Active Unemployed Austria

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      Solidarity with Ralph Boes´ „Sanctionstarving“ – it concerns the human rights of all people!

      Active Unemployed Austria declares solitary with the protest against the human-rights-violating regime of sanctions in Germany and elsewhere

      (Vienna, 3rd September 2015) The German unemployment- and universal basic income Activist Ralph Boes is undergoing Sanctionstarving since July 1st, 2015, e.g. every evening sitting at a small table in front of the Brandenburger Gate – from 2nd to 6th September the action continues in front of the Bundestag – and only consumes water to publicize how all the unknown people are doing, who are cut by the employment agency and do no longer get money to survive, cannot fend for themselves, get their flat taken away and - in the worst case - starve to death within the heart of rich Germany.

      While the health of Ralph Boes has dramatically worsened, the German Ministry of Labour refuses to take the concerns of his action seriously. Active Unemployed Austria therefore have sent an open letter to the JobCenter Berlin Mitte and Labour Minister Andrea Nahles on 2 September 2015.

      The Job Centre “Berlin Mitte” has imposed the penalty of yet another 3 months lasting sanction on Ralph Boes. This time it's even 200% cuts of benefits! In the first appeal for basic rights published already in 2011, Ralph Boes has refused to obey the Hartz IV regime of force and declared to reject apparent insensible compulsory measures and job offers.

      Ralph Boes is also fighting the livelihood-destroying reductions and cuts in benefits by legal means. In this one instance the social court refuses to grant deferring effect of the suit as the state claims these life-threatening sanctions are in “public interest”. Ralph Boes is fighting for all people affected by the regime of sanctions. He also filed a complaint at the constitutional court against the human-rights-violating and unconstitutional regime of sanctions.

      The independent grass root union for the unemployed, „Active Unemployed Austria“, supports the fight of Ralph Boes against the “administrative mass crime” (1) of the sanctions, which threaten the livelihood and are thuss clearly violating human rights.

      The regime of sanctions

      • aims first and foremost at the weakest of society, who are eliminated by the business as being „superfluous“. This serves the culprit-victim-reversal: Not „the economy“ destroys or outsources employment for maximizing profits but “referral obstacles” and “missing virtues of work” of the unemployed are at fault and need to be fought by even more stigmatizing compulsory measures.
      • tries to make the people eliminated by business submissive to have them accept employment for any price, even far below collective bargaining agreements. It's mostly precarious part time jobs - jobs that do not ensure livelihood and its expansion - that create (the pretense of) the “Job miracle Germany”. Within a rich Europe, for more and more people, the human right of freely chosen, full, productive work that ensures a part of the jointly created wealth of society is moving into an unreachable distance .
      • affects all employed people, as it increases the fear to loose ones job and rises the pressure to accept worse and worse conditions of work.
      • affects the employees of job centres as it also robs them of their human dignity. The employees are forced by the state to oppress and harl their fellow humans. The rule-of-nobody of bureaucracy produces more and more desk culprits who refuse to act as humans by accepting responsibility for their own actions.

      This massive form of structural force undermines the foundations of democracy and human rights.

      Where right becomes wrong, resistance becomes mandatory”, wrote David Henry Thoreau, and Kant's Categorical Imperative tells us that “no person has the right to obey” (2). By his actions, Ralph Boes is practicing these principles in unconditional consequence and translating them into life. Unfortunately his radicalism is not easy to understand for everyone, but in view of the overwhelming circumstances it even seems necessary.

      Even more frightening is the blaring silence of the mass media on this unique action, by which the media show complete disregard of their democratic responsibility. Due to the non-reporting – also on daily violence against disabled people, often without income or pushed into poverty by the business – they become accomplice to the inner fortress of the neo-liberal labour camp Europe.

      Active Unemployed Austria demand in Germany and worldwide from

      • the responsible politicians to end the rule of force by the regime of sanctions as fast as possible and to cease forcing the employees in the job centres to inflict harm on their fellow human beings. Ralph Boes and other people under sanctions should receive the withheld monies promptly to ensure their livelihood.
      • the employees in Job Centres etc. to reject being forced to inflict harm on their fellow human beings.
      • judges not to provide sham justification through human rights violating judgements to force against other people by the livelihood threatening regime of sanctions.
      • journalists to break the silence about the rampant injustice and also report on the responsibles and beneficiaries of the regime of force.
      • all people to stand up against this injustice within their means as it’s against all of us!

      Even if Ralph Boes' complete refusal to comply with the impositions of the rule of capital and the state is not a path that (m)any of us “normal people” can follow, his fight at least deserves our fullest support!

      Mag. Ing. Martin Mair

      Chairman „Active Unemployed Austria

      Further Information:

      Online-Petition for Ralph Boes

      Philosophical Thoughts for the fight against force by the regime of sanctions

      The person is not necessarily obliged to devote oneself to the elimination of injustice (…) but at least it is the obligation not to accept injustice and if one does not want to spend a thought on it, at least not support it practically”.

      A minority is without power if it adapts to the majority, it is not even a minority then, irresistible it is though if the entire weight is put in”.

      David Henry Thoreau in: „On the duty of disobedience to the state“

      The philosopher laying down an example and ‘persuading’ the many to adopt the one appropriate and permitted path, to believe him and follow, he has already started to act”. Hannah Arendt: Wahrheit und Politik, Seite 351, in: „Zwischen Vergangenheit und Zukunft“, Piper Verlag 1994

      (1) Refer to Hannah Arendt: Eichmann in Jerusalem

      (2) Hannah Arendt im Gespräch mit Joachim Fest