Platform of the Federation of Anarchist Communists of Bulgaria, 1945
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Thursday March 02, 2006 21:24 by Nestor McNab - FAKB
We reject the present social system of State and capitalist centralization, as it is founded on the principle of the State which is contrary to the initiative and freedom of the people...
Platform of the Federation of Anarchist Communists of Bulgaria, 1945
Federatsia na Anarkho Komunistite ot Balgaria - FAKB
We reject the present social system of State and capitalist centralization, as it is founded on the principle of the State which is contrary to the initiative and freedom of the people. Every form of power involves economic, political or spiritual privilege. Its application on an economic level is represented by private property, on a political level by the State and on a spiritual level by religion. These three forms of power are linked. If you touch one, the others are changed and, inversely, if you keep one form of power, it will inevitably lead to the re-establishment of the other two. This is why we repudiate the very principle of power.
We are supporters of the abolition of private property, of the State and of religion, and of the total suppression of every form and institution of constraint and violence.
We reject every teaching and every social, political and economic-political movement aimed at maintaining the State, private property, the church, and constraint and violence in social relations.
We repudiate fascism, which is a historic attempt to restore absolutism, autocracy and the strength of the political form of power with the aim of defending the economic and spiritual dominance of the privileged classes.
We reject political democracy, as it does not foresee the disappearance of the principle of power, and drives the masses to bewilderment by leading them, through lies and illusions, into fights which are against their interests, and corrupts them through the exercise of power and the maintaining of the appetite for domination. Political democracy, furthermore, shows that it is totally incapable of solving the great social problems and that it fosters chaos, contradictions and crime as a result of its social foundations based on the centralized State and capitalism.
We repudiate State socialism as it leads to State capitalism - the most monstrous form of economic exploitation and oppression, and of total domination of social and individual freedom.
We are for anarchist communism or free communism, which will replace private property with the complete socialization of lands, factories and mines, and of all goods and instruments of production. The State will be replaced by a federation of free communes regionally, provincially, nationally and internationally united. The church and religion will be replaced by a free individual moral and a scientific vision.
Unlike all other socio-economic and political concepts and organizations, Anarchist Communism is federalist.
The new social organization that will replace the State will be built and run from the bottom upwards. All the inhabitants of any given village will form the local free commune, and all the local free communes will unite regionally, provincially, nationally and internationally in unions and federations and in a universal general social confederation.
The new organization of society's production will be formed by a tight network of countless local agricultural enterprises, artisans, mines, industry, transport, etc., united on a regional, provincial, national and international level in production unions and federations as part of a general confederation of production.
Society's new organization of exchange, consumption and supply will likewise be represented by a dense and complex network of regional, provincial and national organizations, unions and federations, grouped in a general confederation of exchange and consumption for satisfying the needs of all inhabitants.
All human social activity and all transport, communications, education, healthcare, and so on, will be organized in a similar fashion.
With this organizational system of all the functions of the various aspects of social life, there will be no place in society for the power of one individual over another or for the exploitation of one by another.
The basic principle of production and distribution for the building of the new social system will be: everyone will produce according to their possibilities and everyone will receive according to their needs.
The realization of this social ideal of equality, solidarity and freedom can only be brought about by the united workers and peasant masses, inspired by anarchist communism and organized into ideological, professional, exchange and consumption, cultural and educational groups.
Anarchist communism, while repudiating the State, rejects the involvement of the workers in the administration bodies and institutions of the State, in the parliament and in any vote for the official management of the State.
As the sole means of efficient struggle, as a defence of the immediate interests of the working masses, and for the realization of the full ideal of humanity's freedom, anarchism recognizes only the direct action of the workers themselves, initiated by their economic organizations and expressed through strikes, sabotage, boycotts, general strikes, insurrections and the social revolution. In consequence, anarchism rejects all forms of organization and struggle by political parties, considering them sterile and ineffective, unable to respond to the goals and the immediate tasks and to the interests of the workers in the towns and villages. He true strength of the workers is in the economy and their economic organizations. Only there lies the terrain where capitalism can be undermined. Only there lies the true class struggle.
The radical social re-organization demanded by anarchist communism requires the organizational action of all the forces on whom this historical task is incumbent.
It is above all necessary for the partisans of anarchist communism to be organized in an anarchist communist ideological organization.
The tasks of these organizations are:
- to develop, realize and spread anarchist communist ideas;
- to study all the vital present-day questions affecting the daily lives of the working masses and the problems of the social reconstruction;
- the multifaceted struggle for the defence of our social ideal and the cause of working people;
- to participate in the creation of groups of workers on the level of production, profession, exchange and consumption, culture and education, and all other organizations that can be useful in the preparation for the social reconstruction;
- armed participation in every revolutionary insurrection;
- the preparation for and organization of these events;
- the use of every means which can bring on the social revolution.
Anarchist communist ideological organizations are absolutely indispensable in the full realization of anarchist communism both before the revolution and after.
These organizations are formed on a local level. Every local organization chooses a secretary, whose task is to keep in contact with other similar organizations. The secretaries of all the organizations of one locality with a certain number of inhabitants constitute the general organization of the locality. All the local organizations unite, by region and province, in regional and provincial unions. Contact between the unions is assured by the respective secretaries. All the provincial unions of the country are united in the federation of anarchist communists of Bulgaria. Activities are coordinated by the federal secretariat. The members of each secretariat form part of the local organization in their area of residence, and it is obligatory for every initiative of theirs to pass through the local organization, and therefore be considered an initiative of the latter. The secretariats are merely liaison and executive bodies with now power.
Only anarchist communists can be members of the anarchist communist ideological organizations.
A second type of organization is the workers' syndicate, also based on the federative principle, organized by workplace or by trade, and united into production or trade unions in a general federation of workers' syndicates.
These organizations, created with the participation of anarchist communists, adopt the tactic of direct action and reject the struggles of political parties and all interference by political parties in the workers' organizations.
Their tasks are:
- the defence of the immediate interests of the working class;
- the struggle to improve the work conditions of the workers;
- the study of the problems of production;
- the control of production, and the ideological, technical and organizational preparation of a radical social reconstruction, in which they will have to ensure the continuation of industrial output.
All workers who accept their structure, tactics and tasks may be members of these organizations.
When conditions do not permit the existence of such organizations, anarchist communist workers join other independent syndicalist workers' organizations, while defending their concept of direct action and their anti-party position. The ORPS (1) would appear to be such an organization today.
A third type of organization must group the peasantry. This is the locally-created agricultural labour organization, united on a regional, provincial and national level in a general federation which, together with the federation of workers' syndicates, make up the national confederation of labour.
The tasks of these agricultural labour organizations are:
- to defend the interests of the landless peasants, those with little land and those with small parcels of land;
- to organize agricultural production groups, to study the problems of agricultural production;
- to prepare for the future social reconstruction, in which they will be the pioneers of the re-organization and the agricultural production, with the aim of ensuring the subsistence of the entire population.
The agricultural labour organizations are built on the basis of sector and reject all struggles by political parties and their interference in the organizations. They apply the tactic of direct action, whenever possible, in their specific conditions, including refusing to pay taxes, boycotting the State, production strikes, etc.
The members of these organizations can be landless peasants, those with little land and those with small parcels of land, who work the land themselves without the use of wage labour.
When the conditions to create such organizations do not exist, anarchist communist peasants join other similar labour organizations, with the aim of promoting within them their vision of direct action and struggle against political parties and the tactic of peasant direct action. The OZPS (2) could be considered such an organization.
A fourth type of organization is the cooperative. Anarchist communists participate in all types of cooperative, bringing to them the spirit of solidarity and of mutual aid against the spirit of the party and bureaucracy. Agricultural production cooperatives today merit special attention, as they will become more important and will play a decisive educational role in the future construction of an anarchist communist social system.
Another type of organization are those of young people, women, temperance groups, Esperantists and other cultural organizations whose members support the ideas and the struggles of the anarchist communist ideological and economic organizations of the working people.
Relations between the aforementioned organizations are on a functional basis, that recognizes the full freedom and independence of the members and the organizations, and excludes all external interference and all subordination of one organization to another. The reciprocal dependence between the various types of organization can only be based on their ideological commonality and unity, the common goal to which they all aspire.
Organizational decisions within anarchist communists organizations are made unanimously, and not by majority. The decision of the majority is not binding on the minority; persuasion should always be sought. In practice, the minority generally rallies to the decision of the majority, which reserves the right to express the correctness of its position, once it has been demonstrated in fact. Thanks to this principle, which is widely applied within the anarchist movement, splits, enmities and arguments are rare.
However, within the mass economic organizations and the other organizations, decision are taken by majority vote and are binding, as only in this way can unity be achieved, unity that is absolutely indispensable in mass organizations. But in certain cases where there is profound disagreement, the minority may be freed from the obligation to apply a general decision, on condition that it does not prevent the execution of such a decision.
All the aforementioned organizations share the common task of preparing the radical social reconstruction throughout the country. During the social revolution, they will each carry out (within their own domain) the expropriation and socialization of the means of production and of all goods.
At present, the federation of anarchist communists of Bulgaria has adopted the following slogans:
Long live the international solidarity of the workers!
- The creation of free worker and peasant local councils and committees elected directly and not as representative of political parties, organized and controlled by the people. These councils and committees must take completely in hand, or control, the political direction of the country.
- The role of these councils and committees is to express the wishes of the working masses and of coordinating the efforts of all in order to construct a complete social system and ensure its functioning. They are united on local, regional and national levels and represent the whole people's political force, thought and will.
- The adoption by Bulgarian workers and peasants of the International Workers' Association, to defend the worldwide interests of all working people and impede any forthcoming war.
- The clear and categorical rejection of all forms of class collaboration.
- Recognition of the right of workers to struggle freely to defend their material interests, to improve their conditions and to strike.
- Workers' control of production and a share of the benefits.
- The reduction of wage differences between the various categories of civil servants, State workers and private sector workers, tending towards the introduction of a family wage.
- Exemption from all taxes for workers, low-level employees, small peasants and all low-paid levels of society.
- Free and voluntary agricultural cooperative associations.
- Free and voluntary cooperation between small artisan enterprises.
- Progression towards a complete cooperative system of exchange, food supply and consumption, and towards cooperative development to include domestic and foreign trade and social security.
- Increases in the prices of agricultural production up to an average level and a reduction to the same level of the prices of industrial products, based on real retail prices and a just and egalitarian remuneration for labour in the towns and countryside.
- Organization of the struggle against speculation and the black market by the labour associations, producers' associations, exchange and consumption associations and by the public naming of all speculators and traffickers.
- The creation and development of regular, high-quality commercial relations throughout the country, with the rapid satisfaction of needs with regard to basic essentials, such as clothing and footwear, through foreign imports.
- The financial stabilization of the country with a streamlining of the bureaucratic apparatus, with a real (not provisional) State budget and economy, with the complete elimination of all unnecessary spending (such as the costs of war), and with a real increase (not just a demagogic one) in the national production.
- Complete freedom of speech, of the press and of organization and assembly for all non-fascists. The suppression of all State and police control - left over from the fascist period - of cooperatives, trade unions and other organizations. The government must fulfil its promises in this regard.
- Opposition to all dictatorships of whatever name or colour.
- Suppression of the death penalty and of all special laws.
- The disappearance of all concentration and labour camps or workhouses with the aim of punishing; dissolution of the forced labour system, applied as a police method.
- Struggle against the remnants of fascism and vigilance against all activity against the people, under the aegis of the various labour, production and ideological organizations of the workers and peasants.
- The grouping of all worker and democratic elements into egalitarian military unions in order to resist strongly and effectively the growing reaction.
- War reparations to be made by war criminals.
- The dissolving of the army, the suppression of obligatory military service and the militaristic education of young people both inside and outside schools.
- The creation of a voluntary popular militia (not controlled by any party), recruitment to which will be solely effected from among the workers and peasants, and controlled by the worker-peasant organizations.
- Fully scientific teaching and education, free of all political party and class influence, widely available to the new generations.
- Free, widely available healthcare for everyone.
- The total exclusion of all religious interference from teaching and the family.
- Aid to the population under the control of the labour, production and ideological organizations of the workers and peasants.
- Bread, freedom, peace and jobs for all workers and the progressive layers of the Bulgarian people.
Long live anarchist communism!
Text taken from the website of the Fondation Pierre Besnard
Translation from French by Nestor McNab.
1. The Obsht Rabotnischeski Profesionalen Sayuz, or General Workers Trade Union, was formally founded in March 1945 and was dominated by the Bulgarian Communist Party. It became the Central Council of Trade Unions in 1951 and the Central Council of Bulgarian Trade Unions in 1972 before merging into the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Bulgaria in 1990.
2. The Obsht Zemedelski Profesionalen Sayuz, or General Peasants Trade Union was set up as an independent syndicalist union. However, it too fell under Communist Party control and dissolved in 1951.
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I have recently had some help from the editor of a forthcoming book on Bulgarian anarchist Alexander Nakov in providing more information on the two organizations which are the subject of the two footnotes to the above article. I have accordingly amended the footnotes, which previously read: "We have been unable to trace these organizations, respectively an industrial union and an agricultural union."