Re: [OPE] Marx on international relations

Date: Mon May 12 2008 - 11:45:56 EDT

 Dear Paul, Jerry and Jurriaan,
apologies for having not replied to your responses to my short report. I have been away for about 10 days.I will get back tomorrow. I hope you understand.

-----Original Message-----
To: Outline on Political Economy mailing list <>
Sent: Tue, 6 May 2008 14:15
Subject: RE: [OPE] Marx on international relations

That seemed plausible until the breakup of the Commintern.

Comminform was much more limited, and since then the European bourgeoisie have made more progress at union than the workers of Europe. We do not even have a single European workers party to contest the EU elections.



Hi Paul C (and Dogan and Jurriaan):


The picture I would paint is somewhat different.? 


The long-term trend *for capital* has been increasing concentration 

and centralization and this led not only to oligopolistic markets but

also the formation of *transnational corporations*.? So, in *that* 

sense, capital has been confronting labor more in a united way.


But, we have not seen the same 'concentration and centralization'

of workers and unions internationally to confront capitalists in an

effective way.? Not only haven't mass *international* working 

parties been formed to further the agenda of labor in the political

process, but examples of *transnational bargaining* by trade

unions have been few and far between. In "transnational bargaining"

all of the unions *internationally* representing workers employed 

by a single firm enter into joint and coordinated negotiations. This 

has been attempted (going back at least as far as the early 1980's 

when auto unions which were members of the International Metalworkers

Federation - the *other* IMF! - entered into coordinated bargaining with 

GM and Ford, for example), but has not generally been very

successful - for a variety of reasons which basically reflect the

divisions among workers internationally (e.g. different cultures, 

different conceptions of the role of trade unions and 'labor relations',

different contracts and laws, and different histories of class 

struggle). So - on balance - I would have to say that capital confronts

labor in a far more united way internationally than is the case the 

other way around.


In solidarity, Jerry



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