USA – On March 14, Trump touted his corporate tax cuts at the Boeing plant in St. Louis. Boeing CEO Muillenberg said the cuts are “one of the best things that has happened in the last few months.” The company will get a windfall of billions.
Most will be used to continue a gigantic buyback of Boeing stock, netting executives millions. Workers are not happy.
The company Publc Relations department came up with a scheme to spin the news. They are holding a vote for “suggestions on how to invest $100 million [from the cuts] toward workforce development.” Party members and friends couldn’t find a single worker who will admit to participating.
On the other hand, Party cadre and friends in the factory are discussing “workforce development” in communism.
The bosses want us to choose between four options. The first three concern technical skills for individual advancement. The last, management training, is straight-out capitalist brainwashing.
We started by contrasting this to the aim of communist development of the workforce. Our goal is to develop communist political leadership in the heart of the factory, not limited to technical skills.
“How do you do that?” asked a Boeing Red Flag distributor. “Around here, people are brainwashed to get ahead individually, not collectively.”
We agreed we will need lots of communist organizers. Many will be forged in the political struggle to create communist relations of production. But first we’ll need a revolution.
We must focus on developing those communist organizers now. These organizers, particularly in industry, need to know how communist factories will function to guarantee the success of communist society. The politics of communist workforce development is key to this understanding.
During the Chinese Cultural Revolution, there were many attempts to merge performance tasks with administrative tasks. No separate classes for management. No larger salaries! The slogan was for mass management.
In communism, there won’t be managers and technical staff standing apart from the immediate producers who make decisions about what to produce, the allocation of tasks, and the nature of production. Nobody will be assigned to only one sector. The party will mobilize workers to seize control of every aspect of production.
We will not, however, ignore technical skills. We will change the nature of technical innovation by placing it in hands of the workers.
This will require a new way to educate. Worker collectives in the most advanced factories during the Cultural Revolution decided who got specialized training based on the needs of the collective, not job advancement. Those who got such training were immediately integrated back into work units.
Scientific knowledge will be put in the hands of workers, enabling them to transform production themselves. The goal is a new social organization of scientific and technological research.
The political struggle for workers to organize production to serve the international working class will create unity, helping to break down race, gender and national segregation. The interests of individuals and production units will bow to the interests of the world’s workers.
The appropriation of this communist ideology by the masses will help answer our Boeing friend’s qualms. The social norms of behavior will change.
In the end, the Cultural Revolution did not win this battle. They were fighting under a socialist system. Socialism maintains wages, inevitably leading to greater inequality.
We’ll immediately eliminate wages in communism, giving us a clear advantage. The working class will provide what we need and now must buy with wages. Even so, we’ll face significant political struggle to replace mere “production units” (i.e. companies) with interrelated political units that also produce material goods.
We are encouraging our base to test these ideas with their friends. Their experiences will help develop the organizers we need and should fill the pages of Red Flag.
We call for a communist May Day! “Communist Workforce Development in Communist Factories” will be one of our organizing slogans. That’s how we’ll answer Trump’s bluster and Muillenberg’s votes.