[Marxism] Some thoughts on US perspectives

John Reimann 1999wildcat at gmail.com
Thu Jan 11 12:39:52 MST 2018

Anthony Boynton seems confused by what I wrote in the piece on US

The election of Trump helped add to the confusion and division within the
working class. I think that much is obvious, if for no other reason than
the rise of the white supremacists, the normalization of outright lying,
and the increase in celebrity worship. And had Hillary Clinton won? Would
that have advanced the consciousness of the working class? First and
foremost, would that have helped the working class get to its feet and
assert itself as an independent force? I think the answer is absolutely
not. So, we were damned if we do and damned if we don't.

I also think that it's undeniable that the working class does not exist as
a coherent - meaning independent - force in US society. Look at the voting
statistics, for example. There is no general pattern as far as how workers
- meaning wage earners - vote. The only working class organizations that
exist are the unions, and they are in a state of disastrous decline. Worse
than the fact that they barely represent 10% of the US work force is the
fact that they are nearly completely controlled by a clique who directly
represent the employers inside the unions. The decades-long campaign to
erase all the militant traditions of the 1930s has left the rank and file
largely alienated from their own unions. Here where I live - Oakland CA -
most union members I run into don't even know the name of their union,
never mind attend any union meetings!

Then Anthony draws a "logical" conclusion - logical in the sense of formal
logic: He writes:

*"It also says that the absence of a mass working class party is the
keyfactor in all of this, from which a reader might conclude....all of
has been a long interrupted string of defeats for workers."* The point is
that a certain presence - or absence - in one situation can have a very
different affect from in a different situation. In the 1960s and early 70s,
for example, when US capitalism was (1) raking in the profits hand over
fist; and (2) competing with the Soviet Union for influence all around the
world - in that situation in many instances they had to concede to the
demands of the working class. Or take in the 1930s, when there was an
aroused working class, to some degree influenced by two anti-capitalist
parties - the Socialist and the Communist Parties. Again, the same thing.
But today? We've had 30 years of propaganda that the workers and the
capitalists have common interests. It comes not only from the capitalist
class and their various organs, but also from the union leadership. And the
tradition of struggle from the 1930s is largely lost, with what few
militants that remain in the unions largely isolated. On top of that, we
have had defeat after defeat.

All of this has led to massive confusion and demoralization. I don't see
how anybody who has any contact with working class people can deny that
that confusion is rampant. It's ironic that also, at the same time, there
never has been a better opportunity to start to build a working class
political party. That's a contradiction, you say? Well, yes, but life is
full of contradictions.

John Reimann

"No one is going to give you the education you need to overthrow them."
Assata Shakur
Check out:https:http://oaklandsocialist.com also on Facebook

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