The Elections Have Already Been Decided; The Future Has Not
February 5, 2016
The first of the Presidential primaries took place this week and others will take place over the next several months. But the outcome is already all but decided – in both the Republican and Democratic Parties there are only one or two candidates who have a chance of getting their party's nomination.
From the point of view of the working class and people, the Presidential election was decided a long time ago. It was decided by the fact that only the Republicans and Democrats have the right to nominate candidates. It was decided by the fact that multi-million dollar campaign warchests are needed to win elections. It was decided by the fact that the monopoly-controlled media never stops advertising the Democrats and Republicans while ignoring any politics which falls outside their pre-set agenda.
In fact, the elections are not about the people choosing their representatives and deciding on the policies of government. The representatives as well as the policies are decided on by the monopoly capitalist class who have rigged the political process from start to finish.
The elections aim only at giving the appearance of democracy and claiming that the people give their consent to a government which, in reality, is of the rich, by the rich and for the rich. The long, drawn out process is used only to prepare public opinion for the agenda and candidates chosen by the capitalist class.
Yes, the elections are already decided. In January 2017, there will be another President and another Congress handpicked by the big capitalists. But this does not mean that the capitalists will necessarily have everything their way.
On the contrary. The workers and people will find ways to assert their interests. Real politics is a broad arena – an arena of struggle between the capitalists and the workers which centers on the issue of state power. At present the rich have rigged the electoral arena and excluded the people. But the people do not have to accept this limited definition of politics. There are many favorable fronts on which we can develop our own independent political movement.
For one thing, we must wage the struggle for public opinion and, in particular, use the election period to denounce the Democrats and Republicans for their attacks on the people. We must carry a broad political campaign to rally people around a genuinely pro-social political agenda – an agenda which demands that society recognize all the economic rights of the people, an agenda which demands an end to militarism and war, an agenda which demands the democratic renewal of the political process so as to empower the people.
In addition to the struggle for public opinion, we must unify and step up our mass actions aimed at resisting the attacks of the capitalists and at winning new ground for the workers' and people's movement.
The Democrats and Republicans will keep on following the same old politics – the politics of exploitation, the politics of war, the politics of racism and repression. The future of our country depends on the workers and people asserting a new politics – a politics of emancipation and empowerment of the people. This is the real task facing us – the task of building up our own consciousness, organization and political initiative – of building our independent political movement in opposition to and struggle against the parties of the rich.