What the Elections Demand:
October 7, 2016
While people are rejecting capitalist politics, they remain more concerned than ever about the problems facing them and about finding solutions to these problems.
The capitalist class – which completely controls the “election” process through its two big parties and the mass media, is preparing to continue its offensive against the wages and livelihoods of the people. As for the “election” process, the working class and broad masses of people are completely locked out and excluded. There are no candidates and no parties representing the interests of the workers. None of the burning problems or vital concerns of the masses are discussed by any of the politicians of the über-rich. From the point of view of the capitalist class, the elections are nothing but a competition between two potential partners over which one will be “most qualified” to be President.
As for the Democrats, there is no opposition from within their organized ranks to the program of the capitalists. To begin with, Obama’s entire war program, from Palestine, to Iraq, to Afghanistan, to Somalia, to Colombia, to Venezuela, to North Korea, to the Philippines was taken over intact from the Republican administration of George W. Bush.
During Obama’s first two years, each record military budget was approved by the Democratic-controlled Congress. During the last six years, each record military budget was approved by the Republican-controlled Congress.
The bottom line is that both the Republican and Democratic parties are parties of war and imperialism. While the two big parties and their respective nominees compete with one another for the spoils of office, they stand together against the interests of the people. When the Democrats and Republicans speak of the “national interests” they mean only the interests of the U.S. multinational corporations, of the big capitalists whose entire life is bound up not only with exploiting the American workers but also in the enslavement and domination of whole nations and peoples.
So too, the entire economic policy of both the Republican and Democratic parties only serves the interests of the big capitalists while attacking the rights of the people. Does the government spend money in order to guarantee the economic needs of the masses? Does the government raise its revenues by taxing the billionaires or monopoly corporations who can most afford it? On the contrary. The economic policy of both the Republican and Democratic parties is to use the government budget as a means to siphon money out of the pockets of the workers and to turn it over to the big capitalists. The “deficit” itself is a result of the fact that, while barely taxing the monopoly corporations and billionaires at all, the government has spent hundreds of billions of dollars to enrich the monopoly corporations, the Pentagon arms merchants and the finance capitalists.
So too, the reality is that the people have no voice, no say so, in the process of governance itself. The big capitalists maintain a monopoly over the two major political parties, over the mass media, and in turn over the government itself. The candidates and their respective parties have no genuine connection with the workers and masses – they do not share the lives and concerns of the people. Governmental affairs and American politics are completely dominated by a loyal caste of candidates whose main function is to 1) lie to the people, 2) enrich themselves and their über-rich bosses, and 3) attack the rights of the people.
So too, the Democrats and Republicans both stand for the program of stripping away the political rights of the people. For several years now, the government has been using the slogans of “fighting crime, drugs, gangs and terrorism” to create an atmosphere of hysteria and to justify its arbitrary violence against people and its suppression of basic democratic rights. Police violence is an everyday fact of life for the oppressed minority peoples and the entire working class; the so-called “wars” against “gangs” and “terrorists” have repeatedly been used to target and repress various social and political organizations of the people. As the crisis of capitalism deepens, the state is building up its apparatus of repression and strengthening the legal framework to enable it to suppress, through force, the inevitable and growing struggles of the American people. At the same time, the capitalist politicians, and the monopoly-owned media, echoing each other, bombard the people with images of violence and crime in order to inculcate, covertly and overtly, chauvinism and racism. This tactic aims both at inciting violence and antagonism among the people as well as creating an atmosphere of insecurity which is used as a justification by the state to build up the repressive apparatus of government and to further undermine the democratic rights and liberties of the people.
But does this mean that there is no alternative, no way to fight the exploitation and oppression being imposed by the capitalists? That there is no way to turn the situation around? Does this mean that there is nothing that can be done? No, it does not. In the first place, we must face up to what this reality reveals. We must face up to the fact that, despite all the propaganda about “democracy,” the workers are nobodies under the present system – nobodies with no say so in the kind of society we live in. Under this “free market” system, we are nobodies whose only role is to be exploited by the capitalist monopolies.
Facing up to the political reality means recognizing that we nobodies are going to have to emancipate ourselves. The workers and people have to come out together and develop our own independent political movement which brings the agenda of the people to center-stage.
The Workers Party is optimistic about the future and our optimism comes precisely from the fact that we are engaged in work and struggle to change the situation. This is what our Party is all about. All the foundations have been laid for the Party to advance its work – to bring the politics of economic rights, democratic renewal, a democratic foreign policy and socialism to center-stage, to deepen the content and expand the circulation of the mass workers’ press.
For our Party, it is not a matter of debate whether or not the workers and people are oppressed and exploited. It is not a matter of debate whether the workers and people have the aspirations to build the new socialist and communist society. Our Party, based on its scientific thinking and collective organization, has mapped out a way to step by step change the situation in favor of the working class and people and advance towards the goal of socialism and communism. On the basis of this politics and plan, we take up our work and our struggle. We put our theory into practice.
This is the path we are on and we invite everyone to join with us.
For those people who are fed up with capitalist politics but remain hesitant about the possibilities for change, there are, of course, many facts and arguments which show the great strength and on-going struggles of the people. But, in the final analysis, the best facts and arguments can be seen in life itself. We say: “Try it Out!” We say that the way to see the revolutionary aspirations and drive of the people is to go amongst them with genuinely independent politics. Only such a politics can interest and mobilize the people.
The Workers Party unites and mobilizes people on the basis of the program of economic rights, democratic renewal, a democratic foreign policy and socialism. Our experience is that by popularizing this independent program as widely as possible and by persisting, on a daily basis, in developing this politics amongst the people, we break the stranglehold of capitalist politics and help people come into active political life on the basis of their own aims and agenda.
Join in building the alternative!