“Selbstbestimmtes Österreich” (SBÖ, Austria Self-determined) is a new political alliance in Austia. They define four basic lines for their approach on Austrian politics: Democratic, Social, Sovereign, Neutral. The approach is in key points very colse to the Lexit idea, as the founding declaration says: “The EU-integration is the transmission belt for the neo-liberal reconstruction of Austria, which means that any serious protest against the right-wing government has to include protest against the right-wing EU politics. It cannot ignore that the very essence of the EU neither allows any alternatives against its aggressive economic policy nor against its anti-democratic, militaristic and chauvinistic political moves within its structures. Therefore it is necessary to question the whole structure of the EU and think about alternatives to being a member of this union.” We document their founding declaration in our blog.
Democratic – socially responsible – sovereign – neutral
Against the government dictated by the Federation of Austrian Industries
The current government’s programme largely originates from the pen of the Federation of Austrian Industries and its entourage. With this programme those forces see a good chance to establish a new centre of power that will accelerate the neo-liberal societal and economic counter-reform, safeguarding this process with chauvinistic rhetoric and politics. They are aware of the fact that many of the underprivileged and disadvantaged voted for them in the false hope that their social situation would be improved. So the government also knows they have to act quickly. They will target all social and political forces and institutions opposing the radicalised neo-liberal deconstruction of society.
The political orientation of the current government is congruent with the EU bureaucracy’s politics, so any protest against this government’s measures that calls for EU support exposes itself to ridicule. In order to oppose the right-wing development thoroughly, the neo-liberal changes have to be questioned fundamentally.
The elimination of trade restrictions results in wage cuts, social cuts and de-democratization. As a result, the gap between the rich and the poor is widened, with the concentration of assets and wealth in the hands of a few, reaching levels of the times before 1914. The uncertainties in international exchange relationships are increasing. Deregulated financial markets cannot compensate these imponderables and they themselves become explosives for the next crisis. Export battles are a threat to international relationships and do destabilize countries in peripheral regions to an extent that may result in warlike conflicts and outright wars.
The EU-integration is the transmission belt for the neo-liberal reconstruction of Austria, which means that any serious protest against the right-wing government has to include protest against the right-wing EU politics. It cannot ignore that the very essence of the EU neither allows any alternatives against its aggressive economic policy nor against its anti-democratic, militaristic and chauvinistic political moves within its structures. Therefore it is necessary to question the whole structure of the EU and think about alternatives to being a member of this union.
We want a DEMOCRATIC society, a society based on gender justice, a society that allows all its members to take part in will formation and decision-making processes equally. This requires that the subordination to all the institutions – in particular the EU-bureaucracy – which accelerate the neo-liberal reconstruction of our society must be broken up. Furthermore, it definitely requires turning away from the political establishment that creates concepts and stereotypes of the enemy for the disappointed and those left behind, directing their energies towards those enemy images while at the same time pushing through political measures in the interest of the elites.
We want a SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE society, a society that respects and protects the collective rights of the people, a society that allows a democratic management of economic processes, thereby taking the interests of the society at large into consideration. Our political aim is to use productivity gains for the development of public services in the health, nursing and educational sectors as well as for an ecological change instead of their current annihilation in export battles and in the accumulation of parasitic wealth. Our political aim is to put an end to a situation where the poor are played off against the poor; in its place, we want a society where everybody’s right to existence in dignity is secured.
We want a SOVEREIGN Austria. Our aims can only be realized effectively if they are related to a concrete political entity. Democracy and a socially responsible welfare state have to be based on this particular political framework. The accusation of falling back into nationalism is wrong and misleading. The nation state is still the framework within which the social life of the people is politically organised. The call for abandoning this national framework under the pretext that this concept would imply the return to nationalist thinking would mean surrender to the elites who, in their turn, effectively use the nation state as a tool to push forward globalisation and to pursue the class struggle in their own interests.
We want a NEUTRAL Austria. It represents the heritage of the victory over German fascism and its imperial expansion. Sovereignty does by no means stand for isolation and dissociation. What we want is an open-minded exchange with other societies as equal partners. This implies that every collaboration or cooperation with major powers like the EU or military blocs like NATO, which secure a world order based on injustice and violence, must be terminated. The status of neutrality offers the chance to work together with other neutral states striving for sovereignty in order to contribute to a world that might realize peace and just international relationships.
We are expecting upcoming social and political conflicts as the profile and plans of the new government are clear:
* cuts in social welfare especially affecting the poorest, especially migrants
* attacks of the public bodies of self-determination (chambers, social security, etc.)
* attacks on collective bargaining and unions
* contracting the budget and further decreasing public services which is deepening the class divide
* tax gifts to corporations and wealthy
* increasing lack of housing in the urban centres
* growing police state and repressive apparatus
* continued gridlock in reducing climate affecting emission
* continued deregulation and liberalisation of transport instead of endeavouring an ecological turn-around
* intensification of the campaign on refugees, migrants and Muslims as enemies; segregation instead of integration
* Emptying out neutrality by participation in core Europe
We pledge to support anybody, political forces as well as institution, who is ready to resist these attacks and will co-operate with them. We do not set any conditions but insist on respecting the political and social rights of everybody whose centre of live happens to be in Austria. We are convinced that a break with the neo-liberal regime is necessary. We do not want to force this conviction on anybody but we want to show in the forthcoming conflicts that this premise is useful.
Our position must become visible, audible and palpable. Hence we are uniting in order to commonly act politically, in front of media and for street actions.
Especially we will fight
* against dismantling the public representative bodies defending the interests of the lower classes which would drive the neo-liberal restructuring of society.
* against a debt ceiling being cemented in the constitution. Its target is not a balanced public budges, but a further curbing of democracy
* against all cut into the welfare state