Wednesday, June 17, 2015

United We Stand, yes. But with whom and about what.

The image and stats above I got it through the Daily Kos. The figures are not surprising at all. Statistics have to been taken with an open mind but the huge disparity between the groups that are referred to in the image as  the "Elite" and the "Majority" expresses social consciousness.

Consciousness, as Marx pointed out, is a product of being, of our material existence not the other way round. In particular it is a product of one's social role in production and without production there is no human life.  In this example, Elites are defined as individuals that earn more than $1 million annually.

These figures generally express that class division between those that sell their labor power in order to obtain a means of subsistence and those whose income or wealth is accumulated from the profit of capital, or through the direct buying of labor power for use in the process of production.

I do not intend to go on about this here and I recognize this is one of my weaknesses at times but it made me think of the question of national unity or nationalism. In the US and all national anthems it talks of being one people united against all enemies of the state foreign or domestic.  But these figures clearly show there is a difference of opinion between us, a difference of considerable significance that affects our material well being.  This comparison would be pretty much the same no matter which nation state it was conducted in, whether in the US, Britain, China or Greece. In any of them, workers and huge sections of the middle class would be on the right and the capitalists in the main on the left.

When the first Iraq war broke out and pictures of Bush's old friend Saddam Hussein with a target site fixed on him appeared at work stations around the country along with the slogan United We Stand, despite some 20% of Americans unable to point to Iraq on a map according to one survey I came across, I asked a co-worker if he we went on strike would the slogan, United We Stand apply to us. In other words, should we, as workers unite with the bosses or against them.  He was quite emphatic that we should unite against the boss as workers and this was an all American boy as they say.

So why would we sheepishly, without any thought or investigation unite with our bosses when it came to calls for war against workers in other countries?  Practically all the workers in a foreign country including North Korea, would agree with US workers whose votes fall on the right side of this image. Practically all the capitalists would join with ours in the column on the left.

It seems then that nationalism is bunk One nation undivided is bunk. If we were undivided, no one would have lost their homes, jobs and livelihoods in the last crash and there'd be no homeless.

Marx wasn't far wrong then when he said Workers of the World Unite

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