We’ve all seen this horror movie before. The monster has been slain, the survivors gather to count their losses (or if this is the sci-fi flick Alien, a weary Ellen Ripley climbs back into her stasis capsule). And suddenly… the monster (or its evil offspring) is back to inflict more mayhem. Why? Because it’s just not enough to slay the monster once. We need a strategy to win a monster-free city, or planet, or Nostromo.
Okay, enough with the hokey analogies. But there are parallels between the horror genre and capitalist globalization. After years of secretive talks, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between the European Union and Canada has now been defeated by an uprising of the Wallonian peasants… er, parliament. Like the Brexit vote, this outcome is a victory against the drive by big capital to wipe out national sovereignty and prevent any challenge to corporate domination over the global economy. The collapse of CETA (barring any last-minute revival of the deal) gives fresh impetus to the struggle to block the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which cannot take effect unless all 12 signatory countries give legislative approval by early 2018. That includes Canada, where the federal Liberals seem nervous about bringing the TPP to a vote, and the U.S., where popular anger has forced Hillary Clinton to back away from the deal.
If only that could be the final chapter. But as long as imperialist hegemony continues, new “corporate rights” deals will keep coming. The ultimate response by the working class, indigenous peoples, and their allies must be broad unity around a people’s alternative to block the power of big capital and open the way towards a socialist future. The victory over CETA should become the first step in this radical new direction.