A Brief Interview with Jim PetrasPosted: March 24, 2017
Jim Petras is a retired Sociology professor with 45 years of teaching experience at SUNY-Binghamton. He spent several semesters teaching in numerous Latin American countries, Canada, and China. He has three web sites with over 50,000 readers per week and has written 29 books, published in 29 languages, and over 2,000 articles in magazines and newspapers. He is a regular contributor to the People’s Press.
People’s Press: What do you think about the state of U.S. politics today?
Professor Petras: The right has stymied mass discontent from finding a leftwing expression. Every popular movement has been blocked by Democratic Party demagogues. The mass peace and anti-Wall St. Movements were sabotaged by Obama and the Democrats. Prior to Obama’s election a growing anti-war movement was expanding and linking up with anti-Wall St protests. Obama promised to support them if they worked for his election. When Obama doubled up on the wars and embraced the Wall St. bankers these movements were dismayed and left leaderless. Some of the leaders were given low level jobs in the Democratic regime. Sanders capitalized on the anti-Wall St. movement but abandoned his supporters when he turned to the right to support Clinton. Many of these workers either voted for Trump or abstained from voting. Forty eight percent of citizens age 18 and over abstained from voting. Now Jill Stein is shilling for the Democrats.
Right now there is no national movement on the left. Black workers have no organization. Ninety three percent of workers are not unionized and of the 7% who are more than half are controlled by millionaire Democratic hacks.
On the international scene, the U.S. regime is threatening war with Russia and China. But the U.S. economy is debt ridden, there is deepening domestic inequality, and there is growing popular opposition to more wars.
Anti-neoliberal movements are growing in Europe and Latin America but they are more nationalist and populist than they are socialist.
PP: What Needs to be Done?
Petras: We need to build local organizations based on jobs, health care and medical pharma drug addiction that is killing hundreds of thousands of low paid workers. This country needs housing for low income workers and an end to police violence.
From the bottom up we need to build a state wide movement which will control political candidates. And this is only a small part of the struggle.