I tidningen Socialist Worker har man intervjuat en mängd amerikanska vänstermänniskor om Obamas valseger och vad som följer:
Howard Zinn, Historian and veteran activist, author of the classic book A People’s History of the United States.:
So it will take a revivified social movement to do for Obama what the strikers and tenant organizers and unemployed councils and agitators of the early 1930s did for FDR, pushing him into new paths, so angering the superrich that FDR, in one of his best moments, said, ”They hate me, and I welcome their hatred!”
Obama needs such fire. It is up to us, the citizenry–and non-citizens too!–to ignite it.
More importantly, tens of millions of voters have reversed the verdict of 1968: this time choosing economic solidarity over racial division. Indeed, this election has been a virtual plebiscite on the future of class-consciousness in the United States, and the vote–thanks especially to working women–is an extraordinary vindication of progressive hopes.
First, there is no hope whatsoever of the spontaneous generation of a new New Deal (or for that matter, of Rooseveltian liberals) without the combustion of massive social struggles.
Second, after the brief Woodstock of an Obama inauguration, millions of hearts will be broken by the administration’s inability to manage mass bankruptcy and unemployment, as well as end the wars in the Middle East.
Third, the Bushites may be dead, but the hate-spewing nativist Right (particularly the Lou Dobbs wing) is well-positioned for a dramatic revival as neoliberal solutions fail.
The great challenge to small bands of the left is to anticipate this mass disillusionment, understanding that our task is not ”how to move Obama leftward,” but to salvage and reorganize shattered hopes. The transitional program must be socialism itself.
Sharon Smith, author of Subterranean Fire: A History of Working-Class Radicalism in the United States and Women and Socialism:
IT IS worth remembering that only 50 years ago, African Americans were denied the right to even cast a vote in presidential elections, much less run for office. These rights were won only after the massive struggles of the civil rights movement finally broke the Democratic Party from its segregationist legacy.
Obama’s victory marks a blow against racism of similarly historic proportion. Despite McCain’s and Palin’s best efforts to whip up racial animosity toward Obama, they failed to garner a majority of voters for their hate-filled campaign. To be sure, the changing demographics of the U.S. voting population has reduced the relative importance of the white vote, while boosting that of Blacks, Latinos and other immigrants.
We have not seen a rise in class struggle for more than three decades in the U.S. But the class anger on display in this election could well be a prelude to such a rise in coming years. Obama has promised ”change,” but the scale of change that is needed requires mass struggle from below.
Ken Riley, president of the International Longshoremen’s Association Local 1422 in Charleston, S.C.
ELECTION DAY has been phenomenal in South Carolina. Among young African Americans, the idea of not voting is unpopular and uncool.
I was in line to vote early on Election Day and saw a lot of young people I knew–I couldn’t believe they were 18 already. I gave one young man who just turned 18 a ride to vote, and he couldn’t have been more proud. That’s the kind of energy and excitement we have in the African American community in Charleston. We expect 2,000 people at the union hall tonight.
Therefore, you won’t see people cast a vote and back off. There will be significant organizing. If there is such a thing as trickle-down, that is what’s going to trickle down.
Där finns fler intervjuer, Tariq Ali, Donna Smith, Anthony Arnove och Rosi Carrasco. Gemensamt är att de ser positivt på Obamas seger, men för att det ska ske några verkliga förändringar krävs social kamp.
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