The American Party of Labor is a Marxist-Leninist Party in the United States of America whose aim, goal and desire is to establish a vanguard party that will build a socialist republic under the dictatorship of the proletariat on the American continent. To ensure that a correct line is maintained, that the Party effectively communicates to the working class and its organizations our plans, aims and goals, and to reinforce our statements on American society, our ideology and general line, we do hereby establish this document as our Party Program.
Our General Line
1. The American Party of Labor comes from and represents the American working class; it has no interests aside from those of the working class and the workers’ movement as a whole. As such, the Party champions and defends the struggles of oppressed and marginalized peoples for emancipation and liberation. To that end, the Party participates in mass and popular struggles for social justice, peace, and democracy.
2. The American Party of Labor maintains that value in society is produced by human action within the material world. That is to say, value is created by the consumption of labor power. The working classes, which have only their labor power to sell for their daily sustenance, therefore make production possible. The Party demands the abolition of private property and that all means of production be in the hands of the working class.
3. The American Party of Labor asserts that profit under capitalism is extorted from the working class and constitutes theft by the capitalist ruling class. Therefore, modern society is a capitalist dictatorship. Under the socialist system, the working class will be paid the full value of their labor less the necessary deductions to support the state and its various cultural, economic, and social support projects.
4. The American Party of Labor demands that all oppressed nations within the context of the U.S. Empire, including, but by no means limited to, First Nations, Chicanos, Native Hawaiians, Guamanians and Puerto Ricans (within the context of Puerto Rico), be given national self-determination as to whether or not they wish to remain in the American socialist state, which shall be constructed on the remnants of the United States. We call for the end of the so-called commonwealth system in all U.S. imperial possessions. These nations should either choose to become a U.S. state, an autonomous zone, or an independent country.
5. The American Party of Labor demands the cancellation of all current debt held by developing countries to the U.S. These loans were not made with the intention of helping the people of these countries, but rather to enslave those countries with debt.
6. The American Party of Labor is an anti-imperialist party. We are opposed to all imperialism, wars of aggression, and the machinations and intrigues of capitalism. We call for the immediate withdrawal of all U.S. troops from overseas, an end to all imperialist wars, and the promotion of world peace. We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with all occupied peoples and with all nations living underneath neo-colonial regimes. We call for the end of foreign aid to Israel, Colombia, the Philippines, and other outposts of capitalist and imperialist aggression.
7. The American Party of Labor is an internationalist party. All peoples around the globe struggling for their emancipation from their own systems of exploitation are our allies. We extend our hands to all revolutionary organizations guided by Marxism-Leninism worldwide and to national liberation movements of exploited peoples of all countries because our cause is one and the same.
8. The American Party of Labor demands the U.S. withdrawal from NATO and other imperialist alliances.
9. The American Party of Labor stands fully against the militarization of the U.S.-Mexican border. It supports the rights of immigrants and the ending of neo-liberal policies in other countries, particularly in Latin America and the Caribbean, that drive sustenance farmers off their lands and to the United States due to a lack of economic opportunity in their native countries.
10. The American Party of Labor has a more generalized list of our demands and positions in a separate document called the Party Platform.
1. The American Party of Labor understands that so long as we limit ourselves to electoral politics, socialism can never be constructed in the United States. The United States is a dictatorship run by the capitalists who own and control what is produced, the means of disseminating information, what is advertised, who runs for office and who is elected. Even though there are contradictions between various groups within the ruling class, we understand that the whole point of periodic elections between Republicans and Democrats is just an illusion of choice. The reality is that both parties serve the same people and the same class; that class is the capitalist class, not the working class.
2. Therefore, the only solution is socialist revolution in the United States. Our Party is based on Marxism-Leninism as formulated by Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Vladimir Lenin, and Joseph Stalin; and enriched by figures such as Enver Hoxha, Che Guevara, Fidel Castro, Ho Chi Minh, and the countless other revolutionaries who have dedicated their lives to the defeat of capitalism and advancement of socialism.
3. With respect to the freedoms that capitalism claims to grant, we believe that liberty is impossible so long as the system of wage slavery continues to exist. It is impossible for the majority to pursue life so long as they are one paycheck away from homelessness, destitution, starvation, and death. In this system it is impossible to pursue happiness as long as the workers are subjected to wage slavery and excluded from necessary healthcare, cultural outlets, and general personal freedom.
4. In short, so long as the capitalist dictatorship continues to exist the inalienable rights mentioned in the U.S. Constitution are mere empty words. The American Party of Labor calls for socialist revolution to seize the state for the working people of the United States, to take over its economic apparatus, and to form for the first time on this continent a state by and for “We the People.”
5. To that end, the American Party of Labor sets before itself the immediate and necessary task of expanding itself into a mass-based party capable of carrying out revolution and of helping to create the conditions necessary for socialist revolution in the United States.
Our General Strategy
1. The purpose of the American Party of Labor is to combine the working class movement with the socialist (Marxist-Leninist) movement. This is accomplished by winning over the most politically reliable and active movement leaders to Marxism-Leninism.
2. The Party seeks to cultivate working class leadership by participating fully in those struggles which can mobilize the broad masses against the enemy. The American Party of Labor shall incorporate itself into the labor movement, protests against war, poverty, social injustice, and any other popular and progressive movements.
3. The American Party of Labor organizes for and with the working class and oppressed against capitalism and for emancipation from bourgeois society. The American Party of Labor aims to establish systems of dual power independent of the ruling capitalist system. Power will be built by focusing on the working class, as well as the rising generations of proletarians, the youth. Mass-based organizations will be the new power in the revolutionary society, guarded by a people’s army, and led by the Party as its civilian leadership.
4. The Party will under no circumstances enter into alliances or working relationships with groups which espouse right-wing or reactionary views clothed in populist language.
5. The Party is led in democratic-centralist fashion, meaning decisions are made democratically, and after a decision is reached, the entire Party, including the minority and dissenting opinions, are obliged to carry out the will of the majority. The role of the Party leadership is to enforce the decisions of the majority and to guide their implementation.
6. The Party presently holds that the two major tasks for Marxist-Leninists in our country consist of
a) Supporting unity in the revolutionary movement and;
b) Supporting the struggle against revisionism.
These two tasks are paramount for Marxist-Leninists because they address the dire need for a united party of the working class in North America, a trend at which all revolutionary forces are converging and which is historically necessary for the final victory over U.S. imperialism and world capitalism. These two tasks address the fact that attempts to combine the labor and Marxist-Leninist movement will fail unless the Marxist-Leninist movement is devoid of counter-revolutionary factions and is able to articulate a comprehensive anti-revisionist line on revolution and socialist construction.
7. The unity of Marxist-Leninists will occur after we have started what needs to be done; the revisionists will be exposed by refusing to do what needs to be done. We need to build the Party through leading the masses, not lead the masses through building the Party. The Party will come only after we have gone to the masses to serve the people, learn from them and earn their trust and support. This is the one and only way we will see a revolutionary movement in the country. This is because putting Marxism-Leninism into practice comes before even the creation of the vanguard party.
8. We will work directly in labor-based groups in order to agitate and lead from where the people are, within the centers of struggle. When we have developed our networks to a high degree of functionality in the “bourgeois trade unions” (Lenin) we can begin to talk of building our own dynamic labor organizations such as once existed in the Trade Union Educational League, now to be replicated in the Voluntary Labor Front (VLF). Student-youth based groups will be mobilized in much the same way through the Young Shock Brigades (YSB), which has already begun to form Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) chapters and work within them to bring movement leaders and working class people to Marxism-Leninism, using the strategy to “bore from within” (William Z. Foster) that has been developed and is slated to be reinitiated in labor.
9. We support legitimate and justified self-defense as a bulwark against fascist paramilitaries, vigilante cops, organized crime and other such criminal elements of reaction which pose an imminent threat to our people. It will be impossible to make our revolution if we are incapable of defending ourselves and our communities from outright attack.
10. Above all, the American Party of Labor shall be where the working class is, wherever people are oppressed because of their national origin, wherever people are exploited because of their class and wherever there is social injustice.
1. Establish socialism in the United States and place all political power in the hands of the working class.
2. Place all the means of production (factories, land, machines and implements, etc.) as well as the principal means of the distribution of commodities in the hands of the workers as public assets, with the surplus geared towards the common good.
3. Establish agricultural and workers’ cooperatives and other forms of social and collective property to allow workers direct control of the workplace as part of their political empowerment.
4. Establish a centrally-planned economy working on the principle of “from each according to their abilities, to each according to their work,” building towards an economy working on the principle of “from each according to their abilities, to each according to their need.”
5. Establish a worker’s state, with all power in the hands of a worker’s government. The life of the country will be based on proletarian democracy, which will consist of democratic participation in economic, political and social life by the working class, farmers, youth, women, immigrants, and other oppressed and marginalized peoples. All historically oppressed nations will have the right to self-determination, up to and including the right to secession, from our future socialist state.
6. Public and collective ownership will be introduced over all land, soil, airspace, minerals and resources for the common good. This public ownership of resources will be managed with the aim of eventual total abolition of capitalist class relations and exploitation.
7. The socialist state shall observe an internationalist foreign policy which shall support proletarian and anti-imperialist movements in other countries, and will respect the sovereignty and self-determination of peoples.
The fight for the working people is the force that drives us. Socialist revolution is the means to our emancipation. Armed with a correct political analysis and a strong resolve, we will struggle forward to victory. With the power of the American working class, and the workers of all countries, we have a world to win.
Onward towards socialism!