Letters from our readers

22 May 2012

On “Greece and the global crisis of capitalism

Thank you Chris Marsden for providing an astute overview of the Greek tragedy to-date from a socialist perspective. The EU, US and UK media, being puppets of competing financial and national interests, are barely useful even in providing readers consistent data, let alone in orienting the Greek story for benefit of the common person.

As the monetary-doctors at Reuters, WSJ, Bloomberg, DW, BBC and the Telegraph portray it, the toxic austerity medicine given Greeks remains the only cure for a stubborn and recalcitrant patient, and they will continue to swallow it in the end (so they think).

But the game is not over until it is over. This one is in the third inning and others will begin throughout Europe, UK and US and last for many years ahead. What the investment class doesn’t believe, or fully realize, is that people who are starved eventually will fight to their death, for they have little more to lose.

Such will be the outcome from financial capitalism’s ultimatum (call to arms) against Greece today and all EU countries tomorrow.

In short, it reads:

“You can choose to let us starve you, or you can choose to starve yourself. Either way, the markets must eat!”—Troika

Michael B
17 May 2012

On “New elections called in Greece

The forces of European political reaction are briefing the press constantly that it’s Frankfurt’s way or the highway. They do not brief, however, on the survival of the euro given a Greek exit. And for good reason. Greece is only the first country in a long list of possible departures. And once Greece exits the euro, the crisis of the euro’s dissolution begins.

Chris
Ireland
17 May 2012

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The Greek political crisis creates an opportunity to forge the ICFI’s perspective ahead and positively influence a working class layer with awareness of the destructive nature of capitalism today. The role the WSWS is playing vis-a-vis this opportunity injects hopes into its international readers. They who are scattered on this planet pin hopes on the impending success of political internationalism over nationalist ideologies.

IVE
Sri Lanka
17 May 2012

On “A dangerous dispute in the South China Sea

The sad outcome to this situation is even more evident to someone born a year after the war in Eastern Europe. The Philippines and Vietnam are not so different from my native Hungary, or for that matter Romania, Bulgaria and Yugoslavia between two imperialist world wars. Only specialists now remember the fruits of a failing and inhuman capitalist system in the thirties, that not only the big, but all the little powers arbitrarily yoked together after World War I joined one or another conspiracy of the big powers, and sought to redress new and old grievances.

I fear what is down the road, on tracks and speeding fast toward us, having played in my childhood in Budapest amidst the consequences of Allied bombing and a fierce two-month Russian siege when my parents, Jews, narrowly escaped with their lives.

Children born in Belgrade, Warsaw, or Bucharest suffered for these alliances which stirred up new and old grievances to save the big powers all in crisis much like those about us. Very scary.

AL
Toronto, Canada
19 May 2012

 

On “Obama backs gay marriage

Wonder as you might at the Workers World newspaper editorial entitled “The president and same-sex marriage,” the line being enunciated is both calculating and triangulated.

Instead of denouncing President Obama’s toothless and cynical witnessing for same-sex marriage, while not lifting a finger to do anything to ensure that right, or any other, for US workers, WW presents the president’s statement not as cowardice or double-dealing, but as a “reflection” of the strength of the LGBT movement and the changing consciousness of US workers about the issue. We have come to a pretty pass when bourgeois politicians can be let off the hook so easily by Marxist-Leninists.

The editorial intones, “The fact that Obama made this statement in an election year—in which he is obviously concerned with receiving as many votes as possible—speaks as a testament to the changing consciousness in U.S. society around LGBTQ rights and ending anti-LGBTQ bigotry.” Is WW suggesting President Obama may lose votes by this stance? Or suggesting that he will reap greater electoral rewards?

One of the most shocking things about the editorial is its lack of perspective on Obama’s general modus operandi. He has accumulated support from many a partisan of left-liberal causes by indicating his support, all the while acting against those causes in his exercise of executive power.

Workers World editorials and news articles rarely mention the current presidential election, and Workers World Party has not announced whether it will run or endorse a ticket this year. Were they to take a look at the current stage of bourgeois electoralism, it would be hard to miss the financial windfall Obama’s campaign will reap on the heels of the same-sex marriage announcement. Never has so much been raised from so many by a statement so small, and small-minded.

The editorial does correctly point out that marriage equality will require a national movement, and will only be finally secure when enshrined, like voting rights legislation, in federal law. Obama, the editorial does not mention, wants no part of this. And to deflect any demands that he actually do something, as opposed to saying something, is the purpose of his May 9 announcement.

What is the line of WW in all this, if we may infer it from reasonable deductions based on experience and the editorial? To not offend black supporters of President Obama who are active in coalitions and protest activities where Workers World cadre focus their time and energy. Hence the kid-glove treatment on same-sex marriage. Hence headlines protesting “1%’s NATO: Out of Chicago” as more expedient and diplomatic than “Obama’s NATO out of Chicago.”

Parenthetically, WW seems to be having a hard time saying that Obama is, de facto, the master of NATO. In a substantial May 14 article by Sara Flounders titled “Chicago NATO Summit, Marxism and state violence,” Obama is only mentioned once: “NATO conducts undeclared wars on Pakistan, Yemen and Syria, while threatening war on Iran and encircling Russia and China with a new generation of missiles. Both the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations have politically defended the deployment of targeted assassinations, secret renditions, kidnappings and torture.”

Is it not less of a lie to say that Bush and Obama as US presidents are the final arbiters of any NATO action? They do not defend a NATO that makes its own decisions and acts unilaterally: they act unilaterally and use the NATO coalition as one platform to carry out the imperial designs of Wall Street.

The editorial “The president and same-sex marriage” panders to more than just the black activists who collaborate with Workers World. It also panders to those the party seeks to attract in general by soft-pedaling socialism and the historical vanguard role of the proletariat. What do socialists have to say about same-sex marriage? We don’t know, because this editorial, with its quotes from Obama and Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina [whom WW does not identify as a Democrat, or as the 110th Congress’ Majority Whip], offers no revolutionary socialist perspective on LGBT liberation. The most that can be said is that it offers a social democratic perspective.

And that is not enough.

Jay R
18 May 2012