Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

’76 Strategy


First Published: Unity and Struggle, Vol. IV, No. 14, October 1975.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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Recent events have emphasized the apparent need that the people of America have for an alternative to their misery and the need for the revolutionary and progressive forces to arouse the masses and make them look more closely at the sources of this misery, monopoly capitalism and imperialism, and bring the struggle for socialism as the clear alternative.

In the Republican wing, Ford campaigns for president and steps on the people as he goes! And who’s challenging him? Republican reactionary Ronald Reagan; or “Democratic” alternatives “Scoop” Jackson and George Wallace – bringing histories of labor union bureaucracy and racist oppression, wrapped in convention glitter and “for the people rhetoric”!

And in case we don’t go for this, the Republican-Democratic Party in the Senate are collaborating on the S.-1 Bill laying the foundation for a fascist type repression once people can no longer be distracted by newspaper serials on insane terrorists and Ford Family antics!

Meanwhile, the people are left to depend upon who for leadership? The luxuriously paid labor aristocrats putting on militant acts for the workers and making the real deals with the corporation presidents. The bankrupt “activist” leaders and liberals, CPUSA revisionists pushing pure reformism and peaceful coexistence with capitalism and imperialism, now when we need to be struggling for revolution.

CAP has raised Strategy 76 and called upon a broad range of organizations to form a united front that would raise the needs of the working class and oppressed nationalities, oppose the bourgeois parties and bring socialism to the people.

The National Black Assembly is one united front where Strategy 76 was raised. Initially NBA accepted the anti-Democrat, anti-Republican thrust calling a Black candidate for president and later adopted an entire Strategy 76 resolution (a revised version proposed by someone else) and set up a Strategy 76 Committee. But since that point (April 1975) the dominant factor has been undermining and delay. For example, certain NBA forces maintain the need for four meetings to discuss the strategy – one Black, one Third World, one white and then one with people! These forces say it is because each group has its own priorities to discuss. Yes, each group may have priorities, but the purpose of the united front is to bind these priorities into a single thrust. Even more important, while we spend four months delaying in four different meetings discussing the same issues and drawing the same conclusions, the Republican-Democratic Party, the bourgeoisie and their lackies, are mobilizing, tricking or forcing people to either fight on their side or pretend there is democracy under bourgeois dictatorship and submit to their rule!

On the other hand, Strategy 76 has been raised to Marxist-Leninist organizations in the anti-revisionist movement. Since that time a stream of questions have been raised-answered-reraised, such as: How Strategy 76 might forward the struggle to build a multinational vanguard communist party?; and, Does the massive organizing effort that electoral campaigning demand weaken organizing at the point of production? CAP responded that bringing together the Marxist-Leninist organizations in the close working relationship that electoral compaigning requires would also provide a basis for beginnings of long range work together by Marxist-Leninist forces and progressives that will contribute to formation of united front against imperialism. One of the necessary components, along with a revolutionary party and armed struggle is making socialist revolution.

On the question of electoral work weakening work at the point of production first, Lenin, in “Against the Faction of the Otzovists” states, “Hence, the ability to use parliamentarism has proved to be a symptom (not a condition but a symptom) of exemplary organization of the entire socialist movement, in all its branches...” Secondly, the workers at the point of production are one main sector the bourgeois parties aim at in their electoral thrust, through union bureaucrats, rallies, TV and mounds of printed lies about their positions on “bread & butter” issues. Workers vote in their communities and are also influenced there by politicians and political activity. We need a strong line then in the shops, at union meetings and rallies, on TV and in the many communities, with attractive and clear literature exposing these lines and the exploitation and oppression of capitalism, the racism that oppresses Black workers and divides the class and calling for workers control of the economy.

In the struggle to bring NBA and National Coordinating Committee (a coalition of varied forces around Strategy 76) together to work on Strategy 76, some of the bourgeois nationalist “paranoia” has given way to a willingness to have multinational meetings of the NBA and NCC committees, but such unity must be principled and not opportunist. It is essential that Marxist-Leninist forces came to see the importance of a 76 electoral thrust to put out in a broad popular campaign a platform that not only addresses itself to the urgent needs of the people but a “maximum” program that calls for a new social system and the control of the economy by the masses. Theoretical clarity around electoral politics and their use in building the mass movement toward socialist revolution is a must for Marxist-Leninist forces. Closer study of the History of the CPSU(B) on work in the Duma and the struggles against the Otzovists (& the Liquidators) as well as Lenin’s, Left Wing Communism, An Infantile Disorder and Against Boycott C.W., Vol. 13, p. 17-49 or “Faction of Supporters of Otzovism and God-building”, C.W. Vol. 16 p. 29-61 esp. pp. 33-38 is absolutely necessary to stop so called Marxist-Leninist forces from falsely testifying that non-participation in electoral politics is a Bolshevik principle or a line of tactics of Marxist-Leninists. We have quoted Mao Tse Tung’s article Problems of War & Strategy 1938. Many formations claim study is essential to the building of the new multinational anti-revisionist communist party. Clarity on the uses of electoral politics as a method of putting out a progressive political line and opposing the bourgeois line, as a means of building a broad united front, some of whom will become interested in Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought is one very badly needed element of that party building study.