The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

70-year Jubilee, Nothing to Celebrate:
High Time for the Monarchy to Go!

Jun 6, 2022

What follows is an editorial that appeared on the front of all of Workers Fight’s workplace newsletters, during the week of May 30, 2022. Workers Fight is a revolutionary group active in England.

This weekend the British people are meant to celebrate the 70-years-too-many reign of “their” monarch: the Platinum Jubilee of 96-year-old Queen Elizabeth, who has been head of state longer than any other British king or queen.

She is not just a figurehead. Even if, for over 300 years, no British monarch actually used his or her powers (for example, to declare war, refuse a law, or dismiss parliament), the queen still holds such “rights.”

But the main function of this gold-encrusted monarchy is as a lavish distraction from the brutal class system which it shields—and which in case of an emergency (like a general uprising of the working class!) it can defend by usurping power....

Of course the class rule which the queen presides over, is today not immediately under threat—and more’s the pity. But at least Liverpool football fans have the guts to remind everybody of the true nature of this system when they booed the national anthem, which they did again at the Football Association (of professional soccer teams) cup final at Wembley Stadium, unafraid to be labelled “unpatriotic”!

They are booing, not just because of their memories of Hillsborough in 1989, when 97 fans were crushed to death and no policeman nor FA boss was held responsible. And yes, it was a travesty, brought back vividly this weekend when police in France laid into fans (mothers and kids included), with tear gas and pepper spray, ahead of the Champions League final—showing that a cop is a cop, wherever you might be.

No, Liverpool fans refuse to idolize the Queen because they retain a consciousness which the working class in Liverpool built up through the very toughest times. It was no surprise, since Liverpool players openly supported the 1984—85 miners’ strike. And it is outside Goodison Park and Anfield stadiums that “The Fans Supporting Foodbanks” initiative was founded in 2015—and for good reason. They know all about poverty and its causes.

Today the gap between rich and poor is wider than ever. Never mind the pandemic: the richest 250 saw their combined filthy lucre rise to about 900 BILLION dollars in 12 months! And while the Queen isn’t one of the 177 billionaires in the Sunday Times Rich List (her personal fortune is worth over 450 million dollars), the monarchy as a whole has a total net worth of 90 billion dollars altogether!

So it would be just as well if this archaic institution, which hides the ruthless exploitation and deep poverty in this country, dies with this Queen. But the final toppling of the rotten system she presides over will require a strong collective push by the working class: and the sooner the better.