Quebec Students Strike Against Capitalism
Solidarity Means Tabarnak!
This week we look at the student led mobilizations that have rocked the streets of Montreal and Quebec City. From large scale marches, to occupations of university buildings to direct actions, the spring 2015 coalition has re-energized radical organizing in so called Quebec. If you want some more background on this watch “Street Politics 101″ our documentary on the 2012 Quebec student strike.
The following statement, issued by the International Youth and Students for Social Equality and the Socialist Equality Party (Canada), was distributed at a demonstration in Montreal last Saturday organized to kick off a student strike in opposition to the austerity measures of Quebec’s Liberal government.
The student strike set to begin March 23 reflects the deep anger in broad layers of the population at the pillaging of public services and the frontal assault on workers’ rights and living standards.
The struggle initiated by the students expresses a desire for a unified response to capitalist austerity—the class program, not just of the Liberals of Philippe Couillard and the Conservatives of Stephen Harper, but of the whole ruling elite in North America and throughout the world.
But energy and combativeness are far from sufficient to guarantee victory. The students and their supporters are confronted with the necessity—if they want to avoid a defeat like in 2012—of adopting a political line diametrically opposed to that of the organizers of today’s demonstration: ASSE (Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante/Association for Student-Union Solidarity) and the Printemps (Spring) 2015 committee.
Their militant speeches serve as a cover for a bankrupt politics of protest to the powers that be, subordination to the pro-capitalist unions, and narrow nationalism.
According to press reports, Quebec Liberal Premier Philippe Couillard personally contacted the rector of UQAM to demand the police crackdown.