By 29/08/2012

Atos and the Ruling Class

According to their web site, “Atos is an international information technology services company with annual 2011 pro forma revenue of EUR 8.5 billion and 74,000 employees in 48 countries.” In addition to being major sponsors of the Paralympics, their UK business division, Atos Healthcare, “makes big profits out of removing disabled people from benefits through the hated work capability assessment and finding them ‘fit for work’.”

Like the other corporate backers of the Paralympics, the fat-cat-capitalists harnessing their blood-sucking companies to the forthcoming games have no real concern for improving the welfare of humans. On the contrary, like Atos, most of the Paralympics so-called corporate benefactors are regularly engaged in activities that actually intensify the exploitation of the most vulnerable people in our society.

Four notable members of the ruling class who presently reside on Atos’ board of directors are as follows:

Atos’s Chairman, Thierry Breton, who is the French Conservative Party’s former Finance Minister (2005-7) and current board member of Carrefour, which is the world’s second largest retailer (after Wal-mart). Notable Carrefour board members include fellow Atos director René Abate, and the forth richest person in the world, Bernard Arnault. One might add that Carrefour board member and their recent chairman, Amaury de Sèze, is a board member of both Thales and the Dassault Group — two leading French military defence contractors.

Atos board member Bertrand Meuier, who is a managing partner of CVC Capital Partners — a private equity firm which includes Lonmin board member Jim Sutcliffe as one of their senior advisors.

Earlier this year, Atos board member Vernon Sankey retired from his long-standing position on the board of one of the world’s leading insurance groups, Zurich Insurance Group. Here it is interesting to observe that Sankey’s fellow Zurich board member, Manfred Kindle, is a board member of Rexel, where he sits beneath Rexel board chair Roberto Quarta –- a man who is a board member of the controversial ‘dirty seven’ engineering company, SPIE.

And finally, former NATO economist and Atos board member, Colette Neuville, who is currently a board member of Groupe Eurotunnel — the company that manages and operates the Channel Tunnel between Britain and France. Other notable Groupe Eurotunnel board members include ‘greenie’ Tory MP Tim Yeo, former Labour MP and healthcare privateer Patricia Hewitt, and defence contractor/financier and current Total Fina-Elf board member Lord Peter Levene.

Needless to say there is no reason why any right-minded person would trust such a motley crew to do anything useful for society. Which is precisely why socialists fight to nationalise the commanding heights of the global economy. Under socialism, the global economy will be run by normal working people, not parasitic capitalists. While the only people who will need to be forced into work will be members of the ruling class!

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