About the Provincial States- and water board elections.

14 March 2023

Declaration by the CC of the NCPN

On March 15th, elections will be held for the Provincial States and the water boards. These elections take place at a time when the working class increasingly feels the growing contradictions of capitalism. Loss of purchasing power, poverty, dismantling of social security and facilities, war, climate change, and discrimination against women and minorities are issues that many people rightly worry about.

The working class is once again facing significant setbacks in income and rights. Inflation is skyrocketing: groceries, rent, and energy are becoming more expensive by the day. Costs that the working class must bear to provide capitalists with enormous profits.

The imperialist war in Ukraine plays an important role in this. A war between two imperialist blocs where Russian and Ukrainian workers are pitted against each other, solely for the benefit of the capitalists of Russia and NATO-US-EU who are fighting each other for territory, markets, resources, and spheres of influence. Indirectly, working people in the Netherlands and other countries are also affected: the war is consuming an increasingly larger share of national budgets and driving up the daily costs of living for everyone.

In the current housing crisis, the Provincial States are specifically important because they have the task of determining spatial planning. They determine whether houses or offices are built. The interests of capitalists are directly opposed to what the population needs, such as affordable housing. The false solutions proposed by bourgeois parties for the housing crisis are clearly in the interest of big capital, or serve it in a sneaky way through complex constructions. For example, further liberalization of the housing market or the constructions in the social sector where capitalists are financially rewarded for renting out social housing. The Provincial States also play a role in the energy supply. The government is now spending billions of state funds on the so-called price ceiling for energy. Money that comes out of the pockets of working people and goes to the monopolies. Directly or indirectly through taxes, capitalists will appropriate as much of our hard work as possible.

The important role of provincial policy is hardly discernible from the election campaigns. National parties see the Provincial States as an electoral college for the Senate. Positions on provincial policy fade into the background. There is no accountability for the execution of the past four years. This trend is characteristic of the increasing erosion of the already limited civil democracy. Another example of anti-democratic practices can be found in the water boards. These have the task of regulating water level and quality. An important task, given the droughts and floods that we face in the Netherlands, with significant effects on our living environment. However, the water board elections are not entirely democratic. There are a number of reserved seats that are appointed by stakeholder umbrella organizations instead of being elected. In addition to this, there are strong lobbies at all levels of government that serve the interests of capital. With enough money, you can buy democracy.

The parties that participate come in different capitalist flavors: social democratic, liberal, extreme right-wing, and even fascistoid parties.

Extreme right-wing and fascistoid parties such as PVV, FvD, JA21, and BVNL do not offer real solutions to the problems that affect the working class. They attribute the problems caused by capitalism to refugees, foreigners, “globalists,” climate activists, the “party cartel,” etc. They invariably lash out at oppressed groups, fuel racism and other forms of discrimination, and undermine workers’ rights. The “elite” they claim to fight is left untouched. In this way, they mask that, like all other bourgeois parties, they serve the interests of capital. Wrapped in a radical disguise that creates illusions for some oppressed segments of the population. The so-called progressive parties wage a sham opposition against extreme right-wing, based only on moral aspects and not on the core of the problem: that fascist ideology is a product of the capitalist system.

The Provincial States have the task of ensuring a clean and safe living environment. We see that the BBB channels the rightful anger of small farmers towards a reactionary line. The core of the problem is left untouched. Namely, that small farmers, who are ruined by fierce competition and the market power of monopolies, are the victims of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy and the policies of successive governments that promote the concentration of land and capital in agriculture. Instead, farmers are incited against tackling environmental problems, which are portrayed as a fabrication or conspiracy. We all have an interest in fighting the pollution of our environment by capitalism.

Social democratic and opportunist “left” parties (such as SP and GL) increasingly use the word capitalism, but only as “runaway” capitalism. Dissatisfaction with the real problems arising from capitalism is thus restrained in a tame form that poses no danger to capitalist rule. Without discussing the real causes, it is suggested that it is possible to make the capitalist society more just, equal, green, and inclusive, an impossible task. This works against the organization of the working class and thus in favor of big capital, and even fascism that thrives on disappointment in social democratic illusions. In this way, they also contribute to the preservation of precisely the capitalist system they claim to criticize.

None of these parties can therefore offer a real way out. None of these parties look at the social laws underlying all these problems. Problems that are getting worse in this unsustainable capitalist society. The only real way out is that of socialism-communism. A society where we use our social product, everything that we produce as a society with our work, for the working population. A society where we get rid of the capitalist parasites who become rich at the expense of the working class because they own the means of production. A society without exploitation.

At the moment, the NCPN is not participating in the elections for the Provincial States or water boards due to practical, financial, and organizational hurdles. Given the above considerations, we do not provide voting advice either. Our focus is currently on the direct organization of the working class at the grassroots: in companies, neighborhoods, educational institutions, and, as a result, in the trade union movement, student movement, and other social movements. We have taken steps forward in this and will continue to do so, with more and more people joining us in the class struggle. This creates conditions for the participation of the communist party in future elections for, among others, Provincial States and water boards, so that communist representatives can serve as a platform to raise the issues of the working population, support their struggle, and oppose the plans of the capitalist class.