The Worker (Update), July 20, 2008
Published by the Workers Party, USA
P.O. Box 25716, Chicago, IL 60625

Get Organized!

This year’s elections once again remind the working class and the vast majority of people that, despite all of the propaganda about "democracy," we have no say about the kind of society we live in. We are completely locked out and excluded from the political power.

The Democratic and Republican parties, which have a monopoly over the electoral process, are bought-and-paid-for by the very same billionaires and corporations. The Democrats and Republicans are devoted to the agenda of the rich and offer us no other prospect but more wars, more racism and repression, more poverty and exploitation.

Facing up to the political reality in our country means recognizing that we are going to have to emancipate ourselves. This means that we have to come out together and develop our own independent political movement which brings the agenda of the people to center-stage.

The Workers Party calls on all the people:

Break the political stranglehold of the rich! Use the elections as an occasion to get organized and develop our own independent political movement!

How can we develop this movement and this struggle?

—Use the elections to denounce the Republicans and Democrats and their agenda of leading our country into wars, slashing social investments while putting all of our resources at the disposal of big business, building up the repressive apparatus of the government and attacking the democratic rights of the people.

—Step up both our resistance to the attacks of the capitalists and our struggles for our own independent agenda based on the program of economic rights, democratic renewal, and a democratic foreign policy.

— Put forward our own vision for our country which, recognizing the collective nature of society and the common interests of the overwhelming majority of the people, places the political power in the hands of the people themselves and provides real guarantees for our inalienable rights.

Developing such an independent movement is the way to end our marginalization in the political life of the country and for the workers and people to become the active and leading force guiding our country forward.

Money and Politics

The open buying and selling of government is on with great zeal this year.

Official spending by candidates in the elections for President already amounts to over $930 million. So far, candidates in the elections for Congress have officially spent over $458 million. And the elections are nearly 4 months away. (Based on data released by the Federal Elections Commission on July 16 and available from the "Center for Responsive Politics" at opensecrets.org)

As the politicians gleefully roll in the money, the vast majority of people are sharply reminded that they are completely excluded from the political process and governance.

The plain truth is that elections under the present setup are a fraud.

The two political parties –the Republicans and Democrats – have a monopoly over the selection and nomination of candidates for office. The capitalists organize and sponsor both of these parties. In fact, the big capitalists consistently donate to candidates from both parties, including those "competing" for the very same office. Thus they automatically secure a "win-win" situation.

That is why, flowery campaign speeches aside, both the Democrats and the Republicans always stand firmly with the interests of big capital. That is why politicians from both parties embrace the so-called "war on terrorism." That is why Republicans and Democrats alike help the monopoly capitalists loot the public treasury for hundreds of billions of dollars every year, privatize the public infrastructure etc, etc, etc.

While the current system proclaims "political equality," the role of big money tells the true story. The reality is that the very foundation of capitalism is based on vast economic and social inequality. Those with the economic and social privilege pull the strings of government. In fact, the capitalist state arises precisely as an instrument to insure and protect the interests of the capitalists, i.e. the system of private property in the means of production.

Genuine democracy means rule of the majority. It is a system that serves the interests of the vast majority of people and is not bound by the stranglehold of big money. The marginalization of the people can be overcome and the people can be empowered by creating a political system which brings people to the fore as the creators and shapers of their own human and social environment, and in which the entire political process is controlled by the people themselves.

Democratic renewal of the political process requires that the right to nominate and select candidates be returned to the people and that everyone be guaranteed equal right to elect and be elected. The agenda of government must be set by the people themselves. The people must have a direct role in governance through such mechanisms as recall and referendum. Such genuine reforms will open the path for renewing democracy.

In the final analysis, genuine democracy can only be maintained and defended through the abolition of social classes.

Grabbing Iraq's Oil

On July 1, Iraq's oil ministry began auctioning off Iraq's oil fields to U.S. and other foreign oil monopolies. Iraq's oil industry has been closed to foreign exploitation since 1972.

Under direction of American advisors, the puppet Iraqi government has already drafted no-bid “technical support” contracts for Exxon Mobil, Shell, BP, Total and Chevron. Each contract is worth $500 million and gaining the contracts provides an obvious upper-hand to these monopolies for grabbing future contracts.

Iraq has the third largest known oil reserves in the world.

U.S. imperialism launched the war in Iraq in order to grab new economic territory for the big corporations and is continuing to use its military force to proceed with the takeover of Iraq's economy.