THE two wings of the bourgeoisie are now going at it hammer and tongs to both exploit and abuse workers from the new EU states, many thousands of whom have come to the UK looking for a better life.
First of all you have the Bank of England and the government who say that the waves of migrant workers are absolutely vital because they help to keep wages down at a time when inflation is rapidly rising and British workers are fighting for above-inflation wage rises.
They are seen quite simply as a weapon to be used against the organised working class in the trade unions.
This extends to the use by Royal Mail of eastern European workers organised by agencies as scabs speeding through picket lines in the recent strike actions, which are set to resume shortly.
In fact, eastern European workers are super-exploited, make fortunes for the farmers and others they are hired out to, and very often end the week in debt, owing the boss for the scandalous housing arrangements and the poor food for which they are massively overcharged.
The other section of the bourgeoisie has also recently become hyper-active.
These fan the flames of racism, complaining that foreigners are now committing up to 30 per cent of all the crimes in Britain, and that the police are being overwhelmed by a migrant crime wave.
Newspapers have all of a sudden come across villages and towns in Bulgaria and Romania where the people are allegedly living as a plush middle class out of the cash that their relatives, organised in criminal gangs in London, are robbing and stealing, we are being told.
Allegations are rife that Polish workers in particular are claiming child benefit in both Poland and the UK.
All this crap takes you back to the good old days just after the Second World War when London was full of accommodation notices that screeched out ‘No blacks or Irish allowed’.
The Irish were said to be drunken, fighting, troublemakers, while the blacks were just black.
While one section of the bourgeoisie is making millions out of the exploitation of the eastern European migrants, the other is setting out to permanently split the working class and to have a minor civil war in every town and city, so that the exploitation of all workers can be stepped up and continued indefinitely.
The bourgeoisie in Britain is very experienced in the tactic of divide and rule, both at home and abroad.
Read Frederick Engels’ ‘Condition of the Working Class in England in 1844’ to see how each town had an Irish quarter. He shows that the English workers condemned the Irish because they worked for less and lowered wages. The Irish gave as good as they got and showed their contempt for the English workers, regarding them as supporters of colonialism and willing slaves of the bosses.
It took years of struggle to overcome this split in the working class, whose only gainer was the bosses.
The crux of the matter is that the trade unions must welcome unreservedly all migrant workers, and they must organise the whole working class to fight the Brown government which is leading the the bosses’ attack on all workers in Britain.
While the TUC is bound hand and foot to the Brown government it will never be able to unite the working class, since it is the Brown government that is both encouraging the gangmasters and seeking to destroy sections of workers like the Royal Mail workers and their trade union, the CWU.
The TUC must insist that migrant workers must have the same rights as British workers from the moment they arrive in Britain.
It must then lead the struggle against the Brown government, not hesitating to bring it down in order to go forward to a workers’ government that will expropriate the bosses and bankers and bring in socialism.
This is the way forward.