NUEVO PERU – CURRENT SITUATION UPDATE: NOTES ON THE GLOBAL CRISIS

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18. ON CLASS STRUGGLE AND REACTIONARY ELECTIONS IN FRANCE

The purpose of these notes is none other than to provide material that serves the discussion of the different issues we raise.

On the early elections to the National Assembly called by Macron after his party’s failure in the elections for the European Parliament on June 9, much has been written by journalists and political analysts in the reactionary media, the meaning of which can be summed up by what The Wall Street Journal (USA) said after the first round of voting on June 30:

“If you are in a casino with Emmanuel Macron, do not imitate his bets” (…)

The French president gambled by calling elections at short notice for the National Assembly, and on Sunday he and his centrist party finished in a weak third place in the first round of voting. The big winners were the parties of the right and the left.”

This is an embarrassing result for Macron, who called unnecessary elections at short notice after the Rassemblent National obtained good results in the recent elections to the European Parliament,” analyzes the newspaper.

»His bet was that voters would sober up when the National Assembly came around. Instead, they served themselves a double, more interested in sending a message of discontent than Macron’s version of centrist sobriety.”

As for the parts we have underlined from the American newspaper’s comment, we agree because it corresponds to the results achieved by Macron’s party, since these express the spontaneous rejection of his policy and the institutions he represents. Regarding the opportunity of the call for early elections and the objectives that Macron has set himself, we consider that TWSJ does not hit the mark. Undoubtedly, the reactionary Macron is a gambler, who deals the cards and keeps the aces up his sleeve to win the electoral game, whatever the results of this, in absolute or relative figures. Power that he is invested with by the Constitution of the Fifth Republic of 1958.

For the above, we raise the following question:

Is there a possibility in these early legislative elections in France of a change in the form of government, from a reactionary bourgeois-democratic regime to a fascist regime, of the French State, a State of bourgeois dictatorship? But, if the answer to the question is negative, let us formulate the problem in another way: But has the French president put his sovereign power in these elections?

Before trying to answer the question posed above, let us look at some substantive things:

SOME SUBSTANTIVE THINGS

France, as an imperialist country of the second world, has an economy centered on the monopoly of non-state property, politically it develops a bourgeois democracy of increasing restriction of rights, it is a reactionary liberalism. Therefore, the main contradiction in France is the contradiction between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, which is resolved through the socialist revolution.

France, like the other countries of the second world, are non-superpower imperialist powers, that is, with less economic, political and military power like Japan, Germany, France, Italy, etc. that have contradictions with the superpowers because they endure, for example, the devaluation of the dollar, military restrictions and political impositions; these imperialist powers want to take advantage of the conflict between the superpowers to emerge as new superpowers, they also unleash wars of aggression against oppressed nations and among them, in addition, there are also sharp contradictions (see International Line of the PCP, 1988).

Lenin, on the process of reaction of the capitalist States, says that these follow the process of centralization of power, of strengthening of the “executive power”, of its bureaucratic and military machine to the detriment of parliament as its common characteristic features, in a process that is repeated in the 19th century and continues in the 20th century, although, with the passage from pre-monopoly capitalism or free competition to monopoly capitalism, in a more varied, slow and extensive way.

Lenin teaches that: that the monopoly in economy corresponds to the reaction and violence in all the lines of politics. That in the imperialist phase, at a certain moment the immense power of the bourgeois State merges with the power of the gigantic monopolies in the economy and all the other organizations of bourgeois and class society follow this tendency. The different bourgeois organizations and parties are incorporated into the state apparatus.

HISTORY

After the First World War, there was a crisis of bourgeois democracy and parliamentarism (Mariátegui) and then the phenomenon of fascism occurred. After the defeat of fascism in the Second World War, in the process of the bourgeois State, there was a new restructuring of the State in the imperialist countries, on the path of centralization of power in the executive, to varying degrees, as a gradual displacement of parliamentarism by the power of the executive.

And, after the Second World War, the French imperialist State has had two restructurings on its path of reactionary, following the tendency towards presidential absolutism. Therefore, it is necessary to take a look at the development of the national and international class struggle in that period.

During the Second World War, the people, led by the Communist Party, developed guerrilla warfare and rose up in armed insurrections against the Nazi occupation and against the collaborationist Vichy regime in part of France, until 1944. The civil war of the proletariat against the bourgeoisie “was inserted into the international war and, for them, civil war and international war became one.”

But in France, unlike in the countries of Eastern Europe, where “the reactionary elements in these countries were uprooted by the iron plough of the Soviet Red Army,” the opposite happened. “The reactionary elements” obtained the support of the armies of the “Western Allies,” who diverted their march towards Nazi Germany to enter Paris and help De Gaulle, in order to snatch from the proletariat and the people the fruits of victory in the war against fascism.

De Gaulle, in the service of revisionism, which usurped the leadership of the PCF, established the coalition government of the National Front on May 8, 1945.

According to Chairman Mao, “To say that there was no civil war in these countries is to look at the problem from a formal point of view and to refuse to see the real nature of the war” (Chairman Mao Tsetung, Reading Notes on the Handbook of Political Economy of the Soviet Union, 1960). And, we add, not to see the capitulation of revisionism.

On the betrayal of revisionism, the Communist Party of China under the personal leadership of Chairman Mao also stated:

Since the Second World War, the international communist movement, while developing greatly, has produced its antithesis within its own ranks, namely, a revisionist countercurrent opposed to socialism, Marxism-Leninism and the proletarian revolution. This countercurrent was primarily represented first by Browder, later by Tito and now by Khrushchev. Khrushchev’s revisionism is nothing other than the continuation and development of the revisionism of Browder and Tito” (THE PROLETARIAN REVOLUTION AND KHRUSHCHEV’S REVISIONISM, COMMENTARY ON THE OPEN LETTER OF THE CC OF THE CPSU (VIII) by the Editorial Staff of Renmin Ribao and the Editorial Staff of Hongqi Magazine, March 31, 1964).

Within this revisionist countercurrent, “represented at that time by Browder, we locate the French revisionists headed by Thorez at that time, who would later follow in the wake of Khrushchev’s revisionism. As the CCP document cited above says:

With the formation of the international and national anti-fascist united front during the Second World War, he became obsessed with the “democracy,” “progress” and “good sense” of the bourgeoisie, he totally bowed down to the bourgeoisie and degenerated into a capitulationist from head to toe.”

Acting like Browder, these miserable revisionists, headed by Thorez, betrayed the proletariat and the French people who had given their blood in the war of resistance against fascism and for the development of the proletarian revolution in France, the socialist revolution.

The French Communist Party changed its colour, going from a party of the proletariat to a bourgeois workers’ party. Capitulating before the bourgeoisie, instead of continuing “the armed struggle, breaking the old state machine and establishing the dictatorship of the proletariat” that was implicit in the international war (Chairman Mao), they became part of the government of “national union” of the French imperialist bourgeoisie, headed by De Gaulle, supported by the armed forces of the “Western allies.” As the French comrades write in their call to boycott the reactionary elections of June 29 and July 7:

Our class, the working class, is today certainly combative, but disorganized and without direction. It lost its capacity to give a coherent political expression, autonomous from the bourgeoisie, when the French “Communist” Party itself became a party of the bourgeoisie.”

The Communist Party of China led by Chairman Mao Tsetung, in the struggle against revisionism, stated:

The events after the Second World War once again demonstrate that the main component of the bourgeois state machine is the armed forces and not parliament. Parliament is only a decoration, a screen for bourgeois rule. Adopting or abolishing the parliamentary system, granting greater or lesser power to parliament, adopting one or another type of electoral law, all this is always determined by the bourgeoisie in accordance with the needs and interests of its domination (…) For example, after the Second World War, the French monopoly bourgeoisie has revised the electoral law twice, in each case causing a considerable decrease in the parliamentary seats of the French Communist Party. In the parliamentary elections of 1946, the PCF obtained 182 seats. However, in 1951, as a result of the revision of the electoral law by the monopoly bourgeoisie, the number of seats of the PCF was drastically reduced to 103, that is, it lost 79 seats. In the parliamentary elections of 1956, the PCF won 150 seats. But for the 1958 elections, the monopoly bourgeoisie revised the electoral law again, and as a result, the number of seats of the PCF was suddenly reduced to 10, that is, 140 seats were lost” (THE PROLETARIAN REVOLUTION AND KHRUSHCHEV’S REVISIONISM).

Also, what is applicable to the revisionist PCF of Thorez and his followers, in the same document he stated:

The events after the Second World War also show that if the communist leaders adhere to the “parliamentary road” and fall victim to the incurable disease of “parliamentary cretinism”, they will not only be disappointed but will inevitably sink into the swamp of revisionism, burying the revolutionary cause of the proletariat.”

The restructuring of the French State

Continuing with the restructuring of the French State, we say:

The process of centralization of the bourgeois state has been studied by non-Marxist authors from the point of view of constitutional law and state theory, such as Susanne Benöhr in her research “Das faschistische Verfassungsrecht Italiens aus der Sicht von Gerhard Leibholz, Zu den Ursprüngen der Parteienstaatslehre” (The fascist constitutional law of Italy from the point of view of Gerhard Leibholz, On the origin of the doctrine of parties”, 2001), this author is the father of the theory of parties in force in Germany. By order of the Federal Constitutional Court, where as a result of her research the following is written:

In other words: Leibholz’s theory on the party state was based on the analysis of fascist constitutional law, in particular of the fascist constitutional law. constitutional position of the PNF, and would lack the elements of fascist constitutional law. The idea of ​​integrating the parties into the constitution in a mediating and integrative manner was based on the example of the fascist party. The same applies to the organizational integration of the PNF. parties in the constitutional structure The immanent barrier that the drafter of the Basic Law had imposed on Leibholz on the one hand, and the exemplary role that the PNF played on the other, can be clarified by the following quote: The difference between a total state and a Western-style democracy is The only truth is that with the totalitarian state we are dealing with a one-party state and with a Western-style democracy with a two-three-party or multi-party state (Leibholz, People and State). in German Constitutional Law, in: Ill. (as note 96), pp. 7-76,”.

The process of the imperialist bourgeois state in France follows one of the two possible forms, that of executive absolutism concretized as presidential absolutism. The other form is that of fascism, which we will not deal with here. In France, this form of reactionary bourgeois state with centralization of power in the executive, to the detriment of parliament, takes a classic form as presidential absolutism.

The first reconstruction of the bourgeois dictatorship after World War II occurred with the Constitution of the Fourth Republic. The 1946 constitution, similar to that of 1875, which led to a crisis of parliamentarism between the wars, provided for a head of state and a cabinet of ministers responsible to parliament. The Fourth Republic developed amidst “minor government crises”, as during the validity of the previous Constitution of 1875. The Algerian war and the blockade of the island of Corsica occurred in 1958 and the President of the Republic, Rene Coty, called General de Gaulle back to resolve the crisis. Thus, the second restructuring of the French imperialist bourgeois State after World War II took place, the new Constitution of the Fifth Republic, which is still in force today.

The second restructuring of the French imperialist bourgeois State after World War II. The Constitution of the Fifth Republic of 1958, amended in 1962, as regards the indirect election by electoral college of the President of the Republic, in order to establish his direct election, leads to the second restructuring of the French imperialist bourgeois State, with which the reactionary nature of the bourgeois State is concretized as the centralization of power in the President, in the manner of an Orleanist sovereign (Chartre of 1830, with King Louis-Philippe – Orleans dynasty).

With the new constitution a “bastard republic” is established, with a president who has the power to arbitrate over the Executive and Parliament, who is thus above the political parties and can have laws passed by his own decision, by means of a plebiscite and has the power to dissolve Parliament, declare a “state of exception”, which as the fascist Carl Schmitt said, whoever has the power to declare a state of exception exercises sovereignty. In this situation, it is necessary to point out that the imperialist bourgeois faction in power has secured control of this presidential institution, turning the president into a “republican monarch” and the bourgeois republic into a “republican monarchy” (“bastard republic”).

ON THE QUESTION RAISED AT THE BEGINNING

After the long digression above, we continue to address what is related to the introductory question:

Much has been discussed about the dissolution of the Legislative Assembly and the calling of new elections by French President Macron, on the same night of the elections of June 9th for the European Parliament. As is known, Macron’s party was defeated and Marine Le Pen’s Rassemblement National (RN) party, headed by Bardelle, achieved victory with more than 32% of the votes, thus imposing itself on all the other parties of the French political spectrum participating in the elections.

Macron’s measure has been branded by some as unnecessary, as a political gaffe, as an irresponsible act of unleashing an unnecessary political crisis, endangering French democracy and the European Union. All this can only be explained by the immense power that the president has according to the French Constitution of 1958 and by his narcissism. The immense power of the president is true, according to the Constitution, as we will continue to discuss later, the president has practically the powers of a sovereign like Louis Philippe of Orleans.

The introductory question that we have raised, is appropriate to ask in order to know what President Macron is pursuing with the dismissal of the Executive – Prime Minister and all his ministers – and the Legislative Assembly, to unmask the revisionists and opportunists of all colors such as those grouped within the so-called “New Popular Front” or those not grouped in it and to use in the agiprop among the masses.

We believe that Macron has faced two alternatives: a) win the current elections in the second round, which is the important one, with a republican front, which is in place after the first round on June 30, or b) give way to a government of cohabitation with the RN in order to “disenchant” it by integrating it as a government under its tutelage. The latter, so that the RN – the continuation of the FN of old Le Pen, founded by ex-collaborators of the Vichy regime and ex-French members of the Nazi SS – loses the “enchantment” it has for voters, since it has not been a government until now and therefore does not have the popular rejection, expression of the proletariat-bourgeoisie contradiction, as masses-government. And, in addition, in the three years that Macron still has as president, to complete the integration or adaptation of the RN to the current constitutional regime in order to maintain the political “stability” of the bourgeois dictatorship. It should be added that Macron’s sovereign power is not only over the parties and the assembly, but he also keeps the Defence and Foreign Affairs departments for himself. This means that there is no danger for Macron’s current commitments regarding the war or the policy of the imperialist alliance of the EU, “Europeanism”.

According to the comments in the bourgeois media, by bringing forward the legislative elections, Macron intends to “unite the entire French nation against the extreme right”, represented by the RN, the renamed party of Le Pen, the National Front, which is presented as the greatest danger to democracy, Europe, etc. Following their patterns in the big bourgeoisie, the most diverse opportunists and revisionists have grouped together in the “New Popular Front”, in remembrance of the “Popular Front” of before the Second World War, of the fight against fascism, to defend the bourgeois-democratic form of government of bourgeois dictatorship.

IN REALITY THE QUESTION WE POSED WHEN WE BEGAN TO OUTLINE THESE NOTES HAS ALREADY BEEN ANSWERED TO A LARGE EXTENT

After the first round of the elections on Sunday 7 July, the Belgian newspaper “De Tijd” commented on Monday: “Ultimately, these results do not say much about the final distribution of seats in Parliament. Now comes the second round, and “then tactical considerations come into play when choosing.” Voting game. If an RN candidate makes it to the second round – which is not a problem given the results of the first round – the other parties usually unite to defeat him.

The only question now is which side can beat the RN rival in the electoral districts. »Macron expected his alliance to succeed. However, he was surprised by the rapid formation of a Left Front that occurred immediately after his announcement of early elections,” explains the newspaper. “Macron now risks having to cede the initiative to the left if his candidate comes third.” But he clearly overestimated his strength.” This is not true, because it is the majority of NFA candidates who have given up their place to the Macronists, except for those of the so-called FI who hypocritically want to show themselves as loyal to their voters but will ultimately end up pushing the cart of the “republican front.”

But the newspaper El País of Madrid clarifies what is expressed in the last paragraph of the Belgian’s comment, when it says:

»El País«

The National Assembly’s victory in the first round of parliamentary elections places the blame on other parties. “Either they unite in the second round to defeat Marine Le Pen’s RN, or they risk paving the way for a far-right government in France within a week.”

The newspaper sees possible difficulties in forming a front against the right due to political differences, but at the same time states: “Fortunately, there seems to be a will to overcome these differences.” “El País” also refers to Macron’s call for a solution: to form a “broad, clearly democratic and republican union.”

Now, that is already clear, as we anticipated, the NFP has withdrawn the majority of candidates and the Macronists have not reciprocated to the same extent. Thus, in practice, the “republican front” proposed by Macron has been formed. In passing, we affirm that this clarifies that Macron’s call for early elections is not only about imposing “legitimacy” at the polls of his policy rejected by the majority, but that his sights are set on the presidential elections of 2027. And that it was not a hasty or unnecessary measure.

We add that the imperialist bourgeoisie of the various countries of Europe discovered early on the importance of using the natural fear of fascism among the masses, both to restrict rights and freedoms, from freedom of conscience and the right of opinion to the right of asylum, and to harness the masses to the bourgeois State by calling on them to go to the polls and vote against the danger of “fascism” or the “ultra right.” In some cases, the intelligence services have facilitated with personnel, weapons and means the formation of “clandestine” neo-Nazi or neo-fascist armed groups to attack immigrants and even members of established parties.

In almost all imperialist countries, the bourgeois state itself finances these so-called “extreme right” parties according to its electoral laws and also provides them with personnel from the internal intelligence service to adapt them to the general policy of the state, under the pretext of monitoring their conformity to the constitution.

These “extreme right” or pro-Nazi or neo-fascist parties serve for a time as the “democratic juice” of the opposition government. This is clear if one looks at the path followed by the parties of this sputum in post-war Europe, such as in Italy, Germany, France, etc. One should not forget how the process of “denazification” took place in Germany, where the ex-Nazis were integrated into the institutions of “democracy” by the Adenauer government, or in France, where many of the ex-officials of the Vichy Republic regime have successively occupied important posts in the IV and V French Republic.

The RN seeks a more open reactionary approach to the bourgeois state, focuses more openly than other bourgeois parties on the danger of immigration for French “identity” and is in favour of the same policy of French imperialism of defending its imperialist interests by keeping its distance from US imperialism and NATO, and of France’s own military and atomic policy and closer ties with Russia to defend its zones of influence in Africa and the Middle East, which have been taken from it by US imperialism and the other imperialist powers. For this reason, like the AfD in Germany, it presents itself as “supporters of peace” and “against war”. The RN “wants a Europe à la carte” say the bourgeois media.

Now, in the second round, which is the most important for determining the composition of the Legislative Assembly, the faction of French imperialism headed by Macron is faced with the challenge of uniting all the forces opposed to the RN, including the NFP. If the agreement and the redistribution of posts are reached and the RN, headed by Le Pen’s pawn, is defeated, there will be a government of these forces. Thus, a “republican front” would have the right to put forward a candidate for this faction of French imperialism in view of the presidential elections of 2027. But Macron has planned an alternative B for a “national unity”, another face of collusion and struggle of the big monopolistic bourgeoisie at a new level against the French people, that is, “cohabitation” with the RN, if the latter obtains a parliamentary majority. In order, as we have already said, to “disenchant” the RN in the eyes of the masses (arena of contention), which represents the rival faction of the same French monopoly bourgeoisie of the same class dictatorship, in order to regain the sympathies of the voters for the 2027 elections. But, most importantly, for the system to become the guardian or adoptive father of this faction of imperialism in its adaptation to the Fifth Republic.

Macron is taking this gamble knowing that in both cases a) or b) he will retain governmental power for the reactionary bourgeois-democratic faction of French imperialism. In this way, the “prime minister and the ministers of the parliamentary majority as part of the executive branch subject to presidential power” serve as a fuse for the president to unleash popular anger against Macron’s anti-popular policy. All this is due to the restructuring of the French imperialist state carried out between 1958 and 1962 by De Gaulle.

Macron, as head of the French imperialist state, first seeks to “legitimize” his presidential power at the polls in the face of popular rejection of his government’s anti-worker and anti-popular measures and the defeat in the elections for the European Parliament. He resorts to using the fear of the masses against fascism, which worked for one of his predecessors, Chirac, to be elected in the second round with more than 82% of the votes against the old Le Pen, and for himself, to be elected in the second round against his daughter Le Pen, in the second round on two occasions.

Macon, regardless of the results, can maintain his power and govern based on the “legitimacy” of the results of the “last popular consultation”, either with a government of “consensus” or “cohabitation”, a deceitful “legitimacy” granted to him by this “bastard republic” of the dictatorship of the imperialist bourgeoisie. With this “legitimacy” he will continue with his government of the big monopolistic bourgeoisie, with his reactionary anti-popular and anti-worker policy. Let us see what the French Constitution of the Fifth Republic says about presidential power

According to the Constitution of the Fifth Republic: “In addition to the usual prerogatives of a President of the Republic, such as the appointment of the Prime Minister and members of the government (Article 8), as well as the presidency of the Council of Ministers and the promulgation of laws (Articles 9 and 10), the President also has the power to submit to a referendum any bill that is related to the public powers (Article 11), which gives the President the power to ask the people for direct legitimacy in case the parliament does not agree with him. He can also dissolve the National Assembly (Article 12) as well as obtain exceptional power when the safeguarding of the institutions and the nation is in danger (Article 16).”

The legislative power, composed of the National Assembly and the Senate, has the power to vote on laws and control the exercise of power. It can, if it so wishes, revoke the government by not attributing its confidence to it. The Senate examines the laws and in case of disagreement, this last institution always has the last word.

But, we add, do not confuse, the president of the republic is untouchable and has in his hands the policy of Defense (war) and Foreign Affairs. And, the “government” has the function of “fuse” of the president. This means, the “government” can be changed but not the president, who can always dissolve the parliament and appoint a new government.

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