Socialist Workers Party Statement

Demand jobs program to put millions back to work!

July 13, 2020

 Alyson Kennedy, Socialist Workers Party candidate for president, issued the following statement July 1. Malcolm Jarrett is the party’s candidate for vice president.

Workers today confront rising competition among our class for jobs amid massive unemployment, a result of the capitalist rulers’ lockdowns that shuttered much of production and trade. Now as they move to “reopen” the capitalist economy, the bosses are pushing to make us work longer, harder and for less pay as they fight to return to profitability. Workers’ interests can only be defended by fighting for jobs as well as better wages and conditions, to unify the working class. 

Workers are taking initiatives to stand up to the bosses, gaining confidence that they can involve co-workers and win solidarity. The SWP campaign helps get out the truth about these struggles.

Thousands of Machinists union members in Maine have gone out on strike against take-it-or-else concession demands by the bosses at the Bath Iron Works shipyard. I’ve visited their picket lines to bring solidarity and they are lively and determined. The strikers are standing up to bosses’ efforts to pit younger and older workers against each other. They definitely know that the bosses lie whenever they say, “We’re all in this together.” Join in building solidarity with their strike! 

Contrary to what the bosses tell us, the only “we” that is real is “we” fellow workers here and around the world, alongside our allies among farmers and other exploited producers. The bosses work hard to try and set workers against each other, to take our eyes off our common enemy — them and their capitalist system — to keep us divided and weaken our struggles. 

The SWP candidates campaign for a fighting action program to combat the effects of the biggest division workers face — between those of us with jobs and those without. The party urges workers to fight for a government-funded public works program to put millions back to work at union-scale pay, to build the houses, hospitals and schools we need, to repair decaying infrastructure, and to begin to clean up the land, air and waters contaminated by the bosses’ profit-driven plunder of the environment. 

Only at work can the working class join together to fight the bosses’ efforts to load the crisis of their system out on our backs. Along that road we learn through common action to rely only on our own fighting capacities, deepen our self-confidence and widen our view of ourselves and the world. This is the opposite of the course offered by Democratic and Republican parties, which say the best we can do is to turn our future over to the “lesser-evil” of the bosses’ two political parties. 

As the class struggle sharpens, workers will rise up and fight in their millions to wrest control of production out of the clutches of the bosses. Their sole motivation is profits, ours is radically different. We will reorganize production to ensure working conditions are safe. We will decide how workers are organized and what goods are produced based on the broad social needs of all the toilers as part of a thought-out national plan. 

As workers awaken to our own capacities, more of us see the need to act as a class on all political questions, to build our own party, a labor party. 

This kind of party would mobilize support for strikes and union-organizing battles, build protests against cop brutality, defend amnesty for all immigrant workers here, and fight against attacks on abortion rights. It would bring solidarity to actions organized by owner-operator truckers, farmers and Uber and taxi drivers fighting to defend their livelihoods. It would speak the unvarnished truth about capitalism, exploitation and oppression, and the immorality of the bosses’ social system.

In struggle working people will increasingly see our own capacities for revolutionary action and chart the road to lead millions to overturn capitalist rule and bring to power a workers and farmers government. 

Join the SWP 2020 campaign!