Category: Labor
Karl Marx- Wage, Labour and Capital 1847 (Part II)
| July 26, 2017 | 7:09 pm | Analysis, Economy, Karl Marx, Labor | No comments

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Karl Marx- Wage, Labour and Capital 1847 (Part II)

Wage, Labour and Capital.

By Karl Marx. 
First Published: April 1849.
Source: From the original 1891 pamphlet via Marxists Internet Archives.

(Continue from Part I)

Capital consists of raw materials, instruments of labor, and means of subsistence of all kinds, which are employed in producing new raw materials, new instruments, and new means of subsistence. All these components of capital are created by labour, products of labour, accumulated labour. Accumulated labour that serves as a means to new production is capital.
So say the economists. What is a Negro slave? A man of the black race. The one explanation is worthy of the other.
A Negro is a Negro. Only under certain conditions does he become a slave. A cottonspinning machine is a machine for spinning cotton. Only under certain conditions does it become capital. Torn away from these conditions, it is as little capital as gold is itself money, or sugar is the price of sugar.
In the process of production, human beings work not only upon nature, but also upon one another. They produce only by working together in a specified manner and reciprocally exchanging their activities. In order to produce, they enter into definite connections and relations to one another, and only within these social connections and relations does their influence upon nature operate – i.e., does production take place.
These social relations between the producers, and the conditions under which they exchange their activities and share in the total act of production, will naturally vary according to the character of the means of production. With the discover of a new instrument of warfare, the firearm, the whole internal organization of the army was necessarily altered, the relations within which individuals compose an army and can work as an army were transformed, and the relation of different armies to another was likewise changed.
We thus see that the social relations within which individuals produce, the social relations of production, are altered, transformed, with the change and development of the material means of production, of the forces of production. The relations of production in their totality constitute what is called the social relations, society, and, moreover, a society at a definite stage of historical development, a society with peculiar, distinctive characteristics. Ancient society, feudal society, bourgeois (or capitalist) society, are such totalities of relations of production, each of which denotes a particular stage of development in the history of mankind.
Capital also is a social relation of production. It is a bourgeois relation of production, a relation of production of bourgeois society. The means of subsistence, the instruments of labour, the raw materials, of which capital consists – have they not been produced and accumulated under given social conditions, within definite special relations? Are they not employed for new production, under given special conditions, within definite social relations? And does not just the definite social character stamp the products which serve for new production as capital?
Capital consists not only of means of subsistence, instruments of labour, and raw materials, not only as material products; it consists just as much of exchange values. All products of which it consists are commodities. Capital, consequently, is not only a sum of material products, it is a sum of commodities, of exchange values, of social magnitudes. Capital remains the same whether we put cotton in the place of wool, rice in the place of wheat, steamships in the place of railroads, provided only that the cotton, the rice, the steamships – the body of capital – have the same exchange value, the same price, as the wool, the wheat, the railroads, in which it was previously embodied. The bodily form of capital may transform itself continually, while capital does not suffer the least alteration.
But though every capital is a sum of commodities – i.e., of exchange values – it does not follow that every sum of commodities, of exchange values, is capital.
Every sum of exchange values is an exchange value. Each particular exchange value is a sum of exchange values. For example: a house worth 1,000 pounds is an exchange value of 1,000 pounds: a piece of paper worth one penny is a sum of exchange values of 100 1/100ths of a penny. Products which are exchangeable for others are commodities. The definite proportion in which they are exchangeable forms their exchange value, or, expressed in money, their price. The quantity of these products can have no effect on their character as commodities, as representing an exchange value , as having a certain price. Whether a tree be large or small, it remains a tree. Whether we exchange iron in pennyweights or in hundredweights, for other products, does this alter its character: its being a commodity, or exchange value? According to the quantity, it is a commodity of greater or of lesser value, of higher or of lower price.
How then does a sum of commodities, of exchange values, become capital?
Thereby, that as an independent social power – i.e., as the power of a part of society – it preserves itself and multiplies by exchange with direct, living labour-power.
The existence of a class which possesses nothing but the ability to work is a necessary presupposition of capital.
It is only the dominion of past, accumulated, materialized labour over immediate living labour that stamps the accumulated labour with the character of capital.
Capital does not consist in the fact that accumulated labour serves living labour as a means for new production. It consists in the fact that living labour serves accumulated labour as the means of preserving and multiplying its exchange value.
What is it that takes place in the exchange between the capitalist and the wagelabourer?
The labourer receives means of subsistence in exchange for his labour-power; the capitalist receives, in exchange for his means of subsistence, labour, the productive activity of the labourer, the creative force by which the worker not only replaces what he consumes, but also gives to the accumulated labour a greater value than it previously possessed. The labourer gets from the capitalist a portion of the existing means of subsistence. For what purpose do these means of subsistence serve him? For immediate consumption. But as soon as I consume means of subsistence, they are irrevocably lost to me, unless I employ the time during which these means sustain my life in producing new means of subsistence, in creating by my labour new values in place of the values lost in consumption. But it is just this noble reproductive power that the labourer surrenders to the capitalist in exchange for means of subsistence received. Consequently, he has lost it for himself.
Let us take an example. For one shilling a labourer works all day long in the fields of a farmer, to whom he thus secures a return of two shillings. The farmer not only receives the replaced value which he has given to the day labourer, he has doubled it. Therefore, he has consumed the one shilling that he gave to the day labourer in a fruitful, productive manner. For the one shilling he has bought the labour-power of the day-labourer, which creates products of the soil of twice the value, and out of one shilling makes two. The day-labourer, on the contrary, receives in the place of his productive force, whose results he has just surrendered to the farmer, one shilling, which he exchanges for means of subsistence, which he consumes more or less quickly. The one shilling has therefore been consumed in a double manner – reproductively for the capitalist, for it has been exchanged for labour-power, which brought forth two shillings; unproductively for the worker, for it has been exchanged for means of subsistence which are lost for ever, and whose value he can obtain again only by repeating the same exchange with the farmer. Capital therefore presupposes wage- labour; wage-labour presupposes capital. They condition each other; each brings the other into existence.
Does a worker in a cotton factory produce only cotton? No. He produces capital. He produces values which serve anew to command his work and to create by means of it new values.
Capital can multiply itself only by exchanging itself for labour-power, by calling wage-labour into life. The labour-power of the wage-labourer can exchange itself for capital only by increasing capital, by strengthening that very power whose slave it is. Increase of capital, therefore, is increase of the proletariat, i.e., of the working class.
And so, the bourgeoisie and its economists maintain that the interest of the capitalist and of the labourer is the same. And in fact, so they are! The worker perishes if capital does not keep him busy. Capital perishes if it does not exploit labour-power, which, in order to exploit, it must buy. The more quickly the capital destined for production – the productive capital – increases, the more prosperous industry is, the more the bourgeoisie enriches itself, the better business gets, so many more workers does the capitalist need, so much the dearer does the worker sell himself. The fastest possible growth of productive capital is, therefore, the indispensable condition for a tolerable life to the labourer.
But what is growth of productive capital? Growth of the power of accumulated labour over living labour; growth of the rule of the bourgeoisie over the working class. When wage-labour produces the alien wealth dominating it, the power hostile to it, capital, there flow back to it its means of employment – i.e., its means of subsistence, under the condition that it again become a part of capital, that is become again the lever whereby capital is to be forced into an accelerated expansive movement.
To say that the interests of capital and the interests of the workers are identical, signifies only this: that capital and wage-labour are two sides of one and the same relation. The one conditions the other in the same way that the usurer and the borrower condition each other.
As long as the wage-labourer remains a wage-labourer, his lot is dependent upon capital. That is what the boasted community of interests between worker and capitalists amounts to.
If capital grows, the mass of wage-labour grows, the number of wage-workers increases; in a word, the sway of capital extends over a greater mass of individuals. Let us suppose the most favorable case: if productive capital grows, the demand for labour grows. It therefore increases the price of labour-power, wages.
A house may be large or small; as long as the neighboring houses are likewise small, it satisfies all social requirement for a residence. But let there arise next to the little house a palace, and the little house shrinks to a hut. The little house now makes it clear that its inmate has no social position at all to maintain, or but a very insignificant one; and however high it may shoot up in the course of civilization, if the neighboring palace rises in equal or even in greater measure, the occupant of the relatively little house will always find himself more uncomfortable, more dissatisfied, more cramped within his four walls.
An appreciable rise in wages presupposes a rapid growth of productive capital. Rapid growth of productive capital calls forth just as rapid a growth of wealth, of luxury, of social needs and social pleasures. Therefore, although the pleasures of the labourer have increased, the social gratification which they afford has fallen in comparison with the increased pleasures of the capitalist, which are inaccessible to the worker, in comparison with the stage of development of society in general. Our wants and pleasures have their origin in society; we therefore measure them in relation to society; we do not measure them in relation to the objects which serve for their gratification. Since they are of a social nature, they are of a relative nature.
But wages are not at all determined merely by the sum of commodities for which they may be exchanged. Other factors enter into the problem. What the workers directly receive for their labour-power is a certain sum of money. Are wages determined merely by this money price?
In the 16th century, the gold and silver circulation in Europe increased in consequence of the discovery of richer and more easily worked mines in America. The value of gold and silver, therefore, fell in relation to other commodities. The workers received the same amount of coined silver for their labour-power as before. The money price of their work remained the same, and yet their wages had fallen, for in exchange for the same amount of silver they obtained a smaller amount of other commodities. This was one of the circumstances which furthered the growth of capital, the rise of the bourgeoisie, in the 18th century.
Let us take another case. In the winter of 1847, in consequence of bad harvest, the most indispensable means of subsistence – grains, meat, butter, cheese, etc. – rose greatly in price. Let us suppose that the workers still received the same sum of money for their labour-power as before. Did not their wages fall? To be sure. For the same money they received in exchange less bread, meat, etc. Their wages fell, not because the value of silver was less, but because the value of the means of subsistence had increased.
Finally, let us suppose that the money price of labour-power remained the same, while all agricultural and manufactured commodities had fallen in price because of the employment of new machines, of favorable seasons, etc. For the same money the workers could now buy more commodities of all kinds. Their wages have therefore risen, just because their money value has not changed.
The money price of labour-power, the nominal wages, do not therefore coincide with the actual or real wages – i.e., with the amount of commodities which are actually given in exchange for the wages. If then we speak of a rise or fall of wages, we have to keep in mind not only the money price of labour-power, the nominal wages, but also the real wages.
But neither the nominal wages – i.e., the amount of money for which the labourer sells himself to the capitalist – nor the real wages – i.e., the amount of commodities which he can buy for this money – exhausts the relations which are comprehended in the term wages.
Wages are determined above all by their relations to the gain, the profit, of the capitalist. In other words, wages are a proportionate, relative quantity.
Real wages express the price of labour-power in relation to the price of commodities; relative wages, on the other hand, express the share of immediate labour in the value newly created by it, in relation to the share of it which falls to accumulated labour, to capital.
We have said: “Wages are not a share of the worker in the commodities produced by him. Wages are that part of already existing commodities with which the capitalist buys a certain amount of productive labor-power.” But the capitalist must replace these wages out of the price for which he sells the product made by the worker; he must so replace it that, as a rule, there remains to him a surplus above the cost of production expended by him, that is, he must get a profit.
The selling price of the commodities produced by the worker is divided, from the point of view of the capitalist, into three parts: 
First, the replacement of the price of the raw materials advanced by him, in addition to the replacement of the wear and tear of the tools, machines, and other instruments of labor likewise advanced by him; 
Second, the replacement of the wages advanced; and 
Third, the surplus leftover – i.e., the profit of the capitalist.
While the first part merely replaces previously existing values, it is evident that the replacement of the wages and the surplus (the profit of capital) are as a whole taken out of the new value, which is produced by the labor of the worker and added to the raw materials. And in this sense we can view wages as well as profit, for the purpose of comparing them with each other, as shares in the product of the worker.
Real wages may remain the same, they may even rise, nevertheless the relative wages may fall. Let us suppose, for instance, that all means of subsistence have fallen 2/3rds in price, while the day’s wages have fallen but 1/3rd – for example, from three to two shillings. Although the worker can now get a greater amount of commodities with these two shillings than he formerly did with three shillings, yet his wages have decreased in proportion to the gain of the capitalist. The profit of the capitalist – the manufacturer’s for instance – has increased one shilling, which means that for a smaller amount of exchange values, which he pays to the worker, the latter must produce a greater amount of exchange values than before. The share of capitals in proportion to the share of labour has risen. The distribution of social wealth between capital and labour has become still more unequal. The capitalist commands a greater amount of labour with the same capital. The power of the capitalist class over the working class has grown, the social position of the worker has become worse, has been forced down still another degree below that of the capitalist. 
What, then, is the general law that determines the rise and fall of wages and profit in their reciprocal relation? 
They stand in inverse proportion to each other. The share of (profit) increases in the same proportion in which the share of labour (wages) falls, and vice versa. Profit rises in the same degree in which wages fall; it falls in the same degree in which wages rise. 
It might perhaps be argued that the capitalist class can gain by an advantageous exchange of his products with other capitalists, by a rise in the demand for his commodities, whether in consequence of the opening up of new markets, or in consequence of temporarily increased demands in the old market, and so on; that the profit of the capitalist, therefore, may be multiplied by taking advantage of other capitalists, independently of the rise and fall of wages, of the exchange value of labourpower; or that the profit of the capitalist may also rise through improvements in the instruments of labour, new applications of the forces of nature, and so on. 
But in the first place it must be admitted that the result remains the same, although brought about in an opposite manner. Profit, indeed, has not risen because wages have fallen, but wages have fallen because profit has risen. With the same amount of another man’s labour the capitalist has bought a larger amount of exchange values without having paid more for the labour on that account – i.e., the work is paid for less in proportion to the net gain which it yields to the capitalist. 
In the second place, it must be borne in mind that, despite the fluctuations in the prices of commodities, the average price of every commodity, the proportion in which it exchanges for other commodities, is determined by its cost of production. The acts of overreaching and taking advantage of one another within the capitalist ranks necessarily equalize themselves. The improvements of machinery, the new applications of the forces of nature in the service of production, make it possible to produce in a given period of time, with the same amount of labour and capital, a larger amount of products, but in no wise a larger amount of exchange values. If by the use of the spinning- machine I can furnish twice as much yarn in an hour as before its invention – for instance, 100 pounds instead of 50 pounds – in the long run I receive back, in exchange for this 100 pounds no more commodities than I did before for 50; because the cost of production has fallen by 1/2, or because I can furnish double the product at the same cost. 
Finally, in whatsoever proportion the capitalist class, whether of one country or of the entire world-market, distribute the net revenue of production among themselves, the total amount of this net revenue always consists exclusively of the amount by which accumulated labour has been increased from the proceeds of direct labour. This whole amount, therefore, grows in the same proportion in which labour augments capital – i.e., in the same proportion in which profit rises as compared with wages.   
Report: $15 minimum wage bill would benefit 20.7 million workers in 21 states
| July 24, 2017 | 8:46 pm | Bernie Sanders, Labor, political struggle | No comments

Report: $15 minimum wage bill would benefit 20.7 million workers in 21 states

Report: $15 minimum wage bill would benefit 20.7 million workers in 21 states

Democrats’ proposal to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2024 would provide raises for 20.7 million workers in 21 states where the minimum wage is currently set at $7.25 an hour, according to a report released Monday by the National Employment Law Project.

The analysis of the Raise the Wage Act of 2017, which Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersNew Dem message doesn’t mention TrumpOvernight Healthcare: Trump pressures GOP ahead of vote | McConnell urges Senate to start debate | Cornyn floats conference on House, Senate bills | Thune sees progress on Medicaid GOP seeks to meet referee’s rule on healthcare repealMORE (I-Vt.) introduced with Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerCharles SchumerTrump: Why aren’t ‘beleaguered AG,’ investigators looking at Hillary Clinton?Trump: Washington ‘actually much worse than anyone ever thought’Schumer: Dems didn’t ‘tell people what we stood for’ in 2016MORE (D-N.Y.), Sen. Patty MurrayPatty MurrayReport: minimum wage bill would benefit 20.7 million workers in 21 statesLawmakers send McCain well wishes after cancer diagnosisTrump labor board nominees advance in SenateMORE (D-Wash.) and 28 other Democrats in May, comes on the eighth anniversary of the last increase in the federal minimum wage.

Reps. Bobby ScottBobby ScottReport: minimum wage bill would benefit 20.7 million workers in 21 statesRepublicans aim to kill off Obama franchise standardBipartisan group defends national security against climate riskMORE (D-Va.) and Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) reportedly introduced the bill in the House with 152 co-sponsors.

The report, based on data and estimates from researcher David Cooper of the Economic Policy Institute, found that in the 21 states with minimum wages at $7.25 an hour, an average of 36.8 percent of the workforce would receive raises.

In Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — two key battleground states won by President Trump — the percentages are similarly high at 35.4 and 32.5 percent, respectively, the report said.

“The federal minimum wage is supposed to provide a meaningful standard to ensure that workers everywhere in the country are paid at least an adequate wage to meet their basic needs,” Christine Owens, the group’s executive director, said in a statement.

“But with the federal minimum wage stuck now for eight years at a poverty-level of $7.25 per hour, it is falling far short of that critical role. Instead, at such an appallingly low wage level, it’s being used as a weight to suppress workers’ wages.”

Capitalism Kills: 353 occupational murders within 2 months in Turkey
| July 22, 2017 | 8:42 pm | Analysis, Labor, Turkey | No comments

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Capitalism Kills: 353 occupational murders within 2 months in Turkey
How many dead workers are needed to increase the profitability of the monopolies? 
As soL international reports, according to Council of Workers’ Health and Safety (İSİG), at least 353 workers were killed in occupational murders in two months in Turkey
Reminding that the construction site of the third airport in İstanbul is notorious for occupational murders, the İSİG underlines, about the campaign which was announced inside the construction site of the airport, that the numbers reported by the Turkey’s Ministry of Labor and Social Security and several bureaucrats are dead wrong, and that roughly 20 thousand workers were killed by occupational murders in AKP’s rule.
The İSİG also explains that, even though the Ministry claims the rate of occupational murders to have decreased by 40% after 2002 when the still-ruling party AKP was elected, the numbers given by the Council show otherwise. 
The report suggests that the reason for the increase in the number of occupational murders is the recklessness of the company-owners, which they receive from the facts that the state does not conduct inspections, that it even postpones the laws it passes, and that the company-owners generate an unquestionable working environment, let alone taking precautions.
The report also indicates that 40 Turkish construction companies made it to the “250 Greatest International Contractors of the World” list of the international journal of construction sector, Engineering News Report. The İSİG states that the government keeps its promise to employers, creating an environment for them to increase their capital incrementally, such as passing laws that allow subcontracting, cheap labour, and banning strikes, etc.
The report also prompts that in the centre of the campaign was the construction sector, in which 78 workers were killed by occupational murders in the last 2 months.

* According to the official statistics by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration of the U.S. Department of Labour, in the United States approximately 4,836 workers were killed on the job in 2015 (3.4 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers) — on average, more than 93 a week or more than 13 deaths every day.

* At least 1,023 workers were killed and about 2,500 were injured when the eight-storey Rana Plaza factory building near Dhaka, in Bangladesh, collapsed on 24 April 2013, marking one of the worst industrial “accidents” in modern history. 
* The Soma mine disaster on 13 May 2014 in Turkey, left 301 dead workers, while on May 2010, in Zongudlak province, another “mine accident” led to 30 occupational deaths
* At least 13 workers were killed in construction works of the venues prior to the 2004 Athens Olympic Games
National Strike: Tourism workers in Greece raised their voice against modern slavery
| July 21, 2017 | 9:02 pm | Greece, Labor, PAME | No comments

Saturday, July 22, 2017

National Strike: Tourism workers in Greece raised their voice against modern slavery
With militant demonstrations and picket lines in front of big hotels, the class unions held successfully the National Strike of Workers in Tourism, on Thursday, July 20. The Tourism workers in many cities all over Greece and especially in tourist areas like Corfu, Crete, Rhodes and more, went on strike.
The main strike rally took place in Athens, where the picket lines and the workers of many big hotels met. The strike had great success in hotels like the Metropolitan, Athens Hilton, Νovotel and Royal Olympic. The strike rally took place in front of the Ministry of Labour, protesting against the anti-workers legislation, especially for the young workers, students and apprentices. The rally also stopped in front of the National Union of Tourism, the association of tourism enterprises, where the unions wrote in red paint “Here are those who drink the workers’ blood”, and demanded National Collective Agreement, imposed to all tourism enterprises and hotels.

Meanwhile, the class-collaborationist Unions…

The so called National Federation of Tourism Workers, (member of the leadership of the GSEE, the ETUC affiliate in Greece) called for participation in the strike in Tourism yesterday.
Of course, this union did nothing in order to prepare and support the strike. As GSEE, they have also accepted all the wage cuts and the antiworkers’ policies of the Governments, EU, IMF.
This led for their main rally in Athens yesterday, to have zero (0) participants. Not even the president of the union, bothered to appear. Below, is the photo of their rally. This is the true picture. NOT even ONE person participated.
After some time, they just took down the stage and left.
This is the reality about the forces of class collaboration, the ETUC. This is the condition they have created in the trade union movement. No action. No struggles. No connection with the workers.
Anti-workers rage by SYRIZA’s newspaper “Avgi” challenges the right to strike!
| July 17, 2017 | 8:06 pm | Labor, Syriza | No comments

Monday, July 17, 2017

Anti-workers rage by SYRIZA’s newspaper “Avgi” challenges the right to strike!
In an anti-workers delirium that even the right-wing, neoliberal press would envy, SYRIZA party’s newspaper “Avgi” launched a vociferous attack against the working people’s right to strike! In an article published on 28/6, the newspaper shamelessly attacked the striking mobilizations of the municipal sanitation workers by reproducing the most reactionary arguments of the bourgeois press. Trying to justify the anti-people, anti-worker policy of the SYRIZA coalition government, “Avgi” characterizes the strike as the “ultimate medium” (!) which, according to the newspaper, should not be used frequently by the workers.
Using the arguments of the capitalists and big employers, the newspaper of SYRIZA tries to fuel “social automatism” (turning labor sectors against each other) and undermine class solidarity. In order to do this, the paper attacks the strikers for “keeping society hostage” and blames the workers-peoples’ mobilizations for being “harmful” for the “national interests”! According to “Avgi”, the “national interest” is the interest of the bourgeoisie which the SYRIZA government faithfully serves.
The newspaper intentionally tries to undermine the solidarity among workers of different sectors thus condemning those who strike against the barbaric policy of the government as “enemies” of the economy and development. But the point where “Avgi” openly challenges the right to strike is when it writes the following: “Some crucial for the social and national interests sectors do not have the right to strike” (!). Yes, the official party newspaper of SYRIZA reaches the highest levels of reaction, showing its real role as a social democratic instrument of the bourgeois class.
Apparently, the article of “Avgi” echoes the deeper intentions of the Tsipras’ government to restrict the right to strike. Being in the service of the big capital and an enemy of the working class, the SYRIZA-ANEL government is ruthless in accomplishing its anti-people role. The working class movement in Greece have no other choice but to stand firm in class solidarity and respond dynamically to such hideous provocations.
Solidarity with the striking workers at FIAT factory in Serbia

Friday, July 14, 2017

Solidarity with the striking workers at FIAT factory in Serbia
The World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU), which is the militant voice of 92 million workers in 126 countries all over the world, stands firmly by the side of the 2.000 workers of the factory of FIAT Chrysler Automobiles, automobile assembly plant in Kragujevac, Serbia, who are on strike since Tuesday 27 June 2017.
The workers have taken strike action against the intensification of work, which increased after numerous workers were dismissed from the factory, while the factory tries to produce a high number of cars per day. Their main demands also include wage increase and transport allowance.
WFTU, on behalf of the world class-oriented trade union movement, calls the working class of Serbia and internationally to support the struggle of the workers of the factory of FIAT in Kragujevac. This factory has great profits from cars production and exportation that are gained through the exploitation of its workers and through the intensification of work, with dramatic results on their health and safety.
International solidarity with FIAT workers in Serbia to continue their struggle until the satisfaction of their just demands!
* * * 
Dear Comrades, we wish to bring the following important matters to your attention:
Workers at the factory of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Serbian subsidiary FCA Srbija in Kragujevac are on strike over excessive workload and low wages.
The strike began on Tuesday 27 June after two days of warning protests. Two thousand blue collar workers, representing 90 per cent of the workforce, have taken strike action to demand a small wage increase, paid overtime, an end to layoffs, a reorganization of work to cut workload, and compensation for transport costs for shifts that start or finish when there in no public transport.
The core issue is the intensification of work, and low wages. Last summer, a whole shift was laid off, but the volume of work stayed the same.
Workers took strike action after management refused to negotiate.
The strike is seen as a highly significant test of Serbian workers’ ability to resist the intensification of work, and win a decent living wage. Many European auto manufacturers have shifted production to Eastern Europe, where wages are low. FCA Srbija production workers earn about 400 Euros per month. Recently, Slovakian VW workers won a significant wage increase after taking strike action.
The strike committee’s demands are as follows:
1.  Increase the minimum wage per hour from 2 to 2,40 Euros (290 dinars);
2. Improve production organization, and replace workers who are absent for maternity and paternity leave, or for long periods of illness;
3. Recognize bonuses linked both to the achievement of efficiency goals and to the recognition of bronze and silver in World Class Manufacturing principles;
4. Apply the collective bargaining agreement to both the transport allowance when working outside the standard working hours and no public transport is available (at night from 22.00 to 05.00).
The way foreign “investment” works in Serbia and neighbouring countries goes well beyond standard bourgeois exploitation. The term “investment” here has truly turned into its opposite. Most of the expenses are paid out of the state budget, leaving the private owners to accumulate more and more super-profits without any serious risk to their businesses.
The workers in Kragujevac aren’t the only ones who decided to intensify the class struggle. More and more strikes are being reported throughout Serbia and other former-Yugoslav lands. “Falk East” in Knjaževac, “Goša” in Smederevo, the Railways of the Serb Republic (Serb part of Bosnia and Herzegovina), and the list goes on… As the economic crisis deepens and the cost of living grows, the purchasing power and working conditions are deteriorating at a rapid pace. The intensification and expansion of class struggle is becoming the only way to survive.
On behalf of the rights of workers factory of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Serbian to fight for their legitimate demands, we call for international solidarity.
Please, send message of solidarity to our email.
With comradely greetings,
International Relations Section of the CC of the NKPJ.
Microsoft accumulates immense profits, starts layoff of thousands of employees worldwide

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Microsoft accumulates immense profits, starts layoff of thousands of employees worldwide
The multinational giant Microsoft– despite its immense profits- is laying off more than 3,000 employees, with the cuts falling largely on the company’s sales force. The vast majority of layoffs will hit employees located outside the United States, although some will also be in Redmond. Greek Telecommunication & IT Workers Unions has condemned the lay offs:
The Telecommunications & Information Technology Unions of Athens, Thessaloniki, Forthnet and 360 Connect (Vodafone) members of PAME (All-Workers Militant Front) and WFTU (World Federation of Trade Unions) condemn the multinational Microsoft, which announced that it will lay-off 3000-4000 from its sales departments.

The “reason” of the layoffs is the company’s decision to proceed with restructuring aiming at the further development of other services eg cloud. The use of the new possibilities offered by science and technology development under the ongoing effort the of monopolies to increase their profitability and competitiveness leads thousands of workers to unemployment, even to giant companies such as Microsoft.

The policy of layoffs in the context of restructuring to boost profitability has been followed by other IT companies around the world. In a sector of tremendous profitability, the extreme competition of business groups requires continuous sacrifices from the workers, deterioration in working conditions, wage cuts and abolition of workers’ rights.
Against the anti-workers’ policies of the business groups, workers have the weapon of organization and solidarity
We express our solidarity to the thousands of Microsoft employees and call them to coordinate our struggle, to protect our jobs and our rights
Telecommunications & Information Technology Union of Athens
Telecommunications & Information Technology Union of Thessaloniki
Telecommunications & Information Technology Union Forthnet
Telecommunications & Information Technology Union 360.
Source: PAME.