Aug 232016
 
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Labour Day 2016 statement from the Central Executive Committee, Communist Party of Canada

Coming almost a year after the defeat of one of the most dangerously reactionary governments in Canadian history, Labour Day 2016 is an important point for the organized trade union movement to respond to challenges facing the working class in the changed political environment – and most importantly, to mobilize against the continued neoliberal austerity policies of governments and corporations. Continue reading »

Aug 252016
 
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Our 38th Central Convention meets at a moment of escalating danger, from increasing war, environmental crisis and economic decay. As the systemic crisis of capitalism continues to deepen, and the effects of the 2008 economic meltdown continue to be felt, imperialist states and organizations are becoming increasingly aggressive. The standoff between nuclear armed states in Ukraine and the expanding war in Syria are powderkegs that threaten disaster. Millions upon millions of people in all parts of the world are being forced into poverty, hunger, homelessness and displacement.

But this is also a moment of rising working class and popular resistance. In all countries, albeit unevenly and with different characteristics, we see increased unity and mobilization. From online campaigns to mass demonstrations, general strikes, and political actions, people are using many different vehicles to advance these struggles. This is also expressed by the rising popularity of so-called democratic socialism, with all its contradictions, which is examined in detail in this report.

In Canada, the electoral defeat of the Conservatives in October 2015 represents a significant victory for the working class, Indigenous peoples, racialized communities, women, LGBTiQ communities, youth and students. While the victory of the Liberal party does not represent a break from the reactionary policies that are characteristic of the Canadian state, through a united, conscious political and organizational struggle we can open new space and possibilities in the fight for peace and disarmament, for immediate action to combat climate change, and for social equity and social justice. These advances can be realized – and can become concrete steps toward more fundamental change. Continue reading »

Aug 252016
 
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The 38th Central Convention of our Party follows a major political upheaval in the recent federal election, and a new escalation of the global economic crisis which emerged in 2007-08. Initially, the Canadian economy was buffered to some degree by exports of fossil fuels and other natural resources, and because Canada’s megabanks were somewhat less exposed to the collapse in value of leveraged (re-packaged) debt. Now, the dramatic collapse in energy prices and the Canadian dollar are causing new job losses and rapid increases in the cost of imported products. The working class is paying a heavy cost for the turmoil of the capitalist system. Continue reading »

Aug 252016
 
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As the economic crisis continues, more progressive people are drawing partisan conclusions and deciding they need to take action, get organized and involve themselves in resistance. Some are becoming active in their unions and mass organizations. The most advanced are being won to the struggle for socialism, and some are joining our ranks.

The urgent question today is to forge a plan of united class action linking the struggle for reforms with the revolutionary struggle for socialism.

Neither social reformism nor ultra-leftism can forge such a way forward. Socialist theory and practice will not arise spontaneously. Only the work of the Communist Party, as our programme says, Afuses scientific socialism with the class struggle and by so doing spreads political and socialist consciousness among the workers B an awareness of their historic mission as a class,@ to lead the peoples of Canada from capitalism to socialism and ultimately communism. Continue reading »

Jul 302016
 

The best thing about the federal government’s pension reform is its pending decision to restore the age of eligibility for Old Age Security (OAS) to 65. It was Harper who raised the age to 67, citing the OECD countries which had re-set the pension age to 67, and in one case to 68. Canadians were living too long, was the argument, and ought to be working – not retiring at 65 – like the Europeans.

These are the same governments that imposed vicious austerity measures right across Europe, that in Greece have led to the suicides of pensioners including a pharmacist who said he refused to eat out of garbage cans.

In Canada the OAS is a significant amount of money for many retirees without a private plan, and can easily double the CPP payments for low-income workers. Harper’s plan was to force seniors to stay in the workforce, many competing with young workers for low-waged entry level jobs.

But the CPP reform, touted by federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau as an agreement that will make “a real difference in all our children’s future lives and I hope for many of you… It’s a historic day”, won’t make any difference at all for today’s pensioners whose incomes won’t rise by a single nickel.

Continue reading »

Jul 292016
 
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In the lead up to the June 23 Brexit vote, Canadian media reported almost daily on the line-up of right-wing, anti-immigrant, racist and fascist organizations that were campaigning in support of Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union: the Brexit referendum.

The message to Canadians was clear: Brexit is dangerous; the European Union is safe. To nail down that assessment with working people, the leader of Britain’s TUC, Frances O’Grady, confirmed that maintaining Britain’s labour rights and standards hinged on enforcement by the European Union – not the British government which she said, would first erode and then eliminate workers’ rights and standards.

Continue reading »