Solidarity-a loose association of ex-revolutionary socialists, ordinary reformists, and other disparate radicals-has gone way out of its way to defend the capitalist government’s attack on Carey and the Teamsters Union. This group is a far more aggressive and shameless defender of government intervention in the Teamsters than are the central leaders of the Teamsters for a Democratic Union (TDU-see article on page 17).
Solidarity spokespersons defended support to the government in their own publication, Against the Current, and in various “socialist” and “leftist” publications. It’s likely that their zealous defense of TDU leaders’ policy may have been a mite embarrassing to them.
On several occasions, we are very sorry to say, Solidarity’s polemics justifying the government’s attack on the Teamsters Union appeared in the pages of International Viewpoint.
This magazine is the public voice of the Fourth International (FI), which was founded by Leon Trotsky to advance the cause of world socialism.
(Trotsky along with Lenin were central leaders of the October 1917 Socialist Revolution in Russia and were advocates, par-excellence, of working-class independence from the capitalist class, its governments, and its other agencies.)
Socialist Action, the political organization whose views are reflected in this newspaper, is in principled support of the historic program and goals of the world party founded by Leon Trotsky.
And since we are fraternally associated with the FI, we are obligated to make public our strong opposition to International Viewpoint’s de facto political support to Solidarity’s shameful defense of the government takeover of the Teamsters.
Besides repeatedly printing Solidarity’s viewpoint on this matter without a word of criticism, support to Solidarity’s viewpoint is further evidenced by International Viewpoint’s failure to publish opposing articles, written for Socialist Action newspaper by members of Socialist Action, which defended Carey against the government.
What is the meaning of the word, “solidarity”? Its meaning is immortalized in the well-known labor anthem “Solidarity Forever,” and the time-honored labor slogan: “An injury to one is an injury to all!”
Simply put, working-class solidarity is the workers’ strategic answer to the capitalist strategy of divide and conquer. Because workers are the great majority and capitalists a tiny minority, it’s the only strategy open to them.
The real immediate target of the government’s assault on Ron Carey was the Teamsters Union. And the longer range target is the entire American working class and all its class-based economic and political organizations.
Any organization that calls itself “socialist” should know better than to justify such a government attack.
It doesn’t take a master logician to see that if the bosses or their direct agents, in this case the government, are allowed to enter a union headquarters unchallenged to arrest, physically remove, or otherwise do injury to its leaders, then, as history shows, they can do it to anyone in the workers’ movement.
Those who lay claim or aspire to leadership of workers were obliged to do whatever is necessary and possible to defend the most outstanding militant trade unionist this country has seen in over half a century from an attack by the bosses and their government. It’s an elementary exercise of the principle of working-class solidarity!
The political grouping called “Solidarity” failed in its obligation to act in solidarity with an outstanding workers’ leader and in defense of working-class interests.
All supporters of the Fourth International should join Socialist Action in repudiating those responsible for the shameful support given to this act of betrayal in the pages of International Viewpoint, and thereby staining the banner of the World Party of Socialist Revolution.