Editorials

Editorials

 

Chinese Communist Party to include capitalists

Taking the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party, on July 1 the CP general secretary and president of the country, Jiang Zemin, called for welcoming capitalists into the party’s ranks. It was a logical corollary of the policy of restoring capitalism and of the Chinese Stalinist bureaucracy’s attempt to transform itself into a new capitalist class.

Jiang Zemin’s declaration marks the final stage of the degeneration of a party that was formed 80 years ago to represent the workers and poor peasants of China and to carry out a revolution in their interests.

Despite the victory of the Stalinist bureaucratic faction at the end of the 1920s, the party did continue to defend some fundamental historical interests of the working class and poor peasantry, such as full employment and independent industrial development of the country. The CP’s decision to move toward restoring capitalism is eliminating even that.

According to the June issue of October Review, a Marxist journal published in Hong Kong, some estimate that the real rate of unemployment in the country is already over 10 percent: “Zhang Zuoji, head of the Department of Labor and Social Security, said that in the next five years, an estimated 52 million people will be looking for employment and 10 million will not be able to find a job.”

In these conditions, working people are moving into confrontation with the party that rules in their name while defending the interests of native and foreign capitalists. The June October Review pointed to frequent strikes, involving thousands of workers and direct clashes with the authorities in the streets.

Clearly the working people of China need a new Communist Party that will really represent their interests. Such a party would have no reason to suppress free public discussion and organization. It would have to fight for maximum democracy, so that the working people can learn what is really going on in their economic lives and how to organize to defend themselves and their future.

Patients’ rights fraud

The media reporting that the U.S. Senate has passed a landmark “patient’s bill of rights” bill, which would at long last establish “stringent new federal standards for health insurers, including HMOs,” is a fraud.

Last-minute amendments to the bill exclude 94 percent of employer insurers from patient lawsuits and require the remainder to go through an “independent medical review” before filing suit. The loopholes limit class-action lawsuits and make it clear that insurers can continue to exclude coverage for specific items.

This bill is part of the Democrats’ pretense that they have some sympathy with the outrage provoked by the HMOs, which has gone hand in hand with the liquidation of the few public health resources that existed for the poor and the uninsured. In fact, the capitalist exploitation of medical needs can only be halted by a fight that would challenge capitalist principles by taking medical care out of the profit system. .

Cuban agents face U.S. sentencing

Five Cuban intelligence agents whose Miami trial resulted in a June 8 conviction on U.S. charges of spying have been removed from the general prison population at the Federal Detention Center in Miami and placed in a form of solitary confinement.

The five Cubans-Antonio Guerrero, Ramon Labanino, Gerardo Hernandez, Fernando Gonzalez, and Rene Gonzalez-are awaiting the sentencing portion of their trial, in which they face prison terms ranging from 15 years to life.

Their transfer is seen as punishment for their letter published in Granma, the publication of the Cuban Communist Party, stating, “We declare ourselves not guilty and simply take comfort in the fact that we have honored our duty to our people and our homeland.”

The convicted Cubans have repeatedly stated that their activities, including infiltration of the U.S.-backed, Miami-based terrorist group Brothers to the Rescue and a U.S. military base, were aimed at preventing terrorism against Cuba.

Cuba has presented voluminous evidence documenting U.S.-backed terrorist actions spanning 40 years, including blowing up Cuban passenger planes, assassinations, bombing public buildings, and the use of biochemical poisons to destroy Cuban agriculture. Several thousand Cubans have been murdered in these heinous deeds.

Over 50,000 Cubans rallied in Havana on June 23, chanting, “Free the Five!”