In economics classes we learn that Genoa was the birthplace of modern capitalism. Highways like the “Autostrada” are privatized there. Recently a bridge over the city collapsed in a spectacular structural failure. This bridge is a metaphor for our era. Scarcely 50 years old, this bridge was even criticized as a con job when it was just a civil engineering concept. Now it has murdered a number of drivers and passengers who depended on it. No ‘act of god’ involved here. This was the work of the profit system.
While cities in India and Pacific island countries and coastal China ?sink under rising tides thanks to the melting ice caps and glaciers, Capital celebrates the resulting new ice-free sea lanes.
But lest you think the post-modernists dream of keeping the empires’ problems out of sight in the regional extremities are coming true, the effects of declining investment worldwide ?are beginning to show. Even the growth of the Chinese powerhouse economy has begun to slow as foreign investment contracts. The phenomenon doesn’t get mentioned much outside of the conferences of economists and the pages of the financial newspapers because so many are kept servants and all they want you to know about is the record longevity bull market, but the results are layoffs in the BRICS countries exactly at the moment the autarchic Trump regime launches its “Easy to win” trade war with China, ?Europe, Canada and Mexico. Trump’s main economic advisor is Prof. Peter Novarro, author of the bizarre “Death By China.” Novarro says his main job is to reinforce Trump’s economic intuitions (!) Trump says if he’s impeached the economy will crash. This sounds like a threat. As the trade war threatens to become a currency war, the U.S. is exporting its unemployment at the expense of the entire capitalist world system. The globalist real existing world of integrated modern manufacturing being what it is, unemployment will be returning ?soon. With it will come a contraction of trade and all the effects that flow from that. Jamie Dimon, head honcho at JP Morgan Chase says the next global crash is coming in 2020.
When Trump first took office we said he was behaving like a Russian agent. His behavior since has convinced many of this and within the main bourgeois parties some already want him removed for his attacks on government norms our class never had anything to do with. We, on the contrary are concerned with the plan he is foisting on the public to “improve relations with Russia,” in the persons of oligarchs he has partnered with, when the real and preponderant course of events is a slide toward war between capitalist classes and the blocs of countries they rule. Trump’s trade war with China signals that his alternative to the bipartisan anti-S.C.O. (China/Russia alliance) policy is just a different path down the same slope to war. And as the party on the left holding the red flag for the workers and the oppressed, we are also concerned with what Russian electronic penetration of U.S. elections means and still portends for future contests where a fighting workers’ labor party could win important offices and make of them great soapboxes for the transitional program for the socialist revolution and for the support of ?every struggle of the workers and the oppressed. A recent Rutgers University symposium showed how a grammar school kid can hack the tallies in New Jersey voting machines in ten minutes, as of August.
Trump will will be able to fend off Federal criminal penalty if Brett Kavanaugh is approved as a Supreme Court justice by the Senate, as he will be a swing vote to prevent any ?Federal legal action against Trump while in office. This confirmation is at least as weighty a historical consideration as the fate of Trump’s presidency. Kavanaugh would be the swing vote for years to come, until one of the other Justices retires or dies AND the other party is on top. All decisions where he makes the majority will become pro-Bonapartist ?precedent. All reforms it could be possible to wring from the bourgeoisie will be smacked down as “unconstitutional” by the Court majority and the Democrats will say nothing or tell us “what can you do?” There will be a thicket of contentions over who has the Jurisdiction to bring which charges against whom in the coming months. We don’t know the precise character of the immunity granted to the Trump Organization C.F.O., Allen Weisselberg. But we think his testimony will figure in State and N.Y. City charges. ?Expect Trump to fire Sessions after the mid-terms, in November; Sessions is ironically the most effective of his racist henchmen. A new Attorney General will be able to stifle Mueller’s probe if it is not already complete by then. Even before the elections, Trump wants to fire Mueller but is restrained, particularly after Manafort’s flipping was announced. Even attorney Alan Dershowitz, who previously sought to find legal legs for Trump to stand on, now sees Trump’s future as “very bad.”
The lesson for the working class is there is no justice available in the capitalist courts. ?The entire system is rigged to keep the working class from winning or sustaining any gains. When the Democrats were in power and the Republicans were the obstructionists the Democrats caved. ?When they are out of power they say nothing can really be accomplished until they recoup “their” lost seats in Congress. Where voting rights are obstructed the Democratic leadership ignores the defacto overturn of the Voting Rights Act. ?Instead Donna Brazile and the Black, progressive and LGBT caucuses whine over their loss of superdelegate control of the Democratic Party convention.
Workers have long realized the Democratic Party only keeps them around for phone banking and union contributions. Working class and oppressed people have long been told voting for the Democrats is the lesser of two evils. But the labor leaders who retail this are so entrenched in the Democratic Party they refuse to consider launching a workers party. Since Anthony Mazzocchi’s death they won’t even discuss it! They point to the failure of the Labor Party Advocates (LPA) and draw the wrong lesson. Where Mazzocchi built LPA as a pressure group, we fought for LPA to run candidates on a transitional program in the 1990’s. So the real task of building a fighting workers’ labor party is on the agenda today!
The Democratic Party is so far prepared to content itself with letting Trump continue to term in Jan., 2021, and in fact they would prefer this, regardless of trendy noises they may make for November votes. He is their ideal punching bag. Some of Trump’s associates are even now heading to jail, and this will be enough for some. Democrat leader Nancy Pelosi opposes impeachment as “divisive.” This also becomes a battle within the D.S.A. which the “left” wing loses, one of a number it is bound to lose, being in denial that the Democrats are a bourgeois class rule imperialist organization they will never be allowed to control.
Just to gain a seat at the table Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, ?and Bernie Sanders, in order to keep his, were both obliged to kowtow to the legacy of war criminal and Maidan fascist lover McCain, indicating that their fake to left was to be followed by a track to the right, social-imperialists that they are.
Both parties are afraid of the consequences of the upcoming Mueller Report on Russian Interference in the 2016 Elections and the subsequent obstructions of justice to prevent the facts from being revealed, and a minor possibility exists that the report ?will NEVER be published. The law says the Special Counsel only has to deliver his report to the Attorney General(AG), or in the present case with Sessions recused, his Assistant. If Assistant AG Rosenstein rejects any proposed indictments against Trump, the report will have to go the the Judiciary committees in the House and Senate. ?If Muller has no indictments against Trump the report can be buried by Rosenstein. That is the legal path but there can always be class struggle mass pressure and its consequences including legal release of the report, leaks, or hacking.
There is still the possibility that the report will HAVE TO go to Congress, exactly and only due to public outcry, since we don’t yet know what Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen will say in the course of unspecified “flipping” or what Omarosa Manigault Newman’s White House tapes collection say or whether Bob Woodward’s book on Trump will be meaningful to the reader masses. John Dean, former Nixon lawyer thinks the plea deal by Paul Manafort to avoid his second trial signals the beginning of the end for Trump. Likewise the chances of driving Trump from office could depend on the charges that will be brought by the Attorney General of New York State against his adult children and his businesses for tax fraud. His children not only manage the trust he supposedly placed his businesses in, but also the Trump Foundation charity, which turns out to be a decades-long continuing criminal enterprise. There may also be a division of labor on theses charges, with separate charges brought by the Manhattan District Attorney, and it should be noted that Trump’s pardon powers only extend to convictions in Federal Courts.
Last year we said the evidence already existed to impeach Trump. Now he is already an ‘unindicted co-conspirator’ (in crimes Michael Cohen has pleaded guilty to) like Nixon was. The Democrats will nevertheless remain content and happy to howl about the colossal grift of Trump’s ?appointees while voting for such parts of his disaster capitalism program as do not make total collisions with the interests of big donor capitalists. We hear next-to nothing about Tax Cut 2.0, which may be the farewell gesture of the Republican majority. This will give the rich an additional $2.8 Trillion (taxpayer debt!!). Where will this money come from in between budgets? It would have to come from “entitlements,” such as Social Security programs and Medicare. ?Are Democrats noticeably upset over the anti-union Supreme Court rulings? We hear crickets listening for their opposition. For them, everything is the November elections, and the closer we get the less content we hear. Steve Bannon is surprised the “Me Too” and “Time’s Up” movement are not tearing up the streets. We said last spring that the Democrats would demobilize them, and we are not surprised.
Trump has alienated some of the twin parties’ megadonors. David Pecker, publisher of The National Enquirer has flipped on Trump and is cooperating with Mueller’s investigators. The Koch Brothers will not back his Senate candidates in some key races where the Democrat has proved to be sufficiently and effectively anti-labor. Expect more such flipping and defections.
Trump must go! We will leave it to imperialist liberals to shriek at how he is shredding the post-war alliances. We will leave it to the talking heads and experts to howl how there are two foreign policies. For wage labor and all the oppressed the emerging picture of Trump’s pro-Russia policies are an anti-labor program of white nationalism that presumes it will be possible to split Russia from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and attach it to a U.S. scheme to attack China in WW3. To accomplish this Trump is ready to deliver many concessions to Putin. Trump has been partners with the circle of oligarchs supporting Putin since they bailed out his four Atlantic City bankruptcies, and he has laundered their ill-gotten gains ever since, turning them into real estate assets in America. He has supported all the white nationalist parties in Europe and has helped maneuver Turkey into recession. This raises the possibility that Turkey will quit NATO, which would change all the geopolitics of the Mediterranean to Russia’s advantage! Turkey, lately more aware of the Russia menace to Europe, is exploring its own possible alliances with Romania, Poland and others.
Trump’s problem is there are no signs of division in the SCO. He doesn’t want a successful revolution in Iran any more than Moscow does, but unlike Putin he is committed to opposing the Khamenei theocracy. And even though his own party is to date ?prepared to go to the mat to preserve his presidency, they are also not enthusiasts for his foreign policy and have levied sanctions on Russia that he has tried hard not to impose, even though they have the weight of law behind them. Many concede that his parley with Kim Jong Un was a bust. This rift is growing, but he is assuming more powers without essential opposition and not a few of the pols who are retiring this year have noted his power-hungry ambitions. He fosters divisions at home to make himself the essential decider above the conflicts of classes and races that he himself stokes. He trashes the Republican party “family values” slogan with his racist border policy, making hundreds of felonized orphans and deporting Central American parents to face the killer gangs and police they sought asylum from. We demand full citizenship rights for all refugees!
We say he wants to be a Bonaparte. Let Trump have Kavanaugh confirmed and he will proceed with his power grabbing ?plans. He has already grabbed control of tariff authority away from a supine Congress. We will not cry if he is by some fluke impeached, but to drive him from office for sure we should be trusting our own class’ forces and forms of struggle! This is a bosses’ government; the lawyers are just the superstructural excrescence. Strikes cut the bosses’ profits and get their immediate attention. Demand they delete Trump now!
We will not fool anyone like the Avakian Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP) does. The opposition to Trump from the FBI and CIA is rooted in Trump’s alliance with Putin and the Russian mafia and offers no defense of any worker’s democratic rights, but only the institutional rights of branches of the state. Sometimes the bosses’ gunsels, like the Cosa Nostra mobsters, are at each others’ throats. This is not a moment to help ANY of them! The RCP is hysterical about a phantom fascism, but they are peddling an intentional misunderstanding of what it is, and are doing so with a usual Stalinist “emergency” preference for Democrat office seekers (“refuse fascism!” just like “Drive out the Bush Regime!”) ?So far as we can see they never fought Obama with any energy: they are the ultraleft flip side of reformism and we can’t see how their “revolution” differs from Bernie’s when it comes to how to arrive at socialism.
Fascism is not coming unless Trump is able to assemble a private army for terrorizing and smashing the labor movement. So long as he can get the desired anti-labor votes from his Supreme Court, he can assure the capitalist class that survival of their class rule does not depend on a militarized private mass reactionary movement. He gives himself an A-plus on job performance and says all they need is him. All his life he has been able to get over by manipulations, and his egotism does not let him trust even a small organization. This can change for the worse when Capital so decides, but so far it has not. For a more detailed discussion please see the two “Redrave” articles reprinted in this issue. See “How (not) to smash fascism” and “Breivik is a fascist”.
We want to supply the public outcry class struggle to open the books! No secret reports! We know the Democrats have no plan to rid us of Trump–as they have indicated. ?Only revolutionary socialists can end his tenure so we especially advocate for & want “illegal” political strikes to make the fall feel like a hot summer in D.C. and rolling general strikes until he is driven from office. ?We certainly don’t want Pence put in his place or the next-in-succession, the Speaker of the House, which is what you’ll get via impeachment(s). Only a workers government can create solutions to and end the current crisis of capitalist decay. The bosses say we have full employment, but wages stagnate. ?A workers government will impose thirty hours work for forty hours pay, will expropriate the big capitalists and use the assets now wasted on militarism to rebuild the environment, provide full employment at living wages, quality education and healthcare for all. This cannot be done via a parliamentary take over like that proposed by the DSA, Sanders and the reformists. Only a government of workers councils based on factory, mine, farm and office workers’ own worksite committees can create the democratic basis for a socialist transformation of society.
This program, not the unprogram of impeachment is the only solution to the current political, economic and environmental crisis. This program requires a fighting workers/labor party committed to building rank and file self organization and uniting all oppressed people and working class students and families with workers at their jobs. ?Our class requires a class based political force that links the American workers with their class sisters and brothers internationally to build the world socialist system against the dying world capitalist system. Liberals and “progressives” who talk trash about the Democrats always offer a Third party, but that is a subterfuge, a way of avoiding the need for the workers to have their own political independence, a way to maintain a bloc with a wing of the capitalists and sustain the corporate power, the military industrial and prison industrial complex and the imperialist exploitation of the semi-colonies it is based upon.
We need a fighting workers’ labor party! With such a party we would oust Trump from office with the irresistible ?economic pressures brought to bear on the bourgeois state by strikes from coast to coast, against domestic and multinational corporations alike. This would flush the provisions of the Taft-Hartley “Slave Labor Law” and signal a battle for the replacement of each and every labor-faker leadership who have made a fat living accommodating and defending this kind of ‘legality.’