I urge all progressives to fight reactionaries on every front, but the main one is going to be the battle to save basic democracy in America.
- The idea that Trump’s policies are going to make life better for Americans is laughable
- Given the present system of American politics, the Republicans will not maintain power through the 2018 mid-term elections
- They know it
- The only way for the anti-worker forces to maintain power is by scrapping democracy
- Therefore, progressives must fight for basic democracy now
Will Trump Improve Life for Americans?
Economist Josh Bivens has a good summary of expected Trump policies on line. It doesn’t look good.
Mr. Hitler made immediate improvements in the German economy by massive infrastructure programs and by going to war. Will Mr Trump be able to do the same?
The U.S. Congress has blocked infrastructure programs all the way through the Obama Administration, even though they would have greatly shortened the long recession. It is unlikely that they would allow Mr Trump to implement anything good along those lines, because their main commitment is to the barons of finance, not construction businesses and certainly not to the American workers. Actually, I’d love to be proven wrong on this.
Mr Hitler had tremendous early successes in his war-making, but that was largely because the Great Powers did nothing to rein him in. They thought he would put an end to communism before he struck at any major capitalist countries. It is doubtful that Mr Trump will be able to use war to improve the American economy in any meaningful sense, and it is unlikely that he will receive cooperation from the other major capitalist countries in whatever adventures he undertakes.
The world wars that resulted from the economic crises of the 20th century are not considered available as a “solution” to economic and political crisis today, because of the imminent destruction of the planet.
Capitalist economies have always suffered from phases of “ups” and “downs.” “Down” is already overdue after the long recovery during the Obama Administration. The current expectation of new “tight money” policies, combined with Mr Trump’s new tax cuts for the rich and deregulation policies will create an immediate and painful crisis for working people.
Hard Times Will Likely Dominate the Mid-Term Elections
If one assumes that our American levels of partial democracy continue, it is unlikely that the party in power will fare well in 2018. In fact, the party in power usually does very poorly in mid-term elections.
None of this is a secret, neither to progressives nor to reactionaries.
What Can We Expect about Democracy?
Since around 1980, American democracy has already taken hard knocks at the hands of Republicans. Unions were assailed in every imaginable way. The Voting Rights Act was gutted, big money was sanctified by the Supreme Court, Republican redistricting largely overcame the popular vote, and voter suppression schemes were put into effect all over the nation.
The Obama Administration fought to maintain democracy, but does anyone think the Trump Administration will? If Mr Trump were to make outlandish anti-democratic Executive Orders, for example, who in government would oppose him? Not the legislative branch that is already in the hands of Republicans, and not the judiciary which will return to a reactionary anti-worker majority as soon as Mr Trump makes his first appointment.
Mr Hitler, it is often pointed out, won an election without winning the popular vote. How did he stay in power? How will today’s reactionaries try to stay in power?
Get ready to organize and fight!
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