By: Rogelio Acevedo
The past electoral event and its results have confirmed the monumental fraud that has characterized bourgeois democracy and its institutions in the territory of Puerto Rico. The collapse is of such a magnitude that the colonial bourgeois elements have had no recourse other than to admit the debacle. Figures provided by different bourgeois news outlets estimate that abstention was close to 58%, in other words, out of 2.8 million registered voters 1.5 million participated. These statistics seem contradictory considering they were inflated by an indeterminate number, which some sources estimate at between 500 and 700 thousand people. The crass attempt to buttress the electoral system had the contradictory effect of reflecting with greater clarity the weakness of the system.
There is little doubt that the working class confronts an extremely complex scenario in which very powerful forces are moving rapidly to create favorable conditions to increase exploitation and lower its quality of life.
Wall Street’s candidate, Ricardo Roselló, has had several numerous meetings with the financial oligarchy in New York and Washington to assure them that favorable measures in their interests will be enacted: drastic salary reductions, layoffs, service reductions, debt ‘renegotiations’, and tax breaks for finance capital. In addition, there has emerged the orgy of contracts for consultants, coordinators, lawyers and a whole army of parasites salivating over the potential to ‘collaborate’ with the Wall Street Junta. As a result of the approval of the PROMESA Law as well as these meetings, the General Obligation, COFINA and PRASA bonds have begun to rise in value on bond markets in the US.
All of this complex panorama confirms the irrelevance of diverting the attention of the working masses back to the electoral process in the territory and demonstrated the correctness of the call by the Communist Party of Puerto Rico for an active boycott. Many petty bourgeois organizations like the PIP, MIHN and PPT have opportunistically criticized of tactics, without mentioning us by name, alleging that said call caused a “division of independence forces” and that “it is necessary to fight in the streets and at the ballot box.” This posture reflects a high degree of opportunism and that the interests they defend are far removed from the needs and aspirations of the working masses. Apart from our profound differences, the past elections showed the ideological bankruptcy of this sector and that its proposals to reform the system are removed from the tasks required by the moment: the education and organization of the working class.
As a whole, the elections showed the clear purpose of tightening the power of the Wall Street oligarchy in the territory. However, they also showed the path ahead: to achieve changes that benefit the majority in society, the political struggle of the working masses must take place outside of the realm of the bourgeois representative system. This is why we insist on the necessity of the political independence of the working class, which breaks its ideological dependence on the bourgeoisie and the ‘progressive’ sectors of the petty bourgeoisie. Experience has shown that the organizational form of workers councils and Assemblies of Workers are deliberative tools that elevate consciousness for our struggle. These forms of organization are superior to the proposals of electoral participation in the colony.
Before the collapse of the ELA, the moment demands organization and combativeness from the working masses to avert what by all accounts will be a new phase of systematic pillage led by Wall Street Oligarchs and executed by their lackeys in the territory. To overcome the current phase, not only will all of our organizational efforts be necessary – within our workplaces, communities, etc. – to confront the Wall Street Junta and prevent its plans, but also all means at our disposal.