The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Democrats and Republicans Do What the Bosses Want

Oct 31, 2016

The main thing on people’s minds in this election cycle is jobs.

So where do Clinton and Trump stand on these issues?

Hillary Clinton argues that the Obama administration has done pretty well at overcoming the 2008 recession, which she said was the worst in this country since the Great Depression.

Reality is a little different. It shows that in the last eight years, millions of workers who lost jobs and found new ones got lower-paying jobs. Millions who have given up looking for work don’t count in the most common unemployment figures given. And work force participation is at its lowest point in 38 years, with millions of adults not in the work force.

But Clinton is willing to admit the economy hasn’t been good for everyone. In the first debate, she said, “We want to build an economy that works for everyone, not just for those at the top.”

Yet she voted for the bank bailouts that worked only for those at the top. Trillions of dollars went to the very ones who caused the recession–at the expense of everyone else.

She certainly doesn’t see that policy as a mistake. And that is a clue to where a Clinton administration would be going.

Trump said that he had two ways he would improve the economy for the population. First, he said in the debates, “I’ll reduce taxes tremendously from 35% to 15%–that’s going to be a job creator like we haven’t seen since Ronald Reagan.”

This policy of “trickle-down” wealth has, since Reagan’s time, only trickled up. Only wealthy people have benefitted from reduction after reduction of their taxes. The share of wealth going to the top one percent has continued to grow. But the number of decent-paying jobs continues to decline.

Trump also said, “... we have to stop these countries from stealing our companies and our jobs.”

The remark is truly cynical. Does Trump really think no one has heard about what he has done with manufacturing overseas? Trump shirts have been made in Bangladesh, Honduras, Vietnam. Trump suits have been made in Indonesia, India, Mexico. Trump ties and eyeglasses come from China.

But it’s what Trump and all the other bosses do in the U.S. that has the worst impact on U.S. workers. There is no trickle down, only wages going down. His casinos and hotels employed people mostly at minimum wage. When some of them tried to unionize, Trump used the bankruptcy courts to shut down the properties, laying off thousands and giving himself more tax breaks.

It’s policies like all of these, and the drive of the bosses to make one person do the work of two, that has driven the economy for most people into the ground.

Trump and Clinton propose solutions for bosses, not for working people.