Thursday, April 12, 2018

US Imperialism Under Pressure at Home and Abroad

Sean O’ Torain.

I am sharing with our readers some thoughts I have about the present situation. This Trump is astounding in his stupidity. Think about this. I think it is open to question whether he will bomb Syria except maybe another empty airfield. But if he does bomb serious targets within the country and hit Russian imperialism's forces, there might be other repercussions beyond a military response from Putin.

Putin might think Trump was no longer of use to him in the White House. He might decide that the love affair between them is over and release all the information he likely has on him. It’s seems almost impossible that Putin, an ex KGB man, didn’t take advantage of Trump’s visit to Russia in more ways than one. If Putin did this and called for negotiation on Syria he could pose as a peace maker compared to Trump. This would be a major blow to US imperialism's stature abroad. 

So you could have Putin helping to elect the US president and then helping to bring down the US president. As Facts For Working People blog has been saying for some time. US imperialism is engulfed in a very serious political crisis. We have also been saying that era of the monopoly of US politics by the two parties of US capitalism is coming to an end.

US corporations as well as former aides and legal representatives are jumping ship and now the rich politician Paul Ryan has announced he is bailing out. The great genius who had the plan to cut the deficit has presided over it exploding. But does he admit this? No! He Just runs for the exits, most likely to a multi million dollar income as a briber, a lobbyist for the corporations whose taxes he cut.

FFWP has been saying for some years now that US imperialism can no longer afford to maintain its huge military to dominate its rivals and continue to plunder the world’s resources and maintain its own working class at the level it was accustomed to in the post World War 11 decades.

US imperialism moved to address this problem by attacking its own working class. This began with with the deregulation under the Democrat Carter who used the Taft Hartley against the miners in 1978 and it intensified under Reagan with his firing of the air traffic controllers and has continued under Republican and Democratic regimes alike. They were able to get away with this onslaught on the US working class because the pro capitalist US trade union leaders cooperated, helping to crush the series of strikes that took on a national character in the 1980’s in response to Reagan’s war on organized labor.

What the West Virginia teachers and educators strike shows is that this period has come to an end. These workers pushed aside their own leaders, struck and won, and this has inspired teachers and educational workers in other areas------mostly Republican states. From now on, shifting the cost of their international imperialist role on to the backs of the US working class will be challenged. A new era has begun in the US. The working class will begin to rise to its feet, is beginning to rise to its feet. And as it increasingly does so, US capitalism making its own working class pay for its imperialist role will become more difficult and eventually impossible. To be clear to new readers; what this imperialist role amounts to is protecting the profits of US corporations and holding onto and dominating as much of the planet's resources as possible, struggling with its rivals such as Russia and China, and keeping down the working class internationally. This the reality they cover up by their continual prattling on about defense spending about the defense department, about the Secretary of defense. 

Two points arise out of this situation.  One is increased struggles by the working class to defend areas such as education, Medicaid, Medicare and other public services and living standards in general. Secondly, this will then pose the costs of US imperialism's global activities in a concrete way. The costs of the military will be increasingly looked at and demands made that it be cut. This will sort out the liberal bourgeois politicians like Clinton, Sanders and others like them who support military spending, are terrified of even hinting that the military spending should be touched.

Yes! A new era has begun.

 It’s The Biggest Budget The Pentagon Has Ever Seen… “$700 billion. That’s far more in defense spending than America’s two nearest competitors, China and Russia, and will mean the military can foot the bill for thousands more troops, more training, more ships and a lot else… The enormous increases in defense spending agreed to by lawmakers on Friday go beyond what Trump ask[ed] for. Of the $700 million in spending for the 2018 budget year that started last Oct. 1, about $629 billion is for core Pentagon operations and nearly $71 billion is for the wars in Afghanistan and elsewhere. Trump had requested a 2018 military budget of $603 billion for basic functions and $65 billion for war missions. The deal Congress approved early Friday also sets the Pentagon’s 2019 budget at $716 billion, giving Mattis the financial stability he’s been demanding. The biggest winners in the military buildup are the country’s largest defense contractors, such as Lockheed Martin, Boeing and General Dynamics, that spend millions of dollars each year lobbying Congress.” – Washington Post, Feb. 10


Cameron said...

Agree that U.S.Imperialism is under pressure but am interested in knowing how it is you arrive at the notion that the Russian Federation is imperialist. Also does this make them equal targets for revolutionary socialists in the U.S. Case in point - is Russia's imperialism equal to U.S. imperialism in the ongoing conflict in Syria? In my mind Russia is a capitalist nation but has not yet matured to the advanced capitalist stage of imperialism or the competition to rule the capitalist world as a whole. Its line of supporting a multi-polar capitalist world does not seem to qualify as an imperialist line or at least is a much less noxious form of imperialism than that of today's U.S. Lastly does your view of Russia as an imperialist nation bar you from supporting them in Syria over U.S. imperialism and lead you to equally condemn both? If the latter is the case what practical alternative outcome do you see worth supporting?

Richard Mellor said...

Sorry it took so long to get back to you Cameron. The easier one for me first. I think in Syria there is no side workers and socialists can support. Most of us have argued on this blog that capitalism cannot solve that crisis much like other crises it has created, Northern Ireland, Israel/Palestine Kashmir etc. In some cases and I think Syria is one of them, the working class in a nation is too weak or practically non existent as a force for various reasons, war, decimation, emigration, imperialist meddling etc. So some struggles are unsolvable without the intervention of a united working class of a region or globally and we can only answer in general terms. Some argue that there is an organized and cohesive revolutionary working class organizational structure there. I personally don't know. Perhaps the Russian federation is not imperialist in the classical sense and I do not know the level of capital exports to cite anything. As a capitalist state it did not develop in an organic way over time as we know like western industrial democracies, but through the collapse of Stalinism and plundering of the collective wealth of the system by gangsters and former KGB thugs. But it is clearly imperialistic in its aspirations and its practices, Chechnya, Georgia, Middle East etc and if we are are talking about export of capital, China certainly is but they are weaker in all ways than their US competitor. We are adamant in our view that it is not a matter of socialism or barbarism, but socialism or the end of life as we know it on this planet.

Cameron said...

Richard -- Thank you for the response. Here is my reaction. You say "in Syria there is no side workers and socialists can support". For me this point of view coming from socialists constitutes abdication of a correct and primary task for all U.S. revolutionaries, that is undying opposition to U.S. Imperialism. In Syria this means 1)recognition of the fact that U.S. Imperialism's worldwide policy of regime change and chaos, particularly in the Middle-east, plays a significant causal role in the Syrian tragedy. To step back from supporting an offensive against this policy as Syria,with Russia's assistance is doing,is indeed an abdication of a correct task. 2)support for a defeat of U.S.Imperialism in Syria is a plus for all revolutionary movements throughout the world. Such a weakened U.S.I. would also assist the work of making revolution in the U.S. Requiring alliances to conform to absolute standards is clearly a strategy for failure - success can come from temporary alliances which move the struggle forward rather than standing on the sidelines while the U.S. consumes the world in war and chaos. Thanx for the opportunity to air my views.