For a new anti-war movement!
The danger of world war threatens the entire planet. A quarter century of US-backed war in the Middle East and Central Asia, waged under the banner of the “war on terror,” is developing into a conflict between the major, nuclear-armed powers. The Trump administration’s National Security Policy, unveiled in December 2017, for the first time makes explicit that the center of US military planning is preparation for a war involving “great powers.”
There is no anti-war faction within the political establishment. The Democrats have centered their criticism of Trump on demands that he take more aggressive military action in Syria and against Russia. And as the US seeks to use its military power to control the world, Germany and the other imperialist powers of Europe are rearming in preparation for a new redivision of the globe.
A new anti-war movement must be built, which connects the fight against war with the emerging working-class struggles, in the United States and around the world. The fight against war is inseparable from the fight against the capitalist nation-state system.
For the social rights of the working class!
All workers have certain social rights that are essential to life in a complex modern society and, therefore, “inalienable.” Working people must resolve to secure these rights through the mobilization of their strength as a class, independent of and in opposition to the corporate-controlled political parties and the institutions of the capitalist state.
These rights are: the right to culture; the right to a healthy and safe environment; the right to education; the right to a secure retirement; the right to high-quality health care; the right to utilities and transportation; the right to decent and affordable housing; the right to leisure; the right to a livable income; the right to a job
It would be utopian to believe that these rights can be achieved without a fundamental reorganization of economic power and the redistribution of wealth within the United States. The realization of these rights requires a frontal assault on the hitherto unchallenged prerogatives of the corporations and the rich.
The vast wealth created by the labor of generations of workers must be taken out of the hands of a privileged few and put at the disposal of the people as a whole.
No to dictatorship and authoritarianism!
Extreme social inequality and endless war find political expression in the breakdown of democratic forms of rule within the United States. Trump is the personification of the criminality, parasitism, and ruthlessness of the capitalist oligarchy. His administration has brought far-right, fascistic politics into the highest levels of the state apparatus, expressed most viciously in the brutal crackdown on immigrant workers.
The election of Trump is the outcome of the protracted decay of American democracy. It is eighteen years since the theft of the 2000 elections, which was followed by the “war on terror”--i.e., the Patriot Act, domestic spying, and Guantanamo Bay. The Obama administration continued and expanded the attack on democratic rights, proclaiming the right of the president to assassinate anyone, including US citizens, without due process.
While the Trump administration represents a conspiracy against the democratic rights of the American people, the Democrats have used their anti-Russia campaign to implement a regime of Internet censorship, in alliance with Internet companies like Google and Facebook, under the guise of combating “fake news.”
Genuine democracy is incompatible with a social and economic system in which all wealth is monopolized by a tiny layer of the population. The defense and expansion of democratic rights requires the independent mobilization of the working class on the basis of a socialist program, to establish democratic control over the process of production.
For the nationalization of the banks and major corporations!
All the basic needs of the working class come into immediate and direct conflict with the dictatorship of the giant banks and corporations over every aspect of political and economic life. These corporations control vast social resources, the product of the collective labor of billions of people all over the world. These immense sums are employed not to benefit society, but to increase the wealth of a tiny layer, buy off governments and dictate policies.
These corporations work tirelessly to defend their own narrow interests at the expense of society as a whole—from preventing the development of alternative sources of energy and public transportation, to maintaining monopolies in computer operating systems.
All the major banks and all privately owned industrial, manufacturing and information technology corporations valued at $10 billion or more must be transformed into publicly owned enterprises. Industries critical to the basic functioning of society—including telecommunications, agriculture, education, health care and transportation—must also be subject to public ownership and democratic control.
The expropriation of the banks and corporations must be accompanied by the establishment of genuine democratic control over production. This is the necessary basis for the development of a rational plan of global production and distribution to replace the anarchy of the capitalist market and ensure that all decisions are based on social need.
Industrial democracy means real control by working people over their working lives. What is democratic about a system in which the place where most people spend the bulk of their time—the work place—is run as a dictatorship? Decisions affecting conditions of work, safety, salaries, hiring and hours must be subject to the democratic voice of the workforce.
For open borders! End all deportations and detentions!
The world looks on in shock and horror as the Trump administration wages its fascistic campaign against immigrant workers, subjecting them to mass roundups and deportations, separating families, and locking up children in cages. This has been combined with a racist and illegal prohibition on refugees from predominantly Muslim countries, upheld in a recent Supreme Court decision.
These policies, like the Trump administration itself, did not arise out of nowhere. Obama justly earned the designation, “Deporter-in-Chief” for deporting more immigrants than any previous president.
The attack on immigrant workers is an attack on the entire working class. The police state methods used against immigrants will be used against all social and political opposition to the ruling oligarchy and its policies. The defense of immigrant workers must be connected to the demand that all workers have the right to a decent-paying job and a secure life. The real enemy of every section of workers is not workers of other countries, but the capitalist ruling elite.
For new organizations of working-class struggle!
Preparation for mass working class struggles requires the development of an interconnected network of popular workplace and neighborhood committees. The necessity for such committees arises out of the experiences of the workers themselves.
The organizations that claim to represent them, the trade unions, are not only deeply hostile to the organization of working class struggles, they have abandoned even the most limited forms of representation, including the resolving of grievances and the enforcement of contract provisions. Workplace and factory committees will raise demands such as workers’ control over line speed, an end to multi-tier labor, the enforcement of an eight-hour day, with full and livable wages for all workers, and an end to unsafe working conditions.
Break with the Democrats and Republicans!
The working class is the vast majority of the population, in the US and internationally, but it is excluded from political life. The Democrats and Republicans defend capitalism and represent the rich.
Trump’s election in 2016 was possible only due to the character of the Democratic Party. Hillary Clinton ran as the candidate of Wall Street, the military-intelligence apparatus and privileged sections of the upper-middle class through the promotion of identity politics. The decision of Bernie Sanders to back Clinton—the culmination of a campaign aimed at channeling social opposition behind the Democratic Party—opened the way for Trump to make an appeal to social discontent.
In the aftermath of the election, the Democrats have worked to direct all opposition to Trump behind the conspiracies and intrigues of powerful factions of the intelligence apparatus, centered on the anti-Russia campaign and the investigation headed by former FBI chief Robert Mueller. While the Democrats have denounced the Trump administration for seeking an accommodation with the government of Vladimir Putin in Russia, they have ignored, covered up and facilitated its attack on the working class and immigrants, its tax cuts for the wealthy and its systematic preparations for world war.
For equality and socialism!
Eight billionaires, six of them from the United States, own as much combined wealth as the bottom half of the world’s population, some 3.6 billion people. Since 2015, the richest 1 percent of the world’s population has owned more than the rest of the world put together, and over the past quarter century, the top 1 percent has gained more income than the bottom 50 percent combined.
The apologists for capitalism claim that inequality is not related to the economic crisis, as if the withdrawal of trillions of dollars from productive use has no economic impact.
The Socialist Equality Party, which is affiliated with the International Committee of the Fourth International, stands in the tradition of revolutionary socialism, from the origins of Marxism in the 1840s, through the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the implacable struggle, led by Leon Trotsky, against the bureaucratic degeneration of the Soviet Union under Stalin. In a new era of world war and revolution, the ruling class and its ideologists are engaged in a campaign of historical falsification aimed cutting workers and young people off from the history of the struggles for international socialism.