The following article was first published as the editorial of workplace bulletins distributed by members of L’Etincelle (The Spark) faction in France.

April 17, 2017

To express our anger, and to prepare tomorrow’s fights: Vote Philippe Poutou

Working class people are angry – and rightly so – against Fillon, Macron, Le Pen, etc who are ready do give even more billions to the bosses. To create jobs, they say. But politicians have used this argument for almost 35 years; presidents and ministers, left and right, all have kept on shifting public money to corporations and their stockholders… Did that create one single job? Of course not! But unemployment exploded.

There are better things to do than vote for one of those politicians “who has chances” to get elected. “Poutou? He says what we all think! He speaks like we do!”  This is what workers are saying during the campaign, at the market, in the factory or in the office. But often, they add: “But what’s the point of voting for him? He has no chance to win!”

Maybe. But we know from experience that whoever is elected, the policy will be the same. It will be the policy decided by the bosses, served by all politicians. It will be the policy that serves the rich and that we’ve endured for so many years.

Elections are one of the rare occasions to voice what we think. An opportunity to express our anger against this society, against the capitalist system, which crushes the majority so the rich can get even richer.

Yelling out feels good, but it’s not enough

We need to be ready for tomorrow. The post-election period will see many attacks against the working class. Fillon, Macron, Le Pen warn us about “blood and tears”, and that’s the only promise they are ready to keep! Behind them stand the greedy stockholder, the bourgeoisie, which will make sure the new government keeps dismantling the Labor Code, hit public sector jobs, put another dent in pensions and social security, lower wages, and make us work more without paying us more.

“No saviour from on high delivers, no faith have we in prince or peer” (The International)

And what do Hamon or Mélenchon propose? “Vote for me and I’ll protect you”. No kidding! Mitterrand, Jospin, Hollande said the same thing. Fool me once…

Only the far left candidates make no electoral promises.

Philippe Poutou and his Ford coworkers had to fight for their jobs, and will have to fight again like many of us. No politician came to help them; they could only rely on themselves.

To vote Philippe Poutou isn’t just a way to yell our anger, it’s also a way to say that we only rely on ourselves, that we prepare for tomorrow’s fights. His programme includes no promises, only the goals of our fights:

– Ban layoffs

– Spread the work among all without wage loss

– Minimum wage at €1,800 net, €300 raise for all wages and pensions

On April 23rd, VOTE POUTOU!