Friday, July 12, 2019

Salvation Lies In World Socialism

What do every worker want? They want peace, not war. They want better public schools, free college, socialised health care, better housing and decent jobs, not more jet-bombers. Yet in spite of the widespread yearning for peace, freedom and plenty, militarism is on the rise. Under the capitalist system, it can be no other way. To ensure profits, the ruling class is compelled to acquire foreign markets and to secure sources of raw materials and cheap labor abroad. This requires that U.S. capitalism pursue its economic objectives with sheer military might. Furthermore, in an economy where billions are being spent on the production of armaments—military spending constitutes a vital economic stimulus. Without this stimulus, capitalism would be in even more dire economic straits than it currently finds itself. And in exporting arms to repressive regimes allied to U.S. interests around the world, an additional benefit is gained. In order to justify increased military spending in the face of sharp cutbacks in social programs, the capitalist class has told workers that these military expenditures are necessary to keep the “peace” and to protect the “national security” of the United States. Every arms race, however, has ended with a war. In the name of all that is decent and humane, the Socialist Party calls upon the working class of the United States to demand a complete and immediate halt of any move to war against Iran.

The roots of militarism are deeply rooted in the system based on profit-motivated production, private ownership of the economy by the capitalist class and the exploitation of working people. Accordingly, if militarism is to be stopped, workers must abolish the capitalist cause of modern war and build a new socialist society. A socialist transformation of society would create an economic order under which the means of production would be socially owned and democratically controlled by workers through their industrial organizations. Socialism, unlike government ownership schemes, would place power in the collective hands of the working class, not in those of government bureaucrats. With the elimination of the profit motive, the principle of social use would guide production. The need would no longer exist for military spending artificially to stimulate the economy, or to maintain a large military machine to enforce access to foreign markets. Under capitalism, even relatively small cutbacks in military spending could lead to increased unemployment and the creation of economically depressed areas. Under a social system based on production for use, the elimination of unnecessary production would simply reduce the workweek of the entire labor force because the entire industrial process would reflect the needs of the whole population. To resist the drive toward militarism and to eventually abolish its capitalist cause, workers must organize politically, a socialist party of the working class to challenge capitalist power in the political arena. The success of such a revolutionary movement would eradicate forever the dangers of militarism. 

The United States has callously and systematically turned its back on numerous conflicts, massacres and human tragedies all over the world. Its spokespersons have frankly admitted that the United States cannot “police” the globe and that it must pick and choose where it will use its military might to enforce its will. How does Washington decide what country to invade, what tyrant to support or what despot to depose? The answer is simple. It is that the interests of the tiny class of capitalists who own the economy need “spheres of influence” all over the world. They need these spheres of influence and control to secure access to foreign sources of raw materials to feed their industries, and to protect and expand foreign markets in which to sell their wares and rake in their profits. They need these things because without them the capitalist system would collapse. These necessities of capitalism are the “national interests” that determine where and when American soldiers, sailors and pilots will be sent to kill or be killed in conflicts. Every day the American working class enter the nation’s factories that makes the country the richest and the most powerful on Earth. To prevent an Iranian war and stop it spinning out of control, the American working class must make a stand. It must organize its political and economic might to declare its determination to end capitalism and to build a new democracy—an industrial democracy—based on common ownership. In short, genuine socialism.

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