Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Workers Viewpoint Organization

RCP Helps Ruling Class “Celebrate” Bicentennial


First Published: Workers Viewpoint newspaper, Vol. 1, No. 5, August 1976.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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As the last issue of Workers Viewpoint newspaper, (Vol. I, No. 4) pointed out, the Bicentennial “celebration” staged by the bourgeoisie is “part of their work among the U.S. working class and masses to numb and disarm us ideologically to prolong their rule.” Through their “celebrations,” the bourgeoisie tried to divert the upsurge in our powerful multinational working class movement for socialism by whipping up national chauvinism and faith in bourgeois democracy to lay the groundwork for fascism and another imperialist world war.

But for all the work and money the ruling class is nutting into it, they aren’t getting over. The workers’ disdain for the barrage of capitalist lies was clearly shown in the miserable turnout for these bourgeois Bicentennial “celebrations” across the country.

The task of communists is to thoroughly expose the class nature of these bourgeois lies. We must use these lessons of the day to bring to the workers the need for socialism and the need to build the genuine communist party of the working class. we must channel the spontaneous resistance of the working class into a mighty current for the task of overthrowing monopoly capitalism and establishing the dictatorship of the proletariat.


As faithful collaborators of the bourgeoisie, the right opportunist Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP) and the revisionist Puerto Rican Socialist Party (PSP) and “Communist” Party, U.S.A. (“C”PUSA) organized two Bicentennial rallies in Philadelphia over the Fourth of July, peddling their revisionist and economist lines under the cover of “communism.”

The PSP/“C”P coalition rally was a flop as far as the workers were concerned. These revisionists showed themselves to be faithful agents of the bourgeoisie by raising the same blatant appeals to-national chauvinism and illusions of bourgeois democracy as their capitalist masters. They raised slogans such as “Bicentennial Without Colonies or Repression,” trying to swindle the workers into thinking that there can be no imperialism or repression under monopoly capitalism, that imperialism and repression are mere “policies” and not intrinsic to monopoly capitalism. They only raised independence for Puerto Rico and did not take a stand with the international proletariat to support all national liberation struggles. This shows how they are narrow nationalist to the bone. The revisionist politics of the coalition appealed to the marsh forces who have been sorted out as the genuine communist movement surged forward. The PSP contingent in the march was dwarfed by a swarm of gay liberationists and other petty bourgeois elements from, past spontaneous movements who could not move into the new period.

In spite of the RCP’s phony gesture of inviting the PSP-“C”P coalition to do “open polemics,” while it has consistently shied away from polemics with the genuine Marxist-Leninist forces in the anti-revisionist communist movement for fear of being exposed, the content of RCP’s rally was in essence the same as the revisionist coalition. The thoroughly economist line of the RCP serves in essence the same class-collaborationist role as the PSP-“C”PUSA.


The “Rich Off Our Backs” July 4th demonstration was a lively demonstration of how the RCP has completely abandoned our communist task of conducting propaganda to the broad masses, especially the advanced workers. Bob Avakian, Chairman of the Central Committee of the RCP, delivered the same worn-out May Day speech he gave two years ago. There was nO propaganda on the role of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse-tung Thought as the theoretical basis guiding our thinking; In fact, the words MLMTTT were not even mentioned. He shamelessly defined communism as “nothing but in common.” Instead of exposing the class nature of the monopoly capitalists, he said that they are just like tapeworms in society.

As for the strategy and tactics of proletarian revolution, Avakian left it to nothing more than “getting rid of Al Capone and Bugsy Moran” (he wanted to mean US imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism), and ”seizing the time to drive the stake through Dracula’s heart.” Such fairy-tale type propaganda is downright anti-working class. Does Avakian think that the working class is too backward for the science of MLMTTT?

In the name of “applying Marxism to the experience of the masses in a down-to-earth militant and lively way” (Revolution, July), RCP resorts to the “strength of the old world” – bourgeois ideology. In fact, they become the happy collaborators of the bourgeoisie by freely borrowing from the anti-communist propaganda of the bourgeoisie. Avakian declared in his speech, “what’s wrong with ’brainwashing’? I believe that the brain is like anything else: if it’s dirty, then you gotta wash it!” So this is how a chairman of a supposedly communist party interprets the duty of communists to transform ourselves and change the subjective world in the course of changing the objective world!

The RCP demonstration chose to focus especially on the “American rulers” because they thought that “the American workers are much more likely to understand that the New Tsars are pushing towards war. Our capitalists – our rulers – are doing plenty of ’education’ on this point themselves.”(Revolution, July, p. 14) This totally liquidates the task of communists to give a scientific analysis of the contention of the two superpowers and the greater danger of Soviet social-imperialism as the source of world war. Instead, the RCP substitutes bourgeois anti-communist propaganda as a form of attack on social-imperialism instead of communist exposure.

In WV Journal vol. 1, no. 2 (#4), we pointed out that the communist movement is entering into the third period, when political line is the key link. We said

principally because of the emergence of the mighty, irreversible trend based on building the party on the ideological plane, and secondarily because of the flow of the mass movement – because of this ’totality of historical conditions’ today the second period of the communist movement has ended. (p.99)

The first period of the communist movement lasted until 1972. It was the period of eclecticism where the forces emerging out of the spontaneous anti-war and national movements were groping for direction and guidance. The RCP (then the RU) played a leading role in that period, affirming the general truths of MLMTTT as the guiding theory of the proletarian revolution in the U.S. and the working class as the main force in making the revolution. However, RU was sorted out in the second period when it failed to grasp the role of theory and persisted in its “practice, practice, practice” line.

As the communist movement is moving into the third Period, the pragmatist RU has shown itself totally incapable of providing communist leadership to the working class. Their reports on workers’ struggles in the Revolution are tireless chants about how workers were united and how workers fought back. As Lenin pointed out, this is confining “propaganda” to working class hostility to capitalism instead of “undertaking the organization of the political exposure of [monopoly capitalism] in all its aspects.” (What is to Be Done?)

The July 4th demonstration showed RCP’s further political degeneration, falling back into the first period of eclecticism. In the demonstration, they pulled out of the garbage can such co-opted slogans as “Power to the People,” which has absolutely no working class content. The banner of one contingent in the RCP rally even read “Youth in Action, Fighting for Satisfaction”!

In all their propaganda, they carefully avoided terms such as “bourgeoisie” or “monopoly capitalists” as if advanced workers do not see the oppressive nature of monopoly capitalism already. Instead, they preferred to coin slogans such as “We Won’t Fight Another Rich Man’s War” which neither points to the nature of imperialism nor exposes the role of the two superpowers which are fiercely preparing for world war. This shows how the RCP tails behind the spontaneous consciousness of the working class, not only the advanced workers. Along with the worker quoted by Lenin in What Is to Be Done?, a worker in their demonstration bluntly said, “They’re not telling us anything we don’t already know!”

Chairman Mao has said that “the correctness and incorrectness of the ideological and political line decides everything.” With their anarcho-syndicalist line, the RCP cannot win over advanced or even middle workers. Their economist propaganda is useless in winning advanced workers to communism. Their incorrect ideological and political line is the reason their demonstration could only draw barely 3,000 overwhelmingly petty bourgeois and student elements. This shows what the RCP can draw out organizationally with six months of nationwide promotional campaigns, resorting to bourgeois publicity and public relations gimmicks. The Philadelphia demonstration was a clear sign of the quickening degeneration of the RCP and its desertion of the working class. In a report to the Tenth National Congress of the Communist Party of China we learn that:

If one’s line is correct, even if one has not a single soldier at first, there will be soldiers, and even if there is no political power, political power will be gained. (p.17)

In the rally, the RCP had to resort to force to physically prevent anyone in its ranks from buying a WVO newspaper or talking to our propaganda teams. Instead of principled struggle, RCP engineered mindless chants of “Rich Off Our Backs,”, “No Rich Man’s War,” and “Jobs or Income Now” in attempts to drown out our communist propaganda. In practice, the military parade style of RCP’s march was designed to shield their friends and cadres fro*m ideological and political struggle, fearing exposure of their thoroughly right opportunist lines.

The marsh OL liberals fled before RCP’s threats. The forces of WVO persisted in struggle and exposure against this thoroughly bourgeois line.


The cracks are appearing in RCP, as more and more workers and communists refuse to be force-fed a steady diet of opportunist garbage which supports bourgeois ideology in the name of exposing it. We call on all genuine communists to unite in ruthlessly exposing the right opportunists in our movement, represented by the RCP and OL. The struggle over the July 4th demonstration shows once again that the victory of the genuine Marxist-Leninist and proletarian revolutionary line in the U.S. is inevitable!