In case you missed it this week, the chairman of America's Revolutionary Communist Party, a man called Bob Avakian, has endorsed Joe Biden for president. Avakian, who briefly fled to France after being charged with assaulting a police officer in 1979, has released a lengthy and rambling screed to his newsletter subscribers in which he throws his support behind Joe Biden for president in the upcoming election. In order to uproot "capitalism-imperialism," it's crucial to defeat the "fascist regime" of the Trump administration, he writes:
This is a regime headed by “a demented bully” with his finger on the nuclear button. It is a regime that, without exaggeration, threatens not just greatly heightened suffering for the masses of humanity but the very existence of humanity itself, through its intensified moves to further the plunder of the environment and its boasts of unequaled weapons of mass destruction and its blatant declaration of willingness to use those weapons, including its massive nuclear arsenal. I have also emphasized that it is this system of capitalism-imperialism which, through its “normal workings,” has brought forth this fascism, and that no fundamental change for the better can be brought about under this system, and instead this system must be overthrown and replaced by a radically different and far better system, in order to abolish and uproot all relations of exploitation and oppression, and the violent conflicts they give rise to—all of which is built into the foundations of this system and its ongoing functioning and requirements. Right now, for everyone who is concerned with ending injustice and oppression, and with the question of whether humanity will have a future worth living—or will have a future at all—removing the Trump/Pence fascist regime from power is an immediate, urgent question and truly historic imperative.
The over-arching goal is still total revolution to "uproot" the American system, of course. He makes this quite clear, with characteristic Stalinist subtlety: "Our fundamental goal, and guiding star, remains: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS!" He writes, "normally, we revolutionary communists argue that people should not vote in bourgeois elections, which serve to reinforce the existing system of capitalism-imperialism." But these are not normal times. After drawing some requisite Nazi comparisons (it's always interesting when committed commies rail against regimes who slaughter millions), Avakian explains why it is imperative for revolution-minded Communists to proactively vote in favor of Joe Biden in November (emphasis original):
Using all appropriate means to work for the removal of this regime must include voting against Trump (assuming the election is actually held). To be clear, this means not a “protest vote” for some candidate who has no chance of winning, but actually voting for the Democratic Party candidate, Biden, in order to effectively vote against Trump. This is not because Biden (and the Democratic Party in general) have suddenly become something other than what they are...this election is different—in a crucially important way. The question is not whether Biden and the Democrats represent something “good,” or whether, in fundamental terms, the Democrats are “better” than the Republicans. Both of these parties are ruling class political parties, and none of their candidates represent anything “good” in the most basic and essential sense. Biden is not “better” than Trump, in any meaningful way—except that he is not Trump and is not part of the move to consolidate and enforce fascist rule, with everything that means.
Imagine Avakian's struggle session over bestowing this endorsement just after one of Biden's vice presidential short-listers publicly disavowed Fidel Castro. This was perfunctory, if not entirely convincing:
Karen Bass apparently only realized that Fidel Castro was Bad, actually, sometime between her 62nd & 66th years on earth. https://t.co/D26GWEoA6x— JERRY DUNLEAVY (@JerryDunleavy) August 2, 2020
She added, "I'm not a communist," which isn't a clarification one generally wants to have to make in politics. Sad! Bass, the chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, certainly keeps some interesting company -- that's for sure:
Karen Bass in 2010 at a ribbon-cutting for a Scientology church:— Alex Thompson (@AlxThomp) July 31, 2020
"That is why the words are exciting of your Founder L. Rob Hubbard...The Church of Scientology I know has made a difference, because your creed is a universal creed and one that speaks to all people everywhere" pic.twitter.com/EghkCwqHi6
Perhaps Avakian and company can console themselves by enjoying the clear "progress" the country's left-wing movement is making in general:
A coalition of 10 teachers unions and the Democratic Socialists of America is demanding:— Corey A. DeAngelis (@DeAngelisCorey) August 2, 2020
• Ban new charter schools
• Ban private school choice
• Ban standardized tests
• Police-free schools
• More federal funding
They are holding a "National Day of Resistance" tomorrow.
Minneapolis City Government tells residents to be ready to give up their phones and wallets and to always cooperate with criminals: pic.twitter.com/qQhw4YLRSY— Kyle Hooten (@KyleHooten2) August 1, 2020
Of course, no politician should be judged by his or her most odious supporters and sympathizers (the media often enjoy playing this game against Republicans, and running interference for Democrats), but it's at least worth noting that the country's leading revolutionary communist is telling his followers that it's important to support Joe Biden in the fall. Question: Will Biden be asked to disavow this electoral blessing? For fun, I'll leave you with this:
America’s leading communist revolutionary: “I don’t always vote in bourgeois elections, but when I do, it’s for Joe Biden. Stay bloodthirsty, my friends.” https://t.co/5GE1E2AvJr pic.twitter.com/6qtQiwD0ky— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) August 3, 2020