With less than three months until the November elections, both the Democrats and Republicans are focused on how horrible the other party is, rather than on concrete measures working people need as the economic, social and moral crisis of capitalist production and for-profit health care bears down on us.
The Democrats hope the economic crisis continues and the pandemic drags on to make Trump look bad. Trump says things are really OK, just give him four more years, and the main problem is the “radical left” running Joe Biden’s campaign. Neither of the candidates of the bosses main parties are running on a program that offers working people a way forward in the face of mass unemployment, wage cuts and unsafe conditions.
Only the Socialist Workers Party presidential ticket of Alyson Kennedy and Malcolm Jarrett starts from the capacities of working people to fight together against the bosses and their government.
The SWP campaign says workers need a union movement in every workplace. We need our own party, a labor party, to organize working people in their millions and to take political power into our own hands. Workers need to fight to take control of production and safety on the job and for jobs for the unemployed.
Democrats’ ‘virtual’ convention
The Democratic Party organized a “virtual” national convention August 17-20, nominating Biden and Kamala Harris as its presidential ticket. It featured talks by politicians of various stripes — from Bernie Sanders to Never-Trump Republicans like former Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Colin Powell. The single theme is all out to get rid of Trump.
Virtually every middle-class radical group in the country has signed on to the Biden campaign.
Democrats hope putting Harris on their ticket will garner votes based on her skin color and her sex. But her claim to fame is serving as district attorney in San Francisco and attorney general in California — in charge of the capitalist rulers’ criminal “justice” system. She helped railroad workers to prison and defended the prison system from challenges against solitary confinement and brutality.
The liberals that control the party and their media allies have spent the last four years trying to use an FBI witch hunt to get rid of Trump. The last thing they want now is to debate with the president.
Debates should only be scheduled, Jennifer Rubin wrote in the Washington Post, if they are limited to “coronavirus, one on the economy and one on racial justice,” and there are no opening and closing remarks. And she says they should be monitored by a “real-time fact checker” ready to censor any lie Trump may utter.
Never far from the surface is liberals’ scorn for working people, who they consider responsible for Trump’s election in 2016 and fear they will do so again this fall. Hillary Clinton called working people “deplorables.”
Biden declared in June that some 15% of the population are just “not very good people,” but if he is elected he will hold their worst instincts in check.
What they really fear is that workers will organize ourselves and mount a challenge to the system of capitalist exploitation and oppression that these politicians have dedicated their lives to upholding.
Republicans up next
The Republican convention is set for Aug. 24-27, mostly virtual as well. Donald Trump will give his acceptance speech from Washington, D.C. No Democrats are scheduled to speak, neither is former President George W. Bush.
When Trump ran for president in 2016, he campaigned as an outsider, saying his goal was to “drain the swamp” of Washington politicians who don’t give a damn about working people. And he pointed to workers’ need for jobs as a key priority, saying he would create an infrastructure program to solve that.
But he’s been in Washington for four years now. He never did organize a serious jobs program, and doesn’t propose to do so if reelected.
He does explain that the relentless effort by the Democrats to drive him from office has created obstacles to what he could accomplish. And this gets a real response from many workers.
Trump gave a preview of the convention at a rally in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, held the same day as the opening of the Democrats’ virtual gathering. He said the 2020 campaign was “a fight for the survival of our nation and civilization itself.” The rest was to tout the accomplishments of his administration.
The fact is, millions more today are without jobs and face growing insecurity about the future. Neither of the capitalist rulers’ two parties have a program to offer working people. Whether Biden or Trump is in the White House for the next four years they will act as every president has done — to defend the propertied rulers, to maximize their profits and to defend U.S. imperialism’s political and military interests abroad.