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Labor Day 2009: What is the supreme question of global depression and recession?

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"To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them?  ... "
(William Shakespeare, Hamlet.)

To try to answer the major question of our age, we need not summarize all the thousand fold major expressions of the big crash over the last few months, neither the current 'swine flu' nor the coming 'Spanish Flu'. What is not clear is that the workers of the world have an emancipatory duty to humanity to topple capitalism here and now at its most dangerous but weakest historical moment, at its objective, material collapse, to prevent a coming age of terrorist barbarism, of world fascism beyond imagination. Where should we begin? For America, for Venezuela, could the young Marx, so often cited by President Chavez, give us some revolutionary advice how to achieve a working class consciousness?

Let us look at some events and figures which confirm this inexorable historic tendency.

A while ago, in a commentary "Coming Workers’ Riots in the Metropolis", we described the deplorable situation of the autoworkers of Chrysler, General Motors and of other North American corporate giants. The workers are beginning to see that while they are being told to fasten their belts, to take more pay and job cuts, the billionaires are getting fat bailouts, taken mainly from their taxpayers' money. They learn to see the master-slave relation.

Consequently, they feel being cheated and betrayed by their opulent bosses, by their imposed trade unions which have consigned them to poverty wages. Also, now already they feel economically discriminated by the Obama administration itself. They also complain that fraternity is only valid for ruling class elites and privileged corporate members of the industrial military complex, and that the Democratic party has given them nothing. In this way the seeds of social discontent, mass upheavals, class consciousness and struggles are beginning to germinate, not only in the USA but across the globe. In this way proletarian internationalism and international proletarianism out of vital necessity appear on the horizon of workers' local, national and regional struggles. Due to common class interests and struggles, eventually the General Motors autoworkers of Detroit will meet their colleagues of Opel in Ruesselsheim, Germany.

Certainly, nowadays the divine mills of concentration, monopolization, competition, merging, centralization, outsourcing, corruption and bankruptcy are grinding at breath taking speed. The contemporary situation has become so perverse: financial titans like the Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of America Corp. or  Citigroup Inc. are not fearing the specter of global communism or of proletarian class struggle, rather they shiver at just the idea of capitalist State nationalization. Now the capitalists not only favor 'fraternity' but also 'unity', as the Club of Rome suggest a while ago, that is, a unitary World State.

Hence, workers of the world, also unite! Jobless and homeless, now you really have nothing to lose anymore except your exploitative, dominating and discriminating chains. Not only your real chains, but also your mental, religious and ideological chains of illusion and delusion.

For example, just take notice who all are interested in constructing the very economic foundations of a global fascist, authoritarian and totalitarian Leviathan: some members of Congress, former U.S. Federal Reserve Board chief Alan Greenspan, Nobel Prize winners Joseph Stiglitz and Paul Krugman; and also former Fed vice-chairman Alan Blinder, a professor at Princeton University. De facto, economically the U.S. government is already the sole owner of many giant corporations.

All this will not help.

This is the first truly globalized depression; the previous limited one of 1929 already cost Europe and other places tens of millions of lives, decades of fascist horror and terror, including a brutal nuclear world war. This one in its destructive magnitude will be worse.

In how far this concerns the workers of the world? The world recession has already  ransacked our savings, is cutting our salaries, our social benefits for which we fought ever since the dawn of industrialization.

At this moment, all over 'tent cities' in the USA are sprouting up; Global Research reports:  "housing prices accelerated on the downside indicating bigger adjustments dead-ahead. Trend-lines are steeper now than ever before--nearly perpendicular. Housing prices are not falling, they're crashing and crashing hard. Now that the foreclosure moratorium has ended, Notices of Default (NOD) have spiked to an all-time high."

As mentioned, if this continues in the USA and elsewhere we will soon not only have jobless but also homeless working classes. President Obama can do nothing to stop this collapse of capitalism. This is not a one man job, only the emancipatory, creative efforts of billions can still save humanity in this dreadful era.

This Labor Day, this May Day 2009 ... which will only be celebrated in September in the USA ... is being ushered in under the following ominous 'writings on the wall of woe':

"Market analysts predict there will be 5 MILLION MORE FORECLOSURES BETWEEN NOW AND 2011. It's a disaster bigger than Katrina. Soaring unemployment and rising foreclosures ensure that hundreds of banks and financial institutions will be forced into bankruptcy. 40 percent of delinquent homeowners have already vacated their homes."

Yes, for the world proletariat it is 'to be or not to be', is 'to take arms against a sea of troubles'. 'It is the best of times, it is the worst of times', it is the dawn of global class struggles, is to convert capitalist collapse into socialist emancipation. Surely, the 'Age of Aquarius' is also dawning on the galactic horizon.

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I, Franz John Tennyson Lee, was born in Ficksburg in 1938. I am a South African then classified as "Coloured" by the racist legislation of my home country. Since 1962, having acquired a scholarship to study overseas, I have been living in the (more...)
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