This past primary election in Pennsylvania, on May 16, I took part in my division’s election board, and I helped people work the new computerized voting machines. People have lost their lives so that WE can have this precious weapon of working people, so affect positive change in our communities and our lives. Whatever you do, please don’t give up this right, and don’t let anyone take it from us.
The Republican-led House of Representatives is hell-bent on ending the programs so many American depend on to survive—Social Security, Medicare, and veterans’ benefits— which, full disclosure, I also depend upon. The republicans, led by “Speaker” Kevin McCarthy (at the sufferance of the MAGA maniacs he depends on to say in how position), insist on “work requirements” for recipients, such as 20-or so hours of side work.
How much work can you get out of a 70- year old veteran, who has mental trauma and some physical injuries; or a construction and building-trades retiree, whose body is worn out from physical demanding labor for 30-some years; or someone in a wheelchair due to a disability, or a single mother needing help with her kids?
That’s the capitalists’ dream—flood the job market with millions of unemployed workers, to prevent employed workers from going out on strike for higher wages (well-deserved) and the unemployed workers are a pool of scab labor; plus the workers would be at war with themselves over attaining the jobs that are in short supply, in a playbook resembling The Hunger Games.
The Republicans aren’t aware that if they have their way with this, people will lose their homes, their food supplies, and their health; or maybe they ARE aware and don’t care. If Biden DOESN’T go with their evil scheme, and the federal government defaults on its debts, the economy of the nation, and the world, will collapse; the Stock Market will crash, millions will be unemployed, for starters. But again, the GOPricks running the House doesn’t think about that, it’s just “destroy Biden and get Trump back in!” And THIS is supposedly the party of fiscal responsibility!
The news is in—Biden and McCarthy have reached a tentative deal on spending, which raises the debt ceiling for two years, and has some work requirements, though it would not be as bad as the Republicans demanded. However, it still would not be enough for the MAGA caucus in the House, whose permission McCarthy needs to stay as Speaker, probably still would welcome a default and the economic catastrophe that would occur. (https://www.cnn.com/2023/05/27/politics/debt-limit-negotiations-latest/index.html?utm_term=1685278240157d92a43bbe9cf&utm_source=cnn_Five+Things+for+Sunday%2C+May+28%2C+2023&utm_medium=email&bt_ee=Dn5hHjlduTwichDHbdPqsNkn15m8EwUPDhQjxycCp5w3wdiCG770mvCaLexMLJD7&bt_ts=1685278240160) (https://www.alternet.org/crazy-cuckoo-maga-people/?utm_source=123456&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=14523)
And in this discussion—or threatening if you will—of a federal default, we have to overcome the “two sides are equally bad” idea, like it’s a squabble between two kids in the playground. The long-term goal of the right, in all its forms, is to undo the advancements that have occurred in the past few decades that uplifted working, low-income, and marginalized people, since FDR. We—Labor, Civil rights, LGBTQ, Feminists, and other activists—are the decedents of those who have campaigned and fought for these things we enjoy, sometimes at the cost of their lives.
SO, we’ll pick up where they left off. We’ll continue the fight for equality and justice that our ancestors fought for, and we’ll move them further. to do that requires we educate ourselves about the reality of our history and our present, organize our communities and worksites, and get out to vote whenever there is an election. We’ve done it before, we’ll do it again.
Stay safe, stay strong, and stay together! Slava Ukraini! America will be free! Bye!