The Worker (Update), December 8, 2014
Published by the Workers Party, USA
P.O. Box 25716, Chicago, IL 60625
Capitalists Strengthen Police-State
During his November 20 speech on “Border Security,” Obama stated, “Today, we have more agents and technology deployed to secure our border than at any time in our history.” In fact, Obama’s massive militarization of the border is only one example of the increasingly repressive character of the capitalist state in the U.S. today.
For example, in addition to stepping up its militarization of the border, the government is strengthening its repressive apparatus in immigrant communities all across the country and carrying out a program of arbitrary harassment, violence and persecution.
The government is also spending money on a program aimed at creating a nation-wide fingerprint bank containing files on all immigrants as well as a pilot program for a national ID system.
The strengthening of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is further centralizing the repressive apparatus of government and undermining the democratic rights of the people. Amongst other things the DHS has wide-ranging powers to carry out surveillance and intelligence gatherings. The DHS is exempt from various provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, thus allowing it to keep secret files on political organizations and activists. The DHS also gives federal police forces new powers to intervene in “national emergencies,” “civil disturbances” and local police matters.
So too, in several recent cases, judges endorsed police killings by refusing to indict police involved in brutal murders.
In another example, U.S. courts hold hundreds of thousands of people in pretrial detention and the U.S. has become the largest jailer of pretrial detainees in the world.
The suppression of the peoples’ elementary democratic rights and the laying down of a “legal” basis for strengthening the police-state in the U.S. represents nothing more nor less than the political program of the entire capitalist class. The capitalist class and capitalist government are increasing the police power of the state and turning to fascism because they are preparing new attacks against the people at home and abroad. The government is resorting to fascism because it is preparing new wars, new cuts in social spending, working to increase the exploitation of the workers and putting the entire governmental budget and the economy of the country at the disposal of the monopoly capitalist class.
Various liberal capitalist politicians, as well as the myriad of “left” groups which have attached themselves to the Democratic Party, present the analysis that attacks on the democratic rights of the people are merely a result of “inequality” in the justice system.
On the basis of their analysis, the liberal and opportunist political forces suggest that attacks on the democratic rights and civil liberties of the people can be stopped through “legislative and electoral remedies;” that is, that the people should rely on the Democratic Party politicians to initiate new legislation which will restore lost rights. This program is in line with the general outlook of the liberals and opportunists to maintain that capitalist “democracy,” as it exists in the U.S., is the best possible political system which, through the constitutional system of “checks and balances,” through congressional lobbying and electioneering, affords the masses the opportunity to address their grievances and defend their rights.
No matter how much propaganda is done praising “American democracy,” the reality remains that the government is nothing but a tool of the capitalist class, used by it to protect its power and privilege and to suppress the struggles and rights of the working people. Democracy – the defense of the interests of the majority – can never be protected and guaranteed by a government bought and paid for by the tiny class of capitalist exploiters. Experience shows that, at every turn, they are up against the repressive apparatus of the capitalist state. When the workers go on strike, the capitalists use court injunctions, police and National Guard to suppress the struggle. The immigrant workers face constant harassment, persecution and deportation at the hands of the Department of Homeland Security. In the working class and oppressed minority communities the people are regularly subjected to systematic police terror, including cold-blooded murder.
The laws and legal system of society are a reflection of the class relations which form the real base of any society; the laws define the rights of the various classes, defending the rule of the dominant class while restricting the rights of the oppressed classes and denying the oppressed the means and methods necessary to struggle against oppression and exploitation. In the U.S., the legal system, as well as the entire state government machine, is in the hands of the capitalist class. Capitalist “democracy” while promising political liberties and equal rights to the workers in theory, always denies these rights in practice. For example, while the black people were allegedly guaranteed equal rights after the Civil War, everyone knows that systematic racial discrimination, segregation, police terror, national oppression and super-exploitation are imposed on them.
Similarly, while the capitalists never stop boasting about the existence of such rights as freedom of speech and freedom of association, political protestors are arrested for exercising these rights. Despite the promises about “democracy” and “equal rights,” the reality is that the capitalist government acts in the most arbitrary dictatorial ways to deny the rights of the workers and to suppress our just struggles.
In the world today, the capitalist class is completely reactionary – completely opposed to the elementary demands and democratic rights of the people. As the crisis of capitalism deepens – as the workers are forced to step up their struggles against capitalist exploitation and poverty, against the war program of the Democrats and Republicans, the capitalists are strengthening their apparatus of repression in order to suppress the struggles of the people. Today when reaction and fascism have become the chief political characteristics of the capitalist class, it is squarely on the shoulders of the working class to come forward as the only consistent fighter for democracy. In the face of the growing fascism the workers must rely solely on their own strength and organization and defend their democratic rights through mass struggle and active resistance to the attacks of the capitalist state.
A genuinely democratic state – a state actually run by and for the masses of laboring people – will be created only after the working-class rises up in revolutionary struggle, smashes the reactionary state of the capitalists and organizes itself as the ruling class in society. Then and only then, the government will protect all the democratic rights of the working people, while suppressing all attempts by the overthrown capitalists to regain power and enslave the people.
The whole historical development of the capitalist state in the U.S. as well as the centuries long struggle of the people for democratic liberties and genuine equality shows that the capitalist class in the U.S. today is completely reactionary, hell-bent on denying even elementary democratic rights and liberties.
History also shows that the working-class alone is the true defender and representative of democracy and democratic liberties. Today it is imperative that the working-class carry forward the democratic struggles to win full equality for the downtrodden and oppressed national minorities, the struggle for full equality for women, the popular movement against imperialist war and militarism and the struggle against the growing fascistization of the state and in defense of democratic liberties.
History shows the democratic rights and liberties can only be won against the will and power of the capitalist state, through the independent political movement of the working-class and people. This has been confirmed countless times in historic battles of the workers to improve their wages and living conditions and to band together into trade unions, as well as by the revolutionary struggles of the black and other oppressed minorities for full democratic rights, by the anti-imperialist struggles, etc. etc.
New Pretext, Old War
On December 3, the U.S. hosted the first ministerial meeting of the so-called “Anti-ISIL Coalition” in Brussels. Ministers from several countries met to discuss ways to defeat armed groups in Iraq and Syria that identify as “ISIL.”
According to a Ministerial Statement released after the conference, the fight against “ISIL” will not be limited to Iraq and it will “be measured most likely in years.”
According to the “theory” of the bourgeoisie, there is no objective basis for the existence of armed groups in Iraq and none of these groups represent the interests of either the Iraqi exploiting classes on the one side or the laboring classes on the other.
According to this fairy tale, the crisis in Iraq comes not from the U.S. war and occupation, but from the inherent "backwardness" of the Iraqi people who are “not yet ready” for American-style “democracy.”
Instead of getting out of Iraq, the Obama administration is continuing the war, even while resorting to the morbid logic that “ISIL” or any organized force which opposes it can be treated as if it had state power and its members can be charged with “war crimes.” This is nothing but a renewed attempt to criminalize the popular opposition in Iraq and legitimize U.S. aggression against the Iraqi people.
As in the past, the war in Iraq is a war between the people on the one side and U.S. imperialism and its lackeys on the other. The fact that today, “ISIL” and not “weapons inspections” are a pretext for denying the sovereignty of Iraq and instigating provocations does nothing to change the fact that U.S. imperialism has declared itself the judge, jury and executioner of the Iraqi people and is imposing its will through force of arms.
The war against Iraq was and remains an aggressive, imperialist war – a war for oil and strategic territory, a war to recolonize Iraq and the Middle East.
In order to put an end to the U.S. war in Iraq the American people must step up our struggle to demand: U.S. Imperialism, Out of Iraq Now!
Only the Peoples Can Stop the War!
After the U.S. trampled on international law and organized illegal elections in Afghanistan while the people are living under occupation, the U.S. Secretary of State claimed in a speech in London on December 4 that “Afghans achieved something incredible. They achieved the first democratic transfer of power from one elected leader to another in their entire history.”
According to the logic of American chauvinism, the real history and democratic rights of the Afghan people mean nothing. The U.S. gets to decide which countries are entitled to sovereignty and independence and which are not.
But national sovereignty, the independence and equality of all peoples, the liberation of the oppressed is not something given the people by the American or any other colonists; it is something the peoples themselves have asserted and fought for.
Today, in the face of the U.S.-NATO war and occupation, the Afghan people are fighting for their liberation from colonial occupation. The people of Afghanistan are fighting for such inalienable political rights as their right as a people to determine their own destiny for themselves.
The U.S. working class and people must wholeheartedly support the struggle of the Afghan people. We demand an end to U.S. military interference and the withdrawal of all U.S.-NATO troops from Afghanistan now.