Bill Maher, Karl Marx, and “identity politics”

BY:Joe Sims| May 3, 2017
Bill Maher, Karl Marx, and “identity politics”

U.S. capitalism was constructed on a racial social division of labor. As Marx said in Capital, “labor in the white skin cannot be free so long as labor in the black skin is branded.”   We would add to that formula gender. American inequality has long been premised on discrimination based on color and gender as means of generating extra profit and diving the class against itself.

Why then the ongoing attack on “identity politics”  the most recent example coming from Bill Maher and CNN, who urged Democrats to ease up on identity politics, which he claims is prioritized over economic concerns.

We’d argue that both have to be addressed, and that along with jobs must come affirmative action and other measures to provide training and skills necessary for advancement and job security.

Without both, the class will be divided and Republicans will continue to win.  And by the way isn’t their hypocritical emphasis on the so-called “white working class,” an expression of identity politics? Don’t get me wrong: white workers are suffer exploitation and are catching hell with the rest of the working class.  To build unity, the issues of the entire class have to be addressed: race, gender, sexual orientation, cannot and will not be swept under the rug. Sorry Bill, identity and class matter.


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