Jaguar car workers are determined to uphold their dignity during October wage negotiations with Tata Management. Workers will oppose any deception and invective organised against them by management and the media.
Car workers and their fellow industrial workers contribute an enormous amount to the well-being and wealth of the people, economy and society. They produce billions of pounds of value each year and are proud of their hard work and contribution to the economy and society. They deserve respect and a decent standard of living not the abuse thrown at them by executives and mass media portraying them in a false light as some sort of “cost”. What absurdity to label those workers who are the source of value as a cost. What insolence to demand workers accept concessions to reduce their legitimate claims on the value they produce merely to transfer it to the international financial oligarchy to fatten their already bulging coffers.
Tata, like all monopoly employers, seek to put car workers on the defensive and make them apologetic about their claim on the value they produce. Car workers have every right to wages, benefits and pensions commensurate with the hard work they do and the value they produce so as to live a cultured existence in security. They must insist that executives and the mass media stop their anti-worker campaigns, every time there is an industrial issue and recognise the rights of workers and their established standard of living as the basis for equilibrium in the sector. Workers will reject any repeat of the derision and threatening behaviour as was witnessed in the recent dispute over contract changes and Saturday working during the coming wage claim in October.
Jaguar and other workers are key contributors to the auto sector. Without British industrial workers transforming the bounty of Mother Nature to produce vehicles, the sector disappears and produces nothing. How long can the economy survive if the majority of vehicles and their components are not produced within the economy but are bought from outside? To reproduce the socialised economy, more has to be put into it than taken out. It is Tata executives who threaten to wreck British production by moving production of Jaguars and Range Rovers abroad and import vehicles from outside the economy if workers do not agree to concessions. It is they who should be removed from their positions, not production and workers. Such executives and their mass media flunkies are a disgrace and danger to the country and should be labelled as traitors. Their threats are attempts to undermine the economy and condemn the people to insecurity, poverty and backwardness. Workers must hold governments responsible for the defence of the British economy and people from such wreckers.
Workers have first right of claim on the value they produce. Governments have second claim on that value so they can fulfil their duties to provide the people and society with social programs, public services and infrastructure. Owners of capital have the last claim on the value car workers produce and only to the extent of a general rate of profit leaving enough in retained earnings for renewal and reproduction of the productive forces and research and development.
Executives do not want workers to remove from their brains any notion that there is an alternative to making anti-worker concessions. Concessions are not solutions to economic problems. They are destructive to the economy and workers’ communities. Concessions are a clumsy attempt to divert public opinion from real solutions to the real problems the economy faces. They are a cash grab by owners of capital at the expense of the economy and those who produce the value. Car workers want equilibrium based on recognition of their rights and established standard of living so they can make their contribution to the economy in peace, security and dignity. But they are not afraid of a fight if necessary to bring these rogue executives to their senses.
The concessions paraded in the mass media, such as destruction of pensions and welfare benefits, removal of proper working hours arrangements are a conspiracy against the rights and well-being of car workers and their communities.
Concessions extorted under threat of disinvestment lead to the wrecking of the economy and a vast transfer of wealth from the working class to owners of capital generating misery, insecurity, poverty, unemployment and disequilibrium in society. British workers are determined not to continue down that treacherous path and express their solidarity with all workers in turning the situation around and defeating the neo liberal attacks. The working class must not allow these executive wreckers and traitors to continue to take Britain on a downward anti-social spiral.
Threats to destroy production are anti-worker crimes. Executives who attempt to extort concessions with threats to wreck or move production should be charged with criminal abuse of power and removed from their positions. A tiny gang within each monopoly is using their class privilege and power to enrich themselves rather than manage production in a professional and socially responsible way within an atmosphere of equilibrium based on the recognition of workers’ rights and their established standard of living.
This nonsense of workers as a cost of production must stop! Cost of production to whom? To those holding a strip of paper or coupon that says they own what workers produce? Those people have the right only to a general rate of profit and no right to abuse car workers and plot to steal their legitimate established claims. If owners of capital want an additional claim on auto production, they should apply for a production job in a parts or assembly plant, steel works or some other components’ factory or mine. Joining with other workers as producers of value would give them the same right of first claim on what they produce from their work-time. But they have no right to steal what belongs to car workers!
Jaguar workers are determined to uphold their dignity in these contract talks and demand that executives and their mass media stop their campaign of anti-worker hatred that is generating disequilibrium.
The British economy is the people’s economy. The automobile sector is the workers’ sector, and car workers and other industrial workers demand dignity and respect as the proud producers of that value.
Whose Economy? Our Economy!
Whose Automobile Sector? Our Automobile Sector!