Communist Party USA

  The following report by Joe Sims was given at the National Committee meeting on October 31, 2021. Our country and our class are in the midst of a great battle. It is a battle for democracy and working-class lives. And those two issues — democracy and workers’ lives — are inextricably linked; one cannot be solved without addressing the other. If you think about it, that relationship is at the heart of the debate taking place in the Congress and, more broadly, in the country. And listening to that debate, working people are saying, “Enough with the talking and obstruction. Let’s get it done.” It’s that sentiment that, at least in part, in recent weeks, led over a hundred thousand workers to vote for strike actions and tens of thousands to march on picket lines. This is the most significant labor upsurge since 2018. Workers are fed up with long hours and lousy pay. They’re rejecting two-tier wage scales and unfair labor practices. Millions — and this is no exaggeration — are so fed up that they’re literally quitting their jobs. In August it was 4.3 million souls. And check this out: one-third didn’t have another place of employment lined up when they said “take this job and shove it” and put on their walking shoes. Some are calling this a silent general strike. Others have named it the “Great Resignation.” But whatever you call it, it’s serious and deep, and the ruling class is getting nervous. Yes, on this Halloween afternoon, the bosses are getting scared — not of Frankenstein or Dracula, or Mr. Werewolf, but of the working class. We’ve entered a new class struggle moment. Yes, it’s pretty clear we’ve entered a new class struggle moment. The labor movement is rising up, and our party has got to rise to the occasion with it. This means we’ve got to be more involved and more active. We’ve got to be on the picket lines more and build more extensive community support. How? Maybe it’s by picketing dealerships or by helping organize boycotts. Another idea is to suggest resolutions in City Councils. Clubs can also write letters to the editor or initiate social media campaigns and make memes. Visiting the picket lines, of course, is a must. And while doing so, we’ve got to write articles for the PW, send in photos and videos, and help make People’s World one of the leading voices of this workers’ upsurge. What’s happening is that these strikes began around bread-and-butter issues, but they’re starting to become political, and when that happens — watch out! Let’s remember that the midterm elections are just a year away. And everything that happens between now and then will help determine the outcome. Speaking of determining the outcome, we still don’t know how the $1.75 trillion package will pan out. There’s a lot in it — that’s true. But at the same time, there’s a lot missing: Family leave is missing. Prescription drug pricing is missing. Why? Because Senators Manchin and Sinema don’t want to tax the super rich? Or because the pharmaceuticals insist on maximizing their profits? Can you imagine? Well, people can imagine, and make no mistake — they’re going to draw conclusions. It’s clear that the challenge with this and other legislation was that there hasn’t been enough pressure from below. In fact, with respect to mobilizing public support, there’s been what you might call a “crisis of inaction.” Of course, it’s not like nothing was being done: the civil rights movement did call a national voting rights rally and march on August 28th.…

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An upsurge worth fighting for