Title: To Set Up Dikes Against the Dystopia of State and Bosses
Subtitle: Against the organisation of exclusion and discrimination, against compulsory vaccination
Date: Summer 2021
Source: Translated for The Local Kids, Issue 7
Notes: Previously published as a pamphlet Ενάντια στην οργάνωση των αποκλεισμών και των διακρίσεων, ενάντια στον υποχρεωτικό εμβολιασμό by Συνέλευση ενάντια στην κρατική καταστολή και για την αλληλεγγύη στις καταλήψεις, July 2021

The health crisis has become intertwined with a sequence of mutually reinforcing crises, as part of a wider systemic crisis, with the declaration of a permanent state of emergency defining the new forms of governance and with the state attempting to proclaim itself the absolute guarantor not only of social security and cohesion, but of life and freedom itself. What an irony!

The imposition of quarantine became the perfect measure of social disciplining, indicating that social control not only wears the uniforms of the police and the army but equally those of science and technology, intervening in new terms and ways in space, time, bodies and our relations, forming new mediations and enclosures. The state management of the so-called pandemic is ultimately nothing more than a laboratory of social control, surveillance, subjugation and counterinsurgency aimed at deepening social divisions and class exploitation. In a so-called health crisis, the question for the states is not to rescue their populations but to avoid being accused of abandoning them, of being unable to guarantee the management of social problems and order, the smooth functioning of the production and circulation of commodities as well as of the most basic commodity: human labour. That is why the objective is to open up the tourism and hospitality industry at all costs, while gatherings in public spaces and squares continue to be targeted.

So what kind of normality are we waiting for?

If today’s statesmen are trumpeting “Operation Freedom” as a hope and victory for a “return to normality”, let us recall what the walls on the streets of Chile during the 2019 uprising said: the question is not a return to normality, because normality is the problem. For decades now, the imposition of any “new normality” has been incorporating and normalising all the changes brought about by the “state of emergency”, attempting to normalise the constant expansion and deepening of social desertification by the state and capital. And this realisation is not just a theory.

A series of reforms announced before the “COVID-19 crisis” were accelerated during the months-long lockdown. The (anti-)environmental development bill, the bankruptcy code and the law restricting or prohibiting demonstrations are clearly here to stay. As well as the restructuring of education towards more market integration and through deploying battalions of cops in schools while they were closed. The passing of the labour law brought the institutional abolition of the 8-hour working day, the institutionalisation of unpaid overtime, the complete abolition of Sunday holidays, the digital control of space and time through the introduction of teleworking and the criminalisation of strikes while legitimising strike-breaking and impeding union action. The transfer of workers’ insurance contributions to private financial investment companies is the next snapshot of this restructuring process. At the same time, migrants have disappeared from the public debate and are rendered invisible through their perpetual confinement in detention centres. The Greek-Turkish rivalry over the EEZs continues on live television. The increase in incidents of gender and domestic violence comes to confirm the deep patriarchal structuring of society, which was institutionally reflected through the passing of the law on co-parenting that expands male patriarchal authority. Patriarchy, nationalism and racism are expressed in increasingly aggressive terms. New technologies of data digitisation and social control are being rapidly mobilised and institutionalised.

And through yet which other “unique solution”?

The advertised vaccination campaign with the not at all random name “Operation Freedom” comes behind the campaign about individual “responsibility” but also about “social distancing”, understood as a practice of social solidarity! Beyond any doubts about vaccines against the coronavirus (side-effects, efficacy, reproducibility, introduction of artificial mRNA into the human body – a solution that bypasses even their own stages and protocols of testing) and beyond the billion-dollar feast for the pharmaceutical companies, the compulsory nature of a medical act – indirectly or directly – introduces new forms of social discrimination, organises new enclosures for our bodies and for our very participation in the social body. Health certificates, like compulsory self-tests and their declaration on digital platforms, visible to bosses and the ministry of labour, constitute new passports of movement (control and exclusion) and means of pressure and punishment.

The blackmails and enclosures of “opening society” are again presented by state employees, expert committees and media as the only truth, as was the case during the lockdown period. Even if individual choices on the current dilemmas do not start from a conscious alignment with state orders, even if they start from different positions or conditions, domination will attempt to homogenise and ideologise them in order to secure the necessary guarantees of social consensus and to continue the march of exploitation of humans and nature by first tightening the grip of state supervision and repression. Modern totalitarianism is rising, while compulsory vaccination is clearly interfering with the self-determination of the body, at the same time as discrimination and exclusion are being institutionalised and organised for those who do not choose to be vaccinated.

Resistance to the new totalitarianism

At the same time as gloom and dystopia spreads through our lives as if on a predetermined trajectory, all of the above is triggering conflict. From the individual refusals because “we’re fed up” to the collective resistances of social/class struggles, student mobilisations, solidarity demonstrations for hunger striker D. Koufontinas, and the insurrectionary events of the demonstration of rage in Nea Smyrni (March 9). Moments of struggle that forced the state to retreat to prevent a generalised social conflict that could erupt as an outgrowth of social dynamics after a year of stifling bans.

The war we are living through is not only a matter of the rulers. And it is not a war against invisible enemies. It is our war, class and social. So let us consciously become the error in the domination rationale of discipline and subjugation. Let us undermine in every way the imposition of the new normal. For it is the intelligence and imagination of the exploited and oppressed, the anti-hierarchical logic, the removal of superficial divisions, reciprocity and mutual aid, unconstrained struggles and radical choices that introduce the possibility of “storming the heavens”. As a creative destruction of the power matrix, as a process of emancipation, as the invention of a new type of social relations and collective forms of life – free and equal.

To resist the imposition of compulsory vaccination and generalised control.
To confront the regime of discrimination, enclosures and exclusions.
To undermine in every way the imposition of the new state of capitalist, patriarchal, nationalist, racist, techno-governmental normality.
To attempt the self-determination of space, time, our bodies, our entire lives.