Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Please note I have a new phone number...


Alan Maki

Alan Maki
Doing research at the LBJ Library in Austin, Texas

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

A program for real change...


What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.

"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Let's talk...

Let's talk...

Friday, August 12, 2011

A Midsummer Night's Dream Obama has sold out the working class

Letter to the Editor submitted for publication to Morning Star Online;

In the article "A Midsummer Night's Dream Obama has sold out the working class" there are several conclusions needing to be addressed.

First of all, Obama was never an advocate for the working class. Obama has always been an advocate for Wall Street's agenda. So, to suggest he has "sold out" the working class is not correct. Wall Street put Obama in office to attack the working class and it is obvious the writer, Phil Amadon, does not understand this; Amadon started this article on a false premise.

Second; completely ignored is the fact that Obama still has to contend with a Primary challenge before there is any discussion of his re-election in 2012. It is not cut-and-dried that Obama will be the Democratic Party's candidate in 2012 because more and more people are coming to the realization that Obama has no chance of being re-elected considering he presides over: three wars; soaring food, gas, electricity and home heating fuel prices; massive unemployment and rising home foreclosures and evictions. Any worker voting for Obama under these circumstances would have to have their head examined.  

Amadon then goes on without explaining the reason for this controversy swirling around raising the debt ceiling.

Obama joining with Republicans to shove this debt ceiling legislation down our throats is part of the austerity measures being used to force the working class to pay for imperialist wars. These austerity measures include depriving working people of their most basic and fundamental rights in an attempt to prevent working people from fighting back against these austerity measures ordered by Wall Street and imposed by Obama together with the Democrats and Republicans.

While it is true there are divisions in the capitalist class, these divisions are not around "left" and "right." There is nothing to suggest that Wall Street has anything other than an ultra-right agenda of which Barack Obama is their main voice in pushing wars abroad and austerity measures at home to pay for these dirty imperialist wars. Isn't this an "ultra-right" agenda?

The Social Security Trust Fund has been looted by the politicians to pay for wars and now they don't want to make good on the "IOU's" they left behind, and this is why Social Security has been placed on the budget cutting table.

Amadon does not mention that the majority of the working class is opposed to these wars; in fact, for some reason, Amadon doesn't even mention these imperialist wars that are wasting valuable resources that could be used for job-creating programs like health care, child care and fighting global warming.

As an example: For much less than militarism and wars are costing us we could build a world-class National Public Health Care System creating over ten-million new jobs providing the American people with free health care through over 30,000 primary health care facilities spread out in all the communities and neighborhoods across the United States instead of having U.S. military bases dotting the globe protecting Wall Street's interests.

Apparently Amadon does not understand the "two-party trap" consisting of both the Democrats and Republicans that has been set by Wall Street for the working class.

Amadon must move in a very small circle since I have found few working people and rank-and-file activists still supporting, or willing to vote for, Obama. Those in the upper echelons of organized labor who live more like Wall Street coupon clippers than workers do continue their support for Obama but this support for Obama has caused them to lose credibility with rank-and-file workers and local union leaders. There are many people in the United States considering building a working class based people's party with efforts underway. The Morning Star should consider providing coverage of these efforts.

Capitalism is on the skids to oblivion and the thoroughly reactionary Barack Obama working at Wall Street's behest is dragging us down the road to perdition with wars paid for through austerity measures from which Wall Street profits in many ways as a direct result of the lowering of the standard of living of the working class.

I would suggest, sometimes before Election Day, Phil Amadon should ask his rank-and-file activist friends:

How is Barack Obama's Wall Street war economy working for you?

End the wars. Tax the rich. Create jobs through government programs designed to solve the problems of the people.

The left has a right to expect much better analysis from a feature article in the Morning Star.

Alan L. Maki
Director of Organizing,
Midwest Casino Workers Organizing Council

(full contact information at the bottom)


A Midsummer Night's Dream Obama has sold out the working class

Wednesday 10 August 2011

The passage of the debt ceiling Bill marks a dangerous moment for the workers' movement in the US.
As Vermont's Independent Senator Bernie Sanders has so clearly pointed out, this "debt ceiling compromise" is in fact a sweeping victory for the wealthy, the largest corporations and banks and the ultra-right.
There is nothing in it for working people that is worth the terrible price being paid. It locks the US into austerity, cuts and no new revenue.
It allegedly preserves social security, which the Democratic leadership and the White House should never have even allowed on the table, as it does not contribute to the deficit in a real way.
Whatever issue there is with social security could easily be fixed by raising social security taxes on higher incomes.
Medicare is allegedly secure from cuts but only if the "Debt Ceiling Committee of 12" - the special bipartisan joint committee of Congress - can find enough extra cuts to prevent the automatic, across-the-board cuts to everything provided for in the debt ceiling Bill.
If this were a union-negotiated deal, it would clearly be a "sell-out" of the rank-and-file workers.
If this were a union struggle it would be time to organise a rank-and-file committee to wrest leadership of the struggle from those who sold us out, without undermining the union.
It is true that the right wing of the capitalist class is the originator and big winner in this struggle.
What is also true and crucial is that in the class war the US is locked into now, this loss is even more important than all the individual union struggles put together and so betrayal of the rank and file in this debt ceiling struggle is more serious than in any single unsavoury contract negotiation.
Most rank-and-file activists I know see no alternative to the president and his party in 2012 to defeat their howling enemies of the ultra-right and the Republicans - the "vanguard party of the capitalist class."
In the winner-take-all arena of US politics it is true that the president and his party are the only ones capable of defeating the ultra-right and the Republicans so they are the only realistic choice in the voting booth in 2012.
It is also true that the president and his party are governing in a way that is discouraging and angering multitudes of his working-class supporters.
The sense of betrayal is strong in many quarters.
The possibility of defeat at the hands of the "stay-at-home voter" is stronger now than before. When it comes to voting, people are more inspired by hope for change than disgust with Tea Party lunacy.
The president and his party allowed the debt conversation to dominate the political conversation rather than a job-creating stimulus.
They essentially took the struggle for stimulus off the table in a serious way and so locked the US into a low growth, jobless austerity.
The US working class can no longer allow the Democratic Party and its leaders to set the agenda for the struggle against the ultra-right.
Conciliation, compromise, bipartisanship with these ruthless Republicans is absolutely senseless. The workers' movement needs to stir up street heat, "Wisconsin-style" times 10.
In the realm of the political discourse the attitude of meeting the Republicans head on must be intensified, focussing on defeating them rather than conciliating them, both politically and ideologically. US workers can trust no-one outside the labour movement to do this for them.

Alan L. Maki
Director of Organizing,
Midwest Casino Workers Organizing Council
58891 County Road 13
Warroad, Minnesota 56763

Phone: 218-386-2432
Cell: 651-587-5541

Primary E-mail: amaki000@centurytel.net