Progressive Labor Party on Race & Racism



Progressive Labor Party (PLP) fights to destroy capitalism and the dictatorship of the capitalist class. We organize workers, soldiers and youth into a revolutionary movement for communism.

Only the dictatorship of the working class — communism — can provide a lasting solution to the disaster that is today’s world for billions of people. This cannot be done through electoral politics, but requires a revolutionary movement and a mass Red Army led by PLP.

Worldwide capitalism, in its relentless drive for profit, inevitably leads to war, fascism, poverty, disease, starvation and environmental destruction. The capitalist class, through its state power — governments, armies, police, schools and culture —  maintains a dictatorship over the world’s workers. The capitalist dictatorship supports, and is supported by, the anti-working-class ideologies of racism, sexism, nationalism, individualism and religion.

While the bosses and their mouthpieces claim “communism is dead,” capitalism is the real failure for billions worldwide. Capitalism returned to Russia and China because socialism retained many aspects of the profit system, like wages and privileges. Russia and China did not establish communism.

Communism means working collectively to build a worker-run society. We will abolish work for wages, money and profits. Everyone will share in society’s benefits and burdens. 

Communism means abolishing racism and the concept of “race.” Capitalism uses racism to super-exploit black, Latino, Asian and indigenous workers, and to divide the entire working class.

Communism means abolishing the special oppression of women — sexism — and divisive gender roles created by the class society.

Communism means abolishing nations and nationalism. One international working class, one world, one Party.

Communism means that the minds of millions of workers must become free from religion’s false promises, unscientific thinking and poisonous ideology. Communism will triumph when the masses of workers can use the science of dialectical materialism to understand, analyze and change the world to meet their needs and aspirations.

  Communism means the Party leads every aspect of society. For this to work, millions of workers — eventually everyone — must become communist organizers. Join Us!


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100 Protest vs. Adjuncts’ Working Conditions

NEW YORK CITY—More than 100 adjuncts, graduate students and professors of the City University of New York (CUNY) picketed outside Democrat New York State Governor Cuomo’s office today, demanding salaries of $7,000 a course, and a seniority plan for adjuncts. Chanting “What’s Outrageous, Adjunct Wages!”, “Down, Down, With Exploitation, Up, Up, With Education.” We then marched a few blocks to the CUNY headquarters and picketed there.
PSC: Business Unionism As Usual
Although most of demonstrators are members of CUNY faculty and staff’s union, the Professional Staff Congress, the PSC did not endorse the protest. The PSC is hoping the governor will sign a “Maintenance of Effort” bill (MOE) that will give the university more money, and is therefore refraining from saying anything critical about him. This is a mistake because (1) it’s likely that Cuomo will veto the bill anyway, as he did in 2015; and (2) the only way to win adjunct salaries of $7K and seniority provisions for adjuncts is to mobilize support from students and working class supporters in the community. Coddling a governor who has forced concessionary contracts on public unions,  pushed through an inferior pension plan for public workers, raised student tuition and  collected millions from New York billionaires for his campaigns, is a losing strategy.
For its part, the liberal PSC misleaders claim to fight for adjuncts and grad students, claiming at various times that the deals they’ve made with CUNY are the best the union could’ve realistically gotten. In response, some adjunct professors and graduate students have organized groups around their own needs within the PSC, and view the full-time faculty as CUNY bosses. The PSC has hung the adjuncts out to dry in exchange for concessions from the CUNY bosses- but the pitting of adjuncts against full-timers is a a part of the bosses’ plan to exploit all education workers, which mainly hurts the mostly Black, Latin and immigrant student population of CUNY, and public colleges generally.
‘An Injury to One Is An Injury To All’
All across the country, university administrators, governors, mayors and state legislators are addicted to cheap labor at public colleges. That’s why the majority of college courses at CUNY and nationally are taught by contingent faculty — adjuncts. Decades ago, three-quarters of the faculty were tenure-track, and one-quarter were not. Now the numbers are reversed, and only a quarter are tenure-track. Of those faculty that are full-time, the greatest proportion are white workers. Of those that are adjunct, a greater proportion than ever are Black, Latin, and women, making the bosses’ pitting of adjuncts against full-timers more and more of a racist divide-and-conquer strategy (Inside Higher Ed, 8/22/16).
As the percentage of adjuncts has steadily risen in recent decades, the faculty union misleaders failed to respond to the rise of adjunct labor as racist and sexist attacks to bring down the security of all faculty workers. Unless the special exploitation of adjunct professors is addressed, there will be fewer and fewer full-time jobs, and more and more incentives for the CUNY bosses to rely on contingent faculty. Ultimately, this means fewer and fewer dollars to colleges for education of New York’s working class youth.
The old slogan “An Injury to One is an Injury to All” shows that if bosses are allowed to more severely exploit one group of workers, they would soon spread that extra exploitation. We see that with adjuncts and we see it more broadly: private sector workers have been forced to accept lower wages and benefits; defined-benefit pensions have been replaced with inferior 401-K plans. Now that conditions in the private sector have been lowered, the capitalist ruling class is going after the public sector. The capitalists have attacked public sector unions for decades through both Democrat and Republican administrations, reducing their wages and benefits, and slashing public spending while lowering taxes on corporations and the very wealthy.
For communists in the Progressive Labor Party, these attacks are opportunities to organize and fight back.
Struggles Ahead
The sharpest of these attacks is the Janus case that’s going before the U.S. Supreme Court in a few weeks. This court case aims at eliminating ‘agency fee’ payments, or union dues, which they hope will weaken unions by damaging their treasuries. In the meantime, the union misleaders have buried their heads in the sand by backing liberal Democrat politicians, instead of organizing  and building support against these attacks. There are more than 200,000 public workers in NYC who are threatened by this court case, and yet there have been no mass demonstrations.
Unions like the PSC offer only bad solutions. PLP fights for real improvements for adjuncts, full-timers, and students, while organizing for the overthrow of the entire system that makes this exploitation possible. For PL’ers, adjuncts and full-time faculty organizing their 275,000 working-class CUNY students is a primary task. These youth are being prepared by the capitalist class for either precarious, low-paying jobs, or into the military to fight and die for U.S. imperialism. Almost half of college graduates in the U.S. have jobs that don’t require a college education, and also half work in low-wage jobs.
Students, adjunct and full-time faculty, and campus workers are all working class sisters and brothers who have no need for this exploitative system. We need to stand up and fight - and continue building alliances of students, workers and faculty - to build a mass movement to take this struggle all the way to communism.

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