To help keep a lid on the New Depression’s growing millions of angry, jobless workers (now 26 million unemployed and under-employed), Barack Obama is giving new life to racist community policing. Obama earmarked $4 billion of his $827-billion stimulus package for Community Oriented Policing Services and “other law enforcement needs.” (New York Times, 2/6).
The Clinton regime, in a glaring example of fascism disguised as liberal “progress,” had put 100,000 new cops on the street in the name of “community policing.” Now Obama wants to double that to 200,000.
Community policing began in earnest in Boston during the early 1990s. The Boston Police Department (BPD) then formed the Ten Point Coalition with pastors in the city’s mainly black Roxbury, Dorchester and Mattapan sections. The cop-loving clergy created a network of stoolpigeons. Tips about “criminal activity” — usually minor offenses like drug use or vandalism — poured in from pastors, principals and merchants. Arrests soared.
Under this scheme, cops expand their ability to terrorize black and Latino neighborhoods by finding allies among church, school and other local leaders. Pretending to combat gang violence, community policing in fact targets rebellion. That’s why it hits the most oppressed — unemployed black and Latino young people — the hardest and why Obama needs it desperately in today’s collapsing economy.
The cops had won the ministers to consider “all youth as their responsibility regardless of the parish the youth lived in or the youth’s denominational affiliation” and to “spend time on the streets at night, getting to know the kids.” (Encyclopedia of Police Science, 2006) In effect, the notoriously racist BPD succeeded in creating a new version of the Nazi’s World War II-era Judenrat. The Judenrat were Jewish “community leaders” who, collaborating with the Nazis, betrayed their neighbors to the gas chambers.
Boston’s top cop in the early 1990s was Bill Bratton, the rulers’ leading apostle for community policing. Bratton has since brought the liberal rulers’ racist gospel, with varying success, to New York and Los Angeles.
Liberals have a long vicious history. It was the liberals (anti-communist Social Democrats) who ushered in Hitler in Germany. And his party adopted the name “National Socialist” (NAZI in German) because a majority of German workers had voted for socialism so the Nazis figured they could use the liberal fig-leaf of “socialist” to win the working class to fascism.
That’s why it would be wrong to think that the beleaguered U.S. bosses need to assert police power only in inner cities. They need to control all of society and Bratton-style policies help immensely. In mostly white, suburban, middle-class Topsfield, Mass., “Police are arresting twice as many people and writing twice as many citations as they were just two years ago [after the police chief] adopted several community policing strategies.” (Salem News, 1/22)
With the whole working class — black, Latino and millions of whites — being hit by the bosses’ Depression, the rulers fear working-class rebellions like the ones in the 1930s, when they had to order out the National Guard every week in 1937. With Guard troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, they’ll need those 200,000 extra cops here, while pushing patriotism among white youth as well to get them to join the Army.
WHITE HOUSE MILITARIZATION INTENSIFIES, DESPITE CLUMSY COVER-UP
Intensifying militarization — again masquerading in liberal guise — accompanies Obama’s burgeoning police state. Facing armed conflict now in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan and eventually with Iran, China or Russia, Obama seeks to avoid imperialist predecessor Kennedy’s disastrous choice of advisors.
Obama has put four-star officers in key war-planning posts. General James Jones is National Security Advisor and Admiral Dennis Blair directs national intelligence. In launching the U.S. genocide in Vietnam, Kennedy relied on academic Ivy League experts like McGeorge Bundy, who had read all the books but hadn’t a clue about the technicalities of waging war.
“Anti-war” Obama’s preference for war-bloodied brass has become so obvious that he backed off on appointing General Anthony Zinni as ambassador to Iraq, whom he had already promised the job. “Late last week, Lt. Gen. Karl W. Eikenberry, a former top military commander in Afghanistan, was named as the next ambassador to Kabul. That made it unlikely that the White House would name another general to a high-profile diplomatic post, and fuel criticism that it was militarizing American foreign policy.” (NYT, 2/6) Phony peacemaker Obama then made the obvious move of replacing Zinni with Peace Corps alumnus Christopher Hill.
Obama’s coziness with the cops and generals destroys his credibility as an agent of pro-working-class change. His choice of Paul Volcker to head a panel on economic restructuring proves Obama serves only the highest, imperialist echelons of the U.S. capitalist class. Volcker was once top economist at Chase Manhattan Bank when David Rockefeller ran it. In the early 1980s, as Federal Reserve chief, Volcker threw millions out of work by jacking up interest rates for the bankers’ benefit. Now he and Obama preside over an effort to restore U.S. rulers’ profits through misery and war.
In these hard times, workers can rely only on our own class. And the only purely working-class political organization is the Progressive Labor Party. We encourage the rebellions Obama and his bosses dread. It is our long-term goal to crush their top-down oppression with bottom-up base-building in the working class for a communist revolution.