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Dems and Reps Unite for Cuts

by We know Whats up Friday, Jul. 31, 2009 at 5:40 AM

While billionaires get bailed out and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq continue THE BUDGET CRISIS IS A LIE! THERE IS MONEY THE RICH ARE STEALING IT.

Left: The gang leading the assault on California's workers on behalf of global capitalism, Schwarzenegger, Karen Bass, Darryl Steinberg

The Wall Street Journal announced in its July 13th editorial that good news comes out of California; “California Progress” is the editorial’s title. The “progress” is the budget deal struck between the Republicans and Democrats that “…implements the deep cuts the {Republican} party had sought for years.” “They have realized Reagan’s vision of a smaller state and local government.” the editorial adds.

The “deep cuts” are primarily in education, some billion worth. The Wall Street Journal editorial describes California’s education and health care programs as “bloated” and “previously untouchable.” The Republicans were able to get these concessions from Democrats, one commentator points out, because they refused to back down even when the state’s crisis worsened. So not backing down produces results it seems, perhaps the heads of organized Labor might take note of this.

The overall package is designed to eliminate a billion deficit and comes on the heels of earlier attacks in the form of tax increases to fill a billion hole. Most economists expect next year’s deficit to be between and billion. As early as this fall, the politicians of the corporations will be coming to workers and the middle class for further cuts.

The Democratic Party, the so-called “friend” of the worker and defender of our interests, cooperated willingly in this attack on workers and the middle class. Sure, for the benefit of the public they cried crocodile tears and said a few nasty words about the millionaire Schwarzenegger here and there. But on the main issue, that the cost of rescuing capitalism from its worst economic crisis in 70 years will fall on the shoulders of working people, in particular the poorest of us as well as youth, the aged and disabled, on this, Democrats and Republican’s agree.

Along with the cuts in services, state workers are taking 14% cuts in pay in the form of forced furloughs. “The state and its people have to make major sacrifices. There’s no two ways about it.” Says Schwarzenegger through their media. His Democratic friend, Karen Bass, State Assembly Speaker, backs the governor up, “… make no mistake”, she says “this is a budget of shared sacrifice and shared pain.”

These people are thugs. In enacting this budget they are committing acts of violence against the working people of California. These same people, Republican and Democrat alike have participated in perhaps the greatest transfer of wealth from US workers to the bankers, speculators and other social parasites in US history. They are economic terrorists,

It’s not going to get better. The total exposure of the US taxpayer to the financial crisis could hit .7 trillion, Neil Barofsky, overseer of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (Tarp) told the congressional oversight committee this week. With the first half of the 0 billion of TARP money the banks bought other banks and used it to make more money in the marketplace. The taxpayer, particularly our children, whose futures are being sacrificed by this unprecedented accumulation of debt, have no idea where this money of ours is going. The TARP fiasco is being described by economists as a “Don’t ask don’t tell” program.

Bill Lockyer, the State Treasurer, has been putting the pressure on for the moneylenders, many of whom refused to accept the state’s IOU’s; the very same banks that received billions from taxpayers. The further the state slips in to crisis, the more the moneylenders will charge the working class for lending our money back to us. “They’re the one’s paying the interest on the IOU’s issued by the government of the world’s eighth largest economy” says Lockyer, says as if he cares about working people.

The response from the workers of California has been muted, limited in the main to protests and, in the case of teachers, wearing pink on a certain days to show the public, and the politicians that they are all opposed to layoffs.

The muted response is primarily due to the failure of the potentially powerful California Labor movement to mobilize workers in defense of our own interests. Union leaders are not willing, like the Republicans have been, to stand firm, instead capitulating to our enemies every step of the way.

Despite trillions of dollars of taxpayer’s money the Republicans and Democrats have handed over to the bankers, the heads of organized Labor continue to make the same basic arguments as the employer’s and their two political parties to justify these attacks on working people. The transit workers in the San Fransisco Bay Area are in negotiations and, with a correct strategy and approach, could start the ball rolling by bringing the local economy to a halt. A crisis brought about by capital is one thing---a crisis brought about by Labor and for working people is a positive crisis. But, a Union official made their stance very clear when interviewed about the state of negotiations referring to the transit talks as “Concession bargaining”. This is the position of the entire Labor leadership and gives the employers great confidence and sense of security demoralizing workers at the same time.

The website of the California Teachers Association, an affiliate of the largest Union in the country with some 330,000 members statewide has the following to say about the budget compromise between the two parties of the corporations:

“The Governor signed the compromise budget agreement this morning -- protecting Prop. 98 and restoring billions cut from schools and colleges once the economy improves.

CTA thanks our many members who have reached out to Legislators and the Governor to ensure education is not forgotten during the budget crisis. Check back for updates and CTA's official statement.” http://www.cta.com

This is nothing less than disgraceful. It is hard not to personalize the issue reading such garbage. CTA’s own members are facing 14% pay cuts, education, health care, national parks and other services are being savaged and this is all the leadership of a Union with more than quarter of a million members has to say as they pour millions of dollars of workers’ hard earned money down that sinkhole called the Democratic party. The SEIU, often referred to by the employers as the most powerful Union in the United States is "fighting" the cuts, say reports in the media. What does this amount to? They are filing lawsuits. Unions weren't built by filing lawsuits.

Around the world there are increasing struggles against the effects of this global crisis of capitalism. Workplace occupations and pitched battles with the authorities are increasing and taking place in Korea, England, Ireland, France and other countries. Here in the US there is increased activity among youth whose education is being sacrificed as at the same time the prospect of a decent job is being denied them.

Consciousness lags behind events we say, and the severity of the attacks and what seems an insurmountable obstacle, a combination of the employers, their political representatives in both major parties and the trade Union leaders, will not hold the movement back indefinitely. Big business’ solution to a crisis of indebtedness is to borrow more money stoking further crisis. This collapse of what is called the Anglo Saxon economic model has changed the global landscape and discredited US finance capital. It also places on the agenda the demand for nationalization of the financial sector, the banks and finance houses. This would be a step forward even within a capitalist economy and would not mean nationalizing bank deposits. Capital allocation cannot remain in the hands of thieves like Robert Rubin or Larry Summers.

Nationalizing the banks has been advocated by numerous capitalist economists and it is something we should support. However, there is no permanent solution but the elimination of production for profit and the public ownership of the means by which we produce the necessities of life from transportation to education. Under workers control and management a rational democratic socialist plan of production can replace the anarchy and profit obsessed market economy. They always argue that they take the risks so they deserve the profits. Well this crisis has shown quite clearly that it is us; it is the taxpayer, the workers and the middle class that is taking the risks. Then we’ll make the decisions and take the profits too.

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