Politics - June 12, 2024

There are many areas of social life in which, over the last decades, the centre-right or right-wing parties decided not to put up a fight and to cede absolute dominance to the left. This tremendous mistake occurred more clearly within the European parties and movements because, certainly, in the United States conservative movements have often had a greater vitality, perhaps also as a consequence of the greater pressure of this progressive thinking, which flooded American universities earlier than in Europe.

Culture in general, and in particular cinema, theatre and music, have been fertile ground for the cultural domination of the left. Precisely because of the failure of the so-called social right, which preferred to invest in engineers, doctors, economists and lawyers. The result was a disaster. Because those engineers, doctors, lawyers or economists, or their children or grandchildren, grew up and developed their professional activity in an increasingly radical ideological magma, where traditional virtues such as the patriotic sense of life, bravery, respect for authority and tradition, the communitarian vision of the world, gradually gave way in favour of those ‘values’ imposed by the left: individualism, globalisation, diversity or inclusion.

The same thing happened for decades in the broad spectrum of the labour movement. The left, after the Second World War, monopolised the massive control of workers in Europe; when the conservative right decided to move away – in a process far more profound than we imagine, especially in the Catholic countries of Europe – from the richness of what has come to be called over time the Social Doctrine of the Church, even though it has offered for more than a century a catalogue of measures, resources and principles more than sufficient to confront socialism.

Having shown that the left has betrayed the European working classes, accepting the new identitarianisms of gender or race, this social right of strong convictions is regaining breath and initiative in the defence of European workers – also self-employed and small entrepreneurs – who are suffering the consequences of the relocation of companies, globalisation and immigration processes driven by the ruling elites.

One example is Spain, where the trade union Solidaridad, supported by VOX, is confronting and growing as an alternative to the big class unions, with a clear socialist and communist background. Last May Day the Solidarity union once again called the workers to the streets, outside the unitary calls of the class unions. This is a good way to regain the initiative and take away from the left a space that should never have been its monopoly.

Moreover, it is important that this new trade unionism be open in its relations with companies, workers, but also with youth or student, university and intellectual movements, which are growing today all over Europe, for a better and more complete exchange of ideas.

Trade unionism in the 21st century cannot limit itself to maintaining and fuelling conflict between workers and employers within companies, as in most cases, the situations of injustice that arise do not originate in company decisions but in directives, community regulations or national laws that harm the employer, impose prohibitions or new restrictions, which are applied to the worker. The new trade unionism must recover the conviction that the company is a community in which, normally, employer and worker have to act together, for the benefit of the Common Good of the company.

Proof of this was the presence of prominent members of the Solidarity trade union, such as its general secretary, Rodrigo Alonso, at the conference organised by ECR Party in Madrid on Friday 17 May, accompanied by dozens of representatives of youth associations and organisations from all over Europe and America.