As a start, we propose to transform this somewhat random bonus into an automatic payment on the payslip which would enable an immediate rise in net minimum wage the SMIC from Euros net to Euros net. We could decide to raise the line for income support from Euros to Euros per month, but in this case it is clear that we would have to increase the funding requirements not only from the highest salaries but also at minimum wage SMIC level, with the result that the increase in the net minimum wage SMIC would be distinctly below Euros.
An aim which would be more intelligible — and perfectly feasible in a few years — would be to raise income support to Euros.
Coup de barre à gauche pour le Comité national d'éthique
The minimum wage SMIC would then amount to Euros net which, in total, would represent an appreciable improvement in standards of living for millions of low wage-earners. To sum up: the system of an automatic payment on the pay slip is more practical and efficient for employees; it also means the question of financing and tax reform has to be dealt with immediately which is an excellent thing.
More generally, the advantage of our approach is that it enables us to set the question of basic income in a much broader context, that of the debate on social justice which concerns the distribution of income and property as a whole, and not uniquely the basic income. The question of social justice is not restricted to Euros or even Euros per month.
Our fear is that we are spending too much time and energy on discussing the introduction of an income of Euros formally paid to everyone — which can ultimately be reduced to an accounting operation on pay slips, and that this obscures the major issues of social justice.
Our aim is more ambitious and must be that of a society based on a fair remuneration for labour, in other words, a fair wage and not simply a basic income. This implies re-thinking a whole set of institutions and policies which complement one another. These include a new system of basic income revenue universel which is more automatic and more efficient, in particular for the year age group; improved public services which involves in particular genuine equality of access to education and health these fundamental goods should not be subsidiary to monetary payments ; labour law and the rights of organizations, the fragmentation of work is not inevitable and new spaces for protection and power-sharing have still to be invented in firms, associations and administrations ; and, of course the tax system which also enables the perpetuation of positions of power to be limited and, obviously, the financing of the totality of our shared aims.
I do not share this conception, which seems to me to be excessively rigid but, it is, of course, legitimate and respectable. Sometimes these refer to a system of allocating an allowance, sometimes to a tax credit and sometimes to a combination. Authors do not always take the time to clarify their meaning in this respect. It does seem to me easier to understand if there is a budgetary line for income support which consolidates the payment and the funding; but in the last resort this accounting operation is relatively secondary once we accept the principle of automatic payment on the pay slip.
France , in spite of the establishment propaganda, is the 10 th country for GDP, and not the 5th i laugh as they all proclaim:. Pas plus pertinent. Evidemment non. Pas vraiment.
Mais ces visions sont assez incorrectes. Despite officially respecting its neutrality in the presidential election, the CFDT too is renewing ties to the party. Finally, in what was seen as a cynical move to try to reconnect with working-class voters being lost to the FN, the CFDT General Secretary of the Steelworkers Federation in the North-Lorraine region, Edouard Martin, was designated to lead the PS list for the East France constituency in the European elections, less than a year after criticizing the government for not doing enough to prevent the closure of Arcelor-Mittal steelworks in the Lorraine Bourmaud, Thus, the election appeared to suggest that unions were coming out of their hyper-neutral stances of the previous 20 years and positioning themselves on the left, with the PS being seen as the privileged political partner.
Subsequent events, however, have shown this rapprochement to be very fragile. Explanations for these evolutions and to what extent they represent a durable new configuration of party—union relations in France will now be discussed. Sources: , CSA; clesdusocial. In the legislative elections, just over 40 per cent of those professing to be close to the CFDT voted for PS, with 45 per cent giving their support to Lionel Jospin, the PS candidate in the presidential elections Andolfatto, , pp.
Support, however, has fluctuated in the twenty-first century, falling to 26 per cent in the presidential elections before rising again to 56 per cent in Table 1. One in five CFDT sympathizers regularly votes for the Gaullist candidate in presidential and legislative elections, a figure that rose to one in three in Andolfatto, , p. FO, traditionally close to the left of the PS, shows a similar trajectory: a move away from support for extreme left parties and increasing support for the socialists. Indeed, while the PS again gets the highest share of the votes at 28 per cent, the centre, Gaullists and the FN also score well, with the latter getting one in four votes from FO sympathizers in Table 1.
Is our basic income really universal?
Among other trade unions, similar trends can be seen. The main unions historically close to the PS — the CFDT and FO — have seen large percentages and at times the majority of their sympathizers abandon the left altogether for centrist, Gaullist and even National Front candidates in presidential elections in the twenty-first century. From the party side, trade union weakness and fragmentation in France has long weakened the attractiveness of stable party—union relations.
Indeed, the traditional independence of unions and their appeal to workers irrespective of their partisan allegiance means that they cannot deliver voters en bloc to any one party at election time, a problem that has continued into this century. Thus, in terms of cost—benefit exchange, with the exception of the FSU, unions cannot consistently deliver voters to the PS. Once in power, the PS has little to lose, therefore, in alienating some of its trade union constituency by pursuing policies it perceives as necessary and achievable within the wider constraints imposed by global financial markets and economic crisis.
The fact that union sympathizers have coalesced behind the PS in recent elections should not therefore be seen as a sign of closer ties or union influence, but of the fact that since the late s, the PS has emerged as the only credible left party of government. Put simply, if they wish to have any influence on government policy, unions, their members and sympathizers have nowhere else to go.
However, if a left party captures power, it lacks a credible and dependable union interlocutor due to the political heterogeneity of the union base.
For parties in government, this is not a major problem. Historically, the State has been seen, and has portrayed itself, as the guarantor of the general interest. As we have argued elsewhere Parsons, , there are deep historical roots to this, producing a powerful discourse about the role of the state in France that has resulted in a certain suspicion of organized interests, and a consequent centralization of decision-making power.
Under the Fifth Republic, established in , de Gaulle rejected any claims of interest groups to determine policy, claiming that even the most representative lacked authority and political responsibility, as opposed to the state that, alone, could incarnate and serve the national interest. On the other hand, he accepted that they should be consulted over policy. However, the general picture was one of highly centralized, state-dominated policy-making Hazareesingh , pp. From the s, the Jacobin state may have come under pressure, externally from globalization and Europeanization and internally from state policies of decentralization, deregulation and privatization, but unions have not been able to capitalize on this as these same developments have weakened them Parsons, , From the union side, the political heterogeneity of membership means that they have little incentive to continue to support a government that cannot, or will not, deliver their preferred policies.
This is all the more the case as such rational calculations must be made within the constraints of an ideational heritage that looks unfavourably upon close union—party links. Structurally, the multi-party system in France means that political division risks being internalized by unions. Although the main unions had a political project, defined in terms of the emancipation of the working class, partisan political allegiance was rejected for this reason in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
While this model did not reflect the reality of relations in the post-war period, there has, to some extent at least, been a return to it since the s. The main manifestation of this is the weakening of the link between the PCF and the CGT, and this can largely be explained by the electoral decline of the communists following participation in the first Mitterrand government and the collapse of the USSR Pernot, , p. While one in five voters voted for PCF candidates in presidential and parliamentary elections in the s and s, this had halved by the mids and halved again during the s with the PCF regularly scoring under 5 per cent, and the PCF candidate, Marie-George Buffet, only gaining 1.
Other unions find themselves in a similar, although not so severe, situation, with a need to take the political heterogeneity of their members and potential members into account when assessing the benefits of relations with parties. Thus, contradictory trends seem to be at work. On the one hand, the emergence of the PS as the only credible Left party of government may give unions greater incentives to support the party in the hope of gaining political influence, giving rise to the possibility of a more institutionally linked social democratic bloc.
On the other hand, other structural variables — the fragmentation of the union movement, the catch-all nature of the PS, the continued relative centralization of decision-making power and the constraints of globalization and Europeanization — as well as political contingencies associated with policy-making during a time of crisis, all mitigate against close party—union relations.
Given these major constraints, the rallying of support to Hollande in was ever only likely to be temporary. Indeed, in many respects the changes associated with the presidential elections were politically contingent, dependent upon the impact of right-dominated governments since , which engaged in sometimes radical social reform against the wishes of the unions — in particular the raising of the pension age from 60 to 62 in To this could be added the effects of crisis management by these right-wing governments, with announcements of spending cuts and rising taxes to deal with government debt in a context of high and rising unemployment.
For other unions too, any attempt to gain political influence could only mean support for the PS as the other major party of the Left, the PCF, had gone into sharp decline. Unions therefore want to see the left returned to power in the hope of gaining support for trade union campaigns and struggles. However, with the exception of Thibault, union leaders hesitated to come out in favour of any particular party.
In the case of the CGT this can be explained by its desire to clearly demarcate itself from the CGT and to appeal to a wider social base. For other unions, in the context of multi-party electoral competition engendered by the French two-ballot system, it is better to say who you are against rather than to specify who you are for. It is also a function of the ideational heritage of the early trade union movement in France. Indeed, any transgression of the demarcation between what is considered union activity and the role of parties comes up against a strong element of French political culture.
As has been demonstrated above, trade union independence from political parties was a myth, but it was, and still is, a powerful one. In , a TNS-Sofres poll found that the level of confidence in unions among wage-earners to defend their interests had remained stable since at 55 per cent. Maintaining, in public, at least, a distance from political parties therefore serves union interests in a situation where membership is already extremely low, inter-union rivalry fierce and the free rider problem acute due to the nature of the French industrial relations system.
In effect, extension procedures for collective agreements and the applicability of union gains to non-members reduce individual incentives to join Parsons, The attempt to recruit across as broad a base as possible, therefore, gives an incentive to relations with parties being kept on a largely informal and ad hoc basis. It can be seen that party—union links in France have been historically shaped by the notion of union independence enshrined in the Charter of Amiens. While complete union independence may have been a historical myth, the lack of organic links means that unions do not donate to parties, either to sponsor election campaigns or MPs, or via a collective affiliation of members, again weakening incentives for close relations on a cost—benefit calculation.
Change and continuity in party—union relationships in France can be analysed from a cost—benefit perspective. Likewise, for parties there is little incentive for highly institutionalized relationships with fragmented, weak unions that cannot consistently deliver voters en masse, particularly as, when in power, they are relatively easily bypassed when it comes to policy delivery. The essence of these structural considerations has not changed in over years.
The principal explanation for this lies in the decline of the PCF, which has seen the erosion of both its ideological and sociological bases. For its own survival in a situation of generalized trade union decline and inter-union rivalry, the CGT has had to try to diversify its membership base by appealing to workers more broadly. Beyond the communist left, much of the continuity in party—union relations can be explained structurally by inter-union rivalry and weakness and party competition, and contemporaneously by the experience of the left in government.
However, they are also historically conditioned by powerful normative discourses that see a separation between unions and parties as desirable. These discourses emanate not only from unions through their continued adherence, at least in public, to the principles of the Charter of Amiens, but also through political parties and State institutions through the notion of governing in the general interest.
While the above may explain the fragility of union support for Hollande in general, it does not explain why the CFDT continues to support the government, or at least has not gone to a position of outright opposition as other unions have, in the face of austerity policies.
Structural variables and a cost—benefit calculation cannot in themselves explain this position. An explanation must therefore be sought in the ideational realm as well as in cost—benefit analysis. Effectively, the CFDT is sticking to a path traced since the mids when it embarked upon the process of recentrage and resyndicalization. Its strategy of delivering concrete gains through collective bargaining has seen the confederation grow since the s.
This invites two observations.
Second, as the structural and ideational incentives for links with parties are not strong, but with a need for dialogue with government for policy influence, support for the Hollande administration can be expected to weaken over time, with a return to neutrality in the elections a distinct possibility. Thus, the rallying of unions, even in the case of the CFDT, to Hollande for the presidential elections does not represent a sea-change in party—union relations in France.
Rather the rapprochement of unions to the PS is politically contingent, and with underlying structural and ideational variables mitigating against party—union ties, it is ultimately fragile and in all probability, temporary.
- Ivo Rens - AbeBooks.
- Leonhard Ragaz.
- L’IDÉE DU COMMUNISME, 2 - Alain Badiou, Slavoj Žižek - Éditions Lignes.
- Petty Offenses and Crimes of the Heart.
- Handcuffs and Spanking (Bondage Club 1).
Generally, the results from the questionnaires showed that the major change in party—union relations in France is the disintegration of the PCF—CGT link since the s. Party—union relations in France are multi-directional, with no exclusivity in any relationship, on either the union or the party side.
[SMOLNY] MARX 02f : Marx on Bakunin : A neglected text
As a result, they are ad hoc , fairly weak, giving unions little influence in policy-marking. The explanation for these elements of continuity and change are explained by cost—benefit exchange theory. However, these exchanges are also historically and ideationally conditioned, a theme explored more fully in this article. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.
Skip to main content Skip to sections. Advertisement Hide.
Résumé de l'auteur
Download PDF. Left parties and trade unions in France. Open Access. First Online: 03 April Introduction Historically, particularly in Western Europe, left-wing parties were seen to have close links with trade unions in a mutually beneficial exchange wherein unions mobilized voters for parties and received access to power, or at least influence over policy, in return.
For parties, although the independence of the trade union movement is respected, things are more nuanced. These notes were mainly written in German, with an occasional French or English expression thrown in. Riazanov wrote a brief introduction to his publication of the manuscript. It is very general and exceedingly cautious, avoiding any discussion of the possible political significance of the notes.
Riazanov states that while Engels dated the notes as probably written in , he himself believes they were made in Clearly, for a satisfactory publication of the Manuscript, it should have been printed in the languages in which it was written - the Russian parts in Russian, the German parts in German. However, Riazanov published the whole text in Russian only. The French version is very poor indeed. Rubel again printed extracts from the notes. The only English version I have been able to discover is a partial translation of the French version, and appeared in the New York neo-Trotskyist journal The New International in Since this version simply copied the confusion between what was written by Bakunin and what by Marx, this is somewhat of an understatement.
The Italian translation is much the best, but it is hard to get and prints the text in such a way as to make confusion between Marx and Bakunin still possible. Bakunin raises the question of the social status of ex-proletarians who find themselves in governmental positions in a socialist society. Marx dismisses this point by arguing that a manufacturer who becomes a member of a municipal council does not thereby change his social class - he is still a capitalist.
Moreover, it also carries with it quite definite material privileges. This particular controversy has received some attention in the English literature, which otherwise has completely ignored the Marx notes. The possessors of this capital are the intelligentsia, treated as a separate social class. They use Socialist ideology to get a mass basis in the proletariat for the overthrow of private capitalism.
Having thus, with the help of the proletariat, eliminated the private capitalists, the intelligentsia, refusing to socialize the means of intellectual production, will become the new ruling class. What is of course even more interesting, but can here only be mentioned in passing, is that here we have Bakunin charging Marx with being an ideologue whose views hide the rise of a new class. Yet it is well known that Marx generally analysed the leadership of the Anarchist movement as one of ex-workers and declassed people.
It is not possible to discuss these issues here, nor to investigate possible connections between the notion of Socialism as the class-ideal of the intelligentsia and the ideology of the technocratic movement in its various forms. Just what his new group is - intellectuals? And it would be a fascinating problem in the history of ideas to try and investigate just how far ideas of this type have their roots in anarchist criticism of Marxism. Whatever the reasons why the German text of the marginal notes has not so far been published, it is clear that they are of sufficient interest to justify an attempt to piece together such fragments as are available, re-translating the rest of the notes from the Russian.
This procedure is only a pis-aller , and no claim is made that it is satisfactory. Extracts from the Marx notes have appeared since This was a German version of a similar article written in Russian. Popow cites some of the Marx notes, his references being to the Russian text. However, fortunately the article appeared in the German version of a Russian journal then directed by Riazanov.
The Popow citations may thus serve as our basis. By means of comparing the texts cited, we can trace further fragments of the German text in two other articles. Both writers quote passages already used by Popow, and these agree with his version of the text of the notes.