A plan for black liberation : black workers organize : articles by the Progressive Labor Party

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A plan for black liberation : black workers organize : articles by the Progressive Labor Party
Progressive Labor Movement
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Brooklyn, New York
Progressive Labor Movement
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63 p. : ill. ; 27 cm.


Subjects / Keywords:
Socialism -- United States
Black power -- United States
African Americans -- Economic conditions

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Road to Revolution I Black Liberation Progrsi
Road to Revolution II Trade Union Progrsr
Constitution of the PI !
Criticism and Self-Criticism

The Progressive Labor Party, in the past,
has made the mistake of spreading illusions
about nationalists, nationalism and ihe role
the ideology plays in the Black Liberation
Movement. We talked and wrote about rev-
olutionary nationalists, progressive national-
ists, and reactionary nationalists/' More
often than not we failed to examine and fully
analyze what their relationship was (and is)
to the rulers of this country, and tb the over-
whelming majority of the Black peoplethe
workers, who are being oppressed by these
rulers. We failed to point out that the political
and economic basis of all nationalism is cap-
italism" and that it is bourgeois ideology."
We made these errors because we did not
fully understand that Black liberation could
not be won without the dictatorship of the pro-
letariat." (Quoted from Black Liberation Pro-
Since our second convention in the spring of
1968 our party has begun to better understand
this complex question and move towards cor-
recting itself. This pamphlet is a step in that
The three major statements were issued by
various sections of the PLP with the assist-
ance of the national committee. The review of
the Carmichael-Hamilton book was written by
Bill Epton, as were the last five articles in
this pamphlet. (Bill Epton is a member of the
National Committee of the PLP and a lifetime
resident of Harlem.) The review appeared in
the October, 1968 issue of Progressive Labor
magazine and the five articles appeared in
CHALLENGE, the monthly newspaper of the
PLP. Some of these articles have been slightly
revised for more clarity. The three state-
ments are reprinted from the February, 1969,
issue of Progressive Labor magazine.
National Committee of the
Progressive Labor Party
__________ April 19, 1969
To Help You Read These Articles...
Following is an explanation of certaintermsthatwe frequently use in describing the struggle
taking place in this country and around the world.
CLASSAll societies are divided into classesthe class that rules and the class or classes
ruled. Under the profit system of capitalism the ruling class is the boss class (the bour-
geoisie) and the class that is ruled is the working class (the proletariat). These two classes
are always at war with one another (class warfare).
The capitalist class is choking on its own greed for profit. It takes our great potential and
turns it to waste and war against the people. Because of the key position and the numerical
strength of the working class it will eventually overthrow the bourgeoisie everywhere and set
up its own government and run its affairs in its own class interest. It will suppress and exer-
cise dictatorship over the former rulers.
THE STATEThe governmental organization and its police and army are not neutral. The
state, dear people, is a class concept. The state is an organ or machine for the exercise of
force by one class against another. As long as it is a machine for the exercise of force by
the bourgeoisie against the proletariat, the only slogan for the proletarian must be to smash
the state."
(Lenin, Selected Works, Vol. VI, p. 276)
IMPERIALISMThis is a system (U.S. capitalist system) thatin order to survivemust
make colonies of other countries and take away their raw material and their land, control
their economy, enslave their people and make tremendous profits off of the peoples misery.
U.S. imperialism must also exploit the people within their own country, as the whole system
is built on the drive for maximum profit.
RULING CLASSThe ruling class in the U.S. is the group of bankers, bosses and landlords
who own the large industrial plants, factories and farms, and buildings. They actually deter-
mine who will be president, governor, mayor, police chief, judge, etc. This class of rich people
that run this country are the exact opposite of us and are our enemy and as long as they run
the country the working people will never be free.
For more copies of this pamphlet, including bulk orders, send 25c per copy to Progressive
Labor Party, G.P.O. Box 808, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11201.

January 1969
THE STRUGGLE of Black people for their
liberation has reached unprecedented
heights. Beginning with the 1964 Harlem
uprising, millions have engaged in openand
frequently armedresistance to ruling-class
oppression. Black rebellions represent the
most advanced aspect of class struggle in the
U.S. at the present time. They have shaken the
ruling class as have no other events in the past
30 years.
Despite government claims, conditions of
life for most Black people have worsened over
the years. This is true for the entire working
class, but because of the special oppression of
Black people it is worse for them; They bear the
brunt of the contradictions of U.S. imperialism.
U.S. imperialism has received many im-
portant setbacks around the world. Two in
particular have created enormous problems for
the U.S. ruling class: the Peoples War in
Vietnam and such increasing competition from
other imperialist countries that the U.S. can no
longer completely dominate Western Europe
and Japan.
The resulting loss of profits has forced this
countrys rulers to bear down even harder on
their workers, as they must if they are to con-
tinue to make the maximum profits necessary
to maintain capitalism. For that system can
only survive by making not just the average
but maximum profits. This is the reason for
the oppression of Black workers at home and
the oppression of the people in Asia, Africa and
Latin America. Nor is such oppression an
aberration of capitalism or the work of par-
ticularly deranged imperialists; it is the nor-
mal and necessary operation of imperialism.
Exploitation and systematic robbery of Black
workers at home is the most profitable and
most vital domestic business of U.S. imperial-
ism. By discriminating against Black people
the ruling class is able to force on them a per
capita income of $1,000 less per year than that
of white people. When that figure is multiplied
by the 22 million Black people it becomes clear
that racism earns the bosses $22 billion each
year. Because the ruling class is able to de-
press Black workers wages, it forces down
wages of all workers. Who can calculate the
billions amassed by bosses each year by this
method? Additional billions are saved each
year by bosses who limit the life-giving social
services available to Black people. Then there
is the robbery of higher food prices and higher
rents for inferior housing, all of which shows
the enormity of Black oppression.
The cruel meaning of this for Black workers
is more unemployment, lower wages, and worse
living conditions. It means worse schools, i
worse medical facilities, more garbage on the
streets, little or no decent low-rent housing, j
more and worse slums, high infant mortality,

lower life expectancy and more police terror to
prevent or contain the inevitable resistance to
this state of affairs.
Such has been the treatment meted out to
Black people for over 350 years, first as
slaves, then as wage slaves. If one could calcu-
late the hundreds of billions in profits derived
from the super-exploitation of Black workers
during the last three and a half centuries, one
would see that imperialism relies on these
profits for its vigor. Similarly the plunder of
colonial nations in Asia, Africa and Latin
America is the most profitable external busi-
ness of U.S. imperialism, which explains the
fierceness of the Vietnam War and the lengths
to which the U.S. will go to retain its influence
and control there.
The imperialists use racist ideas to justify
their brutal exploitation of national minorities
at home and workers and oppressed people
abroad. They do this in order to set one group
of workers against another and so cover up the
fact that the basic and common enemy of all
workers is the class of big businessmen and
the imperialist system of private ownership.
Only when this imperialist system is elimi-
nated, the government* that protects it smashed
and the working class in absolute control will
all the workers, for the first time, be able to
lead a decent life. This means building social-
ism, because imperialism can only be replaced
by socialism.
Imperialism exists to the degree that it can
continue racist exploitation. Three and a half
centuries of drumming home to Black and white
workers the myth of Black inferiority enables
the ruling class to continue its oppression;
and unless the working class learns to reject
racism it cannot end that oppression. No work-
er, Black or white, should have any illusion
that U.S. imperialism can ever grant full
equality to Black workers. To do so would end
the maximum profits made possible only by
Black exploitation.
Black rebellions are currently the most
advanced expression of class struggle. They
are a serious threat to the ruling class, which,
after the Harlem rebellion, prepared a massive
effort to suppress future Black rebellions. It
well understood that Black working people were
*By "government" we mean the entire state power
every repressive force on every level of government that
can be used to blunt and defeat the workers fight for their
class interests: the army; National Guard; state, county
and city police; courts; jails; laws (injunctions, martial
law, etc.).
not going to take their worsening conditions
lying down. Though the ruling class acted to
pacify some leaders and militants with the
"War on Poverty programs, it realized the
limits of its economic resources. It could
bribe a few leaders and co-opt many others,
but 95 percent of the 22 million Black people
are part of the working class; and you can't
buy off that many people! So the ruling class
moved a massive police and army apparatus
into action to prevent or smash the Black
working people's rebellions. Ruling-class strat-
egy, as always, was to use the dual tactic of
bribery and, ultimately, terror.
In each city across the country and in many
rural areas the ruling class has mustered a
huge army of police, National Guard and regu-
lar Army units to suppress the forces of ever-
threatening Black rebellion. In addition, the
ruling class, finding itself weak, feels it neces-
sary to augment these agencies of state power
with "unofficial" vigilante groups. This serves
the purpose of diverting Black and white work-
ers from fighting the ruling class to fighting
each other.
U.S. imperialism, therefore, is faced with a
serious second military front at home. This
limits what it can throw against other op-
pressed people in Asia, Africa, Latin America
and socialist China and Albania. Black re-

bellions help the fight of all people who try to
free themselves from U.S. domination. And,
in turn, the efforts of any people around the
world who fight the U.S. rulers help Black
workers at home, since U.S. imperialists must
weaken themselves trying to put down these
Unquestionably, the heroic efforts of the
Vietnamese people inspired the battle of Black
workers at home. Millions of Black workers
now identify with the struggles of the Vietna-
mese people, and many recognize that U.S.
imperialism is their common enemy. Recently,
in response to the statement of Mao Tse-tung
in support of the Black Liberation Movement,
revolutionary forces all over the world added
their voices in support of Black liberation.
The revolution in Vietnam has exposed the
myth of U.S. democracy,' thereby spurring
millions around the world to organize against
U.S. imperialism, weakening and isolating it
politically. Even a U.S. deal in Vietnam made
with the help of revisionists in Hanoi and
Moscow cannot perfume the stench of U.S.
Shatters USA Myth
Because Black worker rebellions occur in
the heart of U.S. imperialism, they directly
affect both the class struggle at home and the
international class struggle. Because of this
simultaneous attack on its maximum profits,
U.S. rulers repress them violently, despite the
political consequences. But this repression by
the U.S. rulers is another blow to their phony
democratic image. Black action exposes the
actual character of the U.S. imperialists. This
political awareness will eventually lead to even
sharper efforts against the U.S. bosses at home
and abroad.
The action of millions of Black workers is
also a shattering blow to the myth of U.S. in-
vincibility, Black rebellion destroys the idea of
American exceptionalismthe idea that U.S.
imperialism is enlightened and can master
its internal contradictions. Black rebellions
have pointed up the possibilities for revolution.
They show the ruling class is not omnipotent,
and easily panics in the face of sharp struggle.
Black rebellions finish forever the racist notion
that Black people are docile, servile, trained
by their circumstances to endless passivity.
A life free of exploitation and oppression is
only possible when the capitalist state has been
smashed, capitalism outlawed, the country ruled
absolutely by the workers, and socialism is
being built. Capitalism and imperialism, the
bosses' private ownership of industry, can only
be replaced by its oppositesocialism, the
workers' public ownership of industry. The
most important point to be concerned about in
fighting imperialism is political power. Either
the imperialists have political power and use it
to protect imperialism by repressing the work-
ers, as in Vietnam, or the workers have politi-
cal power and use it to repress the imperial-
ists, outlaw capitalism and build socialism, as
in China and Albania. This workers' political
power is called the proletarian (or workers')
dictatorship (which means dictatorship over
the imperialists).
Countries that checked imperialism but did
not establish a dictatorship of the workers
halted imperialism only momentarily; they are
again controlled by the imperialists. Algeria,
Egypt, Guinea, Ghana, India, etc., are all con-
trolled by some imperialist or by all of them.
The U.S., Britain, France and the U.S.S.R.
really run these countries. What has changed is
the position of the national bourgeosie (the
home-grown bosses of the colonial country)
who used to be oppressed by imperialism and
now front for it.
In these countries the masses of people are
in desperate straits. Their rulers call them-
selves socialists merely as a concession to the
people's socialist beliefs and sense of inter-
national solidarity. In none of these countries
do the workers hold political power. And since
there are only two classes capable of holding
state powerthe working class or the capitalist
classit is the latter that continues to rule.
The working class is still exploited and does
not own or control the means of production and
the state power that is needed to enforce that
control. That, too, is the state of affairs, in
countries once socialist, like the U.S.S.R.,
where the dictatorship of the workers has been
overthrown and turned into its oppositethe
dictatorship of the bourgeoisie.
In the supposedly liberated colonial coun-
tries and in the former socialist countries, the
ruling bourgeoisie spreads the idea of loyalty
to our nation, But since only one class can
hold power in any nation, loyalty to the
nation can only mean loyalty to the class that
holds power in that nationwhich means to the
bourgeoisie, in all countries not ruled by the
workers' dictatorship. Such national loyalty,

which really means loyalty to imperialism, is
expressed in the United States by supporting
reactionary, racist, fascist and anti-working-
class groups.
The ruling capitalist class urges on the
workers a nationalist ideology to replace their
loyalty to the international working class. The
latter loyaltyinternationalism is a funda-
mental Marxist-Leninist idea that runs exactly
counter to nationalism. Consequently it is in
the class interests of U.S. imperialists to
promote nationalist ideas among workers since
it diverts them from loyalty to their own class.
Nationalism is a bourgeois idea, which infects
workers and prevents them from winning their
freedom from the capitalist class.
Although Black workers today are usually
consciously propelled into struggle because of
their nationalist beliefs, this nationalism has its
material base in the fact of special class op-
pression of Black workers by the ruling class.
The initial reaction of Black workers to this
oppression may take the form of a proud af-
firmation of their "blackness, which the bour-
geoisie uses to set them apart for special op-
pression. Unless the fundamental, but usually
ignored, working-class content of the Black
workers struggle becomes the conscious basis
for action, the ruling class will co-opt the
movement. The imperialists can always turn the
initial nationalist reaction to class oppression
into a reactionary movement if the nationalism
is not transformed into conscious loyalty to the
entire working class and to the class struggle.
In the course of the fight against class op-
pression, Black workers put forward special
demands to meet their special class oppression.
They understand these demands to be nationalist
demands. There are three types of such demands:
(1) the demand for more Black supervisors;
(2) the demand for an end to oppressive work-
ing conditions such as speedup (which may even
take the form of saying "speedup is an attempt
to destroy the Black workers); and (3) the de-
mand for preferential hiring and upgrading.
The first type of demand will not help end
special class oppression of Black workers. On
the contrary, it will intensify it; it is a bour-
geois demand. It creates a group of Black
straw bosses who will be more effective than
white straw bosses in running the factories and
overcoming Black workers resentment against
the bosses. This must be opposed.
The second type of demand is clearly in the
interests of the entire working class; we support
it. The fight against such conditions as speedup
is a fight against oppression of all workers,
even though some Black workers may see speed-
up merely as a special attack on them.
The third type of demand is in the interests
of the entire working class, although this is
not always clearly understood by white and
Black workers. Such demands are in opposition
to the special class oppression of Black workers.
Imperialism requires this special oppression to
maintain itself. The struggle against this special
oppression, to improve the conditions of Black
workers, is a struggle against the imperialist
system that is responsible for the common op-
pression of all workers. White workers must
therefore support such demands.
The real answer to the ruling class's na-
tionalist ideology, which corrupts the struggle
for class demands, lies in Marxism-Leninism,
which rests on internationalism and loyalty to
the working class and is the only serious
enemy of imperialism. It is only Marxism-
Leninism that can take the imperialists' state
power from them and place it in the hands of
the workers.

Therefore, it is decisive for Marxist-Len-
inists to be actively involved in all aspects of
the class struggle in our country and through
these struggles learn how to win millions of
people to the fight for the workers' dictator-
ship. All history proves conclusively that no
people can determine its own destiny without
the dictatorship of the workers.
Black Workers Kay Role
Black people in our country are overwhelm-
ingly workers, with almost two million in the
organized labor movement. Many are in basic
industry, often in the most decisive sections.
Therefore, the essence of Black liberation is
working-class liberation. And a correct revo-
lutionary strategy must be working-class
struggle based on the needs of Black workers.
A worker-led Black Liberation Movement,
however, will not easily spring up. The revi-
sionist (anti-Marxist-Leninist) notion of all
class unity'' is still the prevailing idea of Black
militants within the movement. For years the
Communist Party pushed this idea. It claims
that since all Blacks are oppressed by being
Black, and since all Blacks are equally op-
pressed, it is irrelevant to differentiate them
into classes. Rather, the common bondprovided
by ruling class oppression unifies all Black
people; and if Black people are not unified they
are weakened.
This theory contains a fundamental error: It
disputes the pre-eminence of Black workers,
thereby requiring and justifying the leadership
of the petty bourgeoisie. And this means ac-
cepting tiie reactionary bunk of middle-class
Black nationalists.
All-class unity means obscuring class de-
mands and accepting ruling-class ideology. First
it meant encouraging the non-violent integra-
tionist leadership. As the various Rev. King
types lost their footing among large sections
of militants, they were replaced by Black Power
advocates. Their aim was not to defeat im-
perialism but to reform it and get in" using
more militant tactics than their predecessors.
The ostensible goal of the all class unity"
theory was the completion of the bourgeois-
democratic revolution." Although the C.P. and
others occasionally mouthed the idea of Black
workers being in leadership, what they actually
had in mind was gaining equality under capital-
ism for Black people. But this is impossible.
The outlook must be to smash capitalism, get
rid of the existing state apparatus and replace
it with the dictatorship of the proletariat. And
this can only be done under the leadership of
the working classBlack and white;
Later, demands of Black Power advocates
were outlined as Black capitalism. This has
been further refined to demands for community
control or decentralization." Mostleadersof
these movements were virtually bought off. This
was done through the various government anti-
poverty agencies, private foundations like the
Ford Foundation, or simply working for the
Many petty-bourgeois forces used the mili-
tancy and national feelings of Black masses to
bargain for a place in the bourgeois sun. Ob-
viously, ruling class strategy is not reduced
to terror. To contain Black liberation, the ruling
class works to impose on Black people a phony
leadership. They have already succeeded in doing
this to white workers.
A Black bourgeoisie never developed in the
U.S., although many people talk about one.
Black people do not own any significant portion
of the means of production. They are not a
factor in the basic economic ownership of the
country. There is no national Black bourgeoisie
in the United States; and even if there were
there would be no justification for its leader-
ship of the Black Liberation Movement.
In many colonial countries the national bour-
geoisie often struggles against the imperialists
for a larger share of the profits. At some stage
in this struggle the national bourgeoisie may
attempt to enlist the support of workers. How-
ever, the national bourgeoisie will always be-
tray any workers with whom it has formed
a temporary alliance. This occurs when 'work-
ers begin to rid themselves of nationalism and
adopt working-class struggle attitudes and
practices towards imperialists and towards the
national bourgeoisie. In other words, when
workers of an oppressed country fight for
class leadership, for the dictatorship of the
proletariat, the national bourgeoisie will unite
with the imperialists to stop it. For example:
In Egypt the national bourgeoisie, under
Nasser's leadership, with the U.S.S.R. as its
main economic and military backer, has been
murdering communists and militants for years
while mouthing an ^anti-imperialist line. In
Indonesia when the national bourgeoisie felt the
power of the communist movement and of the
workers and peasants was too strong, it
slaughtered 500,000, using Soviet and U.S.

imperialist aid. And the blood baths and jail-
ings aren't over. The Indian ruling class has
wiped out each electoral victory of the people
with killings and jailings. There, too, the mili-
tary arsenal is furnished by the Soviet Union
and the U.S. All this proves that the national
bourgeoisie is the implacable enemy of the
people. And you surely can't vote them out.
As long as the Black Liberation Movement
remains under the leadership of fake radicals,
basing themselves on the petty bourgeoisie, it
is no threat to the ruling class. Within the
Black community there is a tiny group of small
businessmen who want a monopoly market in
the Black community. There is a larger group
of offspring of this small middle class and of
other relatively privileged families who want to
make it" in the white capitalist world. These
petty-bourgeois forces, often reactionary "in-
tellectuals" like LeRoi Jones, demogogically
identify with the militancy of the Black masses.
They are articulate and, with the cooperation
of the bourgeois publicity media, they emerge
as the leaders" and spokesmen" of the
Black masses. After they get a little footing
among the peoplewhen they have 40 or 50
followersthey demand that the bosses given
them jobs. One could fill the pages of a book
with the names of Black "leaders" who now
work for the government or the Ford Foundation,
The burning militancy of the Black masses
impels the ruling class to engage in this farce
because it is in the ruling class's interests. It
slows the development of working-class leaders
thoroughly dedicated to the defeat of imperial-
ism. It slows the development of long- range
strategy and planning. It limits unity of Black
and white workers. These Black middle-class
elements manipulate the understandable anti-
white feeling in the Black community in order
to share the plunder of racist imperialism. The
sight of leader after leader selling out rein-
forces cynicism and defeatism already found
among sections of the Black community.
The idea of "all class unity" under petty-
bourgeois leadership must be replaced by a
Black Liberation Movement that is a workers'
movement. It will be led by workers and com-
pel support from the Black middle class.
Gradually, the ideology of nationalism must
give way to Marxism-Leninism. Only the ideas
of Marxism-Leninism can liberate the working
class from imperialism. Furthermore, only
such a development can save the petty bour-
geoisie from vaecilation and corruption, for it
is only this development that can pull the petty
bourgeoisie out of the arms of the ruling class
and unify it with Black workers. When working-
class leadership emerges from factories to
organize the ghetto, the shackles of nationalism
will begin to fall away.
If the Black people are to play their historic
role in the defeat of imperialism the Black
Liberation Movement must be a workers'
movement. It must have workers leadership.
Black workers are equipped to lead the fight
for the workers' dictatorship. They are disci-
plined and organized by conditions of work.
The enemy is clear to them since they are at
the point of production and they see more
easily that the enemy is the boss. Black work-
ers have to fight on the job. This means taking
on the boss, his foremen and flunky union mis-
leaders. And because of their special oppres-
sion within the working class they understand
now how the boss uses the state apparatus to
hold power. Open repression by the police, the
National Guard and the Army are now a part of
their life conditions, especially since 1964.
Studies of Black rebellions have proven
that stable Black workers were thoroughly
involved. Black workers are trained by life
conditions to shoulder the job of leadership.
They are involved in the class struggle on all
fronts. They have the best experience for
building solid class organizations in the shops

and communities, and can give active, correct
leadership to the struggles in the ghettoes.
This is what the ruling class fears.
Black workers work side by side with white
workers. They are more aware of the need for
unity to win the smallest demand. All the de-
mands that are in the interest of Black workers
correspond to the needs of white workers. This
creates the possibility for future unity. Their
common struggle is the arena in which racism,
an extreme form of nationalism (and after anti-
communism the main internal danger in the
working-class movement), can be defeated. As
fighting Unity grows between Black and white
workers, Black nationalism, a reaction to rac-
ism, will recede.
Just as the Black workers can use their
experience in fighting the ruling class in the
shop to give leadership to the whole Black
Liberation Movement, so, too, do the Black
workersspecially oppressed in all aspects of
lifebring a special militance and class under-
standing to the working-class movement at the
point of production. In many instances using the
form of Black caucuses, they have advanced
class demands against the bosses (and fought
their labor lieutenants") in a way that has
drawn tens of thousands of white workers into
militant class struggle.
Black workers in the auto industry, reacting
specifically to racist oppression, have organ-
ized wildcat strikes at Dodge in Michigan, at
Ford's Mahwah. (N.J.) plant and elsewhere
throughout the country after the assassination
of King. Most of these walkouts have occurred
over oppressive working conditions on the
assembly line and most have inexorably drawn
the white workers into the action, for they too
feel the implacable tension and harassment on
the line. These are actions that worry Reuther
and partially explain why he is organizing a
dynamic" second labor federation. Just an-
other attempt to cover up the racist character
of the top leadership of the labor movement.
The strike of 1,300 Black sanitationmen in
Memphis against the ruling-class structure of
the anti-union and unorganized South was a
milestone in stimulating trade unionism and
class struggle all over that region among Black
and white workers. The sanitationmen brought
not only the militance of the Black Liberation
Movement into a trade union struggle but
organized the active mass support of the whole
Black community. Without both that militance
and backing they never could have won. The
ruling class in Memphis fought tooth and nail
against the sanitationmen because they feared
the thrust of the militance and class under-*-
standing of the Black Liberation Movement in
setting an example for unionization all over the
low-wage South.
The rebellion of 15,000 shipbuilding workers
in Newport News (Va.) in July 1967 was sparked
by the refusal to work compulsory overtime by
200 Black workers in the transportation depart-
ment. Actually that issue was but the latest of
a long list of grievances suffered at the hands
of the biggest employer in the state (and the
biggest shipbuilder in the world) and his helpers
in the sellout company union. What began as a
departmental walkout quickly spread to become
the first shutdown of that company in its 81-
year history. When the white majority saw that
the Black workers' demands were on behalf of
all workers, they united to fight the company,
the union misleaders, the courts, the governor

..and without
nter-'i it is
and the full power of the statecops and state
troopers. A two-day rebellion ensued in which
white and Black workers smashed the pawn
shop finance company loan sharks that fed like
leeches on the workers paychecks across the
street from the plant. They fought us like
brothers," said the police chief.

Examples such as these are becoming even
more numerous: the 1968 summer's wildcat
strikes in Chicago involving drivers for the
city's bus company and for Railway Express,
both sparked by Black caucuses and both sup-
ported by white workers; the walkouts and
threatened walkouts of New York hospital
workers, overwhelmingly Black and Latin, which
have set the pace in militance for all low-paid
workers; and the titanic battle of 800 garment
workers against a world-wide imperialist
outfit, Kayser-Roth, as well as their sweetheart
partners-in-crime, the International Ladies
Garment Workers Union sellout misleadership.
This fight, too, was supported by white workers
wherever the issue was brought to them.
The growth of a working-class Black Libera-
tion Movement under the leadership of workers
will be a powerful stimulus to the class struggle
in the country. It will sharpen it and will clarify
for all workers the problem of who the enemy
is. The development of a worker-led Black
Liberation Movement is a pre-condition for the
unity and victory of the working class, a pre-
condition for Black liberation.
Elements of Program
White chauvinismthe idea that being white
makes one superioris rampant among white
workers. The struggle of white workers lags
behind Blacks. Certainly white workers have
not begun to grasp the Marxian truth that the
worker in the white skin can never be free until
the worker in the Black skin is free. Conse-
quently at this stage the Black Liberation Move-
ment is developing as national in form and
working class in content.
The organization of a national network of
Black caucuses in shops across the country
would be a most welcome development. For
many years Black caucuseshave existed in basic
industry, with particularly strong roots in steel
and auto. Though most have been short-lived,
they are once again springing up. The most
notable of these are in auto. In the past year
there have been major walkouts by Dodge
workers, mainly Black, under the leadership of
a Black caucus. Their program is a working-
class program and includes more jobs, better
pay, an end to speed-up, no compulsory over-
time, shorter hours and an end to abuses from
foremen. And there are also good demands
based on the special oppression and needs of
Black workers, such as equality in hiring,
upgrading and job training. Of course, when
boss-inspired nationalist ideology stimulates
such demands as Black foremen and stock
options, they must be resisted and defeated.
These caucuses could amalgamate locally and
eventually lead to the re-birth of a new power-
ful nationwide Black workers' organization.
One element of a program based on a caucus
movement in the shops would be to fight against
the special oppression of Black workers. This
would include equal pay, upgrading, preferen-
tial hiring in all industries (especially the ones
that exclude Black workers), special training
and rank-and-file representation in unions.
The following have been demanded by Black
caucuses and can immediately unite all workers:
higher wages, shorter hours with no loss in pay
and demands dealing with problems of speedup,
automation and safety.
A second area in the program of the Black
Liberation Movement is anti-U.S. imperialism.
An important aspect of this is how the ruling
class tries to make mercenaries of Black
workers to suppress colonial workers and
peasants. The main demands today would be for
the U.S. to get out of Vietnam now, organiza-
tion of Black troops against the war, utiliza-
tion of skills learned in the army by Black
troops to defend whatever gains were won by
the Black Liberation Movement and to protect
the community from police terror, and U.S.
out of Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and
other occupied countries.
Within the community a program is needed
to prevent the pacification of the ghetto by
placing in its midst huge bourgeois institutions,
like the State Office Building in the middle of
Harlem. A fight must be made for funds to
improve and build more schools, hospitals,
parks, for improved garbage collection and
more and better housing. This program should
include plans for low-rent housing and punish-
ment for slumlords.
A key aspect of any program for Black lib-
eration is armed self-defense, a concept in
opposition to the liberal-revisionist clamor for
more Black cops or for decentralization of the
police. Decentralization of police control would
still keep the police under the control of the ruling
class because it would pick, train and pay the
new Black policemen. But more important, the
Black policemen would still enforce the laws of
imperialist private property. In fact, many in
the ruling class feel this can now be done
better by Black cops. This would be another

slick maneuver to prevent the people from
organizing their own protection and would re-
duce their fighting capacity by creating the illu-
sion that they controlled the police.
The essence of a program for Black libera-
tion is anti-imperialism, and is based mainly
on working-class demands. It would steer clear
of democratic" demands for decentralization,
more Black representation in legislative bodies,
and federal money and foundation funds to
support Black organizations. It would shun and
resist bourgeois demands for Black foremen
or Black bosses and businesses. This imme-
diately distinguishes it from any other program.
Its particular significance is that it is based
on, and is led by, Black workers.
This program could create the basis for a
united front between Marxist-Leninist revolu-
tionaries and the broadest stratum of the Black
workers, as well as with a significant section
of the middle class.
Black Students
During the past few years Black students in
Black colleges across the country have re-
belled, in many cases going far beyond the
militancy of SDS demonstrations. Though few
of these actions reached the level of armed
confrontations with the police, students' de-
mands were generally limited to improving
their education.
In addition, Black student groups have come
forward at many of the major white institutions
all over the country. These groups have fought
for more Black student enrollment, improved
curriculum relating to Black history and cul-
ture and, at Columbia and San Francisco State,
elements of an anti-imperialist program.
The major weakness of these movements is
that they dont have a working-class orientation.
Nationalism is strong, sometimes leading the
struggle into the dead-end of Black student
power." Basically the goals of the Black stu-
dents are limited to securing a better deal for
themselves from the schools and from the
ruling class. They are not aimed at defeating
the system.
Within these movements attempts should be
made to promote alliances with Black workers.
Almost all major labor action includes large
sections of Black workers. The Newport News
shipyard strike of Black and white workers
could have been a great rallying point for all
militant Black students in the South. Suffice it
to say there are no shortages of similar battles
taking place, or soon to occur.
Black studentsas well as whitemust start
the long process of determining with whom they
are going to ally. Will they fight the ruling
class for crumbs but support the framework of
capitalism, or will they ally with workers?
Helping workers win immediate demands, as
well as their own at school, creates the basis
for a political transformation of students and
workers. This alliance will speed the growth of
political consciousness.
Racism is an essential part of the liberal
apology for imperialism disseminated by uni-
versities; it must be fought by white students
as well as Black. Alliances should be formed
between Black students and anti-racist white
students based on a principled fight over this
issue against the campus administration. In fact
there is no way to build a radical movement on
campus and a worker-student alliance without
a strong fight to defeat racism.
Such a united front between Black workers,
including communists, and a section of die
middle class will exclude those who rely on the
ruling class, which includes those few who still
parade under the slogan of integration or those
pushing "community control" and "decentrali-
zation." And because this movement is aimed
at the bosses and their government it will limit
the indiscriminate "hate whitey" bunch. Though
we can expect considerable antagonism against
white workers,.they are not the enemy and must
be criticized with the aim of winning them. A
serious Black leadership must have the outlook
of fighting racism among white workers to help
gain strength for specific and long-range battles.
This will be a Left-Center coalition with
varying points of view within it. It must include
communists, who, together with their closest
allies, must defeat anti-communists within the
Black Liberation Movementor that movement
will fail. No movement can win if it is saturated
with anti-communism. The anti-communism of
Roy Wilkins has given way to the more subtle
anti-communism of Black clerics like King.
And now there is an extremely bellicose
"revolutionary" anti-communism produced by
so-called militants like Stokely Carmichael.
Anti-communism, no matter how much it is
covered over with verbal militancy, is still
imperialism's primary ideological weapon
against any people. You cannot win with the
ideas and tools of the master.

For years the ruling class has harped on the
idea of the outside agitator, with the specific
aim of excluding communists from the Black
Liberation Movement. Men like Roy Wilkins and
King dedicatedly carried out this line. Commu-
nists not only threatened their leadership but
more important, threatened their bosses. The
ruling class tries to exclude communists from
all movements by creating the notion that
Marxism-Leninism is a foreign idea and alien
to our people. It knows that it can only retain
control if it keeps revolutionary ideas and
organization out of the people's movements.
A Left-Center coalition will provide an
effective cutting edge against the ruling class
and be the vehicle to defeat right-wing Black
forces like the Muslims, cultural nationalists
like LeRoi Jones, the various successors of
Rev. King, phony radicals like Carmichael, and
Black-capitalist spokesmen like McKissick.
The Ford F raud
The growing militancy of Black workers and
the corresponding drop in influence of Rev.
King's successors have compelled the ruling
class to take a more flexible attitude to Black
Power advocates. It has not always been skill-
ful in using them. At one time the ruling class
felt that between the praying of Rev. King, the
general bribing of the middle-class leaders and
the guns, clubs, dogs and police, they could
keep the Black people in line. But the eruption
of armed rebellion forced the ruling class to
reevaluate its team of frontmen. One could say
the limited outbreak of sniping forced this.
Guns are a dangerous business. So, within a
short time everyone was for Black Power.
All the politicians became soul brothers.
It soon became obvious that the anti-poverty
programs could only buy off a relatively small
number of militants. The ruling class knew it
would have to do better. Recognizing that edu-
cation was a burning issue within the ghetto for
millions of Black working-class families, the
ruling class decided that this was a good place
to harness the new nationalism and buy off the
new nationalists. In reorganized schools the
ruling class could continue the miseducation of
millions of children with the full cooperation
of the Black Power nationalists. The Ford
Foundation, the leading bourgeois Ideological
and management center outside the government,
was chosen to do the job. It adopted the slogan
community control.
The Foundation devised a plan by which the
Board of Education would create local govern-
ing boards. The local board would have some
paid staffers and some parents elected by a few
people in the community. The plan also called
for introducing aspects of Black history and
culture into the curriculum together with more
Black teachers. The more ardently nationalistic
the teachers, the more anti-communist and
anti-working class they were. What could be
the big danger to the ruling class? The children
would be in school and presumably more in-
terested in the new curriculum. The parents
would be happier, because it would appear that
they had some say in the schooling process.
And the nationalists could have all their psy-
chotherapeutic name-calling of whitey in-
stitutionalized. They would get pretty good pay.
And some of the administrators would have the
privilege of embezzling from the Foundation
like their white counterparts.
Applying this scheme in New York City, the
ruling class received some fringe benefits.
Setting up local boards deflected the mounting
criticism of the central board and the city
administration. The city, state and federal
government still controlled all the money, still

controlled the entire teacher-training apparatus.
However, by skillfully manipulating the teach-
ers' racist ideology, which led them to be con-
trolled by racist union leadership, they got
Black and Puerto Rican parents to fight the
teachers as the main enemy. This let the
government off the hook and obscured the key
issues of anti-communism, the Vietnam war,
ruling-class control of the school system and
the poor working and learning conditions of
teachers and students. The ruling class, by
creating the illusion of community control, has
manipulated the teachers into fighting the par-
ents instead of the Board of Education, thereby
laying the basis for the destruction of any
decent type of union.
The two hundred thousand dollars the Ford
Foundation will spend in New York, and the
tens of millions it will spend around the coun-
try, is a ~ cheap price to pay to continue the
miseducation of Black children with anti-com-
munist, anti-working class ideas. It is a cheap
price to pacify some Black people. It is a very
cheap price if it keeps Black people within the
framework of the system, creating the illusion
that the system is flexible enough to be forced
into meeting them part way. It is even a cheap-
er price if this slows down the class struggle
in the auto shops and in all industry.
Unfortunately, many people are taken in by
the Ford Foundation, and especially by its
money. They rationalize the money grab: ''Now
we're getting a little of it back." But by now we
should have learned the lesson that the enemy
gives nothing for free. If you take his money
or his "aid," you are working for him, no
matter how well-intentioned you are.
The school decentralization plan is reaping
quick returns. There is now a move to do
something similar with the police. Isn't it
better, the ruling class reasons, to have Black
cops drawn from the ranks of the mostmilitant,
having respect in the community? Let them
maintain the ruling-class interests. The ruling
class has a great opening here. And most Black
nationalists, having no understanding of the
class structure of society, greedily see a way
to get some jobs and money. Most call for
more Black cops in the ghetto.
The ruling class reasons well when it
recognizes that the current advocates of Black
Power want in on imperialism's spoils, like the
integrationists. There are only some differ-
ences in form and tactics between the integra-
tionists and the Black Power advocates. They
are both the same in content. Having a Ford in
your future means having capitalism in your
future. Having Ford's better idea means not
having working-class ideas and never winning
your freedom.
Within the ruling class there are tactical
differences about how to handle the new Black
nationalists. But as the Black masses keep up
the pressure all the ruling-class factions will
eventually make greater use of nationalists.
Revisionism Means Slavery
Over the past 25 years the Communist Party
has lost its base among Black people primarily
because of its consistent selling-out of the
Black people's struggles. During the past dec-
ade it pinned its hopes on the integrationist
leadership. It slobbered over Rev. King. How-
ever, it should be noted that at the beginning of
the integration movement the C.P. branded it
"adventurous." It considered the first Freedom
Rides a "provocation." But when the integra-
tion movement became established and politi-
cally conservative, the C.P. hopped on the
bandwagon, reasoning that the Black people
were in ferment and King could put his non-
violent, pro-imperialist ideas over on the
people without running afoul of the imperialists.
By supporting him the C.P. hoped to curry
favor with the base of his movement.
When the rebellions broke out in Harlem in
1964, the C.P., King and the rest of the ruling
class attacked them. They attacked the masses
and called on police power to put them; down.
The C.P. attacked the PLP, accusing it of
fomenting disorders with "Chinese money,"
and got the Kremlin "leaders" to attack the
Black masses. The District Attorney used the
C.P.'s lies and opportunism in court against
the PLP.
But as the tide of rebellion became irre-
sistible the C.P., like the ruling class, had to
hedge its bets. Since it could no longer rely
completely on King & Co., the C.P., like Ford
and the U.S. Government, began to hail "Black
Power." It became a "soul brouther" and like
the Ford Foundation, hopped on the community
control bandwagon. Petty bourgeois nationalism
posed no serious obstacle for this "Communist"
Party. Because the C.P. has no base among
Black workers it is not visible in the movement.
Consequently there is a tendency to under-
estimate its influence. Like the Ford Founda-
tion, it buys its way in, often with lawyers who

are always willing to "help" a Black victim out.
Because of the C.P.'s financial resources, it
is able to co-opt some of the nationalist lead-
ers in the community. Probably some of the
community control bureaucrats are on two or
three payrolls. They get paid by the C.P., the
Ford Foundation and the Government. Fortu-
nately, the C.P.'s consistent record of betrayal
and its support of the shameful imperialism of
the Soviet bosses isolate it from the people.
But because there is so much corruption at
the top, money turns the trick. The C.P. does
influence some nationalists to push community
control or whatever new nationalist gimmick
that comes along. It has gotten the Black Pan-
thers to institute court actions for police de-
centralization in New York and California, and
has influenced them to meet with Lindsay and
the New York police commissioner to discuss
"mutual problems," The C.P. role is one of
guaranteeing the leadership of the liberal bour-
geoisie, which in New York means the Lindsay
administration. It is no accident that the C.P.
is one of the biggest boosters of community
control of the schools in New York. Unfortu-
nately it is doing a lot of damage to the devel-
opment of the Black Panthers. C.P. lawyers
have persuaded some Panther leaders to rely
on court action rather than mass action. The
current actions for decentralization of the cops
are C.P. inspired.
Anti- communism was given a big boost
among Black workers because of the sellouts
they suffered at the hands of the revisionist
C.P. from World War II until the present day.
The C.P. either never fought anti-communism
or denied its existence.
Unless anti-communism is met head-on and
defeated, it will cripple and destroy revolu-
tionary movements. Only communist organiza-
tion and ideology, based on class analysis and
the need for workers to seize state power, can
lead to victory over imperialism. Thus, those
who tolerate or advocate anti-communism are
advocating the continued exploitation and sup-
pression of the Black as well as the white
workers. Nationalism and anti-communism are
About Our Party
In the past we in the Progressive Labor
Party have been guilty of creating illusions
about Black nationalism and nationalists. In our
early period we were one-sided; because we
supported the resistance of nationalists like the
Muslims and Robert Williams, we viewed them
as generally good. We failed to understand that
nationalism is reactionary, and that this is its
main aspect. We made similar errors inter-
nationally. We were wrong in evaluating Ben
Bella, and then Boumedienne. We were wrong
in our evaluation of Sukarno.
The political and economic basis of nation-
alism is capitalism. It is bourgeois ideology.
Often we tried to understand the Black Libera-
tion Movement through the experiences of other
countries. We believed nationalism here would
play the same role that it has appeared to play
in other countries, where a national bourgeoisie
often resisted complete foreign domination.
Loyalty to one's class and the international
working class must replace narrow allegience
to a nation or a grouping within a nation. As
long as oppressed people are limited to defend-
ing the nationthat is, the ruling class of that
nationthey will remain enslaved. As long as
people remain loyal only to themselves as an
oppressed national minority, they will fail.
Unless they aim to liberate all of oppressed
mankind they will be unable to liberate even
themselves. Although the nationalists may win
some small initial gains, even these will be
lost unless the strategy of the dictatorship of
the proletariat emerges, for this is the only
strategy for victory. The outlook of Black
Power adw)cates today narrows down finally to

get what you can/' a form of Black capitalism.
In any event, there is no national bourgeoisie
here. There is only a relatively small Black
petty bourgeoisie. We have been guilty of
spending too much effort with them and failing
to work sufficiently among Black workers,
especially in the shops. We made these errors
because we did not fully understand that Black
liberation could not be won without the dictator-
ship of the proletariat. By making these errors
we limited our base-building among workers
and left the petty bourgeoisie open to co-option.
Without a strong working-class leadership, the
petty bourgeoisie will always vacillate and
limit its efforts against the ruling class.
When the special oppression of a particular
group among the masses becomes the initial
stimulus for action, the capitalist class attempts
immediately to saturate that group with nation-
alist ideologyloyalty to the bourgeoisie. Unless
that initial stimulus is transformed into con-
scious class struggle it is co-opted by the
ruling class, which has learned from experi-
ence that it can quickly tum< such an initial
progressive response into its oppositeinto
nationalist loyalty to capitalism.
An even more significant error is that we
have not fought vigorously against white chau-
vinism among workers and students. This is
because we are still weak in understanding how
racism is used to maintain ruling-class power.
Though we have singled out nationalism as the
chief internal weakness in the Black Liberation
Movement, we dare not fail to understand that
white chauvinism is, after anti-communism, the
main weakness within the entire working class.
Nationalism can never be defeated without de-
feating white chauvinism and its foundation,
U.S. imperialism.
Th. working class will eventually unite into
an unbeatable force as Black and white workers
become more politically conscious. This can
only .be achieved by sharpening the struggle.
Future unity is a goal, but this should in no way
imply the slowing down of the Black Liberation
Movement. On the contrary, the path to unity is
through increased struggle on all fronts. Natu-
rally there will be struggles between different
groups of workers, but this is an inevitable
feature in the process of developing greater
political consciousness.
Unity will be achieved by the creation of
centers for Black struggles, especially in the
shops. Virtually all actions of Black caucuses
can be aimed at the boss. This fact of life will
create the condition for the unity of Black and
white workers, as communists in the workers'
movement give political leadership'.
The next important moves for our. Party are
to step up the struggle against nationalism and
to focus our work among Black workers. A.s
the political consciousness of the workers
grows under the leadership of Black caucuses
and the work of communists, organizational
unity of the workers will be realizeable. Even
today wherever there is the possibility of unity
between Black and white workers that form
should be used. In every case a study of the
situation must be made to find the form that
best advances the class struggle.
Though we still use the concept self-deter-
mination we believe that the dictatorship of the
proletariat is the only solution for Black work-
ers and the Black people generally. In the
future, however, the petty-bourgeois tendency
for separation (Black capitalism) may grow
strong and come into sharp conflict with the
ruling class. If the imperialists acted to physi-
cally destroy this movement we would support
it against imperialism. We would support it by
fighting for the dictatorship of the proletariat
as the only solution.

This is our attitude in regard to Vietnam,
Though we no longer believe that the Vietna-
mese leadership is fighting for the dictatorship
of the proletariat, we support the efforts of the
people against imperialism and demand that the
U.S. get out now, regardless of what type
government the Vietnamese wish to set up. We
also call upon the Vietnamese workers and
peasants to fight for the dictatorship of the
proletariat as the only way they can determine
their own destiny.
We regard this as a principled concession to
nationalism because it is within the framework
of a serious fight against imperialism. If not
for the anti-imperialist struggle there would be
no reason for the concession.
While racism is die greatest source of profit
for the ruling class, it is also its Achilles Heel.
WOMEN have always been a specially-
exploited section of the working class.
U.S. imperialist has maintained and
extended this special exploitation by barring
women from certain types of work, paying lower
wages for similar work as men do and by using
them as a special ' reserve* force against mili-
tant male workers. There has always been, too,
a systematic ideological campaign to place
women socially, politically and economically
beneath the status of the male population in
general. As Engels said, "within the family, he
is the bourgeois, and she is the proletariat."
While this special exploitation of women is
true in general, it is more brutal when applied to
Black women; they must face super-exploitation
as workers who are Black, together with the
additional burden of being women. The super-
exploitation of women and the triple-exploitation
of Black women workers can only end with the
destruction of imperialism and the construction
of a workers dictatorship.
It is precisely because of die special position
of women and the brutal exploitation of Black
women that they therefore are the mostpotential-
ly revolutionary section of the working class;
they are die most oppressed and therefore will
fight back the hardest. Recent history has shown
that Black women have taken leading roles in the
fight for better housing, welfare, against police
brutality and drug addiction. As a result, U.S.
imperialism, attempting to use its "divide and
conquer" technique, is attempting to utilize the
old male supremacist standby to split Black
women from Black men.
Racism has created a huge politically advanced
force for the working class. Black people have
shown the greatest persistence and courage
against imperialism. This advance force of
fighting Blacks is having the same effect in the
U.S. as the Vietnamese are having in the world.
The ruling class can buy up some of the loud-
mouths, but it can't buy off 22 million fighting
Blacksany more than it can buy off tens of
millions of other workers and students.
Black workers are beginning to see that to
achieve their liberation the only answer lies
in Marxism-Leninismthe science of class
struggle and proletarian revolution. This is the
science of the international working class of
which Black working people in the United States
are an integral part.
Ruling- class scholars' and press are telling
Black men to regain their "rightful male posi-
tion" in their lives and "not permit their own
emasculation." And, at the same time, the so-
called "revolutionaries" in the ghetto, the "cul-
tural nationalists," preach that Black women
should stand behind their men and play a sup-
porting role. Some even claim that this is in the
historical "African tradition." It is much the
same argument that the ruling class uses when it
tells Black Americans that their forefathers on
the Southern plantations "liked the warm,
leisurely way of life."
L seeking to find African roots for the ruling-
class inspired campaign of oppression, the Black
nationalists distort the feelingsofinternational-
ism that Black people have for their brethemin
Africa, and toe other coloredpeoplesof Asia and
Latin America. In line with this insidious plot,
they foist drugs, which were forced upon toe
people of Latin America and Asia, as a "tradi-
tional Asian experience" and even prostitution of
Black women, in toe name of the "traditional
polygamous forms of marriage" in Africa.
These ruling-class inspired plots to split
Black men from women will not work in the long
run. As Black and white workers will fight to
defeat the common class enemy, so Black men
and women will defeat the splitist tactics of the
enemy. As the working class generally will be led
by communist Black workers, leaders among
these Black working-class revolutionaries will
be Black women.

(Excerpted from Scientific American Magazine)
,.. Among the males in both the Detroit and the
Newark surveys, about 30 percent of the rioters
reported that they were unemployed. The unemploy-
ment rate among the nonrioters differed in the two
cities. In Detroit the unemployment rate among the
nonrioters was practically identical with that for the
rioters, 32 percent. Unemployment among the Newark
nonrioters was lower, 19 percent. In addition we
found that in Newark 61 percent of the self-reported
rioters, but only 43 percent of the nonrioters, had
been unemployed for a month or more during the
preceding year. (Students were excluded from the
analysis of employment data.) We also found that
the Newark rioters more often held unskilled jobs:
only 50 percent of the rioters and 60 percent of the
nonrioters held jobs at the semiskilled level or
It is clear from these findings that the rioters
are not the hard-core unemployed. In Newark, where
we did find some indication of employment differ-
ences between rioters and nonrioters, the rioters
are more likely to be marginally employed than truly
unemployable. As a matter of fact occupational
aspiration was higher among rioters than among non-
rioters in Newark...
Nor are the rioters the least educated. In Detroit
93 percent of the rioters remained in school long
enough to acquire some high school education; the
comparable figure for the nonrioters is 72 percent.
In Newark .98 percent of the rioters and only 86
percent of the nonrioters had attended high school.
(The differences between the two cities are due to the
age differences between samples, with the Newark
respondents all under 35.) Probably no single finding
in our data argues so strongly against the under-
class theory. The finding is precisely the reverse
of the prediction...
In Detroit and Newark, we found that those most
likely to riot were not the migrants but the long-
term residents. In Detroit 59 percent of the rioters
and 35 percent of the nonrioters had been born in
the city. In Newark the discrepancy was even greater:
more than half of the rioters and less than a quarter
of the nonrioters were natives.
We focused more closely on the migration ques-
tion by comparing the region of upbringing, for the
two riot activity groups. In both Detroit and Newark
74 percent of the rioters reported that they had
been raised in the North. Among the nonrioters 64
percent in Detroit and 48 percent in Newark said
they were raised in the North. It is, then, the long-
term residentsthose who know Northern living
patterns and the city bestand not the unassimilated
migrants who are most likely to riot. Again the
prediction of the riffraff theory is reversed...
Asked if their jobs were appropriate considering
the education you have, rioters more often answered
that they should have a "job with more income and

Social and Economic data on Afro-Americans
In the October 1967 issue of the Bureau of Labor
Statistics Report No. 332 (Social and Economic
Conditions of Negroes in the United States) we find
the following (All data is from that source unless
otherwise noted.):
In 1966 the total U.S. population was 194 million
and the Black population was 21.5 million or 11%
(p. 3). (It is estimated by some Census statisticians
that the non-white population is roughly 34 million
(18%) as opposed to the 21-odd million given by the
Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is due to under-
counting and fear of going among the Black people
to get an accurate account, and also a general
tendency to deliberately lie about the population of
the Afro-American people. Also, the Afro-American
percentage of the "non-white" population in these
statistics is approximately 92%, so from time to
time we will be referring to Afro-Americans when
the statistics use the term "non-white. We do not
think any meaningful alterations will result from
55% of all Afro-Americans live in the South (de-
fined as Delaware, WashingtonD.C., Kentucky, Mary-
land, Oklahoma and West Virginia and the states of
the Old Confederacy: South Carolina, Mississippi,
Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Vir-
ginia, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina).
3.7 million Blacks left the South between 1940 and
Blacks are moving from the South to the North
(Northeast and North Central) and to the West U.S.
From 1940 to 1966 the Afro-American percentage
of the total population dropped in the South from 24
to 20. In the North it rose from 4 to 8 and in the
West from 1 to 5.
In the central cities the Black population has just
about doubled between 1950 and 1966 (6.5 million to
12.1 million). The general Black population rose in
the U.S. from 15 million to 21.5millionfrom 1950 to
1966. In the metropolitan areas the population rose
from 8.4 to 14.8 million. This represents a 43%
increase in the population of the Afro-American
people during that period in the U.S., a 77% increase
in the metropolitan areas and an 87% increase in the
central cities. In that same period whites had a 36%
increase in the metropolitan areas with only 2% in
central cities and 79% in the urban fringes.
In 1966, 69% of the Afro-American people lived
in metropolitan areas, and 56% lived in central cities;
31% in whats called smaller cities, towns and rural
areas, and 13% in the urban fringes.
In metropolitan areas with a population of one
million or more the Afro-American population repre-
sented 26%. In cities of 250,000 to one million they
represented 20% of the total population, and 12% in
cities under 250,000.
Wall Street Journal (10/27/67): "Urban Negroes
will make up at least 40% of the population of 14 big
American cities by 1970, a study published by Con-
gressional Quarterly predicts. Only four cities had
that large a Negro population in 1960. The largest
increases are expected in Northern and Western
The major population increases have been to
Northern and Western industrial cities where job
opportunities presented themselves. Among the 30
largest cities in the country the population of the
Afro-Americans has, in many cases, doubled be-
tween 1950 and 1965.
Total Labor Force (14 years and older) (in thousands)
1960 1965 1970 1975-1980
White 65,057 69.678 76,272 82,714 89,137
Non-white 8,024 8,678 9,725 10,931 12,273
In the West and North Central areas the average
wages of Black workers come closest to that of
white workers (72% in 1966).
Between 1960 and 1967 the number of employed
Afro-Americans rose from 6.9 million to 8 million,
a 16% increase. Among the white workers the rise
was from 58.9 to 66.1 million, a 12% rise.
Over two-fifths of the non-white men and three-
fifths of all non-white women workers in 1966 re-
mained in service, laboring or farm jobssubstan-
tially more than twice the proportion among whites.
Wall Street Journal (1/20/67): "Federal Gov-
ernment hiring was responsible for more than half
the new professional and managerial positions opened
to Negroes, the study showed... Government hiring
was also responsible for 70% of the movement of
Negroes into clerical and sales positions in the
same period." (Source: Columbias Bureau of Ap-
plied Social Research)
The reason why the increases seem to be so
large is that the number of Afro-Americans in
"white collar" jobs in 1950 was so small that,any
increase would seem extremely large, percentage-
In addition, with the iarge influx of Black people
into the cities, there is. an increased demand for

services by the city, state and federal agencies.
Since an increasingly greater proportion of those
people receiving these services are Black, the
government is increasing the proportion of Afro-
Americans in the lower level of government jobs.
New York Times (8/7/67) (A survey made by
the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission):
"The heavy overpopulation of Negroes in blue collar
jobs remains equally pronounced. In all nine metro-
politan areas, Negroes make up a significantly
greater proportion of the blue collar workforce than
their percentage of the population would indicate,
ranging from 41.3 percent in the Washington area
to 11.2 percent in Los Angeles."
Wall Street Journal (2/20/68): "Negro employ-
ment rises steeply in post offices. Negro postal
workers now number 132,000, up 43% since mid-
1965. Negroes make up 19% of postal employment."
In 1967 the official figures of unemployment
among the Afro-American people was given as
7.3% (3.4% among the whites).
26.5% of non-white teenagers (16 to 19 years)
are unemployed and 10.6% for whites.
New York Times (3/3/68); "One-third of Black
youth between the ages of 16 and 19 are unem-
ployed in the 29 largest metropolitan areas of the
"A newly completed breakdown by the Bureau
of Labor Statistics shows that the jobless rate
for all potential non-white workers is at least triple
that of whites in six cities.
"It says that 32.7 percent of non-whites aged
16 to 19 were without work compared with an 11
percent jobless rate for white youth."
Business Week, (9/2/67): "Between 1960 and
1966 Afro-American youth between 14 and 17 soared
some 40% in numbers, while the white youth the
same age increased 26%.
New York Times (2/15/67): "The Defense De-
partment quoted the figures that: the Army was
composed of 14.5% Afro-Americans, and they made
up 20.6% of the death rate. In the Marine Corps
they comprised 7.5% and were 10.5% of the deaths."
50,000 Black men are in Vietnam (1966) out of a
total of 300,000 in all of the Armed Forces.
The more the Afro-American moves up on the
education ladder, the wider becomes the income
gap between him and his white counterpart. The
median income of men 25 years old and over,
classified by educational attainment (1966), shows
that with less than 8 years schooling, the income
of whites was $2,945 and Afro-Americans $3,376.
Among college graduates, the whites earned, on an
average, $9,023 to Blacks' $5,928.
"In the South, nearly half of all non-white house-
holds live in dwellings that either are dilapidated
or lack plumbing facilities, compared to less than
one-fifth in the North and West. In all regions
housing is tar worse in the smaller cities, towns
and rural areas than in toe metropolitan centers,
for both non-whites and whites."
U.S. Workers
Percent Distribution by Occupation and Color
1950 1955 1960 1965 1966
Wh. Bl. Wh. Bl. Wh. Bl. Wh. Bl. Wh. Bl.
White collar 40.3 10.2 42.1 12.0 46.4 16.0 47.5 19.5 47.9 20.8
Blue collar 39.3 37.5 39.0 41.8 35.9 39.8 36.2 40.7 36.1 41.7
Service 8.5 33.8 9.0 31.6 10.2 31.8 10.7 31.7 10.9 31.4
Farm 11.7 18.4 9.9 14.5 7.6 12.4 5,6 8.1 5,1 6.1
(Tables from Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1967,
pp. 222 and 231)

January 1969
IMPERIALISM has one primary needto
amass maximum profits. Therefore, the
oppression of Black workers at home and
the domination of oppressed peoples in Asia,
Africa and Latin America is not merely an
aberration of deranged imperialists, but the
necessary operation of imperialism.
Racism is the political expression of im-
perialism; it organizes and justifies such brutal
exploitation at home and abroad that the exploi-
tation of Black workers is the most profitable
domestic business of U.S. imperialism.
Wage differentials between Black and white
workers each year amount to $22 billion. In
addition, billions more are saved by denying
Black Americans the vital social services
necessary for survival; this is the enormity of
Black oppression.
Imperialism as a system must perpetuate
racism in order to thrive; it must continue to
reap the super-profits derived from the racial
inferiority" thesis it has drummed home into
both Black and white workers.
Consequently, the ability of the working class
to reject racism is crucial to its ability to end
class oppression. U.S. imperialism can not
exist without the brutal super-exploitation of
Black people and, therefore, will never grant
equality to Black workers.
The fact of this $22 billion of super-profits
raked in by the bosses in this country perme-
ates every aspect of life. It leads us to the
conclusion that unless an all-out fight is made
against the racism that permits this robbery
a battle waged by revolutionaries in the first
place and by the working class in generalthen
(1) the workers will be unable to make any
basic advances in their class interests and
establish a Left-Center coalition to lead their
fight against the bosses; (2) the danger of
fascism will increase; (3) the hacks who serve
the ruling class at the head of the trade union
movement will continue to ride roughshod over
the interests of the rank and file; and (4) no
Marxist-Leninist revolutionary party will suc-
ceed in the United States.
The basic industries on which the U.S. ruling
class depends for. its very existence are in-
creasingly using Black workers as a source of
labor power. In the auto industry, which affects
one out of every seven jobs in this country,
there is a growing Black minority. No longer
limited to 10 or 20 percent of the work force,
it now makes.up 35 to 50 percent, and in many
plants Black workers are in a majority. In the
steel mills the Black work force has reached
about 35 percent of the total. In the next 8 to 10
years the present 500,000-man work force in
basic steel is expected to dwindle to 200,000 if
the $2 billion annual capital investment plans of
steel bosses produce their planned results.
Since the preponderance of Black workers are

among the unskilledthose most likely to be
affected by such plansa fierce struggle in-
volving tens of thousands of Black workers is
The transportation industries are gaining
increasing numbers of Black workers, since
this is another area that hires many unskilled
workers. In many metropolitan mass transit
systems. Black workers form a majority. This
is also true in other "vital city services' such
as sanitation where Black workers compose
from 30 to 70 percent of the work force.
Thus, though Black workers compose only
10-15 percent of the population, their presence
and militancyin such vital areas of the
economy as basic industry, the key unionized
sectors, and key industries in big cities, gives
them a far greater importance than their num-
bers suggest; in fact, a decisive importance.
Consider New York City, for instance: Black
and Latin workers make up 25 percent of the
population but are a majority, or near it, in
mass transit, sanitation, garment, post office,
welfare department, and are sizable minorities
in teamsters, railroad, longshore, distribution
and city government. Though New York's white
workers form majorities in some of these
industries, most of them are in the skilled
crafts and in the white-collar sales areas.
Black workers, therefore, being either a ma-
jority or sizable militant minority, can bring
the city's politicians and their bosses to their
The above example can be repeated in other
large cities where Black workers make up an
even larger percentage of the populationup to
40 and even 50 percent in places like Chicago,
New Orleans, Newark, and Detroit.
Since capitalism as a system creates rac-
ism, there is more to the problem than just the
effects within the working class at the point of
production. The ruling class-created ghetto so
permeates every area of life that white workers
and the middle classcan no longer escape
its growing effects. During the New York school
shutdown, a racist fight affected every neigh-
borhood in the city as Black parents demanded
better education for their children.
But the effects of the ghetto spread far be-
yond education: super profits to banks grow
from mortgages on ghetto housing; rebellions
begin to shape the uses of the army and national
guard as well as local police forces; the flight
of whites to surrounding areas makes Black peo-
ple a greater force within the cities and creates
sharper contradictions about "who pays" for
the running of the city, since the remaining
Black workers are the lowest paid; the hope-
lessness of ghetto life leads Black youth to
enlist in the armed forces or await the draft,
making for a less stable military to depend on
in foreign imperialist wars and in domestic
rebellions. The increasing revolts among Black
servicemen in Vietnam and here at home attest
to this instability. The special oppression also
leads to a greater resistance to being drafted
by many Black youth. Both types of opposition
to the military creates a greater need for the
ruling class to figure out ways to put more
pressure on white youth to "serve their time,"
resulting in all kinds of new gimmicks to
maintain a standing army. Again the special
oppression of Black people sharpens the con-
tradictions for the whole population.
Of course, the ruling class has many
"answers" for these problems: "community
control"; breaking up present slums with
middle-class housing and relocating Black
people in new slums; making welfare clients
into case-aides and eliminating caseworkers,
who cost more money; hiring more Black cops
and national guardsmen, as well as turning
militant Black youths in the ghetto into local

police forces over Black workers ("community
control of the police").
Though its been said that fascism will come
to the U.S. in the guise of democracy, it is
more important to say that racism will be the
main tool the ruling class uses to turn white
workers and the white middle class to fascism.
The bosses will try to present the Black
workers as the main enemy in every one of the
situations already cited, thereby preventing
the specially oppressed Black workers from
leading the whole working class in revolution
again&t the bosses.
Recent Experiences in Labor Movement
The central importance of the fight against
racismand the potential for working-class
victory if the fight is successfulis reflected
in the fact that it is fast becoming the burning
question in just about every major trade union
and community struggle now taking place.
In the New York City school shut-down, the
Shanker leadership of the United Federation of
Teachers has done the bidding of the bosses by
calling a racist' walkout directed essentially
against the Black and Latin working-class
parents of the city. The split between white
and Black workers in New York has not only
hurt any common class struggle against these
bosses, but has set rank-and-file white teach-
ers fighting ghetto parents, and generally taken
the heat off the main enemythe ruling class's
Board of Education. (For a full analysis of this
struggle see Challenge, October 1968 and the
section of the Black Liberation Program on
community control, in this issue.)
In a recent major rank-and-file-led strike
in New York's largest industry, garment (see
PL, October 1968), racism was the tactic the
bosses tried to use to split the Black and Latin
workers. This was a particularly important
gambit for the garment bosses because these
workers were setting an outstanding example to
the 250,000 workers in the garment center and
could become of decisive importance in break-
ing the boss-banker-ILGWU-Mafia-police hold
on those workers. Nor did the ruling class lose
sight of the fact that half of these quarter-
million workers live in the ghetto and could
bring it special organized leadership because
of the experience gained in their struggles
against the bosses at the point of production.
In recent auto wildcats, the issue of racism
assumed an increasing importance. First there
were the King assassination walkouts, led by
Black workers, which shut down the plants; in
some cases the companies tried to forestall the
movement by voluntarily closing down "in
memorium" before the Black workers walked.
Then there were disorganized attempts by
white workers to walk after Kennedy was
killed, but these were racist reactions. (If
"they" could shut it down for one of "their
own" why can't we do the same for one of
"ours.") For the most part these failed to shut
the plants.
In two wildcat strikes in ChicagoRailway
Express and bus driversagain it was Black
workers in the lead, with the bus strike con-
tributing to the disruption at the Democratic
And there have also been welfare client
demonstrations. Since these were generally led
by government anti-poverty forces, the case-
workers were on the spot. They had to find a
course of action that would neither be directed
against the clients nor seek out the cops as
allies but would, at the same time, help build
the union against the city, not against the
clients and also defeat the racism existing
among both white and Black caseworkers.
These strugglesinvolving either the lead-
ership of Black workers, the fight against

racism by Black and white workers or the use
of racism by the ruling class to divide and
weaken the working classfollow many battles
of a similar nature in the past year: a wildcat
at Ford's Mahwah (N.J.) assembly plant when
Black workers walked out with the support of
white workers after a white foreman called one
Black worker a Black bastard" (see Challenge,
May 1968); the historic Memphis sanitation-
men's strike, which fought the whole ruling-
class structure of that deep Southern city for
union recognition and decent pay and conditions,
setting a fighting example for unorganized
workers all over the South (see PL, June 1968);
the wildcat strike and two-day rebellion of
15,000 Black and white workers at Newport
News (Va.) Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co.,
initiated by 200 Black workers over oppressive
working conditions and discrimination, and
joined by the rest of the workers, a majority of
whom are white (see PL, Oct.-Nov. 1967). No
doubt still more examples both inside and
outside the trade union movement could be
cited to prove the point that racism and the
fight against it, especially when led by Black
workers over class issues, has become the
all-pervading issue in the country.
Ruling Class Reactions
That the ruling class recognizes the im-
portance of maintaining racism is evident from
its latest actions. A two-pronged drive has
unfolded raising racism among white workers
to new heights and also pushing anti-working-
class Black nationalism to an unprecedented
The ruling class made "law and order"
(meaning shoot Black people) the main issue in
the recent elections; it gave Wallace tremen-
dous publicity to bring out the worst racism
among white workers; under the guise of "com-
munity control it provoked a school shut-down
in New York City designed to weaken and de-
stroy the teachers' union as well as whip up
racism among white people; it is attempting to
use professional workers such as teachers and
welfare workers people with middle- class
backgrounds, aspirations and ideologyas a
base from which to launch strong attacks on
Black and Latin workers and the class con-
sciousness of workers generally; and it is
using every anti-working-class Black national-
ist it can create or buy as a target for white
people to vent their racism on.
And that is the other side of the ideological
coin: the capturing of the Black movement by
anti-working-class nationalism, using the very
increase in Black consciousness itself as a
weapon against both Black and white workers.
The ruling class is afraid of the class leader-
ship Black workers in Black caucuses can give
to white workers, setting them in motion
against their sellout leaders. Thus, the big
pitch for "Black capitalism (a major plank of
Nixon's campaign), or "sitting down with the
Black Panthers, or "making contact to keep
things coolmeaning buying off any Black mili-
tants, an approach increasingly used by mayors
such as Aliota of San Francisco and Lindsay
and his "urban task force in New York, and
"community control; in other words, anything
to prevent Black workers from developing a
revolutionary, Marxist-Leninist outlook.
The ruling class "lieutenants in the labor
movement are busy, too. It is no accident that
Reuther is forming a second labor federation at
this time. In addition to the unions considering
joining (UAW, teamsters, chemical workers,
rubber workersall with large numbers of
Black workers), it will probably include.unions
such as District 65, the drug and hospital
workers' Local 1199 and the UFT in New York;
as well as many ex-left-led unions that are
having plenty of trouble keeping their increas-
ing Black memberships in line. Reuther, him-
self, sees the handwriting on the wall in the

TJAW, with Black workers increasing in mem-
bership and in leadership of rank-and-file
Therefore, what better way to create the
illusion of action than to set up a safety valve
for more militant workers to fight the Meany
old guard," which, of course, includes the
fight for civil rights, As things stand now,
the Alliance for Labor Action may have four
million members. It will be looking forand
feedingBlack nationalists and sellouts to join
the payroll and become the leaders of the
militant Black workers. In other words, the
main feature of this new federation will be to
contain the rising rank-and-file militancy in
the labor movement, of which the Black work-
ers form a crucial part. The organizers are
even sponsoring" (unofficially, of course)
Black caucuses in their own unions (Reuther in
the UAW, Shanker in the UFT) to steer the
workers down the wrong road.
Fighting Racism: Principled Struggle
In PLP's Black Liberation Program we
stressed the necessity of organizing Black
workers in the shops and at the point of
production." Here, we have emphasized the role
of Black workers in certain key industries and
the all-pervading influence of racism and the
fight against it in every important peoples
struggle now occurring. From this it must be
concluded that unless an all-out fight is made
against racism within the working class (which,
of course, includes our own members), a
Marxist-Leninist party cannot grow or succeed
in the United States. Furthermore, the ability
to defeat a ruling-class move to fascism will
be seriously weakened. We will not even be
able to construct a Left within the trade union
movement, let alone a real Left-Center coali-
It is not only crass racism to conceive of
building this Left and this coalition without
major emphasis on the role of Black workers
in leadership of itit is also impossible. In the
past, many of us have coupled the correct idea
of the Black Liberation Movement being the
vanguard of the revolutionary process" in the
U.S. with the false notion that this meant the
Black people as a whole were in advance of the
white workers, especially in basic industries.
And, further, that while the Black people could
not wait for the white workers, at some time
the white workers would catch up and assume
their rightful place (being the majority, after
all) in the leadership of the working-class
movement. It is time to bury this theory, for it
is now clear that the trade union movement
and any budding Left-Center coalition within it
will be smashed unless it decisively includes
Black workers in its leadership as well as, of
course, in its rank and file. Therefore, the
Black workers (not the all-class" Blackpopu-
lation) are an essential part of the revolutionary
potential of the U.S. working class and in a
quality and quantity far exceeding their per-
centage in the population. Without the Black
workers, no rank-and-file movement of work-
ers in any key area of the trade union move-
ment can succeed for long, if at all.
The fight against racism is inseparable
from the fight for rank-and-file-led unions,
from working class solidarity. We can thus
define the New York school shutdown as a
racist action, not a strike in the class in-
terests of workers. And we can oppose soli-
darity" in the abstract by asking solidarity
with whom and for what?" In New York it was
solidarity with the teachers bosses, the ad-
ministrators and principals, to say nothing of
the cops necessary to protect" teachers job
security" in the schools. Thats about the last
place to look for job protectionto the police
whose job it is to break the class actions of
Contradictions such as these are going to
increase. We must prepare to analyze every
action led predominantly by white workers
from a class viewpoint that considers racism
an anti-working-class factor. We must care-
fully determine if the action is building soli-
darity against the ruling class or for racism.
from all this we must conclude that the
question of fighting racism is a principled
question, a question of strategy, not tactics.
Building a base for revolutionary ideology and
for a Marxist-Leninist party, rather than a
base for the union" or a personal base for
ourselves, can only succeed if the fight against
racism is made a central task of the Marxist-
Leninist party.
This problem is most clearly revealed among
teachers in New York because the class strug-
gle is a lot hotter, at the moment, on the school
issue than it is in many other trade union situ-
ations. But when the battle heats up in other
industries and areas of working-class struggle,
we will be faced with the same ruling-class

drive to raise racism to a fever pitch. We
could then easily give in to it (since to fight
it "isolates me") the way some teachers did.
Such behavior stemmed from the confused
idea that the struggle was for solidarity in a
trade union class struggle, rather than a racist
action; therefore, any opposition might lead to
isolation from one's fellow teachers. Yet, in
nearly every instance where the class analysis
of the action as racist was put forward, some
teachersand parentswere won over to that
understanding, and won over on a higher level
than ever before. This is building a base for a
Marxist-Leninist party, for a revolutionary
ideology. To "defend the union" under any
and all circumstances, without examining the
class content of that defense, is economism,
not Marxism; and in this case was also racism.
Such a defense will have the opposite result: It
will destroy the union as a viable weapon of
class struggle folr rank-and-file teachers. In
such a situation Black and white workers (in
this case, Black parents and white teachers)
who see "going into school or staying out as
a purely tactical question are thinking of rac-
ism itself as a tactical question. Here we see,
in sharp relief, the inseparability of class-
conscious trade unionism and the fight against
racism, since in not fighting racism in a prin-
cipled way the union, as an organization that is
supposed to fight in the class interests of its
members, is being destroyed.
We cannot adopt an approach that says:
"Racism is a tough question; it splits workers
if you fight on it too soon. Therefore, fight on
other not-so-tough economic questions first,
With racism staring us in the face now in just
about every situation we encounter, the "too
soon" approach will tend to make the fight
against racism a tactical question. This would
be a disaster for a Marxist-Leninist party. We
must make the fight against racism a cardinal
principle. Of course, this doesn't mean that the
first time one meets a particular racist white
worker he should be fed the entire Marxist-
Leninist analysis in one swallow. But it does
mean that the path of how toand the necessity
tofight racism every step of the way is laid
in concrete discussions in our PLP clubs, in
caucuses, and in all organs of people's struggle.
For our part, in PLP, we must re-emphasize
the struggle to win over the white workers,
away from racism and to a class line. Not to do
this would be to fall into the trap of: "All white
workers are racist; therefore develop relations
with only Black workers." It is possible to
make progress among most white workers, as
we have found from our own experience. Even
more important, we must develop the kind of
mutual trust and confidence among workers
that goes into their understanding of us as
communists. Such a relationship will go a long
way to helping us get listened to and break
down racism among white workers. The main
concentration for white communists is still
among white workers.
Black Communists Reflect Anti-Racism
A real measure of whether we're fighting
racism among the masses is whether we're
recruting Black workers to a Marxist-Leninist
party, which in turn is a reflection of how well
we're fighting racism among white workers. No
Black worker can be expected to join such a
party unless it is actively fighting racism
among white workers who are racist. Thus,
recruiting Black workers becomes a key question
and forces white communists to measure up to
what they're doing among white workers as
well. For instance, are white workers being
recruited to a line that doesn't include fighting
racism as a principled question?
There are, of course, many special aspects
to the fight against racism. For example:
People who come from middle class or student
backgrounds acquire a special brand of racism
over and above hie brand developed among
white workers, a certain class snobbishness
that is directed against all workers but that
becomes a racist attitude when it involves
Black workers.
Another problem concerns teachers. Teach-
ers have a particular problem in fighting
racism because they are involved not only with
their fellow workers but also with the children
and parents in the large cities where a high
proportion of the population is Black or Latin,
Though an auto or garment worker may not
like his work, this doesn't necessarily reflect
itself in racism towards his fellow workers.
But if a teacher doesn't like children, he will
inevitably adopt racist attitudes toward the
ghetto children similar to the racism of his
fellow teachers. Teachers deal mostly with the
children of the working class and in a high
percentage of cases with the children of the
specially oppressed Black and Latin workers.
Under these circumstances, to dislike children

will inevitably result in anti-working class and
racist attitudes. If the cornerstone of any
strong teachers union is an alliance with
parents, and if these parents are part of
specially oppressed groupsvictims of racism
certainly a dislike of children that becomes
racism will defeat the aim of any teacher
attempting to fight in the class interests of his
fellow teachers or of the working class as a
Racism is the main tool the ruling class has
to divide the working class. In every instance
where its use has been successful, all workers
have been set back, no matter how much a
privileged group of white workers think theyve
gained, because the united struggle of workers
as a class has been weakened. And in all the
instances cited in this article, where racism
has been forced to take a back seat, the class
interests of all workersBlack and white-
moved forward.
To root this cancer out of our Party and the
working class is a first order of business. We
must make a qualitatively renewed effort to
study the questions of racism and nationalism
as they reveal themselves in our everyday
relations with white and Black workers. We
must oppose racism whenever and wherever it
bursts forth, in the smallest incident as well as
the biggest strike or working-class struggle.
The fight against racism is a life and death
matter in the United States. To succeed means
to bring the militant and revolutionary leader-
ship of the specially oppressed Black workers
to the working class as a whole in the total
fight against the same exploiterthe bosses
who own and run this country. It means to build
a base for socialism within the trade union
movement, and a Left-Center coalition that
will toss out the present sellout misleadership
and work in the class interests of the rank and
file. And it means that a truly revolutionary
Marxist-Leninist party will be built in the U.S.,
one that will not in any way accommodate itself
to the ideology of the class enemy.
Therefore, for the working class to emanci-
pate itself and all oppressed people, for it to
eventually seize state power as a class, with a
Marxist-Leninist party in its vanguard, the
racism that splits the working class must be

Rulers Coopt Nationalist Demands
by Don King
OVER the past few years, the Black student
movement seems to have surged ahead
with the rest of the movement for Black
liberation. On campuses across the country
there have been some sharp, lengthy battles
against school administrations. One thing is very
clear: Black students are ready, willing and
able to fight; they want to battle against racism
and imperialism. Often, some sections of white
students have shown similar capabilities. These
developments could be another blow to the racist-
imperialist ideas of the bourgeoisie if they are
properly conducted.
The ruling class, using Black nationalism
and nationalists, has side-tracked the aspira-
tions of the students. Taking advantage of good
tendencies, it has temporarily turned the move-
ment into its opposite. The movement for such
things as Black studies departments and Black
administrators is bad. Students are mainly from
the middle class. The outlook of most is to
eventually find a place in the Establishment.
This has enabled school administrations and
various nationalist leaders to bring the Ford
Foundation program of community control to
Ghetto rebellions have inspired most Black
students and many white students. Unlike the
demands of the ghetto rebellionsjobs, housing,
education, hospitals, no police brutality, job
upgrading, equal pay with white workers, prefer-
ential hiring, shorter hours and more pay
Don King is an Afro-American student, active in the
Boston area.
student demands are mainly bourgeois. These
demands, as we will spell out later, perpetuate
It is no accident that school administrations
from Harvard to CCNY have quickly given in
on these demands; in many cases they have
taken the initiative. Some schools have even
gone beyond the demands. What appears to have
nettled racist administrations most is that stu-
dents demandtakerather than ask. In Califor-
nia, under Reagans leadership, this section of
the bourgeoisie has used the tactic of attack-
ing the students head on. Eventually, it will
give in on all the demands! Consequently, a
movement cannot be built depending on the stu-
pidity of a section of the ruling class or rely on
liberal imperialistssplits in the ruling class. At
Queens College the administration gave in to the
demand for a Black administrative head of the
SEEK program. Shall we fight for more Black ad-
ministrators at Queens now? Should we fight for
more nationalist Black study courses?
We feel the courageous attitudes of Black
.students must move to higher ground. We urge
they move for a worker-student alliance. Nation-
alism can only be curbed and defeated by an
all-out assault against racism by Black and
white studentsespecially white students.
In the course of these battles we must learn
how to unite with and encourage students anti-
racist-imperialist attitudes while opposing their
reactionary nationalist ideas. This means fight-
ing racism, police brutality and Army inter-
vention, fighting nationalism and anti- commun-

ism. We will work in these movements and try
to prevent their cooption by the ruling class.
But we cannot build these groups while they are
essentially reactionary or call on the students
to support their middle-class demands. We do
not build support around community control*
(Nor could we support the racist strike of
the Shanker leadership.)
One thing for sure: We cannot have illusions
that the ruling class will teach us anything
goodlet alone a pro-working-class, anti-im-
perialist outlook. The bourgeoisie will never do
this*. The revolutionary movement theMarxist-
Leninistsare the only teachers. We will never
take "aid or ask for help from the rulers.
The community control movement in the
community and on the campuses is a counter-
movement to the ghetto rebellions. The bour-
geoisie has organized and leads it to prevent
working-class and communist leadership from
emerging. The bosses would prefer nationalist
study to class action in ghettos and schools.
Nationalismthe reaction to racismacts to
further the division among the people.
We must understand the difference between
movements that are progressive, ev^n if limited,
such as ghetto rebellions, and movements that
are ruling-class-nationalist organized to be
counter- revolutionary.
Worker-Student Alliance
The ruling classs use of the carrot (brib-
ery) and the stick (vicious police terror) to sup-
press these struggles clearly indicates the
importance it attaches to winning Black stu-
dents to its camp and away from an alliance
with Black workers. Black workers (especially
industrial workers) are now fighting the ruling
class harder than any other sector of the
population. Rebellions, rank-and-file move-
ments against the bosses and racist sellout
union leadership, and struggles for decent educa*
tion are some of the key actions. The super-
profits reaped by the ruling class from the
exploitation and oppression of Black and other
national minority workers are being threatened.
A real alliance between Black students and
workers frightens the ruling class even more.
The struggle at San Francisco State College
shows the great potential of Black students if
they fight with and in the interests of the
masses of Black working people.
We believe that the concept of a worker-
student alliance against racism and imperial-
ism provides the best overall strategy for the
Black student movement. It is the only strategy
that will enable it to play a progressive role
in the elimination of racism and imperialism.
Black workers suffer lower wages and great-
er job insecurity than their fellow white workers.
They suffer the harshest, most degrading work-
ing conditions. In addition, they are subjected
to racism from white workers. The Black
industrial proletariat is concentrated in fac-
tories whose owners make up the key sections
of the ruling class. They are placed in a con-
stant day-to-day, almost life and death battle
with such giants as GM, Ford and U.S. Steel.
Their oppression is very sharp. Of all sections
of Black people, workers see clearly that the
main enemy of Black people is the ruling class.
Superexploitation forces Black workers to fight
harder now than white workers. This militancy
is helping to lead more and more white workers
against the bosses and their labor lieutenants.
Because of their strategic position and their
militancy, Black workers can hit the ruling
class where it hurts mostat the source of
profits. Black workers are the most stable,
the most uncompromising and the most reliable
force in the Black Liberation Movement. And
they are the ones most capablein fact, the
only ones capableof leading the movement to
Black Middle Glass
We say the Black Liberation Movement must
be led by Black industrial proletariat, together
with all Black.workers. We do not mean to dis-
miss the oppression of other strata of the Black
people, or to exclude them from an active role.
The majority of Black people are workers.
The liberation of Black people means, first and
foremost, liberation of the Black working class.
We believe working people like Black teachers,
Government workers, artists and intellectuals
also have an important role to play within the
movement. A large portion of the Black middle
class has a material stake in the defeat of U.S.
imperialism. While members of this group are
not directly exploited, they are oppressed. Their
special talents and skills are used by the ruling
class to strengthen its hold on the Black (and
white) working class. The ruling class pits this
group against Black workers, and treats it only
a little better in return.
Because of their position between the ruling
class and the working class, members of die
Black middle class often straddle the fence when

confronted by Black workers in sharp struggle
with bosses. Many times they take the side of
the ruling class. Sometimes they ally with Black
workers to advance their own narrow interests.
Vacillation is inherent in the position of the
Black middle class, which, unlike the Black work-
ing class, cannot provide militant sustained
Many membersof the Black petty-bourgeoisie
aspire to join the ruling class or become well-
paid lackeys. Demands for more Black cops,
Black businessmen, politicians and school ad-
ministrators emanate from the Black petty-
bourgeoisie. Desires for admittance to the power
structure are hidden behind demands for com-
munity control or more poverty programs. This
means continuing the same old oppression of
Black workers under a new, more deceptive
For a large portion of the Black middle
class, joining the power structure is impossi-
ble. For a major section of the Black middle
class, an alliance with Black workers (and white
workers) is a necessity. Those members of the
Black petty-bourgeoisie who want toplayaposi-
tive role in the liberation of their people must
ally with the struggles of Black workers. They
need a pro-working-class outlook. They should
place their talents and skills at the service of
Black workers.
Black students, despite their relatively more
privileged position than Black workers, and
workers generally, are also harshly oppressed.
They will continue to be oppressed even if they
are fortunate enough to graduate and become
mental workers (teachers, social workers, white
collar workers). Like their white counterparts,
the education they receive is racist and imperi-
alist in content. The "education" is designed to
prevent them from allying with the working
class, especially Black workers. Their vital
needs as students (the defeat of imperialism),
and later on as mental workers, can only be
satisfied through a worker-student alliance.
Black students are more likely to be drafted,
have a higher flunkout fate, a harder time pay-
ing for their education and receive a lower
quality education than do white students. More-
over, Black students suffer, sometimes physi-
cally, from the racism of white students. And
proportionately fewer Black students attend col-
leges and universities.
The struggles of Black working people in
the over 1000 rebellions that have occurred
since 1964 are responsible for even the token
admissions of Black students that have occurred.
We must bring a pro-working-class and anti-
imperialist outlook to these students.
Such struggles as strikes at Newport News
(See PL, Nov. 1967), Hotpoint (PL, April 1969),
San Francisco State and Columbia University
illustrate, masses of white and Black workers
as well as Black and white students can be
united to fight racism of the class enemy. In
the course of struggles, significant blows can
be struck against racism implanted deep in
white workers and students. Eventually, racism
can be limited and entirely overcome.
It cannot be stressed often enough that be-
cause racism is based on class exploitation,
it is in the material interests of the entire
working class and the majority of students to
defeat it. Students must take sharp action in op-
posing racism, and must ally with Black workers.
They should try to enlist white students and
workers in this fight.
Many Black students have learned in strug-
gle, to one degree or another, two important
points. The first is thattheir immediate enemy
the administrationis a tool of the ruling class.
They are being educated, or rather miseducated,
to serve that ruling class and not the Black
masses. By consciously and clearly directing
the main thrust of their struggle against the
ruling class together with its agents and toms
(as opposed to white students or white people
generally), they can win. This does not mean
that we do not recognize the reality of racism in
white students and workers. It is necessary
for Black students to constantly fight racism.
Second, many Black students have seen (al-
though vaguely and incompletely) or at least
have paid lip service to the idea that they
must ally themselves with the Black masses.
This is often expressed as "relating" or "go-
ing" to the Black community. Black students
are generally unclear, however, about answers
to questions like Whom do we go to in the com-
munity? and What do we take to them? Many
Black students have recognized that they must
play some role in the struggles of Black work-
ing people. Conversely, Black working people
can be rallied to support student struggles.
The struggle at Columbia last spring, despite
its eventual failure, demonstrated the potential
of a sharp campus fight with support from Black
working people in the community.
Two points, then, are central in advancing
the worker-student alliance strategy to Black
students: (1) the need for Black students to
clearly attack the ruling class as the main op-
pressor of Black students and Black workers,

and the perpetrator of racism, and (2) the need
to consciously ally with the Black working
class and to develop in themselves an attitude
of serving Black working people.
Alliances between Black students and white
students against the ruling class's racist prac-
tices are essential. They are extremely power-
ful. In the immediate future, and in most cases
(given -the weakness of conscious Left forces
in the Black Liberation Movement), we will
have to make some concessions to the nation-
alism widespread among Black students. Thus,
Black student groups will prevail.
In response to the racism they have suffered
from white students and white workers, many
Black students have developed a bad outlook.
Most Black students assert that racial divisions,
rather than class divisions, are primary. Many
Black students see all whites as the enemy of
Black people. Black nationalism denies any
fundamental class divisions among either whites
or Blacks. No distinction is made between those
whites who benefit from racism and perpetuate
it, namely the ruling class, and those who pick
up racism from the ruling class and are hurt
by itthe white working class. Nationalism de-
nies that class exploitation is the basis of ra-
cism, Instead, nationalists assert that Black
millionaires, cops, generals, steelworkers,
teachers and domestics are all oppressed in
basically the same way. Supposedly they all have
the same interests with regard to all whites.
Thus nationalism diverts minority working peo-
ple from struggle on a class basis and from
making alliances with white students and work-
ers. Nationalism even prevents Black people
from unitingworkers and middle classto
fight imperialism successfully.
Our struggle is national in form and work-
ing class in content. Thus Black students have
established Black student unions and Black work-
ers have set up separate caucuses within unions
to fight against their special (class) oppression.
Black students are not always fully aware of the
cfass nature of their oppression. Often a national
feeling is the initial conscious impetus towards
Nationalism, in the sense of a well developed
ideology (represented by such spokesmen as
LeRoi Jones, Ron Karenga or Stokely Carmi-
chael), is held by relatively few Black students.
However, many Black students would claim to
be nationalists, because within the Black Libera-
tion Movement nationalism is presented as the
true revolutionary position.
There is no such thing as revolutionary
nationalism. Black students may be nationalist
to a large extent, and can become revolutionary.
The two aspects are contradictory in the same
way that racism or male supremacy often con-
tradicts strong class consciousness in a white
worker. We must always and clearly distinguish
between the nationalism of the leadership of
BSUs, which is reactionary, and the na-
tional consciousness or strong natiohal feelings
of rank-and-file Black students. National con-
sciousness is the vague awareness of being a
part of a specially oppressed minority which is
now fighting hard against the oppression. Na-
tional consciousness is not necessarily reaction-
ary, although it may become so (i.e., as na-
tionalism) and is subject to manipulation by na-
tionalists. In any case, national consciousness
is still a long way from class consciousness.
Tile basis of our struggle is class exploita-
tion. This knowledge must become the predom-
inant ideology for all our struggles. Nationalism
must be defeated, and national consciousness
transformed into class consciousness. In battling
imperialism we must adopt proletarian inter-
nationalism; that is, unity with the working peo-
ple of all countries and of all nationalities
who are oppressed by imperialism.
We want Black students to ally with and
support just struggles waged by white students
and white workers. However, we must take ac-
count of distrust of white students and white
workers. The fight against racism among whites
by white communists and revolutionaries is of
the utmost importance and will help pave the
way for an alliance with Black students. We
certainly will not get very far if all we have to
propose is a rather glib Black and White,
Unite and Fight." This is especially true since
racism among whites will often force Black
students to act alone. The important thing is
for Black students to clearly attack the ruling
class (administration) as the main enemy of
Blacks. They should also ally with Black work-
ers whenever they fight racism.
To the extent that Black students see the
ruling class as their main enemy, and the
enemy of the vast majority of whites, they will
regard white students and white workers as
potential allies. Unity of the whole working class
on correct demands is clearly in the interests
of Black workers. If Black students develop a
pro-Black working class outlook, they will nec-
essarily develop a pro-white and Black working

class outlook. Forging a real alliance between
Black students and Black workers, and white
students and white workers to defeat racism and
imperialism is a very long affair.
Unfortunately, no significant portion of the
Black student movement has yet worked out in
detail an overall strategy based on the two key
points above. Black students are partially organ-
ized. They have largely been organized into
Black student unions and Afro-Ams under nation-
alist leadership. All indications point totheU.S.
ruling class making some attempt to organize,
under its leadership, a national Black student
organization. Just as the CIA controlled the
National Student Associations, the ruling class
will try the same with a national Black stu-
dent organization, probably through the Ford
Foundation. Within the Black Liberation Move-
ment as a whole, nationalism has replaced
pacifism as the main ideological weapon of the
ruling class.
Nationalist leaders in the movement con-
sistently discourage militant struggle against
conditions and bourgeois content of the education
of Black students. They do not organize against
the local university administration who op-
presses Black working people. These leaders
do not fight for substantial wage gains, unions
or better working conditions at Black or white
institutions. They generally dont fight against
the expansion of universities into Blackworking
class communities unless there is strong rank-
and-file pressure. They do not fight against
the draft, ROTC or for immediate withdrawal
from Vietnam. They do not rely on the masses
of Black students nor on the masses of Black
working people. They certainly do not rely on
fellow white students, whom they regard as
hopelessly racist. Instead, under their leader-
, ship, the Black student unions become com-
placent pressure groups, relying on liberal ad-
I ministratorsthe ruling classto provide afew
more crumbs. Pretending to be supermilitant'
and busy getting our thing together, they
hide a no-struggle approach and acceptance of
tokenism. As a result many of these unions
have degenerated into social and cultural clubs
or extended bull sessions concerning the prob-
lems of being Black.
Nationalism, as a fully developed ideology,
is restricted to a few Black students. Neverthe-
less, given the prevalence of racism among
white students and the weakness of class-
conscious leadership in the movement, many
Black students are rallied behind nationalism.
This is illustrated by the frequency with which
demands for. more Black trustees, Black ad-
ministrators and autonomous Black studies de-
partments are being put forward by Black stu-
dents all over the country.
More Black trustees or administrators means
only expanding the Black middle class. It does
nothing to alter the racist, imperialist char-
acter of the education Black students receive.
It merely changes the faces of those carrying
it out. This is essentially the equivalent of the
discredited student power demanded by white
students in the past.
The same is true of the demand for Black
studies. Black and white students can never
receive an anti-imperialist pro-working class
education from the bourgeoisie. They can get
this only by fighting for socialism and by
studying Marxism-Leninism. Black studies will
amount to more of the same liberal racism
found in all the other courses and departments
of the university. The university will use Black
studies against Black workers and white work-
ers. The department will be filled with courses
designed to defeat Black rebellions using all
sorts of sophisticated techniquescommunity
control of police, redesign of cities, etc. (At
Harvard recently, in a fight led by the Afro-
American group and supported by SDS, such a
course was defeated.) Many courses dealing
with the special problems or concerns of Black
intellectuals, designed to increase their aliena-
tion from Black workers and their struggles,
will also be thrown in. Black studies depart-
ments will simply reinforce nationalism (often
with a militant veneer) by dealing with such
so-called revolutionaries as LeRoi Jones, Ron
Karenga and others and Black capitalist re-
formers like Stokely Carmichael.
University administrations across the coun-
try are initiating degree programs in Black
studies, often without a murmur of protest.
Harvard said such a program would enrich
the Harvard experience for Black students.
The ruling class wants to train Black stu-
dents as teachers and intellectuals to become
the nationalist leaders of all the Black people,
including the working class. These Black studies
departments would be centers to spew national-
ism into the ranks of the working class.
The demand for control of the Black studies
department also falls in the category of bour-
geois demands. Black students should not want
to become bosses. It is impossible to control
such a department. The proposed Black studies
programs pose no threat to the rulers. Uni-
versity administrations are often perfectly will-

ing to let Black students have a say in such
programs. In practice, control by Black stu-
dents means becoming a part of the rotten ad-
ministrative structure.
They are fooled into spending long hours
trying to talk the administratorsthrough spe-
cial committeesinto having a more militant
curriculum. Black students are persuaded to
assume part of the responsibility for the in-
evitable racism that a Black studies program
gives in the interests of the rulers. The way
to avoid this is to develop a program that unites
Black students and workers, fights imperialism,
fights the draft and other important issues.
In its emphasis on cultivating ones "negri-
tude apart from class struggle, nationalism
(especially its cultural variety) feeds selfish-
ness, elitism and anti-working class prejudices.
For example, some Black students can reject
the struggles of Black workers for material
gains on the grounds that this will only make
them crass and materialistic like the white
working class and so lose the essence of
their "blackness. However, this ideology
stands in direct opposition to the real needs
and interests of the majority of Black students,
who cant enter the ranks of the ruling: class nor
those of its well paid lackeys. This is true
despite ruling-class propaganda to the contrary.
Black students will continue to be drafted to
fight imperialist wars in Vietnam and elsewhere,
which they may oppose but apart from workers
cannot stop. Later on, as mental workers, they
will continue to be oppressed though not to the
same extent as their brothers and sisters in
the shops and factories.
Nationalism can only be defeated by showing
how it betrays the interests of Black workers
and students. Nationalism cannot be defeated
through discussion or just on paper. The way
to defeat nationalism is to initiate sharp mass
struggles on campus by Black and white students
around working-class demands that rally work-
ers In support. In such a situation it is easy
to expose the "more militant than thou nation-
Anticommunism is used extensively by the
ruling class to defeat the struggles of workers
and students. Anticommunism is really the
chief weapon of the bosses. Just consider one
way tile rulers are now trying to handle the
growing number of Black and white student
rebellions against their racist practices in the
high schools and colleges. In addition to nation-
alist schemes and violent suppression, the ruling
class tries to label all these struggles as the
work of "outside agitators, of "a handful of
SDSers, or of "Maoists or as the result of
some "national conspiracy. This is nothing but
The intent of the rulers is clear. They want
to destroy the unity of the students who are
fighting them and prevent Black and white work-
ers from allying with them. When the bosses
make such attacks, they are relying on and
playing up to the false fears and distorted images
that students and workers have about commun-
ists. According to the bosses, communists are
cold, calculating, mechanically disciplined ro-
bots. Communists are supposedly evil manipula-
tors who seem to be sincere and militantfighters
but who hide sinister motives. Because the
bosses hold state power (which means among
other things that they run the schools and news
media in their interest), they have managed to
infect each of us with the venom of anticom-
munism. Hence, we are all susceptible to ap-
peals made on the basis of anticommunism.
And in any struggle, if we do not fight to des-
troy all the rulers poison in ourselves and
other Black students (and white students), we
are bound to be defeated.
Anticommunism is frequently the last resort
of Black students who cannot rationally counter
the arguments for a pro-working-class orienta-
tion of the Black student movement. It is fre-
quently mixed with nationalism as when the
worker-student alliance strategy is condemned
for being Marxist, and Marxism condemned as
a "white ideology, hence irrelevant to the
needs of Black people. This fusion between
nationalism and anticommunism is important
because it shows that anticommunism comes not
only, though mainly, from outside the move-
ment (that is, from the ruling class) but is
also pushed by forces within the Black move-
ment. (See, for example, "Stokely's Anti-Com-
munism in PL, October, 1968.) Indeed, nation-
alists within the student movement, and the
Black Liberation Movement generally, are in-
evitably among the most rabid redbaiters pre-
cisely because communists are the foremost
advocates of proletarian internationalismthe
very antithesis of nationalism. Communists,
Black and white, will struggle ceaselessly to
defeat all the schemes of nationalists to ad-
vance themselves and curry favor with the
bosses by selling out and misleading Black work-
ers and students (Black capitalism, community

control, Black student power, etc.) The anti-
communist aspect of nationalism is another
reason that it must be defeated among Black
Pro-working- class (worker- student alliance)
forces within the Black student movement are
bound to be redbaited, precisely because they
agree with communists that the movement must
have a clear pro-working-class, antiruling-
class orientation. Communists, however, go
much much further and assert that despite some
temporary improvements and possible victories
the oppression that Black and white workers
suffer cannot be ended under capitalism. Instead,
to end forever all the exploitation they suffer,
and among other things to lay the basis for
the complete defeat of racism, workers and their
allies must make a socialist revolution, guided
by Marxism-Leninism and a Marxist-Leninist
party that smashes the present bourgeois state
and sets up a dictatorship of the proletariat. Still,
because of the basis of agreement between com-
munists and worker-student alliance forces, the
latter will also be redbaited by Black and white
students. And since we know what poison anti-
communism is, we must meet it head on and ex-
pose it as the tool of the rulers. The complete
and utter defeat of anticommunism among Black
students must be one of the primary aims of
the worker-student alliance forces.
One measure of success in winning Black
students to a clear anti-imperialist, pro-working
class outlook will be their rejection of aid
from the ruling class. Money given to Black
student unions by the Ford Foundation, the
Carnegie Foundation and others, is meant to
induce Black students to stop fighting hard
against racism and imperialism in their uni-
versities and to devote their time to harmless
social and cultural activities. Accepting this
"aid" (much of which is extracted from Black
workers) breeds reliance on the ruling class.
Black students will avoid struggle for fear of
losing it. When Black students have a clear
class perspective they will refuse this "aid."
Because of money given to them by rulers,
and because of the prospect of entering the
power structure, some Black student leaders
have a material stake in keeping their organiza-
tions reactionary. Such leaders will try to crush,
by any means necessary, any class-conscious
forces developing in their groups. This is be-
cause Black students with a worker-student
alliance outlook and practice threaten the status
of these leaders as effective lackeys. Worker-
student alliance forces must be prepared to
defend themselves against the counter-revolu-
tionary violence of the reactionary, nationalist
elements in the movement.
Build a New Movement
We cannot support the movement for more
Black working-classor white working-class
students. The movement implies that the uni-
versity is going to teach working-class youth
how to change society for the betterperhaps
even how to make a revolution. It is a slap in
the face of Black people, because it gives the
ruling class another way to coopt some of the
most disciplined forces from the ongoing Black
Many people say that education is what can be
learned at universities under capitalism. This is
a very, very narrow conception of education.
It is true that some information and skills can
be learned at school. However, the essence of
education is understanding how class struggle
guided by Marxism-Leninism can establish and
consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat.
We can sympathize with many excellent people
who hold this narrow idea. And we will try to win
young Black youth to revolutionary activity just
as we work among all students now if they
are admitted into college. But the ruling-class
plan will be to try and behead the people's move-
ments by putting working-class kids in schools
and tying them up in administering Black studies
schemes. And the ruling class gets an extra
bonus by combing through thousands of working
class youths to come up with a little more brain
power to perpetuate the bosses' system.
Why should we help the ruling class denude
the working-class movement?The movement for
preferential admission helps create the illusion
that the way to solve workers problems is to
send their children to the university.
We want to build a mass Black student move-
ment committed to defeating racism and im-
perialism, and capable of allying with and lead-
ing masses of white students in this fight. Black
students will certainly not organize workers,
but can help bring to them revolutionary ideas.
The point is to develop an increasingly pro-
working class Black student movement rooted
in struggles against the ways imperialism op-
presses all students, at the outset allied at
least with Black workers, and more and more
consciously allied with all workers in struggle.
Developing a worker-student alliance is a long
process. The following steps are important in
building that alliance:
1. Support for Campus WorkersPreferen-

tial hiring for Black workers where there is
discrimination* Support for higher wages, union-
ization and better working conditions for all
campus workers.
2. Opposition to University Expansion at the
Expense of Black and White Working-Class
HousingThis is the case at Columbia (the gym
was only a small part of their plans), University
of Chicago, etc. Harvard owns houses with ter-
rible conditions.
3. Support for the Struggles of Black Workers
On and Off the JobThis includes support of
strikes, actions by welfare recipients, rebellions
by high school students and parents fights for
decent education for their children.
4. Support for Black RebellionsSupport for
Black rebellions on the part of Black students
should be as large-scale and as sharp as pos-
sible. Direct participation in these rebellions
with the aim of increasing the resistance and
helping to guide them more against the class
enemy is one possible course of action. Militant
demonstrations on campus and before armories
demanding all troops and cops out of the ghetto,
massive leafletting among white students and
workers explaining why the rebellion is just,
pointing out that they have a common class
enemy with Black working people, are other
possible activities.
5. Opposition to Special Liberal Studies on
How to Control the GhettoManyprofessors are
Involved with such studies.
6. Opposition to Racist Investments and Re-
cruitingPrinceton has large-scale investments
in South Africa. Many companies recruiting on
campus have racist hiring policies.
7. Opposition to Racist Textbooks, Courses
and ProfessorsParticular issues should be
chosen and fought on. These struggles can be
won, which is much better than spreading the
illusion of student power. The main function
of the university is spreading racist, imperial-
ist, anti-working class education.
8. Attacks on Racist Teacher Training Pro-
gramsUp to 40 per cent of the graduates of
many colleges become teachers. We should go
into such classes and fight for support .for
working-class education and the struggles of
working-class parents for better schools.
In points (5), (6), (7) and (8), as is the case
with all reform struggles, the main lesson we
want students to learn is that under capitalism
the university and the state will always serve,
the same classthe bourgeoisie. There is a dan-
ger in advancing these points we may foster the
illusion that the class nature of the university
may be fundamentally altered without a socialist
revolution. We must make it clear to students
that while it is necessary to fight for and pos-
sibly win the moderation or elimination of cer-
tain racist policies and practices of the univer-
sity, it is impossible to change its overall racist
and anti-working class character.
9. Fighting imperialism in the University-
Mack students must, to a much greater degree
titan at present, lead and take part in anti-
imperialist campaigns against the university.
The link between the superexploitation of mi-
nority peoples at home and abroad can be made
clear. ROTC trains officers to put down revolu-
tions in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and re-
bellions in minority communities here. The
Institute for Defense Analysis maps plans to
counter armed struggle by oppressed peoples
at home and abroad. Nationalists reduce im-
perialism to the desire of whites as a whole
to maintain "white power and "white values.
But the ruling class does not hold on to the op-
pressed people of the world because it considers
these people savages or subhumans incapable
of governing themselves. It does so because it
makes superprofits from their exploitation. This
is the only basis on which Black students can
be won to demand No NegotiationsU.S. Get
Out of Vietnam Now.
10. Summer Work-In ProjectsGoing into fac-
tories to work over the summer can help Black
students, some of whom are from die middle
class, learn first hand the superexploitation of
Black workers and develop hatred for the class
enemy. Bringing out political ideas can help
some workers gain a clearer understanding of
die war and racism, and how to fight them. A
number of permanent and useful contacts are
likely to develop.
In general, we must persuade Black stu-
dents to ask whether the struggles they wage
(for Black trustees, deans and'admissions per-
sonnel, control over Black admissions, Black
courses, etc.) serve the interests of the ruling
class or those of the working class. We have
to think out campus struggles to answer the
questions How can this fight be directed most
sharply against the ruling class? How can the
real class relations of America be most sharply
exposed? How can we raise effectively the need
to ally with working peopleBlack and whitein
sharp struggle against imperialism? Marxism-
Leninism, the science of working-class revolu-
tion, must lead the struggles of Black students.

Third World Cliques are Anti- Working Class
by Hari Dillon and
The "Third World" student movement is in
the control of right-wing, anticommunist (i.e.,
antirevolutionary) antiworking-class forces. The
situation at San Francisco State seemed to be
the pattern at colleges throughout the country.
At San Francisco State the Black Student Union
and to a slightly lesser extent the Third World
Liberation Front of which it is a part, is con-
trolled by a small (about 15) group of petty-
bourgeois nationalists. These leadership cliques,
usually drawing at least one salary from the
school administration, Carnegie, or both, have
no perspective of building a movement, period-
let alone a revolutionary pro-working class stu-
dent movement. They are "Black Power" type
reformists whose ideology is nationalism (all-
class unity, class collaboration, etc.) although
they spout "Marxism" and Leninist" organiza-
tional forms.
They usually put forward mainly bourgeois
demands (more Government money, Black ad-
ministrators, etc.). One of their key demands
is a Black studies department, to be controlled
by die BSU. This demand is national in form
and ruling class in content. The other impetus
for the leadership cliques making this demand
is that they see a chance to get themselves
some well-paying jobs as Black faculty.
We cannot build a movement that threatens
ruling-class power if we are financed by ruling-
class grants. The only kind it will allow to be
built with its money is one which serves its
class interest (a petty-bourgeois reformist
movement). And even then, if this petty-bourgeois
movement gets too militant and begins to wage
sharp struggles on the campus, the money will
be taken away until things cool off. (At SF State,
in a desperation move last week, Carnegie post-
poned indefinitely its grant to the TWLF, all
AS funds were frozen, and all EOP student
teachers who have been arrested were fired.
Hari Dillon and Bridges Randle are San Francisco State
PLP-Third World Liberation Front and Black Student
Union members respectively.
Bridges Randle
This happened because the nationalist ideas
among the* rank and file began to weaken a
little and class ideas came forward.) The lesson
is clear, from SF State to Vietnam: We can't
take their "aid" and fight them at the same time.
At SF a weakness has been a preoccupa-
tion with this or that "militant" on the Central
Committee. Particularly during a sharp and
protracted mass struggle it is easy to become
caught up in giving tactical advice to these fak-
ers and developing illusions that this one is better
than that one. This is a fatal mistake. Our strat-
egy must be to build a rank-and-file caucus
around worker-student alliance politics. If the
estimate is that someone connected with the
leadership can be won, then we should struggle
with himbut this must be political (as opposed
to Jtactical) struggle In which we win him away
from the leadership and to the caucus. And Hie
main emphasis has to be on the rank and file.
r Xhe caucus should try to involve people in
parts of a worker-student alliance program.
This would include high school organizing, a
summer work-in, support of minority work-
ers' struggles, leafletting factories, etc.or
launching a fight to get Urban Studies ("urban
removal") classes stopped (such as the one
taught by construction millionaire Eichler at
SF State).
(1) Class Analysis and Class Outlook: This
would include a general understanding of the
class nature of U.S. (capitalist) society and fee
class basis of racism, that minority people are
the most oppressed section of the working class.
Also, it should include a basic understanding of
the class nature of the state and oppose bour-
geois demands (Black administrators, etc.),
which are not in the interest of the Black work-
ing class. Understand why there can'tbea Black
studies department which is autonomous from
ruling-class content. A working-class outlook
also includes opposing male chauvinism and

struggling against it.
(2) Worker-Student Alliance: The caucus will
fight for a worker-student alliance strategy
and outlook for the movement, the need for mi-
nority students to ally with minority working
peoplethe only way to win immediate reform
struggles and ultimately revolution. Either mi-
nority students will ally with minority workers
or with the ruling class (administration, Ford,
ECC, etc.) The caucus should include in its
program support of minority workers struggles
(rank and file as opposed to fake leaders).
(3) Alliance with the Progressive (Pro-Work-
ing Class) Forces in the White Student Move-
ment: One of the barriers to unity is nationalism.
We must win people to the need for unity on
a class basis. We must point to the fact that
all over the country, under the leadership of
worker-student alliance forces in SDS, thous-
ands of white students have been organized to
fight alongside minority students against racism.
This unity is necessary to win and is a positive
development that we must support and fight for
when possible. Also point out that (at San Fran-
cisco State in particular) the supposedly anti-
white leadership is quick to ally with reaction-
ary white forces (YSA, Marcuseites, Programs)
against worker-student alliance forces in both
the white and minority students movement.
(4) Oppose Redbaiting: As the worker-student
caucuses gain strength in the movement, the
main ideological weapon the ruling class and
the rightist forces will use against us is anti-
communism. When attacked, the Right will try
to submerge political differences, in fact stop
any internal political struggle (We have to
stick together as brothers, etc.") and instead
redbait the PLers in the caucus. Theyll rant
and rave about external cadre," manipula-
tion," "bringing outside politics into our or-
ganization," foreign ideology," dogmatic
Marxists," etc. Many of the more sophisticated
hold up the Red Book while they redbait
Wave the red flag to oppose the red flag."
This anticommunism must be met head on
by the worker-student caucus. Caucus mem-
bers should point out how theyre redbaiting in
order to avoid discussing openly their politics,
that theyre trying to scare people away from
working-class politics. Anticommunism, if suc-
cessful, will destroy an organization as an
effective fighter against the ruling class. It is
an attempt to isolate the people from communist
ideaswhich are needed to win.
PLers should also put forward a clear
independent position that we are revolutionary
communists and talk about what that means and
why the rightist forces fear it (revolution,
Dictatorship of the Proletariat, etc.) PLers
should point out how nationalism and anticom-
munism are inseparable. Communism, the inter-
nationalist ideology, is the opposite of nation-
(5) Oppose Taking Money, or Aid" From the
Administration, Ford, Carnegie, etc.: One of
the main tactics of the ruling class to turn the
minority student movement into a liberal, re-
formist (i.e., reactionary) force against minority
workers is to buy off the leadership. Over $20
million has been poured into minority student
organizations across the country. This takes two
main forms: foundation grants and money from
the administration doled out through the As-
sociated Students. This money serves only one
purpose: to stop the development of a revolu-
tionary movement which allies itself with mi-
nority workers. The grants are given out in
consultation with the CIA. The money came
from the exploitation of minority workers and
will go into the pockets of the petty-bourgeois
Most of the rightists in the movement have
a vested class interest (through the money
they get now and the jobs theyll get later)
in maintaining their power. Just like any other
group of capitalists, when these petty-bourgeois
nationalist feel their interests are threatened,
they will begin to use violence and the threat
of violence against those who challenge their
leadership. At SF State we have been threatened
a lot, and there has been one fistfight. At UCLA
the fighting reached a much more serious level.
Two Black students were killed by the reac-
tionary forces in Los Angeles.
Many Howard University students joined anti-
imperialist demonstration in April, 1967

A Review
THE U.S. RULING CLASS has attempted
over the years to impose its type of
leadership on the Black Liberation move-
ment, They have offered us ministers, "nation-
alist" charlatans, athletes, students, and now
rock-and-roll singers (James Brown- "Mr,
Soul"). All kinds of "leaders" except working-
class leaders'. And without fail, the Black masses
have always come to reject these misleaders
because they quickly show their hand as their
real class interest comes forth.
Since the Meredith march in Mississippi
in 1965, when Stokely Carmichael raised the
slogan "Black Power," many of these so-called
leaders have attempted to define this slogan.
This book* is the most articulate definition
of "Black Power," as interpreted by its ex-
ponents. It also reveals a definite classpositlon
from the beginning, which has changed only to
the extent that it has moved to the right'.
Here are the ideas and programs that these
leaders of the Black Power movement will
try to impose upon the Black Liberation
movement. They will also attempt to win the
Black working class to this line. There should
be absolute clarity on the connection between
it and the line of the ruling class, which is to
contain and control the Black Liberatiai struggle.
In a conscious avoidance of any attack on the
U.S, government or imperialism the authors
center some of their main attacks on the white
middle class that "wants 'good government' for
themselves; it wants good schools for its chil-
dren" (p. 41). This is a correct charge; we
will see later on that this is the same class that
"Black Power, The Politics of Liberation in
America," by Stokely Carmichael and Charles
V. Hamilton (Vintage Books, 1967).
die authors have most confidence in (their
class brothers!).
The authors constantly refer to "modern-
izing" the society. This we assume means that
the present system is outdated and through this
"modernization" everything will turn out all
right. Undoubtedly the authors have the illusion
that U.S. imperialism can be changed instead
of overthrown. In essence they are saying that
imperialists should read this book and find
a way out of the dilemma of class warfare
by the Black workers and their allies.
They make another attempt to clarify their
position: "The concept of Black Power rests
on a fundamental premise: Before a group can
enter the open society, it mustfirst close ranks.
By this we mean that group solidarity is neces-
sary before a group can operate effectively from
a bargaining position of strength in a pluralistic
society" (p, 44), First of all, what is there to
bargain? Our liberation? Are we to sit down with
U.S. Imperialism and bargain with it over how
we are to achieve our liberation? Have there
been any people who have ever won their freedom
by bargaining with their oppressor, even in what
they misname a "pluralistic society" ?Ours is a
society where one class (the bourgeois) ex-
ercisesdictatorshipover another class (working)
and national groups (Afro-American, Puerto
Ricans, Mexican-Americans and Indians). There
is nothing "pluralistic" about that! When they
refer to entering "the open society" we take
it they mean the capitalist society, which Is not
"open" to the Black and white workers. It is
only "open" to the ruling class and its allies,
who want to exercise control over the working
In displaying their ignorance of the nature
of the state they make the following statement:

"Black Power means, for example, that in
Lowndes County, Alabama, a black sheriff can
end police brutality" (p. 46). But the police
are the principal arm of the state in suppressing
the people; and the cops, no matter what their
color, represent the capitalist system and will
do what the system tells them to do. McKissick
made a similar statement when the Orangeburg
Massacre took place in South Carolina. He said
that H there were Black cops there the massacre
would not have taken place. We say that if the
ruling class calls on them to smash the people
they will do it, Black and white! If any further
example is needed it was Sheriff Amerson,
in Tuskegee, Alabama, who told the Black
students at the college that if they did not end
their strike he would call in the National Guard.
Sheriff Amerson is Black and was elected by
Black people! The call for more Black cops
in the Black community is one frequently made
by the nationalists, but every Black worker
knows that these Black mercenaries are just
as brutal as whites!
In the chapter on "The Myth of Coalition,"
they attack the idea of coalition with "liberal,
labor, church and other kinds of sympathetic
organizations or forces, including the 'liberal
left' wing of the Democratic Party," because
this alliance is advocated "with groups which
have never had as their goal the necessarily
total revamping of the society." Later on they
do advocate such an alliance. Their true purpose
at this point is to rule out alliances with the
revolutionaries, who have a program that calls
not for a mere "revamping of the society," but
for its complete reconstruction. The Pro-
gressive -Labor Party has such a program; and
the deliberate sidestepping of this is an attempt
to create splits between the Black Liberation
movement and the Marxist-Leninist party. In
the entire book they only make reference to
forming coalitions with "liberal" groups and
never about uniting with revolutionary groups.
Where they earlier attacked the white middle
class and the "liberals," they now seek to unite
with them."The liberal-reform politicians have
not been able fully to accept the necessity of
Black people speaking forcefully for themselves.
This is one of the greatest points of tension
between these two sets of groups today;, this
difference must be resolved before viable
coalitions can be formed between the two"
(p. 66).This is the heart of their desire.-,
to unite with their class brothers, on their terms,
which amounts to having the freedom to choose i
who will be the Black representative in this co-
alition. f
Working Class Attacked *
The only reference to Black workers in the
Carmichael-Hamilton book is used to attack the
trade union movement in this country, from a
distorted and anti-working-class point of view.
Obviously, the trade union movement is racist
and its leadership is an arm of U.S. imperialism,
but if one were to view some of the most militant
Bill Epton speaks in Harlem.
strikes and actions by the working class in the
last few years one would find that Black union-
ized (and non-unionized) workers either gave
leadership or were deeply involvedalways
around class-national demands!
The class-national demands and their pre-
sentation followed, usually, a classic pattern.
Because of a lack of union representation or
because of special oppression and discrimination
at the hands of the bosses, or both, the Black
workers organized themselves (national form)
and began to struggle to alleviate those conditions

(class) that were oppressing them. In the vast
majority of these straggles the Black organ-
ization put forth a number of class demands
that were in keeping with the aspirations of
all of the workers in the shop. Included in
these lists of grievances and demands were
those that would end the special oppression
that is directed mainly against the Black workers
that is, class-national demands.
Because of the special oppression of the Black
workers they are usually in the vanguard in
the fight against the bosses and the corrupt
union leadership. White workers fully under-
stand this vanguard role because they almost
always follow the Black workers in these
struggles. In fact, in many shops, plants, and
factories white workers very often elect the
Black workers to represent them as shop
stewards because they understand the vanguard
role of the Black people in general, and the
Black workers in the shops in particular.
The attack on the trade union movement, and
therefore the working class, stems from the
fact that large sections of the working class
have been dormant for a while, are racist,
and have been getting the drippings left from
U,S, imperialism's exploitation of the oppressed
peoples of the world. As we stated in our draft
trade union program (PL, June 1968):
All through the 1950s the workers were numbed,
except for scattered rank-and-file walkouts and the
emergence of the Teamsters as one union (in an expanding
industry) that would at least fight for pork chop issues.
The Left-led unions either shrank in membership, dis-
appeared altogether, or "made their peace" and were
allowed to work with the labor movement again such
as District 65 in New York and Harry Bridges International
Longshoremens and Warehousemens Union on the-West
Coast. One measure of this peace is cqntained in a report
from the San Francisco Chronicle, August 8, 1965; it
said that the ILWU contract which sold jobs for future
payment to usher in automation without a fight "in five
years saved the employers an estimated $200 million"
in exchange for $13 million in the workers mechanization
and modernization fundi
The role of this new "house of labor" has not been
limited to selling out U.S. workers. The misleaders of
labor have extended their efforts to include workers abroad
as well. Working under the aegis of the CIA and Jay
Lovestone, Meany's front man in international affairs,
U.S, labor unions have supplied money and trained personnel
to subvert and capture the labor movements of Guyana,
various African countries, Brazil, Italy, and others. They
work through joint management-labor bodies to spread
the principles of sellout business unionism throughout the
capitalist and colonial world. Many times they can sell
capitalism better than the capitalists, and get paid off
in the crumbs the U.S. bosses have left over from the
super-exploitation of foreign workers. The irony of all this
is that the Meanys and Reuthers use U.S. workers dues
money to subvert other labor movements, further splitting
workers in this country from their brothers and sisters
abroad. But all this misleadershlpin the U.S. and
around the worldhas begun to produce a counterreaction
here at home. It has not been all one-way for the bosses
and.their union "assistants."
After experiencing a decade of surrender on just about
every shop issue, a decisive turn came with the 1959
steel strike. The issue was the company drive to abolish
work rules won under the CIO, which would have led to
wholesale layoffs. The union leadership, headed by Mac-
Donald, had been spending the 1950s touring the plants
with U.S. Steels president as part of a"human relations"
committee. It was utterly unprepared, nor did it intend, to
wage any kind of struggle to defend the workers. After
about three weeks of striking, it was ready to surrender,
but at that point the workers took matters into their own
hands. They refused to return unless their work rules
were guaranteed. MacDonald had no choice but to continue
the strike. The workers held out for 116 dayslongest
steel strike, in any country, in historyand won their
point. Although the victory was gradually whittled away in
the years following, the steelworkers showed that even
with a sellout leadership they could make their power
felt by simply refusing to work.
This strike began a slow but steady comeback for the
working class in the early 1960s. Workers began to learn
they had to wildcatstrike against the opposition of their
own leadersif they were not to be denied their demands
and prevent old gains from being taken away. At one point
the fight became an armed struggle, in the Kentucky coal
fields, as union miners tried to stop a concerted company
drive to lower their conditions with scab labor (which
ultimately succeeded).
As hie state felt more and more compelled to step
in with "neutral" boards, arbitration, the "national
interest" patriotism appeal, Taft-Hartley injunctions, and
die rest of its arsenal, workers came increasingly in
conflict with the state apparatus. That the wave of
struggles,.. has become die order of the day currently
testifies to the fact that the working class not only has
plenty of fight in it, but is potentially the decisive force
to beat the U.S. ruling classespecially based on Its
unique ability to shut the system down, The possibility
that this power can become politicized strikes fear
in the bosses, as they shift back and forth between die
"carrot and the "stick" to forestall it
The lack of at least die class outlook stimulated by
communists Is one Important reason why the, labor
movement has stagnated and gone backwards until recently.
The class cooperation of the leadership that replaced the
communists led to the kind of trade union movement that
exists today: in constant fear that the workers will take
control of their unions and throw die plecards out of their
soft, no-struggle jobs. Once you make a fundamental
. compromise with the bossrather than just a temporary
tactical retreat to come back stronger another day
die path is clear: rationalization to "save the union,"
but sellout, in fact, to save one's own skin. This, then,
is the source of the conflicting feelings that many trade
unionists have today about their unions and their mis-
The Progressive Labor Party believes that
the trade union movement is the fundamental

organization of the working class in the fight
for its immediate class interest. As long as
this class organization is in the hands of the
ruling class, through agents such as Meany,
Reuther, and to a lesser degree, Randolph (to
keep the Black workers in line) the working
class will be compromised. It is the task of
all revolutionaries and militants to seize con-
trol of these unions and to transform them
into instruments that will fight the bosses.
If the workers had no organizations to protect
their interest, as limited as they may be at
this point, they would be at the complete mercy
of the ruling class. (For a fuller analysis and
program, see Draft Trade Union Program,
PL magazine, June 1968.)
Wth, evidently, very little knowledge of the
Negro American Labor Council (NALC), Car-
michael and Hamilton nevertheless attempt
to explain its origin and goals. They state;
It is our position that a viable group cannot
be organized within a larger association. The
sub-group will have to acquiesce to the goals
and demands of the parent; it can only serve
as a conscience-pricker because it has no in-
dependent base of power from which to operate"
(p. 74).
This is the direct opposite of what the NALC
was originally organized to do and what the
goals of the Black workers were. These goals
were, exactly, to organize Black caususes as
an independent base within the unions to
ally with the white militant caucus to press
their class-national demands against the bosses
and the corrupt union leadership. The death
of the NALC was due mainly to the sellout
leadership of Its president, A. P. Randolph,
and the Black functionaries, who were deathly
afraid of the militancy of the Black workers
at the founding convention.
The formation of the NALC was hailed nation-
ally by all Black workers as the organization
that would take the leadership in the fight for
equal job opportunities, democracy In the trade
union movement, and struggles against the
bosses. A clear indication of tills was the rapid
growth of chapters across the countryfrom
coast to coast, above and below the Mason-
Dixon line. Black workers from almost every
union in the country rallied to the call THE
TIME HAS COME, and began to organize in
their shops, unions, and communities. In New
York, the largest chapter in the country, In add-
ition to struggling over demands and grievances
in the shops, the chapter conducted rent strikes
in the community, supported the Southern sit-ins
of that time, and other struggles that are
commonly called community struggles.
The call also stated that the NALC in
working with the trade union movement would'
be ...independent of the control or domination
of any union or segment of the labor movement.
Independence was key to the initial upsurge
and growth of the NALC.
E^lack trade unionists had learned that the
bureaucratic setup in the labor movement made
it almost impossible to fight individually within
the unions for their rights. An organized body
was needed that was willing to fight through
on the issues and would deal with the special
national oppression of Black workers. Thus,
Black caucuses developed in many locals and
in many unions. Though these caucuses in many
instances made notable gains within their unions, .
one of their drawbacks was the tendency, when
sharp struggles were not taking place, to deter-
iorate from militant fighting organizations into .
social clubs. Another serious drawback was the
the lack of communication between caucuses in
various unions and in varioys cities. This helped
to keep the movement divided.
Many Black trade unionists felt that the NALC .
would establish strong lines of communication
among Negro trade unionists throughout the
country as well as within Negro communities.
And this at a time when there was no organi-
zation, national in scope, in the U.S, that spoke
to the needs of the Black worker^ and a budding
civil rights movement was taking shape that had
no leadership and no direction. Also, inter-
nationally there were great stirrings in Asia,
Africa and Latin America for national liber-
ation. For these and other reasons there was
a need for a national organization organized by,
controlled by, and with a program geared to the
needs of the Black working people in the U.S.
to lead the struggle towards liberation. This
was the setting for the founding convention of
the NALC.
Is it any wonder that when the call went out
stating, For Negro trade unionists all roads
lead to Detroit on May 28 and 29, 1960 for .
the founding convention of our Negro American
Labor Council... over 1000 leaders and rank-
and-file Black workers converged on Detroit,
heartland of American industry. At the time of

the founding convention there were functioning
chapters in at least 23 key cities across the
country, with a little over 10,000 members.
When Meany, Reuther, Randolph and the
government (through the FBI) saw the militancy
of these rank-and-filers (they dont under-
estimate the potential strength of the Black
workers) and their fighting spirit, everything was
done to emasculate the organization right at the
beginning, Reuther told the Black delegates from
the UAW (who were union pie-cards) that
if they did not kill the NALC they would lose
their jobs, Meany, through his agents, did
the same thing to those delegates under his
control, while the FBI lurked in the hotel
corridors. Randolph, chairing the convention,
did all he could to wreck it from that position.
These machinations, and the undemocratic man-
ner in which the convention was conducted,
allowed Randolph to push through his hand-
picked slate of officers. Amidst a general uproar
a solid block of Black rank-and-file trade union-
ists rejected the slate and left the convention.
This was the brief history of the NALC and
;why the Black workers saw its needand why
the ruling class had to destroy it.
After the ruling class smashed the NALC
it saw a basic need to fill the void it had
created, before the Black workers reorganized
themselves to lead the struggle. At this point
they brought forth Martin Luther King and
other non-working- class elements as the lead-
er' of the Black struggle. The door was now
open to all kinds of fakers to temporarily
become the spokesmen' for the Black Liber-
ation movement. The NALC was destroyed be-
cause the ruling class could not tolerate a
militant organization of Black workers, with
years of experience in struggle, taking leader-
ship of the Black Liberation movement.
In a continued attack on the working class,
Carmichael and Hamilton ask: With whom will
economically secure, organized labor cast its
lotwith the big businesses of exploitation or
with the insecure, poor, colored peoples?
This question gives additional significance -
a double layer of meaning to the struggle
of Black workers here. The answer, fortunately,
seems clear enough.
We cannot see, then, how Black people^
who are massively insecure both politically and*
economically, can coalesce with those whose
position is secure particularly when the latters
security is based on the perpetuation of the ex-
isting political and economic structure.
With whom, then, must the alliance be forged
in order to destroy U.S, imperialism? (If
that is their wish, which apparently it is not.)
Obviously, the only way imperialism will be
destroyed and the Black working people win the
right of self-determination is through the proc-
ess of Proples Wara war that will be waged
against U.S. imperialism, 'guided by the re-
volutionary party, that will involve the over-
whelming majority of the people in this country.
Though the Afro-American people will play
a vanguard role, such a war cannot be waged
or won by a small elitist groupno matter
how well intentioned it may be.
The Carmichael-Hamilton thesis writes off-
in a couple of paragraphsabout 80% of the
people. The U.S. government puts the poverty
level at $3,300 for a non-farm family of four.
It says there are 4.4 million whites in this cate-
gory, or 12% of the population. But figures from
the 1967 Statistical Abstract of the United States
show that 21.6% of the white population earn less
than $4,000, with 26% earning $4,000 to $6,999
and 2*5.3% earning $7,000 to $9,999. Thus,
according to the government, 73.6% of all the
white families earn less than $10,000 a year.
Farther, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says
that a family of four needs $9,191 per year
for a moderate living standard. We must
also add the fact that these salary figures do
not include state and city income, property,
or sales taxes. This surely does not look like
an economically secure class even though
their relative position is better than that of
the Black workers.
Also, there are approximately 50 million
workers in this country who are not in the
organized trade union movement and who are
exploited even more than those in the unions
not to mention those who still work the land.
These are surely, in addition to the unionized
workers, a source of strength and allies for
the Black Liberation movement.
Since the authors propose unity with the white
middle class, and disunity with the Black and
white workers, it becomes clear that they view
the Black Liberation struggle from their class
position as opposed to the class position of the
vast majority of the Black working people.
There is much talk about institutionalized
racism throughout the book. In a chapter called

Dynamite in the Ghetto" they clearly outline
the wretched living conditions of the Afro-
American people. Then they say that rebellions
will continue unless society" does something
about it, and end the chapter by saying that
that dynamite was placed there by white racism
and it was ignited by white racists' indifference
and unwillingness to act justly."
A he relationship of the Black Liberation
movement to the state and state power and the
role of the state is key in evaluating how to
fightand finally, how to overthrow it. There
must be a clear understanding that this state
this capitalist statecreated, perpetuated,
and institutionalized racism as one of its vehi-
cles to raise profits and to continue its class
rule. As long as capitalism exists, itwill never
meet tiie needs of the Afro-American people; and
as long as it exists, racism will always be a
major prop for its continued rule. Therefore,
to indict white racism as unjust" without
exploring its origins and why it ts now instition-
alized and without explaining its relationship
to the state only tells part of the story and
leaves the most important unsaid. (This is es-
sentially the same approach that the Presidential
Commission on Civil Disorders took.) This
view, that separates racism from the capitalist
system, is widely held among nationalist groups.
The part of the story that is left unsaid is
that as long as state power rests in the hands
of the bourgeoisie, white racism will always
exist; and not until the dictatorship of the pro-
letariat-working-class state powerwill the
foundation be laid for its elimination1.
Schools Serve Ruling Class
In stating that the struggle around I.S. 201
has rooted in the community the concept of
community control" the authors see that, ulti-
mately, community controlled schools could
organize an independent school board (like the
'People's Board of Education') for the total
Black community. Such an innovation would
permit the parents and the school to develop
a much closer relationship and begin attacking
the problems of the ghetto in a communal,
realistic way" (p. 171). Again we find no
discussion of the class character of education.
The U.S. public schools arose in response to
the specific needs of U.S, capitalism. They
are organized by and function in behalf of the
ruling class, with the aim of producing people
best suited to perpetuate capitalism: a small
group of intellectuals to teach and act as
spokesmen" for the people; scientists and tech-
nicians to organize industry; large masses of
workers to run that industry; and a large group
of unskilled and usually unemployed
workers to act as competition" for the em-
ployed labor force or to serve in the army.
Thus there is one type of education for the
working class and one type of education for
those slated to join the ruling class.
The matter cannot be settled by community
control of the schools if the Board of Ed-
ucation and the educational system is controlled
by the capitalist state, which will do everything
possible to prevent anything from being taught
that will threaten its rule.
The ruling class will undoubtedly make a
concession" and allow Swahili, Afro-American
and African history to be taught to Black children.
Why not? Do any of these courses, taught
without class content, threaten in the least
its rule? We think not! Will the ruling class
allow teaching about African kings and queens
and, tribalism? We think so! Will the ruling
class allow Afro-American history to be taught
about George W, Carver, Booker T. Wash-
ington, etc.? We think so! And will the ruling
Class allow the children to learn about Malcolm
X and Nat Turner? We think so; they are
already making movies about them, using the
ruling class' s line. John Brown was dismissed
years ago by Hollywood as a bloody, half-
mad fanatic. None of these courses will have the
effect of being a vehicle to liberate the Black
people unless these courses are tied to the over-
throw of U.S. imperialism and the complete
liberation of the Afro-American workers. If this
were the demand, the ruling class would resist
And yes, the ruling class will staff schools
in the Black community with Afro-Americans.
Why not? Haven't the schools in the Black belt
of the South been staffed by Black people for
over a hundred years? Has there been any appre-
ciable change, because of that, in the level of
consciousness of the Black people? Obviously
not! So the answer does not lie in who staffs
the schools as long as the state apparatus
is controlled by bourgeosle.
The demand that the solution to ghetto edu-
cation lies in having an entire Black staff that
will guarantee a curriculum that teaches African
and Afro-American history is apetty-bourgeois

demand^ that does not meet the class-national
demands of Afro-American workers. However,
the demand that is being raised by parents
and students all over the country for a greater
voice in the educational system is a just,
reformist demand and one that offers many
avenues for organizing.
. The parents raise demands about entire
curriculum, the building of new and better
schools, lunch programs, their children's safety,
and other working-class demands. The petty-
bourgeois, nationalists, in no class position to
struggle around these demands, take up the
struggle and obscure the class demands of
the parents by substituting their demands
the hiring of more middle-class oriented Black
teachers, which the ruling class is more apt
to "concede." Parents and students have one
set of demands, which the ruling class fears;
the petty-bourgeois nationalists have another.
The demands for a change of principals or
administrators, or the teaching of African or
Afro-American history, in the majority of the
struggles have not been the major demands
raised by parents and. students. Theirs have
generally been about "bread and butter" issues
in their schools.
The question of working-class control of the
schools is a valid question that can be raised;
and serious struggle, led by working-class
parents, can be organized around it. The ruling
class will not make this "concession" but the
workers would make minor gains and learn
an important lesson in the course of the struggle:
U.S. imperialism will not relinquish control of
anything. Its class, or a class that is allied
with -it, must keep control. The working class
will learn that the only way to get this control
is by destroying that class that is in its way.
Yes, the ruling class can, and.often will, allow
a certain amount of "community control" or
"decentralization" as long as it remains "top
We say that the working class should have
a powerful voice in running the schools because
we know that the working class will not Com-
pletely run the schools under capitalism; this
will only happen under socialism. But under
capitalism, working people should wage a strong
fight for the best schools possible. These limited
reforms will only come as a result of struggle.
Industrial workers only got the 8 hour day after
years of bloody struggle. The bosses were not
willing to give up easily, even for certain
reforms. The same goes for the schools. The
Board of Education and the ruling class aren't
going to give us anything. They are our ene-
mies. They may talk .about. community control
of the schools, but they know that the working
class will not control the schools until their
class (capitalist) is out of power. When they
praise community control, usually some of their
stooges from city hall are the front men for
some false community control board. This false
community control plan is usually financed by the
state government, federal government, or some-
thing like the Ford Foundation, as in some New
York City communities. These interests are not
really concerned about working class power,
whether it's in the form of community control
or some other form. These plans are only de-
signed to fool honest people that are fighting
for better working-class public education.
The working class uses these schools most.
It should have the power to look over the kind
of job every principal and teacher is doing
and to replace anyone who is holding their child-
ren backand should have the last word on cur-
riculum. We understand well what community
control means when it is put forth by die nation-
alist organizations such as CORE, They see it,
in conjunction with the rest of their program,
as Black capitalist control over the Black-
communities. In other words, replacing one
form of oppression with another.
On the other hand, when parents raise their
demands for a greater voice in the running of
the schools, around the list of demands we
mentioned earlier, we fully support these strug-
gles even though, in many cases, the parents
will raise the slogan" community control." In
such cases we will go on to explain to them
that community control cannot be achieved
under capitalism, that in many respects it is
a utopian demand (liberation can be won without
revolution), which can lead to the diversion of
their just struggle for realizable demands. The
just, reformist demands can and will lead to
militant struggle and organization. The fight for
community control will lead to a dead end.
The Petty-Bourgeois Line
The second major area of the Carmichael-
Hamilton program concerns ghetto housing. They
propose tenant unions to call rent strikes in
slum buildings, and then say "But more Im-
portantly, the black community should set as a
prime goal the policy of having the owner's
rights forfeited if he does not make repairs:
forfeited and turned over to the black organ-
ization, which would not only manage the prope rty
but own it outright (p. 172).
First of all, they haven't told us what "the
black organization" is. What is its makeup and




" f -iff- ja r Mm*
Black, cop, white cop? A COP IS A COP!
Harlem children listen at a street-corner meeting of the Progressive Labor Party. It is only
the struggle for a working-class education that will guarantee a decent future for them.

what are its goals? Is it to "manage this
property as another landlord; and in whose inter-
ests will they "own it outright? What re-
lationship will the new managers of this seized
property have to the state?
Secondly, the major aim and struggles of
tenant unions and rent strikers have been to
force the landlord to provide adequate services
and make repairs not to own his property and
be "managers, This kind of demand, of course,
does not come from working people because
workers, in the main, do not see themselves as
bosses or "managers. This concept finds its
roots in the petty-bourgeois ideology of its
The next programmatic point raised speaks
again of the mysterious "properly organized
black group. . organizing boycotts of
"merchants and exploiters in the Black ghettos
who do not "reinvest in the community. "The
contributions could take many forms: providing
additional jobs for black people, donating
scholarships for students, supporting certain
types of community organizations. Andfurther,
"If a merchant wants customers from a black
community, he must be made to understand
that he has to contribute to the community.
If he chooses not to do so, he will not be patron-
ized, and the end result will be no profits
from that community (p. 172-3).
The logic of this point is that capitalism
and exploitation will be allowed to make profits
in the Black communities with the sanction
of the "properly organized black groups as
long as these "merchants and exploiters...
reinvest.. .forty to fifty percent of their net
profits in the indigenous community. The
working class demands in all Black communities
have been to stop all exploitation not forty
to fifty percent of it no matter who the ex-
ploiters may be, Black or white.
finally, they say that "it is important that
the black communities in the northern ghettos
form independent party groups to elect their
own choices to office when and where they can.
It should not be assumed that 'you cannot beat
City Hall', To prove that you can, they give
an example of Sammy Rayner, who ran as an
"independent against a machine politician in
fee Black Sixth Ward in Chicago. They see
this as a positive example, of "Black Power
because "if Rayner does not remain true to
his constituents, then they should dislodge him
as decisively as they did his predecessor,
"The problem then is to resist the forces
which would crush or co-opt while building com-
munity strength so that more of such men can
be elected and compelled to act in the com-
munity's interest. At this point the authors
had to make it clear that Rayner "rejected
fee term Black Power ... They then say that
Rayner's "statements, attitudes and programs
suggest that they endorse what we mean by
Black Power. "The reason for this, by and
large, is a fear of offending the powers-that-
be which may go by the name of 'tactics
(p. 173-77)
Now we have Black Power beginning to be
established through fee electoral system by
running an "independent candidate who "must
first be responsive to his constituents but
rejects fee term "Black Power because of
fear of "offending the powers-feat-be. It
becomes clear that they are talking about setting
lip a Black political machine that will serve
in the interests of fee Black middle class be-
cause fee existing one does not meet their
needs. They state it this way: "If political
institutions do not meet the needs of fee people,
if fee people finally believe that those insti-
tutions do not express their own values, then
those institutions must be discarded. Discarded
and replaced wife what? They talk about "in-
dependent"polities ... as the first step towards
implementing something new.
Most of this is a warming over of the re-
visionist line of the -U.S. "Communist Party
and does not, at any point, deal with the central
question of "independent politics: in whose
interest and to effect what kind of changes?
This is just another form of bourgeois politics
to provide representation in the various levels
of government for the Black middle class. In
this manner they claim that "you can fight
City Hall.
Even though electoral politics still has a great
deal of influence in this country, among both
Black and white people, it should be viewed
by militants and revolutionaries as a means
to reach as many people as possible with re-
volutionary ideas, and &s a platform to educate
the masses not as an end in itself to effect
any kind of change in- the system. The only
way the system is going to be changed or
"discarded is by the people rising up against
it and, led by the vanguard party, conducting
People's War, until U.S. imperialism and all
its institutions are ground into the dirt!
Carmichael and Hamilton wind up this chapter
by telling the Black people that they have no
other choice but to accept their formula of

"independent politics and from there, the move
toward the development of wholly new political
institutions/ We beg to differ; there is a choice!
There is a choice for the Black people, led
by the Black working class. The choice is
uniting and forming a liberation movement that
will ally with the white revolutionary movement
to Overthrow U.S. imperialism. This, in fact,
is the only choice Black workers have; this,
or endless years Of more subjugation that the
illusion of non-class independent electoral poli-
tics offers.
In keeping with Carmichael's "new tactics"
on building a "united front," the book goes out
of its way not to attack or expose the "Negro
leadership" (or better, the traitors). Not one
word of attack is leveled at Wilkins, King,
Young, Randolph, and all their ilk. These have
been the people who have worked hand-in-glove
with the ruling class for years to help keep
die Black working people down. We don't think
it is an accident that they come from the same
class background and have the same class aspi-
rations as the authors of this book.
They even call for "unions of welfare re-
cipients actually taking an official role In running
the welfare departments" (p. 176), This is
exactly what some city administrations are doing
in order to pay the recipients about half the
wages that they pay the present welfare workers
and to pit client against client. Welfare re-
cipients are not interested in running the welfare
department. Their class demands are clear:
better and more clothes, more money, more
dignity, better medical care, and otner such
In summing up the aims of nationalism
and the kind of political movement it is
attempting to build, the authors state very clearly
their class position and their relationship to the
ruling class. "We are calling at this time for
new political forms which will be the link between
broadened participation (now occuring) and le-
gitlmate government. These forms will provide
;a means whereby a newly politicized people
can get what they need from the government* '
(p. 181).
The theme is hammered home again: "Our
ibasic premise is that money and jobs are not
the final answer {o the black man's problems.
Without in any sense denying the overwhelming
reality of poverty, we must affirm that the basic
goal is not 'welfare colonialism' as some have
called the anti-poverty and other federal
programs, but the inclusion of Black people-
at all levels of decision-making. We do not seek'
to be mere recipients from the decision-making -
process but participants in it" (p. 183).
A Share in the Plunder '
In the last sentence of the book, in an attempt ,
to cover up and sound revolutionary they again
betray their innermost feeling: "They will not jt
be stopped in their drive to achieve dignity, f'H
to achieve their share of power, indeed, to
become their own men and women in this
time and in this land by whatever means
necessary" (p. 185).
Carmichael and Professor Hamilton are try-
ing to sound like they are talking about the
Black working people, but in reality they are talking about the Black bourgeoisie because the .
Black workers do not want to "share" power ^
with U.S, imperialism with all of its ramifi- "
cations fighting wars of aggression in Asia .
Africa, and Latin America, extracting maximum
profits from the slave labor of other oppressed .
people, sharing in the profits that come from _
the exploitation of white workers and the super-
profits that come from the exploitation of Black
workers. No, the workers don't want their
"share" of this plunder they want to destroy
that system that makes this plunder possible. ^
We repeat that we quoted from this book at
length because this is the political line of the ^
leadership of the Black Power movement '
a nationalist line. The nationalists and some
of the more clever sections of the ruling class ^
are trying to make this program and
line dominate in the Black Liberation movement. '
We have the responsibility to fight against this ^
line and expose it wherever and whenever it
comes tip.
Is it any wonder Professor Hamilton says that
"Black Power" is a "clear alternative" to ^
violence. And that essentially the talk among "
the militants about guerrilla warfare is "more v,
talk than talent" and that it was "rhetorical s
violence" (New York Times, Jan, 22, 1968). ,
The Carmichael-Hamilton line and that of v
many other "spokesmen" for the Black Power u
movement leads to a replacement of white
capitalism with Black capitalism. This line and 4
policy is already being advanced by CORE and 4
some of the "cultural nationalists," and given i
legitimacy by Nixon, leading bankers, and other
members of the ruling class.

Jones-Karenga Hustle
The past ten years has seen a healthy develop-
ment of national consciousness among Black men
and women in the U.S. No longer are the brothers
and sisters Imitating white ruling-class looks, cul-
ture or thought. Africans are recognized as our
brothers. And, most important, leadership in Black
Liberation struggles has been "liberated from the
deadly hug of the white liberals.
These developments are all to the good. But,
as with any move forward, there is a danger of a
bad turn. A good thing can be made into a bad thing
and that will happen to the Black workers upsurge
if the people are not on guard.
One of our main dangers at the present, and an
obstacle to the further growth of the Black Libera-
tion Movement, is a movement that goes under the
name of "cultural nationalism. Not only could it
prevent the growth of the BLM, but it has inside it
a strong-man or fascist tendency. Its main aspects
the notion that Black working people can achieve
their liberation through some sort of Black
culture, Black Art, Black awareness', etc.;
small-business mentality leading to some form
of Black capitalism;
a strong disrespect for and mis-use of Black
*an essentially no-struggle approach to the
liberation of the Black working people, and an
accommodationist attitude towards the ruling
class, that eventually leads to...
*.. .working in conjunction with the ruling class
against the interest of the people.
All of these negative developments are couched
in the most militant sounding words to disguise
the way they hold the people down.
Major spokesmen of this trend are LeRoi Jones
and Ron Karenga (the former from Newark and the
latter from Los Angeles.) There are a host of
similar saviors whp preach varied forms of
this philosophya middle-class, petty-bour-
geois approach to liberation and struggle.
C Petty-bourgeois is the scientific term for the
class of small-time exploiters of the people.
Their idea of liberation is that the big-time
capitalist exploiters should leave more room for
Cultural nationalism, as a SUBSTITUTE for
revolutionary struggle, gained a serious footing in
the Black Liberation Movement during the mid and
late 1950s when many of die African countries
were struggling for their independence from the
colonial rulers. Many of the back-to-Africa
nationalist groups and various other cultural
nationalist groups (dance companies, drumming
groups, African cultists, etc.) for the first time
found a wide audience. There was a great deal of
interest in the Black communities on the develop-
ments of the liberation movements in Africa, and
the people were eager to hear or see whatever
was available of their former motherland.
As a result there emerged in the Black com-
munities (mainly in Harlem) many cultural
organizations dedicated to "'resurrecting the
lost African culture that the Afro-Americans
once had. We find this reflected in the demands of
some of the nationalists for the teaching of Swa-
hili, Arabic and African history as key in die
public schools. Their approach is essentially
teaching about African Kings and Queens, African
empires. There is no class approachno notice
that these Kings, etc., were oppressing the mass
of the African people.
During this period the civil rights movement
generally commanded the widest respect among
the Black workers. They were on the firing line in
the south. As their movement began to disinte-
grate, which left somewhat of a vacuum in the
BLM, the cultural nationalists stepped in to
fill the void. Today they have a wide influence

among some activists in the BLM, because of
their militant sounding words and their ability to
take the profound Marxist thinking of Communists
like Mao Tse-tung andtwistitto serve their narrow
Ron Karenga, a student at UCLA, a pseudo-
intellectual, has thoroughly read Maos Talks on
Literature and Art. In fact he can quote from this
work as if he wrote it himself. What he did with
this Marxist classic is to take out its heartthe
class struggleand substitute no-struggle. In ad-
dition he has put "art above politics and has
MADE ART THE REVOLUTION. He says in one of
his essays, "Art will revive us, give us enough
courage to face another disappointing day. To his
kind "Black Art and "Black Culture has been
elevated above politics. And they carry this to the
next step: that this awareness of ones culture will
BY ITSELF lead those who are aware to make
some kind of revolution. But Mao said, in this
same talk that these cultural nationalists so
much admire:
Our aim is to ensure that revolutionary litera-
ture and art follow the correct path of develop-
ment and provide better help to our revolu-
tionary work in facilitating the overthrow of
our national enemy and the accomplishment of
the task of national liberation.
In our struggle for the liberation of the
Chinese people there are various fronts, among
which there are the fronts of the pen and of the
gun, the cultural and the military fronts. To
defeat the enemy we must rely primarily on
the army with guns. But this army alone is not
enough; we must also have a cultural army,
which is absolutely indispensable for uniting our
own 'ranks and defeating the enemy, (Talks at
the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art)
Mao makes it very clear where the primary force
must be!
'King Ron* wants to ride on people's shoulders
"Cultural nationalism is not only worshipping
tiie most reactionary aspects of African history.
It even goes so far as measuring ones revolution-
ary commitment by the clothes that are being
worn! This is part of the "Black awareness.
Thus, the amount of militancy is judged by how
closely one can imitate genuine African wearing
apparel. (Most of these "Cultural nationalists
have businesses that produce and sell these items!)
Most cultural nationalists have small business
enterprises (a kind of "Buy Black) that are used
as outlets for their pamphlets, books, wearing
apparel, and whatever else they can sell. They
also strongly encourage Black businesses as a
solution to the "problem of the Afro-American
people. It is these groups that the government is
strongly relying on to PROTECT IT from the
masses of the Black workers when the chips are
downbecause people's power would end their
selfish games.
At some point in their research of African
"culture they arrived at the conclusion that in
Africa (what part and how reactionary was it?)
women were used mainly as slaves to the men.
Supposedly there were polygamist societies that
they, given their petty-bourgeois mentality, find
appropriate here. The result of all of this is that
they low-rate and exploit Black womenall in the
name of "African culture and in the name of
"revolution. They have included in their "philoso-
phy all of the bad sides of building up the Black
man, while the Black woman is supposed to just be
"the woman behind the man..
The cultural nationalists take the very legitimate
national feelings and aspirations of the Afro-
American peoples and turn it into its oppositea
narrow, nationalist, "cultural, no-struggle ap-
proach to the enemyU.S. imperialism. Nothing
in what they say or do remotely relates to the
overthrow of U.S. imperialism. None of it relates
to the full and complete liberation of the Black
workers. Struggle becomes howc'tough your words
are! The aim is to "be a manNOT to destroy
tiie enemy. But young, potentially militant youth
are sucked into this nonsense and withdraw from
tiie struggle in favor of some kind of "cultural
nation. The enemy knows this, and treats these
mis-leaders very gently indeed!
In all revolutionary and potentially revolution-
ary movements this negative petty-bourgeois tend-
ency appears. It naturally appeals to would-be
exploiters, but it gains a certain foothold among
honest people because of its seemingly militant
rhetoric. But as the people gain by experiences
and begin to struggle harder, and see the need for
a real revolutionary party, these fakers lose
influence and the liberation movement grows and
On the eve of the Bolshevik revolution, in 1913,

Lenin had to struggle against a similar line in the
Russian revolutionary movement. He said:
The conclusion is that ALL liberal-bourgeois
nationalism causes the greatest corruption
among the workers, causes immense harm to
the cause of the proletarian class struggle. It
is all the more dangerous because the bour-
geois... tendency is SCREENED by the na-
tional culture" slogan. In the name of national
culture... the bourgeoisie of all nations, do
their reactionary and dirty work.
Such are the facts of the present-day
national life, if it is looked at from the Marxist
standpoint, l.e., from the standpoint of the
class struggle, if slogans are compared with
the interests and policies of classes and not
with vapid 'general principles", declamations
and phrases."
As we have seen with both Jones and Karenga
the leaders of the band, a live-and-let-live accom-
modation with imperialism is part of their plan.
Both of them take money from the government,
through the anti-poverty agencies. The rulers*
purpose is to have them push cultural national-
ism* into the Black Liberation Movement, because
it will lead the people to a dead-end of no struggle.
They are both free to roam the; country preaching
this line. One of their major functions at this point
is to take the BLM along the road of electoral
struggle" as can be seen by Jones, in Newark, and
Karenga, in L.A., trying to steer the Black people
away from struggle and fully into that enemy bag.
In an essay entitled The Need For a Cultural
Base to Civil Rites & Bpower Mooments, LeRoi
Jones (the strange spellings are his) puts forth
the line:
"The very failure of the civil rights and
blackpower organizations (collecting member-
ships on strictly socio-political grounds) to
draw more membership is due to the fact that
these organizations make very little reference
to the totality of black culture. The reason
Mr. Muhammads Nation of Islam has had such
success gathering black people from the grass
roots is that Mr. Muhammad offers a program
that reflects a totality of black consciousness.
Islam is a form of spirit worship (a moral
guide) as well as a socio-economic andpolitical
program. Religion as the total definer of the
world. (This is as old as the world, and finally
will be the only Renewal possible for any of us
to submit to the Scientific-Religious reordering
of the world, through black eyes and black
minds.) It must be a culture, a way of feeling,
a way of living, that is replaced with a cul-
ture, feeling, way of living and being, that is
black, and, yes, finally, more admirable.
Hence, the socio-political must be wedded to
toe cultural. The socio-political must be a-
righteous extension of toe cultural, as it is,
legitimately, with National groups."
(Printed in The Black Power Revolt edited by
Floyd Barbour; Extending Horizons books, Boston,
Mass., p. 122-123)
Jones, in addition, has allied himself with the
most right-wing elements in New Jersey against
toe Black workersThe policies of Jones and Karenga
would open the door for open fascism in toe U.S.
But as in other revolutions, toe masses will win
when they reject this philosophy" as being the
servant of the ruling class, and will deal with
them as the masses always do. This realization
will come through struggle and toe leadership of
Marxism-Leninismtoe science of revolutions.
These cultural nationalists" move into the
workers' community and say, You see, I too live
in toe ghetto." As small-time exploiters they
naturally have to rub up closer to toe people. But
they bring into the ghetto their bourgeois concepts
of art and culture, which make honest people the
tail of their small-con (petty-bourgeois) kite.
Art and culture will not make a revolution.
Only a revolutionary ideology and a revolutionary
party can serve the people toward this great end.

Black Capitalism: A Bad Dream
The life-and-death struggle of the Afro-ameri-
ean workers to control their destiny and develop
the organizational forms to conduct this struggle
is growing daily. At the same time the U.S.
ruling class, and its agents, are in a life-and-
death struggle to control the movement and use
it to serve its needs.
Every time that the Black Liberation move-
ment takes a leap forward the U.S. rulers are
there in an attempt to bheck it. The checks used
to be the liberals" but the Black people got
wise to them. When the liberals" failed in
came the cops. But that has not effectively
stopped or curtailed the movement. So, a new
direction is being taken. That direction is to
find the weakest political section of the move-
ment and turn it into a arm of the oppressors'
system. The U.S. rulers have decided that that
section is the Black Power section and that is
where they are primarily concentrating their
Week (July 22, 1967), a magazine representing
big business.interests in the U.S., said:
{Negroes cannot be treated any longer as;
simply the prospective beneficiaries of white*
reformers (whom the Negroes have come toe
{regard as their real betrayers). Rather,*{
Negroes must be encouraged to play a larger{
role in determining how their problems are{
{to be solvedand in putting these solutions{
{into execution. This would seem to be die onej
element of good sense that underlies thej
'black power' movement, with all its un-a
{pleasant racist overtones. {
{ Can 'black power be transformed into a{
movement of self-help and progress? Thej
{white and Negro communities alike musti
{think that one through carefully, if any hope {
is to emerge from the wreckage and blood of
Big business has seen that Black power"
can be transformed" into a movement for its
own uset
Later on that year Business Week was de-
scribing a quiet" meeting held in Washington,
called by Humphrey, that included about a

dozen Negro leaders, of both national and merely
local prominence, for an in-depth discussion of
the future of the cities and the Negro's role in it.
Among those at the meeting, incidentally, were
Stokes and Hatcher. National Democratic leaders
are heartened by the thought that their party is
providing a channel for the demands for legiti-
mate Black Power" in the cities.
Whether the winners will now be able to win
the confidence of white urban majorities without
losing the allegiance of their Negro supporters
is the next problem before them. If so the crisis
in the cities may have turned a corner." (Busi-
ness Week, Nov. 11, 1967)
cided that the corner has been turned: The new
cry of militant Negroes is color it black". And
on one significant Questionhow to rebuild and
and bring business into inner-city ghettosthe
cry is being taken up by conservative business-
men and politicians wh6 find the notion of 'black
capitalism' philosophically and politically ap-
pealing." (Business Week, 8-3-68)
The U.S. rulers and their flunkeys had now
made their plans and all that was left was to get
them carried out. The overall plan was to make
sure the Black Power movement stayed within
the two-party system and played according to the
rules set up by the government. One method was
to keep them involved in electoral politics and
the other was to give them some money (buy
them off) to open some small insignificant stores.
The Wall Street Journal, the bible of the U.S.
ruling class, stated quite frankly that This
summer, as bullets shattered Cleveland and
violence erupted elsewhere, Newark so far has
remained calm as the United Brothers go about
registering ghetto residents..."
They go on to say: The change of emphasis
is not unique to Newark. Apostles of'blackpower*
in many major cities, recognizing the political
potential offered by those cities swelling black
populations, are beginning the effort to translate

their slogan into meaning through the voting
"A growing number of black militants 'think
this is the way to go, reports a spokesman for
the Justice Departments community relations
service in Washington. The article goes on to
say that the "militants are having some trouble
forming alliances with other groups, but some
progress is being made; and gives examples of
"The Black United Front in the District of
Columbia, The North City Congress in Philadel-
phia,* The United Front in Boston, The Black
United Conference in Denver and The Black Con-
gress in Los Angeles.
"Federal observers view the activity of these
groups as a constructive alternative to violence.
Not only are these groups useful to capitalism
as a "constructive alternative to violence, but
they also serve as the front group for the intro-
duction of more robber businesses in the Black
communities under the lying name of "Black
capitalism (something that does not event exist).
The other aspect of the U.S. rulers maintain-
ing control is through so- called Black capitalism.
Of course, there is no such thing as "Black
capitalism in the U.S. There is only one kind of
capitalism, and that is organized by, controlled
by and serves the interest of .the U.S. ruling
class. It exercises complete control over the
means of production. And this capitalism, like
capitalism everywhere else on the face of this
earth, is oppressive and exploits people in order
to make its profits. What these nationalists,
called "Black capitalists, are being used for
is go-betweens for the ruling class to steer
the masses of the Black working people away
from struggle. And it is this ruling class, their
masters, that they will serveNOT THE BLACK
How does the ruling class propose to use
these budding "capitalists? The Wall Street
Journal of August 13th says that "the ugly side
of this militancyarson and lootingis creating
unprecedented opportunites for 'anti-colonialist
takeover by Negro buyers from white ghetto
merchants who want to sell out. But, more im-
portant, it's also convincing influential white
businessmen and bankers, along with Federal
officials, that black business ownership is es-
sential to help defuse the racial emnity crackling
across the nation. In this same article they
give an example in Baltimore of how Black
businesses can be opened, financed, stocked with
the same shoddy goods to be sold to Black
workers, ana reap the same and even more prof-
its from the Black working people.
IT WORKS LIKE THIS: A major wholesale
grocery concern, B. Green 6 Co., had lost some
of its business because of the Black rebellions
(white merchants did not re-open their stores
after they were driven out). Of about 100 small
Black grocers that buy from the Green ware-
house they4'selected a half-dozen operators they
considered superior... and helped them to take
over burned-out supermarkets. They even make
the point that some of the burned-out supermar-
Lefh CORE'S Wilfred T. Ussery
Center: CORE'S Roy Innis
Right: They can't be right (see story)
kets were not formerly their customers, so now
B. Green 6 Co. has actually increased its
exploitation of the Black community!
When Green & Co. picked their Black front-
man (a Mr. Hall) they went to the Council for
Equal Business Opportunity (set up by the ClA-
Ford Foundation) that provided a staff to nego-
tiate the purchase of the building. "Then it
arranged for Ebony Development Co., an all-
Negro concern it helped organize, to purchase,
renovate and re-equip the gutted brick building
with Small Business Administration financing,
and lease it to Mr. Hall.
"The Baltimore technique, in fact, fits neatly
into a national program for broad private-sector
support of black business that former commerce
Undersecretary Howard Samuels is pushing from
his new post as SBA administration.
Samuels stated that he dropped the SBAs ban
on financing liquor stores, bars and restaurants
and other establishments where alcoholic bever-
ages are sold. The implication of this statement
is clearopen more bars and liquo* stores in
toe Black .workers communities and sell cheap
whiskey and wine to try to keep the people in a
stupor. Of course this is in addition to toe large
scale distribution of drugs by the U.S. govern-

As an added incentive to the white merchant
to leave and turn his small store over to a
"Black capitalist' .the government is willing
to pay him for his place at a price that will
further steal from the people. He has been
stealing from the people for years, in the ghetto,
while selling them inferior goods. Now, the gov-
ernment pays him to leave (with the taxpayers
money) and at a price much higher than the
place is worth, and gives some Black small
store owner a loan at high interest rate to pur-
chase the store. The Black store-owners, in
order to meet these bills, must continue to sell
the same inferior goods and even increase the
price of these goods. 'Hen they put signs in their
store windowsSoul Brother"when the Black
workers rebel against exploitation and robbery.
Chase Manhattan, probably the richest bank
in the world, is doing their part also. From May
to August of this year they have approved"
about 25 loans averaging $20,000. The only
conclusion that can be drawn from the size of
these loans is that a monstrous joke is being
played on the people. The best anyone can do
with this kind of money is to open a candy store
and sell apples and newspapers. But this is what
some nationalists call Black capitalism", hi
fact, this fits into line with the existing situation
and will not, in any manner, alter the condition
of the Black store owner. There are 150,000
non-white businesses in the U.S., or 2.9% of the
total. (W.S.J. 8-13-68) These are, of course,
usually a one-person retail, service business
that can only support one person and operates
continually on the verge of bankruptcy, with the
owner working anywhere from 8 to 15 hours a
day to eke out a living. The owner is in effect
an agent for the wholesalers and bankers to loot
the community.
The CIA- Ford Foundation is one of the prime
movers of this so-called Black capitalism". It
is working hand-in-hand with the Taconic Foun-
dation to carry out their dirty work. McGeorge
Bundy, who helped work out the plans for the
attack on Vietnam and who is now the President
of the Ford Foundation, said that some smaller
foundations, as well as religious organizations
and unions, already have departed from conven-
tional investment rules in the interest of greater
social effectiveness." (W.S.J, 9-30-68) In clear-
er words he means being more effective in
keeping the Black workers down*.
Ford Foundation has quite some record! In
addition to (1) their attempt to buy off the Black
Liberation Movement, (2) their attempt to turn
the legitimate fight of the working-class parents
for decent education for their children into some
meaningless community control" and decen-
tralization", which does not solve the question of
the childrens education, it is now (3) making
moves to prevent Mack farmers and farm workers
from migrating out of the south.
After stating how Ford is helping a small
business in Congaree, S.C., it flatly stated that
the foundation sees the venture as a way of
increasing Negro participation in the profit and
ownership of a local business and a way of pro-
viding new economic opportunities to displaced
Negro farmers and farm workers who. would
otherwise migrate to-Northern cities." (W.S.J.
9-30-68) It is also buying $300,000 of nonvoting
common stock of Progress Enterprises Inc, a
new Black-owned capital fund in Philadelphia.
The company is building shopping centers and
setting up other business ventures in a dozen
cities." Obviously the Ford Foundation sees that
it is in its interest to keep that enterprise going,
and what is in the interest of the Ford Founda-
tion is in the interest of U.S. imperialism and
against the interest of Black workers!
The Urban League is also doing their part.
They have planned a new thrust". They plan,
with the backing of the countrys biggest corpo-
rations and foundations, to help build this so-
called Black capitalism". The present presi-
dent of the Urban League, James A. Linan, who
is also the president of Time Inc., says that he
is in full accord with the Leagues new position:
Industry is going to have to accept this j
if it doesnt want to wake up every morning*
worrying about whether its factories havea
J been burned down the night before! says John 2
2F. Maguire, an official of Public Service2
Electric & Gas Co., Newark, N..J, I dontj
view this as a real radical departure (for the!
{league) but a rational development, adds2
Stanley Marcus, president of Neiman-Marcus J
Co., Dallas. (W.S.J. 8-12-68)
Both these men are supporters of the Urban
League* And Whitney Young, the Leagues exec-
utive director, puts the icing on the cake. He
states, we are asking the Establishment to fund
a social revolution to offset a violent armed
revolution." (W.S.J. 8-12-68)
CORE is the organization, and Roy Innis, its
national director, is the person that the ruling
class has chosen for its major front to push
Black capitalism" in the Black communities.
Innis and CORE are good for the job because the
organization has had, in the past, a reputation
for being militant" and Innis was recognized as
a spokesman for that militant" section.: What:

made them ripe for plucking for the ruling class
was the fact that at the heart of their program
was "community control", or replacing whites
with Blackswith no mention of their relation-
ship to the Black workers. So in other words
their entire approach was: put Blacks in minor
exploiting positions now held by whites and
maintain the same structure. This fitted in well
with the desires of the ruling class. No wonder
it was praised by Nixon.
First they gave CORE money to pay its debts
(given by the Ford Foundation), then they began
to groom Innis to play his role. In an extensive
article in Business Week entitled "Is Black
Capitalism the answer" (August 3, 1968) the U.S.
rulers plainly say how they see CORE and Innis
playing their roles.
of "Black capitalism" was the Harlem Common-
wealth Council, Inc. Donald Simmons, its execu-
tive director, who was Phillips Petroleums
sales manager in Nigeria (which should give us
an idea of where hes at), says that Harlem is an
"economic colony" and that the "first job of
economic development is to plug the leaks by
giving black people control over capital instru-
ments." Either he has no idea of what capitalism
is all about, or he knows and is trying to hood-
wink the Black people. Certainly the "instru-
ments of capital" are factories, plants and labor,
and nowhere in his program does he speak of
this. To him and CORE "instruments of capital"
means a grocery store or liquor store!
In addition to HCC, experiments are being
conducted in Rochester, where a once-militant
organization, FIGHT, is being used for the same
purpose. It "decided to go into business for
itself". How did it "decide"? "With the help of
Xerox, the U.S. Labor Dept., and the Rochester
Business Opportunities Corp., an organization of
local businessmen trying to underwrite Negro
entrepreneuship." (Business Week, 8-3-68)
Again, very clearly, we see the directing hand of
U.S. imperialism.
Early in August, 26 senators sponsored a
proposal for "community self-determination".
This bill was drafted by CORE. Business Week
says, "conservatives respond to black capital-
isms strong flavor of self-reliance and self-
help." Further, "Hack capitalism appeals to
both Negro radicals and white conservatives in
part because each group can bring its own par-
ticular meaning to the termand still agree on
tactics. What appears to the white group as the
simple extension of the private enterprise system
to the nations ghettos is to Negroes a fairly
radical proposal for the community to assume
ownership of the MEANS OF PRODUCTION."
(our emphasis). We know that B.W. knows better
knows that there is no relationship between
"Black capitalism" and the "ownership of the
means of-production." If they know better, then
they are only putting on those Black people and
CORE who have the illusion that U.S. capitalism*
will let them control the "means of production",
which are the factories, plants, schools, and the
hear from Innis, who says that CORE seeks to
"develop an economic power base for the ghetto
so that Negroes will not have to depend on white
benevolence". (B.W. 8-3-68) From McKissick,
former head of CORE who has now set up the
Floyd B. McKissick Enterprises: "All civil
rights organizations are suspended in mid-air
dependent on the thing which they are fighting
the white power structure." (Amsterdam News,
10-8-68). Now lets hear the truth from McKis-
sick s Vice President, Harold Brown, who has
been on the direct payroll of the U.S. government
for years (his latest job was deputy director of
the CIA-Peace Corps in Africa). He stated in the
same story that "the new venture will try to
raise money for its operations from American
industry, foundations and U. S. government
agencies for the benefit of eventual black owner-
ship of black businesses within the black com-
munities." Apparently McKissick doesnt con-
sider "American industry, foundations and U.S.
government agencies^ to be any part of "the
things which we are fightingthe white power
structure." And remember, Innis said the idea
was NOT to depend on white benevolence! WHOS
JIVING WHOM? This is the kind of doubletalk
that the Black people have become accustomed
to hearing from the McKissick and Innis and
their kind.
Yes, the journals of capitalism in this country
talk frankly about their plan to misdirect the
Black Liberation struggle. And we have heard
from those Blacks that they have chosen to front
for them. Obviously, replacing the two-bit white
exploiters by Blacks is no help to the mass of
Black working people. An end to all exploitation
and oppression is the only worthy goal. This
means an end to the system, and an end to the
selfish dreams of Black petty-bourgeois mis-
other method to try to keep the Black working
people in subjugation. And this means that the
Black Liberation Movement must keep a sharp
eye on the enemy, AND THEIR FRONT MEN,
and must continue to unite and smash this
"Black capitalism" scheme just like we have
destroyed other obstacles that are thrown in our
way by the U.S. ruling class on our march to our

There is no future for working people's children under any kind of capitalism.

Black Liberation Struggle:
The most important question facing the Black
Liberation Movement is whowhat classwill
give leadership to the movement. Everyone and all
classes cannot lead. There must be a focal point,
a leadership, a guiding force, a section of the
people that must give leadership.
That focal point and leadership must be a
CLASS since all societies are class societies.
This means that in all societies there are the
people that rule and the people who are being
ruled. They are the different classes. In the U.S.
today the ones who rule are the boss class (called
the bourgeoisie), and they rule over the working
classthe overwhelming majority of the people.
The working class and the bourgeoisie are
constantly in a struggle. For the moment the
ruling class (the bourgeoisie) has the upper hand.
As a result we are forced to work for them for
low wages, forced to live in slum housing, forced
into inferior schools, forced into the army, etc. If
any have the illusion that they are not FORCED
into these conditions they should consider how
workers are treated by the cops, the national
guard, the courts, the jails and prisons, etc. This
rule depends on FORCE and is properly called the
The dictatorsthe "ruling- class" or bourgeoi-
sieis the group of bankers, bosses and landlords
who own the large industrial plants, factories and
farms, and buildings. They actually determine who
will be president, governor, mayor, police chief,
judge, etc. This class of rich people that run this
country are the exact opposite of us and are our
enemy and as long as they run the country we will
never be free!
The working class ("proletariat") are the
people who must sell their labor-power in order
to live. They own no means of production.
similar divisions into classes. But the Black
bourgeoisie exists more as a state of mind, as
something they would like. Most of these people
are cheap imitators of the white bourgeoisie, the
"Ebony magazine type Negroes"with or without
Thus, what is called the "Black bourgeoisie"
is in reality a member of the lower middle-class
that WANTS to be in the ruling class and share the
gravy of exploiting the working class. Many of
these people work for a living (sell their labor
power) just like any member of the working class.
The major difference is that their loyalty is to the
ruling class and not to the working class.
These social climbers will use any method to
achieve their ends. They may yell to the skies
"Black power'." "Black capitalism," "We have to
do our own thing," "Buy Black," "Support your
own" (meaning themselves) and on and on. The
key question is whether their program and action
js for the liberation of the Black working jnasses
Father and daughter help shut down Ford

not just themselves and their few class brothers*
We must ask: who are they trying to organize and
lor what? And when we examine these questions
we find that their class position is clear.
They talk and act in a manner that says clearly,
"We are the educated class and we know whats
good for the movement They talk down to the
Black workers, and, in fact hold the Black work-
ing people in contempt!# they ever speak to the
Black workers it is for the purpose of getting
them to support some project whose main bene-
fit will be just for themselves or their class.
Sitting on the Fence
Most of these would-be members of the "Black
bourgeoisie have been college trained. What
effect does this have on them? Lets examine.
The ruling class has selected a handful of
Blacks to send to college to be trained to carry
out the policies that the ruling class has made.
These students have been educated in middle-
class values and, yes, trained to be white middle-
class in Black skins! It is quite similar' to the
Imperialist countries training local civil servants,
teachers, police, etc. to carry out its policies in
Hie colonial countries.
Black rebellions and the Increasing fighting spirit
among large sections" of the Black workers,
these middle-class trained Blacks are caught in
the middle. Many do not know which way to turn.
Should they line up on the side of the Black work-
ers or on the side of the "Black bourgeoisie"
and the ruling class?
Many of them, at this point, have decided to try
to straddle the fence. They dont want to give up
anythin; and at the same time they want to be
identified with "the movement. At no point do
they change their "in way of life, their aspira-
tions or their relationship'to the Black workers.
Sometimes they may change their outward
appearances, but this is because they have no
strength unless they get some support from the
working classwhich is 90% of the Black people.
So they become Hie loudest talkers about "Black
capitalism and "Black culture, etc. They claim
this is "speaking to the needs of the Black
When leaders speak about and organize around
these Issues then they will be "speaking to the
needs of the Black people! But what most have
been attempting to do is to hide their class posi-
tion and their bourgeois world outlook in a lot of
talk about Black this or Black thatto hide the
fact that the things THEY want would be a sellout
of Hie struggles of the vast majority of the Black
peoplethe Black workers.
For many years the Black Liberation Movement
has been led by the so-called "Blackbourgeoisie-
in the name of preachers, students, nationalists,
athletes, entertainersin a word, by everyone
EXCEPT the people whose interests all of this
leading is SUPPOSED to be servingthe Black
working people! Why do these mis-leaders get the
spotlight? The reason is that when a true Black
workers organization emerges the ruling class
does everything in its power to smash it. But the
RULERS will HELP the NON-working class leaders
to flourish, by giving them money, giving them
publicity, etc.
A clear example is Hie Black rebellions. The
young workers and the unemployed have been
doing the fighting and organizing the resistance
to oppression, but it is the would-be Black bour-
geoisie "spokesmen that appear afterwards and
get handouts. The ruling class helps them "feather
their own nest because this is the cheapest way
to make sure that 90% of the Black peoplethe
working classthe fightersget nothing!
The so-called "Black bourgeoisie cannot
lead the Black Liberation Movement at this level
of movements development! When our movement
was at a lower level of development some of these
"Black bourgeoisie did help by stirring things
up. But now that Hie movement is very much alive
the need is for much clearer leadership and they
mess us up. Now it is up to the working class to
seize Hie leadership. Leaders not in the working
class will change with the wind and can be counted
on to put their personal interests above that of the
mass of the Black peoplethe workers.
Black working class! This is the class that daily
suffers at the hands of the bosses and the slum-
lords. This is the class that daily fights, in a
thousand and one ways, to protect its class in-
terests against the bosses. This is the class that
controls production (the factories, the transporta-
tion system, the shops, the mine pits, etc.). They
are the ones that can organize to hurt imperialism
where it will hurt mostat Hie source of profit.
The Black workers have the organizing skills
that they learn in the shops and in the unions; and
\ >

it is in their most direct interest to overthrow
U.S. imperialism because as long as imperialism
exists they will never be free. U.S. imperialism
CANNOT BUY OFF the entire working class (this
would mean the end of their profits); whereas it is
not difficult to buy off a handful of the so-called
"Black bourgeoisie".
The Black working people are stable and the
chance of them wavering or straddling a fence
very small. What fence is there to straddle? What
is there to waver about? They have been born into
the working class, have become workers and the
odds are that they will always remain workers.
This should be a source of pride because no
economy or system can exist without the working
class. The ruling class, through its propaganda
machinery, always try to downgrade the people
who use their hands to earn a living. They glorify
the white collar workers and try to say that only
the "misfits," "those who can'tmakeit," etc. wind
up as workers with their hands. This is a lie and
part of their attempt to keep our working men and
women in slavery.
militant and that strike fear in the hearts of the
ruling class. It is the working class, and the
working class only that can properly lead the
Black Liberation Movement. They have accumu-
lated years of experience and have developed
hatred for the ruling class and the bosses.
Students and the more advanced sections of the
small bourgeoisie can join this leadership by
serving the peopleby putting their talents into
the service of the working-class revolution.
The Black workers must kick out the fakers
and pimps and bloodsuckers'. Their leadership has
meant sellouts and compromise. It has meant
leaders accepting deals when the ruling class
comes in with a higher bid. It has meant lining up
with the ruling classthe enemy of the Black
your shops and plants against the corrupt union
leadership and against the bosses, around your
class demands'. Where there is no union organize
one that will represent the interests of the work-
ers in the shop.
organize in your communities against the
slumlords, against police brutality, for a decent
education for our children, against toe dope traffic
organize to protect and save our communities
against "Black removal".
Organize to kick out toe fakers who call them-
selves "leaders" but feather their own nests.
your rightful place at the head of the Black. Libera-
tion Movement!
Without your leadership there will be no free-
dom or liberation for the Afro-american people!
Black, white and Latin workers unite to shut down New York garment district

Blind Action Wont Win
In the last few articles we have shown the
reactionary and anti-Black worker character of
the Cultural nationalists like LeRoi Jones and
Ron Karenga. We have documented how the U.S.
government plans to use so-called "Black capi-
talism" to further exploit the Black workers,
and we demonstrated in the last article that
it is only the Black workers that are capable
of leading the Black Liberation movement.
Leadership is not going to fall out of the
skies. This position is not achieved because
someone says it. It comes because of certain
real, objective circumstances that we discussed
in the article "Black Workers Must Lead the
Black Struggle.
the Black people are workers and get special
oppression f^pm U.S. imperialism, they become
Class-conscious (aware of their exploitation) and
fight the hardest against it. The rebellions and
the struggles in the factories and plants, led by
Black workers, give plenty of proof of that. Out
of our personal experiences, experiences of our
families and friends, we have come to hate the
ruling class. As we come to understand that our
oppression is not just Isolated instances but is
the suffering of an exploited class, and as we be-
come more conscious of our special oppression as
Black workers (national consciousness), we must
come together to find the way to relieve our
sufferings. .
It is at this point that the most class-conscious
workersthe Marxist-Leninist revolutionaries
introduce to the working class and interject into
ttie struggles of the working class the key revolu-
tionary ideology. This is the ideology of Marxism-
Leninism. Armed by ideology,the class-conscious
worker becomes a politically conscious worker
also, and begins to see the need to overthrow the
capitalist system, AND HOW TO DO IT. When
this ideology is generally accepted by our working
class and becomes their own, it will become a
force for social change, for revolution, that no
force on this earth will be able to hold back. It
provides the scientific thought we need to win the
class struggle.
The United States imperialist system, the most
ruthless and vicious system in the world today, is
powerful and should not be underestimated. At die
same time it should not be OVERestimated be-
cause only a handful (a tiny minority) run this
country and enslave the overwhelming majority.
This minority (the Rockefellers, Duponts, Fords,
General Motors, United States Steel, etc.) is
fatally weak in numbers of people. This is our
strength, if we learn to use it.
The strength of U.S. imperialism must not be
overestimated because while it seems on the sur-
face to be all- strong, we only have to analyze its
reaction to the struggle of the Afro-american
workers to see its cracks and inherentweakness.
It has to mobilize its national guard, its police
forces, its .courts, its jails, an entire election
campaign, a fever of whipped-up anti-Black
racism, etc., to try to contain die struggle of the
Black people-41% of the population*. Thats not
exactly an all-powerful system. And the U.S.
imperialists know that when unity has been
achieved between the Mack and white working
class that their days are numbered. THAT IS
In order for the Black people to win their
freedom they must organize themselves, led by

the working class, into a mighty force united with
other sections of the working class, to take on and
defeat U.S. imperialism and set up a worked
state, a nation run and controlled by the working
development? As we have stated earlier the ideas
of 'f Black capitalism, of" Cultural nationalism,'
of small-time bourgeois nationalism are not the
answer, and cannot serve the interest of the vast
majority of the Black peoplethe working class.
These schemes only Serve a small handful of
people who are not going to struggle to the end
to liberate all of the oppressed people. They
only look out for themselves.
Around the world the revolutions that have been
successful in overthrowing the oppressors and
liberating the working people have been led by men
who have a different idea than the ruling class. Led
by men trained in the science of Marxism-Lenin-
ism, who usedthis ideology as a tool to make revo-
lution. This was the case in the Soviet Union in
1917 led by V.I. Lenin, in China led by Mao Tse-
tung and in Albania led by Enver Hoxha.
These men were all students and followers of
Karl Marx, who successfully put together the
theory of class struggle, of scientific socialism,
of internationalism as opposed to nationalism, and
of workers' revolution. And in a country like Cuba
the leaders of the revolution at one point realized
that they could never win unless they adopted the
science of Marxism-Leninism. And to the degree
that they begin to turn away from Marxism-
Leninism the revolution starts to slip away and
turn into its oppositerule by die bourgeoisie.
Stalin, Hoxha and Mao Tse-tung understood,
practiced, taught and adopted the general truths
of Marxism and put them into practice in the
specific conditions of their countries. Marxist
ideas became a real force for the masses of the
working people and peasants, who used these
ideas to guide the overthrow of their class enemy
the rich ruling class.
And likewise it will be the adaptation of the
general truths of Marxism-Leninism to the spe-
cific conditions of the United States that will lead
to the destruction of U.S. imperialism and die
liberation of the Black working people and all
working people. This can only be done by the
American people themselves led by the Marxist-
Leninist Party, which fully understands that the
only way the working class can seize political
power is through armed struggle.
Where Marxism-Leninism is not the force and
science for revolution the revolutions ALWAYS
FAIL and are re-captured by the capitalist class.
And even in those countries where revolution has
been made, the people must struggle to keep the
workers' science of Marxism-Leninism in com-
mand. It can still be abandoned and the people
betrayed, as- in the Soviet Union after the death
of Stalin (and those countries in eastern Europe
and Asia that are today under the imperialist
domination of the Soviet Union). Capitalism has
come back in those countries as Marxism-Lenin-
ism was "revised," and the people are once
again exploited. But the people will learn from
this setback and say (as in China): never again'.
THERE IS NO WAY for the Black working
people to win their freedom and liberation except
through revolution armed with the science of
Marxism-Leninism. Any other attempt and any
other way can only lead to defeat and disaster for
the Hack working people. All one has to do is look
around the worldfor instance, in Africa and
where you see failure and disaster you will find
Hie absence of Marxism-Leninism. In today's
world, a non-Marxist "revolution" is an immedi-
ate disaster for the working people.
Like leadership, Marxism-Leninism does not
fall out of the skies into Hie hands of the working
class. It is brought to the working class to grasp
and use as a weapon to destroy their class enemy*.
It is brought to them by the organization that is
trained, skilled, that studies struggle and that
has gained experience in struggle. It is brought by
the organization that has adopted Marxism-Lenin-
ism as its science and sees that the only way for
the Black people and all working people to achieve
their liberation is through sharp class struggle and
revolution. That organization here and now is the
political party of the U.S. working class, Hack
and whitethe Progressive Labor Party.

Karl Marx, the founder ofand fight-
er forscientific socialism, which
became known as Marxism: the sci-
ence of workers revolution.
J.F. Stalin directed the advance of
socialism in the Soviet Union after
Lenin. Stalin led the Soviet people
in defeating Hitler and fascism.
V.I. Lenin advanced the thinking of
Marx into the era of the Proletarian
Revolution. He led the workers
revolution in Russia.
Enver Hoxha (L.), First Secretary
of the Central Committee of the Par-
ty of Labor of Albania, greets labor
delegates from the Congo.
Mao Tse-tung, who carried forward the theory of Marxism into the current
era of advanced imperialism and world revolution. With him is Lin Piao,
his close comrade, widely-studied as a leader of peoples war.

Black Workers, Organize!
A popular expression these days is "do your
own thing." We have heard this expression used
many times to combat the idea that the working
class needs a revolutionary party trained in the
science of Marxism-Leninism to liberate itself.
Many times it is not said so openly but the same
kind of individualistic attitude is demonstrated.
Of course, "doing your own thing" is the
easiest way to cop out of any serious struggle
against the capitalist system that is oppressing
the entire working classboth Black and white.
If you "do your own thing" then you are going
FOR yourself, BY yourself. In a million years you
can never destroy capitalism on your own. The
only way is through a collective effort!
we talking about, and where should it lead? We
are talking exactly about an organized collective
effort to destroy U.S. imperialism, liberate the
Afro-American people along with tiie entire work-
ing class, establish a socialist system, and end
exploitation of man by man. That organized col-
lective effort will be organized and led by the
Marxist-Leninist partythe party of the working
Why do we need a Marxist-Leninist Party?
Comrade Mao Tse-tung says:
! "If there is to be a revolution, there must?
Jbe a revolutionary party. Without a revolu-
-tionary party, without, a party built on the!
Marxist-Leninist revolutionary theory and in 5
the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary style, it is*
!impossible to lead the working class and the!
broad masses of the people to defeat Imperial-
ism and its running dogs." (Mao Tse-tung,
- Selected Works, Vol. IV, p. 285)
The United States imperialist system is the
most ruthless and vicious system in the world
today. It is also one of the most powerful. It has
a history of murder, plunder, oppression and
exploitation. It will not give up easily and just
stop this exploitation of the people of the world
and of the working class here at home. It must
be forced to stop by the overwhelming power of
the U.S. working class, backed up by the inter-
national working class.
This tremendous united force cannot be organ-
ized or guided by just any group of people. This
can only be done by dedicated and disciplined
people who have voluntarily come together for the
common aim. of destroying this monster.
History proves that the program to destroy
imperialism must be a fight for a socialist system
and workers' rulethe dictatorship of the prole-
tariat. All other plans have failed and will fail to
liberate the working people. History proves that
the dedicated and disciplined group which relies
on Hie working people, marches in the ranks of
the working class and serves them by guiding the
strugglethese people are communists and their
organization is the Marxist-Leninist Party. All
other groups have failed and will fail to see the
right move at the right timewill fail to liberate
the working peoplebecause they fail to study
and understand the science of revolution: Hie
working-class science of Marxism-Leninism.
And in the U.S., the Marxist-Leninist party
is the Progressive Labor Party (PLP).
The PLP is struggling to become the party of
the working class in general and also the party
of the Black working people in particular. But
leadership will not fall out of the skies, and
Marxism-Leninism will not fall out of the skies
into the laps of the Black working people. The
Marxist-Leninist party will not fall out of the
skies and lead the working class to victory. The
Marxist-Leninist party is born in struggle be-
cause of the real, objective conditions that exist
in Hie U.S. and the world today. Those objective
conditions include:
The growing struggles waged by Black and
white workers against the bosses and the sell-
out 4mion, "-leadersT that have showj* themselves
in increasing wildcat strikes (4,650 strikes last
The opposition to the war in Vietnam.
The students rebelling against their oppres-
sion by the ruling class and their realization that
they are being used to oppress other workers.
The developing armed struggle of the Black

workers in the ghettos.
The foil in real wages for the last five years.
Increasing taxes and less services.
A general decline in the living and working
conditions of the working people.
Each one of these contradictions can cause
Some struggle by itself, but it is the Marxist*
Leninist party that brings together all of these
contradictions, studies how to unite them, organ-
izes the working class around them and serves
the people by guiding the attack against the source
of all these contradictionsU.S. imperialism.
ism exploits the Black working people more than
the white working class, and suppresses the Black
woman worker even more, Black workers become
the leading revolutionary force in the working
class, and the leading, vanguard party of the work-
ing class must also be the vanguard party of the
Black liberation struggle.
As Stalin has said, when certain objective
conditions exist the need for the revolutionary
party becomes important. These objective condi-
tions do exist in the U.S. and "Hence the necessity
for a new party, a militant party, a revolutionary
party, one bold enough to lead foe workers in foe
struggle for power, sufficiently experienced to find
its bearings amidst foe complex conditions of a
revolutionary situation, and sufficiently flexible to
steer clear of all submerged rocks in the path to
its goal. (Hie Foundations of Leninism, p. 102-
to unite the entire working class. In addition it
takes special care not to drag or tail after foe
people. In other words it is not a serious work-
ing-class partya revolutionary partya
Marxist- Leninist partyif it can only react to
events and run after them, instead of giving lead-
Our party must not only be ONE with foe Black
working people and the entire working class, but
it must also draw its members from this working
class that is to lead the revolution. It must be a
training ground for the leaders of the revolution,
a tool of the working class to be used by foe work-
ing class to overthrow U.S. imperialism and
establish a socialist system.
There is a growing awareness of foe special
oppression that we as Black working people are
is based on that awareness of grim CLASS op-
Progressive Labor Party Builds Workers' Strength
Though Progressive Labor is a young party,
many examples of pointing foe right road can
already be given, as those who follow our litera-
ture or work with our members know. The NYC
school struggle is the most recent example of a
most complex problem, where traps can be avoided
only ByscientificMarxist- Leninistplanning by
people who are right there struggling among all
sections of foe working class, Black and white.
As soon as the UFT began foe walkout we
said that this could not be called a strikesince it
was a racist action which split foe working class.
We stated flatly that Shanker was serving foe
rulers, and this was later proved by their payoff
to foe teachers for foe time lost.
But we also continued to maintain our past
position that the Ford Foundation's Community
Control scheme cannot serve foe Black working
people, but only the rulers and the Black national-
ist mis-leaders who will pick up a few jobs. The
key force in this struggle is a parent-teacher
alliance based on foie working people, which must
..put foe fight< against foe racism in foe forefront.
Real life will prove that this analysis is also cor-
not such a young partythat enough years had
passed for tens and hundreds of thousands to
learn that they could rely on the Marxist-Leninist
PLP to show how to build working-class revolu-
tionary strength in each situation. How different
the school struggle would be! Lindsay and Rocke-
feller and their stooges in the Board of Ed., the
Union, and the control boards would be faced with
a powerful united enemythe working people, with
foe militant Black workers in foe lead, demanding
better working-class education and foe money to
pay for it. And the struggle would be consciously
planned to swing more workers into foe ranks of
all-out revolution, building toward the day when
we smash the ruling class.
These examples come up all the timewhere
Black workers waste their strength because of
misleaders who cannot size up a situation with an
eye on the revolution as a whole. It's like fighting
with a blindfold wrapped around your head, while
the enemy stays cool. A mass Marxist-Leninist
party is foe only answer.

Why is our revolutionary party able to exist
in the heartland of the most vicious and ruthless
ruling class the world has ever known? We have
been able to exist for a number of reasons. First
of all we plan, we take advantage of temporary
contradictions within U.S. imperialism. They
would like to say arrest them, put them in jail,
kill them. But they know the best way to keep
control is to keep people believing in "fair"
bourgeois democracy ("everyone is entitled to
his own views").
Of course the stronger action we call for the
more they want to crack down. But we call for
strong action only when large numbers of people
are making strong demandsso the rulers risk
mass revolutionary anger if they start jailing
and shooting. (The San Francisco College struggle
against racism is a good example.)
We have been able to exist because we have
guided ourselves with the science of Marxism-
Leninism. And we have been able to exist and
.become stronger because of the solidarity within
our ranks around a common ideology and a com-
mon political line. We have been able to exist
and grow like no other "left-wing" political
organizations because of our "unity of will," our
"unity of action* and the discipline of our mem-
bers. But only the MASS JOINING of these quali-
ties with the struggles of the Black and white
working classthe swelling of the partys ranks by
the working classonly this can lead to the
destruction of U.S. Imperialism.
lution will grow when the ruling class decides to
crack down and use die "other" method is that
the party has built strong political bases among
the working class around the Marxist-Leninist
political line. It will be guaranteed when hundreds
of thousands of workers join the ranks and make
the party their own. It will be guaranteed when
fae working people, seeing that die PLP is their
party and represents their needs and desires,
put themselves on the line and join die revolu-
tionary' organization* It will be guaranteed as
we step up the fight to destroy racism within
PLP ranks and among the white working class,
so that die majority of workers can stand united
against the ruling class. These are die only
guarantees that the revolution will grow in the
coming period.
It is because of the solidarity, unity, displine
and the guidance by the science of Marxism-
Leninism that our small party, that is scarcely
four years old and learning from its mistakes, has
already taken on U.S. imperialism boldly and has
led and participated in many struggle s of the work-
ing classes, both Black and white. And the U.S.
rulers and their flunkeys have responded by
launching attacks against us.
It is because we are being trained in the revo-
lutionary science of Marxism-Leninism and are
struggling to put it into practice that we are
beginning to have a definite impact in the Strug-?
gles that affect the lives of the American people.
We are not afraid of criticismin fact, we need
and welcome itto expose oQr mistakes to the
working class so they and we can learn from them,
and correct them quickly, before the enemy can
take advantage. It is this combination of qualities
that has built and will guarantee our ability to
exist and serve the people.
Many people ask why we do not set up two
partiesone for Black communists and one for
white communists. Their idea is that racism is
so strong in the U.S. that white and Black people
cannot work together, and that U.S. racism will
reflect itself in the PLP.
Yes, some of the racism that exists in the U.S*
does reflect itself in ourparty. How else would we
learn to fight it? But that is only one side of the
coin. The people that raise these questions either
do not grasp the essence of Marxism-Leninism
or they are working in the interest of the ruling
class to split us.
Marxism-Leninism finds that all over tills
world societies are primarily divided into
CLASSES. The overthrow of the powerful ruling
CLASS can only be accomplished by their op-
Workers must ORGANIZE the confrontations

Marxist Leninist from China shares experience with African workers.
positethe more powerful working CLASS.
The fighting army of the working class can
indeed have different powerful battalions. Our
party of course agrees that the special exploita-
tion of the Black working people requires special
organizations. But within the Black battalions we
build toward united power by fighting for WORK-
ING-CLASS CONTENT in Black struggles. It is
only working-class demands lhat can serve the
interests of 97% of die Black people AND pave the
way for unity with other battalions.
tual fighting unity of the whole working class army,
advancing along different roads to fight the same
enemy. The general Black liberation movement
will be national in form (organizations of Black
workers and student allies) and working class in
content (fights around the demands of the Black
working class, not the small-time bourgeoisie).
Within the white battalions our party makes its
number one job today the fight against racism,
outside and inside the party, while defending all
workers' interests.
But in real life sharp struggles are always
springing up which involve both Black and white
workers and their allies. The Marxist-Leninist
party is built on CLASS lines, not race, so it can
be in a position to decide quickly what line of
battle, what set of demands, what strategy and
tactics will build die fighting strength of die
entire working class, always remembering that
die Black workers* super-exploitation puts them
in the lead.
decisions could never be made quickly and ac-
curately. The party is a CLASS organization,
working-CLASS based, of people who have over-
come their own racism and nationalism far
enough to be able to struggle together to hammer
out a winning plan for the workers' revolution,
based on the historical science of Marxism-
Leninism as applied to the special conditions in
the United States.
"The working class without a revolutionary
party is an army without a General Staff."
(Stalin: Foundations of Leninism, p. 104)

FIVE-PAGE SECTION on The Son Francisco State College Strike: pp. 19 through 23
Big Calif. Oil
Strike; Students
loin Pickets
see pp. 72, 2$
Black Workers
Need Marxlst-
Leitinist Party
see pp. 15-J6
Vol. V, No. 11
February, 1969 10$
Unity gets SAN FRANCISCO WORKER rehired (p.2); a Call toWHITE WORKERSp2
CHICAGO STEEL MILL calls Cops as Racism is exposed (p.3); Noe Valley (San Francisco) holds
high school students rebel (p.5); "Special Firing" by RACIST PHONE CO. Fought (p.11); Blacks
fight BRANDEIS COLLEGE racism (p .25); SDS' FIGHT-RACISM proposal passed (p.27);
HIGH SCHOOL SDS in LA Sit-in (p.27); 'UPTIGHT Slanders Black Workers (p.16); AUTO
WORKERS back S.F, State strike vs. rac ism; (p 2 3); Admin, closes QUEENS COLLEGE (p.20
New York California
Block working people hove long been reody for militant oetion ogoinst rocist exploitation. NEW LOOK IN ARMED SELF-DEFENSE:
Now the need is for revolutionary organization, the Marxist-Leninist party (see page 15). A San Francisco Student pickets with Dobermans
ILG Helps Fig.-Flattery Attack Workers
stories on
pp. 6,7,8
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