On the Canadian Trucker Convoy

By Timothy Dirté

Trucks parked outside Parliament Hill

At the end of January this year, a “convoy” of truck drivers took to the roads en masse and disrupted the flow of goods between Canada and the US. Their reason is to protest the vaccine mandates implemented for truck drivers in Canada, where over 80% of people in the country are vaccinated. Furthermore, it is estimated that nearly 90% of truck drivers themselves are vaccinated.1

That these protests would occur in a country of near-universal inoculation and acceptance of vaccination is telling, especially given the widespread support from reactionary US capital for them.2

Some “progressive” elements in the US, such as Richard Wolff, have even given their support to the protests. Richard Wolff is a notably influential voice in the labor movement who is best known for their spin on worker organization surrounding cooperatives and worker participation in the growth and management of capital.

In their YouTube video Finding Common Ground with Canadian Truckers, Richard Wolff states, “What the Left should do is support the protests while opposing the right-wing for its attempt to exploit protesters’ legitimate grievances.” But what Wolff failed to see is the inherently reactionary origins of the organization of the protests, which attempted a previous convoy against vaccine mandates only a few months prior but did not make international news. Wolff is signifying here that they are actually to the right of liberals.

The primary organizers behind the “trucker convoy” are reactionary elements such as “Police on Guard for Thee”, “Mounties 4 Freedom”, “Police for Freedom”, “Feds for Freedom”, and “Canada Unity”.3 In fact, most of the funding that has surfaced (around $10 million4) comes from wealthy individuals in Canada and the US.

This is not simply an issue of sectarianism as Richard Wolff tries to suggest. The entire character and aim of the convoys are fascist. They are a purposeful misdirection of the workers away from class struggle. The inability of capitalism to resolve the pandemic has led to policies at the behest of monopoly capital which exacerbate the pauperization of the people. Those who have participated come from the broad masses who have felt the growing pressure of monopoly and have become fertile ground for their subsequent entanglement in fascist reaction to the intensifying crisis.5 Anti-monopoly sentiments among the broad masses are easily and commonly exploited to further the interests of monopoly in the absence of militant Communist leadership.

Similarly, the inability of the Communist Party in Canada to have built itself among the most decisive elements of the Canadian working class has resulted in the workers being left to the auspices of fascist leadership. Even though those who participated in the “Freedom Convoy” are a small percentage of workers, the rest of the Canadian working class can only look on in horror as they are in no better position being paralyzed by social-democratic leadership, and in the case of Richard Wolff actually thrown to these wolves.

Only through the industrial concentration of the Communist Party among the workers in the most decisive industries of capitalism today can the workers be rallied into revolutionary struggle against the anti-worker and anti-people policies of reaction. The struggle against social democracy today which diverts the workers from political struggle and allows the systematic slaughter of the world for profit is a life and death struggle for the future of humanity as a whole.

References

1 https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-protest-1.6335086

2 https://globalnews.ca/news/8602177/freedom-convoy-protest-us-far-right-support/

3 https://policeonguard.ca/news-release-urgent-message-to-canadians/

4 https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/14/world/canada/canada-trucker-protests-donations.html

5 https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/2022/02/15/american-donors-freedom-convoy-zipcodes/

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