DECEMBER 23RD, 2016
ALL OUT January 20th
The election of Donald Trump, a far-right populist bigot, is both a symptom of and a turning point in the historical political crisis unfolding in the United States. The polarization of class struggle is already producing unprecedented mobilizations prior to the inauguration of a new president elect, and can generate great struggles to oppose this far-right government from day one.
After 8 years of government the farce of the “human face” of Obama has been revealed to be a lie. Now with Trump the real, oppressive and brutal face of imperialism has emerged clear to the world. Therefore, it’s time to unify the fight against the imperialist government of Trump in the U.S. and around the world.
Furthermore, for the first time in decades the bi-partisan political system is in real crisis: the two traditional parties of the bourgeoisie (Democrats and Republicans) have massively lost their popular support, in particular that of the blue collar sectors of the working class, immigrants and youth. Since the election, many working class youth, in particular Latinos, walked out of their schools to protest Trump and very quickly students have begun to organize locally and at the state level to protest the inauguration on January 20th. This call has been joined by the most active labor sectors, and a call has been put out for a “women’s march” on January 21st in Washington DC.
It is necessary to organize all around the world mobilizations against U.S. imperialism in January 20th, to support the workers, youth, the immigrant, Black and Muslim communities that will be taking action not only in the U.S. but all over the planet. On J20 more than ever we need to take it to the streets, and show in action that the working class is international and that an injury to one is an injury to all! Through the fight against Trump, let’s start building a new leadership for the worker’s movement, independent from the Democratic Party!
Trump’s New Cabinet Represents A Threat to Working People and to the Planet
The Trump administration is profiling itself to be one of the most reactionary, racist, misogynistic, anti-worker and aggressive imperialist government the United States has elected in decades. An ex-executive of Goldman Sachs, Steven Mnuchin, will be leading the Treasury Department; the CEO of Exxon, Rex Tillerson, has been appointed Secretary of State; the CEO of a fast-food chain (CKE Restaurants) which pays poverty wages, Andrew Puzder, will be the next Secretary of Labor; the new government official who will lead the Environmental Protection Agency (Myron Ebell) is a climate change denier and a heavy supporter of fossil fuel based energy, finally a millionaire and advocate for the privatization of public education (Betsy DeVos) will be running the Education Department. According to the economic news site Quartz, the new 17 members of the executive, the wealthiest in U.S. history, with a common fortune of $9.5 billion (other media are projecting figures that could reach $35 billion), earn more money than 43 million U.S. households (the average income being $55,000).
The new administration also includes several retired generals of the U.S. army to cut short the crisis opened in the military ranks by the defeat in Iraq and Afghanistan and the lack of support to veterans, which was clearly expressed by the recent participation of U.S. veterans in the Standing Rock struggles against the U.S. government.
Furthermore, several sectors of the extreme right and fascist zionism are represented in the new government: the new U.S. ambassador in Israel, David Friedman, who is linked to the israeli far-right and supports the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the White supremacist Jeff Sessions who is the new General Attorney and will lead the Justice Department, and finally Steve Bannon, the extreme right ideologue who is the new Chief Strategist and senior counselor.
Trump’s administration is preparing a wide-range attack on unions, on the fight for $15, on abortion rights, on the struggle against police brutality and for prison reform, on Native American struggles for land, on the demand of free fully funded public healthcare and education, on the struggle for an eco-socialist energy transition and many other ones.
Yet the impact of Trump’s election will not be felt only in the United States but also across the world. The U.S. is still today the leading imperialist power, which controls the major multinationals and possesses the strongest military apparatus. Trump’s slogan, “Make America Great Again” is predicated on a nationalist, racist and aggressive ideology, where “America” (i.e. the United States) is postulated as superior and thus as having the right to oppress, invade, over-exploit or even suppress any nation or people which it desires.
It will be our united action in the workplaces and the streets that will determine if the tough attacks Trump is preparing can be realized. We want to warn the unions, community groups and social movements against inequality and oppression, and Left organizations that will be have to fight strongly in the next period, and it is important to do so by building a united, independent and democratic front of struggle.
Build a New Direction for the Mass Movement in the Fight Against Trump
There is a great crisis in the Democratic Party which is an historic opportunity for workers and revolutionary socialists to fight for an alternative leadership. Yet there is also a crisis of leadership in the labor movement: rank and file workers revolted against the AFL-CIO leadership which massively endorsed Clinton with never discussing with rank and file workers and disregarding the devastating results of the neo-liberal policies defended and enforced by the Democratic Party throughout the last 30 years.
Today the labor movement leaders do not know what to do and are paralyzed. The Democratic Party is trying to “work with” Trump on the “good” areas of his program, those who benefit what they consider “working people” – setting aside Trump’s anti-immigrant, anti-black, anti-Muslim and deeply misogynistic ideology and attacks… as these were not also sectors of the working class.
Young people and many sectors of the working class, however, who massively rejected Trump and have never been strong supporters of Clinton, are looking for avenues of mobilization and organization. The situation is thus paradoxical, and is similar to the grassroots revolt that emerged during the 2006 mass immigrant protest, the Wisconsin uprising, the Occupy movement, and the more and more recurrent protests against deportations and police brutality: a lot of protests have been planned locally against Trump’s election, but there is not a national mass organizations that has issued yet a call for action.
This is an expression of the absence of leadership and the urgent need to organize the working class sectors who want to fight back. We need to bring the action proposals to every union, every local committee, and fight to unite our struggles and to break from the Democratic Party.
This is also an opportunity for honest activists and revolutionary socialists, who are truly committed to develop independent working class organization on a democratic basis, to build and develop independent structures for class united action and rank and file organization.
Let’s fight against Trump and in the course of our struggle build an alternative for workers, independent from the Democratic Party!
Building Together the Mobilizations in January 2017
In California, the calls for action on January 20th have been endorsed by multiple student organizations of the University of California system (9 campuses), the City College of San Francisco, the student and teacher coalition Educators Against Trump in San Francisco (that brings together hundreds of UESF teacher activists and students) and the Black-led Anti Police Terror Project coalition in Oakland with the goal of organizing concerted actions in SF and Oakland for that day. Community organizations in Los Angeles and San Diego are also planning several protests for the 20th.
So far several labor unions have officially endorsed the call: UAW 2865 (Teaching Assistants of the University of California), UESF (San Francisco teachers), UTR (United Teachers of Richmond) and others, like ILWU Local 10 (dock workers) are planning to endorse their official participation. The Alameda County Labor Council, representing more than 100 local unions and 100,000 workers on the East Bay that has issued a very important resolution which “encourages each of its affiliates to use the day of action on Friday, January 20 to display our power, unity and solidarity by planning an action around an existing labor dispute and inviting all of its members to participate as well as support their members who want to participate in inauguration protests.” The union activist pushing for labor action in California have formed the organizing collective Labor Rising [Against Trump] which is growing and building a base in several unions.
California will not be for sure the only state taking action on J20, even if it is building to be one of the main sites of resistance given its strong Latino and Black population which have been viciously targeted by Trump and his supporters throughout the campaign. On the West Coast, students of the University of Washington are also organizing protests and in Seattle neighborhood councils are developing to plan the resistance. In Chicago, New York, Baltimore and Washington D.C. several calls for action have been put out through social media through different networks.
An independent call to hold a “Women’s March” against Trump and for women’s rights on Saturday J21 in Washington D.C. was issued on November soon after the election. This call does not come from any known women’s organization – which is not a surprised as NOW and many other groups have become subservient to the Democratic Party in the last decades.
The call for the march rallies people around the slogan that “women’s rights are human rights,” and responds to the rhetoric and debates of the electoral campaign which have “insulted, demonized, and threatened many of us–women, immigrants of all statuses, those with diverse religious faiths particularly Muslim, people who identify as LGBTQIA, Native and Indigenous people, Black and Brown people, people with disabilities, the economically impoverished and survivors of sexual assault.” Many local marches will be held for those who cannot travel to Washington DC.
If any program at all, it embraces the liberal bourgeois program of parity and equity with no real class (nor race) analysis: “We will not rest until women have parity and equity at all levels of leadership in society. We work peacefully while recognizing there is no true peace without justice and equity for all”.
We think that despite our programmatic differences, it is very important to mobilize and participate in those demonstrations with a separate and independent contingent, precisely in order to bring working people, with a special emphasis on working class and immigrant women, with our program of action and demands and join in a united action.
So far two national days of action are being planned:
-January 20th 2017, Trump’s presidential inauguration day
-January 21st 2017, when a national and local “women marches have been called”
We are committed to build those national actions and propose unified mobilizations around the world in January 20th. We want to organize street mobilizations together with trade unions, left-wing organizations and movements against the oppression of the imperialist government of the United States. There will be protests in the streets against Trump. We will fight against American imperialism and domination of multinationals on each one of our countries.
Down with the Trump Government!
Let’s Build A Unified Resistance Against The Attacks to Working People And Oppressed Communities!
For a New Leadership for the Workers Movement Independent From the Democratic Party!
Let’s Stand Against American Imperialism and its Military Interventions Around the World!
Let’s Stand Against the Domination of Multinationals!
For Non-Payment of Foreign Debts!
International Secretariat – International Workers League, Fourth International
December 20th 2016