The working people of Britain, laden with inflation, with soaring living-costs, and stagnant wages, are facing the grim prospect of immiseration. Neither a change of Prime Minister nor a new King will paint over this rot of impoverishment, festering across Britain. We need a concerted, organised campaign against the capitalist class, led by the working class.
The cause of this crisis is corporate profit, created through the direct transfer of wealth from the working class to the rich. This can be illustrated by, for example, how Tesco projects at least £2.4 billion profit this financial year. In return, it gave its staff a miserable 60p wage increase, whilst raising the prices of groceries, and shamelessly attaching security tags to baby formula. Or how Scottish Power reported £925 million in profits in the first half of 2022, whilst hiking their customers’ bills up by 119% since the start of the pandemic.
Through unbridled price gouging, undercutting wages, and attacks on industrial action, the government and the ruling class it represents intend to make the poorest in our society pay for the so-called “cost of living crisis.” They want a repeat of the 2008 financial crisis, a similar crime of corporate greed, paid for by the public, who suffered a consequent regime of austerity. Why should we be forced to pay the debts of the rich in a system rigged against us?
The impotent wallowing of the parliamentary ‘left’ has done nothing to alleviate this onslaught on the lives of working-class families, nor challenge the business executives, board members, and shareholders culpable. As Marxist-Leninists, we know our class cannot defend itself with tepid slogans and placard-waving in city centres. Capitalism is an economic system defined by inequality and rampant exploitation. The inherent poverty it creates will not simply stop after closing a few loopholes around the highest income tax bracket. They are symptoms of this rigged economic system we have in the first place.
The redistributive justice at the heart of communist strategy seeks to fundamentally rebalance our economy in the interests of working people—the real wealth creators. Justice for the masses will only be served when we Make The Rich Pay for their crimes.
Communists know real, material change is only possible through class struggle, not competition between individuals. Our strength lies in unity. Our enemies’ strength relies on us forgetting their individual vulnerability. As such, we will not be broken apart, but we will look to fragment the capitalists down to a set of isolated individuals. In short, we recognise that the forces destroying the livelihood of the working class are not vague, intangible entities—they are a series of people with names, faces, and addresses.
Make The Rich Pay strikes at the individuals who create inequality: the capitalists themselves. Bosses, board members, and shareholders—those who are not merely lackeys or cogs in a machine, but are the hoarders of wealth, who pull the levers of power. These are our enemies, and their cheap talk about how ‘everyone must make sacrifices’ does little to mask the class interests that motivate them.
In Scotland, our campaign is targeting public enemy number one, Scottish Power CEO, Keith Anderson. Exemplary of the gross arrogance and reckless profiteering of his class, Anderson’s decadent lifestyle is funded directly by price hikes on essential domestic energy. Poverty was already rife in Scotland before the energy crisis. Thanks to Anderson and his ilk, societal destitution has dropped to frigid new lows, as dystopian ‘heat banks’ open by the day.
As Scottish Power board members and shareholders relished profiteering at our expense, Anderson tabled a plan with the Scottish Government for a two-year energy price freeze paid for by the public over the next 10-20 years. This would bolster the wealth and power of monopoly capitalists, locking another generation of working people into financial bondage. As poverty descends further and the Scottish Government collaborates with these class criminals, working people have no option but to take matters into their own hands.
To begin our campaign, comrades forced their way into the Scottish Power headquarters back in August. Advancing in a red bloc, they delivered a letter addressed to Keith Anderson, demanding a meeting with the absent CEO. It made clear our demand for an immediate return to the October 2021 energy rates (£1,277 per year per household), financed by a freeze or reduction to board member and shareholder dividends. The letter also promised to take further action, should there be no communication from Anderson.
After three weeks of silence, comrades fulfilled their promise to escalate. This time at ad+ Chartered Accountants, whose clientele includes Anderson & Todd Property, another business venture of the Scottish Power CEO. Close associates of Anderson, the accountancy firm boasts of providing a service that allows its millionaire clients to scrape maximum profit, pay as little tax as possible, and accumulate ever greater wealth, at the expense of the working class.
Accountancy firms exist to commit economic vandalism against working-class communities by aiding and abetting the mendacious activity of parasitic business elites. To highlight this, comrades smashed bottles of red paint against the building and spray-painted a hammer and sickle along with the message: ‘MAKE K.A. PAY’, unveiling the Make The Rich Pay banner from an adjoining staircase. The target was chosen to show that, however protracted it must be, this campaign will continue to target and expose the capitalists and their recondite connections, with no respect for their ‘right’ to privacy.
Friedrich Engels identified social murder as the process by which the working masses are forced, due to the conditions imposed upon them, to meet premature death due to unnatural causes. These causes seem natural, however, because the perpetrator of the murder remains hidden, and thus evades justice. With our communities set to face the harshest winter in memory, the capitalist agents of social murder must learn their own harsh lesson: if they continue to hide, we will find them, we will expose them to the full glare of the people, and then justice will be served. Neither Keith Anderson, nor any member of the ruling class, can expect to remain abstract, faceless bodies, unknown to the masses who create their wealth.
Make The Rich Pay is the rallying cry of young cadres up and down the country who are primed and ready to take direct action against the British ruling class at a moment’s notice.
A pertinent example of this was the action on Monday 19th September, in the midst of state-enforced grieving for the death of the monarch on her funeral. A two-minutes silence was announced for 11:55 am, but there would be no mourning for the working-class families, here or abroad, that died from social murder under her 70 year reign. So, in response, the MTRP campaign coordinated actions across Britain to disrupt the two minutes, with the Scottish teams focusing on banner drops and disruptions in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Windsor’s coffin was temporarily held in St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh, a key site of protest following the arrest of an anti-monarchy protester for the ‘crime’ of shouting and holding a sign. At exactly 11:55, comrades disrupted the silence with chants of abolishing the monarchy, waving red flags and revealing a banner in front of the cathedral. The banner read ‘All Held In Common’, with a hammer and sickle and an upside-down crown. Comrades gave a speech before Edinburgh Castle, making clear our demand for a socialist republic. We condemned the mawkish “orgy of sentimentality” for the dead monarch, perpetuated by the media, at a time when working-class families struggle to heat their homes and feed their children, due to the greed of our rulers.
At the time of writing this, we have executed three actions just in Scotland in a little over a month. By the time this statement is published, we will have revisited Scottish Power’s HQ once again, penning our message on their doors- rather than wasting a second letter. The MTRP campaign grows stronger with each passing day. Our comrades are disciplined and dedicated, and continually hone our strategies and tactics, as we move forwards.
To our comrades in other organisations, we hope this campaign will show you that our class deserves more than performativity, more than toothless, feel-good demonstrations and shouts into the void. We need real leverage, real escalations, and real fear from our targets as our class builds up its arsenal for the final battle.
And to our enemies: the capitalists, the CEOs, the bosses who murder our class and get away with it? You only swell our numbers as you continue to impoverish and exploit us. The reign of capital is coming to an end, and communism will win. Be afraid.
Because our class will make the rich pay.
Make The Rich Pay- Scotland