Monday, September 27, 2010

Join the Socialist Contingent on October 2

Join the Socialist Contingent on October 2

We March for Jobs, Peace, Justice and the Socialist Alternative That Can Win Them

Hundreds of thousands of Americans organized by labor and civil rights organizations will gather in Washington, D.C. on October 2 to demand a change in the direction that our nation is heading. We are proud to join this march to demand jobs, to demand an end to the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, and for a society that is fairer, more equal and more just. We believe it important to be in the capital on that date to help create a counterweight to Glenn Beck, the Tea Party, and Republicans, their reactionary politics, ruthless economics, and their racism.

We do not, however, share the goals of the AFL-CIO, the NAACP, and other organizations which hope to achieve jobs and justice by supporting Barack Obama and the Democratic Party in the national elections on November 2. We believe that it has become quite clear now that neither Democrats nor the Republicans are capable of solving the country’s three great crises—the economy, the environment, and the wars—in a way that will be good for the American people. The goals of a full employment economy, real environmental sustainability, and peace cannot be achieved by our capitalist system and the corporations motivated only by profit. We need a new direction toward a new system.

The two major parties have failed us. During the past two years, the Democrats and Republicans have failed to represent us, but they have done a fine job of representing the banks, insurance companies, and corporations. They saved the banks for the bankers—not those whose homes are still threatened with foreclosure or collapsing value. They saved the auto industry for the auto CEOs—not for the workers whose plants have been closed, whose health insurance contributions have been raised, and whose wages have been lowered. They have saved the health insurance companies by forcing millions of Americans to buy their policies, while denying us a single-payer plan and leaving prices remain uncontrolled. They have saved them, but they have not saved us.

We join the movement for this march, excited and enthused to see the labor unions, the African American and Latino populations, the women’s, gay and lesbian and environmental movements taking to the streets. But we know that change can only be brought about as it has been in every period of American history by independent social movements. And such independent movements must find political expression first in independent candidates and then in a party of working people and all in our society who suffer exploitation, discrimination and oppression.

The organizers of this march have called it “One Nation.” The truth is we are two nations. One nation of corporate CEOs and Bankers and their legions of high level executives, the very wealthy of our country, and another nation of working people, many of them now jobless. We are two nations: the corporations who run this country and the working people who make this country run. We will be marching with the working class to end a system dominated by corporations. We march because we believe that those working people who make the country run should run the country.

We know from American history and the history of the world that great and progressive changes come about only from below. We know that in modern times working people, who stand at the center of our economy and represent the majority of our population, represent the crucial force capable of making the changes we need. We also know that if we only organize movements and fail to create an independent political force, the Democrats will harvest all of our organizing. The fruits of our labor will be turned against us in Congress.

So we march. We march for jobs. We march for single-payer health care. We march for free public education from K to Ph.D. We march for an end to our racist and class-biased injustice system, and for equal justice for all. We march for women’s rights. We march for legalization of all the undocumented. We march for LGBT rights. We march for an end to the destruction of our environment. We march for an end to the U.S. wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. We march for an end to US support for Israel's occupation of Palestine and blockade of Gaza. We march knowing that the things we march for can only be achieved by abolishing capitalism and creating a democratic socialist society. We invite you to march with us. Join the Socialist Contingent on October 2 in Washington, D.C.

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1 comment:

  1. Great idea!
    Two questions. First, about the building of an independent political party. Many Americans think it is necessary, yet due to the winner-take-all system, they don't want to vote for their party of choice if they know it will only contribute to taking votes away from their second least favorite party and therefore helping to get their least favorite party in office. What are your thoughts on this dilemma?
    Some argue that the difference between the GOP and the Democratic Party is so minor that one shouldn't be concerned about it. However, many recognize that had Gore been in office on September 11, a war against Iraq would have most likely not occurred, indicating a significant difference between the two major Parties.
    The second question refers to your comments about "the nation." While it is important to point out the serious differences in socio-economic class, rather than supporting the notion of a "we are all in this together, nation," the concept of a "nation" has lost all meaning when you are really trying to speak about class. No, the middle and working classes are not a "nation," and neither are the millionaires and billionaires. Holding onto the concept of "the nation" obscures the reality more than it serves to illuminate it. Additionally -- and this is the mistake of those who named the rally "One Nation" in the first place -- why pander to national conceptions when addressing social issues? I am afraid it only benefits those who push nationalism even harder, and those who least benefit from that framing are migrants, even if the "One Nation" mission statement explicitly supports the rights of the immigrants, including the undocumented.