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
Feb 15, 2010
Unemployment won’t get back down to 6% until 2015. And it won’t reach its pre-recession level of 5% until 2020. These are among the projections contained in the new President’s Economic Report.
2015? 2020? We can’t wait that long! The situation is truly catastrophic today – and has been for years. When the economy crashed into recession in December of 2007, with unemployment officially listed then at 5%, an important part of the working class was already being stalked by poverty.
So don’t tell us we have to wait – not until 2015, not until 2012, not at all.
The truly amazing item contained in this report is the statement that the economy has now entered into a “recovery,” and that growth will pick up this year and next.
To put it bluntly, the president’s economic advisers are expecting another “jobless recovery” – one during which profits balloon, executive compensation skyrockets, and dividends and bankers’ interest produce hundreds of billions of dollars. That kind of recovery. But no jobs – not enough to make up for what has been lost, not enough to keep up with young people entering the work force. Not nearly enough to stop the growing impoverishment of the laboring population.
Facing a raging forest fire, you bring out the emergency brigade, not a little bucket of water. Well, we are facing a truly catastrophic situation today, a real emergency. And it requires emergency steps, ones that this government has the resources to take.
As the very first step, companies must be forbidden to lay off any more workers. States, cities, counties and boards of education, too. No employer should be allowed to worsen the situation.
As a second step, all those people thrown out of their jobs, or cut off from the possibility to get one, must be provided with the means to survive until a job is made available. If the government, under both Democrats and Republicans, can throw trillions of dollars into the pockets of the bankers, it can provide billions for the survival of the population.
As a third step, all those too old, too sick or otherwise unable to work must be supported at an adequate level. This government has thrown away trillions supporting parasites who contribute absolutely nothing to the well-being of society – bankers, corporate executives. The elderly, the sick, the infirm are not parasites. They are part of the laboring population.
Then, the available work must be divided up among all those who want to work – with no loss in pay.
Of course, this would cut into corporate profits. So what? It would make the economy run again, serving the needs of the population.
Of course, the bankers who suck money out of every productive workplace would scream. So what? In fact, the vampire grasp of the bankers on society’s life blood has to be cut off.
The working population itself, situated in the very midst of the productive economy, has the means to determine what needs to be produced and how goods and services should be distributed.
Of course, neither Republicans nor Democrats would propose, much less carry out such a program, threatening as it would be to the bankers, the executives, the other parasites they serve. But the working population, when it begins to fight to protect itself from this emergency situation, could impose it.