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  • Writer's pictureMichael Laxer

Portuguese Communist Party turns 100

"The developments in the international situation confirm the exploitative, oppressive, aggressive and predatory nature of capitalism and how it is incapable of responding to the problems confronting Humanity, for which it is responsible."

Image via twitter

The Portuguese Communist Party, created by the Portuguese working class and workers, a legitimate heir and continuator of the best traditions of struggle and of the progressive and revolutionary achievements of the Portuguese people, celebrates its Centenary by signaling and valuing its heroic history, by carrying out the struggle in the present and by affirming the Communist ideal and project, which project into the future.
Throughout these 100 years there has been no social transformation, no advancement or achievement by the Portuguese workers and people that is not directly or indirectly associated with the PCP’s activity, struggle, action and intervention. These are 100 years of life and struggle of a Party that, proud of its history and learning from its own experience and that of the international Communist and revolutionary movement, assumes with determination and confidence the demands of today and of the future. - from the Political Resolution of the XXI Congress of the PCP

March 6 marks the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Portuguese Communist Party.

The party and it supporters held events and displays across the country in celebration.

The developments in the international situation confirm the exploitative, oppressive, aggressive and predatory nature of capitalism and how it is incapable of responding to the problems confronting Humanity, for which it is responsible.
Within this general framework, characterized by great instability and uncertainty, the following traits can be highlighted:
- Accumulation of elements of economic stagnation and recession, particularly in the capitalist great powers, and the succession, at shorter intervals and with varying intensity, of peaks of crisis, in the context of the structural crisis, which are rooted in overaccumulation and overproduction, that are intrinsic to the capitalist system.
- Persistence and even intensification of the factors underlying the crisis that erupted in 2007-2008 and the recognized – including by sectors of the ruling class – inevitability of further, possibly even more serious, cyclical crises. The Covid-19 pandemic, which broke out in an already latent situation of crisis, is being harnessed to intensify exploitation and attack rights and freedoms.
- Increasing concentration and centralization of capital and wealth and worsening social inequality, a trend marked by a more unequal distribution of income between Labor and Capital, the drainage of public resources for speculative activities and for economic groups, especially for the finance sector, by a new impetus in the processes of privatization, mergers and acquisitions.
- A brutal intensification of the exploitation of workers with a violent attack by big capital on labor rights, trade union rights and working-class organizations.
- Attacks against social rights, particularly by calling into question public services and the State’s social functions, with privatization processes at the core.
- Deepening injustice and discrimination, particularly against youth, women and immigrants.
- The capitalist system’s difficulty in relaunching significant cycles of accumulation and in countering the tendency of the rate of profit to fall, driving a growing financialization of the economy, an overexploitation of workers and the development of new lines of capitalist reproduction and accumulation.
- Worsening environmental problems, the destruction of ecosystems and the predation of natural resources, which are inherent to the capitalist system, as well as their instrumentalization to subordinate labour and workers' rights, develop new business areas, impose greater concentration and centralization of capital and new privatizations and renewed forms of economic and geostrategic domination.
- A new qualitative leap in the scientific and technical revolution characterized by using machines for tasks that until now required abstract brain functions (artificial intelligence) and other developments, in particular in areas such as information and communication technologies, robotics, the Internet of Things, 3D printing, nanotechnology, genetic engineering or synthetic biology. A leap presented by the ideologues of capitalism as the solution to economic, social and environmental crises for which it is responsible and which they use as pretexts and blackmail on workers to impose unemployment, low wages and inequality, the liberalization of the labour force market.
- A good use of remarkable scientific and technical advances – which contain exceptional potential if used for the benefit of the workers and peoples – is constrained and even subverted by capitalist relations of production that seek to step up exploitation, maximize profit or develop new and powerful military weaponry.
- The affirmation of the role and power of multinational corporations of the so-called digital sector, mostly US-owned, which embodies enormous perils in the economic, social and media spheres, as well as for freedom, democracy and sovereignty, and contributes to increase the domination of economic power over political power, and of imperialism over the peoples.
- The growing domination by finance capital and the sharpening contradiction between the social character of production and the private appropriation of the means of production.
- The financialization of the economy, with growing endebtment and speculation, and the increasingly parasitic nature of the system. Tax havens, corruption and all sorts of criminal trafficking which are inherent to capitalism.
- The ever sharper contradictions between the great imperialist powers as a result of the system’s deepening crisis and, at the same time, their class collaboration against the workers and peoples, within the framework of imperialist rivalry-concertation relations. The insistence by the US on preserving its hegemony over the imperialist camp and, at the same time, dragging its allies into its escalation of confrontation and aggression on the world level.
In the USA, the hegemonic power of the capitalist world – with its enormous economic, scientific and technical, military and ideological potential – the problems, contradictions, inequalities and social conflicts are more intense and evident, together with visible cleavages within the ruling class, in particular as to how to counter the relative decline of the USA at the international level.
The Trump administration carried further the policy of favoring big capital, promoted an even more reactionary drift, encouraging far-right, racist and fascist forces, and stepped up the arms race and US imperialism’s policy of confrontation, interference and aggression.
Not underestimating the desire for change on the part of the people of the United States and differences that may occur as regards domestic policies, the election of Joe Biden as President will translate into the continuation of a foreign policy that reaffirms the goal of preserving the USA’s hegemonic domination in the world, with the inherent threat to the sovereignty and the rights of peoples, international security and peace...
The October Revolution, with its profound transformations and extraordinary historical achievements and its global impact that continues to this day, was a historical experience of universal significance and ushered in a new epoch in the history of mankind, the epoch of the transition from Capitalism to Socialism.
Systematic anti-Communist campaigns, aimed at denigrating what the construction of socialism in the USSR and in other countries was, and what it represented, cannot conceal the extraordinary political, economic, social, cultural and scientific achievements and its role as a powerful factor for progress and world peace.
The decisive contribution of the USSR to the victory over Nazi-fascism, whose 75th anniversary is marked in 2020, was an expression that cannot be erased of socialism’s superiority and of its decisive contribution for the great revolutionary achievements of the 20th Century.
The disappearance of the USSR and the defeats of socialism in Eastern Europe do not counter the need and the possibility of building a new society without exploiters or exploited. On the contrary, these are confirmed by the cruel reality in which millions of human beings are living and the increasingly dangerous international situation arising from the nature of Capitalism and the action of imperialism.
Capitalism, its deepening structural crisis, its nature, the threats and dangers it poses to Humanity, its ever sharper contradictions and the development of the struggle of workers and peoples, make their social and national emancipation more relevant and objectively necessary. -- from Portuguese CP, Chapter 1 - International Situation of the Political Resolution of the XXI Congress

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