Declaration on the 2017 parliamentary elections
The result of the Dutch general election has been announced and it reflects the expectations of the NCPN: the outgoing government has been punished harshly with a loss of 37 seats. The VVD lost 8 seats and the PvdA lost 29, a historic defeat. Nevertheless, the VVD remained the biggest party in the new, fragmented political landscape. VVD, CDA and D66 have 71 seats together. They will form the right-wing bloc that will implement the destruction of social rights as demanded by capital and determined in the Lisbon agenda. They will be aided by some right-wing splinters or by the Green Left if necessary. Tax cuts and less regulation for capital and cutting wages and securities for the working class. The continuation of the neoliberal political agenda, depending on the free market as the dominant factor. The parties will be different, the policies will be the same. New attacks on dismissal laws and collective bargaining are sure to follow quickly.
The PvdA has been punished more than ever for its betrayal of the working class initiated under Wim Kok, which led to the official renunciation of socialist thought. They are a long way from being accepted as a left-wing party again. Ever since the 1990s, ups and downs have followed each other in quick succession, but on the long term, the PvdA's support has declined gradually.
The Socialist Party is unable to profit from this with its current line. The party is awash with rightful calls to move to the left again, away from government and back to the struggle, with an increasingly clear demand for Marx.
Green Left aims at a progressive, young, optimistic and relatively prosperous audience, using American electoral techniques. Their example is Obama, who is now mainly know for his failure, and for showing that illusions cannot trump the power of capital.
The Party for Animals and the elderly-rights party 50plus won some seats by positioning themselves against the establishment, but they will continue to play a marginal role in parliament.
Geert Wilders echoes the unrest in society and the resistance against the establishment, without proposing even a hint of a solution. For him, this result means that he will have to keep proclaiming his nonsense from the sidelines, still lacking support for his planned coup. All other political parties are more of the same, and they will probably be allowed to continue the systematic, inevitable, but gradual destruction of the welfare state and the people's standard of living.
Even if they wanted something else, reality would not allow them. At the core of right-wing politics lies the purely capitalist free-market approach, which cannot be changed unless the entire system is overthrown. There is no room for ethical approaches to capitalism, even if some righteous politicians genuinely believe otherwise. Ethical capitalism is an illusion: water and fire cannot go together. The same goes for appeals that see economic growth as the problem, rather than the solution. The question is how this necessary growth is used, and who profits from it. In other words, business as usual will continue after the elections and the political game.
Capitalism is still capable of maintaining its position, especially in the relatively prosperous Netherlands. The victims of neoliberal social demolition are growing in numbers, but a majority still has an optimistic vision of the future. The ruling class not only stays on its feet because of its means for mass influence, but also because, in non-revolutionary conditions, workers tend to interpret events from a bourgeois point of view, both in terms of the general situation and the developments that affect them directly. Especially Green Left and D66 voters hold false hopes when it comes to the influence of their own performance. Individualism and the mild economic situation impair their ability to observe the situation. However, this is not a permanent state of affairs; it is subject to change. The NCPN will continue to fight against these illusions and false observations. Many of these will soon be tested by the ongoing attacks on social rights.
The NCPN was unable to participate in the elections because of practical, financial and organisational limitations. We also hold no illusions that under the present conditions, without mass support from the people, such a participation in parliament can be useful. What is needed now is building our party in the base, in the neighbourhoods and workplaces. The necessary next step is to act within institutions, workplaces and neighbourhood action groups with clear objectives for change. Success within the labour movement and organising the counterattack is only possible with such goals. Real change has to be realised in collaboration with the growing sections of the masses who understand that the people always lose under capitalist conditions.
People must get over the limitations of anti-communism and exchange thoughts with the party and its youth movement and cooperate with them. They must understand that all the wonderful election promises will turn to more "reforms", i.e. the continued gradual decay of the standard of living. The beginning of the end has come for the decades of illusions. People are searching for truly useful answers, even if the lovely spring weather and some crumbs sometimes reinforce the existing illusions about the future. There is a political reversal going on throughout the social fabric of the West.
Without a proper left-wing alternative and increasingly organised and militant resistance, the people will not get the answers they need. Right-wing figures like Trump, Le Pen and Wilders, but also classical right-wing parties, will continue to be able to strike as long as the main class contradiction, between the owners of capital and those who can only sell their labour, is avoided. The search for socialism, for a society without exploitation of man by man, must be intensified. The slogan of "Down with capitalism, towards a socialist society" is still valid. Sections of the working class should no longer be put up against each other. There are plenty of reasons to get rid of capitalism. The insight into the need to create a socialist world is growing.
Resistance must be organised against further flexibilisation, free-market policies and the general destruction of our social system. This will not be easy, but it is the only way. Only through struggle can the real intentions of right-wing politicians be exposed, and those truly in power can be defeated. Otherwise, the working class will continue to be on the losing side of the class struggle.