Hundreds of Thousands of Job Cuts a Month

February 5, 2009

Mass layoffs are proceeding at a rapid rate. According to Forbes.com, 524,000 layoffs are expected during February. This follows an estimated 500,000 job cuts in January. In 2008, 2.6 million American workers lost their jobs, the highest number of layoffs of any year since 1945. As the recession deepens, more and more jobs will be lost.

The plain truth is that the entire American working class faces extreme and growing job insecurity. Side by side with job cuts, corporate restructuring and downsizing is continually substituting part-time, temporary and contract workers for full-time employees. Of course, mass layoffs go hand-in-hand with intense overwork of the remaining workers, who are forced to work longer hours, to do the work of two or even three people, and face downward pressure against wages, etc.

The capitalist economic system today is proving itself more and more unable to guarantee even the most minimal conditions of existence for millions and tens of millions of workers. It is an economic system which denies the fundamental right to a livelihood to tens of millions of workers, and which imposes growing exploitation and economic insecurity on the entire working class.

Today, as the recession deepens, the workers must prepare to redouble their struggles in defense of their livelihoods. The writing is already on the wall–more and more workers are being thrown into desperate straits. The workers must unite their ranks and come out to defend their jobs and win new guarantees of their right to a livelihood. In the course of these continual struggles against exploitation and job insecurity, the working class must set its sights on abolishing the capitalist system once and for all. The workers must aim at creating a new socialist system which eliminates the exploitation of human beings and guarantees that everyone enjoys a secure livelihood commensurate with our country's high level of development.