On the CPP statement for US elections


Concerning the message of MV CIO of the CPP dated November 20, 2020 communicated by “Nepali P.L.A” on December 4, it would be appropriate to be accompanied by the text to which criticism was made and the statement of the CPP to which the TOP (Tribune of the People) article made criticism.   

Without involving in arguments both from the side of MV CIO of the CPP as well as of the TOP, and with reference only to the CPP statement of November 8, I find useful and necessary to write the following:

The statement does not “celebrate Biden’s Victory” and its purpose is not this. But “The American people deserves praises” is not an accurate expression for the following reasons:

(a) The American people electorally is divided practically in two sections. Those who voted for the Democratic Party (Biden) and those who voted for the Republican Party (Trump). Obviously the praise is addressed to the first, but this is only one section of the American people. Electoral results show that the first section represents the 51, 4 % of all voters who voted for a candidate (white and blanks excluded). Taking into account the turnout that according to data on November 16 was 66, 7 %, it gives that the approximate percentage of the people who voted for Biden in the electorate is just 34, 28 %. Therefore the praise is addressed to this section, one third of the electorate.   

But again and to be reasonable, the big majority of these voters would vote for the Democratic Party anyway. By reasonably assuming that the praise is not directed to those voters who on permanent basis vote for this party, namely independently of Trump particular policies, this praise in order not to be meaningless should be addressed to people who made the difference since last elections. This difference expressed as percentage of increase of voters normalized by 2020 percentage of participation rate (turnout) and 2020 electoral body, and given that Democratic party candidate (H. Clinton) received 48, 18% in 2016, that turnout was 59, 2% and the electorate size ratio is 0,974 (In 2020 was about 237 million while in 2016 230, 86 million), it follows that this percentage of increase reduced to voters population size is 9, 76 %. In terns of voters it gives 15, 4 million that is exactly the increase in number of votes won by Biden. But it is correct this percentage to be reduced to the electorate population size: 9,76 % x 0,667 = 6,51 %. This represents the percentage increase of votes for the Democratic party candidate in comparison to 2016 election results with base of reference the 2020 electorate. But not all of this fraction and the corresponding number of voters belong to the people even though all are citizens. The identification of voters with people is not correct and the identification of the electorate with people is not correct either. At the same time not all of this fraction corresponds to votes with the political character of rejection of Trump and not of support to the Democratic party per se. Actually it is analysed in components, the component of mutual exchange of votes between the two parties, namely the positive resultant of this exchange, the component of other candidates votes that were significantly reduced in these elections, the component of reduction of abstention (increase of turnout) that again is analysed to the fraction of those who voted just due to facilitation by alternative ways of voting (e-mail and even telephone calls besides post mail), the fraction of those particularly interested to vote in these elections but not in 2016 and the fraction that in previous elections abstained for political reasons. And finally the component of the electorate renewal (increase by about 6.250.000). Only parts of these components and their fractions, in varying degrees fulfil the criterion set. It would be generous to assign a 4% of the electorate that voted Biden not for what he represents but as a form of rejection of Trump. This numerical procedure is useful in that does not indicate any substantial rise in the political consciousness of the American people reflected in the election result, even if we consider that the criterion set is sufficient to apply. The fact is that Trump was defeated electorally by a small percentage of people of certain categories who disproportionally voted for the Democratic party candidate in these elections. But arithmetic do not support the claim that “the American people deserves praises” for voting against Trump. If this simple logic dictated by numbers is not followed and someone insists on praising the American people in general or even the Democratic party voters in general, then in the same way he ought to criticize or denounce the American people in general that in 2016 elected Trump as president.

(b) Till now the analysis was based on a criterion that is somehow subjectivist: people wanted to express in the elections their disapproval and rejection of Trump policies and they did so by voting the only existing alternative, Biden of the democratic party. But the objective reality says that independently of the intentions of some section of the voters, these two parties are two faces of the same system and that a particular role of the Democratic party is to serve as a trap for people who have democratic aspirations and disapprove Republican party policies and concepts. Not to mention the fact that in certain periods of the past, Democratic party presidents and administrations implemented equally reactionary or even worse politics. This is particularly true for the foreign policy of the USA that in even lesser degree is influenced by differences in the two parties programs. And this foreign policy that basically serves the imperialist interests of the American capital as a whole and not of particular factions of it, is not given much importance by the vast majority of the population in the US but is of great importance for the people of the rest of the world, particularly of the Third World.       

If it is to recognize some difference of these elections from many others in the past, we will see that the qualitative difference associated with these elections was the preceding protest movement. This protest movement had two components: One that was finally positioned within the framework of the system (and this includes the Black Lives Matter movement) and another one that positioned itself or wanted to position itself outside this framework. Now to correlate meaningfully the protest movement with the election results it would be really important and despite the fact that it stays within the legal framework, if the protest movement could be expressed with the presence of a combative alliance of people with separate candidates in the elections and with certain demands. The fact that for another time this did not happen, that for another time the Democratic party appropriated a protest movement to be turned as electoral gain for this political section of representatives of US imperialist bourgeoisie, is a fact certainly not for joy. On this base the praise becomes even less meaningful and more incomprehensible. But on this basis the defeat of Trump is victory for Biden and not a (small) victory of the people. The masses of people who actively participated in or supported this movement should be praised as such, but these masses themselves – actually the part of them who in the elections voted for Biden for rejecting Trump – should not be praised for this choice because it runs counter to the interests of the movement both short and long term.           

If despite of all these, someone insists to see this victory of the Democratic party as something with some significance for the people, has reasonably to do with one factor and interpretation only: To consider this electoral contest as part of the fight between bourgeois democracy and fascism. Actually there is a party in the US that supports and promotes the absurd idea that US has a fascist regime that should be fought by peaceful means and called the people in order to help oust this regime, to vote for Biden in the elections! Even though the statement speaks for “Trumpian fascism”, it can be considered as a characterization addressed to person rather and not as the absurdity that US has a fascist regime, and for this reason it will not be proven here why this idea is totally erroneous. But then, this victory of the Democratic party has not at all positive significance for the people. 

Here it is necessary to point, that as participation in the elections and its results do not show any rise in the political conscience of the American people (and if indeed some rise exists this is not depicted in the election results), the same holds true for the abstention from the electoral process. This also does not show any rise, not because turnout increased, but because in this very big segment of citizens that do not vote as a rule, only a very – very small, a rather infinitesimal quantity of people do it consciously, while the rest belongs to all categories of people for whom there is a reason for not participating, not related to consciousness and ideology, as always happens in elections. And a big part of them do not participate not because of social and political consciousness but because are indifferent, exactly because of the lack of any such consciousness. This part include both poor people that the system throws away, permanent unemployed, homeless, lumpen proletariat, and well off people which the capitalist system benefits and which are followers of that system but do not see reason to have a political affiliation. To see rise in the political consciousness from the election results is an interpretation that deviates to the right but to see such a rise in the abstention, is an interpretation that deviates to the “left”.             

The statement speaks for Trumpian fascism, militarism, racism and so on. This is implicitly counterposed to Biden. These two as persons and as a style of exercising presidential power of course have differences. But this point in class politics national and international, is insignificant or of zero significance. Let’s wait and see which will be the positive differentiations of the Biden government from that of Trump. We know of course very well that any differentiation would be only change of methods in attaining the same US imperialist ends. The Trump government was not qualitatively more “fascist”, militarist or racist from many previous governments. And if someone indicates certain policies and deeds that justify these terms, there are policies and deeds that can justify the use of same terms for past presidents and governments while at the same time, there are other policies and deeds of the present one that do not justify it. We can see signs of the opposite tendency for example in the field of international politics and militarism. US under Trump signed a peace treaty in Afghanistan and is withdrawing all US forces from this country, finally withdraws US forces from Iraq and in the confrontation with N. Korea certainly did not pursue the militaristic approach. This runs counter to the statement that “Under Trump, US imperialist militarism and aggression intensified”. Does it mean that the Trump government was more peace friendly than previous governments? Because the answer is no, for the same reasons it is not more militaristic than previous governments. But also in home and concerning racism does the statement consider that racism in society and in the state apparatus before the Trump administration was lesser? The protest movement focused on murders of black people principally from police but also from right wing vigilantes. But statistics of police killings of black people in the period 2013-2020 show that to be of the same order of magnitude or even approximately equal per year, with some small reduction for 2020. Also statistics for the years 2003 -2009 show the same invariability with 218, 4 killings per year on average. This is almost exactly the same for the period 2017-2020. These data show that black people killed by police in the average year of Trump administration to be equal to that of the second term of Obama administration. And Obama was not only democrat but of black origin himself. This clearly shows that the determining factor in blacks’ murders by police is the system and not the every time administration. In words someone can say what he likes, but facts are stubborn. Another example related with racism, is the barrier wall along the US-Mexico border. Most people know or think that Trump erected the barrier. But over 650 km of that pre-existed. In 2016 Trump stated he will built 2000 miles of barrier. Now it is estimated that in January 2021 only 500 miles will be completed and a part of it represents replacement of old barrier. Biden stated that he will not continue building but shall not demolish what was built during Trump’s presidency.  

The statement continues with reference to the American working class.  It speaks for “mass resistance by American workers …”. Has the CPP relevant information for the participation of American workers (of any race) in the mobilizations in a number or percent either in terms of workers population or of people participating in the demonstrations, to support the reference to mass resistance by them? And then: “The American working class and people must continue to organize and mobilize in their numbers to make the Biden government act swiftly to respond to these urgent demands”. Does really exist today any significant segment of this American working class from which we can expect this kind of mobilizations and pressure to the government that has also a political character? Which are the manifestations of working class mobilizations and struggles that make relevant such a call, or is it wishful thinking? Which strikes and confrontations with the state, labour union mobilizations, solidarity actions with the people, both victims of US imperialism and fighting force against US imperialism, form the ground for such statements? It is obvious that concrete analysis of the concrete conditions is necessary. From the beginning of the century, USA was after England, the most important base for labour aristocracy and then it surpassed England as this base. Modern revisionism was manifested for first time in the forties exactly in the US, with Bowdlerism and this revisionism was the real reason for quitting in 1940 the Third International. The roots of it go obviously into the thirties. But this revisionism had a social base that was a privileged and extended labour aristocracy. In the ‘60s this labor aristocracy was further strengthened along with parasitism in American society. It was then that the labour unions of dock workers canceled strikes for economic demands, when the US president Johnson appealed to them asking not to disturb the war effort in Vietnam. Statistics data of the year 2015 (www.statista.com), show that percentage as contribution to GDP from the service sector for the US was 77.6%, the highest in the world and according to World Bank data, employment in the service sector as percent of total employment for the year 2010, for the US was 81%, again the highest globally. This is a clear indication that US society represents the most unproductive and parasitic society in today’s world.

Without having a correct picture of the class structure of the American society someone cannot interpret why people by tens of millions vote for republicans Trump and the likes, why the rest vote for Democrats, and why the two parties (these two political gangs of capital) monopoly system, the most undemocratic of all today bourgeois democracies electoral representative systems, is perpetuated. A correct interpretation of political trends and behaviours should be based on a Marxist social class analysis. The meaning of “people” itself has to be correctly defined. In a developed capitalist country, middle strata do not belong to the people. But these are the strata that in the US constitute the majority of the active electoral body (those who as a rule cast a vote in the elections). Another serious factor of divergence between the people (as participating in the economic life) and the citizens (as having political rights) and even more between the people and the active electoral body, are the tens of millions of immigrants either under legal status (but not citizens) or illegal. The social and political consciousness of this category is another question. In any case it would be interesting to have an analysis of the electoral results as it concerns areas, municipalities and neighbourhoods with high concentration of working class when they still exist, or areas with low income people to find whom they voted for.           

Finally, and as it concerns the call for an end to military support to Duterte’s regime, it is not evident whether it serves any meaningful propaganda need, but as it concerns the result, it will be an absolute zero. This does not mean that any pressure from below under any conditions could not have some positive result, but the existing framework defines the outcome.     

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