as my newsfeed, twitter feed, and regular listening on NPR becomes unbearable with so much crap about who is winning over who in the republican primary, i constantly remind others that this is nothing more than a sideshow to real politics: the class struggle.
now, don’t get me wrong. i’m not an anarchist who thinks that all elections and voting within the u.s. power structure is worthless and compromises one’s principles. nor am i a communist party, usa member (or many other social-democrat groups) who are opportunists, apologists for obama, or at the worst, cheerleaders for the democrats. i believe strongly that people move politically within election seasons. it’s our jobs as revolutionaries and activists to use that movement to our advantage.
in 2008, it was different. we had the first (cisgender) male african american and white woman within short distance to winning the democratic party nomination, and the presidency. obama was clearly more progressive than hillary clinton (and sadly still is!), and you had this big movement of particularly youth activists being siphoned off the anti-war movement into the political campaign (again). so, this wasn’t really a choice for my area of activism, neither was it for the serious revolutionaries in the trade union movement (and i’m not talking about the i.w.w. here, folks). you had to work with the obama supporters. and you most definitely had to guard your activists from becoming sucked into the democratic party.
as predicted, and because of the state of leftist non-unification in the u.s., activist groups hemorrhaged. only the strong survived, and many local, regional, and national groups that did had a strong backbone of dedicated leftists and/or communists. still others went into more non-profit community center politics — but that’s for another article.
in 2012, we see what we’ve prepared for all along since the economic collapse in 2008. obama was never the answer, the u.s. still leans “center-right” in bourgeois political standards, and the international situation is still more ominous with the manipulation of the arab spring in libya, syria, and of course, iran.
of course, as leftist activists, we see nothing to be gained by engaging the 2012 obamaites. and rightfully so. anyone who is so mired in love with obama as the “practical center-left” and so fearful of a republican alternative deserves criticism.
my personal prediction is, seeing how split the republican section of the bourgeoisie, and the base, that there will be no chance for the prospective republican nominees to win, unless of course something big happens. romney is too moderate and is a mormon. santorum is too far right, and is a frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter. newt is gone, and the racist ron paul has been out of the picture since the beginning. if paul decides to run as independent, it only increases the odds of republicans losing.
our main job is to build upon the occupy movements and organize big mobilization against the nato and g8 summits in chicago, starting in may. occupy has already succeeded far beyond what the organized hardcore left expected. it has quantitatively shifted public opinion and garnered significant support in anti-capitalism, anti-bourgeois (the 1%), anti-corruption, and pro-socialist beliefs (albiet in many its forms). yes yes, i have many criticisms of occupy, but that too will come in another post.
also is our main job to resolutely struggle against the upsurge of the criminalization of dissent: the national defense authorization act, bradley manning and wikileaks, and of course the case of fbi repression of political activists across the u.s.
don’t be mired in the 2012 political sideshow. this isn’t about queer rights, wars, healthcare, blah blah blah. yeah, those struggles for intermediate demands are important. but we all know we win these rights from the peoples struggles, not politicians. fighting against the nato/g8 summits go hand and hand for developing both demands for, one example, free speech rights while also preparing the masses for revolutionary struggle. it’s a step by step process.
so in the words of amilcar cabral, a luta continua! the struggle continues!