SANKT PAULI ALERTA CHOREO: A spectre is needed once more to haunt Europe …

Most of you will have noticed it at the beginning of the second half versus Kaiserslautern. A spectre appeared, surrounded by red flags and a banner (in German) proclaiming the sentence in the title above. Some of you will know from where the inspiration for the banner came, others perhaps won’t. For those who don’t know, then I have a little reading tip for you. The book is called “Communist Manifesto“, written by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. The sentence actually goes:
„A spectre is haunting Europe — the spectre of communism. All the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre: Pope and Tsar, Metternich and Guizot, French Radicals and German police-spies.“
Ok, it was written in 1848, so isn’t exactly up to date. Or perhaps it is? Why could we find ourselves in a position where we want the spectre i.e. communism to return?

Perhaps before we start, it would be sensible to explain what we mean when we talk about communism. It’s quite simple really: a better world. That sounds like Hippie shit at first, but we aren’t talking about flowers, VW buses and drugs (well I guess that could play a part to a degree ;-)). But really we are talking about a liberated society, a society which is built around the needs of people, and where competition and exploitation no longer exist. For us that means a clear rejection of the cornerstones of capitalism, in other words trading, money, wages and profit. Furthermore we believe that everyone should be involved in the decision making process, in other words, radically democratic.

Unfortunately though, we do not live in a liberated society. We live under capitalism. In a system based on competition and rivalry. There is no real freedom in this system. There is more freedom than under a dictatorship, however instead of surrendering to the tyranny of the power hungry, we instead succumb to the power of the market. Everything in our society can be sold, in fact exactly that is essential for our current system to work. That begins with the act of going to work, applies to drinking water, and even stuff like the USP-scarves that end up on ebay. People in this society are left on their own and end up only looking out for themselves. They do that, not because they are evil, or cannot stand other people though, but because the system forces them to. Whether you work in a bank, are a student, or work down at the harbor, we ALL succumb to the same logic of usability. Most of the madness of this world stems from this same logic. The people who flee Africa for Europe, via Lampedusa, are forced to do so because of capitalism. War, starvation and lack of prospects are not things that occur out of nothing, but are all logical effects of the system. You end up competing with your colleagues at work for the best position or tasks, and in the same fashion, on a greater scale, so do the states and continents of this world. And because we are better off here in Europe, Africa must lose out. Every nation wishes to be the winner in this competition, and therefore each nation must ensure the game continues. For it all to function, there must always be “the others”. Put simply, that means people will always hate other people. A reason to do so will always be found, whether it’s religion, sexual preference or skin colour.

Worldwide Communism as a concept was created to smash all of this. Its aim is to return us to treating each other with respect and to act with solidarity. We would only produce what we need, rather than what happens to be sold on the market. That has advantages for us and the environment
. There would no need to produce the masses of food that we currently throw away each day, and the food we would actually eat would be healthier, as it wouldn’t require the additional ingredients currently needed to compete.

All people would own the basic materials and factories etc. There would no longer be the need to worry whether a company might go bust or be taken over. Currently many people are excluded from wealth because they don’t own a factory or apartment house. Were we to share these things though, we would all be wealthy. That would save us all a lot of stress, as we would no longer feel the need to keep up with the race or face losing out. It would also mean we could decide together what should be made. That would be advantageous, as so many things produced today are incredible dumb or ugly.

Communism would establish a fair, level playing field for all. The current system doesn’t help us. We all have the same rights, but some have more funds to uphold those rights than others. Not all of us can afford the same lawyer, or a lawyer at all, and so we can end up losing a decision in court, even when perhaps we were in the right. We want a situation where everyone is protected to the same degree, and the situation is not influenced by something like age, gender, level of education etc.

Perhaps the idea sounds good to you too, and you would like to live in such a society. The question remains however, how do we achieve such a society?
Well actually, it’s not as difficult as it might first appear. We must organise, we must act with solidarity, and above all we must be prepared to live differently. We put a lot of the theory into practice in the way that we act as a group with USP. We organise as a group, and we look after each other when there is trouble with the cops or the state (if you read that sentence from Marx, you will realise that they had that back 1848. It’s nice to know, we weren’t the first people who couldn’t stand the police). We work, without the expectation of reward e.g. for choreos or when we decorate the streets. We just need to carry that over into the greater society. Imagine a company organised like USP. It would be extremely productive, everyone would meet regularly and discuss important matters at hand, and when a worker was down on his or her luck, the others would look after them.

With USP it is irrelevant where you are from, what you look like or how well off you are. It is irrelevant whether you left school at 16 or did your A-Levels. All of these differences are artificial differences created by the market. Therefore we don’t need to pay any attention to them. More important is that we join the struggle, that the people have always fought – the struggle for a better life. Marx and Engels did their part in 1848.

Today, the aim of a liberated society seems a long way away. We are constantly confronted by racist politicians, Nazis and coppers. Nevertheless, whilst the struggle for communism may be hard, it is worth it. That is what we wanted to say with our choreo, as part of the Alerta-Actionday.
We need a spectre to haunt Europe once more. We need communism.