The Secretariat of the American Party of Labor prepared the following presentation that was given in Spanish by Spokesperson Alfonso Casal at the 25th International Seminar on the Problems of the Revolution in Latin America held by the ICMLPO in Quito, Ecuador. You can read our coverage of the presentations at the seminar here.
While many in the world look at the state of American civil society, it is laughable as the Republic seeks to tear itself apart. Political life in the United States is experienced by the majority of its population in direct confrontation. The era of the Ruling Class doing so from it’s leather chairs are behind it. Now, the American Ruling Class seeks to do as fascists have always done in the past, organize the petty-bourgeois to do it’s dirty work.
The Republic of the United States is certainly in crisis. There is however another side to the United States, not its republic, but it’s empire. The empire is not in crisis.
The United States boasts over 800 known military bases across the globe. During the Trump Administration, the Democrats and accepted left-wing or progressive politicians did not denounce the imperialist actions of the regime. Accepted progressive politicians never spoke a word of the military expansion in Africa and Latin America. It certainly didn’t dare utter a word about the expansion of American capital around the globe.
The closest to denunciation that was spoken of was denouncing the coup attempt in Venezuela for having failed and having been carried out incorrectly.
Increases in the military budget, assassinations, and coups were carried out without the slightest institutional dissent. The Democratic Socialists, which as far mainstream American culture is concerned is practically Stalinism, were often in support of imperialist actions. Progressive politicians met with Bolivian coup leaders and gave their quiet blessings. So we must not mistake the crisis of the bourgeois republic for a crisis of the empire.
Of course this is not to say the “American Century” promise has come to fruition as boasted by many American imperialists upon the overthrow of the Soviet Union. Over a decade of short term profits from neo-liberal trading led to a great bust which was felt all over the globe. But this bust showed that Globalization, global imperialism, has not meant an American Century but the rise of imperialist relations around the globe. Many around the globe are now being strangled by both west and east.
The exploitation and oppression in one country can be and is profited off of by the national bourgeoisie and capitalists across the world market including the third world where they function with impunity.
But this gives rise to the fear amongst the most reactionary citizens of the United States and the Western Imperialist in general. The rise of the East, in part due to the military build up of Russia, but more so that the 2008 recession allowed the capital of the ruling class in China to expand to the point of social imperialism. White supremacists and the most staunch reactionaries are terrified, and as there are many reactionaries and white supremacists within America, civil society is turning in on itself. The fascists throughout the Trump years acted in quantities not seen for some time. And while there has been a marked retreat since presidential turn-over, the damage is done.
Yet, again, this continuation of civil strife within the republic has not touched the empire. While the Biden administration boasts of the ending military operations in Iraq, the retreat of military forces of the state are being replaced by an advancement of private security and military cartels. And of course China’s one belt, one road initiative plans to bring military bases along with its construction. The bourgeoisie are no longer confined to one country or one hemisphere. The international imperialist class exists not just due to a commonality of relations to the means of production in their respective national economies, but because they all do business and have become interconnected materially with one another.
China and the United States are heavily invested in one another, their respective capital are deeply intertwined. Both powers rely on each other’s investment, exploitation, and imperialism in order to grow profit and increase global circulation. Let us not forget that Germany and England were each other’s biggest investors right up until war was declared in 1914. But as the United States and China are presented as national enemies of one another, the reactionaries and so-called leftists pick sides as if international politics and the practice of internationalism are a matter of picking a team to win the World Cup.
Now that the global imperialists have become a material reality, the material reality of the international working class has become ever more important. Yet within the Imperialist core of the West, radical liberalism continues to dominate. The radical left which spouts Marxist terminology and radical rhetoric are merely dressing up liberal thinking. Workers are blamed for imperialism but not the imperialists. Imperialism is attacked but the imperialists are never named. Social-Imperialism is upheld as anti-imperialism. Ethnology has become progressive. Separatism is named as the only possible solution. National liberation has become divorced entirely from the class struggle. Productive relations and forces are ignored entirely!
Yet, the same so-called leftists who uphold such positions rely on liberal logic, subjective and relative to defend their positions of uncritical support or eternal damnation of this or this personality or State. But because they play the role of cheerleader for a foreign state, they are self-qualified communists, Marxists, and anti-imperialists. The pluralism that liberalism celebrates is completely missed by the American radical left. It is this radical liberalism that parades around as anti-imperialist, as Marxist, as communist, that has kept the American left it’s own greatest victim since the acceptance of the revisionist program back in 1961.
Such prominent thinking amongst the left and progressive masses has led to the mass uprisings against police brutality and oppression of African-Americans to remain spontaneous and petty-bourgeois. And, of course, the static nature of a movement based in spontaneity allows time for the ruling class to take control of it. Despite the uprisings that lasted for three months due to the exposure of the George Floyd killing, from the major cities to small towns in the country, dispute that police stations were being set ablaze for three months, the Black Live Matter movement has been copyrighted and turned into a private enterprise. Police killings and brutality of black Americans continues. Black liberation has become commercial and a source of profits for capitalists.
Many of the progressive’s have ceased their critique of such matters as to not make the Biden Administration look bad. The same has happened in the case of the many Latin American peoples, including children, held in concentration camps within the United State. Many of those who came out to oppose the camps under Trump are nowhere to be seen under Biden. In fact, many of these organizations and personalities are now defending the camps. Rest assured, we can still be seen.
The fight is hard, but it is also small. Communism in America has always been seen foreign, and never more so than now. In spite of being attacked from all sides of the political spectrum, we continue to grow. The reactionaries attack us, the revisionists who uphold uncritically “Xi Thought” and “Gonzoloism” attempt to sabotage us, and the mainstream seeks to isolate us and defend reactionary attacks. But our duty is clear. We are in the belly of the beast and hold a great responsibility because of it. We have continued to stand and grow and we will continue to do so. Not simply for our sakes but for those of the world who are ground under the boot of US imperialism.