Where we stand‎ > ‎News & Comment‎ > ‎

DISMANTLING WORKING CLASS EDUCATION by Robin Ramkissoon

posted 19 Feb 2014, 19:36 by Gerry Kangalee   [ updated 19 Feb 2014, 19:38 ]
Ken Howell in his article PNM: The Politics of Deception states: “Against this background, what therefore are the options open to the working people and the ordinary masses whose financial resources are earmarked to be transferred to foreign and local capital?

I would suggest that even in the absence of a combat-ready labour movement the central issue facing all of the people is not simply to remove the current government from office in 2015, but also to reject all of the others including the PNM, and to create a mass movement people’s organisation led by the best among us to take power through the process of national election in order to create a true people’s government.”

Let’s try to understand what Ken Howell’s take is on the deception of the Eric Williams/PNM.

The PNM, NAR, UNC, PP are all on the same capitalist ideological road Different name, different faces, same old economic/social policies.

The problem is, with the absence of a solid Labour movement, the working class has lost its working class identity. The industrial worker at Petrotrin, TTEC, TSTT, Public Transport, Port, Airport, Mittal, Powergen, Cement, Government Agencies etc. do not identify with the working class anymore. They consider themselves part of the middle class. Two cars in the garage, nice house, husband and wife have “professional” jobs. They are no longer conscious that they sell their labour for a wage.

Why is this so? The Labour movement systematically dismantled Trade Union/Working Class education. So the functionally working class, the task worker and the unemployed have no ideological base and as such have lost their identity (consciousness) of their class value.

If you can walk into work in the morning and be told your labour will no longer be paid for, so you are out of a job and have no other meaningful way to get money to live off then you are working class.

You may have been under the impression you are middle class, because of education, participation in managing institutions and systems, having disposable income, liking classical music, etc. But the bottom line is no means of survival but the job you are employed to do, then you are functionally working class!

Ken Howell’s projection at this time will remain a piece of historical /political analysis with a reasonable solution but there is no vehicle occupied by any group of labour leaders to create a “mass movement people’s organisation led by the best among us to take power through the process of national election in order to create a true people’s government.”

Maybe a serious economic/social crisis may motivate the secondary leaders in the labour movement to reignite the foundation laid down by Butler, Rienzi, CLR James, Weekes and others. The present bunch of leading labour leaders dismantled the centre for social transformation.
Comments