The lie of capitalist advancement

BY:Michael K| May 16, 2024
The lie of capitalist advancement


This piece is a contribution to the Pre-Convention Discussion for our 32nd National Convention. During Pre-Convention Discussion, all aspects of the party’s program, strategy, and tactics are up for consideration and debate. The ideas presented here are those of the author or authors alone, and do not necessarily reflect the positions of the Communist Party USA, its membership, or their elected leadership bodies. — Editors

Under capitalism, the lie is that innovation thrives and everyone’s lives improve alongside these innovations. The reality is the tools created under this system will always be swayed to further the capitalist ideology. The Communist Party has an opportunity here through seizing on the dissatisfaction of both workers and consumers by highlighting the contradictions.

Planned obsolescence has become more prevalent, and ever more important given its use of finite resources and the toll on the environment. The purposeful choice of inferior designs to lead to products that are less repairable and with shorter lifetimes all for the purpose of boosting profits.

In the labor aspect, the “gamification” of society is just a reskinned gilded age style of labor practices. The introduction of peer to peer businesses has glorified the hustle culture of needing multiple jobs to simply afford basic living standards. All the while labor rights are whittled away by categorizing employees of these companies, and increasingly other jobs as well, as contract workers. This has led to a normalization of predatory labor treatment on a sliding scale depending on the already existing material conditions.

The Communist Party has already made progress by focusing on labor initiatives. There is a growing connection between our chapter and local coalitions and labor organizations, many led by youth. Further growing the momentum of these organizations and coalitions will bring the most immediate benefits to the working class under our current capabilities. One method is through the automotive industry, which is an avenue of importance with the increasing presence of software. We should begin to advocate a “right to repair” to ensure user rights over the software in the products that we own. Primary example of this are Tesla cars using DRM software, in addition to locking the owner out of knowing what the software does or if it is even operating properly.

Additional topics to facilitate this growth can be in taking over the fear discourse of AI. The fear is over the threat of unemployment over having a tool that automates tedious tasks. This fear is the result of knowing deep down that the capitalist owners will use technology that should be used to improve the lives of all, but is instead implemented to enrich themselves by maximizing the harm done to the workers and populace as a whole. Our party has the opportunity to be the one to actually tell the masses the truth. Capitalists will always dance around reality as the truth is detrimental to their cause.

True advances in technology over the past 100 years have been under socialism, or at the very least through public funding by the government, the only capability of the private sector is profiteering. History has shown us how technology is key in facilitating a socialist economy from automation, all the way to cybernetics. The tools themselves are ready for us, we must now seize the opportunity and put them to action.



    Michael K is an activist with the Dallas Fort Worth, Texas, club.

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