Wednesday, February 23, 2011
The Reason Why Wisconsin Won't Lead to a Revolution.
People who are familiar with the left/socialist movement here in the United States know that every time a huge protest happens or a school building is occupied by students that the left will start screaming "the revolution is coming" or "this could be the start of the revolution" and "see the people in the United States are class conscious/revolutionary."
The event we see happening in Wisconsin is very important to pay close attention to. What we see happening is a right wing tea party supported governor who is a champion of corporate American billionaires trying to attack the unions right to collectively bargain. The governor is doing this to gain more support from the upper capitalist class (millionaires and billionaires) for making it easier for corporations to make more profits by paying their employees shitty wages, and the employees not having the legal right to demand higher wages.
It should be noted that this is the second attack on public workers, all in the name of "needing to cut the budget." The first cuts that were proposed to public workers were actually agreed to by the public workers and their unions according to MSNBC tv(1). But these second cuts will do more than make collective bargaining illegal it will also force public workers to pay double for their health care and force the workers to contribute 5.8% of their checks to their pension(2).
It is very important to support the unions and their right to collectively bargain. Even though a lot of unions in the US are reactionary and often side with the bosses before they would call for a strike. They can in some instances be the last line of defense for workers rights. So this post should not be seen as a attempt to stand against the Wisconsin workers.
I do want to touch on the claim that somehow the protest in Wisconsin means workers "do understand politics and are the first to engage in mass political activity." And that somehow workers trying to keep their jobs in Wisconsin is a sign that workers are trying to rise up and defeat the ruling and other bourgeois classes. Many populist socialist have made bolder claims that somehow all people who go to work and get a wage for their labor are working class(3). So by that claim I guess people making 300,000 dollars a year and millionaire CEO's who get paid by the hour are working class as well.
The truth of the situation is that probably 70% or more of those protester are pro-capitalism and they are just trying to keep their jobs. They are not there to do anything other than fight for their right to a fair job. This situation does not mean workers in the US are revolutionary or class conscious and as the link above falsely claims that US workers make common cause with workers in other countries. I would tell readers to go read any Yahoo news article, youtube, etc etc go read the comments about videos/articles about other countries. These comments are left by average everyday Americans and you will see that 70-30% are reactionary, xenophobic, and racist and ignorant, these are the real average US citizens. The people in left circles are advanced and are indeed not most of those things, but to claim the majority of Americans are revolutionary and not backwards is to lie to the people you're talking to.
Every time some bit of disorder happens does not mean "the revolution is here!" Here is what will probably happen; one of two things will happen. The Governor will win and the unions will be busted and the workers will be pissed off but will go back home eventually and start looking for a new job so their family doesn't starve but no revolt will happen and people in other states won't stand up with the workers (after all they have jobs and families to feed). Or the unions will win and everyone will cheer than go home and celebrate. But neither will lead to a revolution or even a radicalization of workers in the US. I really wish it wasn't true and I wish this would spark the prairie fire but it just won't happen brothers and sisters the conditions just aren't right at the moment.
If every time the left claimed revolution was about to happen then we would have around 3-6 revolutions every year. But what is most important is that we support the union in their struggle and encourage them to call for a general strike as the WIL (Workers International League) and the SA (Socialist Alternative) have advocated for. The people and the people alone will be the driving force.
Support a general strike in Wisconsin and Ohio!