13/02/2022 by socialistfight
By Dov Winter
The ongoing Covid crisis is frying people nerves. People are tired of masks. As a result, we are seeing the strengthening of the anti-vax movement. This is expressed in the growing rage among sectors of the petty bourgeoisie. The truckers’ anti-vax protest in Canada expresses perfectly the split within the petty bourgeoisie in times of growing crisis. The Truckers are the right-wing “vanguard” of the anti-vax movement.
It is not an accident that rightwing politicians, are backing the truckers. This includes Marjorie Taylor Greene, which in my opinion is a fascist: “Senator Ted Cruz called the Canadian truckers “heroes”; Elon Musk tweeted, “Canadian truckers rule”; Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene suggested that the “corporate Communists” at GoFundMe should be arrested.” (Opinion | The Ottawa Trucker Protests Are a Test of Democracy – The New York Times (nytimes.com))
It is important to note that cops are fully behind the protest. These nemeses of the working class are the protectors of the protest:“. . .police forces are increasingly uneasy with their role” echoing a view among protesters that – unlike the upper echelons of the Ottawa police and Royal Canadian Mounted Police – frontline officers are sympathetic to their cause.” (Ibid)
But the right-wing does not want to take responsibility for the disruptions that the Truckers are causing. The right-wing and their conspiracy theorists blame. . . Antifa for the disruptions:
“There has been a pervasive narrative in this movement that any violence is not the fault of the protesters, but instead instigated by ‘Antifa’ … or orchestrated by the deep state,” said Stephanie Carvin, a Carleton University professor and former intelligence analyst.” (Ibid)
The Truckers and their disruptive tactics are rejected by the majority of the petty bourgeoisie and the working class. They see the Truckers as selfish people who refuse to be vaccinated, and would not accept the 14-days quarantine as the alternative to vaccination. Even a publication such as the Atlantic can see that:“This is not a movement of ‘working class’ protesters against remote, affluent elites. The burden of the protests has fallen on Ottawa residents, whose streets have been paralyzed, and Canadian autoworkers, who face factory shutdowns because of cross-border disruptions.” (Canada’s Trucker Blockades Are a Warning – The Atlantic)
The great majority of truckers have been vaccinated and they do not want to have any association with the protesting Truckers:“The blockades are very much a rogue movement. They have been condemned by the Canadian Trucking Alliance and Canada’s Teamsters Union. About 90 percent of Canadian truck drivers are vaccinated; comparatively few of those protesting are professional truck drivers.” (Ibid)
Most truck drivers are against the right-wing protest. Only about a tenth of the truck drivers that cross the border drivers are not vaccinated. The Canadian Trucking Alliance disavowed the protest. 86 percent of Canadians received the at least one vaccine shot. A survey by the market research firm Leger found that 65 percent of Canadians think that the Freedom Convoy represents only a small minority of selfish Canadians.
The new tactic of the ruling class in many countries, and of American capitalists in particular, is to “open up” the economy. They completely ignore the fact that the virus is spreading right now like out of control fire throughout the world. The economy, that is, the profit of the capitalists, is much more important for them than the health and the wellbeing of the masses.
Liberal publication such as the New York Times are 100% behind the Truckers. And the Times supports the Truckers with some enthusiasm:“We disagree with the protesters’ cause, but they have a right to be noisy and even disruptive. Protests are a necessary form of expression in a democratic society, particularly for those whose opinions do not command broad popular support. Governments have a responsibility to prevent violence by protesters, but they must be willing to accept some degree of disruption by those seeking to be heard.” (.” (Opinion | The Ottawa Trucker Protests Are a Test of Democracy – The New York Times (nytimes.com)))
And:“Allowing nonviolent, even if disruptive, protest is an important tool for maintaining social cohesion in a polarized society.” (Ibid)This was not the song that the New York Times (NYT) sung during the protests of Black Life Matters (BLM). Then, the capitalist press condemned the “disruptions” by the Black masses and their supporters. But right-wing white protests are different matter.
The capitalist press argues that they have the right not only to protest but also to cause disruptions. And the fact that Auto workers cannot work in Detroit because they do not get important parts for the assembly, is not a problem for the capitalist press. Socialists are not, of course, against the right to protest.
On the contrary, we fight for the right to demonstrate as a basic democratic right. But we are politically against the agenda of the right-wing, and we against the “right” of fascists to take the streets. But we rely on the working class to stop the fascists, not the capitalist state, that in times of severe crisis supports the fascists as a ramming barrage against the workers.
The bottom line is that it is not in the interest of the working class and the unions to support such a right-wing anti-vax protest. The only thing that the workers get from this is noise and disruption to their life:
“Local residents complain that life in the city has been made intolerable by the occupiers’ blaring truck horns and nightly fireworks.” (Ibid)