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 Progressive Labor Party on Race & Racism

OUR FIGHT

 

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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Thursday
Aug192010

Black and Latino Workers Unite to Defeat Bosses’ Racism  

STATEN ISLAND, NY, August 4 — Hundreds of black, white, Asian and Latino workers, students and their families marched and rallied here against the more than 17 known racist attacks against undocumented workers from Latin America. This multi-racial protest was organized by workers from a group that fights for immigrants’ rights, along with PLP. PL’s years of work in a mostly black church united black workers and Latino workers here, in the face of anti-immigrant racism and police terror.

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Thursday
Aug192010

Summer Project 2010: Week of Struggle Sets Tone for Convention  

NEW YORK, NY — The Summer Project showed that PLP is all about trying to create a fighting mass party. Participants came from around the world and boosted the confidence of the youth-led Summer Project, which led up to PLP’s 2010 Convention (see page 3). We sold over 7,550 CHALLENGE’s and improved our tactics of talking to workers when distributing the paper to make contacts and asking workers to pay for the paper. We collected over $2,000 and made dozens of contacts.

We sold CHALLENGE at factories, bus barns, hospitals, schools and working-class neighborhoods. One group spent a day at a military base distributing CHALLENGES and GI Notes and making contacts with soldiers.

Study groups were held on how to build a base for communist revolution and how the fall of the old communist movement affects our fight today.

One of the most significant events of the Project was a demonstration in front of the Council on Foreign Relations where U.S. bosses plan how best to attack workers and wage imperialist war. Another was a demonstration in Staten Island where a few black workers who have been temporarily won to the bosses’ racism have brutally attacked immigrant workers (see article above). PLP is fighting for working-class unity of all workers, immigrant and U.S. born, who have more in common with each other than with the bosses.

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Thursday
Aug192010

Imperialists’ Fight Over Profits, Not ‘Terror,’ Fuels Obama’s Secret/Open Wars

 

PLP has warned for decades that U.S. rulers must conduct ever wider wars to shore up their slipping status as the world’s top imperialists. Now, in addition to their Afghan and Iraqi bloodbaths, the NY Times reports (8/15) that Obama & Co. are running secret and not-so-secret military operations (using Hellfire and cruise missiles, drone attacks and cluster bombs) in Yemen, Somalia, Kenya, Algeria,
Morocco, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Pakistan, Iran, and Tajikistan.

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Thursday
Aug192010

PLP Convention 2010: Internationalism and Youth Lead The Way

 

The historic 2010 Convention of Progressive Labor Party brought to life the slogan ‘one flag, one world, one Party.’ Over 500 members and supporters from at least 17 countries gathered to reaffirm our commitment to communist revolution.

From the first speaker, a young black woman worker explaining in sharp detail the current stage of inter-imperialist rivalry and the irrevocable move towards world capitalist war, to the closing session in which the new International Steering Committee of the
Party was overwhelmingly affirmed by the entire convention, this event marked a significant new stage in the life of the Party.

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Thursday
Aug192010

Cuban Socialism: Wrong Road for Haitian Workers  

A report from friends of the Party travelling in Haiti:

About 100 trade unionists and students
listened attentively to a Cuban diplomat speak about the Cuban Revolution. This political
forum was organized by the teachers’ union as part of a campaign to raise the political
consciousness of their constituency as well as the Haitian masses.

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Thursday
Aug192010

Unemployment: Bosses’ Real GI ‘Benefit’

Melanie Gutermuth is a twenty-five-year-old veteran. She served in the Army for four years. Since the completion of her service, she has been greeted with twelve months of unemployment. Joseph Jacobo is an Iraq war veteran. At the end of his military service, only the streets welcomed him home. He has been homeless since his return. Melanie and Joseph are two among hundreds of thousands of unemployed and/or homeless veterans.

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Thursday
Aug192010

Black and Latin Workers’ Unity Fights Bosses’ Speed Up  

I work in a pharmaceutical plant in the Bronx. Approximately 200 workers are Latino and about 30 are black. When I told several co-workers I was writing an article for CHALLENGE I asked them what I should write about. They said, “the racism of the factory.” Guys, this one is for you.

When the manager does hire, he mostly hires black temporary workers, using them for the two months that the temp agency, not the factory, pays their wages. Then, when the company has to decide if they will hire them, the company fires most but keeps what they call the few “good workers,” or favorites that they think will produce the most profits for the company.

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Thursday
Aug192010

France: What’s Good for GM Is Lousy for Workers  

STRASBOURG, July 31 — In what bosses in France hope will be a trend-setting decision, workers at GM’s automatic transmission plant here approved a 10% cut in wages and benefits in return for keeping their jobs. The two-month struggle with GM illustrates the nightmare of life under capitalism.

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Thursday
Aug192010

As Racist Unemployment Soars, Workers Misery Fuels Rulers’ Recovery  

While the Obama Administration babbles about a supposed “economic recovery” over 33 million U.S. workers are still looking for non-existent jobs. There is only one job for every six jobless workers. The unemployment rate is really 21.6% according to ShadowStats.org which includes short- and long-term discouraged workers and underemployed workers, dwarfing the “official” 9.5% unemployment rate.

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Thursday
Aug192010

In Memoriam: Harriet Rosen  

Harriet Rosen, a life-long supporter of PLP from its earliest days, died on August 8 at 86. She was married to Milt Rosen, one of the original organizers of our Party. Her son sent the following remembrance to CHALLENGE.

I want to thank the Party for the huge help you’ve all given me since I moved my parents to Los Angeles in 2004. This support really shows the true meaning of what it means to be a comrade. Only the working class can care for each other like this; the bosses would rather suck us dry and then leave us to die once we’re no longer profitable to them.

My mom and dad were married in 1946; he was 20, she 22. My dad became active in communist politics right after the war; my mom had left leanings. One night, she and a girlfriend decided to attend a left-wing political meeting “to look for interesting men.” My dad gave a speech at the meeting and she was obviously impressed. She was then dating Harry Bulova, heir to the Bulova Watch fortune. But my mother gave up a possible life of wealth to marry a guy dedicated to overthrowing the capitalist class.

After they were married, they lived in Brooklyn for a while. Then the Communist Party sent my dad to Buffalo, NY, to organize in factories there. Times were hard; I recall eating a lot of army surplus cheese. I do remember they made many friends in Buffalo, becoming very close to Morty and Phyllis Scheer, Helen and Teddy Schwartz and Paul and Jo Sporn. There were many others but these are the ones I recall because I was friendly with their children. My parents stayed life-long friends with these three couples and, as you know, my dad went on to form PL with these people.

My mom loved to entertain. She always had many people over and was always cooking. She was a great cook and got pleasure from preparing food for friends. She always prepared holiday feasts, filling the house with friends and relatives. When she was young, her family was very poor and at times went hungry. I believe this is one reason she enjoyed cooking these delicious meals. She was extremely hospitable. We always had people staying at our house.

My mom came from a dirt-poor family. Her
father was a pharmacist who gave medications away for free to poor people. She had one sister and two brothers. Her fondest childhood memories were of the family going to Rockaway Beach in the spring when it was still deserted and staying through the summer in a rented bungalow (more like a dilapidated shack).

Later, when my parents moved back from Buffalo to NYC (I was five and my sister was an infant), they had no place to stay so we headed right out to Rockaway and rented a cheap bungalow. Returning to Rockaway had huge sentimental value for Harriet because of her childhood memories. I think she liked the desolate nature of the beach and the camaraderie she felt with other friends who were renting there.

It was rough because it was deserted in the spring and my dad was away a lot, organizing PL. But my mom hung in there, supporting him while he built the Party. We returned every summer to Rockaway for at least eight years. I can recall many people staying with us and my mom always cooking and being extremely supportive of the folks visiting us there where my dad had many meetings.

My mom loved the Atlantic Coast. She grew up along the water and later my parents would often vacation with their friends at Montauk. When she’d visit me in LA, she’d always go on about how she preferred the Atlantic Coast because the beaches were wider and the landscape more rugged with dunes, etc.

My mom was the quintessential New Yorker. Few people knew she was a double Math/Physics major at Brooklyn College in the early 1940’s. There weren’t many women taking those subjects then (I believe she was the first such female, double major at BC). Unfortunately, her mom made her drop out of college to go to work.

For many years she was a salesgirl at woman’s clothing stores in Manhattan and also a millinery buyer. When my sister and I were older, she returned to college and got a degree in Art History from Brooklyn College and a Master’s in Library Science from Pratt Institute. For many years she worked as a librarian at the main branch of the Brooklyn Public Library where she became close friends with many of her co-workers.

She was a very loving mother, always helping me with my problems in school. I often got into trouble and she always took my side. When Sam Scheer and I were hit by a car in Cape Cod, Mass., she was the one comforting us on the plane when they flew us back to NYC. While we were in the hospital for five months, she took the train almost daily from Brooklyn up to Columbia Presbyterian Hospital.

My mom was a great person. She was smart, kind and very supportive of the struggle to build a world where all people are respected and treated with dignity. She loved cooking, art and was expert in doing the NY Times crossword puzzle (except the sports questions…the only ones I knew).

She loved to take us to the museum (albeit, my dad and I would sometimes give her a hard time about the modern art). She liked Picasso, partly because of his left-wing views. She had a great sense of humor and loved old Italian movies like “The Bicycle Thief” as well as some of the Italian comedies. She was also a caring grandmother to my sister’s kids and my daughter. I’m glad she was able to spend so much time at my sister’s place watching her grandkids grow up.

It was very sad for me to watch her mind whither away. The diseases which proliferate unchecked in this society are horrible. We’re forced to watch our loved ones die of illnesses that could be cured or at least dealt with more humanely, if we had a society that truly cared for people, not profits.

I’ll always remember my mom as a kind, generous and supportive person. Thanks again to the Party for all your help.