The liberal press is full of articles about the unexpectedly “radical” actions of Democratic President Joseph Biden’s first 100 days in office. Many compare him — favorably — to predecessor Franklin Delano Roosevelt. They do have something in common — both have served the country’s ruling families defending their profits and prerogatives at home and abroad, as has every Democratic and Republican administration.
Biden handed over trillions in government money to bosses and local governments, doing nothing to help workers fight large-scale joblessness or take the bosses’ drive to profit off our backs.
In an address to Congress April 28, Biden says that under his administration there are “more new jobs in the first 100 days than any president on record.” But more hiring was inevitable once the first vaccines got Federal Drug Administration approval under Donald Trump’s administration and inoculation began.
By the end of April some 100 million Americans had been fully vaccinated, almost 40% of the adult population. All workers should urge co-workers and family to get the shot. It is only at work that we can unite to meet the bosses’ attacks.
Vaccination and lowering of government lockdowns have driven the recent dip in unemployment. Nonetheless over 16 million people are still collecting unemployment benefits, unable to get a job.
Moreover, Biden does nothing to end U.S. pharmaceutical bosses’ monopoly on vaccine sales by keeping their patents a secret, hindering production of the vaccine and increasing deaths worldwide.
Biden has made a “decisive break with the era of small government,” pundit Samuel Moyn gushed in the May 2 New York Times. But his “big” government of expanding federal regulators and snoops has just made things worse for working people.
Capitalist exploitation continues to take its toll. As workers get back to work, bosses are cutting wages, speeding up production and attacking our unions. Cop brutality continues and millions of undocumented workers are forced to live and work under the threat of deportation.
“Workers are finding ways to defend ourselves,” Róger Calero, Socialist Workers Party candidate for mayor in New York City, told the Militant. Calero uses his campaign to build solidarity with locked-out oil refinery workers at Marathon in Minnesota and other labor struggles.
“We are told our only ‘choices’ are between two parties that both defend capitalist exploitation and imperialist wars abroad,” Calero said. “Workers need to break with the bosses’ two-party system and build a party of our own, a labor party. It would attract millions to its ranks in the course of uncompromising working-class struggle.”
Biden’s presidency hasn’t created a single job, outside of its growing bureaucracy. His “American Jobs Plan” and “American Rescue Plan” bailed out state governments; offered “stimulus” checks for some; and promised investments to bosses, claiming they’ll hire some workers for infrastructure and other projects.
His latest “American Families Plan” would extend temporary tax credits for some workers with children, increase the months each year some workers can get free school meals for their kids, and expand parental leave. But reform measures like this are mainly aimed at increasing workers dependency on the capitalist rulers’ state, to deter us from organizing to fight in our own interests. They do nothing to address the central challenge we face — getting back to work.
Biden defends bosses’ interests abroad
Biden is advancing the U.S. rulers’ imperialist interests abroad, redeploying U.S. forces from Afghanistan to reinforce their massive military might elsewhere in Central Asia and around the world.
So far, the new administration has done nothing to reverse the restrictions on travel to Cuba and trade and financial sanctions on the Cuban people imposed by every previous administration. Officials say changing these policies is not a priority for Biden.
“Working people need our own foreign policy starting from solidarity with fellow workers and farmers around the world,” Calero said. “SWP candidates join and build the monthly car caravans in cities around the country demanding a halt to Washington’s embargo against Cuba.
“We point to Cuba’s revolution as an example for working people here to emulate,” he said. “We need to take political power into our own hands, build a workers and farmers government, and join hands with toilers worldwide.”