Sunday, July 07, 2019

Liberation and Emancipation

Private ownership and control of the means of production demonstrates over and over again what a menace it is to workers, their families and to society in general. Capitalist production, with its all-consuming drive for profit, has proved unable to halt or even appreciably slow down its damage to the environment. The failure of our present form of government to solve global warming is a matter of record and is being demonstrated again and again. Hence, lies, distortions and falsifications in the service of profit-making is "freedom of speech." Joining the ever swelling chorus of voices dissatisfied with present-day society are those of the many men and women active in the climate justice movement expressing the growing rage at the destruction of our environment. Sadly most of their demands are for reform measures within the capitalist system. Nothing short of the elimination of the profit motive as the basis of production amounts, will protect the environment. It is time that workers begin taking matters into their own hands and begin building a movement for socialism -- to save our families, our children and society's future.

Transnational agri-capitalists corporations, sometimes collaborating with local landowners, have dispossessed peasants from subsistence farming. They have turned much of the best land over to producing cash crops for export to American and European markets because profits are higher than in producing foodstuffs for local consumption. Compounding this capitalist-produced underdevelopment of the Third World, displaced peasants can't find jobs as wage workers. Millions starve, not because food isn't available, but because they don't have the income to buy it. To a lesser degree, the spectre of hunger also haunts exploited workers in the advanced capitalist countries, especially the growing numbers of permanently unemployed. Starvation amid plenty strikes many people as an absurd paradox. However, under a system in which commodities -- including food -- are produced for sale with a view toward profit, it is perfectly logical. 

Why are things this way? It is because of the very nature of capitalism. Capitalists control the entire economy, and capitalists care about nothing except what is profitable to them. They care about the well-being of their workers only if this well-being leads to production and profits. They care about the nurture of working-class children only as new workers to replace a spent generation in the years ahead. Today, however, capitalists are caught up in the current "downsizing" phase, and apparently care very little whether the workers reproduce themselves. As automation and productivity rise, the number of workers needed to produce a certain amount of goods diminishes, and the number of available replacement workers increases. Thus, individual workers become disposable because it is so easy to replace them. It is not necessary to keep an employee who is less than satisfactory in any way because another worker can be employed instead. And it certainly is not necessary to support a worker who is spending time and energy on a family, because that worker is easy to replace with a worker who will spend this time and energy on the job. 

The whole system is quite insane. OUR MAIN REASON FOR EXISTENCE is to produce goods and services that our capitalist employers can sell for profit. It is not even meeting the basic needs of people. In a sane society, things would be different. Production schedules would be determined by needs, not by profits. Workers would no longer have to support these parasites that make up the capitalist class, and so plenty of material goods would be available for all workers and their families as well. The necessary work would be shared by everybody, spread among a large number of workers. The workload would be lighter and the working week would be shorter. All workers would have time to spend with their families.

Since its inception, the Socialist Party has been concerned with identifying the cause of society's evils, and with developing and presenting policies suited not only to eliminating that cause, but also to rearing in its place a viable and equitable society. Based on Marxist ideas, we recognise that the social relationships between people and the institutions they establish are basically determined by economic relationships. The Socialist Party calls for unity. On the political field, the working class must express its revolutionary will, via the ballot, to put an end to the private ownership of the means of wealth production and to make them the collective property of all of society to be democratically administered in its own behalf. 

Production will then be carried on for use, rather than for profit. Exploitation will no longer be possible, for we, the useful producers, will retain the full social value of our labour. Class division and class rule will come to an end. Government will again be an administration of "things," rather than of people over people. The day-to-day decisions affecting our lives, and the power to carry out those decisions, will once more be put into the hands of all of the people-the only safe place for such power to reside. Men and women will once again be free and equal because the solid economic base for their equality will have been established. 

A socialist reconstruction of society is required to eliminate the cruel and preventable absurdity of people going hungry and starving in a world choking on "too much" food. In a sane society, with a socialist economy, workers could enjoy all the wealth they produce, because they wouldn't have to support themselves and the capitalist class, too. It would take only a fraction of the time now spent to obtain the material goods a family needs to thrive, because the necessary work would be spread out over the whole population. There would be plenty of time for everyone -- men, women, young and old -- to exercise their talents, fulfill their potentials and grow to be all they could be. Sane and sensible social relations and economic conditions do not exist under capitalism, and they never will. That day will not come until the working class wakes up to these facts and organises its political and economic power to take over control of production and reorganise the economy on socialist principles. The first step is for those who already understand this to act on their knowledge by coming forward to help spread the Socialist Party's message. 

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