Workers of the World, Unite!
Build a Labor Party!
For a Workers’ Government and Socialist Policies
The Workers League calls on all workers, unemployed and young people to support the campaign of our candidates in the 1988 presidential elections. Ed Winn, a trade union militant for 22 years and a now-retired member of the Transport Workers Union, is the Workers League candidate for president. Barry Porster, the labor editor of the Bulletin newspaper, is our candidate for vice president.
They are the only candidates telling the truth to the working class: that none of the life-and-death problems confronting working people can be solved without a bitter struggle against the capitalist system.
All the social miseries that afflict modern society—mass unemployment, poverty, malnutrition, homelessness, illiteracy, drug addiction, war—are, in the final analysis, the product of capitalism. The most basic human needs of millions of workers in the United States and all over the world are brutally sacrificed on the altar of corporate profits.
The capitalists represent only a negligible proportion of the population. But by means of their ownership of the means of production, they hold society in an iron-like grip. For all the democratic trappings, what exists in the United States is government of big business, for big business and by big business.
The election process itself is little more than window dressing behind which the ruling class decides which of the two parties and which of its candidates will look after the interests of capitalism.
The Republicans and Democrats serve the same capitalist masters. Regardless of which party wins the November elections, and regardless of whether the next president’s name is Bush, Dukakis, Gore or Jackson, the antilabor rampage will continue. We warn all workers in advance that should the Democrats win the election, they will defend the interests of big business no less ruthlessly than the Reagan administration.
The future of the working class depends not upon the outcome of elections, but upon the mobilization of its immense social power in a revolutionary struggle against the capitalist system.
To bring this vital message to the working class, the Workers League is intervening in the 1988 elections. We are fighting to place Ed Winn and Barry Porster on the ballot in as many states as possible in order to present to millions of workers and youth a revolutionary socialist program to overcome the conditions of mass unemployment and poverty and the threat of imperialist war created by the capitalist crisis.
The program of the Workers League is aimed not at reforming the bankrupt profit system, but at its overthrow. Its purpose is not to change one set of capitalist politicians for another, but to bring the working class to power in order to expropriate the capitalists and carry out the socialist reconstruction of society.
The Workers League is raising three fundamental tasks before the working class:
1. The forging of the international unity of workers of all countries in a common struggle against capitalism.
We denounce the chauvinist platform of economic nationalism which, with the full support of the trade union bureaucracy, seeks to pit American workers against their class brothers all over the world. Capitalism is a world economic system and the workers of the United States are part of the international working class. In every country, workers confront multinational corporations which produce on a global scale and shift production from one country to another in search of the highest profits. These corporations cannot be fought successfully simply on a national basis. In order to defeat the capitalists, who operate on a global scale, the American workers must adopt an international revolutionary strategy and unite their struggles with those of their class brothers in Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America. Regardless of their country, language, religion or skin color, workers share the same concerns and confront the same capitalist enemy.
2. The building of an independent Labor Party, based on the unions, to fight for a workers’ government.
The Workers League calls on all workers to demand that the AFL-CIO repudiate its worthless alliance with the Democratic Party and form a genuine workers’ party that will fight for workers’ power. We call for the convocation of a Congress of Labor to found a labor party, bringing together all the diverse battles of the working class into one unified political struggle against the capitalist system, and to establish a workers’ government.
3. The implementation of a socialist program to abolish the profit system and replace it with a rationally planned socialist economy.
The anarchy of private ownership of production and the division of the world into rival capitalist nationstates is the cause of the present social crisis. The precondition for the realization of full employment with decent pay, the elimination of poverty and all the social degradation it produces, and the securing of the democratic rights of all working people is the nationalization of basic industry and the banks under workers’ control, with no compensation to the capitalists.
The World Crisis
The program advanced by the Workers League is the only viable alternative to the economic insanity of the crisis-ridden capitalist system. The worldwide financial crash, which began on Wall Street on October 19, 1987, was a warning signal of an impending economic catastrophe, on the scale of the Great Depression, which threatens indescribable suffering for millions of workers and their families.
The policies of the next capitalist administration, whether Democratic or Republican, will be dictated by this crisis, not by the worthless promises of the 1988 election campaign. There is a bipartisan consensus that what remains of social-welfare programs must be destroyed and that the living standards of the working class must be slashed still further. New military aggression will be launched in Central America, the Middle East and elsewhere. This is the reality behind the hollow rhetoric and the massive advertising blitz of the capitalist candidates.
Capitalism is confronted with an insoluble crisis which arises out of the essential contradictions of the profit system. While production is social, involving the coordinated labor of millions of workers, not just in one country but internationally, the means of production—the raw materials, factories, mines and mills—are the private property of a handful of capitalist owners. Production is totally subordinated to the profit drive of the capitalists.
Moreover, while capitalism has created an unprecedented integration of the world market and a world economy, the capitalist world remains divided into separate and competing nation-states. Since the advent of imperialism at the beginning of the twentieth century, the contradiction between the development of an integrated world economy and the nation-state has exploded in the bloody form of two world wars, from 1914 to 1918 and 1939 to 1945, in which tens of millions of people were slaughtered. In both these wars, the major capitalist powers of the day, the United States, Britain, France, Germany and Japan, were fighting for domination of the world market.
More than 40 years after the end of World War II, the renewed growth of trade rivalries, particularly between the United States and Japan, demonstrates that the political stage is being set for a new round of explosive conflicts. All of the economic measures and institutions sponsored by the US after World War II to overcome interimperialist antagonisms and manage a renewed expansion of trade and investment, the Bretton Woods system, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs, are now powerless to halt the slide into trade war and depression.
In short, the productive forces—the means of production and labor itself—are in violent conflict with the existing social relations—capitalist private ownership and the nation-state system. There is no solution to this crisis outside of the destruction of the whole capitalist nation-state system and the creation of a united, worldwide socialist republic, based on the harmonious and integrated development of the resources of the entire planet.
At the center of this global crisis is the devastating decay in the world position of US imperialism. From having once exercised undisputed hegemony over the world market, it has become the world’s biggest debtor. The US share of world markets has fallen from 50 percent at the end of World War II to only 23 percent today. In 1945, Detroit produced 80 percent of the world’s automobiles. By 1965, this fell to 65 percent and by 1980, to only 20 percent.
This historic decline underlies the vicious assault on the living conditions and past social conquests of the working class. The vast economic reserves once held by American capitalism, which made the United States the richest country on the earth, have been wiped out. The resources which Roosevelt could call upon even in the 1930s and which made his “New Deal” possible no longer exist. That is why not one of the capitalist candidates is able to advance a serious program of social reform.
Upon coming to office in the midst of the Depression in 1933, Roosevelt reassured his frightened capitalist backers that he would avert the threat of socialist revolution by making America a nation of home-owners. It is a measure of the transformed economic position of American capitalism that the ruling class is today unable to provide any solution to the spreading plague of homelessness.
The Role of the Multinational
The increasing integration of global capitalist production, dominated by giant multinational corporations, has sharply intensified capitalism’s contradictions. These multinationals carry out operations on every continent, linking together workers from the United States to South Korea, from West Germany to Brazil, in a unified process of production. The tremendous growth of multinationals since the end of World War II, but especially during the last 20 years, demonstrates the existence of all the objective prerequisites for the creation of the scientific worldwide planning upon which a socialist society would be based. Under capitalism, however, the operation of . multinationals simply produces a horrific intensification of the exploitation of the world’s workers.
In every country, wages are directly influenced by conditions which exist globally. In the US, workers are told they must accept drastic cuts in wages if they want to keep their plant from shutting down. Workers know that if they resist these demands, the employer can close the factory and start up its operations again in Singapore or Hong Kong.
The starvation wages and savage exploitation which imperialism has long inflicted upon the masses of workers in Latin America, Africa and Asia are being brought home against the American working class. This is what the corporate bosses mean when they clamor for an end to the “wages gap” between American workers and their brutally oppressed class brothers in South Korea and Taiwan.
Capitalism: A Doomed Social System
The growth of global production has gone hand in hand with a spectacular development of technology. Virtually every aspect of social production is undergoing a revolutionary transformation as a result of the advances in computer technology. But far from serving as a boon to mankind, these innovations have meant the systematic replacement of workers by robots and the most efficient forms of slave-driving against those still left with a job. At the same time, the military monopolizes the latest scientific advances to perfect weapons of mass destruction. For all the developments in science—which, under a rational social order, would promise an almost unimaginable rise in the living standards of all mankind—capitalism cannot put a roof over the heads of millions of homeless nor provide food for the tens of millions of starving people around the globe.
This is because technology remains the private property of a handful of billionaires who use it solely to pursue greater and greater amounts of profit. Organized on the basis of socialist property relations and a planned economy, this same technology could be employed to develop the productive forces, coordinate international production, reduce the working day, wipe out hunger and poverty and vastly improve the living standards of the workers of the world.
But capitalism has long exhausted its capacity for the historically progressive development of the world’s productive forces upon which all humanity depends for its survival and welfare. Today, this system produces social suffering on an unprecedented scale. One chilling statistic provides the most damning indictment of capitalism: it is estimated that 40,000 of the world’s children die each day of starvation! Thus, for every day of its continued existence, capitalism rips a bloody piece of flesh out of mankind’s future.
From the standpoint of man’s entire social history, this means that capitalism is a doomed social order. While the ruling class likes to portray the dog-eat-dog world of “free enterprise” as the final and ultimate triumph of civilization, capitalism is no more “eternal” than the ancient slave and medieval feudal systems which preceded it. It must be replaced by a higher system, socialism. Private ownership of the means of production and the division of the world into hostile nation-states must give way to the abolition of class society and the scientific planning of world production based on the satisfaction of human needs.
The transition from capitalism to socialism is an inevitable step in mankind’s evolution. This historically necessary transformation, however, can only take place through the conscious struggle of the working class to overthrow the dictatorship of the capitalists and establish its own dictatorship of the proletariat as the transition to a classless and truly humane society: without exploitation, oppression and want.
The Social Crisis in America
The 1988 elections are being held under the shadow of a devastating social crisis, although one would never guess it by listening to the complacent pronouncements of the capitalist candidates.
Three million people are homeless, including half a million children. In industrial centers like Detroit and Pittsburgh, in the coal fields of West Virginia and Kentucky, hundreds of thousands of autoworkers, steel workers and miners have been thrown into the streets, lining up at soup kitchens, working for minimum wage or less.
Millions of workers and their families have lost basic medical benefits, their cars and their homes, along with their jobs. Infant mortality rates in major cities are double those in Europe, Canada and Japan. Age-old killer diseases, such as tuberculosis, once again claim their victims among the hungry and the homeless.
Since 1981, the Reagan administration and the Democratic Congress have virtually wiped out social programs introduced over the last 50 years. In the face of rising homelessness and hunger, funding for subsidized housing has been slashed by 79 percent, training and employment programs by 70 percent, the Work Incentive Program by 71 percent and compensatory education programs for poor children by 12 percent.
Twenty years after the nationwide ghetto rebellions, the meager concessions granted in the “war on poverty” have been revoked and conditions of unemployment and poverty are worse than those which sparked these uprisings. In Detroit, for example, unemployment has risen from 7.2 percent in 1970 to 23.2 percent today and the city’s poverty rate has tripled since 1967, from 14.9 percent to 42.8 percent.
The worst conditions face the youth. In cities like New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, young people are robbed of their future by mass unemployment, cuts in education, police killings and rampant drugs. The only alternative offered to them by capitalism is joining the army to be sent off to die defending the overseas interests of multinationals like Citibank and General Motors.
Through its vicious immigration laws, the bourgeoisie has turned millions of workers—forced to flee from their own countries by US-backed tyrants and starvation imposed by the Wall Street banks—into fugitives and pariahs, without recourse against the abuse of sweatshop bosses, the police and slum landlords.
At one pole of society, for the working class, there is poverty, hunger and homelessness; at the other pole, for the handful of ruling class multimillionaires and the privileged layers of the middle class, the piling up of obscene wealth through speculation and stock swindles.
Together with the destruction of conditions of life for the working class, the capitalists and their government have launched an assault on basic democratic rights. Police violence is on the rise. Racism and bigotry are encouraged by the Reagan administration and the Democratic politicians, while the gains of the civil rights movement are systematically attacked. The Supreme Court builds up the police powers of the state, while handing down one antilabor ruling after another. With their enthusiastic support of the death penalty, the Supreme Court justices have become the hangmen of the nation.
Trade unions under attack
The spearhead of this big business assault on the working class has been an unprecedented wave of unionbusting. The capitalists have revived the class war methods of scab-herding, police and gun-thug violence and legal frame-ups.
As the 1988 election campaign began, four union coal miners involved in the 1984-85 strike against A.T. Massey in Kentucky—Donnie and David Thornsbury, Arnold Heightland and James Darryl Smith—were framed up and sentenced to rot in jail for 35-45 years, while a fifth UMWA member, Paul Smith, faces a possible death sentence. Without a shred of evidence, the federal government railroaded these miners on false charges of shooting a scab during the bitter Massey strike. This case marks the return of the ruling class to the type of legal lynchings which were employed against the Haymarket martyrs, Joe Hill, and Sacco and Vanzetti. It is a stark warning of what the entire working class will face, no matter which capitalist party wins the elections in November.
During the past decade, the membership of the trade unions has declined drastically. The United Auto Workers has lost 300,000 jobs in the auto industry, and another 200,000 are slated for elimination within the next two years. The membership of the United Steelworkers has been cut in half. In the Pittsburgh area alone, 250,000 workers have lost their jobs. As for the United Mine Workers, the number of dues-paying members has declined from 160,000 in 1977 to only 73,000 today.
Since the mass firings of PATCO workers, who were completely abandoned by the AFL-CIO bureaucrats, unionbusting has become the national pastime of every corporation. Methods not seen in the United States since the 1930s have become commonplace. The firing of strikers and their replacement by scabs, a practice virtually unknown during the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, became an everyday occurrence in the 1980s.
While the AFL-CIO bureaucrats pretend that the attack on the unions is simply the result of Reagan’s policies, the fact of the matter is that unionbusting is, like all the other attacks on the working class, a bipartisan enterprise. Democratic mayors and governors have participated no less enthusiastically than their Republican counterparts. In Arizona, Democratic governor (and future presidential candidate) Bruce Babbitt in 1983-84 called out the National Guard and state police to smash the strike and break the unions of the Phelps Dodge copper miners. In Minnesota, the strike of Hormel meat packers was broken by Democratic Governor Rudy Perpich, who sent 1,000 National Guardsmen to escort scabs into the plant. The list of big-city Democratic mayors who have used police to assist corporate strikebreaking includes Detroit’s Coleman Young, Chicago’s Harold Washington, Philadelphia’s Wilson Goode and New York’s Edward Koch.
The determination of the ruling class to render the trade unions incapable of resisting the attacks of big business is exemplified by the recent Supreme Court decision to deny food stamps to strikers. As Supreme Court Justice Byron White, who owes his seat to John F. Kennedy, declared in his opinion for the majority: “Denying such benefits makes it harder for strikers to maintain themselves and their families during the strike and exerts pressure on them to abandon their union.”
Workers of the world, unite
In the face of this crisis, the only road open to the working class is the revolutionary road fought for by the Workers League: to unite American workers with their class brothers internationally in the struggle for socialism. The days when workers could conduct the struggle against the bosses as if it were a purely national affair are gone forever. The very fact that a single commodity is often the product of the combined labor of workers in different countries demonstrates the objective unity of the international working class in the process of world capitalist production.
But this objective unity must find its conscious expression in the development of a new revolutionary strategy for the labor movement. Plant closings, wagecutting and unionbusting cannot be fought successfully on a merely national, trade union basis.
The working class cannot allow the bourgeoisie and its agents in the labor bureaucracy to pit workers in one country against another. The struggle against the multinational corporations requires that the American working class systematically organize the scope of its struggles beyond the national borders and coordinate its actions, industrial and political, with those of its class brothers in Europe, Africa, Asia, Latin America, in a common struggle for socialism and against the capitalist system.
This is why the Workers League brings to the labor movement in the United States the strategy of world socialist revolution.
This program can only be advanced through an uncompromising struggle to expel the bureaucratic traitors from the unions. Pathetically illustrating the truth of the well-known adage that “patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel,” the AFL-CIO bureaucrats seek to hide their political nakedness by wrapping themselves in the American flag.
The only policy they put forward is trade war and protectionism. They try to foist the blame onto the workers of Japan, South Korea and other countries for the loss of “American jobs,” while opposing any action against plant shutdowns and telling workers to accept overtime, while their laid-off union brothers are in the street.
While the AFL-CIO bureaucrats frequently resort to condescending racist gibes about cheap labor in Asia and Latin America, they say nothing about the fact that low wage levels are due, in no small part, to the support which the AFL-CIO has provided to the CIA in creating and maintaining brutal anti-working class regimes in such countries as South Korea, Taiwan and El Salvador.
The bureaucrats’ policy is based on defending not the interests of the workers, but rather the interests of the American capitalists against their foreign rivals. Their hatred for foreign workers is inseparable from their abandonment of every struggle in defense of workers at home. Concessions, wage-cutting and the wiping out of millions of jobs are all accepted as sacrifices required to make American capitalists competitive.
Their hysterical appeals for protectionist legislation exemplify the completely backward nature of their nationalist program. The integration of the world economy is the inevitable outcome of the development of the productive forces; and the attempt to establish the sovereignty of an insulated American “national” economy by encircling its borders with the barbed wire of import quotas and protectionist tariffs is a reactionary delusion.
Cutting American workers off from their class brothers all over the world, the economic nationalism of the bureaucracy blocks all forms of international trade union solidarity. Already international unions like the UAW, which once united workers from the United States and Canada, have fractured along national lines, with the Canadian autoworkers seceding and forming the CAW.
Moreover, because this policy legitimizes and encourages the most provincial and narrow-minded approach to the problems confronting workers, its disastrous results are felt at every level of the labor movement. It pits union against union, workers at one company against workers at another, and within the same company, workers in different regions, plants or even departments against each other. The logic of the bureaucracy’s policy is the complete atomization of the working class, and an end to trade unions as organizations which unite workers for a common struggle against the employers.
The essential content of the pro-capitalist and nationalist policies pursued by the AFL-CIO bureaucrats is corporatism: the complete subordination of the unions to the interests of finance capital. The AFL-CIO does not even maintain the pretense of trade union independence from corporate management. The bureaucrats have abandoned every basic principle of trade unionism. They have traded guaranteed wage increases for profit sharing in order to identify the interests of the workers with those of their exploiters. They have joined countless labor-management committees from the shop floor on up to the corporate boards of directors, acting as assistant foremen and company police against the workers.
Drive the bureaucracy out of the unions
The policies of the Workers League and that of the AFL-CIO bureaucrats represent polar opposites. We stand for the program of world socialist revolution to liberate the working class from capitalist exploitation. The bureaucrats stand for the defense of the profit system, upon which their own fat salaries, expense accounts and ill-gotten privileges are based. Between these two lines no reconciliation is possible.
The bureaucrats tell workers that they must bow before the antilabor laws, court injunctions and police repression of the capitalist state. In every major union battle—from PATCO, to Phelps Dodge, to Hormel to the Massey miners—the bureaucracy has helped put a legal straitjacket on the unions. This cringing before the capitalist state has reached the point where the UMWA bureaucracy led by President Richard Trumka refuses to lift a finger against the frame-up of the Massey miners.
The Workers League campaign fights for the independence of the trade unions from the capitalist state. Our candidates call for the full force of the union movement to be brought forward in struggle against this state and its antilabor repression, frame-ups and unionbusting laws.
The bureaucracy not only accepts the capitalists’ right to shut down plants and lay off millions, it collaborates to ensure the orderly closure of the factories and to sabotage the resistance of workers.
The Workers League calls on the rank and file to resist plant shutdowns by reviving the revolutionary class struggle methods employed by workers in the 1930s, when they met the attacks of the bosses with sit-down strikes and factory occupations. The revival of militant forms of industrial struggle is a vital part of the struggle to realize the revolutionary program fought for by the Workers League.
For decades, these bureaucrats have ranted and raved against socialism and communism, responding to every demand by the rank and file for militant action with ferocious red-baiting. They are no different from the company-union thugs and gangsters employed to fight the CIO in the 1930s. Their anticommunism, together with their national-chauvinist orientation, brings the AFL-CIO bureaucracy very close politically to the most right-wing sections of the capitalist class, and even to fascist elements. In the event of imperialist war, the trade union bureaucrats who today shout for protectionism will become recruiting sergeants for the US war machine.
The gulf between these bureaucrats and the rank and file has reached the point of an explosion. While over the past 10 years, millions of workers have lost their jobs, homes and their families, it is safe to say that the bureaucrats have lost nothing. All of them, after abandoning the sinking ships of closed plants and broken unions, have found comfortable jobs in the upper echelons of the bureaucracy, the Democratic Party, or in corporate management itself.
To turn the unions into fighting organizations of the working class requires a rebellion by the rank and file against the pro-capitalist bureaucrats. The Workers League campaign is directed toward mobilizing the rank and file to drive the company agents in the AFL-CIO bureaucracy out of the unions, which means building the new revolutionary leadership which the working class requires.
Build a Labor Party
In the 1988 elections, the trade union bureaucracy is once again preparing to pour tens of millions of dollars in workers’ dues into the coffers of whichever antilabor candidate is selected at the Democratic convention in July. The Democratic Party is a capitalist party; it represents the same class interests as Reagan and the Republicans. The bureaucracy’s claim that the election of a Democrat in November will reverse the attacks suffered by the labor movement over the last seven years is a cynical lie. The closer it has sought to integrate itself into the Democratic Party, the more the bureaucracy has sabotaged the struggles of the working class.
The working class must reject this bankrupt policy. American workers can unite with their fellow workers internationally in a successful struggle against capitalism only by establishing their complete political independence from the American capitalist class and its two political parties, the Democrats and Republicans. This must begin with the labor movement breaking from the Democrats and building an independent Labor Party.
The Workers League demands the building of a Labor Party as a genuine mass working-class party through which the working class can fight for revolutionary socialist policies. The fight to construct a Labor Party is inseparable from the widest possible mobilization of the strength of the working class in mass struggles: strikes and mass picketing, factory occupations, direct resistance to evictions, foreclosures and utility shutoffs.
The Workers League calls for the convening of a Congress of Labor to bring together representatives of the trade union rank and file, the unemployed workers, the youth, retired workers, the unorganized, immigrant and minority workers in a genuinely democratic assembly of the working class.
This Congress must repudiate the pro-capitalist politics of the trade union bureaucracy, establish an independent Labor Party based on a socialist program, and unite all the separate struggles of the working class into a mass movement directed against the capitalist system and the capitalist state, for the establishment of a workers’ government.
The Labor Party must fight for socialist policies which start, not with what the decaying and bankrupt capitalist system can afford, but with what millions of working people need in order to survive. The struggle for these policies is not a question of casting a ballot in November nor lobbying Congress for legislation.
The capitalists and their political servants oppose any and every systematic social reform. They will all say that these demands advanced by our campaign are impractical and unrealizable.
Such arguments deserve only contempt. First, nothing is more impractical than the bureaucracy’s program of class collaboration, which has produced nothing but defeats and suffering for the working class. Moreover, what is realizable or unrealizable is determined only in struggle. Had it always been led by corrupt cowards like Kirkland, Bieber and Presser, the American labor movement would never have won the eight-hour day, let alone built industrial unions. Indeed, even these basic gains are being lost by the treachery of the AFL-CIO misleaders.
Furthermore, if capitalism cannot provide for the basic needs of the masses and satisfy demands which arise from the desperate social crisis which this system has itself created, then this simply proves that it must be replaced.
The Workers League candidates call for the building of a Labor Party that will fight to implement the following program:
Nationalize Basic Industry and the Banks!
Millions of jobs have been wiped out over the last 10 years in steel, coal, auto and other sections of basic industry. The capitalists seek consciously to create a permanent army of the unemployed to pit against the unions. The Workers League advances a program to unite the working class and ensure a job for every worker.
The first step which must be taken is the nationalization of key industries, transport and utilities under workers’ control, without compensation to the capitalists. Only in this way can the productive forces be placed at the disposal of society. At the same time, the banking and credit system must be nationalized and amalgamated into a single state bank, democratically controlled by the working class. Moreover, to protect the working population from the manipulations of the Wall Street marauders, we demand the shutdown of the stock exchanges and commodity markets. These revolutionary measures will permit the scientific allocation of resources in the interests of the masses of people.
This does not mean the confiscation of the small depositor’s bank account. On the contrary, the expropriation of the private banks and the concentration of the financial system in the hands of a workers’ government will create the conditions for providing adequate and cheap credit and protecting small depositors from the growing wave of bank failures.
Based on this program of revolutionary nationalizations, we propose as well the following necessary measures to ensure full employment:
- Immediately establish a 30-hour workweek at 40 hours pay to create jobs at union wages for every worker and to unite the employed and the unemployed workers. On this basis, all the existing work would be divided equally between all in need of work, with no reduction in weekly wages and benefits.
- Launch a massive multibillion dollar program of public works, putting millions to work building new housing, hospitals, schools and transportation systems.
- Nationalize privately-owned factories and businesses which have been shut down as a result of the crisis, without compensation for the capitalists, and reopen them as public enterprises, under the direct management of the workers.
Immediate Assistance to the Unemployed!
While fighting for the above program to guarantee a job for every worker, immediate action must be taken to provide relief to the millions of unemployed. The Workers League demands:
- Immediate restoration of all social benefits lost by workers after their layoff.
- Payment of unemployment benefits at a level necessary to maintain a decent standard of living for laid-off workers and their dependents.
- Union coverage for all unemployed workers.
Defend Living Standards!
The real income of workers in the United States has declined steadily for the last 15 years. During the last decade, the average wages of young workers fell 30 percent, and for young black men, the figure was 50 percent. COLA clauses, one of the principal gains of the labor movement in the post-World War II era, have been eliminated from the contracts of the majority of the unions in the US. The economic crisis raises anew the danger of uncontrolled inflation. Workers must not be forced to pay for the crisis of the capitalist system. We propose that the labor movement build a labor party that will fight for the following policies:
- Automatic cost-of-living increases for every worker’s wages to fully compensate for every rise in the cost of living.
- The end of wage discrimination against female employees and minority workers by guaranteeing “equal pay for equal work.”
- The Workers League proposes as well the establishment of independent committees based on the unions to monitor price increases. Workers can place no confidence in the rigged inflation indices of the capitalist government.
Billions for Social Programs!
Social services and programs instituted over the last 50 years are being eliminated by the capitalists. They claim that health care, education and Social Security must be wiped out to pay for their ballooning debts and budget deficits. The working class must demand the restoration of all cuts and a vast expansion of social programs to wipe out hunger, poverty and misery. The Workers League proposes that the following demands be written into the platform of the labor party.
- Free and complete medical care for all at state expense. Nationalize the hospitals, drug companies and nursing home chains to take profit out of medical care, which should be viewed as a human right and not as a special privilege available only to those who can afford it. Extend medical care to working-class and low-income areas by training hundreds of thousands of new doctors.
- Billions more for education to wipe out illiteracy, construct new schools and hire teachers. Equalize teachers’ pay and school resources in every region of the country and in all school districts. Free higher education for all those who desire it.
- Guaranteed Social Security payments to provide a minimum $25,000 a year income to all retired workers, with 30-and-out retirement at full benefits for all. All pension funds must be secured against corporate bankruptcies by providing 100 percent federal insurance.
- Establish free and comprehensive day-care facilities for the children of all working-class families.
Against the capitalist politicians who claim that the budget deficit makes such programs impossible, the Workers League proposes the repudiation of the $100 billion-plus annual interest payments to the bankers on the national debt.
Against the capitalists and their lackeys who claim that society cannot afford these elementary necessities, the Workers League calls for the formation of committees of workers, housewives and small farmers to obtain access to all of the business secrets of the banks and corporations. These committees must obtain a precise balance sheet of the real assets of the multinationals and expose the daily under-the-table swindles through which the capitalists rob the people and conceal their wealth, as well as the vast squandering of resources and human labor which they carry out in their relentless pursuit of profit. Those corporations and industries which demonstrate their bankruptcy must be expropriated and run by the workers.
Defend the Unions!
Unionbusting and strikebreaking have reached epidemic proportions. Union membership is the lowest in 40 years and every strike confronts the attacks of the capitalist state. The Workers League demands:
- Halt all attacks on the trade unions by nationalizing every company engaged in unionbusting.
- Outlaw the hiring of scabs and corporate gun-thugs.
- Establish the complete independence of the unions from state control. Repeal all anti-union laws such as Taft-Hartley, Landrum-Griffin, the Taylor Law and the “right-to-work” laws. Abolish the NLRB and all other agencies of capitalist state control over the unions.
- Free the framed-up Kentucky coal miners and rehire the PATCO air traffic controllers and all other workers who have lost their jobs due to unionbusting.
To combat the attacks of the state and the betrayals of the bureaucracy, the working class must develop new means of mobilizing the masses.
Organize Factory Committees: Fight the attacks of the employers and the collaboration of the union bureaucrats through the formation of factory committees, elected directly by all the workers in each factory and workplace. These committees must organize the broad masses of unemployed, nonunion workers and youth around themselves in a direct challenge to the capitalists’ control of production. Against the threat of closure, the factory committee will organize the occupation of the factory. The committees must fight to establish workers’ control of the factories, determining all questions of employment, wages, working conditions, etc.
Form Workers’ Defense Committees: Against the armed violence of the capitalist state, the army of hired security thugs, scabs and police, the working class must form its own self-defense groups to protect its picket lines, demonstrations and meetings.
A Future for the Youth!
The conditions facing youth and young workers are the worst for any section of the working class. The labor movement must provide a decent future for the youth through the following program:
- Reorganize the education system, under the control of the unions and student committees, to provide youth the high level of education required by the development of modern technology. This should include the establishment of special job training programs open to all youth and paid for by the bosses. This may be supplemented by state-paid job training and apprenticeship programs, also under union control, for youth to learn needed skills and trades.
- Provide unemployment benefits that guarantee a decent living standard to all unemployed youth immediately upon finishing school.
- Raise the minimum wage to $6.00 an hour, and abolish all two-tier wage and part-time job schemes and other forms of pay discrimination against youth.
- Full union rights for young workers, such as the millions who work in the fast-food chains.
- Begin large-scale public works programs to build modern recreation centers, with full training facilities in sports and the arts, in all working-class neighborhoods.
- A minimum of six weeks paid vacation for all youth.
House the Homeless!
The denial of the right to decent housing to workingclass families has become a life-and-death question for millions of homeless people and has nakedly exposed the complete bankruptcy of capitalism. Against the real estate speculators, rich landlords and the bankers who have created the crisis of homelessness, the working class must fight for:
- Nationalization of the real estate monopolies to end speculation and profits in the housing industry which are responsible for soaring rents.
- Launching of an emergency program of low cost, high-quality housing construction.
- Lowering of all rents so that no working-class family is obliged to pay more than 15 percent of its income for housing.
- Immediate suspension of all evictions because of nonpayment of rent. Seize the vacant housing and multiple homes maintained by the real estate monopolies and the millionaires and make it available to provide emergency shelter for the homeless.
- Nationalization of basic services such as heat and other utilities to be provided at affordable prices to every working-class home.
Defend Democratic and Civil Rights!
The most basic democratic rights have come into irreconcilable conflict with capitalism and its system of private ownership of the means of production. Political repression, racism and discrimination are all employed by the capitalists in defense of their system. The working class must put forward its own program to defend its rights:
- Free all political prisoners, such as the Massey coal miners in Kentucky and Gary Tyler, who remains in jail 13 years after he was framed up in Louisiana on a phony murder charge at the age of 15.
- Abolish the death penalty.
- Outlaw racial discrimination in employment, housing and education.
- The democratic rights of the Native American people must be defended and the treaties which they concluded with capitalist governments renegotiated on terms favorable to them.
- Outlaw discrimination based on sex and sexual preference. Defend women’s right to abortion on demand.
Defend Immigrant Workers!
The labor movement must put an end to the horrible conditions faced by immigrant workers, the most exploited section of the working class. All workers must be able to live in whichever country they choose with full citizenship rights. The platform of the labor party must demand:
- Repeal of all anti-immigrant legislation. Abolition of the Immigration and Naturalization Service and the Border Patrol.
- Guarantee of full legal rights, including the right to work, for all undocumented workers.
- Abolition of discrimination against workers based on language or country of birth.
- Voluntary state-paid instruction in English for all immigrant workers and their families. The time spent by immigrant workers on English-language instruction shall be compensated at the same rate as their normal employment.
Aid Farmers and Small Businessmen!
Through the construction of a labor party, the working class will provide a helping hand to the family farmers and small businessmen who have been driven into bankruptcy in record numbers by capitalism. The Workers League proposes that the platform of the labor party include the cancellation of their debts and the provision of adequate credit and assistance, on reasonable terms. Foreclosures must be immediately halted and those who have lost their farms during the past decade must have their land returned to them.
While as socialists we are convinced of the superiority of large scale industrial and agriculture production as part of a planned economy, socialism does not mean the expropriation of family farms or small businesses, which are threatened with extinction by the parasitic bankers and monopolies.
Oppose Imperialist Plans for War!
A new world war, which would inevitably be fought with nuclear weapons, threatens mankind with the end of civilization. Workers can prevent this holocaust only insofar as they know the real source of the danger that is the greatest threat to man’s survival.
The danger of war arises directly out of the predatory character of the capitalist system. In addition to the danger that the intensifying trade war against its capitalist rivals may at a certain point be converted into a shooting war, American imperialism’s massive military buildup is directed above all against the Soviet Union. Having never reconciled itself to the October 1917 Revolution which overthrew capitalism in Russia, the US ruling class remains determined to reconquer the vast territory of the USSR for the renewal of capitalist exploitation.
Moreover, American imperialism is the worst enemy of the oppressed and exploited people of every country on the planet, providing the material and financial resources required by the most reactionary regimes to maintain their rule. Not a single drop of workers’ blood should be shed to preserve the global interests of Wall Street. The Workers League rejects the concept of “national defense” as a cynical ruse aimed only at duping the workers. The real enemy of the American working class is not the toilers of Central America, the Middle East or the Soviet Union. It is the capitalist class here at home. In the event of a future military conflict involving the United States, we stand for the defeat of US imperialism.
War cannot be stopped through pacifist appeals to the ruling class or fraudulent disarmament deals. The only road to peace is the revolutionary mobilization of the working class to disarm the warmongers, that is, through the overthrow of capitalism.
In furtherance of that aim, the Workers League calls for:
- The abolition of the Pentagon, the CIA and all the associated agencies through which the American ruling class defends the interests of imperialism.
- Immediate withdrawal of all troops and dismantling of all bases maintained by US imperialism overseas.
- Nationalization of the military-industrial complex under workers’ control and the confiscation of its profits. All war industries should be converted to useful production.
- Cancellation of the $1 trillion foreign debt owed by the impoverished nations of Latin America, Africa and Asia to the Wall Street banks.
- Establishment of a socialist foreign policy based on fraternal relations with the workers and oppressed peoples of the entire planet. Repudiate links with the racist state of Israel which was created in 1948 to defend the interests of US imperialism in the Middle East. Support the struggle of the Palestinian people to regain their homeland through the establishment of a socialist Palestine as part of the struggle for a United Socialist States of the Middle East where Arab and Jewish workers would live together in peace. Support the overthrow of the racist South African state and the establishment of a black workers’ republic of Azania. Support the ouster of the British from the north of Ireland and the establishment of a united socialist republic of Ireland.
- Support for the unconditional right to self-determination and independence for Puerto Rico. Immediate freedom for all Puerto Rican nationalists who have been framed up in New York, Hartford, Chicago and other cities and imprisoned because of their political activities.
- Defend the gains of the Russian Revolution—the nationalized property and planned economy of the Soviet Union—as well as the deformed workers’ states of Eastern Europe, China, North Korea and Southeast Asia, against imperialism. Full support to the working class of the Soviet Union, Poland, China and the other deformed workers’ states in the struggle to overthrow the parasitic Stalinist bureaucracies through the political revolution.
For a Workers’ Government!
This program can only be realized by the working class taking political power, through a mass revolutionary movement to establish a workers’ government.
The formation of a workers’ government will not be accomplished through the winning of a majority in Congress and electing a worker as president. The capitalist class will never bow to a democratic majority and peacefully hand over power to the working class.
All the institutions of government in the United States at every level, federal, state and local, the Congress, the White House, the Supreme Court, the Federal Reserve, the Pentagon, CIA and FBI, are part of an apparatus of state violence whose fundamental task is the defense of the “right” of a handful of capitalists to own the wealth of the country and exploit the working class, the vast majority, for their own profit.
So-called democracy in America is bourgeois democracy: democracy for the capitalist class, democracy for the rich. The elections held by the ruling class every two or four years simply mask the dictatorship of the capitalists over the working class by propagating the illusion among the masses of working people that their votes choose the government and determine its policies. The democratic rights of the working class were not established by the capitalist government, but won in struggle against it.
A workers’ government would abolish the institutions of the capitalist state and establish a new form of state, a workers’ state, based on the democratically elected representatives of the working class, organized in workers’ councils, and defended by a workers’ militia controlled by the trade unions. This is the dictatorship of the proletariat, the rule of the vast majority of workers and the suppression of the tiny minority of capitalist exploiters.
For Workers’ Democracy!
The workers’ councils will be elected directly by the workers in the shops, the factories, the mines, the farms and the working-class neighborhoods. Local units will combine into regional bodies and regional into the federal body. As opposed to the millionaires’ talk shop of the present US Congress, these councils will be working bodies which will directly implement the democratic decisions of the working class.
Such a government will replace the present shell game of bourgeois democracy with real representation, democracy and control for and by the working people.
After it abolishes private ownership of basic industry, finance and natural resources, the overriding concern of this workers’ government will be the reorganization of economic life on the basis of a scientific plan in order to increase production and vastly improve the living standards of the people. Decisions on production will be made not by financial and industrial magnates concerned only with their own profits but by the workers’ representatives, basing themselves on the sole criteria of what the people want and need.
The Workers League is not running in the elections to spread any illusions that the burning issues facing the working class will be decided through the ballot box. There is no electoral road to socialism.
The facade of political democracy in America is already being ripped away by the development of the capitalist crisis. The Iran-contra affair revealed how far the preparations for military rule in the United States have already advanced. Lt. Col. Oliver North, the blood brother of the death squad leaders in El Salvador and the Philippines, drafted plans for the suspension of constitutional rights and the declaration of martial law in the United States, in the event of widespread domestic opposition to a war by US imperialism. These plans included the establishment of detention camps for Central American immigrants and other likely political opponents of an imperialist war and emergency legisla-
North’s plans for military rule, which were approved by the White House and the National Security Council, were covered up in the Iran-contra hearings conducted by the Democratic-controlled Congress, and all of the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates, for definite class reasons, are concealing this issue in the 1988 election. The entire ruling class is aware of the political explosion building up in the United States, and fully supports the preparations to use state violence and paramilitary forces against the working class.
The American capitalists’ support for blood-drenched dictatorships around the world shows the real character of their rule. Faced with a mass revolutionary workers’ movement at home, they will cast off the democratic facade in the US as well and turn to wholesale violence. They will seek to repeat the fascist bloodbaths carried out by their big business counterparts in Italy and Germany in the 1930s, or, more recently, in 1973 Chile.
This is the irrepressible conflict which is building up within the present social crisis of capitalism. Either the workers establish their own government to expropriate the capitalists, or the capitalists will set up a fascist dictatorship to crush and enslave the workers. The workers are the absolute majority of the population and because of their strategic position in industry enjoy enormous power. But the essential prerequisite for victory is a revolutionary leadership, a party, which consciously prepares for it.
Build Revolutionary Leadership!
The crisis facing the working class can only be resolved by building a revolutionary Marxist leadership. Only such a leadership can conduct the political struggle needed to defeat the bureaucracy and establish the political independence of the working class.
We have entered a new period of mass revolutionary struggle by the American and world working class. The campaign of our candidates is part of the struggle to arm this revolutionary movement of the working class with a Marxist program and a new revolutionary leadership, to insure its victory.
We are running in the elections in order to reach the widest possible audience of workers, youth and students, to convince them of the necessity to join the Workers League and become educated as Marxists, conscious fighters for the perspective of world socialist revolution. This entails the most ruthless struggle against all those political forces which operate to hold back the working class and block the development of socialist consciousness.
The Fraud of Jackson’s Rainbow Coalition
A key instrument of big business in disorienting the working class in the 1988 elections is the demagogic campaign of the Reverend Jesse Jackson. Jackson’s campaign is especially aimed at deceiving the most oppressed layers of the working class, the unemployed, minorities and the youth and keeping them tied to the Democratic Party and capitalism.
Claiming to represent the interests of poor and working people, Jackson is a fervent supporter of capitalism and US imperialism. He is the latest in a long line of the demagogues used by American capitalism throughout its history to divert the working class from the road of independent political struggle and socialism.
The liberation of the working class from capitalist oppression must be achieved by the working class itself. No self-proclaimed capitalist messiah is a substitute for the development of the political self-consciousness of the working class—that is, its clear understanding of its own distinct interests as a class—and the organization of its struggle against capitalism on the basis of a revolutionary socialist program.
The Jackson campaign does not represent the development of revolutionary consciousness in the working class, let alone a genuine alternative to capitalism. Behind the preacher’s demagogy is to be found the same bankrupt capitalist program. For all his verbal denunciations of poverty, he does not challenge the capitalist property relations out of which this poverty develops. Indeed, a dispassionate study of Jackson’s program reveals him to be a rather conservative bourgeois politician whose proposals appear timid compared to the far more sweeping reformist agendas of such liberals of yesteryear as Lyndon Johnson and Hubert Humphrey. Were Jackson to be elected president, he would function no differently than all the other black Democrats—like Andrew Young in Atlanta, Thomas Bradley in Los Angeles, Coleman Young in Detroit, Wilson Goode in Philadelphia, Richard Hatcher in Gary, and the late Harold Washington in Chicago—who, once in office, presided over the continued impoverishment of the working class.
The ruling class desperately requires charlatans like Jackson as a lightning rod to deflect the growing threat of a social explosion and a political break by the working class from the two capitalist parties.
The AFL-CIO bureaucrats use Jackson to cover their most outrageous betrayals and bolster their discredited alliance with the Democratic Party by parading him before mass rallies of workers in every important struggle against plant closures, unionbusting and wagecutting. Such stage-managed media events produce political illusions but not strike victories. A collection of union officials, constituting a veritable “Who’s who” of labor traitors, have become sudden converts to the Rainbow Coalition, attempting to divert workers into harmless protests and prayer sessions.
The real class character of Jackson’s campaign is shown by the way this demagogue can go in a single day from mingling on the picket line with workers fighting unionbusting at International Paper to soliciting the endorsement of ex-candidate Bruce Babbitt, who as Arizona governor was notorious for his use of the National Guard to smash the Phelps Dodge copper miners’ strike. Indeed, the bankruptcy of Jackson’s petty-bourgeois program is exemplified by his opposition to the class struggle and his fervent espousal of class compromise and reconciliation: as if it is possible to reconcile the interests of the billionaire capitalists and the exploited working class! Thus, the Jackson campaign represents not the rebellion of the workers, but the desperate efforts of the ruling class to prevent the growth of a mass revolutionary movement against capitalism.
Whether as the nominee of the Democratic Party or as an “independent” candidate, Jackson is a bourgeois politician who serves the interests of imperialism. Under no conditions will the Workers League lend the slightest support to Jackson. In fact, the political mobilization of the working class to fight for its real interests is inseparable from an irreconcilable struggle to dispel whatever illusions exist among workers in the Jackson campaign and his Rainbow Coalition.
The Counterrevolutionary Role of the Communist Party and the Socialist Workers Party
The Jackson campaign has the support, open or tacit, of all the forces of petty-bourgeois radicalism, Stalinism and revisionism. The Moscow-line Stalinists of the Communist Party USA have decided not to run in the presidential elections for the first time since 1964, in order to clear the way for all-out support to Jackson. At the same time, they have kind words for virtually any capitalist politician who supports Reagan’s Intermediate Nuclear Forces treaty with the Soviet bureaucracy and Mikhail Gorbachev, including sections of the Republican Party (Bush and Dole), as well as all the Democrats.
The Communist Party USA has nothing to do with genuine socialism and communism. It is a direct agency of the counterrevolutionary Stalinist bureaucracy in the Soviet Union, which seeks an agreement with US imperialism at the expense of both the Soviet workers and the international working class. Under Gorbachev, the Soviet bureaucracy is directly undermining the foundations of the planned economy, encouraging tendencies towards capitalist restoration, and opening up the Soviet Union to imperialist penetration.
The Stalinists peddle the most dangerous pacifist illusions, telling workers that they must support capitalists who favor “peaceful coexistence” with the Soviet Union. The real import of this policy is to demand that workers maintain peaceful coexistence with the profit system, rather than fighting to overthrow it.
The anti-Trotskyist Socialist Workers Party is also moving openly into the camp of the Democratic Party. The presidential campaign of its candidate, Mac Warren, is a blatant fraud; the fact of the matter is that the SWP has been promoting the campaign of Jesse Jackson.
The SWP has dropped all reference to the campaign for a Labor Party, first pioneered by Trotsky and the SWP when it was a Trotskyist party. It presents as the task of the working class, not the struggle for socialism, but the struggle to defend democratic rights, in alliance with a “democratic” section of the capitalist class.
At any rate, the SWP’s claims to defend the democratic rights of the working class is especially cynical, given the fact that the leadership of the organization has been massively penetrated by the FBI and other police-state agencies. During the past decade, the Workers League has published irrefutable documentary evidence of the SWP leadership’s systematic cover-up of police agents in its organization. Moreover, the recent unprecedented decision of the government not to appeal a federal court ruling ordering payment of $264,000 in damages to the SWP for past harassment demonstrates the confidence the ruling class places in this party. It is inconceivable that the American ruling class would pay more than a quarter-million dollars to an organization which it believed was dedicated to the revolutionary overthrow of capitalism. The Workers League warns all workers to maintain an attitude of the maximum suspicion and vigilance toward the activities of this dubious, police-ridden outfit.
The various neo-Stalinist, Maoist and revisionist groups are all trailing in the wake of the Jackson campaign, using it as their vehicle to enter capitalist politics openly and abandon even the pretense of opposition to American imperialism. Not one of them warns the working class that Jackson is a demagogue and his campaign a safety valve for big business.
In program and class orientation, all these tendencies are organizations of the petty bourgeoisie, not the working class. They serve to divert workers and youth looking for a revolutionary alternative to capitalism into the swamp of middle-class radicalism and protest politics. They are defenders of the trade union bureaucracy and apologists for its alliance with the Democratic Party.
The Record of the Workers League
The Workers League was founded in 1966 on the basis of Marxist principles, to continue the struggle waged by Leon Trotsky to defend the heritage of the October Revolution. Though barred from formal affiliation by the reactionary Voorhis Act, the Workers League maintains fraternal relations with the International Committee of the Fourth International, the World Party of Socialist Revolution founded by Leon Trotsky in 1938. In close collaboration with our political co-thinkers in countries all over the world, we fight to unite the working class in a common international struggle against the capitalist system.
The Workers League originated in the struggle for proletarian internationalism inside the Socialist Workers Party, against the betrayal by the SWP of its Trotskyist heritage. The founders of the Workers League were expelled from the SWP for opposing its abandonment of Marxism and the strategy of world socialist revolution.
For more than two decades, the Workers League has fought for revolutionary policies within the working class. We have opposed every form of class collaboration and efforts to subordinate the working class to the political agencies of the bosses. We have insisted on the insolubility of the capitalist crisis, warning that the contradictions of American and world capitalism would lead to a revolutionary explosion in the United States.
The Workers League is the party of irreconcilable revolutionary Marxism, combating all those political tendencies—the trade union bureaucracy, Stalinism and revisionism—which seek to divert the working class from its revolutionary tasks, and thereby serve as political appendages of the capitalist ruling class.
The Candidates of the Workers League
The proletarian character of our campaign is expressed above all in our program, which upholds the historical interests of the working class. It is demonstrated as well in the selection of our candidates, both of whom have a long record of struggle in the workers’ movement.
Ed Winn, 51, is a trade unionist, a member of the Transport Workers Union Local 100, recently retired from his job as a bus mechanic for the New York City Transit Authority, where he worked for 22 years. Born in Wilmington, North Carolina, he became active in the civil rights movement and participated in the March on Washington in 1963.
His entire life has been devoted to the struggles of the working class. As a New York City transit worker, he walked the picket lines in the 1966 and 1980 strikes. He served as a union shop steward, and from 1977-81 as an executive board member. During this period he opposed the betrayal of the 1980 strike by the TWU bureaucracy. He joined the Workers League in 1976 and is a member of its central committee. In 1984, Ed Winn was the Workers League’s candidate for president in the party’s first-ever national campaign. He was on the ballot in six industrial states and received 14,363 votes.
Barry Porster, 40, is the labor editor of the Bulletin. Born in Philadelphia, he joined the Workers League while a college student in 1971. He has been on the editorial board of the Bulletin since 1975. He was responsible for coverage of the 1977-78 miners’ strike, and more recently, of the struggles of autoworkers against plant closings and concessions. He is a member of the Workers League Central Committee.
The Workers League campaign calls on all workers and youth to confront the implications of the world economic crisis and the historical decline of American capitalism. It is time to discard illusions and to face reality.
The working class has never won anything through compromise and class collaboration, but only through the most bitter class struggle. Words like “concessions” and “labor-management cooperation” should be banished from the vocabulary of the workers’ movement.
Join the Workers League!
The Workers League appeals to all workers and youth who agree with our program: Join the Workers League and devote your lives to the building of the revolutionary party that will put an end to capitalism and create a socialist society. We make a special appeal to the working class youth to join the Young Socialists, the revolutionary youth movement affiliated with the Workers League.
We urge you to immediately get involved with the work of our election campaign and help put Ed Winn and Barry Porster on the ballot in as many states as possible. Help us form Winn-Porster election committees that will campaign in working-class neighborhoods and at plant gates all over the country for the socialist program of the Workers League.
We call on the most courageous and self-sacrificing workers and youth to fight for the international unity of the working class, the building of a Labor Party, and the mobilization of the working class for a socialist America, as part of the world socialist revolution.