Capitalism is the Enemy, Not Immigrant Workers

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Lou Dobbs, Bill O'Reilly and an army of rightwing talk show hosts are busy flooding the air waves with propaganda messages blaming immigrant workers, legal and illegal, for the social problems that beset American society, particularly the working class. According to this rightwing propaganda line, the deterioration of our neighborhoods, increasing crime, unemployment, what they call "cultural and linguistic pollution," are all caused by immigrant workers. They want to put up an impenetrable fence along the US border with Mexico, they want border guards to shoot to kill, they want to deport 12 million illegal immigrants, and so on. In doing this, they prey on mistrust of and discomfort that some workers feel towards newcomers, foreigners, those perceived as outsiders, and whip up irrational fears of xenophobia and racism.

For the working class, this ideological claptrap is absolute poison. Anything that stresses, exaggerates, aggravates, and manipulates differences within the working class, real or imagined contributes to the disunity of the working class and is nothing but an expression of bourgeois ideology against which we must $fight. Sure, ethnic and racial hatreds exist in the working class and are real, and workers who fall for this can always point to empirical facts that justify their views, but they are not legitimate, they are not "rational" because they are contrary to the historic interests of the working class and serve to divide the working class against itself and render it less capable to confront its class enemy.

Capitalist decadence and decomposition are causing greater chaos and crisis in the world and contribute to massive population displacements as growing numbers of workers and other strata become refugees from war, starvation, unemployment, disease, and pestilence. But the problem is not mass migration; it is not that working people flee to some place better to live and support their families. Workers have done this throughout the history of capitalism. The problem is not that workers flee from the disastrous life that capitalism offers them. The problem is capitalism itself, which has become an historically anachronistic social system, that offers humanity a future of barbarism and suffering, and must be overthrown.

Workers have no country, no national loyalties, no national flag, or national culture to protect. The working class is a worldwide class that lives in many countries and where many languages may be spoken, but in which the same class struggle against capitalist exploitation exists. We seek a new world free of exploitation and oppression - a genuine human community, where there will be no nations, no immigration services, no immigration police. The working class will run the world so that social needs are met and scarcity is not a dominant factor, where cooperation, not competition, is the organizing principle in social life. Anyone who gets mad at immigrant workers, legal or illegal, is giving in to the ideology of our capitalist enemies who rejoice when they succeed in dividing us against each other and reduce us to fighting over the crumbs. The capitalists rejoice when we think that we are each others' enemies, that we are citizens of some "country" or "nation" and not a world class of workers who have the historic responsibility to destroy the capitalist's rotten system.

To the rightwing loudmouths who demonize our immigrant class brothers and sisters as scapegoats and fall guys, we have to tell them we're not the idiots they want us to be. We know that it is not immigrant workers who exploit us at work, who cut our health benefits and our pensions, who despoil the environment and unleash the dangers of global warming, who permit the deterioration of our cities and living conditions, who are responsible for imperialist war that destroys and kills, who perfect the means of oppression and repression under the guise of guaranteeing "freedom," who are completely incapable of offering hope for a better future for humanity. We know it is capitalism we must fight, not our class brothers. - Internationalism Oct. 2007