If human equality is to be forever averted--if the High, as we have called them, are to keep their places permanently--then the prevailing mental condition must be controlled insanity. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad. … Perhaps a 'lunatic' was simply a minority of one. . (George Orwell's 1984) http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Nineteen_Eighty-Four
October 1, 2011
Bernie Sanders: A Minority of One
By Lil Joe
Bernie Sanders is a sterling example of a socialist who campaigns as such, winning elections by financial means from organized labor and direct working class participation.
What's more important in this connection is the contrast to capitalist financed Democrats and Republican patriotic red herrings, the campaign victories, against both Democrats and Republicans has been as an Independent. Sanders has campaigned on working class interests, openly as a socialist.
Sanders campaigns are for the most part financed by and based on labor union. Union financing of an open socialist has won elections for the first time since the `Red Scare' – anti-communist clauses and McCarthyism.
U.S. politicians being endorsed and financed by labor union officials isn't new nor unique, because other members of Congress and candidates have been and are financially aided by labor unions. What is new is their open association with socialists.
After all, the Teamsters endorsed and aided the Republicans e.g. Nixon and Reagan, and PATCO officials endorsed and aided the campaign of Republicans, e.g. Ronald Reagan – thus the oxymoron “Reagan Democrats”. The AFL-CIO has and continues to endorse, aid and campaign for Democrats – Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Humphrey, Carter, Clinton, Gore, Kerry, Obama. The reward for this endorsement and aid from labor has more often than not resulted in labor being kicked in their guts and asses for their brown nosing support for the parties of their class enemies.
Campaign victories of Sanders, running as an Independent – that is, as a candidate separate and apart from the Democratic Party, as well as the Republican Party – produces a conscious proof that it is not just desirable but possible for socialists to run and win elections.
All the Republican politicians and the Democrats in the Senate are financed by various and sundry capitalist factions – Republicans and Conservative Democrats by finance capital, the Republicans by commercial and transnational industrial capitalist, export capital, whereas, in general, Democrats are financed by domestic industrial and agricultural capital, capitalists. However, in the House of Representatives, particularly among the urban industrial working class, there are a significant number of Democrats, such as Dennis Kucinich who are for the most part financed by labor unions, both in the public service and others working under capitalist dominated relations of production. You see such Democrats constantly on television, usually on MSNBC on the Ed Shultz Show and The Last Word /Lawrence O’Donnell, and most recently the Al Sharpton program, together with these hosts posing as a counter point to ‘the Republicans attack on the middle class’.
Were Democrats, such as Dennis Kucinich, who’s primary funding and foot work campaigns are based on support from labor unions, public sector unions and unions of workers in capitalist possession, to break with the Democrats and thereupon become independent of the capitalist class parties, they could function in the interest of the working class. As it is, what Kucinich does is pull workers into the Democratic Party to submit to the capitalist interests that that Party represents.
It is necessary that unions break politically and financially from the Democratic Party to form and fund the Labor Party, and people like Kucinich could join and actually represent Labor. More importantly, socialists such as Sanders would proliferate, becoming members of the Labor Party members of Congress, multiplying in Congress as a disciplined cadre fighting for a working class agenda and legislation without ever compromising working class interests.
The string of campaign victories won by Sanders is proof of the bankruptcy of the Democrat and Republican apologists campaigns against so-called ‘third party candidates’. The slogan that workers voting for Socialist parties, Peace and Freedom Party, and even Green Party candidates are wasted votes, ostensibly because Democrat and Republican candidates are presented as the only ‘real choices’ are refuted by the facts of Bernie Sanders string of victories.
Thus, both Republican and Democratic Party's opportunist advocacy to the respective Party’s ‘base’- the voters for their respective Party’s candidate - to be voted for, not on the basis of Party platform, but as ‘lesser of two evils’, reduce politics from objective criteria of program to subjective emotionalism of like or dislike for the individuals, personality contests.
Thus, ‘Voter turn off’ (‘voter apathy’), in U.S. elections cycles isn’t just the result of ‘negative campaigns’ (demagogy, anecdotes, ad hominems, flowery and demonizing rhetoric) but, voter turnoff – i.e. working class voter’s apathy is to the contrary the result of obvious bipartisan duopoly once these candidates become members of government, turning their backs on their 'base' and revealing loyalty to the capitalist financiers, by passing legislation, issue decrees, and make and enforce judicial policies against working class and union interests.
Insomuch as Democratic, as well as Republican politicians, are themselves capitalists, or capitalist’s political lackeys, they represent that class' interests. This explains why these guttersnipes are ‘bipartisan’ in Congress, the Presidency and the Judiciary, and why in their political campaigns rather than engage in open debates of how these partisans of Capital as individuals compete on the basis of which would be the best lackey of the capitalist class instead go ad hominem against each other in the disguise of patriotic demagogy regarding which of them will best ‘put country first’.
Democrat's and Republican's campaign demagogy use red herrings to divert workers attention from the respective Party's class basis, its platform and program. Thus they engage in gutter snipes and ad hominem personal attacks against each other.
This is because cadres and electoral candidates in and of the Democratic as well as Republican parties in Congress, government and judicial appointments openly represent capitalist class interests and inevitably 'betray' their working class constituents. This is why, after the grading, Congress and the President's 'performance' rating is always low.
The 2008 elections resulted in Democrat majorities in the House and Senate as well as the office of the President The legislative agenda and its bipartisan brown nosing of finance capital and industrial capital against the interests of workers proves, however, that by voting for Democrats workers are throwing away their ballot power, and wasting their votes by helping Democrats pass Republican legislation. It was the Democrats that trashed single payer health insurance, card-check union legislation and renewed the Bush tax cuts for capitalists.
It was the Obama administration that led the bailouts of finance and industrial capital to the tune of trillions of dollars, and that in the last political circus, under the auspices of the ‘debt crises, offered the Republicans as a ‘grand deal’ the cutting of 4 trillion dollars from working class support programs, including Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.
This attack on working class support programs continues to be the class partisan warfare offered by Obama, in his recent Speech to Congress where he proposed rebuilding for capitalist manufacture and shipping industry a modernized infrastructure – to be paid for by cutting trillions of dollars from these social programs, although he is masquerading these attacks on the working class as a ‘job creation plan’.
Along with these painful cuts, the Obama plan calls for a measly 1 trillion dollars tax on capitalists to help pay for the rebuilding of their own infrastructure and armed State power. The Republicans oppose this taxation on capital as ‘class warfare’, as though capitalists are the victims! (See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htX2usfqMEs
That Democrats and Republicans, both in primary and general elections, engage against one another by ad hominems, lies, slander and demonizing personal attacks is nothing but show – the unessential masquerading as essential – because these politicians in both Party’s are equally capitalists or bought and paid for political lackey-representatives of capitalist class interests.
This is not the case with Bernie Sanders. He not only is openly and prides himself a socialist, but whose campaigns are financed by trade unions and supported by working class participation in his campaigns. Therefore, since he recognizes the interests of capital and labor to be mutually exclusive and has no social or financial obligation to capitalists he need not engage in ad hominem red herrings, but stick to the empirical issues.
I am not concerned with his personal politics and electoral wins and losses in local politics. Every class struggle is a political struggle: the struggle for political power at the national level.
For decades Sanders has been in Congress, in the House of Representatives and Senate, as the result of his repeated campaigns for Congressional office. He has won and retained his Congressional seat in competition both against Democrats as well as Republicans.
Bernie Sander’s socialist campaign’s victories besides being examples of how to conduct campaigns on class issues and interests, prove to working class socialists that workers as a class in -self can become socialist class for itself: the possibility, as well as the necessity for working class partisans winning the battle of democracy on the basis of working class self financed political campaigns achieving positions of legislative power in the U.S. Congress.
Sanders’ working class partisan principled political campaign victories and refusal to capitulate to ‘bipartisanship’ of Democrats with Republicans exposes the opportunist ‘progressive’ Democrats. Democrats, ostensibly on the basis of ‘pragmatism’, ‘compromise’ with the reactionary elements of the Democratic Party – so-called “Conservative Democrats” and “Blue Dog Democrats”. These reactionary Democrats, both in their policy advocacy rhetoric and voting patterns are the same as reactionary Republican legislators.
So-called ‘Progressive' and Ethnic caucuses of the Democratic Party, notwithstanding the populist campaign rhetoric, once the politicians become members of Congress, and/or President, their votes and policies are identical with and for their capitalist campaign financiers. In fact, many of these politicians, masqueraders as 'representatives' of their Congressional districts or states, are themselves capitalists and investors.
It is because Sanders is financially independent of capitalist campaign funding that he is able to reject and expose capitalist proclivities - pointing out at the same time that Democrats and Republicans both are political partisans of capitalist class interests.
On General Electric's MSNBC network Democrat partisan television programs, Democrats such as Chris Mathews, Al Sharpton, Lawrence O'Donnell, Rachel Maddow and Ed Shultz, when these Democrats denounce the Republicans alone as lackeys of Wall Street, Sanders usually disassocates himself from the Democrats and include them in his critiques.
In the House of Representatives, Dennis J. Kucinich's financing is a mix of capitalist and union sources, but he is still a Democrat.
Kucinich’s outspoken identification with working class interests makes it appear that he is a champion of working class interests. Yet, in the end, he always capitulates to his Party. His open stances for workers interests – at any rate ‘the middle class’ – by championing interests of workers, by doing so as a Democrat, only further the illusion in the working class that the Democratic Party is the 'champion of the working class' – at any rate the Middle Class.
This illusion so posited is an ultimate service to the interest of the capitalist class, because these illusions keep the labor bureaucracy tied to the Democratic Party. In this connection the labor bureaucrats in the Democratic Party are not representatives of the working class in the Democratic Party, but representatives of the Democratic Party in labor unions.
Democrat President Franklin D. Roosevelt stated his class based capitalist interests as the framework for his New Deal:
“Let us be clear at the outset that the liberty of individuals to carry out their business should not be abrogated unless the larger interests of the many are concerned. It is the purpose of government to see that the legitimate interests of the few are protected but that the welfare and rights of the many are conserved. These are the principles that must be remembered in any consideration of this question. This, I take it, is sound government – not politics. Those are the essential basic conditions under which government can be of service” (Franklin D. Roosevelt: Looking Forward p. 112.) http://www.amazon.com/Looking-Forward-Franklin-Delano-Roosevelt/dp/1417994541
Roosevelt himself was a capitalist – as were the members of his Cabinet either directly or indirectly. Then, as now, Democrats as well as Republicans in both the Senate and House of Representatives were/are either direct capitalists or political lackeys of capitalists. "Sound government" is a euphemism for the ruthless State, and it is politics.
That the ruling classes respectively own the productive forces – natural resources, means of production and distribution - these property-owning appropriating classes thus economically dominate politics: the State is an instrument of political domination. Ruling classes are the classes in possession of the country’s productive forces: these appropriating are the classes and the State is an instrument of their economic dominance, in politics. The economic ruling class is the political ruling class.
Republican Party prattle and bullshit about ‘small government’ versus ‘big government’, is nothing but red herrings by capitalist’s political lackeys in Congress and political ideological gigolos in print and electronic media viz., e.g. Washington Times, FOX news, to divert American workers attention from an analysis of the actual State – its power and partisanship in American capitalist ‘democracy’.
What Republicans call ‘big government’ and the ‘wasteful government spending’ is the use of tax appropriated money in auxiliary social spending on the surplus population.
The surplus or excess population is a direct result and the product of the capitalist mode of production and appropriation in that ‘efficiency’ and displacement of human labor power by machines engenders a surplus population of unemployed, which together with the natural sick and aged workers are, from the capitalist’s standpoint, a useless population because it cannot be profitably employed. Republicans are Neo-Malthusian Social Darwinists. (See http://groups.yahoo.com/group/laborpartypraxis/message/27492)
The Republicans are therefore opposed to what they call wasteful discretionary spending in the category of mandatory spending – welfare, Social Security, food stamps, Medicare, Medicaid and so on:
Discretionary spending is that part of the U.S. Federal Budget that is negotiated between the President and Congress each year as part of the budget process. It includes everything that is not in the mandatory budget, which are programs required by law to provide certain benefits, such as Social Security and Medicare. (See Federal Budget - Mandatory Spending)
Discretionary spending in FY 2010 was $1.3 trillion, or 38% of total spending. More than half ($815 billion) was security spending, which includes the Department of Defense, overseas contingency programs and Homeland Security.
Non-security spending was $491 billion. The largest departments were: Health and Human Services ($84 billion), Education ($64.3 billion), Housing and Urban Development ($42.8 billion) Justice ($27.6 billion), and Agriculture ($25 billion). (Source: OMB, Table S-11)
In FY 2012, spending from the Economic Stimulus Package was moved to Mandatory spending, which is the budget category for spending that is mandated by law. This spending included a surplus of $73 billion from banks for the TARP program, $12 billion in tax cuts and $12 billion in jobs initiatives.(Source: OMB, FY 2011 Budget, Table S-1 and S-4)
Although the Economic Stimulus Package was not technically part of the Discretionary Budget, many government agencies benefited from it. In FY 2009, $253 billion was spent through the stimulus package. The agencies which benefited the most were Education ($81 billion), Transportation ($48 billion) and Energy ($37 billion). This spending helped boost the economy to positive economic growth in the second half of calendar year 2010, ending the recession.
Since unemployment was still at a 10% level, the budget included $147 billion in temporary recovery measures for FY 2011. (Source: OMB, FY 2011 budget, Table S-2)
Mandatory Spending, at $2.109 trillion in FY 2012. The largest mandatory spending programs were Social Security and Medicare, as follows:
· Social Security - $761 billion
· Medicare - $468 billion
· Medicaid - $269 billion
· TARP - $13 billion
· All other mandatory programs - $598 billion. These programs include Food Stamps, Unemployment Compensation, Child Nutrition and Tax Credits, Supplemental Security for the Disabled and Student Loans. (Source: OMB, Table S-3)
Mandatory spending is 57% of total Federal spending. It almost three times as much as the military budget, and 1 1/2 times all discretionary spending. The mandatory budget is, as its name implies, mandated by Congress to be spent outside of the annual budgetary process. It cannot be changed without a change in the laws that set up the programs.(Source: OMB, Table S-4)
Social Security is funded through payroll taxes. Through 2017, Social Security collects more in tax revenues than it pays out in benefits because there are 3.3 younger workers for every beneficiary. This created a surplus in the Social Security Trust Fund. http://useconomy.about.com/od/fiscalpolicy/p/Mandatory.htm
Obama calls for $3 trillion in deficit cuts Agence France-Presse 12:32 pm | Monday, September 19th, 2011
WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama will Monday call for new deficit cuts of $3.0 trillion but warn Republicans he will veto any bill that trims health care for the elderly without hiking taxes on the rich.
Obama will lay out a series of proposals that include a broad overhaul of the tax code designed to raise $1.5 trillion dollars, mostly by letting previous tax cuts for the wealthy expire and by closing corporate loopholes.
Officials said the plan would ensure America’s long term fiscal future at a time of deep economic gloom, and permit continued investment in education, new generation energy and job creation.
Specifically, Obama will lay out a plan for tax revenue raises and spending cuts which he will suggest a congressional supercommittee charged with coming up with up to $1.5 trillion dollars in spending cuts should adopt.
Obama’s proposals will bring total deficit cutting plans over the next decade to $4.4 trillion, officials said.
That topline figure includes $1.2 trillion in cuts in federal discretionary spending already agreed by Obama in August as part of a compromise which ended a standoff with Republicans over raising the federal debt ceiling.
It includes 580 billion in spending cuts across all mandatory spending programs and $1.1 trillion of savings realized from drawing down US troop numbers in Afghanistan and Iraq.
September 17, 2011 06:30 AM
'Gang of Six' Swells to 'Gang of 38' Senators Now Ready to Aid Super Committee
By John Amato
Saxby Chambliss’ Gang of Six has grown to 38 U.S. senators from both parties, who on Thursday urged the debt reduction “supercommittee” to aim high and secure $4 trillion in budget savings.
The Georgia Republican was joined by Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., and a group too large to fit on the news conference stage to send a message to the 12-member joint committee created in the summer’s deal to raise the debt ceiling. The committee must devise a plan by November to reduce future deficits by at least $1.2 trillion, on top of $917 billion in already agreed-upon savings. Chambliss and his gang want to nearly double that, as most budget experts say a $4 trillion course correction is necessary to lasso the nation’s rising debt.
“As you can see, our numbers have grown significantly,” Chambliss said. “We’re not only bipartisan, but we stretch on both sides of the spectrum in our respective caucuses. That’s how serious we know this debt is.”
This summer the Gang of Six — Sens. Chambliss, Warner, Mike Crapo, R-Idaho; Tom Coburn, R-Okla; Kent Conrad, D-N.D.; and Dick Durbin, D-Ill. — put forth a framework to save $3.7 trillion through cuts to domestic and military programs, changes in the tax code and reform of costly entitlements such as Medicare.
The Gang of 38 did not back one proposal, rather stressing that the foundation for a big deal already has been laid by the Gang of Six and outside panels. “Nobody needs to really look too far for what we need to do,” said Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga. “They just need to be willing to pull the trigger.”
Part and parcel of Republicans and Democrats by-partisan management of State power, they regard the Military-Industrial Complex as an economic necessity. It’s called military Keynesianism.
The German Nazi war machine as reducing unemployment by spending on public works and more decidedly on military related industry was the economic model for the U.S. Keynesian policies of the Roosevelt New Deal, particularly military spending in a war context kept the demand for weapons systems very high. WWII also ‘employed’ able bodied men, and when these men died in the war it was a Malthusian means by which to ‘decrease the surplus population’.
Capitalist commodity production on the basis of buying and exploiting labor power is profit driven and the tendency for rates of profits to decline results in displacement of workers by machines and overproduction. Since the Roosevelt regime, military spending is always off the table when budget battles occur.
What is spent by government to maintain the State Killing Machine is money the State appropriates as taxes. The ‘government’ is not the State. Classes rule, parties govern.
The bureaucratic-military machine that is the State – special bodies of armed men and women with courts and prisons at their disposal – is the essence of the State, not social spending programs.
Republicans opposition to ‘big government’ is not an opposition to ‘big State’. What is meant by opposition to ‘big government’ and ‘government spending’ is advocacy and policies to return to the principles of the State jailing and killing working class and poor people, to jail and kill rebellious elements of the working class and the surplus population. Republicans don’t want to ‘waste money’ on spending on the provision of surplus population with money and health care that result in keeping these ‘worthless’ individuals alive and healthy.
The Reagan, Clinton and Obama regimes attacks on ‘welfare queens’, ‘welfare as we know it’ and cuts in welfare, and now Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid is an issue separate and apart from government spending on weapons of mass destruction systems.
Republicans, as for that matter Democrats also, tend to increase spending in the Military-Industrial Complex.
Republicans are not opposed to the State’s appropriating and spending taxes on its professional killers and their weapons. This the Republicans, Conservative and Blue Dog Democrats regard as necessary spending consistent with the class nature of the State as opposed to wasteful spending on the poor.
The problem at present is that militarism and war spending is a part of the problem and not an alternative to end unemployment and providing otherwise unemployed workers who don’t have money to purchase commodities with money to purchase from the overproduced stacks of means of subsistence commodities.
The permanent arms economy is now part of the problem.
What Republicans oppose is tax money appropriated and used for social programs that are spent on discarded workers and workers who are not exploitable. The discarded workers, and others who cannot sell their labor power, need social spending to live on. What the Republicans want is to, as Scrooge in Charles Dickens said of them in A Christmas Carole: “let them all die, then, and decrease the surplus population”. (See Charles Dickens A Christmas Carole @ http://www.stormfax.com/1dickens.htm)
Conservative Democrats in the Senate and Blue Dog Democrats in the House of Representatives have the same perspective as do Republicans concerning ‘wasteful spending’ on the surplus and aging population. Thus, the ‘Gang of 38’. ( See Adaoma’s post @ http://groups.yahoo.com/group/laborpartypraxis/message/27514)
This is class based analysis of unnecessary v necessary spending. It is this capitalist standpoint of the ‘pragmatic’ policies advocated by the Obama regime – advocating 4 trillion dollars to be redirected from social spending programs to ‘pay for’ capitalist infrastructure. It is class war and appropriating also tax 1 trillion dollars from capitalists to capitalists to hire able bodied young workers to be exploited by capitalists in rebuilding “America’s infrastructure” does not constitute class warfare against ‘the rich’, but against the working class and the surplus population. (See the Obama Speech to Congress @ http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0911/63043.html )
Money spent on the needs of a surplus population comprised of the unemployed/economically unemployable and the poor, that Democratic Party ‘New Dealers’ and ‘Progressives’ have advocated in the interests of domestic commercial capitalists being able to sell their commodities to, is not altruism. It is the same as Democrats spending in the Military-Industrial Complex and for imperialist wars abroad.
When the media calculate the costs of imperialist wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Libya, what this is referring to is primarily the price paid US arms manufacturers, and secondarily the salaries paid to the killers themselves. The Obama regime’s Department of Defense- Pentagon has sent thirty thousand more armed and financed professional killers into Afghanistan and increased bombings in Pakistan, and now supplying NATO with bombs used against the people of Libya as well.
In 1967, in opposition to the U.S. wars in Indo-China, Africa and Latin America – not just the aggression in Vietnam – Martin Luther King said:
Somehow this madness must cease. … I speak as a citizen of the world, for the world as it stands aghast at the path we have taken. I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great initiative in this war is ours. …The initiative to stop it must be ours. … the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today – my own government. ...
In Oliver Stone’s 1991 film JFK, former Black Ops military leader said to the New Orleans prosecutor:
“The organizing principle of any society, Mr. Garrison, is for war. The authority of the State over its people resides in its war powers.”
City Police Departments and County Sheriff Departments of the State, and state National Guard, even the National Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force are the armed power of the State that is used domestically to maintain ‘law and order’- i.e. to maintain by armed terror force the submission of the working classes and toiling masses to the dominance of the possessing classes’ relations of production and submit to the corresponding forms of appropriations characteristic of those relations, thus the specific systems of labor power appropriation and exploitation.
The real conflict between Republicans and Democrats is not regard to ‘big government’ v ‘small government’, insomuch as both Parties want and need a powerful military State power to use against unruly and striking workers. The thing or ‘issue’ today, with regard to the storms and fires damage isn’t a military issue, but the Republicans wanting to privatize even disaster relief, or use this natural tragedy to hold its victim hostage in demanding cuts to pay for it – cuts out of the social programs that keep the surplus population alive.
Republican slogans, calling for instance for 'limited' government and opposition to 'big government' and 'out of control covernment spending', is nothing but demagoguery. What is lurking beneith this demagogic clap trap is opposition to the use of appropriated taxes that are spent for the providing of income and medical care to the surplus population.
Republicans want to restrict appropriated money taxes to the funding of the Military- Industrial Complex – that is, ‘necessary spending’. It is not an opposition to 'government spending' as such, but specific Opposition to government's auxiliary social departments.
Republicans are in opposition to using taxes required to provide means of subsistence to what neo-Malthusian Republican ideologists and members of Congress regard as a non-productive, unemployed, useless and therefore parasitic surplus population.
Republican Party television pundit-ideologists and members of Congress bombastic clap trap, connecting 'government spending' on the surplus population with and the cause of 'high taxes', by demonizing the surplus population as economic parasites, divert discussion of State expenditure from the real basis of taxation, that is the 'necessary spending' required by the State to pay for the State's essential repressive function: the bureacratic- miliarty apparatus.
Insomuch as the Republicans want to roll back the New Deal and Great Society legislation, to return to an era where government expenditure was restricted, or 'limited' to paying for the repressive functions of the bureaucratic-military killing and jailing activities, they are reactionary.
The Clinton and Obama admistrations joined with reactionary Republicans. "The era of big government is over", said Clinton in his 'welfare reform' policies. Obama's policy of cutting trillions from social programs is consistent with the policies of the Clinton 'New Democrats'.
'Progressive Democrats' represent the interest's of domestic industrial and agricultural capitalist regimes. Domestic capitalists operate in the national framework and are dependnet upon domestic markets. These capitalists benefit by 'government spending'. The surplus population consumes surplus products.
Axuliary government spending provide the surplus population with the wherewithal - money and food stamps- that is necessary for domestic industrial and agricultural capitalists survival, in that it enables families to purchase the commodities that otherwise couldn't be sold. The same is true of infrastructure repair projects that provide jobs and income, to be spent.
'Progressive Democrats', want to retain the axuliary social departments and maintian funding for programs such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. These are the bourgeois Keynesian economists, ideologists, pundits and members of Congress - the caucus of 'Progressive Democrats'- as they call themselves. These 'Progressive Democrats' are therefore not 'progressives' in the revolutionary European historical sense; indeed and in fact today they represent the interests of domestic industrial and agricultural capital and are conservatives.
The political battles of Republicans v. Democrats is not 'class warfare' between the 'rich' and the 'middle class' regarding taxes, or 'limited' small government v. 'big government'. Rather, it's a battle for political supremacy of the political representatives of finance and transnational capitalists, represented by the Republicans, against domestic industrial and agricultural capitalist interests, represented by the Democrats.
Roosevelt’s references to capitalists as ‘individuals’ is no different from the current Supreme Court’s ruling that capitalist’s ‘corporations’ are ‘persons’ – or as Romney put it capitalists are ‘people’. So, yes indeed! Let us be clear at the outset! The ‘individuals’ that Roosevelt referred to as having the ‘liberty’ to ‘carry out their business’ is referring to capitalists having the ‘liberty’ to appropriate and exploit the labor power of the non-possessing working classes and landowners the products of share-cropping toiling masses.
The government of the United States is not neutral in its management of the bureaucratic-military State. Thus, the ‘legitimate interests of the few’ referred to by Roosevelt are capitalists and landowners interests: the interests of capitalists against the interests of wage labor, and the interests of landowners against the interests of share-croppers. In each set are class interests that are by economic description and definition irreconcilable, are therefore, politically, mutually exclusive.
It is the workers and share-croppers that constitute ‘the many’. To ‘protect’ the capitalist’s ‘business’ of appropriating and exploiting wage workers and landowners the produce of share-croppers is to subordinate the ‘larger interests of the many’ to the business interests of ‘the few’: to take the side of capitalists and landowners against workers and share-croppers.
By contrast to Kucinich, Sanders is not an illusory champion of the working class, but is the real thing. He doesn’t campaign or hold his seats in Congress as a member of the Democratic Party. Labor unions financing and campaigning for an independent socialist is therefore to be distinguished from labor unions financing and campaigning for Democrats.
Yet, as an Independent he is not a disciplined member of a working class socialist party. As the sole socialist in Congress, Sanders is presently a minority of one in enemy territory.
The interest of the working class qua class interest is to have members of Congress in class struggle against capitalist members of Congress, not limited to getting the best deal possible, under capitalist conditions of production and distribution of commodities, but the abolition of capitalist exploitation of wage workers by legislating the transfer of the productive forces from capitalist appropriation and exploitation of worker’s labor power to become the public property of the working class.
The minimum wage, unemployment compensation and even Welfare, Food Stamps and Social Security ultimately is to the benefit of the capitalist classes because commercial capitalists are able to sell means of subsistence to workers who are otherwise unemployed and thrown off the consumer demand curves. With this money, so-called ‘government spending’, commercial capitalists are able to sell commodities that otherwise wouldn’t be sold, enabling consumers to remain on and even increase supplies to meet increased demand curves.
Welfare, Food Stamps, Social Security are in the interests of huge commercial capital, as well as mom-pop commercial so-called ‘small business’ operations, apartment owners and others to whom money is by this ‘government spending’ transferred from taxes. It is therefore not inconsistent as representatives of capitalist’s interests in selling commodities that Democrats support these programs.
The Democrats and Republicans are waging class warfare against the surplus population by cutting these programs in order to pay for capitalist infrastructure projects. It is absurd to say, as the Republicans do, that it is class warfare against ‘the rich’ to have capitalists up their taxes by a trillion over time.
Class warfare is not making the rich pay more taxes. Class, as an economic (rather than social) category is defined by its relation to production.
The Democrat’s class partisanship clap trap about capitalist’s ‘sacrifice’ of their ‘fair share’ of taxes paid to their State, that domestically is used against the working class and surplus population and internationally to fund imperialism, is completely absurd.
The money to be spent on repair of the capitalist's infrastructure itself will go to capitalist Construction companies.
(See the Obama Speech to Congress @ http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0911/63043.html)
Capitalist class interests by descriptive definition and legislation is hostile and opposed to working class interests.
Individual socialists as individuals in the US Congress are a voice of working class interests that’s drowned out by the thunderous clap trap of hundreds of bourgeois lackeys, and his or her dedication to working class interests and principled position advocacy notwithstanding, will be either perpetually defeated or forced into blocs with members of the capitalist class’ parties. This socialist individual will eventually have to ‘comprise’ – which is the first rung of capitulation to capitalist class interests, thus abandoning of working class interests.
Working class partisans in Congress cannot, as individuals, by themselves effectively bring about the legislation of working class interests. Yet, what Bernie Sanders career as a principled individual socialist proves is it is possible for socialists to win elections, defeating Democratic as well as Republican opponents.
What is important is that Bernie Sanders strings of political victories demonstrate it is possible for socialist organizations to do the same. It is time for the socialist, communist and labor parties in the United States to stop wasting money and man-woman power in running of candidates for President, Senate and state Governors, which they cannot win and even if they do will be irrelevant as far as numbers are concerned.
Organized Socialists, communists and labor cadres need to field political candidates, confront and defeat Democrats, as well as Republican candidates in Congressional campaigns. It is possible to win seats in the House of Representatives. Using their position in Congress, presenting working class legislation which, even if defeated will educate the working class on the necessity of sending even more socialist and labor candidates to the House of Representatives: engendering a cascading plethora of socialists from every working class Congressional District.
In the House of Representatives, the more the Democrats and Republican partisans of capitalist's interests suppress House of Representative's working class legislation the more the working class will see the need to elect more socialists, communists and labor party candidates and put them in the House of Representatives leading to their becoming the absolute majority in that House.
"Throw the bums out" can only mean throwing all Democrats and Republicans from the House of Representatives.
A Labor Parry majority of workers in the House of Representatives legislating laws strictly benefiting the working class - up to and including legislation passing the productive forces from the private possession of the capitalist classes to the public property of the working classes.
---------- Forwarded message ----------FFrom: U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders
Republicans hate Social Security because it has been an extraordinary success and has done exactly what it was designed to do. It is the most successful government program in our nation's history and is enormously popular.
When Social Security was developed, 50 percent of seniors lived in poverty. Today, that number is 10 percent -- still too high, but a testament to the success of Social Security.
Republicans have spent years demonizing Social Security and spreading lies about its sustainability. They want to scare Americans and build support for making drastic cuts to the program or privatizing it entirely. Their long-term goal is to end Social Security as we know it, and convert it into a private account system which will enable Wall Street to make hundreds of billions in profits.
The truth is that today, according to the Social Security Administration, Social Security has a $2.7 trillion surplus and can pay out every benefit owed to every eligible American for the next 25 years.
Further, because it is funded by the payroll tax and not the U.S. Treasury, Social Security has not contributed one nickel to our deficit.
Now -- in a prolonged recession that has decimated the poor and middle class and pushed more Americans into poverty than at any point in modern history -- we need to strengthen Social Security. That's why I, along with 9 co-sponsors, have introduced the “Keeping Our Social Security Promises Act.” This legislation would lift the Social Security Payroll tax cap on all income over $250,000 a year, would require millionaires and billionaires to pay their fair share into the Social Security Trust Fund, and would extend the program for the next 75 years.
Join me now as a citizen co-sponsor of the Keeping Our Social Security Promises Act.
For 76 years, through good times and bad, Social Security has paid out every benefit owed to every eligible American. The most effective way to strengthen Social Security for the next 76 years is to scrap the payroll tax cap for those earning $250,000 a year or more.
Right now, someone who earns $106,800 pays the same amount of money into Social Security as billionaires like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. That is because today, all income above $106,800 is exempt from the Social Security tax. As a result, 94% of Americans pay Social Security tax on all of their income, but the wealthiest 6% do not.
That makes no sense.
The “Keeping Our Social Security Promises Act” will ensure the long-term solvency of Social Security without cutting benefits, raising the retirement age or raising taxes on the middle class.
Join me and Democracy for America in fighting to strengthen Social Security -- Sign on as a citizen co-sponsor of the Keeping Our Social Security Promises Act.
Social Security is keeping tens of millions of seniors out of poverty today. I can think of no more important issue facing our country today than making sure that Social Security remains strong for generations to come.
Senator Bernie Sanders
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