revcom.us, November 30, 2020 through December 6, 2020 (#676)

Voice of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/andy-zee-opening-remarks-en.html

November 24, 2020
Andy Zee Opening Remarks
Forum: What Just Happened? Trump, America, and the Danger of Fascism

| revcom.us

 

Editors' note: These comments have been slightly edited for publication.

If you’ve had a recurring nightmare repeatedly jolt you awake, it can be a problem, indeed dangerous, to not find out where that’s coming from, and work your way through it... For the sources of that terror lie deep and can reassert themselves.

Four years ago, Refuse Fascism said This Nightmare Must End: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go! In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America. How prescient that was, how critical the understanding, the analysis, and the still urgent stand of what begins the Pledge we watched earlier from Refuse Fascism which is: “In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America.”

In the name of humanity concentrates the grave danger that a fascist regime in the most powerful imperialist superpower in history posed not just to people here, but to the people of the world, and to the very Earth we live on. The Trump/Pence fascist regime came to power through the “normal” political processes of this system and the regime represented, it pulled together, it cohered, a whole section of the ruling class of this system who regarded and still do—this American fascism as one possible resolution to the problems that this system faces in the world today.

The Trump/Pence regime did not create the deep divisions in America, nor did it create climate change, nor nuclear weapons, let alone the triad of its fascist program that Coco referred to: white supremacy, patriarchy, and xenophobia, anymore than it created the COVID virus. What the Trump/Pence regime did do, is amplify and put on steroids all of these pre-existing conditions, and to do so, it concentrated and fought for a different form of rule of this same system—it tore through what had been the political and civic norms—to rule

through reliance on open terror and violence, trampling on what are supposed to be civil and legal rights, wielding the power of the state, and mobilizing organized groups of fanatical thugs, to commit atrocities against masses of people, particularly groups of people identified as “enemies,” “undesirables,” or “dangers to society.”

All of this to implement their program of America First—an America of genocidal racism, the most toxic male supremacy, and the outright demonization and terrorizing of immigrants in concentration camps, with the children of refugees separated and put in cages as their families fled countries that the U.S. and the capitalist-imperialist system has devastated.

Isn’t this what they have done? And, since they are not out of power yet; and 73 million people voted for them with over 40 percent of all those who voted in the election fervently convinced that Trump won and Biden stole the election and thus is illegitimate—along with their believing even worse lunatic conspiracy theories; we must remain vigilant, now and going forward.

This Is Not Going Away. There will be no return to normal ... no return to normal ... and any objective view of what this country does to millions of people within its borders, to the people of the world and to the planet, should lead to no one wanting to return to “normal” for all the horrors that brings.

Why? Because fascism is one response to the contradictions of this system on the part of a section of those who rule this system.

Bob Avakian, the revolutionary leader, has said the normal workings of this system will:

continue to wreak havoc in the world and on the masses of people in the world, through destruction of the environment, wars, massive displacement and desperate migration of people, on top of the ongoing savage inequalities, crushing exploitation and murderous oppression “written into the DNA” of this system and carried out by its brutal enforcers.

This is from an article whose title poses a key takeaway from what I am bringing to our conversation: Radical Change Is Coming: Will It Be Emancipating, or Enslaving—Revolutionary or Reactionary? I cite Bob Avakian repeatedly, and I follow his lead, because he has developed the science to more deeply explain where the problems of today’s world come from, what the strategy is for getting out of this mess, what the methods and approaches should be to stay on track and actually build a better world.

The roots of fascism in America are deep. At the organized mass core of this fascist movement is a Christian fascist movement—a form of political Christian fundamentalism—that has been organizing for decades.

One can draw a direct line from the fascism of the Trump/Pence regime with this Christian fundamentalist base, to the Confederacy. A religious fervor of a return to the “lost cause” of a noble way of life—of unfettered brutal white supremacy and patriarchy—each taking on genocidal proportions while wrapped in MAGA/America First package—an aggressive approach to the world—threatening nuclear annihilation that mirrors the aggressive individualism of their movement: my freedom means you might die—fully aware that with COVID that disproportionately means Black and Latino lives.

I want to bring this to a conclusion with Four Points.

[1] There can be NO RECONCILIATION WITH FASCISM. Trump did not divide us and Biden cannot unite us. Bob Avakian has pointed out that the minds of these fascists in power and in the streets will not be changed by “being nice” to them:

There can be no “reconciliation” with these fascists—whose “grievances” are based on fanatical resentment against any limitation on white supremacy, male supremacy, xenophobia (hatred of foreigners), rabid American chauvinism, and the unrestrained plundering of the environment, and are increasingly expressed in literally lunatic terms. There can be no “reconciliation” with this, other than on the terms of these fascists, with all the terrible implications and consequences of that!

NO reconciliation” with this, other than on the terms of these fascists... If you compromise, conciliate, collaborate, with fascism, which is what the Democrats have done and will do, because they fundamentally represent the same system that has white supremacy, patriarchy, and domination of the people of the world woven into its very functioning. It is the fuel of the engine of capitalism-imperialism. So this is my second point. To underscore it:

[2] Biden and the Democratic Party, as representatives of the same system, cannot solve the underlying problems of this system which cause so much unnecessary suffering to people here and around the world—a world of tens and hundreds of millions of refugees, of 150 million children locked in virtual slave labor, of half of humanity confined and thwarted by a vicious patriarchy, of wars, climate devastation, of racial and national oppression, and the crushing of spirits and the squandering of human potential to the dictates of a system whose lifeblood is the exploitation of billions of people enforced through brute power and reinforced through tradition’s chains.

[3] Point three. The contention at the top of society around the fascist Republican Party, deep in the institutions of this country, in control of the Supreme Court and after four years having forged a cohered and hardened fascist base is not going away, but will continue to metastasize and contend for power.

The struggle for any fundamental change and the ground for revolution will be fought on this ground. It is a conflict that is likely to intensify. And, it will be, as BA has written, “a significant factor in the context of an all-out struggle between revolution and counter-revolution.”

[4] There is a way to understand the nightmare of fascism and the workings of the system that gave rise to it. And there is a way for humanity to move beyond a system that perpetuates such unnecessary suffering. To get there requires the scientific method and approach of the new communism developed by Bob Avakian—which stands in opposition to religious obscurantism, conspiracy lunacy, as well as the relativism of the progressive community that there are just individual truths but no objective knowable reality... There is a road—a hard road through an actual revolution to a radically new society on the road to real emancipation that is outlined in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by BA.

This is an invitation to take up the scientific approach of the new communism. Have the integrity and courage of thinking critically, to not be bound by the conventions of today, but aspire to what really could be—a radically different and far better world for all humanity.

The fight against fascism is not over. It enters a new phase. But, let’s undertake this fight. Let’s continue to fight together against fascism and indeed against all the injustices that this system continually brings down on the people. Let’s do so while digging into, discussing, and debating the way out of the outmoded madness that haunts the world today.

The Refuse Fascism Pledge to the People of the World: In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America must continue to resonate far and wide and become not only a needed political and moral compass, but the organized expression of a network ready to act with nonviolent determination to not allow fascism to grow and dominate and terrorize humanity. The next 50 plus days until Trump and Pence are gone from power present real and present danger. We remain vigilant.

To all who have taken up the call from Refuse Fascism, to my fellow panelists who have exposed the dangers of what we face until they’re gone, we should continue to, as the Pledge concludes, “We pledge our determination to prevail over a regime that imperils the people of the world and the earth itself.”

WHAT JUST HAPPENED: TRUMP, AMERICA & THE DANGER OF FASCISM

See the full film, excerpts and Q&A of this film

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/482/skybreak-a-communist-statesman-modeling-communist-leadership-en.html

Excerpt from SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION, On the Importance of Science and the Application of Science to Society, the New Synthesis of Communism and the Leadership of Bob Avakian, An Interview with Ardea Skybreak

A Communist Statesman, Modeling Communist Leadership

March 13, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us

 

In the early part of 2015, over a number of days, Revolution conducted a wide-ranging interview with Ardea Skybreak. A scientist with professional training in ecology and evolutionary biology, and an advocate of the new synthesis of communism brought forward by Bob Avakian, Skybreak is the author of, among other works, The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What's Real and Why It Matters, and Of Primeval Steps and Future Leaps: An Essay on the Emergence of Human Beings, the Source of Women's Oppression, and the Road to Emancipation. This interview was first published online at www.revcom.us.

This excerpt from the interview, “A Communist Statesman, Modeling Communist Leadership,” is a ‘must-read-and-review’ for all those concerned with making revolution and bringing into being a radically different and far better world.

Q: I think that that’s a really important point, and it relates to something you said a minute ago, that you felt BA really came across as a statesman in this Dialogue1. And maybe you could explain that a little bit more, because I think that’s a really important point and I know you were saying earlier that you felt like you really got a sense being at this Dialogue, experiencing it, that this is the leader of the revolution, this is somebody who could lead the future society. So I don’t know if you wanted to speak a little more to that.

Ardea Skybreak Science and Revolution excerpts A New Theoretical Framework for a New Stage of Communist Revolution What Is New in the New Synthesis? The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic--A Visionary and Concrete Application of the New Synthesis Serious Engagement with the New Synthesis--The Difference It Could Make An Explorer, a Critical Thinker, a Follower of BA Some Thank Yous That Need To Be Said Aloud Order the book here Download the full interview in PDF format here

AS: Yes, the reason I felt the statesman aspect, too, is that I think we live in a complicated period, that there are a lot of challenges in this period to actually advance the revolutionary struggle, to deal with the actual fight–the “fight the power, and transform the people, for revolution” aspect of things is going on right now in a way it hasn’t for some time, in particular around the police murders. And, look, BA leads the work of the Revolutionary Communist Party, and there’s not a single initiative, I’m sure, of the Revolutionary Communist Party, that doesn’t have the stamp of leadership of BA and of the top leadership of the Party on it, in terms of how it’s unfolded. As you can see from the diversity of things that are taken up by this Party, and as reflected in the website revcom.us, there are a lot of very challenging contradictions to deal with. And that gives only a hint of what this leadership involves.

I don’t think most people have any idea what revolutionary leadership is about. A lot of people think that a leader of revolution is kind of like an “activist” leader, sort of like a leader of a demonstration, what I think of as tactical leadership. But overall revolutionary leadership is not just tactical. Of course there does need to be tactical leadership in various dimensions, and I’m not trying to devalue that. There is very much a need for the kind of person who might be agitating in a demonstration, for instance, helping to put forward a better understanding of what people are fighting about, and leading people, even tactically, in the streets, for instance in a demonstration. But there’s an important point to be made about how the leader of a revolution and the leader of a new society has to be an all-round statesman and has to be more like a strategic commander of the revolution as a whole. And there’s a formulation that’s been put forward recently that a communist leader–and not just the top leadership, but every single revolutionary communist–has to think of themselves and strive to be a strategic leader of the revolution, “a strategic commander of the revolution, not just a tactical leader, and not just a strategic philosopher.” This is very important. In other words, if you’re going to lead a revolution, lead the seizure of state power and become a leader of a new society–and that’s what I mean by statesman–you have to fully recognize and grapple with the complexity of what you’re doing and the many different levels and layers of it, and the many different contradictions among the people. You have to deal with the fact that you don’t have absolute freedom at any given time, and yet you’re trying to move things in a certain direction. You’re trying to be true to your principles, and you’re promoting that openly, but at the same time you’re dealing with the people you’re leading, who often don’t understand, at least not with any depth, what you’re putting forward in leading them, or who tend to distort what you’re putting forward, because they don’t understand things well enough or because they’re being shaped and influenced by other programs, other outlooks and methods.

So strategic leadership is a very, very complex task, and that’s also involved in why, as I mentioned earlier, so many natural scientists are at a complete loss when they try to address social transformations and they suddenly seem to forget everything they ever knew about basic scientific methods! Part of that is also because so many people have a completely wrong view of what actually constitutes overall leadership in the social arena, especially as pertains to revolutionary change. Much of the time they seem to think a political leader is just somebody with a bullhorn in a demonstration. But that’s tactical leadership, that’s not the overall strategic commander type of leadership that can guide an actual overall radical transformation of a whole society through revolution and the building of a whole new kind of society on a fundamentally different economic basis, with everything that flows from that. That kind of multi-faceted leadership is a much more complex task, and most people today frankly have little or no conception of all that it involves.

And there’s the question of dealing with the audiences–if you wanna put it that way, there are many different audiences. You’re not trying to be all things to all people. You are actually trying to meet the objective interests of the international proletariat, by which I mean–it’s not any individual proletarian that’s the question–there’s an international, world-wide class of people who don’t own the means of production, who have no ability to run society under this system, who can really only sell themselves basically, under this capitalist-imperialist system. They have the greatest interest–whether they know it or not as individual proletarians–as a class, they have the greatest interest of any class in actually going in the direction of communism and getting beyond all these class divisions and relations of exploitation and oppression. But is that the only class that’s going to be part of the process? No. The capitalist-imperialist ruling class is a very small segment of world society, or of any given society, but you do have all these other forces that kind of have one foot in one system, while one foot may be aspiring to something better. And those more “intermediate” strata, they tend to not be very constant, they tend to flip from one side to the other on any given day! Add to that the fact that hardly anybody has been given any scientific training, so hardly anybody tries to approach problems with any kind of consistently systematic and rigorous method. So you’ve got people going all over the place, you know, both in their thinking and in their actions. Bob Avakian’s talked about the challenge of “going to the brink of being drawn and quartered,” both in terms of getting to the revolutionary seizure of state power, and in terms of building a new society–that there are so many different kinds of people pulling in different directions, with different and opposing ideas, and so on.

And here’s another reason you need science. How can you know what’s best for society? How can you know what’s best for the majority of humanity? The capitalist-imperialists, they are proceeding on the basis of what’s best for their system. It’s not just a question of corporate greed, it’s not just that. It’s much more than that. They have a system that they need to maintain, a system that is based on profit, and we can talk about the fundamental contradiction of capitalism-imperialism, it might be worth touching on that a little bit. But the point is that they’re trying to keep their system going, but they don’t understand–even the people running this society often don’t even understand the deeper laws of their own system. But if you’re trying to bring into being a whole new kind of society, one that actually more fully meets the objective interests and needs of the vast majority of humanity, you’ve gotta do a lot of work, and you’ve gotta go up against a lot of misconceptions and prejudice and anti-scientific views. You have to deal with that diversity of views and opinions and with people pulling in all sorts of different directions, while at the same time not losing the reins of the process itself. That’s where the strategic commander role comes in. If you are confident in your scientific approach, then you can say with a quite a bit of certitude that you think it is possible to determine what is in fact in the objective interests of the majority of humanity, and what it would take to move in that direction. It’s like if you’re riding a horse. You’ve got your hands on the reins, so you’re not just going to let the horse run to any old place–the horse here being the process, not the people, but the process, right, the revolutionary process. But if you ride a horse and you pull the reins in too tightly, and you pull the horse’s head too hard, and the bit cuts into the horse’s mouth, and you’re not allowing it any kind of free rein, then that horse is going to stop dead in its tracks, or it’s going to buck, and in any case it’s not going to be able to be part of freely moving forward and advancing the process.

So there’s always a tension–the reason there’s a need, as BA has stressed, for “lots of elasticity, on the basis of the solid core” is not, as some people have incorrectly argued, just because the middle strata of people are going to “buck” and cause problems for you, are going be resentful, and so you’ll have to give ’em a bone here or there, to keep ’em from fighting you, or something. No! That would be disgusting. The real reason that you need to build in and allow for some genuine elasticity, on the basis of the solid core, is because society needs it, the process needs it. The revolutionary process itself needs to breathe, the revolutionary society needs to breathe, or it won’t be any good. Both the process of getting to the revolutionary seizure of power, and then the process of building the new society needs to breathe. And if you try to control it all too tightly and too rigidly–even if you happen to be right in what you’re doing at any given time, if you’re too tight and controlling, it’s just going to be discouraging and demoralizing to people, and people are not going to be given the scientific tools to figure it out enough themselves, and you’re going to end up with a repressive society, a rigid society and a rigid process.

And Bob Avakian really understands that, because he’s a good enough scientist to understand the material tension that exists, objectively, between what’s called the solid core, the certitude, the elements that you can actually be confident of, in terms of what’s wrong with the current society and what’s needed in a future society to benefit humanity, while at the same time understanding the need to sort of shepherd the process in such a way that it can encompass and incorporate the widest possible diversity of views and approaches from among the different strata of the masses in society.

I don’t know if I’m expressing this well enough, but he has certainly expressed this very well in many of his writings and talks, and I would encourage people to dig into this whole aspect of solid core with lots of elasticity on the basis of the solid core. And that last part–on the basis of the solid core–is very important to understand. You couldn’t have the right kind of elasticity without the solid core. You don’t wanna end up like you’re trying to herd cats, with everything and everybody going all over the place. There does need to be a solid core. In fact, the more you’ve got a firm handle, a rigorous scientific handle, on that solid core, on that core scientific theory, on that core accumulated knowledge and experience and on that core certitude, the more it should actually be possible to unleash and encourage broad elasticity and initiative among the people, both in the current revolutionary process as well as in the future socialist society, including in relation to the kind of dissent and broad societal ferment which can actively contribute to further advancing society in a good direction.

Q: As you were talking, one thing that is posed is that there is a unity, there is a connection between what you’re saying about the approach of solid core with a lot of elasticity, both in the process of making revolution to get to a future society on the road to communism, and then in that future society itself–there’s a connection between that approach all the way through the process of making revolution and getting to communism and your point about how you could really get a sense in this Dialogue of BA as the leader of that future society. And then there’s the point that you were making earlier, about why would BA do this Dialogue with Cornel West, if he weren’t actually applying and modeling that approach of solid core with a lot of elasticity? And so something I wanted to probe a little further is this point about how BA, in this Dialogue and in his whole body of work, he’s very much pulling no punches, he’s very much putting forward his understanding of the science of communism and of reality, and he’s not trying to finesse or smooth over differences, including with Cornel West, while at the same time he’s also very much recognizing the unity that they have, and the unity that needs to be forged broadly. And he’s taking the approach that there’s a lot that somebody like Cornel West–he has a lot of insights, there’s a lot that he can contribute to this whole revolutionary process, even while they’re very much getting into their differences. So, is there more you wanted to say about the application of solid core with a lot of elasticity even in terms of how BA was relating to Cornel West in this Dialogue?

AS: Well, I think you can see the application and modeling of “solid core with lots of elasticity on the basis of the solid core” in what BA does, both in relation to Cornel West on the one hand, and also what I was trying to say before in relation to the audience–or audiences, plural, because there are many different strata and different viewpoints represented in the audience–and what you see is, you see the certitude based on experience and knowledge. Look, think about in the natural sciences: If somebody happens to emerge who is the most advanced in their field of science, or in a particular development of the natural sciences, at a given time–somebody who is really advanced and really visionary and really is playing a leading role that way–it would be ridiculous for them to come out and just kind of act as if they don’t know what they know, or not struggle with people and not provide the evidence that they’ve accumulated and analyzed over, literally in this case, decades. Right? So even as he’s working with Cornel, he’s also not pulling any punches because, first of all, he respects people enough not to pander or condescend or pretend he doesn’t know what he actually knows. The only people he doesn’t respect are the exploiters and oppressors at the top of society. But he has enough respect for people, even people who might disagree with him in some important ways, to be honest and to explore differences with principle and integrity instead of condescending or pandering to people or pretending to have more agreement than he does.

He’s gonna call it like it is. He’s gonna tell people, including the audience...he knows this audience is holding on to a lot of different views and misconceptions that he thinks are very harmful. Like a lot of these religious views that are holding people back from understanding reality the way it actually is, and from seeing how it could be changed. His position is definitely not neutral–with religion, he’s not just saying look, that’s not where I’m at, but it’s all good, go ahead and believe whatever you’re gonna believe. He’s definitely not saying that. Instead, he’s really struggling with the audience, right down on the ground–he’s saying, you gotta give up some of this religion stuff, because it is actually harmful; it is clouding your understanding of the way reality really is; and, because it’s doing that, it’s actually making it harder for you to see the way forward, and to see how to transform society in a good direction. So you gotta get off this stuff! And he’s saying that to an audience of people, most of whom are religious, especially among the most oppressed–the very people who are most important for, and who most need to step forward to take up, the revolutionary process. He’s got enough respect, enough strategic confidence in people, to tell it like it is.

Now, in the situation where he’s working with Cornel, he’s working with a developed intellectual who’s also got a lot of experience in life, and who has studied many different things himself and analyzed many different philosophies. And BA’s got respect for that process, too. But he’s still going to call it like it is, and he’s going to bring out the evidence. What does it actually say in the Bible? What is the role of religion? Let’s get into it!

Some people might say, Well, I don’t need to hear all this, because I already don’t believe in God. Well, yes, you do need to hear all this, and do you know why? Because billions of people around the planet are deeply influenced by one or another religion, and they approach all of reality through the prism, through the lens, of their particular religion. This is the framework, this is the theoretical framework, if you want to call it that, that most people on this planet apply to try to make sense of the world, and of what’s wrong with it, and what could or couldn’t be done about it. Religion is a very major question, in the United States and all over the world. So Bob Avakian, on the one hand, in the Dialogue, you see him struggling with Cornel, but with a good method, a good warm method, because these are two people who do respect each other and who do like each other but who are just going to honestly tell each other and the audiences where they have some significant differences. And because they have principle and integrity, they’re able to put forward and clarify those important differences, so that the audiences will be better able to grapple with these questions themselves, when they go home and in an ongoing way.

At the same time, what I think Bob Avakian is modeling, with the elasticity part, is: Listen, this revolutionary process, it’s a very rich and complex and diverse process, which does have to involve a wide variety of people. In fact one of the points Bob Avakian has made repeatedly is that, at the time of the revolution and the actual seizure of state power, most of the people involved in the revolution are still going to be religious! In a country like the U.S., there’s no question that this is true. Most people won’t have given up their religion–even if they’ve decided to join in to be part of fighting for revolution and for socialism in different ways, most still won’t have completely broken with all that. And that’s just one example of having a materialist scientific understanding of reality, understanding just how complex it is, how complex the process is. But you’re not going to try to trick people who disagree with you into walking alongside you in the revolutionary process by concealing your views. No, that’s not what you should do. Instead, as a revolutionary communist, you’re going to be honest about those differences. But, if you’re serious about wanting to transform society in the interest of humanity, you’re also going to recognize that the process that you are arguing for, and that you are helping to give strategic leadership to, has to be able to encompass quite a diversity of people, who are not all going to see eye-to-eye with you on a number of different and important questions. And that this will be the case all along the way, even as people increasingly unite together to fight the common enemy, to seize power, and to build the new institutions and organs of a new society.

It’s because he really understands all this that Bob Avakian can, at one and the same time, genuinely and sincerely embrace and feel very warm towards someone like Cornel West (and I believe those feelings are very much reciprocated), and at the same time remain very clear about the importance of speaking to the differences, and speaking to why you need to take up a consistently scientific method and approach if you really want to change society for the better. And so yes, he’ll tell people bluntly why they should give up religion–all religions–because they get in the way of moving forward. It is a fact that all religions all around the world were invented long ago by human beings, to try to explain what they didn’t yet understand and to try to meet needs that can be transcended now. All around the world people invented different sets of supernatural beliefs to try to fill gaps in their understanding of things, in both the natural and social world, and as a mechanism for dealing with such things as death and loss. If you don’t yet have the scientific knowledge to understand how all life evolves, and how there is clear evidence that human beings themselves simply evolved from a long series of pre-existing species, you’re probably going to want to involve some kind of higher supernatural power to explain how we got here! [laughs] Every religion in the world has some of those commonalities. At the same time, they all have their different particular creation myths, and so on. And they have their different holy books, and prophets and stuff like that. And Bob Avakian is saying, Come on now, let’s get serious, let’s actually open up the Bible and see what it says. See, a dogmatic revolutionary might have said, Well, I don’t believe in god, and I think religion’s bad for the people, so I’m not even gonna pay any attention to it. But instead BA’s saying, religion’s a very important problem in the world, it’s a very important question, billions of people believe in some kind of god or some kind of religion, so we have to address this. And he did some homework, too. He did the work. He read the Bible, in its entirety. He knows the Bible. Unlike many people, he can tell you what’s in it. And he can tell you what these religious forces have argued. He can tell you something about the history of how human beings invented a lot of these religions. He can also speak to why people might be motivated to have a moral conscience on the basis of some of the things they learned in church or mosque or temple or whatever. At the same time, he can also show you, scientifically, the harm that it does to cling to this. And that it is not necessary. You can leave that stuff alone. You can just let it go. You can leave those old ways of thinking behind, and you can take up a philosophy and scientific method about transforming the world in the interests of all humanity, which is full of life, full of joy, full of spirit, full of art and culture, and not dead and cold in any way, but that doesn’t have to have these religious and supernatural trappings and all the old stuff that goes along with it.

 


The "Dialogue" referred to here is an event that took place in November 2014 at New York City's historic Riverside Church and was attended by 1900 people: REVOLUTION AND RELIGION: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion--A Dialogue Between CORNEL WEST and BOB AVAKIAN.

 

 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/a-deadly-serious-attack-on-how-people-think-en.html

Trump’s Ridiculous “Victory” Claim Is No Laughing Matter

A Deadly Serious Attack on HOW People Think... with Lasting Harm

| revcom.us

 

Over the past week, there has been a huge debate around truth going on, focused up around the U.S. election results. Well, perhaps the word “debate” dignifies this too much; to put it more accurately, there has been a screaming insistence on an open and easily disprovable LIE by a much-too-large section of the American people, whipped up and led by the fascist Trump.

Overwhelming Evidence vs. the Pronouncements of the Fascist Leader

On one side are those who go by the actual objective count of the real ballots cast in the real world—overseen by both Republicans and Democrats—in which Joe Biden won the election by a decisive margin—at least six million votes in the popular vote count, and with 306 electoral votes to Trump’s 232.

On the other side are those who follow the lead of Donald Trump, who insists that HE actually won the election and that a massive fraud has been perpetrated on the world. What’s worse, by all accounts this is agreed to by a very large proportion of Republican voters. Not only is Trump insisting on this, he refuses to allow the new Biden administration to begin the transition to governing. This means, to take just one outrageous example, that the Biden administration will not be able to quickly move on the coronavirus crisis, currently taking nearly 2,000 lives a day in the U.S. alone—a fact that surely will cost many more lives than are necessary, as the new people take time to learn the ropes of “how to make things happen.”

Moreover, Trump has rallied the vast majority of Republican elected officials to at least give strong backing to the notion that the vote is somehow “still in doubt” and that there are “serious issues involved that have to be resolved.” This is dangerous bullshit and they know it, but truth is hardly a concern when you have a fascist agenda to carry out.

This claim of Trump’s is at one and the same time ridiculous... and deadly serious. It is ridiculous because the standard of judging any claim about the truth is what the evidence shows and there is absolutely no evidence that even remotely suggests that Trump was defrauded,1 and there is a great deal of evidence that Biden legally and decisively won—including evidence from Republican officeholders in the South who oversaw the balloting and high-level Trump appointees who were fired for actually adhering to and making known this evidence.

Trump and his lawyers have gone to court more than 30 times and had their cases thrown out all but twice; of the other two, both were insignificant and one was reversed by a higher court. While these weasels rant about “fraud” in front of the TV cameras, they carefully avoid using the word in court—where false charges of fraud could bring penalties. One of his lawyers claimed that the election was stolen by an algorithm supposedly originally commissioned by the Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez, who has been dead for seven years... but claimed she does not want to reveal her evidence now.

Yet again, at least according to newspaper reports, polls and fervent demonstrations of Trump supporters, at least a sizeable proportion and most likely at least a majority of Republican voters are choosing to deny all the evidence and believe Trump.

A Further Descent into Fascist Degradation

The implications of this are bad. Quite bad. It is not just that these people will be a reliable social base for continued fascist assaults on the rule of law, on nonwhite people, on those who organize and rise up against different forms of oppression—which they will, and very likely with the even deeper fanaticism of those who imagine themselves to be “the injured party.” That would be bad enough.

But it is worse. The fact is that they have gone further in adopting an epistemology—a way of determining what is true—that has nothing to do with evidence and instead believes that whatever the fascist “strongman” says is true, because it corresponds to and “validates” what they would rather believe.

Trump has succeeded in welding these people to the notion that he alone knows the truth; and even any other fascist previously believed to be a “reliable source” who does not for whatever reason go along with this latest leap of faith—for instance, Fox News, which parted ways with Trump on this and has called the election for Biden—is seen as a betrayer and cast from the circle.

This has developed over a period of decades, including through the emergence of Christian fascism. Bob Avakian has called attention and given emphasis to this anti-scientific epistemological dimension as part of a whole analysis of this phenomenon over decades, and in particular called attention to the anti-scientific character of it. This spring, in regard to the COVID-19 pandemic, BA talked about how “fascist forces, marked by a truly dark ages mentality, and firmly convinced of the ‘truth’ of all manner of lunatic conspiracy theories promoting fascist ‘values’ and objectives, are eagerly embracing callous philistinism, willfully rejecting critical thinking, smugly ignoring, defying and denigrating science and the scientific method.”

It’s important to remember that, after a brief period of attempting to “lead” the response to COVID-19, Trump went all-in on the stance described by BA, and mixed in his own trademark racist, “we (‘white people’) have the best-genes” to make rejection of all preventive measures a hallmark of his campaign—again going against the scientific consensus, and very possibly costing tens of thousands of lives in the process.

What makes this even more toxic is the mixing together of the Christian fascist rejection of evidence-based science with the belief in the supposed all-knowing wisdom of the fascist strongman, all facts be damned. Katherine Stewart, a scholar of this phenomenon, in the important article published in the New York Times last week, “Christian Nationalism Is Here to Stay,” writes that “Christian nationalism [creates] a uniquely isolated messaging sphere. Many members of the rank and file get their main political information not just from messaging platforms that keep their audiences in a world that is divorced from reality, but also from dedicated religious networks and reactionary faith leaders.” And Stewart earlier in this piece gives several examples of these “faith leaders” insisting on lunacy along the lines that “God appointed Donald J. Trump to run this country” and that “Right now we are at war,” to quote particularly fanatical ones.

On top of that, there’s been a melding of these strains of absolutist anti-scientific thought with all manner of lunatic conspiracy theories—the notion that Democratic politicians drink the blood or adrenaline of small children. These kinds of theories dehumanize the opposition and set them up for slaughter; similar, almost word-for-word, theories were used to this end in Nazi Germany and elsewhere against the Jews during centuries of murderous persecution in Europe.

Again, this was there before—and this epistemological dimension has been given repeated emphasis by BA, as well as a number of other scholars, writers, and others. But this has to a degree metastasized in this past period, including now with the stubborn insistence on something so obviously false—that Trump won the vote.

There is a further negative dimension to this controversy over the vote. Trump actually suffered his worst drop-off in vote totals relative to 2016 in the suburbs surrounding cities like Atlanta, Detroit, and Philadelphia; within the city of Philadelphia, he actually improved his performance, including according to some surveys with Black people. Yet all accusations of fraud have focused on the cities, which are disproportionately made up of Black and Latino people, rather than the suburbs, which are principally white.

Why? Because a core part of Trump’s particular twist on Christian fascism is what BA called a “genocidal racism” against all nonwhite people. Trump is further fortifying the racist orientation of the whole Republican Party and laying the basis for further attacks on the voting rights of nonwhite people, and in particular Black people.

In sum: This campaign by Trump is not just a way to mess with Biden, or a way to “get used to the idea that he lost” (as some have claimed), or even something which will do terrible damage to people here, and around the world, through dereliction and destruction around COVID and the environment, etc.—which it will. It is a further advance in hardening, expanding, and welding together the fascist movement—and that will have consequences for the years before us.

So, celebrate—and defend—the victory in the election. And think real hard about the consequences to come, and how to confront them and move forward through them to the world we need.

Your thoughts on this are welcome.


 

1. The only real instance of fraud that may have been uncovered is the accusation by the Republican secretary of state of Georgia, Brad Raffensperger, that Lindsay Graham, a Republican senator from South Carolina, suggested to him that he throw out all the mail-in ballots of Floyd County—a majority-Biden county, with a high percentage of Black voters—on the basis that some of them had defects in their ballot markings. Graham denies this, while two others who were on the call back Raffensperger. Note that Graham is not even a resident of Georgia, but of South Carolina.  [back]

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian is a book of quotations and short essays that speaks powerfully to questions of revolution and human emancipation.

"You can't change the world if you don't know the BAsics."

Order the book HERE
Download the book in ePub format HERE

In light of attempts by Trump and other fascists to suppress votes by trying to undermine the integrity of and discount the elections results particularly in urban areas with large Black populations—in Detroit, Philadelphia, etc.—here is historical record of suppression of the Black vote in the U.S., now being trumped by current fascist attempts:

* The Violent Suppression of Black People’s Right to Vote

* 1965 to Today: Gutting the Voting Rights Act and Disenfranchising Millions of Black People

CONSPIRACY THEORIES, FASCIST "CERTITUDE," LIBERAL PARALYSIS, OR
A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO CHANGING THE WORLD
by Bob Avakian

 

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The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/and-the-evidence-says-trump-lost-en.html

Evidence—Not What The Fascist “Strongman” Desires—Determines What Is True...

And The Evidence Says Trump LOST!

| revcom.us

 

Faced with the fact that Trump lost by six million popular votes and 74 electoral votes, Trump and his backers are spinning a fantasy that the election was “stolen” through massive “fraud.” Their aim is to whip up Trump’s hard-core base (most of whom believe this insanity), spread confusion and doubt among a larger section of people, and provide cover for moves to retain power by illegitimate, illegal, and perhaps violent means, as gone into in the article, “Trump’s Ridiculous ‘Victory’ Claim Is No Laughing Matter: A Deadly Serious Attack on HOW People Think... with Lasting Harm.”

But they keep getting shot down by reality. Here is a sampling of what has happened when the actual evidence—the vote count—has been tested by Trump’s lunatic, fantasy-driven, and pitiful challenges.

The Election Process and Results Are Affirmed by Objective Observers As Well As Trump Backers and Appointees

Chris Krebs, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (appointed by Trump), was in charge of preventing foreign or domestic interference in the election process. On November 17, Krebs tweeted a statement from what AP describes as a “broad coalition of top government and industry officials,” saying that “There is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes or was in any way compromised,” and that the election was “the most secure in American history.” He also set up a website to debunk false information—much of which was being generated by Trump and his allies. Trump fired Krebs on November 17.

Brad Raffensperger, Georgia Secretary of State, who describes himself as a Trump supporter and a “conservative Christian Republican,” oversaw the Georgia election that Trump and his allies are contesting. He faced death threats and calls for his resignation for insisting that the election went smoothly. He was successfully pressured into ordering a recount, and then unsuccessfully pressured by Senator Lindsey Graham to tilt it in Trump’s favor. When the count was finished, Raffensperger said, “I wish he would have won, and especially in Georgia. I certainly cast my vote for him, but the results are what the results are ... at the end of the day, our office is to make sure the election is run fair and accurately, and it’s what we’ve done.”

Secretaries of State in all 50 states—Democrats and Republicans—were contacted by the New York Times and none reported any significant election fraud. The Republican secretary of state of Ohio said, “There’s a great human capacity for inventing things that aren’t true about elections. The conspiracy theories and rumors and all those things run rampant.”

Court Cases Without Evidence

Pro-Trump forces have filed over 30 cases contesting different aspects of the election in states Trump lost to Biden, and so far they have won exactly one—a minor case that had very little effect on vote count. Attorneys have been repeatedly dressed down by judges for showing up without evidence or for claiming “fraud” in press conferences, but then not daring to make those false claims in court (where it can get an attorney in a lot of trouble).

In the most important of the cases, a Pennsylvania lawsuit was “dismissed with prejudice”1 by a federal judge who is a conservative Republican. The judge said that the suit demanded that he “disenfranchise [throw out the ballots of] almost seven million voters,” but provided no evidence of corruption, and was based on a “strained legal argument without merit and speculative accusations.”

In Arizona, a suit was filed based on a conspiracy theory that Republican voters were given Sharpie pens for the ballots that then were not recorded. Completely false, the case was dropped.

In Detroit and in Georgia, claims that mail-in ballots that came in after the deadline were still counted were dismissed for lack of evidence.

Efforts to validate Trump’s November 11 tweet—“... Pennsylvania and Michigan didn’t allow our Poll Watchers and/or Vote Observers to Watch or Observe. This is responsible for hundreds of thousands of votes that should not be allowed to count. Therefore, I easily win both states”—also crashed and burned due to the reality that large numbers of poll watchers from both parties were present when votes were counted.

Fascist Lawyers and Their Lunatic Theories

One result of this is that some of the high-priced, talented, and reputable law firms like Porter Wright that have enabled and collaborated with Trump over the years are now backing away, leaving only the conspiracy theory ravings of people like Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell to pursue the fascist program in court. Among other things, Powell claimed that the election was rigged by “The Dominion Voting Systems, the Smartmatic technology software, and the software that goes in other computerized voting systems here as well, not just Dominion, were created in Venezuela at the direction of Hugo Chavez.” Days later, Powell released a heavily redacted affidavit from a Venezuelan military official who “was with Chavez when he saw [the voting machine] operated.”

One problem with this theory: Chavez has been dead for seven years! [Since the uproar about this theory, Giuliani began claiming that Powell is not part of the Trump legal team.]

 


1. “Dismissal with prejudice” indicates the court thinks the suit was filed in bad faith or at least without any credible basis, and that it cannot be refiled.  [back]

Read also:

Trump's Ridiculous "Victory" Claim Is No Laughing Matter
A Deadly Serious Attack on HOW People Think...with Lasting Harm

Read more

Trump's Trying to Stay in Power? Oh HELL NO!

Appearing in the New York Times on Monday, November 9:
A Pledge to the People of the World

See the full ad and share this announcement

 

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Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/673/three-questions-en.html

Three Questions

| revcom.us

 

Why did 70+ million people vote for this genocidal racist, male supremacist, "America First" fascist, Trump? “Is there hope for white people?”

Where did the American fascist movement behind
Trump and Pence come from?

“We should make no mistake about what is at stake in this battle with the religious right. It is not happenstance that it is a movement that draws its strength and finds its support principally in the so-called heartland of the nation and especially in its southern precincts. This is the portion of the United States that has never been comfortable with post‑WWII America. The brief period of normalcy after the war was followed within a decade by a pent-up and long overdue racial revolution that overturned centuries of culture and tradition, especially in the South. The disillusionment, two decades later, with an unpopular war in southeast Asia shook the foundations of traditional/conventional patriotism in American life; it was followed in the next decade by a sexual revolution that upset deeply entrenched views among this portion of the American populace about the subordinate place of women in society and the non-place of gay and lesbian persons in American life. These political and social and cultural defeats have now erupted into a pitched battle to turn back the clock on the last half-century and return America to its pre-war purity. It is not without significance that teaching creationism in the schools, for example, is such a prominent part of the religious right agenda. That was a battle the right lost in the mid-1920s but it is not one that the right ever acknowledged losing—just as some die-hards have never acknowledged losing the Civil War. Consequently, the restoration the religious right seeks is one that would recapture a way of life that disappeared in this nation a half‑century ago.”*

*“Reflections on Pacific School of Religion's Response to the Religious Right,” by Dr. Hubert Locke, also available at revcom.us.

What do people who yearn for a better world
need to do in the current situation?

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH — WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS, AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

by Bob Avakian

Part 3:

TRUMP’S FASCISM — MORE BLATANT AND DANGEROUS EVERY DAY:
HOW A DETERMINED FIGHT AND MASSIVE MOBILIZATION COULD DEFEAT THIS

Part 2:

TRUMP IS ALREADY STEALING THE ELECTION AND THREATENING EVEN MORE VIOLENCE TO STAY IN POWER

Part 1:

THE DEMOCRATS CAN'T FIGHT TRUMP
THE WAY HE NEEDS TO BE FOUGHT

A talk by Bob Avakian

The Problem, the Solution, and the Challenges Before Us

An important talk given by Bob Avakian in the summer of 2017.

Read talk      |        Listen

 

 

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/633/bob-avakian-a-radically-different-leader-en.html

BOB AVAKIAN: A RADICALLY DIFFERENT LEADER—A WHOLE NEW FRAMEWORK FOR HUMAN EMANCIPATION

Bob Avakian (BA) is the most important political thinker and leader in the world today.

| revcom.us

 

Bob Avakian is completely different than the endless stream of bourgeois politicians who are put forward as “leaders,” whose goal is to maintain one variation or another of this system of capitalism-imperialism that is founded on and perpetuates itself through cruel and literally life-stealing exploitation, murderous oppression, and massive destruction, in all parts of the world. BA is a revolutionary who bases himself on the scientific understanding that this system must finally be overthrown through an organized struggle involving millions of people, and replaced with a system that is oriented to and capable of meeting the most fundamental needs of humanity and enabling humanity to become fit caretakers of the earth.

Bob Avakian is the architect of a whole new framework of human emancipation, the new synthesis of communism, which is popularly referred to as the "new communism."

BA is the author of the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, an inspiring application of the new communism—a sweeping vision and concrete blueprint for a new socialist society, whose fundamental goal is to bring about a world without classes and class distinctions, a world without exploitation and oppression, and without the destructive divisions and antagonisms among people: a communist world.

Ardea Skybreak, a scientist with professional training in ecology and evolutionary biology, and a follower of Bob Avakian, speaks to the importance of what he has brought forward:

Bob Avakian ... on the basis of decades of hard work [has been] developing a whole body of work—theory to advance the science of communism, to advance the science of revolution, to more deeply explain where the problems come from, what the strategy is for getting out of this mess, what the methods and approaches should be to stay on track and actually build a better world, to build a society that most human beings would want to live in. (From Science and Revolution, On the Importance of Science and the Application of Science to Society, the New Synthesis of Communism and the Leadership of Bob Avakian, An Interview with Ardea Skybreak)

BA is a leader who is firmly convinced, on the basis of a consistently scientific method and approach, that the goal must be nothing less than all-out revolution, and who at the same time has emphasized:

the new communism thoroughly repudiates and is determined to root out of the communist movement the poisonous notion, and practice, that “the ends justifies the means.” It is a bedrock principle of the new communism that the “means” of this movement must flow from and be consistent with the fundamental “ends” of abolishing all exploitation and oppression through revolution led on a scientific basis. (From Breakthroughs: The Historic Breakthrough by Marx, and the Further Breakthrough with the New Communism, A Basic Summary)

As a revolutionary leader, BA also embodies this rare combination: someone who has been able to develop scientific theory on a world-class level, while at the same time having a deep understanding of and visceral connection with the most oppressed, and a highly developed ability to “break down” complex theory and make it broadly accessible.

A leader like this has never before existed in the history of this country, and this leadership is of tremendous importance for the emancipation of all humanity.

What is urgently needed now is for continually growing numbers of people—in the thousands, and ultimately millions—to become conscious and active followers of BA, building the revolutionary movement, based on the new communism, for which BA provides this unprecedented leadership.

Download poster and leaflet:

11x17 poster

8.5x11 two-sided leaflet

CONSTITUTION For The New Socialist Republic In North America

Click to read and download (PDF)

 

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/654/bob-avakian_fascists-today-and-the-confederacy-a-direct-line-a-direct-connection-between-all-the-oppression-en.html

FASCISTS TODAY AND THE CONFEDERACY:
A DIRECT LINE,
A DIRECT CONNECTION BETWEEN ALL THE OPPRESSION
by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

Recently there has been an uproar at Liberty University, in Lynchburg (!) Virginia, over the fact that its president, Jerry Falwell Jr., who (like many other Christian fundamentalists) had been refusing to wear a mask, then posted a picture of himself wearing a mask with a “blackface” image. This was actually a photo of Ralph Northam (Democratic governor of Virginia) in “blackface” during his college days, and Falwell’s apparent purpose was to use this to ridicule Northam (and, by extension, Democrats, “liberals,” and other enemies of Christian fascists like Falwell). Falwell was apparently “tone deaf” (as the saying goes) to the fact that this “blackface” image would be highly offensive to Black people (and others opposed to racism), and he at first tried to “stonewall” the criticism that arose (and “stonewall” is a very appropriate word here, as it is associated with the Confederate General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson). Even when Falwell finally seemed to backtrack and issue an “apology,” it was at least as much a continuation of his attack on Northam as it was any self-criticism. All this has led to an outcry, and some resignations, even from the highly “conservative” students and alumni of this Christian fundamentalist university, which has become a major institution, with tens of thousands of students.

In reading about this, I was reminded of the following from The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!:

There is a direct line from the Confederacy to the fascists of today, and a direct connection between their white supremacy, their open disgust and hatred for LGBT people as well as women, their willful rejection of science and the scientific method, their raw “America First” jingoism and trumpeting of “the superiority of western civilization” and their bellicose wielding of military power, including their expressed willingness and blatant threats to use nuclear weapons, to destroy countries.1

The Direct Line to the Confederacy

Here it is worth repeating these insightful observations from African-American theologian Hubert Locke:

We should make no mistake about what is at stake in this battle with the religious right. It is not happenstance that it is a movement that draws its strength and finds its support principally in the so-called heartland of the nation and especially in its southern precincts. This is the portion of the United States that has never been comfortable with post‑WWII America. The brief period of normalcy after the war was followed within a decade by a pent-up and long overdue racial revolution that overturned centuries of culture and tradition, especially in the South. The disillusionment, two decades later, with an unpopular war in southeast Asia shook the foundations of traditional/conventional patriotism in American life; it was followed in the next decade by a sexual revolution that upset deeply entrenched views among this portion of the American populace about the subordinate place of women in society and the non-place of gay and lesbian persons in American life. These political and social and cultural defeats have now erupted into a pitched battle to turn back the clock on the last half-century and return America to its pre-war purity. It is not without significance that teaching creationism in the schools, for example, is such a prominent part of the religious right agenda. That was a battle the right lost in the mid-1920s but it is not one that the right ever acknowledged losing—just as some die-hards have never acknowledged losing the Civil War. Consequently, the restoration the religious right seeks is one that would recapture a way of life that disappeared in this nation a half‑century ago.2

There is a lot “packed into” that statement, so let’s dig into it. Locke begins by making the point that it is not accidental (not “happenstance”) that Christian fascism in this country is based most strongly in the South (although it also finds significant support in rural areas, and even among sections of people in the suburban areas, in other parts of the country). Why is it the case that its strongest base is among white people in the South?

In my book Away With All Gods!, there is a section in Part Three with the heading “The Bible Belt Is the Lynching Belt: Slavery, White Supremacy and Religion in America.” There I refer to (and quote) some important analysis in the book by Kevin Phillips, American Theocracy. The following is particularly relevant and important:

Phillips reviews how, in the aftermath of the Civil War, although the South was defeated and the slave system was abolished, after the reversal of Reconstruction [in the 1870s] the South “rose again” in terms of political power and influence within the country as a whole. In connection with all this, Phillips points out, a religious mythology arose, and took root widely among white people in the South, that the (white) South had a special covenant with God and was the object of a special design by God to restore it to its proper place, righting the terrible wrong that had been done through the Civil War. Phillips makes the very relevant and telling comparison between southern whites in the U.S. and white settlers (Afrikaners) in South Africa, as well as Protestants in Northern Ireland and the Zionists who founded and rule the state of Israel.... Phillips points out that all these groups, including fundamentalist southern whites, see themselves as people being restored to their rightful, and righteous, relation with God—re-establishing a broken covenant and exercising a special, divinely-established destiny.

But all this is accompanied by a constant sense of insecurity and the reversal of perpetrator and victim, so that these oppressors and terrorizers—including the southern-based white supremacists—devoutly carry the artificial cross of being persecuted, regarding even any minor reduction of their favored position as essentially a threat to their very existence, or at least their purpose for being. As Phillips puts it (in another passage cited in Away With All Gods!), this involves biblical attitudes of “religious intensity, insecure history, and willingness to sign up with an Old Testament god of war for protection.”3

And there is the following from Katherine Stewart’s book The Good News Club, summarizing the views of a former Christian fundamentalist, Rich Lang, who broke with that and became a liberal Christian pastor:

Modern fundamentalism, like fascism in earlier times, he says, involves a strong feeling of persecution, typically at the hands of godless liberals or a religious “other”; the belief that one belongs to a pure race or national group that is responsible for past greatness, suffers unjust oppression in the present, and is the rightful ruler of the world; the impulse to submit unquestioningly to absolute authority; and the relentless drive for power and control. It is, he says, a kind of supremacist movement, with religion rather than race at its core.4

As I have pointed out: “that is the insight of someone very familiar with these Christian Fascists. And the fact is that, in this country, with its whole history of genocide, slavery and racism, any form of fascism, including one basing itself on ‘Christian supremacy’—any urge to ‘restore past greatness’—cannot help but be bound together with white supremacy.5

White supremacy, even of the most grotesque kind, has always been part of the “worldview” and actions of right-wing forces in this country. To get a sense of this, let’s look at the racism of two patriarchs of right-wing politics and ideology: Jerry Falwell Sr. (founder of Liberty University and father of its current president) and William Buckley.

Falwell (Sr.), whose Christian fundamentalism was, in his earlier days, intertwined with old-time southern segregationism, viciously opposed the Civil Rights movement in the 1950s and early 1960s. Later, when the upheaval of that time had passed, he “apologized” for that opposition. But then, in the 1980s, during the high point of the struggle of Black people in South Africa against the brutal system of apartheid, Falwell once again opposed and denounced that struggle.

Although from a wealthy northern family and having the bearing not of a crude rural southern “rube” but of a highly-educated intellectual sophisticate, William Buckley, founder of the right-wing magazine National Review, was from the beginning an overt racist. He followed a path very similar to that of Falwell (Sr.): Buckley, too, vigorously and viciously opposed the struggle against overt segregation and white supremacy in the South during the high point of the Civil Rights movement (and he too, later “changed his mind”). And with the same overt racism, he supported European colonialism in Africa and apartheid in South Africa. Buckley regarded the African peoples fighting for liberation from their colonial oppressors after World War 2 as sub-human savages. If, in fact, he had been looking for savagery, he didn’t need to look any further than his own country and the horrific oppression he supported and justified within this country. He might have gotten some valuable education from the following words boldly spoken by abolitionist and former slave Frederick Douglass in a July 4th speech in 1852: “For revolting barbarity and shameless hypocrisy, America reigns without a rival”—a statement which, as I have emphasized, “echoes down through time, expressing a profound truth today.”6

What ties together the racism of these two right-wing patriarchs, despite their very different backgrounds and individual personas, is the fact that both were ardent advocates of the brutally oppressive system of capitalism-imperialism—and more specifically of the “peculiar” way in which this system developed in this country, with its foundation in the enslavement of African peoples (and genocide against the first inhabitants of the continent), and the determination that this particular capitalist-imperialist country must remain dominant in the world.

Given the history of this country and the fact that, from its founding, slavery played a crucial part in its development (and that, even after slavery was abolished through the Civil War, white supremacy continued to play a crucial role in perpetuating this system, and maintaining the established “order,” in this country) and given the particular role of the South in all this, it is true both that the South would continue to have a special role in perpetuating white supremacy, and everything bound up with it, and that, in every part of the country, the advocates of this particular American “strain” of capitalism-imperialism would uphold, justify, and in various ways propagate white supremacy.

The “left” (“liberal” or “progressive”) variation of this, among the powers-that-be, speaks in terms of “equality,” “diversity” and “inclusiveness,” while presiding over and perpetuating social relations, built into this system, which actually embody inequality and oppression, and require the repeated use of violent repression to enforce them.

The right-wing version, which has now taken on the full dimensions of outright fascism, more openly and aggressively promotes and insists upon overt white supremacy, male supremacy, and other oppressive relations, with the insistence that these are the traditional ways that this country has been held together and has been made “great”—and that undermining this, even through limited concessions to the struggle against oppression, will lead to the loss of everything that has enabled this country to become (and, up to now, remain) dominant in the world. This is why, despite their significant differences in backgrounds and individual personas, William Buckley and Jerry Falwell (Sr.) would take the same position in opposition to the Civil Rights movement in this country, and to the struggle in Africa against white colonial rule—they both did this out of a combination of deep-seated racism and the fear that these struggles would undermine the “strength” and “cohesion” of this country and the top-dog position of U.S. capitalism-imperialism in the world. This is why, today especially, with the capitalist-imperialist system wreaking havoc on countries and people all over the world, in multiple ways, including through its plundering of the environment, and with the massive migrations this has caused, immigration—that is, preventing and reversing immigration, especially of people from non-European countries (the kinds of countries that Donald Trump has infamously referred to as “shit-hole countries”)—has become such a major focus and target of virulent, and violent, white supremacist action.

All this is why today the political (and literal) descendants of the Buckleys and Falwells viciously seek to not simply maintain, but to carry to even greater extremes, the “traditional” oppressive relations of all kinds that have characterized this system and this country from the beginning. And the massive outpouring that has been sparked by the police murder of George Floyd—because it has powerfully shaken the oppressive “established order” by erupting beyond the bounds of meaningless “conversation” and polite requests regarding racial equality, and by sharply posing big questions about the nature of this society and the history of this country—has been met with frenzied and brutal opposition from the Trump/Pence regime and its fascist “base,” and has been the occasion for the profound rot of this country to come oozing out, including in the unhinged screams of unloosed racists attacking the protests as well as Black people, and other people of color, that they randomly encounter.

The Direct Connection: White Supremacy, Male Supremacy, American Supremacy

Just as white supremacy has been poured into the foundation and woven throughout the fabric of the system in this country, so too has male supremacy been an essential part of the system of capitalism-imperialism, and all exploitative systems, in every age and every part of the world.7 And, just as overt and aggressive white supremacy has been, and remains, an essential part of the ideology and program of right-wing forces in this country, so too has been the insistence on the subordinate position of women. Along with the many different forms of the oppression of women, in countries like the U.S., as well as in the Third World (of Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia), there is the fact that a major source of the wealth and corresponding power of the capitalist-imperialist system in this country (and others) is the super-exploitation of women, especially in the Third World. This super-exploitation would not be possible if these masses of women were not maintained in all-around conditions of oppression, deprivation and desperation, enforced with horrific brutality and abuse of all kinds (and one of the major ways women are abused and degraded, in the Third World and in the countries of the so-called “developed world,” including the U.S., is through exploitation in pornography and sex-trafficking, both of which are multi-billion dollar “businesses”).

All of this requires that the relations of male supremacy that have been developed over centuries and millennia be maintained and enforced, even with different variations in different parts of the world and different particular countries. And, here again, religion—and all the more so in its fundamentalist expressions—plays a crucial part. The fact is that

the scriptures, and the notion of god in the scriptures, in the main “monotheistic” (one-god) religions—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—are patriarchal, male supremacist (with “god” spoken of in male, patriarchal terms—“God, the Father,” and so on). The relations being described and insisted upon are patriarchal, male supremacist relations, with women being kept in an inferior position, often brutally so. These scriptures were written by human beings who lived within patriarchal, male supremacist societies, and the scriptures they wrote reflect this.8

This is why the Christian fundamentalist fascists—for whom the subordination of women (to husbands and to men overall) is an article of faith—are so fanatically opposed to the right to abortion. (The fact that more than a few women are involved in the Christian fascist crusade against abortion, and in support of an overall program that actually involves the systematic suppression and degradation of women—this is not a new phenomenon. Among those who are the targets and victims of oppressive relations, there have always been those who have accommodated themselves to—and even acted as enforcers of—those relations and the “traditions” they embody, because they have not only been cowed and conditioned to accept the inferior position into which these relations cast them, but to actually fear that violating these “traditions” will lead to chaos and ruin.) The Christian fascist zealotry in opposition to abortion is not really about the fraudulent notion that abortion amounts to “killing babies” (the overwhelming majority of abortions are carried out during the early stages of pregnancy, when the fetus is tiny and very undeveloped—and, during the whole period of pregnancy, the fetus is part of, completely integrated with and dependent on the body and bodily functions of the woman: it is not yet an actual independent human being). That this opposition to abortion is not about “killing babies” is demonstrated by (among other things) the fact that these opponents of the right to abortion also oppose, with equal fanaticism, birth control which prevents pregnancy in the first place.

What is really involved is that abortion, and birth control, help to provide women with a certain independence, a freedom to decide whether and when to have children—and, yes, a certain freedom to engage in sexual relations of their own choosing, on the basis of their own desire and volition, without having to be worried about whether they are going to become pregnant when they have neither wanted nor decided to do so. It is this relative independence and freedom that causes a frenzy among Christian fascists, because it runs counter to reducing the role of women to “helpmates” to husbands and breeders of children for those husbands in patriarchal, male-dominated families, and to the subordinate and oppressed position of women in society as a whole.

Just as it is the case that although there are parts of the New Testament of the Bible that can be invoked to “justify” white supremacy—passages that uphold slavery, for example—it is especially in the Old Testament that there is the strongest basis for this, this is also the case with regard to the subordination and oppression of women. And this is why, despite all their rapturous invocations of Jesus, it is the Old Testament (and, to use Kevin Phillips’ apt phrase, the Old Testament “god of war”) that most anchors these Christian fascists in their reactionary fanaticism.

In line with this, although what is involved in the struggle for the rights of LGBTQ people is not entirely reducible to the question of overcoming patriarchy, it is definitely the case that the assertion of patriarchy and male supremacy is very much involved in the Christian fascist opposition to these rights: the insistence that there are only two, absolutely different and separate genders, the whole notion of what is the proper, or “god-ordained,” character of a man and a woman, and of sexual relations that must be limited to those between a dominant man and a subordinate woman (as reflected in the Christian fascist mantra: “God created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve”).

Where you have religious fundamentalism, you are going to have not only the forceful assertion of patriarchy and misogyny (hatred of women) but also aggressive patriotism—and notice that these two words have the same root, referring to allegiance to (and subordination to the authority of) the father(land).And, as we have seen, you are going to have white supremacy and racism.

In the swirling poisonous chaos inside the minds of these Christian fundamentalist zealots (and allied fascists), it is “just one crazy thing after another”: first Black people demanding equality and an end to injustice,...now all people of color complaining about racism...now “illegal aliens” swarming across the border...now women insisting on their right to be independent and equal...now queers, “freaks” and “perverts” wanting to get married, raise children, and use any old bathroom they choose...now they’re tearing down Confederate statues...now they’re going after the National Anthem and burning the American flag...and who knows what’s next?!—“they’re coming for us and everything we hold sacred!”

What ties all this together, in terms of the method of thinking—or non-thinking—of the fascist fanatics is not simply the departure from but the aggressive rejection of the scientific method, and critical rational thinking, and in its place the embrace of all kinds of lunatic conspiracy theories and other demented notions which serve to reinforce their prejudices and paranoia.

In all this we see the “direct connection” between the white supremacy of the Trump/Pence regime and its fascist followers and “their open disgust and hatred for LGBT people as well as women, their willful rejection of science and the scientific method, their raw ‘America First’ jingoism and trumpeting of ‘the superiority of western civilization’ and their bellicose wielding of military power, including their expressed willingness and blatant threats to use nuclear weapons, to destroy countries.”

As Hubert Locke’s statement cited earlier also points out, this is all tied together. And, according to the fascists, in particular the Christian fundamentalist fascists, all the “evil” is concentrated in the fact that “they took God out of the schools” (in the early 1960s, with the Supreme Court decision which, proceeding on the basis of the constitutional separation of church and state, outlawed school-sponsored prayer).

All this is embodied in the program of the Trump/Pence regime, with its declarations about restoring (and keeping) the supposed “greatness” of America. All this is the very real horror they are determined to impose on not just the people in this country but on the world and humanity as a whole.

You Cannot Break the Chains of Oppression by Opposing Only One—You Need to Break All the Chains

Returning to where I began, the fact is that Jerry Falwell (Jr.) and Liberty University stand against liberty and against what a university and education should be all about. The founder of Liberty University, Jerry Falwell (Sr.), was a vehement opponent of the scientific theory of evolution (and the scientific method overall). In opposition to the already well-established truth, and the continually increasing evidence, that all living things on the earth, including human beings, are the result of billions of years of natural evolution, Falwell insisted that everything on the earth is exactly as god created it in the first place. And continuing with this anti-scientific, and dangerous, lunacy, Falwell Jr. is also firmly in the camp of the deniers of climate change and in particular the fact that human activity is playing the decisive role in the accelerating climate crisis. That an institution with someone like the Falwells as its head, and with the kind of anti-scientific indoctrination that flows from their outlook—that this could be accredited as a university is incredible. But, more than that, it is a testament to the bankrupt nature of this whole system in this country, which lends legitimacy to all this and which has spawned a fascist regime not only headed by the narcissistic sociopathic maniac Trump but filled with legions of lunatic Christian fundamentalist fascists, including those holding powerful positions, such as Mike Pence, William Barr, Mike Pompeo, Ben Carson, Betsy DeVos and many others.

Contrast this anti-scientific lunacy with the orientation and approach to education that is set forth in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, a sweeping vision and concrete blueprint for a radically different and far better society and world:

The educational system in the New Socialist Republic in North America must enable people to pursue the truth wherever it leads, with a spirit of critical thinking and scientific curiosity, and in this way to continually learn about the world and be better able to contribute to changing it in accordance with the fundamental interests of humanity.9

It is a good thing that Jerry Falwell Jr.’s exhibition of his racism has been met with outrage and protest, even from among the students and alumni of Liberty University (as well as others). But if this outrage is confined and misdirected into a misguided and fundamentally erroneous notion that this racism is somehow out of keeping with the supposedly positive—but in reality extremely negative—“values” of Liberty University (and the Christian fundamentalism on which it is based), this will result not only in “de-fanging” this outrage but in reinforcing the “package” of reactionary, yes, fascistic, outlook and aims that are represented not simply by Falwell but by the Trump/Pence regime to which he is closely tied and for which he is a relentless advocate and apologist.

There is, in fact, a direct line from the Confederacy to these fascists of today, and a direct connection between all the various forms of oppression that they seek to fortify and viciously enforce. You cannot finally and completely do away with racism and white supremacy without also doing away with patriarchy and male supremacy, and all the other oppressive relations that are interwoven together with white supremacy. And, fundamentally, you cannot abolish all this without abolishing, through an actual revolution, the system of capitalism-imperialism whose basic relations of oppression, exploitation and plunder, of people and the environment, these fascists are seeking to carry to monstrous extremes.10


1. THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO! In The Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America, A Better World IS Possible. Video of this October 2017 speech by Bob Avakian is available at revcom.us. [back]

2. “Reflections on Pacific School of Religion's Response to the Religious Right,” by Dr. Hubert Locke, also available at revcom.us—emphasis added. [back]

3. Bob Avakian, Away With All Gods! Unchaining the Mind and Radically Changing the World, Insight Press, 2008, pp. 141-42. The statements by Kevin Phillips cited here are from Kevin Phillips, American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century, Viking Press, 2006.

There is a definite irony in the fact that Phillips was one of the main people responsible for formulating the Republican Party’s “southern strategy,” which was based on the appeal to the racism of white southerners who are characterized by the very kinds of views and sentiments that Phillips describes, critically, here. It seems that Phillips later came to regret at least much of where this “southern strategy” has led, and this book of his contains important exposure and analysis of this. [back]

4. Katherine Stewart, The Good News Club, The Christian Right’s Stealth Assault on America’s Children, PublicAffairs, 2012. [back]

5. THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO! In The Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America, A Better World IS Possible. [back]

6. See Revolting Barbarity, Shameless Hypocrisy, For Those Who Cling to the Myth of “This Great American Democracy”: Some Simple Questions. Emphasis has been added here to Douglass’ statement. This article by Bob Avakian is available at revcom.us. [back]

7. In a number of works—and in particular in Break ALL The Chains! Bob Avakian on the Emancipation of Women and the Communist Revolution (which is available in BA’s Collected Works at revcom.us)—Bob Avakian analyzes the historical and material roots of the oppression of women, in societies divided into exploiters and exploited, the road to the emancipation of women from this oppression, and the pivotal relation of this to the communist revolution with its ultimate goal of emancipating all of humanity from relations of exploitation and oppression. [back]

8. This is from the article “Morality Without Religion, Emancipation That Is Real,” by Bob Avakian, which is available at revcom.us. [back]

9. The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by Bob Avakian, is available at revcom.us. [back]

10. In Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, Bob Avakian speaks to those crucial questions—analyzing what an actual revolution really involves, the need and the basis for this revolution, how this revolution can be carried out, up against the powerful oppressive and repressive forces of this system of capitalism-imperialism, and what are the goals of this revolution. The text and video of this speech by Bob Avakian are available at revcom.us. [back]

Bob Avakian (BA) is the most important political thinker and leader in the world today.

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The direct line from the Confederacy to the fascists of today

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Quotations From Bob Avakian on the Urgent Need to Drive Out the Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting in This Election, the Need to Take the Streets, and the Fundamental Need for REVOLUTION

| revcom.us

 

Right now, for everyone who is concerned with ending injustice and oppression, and with the question of whether humanity will have a future worth living—or will have a future at all—removing the Trump/Pence fascist regime from power is an immediate, urgent question and truly historic imperative.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020
ON THE IMMEDIATE CRITICAL SITUATION, THE URGENT NEED TO DRIVE OUT THE FASCIST TRUMP/PENCE REGIME, VOTING IN THIS ELECTION, AND THE FUNDAMENTAL NEED FOR REVOLUTION

We can recognize the looming shadow of a situation where not just school children, but everyone in society, will be required to pledge allegiance to a white Christian fascist America.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

Fascism is: open and aggressive dictatorship, trampling on and perverting the rule of law, relying on violence and terror, on behalf of the predatory capitalist system and as an extreme attempt to deal with profound social division and acute crises (both within the country and in the global arena).

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

Hitler and the NAZIs came to power in Germany in the 1930s through the “normal channels” of the “democratic system” there—including elections—but there was absolutely nothing “legitimate” about their rule and all the truly unspeakable horrors it led to. And the same basic principle applies to the Trump/Pence regime. By its very nature and content, there is no such thing as “legitimate” fascism.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

If this regime is able to further consolidate its power and make further leaps in implementing its horrific objectives, this will result in a devastating setback for any attempt to resist injustice and oppression, and will very likely lead to the brutal repression, and even annihilation, of defenders of democratic rights and proponents of any meaningful progressive reforms, as well as any organized forces fighting for fundamental revolutionary change.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

The question is not whether Biden and the Democrats represent something “good,” or whether, in fundamental terms, the Democrats are “better” than the Republicans. Both of these parties are ruling class political parties, and none of their candidates represent anything “good” in the most basic and essential sense. Biden is not “better” than Trump, in any meaningful way—except that he is not Trump and is not part of the move to consolidate and enforce fascist rule, with everything that means.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

The fact is that there can be one—and only one—“good” that can come out of this election: delivering a decisive defeat to Trump and the whole fascist regime. Doing this would create far better conditions for continuing to wage the struggle against everything represented by the Trump/Pence regime and all the oppression and injustices of this system, and would be a great gift to the people of the world.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

Our fundamental goal, and guiding star, remains: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! 

In everything we do, including in all the struggles we take part in that are themselves short of revolution, our consistent approach is, and must be, to make all this serve that fundamental goal of revolution and the emancipation of all humanity.

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020

Only someone worse than a fool would want that racist Confederacy-loving white supremacist, pussy-grabbing misogynistic male supremacist, LGBT-bashing, rights-trampling, science-denying, environment-destroying, war-mongering, xenophobic “America first” bloodsucking fascist motherfucker Trump to get re-elected.

Genocide means killing off a whole people, or a large part of that people. Genocide is what the Europeans did to the native peoples in America, while stealing their land. Genocide is Hitler and the NAZIs murdering six million Jews. Donald Trump is a genocidal racist.

Donald Trump—GENOCIDAL RACIST

Donald Trump hates Black people and everybody who is not a white, English-speaking, Christian American.” If he could, he would kill off a whole lot of them, and put many of the rest in jail for life, or drive them out of the country.

Donald Trump—GENOCIDAL RACIST

The minds of these fascists will not be changed by “being nice” to them or acting as if their “grievances” are “legitimate.”

The reality is that these “grievances” flow from resentment against any changes that even slightly undermine white supremacy, male supremacy, xenophobia (hatred of foreigners), rabid American chauvinism, and the unrestrained plundering of the environment.

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS, AND STAY IN THE STREETS DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW! Part 1

As truly dangerous as these fascist threats and acts of violence, and preparations to carry out even more violence, are—being cowed by and capitulating to this would lead to a far greater horror.

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS, AND STAY IN THE STREETS DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW! Part 2

Losing one’s ability to be outraged, and to act on that outrage, means losing one’s humanity—and, given the situation we are facing, it amounts to collaborating with the fascism of this regime and the catastrophe toward which it is relentlessly propelling humanity.

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS, AND STAY IN THE STREETS DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW! Part 2

As for vice president Mike Pence: While he might not express things in the same blustering, blatant and vulgar ways as Trump, Pence is a religious fundamentalist fanatic, who represents a powerful force driving the whole fascist program of this regime.

VICE PRESIDENT PENCE—FUNDAMENTALIST FANATIC, CRUCIAL FORCE IN THE FASCIST REGIME

While “old school” NAZIs and armed thugs (like the Proud Boys), are useful as storm troopers for the fascist Trump/Pence regime, it is Christian fundamentalism that is the hard core and driving force of this regime.

VICE PRESIDENT PENCE—FUNDAMENTALIST FANATIC, CRUCIAL FORCE IN THE FASCIST REGIME

Do any of the bourgeois politicians, of either the Democratic or Republican Party, represent anything good?

No. They all represent something very bad: the system of capitalism-imperialism that is based on monstrous, literally murderous exploitation and oppression of masses of people, not just in this country but all over the world.

Are all these politicians—and both of these political parties—“the same”?

No, again. They have real differences over how this system should be governed, and enforced, and how this society should be held together under the rule of this system.

Do these differences actually matter for those who are exploited and oppressed under this system, for all those who aspire to a more just world?

It depends. Most of the time, the differences between these two parties are not significant enough to make it right and necessary to single out one party and focus on opposing it. But, on very rare occasions, these differences do matter that much. This is one of those times.

THE ACUTE FASCIST DANGER—RISING ABOVE PETTY “LEFTISM,” ACTING IN THE INTERESTS OF HUMANITY, Basic Questions, Existential Stakes

Driving out the fascist Trump/Pence regime is urgently necessary. It concentrates the question of whether there will be any favorable basis for continuing the struggle against racist oppression and police terror and every kind of injustice and oppression, as well as the plunder of the environment. It concentrates the question of whether there will be a future—one worth living—for humanity.

Refusing to recognize this reality, saying it does not matter now which group of politicians is in power, and taking up the worse than meaningless stance that “these politicians are all the same”—this is not simply silly pseudo-“left” sectarian nonsense—it amounts to active collaboration with this fascist regime and the very real horrors it is relentlessly moving to hammer into place.

THE ACUTE FASCIST DANGER—RISING ABOVE PETTY “LEFTISM,” ACTING IN THE INTERESTS OF HUMANITY, Basic Questions, Existential Stakes

A one-sided civil war—waged only by the forces of fascism against everyone and everything they hate and are determined to wipe out or beat into submission—would be a disaster. Ignoring the reality that these fascists are definitely prepared to carry out such a civil war, if they see it as necessary to achieve their objectives, will only make such a disaster more likely. And nothing good will come from relying on those, like the leaders of the Democratic Party, who refuse to call out this fascism for what it is and oppose it on that basis, because doing so would call into question the “legitimacy” of their whole system, which has given rise to this fascism.

Bob Avakian on CIVIL WAR AND REVOLUTION

What is urgently needed is a massive struggle against the fascism of the Trump/Pence regime and determined opposition to the “base” it is mobilizing in its support. This struggle needs to be waged in a serious way, in accordance with the actual stakes involved—not seeking or initiating violence but also not cowed into submission by the actions of the fascists.

Bob Avakian on CIVIL WAR AND REVOLUTION

Far too often, people who claim to be “woke” say that, since Black people have always been subjected to horrific oppression in this country, Trump is no different than other politicians, and there is no reason, and no need, to focus on opposing Trump and building mass mobilization to demand the removal of the Trump/Pence regime. This is like arguing that, since this country was founded in slavery, it makes no difference if slavery is brought back now!

People need to understand that Trump is a genocidal racist.  He may not be trying to bring back literal slavery but he is definitely aiming to take this country back to a situation where overt white supremacy is blatantly promoted, codified in law and court decisions, and enforced through systematic, full-blown white supremacist violence.

SLEEPWALKING “WOKENESS” AND THE TRUMP/PENCE NIGHTMARE

There can be no “reconciliation” with these fascists—whose “grievances” are based on fanatical resentment against any limitation on white supremacy, male supremacy, xenophobia (hatred of foreigners), rabid American chauvinism, and the unrestrained plundering of the environment, and are increasingly expressed in literally lunatic terms. There can be no “reconciliation” with this, other than on the terms of these fascists, with all the terrible implications and consequences of that!

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS, AND STAY IN THE STREETS DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW! Part 2

DONALD TRUMP ISN’T “TOUGH,” HE’S A BLOATED BAG OF FASCIST FECES

Bob Avakian (BA) is the most important political thinker and leader in the world today.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/659/bob-avakian_statement-on-the-immediate-critical-situation-en.html

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN
August 1, 2020

ON THE IMMEDIATE CRITICAL SITUATION,
THE URGENT NEED TO DRIVE OUT THE FASCIST TRUMP/PENCE REGIME,
VOTING IN THIS ELECTION,
AND THE FUNDAMENTAL NEED FOR REVOLUTION

| revcom.us

 

1The situation today holds truly unprecedented and momentous challenges, with profound implications not only for the people in this country but for all of humanity. Three years ago, I spoke to this reality—which has become even more pronounced, and even more dangerous, in the time since then:

We are confronted by—we are now being ruled by—a fascist regime: relentlessly assaulting civil rights and liberties and openly promoting bigotry and inequality; acting with callous disregard or cold-blooded malice toward those they consider inferior and a drain or stain on the country; on a mission to deny health care to millions who will suffer and many who will die without it; crudely degrading women, as objects of plunder, breeders of children without the right to abortion or birth control, subordinate to husbands and men in general; defying the science of climate change, attacking the science of evolution, and repudiating the scientific method overall; a regime brandishing an arsenal of mass destruction and threatening nuclear war; intensifying state terror against Muslims, immigrants, and people in the inner cities; unleashing and giving encouragement and support to brutal thugs spewing vile “America First,” white supremacist, male supremacist, and anti-LGBT venom—a regime that boasts of all this and declares its intention to do even worse.

This is a regime headed by “a demented bully” with his finger on the nuclear button. It is a regime that, without exaggeration, threatens not just greatly heightened suffering for the masses of humanity but the very existence of humanity itself, through its intensified moves to further the plunder of the environment and its boasts of unequaled weapons of mass destruction and its blatant declaration of willingness to use those weapons, including its massive nuclear arsenal.

I have also emphasized that it is this system of capitalism-imperialism which, through its “normal workings,” has brought forth this fascism, and that no fundamental change for the better can be brought about under this system, and instead this system must be overthrown and replaced by a radically different and far better system, in order to abolish and uproot all relations of exploitation and oppression, and the violent conflicts they give rise to—all of which is built into the foundations of this system and its ongoing functioning and requirements.

Right now, for everyone who is concerned with ending injustice and oppression, and with the question of whether humanity will have a future worth living—or will have a future at all—removing the Trump/Pence fascist regime from power is an immediate, urgent question and truly historic imperative.

And, for those who understand the need for revolution, for the overthrow of this system, as the fundamental solution to the continuing horrors this system causes for the masses of humanity (whether this system is ruled through an open fascist dictatorship, or the disguised “democratic” dictatorship, of the ruling capitalist class), the immediate struggle to oust the Trump/Pence regime from power must be approached not as a “diversion” from (or “substitute for”) building the movement for the revolution that is needed, but precisely as part—a crucial part and urgent requirement—of the overall work of building for this revolution.

Our fundamental goal, and guiding star, remains: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! 

In everything we do, including in all the struggles we take part in that are themselves short of revolution, our consistent approach is, and must be, to make all this serve that fundamental goal of revolution and the emancipation of all humanity.

***********

Normally, we revolutionary communists argue that people should not vote in bourgeois elections, which serve to reinforce the existing system of capitalism-imperialism and feed popular illusions that exploitation, oppression and injustices can somehow be “reformed away” short of getting rid of the system that gives rise to these horrors in the first place. But is this the right position to take in relation to this particular election?

To answer this, we need to look at the whole picture.  [Read again]

2Already, in the nearly four years it has been in power, we have been forced to witness and endure the horrors already committed, and the grave danger posed, by the Trump/Pence regime. Trump ran his campaign in 2016 on what amounted to a straight-up fascist program, including blatant white supremacy and male supremacy, and xenophobic racism toward immigrants, particularly those from Mexico and other countries which Trump regards as “shit-holes,” as well as open advocacy of torture and thuggery by police and Trump’s “civilian” supporters. And, once in power, Trump has blasted ahead with the implementation of this program, steamrolling over any “institutional norms” that stood in the way of this, even in the face of impeachment—and with heightened arrogance and momentum once his fellow fascists in the Republican Party voted to acquit him in the Senate.

Essentially, everything that is described about this regime at the beginning of this statement is what Trump and those around him have carried out with a vengeance. This has become all the more flagrant and aggressive with the approach of the election scheduled for this November. And imagine what Trump will do if he is given a second-term “mandate” through re-election this coming November.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the response of Trump and Pence to this has also provided another graphic illustration of the anti-scientific nature of this regime and its utter disregard for the suffering of masses of people, especially those most despised by this regime and most vulnerable to and hit hardest by this pandemic.

But, as horrific as all this has been, it is not just a matter of horrific policies but of qualitatively different form of rule, based on brutal repression and violation of what are supposed to be the most basic rights.

Already we have seen Trump, in flagrant violation of Constitutional principles, send occupying storm troopers, from various federal government agencies, to criminalize dissent and suppress people protesting in Portland and other cities, and to add to the reign of terror against masses of people in the inner cities of Chicago and elsewhere.

We have seen Trump’s crude displays of “America First” jingoism, including his repeated calls for severely punishing those who, in his view, have failed to show the appropriate patriotic fervor, or who have dared to raise criticism and protest against some of the more glaring oppression carried out by enforcers of this system, in particular the ongoing brutality and murder of Black, Brown, and Native American people by police. We have witnessed his continual encouragement of white supremacist thuggery, by police and by “Second Amendment people” and other “very fine people.”

All this calls to mind the rise to power and the rule of Hitler and the NAZIs in Germany during the 1930s and early 1940s. As Hitler built his fascist movement, thugs would be mobilized to brutalize and terrorize people who didn’t show support for Hitler and the NAZIs—assaulting them on the street and in other public places. Once the NAZI fascist state had consolidated its power, any opposition was severely punished and crushed. All those who did not openly endorse and proclaim the official NAZI ideology were targeted. Large numbers of people were purged from public institutions—all those, in particular Jews but others as well, who were deemed “alien” to the “pure Germanic race” and an obstacle to the monstrous aims of the NAZIs. Beginning with the communists, but before long encompassing the Jewish population, Roma people, homosexuals, and others, concentration camps were filled with those who were considered a threat to the NAZIs or a “stain” on the German nation. And this led, before long, to the mass genocide of millions of Jews in Germany and countries conquered and occupied by the NAZIs.

All this did not happen all at once—but it took place within a relatively short period of time (a decade or so), and with an increasingly accelerating pace. The rule of law was not openly and formally abandoned altogether, but the “law” and “the rule of law” became the same as what Hitler and the NAZIs said it was. Much of what Hitler and the NAZIs did, during their reign of terror and genocide, was “in accordance with the law”—law that they had reduced to nothing more than their barbaric aims and means, murderously enforced by institutions which had been stripped of any meaning or purpose other than what conformed to and served the NAZI agenda, reduced to nothing more than instruments of NAZI atrocity.

In the whole of what Trump is currently doing—including his open calls to overturn Supreme Court decisions and precedents (for example, to outlaw abortion and punish flag burning), along with his repeated violations of the law and due process of the law and his insistence that he is the law—we can see the looming shadow of even more overt fascist dictatorship. For that is what fascism is: open and aggressive dictatorship, trampling on and perverting the rule of law, relying on violence and terror, on behalf of the predatory capitalist system and as an extreme attempt to deal with profound social division and acute crises (both within the country and in the global arena). And with the moves by Trump’s “Secretary of Education,” Betsy DeVos—who is herself a Christian fascist whose ultimate goal is to replace public, secular education with schools based on Christian fundamentalist indoctrination—we can see the outline of the Trump/Pence regime version of “official (Christian fascist) ideology.” We can recognize the looming shadow of a situation where not just school children, but everyone in society, will be required to pledge allegiance to a white Christian fascist America.

A statement from the organization Refuse Fascism (RefuseFascism.org) argues eloquently and powerfully:

Actual lines are being drawn, with catastrophic consequences for all of humanity. If we lose the right to protest—through legal or extra‑legal means—all bets are off. Fascism is not just the worst of a pendulum swing. It is a qualitative change in how society is governed. Dissent is piece by piece criminalized. The truth is bludgeoned. Group after group is demonized and targeted along a trajectory that leads to real horrors. All this has been happening for more than three years, yet with concentration camps at the border, Trump acquitted in a sham impeachment trial, and an executive order to protect monuments while First Amendment rights are criminalized with actual jail time, too many still want to bask in the comfortable delusions that this is not really happening. This is fascism. It is happening, and time is running out to stop it.

For far too long, those of us, including the diverse voices represented by Refuse Fascism, who have been pointing to the very real immediate danger—and potentially even greater danger—represented by the Trump/Pence regime were far too often met with arrogant dismissal by those who could not, or would not, see the reality and the trajectory of this regime; who dismissed the danger by ignoring or downplaying many of the terrible things this regime had already done; and who then pointed to whatever had not yet been done by this regime as supposed “proof” that it would not do those things. Now, at this late and crucial hour, to treat as “alarmist exaggeration” the fascist nature of this regime and its very real parallels with the horrors perpetrated by previous fascist regimes—this is to ignore not only vital lessons from history, but also the extremely dangerous reality of the current situation, including the significance of the fact that Trump—fulfilling his promise to Christian fascists—has stacked the courts, all the way up to the Supreme Court, with legions of Christian fascists and other extreme right-wing judges, who will move to “legally legitimize” the whole horrific program of the Trump/Pence fascist regime.

If this regime is able to further consolidate its power and make further leaps in implementing its horrific objectives, this will result in a devastating setback for any attempt to resist injustice and oppression, and will very likely lead to the brutal repression, and even annihilation, of defenders of democratic rights and proponents of any meaningful progressive reforms, as well as any organized forces fighting for fundamental revolutionary change.

In the most essential sense, the urgent need to mobilize masses of people around the demand to force the removal of this fascist regime is not in conflict with the mass outpouring against institutionalized white supremacy and police terror, or other mass movements against the outrages of this system, but is in basic unity with and is crucial for all these struggles, and all this can and must be understood, and built, in a powerful mutually reinforcing way.  [Read again]

3Simply relying on voting to oust this regime will almost certainly lead to very bad, even disastrous results. This is especially true given what this regime is already doing, and what Trump is saying, in relation to the election.

Through completely unfounded attacks on voting by mail, and preparation to intimidate and obstruct Black people and Latinos attempting to exercise their right to vote, moves are already underway by the Trump/Pence regime and its supporters to suppress the votes of those who are likely to vote against Trump. As he did in the 2016 election, Trump has already indicated his likely refusal to accept the result of the election this time if he is not the winner. And now Trump has openly “floated” the idea of “delaying” the election.

Given what Trump has already done, and what he has blatantly declared, as much as it is horrifying it is also very realistic to envision this regime stationing storm troopers, loyal to this regime, in cities all across this country—viciously moving to suppress any expression of resistance or opposition—with the approach of the election, and continuing beyond that.

The ongoing pandemic, or executive orders to quell “civil disorder” (i.e., protests) in many parts of the country, could also serve as pretexts to “postpone” the election, perhaps indefinitely.

And it is certainly not unthinkable that Trump would move to create a “national emergency”—for example, by carrying out acts of war, against Iran or possibly even China—in order to further institute even more extreme repressive conditions, with even greater numbers of para-military storm troopers occupying cities, in order either to cancel (or indefinitely “delay”) the election, or to control the voting and the results of the election if it is held.

It is of critical importance to continue to build resistance, right now and in an increasingly powerful way, against any and all repressive moves by Trump, including by building mass opposition to this regime’s attempts at voter suppression and through mass mobilization in support and defense of those who are targets of such suppression.

With the full awareness of what is represented by this fascist regime, and what it means that Trump is not only seeking to suppress the votes of people who will vote against him but is also preparing to utilize forceful, violent repression to remain in office if he is not declared the winner in the election, it is of critical and urgent importance to build now truly massive and sustained mobilization around the unifying demand that this regime must be OUT NOW!—with an orientation of being prepared to continue this even past the election, if the situation requires it.

From the first days of the Trump/Pence regime, Refuse Fascism has been calling out the fascism of this regime and calling for the mass mobilization to drive out this regime that is now, all the more urgently, required. It would have been very good—it could have made a real difference—if all those who hate this regime but failed, or refused, to recognize its actual fascist nature and the great danger to humanity it poses as such, had much earlier responded to and actively taken up this call by Refuse Fascism. Now, finally, there is a growing recognition, and increasing discussion, about the “authoritarian” nature of this regime, and even the use of the term “fascism” to describe it. (As I have pointed out, on the part of many, this is a case of “Oh, now they’re saying” this is fascism, as if that has just become the case. But, with an understanding of the profound stakes involved, it is important to recognize that now is better than never.) The hour is getting late—but it is still not too late to make this mass mobilization a reality. Relying on, and confining actions within, the “norms” and “regular channels” of this system, including the upcoming election, cannot solve this profound and urgent problem, especially when dealing with a fascist regime and its fanatical followers that are determined to trample on and tear up those “norms.”  [Read again]

4At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power. And if, in spite of mass protest demanding the removal of the Trump/Pence regime, this regime remains in power when it is time for voting, then—without placing fundamental reliance on this—using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held). To be clear, this means not a “protest vote” for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump.

This is not because Biden (and the Democratic Party in general) have suddenly become something other than what they are: representatives and instruments of this exploitative, oppressive, and literally murderous system of capitalism-imperialism. The electoral process continues to be what we revcoms have called it—BEB (Bourgeois Electoral Bullshit). It remains the case that no fundamental change for the better can come about through this electoral process, and that, in general and overall, voting under this system serves to reinforce this system, especially if voting is seen as a way—and more so if it is seen as the (only) way—to bring about meaningful change.

But this election is different.

It is true that, with every election, the Democrats run the same basic con game—blackmailing people who hate injustice and oppression to vote for them as the “lesser evil”— insisting in effect that, “You may not agree with everything we say, you may even have serious differences and criticisms regarding what we’re all about—but do you want them to be in power?!” (the openly white supremacist, male supremacist, climate change-denying plunderers of the environment, and all-around reactionary Republican Party). And the Democratic Party has done this, time after time after time, while itself representing and seeking to preside over this system of capitalism-imperialism which has white supremacy, male supremacy, environmental plunder and wars for empire built into it, at the same time as the Democrats make noises about, and take some steps to implement, minor (and ultimately meaningless) reforms to supposedly address these outrages. All this has actually contributed to the development of things toward the terrible situation we are faced with now. It has politically paralyzed many who seek an end to such outrages, reducing them to passive dependents on the Democratic Party and its role in the electoral process, while adding fuel to the fire of the die-hard fascist sections of society that insist on absolutely no mitigation of these outrages—no concession to the struggle against this—and in fact demand the brutal reinforcement of this oppression and outrage, in extreme terms.

But, again, this election is different—in a crucially important way. The question is not whether Biden and the Democrats represent something “good,” or whether, in fundamental terms, the Democrats are “better” than the Republicans. Both of these parties are ruling class political parties, and none of their candidates represent anything “good” in the most basic and essential sense. Biden is not “better” than Trump, in any meaningful way—except that he is not Trump and is not part of the move to consolidate and enforce fascist rule, with everything that means.

To approach this election from the standpoint of which candidate is “better” means failing to understand the truly profound stakes and potential consequences of what is involved. The fact is that there can be one—and only one—“good” that can come out of this election: delivering a decisive defeat to Trump and the whole fascist regime. Doing this would create far better conditions for continuing to wage the struggle against everything represented by the Trump/Pence regime and all the oppression and injustices of this system, and would be a great gift to the people of the world.

Again, in these very particular, extraordinary circumstances, if the Trump/Pence regime is still in power by the time of the election, in spite of mass mobilizations demanding the ouster of this regime, then the struggle against this fascist regime needs to include voting against Trump by voting for Biden, while continuing to build sustained mass mobilization against this regime and everything it represents and concentrates, and being prepared to carry forward this mass mobilization if Trump loses the election but refuses to leave.  [Read again]

5In recognizing this, however, it is extremely important to stress once again, in the strongest terms, that, for the reasons spoken to here, relying on voting—without this mass mobilizationwill very likely lead to disaster.

There is the possibility that Trump could actually win the election—although whether he wins or loses, this election will involve unprecedented moves to suppress the votes of those opposing him and to use other illegal means to enable him to remain in power. And, even more essentially, with the clear understanding of the fascist nature of this regime, and the full implications of that, this regime is illegitimate, regardless of the means by which it has come to power and moves to retain and further consolidate power. Hitler and the NAZIs came to power in Germany in the 1930s through the “normal channels” of the “democratic system” there—including elections—but there was absolutely nothing “legitimate” about their rule and all the truly unspeakable horrors it led to. And the same basic principle applies to the Trump/Pence regime. By its very nature and content, there is no such thing as “legitimate” fascism.

Whatever happens with the election—and even if Biden wins and succeeds in actually taking office—there will be no “return to normalcy.” First of all, the fascists—those still in powerful positions, and the fascist “base” in the wider society—will not allow it. And, in any case, no one should want it. The “normalcy” of this system has always included the barbaric oppression of Black people and other people of color, with systematic terror, brutality and murder to enforce this oppression. It has always included vicious discrimination, bigotry and violence against immigrants, women, LGBTQ people, and any others regarded as inferior and “alien.” It has always included unjust wars for empire, and continuing crimes against humanity. It now poses a threat to the very existence of humanity through its increasing devastation of the environment and the ever present threat of nuclear war.

The many-sided struggle to oust the fascist Trump/Pence regime must be taken up not as a substitute for but as a part—a crucial part—of moving to get beyond all that is represented by and embodied in the “normalcy” of this system.  [Read again]

6Finally, regardless of what happens with this election, it remains profoundly true—and it is vitally important to recognize, and to act on the understanding—that no fundamental change for the better can come under this system. Even as sustained mass mobilization urgently needs to be built around the unifying demand of Trump/Pence OUT NOW!, all those who have come to see that institutionalized white supremacy, male supremacy and the many other outrages and crimes against humanity perpetrated under this system are in fact built into this system of capitalism-imperialism must work together, in an ongoing way, to build a continually growing movement and to strengthen the organized forces for an actual revolution to overthrow this system.

In summation: Given the truly monumental stakes involved, not only in terms of any particular issue, no matter how important, and not merely in terms of this country, but for the masses of people throughout the world and the future of humanity, there is a great need to approach things and act with the sophistication necessary to handle the complex and difficult contradictions involved in all this—having a broad vision, rejecting petty sectarianism and brittle dogmatism, and not falling into a paralyzing “either/or”: either we fight against white supremacy and police terror, or we fight to bring about the removal of the Trump/Pence fascist regime; either we vote in this election, or we build mass struggle against outrageous oppression and against this fascist regime; either we oppose this regime, by all appropriate means, or we work for revolution. In this extraordinary and very complex situation—and from the point of view of advancing the struggle toward the goal of finally eliminating all exploitation and oppression, everywhere—there is an urgent need to do all of thatand to do so with an understanding of the correct and necessary relation between the different parts of this overall approach: putting the main emphasis and reliance on mass mobilization, with voting in this extraordinary situation necessary and important but not the main thing to be relied upon; and, in fundamental terms, making all this contribute to creating more favorable conditions for, and building up the organized forces for, not only resisting the crimes of this system but finally carrying out the revolution that is needed in order to put an end to this monstrously criminal system and its domination in the world, in any form.  [Read again]

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During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/670/bob-avakian-sur-la-situation-critique-immediate-fr.html

Bob Avakian
1 août 2020

SUR LA SITUATION CRITIQUE IMMÉDIATE,
LA NÉCESSITÉ URGENTE DE CHASSER LE RÉGIME FASCISTE DE TRUMP ET PENCE,
LE VOTE DANS CETTE ÉLECTION,
ET LE BESOIN FONDAMENTAL D’UNE RÉVOLUTION

| revcom.us

 

 

We received this translation in French. This is an unofficial translation, and we do not vouch for its accuracy.

1La situation actuelle comporte des défis véritablement sans précédent et d’une importance capitale, avec des implications profondes non seulement pour les habitants de ce pays mais pour l’humanité tout entière. Il y a trois ans, j’ai parlé de cette réalité – qui est devenue encore plus prononcée, et encore plus dangereuse, dans le temps qui s’est écoulé depuis lors :

Nous sommes confrontés à – nous sommes gouvernés par – un régime fasciste : qui s’attaque sans relâche aux droits et libertés civils et promut ouvertement la bigoterie et l’inégalité ; qui agit avec un mépris impitoyable ou une malveillance de sang-froid envers ceux qu’il considère comme inférieurs et comme un fardeau ou une tache sur le pays ; dont la mission englobe le refus de soins de santé à des millions de personnes qui vont souffrir et à beaucoup d’autres qui vont mourir sans ces soins ; un régime qui dégrade grossièrement les femmes, en tant qu’objets de pillage, comme des pondeuses sans droit à l’avortement ou à la contraception, subordonnées aux maris et aux hommes en général ; qui conteste la science du changement climatique, attaque la science de l’évolution et répudie la méthode scientifique dans son ensemble ; un régime qui brandit un arsenal de destruction massive et menace la guerre nucléaire ; qui intensifie la terreur d’État contre les musulmans, les immigrants et les habitants des quartiers populaires ; qui déchaîne et encourage et soutient des voyous brutaux crachant leur venin « priorité à l’Amérique », de suprématie blanche, de suprématie masculine et anti-LGBTQ – un régime qui se vante de tout cela et déclare son intention de faire encore pire.

Il s’agit d’un régime dirigé par « une brute démente » avec le doigt sur le bouton nucléaire. C’est un régime qui, sans exagération, menace non seulement d’accroître considérablement les souffrances des masses de l’humanité, mais aussi l’existence même de l’humanité, par l’intensification de ses actions visant à poursuivre le pillage de l’environnement, par ses armes de destruction massive inégalées et par sa déclaration flagrante de volonté d’utiliser ces armes, y compris son arsenal nucléaire massif.

J’ai aussi souligné que c’est ce système de capitalisme-impérialisme qui, par son « fonctionnement normal », a fait naître ce fascisme et qu’aucun changement fondamental pour le mieux ne peut être apporté dans le cadre de ce système, et qu’au contraire, ce système doit être renversé et remplacé par un système radicalement différent et bien meilleur, afin d’abolir et de déraciner tous les rapports d’exploitation et d’oppression, ainsi que les conflits violents qu’ils engendrent – tout cela étant intégré dans les fondements de ce système et dans son fonctionnement et ses exigences permanents.

À l’heure actuelle, pour tous ceux et toutes celles qui ont à cœur de mettre fin à l’injustice et à l’oppression, et engagent la question de savoir si l’humanité aura un avenir qui en vaut la peine – ou n’aura pas d’avenir du tout : obliger le régime fasciste de Trump/Pence de quitter le pouvoir est une question immédiate et urgente et un impératif véritablement historique.

Et, pour ceux et celles qui comprennent la nécessité de la révolution, du renversement de ce système, comme la solution fondamentale aux horreurs continues que ce système produit pour les masses de l’humanité (que ce système soit dirigé par une dictature fasciste ouverte, ou la dictature « démocratique » déguisée, de la classe capitaliste dominante), la lutte immédiate pour chasser le régime Trump/Pence du pouvoir doit être abordée non pas comme une « diversion » (ou un « substitut ») de la construction du mouvement pour la révolution qui est nécessaire, mais précisément comme une partie – une partie cruciale et une exigence urgente – du travail global de construction de cette révolution.

Notre objectif fondamental, et notre étoile polaire, demeure : LA RÉVOLUTION – RIEN DE MOINS ! 

Dans tout ce que nous faisons, y compris dans toutes les luttes auxquelles nous participons et qui ne sont pas elles-mêmes de nature révolutionnaire, notre approche constante est, et doit être, de mettre tout cela au service de cet objectif fondamental de la révolution et de l’émancipation de l’humanité tout entière.

***********

Normalement, nous, les communistes révolutionnaires, soutenons que les gens ne devraient pas voter aux élections bourgeoises, qui servent à renforcer le système existant de capitalisme-impérialisme et alimentent des illusions populaires selon lesquelles l’exploitation, l’oppression et les injustices peuvent d’une certaine manière être « réformées » sans se débarrasser du système qui est à l’origine de ces horreurs. Mais est-ce la bonne position à adopter par rapport à cette élection particulière ?

Pour y répondre, nous devons examiner la situation dans son ensemble.  [Relisez]

2Déjà, depuis près de quatre ans qu’il est au pouvoir, nous avons été contraints d’assister à et d’endurer les horreurs déjà commises, et le grave danger que représente le régime Trump/Pence. Trump a mené sa campagne en 2016 sur ce qui équivalait à un programme fasciste pur et simple, englobant une suprématie blanche et une suprématie masculine flagrantes, et un racisme xénophobe envers les immigrants, en particulier ceux du Mexique et d’autres pays que Trump considère comme des « trous de merde », ainsi qu’un plaidoyer ouvert en faveur de la torture et de la brutalité de la part de la police et des partisans « civils » de Trump. Et, une fois au pouvoir, Trump a mis en œuvre ce programme à toute allure, écrasant toutes les « normes institutionnelles » faisant obstacle, même face à la destitution – et avec encore plus d’arrogance et d’élan une fois que ses collègues fascistes du parti républicain ont voté pour l’acquitter au Sénat.

Essentiellement, tout ce qui est décrit à propos de ce régime au début de cette déclaration est ce que Trump et ceux qui l’entourent ont fait avec acharnement. Cela est devenu d’autant plus flagrant et agressif à l’approche des élections prévues en novembre 2020. Et imaginez ce que fera Trump s’il se voit confier un second « mandat » par le biais d’une réélection en novembre.

La pandémie COVID-19 et la réponse de Trump et Pence à celle-ci ont également fourni une autre illustration graphique de la nature anti-scientifique de ce régime et de son mépris total pour la souffrance des masses populaires, en particulier celles que ce régime déteste le plus ainsi que les plus vulnérables et les plus fortement touchées par cette pandémie.

Mais, aussi horrible que tout cela ait été, il ne s’agit pas seulement de politiques horribles, mais d’une forme de pouvoir qualitativement différente, basée sur une répression brutale et la violation de ce qui est censé être les droits les plus fondamentaux.

Nous avons déjà vu Trump, en violation flagrante des principes constitutionnels, envoyer des troupes d’assaut et d’occupation, provenant de diverses agences du gouvernement fédéral, pour criminaliser la dissidence et réprimer les personnes qui manifestent à Portland et dans d’autres villes, et pour ajouter au règne de la terreur contre des masses populaires dans les quartiers défavorisés de Chicago et ailleurs.

Nous avons vu les manifestations grossières de chauvinisme de Trump, genre « priorité à l’Amérique », y compris ses appels répétés à punir sévèrement ceux qui, selon lui, n’ont pas fait preuve de la ferveur patriotique appropriée, ou qui ont osé critiquer et protester contre certaines des oppressions les plus voyantes exercées par les exécuteurs de ce système, en particulier la brutalité et le meurtre continus des Noirs, des Latinos et des Amérindiens par la police. Nous avons été témoins de ses incitations continuelles aux violences suprémacistes blanches, par la police et par les « gens du deuxième amendement » et d’autres « gens très bien ».

Tout cela rappelle la montée au pouvoir et la domination d’Hitler et des NAZIs en Allemagne dans les années 1930 et au début des années 1940. Alors qu’Hitler construisait son mouvement fasciste, des voyous étaient mobilisés pour brutaliser et terroriser les personnes qui ne soutenaient pas Hitler et les NAZIs – les agressant dans la rue et dans d’autres lieux publics. Une fois que l’État fasciste NAZI a consolidé son pouvoir, toute opposition était sévèrement punie et écrasée. Tous ceux qui ne soutenaient pas ouvertement et ne proclamaient pas l’idéologie officielle NAZIe étaient visés. Un grand nombre de personnes ont été expulsées des institutions publiques – tous ceux, en particulier les Juifs mais aussi d’autres personnes, qui étaient considérés comme « étrangers » à la « race germanique pure » et comme un obstacle aux objectifs monstrueux des NAZIs. En commençant par les communistes, mais en englobant bientôt la population juive, les Roms, les homosexuels et d’autres, les camps de concentration ont été remplis de ceux qui étaient considérés comme une menace pour les NAZIs ou une « tache » sur la nation allemande. Et cela a conduit, avant longtemps, au génocide de masse de millions de Juifs en Allemagne et dans les pays conquis et occupés par les NAZIs.

Tout cela ne s’est pas produit d’un seul coup, mais dans un laps de temps relativement court (une dizaine d’années), et à un rythme de plus en plus rapide. L’état de droit n’a pas été ouvertement et formellement abandonné, mais la « loi » et « l’état de droit » sont devenus ce que Hitler et les NAZIs ont dit qu’ils étaient. Une grande partie de ce que Hitler et les NAZIs ont fait, pendant leur règne de terreur et de génocide, était « conforme à la loi » – une loi qu’ils avaient réduite à rien d’autre que leurs buts et moyens barbares, appliqués de manière meurtrière par des institutions qui avaient été dépouillées de tout sens ou but autre que ce qui était conforme à et servait le programme NAZI, réduites à rien d’autre que des instruments de l’atrocité NAZIe.

Dans l’ensemble de ce que Trump fait actuellement – y compris ses appels ouverts à l’annulation des décisions et des précédents de la Cour suprême (par exemple, pour interdire l’avortement et punir le fait de brûler le drapeau), ainsi que ses violations répétées de la loi et des procédures légales et son insistance à dire que c’est lui la loi – nous pouvons voir l’ombre imminente d’une dictature fasciste encore plus ouverte. Car c’est cela le fascisme : une dictature ouverte et agressive, piétinant et pervertissant l’état de droit, s’appuyant sur la violence et la terreur, au nom du système capitaliste prédateur et en tant que tentative extrême pour faire face à une division sociale profonde et à des crises aiguës (tant au sein du pays que dans l’arène mondiale). Et avec les initiatives de la « secrétaire à l’éducation » de Trump, Betsy DeVos – elle-même une chrétienne fasciste dont le but ultime est de remplacer l’éducation publique et laïque par des écoles basées sur l’endoctrinement fondamentaliste chrétien – nous pouvons voir les grandes lignes de la version du régime Trump/Pence de « l’idéologie officielle (chrétienne fasciste) ». Nous pouvons reconnaître l’ombre qui plane sur une situation où non seulement les écoliers, mais aussi toute la société, devront prêter allégeance à une Amérique blanche chrétienne fasciste.

Une déclaration de l’organisation Refuse Fascism (RefuseFascism.org) argumente de manière éloquente et puissante :

Des limites réelles sont tracées, avec des conséquences catastrophiques pour toute l’humanité. Si nous perdons le droit de protester – par des moyens légaux ou extra-légaux – tous les paris sont annulés. Le fascisme n’est pas seulement le pire des mouvements de pendule. C’est un changement qualitatif dans la manière dont la société est gouvernée. La dissidence est criminalisée pièce par pièce. La vérité est matraquée. Un groupe après l’autre est diabolisé et ciblé sur une trajectoire qui mène à de véritables horreurs. Tout cela se produit depuis plus de trois ans, mais étant donné les camps de concentration à la frontière, l’acquittement de Trump dans un faux procès de destitution et un décret visant à protéger les monuments, alors que les droits du premier amendement sont criminalisés avec de véritables peines de prison, trop de gens veulent encore se prélasser dans des illusions confortables que tout ceci ne se passe pas vraiment. C’est le fascisme. Ça se passe bel et bien, et le temps presse pour l’arrêter.

Pendant bien trop longtemps, ceux d’entre nous, y compris les diverses voix représentées par Refuse Fasicsm, qui ont souligné le danger immédiat très réel – et potentiellement encore plus grand – représenté par le régime Trump/Pence ont été trop souvent confrontés à un renvoi arrogant de la part de ceux qui ne pouvaient pas, ou ne voulaient pas, voir la réalité et la trajectoire de ce régime ; qui ont rejetté le danger en ignorant ou en minimisant nombre des choses terribles que ce régime avait déjà faites ; et qui ont ensuite ont indiqué tout ce qui n’avait pas encore été fait par ce régime comme une prétendue « preuve » qu’il ne ferait pas ces choses. Maintenant, à cette heure tardive et cruciale, traiter comme une « exagération alarmiste » la nature fasciste de ce régime et ses parallèles très réels avec les horreurs perpétrées par les régimes fascistes précédents, c’est ignorer non seulement les leçons vitales de l’histoire, mais aussi la réalité extrêmement dangereuse de la situation actuelle, y compris la signification du fait que Trump – remplissant sa promesse aux fascistes chrétiens – a empilé les tribunaux, jusqu’à la Cour suprême, avec des légions de fascistes chrétiens et d’autres juges d’extrême droite, qui vont s’efforcer de « légitimer légalement » tout le programme horrifiant du régime fasciste de Trump/Pence.

Si ce régime parvient à consolider davantage son pouvoir et à faire de nouveaux bonds dans la mise en œuvre de ses horribles objectifs, il en résultera un revers dévastateur pour toute tentative de résistance à l’injustice et à l’oppression, et il est très probable que cela conduira à la répression brutale, voire à l’anéantissement, des défenseurs des droits démocratiques et des partisans de toute réforme progressiste significative, ainsi que de toute force organisée luttant pour un changement révolutionnaire fondamental.

Dans le sens le plus essentiel, le besoin urgent de mobiliser les masses populaires autour de la demande de forcer le départ du régime fasciste n’est pas en conflit avec le déferlement de masse contre la suprématie blanche institutionnalisée et la terreur policière, ou d’autres mouvements de masse contre les outrages de ce système, mais est en unité fondamentale avec et est crucial pour toutes ces luttes, et tout cela peut et doit être compris, et construit de manière puissante et permettant de se renforcer mutuellement.  [Relisez]

3Le simple fait de compter sur le vote pour chasser ce régime conduira presque certainement à des résultats très mauvais, voire désastreux. Cela est particulièrement vrai compte tenu de ce que ce régime fait déjà, et de ce que Trump dit, en ce qui concerne les élections.

Par des attaques totalement infondées contre le vote par correspondance, et des préparatifs visant à intimider et à entraver les Noirs et les Latinos qui tentent d’exercer leur droit de vote, le régime Trump/Pence et ses partisans ont déjà entrepris de supprimer les votes de ceux qui sont susceptibles de voter contre Trump. Comme il l’a fait lors de l’élection de 2016, Trump a déjà fait part de son probable refus d’accepter le résultat de l’élection cette fois-ci s’il n’est pas le vainqueur. Et maintenant, Trump a ouvertement « suggéré » l’idée de « retarder » l’élection.

Compte tenu de ce que Trump a déjà fait, et de ce qu’il a déclaré de manière flagrante, autant il est horrifiant, autant il est réaliste d’envisager que ce régime stationne des troupes d’assaut, loyales à ce régime, dans des villes de tout le pays – s’efforçant vicieusement de réprimer toute expression de résistance ou d’opposition – à l’approche des élections, et après.

La pandémie en cours, ou les décrets visant à réprimer le « désordre civil » (c’est-à-dire les protestations) dans de nombreuses régions du pays, pourraient également servir de prétexte pour « reporter » l’élection, peut-être indéfiniment.

Et il n’est certainement pas impensable que Trump cherche à créer une « urgence nationale » – par exemple, en menant des actes de guerre, contre l’Iran ou peut-être même la Chine – afin d’instaurer des conditions encore plus répressives, avec un nombre encore plus important de troupes d’assaut paramilitaires occupant les villes, afin soit d’annuler (ou de « retarder » indéfiniment) l’élection, soit de contrôler le scrutin et les résultats de l’élection si elle a lieu.

Il est d’une importance capitale de continuer à renforcer la résistance, dès maintenant et de manière de plus en plus puissante, contre toutes les mesures répressives prises par Trump, y compris en construisant une opposition de masse aux tentatives de ce régime de supprimer les électeurs et par une mobilisation de masse pour soutenir et défendre ceux qui sont la cible de cette suppression.

Avec la pleine conscience de ce que représente ce régime fasciste, et de ce que cela signifie que Trump ne cherche pas seulement à supprimer les votes des personnes qui voteront contre lui, mais se prépare également à utiliser une répression violente pour rester au pouvoir s’il n’est pas déclaré vainqueur aux élections, il est d’une importance critique et urgente de construire maintenant une mobilisation vraiment massive et soutenue autour de la demande unificatrice de chasser ce régime tout de suite : OUT NOW ! avec l’orientation d’être prêt à continuer cela même après les élections, si la situation l’exige.

Dès les premiers jours du régime Trump/Pence, le fascisme du refus a crié au fascisme de ce régime et a appelé à la mobilisation de masse pour chasser ce régime qui est maintenant, d’autant plus urgemment, nécessaire. Il aurait été très bien – et cela aurait pu faire une réelle différence – que tous ceux qui détestent ce régime mais ne reconnaissent pas, ou refusent de reconnaître sa nature fasciste réelle et le grand danger qu’il représente pour l’humanité en tant que tel, aient répondu beaucoup plus tôt à cet appel de Refuse Fascism et l’aient activement repris. Aujourd’hui, enfin, la nature « autoritaire » de ce régime, et même l’utilisation du terme « fascisme » pour le décrire, sont de plus en plus reconnues et font l’objet de discussions de plus en plus nombreuses. (Comme je l’ai souligné, pour beaucoup, c’est un cas de « Oh,  maintenant ils disent » que c’est du fascisme, comme si c’était tout juste arrivé. Mais, avec une compréhension des enjeux profonds en jeu, il est important de reconnaître que maintenant est mieux que jamais). Il se fait tard, mais il n’est pas encore trop tard pour faire de cette mobilisation de masse une réalité. S’appuyer sur les « normes » et les « voies habituelles » de ce système, y compris les prochaines élections, et confiner les actions à l’intérieur de ces normes et voies ne peut résoudre ce problème profond et urgent, surtout lorsqu’on a affaire à un régime fasciste et à ses partisans fanatiques qui sont déterminés à piétiner et à déchirer ces « normes ».  [Relisez]

4En cette heure critique, tous les moyens appropriés d’action non violente doivent être utilisés pour écarter ce régime du pouvoir. Et si, en dépit des protestations de masse exigeant le départ du régime Trump/Pence, ce régime reste au pouvoir au moment du vote, alors – sans s’y fier fondamentalement – l’utilisation de tous les moyens appropriés pour œuvrer au départ de ce régime doit inclure le vote contre Trump (en supposant que l’élection ait effectivement lieu). Pour être clair, cela ne signifie pas un « vote de protestation » pour un candidat qui n’a aucune chance de gagner, mais le fait de voter pour le candidat du Parti démocratique, Biden, afin de voter effectivement contre Trump.

Ce n’est pas parce que Biden (et le Parti démocrate en général) sont soudainement devenus autre chose que ce qu’ils sont : les représentants et les instruments de ce système de capitalisme-impérialisme exploiteur, oppressif et littéralement meurtrier. Le processus électoral continue d’être ce que nous, les revcoms, avons appelé le BEB (baratin électoral bourgeois). Il n’en reste pas moins qu’aucun changement fondamental pour le mieux ne peut se produire par le biais de ce processus électoral et que, de manière générale et globale, le vote dans le cadre de ce système sert à renforcer ce système, en particulier si le vote est considéré comme un moyen – et plus encore s’il est considéré comme le (seul) moyen – d’apporter un changement significatif.

Mais cette élection est différente.

Il est vrai qu’à chaque élection, les démocrates mènent le même jeu d’escroquerie de base – en faisant chanter les gens qui détestent l’injustice et l’oppression pour qu’ils votent pour eux en tant que « moindre mal » – en insistant en effet sur le fait que « vous pouvez ne pas être d’accord avec tout ce que nous disons, vous pouvez même avoir de sérieuses différences et critiques concernant ce que nous sommes, mais voulez-vous que ce soit eux au pouvoir ? » (le parti républicain ouvertement suprémaciste blanc, suprémaciste masculin, pilleur de l’environnement qui nie le changement climatique et qui est réactionnaire dans tous les domaines). Et le Parti démocrate a fait cela, maintes et maintes fois, alors qu’il représentait et cherchait à présider ce système de capitalisme-impérialisme dans lequel la suprématie blanche, la suprématie masculine, le pillage de l’environnement et les guerres pour l’empire sont intégrés, en même temps que les démocrates font du bruit et prennent des mesures pour mettre en œuvre des réformes mineures (et finalement sans importance) pour soi-disant remédier à ces outrages. Tout cela a en fait contribué à l’évolution des choses vers la terrible situation à laquelle nous sommes confrontés aujourd’hui. Elle a paralysé politiquement beaucoup de ceux qui cherchent à mettre fin à ces outrages, les réduisant à une dépendance passive du Parti Démocratique et de son rôle dans le processus électoral, tout en jetant de l’huile sur le feu des sections fascistes de la société qui insistent sur le fait qu’absolument aucune atténuation de ces outrages ait lieu – ni aucune concession à la lutte contre cela – et qui demandent en fait le renforcement brutal de cette oppression et de cette indignation, en termes extrêmes.

Mais, encore une fois, cette élection est différente – d’une manière cruciale. La question n’est pas de savoir si Biden et les démocrates représentent quelque chose de « bon » ou si, en termes fondamentaux, les démocrates sont « meilleurs » que les républicains. Ces deux partis sont des partis politiques de la classe dirigeante, et aucun de leurs candidats ne représente quelque chose de « bon » au sens le plus élémentaire et le plus essentiel du terme. Biden n’est pas « meilleur » que Trump, d’une quelconque manière significative – sauf qu’il n’est pas Trump et qu’il ne fait pas partie de la tendance à consolider et à imposer le pouvoir fasciste, avec tout ce que cela implique.

Aborder cette élection du point de vue du candidat qui est « meilleur » signifie ne pas comprendre les enjeux vraiment profonds et les conséquences potentielles de ce qui est en jeu. Le fait est qu’il ne peut y avoir qu’un seul « bien » qui puisse sortir de cette élection : infliger une défaite décisive à Trump et à l’ensemble du régime fasciste. Cela créerait de bien meilleures conditions pour continuer à lutter contre tout ce que représente le régime Trump/Pence et contre toute l’oppression et les injustices de ce système, et ce serait un grand cadeau pour les peuples du monde.

Encore une fois, dans ces circonstances très particulières et extraordinaires, si le régime Trump/Pence est toujours au pouvoir au moment de l’élection, malgré les mobilisations de masse exigeant l’expulsion de ce régime, alors la lutte contre ce régime fasciste doit inclure le vote contre Trump en votant pour Biden, tout en continuant à construire une mobilisation de masse soutenue contre ce régime et tout ce qu’il représente et concentre, et en étant prêt à poursuivre cette mobilisation de masse si Trump perd l’élection mais refuse de partir.  [Relisez]

5En reconnaissant cela, cependant, il est extrêmement important de souligner une fois de plus, dans les termes les plus forts, que, pour les raisons évoquées ici, compter sur le vote – sans cette mobilisation de masse – conduira très probablement au désastre.

Il est possible que Trump remporte effectivement l’élection – et qu’il gagne ou qu’il perde, on verra dans cette élection des mesures sans précédent pour supprimer les votes de ceux qui s’opposent à lui et pour utiliser d’autres moyens illégaux l’aidant à rester au pouvoir. Et, plus essentiellement encore, à partir d’une compréhension claire de la nature fasciste de ce régime, et de toutes les implications qui en découlent, ce régime est illégitime, indépendamment des moyens par lesquels il est arrivé au pouvoir et des mesures prises pour le conserver et le consolider davantage. Hitler et les NAZIs sont arrivés au pouvoir en Allemagne dans les années 1930 par les « voies normales » du « système démocratique » de ce pays – y compris les élections – mais leur régime n’avait absolument rien de « légitime » et toutes les horreurs vraiment indicibles auxquelles il a donné lieu. Et le même principe de base s’applique au régime Trump/Pence. Par sa nature et son contenu, le fascisme « légitime » n’existe pas.

Quoi qu’il arrive avec les élections – et même si Biden gagne et réussit à prendre effectivement ses fonctions – il n’y aura pas de « retour à la normale ». Tout d’abord, les fascistes – ceux qui occupent encore des postes puissants, et la « base » fasciste dans la société au sens large – ne le permettront pas. Et, en tout cas, personne ne devrait le vouloir. La « normalité » de ce système a toujours inclus l’oppression barbare des Noirs et d’autres personnes de couleur, avec la terreur, la brutalité et le meurtre systématiques pour imposer cette oppression. Elle a toujours inclus la discrimination vicieuse, le sectarisme et la violence contre les immigrants, les femmes, les personnes LGBTQ et toute autre personne considérée comme inférieure et « étrangère ». Elle a toujours inclus des guerres injustes pour l’empire, et des crimes continus contre l’humanité. Elle constitue aujourd’hui une menace pour l’existence même de l’humanité en raison de la dévastation croissante de l’environnement et de la menace toujours présente d’une guerre nucléaire.

Il faudra entreprendre la lutte multiforme pour chasser le régime fasciste de Trump/Pence non pas comme un substitut mais comme une partie – une partie cruciale – du mouvement visant à dépasser tout ce qui est représenté et incarné dans la « normalité » de ce système.   [Relisez]

6Enfin, quoi qu’il arrive avec cette élection, il reste profondément vrai – et il est d’une importance vitale de reconnaître et d’agir en fonction de cette compréhension – qu’aucun changement fondamental pour le mieux ne peut se réaliser sous ce système. Alors même qu’il y a besoin urgent de construire une mobilisation de masse soutenue autour de la revendication unificatrice : Trump/Pence, dehors ! OUT NOW!, tous ceux et toutes celles qui ont pu voir que la suprématie blanche institutionnalisée, la suprématie masculine et les nombreux autres outrages et crimes contre l’humanité perpétrés sous ce système sont en fait intégrés dans ce système de capitalisme-impérialisme doivent travailler ensemble, de manière continue, pour construire un mouvement en croissance constante et pour renforcer les forces organisées pour une véritable révolution visant à renverser ce système.

En résumé : Étant donné les enjeux véritablement monumentaux, non seulement pour chaque problème, aussi important soit-il, et non seulement pour ce pays, mais aussi pour les masses populaires du monde entier et l’avenir de l’humanité, il y a un grand besoin d’aborder les choses et d’agir avec la sophistication nécessaire pour gérer les contradictions complexes et difficiles qu’implique tout cela  en ayant une vision large, en rejetant le sectarisme mesquin et le dogmatisme rigide, et en ne tombant pas dans un « soit/soit » paralysant : soit nous luttons contre la suprématie blanche et la terreur policière, soit nous nous battons pour chasser le régime fasciste de Trump/Pence ; soit nous votons lors de cette élection, soit nous construisons une lutte de masse contre l’oppression scandaleuse et contre ce régime fasciste ; soit nous nous opposons à ce régime, par tous les moyens appropriés, soit nous travaillons pour la révolution. Dans cette situation extraordinaire et très complexe – et du point de vue de l’avancement de la lutte vers l’objectif d’éliminer enfin toute exploitation et toute oppression, partout – il y un besoin urgent de faire tout cela, et de le faire en comprenant la relation correcte et nécessaire entre les différentes parties de cette approche globale : mettre l’accent principale sur la mobilisation de masse et s’appuyer sur elle, le vote dans cette situation extraordinaire étant nécessaire et important mais non pas le principal élément sur lequel on doit compter ; et, en termes fondamentaux, faire en sorte que tout cela contribue à créer des conditions plus favorables et à accroître les forces organisées pour, non seulement résister aux crimes de ce système, mais enfin pour mener à bien la révolution nécessaire afin de mettre un terme à ce système monstrueusement criminel et à sa domination dans le monde, sous quelque forme que ce soit.  [Relisez]

 

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بیانیه ای از سوی باب آواکیان
اول اوت ۲۰۲۰

STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN

در باره اوضاع خطرناک پیش رو،  ضرورت فوریِ بیرون راندن رژیم فاشیستی ترامپ/پنس از قدرت،  رأی دادن در این انتخابات و نیاز اساسی به انقلاب کردن

| revcom.us

 

We received this translation in Farsi. This is an unofficial translation, and we do not vouch for its accuracy.

۱ - وضعیت امروز چالش هایی بی سابقه و با تاثیرات درازمدت در مقابلمان گذاشته است که نه تنها برای مردم این کشور بلکه برای کل بشریت پیامدهای عمیقی خواهد داشت. من سه سال پیش، این واقعیت را تحلیل کردم و از آن زمان تا کنون،  بسیار برجسته تر و حتی خطرناک تر شده است :

اکنون با رژیمی فاشیستی که بر ما حاکم است روبرو هستیم: رژیمی که بی امان به حقوق و آزادی های مدنی حمله می کند و آشکارا تعصب و نابرابری را ترویج و ترغیب می کند. این فاشیست ها عده ای از مردم را فرومایه و بی ارزش  یا لکۀ ننگ کشور می خوانند و رفتارشان با آنها بی اعتناییِ سنگدلانه یا کین ورزی بیرحمانه است. آنها محروم کردن میلیون ها نفر از بیمۀ سلامت و درمان را که بدون آن مردم در رنج زندگی کرده و بسیاری جان خواهند داد ماموریت خود می دانند. آنها گستاخانه زنان را اشیاء قابل غارت و ماشین زاد و ولدِ می دانند که حقِ سقط جنین و کنترل بارداری ندارند و باید تابع شوهران و به طور کلی مردان باشند. علمِ تغییرات اقلیمی را انکار می کنند، به علمِ تکامل حمله و به طور کلی روش علمی را تقبیح می کنند. این رژیمی است که زرادخانۀ کشتار جمعی اش را به رخ می کشد و تهدید می کند که دست به جنگ هسته ای خواهد زد. ترور دولتی را علیه مسلمانان، مهاجران و توده های مردم گتوهای آمریکا تشدید کرده است؛ از اوباش بیرحمیِ که از دهانشان تعفن «اول آمریکا» بیرون می زند، از سفیدپوستان برتری طلب و مردسالاران و نفرت پراکنی های ضد دگرباشان جنسی حمایت کرده و آنها را افسارگسیخته می کند. این رژیمی است که به خاطر همۀ این ها به خود می بالد و اعلام می کند که بدتر از همۀ اینها را در انبان دارد .

 در راس این رژیم «قلدر مجنونی» نشسته است که انگشت اش روی ماشۀ بمب هسته ای قرار دارد. این رژیم، بدون اغراق نه تنها تشدید بیسابقۀ رنج توده های بشریت را تهدید می کند بلکه خطری برای موجودیت بشریت است. زیرا در حال افزایشِ غارت هرچه بیشتر محیط زیست است و به داشتن سلاح های کشتار جمعیِ بی نظیر افتخار کرده و با گستاخی اعلام می کند که مایل است از این سلاح ها، از جمله از زرادخانه عظیم هسته ای اش استفاده کند .

همچنین تأکید کرده ام که سیستم سرمایه داری-امپریالیسم از طریق «عملکرد عادی» خود، این فاشیسم را تولید کرده و  تحت این سیستم  هیچ تغییر اساسیِ مثبت ممکن نیست در نتیجه، سیستم را باید سرنگون کرد و به جای آن سیستمی را جایگزین کرد که به شکل رادیکال متفاوت و به مراتب بهتر از آن است، تا بتوانیم کلیۀ روابط ستم و استثمار و درگیری های خشونت آمیزی که این روابط تولید می کنند را ریشه کن کنیم .  تمامی این ها در شالوده های سیستم تعبیه شده اند و  بخش لاینفک و ضروری  از  کارکرد و نیازهای آن را تشکیل می دهند .

در حال حاضر، برای همۀ کسانی که مشغله شان پایان دادن به بی عدالتی و ستم است و برایشان سوال است که آیا بشریت آینده ای که ارزش زندگی داشته باشد را خواهد داشت و اصلا آینده ای خواهد داشت یا خیر، بیرون راندن رژیم فاشیستی ترامپ/ پنس از قدرت، مساله ای فوری و عاجل و یک الزام حقیقتا تاریخی است .

راه حل  اساسی  برای دهشت هایی که سیستم دائما برای توده های بشریت به وجود می آورد، انقلاب و سرنگونی سیستم است (فارغ از این که سیستم از طریق دیکتاتوری فاشیستیِ عریان طبقه سرمایه دار حاکم اداره می شود یا از طریق دیکتاتوری نقابدار «دمکراتیک» این طبقه). کسانی که این نیاز را درک می کنند نباید رویکردشان به  مبارزه فوری  برای بیرون راندن رژیم ترامپ/ پنس از قدرت،  چنین باشد که گویی این مبارزه «انحراف » از (یا  «جایگزینی » برای ) ضرورت سازمان دادن جنبش برای انقلاب است. رویکردشان، دقیقا باید این باشد که این مبارزه بخشی — و بخشی حیاتی و ضرورتی فوری — از فعالیت کلی برای سازمان دهی انقلاب است .

هدف اساسی و ستارۀ راهنمای ما کماکان این است: انقلاب و نه چیزی کمتر از آن !

در هر فعالیتی که امروز انجام می دهیم، از جمله هنگامِ شرکت در مبارزاتی که رویکردشان مبارزه برای هدفی کمتر از انقلاب است، رویکرد ما این است که همۀ این فعالیت ها را به خدمتِ هدف اساسی انقلاب و رهایی بشریت در آوریم و همواره باید چنین رویکردی را داشته باشیم .

معمولا، ما کمونیست های انقلابی استدلال می کنیم که مردم نباید در انتخابات بورژوایی رای دهند. زیرا این کار به تقویت سیستم سرمایه داری-امپریالیسم خدمت کرده و به این توهم رایج دامن می زند که گویا می توان با «اصلاحات» و بدون سرنگون کردن سیستمی که سرچشمۀ همه این دهشت ها است، از ستم و استثمار خلاص شد. اما آیا این موضع در رابطه با انتخابات خاص کنونی درست است؟ برای جواب گفتن به این سوال باید به کل تصویر نگاه کنیم .

۲ - در مدت نزدیک به چهار سال که رژیم ترامپ/پنس در قدرت بوده است، ما را مجبور کردند شاهد جنایت هایی که پیشاپیش مرتکب شده است باشیم و خطر عظیم آن را تحمل کنیم. ترامپ کارزار انتخاباتی خود در سال ۲۰۱۶ را بر مبنای برنامه ای پیش برد که آشکارا برنامه ای فاشیستی بود مشتمل بر برتری جویی سفیدپوستان و مردسالاری و نژادپرستی و مهاجر هراسی به ویژه علیه مهاجران مکزیک و کشورهای دیگر که او آنها را «گودال های متعفن» می نامد. همچنین حمایت آشکار از تبهکاری و شرارت نیروهای پلیس و هواداران «غیر نظامی» او. ترامپ بلافاصله پس از رسیدن به قدرت، با تمام قوا این برنامه را به عمل درآورد و به سرعت کلیۀ «ضوابط نهادینه »[ ۲ ] را که مانعی در مقابل خود میدید، لگدمال کرد و حتا در مواجهه با استیضاح این کار را ادامه داد و پس از این که رفقای فاشیست او در حزب جمهوری خواه وی را در مجلس سنا تبرئه کردند، با تفرعن و شتاب بیشتر به این کار ادامه داد .

اساساً، هر آنچه در ابتدای بیانیه درباره این رژیم توصیف شده چیزی است که ترامپ و اطرافیانش با شدت کین خواهانه به انجام رسانده اند. با نزدیک شدن انتخابات ماه نوامبر، این روند غلیظ تر و پرخاشگرانه تر شده است. تصورش را بکنید که اگر در ماه نوامبر در صورت انتخاب مجدد برای دور دوم، به او مقام «فرماندهی» داده شود، چه خواهد کرد !

پاندمیِ کوید۱۹ و پاسخ ترامپ و پنس به این بیماری عالمگیر، تصویر روشن دیگری از ماهیت ضد علمی این رژیم و بی اعتنایی مطلق آن به رنج توده های مردم ارائه می دهد. به ویژه قشرهایی که این رژیم بیشترین حس تحقیر را نسبت به آنها دارد و شکننده ترین های جامعه اند و در این پاندمی شدیدترین ضربات را خورده اند .

تمام این ها اتفاقات وحشتناکی هستند اما مساله صرفا اتخاذ سیاست های وحشتناک نیست. بلکه ما با  یک شکل کیفیتا متفاوت از حاکمیت  مواجهیم که مبتنی است بر  سرکوب وحشیانه و تجاوز به هر آنچه قرار است پایه ای ترین حقوق باشد .

پیشاپیش دیده ایم که ترامپ در نقض آشکار اصول قانون اساسی، نیروی ضربت نظامیِ اشغالگری را از ارگان های مختلف دولت فدرال به پورتلند و شهرهای دیگر فرستاده است، تا ابراز نارضایتی و اعتراضات مردم را جرم و جنایت تلقی کرده و سرکوب کنند و بر سلطۀ ترور علیه توده های مردم در گتوهای شیکاگو و دیگر نقاط بیافزایند .

ما شاهد نمایش برتری طلبی عریان ترامپ در شعار «اول آمریکا» بوده ایم؛ از جمله در مطالبات مکررش برای مجازات شدید کسانی  که به نظر او نتوانسته اند به طور شایسته شور وطن پرستی نشان دهند، یا جرأت انتقاد از او را به خود داده اند یا علیه برخی از عریان ترین ستم گری های قوای اجراییِ سیستم، به ویژه تداوم سرکوب بیرحمانۀ سیاهان و قتل مردم سیاه، قهوه ای و بومیان آمریکایی توسط پلیس اعتراض کرده اند. ترامپ دائما در حال ترغیب رذالتِ اوباش طرفدار «متمم دوم قانون اساسی »[ ۳ ] و دیگر کسانی که او «آدم های بسیار شایسته» می خواند بوده است .

همه اینها عروج هیتلر به قدرت و حاکمیت او و آلمان نازی در دهه ۱۹۳۰ و اوایل دهۀ ۱۹۴۰ را به یاد می آورند. هنگامی که هیتلر جنبش فاشیستی خود را بنا می نهاد، اراذل و اوباش بسیج می شدند تا آن دسته از مردم را که حمایت خود از هیتلر را نشان نمی دادند ضرب و شتم کرده و بترسانند و به آنها در خیابان و سایر اماکن عمومی حمله کنند. همین که دولت فاشیستی نازی قدرت خود را تثبیت کرد، هرگونه اپوزیسیون را به شدت مجازات و خرد کرد. همه کسانی که با صراحت او و ایدئولوژی رسمی نازی او را تایید نمی کردند مورد هدف قرار می گرفتند. تعداد زیادی از مردم از مؤسسات دولتی پاکسازی شدند. به ویژه یهودیان و همۀ کسانی که به اعتقاد رژیم نازی نسبت به «نژاد خالص آلمانی» «بیگانه» بودند و مانعی در رسیدنِ این رژیم به اهداف جنایتکارانه اش تلقی می شدند. اول از کمونیست ها شروع کردند. اما خیلی زود جمعیت یهود، کولی ها (رومانها)، همجنسگرایان و دیگران را در بر گرفت. اردوگاه های کار اجباری پر از کسانی شد که  برای رژیم نازی تهدید یا برای آلمان «لکه ننگ» محسوب می شدند. و طولی نکشید که این روند به نسل کشیِ گستردۀ میلیون ها یهودی در آلمان و کشورهایی که توسط رژیم نازی فتح و اشغال می شدند، منجر شد .

هرچند این اتفاقات یک باره رخ ندادند اما طی یک دوره نسبتاً کوتاه (یک دهه یا بیشتر) و با شتابی فزاینده روی دادند حاکمیت قانون کاملاً آشکارا و رسماً کنار گذاشته نشده بود اما «قانون» و «حاکمیت قانون» مترادف شد با هیتلر و هر آن چه رژیم نازی می گفت «قانون» است. بخش عمده از کاری که هیتلر و نازی ها در جریان حاکمیت وحشت و نسل کشی انجام دادند «مطابق قانون» بود. قانونی که به اهداف و ابزار توحش آنها تقلیل پیدا کرده بود، و توسط نهادهایی که کاملا از هر معنا یا هدفی به جز خدمت به دستور کار نازی و انطباق با آن تهی شده بودند، از طریق سرکوب و قتل اعمال می شدند و تبدیل شده بودند به ابزار جنایت نازی ها .

درمجموع آنچه ترامپ در حال حاضر انجام می دهد، از جمله فراخوان های علنی وی برای لغو تصمیمات دیوان عالی و مصوبه ها و بدعت های قبلی (به طور مثال، فراخوان غیرقانونی کردن سقط جنین و مجازات سوزاندن پرچم)، به همراه نقض مکرر قانون و آیین های دادرسی قانونی توسط وی و پافشاری بر این که  او  خودش قانون است، سایۀ فرارسیدن دیکتاتوری فاشیستیِ هرچه عریان تر است. فاشیسم همین است. یعنی دیکتاتوری آشکار و تهاجمی، لگدمال کردن حاکمیت قانون، تکیه کردن بر خشونت و ترور به نیابت از سیستم سرمایه داری سیری ناپذیر و به مثابه تلاشی افراطی برای مقابله با شکاف های عمیق اجتماعی و بحران های حاد (در داخل و در عرصه جهانی). و با اقدامات «وزیر آموزش و پرورش» ترامپ (بتسی دو- ووس ) Betsy DeVos می توانیم خطوط کلی نسخۀ رژیم ترامپ/پنس از «ایدئولوژی رسمی» (مسیحیت فاشیستی) را ببینیم. چرا که بتسی دو-ووس خودش یک فاشیست بنیادگرای مسیحی است و هدف نهایی اش تعویض نظام آموزش عمومی و سکولار آمریکا با مدارسی مبتنی بر آموزش آیینیِ مسحیت بنیادگرا است. از هم اکنون می توانیم سایه گستریِ وضعیتی را تشخیص دهیم که نه تنها دانش آموزان مدارس بلکه همۀ افراد جامعه ملزم به بیعت وفاداری با یک آمریکای فاشیستی مسیحی سفید گردند .

یکی از بیانیه های سازمان «رفیوز فاشیسم» این موضوع را در متن زیر  به شکل شیوا و قدرتمند استدلال می کند :

«به واقع خطوط در حال ترسیم شدن هستند و اوضاع آبستن پیامدهای فاجعه آمیز برای کل بشریت است. اگر ما حق اعتراض از طریق قانونی یا غیر قانونی را از دست بدهیم، اصلا نمی توان گفت که چه خواهد شد. فاشیسم صرفا بدترین حالت در چرخش آونگ نیست. بلکه تغییری کیفی در نحوۀ حاکمیت بر جامعه است. گروه ها را یکی پس از دیگری شرور نامیده و در مسیری که به وحشت می انجامد مورد آماج قرار می دهند. همه اینها در ظرف بیش از سه سال در جریان بوده است، اما با وجود برپا شدن اردوگاه های اجباری در مرز، تبرئۀ ترامپ در دادگاه استیضاح قلابی و فرمان اجرایی برای محافظت از بناهای تاریخی و هم زمان جرم تلقی کردن حق «متمم اول» که استفاده از آن مجازات زندان دارد، خیلی ها هنوز می خواهند غرق در توهمات راحت طلبانه شان باشند و نمی خواهند باور کنند که این اتفاق واقعا دارد روی می دهد. این فاشیسم است که به جریان افتاده و زمان برای متوقف کردن آن دارد از دست می رود ».

خیلی وقت است که عده ای از ما، از جمله صداهای متنوعی که توسط «رفیوز فاشیسم» نمایندگی می شود، نشان داده ایم که رژیم ترامپ/پنس خطری فوری و دارای ظرفیت خطراتی بس عظیم تر است. اما این هشدارها اغلب اوقات و بیش از اندازه با واکنشِ انکارهای متکبرانۀ کسانی روبرو شده است که نمی توانند یا نمی خواهند واقعیت و مسیر این رژیم را ببینند. آنها چشمان خود را بر  بسیاری از کارهای وحشتناکی که این رژیم پیشاپیش انجام داده بستند و به آنها کم بها دادند  تا خطر این رژیم را انکار کنند. آنها خاطرنشان می کردند که این رژیم  هنوز  فلان و بهمان کارها را انجام نداده و انتظار داشتند که «اثبات» این ادعا باشد که این کارها را  نخواهد کرد . اکنون که دیری از شب گذشته و در این لحظۀ حساس، با دیدن ماهیت فاشیستی این رژیم و تشابهات بسیار واقعی آن با جنایت های رژیم های فاشیستی قبلی، دادنِ عنوانِ «زنگ خطرهای اغراق آمیز» به این هشدارها هیچ نیست مگر بی اعتنایی به درس های حیاتی تاریخ و علاوه بر این، چشم پوشیدن بر واقعیت بسیار خطرناک اوضاع کنونی: از جمله، اهمیت این واقعیت که ترامپ برای عملی کردن وعده هایی که به فاشیست های مسیحی داده است، دادگاه ها را از مدارج پایین تا دیوان عالی کشور با قشونی از فاشیست های مسیحی و دیگر قضات راست افراطی پر کرده است. این قشون، برای اعطای «مشروعیت قانونی» به کل برنامه هولناک رژیم فاشیستی ترامپ/ پنس حرکت خواهد کرد .

اگر این رژیم بتواند قدرت خود را بیش از اینها تثبیت کند و در اجرای اهداف ترسناک خود جهش های بیشتری کند، نتیجه اش عقب گرد ویرانگر برای هرگونه تلاش در مقاومت علیه بی عدالتی و ستم خواهد بود و به احتمال زیاد منجر به سرکوب بیرحمانه و حتا نابودی مدافعان حقوق دمکراتیک و حامیان هر شکل اصلاحات مترقیِ معنادار و همچنین نیروهای متشکلی خواهد بود که برای تغییرات اساسی انقلابی مبارزه می کنند .

به اساسی ترین وجه، ضرورت فوری در بسیج توده ای مردم حول خواست بیرون راندن اجباری این رژیم فاشیستی در تضاد با خیزش توده ای علیه سفیدسالاری (برتری جویی سفید پوستان) و ترور پلیسی که نهادینه هستند یا در تضاد با جنبش های توده ای علیه دیگر جنایت های این سیستم نیست بلکه در اتحاد بنیادین با تمام این مبارزات بوده و برای همه آنها حیاتی است .  اینها به طرزی قدرتمند با یک دیگر رابطۀ تقویت متقابل دارند که می توان و باید آن را درک کرد و بر این مبنا آنها را سازمان داد .

۳ تقریبا با اطمینان می توان گفت که صرفاً اتکا به رأی دادن برای بیرون راندن رژیم از قدرت، منجر به نتایج بسیار بد و حتی فاجعه آمیز خواهد شد . این امر به ویژه با توجه به کارهایی که رژیم ترامپ/پنس پیشاپیش در رابطه با انتخابات انجام می دهد و آن چه ترامپ در رابطه با آن می گوید، صادق است. پیشاپیش رژیم و حامیانش حرکت هایی را برای سرکوب آرای کسانی که احتمالا علیه ترامپ رأی خواهند داد شروع کرده اند. به عنوان مثال ترامپ دست به حملات کاملاً بی اساس علیه ارسال رأی از طریق پُست زده و برای ارعاب سیاهان و لاتین تباران و مانع تراشی در مقابل استفادۀ آنها از حق رأی شان تدارک می بیند. ترامپ همانطور که در انتخابات سال ۲۰۱۶ گفت در صورت باخت، از پذیرش نتیجه انتخابات سر باز خواهد زد، در مورد انتخابات آینده هم چنین زمزمه هایی را سر داده است. و اکنون ایدۀ «معلق کردن» و «به تاخیر انداختن» انتخابات را طرح می کند

با توجه به کارهایی که ترامپ قبلاً انجام داده و وقیحانه اعلام کرده، می توان تصور کرد که با نزدیک شدن انتخابات و بعد از آن، رژیم ترامپ/پنس گارد توفانِ storm troopers  وفادار به خودش را در شهرهای سراسر کشور مستقر کرده و با شرارت دست به سرکوب هرگونه ابراز مقاومت و مخالفت بزند. این چشم انداز بسیار ترسناک و همچنین بسیار واقع بینانه است .  

تداوم پاندمی کوید۱۹ یا فرمان های اجرایی برای فرونشاندن «بی نظمی مدنی» (اعتراضات) در بسیاری از نقاط کشور می تواند همچنین به عنوان بهانه و نقابی برای «تعلیق» انتخابات و شاید تعلیق نامحدود آن، استفاده شود .

مطمئناً می توان تصور کرد که ترامپ یک «شرایط اضطراری ملی» نیز خلق کند. برای مثال به اقدامات جنگی علیه ایران یا حتا احتمالا علیه چین دست بزند و به این بهانه شرایط سرکوبگرانه شدیدتری را برقرار کند، شمار بیشتری از گارد توفان شبه نظامی اش را برای اشغال شهرها بفرستد و انتخابات را ابطال کند (یا برای مدت نامحدود «به تاخیر» بیندازد) و یا در صورت برگزاری انتخابات، از این طریق آراء و نتایج آن را کنترل کند .

در حال حاضر، استمرار در سازمان دادن مقاومت و سازمان دادن آن به شکل قدرتمند و گسترش یابنده علیه هر حرکت سرکوبگرانۀ ترامپ، از جمله سازمان دادن مخالفت علیه تلاش های این رژیم در سرکوب رأی دهندگان و از طریق بسیج گسترده در حمایت و دفاع از آنهایی که آماج چنین سرکوبگری هستند، دارای اهمیت اساسی است .

با آگاهی کامل نسبت به ماهیت رژیم فاشیستی و آن چه نمایندگی می کند و با آگاهی نسبت به این که ترامپ فقط به دنبال سرکوب آرای کسانی نیست که علیه وی رأی خواهند داد، بلکه در تدارک است که در صورت برنده نشدن در انتخابات برای ماندن در قدرت از سرکوب خشن و قهری استفاده کند... با آگاهی کامل نسبت به اینها،  هم اکنون  باید دست به بسیج حقیقتا عظیم و پایدار حول خواست متحدانۀ بیرون کردن فوری این رژیم از قدرت بزنیم. این مبارزه از اهمیتی اساسی و فوری برخوردار است و باید جهت گیری آن را داشته و آماده باشیم که در صورت ضرورت اوضاع، این بسیج را بعد از انتخابات هم ادامه دهیم .

از روزهای نخست رژیم ترامپ/ پنس، سازمان «رفیوز فاشیسم» ماهیت فاشیستی این رژیم را فریاد زده و فراخوان بسیج گستردۀ توده ای با هدف بیرون راندن این رژیم از قدرت را داده است. تحقق این هدف اکنون هرچه ضروری تر و فوری تر شده است. اگر، آنها که از این رژیم متنفرند اما در گذشته نتوانستند یا نخواستند ماهیت واقعیِ فاشیستی و خطر بزرگ آن برای بشریت را تشخیص دهند، زودتر از این ها به فراخوان «رفیوزفاشیسم» پاسخ داده و فعالانه درگیر آن شده بودند، امروز با اوضاعی واقعا متفاوت و بسیار خوبی روبرو بودیم. اکنون سرانجام و به طور روزافزونی عدۀ بیشتری این واقعیت را تشخیص می دهند و حول ماهیت «اقتدارگرای» این رژیم بحث می شود و حتی استفاده از اصطلاح فاشیسم برای توصیف آن افزایش یافته است. همانطور که  خاطرنشان کردم در مورد افراد زیادی می توان گفت: «اوه !  حالا  می گویند» که این فاشیسم است، گویی به تازگی فاشیسم ظاهر شده است. اما از آن جا که خطرات عمیق را می فهمیم، بهتر است این واقعیت را به رسمیت بشناسیم که  الان  بهتر از  هرگز  است. زمان در حال از دست رفتن است. اما هنوز برای محقق کردن بسیج گستردۀ توده ای خیلی دیر نشده است .  تکیه کردن بر «ضوابط» {«هنجارها»} و «مجاری معمول» سیستم و محدود کردن اقدامات خود در این چارچوب ها، از جمله انتخابات آینده، نمی تواند مشکل عمیق و فوری پیش رو را حل کند، به ویژه هنگامی که مساله مقابله با یک رژیم فاشیستی و پیروان متعصب آن است که مصمم اند این «ضوابط» را لگد مال و پاره کنند .

۴ - در این لحظۀ حساس، باید از هر وسیلۀ عملِ غیر خشونت آمیز مناسب برای بیرون کردن این رژیم از قدرت، استفاده شود. اگر علیرغم اعتراضات گسترده با خواست بیرون کردن رژیم ترامپ/پنس از قدرت، این رژیم در زمان انتخابات کماکان در قدرت باقی مانده باشد، آنگاه (با فرض این که انتخابات به واقع برگزار شود) استفاده از کلیۀ ابزار مناسب برای کنار زدن این رژیم  باید شامل رأی دادن علیه ترامپ باشد . بدون این که تکیۀ اساسی بر روی این روش گذاشته شود  واضح بگویم که این به معنای «رأی اعتراضی» برای برخی کاندیداها که شانس پیروزی ندارند نیست. بلکه برای  رأی موثر علیه ترامپ، در واقع باید به نامزد حزب دمکرات یعنی بایدن رأی داد .

دلیل این امر آن نیست که بایدن (و به طور کلی حزب دمکرات) یک باره تبدیل به چیزی غیر از آن چه هستند شده اند. آنها نمایندگان و ابزار سیستم استثمارگر، ستم گر و به معنای واقعی کلمه، سیستم آدمکش سرمایه داری-امپریالیسم هستند. پروسۀ انتخاباتی کماکان همان چیزی است که ما کمونیست های انقلابی نامیده ایم : BEB (مزخرفِ انتخاباتیِ بورژوازی). کماکان حقیقت این است که هیچ تغییر اساسی به سمت شرایط بهتر نمی تواند از طریق پروسۀ انتخاباتی به دست آید و این که به طور عام و به طور کلی، رأی دادن تحت این سیستم به تقویت سیستم خدمت می کند، به ویژه اگر به رأی دادن به عنوان راهی برای دست یافتن به تغییر معنادار و به خصوص اگر به عنوان «راه» به آن نگریسته شود .

اما این انتخابات، فرق دارد .

این حقیقت دارد که با هر انتخاباتی، دمکرات ها همان بازی شیادانه را اجرا می کنند. یعنی مردم متنفر از بی عدالتی و ستم را می ترسانند که به «شّر کمتر» رأی دهند و اصرار می ورزند که «شما ممکن است با هرچه ما می گوییم موافق نباشید، حتا ممکن است اختلافات و انتقادهای جدی به ما و فعالیتهای مان داشته باشید اما آیا واقعا می خواهید که  آنها  در قدرت باشند؟! (منظور از آنهاسفید پوستان برتری طلب، مردسالاران، غارتگران محیط زیست که تغییرات اقلیمی را انکار می کنند، و مرتجعین تمام قدِ حزب جمهوری خواه است ).

و حزب دمکرات همواره و دائما این کار را کرده است. حزب دمکرات نمایندۀ سیستم سرمایه داری- امپریالیسم است که سفیدسالاری، مردسالاری، غارت محیط زیست و جنگ برای امپراتوری در وجودش تعبیه شده و همواره تلاش میکند در رأس سیستم بنشیند. با این وجود گاها سر و صداهایی در مورد این جنایت ها کرده و برخی قدم ها برای برخی اصلاحات ناچیز (و در نهایت بی محتوا) بر می دارد تا به اصطلاح کاری در رابطه با آنها صورت بدهد. همه اینها در واقع به ایجاد اوضاع وحشتناکی که امروز در مقابلمان است خدمت کرده است. به لحاظ سیاسی بسیاری از کسانی که به دنبال خاتمه دادن به چنین جنایت هایی هستند را فلج کرده و به سطح وابستگان منفعلِ حزب دمکرات و نقش آن در پروسه انتخاباتی فروکاهیده است. ضمن اینکه بر آتش بخش های فاشیستِ سخت جان جامعه دمیده است که مصرند مطلقا اجازۀ هیچ تخفیفی در این جنایات و هیچ امتیازی به مبارزاتی که علیه آن می شود، داده نشود، و در واقع خواستار تقویت بیرحمانۀ این ستم و جنایات آن به طرزی افراطی هستند .

با این وجود، این انتخابات از زوایای بسیار مهمی متفاوت  است  سؤال این نیست که آیا بایدن و دمکرات ها نماینده چیز «خوبی» هستند یا اینکه آیا اصولا دمکراتها «بهتر» از جمهوری خواهان هستند. هر دوی این ها، احزاب سیاسیِ طبقۀ  حاکم  اند و هیچ یک از نامزدهای انتخاباتی آن ها در پایه ای ترین و اساسی ترین مفهوم، چیز «خوبی» را نمایندگی نمی کنند. بایدن در هیچ جنبۀ محتوایی «بهتر» از ترامپ نیست،  جز این که او ترامپ نیست و بخشی از تلاش برای تحکیم و اجرای حاکمیت فاشیستی با تمام معنایی که دارد، نمی باشد .

اگر به این انتخابات از این زاویه که کدام نامزد «بهتر» است نگاه کنیم، از درک خطرات عمیق و عواقب بالقوه ای که در این وضعیت وجود دارند، غافل خواهیم ماند. واقعیت این است که از درون این انتخابات تنها چیز «خوبی » که میتواند بیرون بیاید،   وارد کردن یک شکست قاطع به ترامپ و کل رژیم فاشیستی است  انجام این کار می تواند شرایط به مراتب بهتری برای ادامۀ مبارزه علیه هر آن چه رژیم ترامپ/پنس نمایندگی کرده و علیه کلیه ستم ها و بی عدالتی های این سیستم ایجاد کند و هدیۀ بزرگی برای مردم سراسر جهان خواهد بود .

باز هم در این شرایطِ بسیار خاص و خارق العاده، اگر رژیم ترامپ/پنس با وجود بسیج گستردۀ توده ای حول خواست برکناری این رژیم، در زمان انتخابات همچنان در قدرت باشد، آنگاه مبارزه علیه این رژیم فاشیستی رأی دادن علیه ترامپ از طریق رأی دادن به بایدن را ایجاب می کند،  در همان حال که سازماندهی بسیج گسترده و پایدار علیه این رژیم و هر آنچه نمایندگی و در خود فشرده می کند را باید ادامه داد و آماده باشیم که بسیج گسترده را حتا اگر ترامپ در انتخابات بازنده شود اما از قبول باخت امتناع کند ادامه دهیم .

۵  – با وجود تشخیص این مساله، بسیار مهم است که یک بار دیگر به شدیدترین وجه تأکید کنیم که به دلایلی که در اینجا گفته شد ،  اتکا  به رأی دادن  بدون بسیج گستردۀ توده ای، به احتمال زیاد منجر به فاجعه خواهد شد .

این احتمال هست که ترامپ واقعاً در انتخابات پیروز شود. اما، چه برنده شود یا بازنده، انتخابات شامل اقدامات بی سابقه در سرکوب آرای مخالفان وی و استفاده از وسایل غیرقانونی گوناگون برای ماندن در قدرت خواهد بود. و حتی اساسی تر، با درک دقیق ماهیت فاشیستیِ رژیم و پیامدهای کامل آن، باید گفت فارغ از این که رژیم ترامپ/پنس از چه طریقی به قدرت رسیده و برای ماندن و تحکیم قدرت خود دست به چه حرکاتی می زند، در هر حالت  نامشروع است . هیتلر و نازی ها در دهه  1930 در آلمان از طریق «کانالهای عادی سیستم دمکراتیک» از جمله انتخابات به قدرت رسیدند، اما حاکمیت آنها و اقدامات وحشتناک وصف ناپذیرشان، مطلقاً هیچ «مشروعیتی» نداشت. همین اصل اساسی در مورد رژیم ترامپ/پنس صدق می کند. به دلیل ماهیت و محتوا، چیزی به نام «فاشیسم مشروع» وجود ندارد .

هر اتفاقی در انتخابات بیافتد و حتی اگر بایدن برنده و به واقع رئیس جمهور شود، هرگز «بازگشت به شرایط عادی» در کار نخواهد بود. زیرا، اولا فاشیست ها، یعنی کسانی که کماکان در مقام های بالای قدرت خواهند ماند و همچنین «پایۀ» فاشیسم که در جامعه گسترده شده است، چنین اجازه ای را نخواهند داد. و دیگر این که، به هر حال هیچ کس نباید  خواهان  «بازگشت شرایط عادی» باشد. چرا که «شرایط عادی» این سیستم همواره شامل ظلم و ستم وحشیانه علیه مردم سیاه و سایر رنگین پوستان از طریق ترور، قساوت و قتل عام سیستماتیک برای اجرای این ستم؛ همواره شامل تبعیض شرورانه، تعصب و خشونت علیه مهاجران، زنان، ال جی بی تی کیوها و سایر کسانی که به عنوان فرومایه و «بیگانه» تلقی شده اند، بوده است. همواره شامل جنگهای ناعادلانه برای امپراتوری و ادامه جنایات علیه بشریت بوده است و اکنون همان «شرایط عادی» از طریق ویرانی های روز افزون محیط زیست و تهدید همیشگی جنگ هسته ای، تهدیدی برای موجودیت بشر نیز محسوب می شود .

مبارزات چند جانبه برای براندازی رژیم فاشیستی ترامپ/پنس جایگزینی برای حرکت به فراسوی این سیستم و هر آنچه که توسط «شرایط عادی» آن نمایندگی شده و تجسم می یابد نیست. بلکه باید به مثابه یک بخش – بخشی مهم – از حرکت به  فراسوی  سیستم در دست گرفته شود .

۶ سرانجام جدا از اینکه چه اتفاقاتی در انتخابات جاری بیفتد، یک حقیقت عمیق تغییر نمی کند و آن این که هیچ تغییر  اساسی  به سمت شرایط بهتر  در چارچوبۀ این سیستم  امکان پذیر نیست. تشخیص این حقیقت و عمل کردن بر مبنای درکِ آن اهمیتی حیاتی دارد. هرچند که بسیج گستردۀ پایدار حول مطالبۀ متحد کنندۀ «برکناری رژیم ترامپ/پنس! فوری!» باید به طور عاجل پیش برود. اما در همان حال کسانی که به این درک رسیده اند که سفیدسالاری، مردسالاری و دیگر ستم ها و جنایت ها علیه بشریت که در چارچوب این سیستم جریان دارد در حقیقت در وجود سیستم سرمایه داری-امپریالیسم  تعبیه شده  اند، باید به طور منظم و مداوم با یکدیگر برای ساختن جنبشی گسترش یابنده و تقویت نیروهای سازمان یافتۀ برای انجام انقلابی واقعی جهت سرنگونی سیستم، کار کنند .   

خلاصه کنم: با توجه به وجود خطرات حقیقتا سرنوشت ساز، نه فقط از منظر یک موضوع خاص، هرچند که بسیار مهم باشد، و نه صرفا برای این کشور، بلکه برای توده های مردم در سراسر جهان و برای آیندۀ بشریت، نیاز فوق العاده ای هست که رویکرد و عمل مان دارای آن حد از پختگی باشد که در مواجهه با تضادهای پیچیده و دشوار اوضاع کنونی لازم است – داشتن دید وسیع، رد سکتاریسم کوته نظرانه و دگماتیسم شکننده و بی دوام، و پرهیز از رویکرد فلج کنندۀ «این یا آن». نباید گفت: ما علیه سفیدسالاری و خشونت پلیس مبارزه می کنیم یا برای بیرون راندن رژیم فاشیستی ترامپ/پنس؛ یا در این انتخابات شرکت میکنیم یا مبارزه توده ای علیه مظالم سیستم و این رژیم فاشیستی راه می اندازیم.؛ یا با هر وسیلۀ مناسبی به مخالفت با این رژیم بلند می شویم یا برای انقلاب کار می کنیم .  در این شرایط استثنائی و بسیار پیچیده و از چشم انداز پیشبرد مبارزه با هدف محو نهایی همه انواع ستم و استثمار، در همه جای جهان، نیاز فوری به انجام همه این کارها هست و این کار را باید بر مبنای درک رابطۀ صحیح و لازم بین بخشهای مختلف این رویکرد کلی باید انجام داد: با  قرار دادن تأکید اصلی و اتکا بر  بسیج توده ای وسیع، رأی دادن در این شرایط خارق العاده لازم و مهم است اما نباید تکیۀ عمده را بر آن گذاشت؛ و به طور بنیادین، همه این کارها را باید به خدمت ایجاد شرایط مساعدتری برای ساختن نیروهای متشکل در آورد، تا نه فقط مقاومت علیه جنایت های این سیستم را پیش ببریم بلکه برای این که بتوانیم بالاخره انقلاب کنیم؛ انقلابی برای پایان دادن به حیات این سیستم  فوق العاده جنایتکار و تسلط آن در جهان، به هر شکلی .

 

 

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Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/rnl-show-episode-35-announcement-en.html

Episode 35 of
The RNL Show—Revolution, Nothing Less!

| revcom.us

 

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Slavery, Genocide and War!? What's there to be thankful for?
An Anti-Thanksgiving Special

The Revolution, Nothing Less Show

There is a fight over whether the truth about America will be confronted as part of the fight for the emancipation of all of humanity or buried by fascist lies or by American chauvinism and American exceptionalism.

Every year kids in this country are taught the same whitewashed myth of the first “Thanksgiving” in 1621. However, the real history of Thanksgiving and the history of America’s origin is a much different story.

In this episode of The RNL Show, we will take a look at some of the real history of how the U.S. has treated indigenous peoples as well as other key events in this country that have defined what makes this country what it is in the world. We’ll take a look at the oppression of Black people... to the system of capitalism-imperialism’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Drawing together clips from previous episodes, we will explore what the real character of America is through short films from the American Crime series featured on revcom.us and produced by documentary filmmaker David Zeiger, and other pieces from revcom.us.

This episode features:

  • Quotes from the revolutionary leader Bob Avakian
  • American Crime: Donald Trump says we need “Patriotic Education”
  • American Crime Case #44: The Trail of Tears, 1838-39
  • American Crime Case #12: The 1921 Tulsa Massacre and the Destruction of Black Wall Street
  • “From Vice Grip to Death Grip,” written by Raymond Lotta and featured on revcom.us

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/atlantic-equates-mao-and-trump-tossing-truth-to-the-wind-en.html

A Vicious, Idiotic, and Irresponsible Attack on Communism —

The Atlantic Equates Mao and Trump...
Tossing Truth to the Wind

by Raymond Lotta

| revcom.us

 

Bob Avakian has recently written:

The “liberal” bourgeois attack on communism is, in its own way, as ludicrous and outrageous—crudely in violation of the scientific method and blatantly in opposition to the actual facts—as the fascist mangling of truth which the “liberals” are forever decrying.

A flagrant case in point is the November 22 online issue of the liberal intellectual journal the Atlantic. It features a lie-filled article arguing that the great revolutionary leader Mao Zedong subscribed to the same kind of lunatic, conspiracy-theory view of the world that guides Donald Trump. The article is disgustingly titled “Mao’s Lessons for Trump’s America.” Its author is Edward Steinfeld, an MIT professor who purports to be a “China expert.”

Like other anticommunist academics bestowed platforms in mainstream print and electronic media, Steinfeld turns history and reality on their head. He recycles the bogus and poisonous narrative that the Cultural Revolution of 1966-76 was an exercise in mob terror driven by what is alleged to be Mao’s crazed paranoia. Steinfeld asserts that Mao’s followers, with Mao’s urging, had been “circulating outlandish conspiracy theories about counterrevolutionary plotting and anti-Mao cliques in the highest echelons of the Chinese system.”

Steinfeld dismisses out of hand the real danger of counterrevolution in China at the time. He obliterates the real aims and distorts the real practices of the Cultural Revolution. He paints an idiotic portrait of Mao as glutton for violence and “vigilante action.” And he likens Mao to Donald Trump. It all adds up to willful and vicious “mangling of truth” writ large. Let’s set the record straight.

1) The Cultural Revolution that Mao initiated in 1966 was guided not by “outlandish conspiracy theory” but by Mao’s scientific analysis of the complex reality of Chinese society and the concrete dangers facing socialism in China at the time.

Mao launched the Cultural Revolution to deal with a world-historic problem of communist revolution. That problem was how to keep a revolution aimed at putting an end to all exploitation and oppression on the road to achieving that goal. And how to enable the masses in their millions to understand and grapple with this problem, and wage new forms of revolutionary struggle under socialism to prevent the restoration of capitalism—and to further revolutionize the institutions of society... and their own thinking.

You would never know this by reading the Atlantic article. To learn more about the Cultural Revolution in depth, go to You Don’t Know What You Think You “Know” About...The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation: Its History and Our Future. But let’s take in a few essential background facts.

In 1949, the Chinese revolution led by Mao triumphed. This revolution drove out foreign imperialism and shattered the old oppressive economic and social order. As Mao put it, the Chinese people had stood up. The revolution established a new socialist state power and economy to meet the basic needs of the people and set out, under Mao’s leadership, to forge new liberatory social institutions and values.

But by the early 1960s, a new bourgeois-capitalist class that had emerged within the top levels of the Chinese Communist Party and government was maneuvering to gain all-around power.

In the name of achieving more rapid economic growth and higher living standards, they utilized their bases of power to introduce harsh capitalist methods of economic management and discipline... to put education on an elitist and technocratic foundation... to focus resources in the cities at the expense of the countryside where the great majority of the Chinese population lived at the time. They had strength in the military and tremendous influence in key government ministries, like education, culture, and economic planning. These were real and observable phenomena. And by the mid-1960s, these capitalist-roaders, as Mao described them, were moving to seize power.

Oh, but Mao, Steinfeld tells us, was inventing enemies and exaggerating threats. Imagine if a supposed scholar of the U.S. Civil War told you that Lincoln was concocting conspiracies by politicians of the South to justify his own ambition. Well, the evidence speaks otherwise. So too with the Cultural Revolution. Indeed, what more proof of the real danger to the revolution do you need than the fact that these capitalist-roaders did carry out a coup in October 1976 soon after Mao died? And what more evidence do you need that once these capitalist-roaders secured power—led at the time by Deng Xiaoping—they did what Mao said they would?

They systematically restructured China’s socialist economy and turned China into a sweatshop to world capitalism. The profit-based economy they instituted has led to some of the world’s most extreme wealth and income inequalities, including the profusion of billionaires. The rapid and chaotic capitalist development they championed has led to some of the world’s most polluted cities and rivers. The capitalist-roaders in power dismantled the extraordinary social achievements of the Cultural Revolution—including what in the early 1970s was the most universal, egalitarian, needs-based healthcare system in the world.

These are the observable results of the counterrevolution that Mao warned against... but which Steinfeld moronically declares was fabricated by Mao to further his “politics of resentment.”

2) The methods of the Cultural Revolution were liberatory.

Mao called on the masses to rise up, challenge, and overthrow these new capitalist forces. Steinfeld makes much of Mao’s directive-slogan issued in August 1966 to “bombard the headquarters” of the capitalist-roaders. But this “bombardment” was political (see my Note below).

The main forms of struggle of the Cultural Revolution were mass debate (over policy and the direction of society); mass political mobilization—demonstrations, strikes, political uprisings that led to new and more participatory forms of political power; and mass criticism through newspapers, wall-posters, and public gatherings of authorities influenced by and those in power pushing this neo-capitalist program.

These methods of struggle were clearly spelled out in official and widely publicized documents, including the following guidance: “Where there is debate, it should be conducted by reasoning and not by force.”

Now acts of violence and killings did take place during the Cultural Revolution. But here is what the evidence shows.

Steinfeld levels the ludicrous charge that as a result of the Cultural Revolution, Chinese society descended into a brute “state of nature.” Again, the bullshit keeps piling up. In fact, as a result of the struggles and experimentation and transformations of the Cultural Revolution, the state of society changed. New systems of governance brought workers and peasants into political life in new and expanded ways... “serve the people” became a measure and motivation of social life and progress... “open door” research brought scientists to the countryside to conduct experiments alongside peasants and to share in their lives... revolutionary ballets dealt with themes of women’s emancipation. Is this perhaps the “tragedy” that the professor bemoans?

3) The idiocy of equating Mao and Trump... when in fact they are polar opposites.

Steinfeld thinks he’s clever by half in offering “Mao’s Lessons for Trump’s America.” He’s a fool. Mao Zedong stood for the emancipation of world humanity from all oppression and exploitation. Mao advanced the science of communism, particularly with the theory and practice of continuing and deepening the revolution in socialist society. The notion that Donald Trump... home-grown American fascist who denies reality, attacks science, propounds genocidal racism, and spreads male supremacy and anti-immigrant hatred... the notion that Trump has anything in common with the communist revolutionary Mao Zedong would be laughable to any thinking person with a shred of respect for the scientific method and historical truth. But in the impoverished intellectual climate of today (no small service rendered by the hackery of the likes of Edward Steinfeld), this toxic anticommunist nonsense gets over.

Unpacking the spurious and manipulative “method” involved in equating Mao and Trump.

Trump and Mao are worlds apart. Think about this. Several months ago we witnessed, and many of us took part in, a beautiful uprising against white supremacy and racist murder by police. Donald Trump denounced this wave of righteous protest, hailed the police, egged on neo-Nazi assassins, extolled monuments to the Confederacy, and dispatched federal police to quash protest. In April 1968, after Martin Luther King’s assassination, Black people rose in mighty rebellions across the U.S. In revolutionary China at that time, Mao Zedong issued a powerful statement of support, declaring that this righteous rising of Black people was “a clarion call to all the exploited and oppressed people in the United States to fight against the barbarous rule of the monopoly capitalist class” and “a tremendous aid and inspiration to the struggle of the people throughout the world against U.S. imperialism and to the struggle of the Vietnamese people against U.S. imperialism.”

For all his facile, bullshit analogizing of Mao and Trump, it is Professor Steinfeld who works from a playbook of Trumpian-like “alternate reality” and the “big lie.”

***

*NOTE: An example of Steinfeld’s shoddy and dishonest scholarship

To make his case for Mao’s alleged “sanctification of violence,” Steinfeld cites a toast Mao supposedly gave in December 1966: “To the unfolding of nationwide all-round civil war.” (my emphasis) Conveniently, Steinfeld provides no source for this statement. Actually, its origin is Roderick MacFarquhar’s and Michael Schoenhals’ 2006 anticommunist screed, Mao’s Last Revolution (p. 155). But when you go to the back of that book for source documentation, you find fuzzy hearsay and all manner of second and third-hand recollections. The authors do, however, acknowledge that Mao approved an authoritative editorial issued in January 1967 that called for: “a year of nationwide all-round class struggle.” Not violent “civil war” but “all-round class struggle”: to overthrow and defeat the capitalist-roaders through the political methods Mao actually called for (and as I have described).

 

Further Reading

*Bob Avakian, Fascists and Communists: Completely Opposed and Worlds Apart

*You Don’t Know What You Think You “Know” About...The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation: Its History and Our Future

An interview with Bob Avakian:

The Cultural Revolution in China...Art and Culture...Dissent and Ferment...and Carrying Forward the Revolution Toward Communism

Read more

Listen to the audio here

 

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So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/673/trumps-trying-to-stay-in-power-hell-no-en.html

Trump’s Trying to Stay in Power? Oh HELL NO!

| revcom.us

 

Right now, WE—the 77 million-plus in this country who voted out the Trump/Pence regime and the millions more across the globe who celebrated this—are on the offensive. WE have the momentum. WE have the political initiative. They—the Trump/Pence regime and its supporters—are on the defensive. They have been politically knocked back on their heels. They have been thoroughly defeated and thoroughly repudiated. BUT... WE can’t let up. We have to STAY on the offensive, because they are trying to pull some dangerous BS to stay in power, and in the name of humanity, we cannot let that happen.

Trump refusing to concede an election he lost by more than 5 million votes in the popular vote and a clear and convincing margin in the Electoral College? Oh HELL no! Trump’s smirking Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, saying there will be a “smooth transition” to a “second Trump administration”?! Oh HELL no! The Trump regime whipping up its dangerous supporters and going to court with completely baseless and absurd allegations of supposed “fraud”? Oh HELL no! The Trump regime seeking to actively block a transition to the Biden administration in a deranged effort to remain in power? Oh HELL no! This is completely unacceptable. It cannot stand, and it will not stand.

It’s this simple: If you were in the streets celebrating Trump’s defeat in the election—or if you took heart from these celebrations—then follow your own logic. Think for a second about all of the reasons that you were so overjoyed. If you do that, you will see that you—and we—must STAY in the streets until Trump’s defeat is cemented and his entire regime leaves office. We demand Trump/Pence Out Now! Trump, Pence, Pompeo, William Barr and the rest won’t commit to leaving office in January? Then they can leave NOW. Actually, the Trump/Pence regime should have been out of office a long time ago, and Refuse Fascism has been saying that—and working to organize people on that basis—for years. But if you ever had any doubt about this, you should have none left now. Think about it: Why should this regime be allowed to stay in office one single day longer when they are threatening, refusing to accept and actively attacking the election and its results?  

Bring your energy... your joy... your anger... your determination... your dance moves... your pots and pans... BACK INTO THE STREETS to demand: Trump/Pence and the whole regime, OUT NOW!! 

A Pledge to the People of the World: In the Name of Humanity, We Refuse to Accept a Fascist America.

 

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During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/673/refuse-fascism-statement-from-editorial-board-en.html

Reposted from RefuseFascism.org

A Statement from the Editorial Board of RefuseFascism.org on November 14, 2020

| revcom.us

 

The election is over. Biden won. Trump lost. Now he and his fascist regime need to go. Trump, awash in his bitter fascist delusion, has not conceded. Pence, Barr, Pompeo play a preposterous yet deadly game with their hands on the levers of power talking of a “smooth transition to a second Trump term.”

This is not a game, but dangerous. Blocking the transition to Biden has real cost in lives: in COVID deaths and in international dimensions. Refusing to concede, to peacefully transfer power IS fascist. Whipping up their followers behind the lie of an election fraud is as dangerous as it is absurd.

The people won a righteous victory over Trump. A weight lifted from our shoulders, we danced and celebrated with good reason. These fascist charlatans must continue to feel the heat of our righteous demand that they must goEvery move they make to illegitimately hold on to power and overturn the election must be met by our side standing up—in the streets—defiantly with justice and an electoral victory behind us to say: NO! Trump/Pence OUT NOW!

After all that the people went through to win this election: voter suppression, intimidation, lies, innuendos, robo-calls, standing for hours in line risking COVID infection, we must not cede any ground to Trump’s bogus yet damaging claims. We have pledged to the people of the world: In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE TO ACCEPT A FASCIST AMERICA. TRUMP AND PENCE MUST GO!

We recognize that even beyond their moves to overturn the election, this regime still poses grave danger to humanity. They have put flunky loyalists to Trump atop the Defense Department. They have blocked information on COVID to the Biden transition. Trump’s rabid MAGA base must continue to feel deflated, demoralized, and unable to unleash their white supremacist fury on society. It is on us to turn our celebration of their defeat into our determination to not allow them to dominate the public space or public discourse. Their time IS, and must be, over.

Going forward from today we must be organized and we must mobilize so that every move they make to delegitimize, to overturn this election is strongly opposed. We must not—as some of our progressive friends say, move on. Not now. It is the fascists in power who must be compelled to move on.

Get connected with RefuseFascism.org—get linked up via text message by going to refusefascism.org, clicking “sign up” and filling out the form. Go to refusefascism.org to see latest developments and our calls to action. Over the next weeks we will be holding forums to dig more deeply into the roots of the fascism that has grown and hardened over the past four years, and is still with us as tens of millions voted for Trump. We will sponsor cultural events online to raise our sights to build on the victory won. We will continue to sound the alarm. If you, if we, are not OK with the white supremacy, xenophobia, patriarchy of this fascism and with every move they make to stay in power and advance their hateful movement and vicious program, join us. Stay vigilant and mobilized and take the streets! ¡Adelante! TRUMP/PENCE OUTNOW!

Appearing in the New York Times on Monday, November 9:
A Pledge to the People of the World

See the full ad and share this announcement

 

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The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

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So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/refuse-fascism-what-are-you-going-to-do-about-the-nazi-problem-en.html" >Reposted from RefuseFascism.org:

 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/what-kind-of-democracy-is-this-en.html

“What kind of Democracy is this... Is this Republic worth keeping?”

Reflections from a Member of the National Revolution Tour

| revcom.us

 

This article—“FASCISTS TODAY AND THE CONFEDERACY: A DIRECT LINE, A DIRECT CONNECTION BETWEEN ALL THE OPPRESSION” by Bob Avakian—provoked my writing.

In the article, Avakian writes,

It is a good thing that Jerry Falwell Jr.’s exhibition of his racism has been met with outrage and protest, even from among the students and alumni of Liberty University (as well as others). But if this outrage is confined and misdirected into a misguided and fundamentally erroneous notion that this racism is somehow out of keeping with the supposedly positive—but in reality extremely negative—“values” of Liberty University (and the Christian fundamentalism on which it is based), this will result not only in “de-fanging” this outrage but in reinforcing the “package” of reactionary, yes, fascistic, outlook and aims that are represented not simply by Falwell but by the Trump/Pence regime to which he is closely tied and for which he is a relentless advocate and apologist.

Democracy works. We voted. The people have spoken, now allow the system to do its course.” These are common views in society of many after the election. People may now go back in their cupboards convincing themselves the worse is now past, now let’s rejoice at the beautiful American democracy we all have learned to enjoy and what the world aspires to replicate. People going back to their cupboards where their worn-out blinders lived for four years: “Great, here they are. Thank you democracy! We can now get back to normalcy!”

Yes, Biden won. Trump lost. But how about the 73 million people who voted for Trump who are OK with children separated from their parents and locked in cages? What about the Christian fascists in the Supreme Court who want to overturn Roe v. Wade and want the bible as the schools’ textbook? What about the white supremacist thugs who have been hardened by this regime, especially post-election as they maraud claiming election fraud? Will there be a section of fascists who will continue to get organized claiming Biden to be illegitimate? And if so, what do we do about them? Will Trump or Trump Jr. or someone like Trump have an opportunity to run for presidency again?

I think a question that needs to be asked by millions, especially the millions who voted out Trump, what kind of democracy is this... is this republic worth keeping?

To come back to the quote above, and its spirit: It is good Trump was defeated! But if this defeat only plays with your outlook that “democracy works” and the last four years was just a hiccup, a bump on the road, you’d be playing in the hands of the very system that gave rise to a fascist. A country founded on the slavery, kidnapping of Africans considered subhuman, the lynching and terror of Jim Crow, genocide on Natives and wars for empire to today. Do you really think Trump and company are just a fluke of this system?

It is really important you recognize that it is the very nature of this system that gave rise to a fascist and has the potential to do it again and seek to understand the problem and solution, otherwise you’d ultimately be part of reinforcing that system with all the horrors it perpetuates. And if they succeed to hold power again, the nightmare of the last four years will be seen as a walk on the beach on a sunny, warm day with your loved one and children playing in the sand. This is no joke. It is no exaggeration!

Deep inside, you have questioned the past four years. You’ve sought out your blinders from your cupboard but you were surrounded, suffocated by the reality of the regime’s fascist program. Even as you accommodated by ignoring it, you didn’t like it.

You have questioned how and why a Donald Trump was elected president. Now you are questioning why over 73 million voted for Trump. What will happen with the Nazi armed thugs foaming at the mouth to make America white again? Will they just go away? These are crucial questions that affect the future of humanity and the planet. The worst thing to do now is push the snooze button on those questions. There are answers to these questions, in the work of Bob Avakian, on revcom.us, but they are not easy answers. They may well shake your core beliefs and make you uncomfortable and skeptical. But what is the alternative?

 

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So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/trump-regime-begins-process-of-transferring-power-en.html

From a Reader

Trump Regime Begins Process of Transferring Power

| revcom.us

 

On Monday, November 23, more than two weeks after Joe Biden was projected to be the winner of the election, the first signs of reckoning with this undeniable reality have come from the Trump/Pence regime, with the Trump-appointed head of the GSA (General Services Administration), Emily Murphy, sending a letter to President-elect Biden informing him that the necessary funds would be released to finance the transition.

There continues to be no “concession speech” from Trump, and it’s doubtful one would ever come. In fact, until now, there had been no acknowledgement from the regime of the legitimate and widely accepted results of the election, in which Trump lost the electoral college by 74 votes, and lost the popular vote by six million votes. Instead, the Trump team has launched lawsuits in a so far fruitless attempt at overturning the election, while leading his tens of millions of hard-core followers to disregard all evidence that goes against what the fascist “strongman” says.

While it is correct to continue pointing towards how dangerous these moves really are, especially insofar as these moves affect the thinking of broader ranks of people, the fact that there is no factual basis for the fascist claim of “massive election fraud” and that the corresponding lawsuits are, or have already been, dismissed, is cause for celebration. The feeling that millions in this country and many more around the world have felt of “having a weight lifted off of their chests” is real, and will continue, with good reason, as the process of Trump and his regime leaving power continues and is actually ensured.

Trump’s Defeat Is a People’s Victory

So does this mean that those who said “rely on the normal channels” and on the institutions of this system alone to stop this fascism were correct? No. The masses of people in the United States who do deeply hate the fascist program and oppressive relations embodied and enforced by the Trump regime and backed up by its fascist social base, and have been compelled in many ways, big and small, to stand against all this, delivered the fascists a decisive defeat on November 3, in an election that was unlike any other in the history of this country. Fascism was on the ballot, and although Trump was able to win more votes than he did in 2016 (for more on why it is that 73+ million people voted for an open white supremacist, watch Bob Avakian’s 2017 speech on fascism, which goes deeply into the rise of the overall fascist movement that has coalesced around Trump and the fascist trajectory of the GOP), the reservoir of people who believe Black Lives Matter and want to see an end to institutionalized racism and murder by police, who believe in the humanity of women and LGBTQ+ people, who want to see an end to the plunder and destruction of our planet, and who in general want to see a “better world,” however they understand that, DID come out and vote for Biden. This was a very good thing—an urgently needed societal repudiation that creates “far better conditions for continuing to wage the struggle against everything represented by the Trump/Pence regime and all the oppression and injustices of this system...” (BIDEN, A DOORKNOB—AND GOING THROUGH THE DOOR by Bob Avakian).

All this does not make it right that so many people did wait so long to act, and confined their resistance to the ballot box alone. It would have been far better for the overall societal alignment of forces and political climate if the mass resistance had taken expression in mass nonviolent, day-after-day protests determined to drive out the regime. Too many people who could be won to stand on the right side of history failed to respond to the urgent calls for mass street protests, and instead relied solely on the “democratic process,” in no small part due to the misleadership of the Democratic Party.

There Is No Going “Back To Normal”

There is likely to be a gravitational pull among some sections of the people, including many of those who were so outraged and moved to act against the Trump/Pence regime, to “return to normal,” as the door closes on this regime, and a resolution to the ongoing coronavirus crisis seems likely within the next year. But, as Bob Avakian said back in June:

For those who cannot help but hunger for a “return” to some kind of “normalcy” as an answer to the madness of Trump, Pence and the rest—forget it, it is not going to happen!

And nobody should want a return to the “normalcy” of this system. The “normalcy” of this system has always included the barbaric oppression of Black people and other people of color, with systematic terror, brutality and murder to enforce this oppression. It has always included vicious discrimination, bigotry and violence against immigrants, women, LGBTQ people, and any others regarded as inferior and “alien.” It has always included unjust wars for empire, and continuing crimes against humanity. It now poses a threat to the very existence of humanity through its increasing devastation of the environment and the ever present threat of nuclear war.

And we can add to that the fact that we are still facing the horror of a fascist Supreme Court and continued virulent fascist street mobs and car caravans, and that the Democrats are not guaranteed to gain control of the Senate through the upcoming Georgia run-off races. And say that the Democrats did win these races? The policy and outlook of the Democratic Party is not one which says that “fascism is unacceptable and we will not work with, and therefore legitimize, fascists!” No. It is quite the opposite. They do not see the now thoroughly fascist Republican Party as illegitimate, but as perfectly legitimate partners with whom they have differences, but nonetheless would “come together” and unite within the “bigger interests” of the Amerikkkan empire. This whole sickening ethos of “reaching across the aisle” is even promoted among the population. We should “reach out to” and seek to “understand” those in our families and communities who voted for an open white supremacist, the liberals insist. Why the fuck should we do that?

For people who care about justice, and forging a better future, there can be no unity with those who uphold and promote the most reactionary and fascistic elements and programs in society. There is no “common cause” with those who take part in or passively go along with the pogroms and marauding MAGA mobs terrorizing and attacking peaceful protesters and spreading lunatic conspiracy theories. There must be a clear line of demarcation, in all aspects of our lives. If they want to “come together,” it is THEY who must change. We will not degrade ourselves in the muddy waters of collaborationism to accommodate the Nazis in our midst.

A Pledge to the People of the World: In the Name of Humanity, We Refuse to Accept a Fascist America.

See the full film, excerpts and Q&A of this film

 

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The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/a-wake-up-call-en.html

A Wake-Up Call: Fascist Supreme Court Assaults Science-Based COVID Restrictions in Ominous Ruling

In a perverse “preview of coming attractions,” SCOTUS Strikes Down New York State Restrictions on Indoor Religious Services

| revcom.us

 

Editors’ Note: This edited submission from a member of the National Revolution Tour is part of developing a new cohort of writers for revcom.us, of which we need much more.

Late Wednesday night, November 25, the Supreme Court signaled a troubling shift. In a 5-4 decision, with the fascists in the majority, and Chief Justice Roberts dissenting along with the liberal minority (although on narrow procedural grounds), the court struck down restrictions put in place by New York’s governor Andrew Cuomo on the size of religious services in areas particularly hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

In October, Governor Cuomo ordered that religious services within certain zones in New York City be limited to a very small number: 10 in some instances, and 25 in others. Epidemiologists and other experts have pointed towards the high-risk nature of indoor religious services which include chanting, singing, and other activities which can spread the virus, airborne in its spread. The restrictions in contention are temporary, and only affect small sections within the state that at any given time has a very high incidence of cases of COVID-19. Both Orthodox Jewish and Roman Catholic congregations challenged the orders, and eventually these challenges came before the Supreme Court.

The Christian fascist Trump appointees Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, in their respective concurring opinions, invoked the severe language of “discrimination” to describe (or more accurately, distort) the situation in New York. They insist that because there are attendance caps built into the restriction on religious buildings, and no such caps apply to (what they describe as) similar, secular buildings, those religious institutions are therefore unjustly singled out.

“So, at least according to the Governor, it may be unsafe to go to church, but it is always fine to pick up another bottle of wine, shop for a new bike, or spend the afternoon exploring your distal points and meridians. Who knew public health would so perfectly align with secular convenience?” Gorsuch argued.

The reality is far from this. As Justice Sotomayor’s dissenting opinion makes clear, this comparison is unwarranted, and the order in contention was based not in discriminatory attitudes towards religious institutions, but on the science of viruses and epidemiology (science of how viruses and diseases spread and what has to be done) of a pandemic that is ravaging through U.S. society right now, and the need for the government to impose restrictions that benefit the larger society and the health of the population at large.

From Sotomayor: “Unlike religious services... bike repair shops and liquor stores generally do not feature customers gathering inside to sing and speak together for an hour or more at a time... Justices of this Court play a deadly game in second guessing the expert judgment of health officials about the environments in which a contagious virus, now infecting a million Americans each week, spreads most easily.”

On Rights and Religious Freedom

Even within the framework of U.S. bourgeois constitutional law, religious rights, like all rights, are not absolute. The well-known example of this is that one does not have the right to shout “fire!” in a crowded theater if there is no fire. Along with necessary and legal restrictions, rights often come into conflict with one another, and which right must cede ground in one form or another needs to be negotiated. This is a great deal of what any legal system needs to handle. In this case, the freedom of these churches and synagogues to hold religious services in the numbers and forms that they wish is actually in conflict with the greater need for society to get the pandemic under control. Most societies would have difficulty, and should have debate determining which of these rights to prioritize. But to put it another way, “freedom of religion” does not give you the right to impose your religion on other people, or to impose an extreme harm on society as a whole: such as spreading a deadly disease.

This is to say nothing of the howling hypocrisy of the Christian fascists, who whine and moan about “constitutional violations” when they feel it can advance their “victim” narrative, and contribute to their drive for power, while themselves seeking to violate and vitiate the rights and liberties of women, LGBTQ people, and all those who do not bend to the will of their aspiring theocratic dictatorship. Let’s not forget that these are the people who insist that their “legal career is but a means to an end ... that end is building the kingdom of God.”1

Amy Coney Barrett joined fellow fascists Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh in the majority, in the first major sign of the impact that she—Barrett—will have in her new role. As revcom.us has previously exposed, Amy Coney Barrett is illegitimate. Not only was she installed on the Court as a key part of moves by the Trump/Pence regime in their moves to steal the 2020 Presidential election should it be close and possible, but more critically, “Barrett’s appointment will seal into place a Christian fascist majority on the Supreme Court for decades to come, with an increasingly disproportionate role in setting terms and policies for the country as a whole.”2

When compared to the Supreme Court rulings in the spring, which upheld certain restrictions during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic, this decision signals a new course: that THIS Court is one that is guided by, and will sacrifice the safety and lives of masses of people for, a Christian fascist agenda and social order. This ruling was nothing less than the opening salvo of what is likely to be a protracted assault by this new Court on science, civil liberties of oppressed peoples, and every social gain made since the 1960s, in particular women’s rights to abortion and birth control, among others. Yes, all this can and will very likely happen under a Biden presidency, given the tendencies and basic nature of the Democratic Party, and especially if mass struggle is not waged against it.

These Fascists Have No Right to Rule, and the System that Birthed Them Must Be Overthrown

The fact that a political force of this type—seeking to impose a dark ages morality, oppressive and reactionary social and political system based on a literalist interpretation of scripture—is not only a major factor in the politics of a high-tech imperialist country, but controls key levers of power and government, strongly influencing the direction and momentum of its trajectory, should raise serious questions about the nature of the system we are forced to live under, and be a wake-up call for all who care about truth and science.

What kind of a system has among the members of its most authoritative legal body, making literally life and death decisions concerning the public health of the masses among other key issues, those who not only dismiss but denigrate the very role and function of “experts”!

Alito also speaks out against what he calls “the vision of early 20th century progressives and the New Dealers of the 1930s” of imposing “the rule of experts.” What he means by this is the idea that government policies should be based on a scientific understanding of reality and not on popular prejudice. (See: Supreme Court Justice Alito’s Christian-Fascist Speech to the Federalist Society)

I am—frankly—stunned, and others should be too, questioning the very nature of this system! Views such as Alito’s reflect much more than crass philistinism. They are a coherent and potent ideological cocktail of ignorance about the world and fanatical “certitude” in service of what they believe “God” demands of them. Just what kind of society and world does this logic lead to? And just how many corpses line the road to this world?

There’s a tremendous need to call all of this out—the illegitimacy of a fascist Supreme Court, the danger of the millions-strong Christian fascist movement and its political operatives, and the ridiculous, outmoded system which gives these forces the room to operate and conspire to force their poison on the rest of us. The concrete moves they make to institute their vision need to be stopped cold, by uniting all who can be united to stop a fascist America—as part of bringing forth a radically different and far better world by getting rid of this system that birthed and nurtured this Christian fascism. A system of capitalism-imperialism, a system that cannot be reformed, that must be overthrown!

 


1. See revcom.us article “Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court? A “Home Run” for Fascism and Oppression; an Imminent Threat to Abortion and All Reproductive Rights.”  [back]

2. Ibid.  [back]


Handmaids protest Amy Coney Barrett in front of Supreme Court. (Photo: AP)

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian is a book of quotations and short essays that speaks powerfully to questions of revolution and human emancipation.

"You can't change the world if you don't know the BAsics."

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VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

by Bob Avakian

Part 1:
THE DEMOCRATS CAN'T FIGHT TRUMP
THE WAY HE NEEDS TO BE FOUGHT

Read more

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/on-a-killing-spree-en.html

On a Killing Spree: Trump/Pence Regime's Department of INJustice

| revcom.us

 

On July 14, Daniel Lewis Lee was executed by lethal injection at the U.S. penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana. This was the first execution of a federal prisoner since 2003. Last week, Trump’s “Justice Department” (DOJ) announced that, in addition to two executions already scheduled before Trump’s term in office is set to end, it intends to execute three more inmates on federal death row. If all these executions proceed, it means that the fascist regime will have executed 13 prisoners since July. This will be the deadliest period of federal executions since at least 1927, according to Federal Bureau of Prisons data. Allison Cohen, a spokesperson for the anti-death penalty group Death Penalty Action, told the Salon website, “We’re really in the middle of an unprecedented execution spree.”

Among those already executed or scheduled for execution:

Lezmond Mitchell, a Navajo man who had no history of violence, and who denied carrying out the brutal murders on Navajo land for which he was convicted. The DOJ sought the death penalty against the explicit wishes of the victim’s family and the Navajo Nation, and despite the fact that a federal law from 1885 prohibits the death penalty for crimes committed on tribal land unless the affected tribe decides to allow it. He was tried and convicted by a jury of 11 whites and one Native American. Mitchell was executed on July 26.

Lisa Montgomery, convicted of murder and kidnapping a pregnant woman. Diane Mattingly, her half-sister, told Elle magazine of the violence, rape, child prostitution, and other abuses that Montgomery suffered from childhood into her young adulthood, and left her “diagnosed with bipolar disorder and complex post-traumatic stress disorder, and (someone who) regularly dissociates and hallucinates.” As one of her lawyers wrote, “Executing Lisa Montgomery would be yet another injustice inflicted on a woman who has known a lifetime of mistreatment.” Montgomery is scheduled to be executed at Terre Haute on January 12, 2021. If it goes ahead, she will be the first woman executed by the federal government since 1984.

Bringing Back the Firing Squad

William Barr, the Christian fascist head of the DOJ, has pushed forward new rules that allow for “expanded execution methods” to “avoid delays” in state-sponsored killings. Along with the barbaric lethal injections now favored, these methods include firing squads and the electric chair. The fascists still in power want to ensure that executions can be carried out relatively quickly, even in states that currently aren’t equipped to carry out lethal injections. If a federal prisoner is sentenced in a state that currently doesn't permit death sentences, Barr’s new measure also enables a judge to designate another state with the laws and capability to carry out the executions.

“It’s going to be black person after black person after black person”

Monica Foster, a federal public defender in Indiana, says that if federal executions proceed, eventually “it’s going to be black person after black person after black person.” History and facts about the prison population back up what she says.

Political authorities, both Democrat and Republican, have whipped up and orchestrated support for executions by focusing huge public attention on the death penalty by convicting and executing white men for horrific crimes, then turning the machinery of death mainly upon Black and Latino men. This approach, as the “thin end of the wedge,” is an attempt to avoid the overt expression of the white supremacy underlying federal—and other—executions, as the percentage of Black men on federal death row is hugely disproportionate to the percentage of Black people in the overall population. According to the list of federal death penalty prisoners, 44.4 percent are Black, and 40.7 percent are white, while Black people are about 13 percent of the U.S. population.

In Texas, the trial and 1984 execution of the "Candyman"—a white man who poisoned his own son — opened the floodgates to the state prison in Huntsville becoming an execution grounds. Soon, people like Clarence Brandley and Shaka Sankofa were sent to the death chamber. Clarence Brandley, a Black man who was railroaded by an openly racist D.A. and convicted by an all-white jury for a crime he did not commit, spent 10 years on death row before finally being released after repeated protests and appeals that went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court; Shaka Sankofa was a revolutionary-minded Black man who had been convicted and condemned to death on the basis of flawed testimony of one witness and no physical evidence, was executed. As the poison coursed through his body, Shaka Sankofa said, “This is a lynching that is happening in America tonight. There’s overwhelming and compelling evidence of my defense that has never been heard in any court of America... We must continue to stay strong all around the world, and people must come together to stop the systematic killing of poor and innocent Black people.”

The Intercept website reported that “From the moment Attorney General William Barr first announced the federal execution dates, it was clear that the cases had been carefully chosen.” All of the people on Barr’s list had been convicted of gruesome crimes, and “Most of the condemned were white men, which struck many people as no accident.”

A Fascist Regime, an Unjust System

Widespread use of the death penalty in this society preceded the Trump/Pence regime. But in recent years it has largely fallen into disapproval, even in states infamous for its widespread use.

The aggressive moves by Trump and Barr to reactivate the federal death penalty are not just an election-year ploy for votes, as some have suggested. They are an indication of the cruel and extreme lengths the fascists are willing to go in carrying out heartless repression, especially against Black and other oppressed people. They reveal the extent of punishment the fascists want to inflict upon people whose lives, minds, and spirits have been twisted and torn apart by the putrid social relations and culture of racism and misogyny concentrated in this country.

The new regulations issued by Barr’s DOJ will continue after the fascist regime steps aside, until they are explicitly taken out by a future administration. Biden has “pledged to eliminate the death penalty” as the New York Times put it. Whether that happens, when and if that happens, and how it would apply on the state as well as federal level, are uncertain. But what is clear are the murderous intentions of not just Trump and Pence, but the entire fascist movement they spearhead. The new death penalty regulations are now “on the books” and can’t be removed quickly, and they are intended to facilitate execution on a more massive scale than has previously existed in this country.

Clear also is the utterly unjust application of the death penalty throughout the entire history of this country, as the ultimate punishment in a society of gaping inequalities, systemic oppression of entire peoples, and institutionalized abuse of women and children.


Lezmond Mitchell

 


Lisa Montgomery

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/672/appearing-in-the-ny-times-a-pledge-to-the-people-of-the-world-en.html

Reposted from RefuseFascism.org:

Appearing in the New York Times on Monday, November 9: A Pledge to the People of the World

| revcom.us

 

On Monday, November 9, “A Pledge to the People of the World: In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America. The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!” appears as a full-page ad in the New York Times. The Times originally tried to censor this, but reversed the decision. The ad has a number of signatories, including Cornel West, Noam Chomsky, Lilly Wachowski, Arturo O’Farrill, and Chuck D.

 

Read this pledge, and see the full list of the signers of this pledge, at RefuseFascism.org

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/standing-up-to-the-fascist-maga-incursion-into-chicago-en.html

Standing Up to the Fascist MAGA Incursion into Chicago

| revcom.us

 

On Thanksgiving Day in Chicago, 100 Trump supporters brought their fascist “Stop the Steal” rally to the Trump Tower downtown. Unmasked in the midst of a skyrocketing pandemic, they spewed their lies that the election was “fraudulent” and “illegitimate,” that COVID is a “hoax” and that their personal and religious liberties are in mortal danger. Their rally was part of a nationwide campaign of weekly protests to unite Trumpers of all the extreme varieties to overturn the election of Biden and quickly build a national organization of “grassroots” fascists to shut down the country in January if Trump is not inaugurated, according to the national organizer Ali Alexander. Forces involved included Proud Boys, Christian fascists, science-denying conspiracy-theory believers who think COVID is a hoax, Back the Blue white supremacist fascists who have organized regular rallies and intimidating truck parades in the suburbs, as well as militia who have rallied to free Kyle Rittenhouse, the 17-year-old MAGA gun nut who murdered two Black Lives Matter protesters in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and maimed a third. Trump2020 banners, Stop the Steal signs, and American flags were the hallmarks of the toxic mix of ideology and program, with the biggest sign capturing their murderous idiocy: “No More Masks, There’s No Pandemic, Covid 19 = Hoax.”

Confronting them was a raucous “noise counter-protest” of 50 people across the street. Mobilized by Refuse Fascism, the Revolution Club, the “No More” Foundation, anti-fascist anarchists, and others, they united that the fascists should not be allowed to dominate the public space or spew their toxic message uncontested, and that the people must be in the streets, nonviolently, to thwart attempts at this illegitimate power grab and drive the fascists out of power. Trump Tower has been a symbol of the hated Trump/Pence regime for four years of protests large and small, most recently the huge dancing-in-the-street celebration after Biden’s election win was announced. The MAGA mob could not be allowed to claim this as a shrine for their fascist devotion to Trump or use it to build up their forces to keep him in power.

Refuse Fascism’s message was boldly in the face of the fascists on the orange “Trump/Pence Out Now!” banners and signs saying “Trump You Lost, Now Get Out. STOP Trying to Overturn the Election! STOP Your Murderous Covid Program! STOP Your Dangerous War Moves! STOP Whipping Up MAGA Fascist Mobs!” Righteous chants rang out: “Humanity First, Not America First” and “Trump pack your shit, you are illegitimate.” Four coffins represented the precious lives of the more than 250,000 people in the U.S. lost in the epidemic, many of whom died needlessly and alone from Trump’s callous, murderous disregard. The “Pledge to the People of the World” was welcomed by many of the protesters as a representation of what they believe and why we must act now.

An important grouping came from Schaumburg, a suburb where they have been counter-protesting the MAGAs’ Sunday rallies for months. Last week, Refuse Fascism and the Revolution Club joined them. The fascist rallies have grown larger and more vicious since the election, and the fascists have been doxxing the counter-protesters and threatening them. One of the women, explaining why she has continued in the face of these attacks, said, “Somebody has to stand up and say ‘No.’”

A group of five anarchists made an anti-fascist, anti-Thanksgiving banner that cleverly connected Trump and the MAGA fascists to the whole white supremacist, genocidal history of this country, including what Thanksgiving really represents. It said “MAGA Pilgrims Fuck Off,” with a painting of a burning Mayflower-looking boat with a “blue lives matter” flag, a Trump sign, and a QAnon sign in flames. They blasted out a Fuck Donald Trump playlist along with pots and pans and cowbells to disrupt the fascist rally.

A young Black couple from Chicago came because “Trump calls Black Lives Matter terrorists... his narrative is racist... and the Democrats are going to sleep. We’re out here for revolutionary change.” A group of eight medics came because “everybody has the right to protest.” One said, “Fascism is a violent ideology. Fighting fascism isn’t provocation, it’s self-defense.” He added, “A night of broken glass is just a matter of time.* Electoralism doesn’t work, we need people in the street.” A young white woman said she thought it was important to protest on Thanksgiving because “people came to promote a feeling of connectedness, to show we’re still passionate about what we’ve been fighting for.” An older white couple who live in the neighborhood came “when we saw the Trump supporters, so pissed off and angry, we had to come out and support you all.” The man said that, like in Nazi Germany, Trump supporters “are just out for themselves. I always thought we were better than this.”

When the MAGAs turned their reactionary rally into a march to Millennium Park, the counter-protesters counter-marched directly on the other side of the street, calling them out all the way into the park where the police cordoned off the two groups. The fascists attempted to rally but were often drowned out by the chants and noise of the counter-protest.

At the end, back at Trump Tower, the counter-protesters wrapped up by joining together to say the Pledge to the People of the World.


*This refers to the nationwide Nazi attacks on the homes, businesses and synagogues of German Jews on November 9-10, 1938. "Kristallnacht" -- "Night of Broken Glass" -- was a major leap toward genocide. [back]

 

A Pledge to The People of the World: We Refuse To Accept a Fascist America

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/free-mumia-stfu-smerconish-shout-out-to-kaepernick-en.html

Free Mumia! STFU Smerconish. Shout out to Kaepernick.

| revcom.us

 

Mumia Abu-Jamal is a political prisoner who was railroaded and wrongly convicted for allegedly killing a cop. He is a former Black Panther and a revolutionary journalist. He has bravely continued to speak out, despite having spent well over a decade on death row and now serving life without parole.

Recently, Colin Kaepernick publicized his case by calling for his immediate release. CNN’s Michael Smerconish blasted Kaepernick for this and spewed murderous lies about Mumia Abu-Jamal.

In this video, Sunsara Taylor takes on and refutes Smerconish's lies.

Sunsara Taylor, a co-host of The Revolution, Nothing Less Show, worked for years on the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal, especially during his years on death row, including spending significant time in Philly itself mobilizing masses to defend Mumia Abu-Jamal.

For more background on Mumia Abu-Jamal's case, go here.

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/640/bob-avakian-the-deadly-illusion-of-normalcy-en.html

THE DEADLY ILLUSION OF "NORMALCY" AND THE REVOLUTIONARY WAY FORWARD

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

Even before the coronavirus became a worldwide pandemic, a New York Times columnist wrote about the lure of boredom—arguing that, after the years of Trump madness, having a sleep-inducing president (like Joe Biden) might be just what is needed. The impact of the coronavirus has reinforced and strengthened this tendency toward a “yearning for normalcy,” especially on the part of the section of the ruling class represented by the NYT and that section of society, particularly among the more formally educated middle strata, that for some time has, to a significant degree, identified with what is represented by the NYT.

But, in fundamental terms, this notion of a “return to normalcy” is an illusion that will be exploded by the nature and workings of the system of capitalism-imperialism to which the masses of humanity are subjected.

In the context of this current crisis, the exploitative and oppressive relations built into this system are asserting themselves in a pronounced way, within this country and internationally, just as they have in previous crises. For example, when Hurricane Katrina hit, in New Orleans and surrounding areas in 2005, even as broad sections of people suffered, it was poor Black people who were hit in the most devastating ways, because of the oppression and savage inequalities to which they were already subjected and because of the not-so-benign neglect and often malign actions of those in power. The same has been true with regard to AIDS—it is those who have been discriminated against and denigrated who have suffered the most—and the lop-sided burden of suffering has been especially pronounced on an international scale, with people in sub-Saharan Africa in particular enduring tremendous devastation.

Even as broad swaths of the population will be hit by the coronavirus, this inequality will once again have its effect in this country in relation to the current crisis—as immigrants, prisoners, the homeless, people in poor communities, particularly among the oppressed nationalities, and others who are subordinated, degraded and despised by the “normal workings” of this system and the powers that be, will be subjected to disproportionate suffering.1

And internationally the same dynamics apply in an even greater way. As I have pointed to previously:

we live in a world where large parts of humanity live in stark poverty, with 2.3 billion people lacking even rudimentary toilets or latrines and huge numbers suffering from preventable diseases, with millions of children dying every year from these diseases and from starvation, while 150 million children in the world are forced to engage in ruthlessly exploited child labor, and the whole world economy rests on a vast network of sweatshops, employing large numbers of women who are regularly subjected to sexual harassment and assault, a world where 65 million refugees have been displaced by war, poverty, persecution, and the effects of global warming.2

It is those, worldwide, who are maintained in these conditions who will be hit hardest in this crisis, as they have been in the past.

All this, combined with the continuing and rapidly deepening climate crisis, rooted in the dynamics of this system and increasingly posing an existential threat to all of humanity, will drive masses, millions and ultimately billions, of people to even further desperation, and no one on the planet will be able to avoid the repercussions and effects of all this.

The Immediate Dangers, the Fundamental Problem and the Revolutionary Solution

Several years ago, I pointed out:

Today, while the U.S. is, and loudly proclaims itself to be, the world’s number one superpower, it is riddled with sharpening contradictions, and facing growing challenges, within the country and internationally, and this has brought forth a fascist regime that now holds the reins of power, with the finger of a demented bully on the nuclear button—a regime that, without exaggeration, threatens not just greatly heightened suffering for the masses of humanity but the very existence of humanity itself.3

And, in a number of other countries, fascism has continued to gain strength, as a response—a fanatical, lunatic, and violent reaction—to changes being driven fundamentally by the necessities and dynamics of the capitalist-imperialist system and the fact that this system does not have, and cannot have, any positive resolution to all this. Despite what many (especially many “liberals”) would like to believe, the notion that especially in times of crisis like this “we are all in this together” is in conflict with and is refuted by reality and specifically is not adhered to by the fascist forces. For example, gun sales in this country have skyrocketed even higher amidst this crisis, as “Second Amendment types” stock up even further on lethal weapons to “protect themselves” from “criminals” (and, on the part of many, to prepare themselves for the “civil war” they see coming). To refer again to the insights of African-American theologian Hubert Locke, what is involved with the fascist movement in this country is not just some abstract battle for the “hearts and minds” of people but a deadly serious struggle for power, with the aim—on the part particularly of the Christian fundamentalist driving force of this fascism—of “seizing the reins of government, manipulating the courts and judicial decisions, controlling the media, and making incursions into every possible corner of our private lives and relationships, so that what the religious right perceives as the will of God will reign in America.”4

This is why the commonly propagated notion that what has given rise to the sharp polarization in this country, and the madness associated with Trump, is a “departure from civility,” or more specifically that it flows from a failure on the part of educated middle class “liberals” to communicate with and try to understand the views of people in the “heartland”—all this is not only completely erroneous but actually a dangerous delusion. Writing a little more than 20 years ago, in her book Mobilizing Resentment, based on her extensive investigation into the right-wing movement in this country, Jean Hardisty recounts how, even where her efforts to engage in civil and friendly conversation with people of this kind would initially be returned with a certain superficial kindliness, as the conversation progressed she would repeatedly be subjected to the “brutal intolerance” that would come to the fore on the part of these right-wingers. As she graphically puts it: “when I give rightists the benefit of the doubt, out of respect for their right to their own worldview, they reward me every time with a kick in the teeth.” She sums up that what we are dealing with is

a well-financed, well-coordinated, savvy movement that has developed brilliant techniques of manipulation and has captured and molded a hospitable moment in history. The right’s quest for political power has become a frightening reality.5

And things have only gotten worse, and the danger this poses even greater, in the 20 or so years since Hardisty wrote this.

In very immediate terms, the outlook and methods as well as the priorities of the fascists, as concentrated in the Trump/Pence regime—with the appointment of the anti-scientific Pence to head government efforts around COVID-19; Trump’s initial denial of the scope and danger posed by this virus and his continuing lies about this; his gross American chauvinism, pitting this country against the rest of the world; his repeated tendency to recklessly deny medical science and ignore the recommendations of medical experts where it runs counter to his own narrowly conceived and dangerously shortsighted interests and objectives; and more—all this amplifies and fortifies the barriers that the “normal functioning” of the capitalist-imperialist system places in the way of a systematic and coordinated approach to combating the coronavirus. At the same time, there is the question of whether Trump will actually recognize the results of the election in November if (even in the electoral college count, as well as in the popular vote) he is not the winner—or whether there will even be an election, since it is not unthinkable that Trump would “delay” (or even outright cancel) the election, declaring that in the context of the coronavirus crisis it is too dangerous to have an election!

All this must be resisted and overcome to the greatest extent possible, while at the same time recognizing that it will require a radical transformation of society, and ultimately the world as a whole, to remove the powerful restraints that this system places on human beings and their ability to act in common to confront and transform the necessity they face, in an ongoing way and acutely so in times of crisis.

Whatever happens in regard to the elections that are scheduled to be held this November, and however the coronavirus crisis is resolved—or if it is not really resolved but becomes part of “cascading crises,” with one crisis leading to another... and another—there will be no returning to some idealized notion of “normalcy.” And, while there is certainly a legitimate and positive desire on the part of people everywhere to get beyond the scourge of this virus, taking into account what is the actual situation for the masses of humanity under the “normal” domination of this system, no one should desire a return to the “normalcy” dictated by the capitalist-imperialist system.

Underlying the immediate crisis, and the danger posed by the Trump/Pence regime and its fanatical fascist “base,” there is the more fundamental reality of the capitalist-imperialist system and the consequences of allowing this system to continue to dominate the world and determine the conditions of the masses of humanity and indeed the very fate of humanity itself. This crisis with the coronavirus has brought into sharp relief the reality that the capitalist system is not simply out of step with but is in fundamental conflict with, and a direct obstacle to, meeting the needs of the masses of humanity. Even as the capitalists and governments representing their interests have been forced to take certain emergency steps that in some ways run counter to the inherent dynamics of their system (such as massive intervention by the government in the functioning of the economy), the ways in which this system constitutes an obstacle to dealing with this crisis continue to assert themselves—including not only such perverse actions as the hoarding by some of vital medical and other supplies, in order to drive up the price, but also the fact that the creation of wealth under this system proceeds on the basis of ruthless exploitation and the impoverishment of masses of people throughout the world, while even in the “wealthier” countries there is significant poverty and large parts of the population live paycheck-to-paycheck and are only one serious crisis away from disaster; the ongoing rivalry between different capitalists (or associations of capital), with their private ownership of the means of production (land, raw materials, technology, factories and other structures) and private, competitive accumulation of wealth acts as a hindrance to necessary cooperation and the production of things that may be urgently needed but are not productive of private profit—and the whole ideology of advancing one’s interests at the expense of others, the individualism that is fostered by this system and is promoted to an extreme currently in this country, runs counter to and undermines inclinations toward cooperation and, yes, sacrifice for the greater good. Despite the dedicated efforts of many well-meaning people, even if the immediate crisis with the coronavirus is resolved, this will be done on the basis of intensifying the contradictions built into this system and the suffering of the masses of humanity who are already exploited and oppressed under this system.

All of this stands in sharp contrast with what is needed to deal in a truly meaningful way with crises like that occasioned by the coronavirus, and to meet the fundamental needs of humanity on an ongoing basis. It stands in sharp contrast to the socialist system envisioned in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, where there is social, not private, ownership of the means of production, social wealth is produced through cooperation not exploitation and is increasingly distributed in accordance with the needs of the people, not those of competing capitalists, and there is a government that represents and is geared to meeting the fundamental interests of humanity, and promotes that outlook among the people and involves them in the process of governance toward that end—not a government that is an extension of and can only represent the demands and dynamics of capital, with all the anarchy and ruthless exploitation that involves, within particular countries and on an international scale.6

Beyond the borders of any particular country, there is the great importance and potentially very positive role and impact of internationalism, which can only be really and fully realized with the overcoming of the barriers erected to international unity and cooperation by the workings of the capitalist-imperialist system—which is international in its scope of operations (that is, its exploitation) but consists of competing capitalists and rival capitalist states.7

Overcoming all this can be—and can only be—accomplished through the communist revolution and the increasing establishment of socialist countries in the world, proceeding on an internationalist basis and carrying out the economic, social and political transformations, as well as transformations in the ways of thinking and culture of the people, that will enable humanity to leap beyond the constraints and the terrible consequences which are imposed by the “normal” functioning of the capitalist-imperialist system and are greatly intensified in situations of crisis. This unprecedented revolution will make it possible for people to engage reality, and to confront crises, in a truly cooperative way as members of a world community of freely associating human beings, not separated and pitted against each other by divisions of country, class, nationality (or “race”), gender and other oppressive relations.

 


1. Materials posted at revcom.us, including communiqués from the revolutionary communists (revcoms) and the interview with Lenny Wolff on the Michael Slate radio show, speak to how this dynamic is already being expressed in this current crisis.  [back]

2. Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make RevolutionThe text and video of this speech by Bob Avakian are available at revcom.us.  [back]

3. THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO! In The Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America, A Better World IS Possible. Video of this speech by Bob Avakian is available at revcom.us.  [back]

4. Reflections on Pacific School of Religion's Response to the Religious Right, by Dr. Hubert Locke, also available at revcom.us.  [back]

5. Jean Hardisty, Mobilizing Resentment, Conservative Resurgence From The John Birch Society To The Promise Keepers, Beacon Press Books, 1999, pp. 5, 6, 8.  [back]

6. The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by Bob Avakian, is available at revcom.us.  [back]

7. In the section “Globalization, the Nationality of Capital, and the Imperialist Nation‑State,” in Notes on Political Economy: Our Analysis of the 1980s, Issues of Methodology, and The Current World Situationpublished by the Revolutionary Communist Party (available online at revcom.us), there is an analysis of this major contradiction in the world today:

In the imperialist era, the circuits of capital become internationalized—and accumulation grows ever more global in reach and process. But imperialist capital remains anchored to national markets and national state formations....

In short, the anarchy bound up with global processes of capitalist development creates new problems of "control." The contradiction between internationalized accumulation and the national character of capital, far from being transcended, is intensified.

As “Notes” further states:

At the same time, capital requires an apparatus (the imperialist state) and the military wherewithal (which means a military industry) to secure the international environment within which it can globally thrive.  [back]

See the full film, excerpts and Q&A of this film

See also:

Reflections on Pacific School of Religion's Response to the Religious Right

by Dr. Hubert Locke

Reposted October 7, 2019. Originally posted January 29, 2006

Read more

Watch BA's whole speech:

Watch clips from speech

 

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/641/bob-avakian-conspiracy-theories-or-a-scientific-approach-short-version-en.html

CONSPIRACY THEORIES, FASCIST "CERTITUDE," LIBERAL PARALYSIS, OR
A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO CHANGING THE WORLD

(Short Version—The Simple and Basic Truth)

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

The coronavirus crisis has brought home very sharply the importance of science—the scientific method and approach to understanding and changing the world. But there is a big problem in how people have been trained and conditioned to think (or not think). While many “liberals” and “progressives” have, for far too long, allowed themselves to become paralyzed by ridiculous notions like “How can you know what is really true, no one can say that their truth is greater than someone else’s truth,” and so on, fascist forces, marked by a truly dark ages mentality, are firmly convinced of the “truth” of all manner of lunatic conspiracy theories promoting fascist “values” and objectives.

Put another way, in terms of major trends in society as a whole: Those who have the most certitude are those most out of touch with reality.

Further complicating the situation and an additional dimension to this problem is the fact that, although they do not share but strongly oppose the “values” and objectives of the fascists, many of the basic masses, who are bitterly oppressed under this system, also are suspicious of and even are inclined to reject science and scientifically-grounded analysis. But this also leaves you vulnerable to all kinds of unfounded “conspiracy theories” and other wrong and harmful ideas, including the notion that nothing people do will make a difference because “it’s all in god’s hands.”

The answer to all this is not giving up on understanding reality, or simply believing what sounds like it makes sense, or what is said by someone you know, or what gives you comfort (at least for a while). The truth of something does not depend on who says it, or how it makes you feel. Because something comes from a source you like does not make it true; and because something comes from a source you do not like does not make it untrue. And truth is not a “popularity contest.” Because a lot of people believe something does not make it true; and because only a few people believe something does not make it untrue.

Truth is objective—which means: Whether something is true or not depends on whether it corresponds to actual reality. (On some levels, the truth of things is obvious—for example, the truth that if it is raining hard and you are exposed to the rain for any length of time, you will get wet. But there are deeper levels to things, and the truth about them is more complex and requires more developed knowledge—for example, what causes rain, why it is raining where you are and not somewhere else, and so on. But in all cases, on all levels, the fact remains: Whether something is true or not depends on whether it corresponds to actual reality.) To sort out what is false from what is true and to stand on solid ground in terms of understanding things, you need the scientific method and approach to reality—and, yes, scientifically-grounded certitude, where such certitude can and must be established.

Ardea Skybreak, a professionally trained scientist and an advocate of the new communism as a further advance in the science of revolution, has made the point that science is not just somebody’s opinion but involves and requires investigating reality and systematizing what is learned through this process. She emphasizes that “Science is an evidence-based process” and

Science is very different than religion or mysticism, or things like that, which try to explain reality by invoking imaginary forces and which provide no actual evidence for any of their analyses. By contrast, science requires proof. It requires evidence.1

If you don’t judge things by whether there is compelling evidence for them—and if you don’t evaluate what people claim by weighing it against what the evidence shows about the actual reality—you can end up believing almost anything! Or, as Skybreak puts it:

Without science you are at the mercy of being manipulated, of having your thinking manipulated and not being able to tell what’s right from what’s wrong, what’s true from what’s false.2

Skybreak emphasizes the point that science is not mysterious, but is something that anyone can learn and apply. She also speaks to the fact that there has been bad science (including bad science used for racist purposes) but that you can and should use good science—the actual methods of science—to understand reality and expose and refute bad science. As she puts it, in simple and basic terms: “Whether you want to cure a disease or make a better society, you need that scientific evidence‑based process.”3

Opposing the scientific method and approach—and denying the possibility of arriving at important truths by applying this method and approach—can only lead to bad, sometimes extremely bad, results, leaving people weighed down by all kinds of ignorance and prejudice, depriving people of the ability to understand and change the world in a fundamentally positive direction. When, for example, Jonas Salk announced that he had finally developed a vaccine to deal with the terrible disease polio, should the response actually have been to be suspicious of this claim and reject it without even looking into it? Should people actually respond in that way if, or when, a vaccine is developed for COVID-19?! Examples of this kind could be cited almost endlessly.

It is worth repeating the very important point emphasized by Ardea Skybreak:

Whether you want to cure a disease or make a better society, you need that scientific evidence‑based process.

And specifically in terms of making a better society—in opposing the fascism of the Trump-Pence regime, and even more fundamentally in making a radical leap beyond this system of capitalism-imperialism (which has given rise to this fascism) and bringing into being a far better world—you need the scientific method and approach of the new communism.

 


1. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION, On the Importance of Science and the Application of Science to Society, the New Synthesis of Communism and the Leadership of Bob Avakian, An Interview with Ardea Skybreak, emphasis in the original. Ardea Skybreak is a professionally trained scientist in the field of ecology and evolutionary biology and an advocate of the new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian. Skybreak is also the author of the very important book The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What’s Real and Why It Matters, Insight Press, 2006. The entire interview with Ardea Skybreak (SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION) is available at revcom.us.

In this interview Skybreak goes in some depth into how Bob Avakian, in summing up the historical experience of the communist movement and drawing from a broad range of human experience, has brought forward a new communism that embodies a further leap in the application of a scientific method and approach to the question of how a better society and world, free of exploitation and oppression, can actually be brought into being. This new communism is a continuation of, but also represents a qualitative leap beyond, and in some important ways a break with, communist theory as it had been previously developed and has put communism on an even more consistently scientific basis, providing the strategy and leadership for an actual revolution and a radically new society on the road to real emancipation.

In a number of works, and in particular the book THE NEW COMMUNISM, The science, the strategy, the leadership for an actual revolution, and a radically new society on the road to real emancipation, and Breakthroughs: The Historic Breakthrough by Marx, and the Further Breakthrough with the New Communism, A Basic Summary (which is available at revcom.us), Bob Avakian speaks to what is new in the new communism and its relation to previous communist theory.  [back]

2. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION.  [back]

3. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION.  [back]

BOB AVAKIAN: A RADICALLY DIFFERENT LEADER—
A WHOLE NEW FRAMEWORK FOR HUMAN EMANCIPATION

Bob Avakian (BA) is the most important political thinker and leader in the world today.

Read more

Watch BA's whole speech:

Watch clips from speech

 

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

Get a free email subscription to revcom.us:



 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/641/bob-avakian-conspiracy-theories-or-a-scientific-approach-long-version-en.html

CONSPIRACY THEORIES, FASCIST "CERTITUDE," LIBERAL PARALYSIS, OR
A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO CHANGING THE WORLD

(Longer Version—The Truth Elaborated)

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

The coronavirus crisis has brought home very sharply the importance of science—the scientific method and approach to understanding and changing the world. But there is a big problem in how people have been trained and conditioned to think (or not think). Even as people in the medical field are proceeding on the basis of a scientific approach and, in the context of this coronavirus crisis, “liberals” are insisting that it is vitally important now to “listen to the scientists,” for far too long many “liberals” and “progressives” have allowed themselves to become paralyzed by relativist agnosticism, lacking—and often even rejecting the very idea of—certitude (with ridiculous notions like “How can you know what is really true, no one can say that their truth is greater than someone else’s truth,” and so on). Meanwhile, fascist forces, marked by a truly dark ages mentality, and firmly convinced of the “truth” of all manner of lunatic conspiracy theories promoting fascist “values” and objectives, are eagerly embracing callous philistinism, willfully rejecting critical thinking, smugly ignoring, defying and denigrating science and the scientific method.

Put another way, in terms of major trends in society as a whole: Those who have the most certitude are those most out of touch with reality.

Further complicating the situation and an additional dimension to this problem is the fact that, although they do not share but strongly oppose the “values” and objectives of the fascists, many of the basic masses, who are bitterly oppressed under this system, also are suspicious of and even are inclined to reject science and scientifically-grounded analysis. But this also leaves you vulnerable to all kinds of unfounded “conspiracy theories” and other wrong and harmful ideas, including the notion that nothing people do will make a difference because “it’s all in god’s hands.”

The answer to all this is not giving up on understanding reality, or simply believing what sounds like it makes sense, or what is said by someone you know, or what gives you comfort (at least for a while). The truth of something does not depend on who says it, or how it makes you feel. Because something comes from a source you like does not make it true; and because something comes from a source you do not like does not make it untrue. And truth is not a “popularity contest.” Because a lot of people believe something does not make it true; and because only a few people believe something does not make it untrue.

Truth is objective—which means: Whether something is true or not depends on whether it corresponds to actual reality. (On some levels, the truth of things is obvious—for example, the truth that if it is raining hard and you are exposed to the rain for any length of time, you will get wet. But there are deeper levels to things, and the truth about them is more complex and requires more developed knowledge—for example, what causes rain, why it is raining where you are and not somewhere else, and so on. But in all cases, on all levels, the fact remains: Whether something is true or not depends on whether it corresponds to actual reality.) To sort out what is false from what is true and to stand on solid ground in terms of understanding things, you need the scientific method and approach to reality—and, yes, scientifically-grounded certitude, where such certitude can and must be established.

Science is not another “dogma”—another untested and unproved “set of beliefs”—it is the opposite of that. Conclusions based on the application of the scientific method are obviously important, but science is not just some “collection of conclusions,” and still less is it a set of “precepts” which are not drawn from reality and are out of keeping with reality, or which once reflected reality but have become frozen and “ossified” and no longer correspond to a changing reality. Science is above all and most essentially a method. In this regard the following, from an interview with Ardea Skybreak, a professionally trained scientist and an advocate of the new communism as a further advance in the science of revolution, is very relevant:

So I think it might be worth starting a little bit by talking about what is science, to demystify it a little bit. I mean, science deals with material reality, and you could say that all of nature and all of human society is the province of science, science can deal with all that. It’s a tool—science—a very powerful tool. It’s a method and approach for being able to tell what’s true, what corresponds to reality as it really is. In that sense, science is very different than religion or mysticism, or things like that, which try to explain reality by invoking imaginary forces and which provide no actual evidence for any of their analyses. By contrast, science requires proof. It requires evidence. It is an evidence‑based process. That’s very important. Science is an evidence‑based process.1

If you don’t judge things by whether there is compelling evidence for them—and if you don’t evaluate what people claim by weighing it against what the evidence shows about the actual reality—you can end up believing almost anything! Or, as Skybreak puts it:

Without science you are at the mercy of being manipulated, of having your thinking manipulated and not being able to tell what’s right from what’s wrong, what’s true from what’s false.2

And:

Whether you’re talking about the material reality of a disease, of a natural ecosystem, or of a social system that human beings live under, science allows you to analyze its components, its history, how it came to be the way it is, what it’s made of, what are its defining characteristics and underlying contradictoriness (and we’ll come back to that) and therefore also what is the basis for it to change, or to be changed, if your intent is to change it. Whether you want to cure a disease or make a better society, you need that scientific evidence‑based process.3

Skybreak emphasizes the point that science is not mysterious, but is something that anyone can learn and apply. She also speaks to the contradiction that sometimes people are turned off to science, partly because they have been given the wrong sense of what science is, and

Another reason people are sometimes turned off by science is because there has been bad science....sometimes in the course of history science has been used to promote the idea that some races are inferior to other races....Well, that’s junk science. In fact you can use rigorous scientific methods to prove that that was all bad science. It’s not just “morally” bad—it is that, but it’s also scientifically bad—it’s completely false and you can use good science to prove that.4

As I have put it, in line with the essential point made by Skybreak:

It is the “good science”—the scientific method and approach of proceeding from the evidence about reality to understand how reality actually is, why it is the way it is, and how it is changing and could be changed further—that we need to consistently apply if we want to transform the world to uproot oppression and exploitation.5

Consistently Applying a Scientific Method, Following the Truth Wherever It Leads

Far too often, and with no small amount of irony, educated middle class “liberals,” “progressives” and the “woke” act as if they are asserting some profound truth when they reject the very notion of “truth” and decry and denounce as dogmatic (or even tyrannical) those who say that they have arrived at certain definite truths. But, once again, opposing the scientific method and approach—and denying the possibility of arriving at important truths by applying this method and approach—can only lead to bad, sometimes extremely bad, results, leaving people weighed down by all kinds of ignorance and prejudice, depriving people of the ability to understand and change the world in a fundamentally positive direction. And is this approach—of denying the possibility or desirability of knowing the truth and denouncing those who say they have brought forward definite important truths—is this really valid and viable, something people can or should stick with? When, for example, Jonas Salk announced that he had finally developed a vaccine to deal with the terrible disease polio, should the response actually have been to be suspicious of this claim and reject it without even looking into it, and to criticize (or even ostracize) Salk for having the nerve to claim that he arrived at an important truth (an understanding of the disease polio and how to combat it)? Should people actually respond in that way if, or when, a vaccine is developed for COVID-19?! Examples of this kind could be cited almost endlessly.

As I have emphasized, speaking to what is a fundamental epistemological principle of the new communism:

The truth is an actual correct reflection of reality, including in its motion and development. And, of course, it is true that nobody can ever have all of the truth. That’s part of understanding reality correctly, part of the scientific method. But...it is true that you can come to definite and definitive determinations about the reality of many particular things, even while you always have to be open to learning more, and to the possibility that some of what you thought to be true may not turn out to be true, or new developments occur which mean that the world has changed in such a way that your understanding has to be modified. That’s all part of the scientific method as well. When we talk about the truth, we’re not talking about THE TRUTH as an absolute and final truth, but we are also not talking about a narrative. We’re talking about a scientific approach to understanding reality and then, on that basis, transforming it. And the scientific approach to that process of analyzing and synthesizing reality can come to important definitive conclusions, even as this is an ongoing process which is never complete because you can never grasp all of reality—including because it’s constantly changing and because there will always be aspects of reality that human beings will not even have penetrated at any given time, let alone come to understand.6

There is a definite connection between the relativism and agnosticism of far too many educated middle class “liberals” and their reluctance, if not stubborn refusal, to recognize the fascist danger posed by the Trump-Pence regime for what it is and what is required in the face of this—which is a determined struggle against this fascism, a struggle that does not rely or depend upon the “mainstream” section of the ruling class (as represented by institutions like the Democratic Party) and the system they serve, which has given rise to this fascism (out of whose basic contradictions this fascism has arisen as an attempt at a resolution of these contradictions within the confines of this system and in the most extreme terms).

Even more fundamentally, there is a definite connection between the relativism and agnosticism of such “liberals” and their resistance or stubborn refusal to apply a consistently scientific evidence-based approach, and on this basis to follow the truth wherever it leads, particularly when it comes to historical, social and political questions—because where it leads is to demolishing cherished illusions and prejudices of “liberals” regarding the actual role of this “great American democracy,” throughout its history and throughout the world; the actual nature of the system we live under, capitalism-imperialism; and the actual experience of revolutionary struggle against this system, and more particularly the experience of the communist movement and the socialist societies it has brought into being.

It is in deeply engaging these questions, and drawing from many different dimensions of human experience, that I have brought forward a new communism, which is a continuation of, but also represents a qualitative leap beyond, and in some important ways a break with, communist theory as it had been previously developed and which has put communism on an even more consistently scientific basis, providing the strategy and leadership for an actual revolution and a radically new society on the road to real emancipation.

In regard to all this, it is worth repeating the very important point emphasized by Ardea Skybreak:

Whether you want to cure a disease or make a better society, you need that scientific evidence‑based process.

And specifically in terms of making a better society—in opposing the fascism of the Trump-Pence regime, and even more fundamentally in making a radical leap beyond this capitalist-imperialist system (which has given rise to this fascism) and bringing into being a far better world—you need the scientific method and approach of the new communism.

 


1. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION, On the Importance of Science and the Application of Science to Society, the New Synthesis of Communism and the Leadership of Bob Avakian, An Interview with Ardea Skybreak, emphasis in the original. Ardea Skybreak is a professionally trained scientist in the field of ecology and evolutionary biology and an advocate of the new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian. Skybreak is also the author of the very important book The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What’s Real and Why It Matters, Insight Press, 2006. The entire interview with Ardea Skybreak (SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION) is available at revcom.us.

In this interview Skybreak goes in some depth into how, in summing up the historical experience of the communist movement and drawing from a broad range of human experience, Bob Avakian has brought forward a new communism that embodies a further leap in the application of a scientific method and approach to the question of how a better society and world, free of exploitation and oppression, can actually be brought into being. As this article points out, the new communism “is a continuation of, but also represents a qualitative leap beyond, and in some important ways a break with, communist theory as it had been previously developed and which has put communism on an even more consistently scientific basis, providing the strategy and leadership for an actual revolution and a radically new society on the road to real emancipation.”

In a number of works, and in particular the book THE NEW COMMUNISM, The science, the strategy, the leadership for an actual revolution, and a radically new society on the road to real emancipation (Insight Press, 2016) and Breakthroughs: The Historic Breakthrough by Marx, and the Further Breakthrough with the New Communism, A Basic Summary (which is available at revcom.us) Bob Avakian speaks to what is new in the new communism and its relation to previous communist theory.  [back]

2. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION  [back]

3. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION  [back]

4. SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION  [back]

5. Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution. The text and video of this speech by Bob Avakian are available at revcom.us.  [back]

6. Breakthroughs: The Historic Breakthrough by Marx, and the Further Breakthrough with the New Communism, A Basic Summaryavailable at revcom.us.  [back]

BOB AVAKIAN: A RADICALLY DIFFERENT LEADER—
A WHOLE NEW FRAMEWORK FOR HUMAN EMANCIPATION

Bob Avakian (BA) is the most important political thinker and leader in the world today.

Read more

Watch BA's whole speech:

Watch clips from speech

 

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/646/from-vise-grip-to-death-grip-en.html

From Vise Grip to Death Grip
Imperialist Domination, COVID-19, and the Poor of the World Be Damned

by Raymond Lotta

| revcom.us

 

As the COVID-19 pandemic spread worldwide, the global economy contracted. As suffering and deaths caused by the virus have mounted across the planet, the world imperialist system, U.S. imperialism in particular, has responded as it always has: acting to maintain the profitable functioning and interests of empire... to even more horrific effect, especially in the oppressed countries.

Four examples from different parts of the “global south” where the great majority of oppressed humanity lives and works:

Exhibit 1. U.S. ambassador issues ultimatum to Mexican government: factories run by U.S. manufacturing corporations must stay the fuck open or we take our jobs elsewhere.

Close to the U.S. border in Mexico, U.S.-owned and subcontracted factories employ hundreds of thousands of Mexican workers. They produce computer, airplane, and car parts, televisions, and other electrical appliances—overwhelmingly for the U.S. market. Wages of workers average one-ninth of manufacturing wages in the U.S.; and labor and environmental protections are minimal.

With outbreaks of the coronavirus erupting in these and other factories, with workers falling ill and dying on the job, and with testing for the virus scarce—the Mexican health ministry ordered plant closings. It was a bare-bones safety measure. But to the U.S. imperialists, this is an intolerable, criminal act. As recounted in the New York Times, it was not because these factories are producing goods or carrying out services essential to the welfare of the Mexican people. Again, most of the output is exported. But that output has been deemed by the U.S. government as “essential” to... the United States! Come again—TVs, Sharpie pens, aircraft engines for a U.S. airline industry that is severely curtailing operations?

A dirty little secret: the profitability of imperialist supply chains* depends on the continuing humming of global assembly lines... the strategic capacities of the U.S. military/death machine and security apparatus requires an assured inflow of components... and the competitive strength of U.S. capital depends on reliable, low-cost/efficient production—the more so with China’s economy re-starting big time, and giving imperialist China a certain competitive leg up in a clobbered world imperialist economy.

And so this threat from the U.S. ambassador in response to the Mexican government’s stated concerns about COVID-19 spreading among workers in these plants: “You don’t have ‘workers’ if you close all the companies and they move elsewhere.” In other words, you (Mexico) reopen, or we (the U.S. with its transnational corporations) could just pull up stakes and leave your economy to crater even more. Which, by the way, is part of the operational logic and extortion of imperialist supply chains. The Mexican factories have remained open.

The New York Times described this ultimatum as an example of America’s “unequal relationship” with Mexico. We can be more precise: brute neocolonialism. And keep this fact in mind: the great majority of the infected in Mexico with COVID-19 are factory workers.1

Exhibit 2. Fast fashion, sweatshops, and COVID-19 in Bangladesh.

Some 4.1 million workers, 85 percent of them women, live and labor in the cramped conditions of the garment industry of Bangladesh. They produce T-shirts, dresses, pants for the likes of Walmart, Target, H&M, and other Western retailers. Industrial accidents, fires, building collapses (more than 1,000 people died in one such collapse in 2013), and sexual abuse are commonplace in these cost-minimizing, life-draining factories. It all goes into your seasonal “fast fashion.”2

Bangladesh’s economy has been twisted and distorted to serve the interests of imperialism: 80 percent of its export earnings derive from the garment industry; it is the driver of economic “growth” in Bangladesh; and the country is highly vulnerable to economic shocks coming from the imperialist countries (like the recession of 2008-09). A sword hangs over the garment industry: if these garment factories do not meet and continue to cheapen prescribed production costs, then Western retailers can subcontract to other suppliers in other poor countries. That’s the pit each-against-each modus operandi of imperialist supply chains. Driving costs down, raising profitability... and it all rests on savage super-exploitation. That’s the norm, before the onset of COVID-19.

With the pandemic hitting hard and retail stores closing in the U.S., Western companies abruptly canceled billion-dollar orders. Much of the garment industry and other manufacturing shut down in Bangladesh. Millions of workers, mostly women from rural areas, were sent home. Nearly all the big-name retailers refused to contribute to the cost of partial wages for furloughed workers, as mandated by Bangladeshi law. Seventy percent of these workers were sent home without pay.3 Many, without knowing, were carrying the coronavirus to their villages.

But the shutdowns were temporary. Rival ownership groupings and garment factories in Cambodia, China, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam (operations that are also part of Western supply chains) had reopened. And if factories in Bangladesh did not find their own ways to restart, orders might be permanently lost. And so the specter of hundreds of thousands of garment workers shuttling back and forth between Dhaka (the capital of Bangladesh where the garment industry is centered) and their rural villages—many traveling by foot. And so the horror, to quote the Economist, of workers “left languishing in slums by the garment factories—now the centers of Bangladesh’s coronavirus outbreak.”

Did I mention that in one of the poorest districts in Dhaka where garment factories are clustered, 150 out of 160 COVID-19 tests conducted in one day proved positive? Did I mention that Bangladesh has a population of 170 million but only some 1,000 intensive-care beds?4

Exhibit 3. Shantytowns caused by imperialism... as transmission belts of COVID-19.

As the curve of new COVID-19 cases begins to flatten in the rich countries, poor nations now represent all of the countries where COVID-19 cases are growing most rapidly.

One of the major reasons is what Bob Avakian has called the “shantytown-ization of the Third World.” This refers to breakneck urbanization in the oppressed countries: and the explosive growth of densely populated and impoverished cities and slums where disease is easily spread.

What accounts for this unprecedented growth of cities and “mega”-cities in the Third World? Imperialist agribusiness and raw-materials investments and land-grabbing in rural areas have devastated subsistence peasant agriculture. Imperialist export-processing zones that produce goods for the wealthy countries entice migrants into the cities. Global warming, caused overwhelmingly by the rich countries’ use of fossil fuels, has turned land previously farmed and grazed into desert. These and other factors have driven and drawn tens of millions upon millions out of rural areas to the cities. But the economies of the oppressed countries are so distorted by imperialism... that they cannot absorb people into regular employment.

As you shelter in place, reflect on this passage from an academic study: “There are 1.2 billion people globally living in informal slums, which by definition are crowded and lack sufficient access to water and sanitation—meaning any force of isolation or quarantine is impossible. In some slums the density is as high as 800,000 people per square mile—for comparison, New York City’s is 27,000.5 The question is posed: How is social distancing practiced under these awful conditions?

But it’s not only how people are forced to live in the oppressed countries. It’s also how they are compelled to work. The great majority of people in the “global south” work, when they do find work, in what is called the “informal economy.” These are irregular jobs offering little security, payment largely in cash, jobs shielded from workplace regulations, and with no benefits. Most who work in the informal economy have no savings, and need their daily or weekly earnings to feed their families. The question is posed: Do you comply with lockdowns and starve—or defy it to feed your family?

And the governments of the poorest countries have limited budgets to support populations no longer working or in lockdown. As one journalist observed, “[it’s] the worst of both worlds—mass poverty from shutdowns and mass illness and deaths from the continued spread of the virus.”6 That is the current reality for much of the world’s population.

Exhibit 4. It gets worse... the imperialist stranglehold on public health in poor countries.

In 2019, 64 countries, nearly half of them in sub-Saharan Africa, spent more servicing their external debt than on health.7 Debt service is the amount of money—the interest and the principal—spent over a given period to pay down loans from imperialist banks, governments, and other lending institutions like the International Monetary Fund.**

More going out to repay debt than going into domestic public health is a grisly statistic. It has meant that, because of cuts in the health budgets, training, and research in poor countries over the years (as part of satisfying conditions to obtain more loans from imperialist financial institutions), many doctors trained in Africa emigrate to the West. It means, in this time of pandemic, that financial resources that could be going to alleviate some aspects of this crisis are earmarked to repay loans that reinforce the whole structure of imperialist domination of oppressed countries: export-oriented production, raw materials extraction, and infrastructure development serving the needs of imperialist accumulation of profit and more profit. And with the economies of the poor nations now experiencing steep declines, and when billions of additional dollars are needed to cope with this health crisis, this debt-repayment will become an even greater weight on these countries.

Consider these facts:

*Africa has the highest burden of disease in the world, but only three percent of the world’s health workers.8

*At the height of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, there was an average of two doctors per 100,000 in Sierra Leone, and 45 per 100,000 in Nigeria (Africa’s most populous country)—compared to some 250 doctors per 100,000 in the U.S. at the time.9

*In mid-April of this year, Nigeria, with its population of 200 million, had only 100 ventilators!10

CONCLUSION

All of what has been described reflects the lopsidedness of the world: the concentration of advanced productive forces and technology in the capitalist-imperialist countries. All the “pre-existing conditions” of imperialist domination in the “global south”—the supply-chain sweatshops, the loans that tighten control over and distort the economies of poor countries, the densely populated shantytowns of poverty and disease—have been an unrelieved horror. All this is built into and basic to the fundamental nature and workings of the capitalist imperialist system. With the COVID-19 pandemic, all the suffering has intensified and will intensify further.

As Bob Avakian has put it: “...we have two choices: either, live with all this—and condemn future generations to the same, or worse, if they have a future at all—or, make revolution!

 

Explanatory notes

*A supply chain is an integrated network of production units, transport, and distribution forming the process of producing a final commodity, like Nikes, iPhones, or cars. Imperialist capital deploys global supply chains to outsource and subcontract interrelated segments of production (mining of materials, manufacture of parts and components, assembly) to low-wage suppliers in the oppressed nations of the “global south”—and puts continual pressure on these suppliers to cheapen costs, which means more savage exploitation of workers. [back]

**To repay debt, poor countries must generate earnings/revenues, typically by producing and selling goods on the world market, which provides foreign exchange, like the dollar, that is required for repayment. But often, when debt cannot be repaid because of high interest/short-term loans, poor countries must borrow and borrow anew to repay loans, leading to a situation called a “debt trap.” [back]

 

1. Natalie Kitroeff, “As Workers Fall Ill, U.S. Presses Mexico to Keep American-Owned Plants Open,” New York Times, April 30, 2020 [back]

2. See, Dana Thomas, Fashionopolis: The Price of Fast Fashion and the Future of Clothes (New York: Penguin, 2019). [back]

3. Elizabeth Paton, “‘Our Situation is Apocalyptic’: Bangladesh Garment Workers Face Ruin,” New York Times, March 31, 2020. [back]

4. “Suffering from a stitch—Bangladesh cannot afford to close its garment factories,” The Economist, April 30, 2020. [back]

5. Asif Saleh and Richard A. Cash, “Masks and Handwashing vs. Physical Distancing: Do We Really Have Evidence-based Answers for Policymakers in Resource-limited Settings?,” Center for Global Development, April 3, 2020. [back]

6. Kelsey Piper, “The devastating consequences of coronavirus lockdowns in poor countries,” Vox, April 18, 2020. [back]

7. Jubilee Debt Campaign, “Sixty-four countries spend more on debt payments than health,” April 12, 2020 [back]

8. Robert Nash, et al., “Reflections on family medicine and primary healthcare in sub-Saharan Africa,” BMG Global Health, May 12, 2018. [back]

9. Statista Research Department, “Physician density in West African countries suffering from the 2014 Ebola outbreak,” August 16, 2014. [back]

10. Max Bearak and Danielle Paquette, “Africa’s most vulnerable countries have few ventilators—or none at all,” Washington Post, April 18, 2020 [back]

Would Mexico & Central America still be the US' backyard after the revolution?

From a Q&A following the speech by Bob Avakian:
Why We Need An Actual Revolution and How We Can Really Make Revolution
Watch BA's whole speech
Watch clips from the speech


The maquiladora owned by the TECMA group in Ciudad Juarez was the center of a major COVID-19 outbreak. Thirteen employees at the factory have died of the disease, according to Mexican health officials. (Photo: Wikipedia)

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian is a book of quotations and short essays that speaks powerfully to questions of revolution and human emancipation.

"You can't change the world if you don't know the BAsics."

Order the book HERE
Download the book in ePub format HERE


Bangladeshi garment workers block a road demanding their unpaid wages during a protest in Dhaka, Bangladesh, April 16. More than a million of the 4.1 million workers in Bangladesh's garment industry have been furloughed or fired due to cancelled orders. (Photo: AP)


Piles of garbage in Dharavi, India.

 

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/covid-19-catastrophe-inside-us-prisons-and-jails-en.html

From a Reader:

COVID-19 Catastrophe Inside U.S. Prisons and Jails

| revcom.us

 

The past month has seen the COVID-19 crisis careen out of control across the country. The infection rate—and the death rate—continue to reach new highs by the day, with no end in sight. This spreading pandemic is striking with even greater terror the more than two million men and women held in the 6,000 jails and prisons across the country. Mass incarceration has made going to jail a possible death sentence for any crime.

The number of coronavirus infections reported among state and federal prisoners had reached 197,659 by November 17, with record-high spikes for each of the previous two weeks, according to the Marshall Project.1 More than 1,450 prisoners have died. These rates of sickness among inmates are more than four times as high as those of the general public; the death rate is more than twice as high. These figures do not include the more than 500,000 people being held in city and county jails across the country. The real numbers are even higher, since the spread of the virus into surrounding communities isn’t measured.

Texas has the largest number of state prisoners with 141,661, and has seen more deaths and infections from COVID-19 than any other state, based on a new report from researchers at the University of Texas at Austin. The rate of infection in Texas prisons is nearly 500 percent higher than in the overall statewide population, and 620 percent higher than the national average. In California, over the summer San Quentin State Prison experienced “the worst epidemiological disaster in that state’s prison history.”2

There is no escape from the coronavirus inside the prisons, which act as hothouses for the disease. The cramped, overcrowded, often poorly ventilated conditions make it impossible for prisoners to avoid exposure. The lack of adequate safety equipment, inconsistent cleaning, irregular testing, inadequate medical resources, and the constant in-and-out of staff, visitors, and prisoners increases the danger. Added to that, those incarcerated have higher rates of pre-existing health problems: high blood pressure, asthma, diabetes, and heart disease, raising the risk of complications and death.

At the end of April, eight of the 10 top coronavirus hotspots in the country were prisons or jails. Prisoners began rebelling against and resisting the “death by COVID” conditions: seizing cellblocks, organizing hunger strikes, clashing with guards because of lack of soap and masks, and more.3 Pressure mounted to reduce prison populations by releasing those serving nonviolent sentences, older prisoners who’d already spent decades behind bars, and those not charged with a crime. The authorities made a big show of releasing a few (far less than other countries), while the vast majority continued to be held. But the numbers began to rise again over the summer, and by mid-August, the Association of American Medical Colleges reported that only 11 of the 100 top COVID-19 clusters in the U.S. were not in a jail or prison.

Mass Incarceration and Genocide

America is known worldwide for its mass incarceration.4 There are more people imprisoned in this country than in any other country in the world. This is true for women as well as men. According to the Brennan Center for Justice,5 the U.S. incarceration rate is nine times higher than in Germany, eight times higher than in Italy, five times higher than in the U.K., and 15 times higher than in Japan. For four decades the “war on drugs” has been used for the mass incarceration of Black and Latino people. Between 1980 and 2018, imprisonment for drugs rose from 40,900 to 443,200, resulting in a national prison population today that is 60 percent Black and Latino, far greater than their portion of the country’s population overall.6 In California, Black people constitute six percent of state residents, but 20 percent of people in jail and 28 percent of people in prison.

The Brennan Center has calculated that, of the 1.46 million people in state and federal prisons in 2016, 576,000, or 39 percent, were in prison without any public safety reason! And the American Bar Association found before the pandemic that as many as 500,000 people (again disproportionately Black and other oppressed people) were being held across the country in local jails mostly for low-level offenses only because they can’t pay bail. And still, with the COVID-19 pandemic rampaging through the country’s prisons and jails today, the authorities are making no serious moves to release those hundreds of thousands being imprisoned “who pose no public safety reason,” nor to provide the remainder with the necessary social distancing, safety equipment, cleaning supplies, and proper medical care fit for human beings. Instead the coronavirus is being used to speed up the “slow genocide” of mass incarceration into a fast one!

***

See these articles from revcom.us:

2.3 Million U.S. Prisoners and Detainees Trapped in “Petri Dish” for Coronavirusrevcom.us, updated April 6, 2020

Prisoners Write, Exposing Conditions Under COVID-19 Pandemic in America’s Hellholesrevcom.us, April 6, 2020

Prisoners Write on Coronavirus Pandemic—
“the crisis brought about by Covid-19 is bringing to light the sharp contradictions of this Capitalism/Imperialist system”
, revcom.us, May 18, 2020

“When will this end? We need a dramatic change now!”revcom.us, from a prisoner in Louisiana, September 2020

Prisoners Resist Outrageous “Death From COVID” Sentencesrevcom.us, April 13, 2020

 


1. Since March, The Marshall Project has been tracking how many people are being sickened and killed by COVID-19 in prisons and how widely it has spread across the country and within each state.  [back]

2. Until the end of May, San Quentin State Prison, north of San Francisco, had zero inmate infections, despite being 168 years old, with terrible ventilation and sanitation, double cells and close quarters. Then, on May 30, 121 men were transferred from the overcrowded Chino State Prison, which was facing a surge of cases. By July 4, more than a third of the inmates at San Quentin had been infected and tested positive for COVID-19. By September 25, the 27th prisoner had died. In October, a Court of Appeal ruled in favor of a prisoner who had filed a lawsuit, calling what happened “morally indefensible and constitutionally untenable,” and ordered San Quentin to immediately cut the number of prisoners to half what it had been in June.  [back]

3. “Prisoners Resist Outrageous ‘Death From COVID’ Sentences,” revcom.us, April 13, 2020.  [back]

4. “Sentencing policies of the War on Drugs era resulted in dramatic growth in incarceration for drug offenses. Since its official beginning in the 1980s, the number of Americans incarcerated for drug offenses has skyrocketed from 40,900 in 1980 to 443,200 in 2018. Furthermore, harsh sentencing laws such as mandatory minimums keep many people convicted of drug offenses in prison for longer periods of time: in 1986, people released after serving time for a federal drug offense had spent an average of 22 months in prison. By 2004, people convicted on federal drug offenses were expected to serve almost three times that length: 62 months in prison.” The Sentencing Project.  [back]

5. The American criminal justice system holds almost 2.3 million people in 1,833 state prisons, 110 federal prisons, 1,772 juvenile correctional facilities, 3,134 local jails, 218 immigration detention facilities, and 80 Indian Country jails as well as in military prisons, civil commitment centers, state psychiatric hospitals, and prisons in the U.S. Territories. (Prison Policy Initiative)  [back]

6. The Sentencing Project.  [back]


By the end of July, there were at least 2,159 confirmed cases of Covid-19 at San Quentin and 19 deaths. Relatives and friends protest "execution by COVID 19." (Photo: AP)


Prisoners in close quarters at Alabama's Easterling Correctional Facility, February 25, 2020. (Alabama Department of Corrections)

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/state-of-emergency-in-covid-19-crisis-en.html

From a Reader:

State of Emergency in COVID-19 Crisis Grows More Dire!

| revcom.us

 

Editors' Note: The following is from a letter from a reader, who is a healthcare provider.

U.S. hospitals are currently facing an unprecedented crisis related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the uncontrolled pandemic that is affecting the entire country, rural areas as well as urban areas, hospitals are facing an acute and sharp shortage in hospital beds and staff to take care of the patients. Having a hospital bed is meaningless if there are no staff to take care of patients, clean the rooms, run the labs, etc. There was already a significant nursing shortage in the U.S. before the pandemic, and due to the pandemic, many skilled nurses and other healthcare workers are leaving now in droves and will not return.

The fascist, anti-science Trump/Pence regime has openly said that it won’t even attempt to control the pandemic, with Mark Meadows saying in October, “We’re not going to control the pandemic. We are going to control the fact that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigations and ‘...It is a contagious virus, just like the flu....’”

The fascist governor of North Dakota, Doug Burgum, has recently allowed healthcare workers who have tested positive for COVID to continue to work due to the fact that there is not enough nursing staff. This decision has nursing and other medical workers up in arms as this would only increase the possibility of more people becoming infected. The fascist governor of South Dakota, Kristi Noem, and other fascists have refused to issue mask mandates in their states to try to slow down the spread of the pandemic. Even worse, doctors, healthcare ethicists (people who give advice over the morality of a healthcare decision), and many other healthcare workers are looking at the possibility of having to “decide” who will get treated and who won’t as the numbers of patients with COVID-19 rise.

This type of decision-making has severe genocidal implications—Black people, Latinx people, and Indigenous people have the worst access to healthcare and tend to be sicker than the white-majority population as a whole. For any doctor, nurse, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, respiratory therapist, and others, to lose a patient under their care can be devastating. For healthcare workers who dedicate their lives to taking care of people, being “forced” to decide who will live and who will die is “soul-destroying.” This will add to the already severe PTSD that many healthcare providers have from working months on end trying to take care of patients who are dying in droves. There have been doctors, RNs, and other healthcare providers who have committed suicide because the strain of working under such horrible conditions finally got to them. Dr. Lorna Breen, who was the Medical Director of Emergency Services at a major New York City hospital, killed herself in April 2020 while on a short vacation, home with her family. Other healthcare providers in other parts of the world have also killed themselves due to the stress. (Dr. Poulami Saha, a pediatric resident who had depression and worked in India, killed herself at a hospital in May; Daniela Trezzi, an ICU nurse who worked in the hard-hit region of Lombardy, Italy, killed herself in March.)

Urgent care doctors, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners at the MultiCare Indigo Urgent Care Clinics in over 20 clinics in Washington State have been on strike since November 22 over the lack of PPE and long hours that they work in these clinics. The strike was precipitated by “a coronavirus outbreak at MultiCare Auburn Medical Center that resulted in the death of two patients. More than a dozen patients and 12 staff members tested positive for COVID-19 between Nov. 5 and 20 in the outbreak in the memory care unit of Behavioral Health. ‘The recent outbreak of COVID-19 within MultiCare’s hospital system should have been a wake-up call, but it was not,’ Dr. Stuart Bussey, union president, said in a statement....”

The recent Thanks-taking holiday weekend with people traveling all over the country by air, is projected to make the pandemic much worse, going into December. “Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s leading infectious disease expert, warned that the travel-heavy Thanksgiving holiday could make the current surge in Covid-19 cases even worse as the nation heads into December...” This is due to the fact that many people will be indoors, not social distancing, mask wearing, etc.

The pandemic has taken its toll on people in healthcare in the U.S., many of them Black, indigenous and Latinx. According to a report from the organization National Nurses United in September, more than 1,700 health care workers had died up to that point from COVID-19 and related complications.

Even though Trump was dealt a resounding defeat at the polls by Joe Biden, it does not mean that things will be OK under this system. Joe Biden is a representative of this capitalist-imperialist system who wants to go back to “normal,” but there can be no “normal” as long as this system exists. Biden is not a fascist like Trump, which will give people a little breathing space, and there is the possibility of opposition to this system continuing to build and some small chance at trying to control the pandemic. Biden, however, has signaled that he is ready to conciliate with the fascist regime and may actually be blocked by the fascist Republicans from trying to implement any changes. The great danger lies, though, in Trump’s fascist base desiring to get revenge and wreak havoc on people that they see as enemies and less than human.

This is why getting this fascist regime out of power now—meaning that we have to be in the streets and stay there until it’s gone—has such tremendous importance. Overall, we need to build and strengthen the movement for revolution and bring into being a socialist society so that humanity and the planet can benefit.

Sources:

Covid Overload: U.S. Hospitals Are Running Out of Beds for PatientsNew York Times, November 27, 2020

North Dakota allows Covid-positive healthcare workers to stay on job as nurses warn it’s ‘irresponsible’NBC News, November 11, 2020

Rising Covid cases means Americans may face health care rationing. Here’s how they view thatNBC News, November 9, 2020

Physician Suicide Is a Daily Occurrence, Dr. Jeff Livingston, September 30, 2020

How the Revolution Would Deal with Health Care, Including Epidemicsrevcom.us, March 16, 2020

Fauci warns Thanksgiving travel could make current Covid surge worseNBC News, November 29, 2020

These GOP governors long resisted mask mandates and coronavirus rules. Now their states are in crisisCNN, November 17, 2020

Doctors Call on DeSantis to Allow Tougher Local Restrictions as COVID-19 Cases RiseSpectrum News, November 28, 2020


November 19, Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in the Mission Hills section of Los Angeles. (Photo: AP)

See also:

The Coronavirus Pandemic — A Resource Page

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/641/resource-page-on-covid-19-pandemic-en.html

The Coronavirus Pandemic — A Resource Page

| revcom.us

 

This is the interactive Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases Chart from the Coronavirus Resource Center, Johns Hopkins University & Medicine.

 

COVID-19, the disease caused by a new coronavirus, has spread throughout the world, including the U.S. This pandemic is interacting with the state of the world and the gross inequalities and oppressive social relations of capitalism-imperialism. It is having a huge effect on human society as a whole and in individual countries, and may potentially have even more major impacts beyond even what is happening now. As Bob Avakian has said in “The Deadly Illusion of ‘Normalcy’ and the Revolutionary Way Forward”:

Underlying the immediate crisis, and the danger posed by the Trump/Pence regime and its fanatical fascist “base,” there is the more fundamental reality of the capitalist-imperialist system and the consequences of allowing this system to continue to dominate the world and determine the conditions of the masses of humanity and indeed the very fate of humanity itself. This crisis with the coronavirus has brought into sharp relief the reality that the capitalist system is not simply out of step with but is in fundamental conflict with, and a direct obstacle to, meeting the needs of the masses of humanity. Even as the capitalists and governments representing their interests have been forced to take certain emergency steps that in some ways run counter to the inherent dynamics of their system (such as massive intervention by the government in the functioning of the economy), the ways in which this system constitutes an obstacle to dealing with this crisis continue to assert themselves—including not only such perverse actions as the hoarding by some of vital medical and other supplies, in order to drive up the price, but also the fact that the creation of wealth under this system proceeds on the basis of ruthless exploitation and the impoverishment of masses of people throughout the world, while even in the “wealthier” countries there is significant poverty and large parts of the population live paycheck-to-paycheck and are only one serious crisis away from disaster; the ongoing rivalry between different capitalists (or associations of capital), with their private ownership of the means of production (land, raw materials, technology, factories and other structures) and private, competitive accumulation of wealth acts as a hindrance to necessary cooperation and the production of things that may be urgently needed but are not productive of private profit—and the whole ideology of advancing one’s interests at the expense of others, the individualism that is fostered by this system and is promoted to an extreme currently in this country, runs counter to and undermines inclinations toward cooperation and, yes, sacrifice for the greater good. Despite the dedicated efforts of many well-meaning people, even if the immediate crisis with the coronavirus is resolved, this will be done on the basis of intensifying the contradictions built into this system and the suffering of the masses of humanity who are already exploited and oppressed under this system. [Bolded emphasis added]

This is a time when having accurate scientific information and understanding is a life-and-death question for people here and around the world. Yet there is a lot of confusion about the coronavirus. There is misleading information coming from people in power, especially Trump. So getting to the truth on this is urgent.

 

Bob Avakian on Revolution and the Coronavirus Pandemic

In the context of this current crisis, the exploitative and oppressive relations built into this system are asserting themselves in a pronounced way, within this country and internationally, just as they have in previous crises.

— Bob Avakian

CONSPIRACY THEORIES, FASCIST "CERTITUDE," LIBERAL PARALYSIS, OR
A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO CHANGING THE WORLD

by Bob Avakian

Short Version—The Simple and Basic Truth
Longer Version—The Truth Elaborated

The RNL Show — Revolution, Nothing Less!

Episode 4: Bob Avakian on Science and How Real Socialism Would Handle Pandemics. An excerpt of a speech from Bob Avakian that takes us deeper into the scientific method. Then a reading of Communique #4 from The Revcoms.

 

[Back to top]

 

The Coronavirus Pandemic: Frequently Asked Questions


A model of the Coronavirus COVID-19.

[Back to top]

How is the capitalist-imperialist system making the effect of the coronavirus worse than it has to be?

Letters From Readers:

COVID-19 Catastrophe Inside U.S. Prisons and Jails

Read more


Relatives and friends protest "execution by COVID 19." (Photo: AP)

State of Emergency in COVID-19 Crisis Grows More Dire!

Read more


November 19, Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in the Mission Hills section of Los Angeles. (Photo: AP)

A Viral Pandemic; A Tidal Wave of Ignorance and Hate; a Fascist Regime Soaked in Suffering and Death

Read more


Armed militia occupying the Michigan State Capitol demanding an end to "stay at home" orders intended to slow the spread of Covid-19.

See also:

The Coronavirus... and the Savage Inequalities of America —
past articles from revcom.us

Read more

[Back to top]

How would the revolution handle the coronavirus or similar epidemics if it held state power?

[Back to top]

What should we be doing now?

[Back to top]

 

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

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The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/iran-top-nuclear-scientist-assassinated-en.html

Iran's Top Nuclear Scientist Assassinated —
U.S. and Israel, Keep Your Bloody Hands Off Iran!

| revcom.us

 

On November 27, Iran’s top nuclear scientist was assassinated when the car he was traveling in was ambushed in northern Iran. Iranian government officials alleged that the killing of the scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, was the work of Israel. The Israeli government has issued no statement on the assassination. The U.S., Israel’s main imperialist backer, also has not said anything officially about it. Trump, however, re-tweeted a comment by an Israeli journalist that Fakhrizadeh’s death “is a major psychological and professional blow for Iran.”1

While no one has officially taken responsibility, the widespread assumption is that Israel was behind the assassination. The New York Times, for example, noted, “Intelligence officials say there is little doubt that Israel was behind the killing—it had all the hallmarks of a precisely timed operation by Mossad, the country’s spy agency. And the Israelis have done nothing to dispel that view.”

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu had claimed that Fakhrizadeh headed up Iran’s alleged program to develop nuclear weapons and had targeted him personally as an enemy of Israel. For decades, Israel has acted as the main enforcer for America’s imperialist interests in the Middle East.2 And in 2018, when Trump unilaterally pulled the U.S. out of the international agreement with Iran that limited Iran’s nuclear development, sharply ratcheting up the danger of U.S. war with Iran, Netanyahu was a vocal supporter of the move.

When he ripped up the international agreement, Trump blatantly lied that Iran was already a nuclear threat or soon would be. Iran is ruled by a thoroughly reactionary Islamic fundamentalist regime, which has carried out vicious crimes against its own people and has ambitions for expanding regional power.3 But let’s be clear: When it comes to the enormity of crimes committed in the past and the ability to carry out more, including in regard to nuclear weapons, the U.S. far, far outweighs the Iranian regime.4 The fact is that Iran has zero nuclear weapons, and had sharply scaled back its non-military nuclear program under the international agreement. In contrast, the U.S. nuclear arsenal is some 4,000, and it is the only country to have actually used nuclear weapons. And Israel itself is estimated to have about 90 nuclear warheads and enough plutonium to quickly make 100-200 more.

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh comes at a time when Trump and his regime—after they clearly lost the presidential election—have been ratcheting up military threats along with murderous sanctions against Iran. There have been recent reports that Trump and close advisers decided not to launch an attack on Iran, for now—but were still looking at different options. Shortly before this, Trump had fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper and made other changes in the Pentagon.

The U.S. has made some ominous military moves in the recent period. On November 21, the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM, which oversees American military operations in the Middle East) announced that the Air Force flew a B-52 bomber task force from its base in North Dakota “to deter aggression and reassure U.S. partners and allies.” (When the U.S. accuses others of “aggression,” it’s like a Mafia godfather threatening a small-time gangster for “not knowing his place.”) And the U.S. military has deployed the aircraft carrier Nimitz to the Persian Gulf (the body of water between Iran and Saudi Arabia), supposedly to provide “combat support and air cover” for U.S. troops being withdrawn from Iraq and Afghanistan.

Also to take note of is the fact that Trump’s secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, made an official visit to Israel on November 19—and three days later, he and Netanyahu reportedly flew to Saudi Arabia to secretly meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The reactionary Saudi kingdom is another close U.S. ally in the region—and bin Salman, like Netanyahu, was opposed to the nuclear agreement with Iran that Trump sabotaged.

Given that president-elect Biden has indicated he will work to put the U.S. back into the international nuclear agreement with Iran, there is speculation among international analysts that one aim of the assassination of the nuclear scientist was to make it more difficult, if not impossible, for Biden to do that.

Whoever was behind the assassination and whatever their motive, this is a volatile and unpredictable moment with potential for great danger. Any moves and countermoves by the U.S. and its allies, on one hand, and Iran, on the other, could quickly escalate. Any U.S. attack on Iran, under any pretext, would be totally illegitimate—and could lead to more devastating wars in the region and beyond. While the past four years of the fascist regime have intensified the danger of war with Iran, more fundamentally, this danger flows out of the U.S. imperialists’ needs and drives to strategically dominate the crucial Middle East region, super-exploit its peoples, and plunder its resources. This violent domination and plunder is totally unjust!

Whether or not there is an immediate military escalation, the Trump/Pence regime’s stepping up of sanctions against Iran is strangling its economy and having a catastrophic effect on the masses of people, at a time when COVID-19 pandemic infections and deaths are hitting new highs. These sanctions are a form of economic warfare. A recent CBS News report said that Iran has ramped up testing, but it is not enough: “The main hurdle for the [COVID testing] lab hasn’t been science, but politics. U.S.-led sanctions have choked off Iran’s access to foreign-made chemicals and equipment.”

The mainstream media and ruling class politicians in this country frame everything in terms of what is in “our” best interests. In reality, what they are talking about are the interests of America as an oppressive global power. These are NOT the actual interests of the people. Our real interests are not with the U.S. rulers, or the reactionary oppressors in Iran and other countries, but with the masses of people in the Middle East and humanity as a whole.

 


1. The Iranian regime, the Israelis and US imperialists claim the Fakhrizadeh was a nuclear scientist. but given the situation, the fuller reality of what was involved is not clear.  [back]

2. See revcom.us special issue Bastion of Enlightenment... Or Enforcer for Imperialism: The Case of Israel.  [back]

3. For more on the Iranian regime, see the sidebar “Islamic Republic of Iran: A Thoroughly Reactionary, Religious Fundamentalist Regime Ruling Despotically Over the People of Iran” in the revcom.us article “Fascist Trump/Pence Regime Threatens Attacks, Increases Deadly Sanctions Against Iran.”  [back]

4. For more on some of the U.S. crimes just in the Middle East, see these articles in the revcom.us American Crime series:


The scene of the assassination of the Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. (Photo: AP)


Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks alongside Israel's Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi after a security briefing on Mount Bental in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights, near the Israeli-Syrian border, Thursday, November 19, 2020. (Photo: AP)

See also:

Fascist Trump/Pence Regime Threatens Attacks, Increases Deadly Sanctions Against Iran
NO to U.S. War on Iran! NO to Increased Repression within Iran!

Read more

The Fakhrizadeh Assassination and the Divisions Among the U.S. Rulers Over Iran

The assassination of Dr. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, one of Iran’s top nuclear scientists, has taken place in the context of sharp struggle within the U.S. ruling class—and between the U.S. rulers and key allies Israel and Saudi Arabia—over what approach to Iran will best serve U.S. interests and its continued imperialist domination of the Middle East. At the moment, this battle is concentrated in whether the U.S. will continue the Trump/Pence approach of breaking the U.S. out of the international nuclear agreement with Iran and escalating sanctions and aggression against Iran—or whether the U.S. will try to deescalate tensions, resume multilateral diplomacy and return to some version of the previous nuclear deal. That deal was negotiated by Obama—not for “peace” or to help the people of Iran, but based on a calculation by sections of the ruling class that this would best serve U.S. imperialist interests. The incoming Biden administration has indicated it plans to bring the U.S. back into some version of the agreement. And some top officials of Iran’s Islamic Republic have said they may be open to this.

There is widespread speculation that the assassination of Fakhrizadeh may have been aimed—at least in part—at escalating the tensions between the U.S. and Iran, perhaps even sparking military conflict, in order to torpedo any Biden initiative to reverse Trump’s actions and approach. (See, for example, “Assassination in Iran Could Limit Biden’s Options. Was That the Goal?” David E. Sanger, New York Times, November 28. 2020.).

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

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The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/unite-and-fight-against-waves-of-suppression-in-iran-en.html

Let Us Unite and Fight Together Against Waves of Suppression in Iran

| revcom.us

 

Issued by friends and supporters of resisters inside Iran, and re-posted from social media.

Pages upon pages of the life history of the Islamic Republic of Iran are marked by repeated waves of persecution, terror, imprisonment, torture, execution; by firing squads, gallows, and arrows... This history has another side as well: repeated waves of resistance, struggle after struggle: Our struggles.

“Our” struggles have stacked up against “their” repression. They want to crush us. But we must send a clear and resolute message: we will not swallow your crimes in silence and on our knees. To be sure, the ranks of this regime are riddled with conflict. But they are united like a fist against us when they want to crush us. We undoubtedly have differences amongst us in various ways. But it is necessary to strive to unite in the face of their repression.

Recently in a span of mere weeks they have aggressively attacked and arrested many people, imprisoning unknown numbers of social and political activists. Just to name a few: Shabnam Ashouri, Elvar Qolivand, Mehran Raouf, Nahid Taghavi, Khosrow Sadeghi Boroujeni, Loghman Pirkhezrayian, Neda Pirkhezrayian, Arash Johari, Bahareh Soleimani, Andisheh Sadri and Somayeh Kargar, Mohammad Khani and Hanif Shadloo, who were arrested in the span of a mere two weeks in October 2020. Moreover, a large number of anonymous citizens have been arrested and detained and are being tortured on a daily basis.

Let us emphasize again that we fight because we have to fight. It would be an illusion to think that a temporary retreat from struggle would make the situation “more favorable” for us. When their repression is constant, our struggle cannot be a once-in-a-while affair. One step backwards on our part will mean two steps forward by them.

We may have differences over various issues. We may have contradictions over how we think and approach events and affairs. But nothing is more clear than the obvious truth that we must all defend every and all resistance against repression. Any kind of standing aloof in this resistance is not justified and is cowardly and will have terrible consequences for everybody and for all just struggles. We have to fight against any form of oppression and unite to support all resisters and activists in struggle.

We know the names of some of these activists and resisters and don’t know the names of many others. We have spoken with some of these fighters, and have walked the walk with them and not with many others. We have shared thoughts with some of them and together with them have become outraged and passionate, have chanted, smiled and cried, together have rejoiced and sung songs, while many other ones we don’t know personally. During some of the darkest and longest nights with some have mocked wickedness, while not knowing many others. We knew some of them closely, and not many others. In fact, we may not have known any of them closely at all, we may not have even seen them once. But they are all our people.

Our unity in the urgent fight against any form of torture, arrest, or repression of activists and fighters in Iran is necessary and is enforcement for all of our just struggles.

Burn the Cage Free the Birds! @burn_the_cage instagram

Free Political Prisoners in Iran!

See also:

We Demand Justice and Freedom for All Political Prisoners in Iran NOW

Read more

Check It Out:

Nasrin, Film About Courageous Iranian Political Prisoner.

Read more

Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh with a poster of South Africa's Nelson Mandela, in a scene from the Nasrin documentary. (Photo: Floating World Pictures)

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

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The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/we-demand-justice-and-freedom-for-all-political-prisoners-in-iran-en.html

We Demand Justice and Freedom for All Political Prisoners in Iran NOW

| revcom.us

 

A call from and to people in the U.S. to join and develop the campaign for political prisoners in Iran right now.

Since October 2020, a new rash of widespread, illegal and illegitimate crackdowns against political and social activists was carried out in Iran by the brutal regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI). Among those arrested are supporters of labor movements, teachers, students, and family members of known activists, Baha’i religious forces, longtime and recent liberal, radical and revolutionary dissidents against the reactionary IRI.

Most of these prisoners are being held without any charges or trial, but at least one (a secretary of the Tehran Teachers Center) is charged with “collusion against the security of the state” and given two years in prison. That is, many are unidentified with no known charges or access to lawyers, which is a violation of the human rights and basic legal rights of the accused.

Besides imprisonment, they face rape, torture, execution, now torment and death by coronavirus infection. Some of these political prisoners are dehumanized in solitary confinement in Evin prison, a notorious torture and death chamber, including several who have dual citizenships with German (and other) passports that have been confiscated by the IRI without cause.

These raids coincided closely with the one-year anniversary of the November 2019 uprising that had rocked Iran. The IRI fears the resistance forces inside Iran who were planning to hold commemorations of that rebellion. Set off by massive inflation, high unemployment and a harsh economic slowdown brought on by cruel U.S. sanctions, mass protests engulfed 100-200 large and small cities across Iran in 2019. The Islamic regime responded not only with mass arrests but water cannons, tear gas, live ammunition fired from rooftops, helicopters and police forces on the ground—shooting some protesters at close range or as they were running away. Estimates are of hundreds killed (some were children), thousands wounded and arrested with reports of hospitals overflowing with the wounded. The IRI blacked out the internet to hide the true scale and scope of their murderous rampage on protesters and its aftermath.

If the modern history of Iran has shown us anything, it is the irrepressible heroic spirit of generations of Iranian people against oppressive regimes. A people who resisted the CIA coup in 1953; who overthrew the U.S. puppet Shah Pahlavi’s blood-soaked rule in the revolution of 1979; who for the past 40+ years, rose up repeatedly against a theocracy that had taken power with the help of the U.S. The resistance continues even as the IRI had massacred tens of thousands of political prisoners in 1988, and as generations of women have been imprisoned and tortured for refusing forced hijab and medieval Sharia law.

U.S. imperialists such as U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo have NO right to speak when it comes to the suffering they help inflict on people in Iran. Years of vicious U.S. sanctions have served to batter the body and spirit of the 80+ million people in Iran—depriving them of food, medicine, books, fuel and other daily necessities but providing a club to the IRI to beat down any dissent as “support for U.S. imperialism.” Recent threats by the fascist Trump/Pence regime towards Iran, the Trump-ordered murder of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in January 2020, and now the suspicious murder of top Iranian nuclear scientist Moshen Fakhrizadeh are all vile aggressions by the U.S. These acts may also give further impetus for the IRI to crack down under vague “national security” and “foreign meddling” accusations against all forms of opposition to its rule.

The U.S. and IRI regimes have their interests, but the people of these countries have our interests. It is in the interest of the people all over the world to unite and defend the political prisoners of Iran whose lives and dignity are in mortal and imminent danger. People in the U.S. have a special responsibility and opportunity to unite across all social and political movements or divides against this vile repression by the IRI, and to actively oppose any war moves by the U.S. government that will bring even more horrific suffering to the people of Iran. We support all political protesters against the IRI and the U.S. inside and outside Iran. We join the urgent cries for justice and freedom by each new wave of Iranian political prisoners. We are taking up the fight now to free them ahead of fresh atrocities and deaths. Free all political prisoners in Iran until every cage is empty.

***

This statement was initiated by Carol Downer and Dolly Veale (November 2020).

To sign this solidarity statement, to join this effort or for more information, please email FreeIransPoliticalPrisonersNOW@gmail.com.

Suggested solidarity actions:

See also:

Let Us Unite and Fight Together Against Waves of Suppression in Iran.

Read more

Check It Out:

Nasrin, Film About Courageous Iranian Political Prisoner.

Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh with a poster of South Africa's Nelson Mandela, in a scene from the Nasrin documentary. (Photo: Floating World Pictures)

From a reader:

Nasrin is a powerful movie by filmmakers Jeff Kaufman and Marcia Ross, narrated by Academy Award winner Olivia Colman. It includes an original song performed by internationally known artist Angélique Kidjo. The film traces the defiant and courageous journey of Nasrin Sotoudeh—Iranian lawyer, political prisoner, human rights and women’s rights activist and exceptional human being. It was filmed inside Iran by people risking arrests and imprisonment to bring this inspiring “candle in the dark” to the bright screen.

As the film’s website describes, Nasrin

was arrested in June 2018 for representing women who were protesting Iran’s mandatory hijab law, and she was sentenced to 38 years in prison, plus 148 lashes. Even from prison, she has continued to challenge the authorities. An Amnesty International petition calling for her release received over a million signatures from 200 countries.

“Challenging the authorities” included, among her many acts of bravery and self-sacrifice, launching a hunger strike inside Iran’s medieval Evin prison, where she had already been held for over two years, to demand the release of ALL political prisoners. She did this at a time when Iran has been one of the countries hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic. She launched her strike on August 11 but was hospitalized for Covid-19 on September 19 herself. Due to the international outcry, she won temporary release on November 7 after suffering lung and heart damage. The film shows that what has threatened the oppressive regime in Iran is her fearlessness infecting many others.

You can find the film’s online screening schedule in England, France, and the U.S. by visiting the screenings page at the film’s webpage.

Sign this statement at Change.org

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/675/trump-pence-regime-threatens-attacks-increases-deadly-sanctions-against-iran-en.html

Fascist Trump/Pence Regime Threatens Attacks,
Increases Deadly Sanctions Against Iran
NO to U.S. War on Iran! NO to Increased Repression
within Iran!

| revcom.us

 

Since his decisive defeat in the elections, Trump and his regime have outrageously stepped up military threats and killer sanctions against Iran. Last week, Trump reportedly was walked back by close advisers from ordering an immediate attack on Iran—but is continuing to look at different options, including cyberattacks in Iran and hitting Iranian allies in the region.1 This came after Trump had fired his secretary of defense Mark Esper and made other changes in top U.S. military command.

Any U.S. attack on Iran, under any pretext, would be totally illegitimate and extremely dangerous—and could escalate to more devastating wars in the region and beyond.

Whether or not Trump launches a military attack, the sanctions that his regime has carried out against Iran for the past few years are having horrific consequences for the masses of people in that country. Because of the deadly squeeze on the economy, unemployment and inflation have skyrocketed. Iran has been blocked from importing needed medicines and medical equipment. This made the situation even more devastating when the COVID pandemic hit Iran earlier this year.2

And now, when Iran—like many countries around the world—is going through a new wave of massive COVID infections and deaths3, Trump’s secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, declared on November 18, “Throughout the coming weeks and months, we will impose new sanctions on Iran...” As in the U.S., the Trump/Pence regime’s actions are directly causing tens of thousands of needless pandemic deaths in Iran.

The increasing sanctions began after Trump, in 2018, pulled the U.S. out of an international agreement with Iran that limited Iran’s nuclear development.4 This was a major change in U.S. policy toward Iran from what it was under Obama. Biden says that he intends to get the U.S. back into the agreement.5 While Trump’s moves over the past several years heightened the immediate danger of U.S. war on Iran, the Democrats’ approach has nothing to do with peace or the interests of humanity. Both are based on the predatory interests in the region of the U.S. rulers to dominate a strategically vital part of the world that has key oil and energy resources. The U.S. aims not only to plunder those resources but, even more, to gain leverage over rivals like China and even allies like Japan and Europe (and to contend with local powers like Iran that also seek to project their influence in the region). To do this, the U.S. has directly invaded Iraq and Afghanistan, sponsored wars and coups by puppets and proxies in many more countries, and carried out drone assassinations all over the region. In the past three decades alone, millions of ordinary people have died in that region over these conflicts, with the vast majority of these murders “made in the USA.” 6 These wars and war crimes stem from a system, U.S.-dominated capitalism-imperialism—a system that grinds up the lives of billions of people all over the globe.

To be clear, there is nothing progressive about the theocratic Islamic regime ruling Iran, which is utterly reactionary and has committed vicious crimes against its people. For more on the nature of the Islamic Republic of Iran, see sidebar.

Along with a whole trail of horrific crimes and repression, this recently includes the shooting down of more than 100 protesters during a people’s upsurge in late 2019,7 and backing of other reactionary forces in the region,8 even while the crimes carried out by the U.S.—in the Middle East and around the world—far outweigh what the Iranian regime has done and is capable of.

Revolutionary leader Bob Avakian (BA) makes clear the actual nature of and relationship between these forces:

What we see in contention here with Jihad on the one hand and McWorld/McCrusade [increasingly globalized western imperialism] on the other hand, are historically outmoded strata among colonized and oppressed humanity up against historically outmoded ruling strata of the imperialist system. These two reactionary poles reinforce each other, even while opposing each other. If you side with either of these “outmodeds,” you end up strengthening both.

While this is a very important formulation and is crucial to understanding much of the dynamics driving things in the world in this period, at the same time we do have to be clear about which of these “historically outmodeds” has done the greater damage and poses the greater threat to humanity: It is the historically outmoded ruling strata of the imperialist system, and in particular the U.S. imperialists. (BAsics 1:28)

What Is Needed Now

People in the U.S. must make clear: Trump, keep your hands off Iran! This needs to be part of being in the streets to demand that the illegitimate fascist regime GET THE HELL OUT!

People in the U.S. should also stand with the oppressed of Iran in their struggle against the reactionary regime ruling over them, and as they suffer immensely from the effects of U.S. sanctions. An important factor in Iran is that there is an actual revolutionary party—the Communist Party of Iran (Marxist Leninist Maoist)—that is working to bring forward a movement for a real revolution.9

As people protest the urgent danger of U.S. war on Iran, there must be a spirit of digging into why this system wages war after war, generation after generation, under both Democrats and Republicans—and how we can get to a radically different, better world. There are answers, at this website and in the works of Bob Avakian. We invite everyone to get into and dig deeply into this.

 


1. Trump Sought Options for Attacking Iran to Stop Its Growing Nuclear Program, NY Times, 11/16/20; ALERT:Trump Considers Options for Military Attack on Iran. No U.S. War on Iran! Trump/Pence OUT NOW!, revcom.us, November 16, 2020. [back]

2. Medical Terrorism—American Style: U.S. Sanctions and Military Threats Escalate Iran’s COVID-19 Death Toll and Threaten the World, revcom.us, April 6, 2020. [back]

3. Iran struggles with Covid-19, U.S. sanctions and collapsing economy, NBC News, October 19, 2020. [back]

4. U.S. Imposes Crippling Sanctions on Iran: A Major, Dangerous and Utterly Illegitimate Escalation, revcom.us, November 5, 2018. [back]

5. Biden Wants to Rejoin Iran Nuclear Deal, but It Won’t Be Easy, New York Times, November 17, 2020. [back]

6. See these articles in the “American Crime” series at revcom.us:

7. Islamic Republic Shoots Down More Than 100, Injures or Arrests Thousands More, revcom.us, December 2, 2019. [back]

8. For example, Iran backs Shi’ite militia forces in Iraq and various groups in Lebanon and Syria. [back]

9. The following are a selection of statements from the Communist Party of Iran (Marxist Leninist Maoist) that have been posted at revcom.us in the past couple of years.

Iran Drug SanctionsThe sanctions that the Trump regime has carried out against Iran for the past few years are having horrific consequences for the masses of people in that country. Sanctions against medicines critical to people caused great suffering. Here pharmacists scan shelves for drugs depleted by sanctions, June 2019. (Photo: AP)

See also:

* Massive Protests Rock Iran: Islamic Republic Shoots Down More Than 100, Injures or Arrests Thousands More
U.S. Sheds Crocodile Tears While Intensifying Collective Suffering, Risking War

* U.S. Imposes Crippling Sanctions on Iran: A Major, Dangerous and Utterly Illegitimate Escalation

* Medical Terrorism—American Style: U.S. Sanctions and Military Threats Escalate Iran's COVID-19 Death Toll and Threaten the World

 

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Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/670/bob-avakian-only-someone-worse-than-a-fool-en.html

| revcom.us

 

Only someone worse than a fool would want that racist Confederacy-loving white supremacist, pussy-grabbing misogynistic male supremacist, LGBT-bashing, rights‑trampling, science-denying, environment-destroying, war-mongering, xenophobic “America first” bloodsucking fascist motherfucker Trump to get re-elected.

Bob Avakian

Read all the articles in Bob Avakian’s new series

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

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So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/667/donald-trump-genocidal-racist-by-bob-avakian-en.html

10 Part Series:

Donald Trump — GENOCIDAL RACIST

| revcom.us

 

Part 1:

Genocide means killing off a whole people, or a large part of that people. Genocide is what the Europeans did to the native peoples in America, while stealing their land. Genocide is Hitler and the NAZIs murdering six million Jews.  Donald Trump is a genocidal racist.

Donald Trump hates Black people and everybody who is not a “white, English-speaking, Christian American.” If he could, he would kill off a whole lot of them, and put many of the rest in jail for life, or drive them out of the country.

Trump has spouted and shouted vicious racism for years, and decades.

Trump’s niece, Mary Trump, who knows him well, said this about him:

“I can only imagine the envy with which Donald watched” the cop killing George Floyd. “I can only imagine that Donald wishes it had been his knee on Floyd’s neck.” (emphasis added)

Think about that.  

What do you think Trump will do if he can get his “knee” even more firmly on the necks of Black, Brown, and Native peoples?

Yes, even after slavery was ended, Black people have been continually subjected to horrific oppression and terror, right down to today—but the fully unleashed rule of genocidal racism, which is what Trump is aiming for, would be a horror on a whole other level. The slow genocide of Black people which has already been going on—through things like mass incarceration and continuing murder by police—can quickly become a much faster and more complete genocide if Trump and his regime succeed in remaining in power and carry forward more fully their fascist program.

And, as I have said in my August 1 Statement,* the hour is getting late, but it is not yet too late, to defeat the fascism concentrated in the fascist regime of Trump (and Pence) and to wrench something positive out of this increasingly terrible situation. But that requires fully facing up to what this regime of genocidal racist fascism represents and what it is aiming to do, and using all appropriate means to remove this regime from power—above all the mobilization of masses of people, to get in the streets, starting now, in the thousands, and stay in the streets, becoming millions, powerfully putting forward the unifying demand that this fascist regime must be OUT NOW!

And, as I emphasized in that August 1 Statement, in the most fundamental terms, it requires working to create more favorable conditions for, and to build up the organized forces for, the revolution that is needed to finally put an end to this system, which has from the beginning rested on genocidal racism and other horrific forms of oppression—and which now, with this fascist regime, is moving to take this to even more monstrous levels, posing a very real and grave threat to the very existence not only of Black people but the masses of oppressed humanity and ultimately humanity as a whole.  

This is not hype or exaggeration in any way—it is the cold hard fact we are faced with—and it demands that, in the name of and for the future of humanity, we act on the basis of fully confronting this reality and moving, in our millions and millions, to change this reality, before it really is too late.

(If you think this is an exaggeration, and the danger is not as great as what is said here, then you don’t know who Donald Trump really is. In part 2 and the rest of this series of articles, further evidence will be brought out to show that Donald Trump is indeed a genocidal racist whose fascist regime is a threat to the very existence not only of Black people, but to the masses of oppressed humanity, and to humanity itself—and, once again, what we are urgently called on to do in the face of this.)

 


*STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, August 1, 2020, ON THE IMMEDIATE CRITICAL SITUATION, THE URGENT NEED TO DRIVE OUT THE FASCIST TRUMP/PENCE REGIME, VOTING IN THIS ELECTION, AND THE FUNDAMENTAL NEED FOR REVOLUTION.  [back]

See each part for a downloadable poster

Download pamphlet of complete series (PDF printer spread)

 

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Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/665/posters-pamphlet-donald-trump-genocidal-racist-en.html

Spread them Everywhere

Pamphlet and Posters of
“Donald Trump—GENOCIDAL RACIST”

| revcom.us

 

 

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Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/666/bob-avakian-voting-will-not-be-enough-pt3-long-en.html

 

TRUMP’S FASCISM—
MORE BLATANT AND DANGEROUS EVERY DAY:
HOW A DETERMINED FIGHT AND MASSIVE MOBILIZATION
COULD DEFEAT THIS

PART 3 of

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

(Long Version—The Larger Canvas and Fuller Picture)

(See also "Short Version—The Basic Picture and Essential Vision")

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

In the Statement By Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution, I spoke to this important point:

At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power. And if, in spite of mass protest demanding the removal of the Trump/Pence regime, this regime remains in power when it is time for voting, then—without placing fundamental reliance on this—using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held). To be clear, this means not a “protest vote” for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump.

At the same time, however, I strongly emphasized that

Simply relying on voting to oust this regime will almost certainly lead to very bad, even disastrous results. This is especially true given what this regime is already doing, and what Trump is saying, in relation to the election.

But, if that is true, then how could this regime be removed from power—and, specifically, how could a mass mobilization actually lead to this regime being forced to go? 

Imagine this. 

Among the thousands who have already been reached, and moved, by the work of RefuseFascism.org, raising the demand that this fascist regime must be OUT NOW!, growing numbers become grass roots organizers, reaching out to their families, friends and communities, and involving all kinds of people and groups—through direct contact, social media, and in other ways—drawing into this growing, and increasingly diverse, mass movement thousands more who share their hatred for everything this regime stands for and is moving mercilessly to hammer into place. Many more, in turn, also become organizers. 

Imagine that, as has happened with the mass protests against racist oppression and police terror, people mobilize in the streets, day after day, beginning on October 3rd, responding to the call from Refuse Fascism for sustained non-violent but determined demonstrations around the unifying demand that this regime must go, now. These mobilizations grow, expanding and multiplying—joined by increasing numbers of people outraged by continuing police brutality and murder; by the ravaging of the environment; children in cages and tens of thousands of immigrants in concentration camps on the border; Trump’s heartless and reckless neglect and lying about the COVID pandemic, causing tens of thousands of needless deaths, disproportionately among Black and Brown and Native people; the regime’s relentless move to further consolidate a Supreme Court that is another instrument of fascist bigotry and repression—masses of people, from all parts of society, who are sickened by all this, and are coming to see even more clearly that all this is bound up with and driven by this fascist regime, joining with the ongoing daily mobilizations, linking their outrage and resistance with the unifying demand: OUT NOW! 

Imagine: Students, teachers, scientists, medical professionals, lawyers, clergy and their congregations, unions, civil rights and justice organizations, artists, athletes and others in the cultural arena—all these, and others, take up the call and mobilize to strengthen the movement. Celebrities, and prominent people in many fields, utilize their platforms to magnify the message and help to mobilize still greater numbers. 

As the crimes of this regime escalate day after day—spewing white supremacy, male supremacy, and other bigotry; moving to suppress votes and steal the election; threatening and unleashing violence to remain in power regardless of the outcome of the election; increasingly turning the “Justice Department” into a naked instrument of lawless repression, robbing people of basic rights, while moving to hammer into place a Supreme Court that will declare all this “Constitutional” and “legal”—as all this, and more, becomes increasingly blatant, and accelerates at a dizzying pace with the approach of the scheduled election, growing sectors of society come to the realization that they cannot simply look to the election to deal with this. Casting aside passive reliance on the “normal political process,” and overcoming fear in the face of threats and assaults by fascist thugs, all over the country masses of ordinary people, in growing waves, take to the streets, join the ongoing OUT NOW! mobilizations, or themselves initiate such mobilizations where they are not yet happening. This becomes a massive groundswell, engulfing the country as a whole, dramatically changing the terms of political engagement, forcing every political contender and all the dominant institutions in society to respond to this rising wave of determined mass resistance. This growing mobilization moves from the margins to the center of media attention and coverage, in this country and internationally. People around the world take notice, are inspired and organize demonstrations in solidarity and support. 

Imagine that, all of a sudden, Democratic Party politicians and operatives are forced to realize that they cannot simply funnel all the outrage and discontent into an election that is being daily stolen and violently corrupted by the fascist regime. These politicians now declare that they identify with the sentiments of the masses of demonstrators demanding OUT NOW!—and they seek to have speakers at rallies and work to control and direct the mobilizations into “acceptable channels” that will not lead to further “disorder.” But, given the growing understanding and determination of the demonstrators, these politicians’ efforts only draw even more attention, and still greater numbers, to these mobilizations—and, even in the face of growing threats and acts of repression and violence by the regime and its fascist supporters, in and out of uniform, these mobilizations continue to grow and even more powerfully thunder the demand: OUT NOW! 

Faced with this intensifying situation, the leaders of the Democratic Party calculate that the only way they can hope to gain control over the situation and re-establish some semblance of “orderly process” is to themselves take up the demand that the Trump/Pence regime must go—now—even before a scheduled election that this regime has thoroughly perverted and prevented from proceeding as a “free and fair” process. This move by the Democrats is joined (or supported, behind the scenes) by others in powerful positions in the government, including even some Republican politicians who have finally decided that their political goals and personal ambitions are better served by breaking with this regime and regrouping around other “leaders.” Trump (and Pence) are presented with the ultimatum from these ruling class forces that either they resign or they will be impeached—and, this time, convicted—and those making this demand also make clear that they have the institutional power behind them to enforce this, if Trump (and Pence) refuse to leave. 

Imagine! 

Of course, it is impossible to say exactly where things will end up, and there is no “guarantee” of success. But it is possible. And two things should be emphasized in relation to this. 

First, if masses of people do not take to the streets, now, around the demand that this regime must go; if this regime is allowed to suppress votes and use the threat and force of violence to remain in power; if it is able to further consolidate its fascist rule and to be further unleashed to bludgeon into place its fascist program and aims—then the consequences will truly be catastrophic. 

Second, we—all of us, from many different walks of life and many different political perspectives, who can recognize this fascist regime for what it is and refuse to live in a fascist America—we, by acting together, in the thousands and millions, can give expression to the strongly held sentiments of tens and tens of millions, who righteously hate everything this regime represents and aspire to a much better world than this. We can give life to massive, non-violent but sustained, and rapidly growing, mass mobilizations demanding that this regime must go—now—with the possibility that this can become a reality. We can powerfully give expression to the crucial understanding that—because of its very fascist nature, and with its escalating attempts to corrupt an election and remain in power regardless of the actual outcome of that election—this regime is illegitimate and must be removed. And if, even with this mass mobilization, this regime is still in power on November 3rd, the fact that we have carried out this mass mobilization and powerfully raised this OUT NOW! demand, will mean that there will be much more favorable conditions for continuing, and further amplifying and strengthening, this mass mobilization if Trump and his regime attempt to stay in power, regardless of the actual outcome of the election. 

Whether there will be a real possibility of a society, a world and a future for humanity—one worth living in—will depend, to no small degree, on what we who aspire to such a world decide to do, and strive with the determination necessary to make this a reality.  

********* 

With this basic outline in mind of what is necessary, and what is possible—the determined fight and massive mobilization that could actually defeat the moves of the Trump/Pence regime to further hammer into place its fascist rule, with the truly catastrophic consequences that would lead to—let’s look at this further, and more fully, in the context of the larger situation and crucial recent developments. 

The Death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the Fanatical Woman-Hating Fascists 

The announcement of the death of longtime liberal Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has been the occasion for Trump and his fellow fascists, not to pause to honor Ginsburg, but to immediately declare their intention to ram through the appointment of yet another extreme right-wing judge onto the court—to give further “legal backing,” by “the highest court in the land,” to the fanatically oppressive and repressive agenda and aims of the fascist Trump/Pence regime, which include: using “executive power” to trample on the rule of law and turn the “law” into merely an instrument of the fascist regime; giving the police even more unlimited powers to brutalize and murder in the name of “law and order”; ruthlessly persecuting immigrants, LGBT people, Muslims and other “undesirables”; further removing restrictions on the plundering of the environment; forcing patriotism and religious fundamentalism (that is, Christian fascism) down the throats of everyone in society—and, not least, outlawing abortion and in general slamming women more forcefully into a subordinate position in relation to men and in society overall. 

In The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!, I examined the “unholy alliance” between Trump and the Christian fundamentalists, who are the hard core and driving force of this fascism.1 

Speaking to the same phenomenon (and referring to the Christian fundamentalists as “evangelicals,” and having in mind particularly white evangelicals), Kristin Kobes Du Mez has made clear:

evangelical support for Trump was no aberration, nor was it merely a pragmatic choice. It was, rather, the culmination of evangelicals’ embrace of militant masculinity, an ideology that enshrines patriarchal authority and condones the callous display of power, at home and abroad.2

The Christian fascist zealotry in opposition to abortion is not really about the fraudulent notion that abortion amounts to “killing babies”—something which is demonstrated by (among other things) the fact that these opponents of the right to abortion also strongly oppose birth control which prevents pregnancy in the first place. The truth is this:

What is really involved is that abortion, and birth control, help to provide women with a certain independence, a freedom to decide whether and when to have children—and, yes, a certain freedom to engage in sexual relations of their own choosing, on the basis of their own desire and volition, without having to be worried about whether they are going to become pregnant when they have neither wanted nor decided to do so. It is this relative independence and freedom that causes a frenzy among Christian fascists, because it runs counter to reducing the role of women to “helpmates” to husbands and breeders of children for those husbands in patriarchal, male-dominated families, and to the subordinate and oppressed position of women in society as a whole.3

In previous writings and speeches—including the previous article (Part 2) in this series—I emphasized that there is a direct connection and powerful link between the patriarchal misogyny (hatred and degradation of women) of this fascism and its aggressive white supremacy, and that:

there can be no “reconciliation” with these fascists—whose “grievances” are based on fanatical resentment against any limitation on white supremacymale supremacy, xenophobia (hatred of foreigners), rabid American chauvinism, and the unrestrained plundering of the environment, and are increasingly expressed in literally lunatic terms. There can be no “reconciliation” with this, other than on the terms of these fascists, with all the terrible implications and consequences of that!4

It is urgently necessary for everyone who refuses to accept (to be “reconciled” with) all this, to understand what the terrible consequences will be if the Trump/Pence regime is able to make a further leap in consolidating its fascist rule and implementing its fascist program. This fascism “is not just a matter of horrific policies but of qualitatively different form of rule, based on brutal repression and violation of what are supposed to be the most basic rights.”5

The African-American theologian, Hubert Locke—whom I quoted in the previous article (Part 1) in this series—underlines this crucial point:

Were all this only a battle for the hearts and minds of the American people, we could wade into the conflict with a great deal less concern, confident that good sense and human decency would ultimately triumph over ignorance and bigotry. But this is a battle for power—it’s about seizing the reins of government, manipulating the courts and judicial decisions, controlling the media, and making incursions into every possible corner of our private lives and relationships, so that what the religious right perceives as the will of God will reign in America.6

A Rallying Cry and a Call to Action 

All those who can recognize that this nightmare is rapidly becoming a brute reality—who refuse to live in a fascist America where every aspiration for a just world is viciously slandered and mercilessly deprived of air to breathe—we, in our millions and tens of millions, must act together to create a situation where there can be, and there will be, no “normal,” no grinding along of the machinery that is leading to disaster, so long as this fascist regime is in power

We need to fight with the full recognition of the profound stakes that are involved and the ultimate threat to humanity itself that is posed by this regime. What is called for now is struggle that is non-violent, but is daring and bold, fired with the determination not to back down, until this regime has been removed. We must, in a very urgent way, bring into being a situation in which every force—among all the different sectors of the ruling powers and institutions, and in the society at large—has to respond to and weigh heavily the political situation that we are creating through increasingly massive and powerful mobilizations, insisting that this regime must go, now!  

Anything less will mean tying ourselves to forces and procedures, and passively awaiting an outcome, that will very likely lead to capitulating to this fascism, with what will be (without the slightest exaggeration) truly catastrophic consequences. 

As my August 1 Statement emphasizes: “At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power.”7 And, if it comes to it, that means voting for Biden in order to effectively vote against Trump

I have also pointed to this important reality:

It is true that, at this point, the vote in a few states essentially determines the outcome of presidential elections—so that, as was the case with Trump in the previous presidential election, someone can lose the popular vote and still become president. But, even given this reality, an electoral strategy that could work much better for the Democrats would be to take on Trump’s whole racist approach, directly and forcefully, and appeal to Black people and other people of color, and the large number of white people (especially, though not only, younger generations) who have shown that they are motivated by a definite desire for an end to social injustice, blatant inequality, and rampant police violence. That is a great “reservoir” that, theoretically, the Democrats could focus on appealing to.8

It is also true that “the Democrats themselves will not—cannot—really do this.”8 But, creating the kind of political situation where Biden and the Democrats are forced to recognize, and reckon with, the powerfully expressed determination of massive numbers demanding an end to the Trump/Pence regime and the fascism it embodies—that could exert a compulsion on the Democrats to voice opposition to Trump on a basis that at least comes close to the heart of the essential fascist nature and program of the Trump/Pence regime...Which, in turn, could impel more people to take to the streets demanding this...Which, in turn, could create still more favorable circumstances and conditions for waging the fight to remove this regime. 

Think about what has happened as a result of the beautiful rising that has taken place against institutional racism and police terror. In very significant ways, “the conversation about race” has been dramatically changed. All of a sudden, the Democrats, and other “mainstream” institutions, feel compelled to talk not only about the need for “police reform,” but about “systemic racism”—and there is widespread discussion and debate about the whole history of this country, with its roots in slavery, and genocide against the indigenous peoples! There is no way that all this would have taken place—and the political landscape would have been so dramatically changed, in such a short period of time—in the absence of this beautiful mass rising! And the same can happen, in the same immediate (“telescoped”) way, if there is not only a continuation of the righteous outpouring against racist oppression and police terror, and other outrageous injustice, but if all this is linked together with, and given powerful expression as, masses of people, in continually growing numbers, in the streets powerfully demanding that the fascist Trump/Pence regime must go! 

If this fascist regime is still in power when it is time for voting—then that will require not just people carrying out the single act of voting themselves, but working to mobilize people in massive numbers to deliver a decisive electoral defeat to this fascist regime. But, at the same time, as I have emphasized repeatedly—and this cannot be emphasized too many times—for all the reasons discussed here (as well as elsewhere in this series and in my August 1 Statement) relying on voting, without the mass mobilization demanding the removal of this regime, is likely to lead to disaster

Masses of people must act, now, to create the most favorable conditions for forcing the removal of this regime, whose continuation, and further consolidation, in power will, without any exaggeration, have truly monstrous consequences. 

Rising to the Historic Challenge and Overcoming All Obstacles (Including in Ourselves) 

As I have also emphasized, it “would be a very grave mistake to fail to take seriously what is being openly proclaimed by Trump and his fascist supporters,” including their threats of even greater violence to ensure that the Trump/Pence regime remains in power. But, an even more important truth is this: “as truly dangerous as these fascist threats and acts of violence, and preparations to carry out even more violence, are—being cowed by and capitulating to this would lead to a far greater horror.”9 In confronting this, every decent person can take inspiration and find courage in the actions of the masses of people who have defiantly braved repeated attacks, by police and government storm troopers under the command of the Trump/Pence regime, as well as assaults by armed pro-Trump fascist thugs, and have poured into the streets, to express their outrage over racist brutality and murder and their determination that this must end

But it is not just fear, however well-founded, that must be overcome. It is also the individualism that has become so widespread, and often expressed in such extreme terms, in this society, especially in recent times. In the situation today, faced with the escalating and accelerating fascist juggernaut, this individualism is often expressed in these terms now: “While I hate everything Trump is about and everything he is doing, I have to look out for myself and those who are close to me; and putting myself on the line to step out and actively oppose this by getting into the streets and demonstrating around the demand that this regime must be removed now—when there are not that many people already doing this—well, that is a risk I am not willing to take, especially when there is an election coming up and there is a chance that this might deal with the problem.” 

Here—along with calling attention once again to the ways in which Trump is already perverting and stealing the election, and is using violence and threatening even more violence to remain in power, regardless of what actually happens with this election—it needs to be pointed out strongly: If everyone who has expressed (or felt) these sentiments were actually to take to the streets, there would be a force of literally millions, and even tens of millions, powerfully demonstrating their insistence that the Trump/Pence regime must be OUT NOW!—as is being called for, and organized by, RefuseFascism.org. 

It also needs to be bluntly said: This rampant individualism—everyone just thinking about themselves and failing or refusing to act on the larger interests of humanity—this is a big part of why we are faced with the terrible situation we are faced with now. And continuing in this way will only contribute to things becoming far, far worse, with truly catastrophic consequences for all of humanity—which few, if any, will ultimately be able to escape. (Besides the ever-present danger of nuclear annihilation, especially with the demented bully Trump having his finger on the nuclear button, think about the environmental crisis and the intensified and accelerated damage the Trump/Pence regime has already done to the environment—and will do on a far more terrible scale, if it remains in power.)

It may not be “easy,” but it is in the fundamental interests of everyone (everyone who cares at all about social injustice and inequality, and having an environment, both natural and social, in which human beings can breathe and hope to flourish) that we all be willing to be “among the first” to boldly step forward and become part of a truly massive mobilization demanding that this regime must be removed, now—and, in doing so, discovering that we are not after all “alone” or “only a few brave souls,” but are together, not just in sentiment but as an active force, with thousands and ultimately millions. 

Yes, it is true that there is no “guarantee” that even such a massive mobilization will succeed in forcing the removal of this regime—and this regime, along with the crazed fascist fanatics who make up its “base,” will rabidly resist this—but it can be guaranteed that, if this regime succeeds in remaining in power, by corrupting and stealing the election and then refusing to leave, once more the consequences will truly be catastrophic. 

And, while there is no “guarantee,” there is a definite possibility of a positive outcome. Once again, think of the tremendous impact that the beautiful rising against racist oppression and police terror has had, almost literally “overnight.” 

At the same time, it is important to understand that, even if and as a mass mobilization demanding the removal of this regime could have a powerful impact on the political terrain, and on all the institutions of power and sectors of society, things would not likely go forward as a simple direct line extension of this mass mobilization. Rather, it would more likely take place as the interplay between that mass mobilization and the contradictions and conflicts among the powers-that-be, which will be heightened by this mass mobilization—possibly leading to a political crisis of such powerful dimensions and depth that forces who normally strongly resist doing things outside of the “traditional institutional means and procedures” of this system, ruling class powers who do not normally involve themselves directly in the politics of the system, and even some of those who have up to now stubbornly stuck with this fascist regime, will conclude that it is necessary to remove the regime—to at least force Trump (and Pence) to resign—in order to avoid an even more profound crisis for their whole system

Again, no one can say, with absolute certainty, what the outcome of all this will be. But a truly massive popular upsurge, aimed at driving out the Trump/Pence regime, even ahead of the election, could play a very powerful role in creating favorable conditions for dealing with the demented determination of this regime to remain in power and wreak even further havoc and horror. 

It is crucial to recognize that

The mass mobilization that is needed cannot be built “overnight,” in the aftermath of the election—and it cannot be built by confining things within the framework and limits insisted upon by the Democrats.10

And, through the work of Refuse Fascism, and some others joining this effort, this mass mobilization has already begun. 

It is a fact that, since the early days of the Trump/Pence regime, Refuse Fascism has been calling for mass mobilization around the demand that this regime must go; and, while it has rallied thousands so far to take to the streets to voice this demand, as yet this mobilization has not resulted in the exponential (by leaps and bounds) growth that it needs to, now very quickly, achieve. But, because those thousands really do give expression to strongly held sentiments of tens of millions, they actually represent a potentially powerful force, and it is crucial to build on every advance that is made in reaching and mobilizing people, including by enabling those who have stepped forward to themselves become organizers of many more...to, in turn, become the organizers of still greater numbers. Further, it is very important to recognize, and act on the understanding, that the times, right now, are very different than they have been over the past few years, even with all the outrages that this regime has committed over those years. 

Things now are much more intense, and are developing in a much more accelerating pace, particularly as Trump is ramping up his fascist offensive, with the approach of the scheduled election. This is having contradictory effects. On the one hand, the violent repression and attacks on people protesting injustice—and the threats of even much worse repression and violence—on the part of this regime, and its fascist supporters, together with the fact that the scheduled election is rapidly approaching: this has led more than a few, among those who hate this regime, to fall into a passive position of just waiting for the election and hoping that it will somehow resolve the crisis that is intensifying now on mainly very bad terms. But, the other side of the story is that the relentless drive by this regime and its supporters, even as the election approaches, to go full steam ahead with their fascist juggernaut, to corrupt and steal the election, to refuse to accept a defeat in the election, and to remain in power regardless of the outcome of the election—this is forcing, more and more to the forefront, the reality of what is represented by this regime, the great objective danger of simply waiting for the election, and the great need to take to the streets, now, to demand that this regime must be removed.

This speaks, once again, to the importance of the mobilization that is already taking place around the demand Trump/Pence OUT NOW! And it speaks to the great importance of this mobilization, with whatever numbers it organizes at any given time, becoming sustained, taking place day after day, and to build on every significant advance it does achieve. As this is done in ways, both determined and creative, that “capture the imagination” of people—together with the continuing intensification of the crisis that is largely being driven, now, by Trump’s fascist actions and declarations—“things can come together,” and “the dam can break,” with growing numbers of people pouring into the streets, raising ever more loudly the demand that this regime must go, now, and calling forth still greater numbers to join in this courageous and urgently needed mobilization. 

In conclusion:

With the full awareness of what is represented by this fascist regime, and what it means that Trump is not only seeking to suppress the votes of people who will vote against him but is also preparing to utilize forceful, violent repression to remain in office if he is not declared the winner in the election, it is of critical and urgent importance to build now truly massive and sustained mobilization around the unifying demand that this regime must be OUT NOW!—with an orientation of being prepared to continue this even past the election, if the situation requires it.11

***

The crazed fanaticism of the fascists insisting that Trump must remain in power, no matter what, must be met, and overwhelmed, by the conscious passionate intensity of masses of people who hate everything that this fascist regime represents, who recognize the very real existential threat that this regime represents for humanity and are fired with righteous determination that this regime must go!12

 


1. The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go! In The Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America, A Better World IS PossibleVideo of this speech is available at revcom.us.  [back]

2. Kristin Kobes Du Mez, Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation, Liveright Publishing. The part quoted here is from the “Introduction.”  [back]

3. Fascists Today And The Confederacy: A Direct Line, A Direct Connection Between All The OppressionThis article of mine is also available at revcom.us.  [back]

4. Trump Is Already Stealing The Election And Threatening Even More Violence To Stay in Power, Part 2 of Voting Will Not Be Enough—We Need To Take To The Streets, And Stay In The Streets Demanding Trump/Pence Out Now! This article is available at revcom.us.  [back]

5. Statement By Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution (also available at revcom.us).  [back]

6. “Reflections on Pacific School of Religion’s Response to the Religious Right,” by Dr. Hubert Locke, also available at revcom.us—emphasis added.  [back]

7. Statement By Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution.  [back]

8. The Democrats Can’t Fight Trump The Way He Needs To Be Fought, Part 1 of Voting Will Not Be Enough—We Need To Take To The Streets, And Stay In The Streets Demanding Trump/Pence Out Now!  [back]

9. Trump Is Already Stealing The Election And Threatening Even More Violence To Stay in Power, emphasis in the original.  [back]

10. The Democrats Can’t Fight Trump The Way He Needs To Be Fought.  [back]

11. Statement By Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution (also available at revcom.us), emphasis in the original.  [back]

12. Trump Is Already Stealing The Election And Threatening Even More Violence To Stay In Power, emphasis in the original.  [back]

Read the 10-part series HERE

 

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Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/666/bob-avakian-voting-will-not-be-enough-pt3-short-en.html

 

TRUMP’S FASCISM—
MORE BLATANT AND DANGEROUS EVERY DAY:
HOW A DETERMINED FIGHT AND MASSIVE MOBILIZATION
COULD DEFEAT THIS

PART 3 of

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

(Short Version—The Basic Picture and Essential Vision)

(See also "Long Version—The Larger Canvas and Fuller Picture")

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

In the Statement By Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution, I spoke to this important point:

At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power. And if, in spite of mass protest demanding the removal of the Trump/Pence regime, this regime remains in power when it is time for voting, then—without placing fundamental reliance on this—using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held). To be clear, this means not a “protest vote” for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump.

At the same time, however, I strongly emphasized that

Simply relying on voting to oust this regime will almost certainly lead to very bad, even disastrous results. This is especially true given what this regime is already doing, and what Trump is saying, in relation to the election.

But, if that is true, then how could this regime be removed from power—and, specifically, how could a mass mobilization actually lead to this regime being forced to go?

Imagine this.

Among the thousands who have already been reached, and moved, by the work of RefuseFascism.org, raising the demand that this fascist regime must be OUT NOW!, growing numbers become grass roots organizers, reaching out to their families, friends and communities, and involving all kinds of people and groups—through direct contact, social media, and in other ways—drawing into this growing, and increasingly diverse, mass movement thousands more who share their hatred for everything this regime stands for and is moving mercilessly to hammer into place. Many more, in turn, also become organizers.

Imagine that, as has happened with the mass protests against racist oppression and police terror, people mobilize in the streets, day after day, beginning on October 3rd, responding to the call from Refuse Fascism for sustained non-violent but determined demonstrations around the unifying demand that this regime must go, now. These mobilizations grow, expanding and multiplying—joined by increasing numbers of people outraged by continuing police brutality and murder; by the ravaging of the environment; children in cages and tens of thousands of immigrants in concentration camps on the border; Trump’s heartless and reckless neglect and lying about the COVID pandemic, causing tens of thousands of needless deaths, disproportionately among Black and Brown and Native people; the regime’s relentless move to further consolidate a Supreme Court that is another instrument of fascist bigotry and repression—masses of people, from all parts of society, who are sickened by all this, and are coming to see even more clearly that all this is bound up with and driven by this fascist regime, joining with the ongoing daily mobilizations, linking their outrage and resistance with the unifying demand: OUT NOW!

Imagine: Students, teachers, scientists, medical professionals, lawyers, clergy and their congregations, unions, civil rights and justice organizations, artists, athletes and others in the cultural arena—all these, and others, take up the call and mobilize to strengthen the movement. Celebrities, and prominent people in many fields, utilize their platforms to magnify the message and help to mobilize still greater numbers.

As the crimes of this regime escalate day after day—spewing white supremacy, male supremacy, and other bigotry; moving to suppress votes and steal the election; threatening and unleashing violence to remain in power regardless of the outcome of the election; increasingly turning the “Justice Department” into a naked instrument of lawless repression, robbing people of basic rights, while moving to hammer into place a Supreme Court that will declare all this “Constitutional” and “legal”—as all this, and more, becomes increasingly blatant, and accelerates at a dizzying pace with the approach of the scheduled election, growing sectors of society come to the realization that they cannot simply look to the election to deal with this. Casting aside passive reliance on the “normal political process,” and overcoming fear in the face of threats and assaults by fascist thugs, all over the country masses of ordinary people, in growing waves, take to the streets, join the ongoing OUT NOW! mobilizations, or themselves initiate such mobilizations where they are not yet happening. This becomes a massive groundswell, engulfing the country as a whole, dramatically changing the terms of political engagement, forcing every political contender and all the dominant institutions in society to respond to this rising wave of determined mass resistance. This growing mobilization moves from the margins to the center of media attention and coverage, in this country and internationally. People around the world take notice, are inspired and organize demonstrations in solidarity and support.

Imagine that, all of a sudden, Democratic Party politicians and operatives are forced to realize that they cannot simply funnel all the outrage and discontent into an election that is being daily stolen and violently corrupted by the fascist regime. These politicians now declare that they identify with the sentiments of the masses of demonstrators demanding OUT NOW!—and they seek to have speakers at rallies and work to control and direct the mobilizations into “acceptable channels” that will not lead to further “disorder.” But, given the growing understanding and determination of the demonstrators, these politicians’ efforts only draw even more attention, and still greater numbers, to these mobilizations—and, even in the face of growing threats and acts of repression and violence by the regime and its fascist supporters, in and out of uniform, these mobilizations continue to grow and even more powerfully thunder the demand: OUT NOW!

Faced with this intensifying situation, the leaders of the Democratic Party calculate that the only way they can hope to gain control over the situation and re-establish some semblance of “orderly process” is to themselves take up the demand that the Trump/Pence regime must go—now—even before a scheduled election that this regime has thoroughly perverted and prevented from proceeding as a “free and fair” process. This move by the Democrats is joined (or supported, behind the scenes) by others in powerful positions in the government, including even some Republican politicians who have finally decided that their political goals and personal ambitions are better served by breaking with this regime and regrouping around other “leaders.” Trump (and Pence) are presented with the ultimatum from these ruling class forces that either they resign or they will be impeached—and, this time, convicted—and those making this demand also make clear that they have the institutional power behind them to enforce this, if Trump (and Pence) refuse to leave.

Imagine!

Of course, it is impossible to say exactly where things will end up, and there is no “guarantee” of success. But it is possible. And two things should be emphasized in relation to this.

First, if masses of people do not take to the streets, now, around the demand that this regime must go; if this regime is allowed to suppress votes and use the threat and force of violence to remain in power; if it is able to further consolidate its fascist rule and to be further unleashed to bludgeon into place its fascist program and aims—then the consequences will truly be catastrophic.

Second, we—all of us, from many different walks of life and many different political perspectives, who can recognize this fascist regime for what it is and refuse to live in a fascist America—we, by acting together, in the thousands and millions, can give expression to the strongly held sentiments of tens and tens of millions, who righteously hate everything this regime represents and aspire to a much better world than this. We can give life to massive, non-violent but sustained, and rapidly growing, mass mobilizations demanding that this regime must go—now—with the possibility that this can become a reality. We can powerfully give expression to the crucial understanding that—because of its very fascist nature, and with its escalating attempts to corrupt an election and remain in power regardless of the actual outcome of that election—this regime is illegitimate and must be removed. And if, even with this mass mobilization, this regime is still in power on November 3rd, the fact that we have carried out this mass mobilization and powerfully raised this OUT NOW! demand, will mean that there will be much more favorable conditions for continuing, and further amplifying and strengthening, this mass mobilization if Trump and his regime attempt to stay in power, regardless of the actual outcome of the election.

Whether there will be a real possibility of a society, a world and a future for humanity—one worth living in—will depend, to no small degree, on what we who aspire to such a world decide to do, and strive with the determination necessary to make this a reality.

 

Read the 10-part series HERE

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/665/bob-avakian-voting-will-not-be-enough-pt2-en.html

 

TRUMP IS ALREADY STEALING THE ELECTION 
AND THREATENING EVEN MORE VIOLENCE
TO STAY IN POWER

PART 2 of

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

In the Statement by Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution, I spoke to this important point:

At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power. And if, in spite of mass protest demanding the removal of the Trump/Pence regime, this regime remains in power when it is time for voting, then—without placing fundamental reliance on this—using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held). To be clear, this means not a “protest vote” for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump.

At the same time, however, I strongly emphasized that

Simply relying on voting to oust this regime will almost certainly lead to very bad, even disastrous results. This is especially true given what this regime is already doing, and what Trump is saying, in relation to the election.

The Trump/Pence Regime Is Already Moving to Suppress Votes

The fact that Trump, and his supporters, continue to commit outrage after outrage, on a regular basis, can cause people—even those who hate everything Trump represents—to forget about outrages that were committed even just a little while ago. But, it is crucially important not to forget that Trump has already “floated” the idea of “delaying” the election on the basis of his completely false claims that things like mail-in voting will lead to massive fraud and that it could take weeks, months, or even years to know the actual result of the election (note: weeks, months, or even years—during which time Trump would insist on staying in power!). 

Trump and his supporters are making moves to suppress the votes of many Black people, and others, who are likely to vote heavily against Trump. Here is one glaring example: In the state of Florida (which Trump desperately needs to win), the Republican-controlled government is working to undermine changes in the Florida Constitution that have restored the right of convicted felons to vote. This could take away the right to vote from nearly 800,000 people, many of whom are Black and Latino.1 

Trump’s operatives are already in the process of organizing fascist thugs to go to polling places, especially in key “battleground” states, to “watch out for fraud.” In fascist Trumpworld, lying is a way of life and the standard operating procedure. When they say “law and order,” they mean police killing Black and Brown people. To them, the truth is “fake news,” and they claim “science doesn’t know” things that only Trump knows. So, when they talk about “election fraud,” what they mean is people voting against Trump. And what these fascist goons being organized by the Trump camp intend to do is precisely to prevent people from voting against Trump—with the threat, and the use, of force and violence.

Michael Cohen—who, for more than 10 years, was Trump’s personal attorney and “fixer”—has sounded the alarm, more than once, that Trump will do anything to stay in powereven start a war to create a national emergency.2 Trump, who is both a pathological liar and a liar with a purpose, has deliberately and repeatedly downplayed the danger of the COVID-19 pandemic, even while knowing what a serious danger it actually poses. He has already forced government bodies, like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to bend its findings and recommendations about the COVID-19 pandemic to serve Trump’s political ambitions and goals. And it seems increasingly likely that, shortly before the election, in the attempt to offset the exposure of his terrible recklessness with regard to COVD-19, and to perversely declare himself the “savior” of the people from this pandemic, Trump will use his presidential power to pressure approval for the use of a vaccine, even before it has really been scientifically determined whether such a vaccine is not only effective but safe

Trump Has Violently Suppressed Opposition, and Has Threatened Even Greater Violence 

Another thing that must not be forgotten is that Trump has not only justified and supported but openly encouraged violence by armed white supremacist storm troopers (what he calls “Second Amendment people”). He has supported police violently attacking protesters and utilized armed forces of the government to attack and suppress protests, in Washington, D.C., in Portland and other cities. There is already plenty of evidence—and more evidence comes out all the time—that (assuming the election is actually held) regardless of the actual outcome of the election, Trump will declare himself the winner and use whatever means he can, including violence, to stay in power. As pointed out in a recent article posted on revcom.us:

On September 10, Trump was asked by Jeanine Pirro of fascist Fox “News” what his response would be on election night if he won and those against him “threaten riots.” Trump’s response: “We’ll put them down very quickly if they do that.... We have the right to do that, we have the power to do that if we want. Look, it’s called insurrection.”3

Here, it is necessary to “translate” what is being said in this episode of the ongoing fascist lie-athon of Trump and his media accomplices (such as Fox “news”). Trump “winning” the election means Trump declaring himself the winner. (Remember that Trump has already strongly implied that he will not accept the results of the election if Biden wins; and Trump has insisted that the only way he could lose the election is if it is “rigged.”) “Riots,” in fascist-speak, means protests against police brutality and other injustices, even when (as has been the case) these protests are overwhelmingly peaceful; and “insurrection” here means mobilization against the Trump/Pence regime, even if that mobilization is non-violent. 

The same revcom.us article calls attention to this:

Another glimpse at what the fascists may be thinking of and even planning for came from the mouth of longtime Republican operative and Trump stooge, Roger Stone. (In July, Trump commuted the 40-month prison sentence of Stone, who had been convicted of lying to Congress.) In a call with Alex Jones—pro-Trump conspiracy theorist—on his online Infowars show, Stone said Trump should consider declaring “martial law” or invoke the Insurrection Act if he should lose the November election.3

And Stone called on “Attorney General” William Barr (head of Trump’s Injustice Department, chief enforcer of unlawful repression, and a “commander” of the regime’s storm troopers) to prepare now a force ready to act on this “martial law” declaration if Trump loses. 

Note that Stone openly calls for Trump to use violence to remain in office if Trump loses the election. 

And other fanatical backers of this regime, in and out of government, have called on its supporters to arm themselves in preparation for the election. 

It would be a very grave mistake to fail to take seriously what is being openly proclaimed by Trump and his fascist supporters.

But as truly dangerous as these fascist threats and acts of violence, and preparations to carry out even more violence, are—being cowed by and capitulating to this would lead to a far greater horror

The Trumpite attempts to suppress votes must be actively, vigorously opposed; and people must mobilize, now and in an ongoing way, demanding that the whole Trump/Pence regime must go. 

We Can’t Rely on the Democrats, We Can’t Wait Until November

In Part 1 in this series, I examined the reasons why the Democrats will not call out the Trump/Pence regime, and its supporters, for what they are: fascist. I pointed out:

Time and again, the Democrats have sought to deal with this by trying to utilize the very “norms” and institutions that this fascist regime is defying and tearing up, or bending to its fascist aims—the courts, congressional hearings and proceedings, and so on. Time and again, the Democrats have failed. Yet they stubbornly refuse to seek any means of opposing this regime other than by resorting to these “norms” and procedures. This is what they are doing, and will be strongly inclined to continue doing, even in the face of Trump’s increasing and intensifying moves to suppress votes in the upcoming election and his clearly indicated determination to have himself declared the winner in the election, or to remain in power regardless of the outcome of the election.4

Biden and the Democrats act as if—and repeatedly insist that—the reason there is so much bitter conflict, violence, and “chaos” in society is because “Trump is dividing us, not uniting us.” But the truth is that, while Trump has become a “rallying point” and “spearpoint” of the fascist forces in this country, within the structures of power and more broadly among sectors of the population, there are deep-seated reasons and causes for why this fascism has become such a powerful force. Biden and the Democrats cannot “bring the country together,” as they falsely claim, because there can be no “reconciliation” with these fascists—whose “grievances” are based on fanatical resentment against any limitation on white supremacy, male supremacy, xenophobia (hatred of foreigners), rabid American chauvinism, and the unrestrained plundering of the environment, and are increasingly expressed in literally lunatic terms. There can be no “reconciliation” with this, other than on the terms of these fascists, with all the terrible implications and consequences of that! 

As I have also emphasized: “all this points to the very great likelihood that regardless of the actual outcome of this election (assuming it is actually held), if Trump declares himself the ‘winner’and refuses to leave, in the absence of truly massive mobilization demanding that the Trump/Pence regime must be removed, the Democrats will end up capitulating to Trump.4

This does not mean that voting for Biden would be irrelevant—would make no difference. Many people who hate Trump have at the same time expressed a definite lack of enthusiasm for Biden. But “enthusiasm for Biden”—or the lack of such enthusiasm—is really beside the point, and basing things on something like that involves gross ignorance, or a deliberate ignoring, of the crucial stakes involved. The reason to vote for Biden is to vote against Trump and his whole regime. And that should be reason enough, for any person who actually cares about social justice, who refuses to live in a fascist America and has any sense of the very real catastrophe it would mean, not just for people in this country but for all of humanity, if Trump gets a “re-election mandate.” For these reasons, as I pointed out in my August 1 Statement, if it comes down to it—if the Trump/Pence regime is still in power when it is time for voting—then voting for Biden, in order to vote against Trump, will be very important and necessary

As that Statement emphasizes, “there can be one—and only one—‘good’ that can come out of this election: delivering a decisive defeat to Trump and the whole fascist regime.”This would not “put an end” to the fascism that has arisen out of deep-seated contradictions and has gained strength, over decades. But, as the August 1 Statement further emphasizes: delivering a decisive defeat to this regime “would create far better conditions for continuing to wage the struggle against everything represented by the Trump/Pence regime and all the oppression and injustices of this system, and would be a great gift to the people of the world.” 

At the same time, for all the reasons spoken to in that Statement, and highlighted here—the moves by Trump that are already far along to steal the election, and his determination to use whatever means he can to remain in power, regardless of the actual outcome of that election, and at the same time the likelihood that the Democrats, left to their own devices, will end up capitulating to Trump—waiting for November and relying on voting will very likely lead to disaster.

People need to really and fully awaken to the reality of what is at stake, before it is too late. More than a few people have observed, sometimes with sad resignation, that the continuing avalanche of lies and truly monstrous criminal acts by Trump and his regime have worn them down, to the point where they are no longer shocked or feel compelled to act. But losing one’s ability to be outraged, and to act on that outrage, means losing one’s humanity—and, given the situation we are facing, it amounts to collaborating with the fascism of this regime and the catastrophe toward which it is relentlessly propelling humanity.

The crazed fanaticism of the fascists insisting that Trump must remain in power, no matter what, must be met, and overwhelmed, by the conscious passionate intensity of masses of people who hate everything that this fascist regime represents, who recognize the very real existential threat that this regime represents for humanity and are fired with righteous determination that this regime must go! 

And, to make this a reality, this righteous determination cannot just be channeled into voting against Trump. What is urgently required now is “stepping outside of the ‘norms’ of this system and mobilizing masses of people in determined, non-violent but sustained struggle in the streets to demand the ouster of this regime, as is being called for by RefuseFascism.org.”4 And:

The mass mobilization that is needed cannot be built “overnight,” in the aftermath of the election—and it cannot be built by confining things within the framework and limits insisted upon by the Democrats....

We Need To Take To The Streets, And Stay In The Streets, Demanding Trump/Pence Out Now!4

(The next, concluding article in this series will speak to the big question: How the nonviolent but sustained, and continually growing, mass mobilization, demanding Trump/Pence OUT NOW! that has been called for, and is being organized by, RefuseFascism.org, could lead to, or contribute in a major way to, a situation in which the Trump/Pence regime would be removed from power.) 

 


1. See the article “Florida Moves to Deny Voting Rights to Hundreds of Thousands of People Convicted of Felonies,” at revcom.us.  [back]

2. In his testimony before a congressional committee in 2019, Michael Cohen spoke to the danger that Trump would refuse to recognize the results of the election scheduled for November 2020, if Trump did not win this election. And, in his recently-published book Disloyal, The True Story of the Former Personal Attorney to President Donald J. Trump, Cohen once again sounds the alarm, even more urgently, with the warning that Trump will do anything, including starting a war, to stay in power. Cohen has acknowledged that, prior to this 2019 appearance before Congress, he had lied to Congress—something he sought to set right by giving truthful testimony in that 2019 hearing. Trump’s fascist falsehood machine has tried to seize on the fact that Cohen is an admitted liar, who has been convicted of the crime of lying to Congress, in the attempt to draw attention away from what Cohen has revealed about Trump and the great dangers he poses. The problem, for the Trumpites, is that the lies they are referring to, and other despicable acts Cohen carried out—this was done precisely on the instruction and for the benefit of the Liar-in-Chief, Trump himself

Cohen, who worked very closely with (or for) Trump, for more than ten years, including the first years of Trump’s presidency, and probably knows Trump as well as anyone can, confirms what is said by Trump’s niece, Mary Trump: Racism, misogyny (hatred and degradation of women), and all-around bigotry are at the very core of Trump’s being.  [back]

3. “Trump on Election Night Protests: ‘We’ll put them down very quickly.’” This is part of the continuing series The Fascist Assault on revcom.us.  [back]

4. The quotes and references here are from Voting Will Not Be Enough—We Need To Take To The Streets, And Stay In The Streets Demanding Trump/Pence Out Now, Part 1, “The Democrats Can’t Fight Trump The Way He Needs To Be Fought.” This article of mine is available at revcom.us.  [back]

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

by Bob Avakian

Part 1:
THE DEMOCRATS CAN'T FIGHT TRUMP
THE WAY HE NEEDS TO BE FOUGHT

Part 2:
TRUMP IS ALREADY STEALING THE ELECTION  AND THREATENING EVEN MORE VIOLENCE TO STAY IN POWER

Part 3:
TRUMP’S FASCISM—MORE BLATANT AND DANGEROUS EVERY DAY: HOW A DETERMINED FIGHT AND MASSIVE MOBILIZATION COULD DEFEAT THIS

(Long Version—The Larger Canvas and Fuller Picture)

(Short Version—The Basic Picture and Essential Vision)

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/664/bob-avakian-voting-will-not-be-enough-pt1-en.html

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

by Bob Avakian

| revcom.us

 

Part 1

THE DEMOCRATS CAN'T FIGHT TRUMP
THE WAY HE NEEDS TO BE FOUGHT

 

In the Statement by Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution, I spoke to this important point:

At this critical hour, every appropriate means of non-violent action must be utilized to remove this regime from power. And if, in spite of mass protest demanding the removal of the Trump/Pence regime, this regime remains in power when it is time for voting, then—without placing fundamental reliance on this—using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held). To be clear, this means not a “protest vote” for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump.

At the same time, however, I strongly emphasized that:

Simply relying on voting to oust this regime will almost certainly lead to very bad, even disastrous results. This is especially true given what this regime is already doing, and what Trump is saying, in relation to the election.

Trump’s Blatant Racism and Support for White Supremacist Violence

It has become increasingly clear that a pivotal part of Trump’s strategy, in relation to the election scheduled for November, and his overall approach to holding power, is to make more and more blatant appeals to racism by trumpeting a call for “law and order.” Trump portrays the ongoing protests against white supremacy and police terror as violent—and, as is typical with him, he flagrantly and grossly lies about the extent and causes of this violence. He paints a crude horror scene of you-know-who coming to pillage and rape—to violate the homes and the people, especially the women—in the suburbs, which in Trump’s vision are all white. This is a direct “echo” of the vile tactics used by white supremacists organizing mobs to lynch Black people during Jim Crow segregation, and of how Hitler stirred up hatred of and violence against Jews in NAZI Germany. Here again, facts do not matter to Trump and his fascist regime and its supporters—or, rather, facts are to be deliberately distorted, defied, and perverted in pursuit of literally murderous aims.

It has been shown (for example, in a study by Princeton University) that, overwhelmingly (more than 90 percent of the time), these protests against white supremacy and police terror have not been violent; and violence that has been committed by the protesters themselves has been relatively minor (some fires, looting, and trashing of a few buildings, in small, confined areas, often at or near police stations—nothing like the picture Trump paints of whole cities being burned down and destroyed). But, beyond that, most of the violence in connection with these protests has been perpetrated by Trump supporters—by police, who have repeatedly attacked the protests, and by armed fascist thugs (those Trump calls “Second Amendment people”). At least 20 protesters have been killed in this way. And Trump and his supporters have justified—and even glorified—this violence by white supremacists.

The Democrats, and the “mainstream media” generally in the same camp (CNN, MSNBC, the New York Times, and so on), have largely tried to shift the focus away from the protests and onto questions where they feel Trump is more vulnerable—in particular Trump’s truly reckless handling of the COVID pandemic, and things such as statements by Trump (or attributed to him) insulting U.S. soldiers. But Trump will continue his racist attacks on the protests against white supremacy and police violence, and his attempts to paint the Democrats as backers of violence and “carnage” by Black “thugs,” anarchists” and other “far leftists”; and this will have the effect of forcing the Democrats to devote significant attention to responding to this. And what has been the response of the Democrats? They have made the point that most of the protests have been peaceful, and they even say that Trump wants violence; yet, at the same time, the Democrats accept, to a large extent, the terms (and the trap) Trump has set. They have put a great deal of emphasis on denouncing violence by protesters, without giving the same emphasis to pointing out who is responsible for most of the violence connected to the protests—once again, overwhelmingly Trump supporters. The Democrats do not highlight the bitter irony that here are people protesting violence by the police and, even when (overwhelmingly) their protests are peaceful, they are subjected to yet more violence by the policeThe Democrats don’t emphasize yet another glaring irony: Here are Trump and his supporters denouncing and attacking people overwhelmingly carrying out peaceful protests against racist violence, while Trump defends monuments to “heroes” of the Confederacy, who waged a war, in which they killed hundreds of thousands of Union soldiers, in the attempt to preserve and extend slavery.

Strategies by Democrats That Flow From and Reinforce the Problem Itself

There are two basic causes for how the Democrats and their allies do—and do not—respond to what Trump is doing with his attacks on the protests and his contrived racist horror story of mobs of “those people” bent on violently attacking innocent (white) people and their property. First, the Democrats’ electoral strategy is focused on winning a relatively small number of “swing voters,” largely white people in the suburbs, in a small number of “swing states.” Flowing from this, and once again largely accepting the terms Trump has set, the Democrats see it as very important to reassure these voters that the Democrats, too, denounce—and, by implication, will use the power of the government to suppress—violence that supposedly is carried out by protesters and supposedly threatens these (white suburban) “swing voters.” Here it has to be said that, even on its own—very wrong and perverted—terms, this is likely a losing strategy. Not only is it the case that, by far, most of the violence connected with the protests has been carried out by Trump supporters (including the police), while overwhelmingly the protests themselves have been peaceful; but, even if the intent of everyone protesting were to remain completely peaceful, including when provoked and attacked by the police and armed “civilian” racists, there will still be violence—exactly because Trump and his supporters will continue to carry out, and to escalate, the violence, no matter what the protesters do.

It is true that, at this point, the vote in a few states essentially determines the outcome of presidential elections—so that, as was the case with Trump in the previous presidential election, someone can lose the popular vote and still become president. But, even given this reality, an electoral strategy that could work much better for the Democrats would be to take on Trump’s whole racist approach, directly and forcefully, and appeal to Black people and other people of color, and the large number of white people (especially, though not only, younger generations) who have shown that they are motivated by a definite desire for an end to social injustice, blatant inequality, and rampant police violence. That is a great “reservoir” that, theoretically, the Democrats could focus on appealing to.

But the Democrats themselves will not—cannot—really do this. And this gets to the deeper reasons why the Democrats approach things in the way they do. Although, in the present situation, where there has been a massive outpouring against police terror, the Democrats have felt the need to talk in general terms about “police reform,” as representatives of this system of capitalism-imperialism the Democrats are very firm about the fundamental need for the police to enforce the oppressive “law and order” of this system, with the racist violence that involves. So, the Democrats cannot carry out a campaign that actually unites with the strongly and widely held sentiment that this police violence must end. At the same time, as representatives of this system, and as upholders of its traditional institutions and “stability,” they do not want to win an election and head the government on the basis of appealing to and further arousing a force of tens of millions filled with passionate intensity to end police terror and white supremacy, which in fact are built into and required by this system. Better, from the Democrats’ point of view, to appeal to longings for “a return to calm and normalcy”—which are likely to resonate with many middle class suburbanites—even though there will not be any “calm and normalcy,” in large part because the fascist forces will not allow it.

Appealing to the “Grievances” of the Fascists Will Only Strengthen Fascism

Once again now, as was the case during and in the immediate aftermath of the 2016 election, there are “mainstream” voices (such as CNN’s Chris Cuomo, brother of the Democratic Governor of New York state, and Thomas Friedman, a prominent proponent of the “great benefits” of highly globalized capitalism) who argue that, in order to win this time, Biden and the Democrats should appeal to Trump’s “base” by recognizing their “grievances,” rather than humiliating them. But there are deep-seated bases for this fascism, and the minds of these fascists will not be changed by “being nice” to them or acting as if their “grievances” are “legitimate. As I (and others who have seriously studied this fascist phenomenon) have pointed out, the reality is that these “grievances” flow from resentment against any changes that even slightly undermine white supremacymale supremacy, xenophobia (hatred of foreigners), rabid American chauvinism, and the unrestrained plundering of the environment. And, even though, in the most fundamental terms, the Democrats represent this system of capitalism-imperialism, which embodies and enforces all of this, the Republican party, as it has become more and more blatantly fascist, has cultivated and organized its “base” through aggressively promoting, in extreme terms, this inequality, oppression, and plunder of the earth, along with a rejection of, and passionate “resentment” against, the scientific method and rational thinking. For example, there is this important analysis, by African-American theologian Hubert Locke, speaking particularly to the Christian fundamentalists that are the driving force of this fascism:

It is not happenstance that it is a movement that draws its strength and finds its support principally in the so-called heartland of the nation and especially in its southern precincts. This is the portion of the United States that has never been comfortable with post-WWII America. The brief period of normalcy after the war was followed within a decade by a pent-up and long overdue racial revolution that overturned centuries of culture and tradition, especially in the South. The disillusionment, two decades later, with an unpopular war in southeast Asia shook the foundations of traditional/conventional patriotism in American life; it was followed in the next decade by a sexual revolution that upset deeply entrenched views among this portion of the American populace about the subordinate place of women in society and the non-place of gay and lesbian persons in American life. These political and social and cultural defeats have now erupted into a pitched battle to turn back the clock on the last half-century and return America to its pre-war purity. It is not without significance that teaching creationism in the schools, for example, is such a prominent part of the religious right agenda. That was a battle the right lost in the mid-1920s but it is not one that the right ever acknowledged losing‑‑just as some die-hards have never acknowledged losing the Civil War. Consequently, the restoration the religious right seeks is one that would recapture a way of life that disappeared in this nation a half-century ago.1

This is what “Make America Great Again” actually means. The Democrats could not “compete” with this, without abandoning their own “identity” as the party that supposedly cares about social justice and addressing the environmental crisis.

All this, in turn, is tied in with the fundamental reasons why the Democrats will not call out the Trump/Pence regime for what it actually is—fascist—which, as I have emphasized, “is not just a matter of horrific policies but of qualitatively different form of rule, based on brutal repression and violation of what are supposed to be the most basic rights.”2 First of all, if you acknowledge that this regime is in fact fascist, then that raises very big questions about the whole system, and how it is that such a fascist regime could come to power—not through something like a military coup, but through the “normal channels” and institutional procedures of this system. And, along with that, if you recognize that this regime is fascist, then that has very big implications in terms of what must be done to deal with the dangers posed by this fascism—which, in reality, requires stepping outside of the “norms” of this system and mobilizing masses of people in determined, non-violent but sustained struggle in the streets to demand the ouster of this regime, as is being called for by RefuseFascism.org.

The Immediate Urgent Need for Mass Mobilization Against This Fascism

In sum, the Democrats, being who and what they are, will not and cannot deal with all this—neither the election, nor the larger situation in which this election is taking place and the profound stakes that are actually involved—in any way other than on the terms, and within the limits, established by this system, which has produced this fascism, and to a large degree on the terms set by the fascists themselves.

This can be seen in what the Democrats have done in their attempts to deal with the way in which the Trump/Pence fascist regime has—repeatedly, and in an escalating way—trampled on the “norms” of this system. Time and again, the Democrats have sought to deal with this by trying to utilize the very “norms” and institutions that this fascist regime is defying and tearing up, or bending to its fascist aims—the courts, congressional hearings and proceedings, and so on.Time and again, the Democrats have failed. Yet they stubbornly refuse to seek any means of opposing this regime other than by resorting to these “norms” and procedures. This is what they are doing, and will be strongly inclined to continue doing, even in the face of Trump’s increasing and intensifying moves to suppress votes in the upcoming election and his clearly indicated determination to have himself declared the winner in the election, or to remain in power regardless of the outcome of the election.

All this is why—even though, if it comes down to it, voting against Trump by voting for Biden will be necessary and important—it will very likely lead to disaster to rely on voting and just hope that the election will solve the problem.

And all this points to the very great likelihood that regardless of the actual outcome of this election (assuming it is actually held), if Trump declares himself the “winner” and refuses to leave, in the absence of truly massive mobilization demanding that the Trump/Pence regime must be removed, the Democrats will end up capitulating to Trump. The mass mobilization that is needed cannot be built “overnight,” in the aftermath of the election—and it cannot be built by confining things within the framework and limits insisted upon by the Democrats.

The truth—the truth about this country, and the truth about what is represented and is being implemented and enforced by the Trump/Pence regime—must be brought alive as a crucial, and immediately urgent, focus of the fight against injustice and oppression and against the fascism of this regime. This must be done without waiting for the election, but by taking action right now, and in an ongoing way, with masses of people—first in the thousands, growing into millions—in sustained mobilization around the unifying demand that this regime must go.

Waiting for November, and Relying on the Election, Will Likely Lead to Disaster:

We Need to Take to the Streets, and Stay in the Streets, Demanding Trump/Pence Out Now!

 


1. Reflections on Pacific School of Religion's Response to the Religious Right, by Dr. Hubert Locke. This is available at revcom.us.

In addition to my own writings and speeches on this question of fascism, which are available in BA’s Collected Works at revcom.us,* there have been a number of important studies of particularly the Christian fascist phenomenon—including in recent books by Katherine Stewart* and Kristin Kobes Du Mez*—which make clear that these fascists are firmly committed to their extremely oppressive, reactionary, and literally lunatic views and aims, and they will not be moved by attempts to appeal to their supposed “legitimate grievances.”

* For example, my recent article Patriarchy and Patriotism—Aggressive Male Supremacy and American Supremacy—The Danger and the Immediate Challenge draws from important insights in Kristin Kobes Du Mez’s book Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation; and my 2017 speech The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go! In The Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America, A Better World IS Possible cites important analysis in Katherine Stewart’s book The Good News Club: The Christian Right’s Stealth Assault on America’s Children.  [back]

2. From Statement By Bob Avakian, August 1, 2020, On The Immediate Critical Situation, The Urgent Need To Drive Out The Fascist Trump/Pence Regime, Voting In This Election, And The Fundamental Need For Revolution.  [back]

VOTING WILL NOT BE ENOUGH—
WE NEED TO TAKE TO THE STREETS,
AND STAY IN THE STREETS
DEMANDING TRUMP/PENCE OUT NOW!

by Bob Avakian

Part 1:
THE DEMOCRATS CAN'T FIGHT TRUMP
THE WAY HE NEEDS TO BE FOUGHT

Part 2:
TRUMP IS ALREADY STEALING THE ELECTION  AND THREATENING EVEN MORE VIOLENCE TO STAY IN POWER

Part 3:
TRUMP’S FASCISM—MORE BLATANT AND DANGEROUS EVERY DAY: HOW A DETERMINED FIGHT AND MASSIVE MOBILIZATION COULD DEFEAT THIS

(Long Version—The Larger Canvas and Fuller Picture)

(Short Version—The Basic Picture and Essential Vision)

 

 

 

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

Get a free email subscription to revcom.us:



 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/671/statement-initiated-by-faith-task-force-of-refuse-fascism-en.html

Statement Initiated by the Faith Task Force of Refuse Fascism:

Urgent! To Religious Communities and All People of Conscience
We Must Not Wait On An Election Being Stolen By A Fascist Regime

Protests Must Continue and Grow! Trump/Pence Out Now!
In The Name of Humanity Stop Terrorizing Immigrant Children!

| revcom.us

 

“Suffer the little children to come unto me for of such is the kingdom of Heaven.”
(Matthew 19:14, Bible)

“By the breath of children God sustains the world.”
(Talmud Bavli, Shabbat 119b)

“They are not from us: the ones who do not have mercy upon young children, nor do they respect the elderly”
(Prophet Muhammad, Qur’an)

People of faith, of all religions—and all people of conscience - of such did we see torn from mothers and fathers during the brutal years of slavery in this nation.

Of such did we see in this nation, during the genocidal separation of Native American children torn from their families to deprive them of their language and destroy their culture.

Of such did we see Japanese children and families torn from their homes and isolated in concentration camps across this nation.

Of such did we see when Jewish children and families were torn from their homes to be incinerated in the ovens of the Holocaust during the monstrous Nazi regime of Hitler’s Germany.

Of such do we now see in this nation with immigrant children crying desperately for their parents while locked in cages by the illegitimate, barbaric, Trump-Pence regime that America must expunge for crimes against humanity.

If a nation, a society is judged by the way it treats “the least of these” then how will we, churches, synagogues, mosques, etc., how will we be judged?
***

It is an atrocity that people are being used as pawns to get a wall built;

That children, akin to the era of slavery in America, have been ripped from the arms of their parents; and moreover are being held in detention centers or transported across the country with little hope of ever being reunited with their parents;

That Trump’s executive orders have mandated military concentration camps—indefinite incarceration in military prisons—for immigrants and refugees. Children. Adults. All families.

And to Trump, Pence, Barr, Pompeo, Devos, former Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the entire White House: Biblical scripture can be used by anyone to justify their twisted beliefs or deviant behaviors. Scripture was used by King George III loyalists. It was used to justify slavery in general and the Fugitive Slave Act specifically. There is little doubt that the kidnapping of more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria was similarly justified. It is patently clear that all laws are not just. It is an absolute atrocity that any political figure in twenty first century America could justify the evil evidenced by the irreparable harm being done to thousands of children in these United States of America. And, it is not okay to turn a blind eye and accept lame excuses of “justification” when fathers are shot in the back while their children look on!

We are at a critical moment. There is a rolling coup underway and the Trump/Pence regime is shredding every norm of democratic rule with their destruction of the election. In the hope of justice and peace, it is time for our religious communities, and all others, to join together in solidarity to oppose and stop the growing list of atrocities of the Trump/Pence regime and take immediate, positive action to protect humanity!

Protests Must Continue and Grow! Turn Up The Heat - Stay In The Streets! This Nightmare Must End! The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!

 

Initiated by: Faith Task Force of Refuse Fascism - I Am My Brother’s Keeper - The Trump Pence Regime Must Go! In The Name of Humanity Stop Terrorizing Immigrant Children!

Some of the initial religious-affiliated signatories (affiliations for identification purposes only):

Sara Atkins, Director of Advocacy, Torah Trumps Hate; Rev. Bob Bossie, SCJ, Roman Catholic Priest; Isabel Cardenas, American-Salvadoran Citizen; Bishop Gregg L. Greer, President of Freedom First International; Ernestine Henning, Supervisor (ret.), AME Church; Rabbi Burt Jacobson, Founder, Kehilla Community Synagogue; Russ Jennings, Host, Love in a Dangerous Time; Rev. Dr. Jeffrey Kuan, President, Claremont School of Theology; Elly Levy, Immigrant Rights Attorney and Activist; Sara MacDonald, Episcopal Church; Rev. Cecil “Chip” Murray, Former Pastor of First African Methodist Episcopal Church of Los Angeles; Reverend Drew David Murray, Los Angeles; Rev. Karen Nelson, United Methodist Church, Portland, Oregon; Robert Packenham, Unitarian Universalist of San Francisco; Rich Procida, Bible Study For Progressives; Merilie Robertson, Presbyterian Elder, Pasadena, CA; Stephen Rohde, Interfaith Leader and Civil Rights Activist; Ramona Tolliver, Member, Ward AME Church; Anna Viggiano, Religious Education, Newman Center, Hawai’i; Rev. Gary Bernard Williams, Pastor of Saint Mark UMC LA; Rev. Frank Wulf, Echo Park United Methodist Church, LA

 

To add your name to this statement, go here.

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/676/to-the-bitter-end-trump-fights-for-scorched-earth-regulations-en.html

To the Bitter End, Trump Fights for "Scorched Earth" Regulations

| revcom.us

 

From a reader:

In four years, Trump and his regime have done much to destroy nature and the environment. Now, even as he proclaims—despite all evidence—that he won the election and is on the path to a second term, his administration is defying rules and rejecting science in order to push through regulations against the environment, complete the sale of access to some of the last wild areas in the U.S., threaten species, and pump more planet-heating greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

The vice president of the National Audubon Society called Trump’s actions “a real scorched-earth effort.” The Midnight Watch Project of the NYU School of Law is tracking 35 actions where the Trump regime is pushing to finalize very destructive environmental regulations in its final days. Regulations once formally approved are not easily undone; the process can take years.

While it is not unusual for a president to push through last-minute regulations, the methods that Trump is using break with previous legal norms. For example, Trump and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) want to approve leases for drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), one of the last remaining wild areas in the United States. To complete the sale before January 20, the government would have to approve the 30-day notice of sale announcement immediately after a comment period expires in December, without time to review comments, a process that normally takes months. That would put the lease sale just days before the inauguration. After a sale, there is another process to formally approve it, which again normally takes months to complete. To deny Biden an opportunity to disapprove the leases, the BLM could immediately approve them. All of this goes against the spirit, if not the letter, of the law and could be challenged in courts. However, those courts are significantly packed with Trump-appointed judges who are hostile to environmental rules.

In addition to the ANWR lease, here are some of the other attacks that Trump and his regime are trying to ram through:

One regulation pending final approval would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from utilizing important studies that include personal health information. These studies are crucial to evaluating public health risks from chemicals. Trump uses the excuse that all underlying data must be public for research to be used to shape policy. In this case, personal health information would be made public, a violation of privacy, protected by law. There is no medical or scientific reason for this requirement. It is being demanded to eliminate evidence that points to the need to restrict people’s exposure to chemicals. More than 600,000 scientists and others wrote to the EPA opposing the change. The head of the Scientific Advisory Office at the EPA filed a formal complaint against this rule, writing, “This will compromise the scientific integrity of our scientists, the validity of our rulemaking, and possibly the health of the American People.”

Trump has removed the person in charge of producing the main U.S. report on climate change, the National Climate Assessment, replacing him with David Legates, a climate-change denier who says that burning more fossil fuels benefits humanity. A Biden administration could replace Legates. However, while he remains, Legates plans to appoint and contract with other climate deniers, who Biden would not be able to fire, to produce the report.

The Department of the Interior plans to open another Alaska preserve to drilling and to auction off oil and gas rights to more than 383,000 acres of federal land in other states, including public lands around New Mexico’s Chaco Canyon National Historical Park.

Other regulations that Trump is attempting to finalize include removing rules that punish companies for killing migrating birds; changing air quality standards; changing the Safe Drinking Water Act to slow down replacement of lead pipes, and allowing chemicals in the water that cause reproductive, developmental, liver, and kidney damage and have been linked to cancer; weakening the Endangered Species Act; rolling back standards for new power plants, and much more.

Trump and the Republican Party as a whole reject the well-established FACT that human society and much of the natural world is threatened by global heating due to the burning of fossil fuels. They view any attempt to protect the environment as a challenge to their “God-given right” to dominate nature, rape the planet for their wealth and power, and destroy the climate so America can be number one.

These regulations are a declaration that, even if Trump exits office, he will continue to be on a mission to destroy the natural world, even beyond the “normal” destruction of capitalism-imperialism, as well as fight to bring forward a fascist regime overall. He is backed by powerful forces in Congress, the courts, the military, and throughout the government, including in departments dedicated to science and protecting the environment, together with a rabid social base. As major damage to biological life on Earth looms, they will do everything they can to continue with their relentless assault on the planet.

All those who value the air, the water, nature, and people must be prepared to resist.

 


The USS Connecticut breaks through the ice-covered surface of the Beaufort Sea during a submarine exercise in March 2018. Trump plans to open federal waters of the Beaufort Sea for fossil fuel drilling. Photo: Micheal H. Lee/U.S. Navy

The Destruction of the Planet by Capitalism-Imperialism, by Bob Avakian, an excerpt

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
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Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/670/planet-cannot-survive-four-more-years-of-trump-part-1-en.html

| revcom.us

 

The Planet Cannot Survive Four More Years of Trump!

Part 1: The Great Barrier Reef and the Amazon


Bleached coral, the Great Barrier Reef

 

Editors' Note: We received the following from a reader—the first in a series on the destruction of the planet's ecosystems that has been brought to new levels of devastation and danger under the Trump/Pence regime.

Whole regions of the planet—ecosystems—are on the verge of collapse as a result of climate change driven by emissions of fossil fuels and other forms of ecological destruction due to the capitalist-imperialist system.

An ecosystem is an interdependent region that includes all the living organisms in an area (from bacteria to humans), as well as the physical environment. Taking out individual species and groups of species can unravel ecosystems, some of which have existed in relative balance for thousands or even millions of years.

Ecosystems impact each other and the entire global system. Collapses can cascade like dominoes. We are confronted not only with the collapse of whole ecosystems but the cascading impact on Earth’s global ecosystem and the transformation to a different kind of planet that could even threaten human existence.

Several recent studies have found that ecosystem collapse could happen sooner than scientists had previously estimated. The studies argue that once the loss of a large ecosystem, such as the Amazon, reaches a certain level, collapse may happen even more quickly than in a small system. John Dearing, who led one of the recent studies, said: “The messages here are stark. We need to prepare for changes in our planet’s ecosystems that are faster than we previously envisaged.”

Capitalism has ravaged and destroyed the environment since its beginnings, and in recent decades this has threatened the natural underpinnings of human society. Trump has thrown gasoline on an already raging fire. He has pulled out of the Paris climate accord. He dismisses the science of global warming. He is expanding extraction of fossil fuels, eliminating restrictions on coal power plants and automobile emissions, mocking green alternatives to fossil fuels, auctioning off pristine wilderness to oil companies, and much more. And all of this has global impact.

This series will look at parts of the world that are under imminent threat.

 


1. Great Barrier Reef


A variety of corals form an outcrop on Flynn Reef, part of the Great Barrier Reef near Cairns, Queensland, Australia, 2010. Photo: Toby Hudson (Wikimedia Commons)


Dead staghorn coral killed by bleaching on the northern Great Barrier Reef, November 2016. Photo: Greg Torda, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies/Creative Commons

The Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest single structure made of living organisms. It has one of the richest diversities of species on the entire planet with 1,500 species of fish, 400 species of coral, 4,000 species of mollusks, and 240 species of birds.

In 2020, for the third time in the last five years, the Great Barrier Reef has been damaged by coral bleaching. Rising ocean temperatures cause vibrant reefs to become ghostly skeletons. It can take years or decades for a coral to recover from a single bleaching, and repeated bleaching often kills reefs. The frequency of coral bleaching has increased dramatically over the last 40 years.


Map of the Great Barrier Reef. Rice University, Coral Reefs Blog.

About 50 percent of all corals that make up the Great Barrier Reef are dead. A single major bleaching in 2016 killed 33 percent of corals. The bleaching in 2020 was significant because for the first time the southern reef, where waters are cooler, was damaged. The full extent of loss from this recent bleaching will not be known until scientists explore the area next year.

“We are all in shock really at how quick this has happened. Three severe bleaching events in five years is not something we anticipated happening until the middle of the century,” said Terry Hughes, director of the ARC Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University.

Other coral reefs are also in danger of imminent collapse. The United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that a 1.5 degree Celsius rise (over pre-industrial levels) in global temperatures will kill 90 percent of the world’s coral. We are currently at 1 degree and, at current rates, we will reach 1.5 degree within a decade. Even if all burning of fossil fuels stopped today, the ocean would continue to warm for 30-40 years.

Coral reef ecosystems are foundational to the life and health of ocean ecosystems. In his important book The Uninhabitable Earth, author David Wallace-Wells speaks to the importance of the coral reefs to oceans as a whole: “Reefs support as much as a quarter of all marine life, and provide food and income for half a billion people.” (p. 96)

 


2. Amazon Rainforest


Amazon rainforest


Endangered species of tree frog (Agalychnis hulli) from Reserva Ecológica Tamandua, Ecuador. One of many unique species in the Amazon. Photo: Andreas Kay Flikr/Creative Commons

The Amazon rainforest is often called the lungs of the planet because it puts so much oxygen into the atmosphere. It is one of the most biologically diverse regions of the world, home to one in ten known species of plants and animals. It contains one-fifth of Earth’s supply of fresh water. It also absorbs about five percent of the carbon dioxide that is emitted annually from the burning of fossil fuels.

Since 1970, more than one-fifth of the land in the Amazon has been lost, much of it by fires deliberately set to clear ground for ranching and gold mining. The burning of the Amazon has been enabled by Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro (a close ally of Trump). International financial institutions, such as BlackRock, are major investors involved in this.


Children flee a fire in the Amazon.


Satellite view of Amazon rainforest in December 2019. By 2020 between 15 and 17 percent of the Amazon rainforest was destoyed by fires. More than 20% of the rainforest has been clearcut. If the amount of cleared forest land reaches 25%, there may not be enough trees cycling moisture through the rainforest to keep it alive

In 2019, fires in the Amazon sparked international outrage. The 2020 fires have been even larger. In September, satellites recorded a 61 percent rise compared with the same month in 2019.

Reduction in the size of the land in the Amazon threatens the very existence of the entire rainforest. Some researchers estimate that with continued global warming (which is changing the climate required by the forests) and continued fires, we could soon reach a point where the destruction cannot be stopped.

The results of a collapse of the Amazon rainforest would be horrific. Tens of thousands of species would become extinct, weather patterns over much of South America would change. Thirty million people may be forced to migrate, including three million indigenous people. And this will greatly accelerate the process of climate change globally as tens of billions of tons of carbon held in the rainforest would be released into the atmosphere.

 


Trump’s Threat to the Planet

The capitalist-imperialist system cares nothing for the rich diversity of life on the planet, the complex web of systems that make up the natural world. If it cannot turn it into money and use it to dominate its rivals it has no value. To cite a recent example, a recent United Nations reportGlobal Biodiversity Outlook 5, found that of 20 biodiversity targets set by world leaders in Aichi, Japan, 10 years ago, not a single one has been met!

The Trump/Pence regime represents an immediate and urgent threat. As revcom.us has said, “If fascism fully takes hold in the most powerful country in the world, this could lead to a catastrophe from which humanity may not be able to recover.” A second Trump presidency would pour even more gasoline on a planet already "on fire" and headed toward catastrophe due to global climate change and its destructive impacts.

We must stop this catastrophe. We must be in the streets in sufficient numbers to force the Trump/Pence regime from office and prevent it from consolidating fascism. And we need to overthrow the capitalist-imperialist system and put in place a system of socialism moving onto communism that is based on, among other things, “Protecting, preserving, and enhancing the ecosystems and biodiversity of the planet for current and future generations.” (from the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by Bob Avakian)

Part 2 of this series will look at the Arctic and boreal forests.

 

Follow: @TheRevcoms
Read: www.revcom.us
Watch: youtube.com/TheRevComs

 

Together, WE passed $40,000 in revcom's Winter fundraising campaign to “Transform Revcom.us’ Web Technology and Presence”!

Reaching this goal is a real achievement and a victory for the people of the world, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedicated efforts of many people working creatively and collectively to meet this pressing need: those who donated whether large or small contributions, who fundraised, who spread the campaign, who sent statements, who raised comments, questions, criticisms or suggestions – and of course those who worked so hard on modernizing and upgrading our web technology and presence. It all made a difference!

The Ongoing Need for Sustainers

During this four month fund drive, Revcom.us continued to incur thousands of dollars of costs each month for our office, maintaining our existing site and other expenses. But thanks to our existing monthly sustainers we were able to meet these expenses and use all the funds raised in the drive to transform the website.

So we encourage all our donors and those who’ve not yet donated to become monthly sustainers at whatever level you can afford.

Remember, humanity’s fate truly hinges on millions taking up the revolutionary science, strategy, and new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian which they can find at revcom.us.

You’ve read this article and now you need to be part of making sure revcom.us is able to make an urgently needed leap and transformation.

 

Get a free email subscription to revcom.us:



 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/671/planet-cannot-survive-four-more-years-of-trump-part-2-arctic-en.html

| revcom.us

 

The Planet Cannot Survive Four More Years of Trump!

Part 2: The Arctic:
Land of (Melting) Ice and Fire


Starving polar bear (Photo: Wikimedia commons)

 

Editors’ Note: We received the following from a reader—the second in a series on the destruction of the planet’s ecosystems that has been brought to new levels of devastation and danger under the Trump/Pence regime.

Update, November 18—The Trump/Pence regime is breaking further norms and precedents in its rush to sell oil drilling rights in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), in the final weeks before it is supposed to leave office. ANWR is one of the last extended areas of wilderness in the U.S. and home to many unique and threatened species. On November 17, the Trump administration announced “a call for nominations” for drilling in the pristine region. This gives companies 30 days to identify the land that they want to drill and for comments on the sale. Normally, such a period would be followed by several months during which the government would review the proposals and comments. But Trump’s Department of the Interior is expected to move immediately to give a 30-day announcement of the sale and hold the sale just a few days before they are scheduled to leave office. After the sale takes place, it will be much more difficult for a new government to reverse. 

This article, written in August when the final environmental reports on drilling in ANWR were pushed through, outlines the environmental importance of the region, the grave threats posed by drilling, and the regime’s threat to the environment globally. The ramming through of the sale of these oil leases points to the danger this regime causes every day it remains in office. Trump/Pence Out Now!

***

Capitalism has ravaged and destroyed the planet’s environment since its beginnings, and, in recent decades, this has threatened the natural underpinnings of human society. Whole regions of the planet—ecosystems—are on the verge of collapse as a result of climate change driven by emissions of fossil fuels and other forms of ecological destruction.

Trump has thrown gasoline on an already raging fire and greatly accelerated this process, with perhaps devastating implications for the planet and humanity if he is reelected and consolidates his fascist regime.

This series looks at parts of the world that are under imminent threat. Part 1 looked at the Great Barrier Reef and the Amazon rainforest. Part 2 examines the Arctic.


The Arctic in the winter. Photo: Wikimedia commons

The Arctic is like no other area on Earth. Its diverse landscapes range from sea ice to coastal wetlands, wide rivers, and the sea itself. The temperature plunges to an average of -40° F in winter.

Cold, month-long nights, frozen land and ice, would seem to make it an unwelcome place for life. Yet the Arctic is teeming with different organisms that have evolved adaptations to live in these extreme conditions. Some fish have evolved a protein to keep their blood from freezing. Seals, walruses, whales, and other animals have blubber to insulate them from the cold. Indigenous peoples have forged a way of life that can thrive and sustain in this harsh climate.

The planet is warming but the Arctic is heating up twice as fast as the global average. This year, a Siberian town reached 100° F, the highest temperature ever recorded in the Arctic. Projections indicate that if greenhouse gas emissions continue at the current rate, by 2050 temperatures in Greenland will be higher than they have been in 125,000 years.

The Greenland ice sheet is a body of ice 1,800 miles long and 1,100 miles wide. In recent years it has lost massive amounts of ice. Ian Howat, author of one study, suggests that the ice sheet has passed what scientists call a tipping point: “The ice sheet is now in this new dynamic state, where even if we went back to a climate that was more like what we had 20 or 30 years ago, we would still be pretty quickly losing mass.”


This aerial photograph shows fast-moving meltwater rivers flowing across the Greenland Ice Sheet, which has lost massive amounts of ice in recent years. (Photo: NASA)

The melting of the Greenland ice sheet would take place over many years, even past the current century. Passing a tipping point would mean that sea level rises of 24 feet, enough to put London, Manhattan, Miami, Mumbai, and many other coastal cities under water, forcing the migration of hundreds of millions, would be locked in place.

In addition to ice sheets, there is sea ice which floats on top of the ocean, and which once covered vast stretches of Arctic ocean year-round. Rising temperatures also increase seasonal sea ice melts. The amount of sea ice remaining at the end of summer has dropped 40 percent in the last three decades. If current trends continue, there will be no sea ice remaining in the summer by 2035.

Melting creates three issues for the Arctic region and for the planet’s climate. All three create dangerous feedback loops.

First, because sea ice reflects 90 percent of the light that falls on it while water reflects much less, the melting sea ice contributes to the warming of the planet—and that makes the ice melt that much faster. David Wallace-Wells writes in his book, The Uninhabitable Earth, that this dynamic alone could contribute as much carbon to the air as the last 25 years of greenhouse gas emissions.

Second, huge amounts of carbon and methane have been locked beneath Arctic permafrost for thousands of years. As the permafrost thaws, it releases these greenhouse gases. It is not known how rapidly this will take place. Several studies this year have predicted a much more rapid melting of permafrost than previously predicted. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration writes that by 2100, the Arctic will have released greenhouse gases equivalent to half of the carbon emitted by humanity since industrialization began.

Third, for the last two years huge fires have burned across the Arctic. In just two Eastern provinces of Siberia, 34.6 million acres burned, 25 times the total area burned by all the fires in California this year. While fires have always taken place in the Arctic, the recent fires represent a transformational shift, burning longer and farther north.

Credit: NASA

More than 50 percent of this year’s fires were on peatlands, carbon-rich soils that accumulate from organic matter over thousands of years. Warmer weather melts the ice that covered it year-round, and longer summers dry it out. A new phenomenon called “zombie fires” is emerging. Fires lay smoldering beneath the ice and snow all winter and then emerge, zombie-like, in the spring. They can burn for years.

The Arctic fires are putting huge amounts of climate-warming gases into the atmosphere. In June of 2020, Arctic fires released more carbon into the atmosphere than the country of Norway did in an entire year.

The Arctic, like all ecosystems, is a complex web with every species, including people, interacting with other species and the physical environment. It is not clear where all this will lead. What is clear is that many species are vulnerable and that little is being done to protect them. (See sidebar: Threatened Species in the Arctic.)

The Arctic evolved over millions of years. Now, as a result of a few decades of human activity, it is threatened with collapse; many species may be lost forever. One of the last areas relatively untouched by human activity spoiled, landscapes of pristine beauty never seen again.

What happens in the Arctic will reverberate in other ecosystems and disrupt human activity. Rising seas can drown whole cities and cover islands, giving rise to perhaps hundreds of millions of climate refugees. Sixty percent of fish sold in the U.S. are from the Arctic. Changing ocean currents will have unpredictable consequences. Our children will face a very different world. For our grandchildren there is a question of survival.


"Not fit caretakers of the earth" — clip from Revolution: Why It's Necessary, Why It's Possible, What It's All About, a film of a talk by Bob Avakian given in 2003.


Threatened Species in the Arctic


Polar bear and cub, Norway, 2015. Photo: AWeith, Wikimedia Commons.

Polar bears: As sea ice melts the bears have less area to hunt seals, without which they can starve to death. Those that do survive give birth to smaller offspring. At a certain point—perhaps in the near future—most of the offspring won’t survive. 

Walrus: These huge mammals hunt for food on the sea floor. In between hunts, they rest on sea ice. As sea ice disappears, the walrus have few places to rest. Two-thirds of Pacific Walrus go to a single beach. Some have been filmed climbing up cliffs and falling to their deaths (see video).

Arctic fox. Photo: Wikimedia commons

Arctic Fox: Its coat changes from white in the winter to brown in the summer for camouflage. It faces new competition from the red fox that has migrated north due to warmer weather and because its main food source, lemmings, are threatened by loss of snow to burrow into.

The Sea Butterfly, a tiny ocean snail with wing-like structures, is a key food source for much marine life. It is threatened by ocean acidification linked to climate change and could disappear in the next few decades. (Photo: NOAA)

Sea Butterfly: This elegant-looking tiny marine snail has developed wing-like structures to propel itself. It is also called the potato chip of the sea because of its importance as a food source for a range of species. Its primary threat is ocean acidification, caused by global warming, that prevents its shell from forming. These organisms will become extinct in the next few decades if current emission trends continue. The decline of the Sea Butterfly will have a dramatic effect in the Arctic seas and beyond.

 

Trump and the Arctic

The majority of the environmental devastation in the Arctic is the direct result of climate change caused by the burning of fossil fuels. This did not begin with Trump; it is the result of a system of capitalism-imperialism, its cutthroat competition, and its quest for profit. But Trump is greatly accelerating the process.

Trump has denied the science of climate change, pulled out of the Paris climate accord, promoted and deregulated coal power plants, repealed rules that would have reduced automobile emissions, cut regulations on methane, approved contested pipelines, and expanded drilling coal mining and fracking.


Tongass National Forest, 2004, Alaska. Wikimedia Commons.


A recent photo of the Tongass National Forest. The destruction has begun.

In addition:

  • Trump has initiated at least six projects on federal lands in Alaska that would further destabilize the region’s environment. For example, Trump is on the verge of selling oil leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge that would endanger species such as polar bears and the Porcupine caribou, and disrupt the lives of the Gwich’in people. In 2019, Trump applied to change rules that prevented building roads and logging in the Tongass National Forest. This would remove protections for 165,000 old-growth and 20,000 young-growth acres and is being opposed by the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian people.
  • The Trump administration has weakened the Endangered Species Act that has been in place since 1973. For example, they are working to eliminate what is called the “blanket rule,” which mandates that species be protected that are threatened but not yet declared “endangered.”

Four more years of Trump’s science-denying, nature-destroying, fossil-fuel-emitting fascist regime will be a nightmare for the planet. We must use all available nonviolent means to prevent Trump/Pence from consolidating fascism. AND, to save the planet, we need to overthrow the capitalist-imperialist system and put in place a system of socialism moving on to communism that is based on, among other things, “Protecting, preserving, and enhancing the ecosystems and biodiversity of the planet for current and future generations.” (From the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by Bob Avakian.)

“Cold War” in the Arctic


U.S. Marines participating in Arctic Edge 2020, the largest joint military exercise in Alaska this year. (Photo: U.S. Marine Corps)

As the sea ice melts, the United States and other capitalist-imperialist powers are focused not on protecting the ecosystem but on extracting strategic resources (mainly oil), defending strategic sea routes, and developing a military presence to protect their interests.

In 2019, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said it was “America’s moment to stand up as an Arctic nation.” Pompeo does not give a damn about protecting the environment. That same year, he WELCOMED the melting of sea ice because it opens opportunities for trade. What worries Pompeo is that Russia is pushing its interests in the Arctic, including developing a route that Putin hopes can replace the Suez Canal, building massive oil wells, and increasing Russia’s military presence.

After Pompeo’s declaration, the U.S. deployed destroyers off Russia’s northern coast and announced that it would deploy 100 F-22 and F-35 fifth-generation fighter jets to Alaska, where U.S. aircraft intercepted Russian warplanes at least a dozen times this year. U.S. and Russian submarines are under the ice in numbers not seen since the Cold War.

Bob Avakian summed this up perfectly in a talk: “This system and those who rule over it ... care nothing for the rich diversity of the earth and its species, for the treasures this contains, except when and where they can turn this into profit for themselves... These people are not fit to be the caretakers of the earth.”

Next Week—Part 3: Oceans

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/672/planet-cannot-survive-four-more-years-of-trump-part-3-oceans-en.html

| revcom.us

 

The Planet Cannot Survive Four More Years of Trump!

Part 3: Oceans —
Dead Zones, Garbage Patches and Heat Waves


Part of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (Photo: Wikimedia commons)

 

Editors’ Note: We received the following from a reader—the third and final in a series on the destruction of the planet’s ecosystems that has been brought to new levels of devastation and danger under the Trump/Pence regime.

Parts I and II can be found here and here. It is no exaggeration to say that if the Trump/Pence regime stays in power for four more years, the damage they inflict on the planet and its ecosystems, especially in accelerating global warming, and to the continuing survival of large sections of humanity, may well be irreparable.


The Pacific Ocean. Photo: Wikimedia commons

Life on the planet is believed to have begun in the oceans more than four billion years ago. Today, oceans contain somewhere between 500,000 and 10 million species, from whales to bacteria, most of it is unknown to science. Oceans absorb carbon dioxide, cushioning the planet against global warming and absorb more heat than land. Ocean currents help maintain the seasons.

For humanity, oceans are a source of incredible beauty, wonder, and knowledge. They provide human society with one-fifth of the protein we eat (and more in many areas).

Climate Change

The ocean as we know it today is dying. Global warming is responsible for the acceleration and increasingly severe destruction of the oceans. For example:

  • In 2006, a large marine heat wave (called “the blob”) covered a large part of the Pacific Ocean, raising ocean temperatures by five degrees and lasting two years. This ocean heat wave had a devastating impact on marine life such as sea lions and salmon. A similar “blob” formed in 2014-2016 and again in 2019. The formation of such large and long-lasting heat waves is now considered 100 times more likely than just a few decades ago. If fossil fuels continue to burn at the current rate and temperatures rise by five degrees (which is within the range of scientists’ current projections), some parts of the ocean may be in a continuous state of extreme heat, with disastrous consequences for the species that live there.

  • In 2014-16 and again in 2019, the ocean waters off the West Coast were hit with hotter-than-usual temperatures in a marine heat wave that came to be known as "the Blob." The 2014-16 heat wave was the largest marine heat wave since NOAA satellites started keeping track in 1981. The 2019 marine heat wave was the second-largest. (NOAA Coral Reef Watch)

  • A study recently published in the journal Nature Climate Change indicates that oceans are becoming more stratified, with warm water at the top, cooler waters below, and less mixing. According to climate scientist Michael Mann, one of the study’s authors, this poses a number of significant problems: 1) the oceans are unable to absorb as much heat as in the past, leading to more warming for the planet as a whole; 2) the increased stratification contributes to the intensity of tropical storms. Mann’s study found that this is happening much more quickly than previously thought.

  • Warmer oceans contribute to the intensity of tropical storms, an event happening much more quickly than previously thought. Here the aftermath of 2015 Cyclone Pam, which destroyed 90 percent of the buildings in the nation of Vanatu. (Photo: AP)

  • The ocean is absorbing more carbon dioxide from the air, making it more acidic. This makes it harder for corals, oysters, mussels, and other organisms to build their shells. Current estimates are that 90 percent of coral reefs, which comprise some of the richest areas of marine life on the planet, will be dead by the middle of this century.

  • 2010: a variety of corals from a part of the Great Barrier Reef near Cairns, Queensland, Australia. Photo: Toby Hudson (Wikimedia Commons)


    2016: dead staghorn coral killed by bleaching on the northern Great Barrier Reef. Photo: Greg Torda, ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies/Creative Commons

  • Disruption of ocean temperatures leads to a disruption of the “ocean conveyor belt,” which regulates the planet’s climate. Any disruption of this current could lead to massive changes in the pl