Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Whose Crisis? Our Crisis!

The crisis in which we find ourselves is not a crisis of the capitalist class, much less a crisis of the capitalist mode of production. Nor is it even a crisis of neoliberalism. It's a crisis of the working class, plain and simple.

What's in store for us, especially in the United States (where the working class has virtually ceased industrial action), is "a dramatic pro-capital redistribution" of the sort seen in Japan after the collapse of its asset bubbles -- only much more brutal.

As Rahm Emanuel said, "You never want a serious crisis to go to waste," and, sure enough, the Barack H. Obama administration is doing all it can to make it easy for the capitalist class to make the best of the opportunities presented by this crisis and to further cut back the wages and benefits of workers in the primary labor market. Above all, the United States government is leading by example: Mary Williams Walsh and Jonathan Glater, "Contracts Now Seen as Being Rewritable" (New York Times, 30 March 2009). The attack on autoworkers sets the tone.