Public meetings in New Zealand and Australia

The political causes and international implications of Trump’s election: A Marxist assessment

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia)
15 November 2016

The victory of Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election marks a turning point in American and world politics. The degeneration of democracy in the United States, under the impact of its protracted economic decline, staggering levels of social inequality and ever sharpening class antagonisms, has enabled the elevation of a fascistic demagogue to the highest office in the country.

An array of political, media and academic apologists for Hillary Clinton—a warmonger, personification of the Washington establishment and servant of Wall Street—are attempting to blame her defeat on “white” racism, anti-immigrant xenophobia and sexism. Such ignorant and self-serving claims are false to the core. Trump’s victory is the result, above all, of a spectacular collapse in support for the Democratic Party. Clinton received some 10 million fewer votes than Obama did in 2008—yet he, as president for two terms, repudiated all of his fraudulent rhetoric about “hope and change” and presided over trillions of dollars in handouts to the banks, continuous war abroad and massive attacks on working class jobs, wages, education and health care.

Bernie Sanders, who postured as a “socialist” alternative during the Democratic Party primaries, proved he was part of the establishment by endorsing Clinton.

Millions of alienated workers and young people responded to the choice between Clinton and Trump by deciding to vote for neither. Trump, while winning increased support in several impoverished working class and rural areas of the US, received fewer votes than the Republican candidate in 2012 and lost the popular vote to Clinton by as many as two million votes. The billionaire won due to the intricacies of the anti-democratic electoral college system, which actually elects the US president.

The US election result will dramatically escalate all the tendencies that have developed since the 2008 breakdown in the world capitalist economy, and that threaten to trigger a third world war. Having claimed the White House with the support of barely one in four American voters, Trump will seek to implement his openly stated agenda of pro-business, “America First” nationalism. He will head a regime dedicated to tax cuts for the corporations and the wealthy, cutbacks to what remains of public education and social programs, trade war against US rivals and a further expansion of the American military machine. His administration will seek to divide working class opposition on the basis of anti-immigrant chauvinism and other reactionary nostrums.

The working class of every country faces a political environment that parallels the situation in the United States.

This public meeting, which has been organised in Auckland by the Socialist Equality Group (New Zealand), and in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane by the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), will address and clarify the immense political questions raised by Trump’s victory. It will review the organisations, ideologies and programs that bear responsibility for the profound crisis of leadership in the working class. It will advance the socialist and internationalist perspective necessary to prevent a descent into a 1930s-style Depression and a new world war.

We urge all those workers and young people who are concerned about these issues, and keen to discuss them, to attend the meeting in your city and promote it as widely as possible in your workplace, university, school or community.

Details:

Auckland

Sunday November 27, 2.30pm
Grey Lynn Library Hall
474 Great North Road
Grey Lynn
Auckland
Tickets: $5, $3 concession

Melbourne

Sunday December 4, 2.30pm
5 Blackwood St
North Melbourne
Tickets: $5, $3 concession

Brisbane

Saturday December 10, 3pm
Woolloongabba Senior Citizens Centre
22 Qualtrough St Woolloongabba
Tickets: $5, $3 concession

Sydney

Sunday December 11, 2pm
Ashfield Civic Centre
260 Liverpool Rd, Ashfield
Tickets: $7, $5 concession