|MORNING STAR EDITORIAL: "Don't cry for EU failings"|
Read on for an important editorial in the Morning Star, the only socilaist daily in Britain. On the front page that day, the lead article pointed to the growth of poverty affecting millions, in work and out. In it, Bob Crow said, "We've seen our brothers and sisters fighting the EU cuts assault on the streets of Greece and Spain and if they can mobilise mass resistance to the political and business elite then so can we." The Star editorial backed this with an analysis of the EU and a call to Britain's labour movement to wise up to what is occuring in Brussels, and to act.
Nobody need weep tears over the collapse of the European Union summit. Member state heads of government will soon meet again and cobble together a compromise EU budget for 2014-20.
But the abortive Brussels talks were instructive about where power lies in the EU.
Absolute power certainly does not lie in the hands of unelected European Council president Herman Van Rompuy, who chairs ministerial meetings and ostensibly heads the EU in between. Nor does it reside with unelected president of the unelected but powerful European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso.
Nonetheless, the people in both posts, together with the unaccountable European Central Bank, wield considerable influence.
They drew up the trillion-euro budget in the first place, allocating resources between the different funds and programmes - including the growing ones for foreign and military policy.
Although the budget cannot be imposed on the presidents and prime ministers of EU member states, the same European army of unelected bureaucrats and unaccountable bankers will draw up the new draft.
They will do so within the parameters of the fundamental treaties of the EU, notably those of Rome, Maastricht and Lisbon.
These promote the free movement of capital, labour, goods and services within the EU, monetarism, privatisation and freedom for Europe's monopoly corporations around the world.
They enshrine the enormous powers of unelected EU institutions while limiting those of elected parliaments and governments at regional, national and European levels.
That is why big business in every country of Europe fundamentally supports EU membership.
It is why Confederation of British Industry president Sir Roger Carr has rushed to condemn talk of British disengagement (while wanting to shield the City of London from EU regulation).
That is also why Tony Blair is taking time off from solving the Palestinian question to address the Business for New Europe forum in London.
On Wednesday, he will urge top capitalists to support a "grand plan" to strengthen the EU in its global struggle against rival imperialist powers and the emerging economies of China, India and Brazil.
Although each enjoys a veto, the EU heads of government will eventually reach a budget settlement after some horse-trading.
They will do so because real power in the major member states lies with the financial monopolies which, including through the big industrial companies, dominate their national economies.
These are the ruling-class interests embodied in EU treaty provisions. Politicians such as Angela Merkel and David Cameron know what they have to do.
New rescue packages will be finalised for German, French, British and other banks exposed in the bond markets - although these will be misrepresented as bailouts for the governments and peoples of Cyprus, Greece and the rest.
The EU Commission, the ECB and the IMF will again demand deeper cuts in social programmes, more privatisation and fewer rights for workers and trade unions.
All of which makes it so extraordinary that Britain's labour movement remains confused about the EU.
Indeed, some unions have yet to abandon the European "social charter" and "social chapter" delusions of the 1980s and '90s.
The anti-EU stance of some fanatically pro-US and xenophobic elements on the right should not deter socialists and democrats from taking a clear position.
Big capital is pro-EU and has made it unreformable. The labour movement should uphold working-class interests and the sovereignty of the people, exposing the class character of the EU at every opportunity.
Marxism - an introduction
Marxism inspires millions to struggle for a better world. The Communist Manifesto is the starting point in understanding working class politics. It was written in 1847 and published the following year. The CP reprinted the Manifesto in 2005 as part of it's Classics of Communism series, read it here.
Revolting Europe is a political blog with an internationalist flavour. Edited by radical left writer Tom Gill, it is great source of information about events in the political cauldron currently called 'European Union'
21st Century Manifesto is a daily blog of politics - home and abroad, economics and culture. It regularly features in the top 150 political blogs in Britain. Manifesto has a worldwide following and speaks with authority on international issues.
Country Standard newspaper was launched by the Communist Party in 1935. It has long championed the rights and welfare of workers in the food and farming sector. Today the journal is run by an editorial collective of CP and Labour members, environmentalists and trade unionists. It is available in print and online.