17-01-2021: The USA is once again divided, this time over the events of January 6 in the capital of Washington DC. A protest called by President Donald Trump possibly drew up to 300 000 supporters, all of them rightly enraged by blatant electoral fraud in the November election which the corporate media called for Joe Biden and the Democrats. In circumstances that remain under a cloud, a very small section of the crowd was either allowed or forced their way into the Capitol Building where the Congress was deciding whether to accept the electoral college votes, the final process which elects the Presidency. During some clashes with police and security, one woman was shot dead, while three others died from “medical emergencies” at the Capitol grounds. The woman who lost her life was Ashli Babbitt, a Trump supporter and Air Force veteran of some 14 years. She was totally unarmed, and was shot at close range while there were police in front and behind her.
Hypocrisy of the so-called left
Without a hint of irony, some on the so-called left, such as the Socialist Equality Party (SEP), immediately labelled the protest a “fascist coup”. The Internationalist Group (IG) breathlessly claimed the protest contained “white supremacists” and “racists” alongside “fascists”. They were joined by the liberal corporate media who raced to label it the “worst day in American history”, and claimed that the protesters “stormed” Capitol Hill and resorted to political violence. Really? Out of a crowd of hundreds of thousands, a handful of them managed to get into the Congress, tip over some furniture, take selfies sitting in the halls, before being led back out? What about the violence of the police who shot dead Ashli Babbitt? Protesting outside the seat of power or a parliament in an effort to force representatives to listen to some demands is as old as the hills. And what was the demand? The main demand was “Stop the Steal” of the election, and perhaps also “Audit the Vote”. These demands are entirely legitimate, and under the circumstances – when there are videos showing suitcases full of ballots being pulled out from under a table in Georgia – rather moderate.
Who was it that started the real political violence? Wasn’t that the so-called left during the fake pandemic of 2020? Ostensibly in response to the alleged murder of African American man George Floyd at the hands of police, the circumstances of which are disputed, much of the so-called left went on a rampage of political violence that went for months. Led by Black Lives Matter (BLM), Antifa and the lockdown left (Union officials and self-proclaimed “socialist” parties who enthusiastically joined with the capitalist state to help enforce scientifically groundless lockdowns), throngs of youth burnt, looted and destroyed buildings across the USA. In Minneapolis, the mobs attacked and burnt the police precinct to the ground, set fire to cars and 16 nearby buildings, and destroyed a bus stop. More than 1500 businesses in the city were damaged, looted or destroyed by BLM/Antifa. In the aftermath, many stores and even childcare centres were boarded up with signs pasted on them pleading with BLM/Antifa not to attack them. Many of the shops and businesses that were damaged or destroyed by the “anti-racist” mobs were in fact owned and run by African Americans or other minorities.
In Portland, Oregon, the city was under siege form BLM/Antifa mobs for 47 days straight, while local Democrat politicians refused to take effective action against them. Federal agents were deployed to protect the courthouse from being burnt to the ground. BLM/Antifa had wooden shields, and were armed with spray bottles filled with bleach, along with firecrackers which they fired at police. Explosives were launched at the courthouse, while people who disagreed with the violence were roughly shoved aside. Courthouses are a part of the state as much as Capitol Hill, but liberals excused or strongly supported a daily violent assault on a courthouse in Oregon for five weeks, but condemned a rowdy protest for a couple of hours on Capitol Hill on January 6?
A short two years ago, liberals were protesting the appointment to the Supreme Court of Brett Kavanaugh, over unproven allegations that he may have inappropriately dealt with a woman some 35 years ago. At that time, liberals marched to the very same Capitol Hill and occupied part of the Hart Senate Office building. No one from the so-called left at that time complained one whit about a “storming” of the home of democracy. Or, how about the establishment of the Capital Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ) in the middle of Seattle in June last year? Six city blocks were occupied by BLM/Antifa and supporters, barricades were set up and police were expelled. The Democratic mayor of Seattle refused to act against the occupation until such time as an unidentified shooter shot someone dead – who happened to be a black man. Riots, occupations, burning down police stations, laying siege to courthouses – this is all supposedly a protest against racism. Yet marching on Capitol Hill to demand the votes of an election be audited, where a handful breach police lines – is “domestic terrorism” ?
Big Tech censors….the President
Using the spurious claim that President Trump is “inciting violence”, Twitter has permanently deleted Trump’s account, and Facebook has suspended him. This came when Trump actually called on his supporters on January 6 to “go home and go home in peace”. Some incitement to violence! Whistleblower Edward Snowden, from exile in Russia, correctly noted that Twitter and Facebook banning or suspending the President of the United States of America will go down as a turning point in the battle for control over digital speech. Many have observed that if the “leader of the free world” can be deplatformed, then free speech itself may well be at an end. Social media is the modern equivalent of the town square. If one of the most powerful political office holders in the world can be prevented from speaking in the town square, ANYONE can be silenced. What is more, they are being silenced by Big Tech giants headed by liberals, which gives the impression that the “left” is instituting a global power grab. We must stress, repeatedly, liberals today are not left-wing in any practical sense. In fact, liberalism at the apex of some the most powerful corporations in the world, is nowadays much more dangerous to working people than conservatism.
It has happened in the past that the liberal wing of the ruling class can occasionally be more right-wing than the conservative wing. Today, however, we can observe that the liberal flank of the world bourgeoisie is consistently more reactionary and more right-wing than its conservative counterpart. Examples abound. Not only do Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg regard themselves as progressive liberals, but so does Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and billionaire financier and funder of umpteen colour revolutions, George Soros. These types personify the liberal bourgeoisie, and probably its project ever since 2016 was to depose Donald Trump using any means necessary. Arguably, the “fascist coup” began at that time, and only culminated with the BLM/Antifa riots throughout 2020 followed by the almost limitless electoral fraud in the 2020 Presidential Election.
We have no illusions that Donald Trump supporters, and whatever movement may follow, can fully represent the interests of working people. However, liberalism has moved so far to the right over the last twenty years that it can now appear that the “right-wing” Trump supporters are fighting the system which is dragging us all down into a pit of staggering inequality. Even if Trump supporters and QAnon and others identify as politically conservative, what they are actually doing in practice is at least confronting capitalism as it declines into decay. To some extent, they are preventing capitalism from further encroachments on the lives of working people. They certainly did this when many of them stridently opposed the scientifically groundless and medically absurd “Covid” lockdowns, mandatory facemask wearing and the threat of a mandatory “Covid” vaccine.
The end of liberalism
There is no political space for liberalism when capitalism cannot dole out any reforms. This is why liberalism today cannot allow any debate or discussion like it did in the 1960s and 70s, and why it degenerates into “cancel culture”. In the 1960s, 70s and even in the 80s to some extent, capitalism was still profitable enough for big capital to allow minor reforms here and there. Now, capitalism cannot allow even a small reform, because economically it is at a dead-end. The SEP, IG and the lockdown left understand this, but they still operate politically as though it is the 20th Century, i.e., liberals and social-democrats are partial allies, and conservatives are enemies. In the 21st Century, due to the exhaustion of the capitalist economic system, the roles have been reversed. So the SEP, the IG and the lockdown left and fellow travelers label Trump and his supporters as “fascist”, even though today the liberal corporate dominators of the world help enforce measures which would make a 20th Century fascist blush. No 20th Century fascist would have contemplated lockdowns in their wildest dreams.
To describe the January 6 protest in Washington, which had the central demand of “Stop the Steal” (or even Audit the Vote), as “fascist” or “white supremacist” is to misinterpret and misanalyse the basic political factors which led to the election of President Trump in the first place. Firstly, the so-called left had moved so far to the right from the year 2000 onwards, that it was barely capable of reaching working people. It had to use identity politics (the vast and almost singular overemphasis of the problems of racism, sexism and homo and trans phobia over and above the centrality of class issues) in an effort to still appear left-wing. This backfired spectacularly, as many workers correctly saw that no overblown rhetoric would solve their day to day issues. It is not “racist” or “white supremacist” to reject the class betrayal of identity politics. But neither is the answer to move to the conservative right. Nevertheless, Trump rejected identity politics, was seen as an outsider to the Washington political elite and appealed (perhaps demagogically) to the “forgotten man” and “forgotten woman”.
Trump also railed against unending regime change wars (e.g. Libya and Syria) which the Democrats had prosecuted under entirely false “humanitarian” grounds. Trump spoke his mind, did not speak with typical corporate politician spin, and gave it straight – even if this meant some level of crudity. There was certainly a history of racism in Trump’s business activity, and he no doubt used it to “build the wall” with Mexico. Even so, many working-class Americans were prepared to look the other way on such things, in order to have someone shake up the establishment. The other option was clearly not viable – the Democrats would continue tyrannical capitalist austerity with a sprinkling of deceitful “anti-racist” and “progressive” verbiage. 21st Century liberalism such as this has absolutely nothing to offer the working class. This is the basis for the popularity of Trump – not overt racism, or white supremacism or, mercifully, fascism.
Offer workers a real left
The lockdown “left” have politics upside down. Workers are not under a fascist threat from conservatism, but on the contrary, are under the threat of what might be termed liberal lockdown fascism. Liberalism has merged with the various states of capitalist imperialism to become the greatest threat facing workers today. All of its components – Big Tech, Big Pharma, the Union officials, the social-democratic bourgeois parties (Democrats in the US, Labour in the UK, Labor in Australia), liberal academia, “progressive” professionals and the lockdown left (self-described “socialist” organisations e.g. the SEP, the IG) – willingly implement the dictates of the state representing the smallest and richest minority in world history. Arguably, liberals throughout this pandemic of lies have demonstrated that they are far more aggressive and far more hostile to ANY dissenting or differing political views than the Nazis of the 1930s ever were.
Needless to say, even though the conservative right are today in some ways more left-wing than liberalism, their politics is not what workers urgently need. What is required, in the US and internationally, is a socialist movement which seeks to defend the basic interests of working people across the board – on bread and butter issues right up to and including firm opposition to imperialist war. This movement must NOT alienate or turn away any worker with identity and/or “moral” fronts, but should seek to bond the plethora of critical issues to the class struggle of labour against finance capital. Workers are prepared to fight for a movement which respects them for who they are. Vital for such a perspective is the assembly of internationally linked Leninist vanguard parties which seek to guide workers towards public ownership of the means of production and a planned economy.
 https://www.unz.com/ghood/her-name-was-ashli-babbitt/ (12-01-2021)