The Democratic Party’s essential lie has been successfully exposed for quite some time. This lie being that it’s a party of the working class, and by extension of peace, racial justice, and the environment. This was the lie that the DNC initially tried to put forth when it got confronted by a working class movement in 2016: that the left insurgents lacked a case because the party was already sufficiently “progressive.” This was the basis on which the DNC and its adjacent media outlets, particularly the Washington Post, tried to construct the narrative that Sanders and his supporters were not challenging the party’s establishment out of genuine policy concerns but out of misogyny, vindictiveness, and other shallow motives. This was the idea that the Post was trying to convey when it put out an intensive concentration of trollish headlines directed at Sanders during the first couple months of the primary voting period.
Because Sanders always intended to capitulate to the DNC, as indicated by prior pro-imperialist actions of his like when he called Hugo Chavez a “dead communist dictator,” these attacks by the liberal gatekeepers were not ultimately directed at him. Their true target was the working class movement, which the ruling class knew was capable of soon going in a revolutionary direction even if Sanders told them to do what the DNC wanted. The reality was that the “Democrats don’t actually have a reactionary politics problem” argument simply wasn’t a sustainable one. Clinton did not win the primary on a fair basis. Sanders could only be taken out of the election by vast voting irregularities, voter suppression, and a coordinated effort by the DNC to arrange the debates in Clinton’s favor. This fraudulent victory for Clinton was able to partially maintain the illusion of popular support for what Clinton represented, but November exposed that illusion.
It was because of Clinton’s lack of working class popular momentum, and pro-war record which alienated swing state voters who’d been victimized by the war machine, that Trump won. The Russiagate psyop could only do so much to perpetuate the lie that the Democrats have a popular mandate, even when Sanders himself started promoting this psyop. The reality that the Democrats are a pro-corporate, pro-war party had become permanently part of the mass consciousness. Even though the Hillary Clinton psyop had succeeded insofar as it maintained the Democratic Party’s perceived respectability within the mainstream of our discourse, outside that insular political and media space, the people had come to recognize the reality of our system being fully corrupt on both sides. And when the party tried to defend itself by embracing an even more clearly pro-war stance, advancing cold war military buildup to validate its narrative about Russia “hacking the election,” this gave the working class movement’s revolutionary wing more of a reason to distrust it. Sanders tried to divert us back into the Democratic Party by reinforcing its war propaganda, but the reaction to this from many was to come to distrust him as well, all while intensifying our resistance towards the DNC.
The DNC preemptively found a way to remain electorally viable after this full break from the left occurred. Chuck Schumer said in 2016 that “For every blue-collar Democrat we lose in western Pennsylvania, we will pick up two moderate Republicans in the suburbs in Philadelphia, and you can repeat that in Ohio and Illinois and Wisconsin.” This strategy has been enough to get them to take advantage of the political pendulum swing, but it’s made it harder for the Democratic Party to continue fulfilling its real purpose: acting as a means for diverting the class struggle towards reformism. There are still working class people who plan to vote for Biden next year, but not enough for the proletarian movement to not exist as a serious threat, like was the case for so many decades until recently.
We’ve gotten to a point where, amid a rise in strikes and union involvement over the last decade, the Democrats have started a proxy war that’s tangibly exacerbating working class poverty. The war machine’s worsening of the inflation crisis, along with the plot by the Fed to sabotage living standards for the benefit of executives, are provoking the people into anti-imperialist mobilization. And when anti-imperialism is combined with labor struggles to form a synthesis, a genuine threat towards the ruling class emerges.
The Democratic Party’s goal at this stage is to impede this progress within our movement. Which it can’t do simply by assimilating all of today’s politically passionate people into the Vote Blue stance—as plenty of these individuals will never be convinced to adopt that stance again—but rather through a combination of Vote Blue and other psyops. Psyops which aim not necessarily to sell that lie about the Democrats being pro-worker (which only still works on petty-bourgeois liberals who think they’re helping those less fortunate), but also to convince developing radicals that they’re fighting the system when they’ve actually embraced imperialism-compatible “solutions.” Solutions that the Democrats have given to them as placebos for truly doing something productive.
An example of this is what Marxists Speak Out has observed from the organizers of ANSWER, and how this contrasts with the ways serious anti-imperialists think and act: “We do not want war, but nor are we pacifists. We must break with the politics of pacifism and Russophobia. The organizers and leaders of the March 18th protests in the USA for example tried to isolate and censure the organizations that support a Russian victory over imperialism in the war and instead aimed to pressure the imperialist Democratic Party that is waging the war. Such politics only cowers in the face of public opinion and serves imperialist governance. No progress will be made appealing to either of the vicious imperialist Republican or Democrat wings of the US ruling class.” Even though these organizers don’t take a stance as shamelessly reformist as that of the CPUSA’s leadership, which openly advocates for voting blue, their Democrat tailism is undeniable. And their sectarian actions towards the pro-Russian orgs are more notable at this stage than what the CPUSA is doing, since CPUSA’s liberalism has over time made it less and less relevant.
The only threat CPUSA’s radical liberal element poses towards revolutionary progress now is one where it can assimilate developing radicals, ones who have potential to contribute something real to the class struggle, into this element’s insular space. Which is becoming even more terminally online as these radlibs grow less present in the organizing scene. Lately they’ve been gravitating towards the types of online communities that effectively seek to replace anti-imperialism with anti-colonialism. By which I mean a distorted iteration of “anti-colonialism” that’s anti-Leninist, due to its arbiters using their “anti-colonial” rhetoric to orient themselves against the anti-NATO struggle. For example, when they refuse to support anti-NATO coalitions or organizations (like the ones ANSWER attacked) based on the idea that these forces are “reactionary” for not exclusively drawing from the left, the rationale they use is that they’re simply trying to be “principled” in their support for oppressed groups. The big problem with this argument is that the groups they claim to care so much about will never be liberated as long as the American state remains undefeated, which can never happen as long as there isn’t a serious anti-imperialist movement.
A serious anti-imperialist movement is instrumental for defeating the state both because we can’t form an international revolutionary alliance without one, and because we can’t destroy the Democratic Party’s influence over organizing spaces without one. U.S. hegemony is the strongest link in the chain that our ruling class uses to keep us within the capitalist prison. There can be no land return for the tribes, no black liberation, no LGBT or women’s victory, without us making anti-imperialism our foremost priority. That’s the reality the Democratic Party’s tailists and discourse agents are trying to convince us not to see. When we adapt our practice according to this reality, we’ll be able to recognize when somebody is trying to sell us a brand of “radicalism” that’s actually designed to help the DNC.
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