Jan 24, 2010 12:01 AM
By Lil Joe
This is an FYI and not an endorsement of the AFL-CIO's bureaucracy's analysis. Most of the union leaders in this union coalition are members of the Democratic Party and delegates to the Democrats State and National Conventions, even speakers there. My analytical expose is a denunciation of the Democrats as political representatives of the capitalist class who masquerade as 'friends of labor' and 'the Party of the common man', that only reinforce illusions prevalent among the American working class that it is a 'unique' and 'classless democracy' (American exceptionalism). The reaction to the Democrats doing the business of the capitalist class rather than the working class is consistent with that Party being financially and socially based in capitalist funding and associations. The US Senators don't hang out at working class bars and bowling alleys, and certainly not in Roxbury.
The labor union bureaucrats are a barrier to the development of a rank and file based trade union politicalization that endorses and participtes in the building of a Labor Party that is financially based on the trade unions and socially in working class neighborhoods, including Roxbury. By 'barrier' I mean in the Hegelian sense that they limit by restricting working class consciousness and politics to the confines of the Democratic Party. But, for every barrier, once the defective character of the unity or being is recognized, there springs antithesis to it: there arise consciousness of its need to be negated, therefore an ought within which inhere the new possibilities that can be freed and those limits destroyed.
By Lil Joe
Anger over Health Care Bill Creates Uncertain Future
by Jane Slaughter January 20, 2010
A Massachusetts local union president called it before the January 19 vote for senator: "I've never seen this much anger at the Democrats from union people," said Jeff Crosby, president of a General Electric factory local near Boston, as he prepared a last-minute leaflet to hand out in the plant. "It's worse than NAFTA."
Top union leaders had bargained a compromise slowing down the health care benefits tax President Obama insisted on, but it was not enough to placate union members-and others-infuriated that Obama had broken his campaign promise not to tax benefits.
Crosby said his members were threatening to vote Republican to stop the tax, since 60 Democratic senators and no Republicans had voted for it. In Massachusetts' special election they chose empty-suit Republican Scott Brown over a Democrat bound to cement the benefits tax in place.
In a Suffolk University poll conducted a week before the election, union-household voters in Massachusetts reported only 45 percent support for the Democratic candidate; union voters nationally backed Obama by 60 percent in 2008. From: email@example.com Sent: 1/20/2010 3:31:30 P.M. Central Standard Time
Trade unions, primariy, are organized by workers to defend and advance the immediate economic interests of its members. Were there a functioning trade union financed labor party, based socially in working class neighborhoods and districts, it would be a united front of workers. It woud be both union and not yet unionized, employed and unemployed labor leagues, that insomuch as it becomes a class organization fighting the capitalist class, and every class struggle is a political struggle to keep or win political administrative management of State Power, the legislating of laws this State would enforce, a collective economic organization of workers as a class for itself would actualize their collective interests as objective class and political interest promoted by the Labor Party on the political offensive.
But, the American working class has no such class party, and individuals that comprise the working class, including the unions have illusions that the Democratic Party is 'pro-labor', the party of the 'Middle Class' and the 'Average American'. The trade unions, blacks and gays, Latino/as and feminists, and those 'progressives' who even believe themselves to be 'socialists' and 'communists', went all out, spending time and donating treasure to achieve the Presidency of Obama, together with super majority of Democrat seats in both the House and Senate.
by Lil Joe
This article originated in a discussion of Max Weber and the sociology of the state.
However, the issue was raised concerning Engels and Lenin's concept of state and revolution, as if they were identical. They are not. Engels' concepts are identical with Marx's, and Lenin's with Trotsky and Stalin. Since these issues and authors have universal significance for revolutionaries and socialists, and in particular revolutionaries who consider themselves socialists, especially of significance since the collapse of the Soviet State and the privatization of the economy, I recognized the need to deal with these things generally in an article.
Most importantly for revolutionaries who consider themselves socialists, is the issue of capitalism and overcoming capitalism by national liberation movements and worker's parties in power. In the 1960's-70's United States in the African-American movement and the Anti-War movement activists rediscovered socialist and communist literature and politics, after having been demonized by McCarthyism's anti-communism.
Yet, the rediscovery by American activists of socialism and communism was but only a caricature of it. It was a "New Left" demonized the American working class and trade unions as selfish white men, spoiled by the crumbs from the imperialist table. This New Left believed that racial and identity politics - Black nationalists, Chicano ethnic activist-nationalists, feminists, and the outcaste lumpinproletariat - were the revolutionary forces internal in the belly of the U.S. imperialist "beast"/ "Babylon". [See Malcolm X Speaks, Hamilton and Carmichael's "Black Power", Aquino's "Occupied America", Kate Mallet's "Sexual Politics"]continue...
Monday 20 March 2006 8:05 PM GMT
French unions and student bodies have called for a general strike and protest marches on 28 March to pressure the government to withdraw a job law they say will create insecurity for a generation of young workers.
"All the unions are calling to make 28 March a day of demonstrations, strikes and work stoppages," Rene Valadon, confederal secretary of the Force Ouvriere union, said on Monday after a meeting of France's main unions, student and high school groups.
A question with which I am struggling is whether capitalist society is poised to enter what Marx called "an epoch of social revolution". There is no global or even widespread revolutionary upsurge of which I am aware whose existence would support such a position. But, throughout history, economic change has preceded social reorganization. Currently, scientific advance is giving rise to important economic change. In particular, computer-controlled production, electronics etc. have greatly reduced the labor-time required to produce virtually everything. Much high-tech production is literally labor-less.
Some assumptions and context:
In Capital Marx studied how commodities are produced and exchanged in capitalist society. He articulates the Law of Value which asserts that, generally, the amount of labor-time required to produce a commodity determines its exchange value and that commodity exchange transfers commodities of equal exchange value. He also showed that value-producing labor is the source of profit..
June 1, 2005
by Lil Joe
In this short essay, I will argue that the essence of the State flows from or is a product of human sociology. In other words, what I here call the State at the same time embodies and mediates the technological divisions of labor, economies of exchange, the subsequent class formations with mutually exclusive economic interests, and the resultant and mutually opposed political factions representing classes. Every class struggle is a political struggle, both relative and absolute.continue...
May 29, 2004
by Lil Joe
Modern productive forces and advanced technology is daily
creating a uniform international working-class. Presently, it is a
global class in-itself -- that is, workers or proletarians are a
multi-ethnic cosmopolitan class of property-less individuals that
everywhere must sell their labor power to ascertain the wherewithal
(money) to purchase means of subsistence. However, in the more
advanced industrial capitalist democracies in Western Europe the
political praxis of sharpening class struggle is engendering what
is becoming class-conscious, a class for-itself.
Cars form barricades in the streets of Paris, May 1968