Category Archives: Health Care

The Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020: The Year the Capitalists Destroyed the World Economy Over Nothing

The “cure” for COVID-19 will prove to be far worse than the disease: the damage that the capitalists have inflicted on the world economy for purely “New Cold War” political reasons may trigger another Great Depression. Source: MarketWatch

Revolutionary socialists like us have long warned the workers of the world that unless the working class overthrows the murderous, exploitative capitalist class and their antiquated economic system and takes state power into the hands of the working class there will be continued, endless misery for the workers all over the world. Capitalism – an economic system based upon less or more brutal exploitation of the working class – is also based upon competition, rather than co-operation, between nation-states and their respective capitalist classes. The struggle between these nation-states over the limited natural resources of the planet lead inevitably to regional and world wars in which tens of millions of workers are slaughtered. And now workers not only face the threat of a nuclear WWIII but also the threat of becoming more and more an economically superfluous population, as artificial intelligence systems coupled with robotics will soon enable the capitalists to permanently replace workers with machines. When we say “there is literally no future for the working class under capitalism” we aren’t just trying to scare you into the ranks of the socialist parties – we’re telling you the truth.

In their endless mad pursuit of profits uber alles the capitalists and their bought-and-paid-for political flunkies in every pro-capitalist political party tend to forget everything else besides conspiring how to grab as much tax money as possible and funnel it into their bank accounts as quickly as possible before they get caught doing it and their scam comes to a temporary end – at which time YOU, the workers in your boundless stupidity kick the bums out of office and elect a competing gang of capitalist criminals from a different pro-capitalist party. So they “game” goes on, until the working class decides, finally, to put an end to all the insanity by taking power in a workers socialist revolution.

Democratic Gov Andrew Cuomo of NY has no testing kits, ICUs, masks or ventilators but the deeply corrupt NY state government now sells hand sanitizer to fight COVID-19. Credit: State of New York

Outside of a handful of their think tanks the capitalists spend their days counting their billions and scheming as to how they can make even more money. The billionaires and their political hired hands never cease to regale the workers with complaints about “the evils of big government” and compete to see how much they can cut social spending so they can steal even more of your hard-earned money. What is politely called “democratic government” – which is supposed to be a means by which the politicians ensure that the national economy is made to provide the greatest good for the greatest number of people – ends up being twisted into a political and economic oligarchy in which the government is made to produce massive profits for about 10% of the population, while we in the “bottom 90%” (this is actually what the Federal Reserve banksters call the rest of the population) are left to fend for ourselves. The proof that the capitalist systems of EVERY capitalist nation-state are not just un-democratic but anti-democratic is found in the distribution of wealth: 75% of the wealth goes to the top 25% of the population and the “bottom 75%” gets to “split” just 25% of the national wealth. And the capitalists and their hired “knights of the pen” wring their hands and pretend to wonder why there is so much violence among the “lower classes”!

Percentage of aggregate wealth by wealth percentile, USA. 50% of US workers do not own ANY appreciable wealth. Top 10% owns 75% of national wealth. The US capitalist class calls this a “democracy”! Did you vote for this distribution of wealth? Source: US Federal Reserve Board

This festival of graft and corruption committed by the capitalists in every capitalist nation-state (known to Marxists as “bourgeois democratic government”) is how the world capitalist system has come to have been basically assassinated this month by the capitalist classes of the world over the emergence of a “novel coronavirus” named COVID-19. The greedheads of the government parties of the capitalist world, were until recently completely focused on the problem of how they could keep the (now-departed) economic boom going through 2020 so they could continue to rake in massive profits squeezed from the bone, sinew and brains of the workers of the world. With the vast majority of the world’s top capitalist leaders having nothing more than business school and – at best – law school backgrounds (in preparation for a lucrative career as a corporate lawyer) they were uniquely unprepared to deal with a global flu pandemic. Expecting these avaricious, thieving, murderous capitalist criminals to have spent any time at all, ever, in their entire lives working on how to respond to a major global health crisis is like expecting any gang of professional thieves to have spent their lives discussing rational economic planning. It was the very last thing that ever crossed their minds – or the minds of their predecessors, either. And that is why, the moment the COVID-19 epidemic hit, the world capitalist classes were caught on TV cameras everywhere with both hands in the cookie jar looking like Bart Simpson saying “I didn’t do it!” There they were, one minute happily stealing as much money as they could get their hands on, and the next minute they suddenly found themselves responsible for the very lives of every single human being they had been pretending to represent all their political careers! It was a shock to every one of them, and it was written plainly on their dumbstruck faces and their “deer-in-the-headlights” stares as waves of reporters shoved microphones in from of them and demanded to know “what are you and your government going to do about COVID-19?”

Government of real-estate swindler US President Donald Trump was caught completely unprepared to handle the COVID-19 epidemic, having spent two months criticizing Chinese Communist Party for *their* alleged lack of preparedness. Photo: Alex Brandon/AP

“What’s a COVID-19?” was a fair approximation of the answers we got to that question almost universally – even from the capitalist criminals who had been appointed (for purely political reasons) to lead the human services agencies of the nation. No, that’s not right: in many, many cases these people had been appointed not to lead but to dismantle the agencies they were running! This would have been very funny if it had happened in a Ben Stiller or Will Ferrell comedy; but these capitalist criminals who have been kept in power, elected and re-elected and re-re-elected by an irresponsible working class that cares more about sports than about their families’ futures are not funny at all. They’re deadly serious about robbing us all blind. And they are completely, organically incapable of giving a damn about the lives of workers, in their home countries or anywhere else. And they especially don’t give a damn about workers who they can’t profit off of – like the unemployed and the elderly retired. To the capitalists the poor, unemployed and retired elderly are a surplus population that sucks billions of dollars out of the capitalists’ pockets and gives them little or nothing in return. These are the people YOU, the stupid-ass workers of the world have put in charge of safeguarding YOUR LIVES AND THE LIVES OF YOUR CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN! Admit it now: you have no one to blame for these incompetent governments that now threaten to destroy your lives but your own damned selves!

Being for the most part – like the working class itself – utterly scientifically illiterate, the capitalists and their bought-and-paid-for politicians, it turns out, had done absolutely nothing at all to prepare their capitalist nation-states to deal with the COVID-19 epidemic! Having wasted almost two months while the epidemic raged in China ridiculing the Communist Party of China’s leadership over their alleged “bungling” of their response to COVID-19, as soon as the first cases began to appear in the USA it was immediately apparent that, compared to the capitalist world’s response, China’s response was flawless! There weren’t enough hospital beds, intensive care units, face masks; no ventilators! No virus testing kits! In short, even with two whole months advance notice of the arrival of a wave of cases of COVID-19, NO ONE in ANY of the major industrialized capitalist nation-state governments was prepared to deal with the crisis!

So what did they do? What does any idiot do when they are suddenly faced with a crisis? They panicked! In spite of the fact that, by the time that the epidemic reached the shore of the US and European capitalist nation-states, it was obvious that this virus was NOT anything beyond a really nasty flu virus that, unusually, killed mainly the sick and elderly. This was completely obvious to us by mid-January. But because the Chinese “Communists” – who, since they initially didn’t know if they had the common cold or an Ebola outbreak on their hands – spared no expense and vastly over-reacted (as it turned out) in response to the outbreak, the capitalist politicians, anti-communists all, rushed to the judgment that they too had to over-react to the epidemic – for purely political reasons! And so, egged on by glory-seeking heads of national disease control labs like Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Neil Ferguson of the UK, who scared the people of the world by predicting absolutely absurd beyond-worst-case-scenario death tolls like over “2 million” in the USA alone – the criminal capitalist heads of state, completely freaked out and caught flat-footed by the outbreak – began to shut down the world economy over this mere flu epidemic!

In spite of the facts that China’s COVID-19 epidemic ended in just 2.5 months – and Italy’s seems to be doing the same – and that both nations have suffered death tolls similar to their annual death tolls from the common flu – the capitalists went and shut down the global economy anyway.  Source: L’epidemiologia per la sanità pubblica
Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Italy

COVID-19 is a very nasty flu indeed, but it’s nowhere near as bad as the 1918 flu that killed millions. Here’s one example that was obvious weeks ago: unlike the 1918 pandemic flu, COVID-19 kills very few people under the age of 50. Source: Bloomberg News

How stupid was it to do this? All it takes is the math skills of a grade-schooler to figure it out. Right now (2 April 2020) the GLOBAL death toll of the COVID-19 epidemic, according the the World Health Organization, is just 45,526! In the entire world!

To a really stupid person, that might seem like a lot! But to anyone who understands the size of the world population (7.8 BILLION) and the history of flu epidemics, it’s not even a drop in the bucket.  According to the US Centers for Disease Control – the same outfit that idiot Dr. Anthony Fauci works for – this year’s “flu season” in the USA has already resulted in as many as 62,000 deaths – from the “mere” “common flu”!

Most recent US Centers for Disease Control update on mortality figures for the 2019-20 US Flu Season. It is quite probable that far more people will die from “common flu” in US this year than from COVID-19. Source: US Centers for Disease Control

In a “normal” flu season in the USA, for example, somewhere around 40,000 people die – and we never hear a peep from the government or the press until the flu season is OVER, when they give us this year’s total and we shake our heads, say “tsk, tsk!” – and get ready to watch The Big Game, right? Somehow, this annual event in which tens of thousands of us die doesn’t even make front-page headlines in a normal year – and they’re not making headlines this year either!  So what’s different about this COVID-19 epidemic? The difference is that the big death toll happened in Socialist China first; and because the “communists” massively over-reacted to their epidemic, now, for purely political “New Cold War” reasons, the capitalists – in their vast ignorance and their boundless hatred for socialism – feel that they must do the same or they’ll “lose face” in the eyes of the working class. This is nothing but a “New Cold War” political pissing contest!  And it gets even worse:

Because of the vicious anti-communist campaign against the “Communist Chinese” response to the virus – which the propaganda outlets of the US and European governments falsely portrayed as being soooo “deadly” – scared the hell out of the workers in the US and Europe, the workers are DEMANDING that the capitalists do at least as much as the Chinese government did or they’ll be subjected to the same abuse the capitalist propagandists used against the “commies”!  This is a spectacular example of how anti-communist propaganda intended to attack “communist China” has come right back like a boomerang and hit the capitalists smack between the eyes and forced THEM to destroy their own capitalist system!

Let’s put these COVID-19 death-toll numbers into a big-picture perspective. In 2015, 57,000,000 people died from all causes. That’s just how many people die in any given year. That means that about 156,000 people died each and every day that year. That would be 6500 an hour, which means that the grand total of the deaths from COVID-19 so far in the entire world – let’s round it to 45,500 – is equal to just 7 hours of a normal daily global death toll! AND THE CAPITALISTS AND THEIR BOUGHT-AND-PAID-FOR POLITICIANS OF THE WORLD DESTROYED THE WORLD ECONOMY OVER THIS! To cover their asses politically!

The much-ballyhooed “disastrous” death toll in Italy from COVID-19 – which today stands at 13,157 (according to WHO) is no different than that from the “common flu” in the 2013-2017 flu seasons in Italy during which over 17,000 people died each year! In two of the four flu seasons examined by researchers in a peer-reviewed journal article published in August of 2019 the death toll in Italy from common flu was far above the death toll reported so far from COVID-19!

Due the the enormous success of Italy’s socialized medical care system, Italians enjoy one of the highest life expectancies in the world – many years higher than in the USA. The downside of this is that Italy has an enormous population of very old and vary frail senior citizens who die every flu season. The death toll from COVID-19 is not unusual for Italy. Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31401203

 

The human toll in lost and ruined lives from the capitalist-class-inflicted damage to the global economy will be many times worse than the death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic!

Today’s headlines indicate that the global death toll from the major recession that the capitalists and their political flunkies who YOU VOTED INTO OFFICE will be one of the worst of all time. In just two weeks the number of unemployment claims in the USA have reached levels never seen since the Great Depression! These idiots have “cured” a flu epidemic by shooting the world economy to death, just so they can cover their asses politically and “show those commies” how much they care for human lives!

Everything’s phony about the US capitalist state’s response to the COVID-19 epidemic. Source: New York Times

While the US capitalist class and their political tools pretend to be shining examples of the “superiority” of capitalism over socialism and as the ruling class who puts human lives ahead of profits, in spite of global appeals from the UN and almost all of the US’ allies, they have refused to end their crushing economic sanctions against Iran and Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea so that those countries can purchase the medical supplies they need to fight the COVID-19 epidemic! That’s because when it comes to the lives of workers living under governments who have dared to rebel against US imperialist neo-colonial domination – THEY DON’T GIVE A SHIT! Any worker, any government that dares to rebel against the US capitalist class is mercilessly crushed, by any means necessary – in the name of “Freedom(TM)” and “Democracy(TM)”! They have proven time and time again that when it comes to the lives of workers – especially Black, Hispanic and Asian workers – they are prepared to kill as many as they feel is necessary in order to stop socialists of any kind from overthrowing the capitalist system and putting an end to misery of a life lived in crushing poverty under ruthless exploitation imposed by the capitalist class! And the sickest thing about this is that YOU – US workers – allow the US capitalist class to do this to your working-class and peasant sisters and brothers all over the world!

The tail wags the dog: US capitalist class anticommunist propaganda operation against China ends up forcing them to apply the coup de grace to the world capitalist system. Source: US Department of Labor

The US working class has had it pounded into their heads by the US capitalist class and their bought-and-paid-for bourgeois press that “it’s better to be dead than Red.” Right now, perhaps, you’re finally beginning to wonder if that makes any sense. It’s literally true that, for the working class, if we don’t “go Red” we’ll ALL be dead! It’s obvious even to a dog that it’s not wise for us as workers to just sit back and “let the rich run things” – because they very clearly don’t give a shit about us!

In fact, under a revolutionary socialist government like the one we at IWPCHI propose, first of all, we’d have a socialized medical system that would provide comprehensive health care to everyone from birth to death at no charge. Under socialism, all higher education would also be paid for from the national budget – there’d by no economic obstacle as there is under capitalism for those who have what it takes to be doctors, nurses and other medical professionals.

Just by covering all the millions of US citizens who now have no health care, we’d be required to build a lot of hospitals and to train a lot of medical professionals. That means we’d have many more intensive care units than we have right now – and the doctors and nurses to staff them.

Under socialism, defending the interests of the entire working class would be the primary purpose of the government. Instead of reacting to crises, we would prepare for them and maintain stocks of all the necessary medical equipment to overcome challenges like COVID-19 and worse. We’d maintain permanent stocks of equipment strategically located around the country so when an epidemic hits the materials needed to fight it would be on hand and ready to be shipped immediately. This is just a matter of simple logistics under socialism; under capitalism it’s simply not profitable to do all this – so it never gets done. We’ve seen the US Government drop the ball over and over again with crises from earthquakes to hurricanes to epidemic diseases. In their diseased minds, ruined by greed, the capitalists simply can’t make enough money preparing for disasters to make it worth their while to do so.

The good news is that you, the working class, have the power to change all this; in fact if you don’t do it, it will never happen! All it will take to get started building a better future for you and your families is to decide right now that you’re never going to vote for a pro-capitalist politician ever again, and then to build a revolutionary socialist political party and fight to take over every major local, state and national political office. This will not take forever. From the time the Republican Party was first formed to the time it won its first Presidential election took about 12 years – and THEY didn’t have the Internet! We can do it in 8, tops. As soon as we have even a handful of seats in Congress we can start shutting down all the vicious legislation being hurled at us by the Republicrats and can start pushing for a socialist workers government. The longer we wait the more of us will die unnecessarily in natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes and this COVID-19 epidemic.

Dump The Republicrats! Build A Workers Party! Fight For A Workers Government! Fight For A Socialist Future! THERE IS LITERALLY NO FUTURE FOR THE WORKING CLASS UNDER CAPITALISM!

— IWPCHI

The Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020 Proves The World Is Incapable of Dealing With Even a “Limited” Nuclear War

Since the onset of The Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020 the shameless apologists for the money-lusting US capitalist class have been busily proclaiming the “impossibility” of comparing this outbreak of #COVID19 – a very nasty flu virus – to any other epidemic in world history (unless it was an even worse and more deadly one). In order to justify the insane shutting down of the global economy over what is and remains to the day of my writing this merely a nasty flu epidemic, we are shouted down by our pro-capitalist opponents every time we attempt to make the obvious comparison between the current COVID-19 “pandemic” and the annual flu “epidemics” which kill between 20-70,000 US workers each and every year. It’s OK, apparently, to compare this COVID-19 epidemic to the far worse 1918 flu pandemic, since that global crisis led to the most deaths ever from the flu. These propagandists for the covering-up of every monstrous failing and murderous crime of the US and other capitalist classes of the world seek in this way to defend the indefensible – the mass-murdering and exploitative capitalist system itself – and to attempt to portray the only truly pro-human-life people on Earth – the revolutionary socialists – as the mortal enemies of mankind.  This kind of naked and perpetual gaslighting of the workers of the entire world whenever the subject of socialism comes up has long become de rigueur for the lying propagandists of the capitalist class.

These repulsive defenders of the capitalist system of the USA – a nation whose principal “great families” amassed most if not all of their wealth via the “primitive methods of accumulation of capital” known as genocide and slavery – have all long opposed every attempt made by the US socialist movement to agitate for a socialized national health care system. There is only one party they all support, “progressives” and “conservatives” alike (properly known as “the Republicrat Party”) – because in their infinite wisdom they never cease to explain that “the creation of a ‘viable’ third party in the United States is impossible”;  this, they falsely claim,  is due to a magical (and nonexistent) “American Exceptionalism”.  These defenders of “civilized capitalism” have utilized all their most vicious methods, from character assassination to actual assassination since the 1870s, to crush any attempt to create not just revolutionary socialist workers parties but even the type of comprehensive free health care system that is enjoyed by the workers throughout the rest of the industrialized world.  In this way they attempt to “prove” to the workers the moral superiority of capitalism over socialism!

The only nation in the world so far that has demonstrated its ability to harness the monumental human power of the entire nation’s working class to smash down any barrier that stood in the way of successfully shutting down the COVID-19 epidemic is socialist China; yet still we see the lying propagandists of the capitalist class attempting to portray the world-historic and successful Chinese response to the COVID-19 outbreak as some kind of “proof” that “socialism does not work”.  And they are even so bold as to make these outrageous and patently false denunciations of the “Communist Chinese” response to COVID-19 at the very moment when the entire capitalist world and its economic system have been laid completely prostrate by this merely nasty flu epidemic! How any honest worker can fail to see right straight through their lies about the rapid and comprehensive Chinese response to their COVID-19 outbreak is beyond us!

Even in those capitalist nation-states that have what they pretend to be “socialized medicine” (but which is in fact merely a nationalized health care system administered – poorly – by the capitalist class) we see that these nations are totally unprepared to handle this mere flu epidemic!  Their health care systems – long derided by and underfunded by the right-wing of the capitalist class as unwarranted “state intervention” in the “capitalist marketplace” of the health care industries – have almost completely collapsed precisely in those capitalist countries where the epidemic has been most intense and the budget cuts to their “socialized” health care systems the most vicious. Che sorpresa!

But in the neo-fascist, anti-communist United States of America, where the US capitalist class has “succeeded” in preventing socialized medicine from becoming one of the crown jewels of their so-called capitalist “civilization”, the disarray and utter failure of the massively understaffed and underfunded privatized health care system to adequately handle this flu epidemic is nakedly exposed for all the world to be shocked – but not at all surprised at. The response to the COVID-19 epidemic by the US capitalist class and their Janus-faced Republicrat party has been absolutely – and typically – disgraceful; yet still there is no discernible push for a third political party – one led by and in the interests of the still-enthralled-by-capitalism US working class!

The COVID-19 Epidemic Was Long Foreseen by the US Capitalist Class

This type of an epidemic has not only been long foreseen by social scientists and epidemiologists; it has supposedly been the subject of a series of “war games” like October, 2019’s “Event 201”: simulations in which top capitalists like Bill Gates and government health and medical science agencies, military and political leaders and policy planners – and even the US Central Intelligence agency – have created these seminars that examine how the US health care system and governmental agencies would respond to a “worst-case scenario” eerily similar to the COVID-19 epidemic.  They used sophisticated computer simulations and the best mathematical modeling to predict how many would be infected, hospitalized – and how many would die – if a virulent and deadly strain of a highly contagious coronavirus suddenly appeared in the USA.

I do not believe – as the craziest conspiracists of the left and the right do – that “Event 201” was not a simulation, but the real deal.  I believe that the reason why the simulation was so close to the COVID-19 outbreak is that, after the SARS and MERS outbreaks, which were also very similar to CODID-19 (only much smaller), it has become readily apparent that these outbreaks are going to occur and reoccur on occasion, perhaps as often as every 5-10 years.  But it’s not absolutely beyond the US capitalist class and their military and killer “intelligence agencies” to commit such a crime; it’s a well-known fact (to those who pay attention to the long, sordid historical record of the crimes of the US capitalist system they have done far worse things before!

It’s possible, in my personal estimation, that the COVID-19 outbreak was as much a surprise to the US Government as it was to the Chinese Government; but the vastly disproportionate response now being undertaken in the US and throughout the capitalist world which has deliberately knocked out most of the global capitalist economy over a global “pandemic” that has at this writing killed only as many people as die in a typical US “flu season” may well be a global social experiment being led by the US Government to see how workers will react under this kind of economic and social stress.  There is simply NO JUSTIFICATION for shutting down the entire economy and for “locking down” the entire population over this merely nasty flu virus!

Much of this wildly out-of-proportion response to COVID-19 is of course phony posturing intended for propaganda purposes: the US capitalist class needs to keep the US working class deluded into believing that the capitalists have everything under control and that there is no need to worry about the US not having a socialized health care system because (in their greed-warped minds) our prohibitively expensive privatized health care system is somehow “better” than the far less expensive and universal socialized health care systems in the rest of the industrialized capitalist and socialist nation-states. By running these largely phony simulations and publicizing their mostly reassuring findings they intend to be able to keep on kicking the “Medicare-for-All” can down the tollway for ever, just as they have been doing since the end of WWII.  And STILL when the crisis they’ve foreseen and even “war-gamed” hits… they fall flat on their face!

Capitalism Sucks! A revolutionary workers socialist government can do far, far better!  US workers need to Dump The #Republicrats and Build A Workers Party, NOW!  It is a matter of life and death for the workers of the world and our families’ futures!

All this should be obvious to even a dog; but somehow, the US working class just doesn’t get it. You just keep on supporting the politicians who have been playing “chicken” with your lives for the past 230+ years and continue to believe what your capitalist masters have long beaten into your thick skulls – that “capitalism” is better than “socialism” and that “it’s better to be dead than Red”.  Well, now you’re finding out that your allegiance to the enemy capitalist class and their murderous system is going to make those of you who have long believed that “it’s better to be dead than Red” really “put your money where your mouth is”!

If The Capitalists Can’t Handle the Medical Response to a Mere Flu Outbreak How Can They Continue to Pretend They Can Deal With a Nuclear War?

If one thing should have become crystal-clear from the complete and total collapse of the capitalist world’s health care and economic systems due to the “strain” of a mere flu pandemic it is this: there is NO WAY we can any longer justify spending hundreds of billions of dollars on nuclear weapons systems. If these health care systems can’t handle a mere flu epidemic, how could they possibly handle even a “limited” nuclear attack? If the capitalists can’t even provide us with enough ventilators for all the critically ill patients in a flu pandemic that spares almost everyone under 50 and kills only the very sick and the very old and very sick, how could they possibly even begin to cope with the massive casualties of a “limited” exchange of nuclear weapons? It’s absolutely absurd to pretend that they could. Yet as I write this, the United States Government is preparing to spend $494 billion dollars over the next decade; not on a “Medicare for All” program – no, that would be “communistic”! – but on the “upgrading” and “modernization” of its nuclear arsenal!

If this is not the very definition of insanity, then certainly the continuation of working-class support to the capitalist classes of the world certainly is. If, in the face of the twin self-inflicted disasters of the collapse of the health care systems of the capitalist world and – far, far worse – the entire capitalist world economy – due to a mere flu epidemic isn’t enough to convince the working classes of the USA and the world that it’s time to replace capitalism with socialism – then there is really no hope for the future of the human race.  If we workers continue to allow the rich super-minority to run the world and call it “Democracy(TM)” then, obviously the working classes of the world – 7 ¼ billion strong – are simply too stupid to evolve beyond our present, pathetic state of subservience to the numerically miniscule capitalist classes of the world. Like happy dogs, we love our masters so much we’ll still lick their hand and crawl at their feet no matter how many beatings they give us, because we know that if we don’t remain subservient they’ll cut off our food and water supply.

Well, our food, yes, but we can always get our water from the toilet bowl, can’t we?

Capitalism Kills! Dump the Republicrats; Build A Workers Party; Fight For A Workers Government; Fight For A Socialist Future! Because there is literally NO FUTURE FOR THE WORKING CLASS UNDER CAPITALISM!

—- IWPCHI

The Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020: America’s “Adult” Children Temporarily Rediscover the Importance of Giving a Shit

Nothing seems to cause the normally child-like short-term attention spans of American workers to temporarily lengthen a little bit like a major global crisis. After years and decades of not-giving-a-shit about politics, of ignoring all the warnings we socialists have given the working class since the 1840s, of lesser-evil voting for first one, then the other of the twin parties of the US capitalist class, the Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020 has temporarily lengthened the attention spans of the “I-don’t-give-a-shit-about-politics” worker-sheep of the Nation.

In a nation founded on genocide, slavery and the wholesale robbery of the working class by the ruling class, where the highest moral principles are “screw them before they screw you” and “look out for #1”, only when major crises affect us personally do we finally pry ourselves away from our favorite porn sites and sitcoms and sporting events and start to pay attention to what new disaster our social betters, the “rightful rulers” of the capitalist class (who we just voted into office a couple of years ago) have gone and screwed up this time.

We’re always astounded anew at what can be learned about the world around us once the football season is over and we have nothing better to do than pick up a damn newspaper and give it more than a cursory glance. “Holy crap! We’re at peace with the Taliban!” we exclaim. “Can you believe it? Life expectancy of US workers has been declining for the past two years!” “Jeezus and Jehosephat! 78% of American workers live paycheck-to-paycheck! I thought it was just us and everyone we know personally!” Yes, it’s amazing what you can learn once a crisis comes “out of nowhere” – while you’ve been spending hours every day on things like designing a big, new kitchen (even though you can’t cook anything that can’t be made in a microwave oven) and poring over your fantasy league strategies for this season – and causes baseball and basketball seasons AND even “March Madness” AND the Olympics to be postponed! Or maybe even canceled altogether! And shuts down production of new TV shows – and movies, too! “The world is on fire! Grab the dog and the cat and… (…am I forgetting something? oh, yeah…) and the kids – and head to the storm cellar, maw!”

And thus did the great American working class become aware, suddenly, that its health care system was utterly inadequate to protect the lives of the workers of the nation! “All it took” was the sudden cancellation of every major sporting event on the planet to impress upon the not very robust consciousness of the American working class that, yes, indeed there was something amiss. “How did that one sneak up on us all of a sudden? You’d have thought something so big would have made some kind of noise before it crept up behind me and almost took the top of my head off with that meat cleaver!”

And now it’s as if it has become a national contest for American workers to be the one who pretends most convincingly that “he really cares”. With the Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020 suddenly upon us, the accusations are flying against anyone who dares to point out that this COVID-19 virus is nothing more than a nasty flu… “WHAT? My great-grandmother’s in the hospital fighting for her life yet once again and you have the nerve to say ‘it’s only a nasty flu?’ You’re a heartless, murderous COMMIE!”

And it seems as if there is not a single human being alive today besides myself and a handful of others perhaps who have the ability to discern that the “cure” being proposed to “stop the virus” – the immediate shutdown of the world’s economy – will cause far more death and destruction of human lives than this “slightly-worse-than-typical-flu-virus” ever could – and the guts to announce that fact publicly. Just go out and say that, and you’ll be instantly confronted with the same kind of hysterical reaction that the innocent victims of the Salem Witch Trials lived (briefly) through. Awakened from their natural dormant state, and suddenly made aware of a sudden viral pandemic that threatens their grandparents’ and great-grandparents’ lives (they were still mostly sound asleep during the brief “epidemic” era) the “minds” of American workers can only passively absorb terrifying CNN and Fox News broadcasts on the “deadly coronavirus” and believe every word that the “experts” and the politicians are saying. When you are awakened suddenly in the middle of the night to a smoke alarm going off you don’t stop to check to see where the fire is or how big it is – you just put on your slippers and grab a jacket and get the hell out of there.

So now the American working class and their families are all out on their front lawns (if they “have” a mortgaged-to-the-gills front lawn to stand on) standing, stupidly as ever, in front of their ball-and-chain houses, in their underwear in the middle of the night convinced that their houses are on fire and if they don’t do SOMETHING – ANYTHING – then they will lose… EVERYTHING! This, boys and girls (which is what so-called American working class “adults” really are) is what happens to you when you don’t pay attention. And now, you are at the mercy of those criminal capitalist-owned politicians you so stupidly voted into office in the last election. The coronavirus epidemic is so far outside the realm of anything these money-grubbing capitalist shitheads have ever contemplated for even a minute it’s astounding.  They only got interested in “public service” in the first place because someone told them it would put them and their criminal bankster friends in charge of how the massive pile of tax money squeezed out of the working class every year will be distributed! Thanks to your own “who-cares-about-politics-let-the-rich-people-run-the-country” stupidity, your lives and the lives of those you love most dearly are in the hands of a real-estate swindler and his cabinet of Wall St. criminals!  These are the people – people who have spent their entire lives doing nothing else but stealing as much money as they possibly could from every working-class person they encountered – who YOU have placed in the highest offices of the land! And yes, girls and boys THEY ARE GONNA FUCK YOU OVER ONCE AGAIN!

COVID-19 is nothing more than a very nasty flu virus, and the idiots YOU voted into office are now – thanks to that innate, boundless ignorance that you found so irresistable you just had to vote for them – going to destroy the world economy to stop a virus that kills less than 1% of the people who get it.

When will you ever learn? You’d better start giving a shit 24/7/365. Your lives all depend on it.  If you don’t rise up and demand socialized medicine for all right now you’re nothing but an enormous troop of the world’s most stupid worker-monkeys.

Dump the Republicrats. Build A Workers Party. Fight For A Workers Government.

Fight For A Socialist Future – because there is literally NO FUTURE FOR THE WORKING CLASS UNDER CAPITALISM!

—- IWPCHI

The Great Coronavirus Scare of 2020: Capitalism Can’t Handle It

US Centers for Disease Control estimate of disease burden for influenza for the USA’s 2019-20 flu season.  They don’t even bother to count the cases!  They don’t have a clue how many US workers die each year from influenza! What do we pay them for? “22,000 – 55,000 flu deaths”? Meanwhile, the entire capitalist world is going crazy over 5,000 GLOBAL COVID-19 deaths!   Source: US Centers for Disease Control

The capitalist classes of the world – and especially of the USA – are proving once again that they and their crappy capitalist system can’t handle natural disasters. From Katrina to the Coronavirus there is one bright green thread running through the US Government’s responses to natural disasters: they don’t want to spend the money necessary to protect the lives of the working class!

Every winter half of the planet experiences what we call “flu season”; in the USA it runs roughly from October to May. This year the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has estimated that there have been “at least 36 million flu illnesses, 370,000 hospitalizations and 22,000 deaths from flu.” The annual US death toll from common flu has an *estimated* range of from 20,000 to 80,000 – no one knows exactly how many die – because our capitalist government doesn’t give a damn! And every year these statistics are COMPLETELY IGNORED by the US capitalist press and our bought-and-paid-for Republicrat politicians! No one knows or cares why tens of thousands of US citizens are dying every year from the common flu – a disease whose mortality rate is allegedly 10 times lower than that for the COVID-19 epidemic. Does this have something to do with the fact that the USA is the ONLY nation in the modern industrialized world in which the citizens do not enjoy a socialized medical care system? No one knows and no one cares except the socialist left apparently. Neither of the twin capitalist-owned-and-operated political parties of the USA has said a word about it. We believe this is because it’s mainly poor workers who have no health insurance who die from it; and the capitalist classes of the world can’t make money off poor people so as far as they are concerned poor workers might as well just die anyway.

Latest COVID-19 data from World Health Organization’s “Situation Report 53” (13 March 2020).  Why does a “pandemic” of 132,000 cases of flu virus and less than 5000 deaths cause global panic while in the USA a “mere” “epidemic” of 36 MILLION cases of flu and 22,000 deaths doesn’t even make the headlines?  Capitalism is *not* a rational system.  Source: World Health Organization

So what makes the COVID-19 flu epidemic (now “pandemic” according to the World Health Organization) any different from the common flu virus epidemic? So far there have been a mere 5,000 deaths WORLDWIDE from COVID-19. The total number of confirmed cases WORLDWIDE are estimated to be under 150,000 (which is a flat out LIE, by the way; the number of cases is at the very least ten times higher than that)! [NOTE: all stats as of 13 March 2020 – IWPCHI] If we were to average out the death toll for COVID-19 by subtracting the number of cases and deaths from Wuhan, China, (which experienced the highest number of deaths of any region in the world) and the death toll from the country with the lowest number of cases and deaths (we could pick from dozens of countries with no deaths or just a handful) the death toll would instantly drop from 5,000 to around 2,000 worldwide, and the mortality rate would drop down to a level not all that different from the common flu. Also, no one seems to be attempting to estimate how many people have acquired the COVID-19 virus but have not become so ill that they required hospitalization. If we did such an estimate, the total number of cases would be in the millions, and the case-fatality and mortality rates would also decline to a flu-like number. THIS IS NOTHING MORE THAN A VERY NASTY FLU VIRUS, FOLKS! So WHY is it that THIS flu virus is producing the level of panic that hasn’t been seen since the 1918 flu pandemic? And in countries where the number of confirmed cases are still very manageable, why is the working class facing increasing pressure to stay home from work until this epidemic is over? HOW THE HELL ARE WORKERS IN CAPITALIST NATIONS SUPPOSED TO FEED THEIR FAMILIES AND PAY THEIR RENTS, MORTGAGES, CAR PAYMENTS AND UTILITY BILLS IF WE CAN’T WORK FOR A MONTH OR TWO?

The capitalist world isn’t Socialist China! There, thanks to the Chinese Revolution that overthrew the capitalist system in 1949 the workers are essentially guaranteed jobs, food, clothing, housing and health care. No Chinese worker will be made homeless or made to starve if he or she must take a month or two off of work! CAPITALISM DOESN’T WORK THAT WAY! If the workers in capitalist countries are forced to take a month or two off work, we will lose our cars, we’ll have our utilities disconnected, we’ll be thrown out of our apartments and houses by landlords and bankers, and many of us will also lose the health insurance we’re being forced to pay way too much for which we will need if we or our kids get sick! What makes these stupid-ass so-called “leaders” of the capitalist nations of the world think it’s no big deal if they decide to shut down the entire global economy because 5,000 people died? The workers in the capitalist world will be facing the loss of everything we own if we miss even just a few paychecks! If you needed proof that the rich capitalists like Donald Trump and his cabal have no idea how the workers live, this idiotic coronavirus panic is providing all the proof you’ll EVER need!

These greedhead capitalists like alleged billionaire Donald Trump have never given a moment’s thought to how to develop any kind of rational public policy initiative ever in their lives. Capitalists spend their lives trying to do one thing and one thing only… no scratch that! The capitalists spend their lives trying to do two things only: get laid and steal as much money from “their” workers as they possibly can! You can rest assured that born-with-a-gold-spoon-in-his-mouth real-estate and casino swindler Donald Trump and his kind have never lost a nights sleep worrying about how his tenants are going to afford to pay him the rent they owe him. Workers are given two options: you can either pay or be evicted. That’s it! Trump has never spent a moment of his life until now trying to develop any kind of rational public policy of any kind. He and those in his capitalist class are as perfectly incapable of understanding the struggles of the working class as your dog is. And he and his “team” of capitalist criminals are proving it to you in their pathetically inadequate response to this stupid coronavirus scare.

The bourgeois press’ weeks-long newspaper and advertising sales fest spreading fear and loathing about COVID-19 have scared the greedhead world so badly that they have triggered one of the worst economic crises since 1987 – all over practically NOTHING! The fundamental irrationality of the unplanned capitalist system has been on full display this past week as what SHOULD have been a rationally-managed response to a relative handful of cases of COVID-19 outside of China was handled so badly by the capitalists that panic was spread throughout the capitalist world to such a degree that it even got the attention of the Wall St. money-grubbers. Suddenly made aware of the possibility that the shutdown of Chinese cities would have a very bad effect on their stock portfolios, they reacted as they always do when someone threatens to take their money away: they freaked out! They started dumping stocks like crazy, driving the US markets to one of their worst performances on record, erasing a couple trillion dollars in fictional “value” in a week’s time and precipitating a global economic meltdown. If you needed proof that the capitalist system is not even close to being an ideal system to depend upon when you try to plan your family’s future, you just got another couple of cruise ship loads of it dropped right in front of you! Are you going to remember it this time and do what’s necessary to prevent capitalism from destroying your family’s lives for the second or third time in the past 20 years? Fellow workers: the capitalist system has got to go! We need a revolutionary socialist planned economy, not this chaotic capitalist horror movie on perpetual rerun!

12 March 2020: US markets collapse, ostensibly over a coronavirus “pandemic” that has so far killed 0.000064% of the world’s population and 0.00001% of the US population. We had NO IDEA the US capitalist class cared so much about human life! Or is it really just proof that they freak out over ANYTHING that threatens their wealth?   Source: MarketWatch

New viruses have always emerged from time to time; some like Ebola are truly deadly, killing 80% or more of the people who become infected with them; but most, like the flu, are far less lethal, killing the old and those with serious life-threatening illnesses already. As Socialist China proved, under a socialist system a calm and rational science-based response to novel emerging diseases can be achieved with a minimum of disruption of the lives of the working class. Under a system where the basic human needs of the working class are guaranteed, taking an unscheduled month or two off work does not threaten to destroy the lives of millions of workers in order to save the lives of a few thousand workers. Under socialism even if this happened each and every year it would be a manageable problem. This is not the case with capitalism!

The capitalist system is based on an anarchic economic model where the kind of centralized planning that is absolutely essential in the event of a major natural disaster simply does not exist! The motto of the socialists is of universal cooperation among all the workers of the world, uniting for the common good as sisters & brothers, harnessing all of our individual strengths for the benefit of all. “From each according to their ability, to each according to their need” is the credo of the socialist workers movement.

Under capitalism the motto is: EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF! Whether or not the rich help the poor or the strong help the weak is up to each individual to decide under capitalism. Capitalist society upholds the primacy of the individual over collective humanity. Capitalism is based upon a philosophy the exact opposite of socialist philosophy. “Look out for #1” is the capitalist credo! This is why the response to natural disasters you see in the capitalist world – as with Hurricanes Katrina and Maria and to the current COVID-19 epidemic – demonstrates none of the calm cohesiveness we saw with the Socialist Chinese societal response. Socialism defends the interests of the working-class majority; capitalism works only for the wealthy minority. This is why the capitalist world’s response to COVID-19 has been a wide range of responses, from almost adequate to completely inept. There is no rationality in the capitalist system, it’s just “every man for himself”, “save yourselves” and “pray for a cure”.

Getting back to public policy: in our opinion it is neither necessary nor rational to shut down the world’s economy over a novel flu virus that has a average 98% survival rate for those who get it. A rational socialist response would make certain that every flu season we would have enough testing kits and equipment to quickly convert empty arenas and buildings into quarantine centers to handle the overwhelming numbers of cases we have seen with this COVID-19 epidemic. We KNOW that these kinds of emerging illness events will occur on average once a decade. Under socialism we would be prepared to handle an outbreak like this each and every year; we would simply allocate the funds necessary because it must be done to prevent the kind of social upheaval we’re seeing in the capitalist world. In a socialist society that prioritizes the guaranteeing of every fundamental human need of the working class over all else it would be easy to become prepared for and to remain prepared for this kind of challenge.

The excellent response to COVID-19 we saw in China had its flaws no doubt. We think one of them was a massive over-reaction when it came to shutting down Wuhan and Hubei. Was it really necessary to quarantine non-symptomatic but COVID-19-positive people in order to control the spreading of the virus? How much did that really stop the spread of it? Is it necessary to shut down schools and workplaces if the workers there aren’t in close contact with each other? Obviously Wuhan’s epidemic was out of control for a while; but the rest of China was hardly affected at all by it. This question needs to be closely studied in the next year.  There is no “one size fits all” response to these kinds of things, but shutting down a metropolitan area of 58 million people to postpone the deaths of a few thousand very frail elderly citizens by a few months might not be the best way to do it.  If it was an Ebola- or bubonic-plague-like illness, that would be a different story, obviously; but COVID-19 is not even close to that level of lethality.

The US capitalist class and their political puppets in the Republicrat parties tell workers the USA “can’t afford” a socialized “healthcare for all” system; but when Wall St. catches a cold, the sky’s the limit to what they can “afford” to spend on a cure.                      Source: Wall St. Journal

In the capitalist world, where most countries are only seeing a relative handful of cases: why can’t we simply institute mandatory quarantines of everyone who tests positive for the virus as well as their close contacts? If we did this, we would not have to shut down huge sections of the economy just out of fear for what might happen. Unless the capitalist countries are going to pass laws guaranteeing that workers will be able to be paid their usual wages while they are under quarantine, how can governments – or individual capitalists like $130-billion-dollar swindler Jeff Bezos of Amazon – propose that workers be laid off for anywhere from a couple weeks to a couple months? It’s easy for THEM to do! But unlike Jeff Bezos or Donald Trump workers don’t have a billion-dollar-cushion to protect us from the loss of a couple of months’ pay! It’s going to destroy the lives of millions of workers for no rational reason! The capitalist politicians – who in the USA were quick to approve $1.5 trillion in aid to provide “liquidity” for the US bond markets – will not provide that kind of aid for the workers who will lose weeks or months of paychecks! We saw that during the US housing market crash, where trillions were used to shore up capitalist enterprises but not a dollar was spent in comparison to prevent workers from losing their homes! Workers can not permit the bought-and-paid-for political puppets of the US capitalist class to declare state and national emergencies that will keep us from going to work while doing NOTHING to guarantee our pay in the meantime! And if they would simply impose quarantines on those who get sick and their contacts, we wouldn’t have to miss work at all! It’s only because of the fundamentally selfish and greed-based nature of the capitalist system that our nations are completely incapable of handling a few hundred or a few thousand cases of COVID-19. They can’t just shut down the economy to cover THEIR asses and let we, the workers suffer the consequences! If we, the workers, are going to be forced to take two months off to stop the spread of COVID-19 we are going to have to get PAID FULL WAGES for that “time off”!

It’s easy for a capitalist swindler like $130-billionaire Jeff Bezos of Amazon to show how much he “cares” about the lives of “his” underpaid non-union workforce by laying them off until his irrational coronavirus fear subsides, but how are they supposed to survive until he deigns to let them return to work?  Source: Forbes

The vast majority of the deaths from COVID-19 have been elderly people (60s and up) who also had pre-existing serious health issues, including things like lung cancer, organ failure, etc. These folks have one foot in the grave already; it’s highly likely that many of them would have died COVID-19 or NO COVID-19. The common flu would be enough to kill them, unfortunately. So does it make sense to make hundreds of millions of workers suffer by shutting down the economy to save the lives of literally , what? 5,000? 10,000? people who are frail and not long for this world anyway? It’s not an either/or kind of decision; obviously as many lives should be saved as possible. But laying off workers by the millions is going to cause a lot of suffering as well – including deaths by suicide & homicide and domestic abuse – and no one of our wonderful capitalists or their politicians seem to be making any plans to deal positively with that side of the question. Epidemiologists and virologists like Dr. Anthony Fauci – who literally looks at the world through a microscope and thus literally does not see the “big picture” – can propose “solutions” to the spread of COVID-19 that make perfect sense to an epidemiologist who looks at the world through a microscope but which will raise holy hell when examined from a “big picture” panoramic societal perspective!

If workers are forced to stay home from work and receive no pay or any compensation from the government, there are going to be literally tens or even HUNDREDS of MILLIONS of workers who will lose their cars, homes, their families will break up… there will be divorces and there will be suicides. Shutting down the world’s economy – or large sections of it – is going to have severe repercussions on the lives of MILLIONS of people in ways that will have little to do with mere money. The half-witted policy-makers of the capitalist world, fearing that their own careers will be jeopardized if they don’t “DO SOMETHING!!!” can be counted upon to do the WRONG thing, ruining millions of workers lives workers lives without giving it the least thought in a futile attempt to cover up their vast incompetence! Many of these impromptu “cures” for the COVID-19 epidemic being promoted by capitalists and the politicians they own could very well cause more far-reaching damage in workers lives than the loss of a beloved grandparent. This is not a simple calculation of “save as many lives as possible” in a capitalist world where human lives have never been held in very high value to begin with. If the US capitalist class and their bought-and-paid-for Republicrat politicians actually gave a damn about workers’ lives we’d have a socialized medicare system already!

In conclusion: we are pretty certain that once this COVID-19 epidemic is over it is going to look a lot more like a slightly-more-nasty-than-usual flu outbreak, and a lot of clueless capitalist politicians and government officials are going to be exposed for their incompetence and lunatic over-reactions to this really trivial health care and economic crisis largely manufactured by the capitalist class and their antiquated third-rate system itself. We can’t shut down the world every time a new flu virus emerges unless we overthrow capitalism and build a socialist system in its place where going without a paycheck for a couple of months won’t wipe out our life savings and make us and our families join the ranks of the homeless. Capitalism sucks! #Build A Workers Party; fight for a workers government! We need to overthrow capitalism and build a working-class-run planned socialist economic system “with American characteristics”!

— IWPCHI

Capitalists Gone Wild: The Great Coronavirus Scare & Global Economic Panic of 2020

World Health Organization Situation Report #52    (12 Mar 2020): 4613 deaths in the ENTIRE WORLD and the capitalist political and economic systems implode. The capitalist system is a house of cards.

 

COVID-19 flu epidemic causes global capitalist economic system collapse: US Markets, 5-day losses as of end of day on 12 Mar 2020. Source: MarketWatch

Since the 1840s the revolutionary socialist workers movement has been organizing workers to overthrow the capitalist class and their insane, anarchic capitalist economic system. Contrary to all our expectations, the very first workers revolutions in history occurred not in the advanced capitalist nation-states where workers had the benefit of a much higher level of education, but in the most backward nation-states, where 80% or more of the population was semi- or completely illiterate. Education, it seems, makes workers incapable of comprehending the very real dangers of allowing the money-mad capitalists to continue to run our countries and the world. In the USA, where workers have enjoyed one of the highest levels of education in the world since the creation of public school systems during the Reconstruction period after the US Civil War, the workers’ education seems to have worked against the widespread working-class acquisition of socialist ideals. The siren song of the capitalist class, sweetly singing the praises of a capitalist system that is supposed to bring prosperity to all willing to work hard enough for it – despite the MASSIVE evidence to the contrary – has lulled US workers into a state of happy servitude to the capitalist class. Not only has the US working class allowed the rich to run the USA from Day One, the workers of the USA have not seen fit to create a workers party of their own, a party based upon the socialist idea that, one day, the working class, which creates ALL the wealth in society, would take its rightful place as the ruling class of the USA and of the world. “Too much trouble!” the workers seem to have decided. “We’re just workers, the descendants of slaves and peasants! We’re too dumb to run the country! We’re not raised to be leaders, we’re raised to be workers. Let the rightful rulers – the capitalists rule. They’ll do a better job than we can.”

COVID-19 flu epidemic causes global capitalist system to go sideways. Asian markets 5-day losses as of end of day 12 Mar 2020. Source: MarketWatch

In only a handful of nations did the workers rise up and throw off their chains of capitalist wage-slavery: first, in Russia in 1917; then in China in 1949. In both of those countries the workers overthrew the capitalists and took power into their own hands and boldly strode forward to create the very first governments that were NOT run by capitalist greedheads solely for the benefit of the rich. After very difficult beginnings the new governments eventually stabilized and formed not just two stable governments but two brand-new superpowers where once there were the most backward governments on Earth. The workers, led by revolutionary socialist political parties, proved that socialism not only can work, but that it can work better for the workers and peasants than capitalism ever could. We’re told a bunch of lies by the capitalists that “socialism never worked” but in fact, as anyone can see from reading a history book, not only did socialism “work” but it kicked capitalism’s ass. The USSR was a global superpower that, right up until its own leaders decided to betray the revolution in the 1980s, was expected to surpass the western European nations in living standards by the end of the 1990s. In China, the introduction of limited capitalist reforms subordinated to socialist planning has turned that socialist country into the most stable and powerful economy in the world. China is expected by most economists to pass the USA as the world’s number one economic power within the next five years. Socialism Works!

The so-called “socialist” capitalist nations of Europe all lost their heads as well over the COVID-19 flu epidemic. European markets 5-day losses as of end of day 12 Mar 2020. Source: MarketWatch

We are now experiencing a powerful proof that the socialist system is superior in almost every way to the capitalist system in the 2020 Coronavirus epidemic in China. A new and highly contagious flu virus unusually mild for very young people and unusually dangerous for those over 60, the Chinese Communist Party’s response to its appearance gave every appearance of a scientific and rational response to a new and unknown highly contagious disease. After some initial missteps by the CPC bureaucrats in the areas that were first affected by thei COVID-19 virus, the socialist planning of a large-scale nationwide response swung into action very effectively. The situation was calmly explained to the workers of China: this was a potentially dangerous virus that would require a strong collective effort to prevent from becoming a flu outbreak with a very high mortality rate. Everyone would have to work together as a team: government, health professionals, and workers in order to save as many lives as possible and to reduce the number of cases that would be spread all over the nation and the world.

Socialist China’s Communist Party had two temporary hospitals constructed in just two weeks to handle the massive numbers of COVID-19 coronavirus patients. This shows the initial construction stage of Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan, China. Capitalism can’t do this. Socialism Works! Source: People’s Daily (China)

A comprehensive quarantine protocol was established that enabled the health care professionals, once a confirmed case of COVID-19 was confirmed, to rapidly discover who had come into contact with that person and to extend the quarantine to them as well. By tracing all the contacts the infected patient had while coming down with the illness, the rapid spread of the virus was contained and the sickest patients were placed in intensive care units.

As the health care system of socialist China was about to be overwhelmed with patients, taking up all the intensive care units in the region where the disease first occurred, the Communist Party did something we have never seen and will never see under capitalism: they began the construction of two huge temporary hospitals to handle the massive overflow of patients; they also commandeered ice rinks and stadiums, any large building that could be easily converted into a workable quarantine hospital and turned them INTO temporary health care facilities capable of sequestering, treating and feeding thousands of people who had come into contact with COVID-19 patients. Then, when that was proving to not be enough, they shut down the entire affected regional economy of 58 million people – similar in scale to the entire population of the major US cities of the East Coast – had everyone take an extended leave of absence from work and school, and ordered them to stay at home until the spread of the virus was checked. Transportation systems were closed down; all regional travel was banned. Citizens were allowed to leave their homes once a day to pick up food and medicines for their families, and for the elderly, food and medicine deliveries were organized. The entire nation was quickly mobilized to do all that could be done to stop the spread of COVID-19 and to save as many lives as possible. And it worked. The numbers of illnesses and deaths outside of the originally affected area were severely reduced and deaths in most regions were limited to a handful. It was a brilliant example of how a socialist society can effectively and rationally and calmly respond to a major natural disaster. There was no panic, and no worries because of course under socialism, where jobs, food, clothing, housing and health care and education are all inalienable rights, no one would go hungry or lose their job or get evicted for taking all that time off. Schools simply closed down and moved their classes online. It was a model of rationality… compared to what we were to experience as this virus moved on to the capitalist world!

The US capitalist class brags about its supposedly “superior” version of capitalism. In fact, for US workers it is a nightmare. 27 million US workers have NO health insurance; tens of millions who are insured can’t afford astronomical premiums and co-pays.

The contrast between rational science-based socialist planning and anarchic “look out for #1” capitalist chaos was starkly exposed as the illness was transported from planned, socialist China to the unplanned capitalist world. And it was particularly stark in precisely those capitalist nation-states that never stop bragging about how far SUPERIOR their styles of capitalism are to the socialist system! In both Europe and the USA, the UTTER LACK OF PLANNING immediately spread chaos and confusion everywhere – and within just a couple of weeks led to the breakdown of the entire global capitalist economic system! The stock markets of the capitalist world, driven to a frenzy by the spreading of all kinds of rumors and lies about the “deadliness” of the virus, crashed day after day, turning what in China had been a mere pause in production into one of the worst economic collapses since the Great Depression – and this chaos is ongoing as I write this. And of all the governments that have lost their heads most completely, the US Government is far and away the MOST chaotic and driven to insanity. Every hour brings another piece of bad news: not enough face masks; not enough virus testing kits; it’s taking too long to run the tests; the schools will be closed; no they’ll stay open; should the subways be shut down? In some places they will be, in others, no; travel from the UK to the US will be allowed but not to any other European country; yet travel from state to state in the US continues… TOTAL CHAOS.

Number of weeks of paid sick leave for workers, by country. The USA is the ONLY industrialized nation without mandated paid sick days.  Source: People’s Daily (China)

The truth is that this COVID-19 virus is only marginally worse than a typical flu virus. There is absolutely NO JUSTIFICATION for the frenzied response to this illness, which something like 97% of the people who get it will survive it. There have been 20,000 DEATHS FROM “COMMON FLU” in the US this year – five times more than the GLOBAL deaths so far from COVID-19 – and yet it is the mere 4,000 world-wide COVID deaths that have caused the global economy to collapse! It’s going to put a tremendous strain on the capitalist world’s vastly under-equipped health care systems, and that SHOULD have been about all! But in the madhouse of capitalism, where a Rube Goldberg economic system built for 18th century conditions must attempt to cope with 21st century conditions, all it takes is a HIGHLY PREDICTABLE flu epidemic to completely send society and the economy into a death spiral! Only under the antiquated, Mickey-Mouse, unplanned and unscientific, inherently unstable capitalist system could a lousy flu epidemic lead to the total collapse of the global economy! Capitalism truly does SUCK!

Hospital beds per capita, by country. US capitalist class says “we don’t need socialized medicine”; workers are the ones who suffer. Source: People’s Daily (China)

We are neither amused by this sad spectacle nor surprised by it. We socialists have been warning the working class since the 1840s about the dangers of allowing capitalist greedheads – who care only about stuffing their pockets with profits stolen from workers – to run our countries. Look at them run around like chickens with their heads cut off! These people don’t care at all about running the nation; they are only interested in plundering the nation! They went to Washington not to show off their skills at rational planning and natural disaster response but to STUFF THEIR POCKETS WITH MONEY! *OUR MONEY*! They haven’t got a clue how to do anything else! The Republican Trump Administration – like the Democratic Obama Administration before it – is full of Wall St. SWINDLERS whose only reason for wanting to get elected to public office was because that was the ONLY WAY for them to get their greedy paws on ALL THAT TAX MONEY! “Public Service(TM)” to these greedheads is nothing more than an opportunity – not to “drain the swamp” (as Trump pretended during his 2016 campaign) but to DRAIN YOUR TAX DOLLARS INTO THEIR BANK ACCOUNTS!

Percentage of aggregate wealth by wealth percentile, USA. 50% of US workers do not own ANY appreciable wealth. Top 10% owns 75% of national wealth. The US capitalist class calls this a “democracy”! Did you vote for this distribution of wealth? Source: US Federal Reserve Board

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE WORKERS LET THE CAPITALISTS RUN THE GOVERNMENT!

And since we US workers do not have OUR OWN POLITICAL PARTY TO REPRESENT US we do not have even ONE REPRESENTATIVE IN WASHINGTON OR IN ANY STATE HOUSE IN THE USA to take control of this situation before people start dying! We – the working-class SUPER-MAJORITY – the creators of all the wealth in this world – are forced to just stand by and watch these incompetent greedheads create more and more social and economic chaos, causing workers lives to be lost and our families’ futures RUINED in the collapse of the nation’s economy!

THIS IS THE PRICE WORKERS PAY FOR ‘NOT GIVING A SHIT’ ABOUT TAKING CONTROL OVER OUR OWN FUTURES and instead “let the rich people run the show”!

WORKERS: WHEN WILL YOU FINALLY WAKE UP AND TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR OWN LIVES?

Our childrens’ and grandchildrens’ future is far too valuable to be left in the hands of the money-lusting capitalist class that only sees them as the exploitable wage-and-debt-slave labor of the future!

It’s time to DUMP THE REPUBLICRATS AND BUILD A REVOLUTIONARY SOCIALIST WORKERS PARTY and take control of our future and the future of our children and grandchildren!

—IWPCHI

Socialist Planning vs Capitalist Anarchy: COVID-19 Epidemic Proves Again that Socialism Works

Socialist China’s Communist Party had two temporary hospitals constructed in just two weeks to handle the massive numbers of COVID-19 coronavirus patients. This photo shows the initial construction stage of Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan, China. Capitalism simply can’t do this. Socialism Works!  SOURCE: China News Service

US President Donald ‘Nero’ Trump fiddles while US panics over COVID-19 epidemic.  SOURCE: https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1236778368533700609

This past two months we have seen an epic battle being played out between socialist planning and capitalist anarchy as the COVID-19 virus swept first through socialist China and then was quickly spread around the globe thanks to our modern mass transportation systems.

The virus was unknown to science until it was identified about a month after the first known cases occurred in the major urban center of Wuhan, China. As will always be the case with new diseases, it takes more than just one case to trigger the warning systems in our modern governmental health care apparatus. By the time doctors realized it was happening, this new coronavirus had already infected hundreds or even thousands of people in Wuhan; and as these folks went about their daily lives, thinking they had the flu again, they were unknowingly spreading the new virus far and wide. Since Wuhan is a major transportation center in China similar to the cities of Chicago or Atlanta in the USA, it was quickly carried via land, sea and air to places all over the world.

Once China’s medical authorities and scientific community realized what was going on – about 3 weeks after the first cases occurred, their centrally-planned socialist economic system began to swing into action. Within a week they had begun to launch one of the most comprehensive governmental responses to an epidemic ever seen in world history. Scientists isolated the virus and immediately published scientific papers on it and on the first 44 patients who had been identified as having the virus. The Communist Party of China’s leadership began discussions about how they should respond, as the nation was just about to begin its New Year festivals with mass gatherings all over the country and families traveling to visit their relatives – a mass movement of people similar to that which takes place during our Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. After some hesitation they decided that they had to shut down all major public gatherings and begin mass quarantines of those who had been in contact with the first victims of the new virus. How could they do it? Because their nation is united by a collectivist socialist consciousness of the workers who understood that this was not some bullshit concocted by the government but a very real and potentially deadly health crisis. Police-state measures were not necessary, as the well-educated and scientific-minded working class of China understood that this was a national crisis and that personal sacrifices were going to have to be made in order to stop the spread of the disease.

The quarantines and travel restrictions imposed by the Communist Party of China were among the most far-reaching and comprehensive in world history. Travel to and from Wuhan – a supercity whose metropolitan area is home to 58 million people – was completely shut down by order of the government. Workplaces, schools, mass transit systems, every public gathering place was shut down and workers were told to stay in their homes. Food distribution was continued, with one member of each household allowed to shop for necessities once a day. Medicines were delivered to peoples’ homes. Take out food was brought to people by delivery workers. Medical personnel from all over the nation were recruited to go to Wuhan and help stop the spread of the epidemic. Military forces were mobilized to enforce the quarantine and to prevent people from traveling from city to city. Tens of thousands of workers were mobilized and trained to carry out spot checks for flu symptoms and to construct – not ONE but TWO  temporary hospitals with a combined capacity of over 2500 beds to quarantine the thousands of workers who had come into contact with those who had tested positive for the new virus. Thousands of workers, working 3 shifts around the clock for two weeks turned two empty lots into temporary hospitals wit a capacity of  The entire enterprise was absolute proof that socialist planning not only works, but that it works far better than anything that any capitalist nation-stat has ever attempted, never mind achieved.

One of the world’s largest metropolitan areas was shut down with a minimum of panic and a maximum of collective amity between members of the community. Under socialism, of course, no one will be thrown out of their homes because they can’t pay rent; no one will lose their jobs at state enterprises due to the national emergency (although there have been some rumored job losses apparently in China’s capitalist private sector). But by and large this enormous logistical effort was successfully implemented with almost no social upheaval! Now, about 3 months after the very first case was found, the epidemic appears to be subsiding in China; about 3,000 people – mostly over 50 and many with serious pre-existing conditions including cancer – have died, almost all of them in the Wuhan metropolitan area itself.

In stark contrast to the orderly and rational, scientific response of the Chinese Communist Party to the epidemic, as the virus began to spread out to the capitalist world we saw the wanton spreading of panic and disinformation by the global capitalist press. Crises like this sell newspapers and TV advertising, and the more scary the headlines the more papers are sold. All kinds of unfounded rumors were spread about the “deadly flu virus” from China. Passengers on cruise ships that had visited China or that had taken on sick passengers from China became the setting for outrageous scenes as once the news that a ship had passengers who had become infected with the virus, countries began to refuse to allow the ships to dock in their ports. Thousands of people became trapped on cruise ships for days and even weeks as their idyllic cruises became horrific. The cruise lines, worried about their profit margins uber alles, attempted to continue to operate as if nothing had happened, refusing to refund people’s deposits and continuing to make stops and pick up passengers from China.

Capitalists all over the world began to take an inordinate amount of concern for the lives of Chinese people for the first time ever, spreading slander against the Chinese Government’s response to the epidemic and shedding crocodile tears over every new death being reported in Wuhan. These same capitalists were strangely silent about the fact that in the USA, for example, some 20,000 US citizens had already died from the flu in the 2019-2020 flu season. No tears were shed for tens of thousands of their countrymen, but copious crocodile tears flowed for the poor workers of Wuhan! In fact all these people really cared about was trying to spread anticommunist lies about China, pretending that the Chinese gov. had somehow allowed the epidemic to occur. What the capitalists were REALLY concerned about was, of course their profits, which have become heavily dependent on Socialist China’s booming economy. When the Communist Party of China, desperately trying to limit the spread of COVID-19 around the world, shut down all the factories in China’s virus-affected cities, the US and world capitalists really started howling about not the human death toll in Wuhan but the decline in the value of their stock market portfolios! All the capitalists care about in the final analysis is of course their own money.

As if to prove this is a fact, now that the COVID-19 epidemic has spread into the USA and Europe the US and European capitalist governments are running around like chickens with their heads cut off, scrambling to cover their asses and the declining value of their assets as the shutdown of the Chinese socialist economy starts to affect the entire world’s capitalist economies. Instead of copying China’s very effective methodology for dealing with the COVID-19 epidemic, every capitalist nation, even every separate state in every nation, is frantically improvising its own half-assed response to the crisis. Of course in the capitalist world, where profits are everything and human life is cheap, the capitalist states can’t figure out whether to protect their populations or their pocketbooks first. The workers of course can’t possibly lose as much as a whole month’s pay! How will they pay their rents and mortgages? Many will be evicted of foreclosed upon! The capitalists will never intervene to protect the workers from the greedy banksters and landlords who will take the opportunity to improve their bottom lines by evicting those who are already behind on their rent!

And what if workers get sick? In the USA, there is no law that requires that companies give workers even ONE DAY of paid sick time! If these workers call in sick for too many days, they will simply be let go by their capitalist bosses and replaced by “someone who wants to work”! In this way, sick people will be forced to continue to go to work, spreading the disease all the more effectively. Capitalism digs its own and the workers graves in this way year in and year out!

Already we are hearing about shortages of medicines, face masks, and virus testing kits. Workers, panicking thanks to an utter lack of leadership by the capitalist governments are hoarding items like… toilet paper, of all things! How can toilet paper help stop the spread of a virus? This panic is a direct result of the frightening headlines & nonsense being spread far and wide by the for-profit bourgeois press & broadcast media just to sell more newspapers and advertising! The capitalist world in a time of crisis is truly a pathetic spectacle compared to the calm and scientifically rational response of Socialist China!

As US workers began to panic over COVID-19 outbreak in USA, US Health and Human Services Secretary Azar went before the national press – to reassure stock market speculators. SOURCE: https://twitter.com/MichaelCBender/status/1237038864419762176

In the USA, the Trump Administration – like the Obama and all other administrations before it, Republican and Democrats – is made up primarily of former Wall St. swindlers. They are more concerned about the effect any quarantines in the USA will have on their stock portfolios than about how many US workers will die. Today, as if to underscore that fact, President Donald Trump posted on Twitter a photograph of himself playing a violin as if he was a modern-day Emperor Nero, fiddling while the USA loses its mind over the coronavirus! His “health care Czar” went on Twitter not to reassure the citizens that their LIVES would be protected but to reassure stock market speculators that “the economy is strong”! THIS is the kind of “leadership” the US capitalist class provides the workers in the midst of an epidemic!

Who do we workers have to blame for this sorry spectacle except ourselves? You can’t have an incompetent and immature government without incompetent and immature citizens. We vote these assholes into office and now we must pay the price for the fact that, instead of building a workers party of competent worker-leaders who can responsibly represent the interests of our class – the working class – we have abdicated our responsibility to ourselves and our families and have decided to “let the rich folks run things”. Well now we will see just how the capitalists – who do not care at all about the lives of workers in the USA or anywhere else – will protect us from this COVID-19 epidemic. If history is any indication – from the US Govt’s inept response to Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast to their absolutely inadequate response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico – we can be certain that many workers lives will be needlessly sacrificed once again on the altar of Mammon! Let’s face it: this US Government of Nero-mimicking greedheads SUCKS!

If we as workers want to have a government that places the protection of human lives above all else we need to stop “letting the rich capitalists run things”! We don’t need to create a carbon copy of the Communist Party of China or the USSR; we can build “socialism with American characteristics”! We can build a better socialist country than has ever been built before! But in order to do that we need to build ourselves a revolutionary socialist workers party to represent us in our State Houses and Congress that will fight for a workers’ socialist government that PUTS human lives above all else! Capitalism has never and WILL never do that. Dump the Republicrats and Build A Workers Party before the NEXT major crisis kills even MORE of our family members and friends!

— IWPCHI

Physicist Stephen Hawking Defended “Socialized” Health Care Over US-style For-Profit System

Prof. Stephen Hawking presenting keynote address before an audience at the Royal Society of Medicine’s “Talk NHS” forum, London, England, 19 August 2017. (Screenshot from RSM video by IWPCHI)

Astrophysicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking was globally renowned as a brilliant scientist and tremendously courageous and heroic human being; and these attributes were expressed through his life-long political activism as well.   A citizen of the UK, he was a supporter of the bourgeois-reformist Labour Party.

His Wikipedia entry lists his political interests as encompassing everything from nuclear disarmament and environmentalism (he supported Al Gore in 2000) to opposing the Gulf War to supporting the academic boycott of Israel.   During the 2016 presidential elections in the US he opposed Donald Trump.  And in the final year of his life he was preparing to participate in a legal case in which he planned to defend the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) against moves by the Tory government of Theresa May to privatize it.

Last August, Hawking gave the keynote address at London’s Royal Society of Medicine  as part of a symposium called “Talk NHS: A Public Debate on the Past, Present and Future of the NHS”.   In it he described the long, debilitating progression of the disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS) which robbed him first of his ability to walk, then to feed himself and eventually almost completely paralyzed him and left him unable to talk – and how, thanks to the UK’s NHS, he was able not just to survive but to take a leading role in making the many tremendous discoveries in cosmology that made him famous.

We publish here our own transcription of the last third of his 19 August 2017 Royal Society of Medicine keynote address in which he defends the NHS and states his principled opposition to the privatized health care system of the United States.  (In the video we linked to above, this part of his speech starts at approximately 22:22).

In an effort to “prove” to US workers in favor of it that “socialized medicine doesn’t work”, the US capitalist “Investor’s Business Daily” published an article claiming that Stephen Hawking had denounced the NHS.  The IBD’s plan misfired when Hawking responded angrily and publicly against this falsification of his actual political stand in favor of univesral health care.

At the time of his death he was preparing to defend the NHS against Tory health minister (and serial Hawking nemesis) Jeremy Hunt in a court hearing.

As socialists, we agree with Professor Hawking that a for-profit health care system is inherently less efficient and cost-effective than a “socialized” state-run system, due to the fact that, as he says, “the more profit is extracted from the system, the more private monopolies grow, and the more expensive health care becomes.”  Under a truly socialist system, even greater efficiencies can be obtained as all large-scale enterprises would be democratically run for the benefit of the entire working class, rather than for the financial benefit of a tiny minority of capitalists.  Not only the hospitals need to be “socialized” but the pharmaceutical industry as well as all the companies that manufacture everything needed for patient care, from syringes to MRI machines.  “Universal health care” programs must always exist under capitalism at the mercy of the willingness of the capitalist class to fund them; only while the working class can maintain sufficient political pressure to force the capitalists to do so will those programs remain in existence.  As capitalism goes through its inevitable “boom-and-bust” cycles, workers will be forced by the capitalists to suffer cuts to the health care programs and other vital social programs  in “bad” economic times, and must then fight like hell in “good” economic times to have the cuts restored.  This pointless back-and-forth toying with the vital needs of the working class will continue until it is resolved permanently in favor of the working class majority through a socialist revolution that places the working class permanently in power.

— IWPCHI

********************

Professor Stephen Hawking – ‘Talk NHS’ Keynote Lecture

Transcript starts at 22:22

[…]

So you see that I have had a lot of experience of the NHS; and the care I received has enabled me to live my life as I want, and to contribute to major advances in our understanding of the Universe.

Sometimes I have had to challenge medical opinion to get the care I need; but the important thing is that the principles of the NHS mean that there is good care available and that it is provided at the point of need to everyone without regard for personal circumstance or ability to pay. These are the principles of universal and comprehensive provision on which the NHS was founded.

It is important that care is available without any of the added burdens for people that come with private health insurance. To be able to access that care from doctors in hospitals without having to go through an intermediary in the form of an insurance company, or deal with massive amounts of paperwork – before and after – is crucial to good health. [Applause]

My team and I have had experience of dealing with health insurance companies in the U.S.; and that experience shows that a health insurance company will try its best not to pay.

As well as my direct experiences, I have medically-trained nursing staff in my care team; and so I hear about changes in the NHS through them. I am aware of the increase in private provision of care – and the inefficiency that causes. The huge increase in the use of private agency staff, for example, inevitably means that money is extracted from the system as profit for the agency, and increases costs for the whole country.

Personally, I have had an unhappy experience with an American-owned, profit-driven nursing agency. They were eager for my custom, but made a number of errors and withdrew their service at short notice after eight months.

In September 2016, together with Professor Robert Winston and Professor Neena Modi, President of the Royal College of Pediatrics and Child Health, I co-signed a letter to the Guardian newspaper calling for health care policy to be based on peer-reviewed research and proper evidence. [Applause]

The specific issue on which the letter was based was the so-called “weekend effect”. Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt had claimed that thousands of patients die unnecessarily because of poor hospital care at the weekend. He used this as an argument that we need to implement a “seven-day-a-week NHS”.

I had mixed feelings about the issue. Having spent a lot of time in the hospital, I would like there to be more services available in hospitals at weekends. It has been frustrating for me personally when everything slows down at the weekend in hospital. Also, it seems possible that some patients spend more time in hospital than is necessary because certain diagnostic tests can only be done on weekdays. So, in principle, a seven-day service could be of benefit to patients, and to the NHS as a whole.

However, any change like this must be properly researched, its benefits over the current system must be argued for and evidence for them presented, and the implementation properly planned, costed, and the necessary resources provided. If there are no more doctors and nurses, for example, then a seven-day NHS will necessarily mean fewer staff and a worse service on weekdays.

There has been no proper due diligence done in the case of the so-called “seven-day NHS” – and that was the whole point of our letter and the reason I signed it. Let me quote from the letter, as it illustrates a further point I want to make.  We wrote:

“The evidence for these claims is not supported by reliable research. Of the eight papers cited by Hunt, only four are peer-reviewed […]  Three use data from the same population and are not independent, with just two from the last decade. The remainder are not peer-reviewed medical literature, [and are only] opinion pieces […] Critically, when his claims began, at least 13 independent, peer-reviewed papers were available to the Secretary of State that refute his definition of a ‘weekend effect’.

“Hunt has ‘cherry-picked’ research…”

Speaking as a scientist, “cherry-picking” evidence is unacceptable. [Applause] When public figures abuse scientific argument – citing some studies but suppressing others to justify policies that they want to implement for other reasons – it debases scientific culture. One consequence of this sort of behavior is that it leads ordinary people to not trust science at a time when scientific research and progress is more important than ever given the challenges that we face as a human race.

There are two ways to think about a national health care system: one is that the most humane and civilized system is one in which all people are provided for equally based only on their needs no matter who they are, rich or poor, young or old. I believe this and have made public statements that we must prevent the establishment of a “two-tier” system with the best medicine for the wealthy and an inferior service for the rest.

The other way to think is that a health care system needs to be organized in the most efficient way, so that there is as little waste of labor and resources as possible.

International comparisons indicate that the most efficient way to provide good health care is for services to be publicly-funded and publicly-run. [Applause] The more profit is extracted from the system, the more private monopolies grow, and the more expensive health care becomes. For that reason I have also made public statements that the NHS must be preserved from commercial interests and protected from those who want to privatise it.

So, these two things coincide: the most humane system is the most efficient system. This means that when politicians and private health care industry lobbyists claim that “we can not afford the NHS”, this is the exact inversion of the truth. [Applause] We can not afford not to have the NHS. A publicly-provided, publicly-run system is the most efficient and therefore a more cost-effective way to provide good health care for all.

What is to be done? A physicist like me analyses a system in terms of levels of approximation. The NHS and the question of how to provide good-quality health care to everyone is hugely complex; that doesn’t mean that we can not understand it in broad terms.

To a first approximation, then, one can see the situation facing health care in this country in terms of forces with different interests. The future will be determined by the relative strength of those forces. On the one hand there is the force of the multi-national corporations which are driven by their profit motive. In the U.S., where they are dominant in the health care system, the corporations make enormous profits, health care is not universal, and is hugely more expensive for the outcomes than in the UK. We see that the direction in the UK is towards the U.S.-style insurance system, run by the private companies – and that is because the balance of power right now is with the private companies.

On the other hand, there is the force of the public and of democracy. Opinion polls consistently show that the majority of the public agrees with me and is in favor of a publicly-provided NHS, and opposes privatisation and a “two-tier” system. So the public already supports the core principles of the NHS as the fairest system; and so what the public needs is the knowledge that this is also the most efficient and cost-effective system.

As I understand, many here today – including a group called “Bring Back the NHS” – are part of a growing movement to empower the public with exactly that knowledge as the NHS reaches its seventieth birthday next year.

Thank you for listening.

[Applause. Standing ovation.]