Point/Counterpoint: Iranian Elections

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Point: We Must Support Rouhani as the Communist Candidate for Iran

by Worker’s Spatula Representative

Iran is a complicated place, with multiple nations living within its borders, a severely repressed trade unionist movement with roots going back decades, and extremely difficult contradictions with regard to women’s issues. There is no easy answer to the many problems that face Iran, from secularism to socialism, and we must make tactical compromises.

Under the current conditions, it seems that the Rouhani presidency can still play a progressive role. While there can be no substitute for a movement of the streets for Iranian comrades on the ground, they too would reluctantly agree that Rouhani represents the most progressive force possible at his level of “big” politics.

As one of the founders of the Worker’s Spatula Centre for Shariati Studies, I have long had a keen interest in Iran and its politics. As a supporter of the ICMLPO (Unity and Struggle), I am deeply interested in contradictions in the international arena. That’s why, in spite of my many criticisms of Mr. Rouhani, I have nothing but the strongest support for his plan to heal old wounds between our movement and the regime by promoting Hamid Reza Chitgar’s daughter as his choice for the next Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, following the death of Khamenei.

In spite of the Iranian regime’s many flaws, and many compromises with imperialism which possessed an opportunistic rather than tactical character, there is still hope for Iran, even within reformist elements of the regime. Rouhani’s recent interview in which he described Ebrahim Raisi as “a proponent of the revisionist Three Worlds Theory” represents such a hope.

Vote Rouhani in the upcoming Iranian elections, the only candidate who has read Alain Badiou!

Counterpoint: Vote Rouhani to Stem the Tide of Counter-Revolution!

by Twitter Left Representative

Iran is not a complicated country, with so-called “multiple nations” (as all true Marxist-Leninists know, this is an impossibility, as there can only be one Iranian nation), or so-called “contradictions”. It is quite simply this: the most heroic, self-sacrificing anti-imperialist state in the world!

Iran is the greatest, and anyone who criticises Iran for any reason is probably a Trot. Not only do the masses of Iranians wholly support their regime, which is almost as socialist as Syria or China, but the downtrodden peoples in all neighbouring countries, whether Iraq, Afghanistan, or Pakistan, all agree that Iran has always rushed to their defence in times of need.

Since Iran is good, and not bad, any challenge to the established order in Iran is plainly a plot by US imperialism, and must be fiercely opposed. Therefore, anyone who votes for, or encourages a vote for, or stands as a candidate against the legitimate President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, is an objective agent of US imperialism, and a wrecker who deserves no fate gentler than immediate execution.

To those who even dream of discussing what the effect of any change to the government in Iran might mean for the position of Supreme Leader following the latter’s death, know this: If the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran chooses to die at any point, this too represents an act of collusion with US imperialism. I call on Supreme Leader Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei to resolutely stand against the US imperialist plot of ageing and death, and instead live on forever, in hiding, much like Muhammad al-Mahdi.

In conclusion: Vote Rouhani for stability in the face of the Kurdish and Baloch ethno-nationalist plots of objective agents of US imperialism, like Worker’s Spatula.

Happy Mother’s Day from Worker’s Spatula

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“Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!”

“Oh, thank you so much sweetie, you really didn’t have to…”

“Go on, Mom, open it, open it!”

Worker’s Spatula’s Oakland correspondent watched excitedly as her mother opened up the long box.

“It looks like some kind of bazooka!” exclaimed our correspondent’s mother, sitting up in bed. Our correspondent rolled her eyes:

“Mom, don’t be ignorant, a Kalashnikov and a bazooka are entirely different weapons.”

“Well I’ve never held one of either before, have I?”

“Mom, we’ve got to fight ISIS.”

“I thought we were going out for mimosas!”

“We’re going to have brunch on the flight to Iraq, which I’ve also paid for.”

“Oh shoot, I don’t know about all that. I had really just wanted some mimosas and maybe some avocado toast.”

“Mom, don’t you see, what we’re fighting for is the right of all women to drink mimosas. We’re fighting to the defence of Yezidi children from the fascist ISIS thugs. This is for the Cumartesi Anneleri and the democratic revolution in Turkey, not only the Roja Rizgariyê of the ezilen Kürt halkı. This is the most dialectical Mother’s Day gift I could possibly give you!”

“[REDACTED], I don’t want you to misunderstand me on this, because you know I support you in all your little… projects, but I don’t actually know what some of those words mean. I’m pretty sure a few of them weren’t actually English.”

At this juncture, our Oakland correspondent snatched the rifle from her mother’s hands. “Whatever, Mom.”

“No, I didn’t mean to say I didn’t like it!”

“WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN, MOM? WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO LIKE SOMETHING? IT’S OBVIOUS THAT YOU DON’T SEE YOUR REFLECTION IN IT! YOU’RE ALIENATED FROM MY WONDERFUL MOTHER’S DAY GIFT OF REVOLUTION, WHICH MEANS I HAVE FAILED AS A DAUGHTER AND AS A REVOLUTIONARY VANGUARD.”

“No, you’re a wonderful voluntary van guard! Really!”

“I don’t WANT to be a voluntarist, mother!” shrieked our correspondent, letting off several rounds into the ceiling in rage. “God, I wish I was never born!”

Our correspondent’s mother sat in silence in her bedroom, watching the dust float down from the bullet holes in the ceiling.

[REDACTED] poked her head back through the doorway sheepishly, “So, um… should I go get the car and we can go get some omelettes or something?”

“That sounds wonderful, sweetie. I’ll just get dressed real quick.”

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO ALL OUR COMRADE MOTHERS WHO HAVE MADE US WHO WE ARE TODAY.

SOLIDARITY WITH THE CUMARTESİ ANNELERİ.

Jeremy Corbyn Announces Plan to Run Over Reactionaries in Bus

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ISLINGTON – Announcing what is already promising to be his most popular policy yet, Jeremy Corbyn says he plans to travel around in a “For the Many, Not the Few” bus and run over reactionary scum.

“The BBC cameraman’s foot was just the beginning. You won’t believe all the bastards I’m going to run over once I really get going,” the leader of the British Party of Labour explained, quite Hoxhaistly, to the assembled crowd of reporters.

“This is empty populism,” explained local Real Revolutionary™ and member of the RCG Sean Davies, “Corbyn’s just exploiting popular support for the reasonable policy of running down various imperialist warmongers and capitalist exploiters in a big red bus so that he can keep using the British state’s funds to maintain his Islington bunker.

“You can’t run down imperialists in an imperialist bus. It simply won’t work. It’s against the laws of dialectics.”

Critics within the Labour Party are concerned with the prospects for future electability presented by an election platform based upon the destruction of the bodies of various reactionaries under the tyres of a massive red bus, concerns Corbyn has refuted as “irrelevant” on the grounds that “This hasn’t got anything to do with the election in the first place, it is simply a principled stance.

“I intend to run over reactionaries no matter the result of this or any future election, because I believe in a Labour Party built upon principles of vehicular homicide for the enemies of ordinary working people.”

Jeremy Corbyn was last seen leaning out the window of the “For the Many, Not the Few” bus, feeling the wind and sea on his face as he drove across the English Channel, screaming “You’re next, Erdoğan, you ayran-drinking bastard!”

 

French Anti-Fascist Front to be Built Around Racist Austerity with a Human Face

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PARIS – Informed and reasonable people across France and in sympathetic imperialist countries are urging all French voters to come out for Macron in the Second Round of the French elections, in which voters will be asked to choose their preferred candidate in a system of run-off voting which, for the unfamiliar, basically prolongs the experience in countries without run-off voting.

Individuals who describe themselves as “socialist, but not in a mad way” are united around the view that Macron must be fervently supported to prevent Le Pen from being elected, although they are less able to articulate why the Le Pen dynasty is such a consistent threat to their estimably reasonable political positions, election year after election year.

What they did know was that Macron will certainly be better for the people living in France:

“I’ve done the maths, and my estimates indicate that we may be able to reduce the number of people killed on the basis of social policy which devalues their very lives by as much as a third if they are murdered for their social class rather than their race, colour, creed, etc.” explained utilitarian philosopher and stats boffin Jules Liechtenstein. “In addition, the high rate of suicide due to the unemployment Macron would create, plus the unnecessary deaths due to his defunding of public services like healthcare, would be dragged out over many years. That’s a big savings in life-years and a potential increase in Gross National Happiness when compared to the death camps Le Pen is proposing.”

“There are those who propose that the death camps would be better for Gross National Happiness on the grounds that French life is already such a miserable charade, such a farce, such a fucking je ne sais quoi of immiseration and despair, that maybe the sooner we’re all rounded up, the better. This is a clearly uninformed position, as the hours prior to suicide may be spent drinking lovely wine in a lovely park; while in a death camp, the scenery is generally considered to be unpleasant and the wine sub-par, and the whole experience therefore somewhat detrimental to the happiness averages.”

Our local correspondent interjected at this point: “Isn’t it true that black and Muslim French people will be killed by fascistic police in either case, and that thousands of refugees already languish in inhumane conditions in detention centres?”

“Of course,” replied Liechtenstein. “But be reasonable. That’s just the way things are, we’ve got to prevent fascist ideas from gaining a foothold in French politics now.”

Worker’s Spatula’s English correspondents found a general solidarity with the reasonable descendents of Maximilien Robespierre in academic haunts of England as well: Trevor Stutts, a liberal Professor of Trade Union Studies at the University of Sunderland said: “I’ve long said that if the left want to stop the right, they have to just close their eyes and just vote for whatever the right wants them to vote for, no matter how awful it is. What’s more, I’ve proven this logically.” At this juncture, Stutts gestured over to a flip chart bearing the formula “Fascism minus Epsilon > Fascism”.

“Anyone who understands basic maths and logic can see that if the far left simply choose to act rationally, unlike Slavoj Žižek and other such ultra-left radicals, they will take a firm stand against fascism by embracing its acceptable “social” form.”

Asked whether he had plans to vote in the upcoming British General Elections, Prof. Stutts said he couldn’t possibly bring himself to vote for a Labour Party candidate who wouldn’t even wear a proper suit.

Erkan Baş Speech Briefly Interrupted by Splitters

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İSTANBUL/STEMBOL – As Erkan Baş, the leader of the Communist Party of Turkey (also known as HTKP), took to the stage at the International Workers’ Day celebration in Bakırköy (Kurdish: Gundê Bekir), a group of neo-Trotskyite splitters from the TKP calling themselves “KP” began jeering at TÖPG’s favourite Brezhnevite, doubtless driven by jealousy of Erkan Baş’s formidable moustache.

“This is truly unacceptable,” explained leader of the KP pack and occasional reader of Nazım Hikmet poetry Emre Tokatçı to an EMEP-affiliated* Worker’s Spatula correspondent in attendance. “We only came because we thought we were going to be the centre of attention. If anyone is going to mention any other communists in Turkey, we’re going home.”

Following the completion of this sentence, all assembled KP members indeed began marching home, to the comfort of the Nazım Hikmet Kültür Merkezi in Ali Suavi Sk. (AKA Sanatçılar Sokağı) in Kadıköy.

For our foreign readers, the NHKM is a magical place where nobody ever mentions Kurds or popular fronts or any other such right deviationist nonsense.

By sheer coincidence, this move to abandon the International Workers’ Day celebration also meant that KP avoided any confrontation with the fascist Turkish police whatsoever.

The KP’s sister party in Greece, KKE, responded immediately with a statement condemning the entire Turkish left for “failing to defend KP, at a time when the sharpest and clearest contradiction in Turkish society is the defence of Kemal Okuyan”.

The Turkish Ministry of the Interior has issued a statement encouraging all young communists who insist on wasting their time with “that nonsense” to side with KP against all rivals (whether HTKP, TKP 1920, or KP-İÖ, if they still exist). The Turkish Foreign Ministry, meanwhile, has issued a statement encouraging all foreigners to simply ignore the whole affair, and indeed, anything that is not printed in an official AKP-approved press release.

*ESP and Devrimci Parti were mostly embedded in the fight for Taksim.

DSA Celebrate Loyalty Day

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CHICAGO – Following news that Donald “Chelsea” Trump had “proclaimed” May 1st to be “Loyalty Day”, History majors and long-time labour activists across the imperialist United States of Amerikkka have taken the occasion to remind everyone that “Loyalty Day” is a long-time reactionary tradition of the imperialist bourgeoisie in that country, and as such Trump has actually done nothing that any of his predecessors have not done to overshadow and delegitimise annual celebrations of the Marxist-Leninist holiday.

Reassured of the legitimacy of “Loyalty Day” in the eyes of the Democratic Party, the DSA, a small Stalinist entryist group within the larger Democratic Party plan to take to the streets to celebrate “Loyalty Day” in the loudest and most loyal way possible.

“I’m so glad to live in America, with its socialist police force, and not in anti-democratic Venezuela!” explained local white Chicago resident and DSA member Sean McGruder, as he handed out flyers inviting other members of the labour aristocracy to the DSA’s May 1st celebration. “God bless America!”

“May 1st is as American as July 4th or Labo[u]r Day,” concurred his friend Michael Del Franco, “We’re loyal to the US constitution, which is the real revolutionary tool of the working class to achieve political power.”

Not all were convinced by the DSA’s rhetoric, however. Local professor and known spoilsport Alfonso Casal said some things about “McCarthyism” and “wer hat uns verraten” to an assembled crowd of decidedly un-democratic socialists:

“I would call the DSA reformists, but they’d probably correct me and say that they aren’t interested in reforms, but democratic reforms. I would charge the DSA with the murder of Rosa Luxemburg, but they would probably respond by pointing out that Rosa Luxemburg was murdered by a democratically-elected government.”

For our part, the US wing of Worker’s Spatula will also be celebrating Loyalty Day. What follows is a statement endorsed by all our US correspondents, editors, and rabble-rousers:

We’ve never felt so loyal. Loyal to our accelerationist president. Loyal to a decreasing rate of profit, loyal to the increasing immiseration of the workers, which signals the gradual re-proletarianisation of the oppressor settler-colonialist Yankee nation’s labour aristocracy, and/or the coming rising up of the oppressed Afro-American people.

We predict a revolution in the US by the end of Trump’s second term.

After all, there’s no chance of the Democrats winning in 2020 if they put Jeb Bush up as their candidate again.

Oscar Temaru Blames Failure on “Les Blancs”

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PARIS – Following the conclusion of the first round of French presidential elections, the Spatula’s favoured candidate, Oscar Temaru, has been knocked out of the race by a veritable menagerie of white people, including other social democrats who couldn’t even manage to beat out Le Pen and Macron.

The Spatula’s local correspondent was present at Temaru’s press conference, where he gave the following statement:

Friends, comrades, ICOR and ICMLPO (Maoist) representatives: thank you all for being here. We ran a good campaign, and we certainly won’t surrender now. I salute all our people in the streets, in the workplaces, in the universities, in all spheres of life, who stand against the dictats of French Republic, its imperialist manoeuvres, and its frankly awful cuisine.

Our campaign was right, and if I had a chance to run it again, I would change only one thing: France has too many white people.

Again I reiterate that I don’t mean this in a racist way. I don’t hate white people. I don’t want to deport white people. I simply think that there are disproportionately many of them in France given their actual contributions to building France into what it is today, and I wish that French civil society more fully reflected the reality that without Polynesia, there would be no France as we know it.

What has been made clear, not only by my defeat in this election, but also in the remaining two choices, is that white people in France cannot be trusted to solve this problem on their own. They simply refuse to recognise the historical justice that would manifest itself in the un-bleaching of French society. The white minority nationalities of France, such as the Basques and Bretons, refuse to even take seriously their historical duty to remove themselves from France in the service of this goal.

I fear that the objective conditions simply made it impossible for us to win this election, and may even make it impossible to win the next election. We will struggle on regardless, but I wish to make one thing perfectly clear: We did not lose this election, white people stole it.

Given the choice between Le Pen and Macron, the Spatula default to the Hoxhaist ICMLPO position of recommending all French comrades cast their vote for Donald Trump, as the lesser evil.

Aboriginals Raise Language Standards for Immigrants to Australia

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DARWIN – Controversy surrounds the latest decision to raise linguistic standards for immigrants to Australia to ensure they can pass a strict language proficiency test imposed by the federal authorities in Darwin today.

“It doesn’t seem that odd to me,” said government spokeswoman Alinga Barton, “If people want to come halfway across the world to live in Australia, the least they could do is adapt to some token extent to our culture and way of life.

“If they can’t even speak the basics of a single Pama–Nyungan language, I don’t understand how we’re expected to live with them.”

Aboriginal Australia was broadly united in their support for this new policy, with over 78% of Aboriginal Australians citing fears that if immigration is left unchecked at current rates, their descendants may lose all trace of Australian culture and speak some totally foreign language, brought by greedy immigrants with no respect for their heritage.

Immigrant rights groups have objected to the policy as racist and paranoid. We spoke with “White Australia” spokesman Sean Jeffries:

I like to think of myself as an immigrant success story. I came here when I was 12 years old and still managed to learn Warlpiri fluently, marry myself a Warlpiri wife, everything. I’m practically a real Australian now. But not everyone is so lucky. Many are excluded from mainstream Australian life because they can only speak English or Croatian, and it’s completely unfair.

If you’d just give white people a chance, you’ll see that we can learn your language and way of life. It just takes time. So long as Australian society is built around an Aboriginal core, with business and education being conducted entirely in Aboriginal languages, there’s no reason to fear immigrants and our languages.

Not all immigrant groups are so hostile to the policy however. On the contrary, Pauline Han, a Salar Muslim immigrant from China, was sharply critical of the “White Australia” group and what she characterised as its “presumptious attitude of entitlement towards Australian society”:

Australia doesn’t owe you a home, Australia doesn’t owe you a job, Australia has thousands of its own to look after. I can’t stand all these white people, showing up uninvited, parasitically using up all Australia’s resources, and then demanding everyone speak English for them on top of it all!

Even the fact that I have learnt fluent Wik Mungkan doesn’t afford me any right to be here. I’m a guest in Australia, and I know it. So when the real Australians just ask that we do this one simple thing, I don’t complain, I thank them.

Worker’s Spatula Editor-in-Chief Revealed to be Your Flatmate

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YOUR FLAT – Months of research have finally confirmed your suspicion that Worker’s Spatula, the most popular source of anti-revisionist snark on the internet, is run by none other than your flatmate.

Your flatmate, who is always seen with a döner wrap in one hand and a Persian-language history of the Kurdish national movement in the other, is supposed to be doing a Master’s in Economics or some such, but actually spends more time smoking in your shared kitchen, mumbling about Turkish politics, a pastime which has been confirmed to be part of the Spatular lifestyle.

Attempts at broaching the subject of Worker’s Spatula with your flatmate have up to this point been fruitless, with the latter constantly brushing off the Spatula by referring to it as “that juvenile bullshit you keep sharing on your Facebook page”. These words, however, were in stark contrast to your flatmate’s deeds, including meeting up at odd hours with local breamfishers, calling Sarajevo, Ankara, and Liechtenstein.

The conclusive proof came today when you found your flatmate’s unlocked smartphone sitting on the table, with a group WhatsApp chat entitled “Dialectics Firing Squad” open to a vote on what the Spatula Reading Group reading for the second half of April would be, with your flatmate, referred to by others as the “editor-in-chief”, casting the decisive vote in favour of more Hegel.

When confronted, your flatmate responded that he was done with the Spatula now, as it wasn’t funny anymore, and was thinking of shutting the site down. Asked if this wouldn’t be a shame, given the Spatula’s broad following, your flatmate responded by saying “When websites are shut down there should be parties to celebrate the victory of dialectics, to celebrate the destruction of the old.”

Spanish State Begging ETA to Rearm

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BILBAO – Following an announcement of a unilateral decommissioning of arms by the left-wing Basque national liberation group known as ETA (Basque Country and Freedom), the Spanish state, fearing increasing economic instability as the EU begins to disintegrate around them, are apparently trying to convince their enemies to rearm.

“We’ve received dozens of letters from various PSOE and PP politicians urging us to set off a bomb or shoot a cop or something. At first we thought it was some kind of joke, and then we remembered the reason why we’re disarming in the first place: we’re supposedly delegitimising the Abertzale left,” explained our masked interlocutor, as he poured boxes full of bullets into a roaring bonfire.

“Now whenever I wake up and find a bomb on my doorstep, I understand it’s not a threat, but a gift from the PP who are concerned about their own electoral future.”

“EYYY Spain, don’t think we don’t know what you’re doing!” exclaimed Erdoğan, in a televised interview where he explained international politics in his usual accurate fashion to the population of Turkey. “The Spanish are having the Basques give their guns to the Kurds because they’re jealous of our world class bridges! If the Spanish respected their Turkish-Andalusian heritage, they would blow some Basque town off the map!”

At this juncture, most non-Turkish readers probably assume that we’re just ascribing a random selection of words to Turkish president Erdoğan, rather than giving a fairly accurate impression of how his speeches usually go. We assure you, this is how Erdoğan actually talks and behaves.

However, in stark contrast to the usual treatment of Erdoğan’s outbursts by state representatives abroad, Erdoğan’s advice is being considered quite seriously in Madrid. Our source in Madrid spoke to several ministers and their aides on condition of anonymity, and apparently launching a pointless war is in the cards for the PP-led government.

“We’re already on the verge of losing Gibraltar,” explained one anonymous source, “and nobody wants to risk losing Catalonia and the Basque Country too. But they refuse to acknowledge our modest demand to allow the Spanish state to determine its own future, and therefore we may be forced to take up arms against them.”

“Our main concern,” explained another source, “is that if we pull an Erdoğan and just launch a military operation against a group which has unilaterally declared a ceasefire, well in our case it’s worse, they’re disarming… it may backfire. Rather than delegitimising left Basque nationalism, it may relegitimise ETA itself.

“Our only hope,” our source explained, looking over their shoulder to make sure no one was listening before finishing, “is to blame the Russians. That seems to be working very well for left-liberals in the US against Trump, and we’re confident it can save Spain as well.”