[Marxism] President Obama signs $8.7 billion food stamp cut into law | MSNBC

shaun may mnwps at hotmail.com
Sat Feb 8 13:06:35 MST 2014

This is a repost to test formatting. Despite putting lines between paragraphs, it is still agglomerating without spacing.Hope this is easier to read.

From: mnwps at hotmail.com
To: marxism at greenhouse.economics.utah.edu
Subject: [Marxism] President Obama signs $8.7 billion food stamp cut into law | MSNBC
Date: Sat, 8 Feb 2014 14:55:30 +0000

It was that late, great American wit Gore Vidal (carrying on in the tradition of that other great, Dorothy Parker) who remarked that the United States is a one-party state with two right wings. 

American socialists may wish to feel relatively comforted by the fact that this 'double-droit' or 'a deux droit' relation is now generally operative all over the capitalist world. 

In Britain, the expression sometimes articulated is that you cannot 'put a cigarette paper' between Liberal, Tory and Labour. None of them would be out of place in the same political party. 

This latest measure by the Obama administration is a living testament to Vidal's rather pithy little maxim. It could be just as much a 'republican' as a 'democratic' measure. Within an American context,perhaps we should assert that it is impossible to slip a 'buck' between the two.

If a household loses $90 per month, then this will inevitably impact on the ability of that household to maintain itself. $90 is what a Wall Street Parasite or Congressman spends on a new tie or shirt. But for a jobless American, it helps to keep your home warm or feed your children in the cold Washington DC or New York winters.

Obama then has the temerity and audacity to attempt to present this bill as one which will "give more Americans a shot at opportunity". It is nothing but a subsidy for agricultural capital at the expense of the poor and destitute in the American cities; the transfer of value out of the mouths of the needy, disabled and jobless into the bank accounts of the well-heeled.   
“Congress passed a bipartisan Farm Bill that is going to make a big difference in communities across the country,” said Mr President.
"Big difference" is the appropriate expression but it is simultaneously a double-edged one. In Britain, welfare/benefit cuts are presenting people with the dilemma of 'eat or heat'. Do I turn up the thermostat or do I give the children a quality cooked meal with fresh vegetables? No such dilemmas will exist for the political elite in Washington and the motley assortment of unproductive parasites and layabouts on Wall Street and elsewhere whose interests they most ably represent and articulate in Congress. Obama's actions have indeed "focussed heavily on economic equality" which he has qualified with a pretentiously glib "defining challenge of our time". Whose inequality and whose challenge, we may ask.

Obama further remarked that the Farm Bill "preserved much-needed benefits". Which is rather like asserting that a street mugger who takes the contents of your wallet has left you with enough money in it to get the bus back home or to the hospital.

Whether or not “the savings in food assistance came solely from addressing fraud and misuse" really does not wash with a single, jobless mother who now has to feed her kids with $90 less than previously. And Obama refers to this as "protection for vulnerable Americans"! May the Good Lord in his infinite wisdom and bounty help those who are not under the protective benevolence of the 'yes we can' President!

Welfare claimants can, however, be re-assured by a Barack side-kick in Congress that...

“This is a nutrition bill that makes sure families have a safety net just like farmers do, .......while maintaining the important benefits for families that need temporary help.”

She forgets to mention that the "safety net" now has a trampoline-sized hole in it. You fall into it at your peril. Our hearts, of course, must bleed profusely for our poor struggling capitalist farmers. 
Congressman McGovern and others are correct when they "expect the burden of the cuts to fall disproportionately on the elderly and disabled" which does not make these inhuman measures any "more legitimate" for them.

In a land with the highest productivity of labour on Earth, we can still witness thousands across the country in poverty, destitution, hunger, homelessness and with poor or no access to healthcare. Of all countries on Earth, it is the United States which presents the most highly developed MATERIAL conditions necessary for socialism. 
Where is all the fake nonsense and rising expectation now which filled the air when 'yes we can' Obama was first elected? It is lying rotting at the bottom of a cesspit somewhere in the midwest.

The American proletariat are being forced to shoulder the burden of the structural crisis of the capital system. It is its poorest sections who are being chronically subjected to this burden by the state power of capital in the United States. It is a system which is NECESSARILY built on inequality, injustice, oppression and the forced destitution and poverty of millions. 

Millions in structural unemployment are now simply a burden on capital, surplus to its requirements. The indebtedness of the US state to the world now runs into trillions of dollars. It is not a question of 'if' but 'when' that state power will default on its debt to the world. And when that happens, the gates of a man-created Hell will swing open and out will rush every known demon and devil in history to haunt human society until humanity puts a final end, once and for all, to the rule of capital. 

This is the absolutely fundamental, quintessential question : who rules - capital or the associated producers? Revolution by all means necessary and at all costs. The future of socialism - and therefore humanity - will be ultimately resolved and settled in America. This is the historic burden which the American proletariat must bear and carry through to the very end, regardless of the costs. The capital order must be destroyed. And replaced by a socialist life for humanity. 
Shaun May
February 2014



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