Towards a New Party
To reach the socialist revolution and establish the dictatorship of the proletariat, the working class, in alliance with the popular, intermediate strata, must be led by its most militant and class-conscious section, schooled in the revolutionary theory of Marxism-Leninism, steeled by experience in the struggles of the working class and the people, and tightly organized into a revolutionary fighting organization: the communist party, the Marxist-Leninist party of a new type.
The development of such forces is important, requiring the elaboration of the policy of alliances within the labor movement, of the strategy of vanguard sectors for detaching the popular strata from the political influence of capital in favor of the revolutionary workers’ movement. The popular strata are those people that cannot permanently exploit the labor of others and cannot accumulate capital, and consequently their interests can be aligned against those of the monopolies. The policy of alliances of the communist party aims to draw social forces to the side of the working class, to rally them towards the confrontation with capital. It should be mentioned that this policy of alliances is distinct from the failed “popular front” or the “anti-fascist” front strategy, which we do not follow. We regard it as an unprincipled, inter-class alliance with bourgeois forces.
Currently, no such party exists in the United States. The Communist Party USA, the historical party originally established as a section of the Communist International, has suffered from ideological, political, and organizational weakness throughout their existence, coming to a head in the first half of the 20th century with the rise of Browderism and the liquidation of the party into the Communist Political Association. Although internal struggle, sparked by the Duclos Letter, provided the necessary push for reestablishing the CPUSA and expelling Browder, the process of self-criticism and ideological steeling was not sufficiently thorough.
The party eventually fell into decline and opportunism, coming to a head once again with the election of Sam Webb, who would launch a brazen attack with his clique against Marxism-Leninism and the legacy of the Soviet Union. In recent years, under pressure from newer and younger members who do not share their anti-communist views, who seek a concrete path towards socialism, the opportunistic leadership of the party has adapted, taking on a more eclectic approach to the discussion of Marxism-Leninism. This has been entirely disingenuous, a cynical ploy to keep these members paying dues and working to raise the profile of the party, now a mere appendage to the US electoral machine.
In the aftermath of the 2007–2008 financial crisis, with the resurgence of militancy within the US working class, members of the CPUSA broke away over the issue of the counterrevolution in the Soviet Union and began organizing around a publication known as Ideological Fightback. These former members, who regarded themselves as Marxist-Leninists, endeavored to create a new communist party in response to the ideological degradation of CPUSA. They formed a pre-party formation, the National Council of Communists, and adopted Ideological Fightback as their publication.
In 2015, they decided they were ready to form a real party, and on April 3rd, 2016, the first congress of the Party of Communists of the United States of America was held in New York City. Included in their constitution, under the title of Points of Unity, were key principles of Marxism-Leninism such as democratic centralism, proletarian internationalism, and opposition to right opportunism. However, in their engagement with the working-class struggle the PCUSA was unable to defend these principles, neither from the petty-bourgeois opportunism carried over from the CPUSA, nor from the general ideological pressure that comes with living in the heart of the greatest imperialist power on the planet.
Further, the weakness of the PCUSA to understand the Leninist theories of imperialism, for example, the operation of the modern capitalist world. Additionally, the party suffered from their weakness to draw conclusions from mistaken notions which marked the Communist International and the international communist movement for years, such as the strategy of “popular” or “anti-fascist” fronts with social democratic and other bourgeois forces. This is reflected in their recent characterization of the imperialist war in Ukraine and vacillation on the issue of China. Over time the revolutionary-minded members were routed, either expelled outright or cowed into compliance. Now, the PCUSA is much like the CPUSA, but rather more brazen in their efforts to direct the rank and file away from a scientific understanding of Marxism-Leninism.
The PCUSA is now just one more “embankment” in the communist movement, trapping class-conscious and militant workers into initiatives that only serve to dilute revolutionary pressure. The same is true for all the other notable “socialist” parties and organizations and organizations in the US. However, this does not inhibit our willingness to work with the popular base of these organizations in the labor and popular struggles. Historical experience proves that sections of the popular base of other parties can only be convinced through an ideological-political front against both the bourgeois political line and opportunism.
The founders of the Communist Workers Platform USA (CWPUSA) were among those stuck in the embankment of the PCUSA. However, the contradiction between the PCUSA’s espousal of Marxism-Leninism with their practical experience reached a breaking point. A rupture emerged, between the opportunists who led the party and those who aspired towards the construction of a true communist party.
One might ask, what is the need for a communist party? Why not simply act individually among the workers and engage in mutual aid or agitation? The reality is that individual action and simple survival programs within class society are not sufficient to create the conditions for revolution. Just as capitalism destroyed the feudal relations of production through bourgeois revolution, so must the capitalist relations be destroyed through socialist revolution. Only a communist party can facilitate the concentration of power necessary for the struggle against the capitalist class.
Building the Party
The fact that the working class requires a communist party, and that none exists in the US, is clear. The question then is how can such a party be realized? Since the breaking of the CWPUSA with the PCUSA, a view arose among our members that the construction of local organizations ought to be prioritized over that of a party. However, in What is to be Done?, Lenin advocates for the organization of all the local Marxist groups around a single publication on a national basis. Such an organization would ensure unity of action and continuity within the class struggle and provide a center for these groups to coordinate and learn from each other.
Otherwise, their activities and experiences would be isolated and lost if the group dissolves or, in the case of illegality of communist organizations, such as in Tsarist Russia, the risk of being wiped out. One could argue that we do not have local committees around the country to unify around a publication, so we should create the committees first and then unify. However, this view stems from a mechanical understanding of Lenin that fails to recognize two basic facts:
- We can organize local committees in the process of forming our party, as an integral part of its formation.
- There already exists in various metropolitan centers, organizations of militant and revolutionary-minded communists in varying states of ideological-political-organizational development that we could, and should, connect with and lead through the collective organizer that is the organ of the CWPUSA.
Forming a party is an objective that far-sighted Marxist-Leninist workers must explicitly pursue as a conscious process of ideological, political, and organizational development. There can be no rush. The example of the PCUSA demonstrates what happens when communists try to form a party without learning from the mistakes of their opportunist predecessors, without the prolonged process of self-criticism, dialogue, and analysis necessary for the formulation of correct ideological and political positions.
The cultivation of Marxist-Leninist cadres is a critical task in this process, one that calls for an assessment of the ideological state of the membership, education in theory, and careful consideration of new members to avoid dampening the working-class character of the party. How is this task realized? A pre-party formation, which is a school where aspiring cadres obtain experience in the workers’ and popular struggles and become familiarized with the organizational methods and processes of democratic centralism. The pre-party formation is the party in embryo.
The Ultimate Goals
The strategy of the CWPUSA is informed by these goals:
- The conquest of working-class power
- The establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat
- The construction of socialism-communism.
The main feature of the contemporary era, that of socialist revolution, is the emergence of the preconditions for socialism-communism. This stems from the fact that this is also the era of imperialism, of monopoly capitalism, where the contradictions between the exploiting and exploited classes approach their limit. The resolution of these contradictions can only be initiated by a socialist revolution that establishes the dictatorship of the proletariat. This can only occur through the concentration of political power into the hands of the working class and popular strata, under the leadership of the communist party.
Following this will be the period of immature socialism, where the means of production are owned and operated by the whole of society on the basis of centralized planning under the direction of a socialist state. By this method, humanity will achieve the construction of communism, a classless, moneyless society where the exploitation of one person by another is abolished, the state having withered away. Immature socialism must be understood as the first phase of socialism-communism and not as an independent socio-economic formation, but rather communism as it emerges from the bowels of capitalism. We use the term “socialism-communism” to emphasize this point.
Socialism-communism, where the satisfaction of social needs is the basic economic law, is realized through the dictatorship of the proletariat, the tool for accomplishing the revolutionary struggle to consolidate political power in the hands of the working class in alliance with the popular strata. In this alliance the proletariat will lead the popular intermediate strata that can be detached from the political influence of capital and unite with the revolutionary workers’ movement.
Democratic centralism is the fundamental organizational principle for the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the one that ensures the subordination of the will of the minority to that of the majority, the unity of action in realizing socialism-communism. The main task of the socialist state, based on the socialization of the means of production, is the abolition of all private forms of ownership and the construction of a communist society. The notion that capitalism can “transition” into socialism through parliamentary or market reforms is a false one. The restructuring of the economy will be based on the experiences and lessons of the construction of socialism in the twentieth century. This means:
- The utilization of a proletarian state apparatus
- The leading of a revolution in social consciousness, placing the cultural and intellectual life of society in service to the construction of socialism-communism
- The formation of a new socio-economic base, with industrial production on the basis of social ownership of the concentrated means of production, under a system of centralized planning
- The understanding that socialism, in the era of imperialism, can be built in one country
- And the completion of the struggle against the domestic and international bourgeoisie until they completely disappear as a class.
The Immediate Goals
One must understand that the immediate goals of an organization should be considered not as ends unto themselves, but rather in service to their ultimate goals. For the CWPUSA the immediate goals are:
- The organization of a founding convention
- The formal constitution of the formation
- The development of ties within the working class and popular strata of the US
- The establishment of formal relations with other organizations in the international communist movement (ICM), particularly those of the section known as the Marxist-Leninist pole (MLP).
These goals do not exist independently of each other. To establish relations within the ICM, a formation with ties to the working and popular masses must be formed, which in turn will require a formal constitution developed in a founding convention.
With these in mind, the following must be addressed:
- What are the requirements for each of these goals?
- What are the tasks that can be done immediately, which ones must be completed continuously, and to what degree do they depend on each other?
All these questions and more must be answered to create an effective plan of action.
The Founding Convention
In meetings of the CWPUSA, the need for a founding convention is frequently discussed. Why is the founding convention necessary? Is the CWPUSA not already founded? Would this be the first congress of an actual party? No, that meeting would not be the first party congress although the CWPUSA already exists as a pre-party formation. However, we’ve organized ourselves on an ad hoc basis, relying primarily on our shared experience in the internal struggle within PCUSA to give our members a mutually understood way of organizing.
This approach is not sustainable. For this formation to grow in strength and numbers, and to develop into a fighting organization of the working class, a formal constitution is required, one with a robust set of statutes, a political program, and a plan of action. It will outline the organizational structure and processes of the CWPUSA, ensuring the growth of sturdy organizational structures. The founding convention will be where this constitution is developed and adopted, marking the first milestone on the road to building a party.
However, there is also the question of why our first convention would serve to form a “pre-party formation” rather than an actual party as opposed to a communist party. This is merely a way of recognizing that there are certain essential properties in a communist party, a unified system of organizations composed of trained cadres and leaders of the mass movements, that we are currently missing. In Foundations of Leninism, Stalin describes the communist party as:
- The advanced detachment of the working class
- The organized detachment of the working class
- The highest form of class organization of the proletariat
- An instrument of the dictatorship of the proletariat
- The embodiment of unity of will
- An organization that becomes strong by purging its opportunist elements
Our formation does not yet meet these criteria, as we currently lack the trained cadres, organizational development, and working-class ties necessary to be considered as the most advanced and organized detachment of the US working class.
That does not mean that we think that there is an insurmountable gulf between the founding of a pre-party formation and the formation of a communist party. As was mentioned earlier, we believe that a pre-party formation is the best way to organize those class-conscious workers that want to work towards the establishment of the communist party, by growing and developing the pre-party formation until it has matured and can hold its first congress as a party.
For the founding convention, the first task is the creation and compilation of constitutional documents, to be discussed before and at the convention, including drafts for the statutes and political program along with articles analyzing the experience of the PCUSA. Methods for crafting these documents must be researched. In this, the publications of parties such as the Communist Party of Greece (KKE), the Communist Party of Mexico (PCM), and the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP), and revolutionary organizations such as the Front of Communist Youth (FGC) will be invaluable.
Next, is the task of the development of cadres. The success of our founding convention will be largely influenced by the completion of this task. Our membership developed immensely in the course of the struggle within the PCUSA. Through this crucible, many emerged with a former grasp on the organizational and ideological foundations of Marxism-Leninism, but as it stands now, we are still underdeveloped and in need of further education.
This is something that must be remedied as much as possible before our convention. The exact form that this will take is still being discussed but the general tasks are clear. We will introduce as much educational content to the membership as possible and find ways for us to critically engage with the content. This is currently being achieved through weekly educational sessions, on top of our in-meeting educational sessions, that emphasize critically analyzing our material conditions in relation to the topics and ideas presented in the readings.
Each educational is prepared as a reading of a text paired with questions that aim to facilitate in-depth discussion. While this course is acceptable right now, at this nascent stage of our development, it will soon become insufficient to meet the educational needs of our organization. We must remain attentive and continue to discuss better ways to develop cadres even after the completion of a founding convention and establishment of a pre-party formation.
Lastly, is the task of the logistics of the meetings. A venue must be secured for hosting the convention, as well as lodgings and transportation for the participants. All attendants must be registered prior to the convention to determine these accommodations. Funds will need to be secured for these tasks, requiring the creation of a budget plan and a survey of the potential sources of income. There must also be procedures for managing these funds. Additionally, a full schedule needs to be composed, detailing the order of business for the convention along with any educational or recreational events.
The process of formally constituting the CWPUSA involves two tasks:
- The adoption of constitutional documents
- The establishment of a central party publication
These tasks were chosen not on a whim but out of necessity, based on study of the history of the ICM and of the current state of the communist movement in the US.
Recent times have demonstrated the need for a communist party in guiding new social movements. In the summer of 2020, spontaneous uprisings over the murder of George Floyd coincided with a resurgence in the trade union movement, both of which were promptly absorbed by the social democratic and other “progressive” bourgeois forces. The involvement of the “socialist” organizations in these struggles was negligible or even contradictory, as can be seen with the admonitions of the leadership of the PCUSA, which dissuaded members from taking part.
Despite the swell of revolutionary energy, no tangible gains were made, no substantive actions were taken to harness the popular unrest. All of this energy was diverted by bourgeois forces, due to the various communist parties’ inability to secure an independent political-ideological position or a successful policy of alliances. This is something that can only be achieved by the leadership of a communist party that is guided by Marxism-Leninism and practical experience in the struggles of the workers and the people.
The history of the CPUSA shows that a communist name is not enough to make a party communist. Rather, a party is communist only when they follow the teachings within Marxism-Leninism and consistently apply it. This was summarized by the 21st Congress of the KKE with five main points regarding a communist party:
- The defense of Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism
- The struggle against opportunism and reformism and the rejection of parliamentary means of “transitioning” to socialism
- The defense of the scientific laws of the socialist revolution and use of them to assess the course of socialist construction
- Maintaining an ideological front against erroneous perceptions of imperialism
- Forging ties with the working class
A communist party must have the ability to express the independent position of the working class in all political and ideological struggles. They must never submit to the interests of any other class.
The working class in the US has been deserted by the communist movement. It is stuck in the tar pit of social democracy, duped by the insidious idea that one must choose between the lesser of two evils. No wonder, then, that the communist movement and our class as a whole would choose to side with Ukraine or Russia in the imperialist war in Ukraine, one band of thieves over another. The parties are plagued by ideological infirmity, content with tailing the bourgeois parties and parroting their slogans. New cadres must rise up to reclaim the red flag from the opportunists.
The time has come for the communists to expose their vision to the world, and we are obligated to create a true communist party for the working class of this country. We must not repeat the mistakes of the communists in the US that came before us and let the hard lessons our class has learned go to waste. First and foremost, we must forge political-ideological unity. To this end, we must drive out opportunism which is theoretically upheld by revisionism and dogmatism and politically justified by reformism. Further, a struggle must be waged against eclecticism and all bourgeois ideologies.
Such a process requires education and creative discussion rooted in the mastering of the method of Marxism-Leninism, the method of dialectics which demands criticism and self-criticism in all spheres of theoretical and practical activity. Criticism and self-criticism are key components of democratic centralism; it is the dialectical unity that allows parties to discover and overcome mistakes, weaknesses and imperfections in their work. They are the driving force that paves the way to remove the obstacles that enter the path of progress. Where criticism and self-criticism are subdued, bureaucracy, corruption, and complacency chart the course towards the subjugation of the party by opportunism.
Opportunists have no place within the party. The consistent and relentless struggle against opportunism constitutes an essential precondition for the revolutionary character of a communist party. As Stalin wrote in The Foundations of Leninism, “The party becomes strong when it purges itself of opportunist elements.” There are those who would ask, is this not too heavy handed? Could these elements not simply be overcome through discussion? Again, Stalin writes:
“The theory of ‘defeating’ opportunist elements by the ideological struggle within the Party, the theory of ‘overcoming’ these elements within the confines of a single party, is a rotten and dangerous theory which threatens to condemn the Party to paralysis and chronic infirmity and threatens to leave the Party a prey to opportunism, threatens to leave the proletariat without a revolutionary party, threatens to deprive the proletariat of its main weapon in the fight against imperialism”.Joseph Stalin
Communists must not waver in the struggle against opportunism over fear of being labeled “sectarian”, nor fall prey to the siren song of “unity for the sake of unity”, with no thought to ideology, solely to increase the quantity of members, as this would be a manifestation of opportunism. This is not to say that the CWPUSA should be against unity in general, but that it must ask itself, “unity of who and why?” We strive to create unity of the working-class against the capitalist class for the construction of socialism-communism. What others call unity is nothing more than capitulation to the programs of the bourgeoisie, which serve only to maintain the existing relations of capitalist production.
Unity cannot be built between working-class organizations and the Democratic or Republican parties, no matter how “left-wing” one or the other faction may appear. Neither can unity be built between the working class and the “social justice” or “activist” organizations, funded by the foundations of this or that capitalist, that only ever tail the capitalist parties. No, unity will be built in the workplaces, in the neighborhoods and the schools, the communities, by the workers and youth in service to the defeat of capitalist-imperialism and the victory of socialism-communism.
Ties to the Workers
The tasks necessary for developing ties within the working class and popular strata are as follows. First, the building of the base organizations. The CWPUSA must aid members in establishing local cells, as well as in mobilizing the sections of the masses that are ineligible for a workplace cell, such as the self-employed, the unemployed, freelance workers, “gig-workers”, and so on. Second, the mobilization of workers in the labor struggle.
The CWPUSA should be constantly involved in the labor struggle wherever the membership is present. Third, the mobilization of the student movement. Members who are still in school have a duty to involve themselves in this movement. Fourth, the development of an alliance with the popular strata. This will require the CWPUSA to carefully identify those sections of the US population which can be brought under the influence and leadership of the working class, over that of the capitalists.
These tasks must not be underestimated. Work must be applied tirelessly toward them, as they are vital to the success of this formation. The CWPUSA must be rooted in the working class and relentless in the building of cells within the workplace and community. One of the fatal flaws of the social democratic organizations is their singular focus on the political dimension of the class struggle at the total expense of the economic dimension. The cells bring the formation to the working class at the site of production, the site of economic power. These base organizations will further the class struggle through the ideological and political development of the CWPUSA. A party lacking deep ties to the working class is bound to lose its revolutionary character.
The process of building these workplace cells will not be completed overnight. Practical work on the ground is required, as well as a thorough analysis of the US communist movement. The petty-bourgeois deviations that define the current movement must be properly traced out and understood. From Browderism to the popular front, the ideological errors which led to the descent of the CPUSA into opportunism and tailism must be elaborated. They have at different times over emphasized the role of American imperialism and at others praised its “progressive” elements. As a result, they have turned a blind eye to the intricate web of imperialist alliances and the imperialist pyramid. Similarly, further study and analysis of the Soviet Union and other former socialist states is required, to identify what conditions and policies sowed the seeds of counterrevolution in those countries.
The contemporary conditions of the US must also be analyzed, to identify what sections of society might be induced towards an alliance with the working-class. The CWPUSA must have a strategy for forming alliances with these popular sectors, based on their position in social production and the degree of their antagonism with the monopolies, as well as a study of the socio-economic reality of the US working class and popular strata, their concentrations, intersections, and internal stratification. The allies of the working-class movement must be identified correctly, their interests clearly laid out.
The International Communist Movement
For the sake of proletarian internationalism, and a further prerequisite for the socialist revolution, the CWPUSA must establish formal and functional relationships within the ICM. Particular attention must be given to the MLP, a collection of communist parties and organizations united in the struggle against opportunism worldwide.
To achieve this goal, the CWPUSA must be formally constituted as a pre-party formation. The formation will need to have media presence, a website, newspaper, and social media. The newspaper will need to have a catalog of quality articles at launch, updated as regularly as possible without sacrificing quality. The website will need to provide contact information, social media links, a feed from the newspaper, the documents composing the constitution, and propaganda that can be easily printed out and distributed at events. The CWPUSA will also need to have an international section, dedicated to maintaining contact with foreign parties and international organizations, as well as sending members to international events. Lastly, the educational curriculum of the formation must be updated to include the texts and policies of the parties and organizations of the MLP.
Why such an emphasis on the MLP? The parties and revolutionary organizations of the MLP, most notably the aforementioned FGC, KKE, PCM, TKP, and the Communist Party of the Workers of Spain (PCTE), all played an invaluable role in the political and ideological development of the CWPUSA. Their analyses were critical in revealing the need to struggle for Marxism-Leninism within the PCUSA; in other words, to Bolshevize the Party. Eight of the points laid out by Stalin in “The Prospects of the CPG and Bolshevization” line up with the lessons we learned from the analysis of the MLP and its attitude towards driving out opportunism in the Party:
- The necessity of mastering the revolutionary theory of Marxism
- The need to break away from the use of slogans and directives based on stock formulas and historical analogies
- The lack of an analysis of the concrete internal and external conditions of the revolutionary movement in our country and internationally
- The lack of ties and contacts with the masses
- The covering up of mistakes and fear of criticism
- The inability to recruit the best elements of the advanced fighters of the workers and the people
- The neglect of improving the social composition of party organizations and the complete disregard of the struggle to rid the party of opportunism
- The erosion of a systematic verification of decisions and directives
This struggle confirmed the experiences of the MLP in their consistent and unrelenting struggle against opportunism. The entrenchment of opportunism signified the alteration of the revolutionary theses and operational principles of the PCUSA. As a result, democratic centralism could not exist, since the ideological and political unity of the party had been wrecked. Historical experience has demonstrated that there cannot be both revolutionary and opportunist forces in the same party. Rupture was inevitable, and to retreat from this break would be to compromise with opportunism.
Beyond that, proletarian internationalism remains one of the core principles of Marxism-Leninism, the principle which opportunists are most quick to abandon, as both contemporary and historical events have demonstrated. From the very beginning, this principle has played an integral role in the development of the communist movement, from the first meetings of the International Workingmen’s Association to the First International of Marx and Engels, and to the founding by Lenin and the Bolsheviks of the Communist International, the Third International.
The betrayal of internationalism by the opportunists within the Second International was the impetus for the split in the ICM between the social democratic parties and the revolutionary communist parties, who laid the groundwork for the establishment of the Comintern. The global influence of the Comintern was, and remains, unmatched by any other attempt to form an international communist organization. For the first time, there was a global center for educating and training the working class in the principles of scientific socialism, giving millions of workers access to Marxist theory. The efforts of the Comintern to build sections in every country enabled workers around the world to form communist parties within their own countries, deepening and expanding the ICM. Their achievements cannot be understated.
For decades, Marxist classics were translated and distributed all over the world, thousands of cadres were developed by the Leninist International School, and critical study of the class struggle, the economic situation, reactionary policies, and the experience of revolutionaries was conducted in each country. From this study, the Comintern would develop the strategy and tactics of the ICM, acting as the world brain of the working-class movement.
The CWPUSA is not just another communist organization in the US. The aim of this formation is to become the US section of the MLP. A Communist International is needed now more than ever. One that is politically and ideologically unified and capable of serving as the center for the coordinated elaboration of a revolutionary strategy for the transformation of the struggle against imperialist war or foreign occupation into a struggle for state-power, as a common duty concerning every communist party in the conditions of its own country.
Merely listing all the tasks before us is insufficient to create an effective plan of action since doing so does not help us make the most effective use of our limited time. Any delay in the construction of a communist party will prolong the suffering of the working and popular masses. Marx explained that as capitalism develops and generates more methods for extracting profits, the conditions of the exploited peoples worsen. However, at the same time, society is brought closer and closer to a revolutionary situation.
Without a communist party to take advantage of these revolutionary upheavals, the organized and unorganized workers and popular strata will not be able to bring the class conflict to a definite triumph of the working class. The misery of workers would be prolonged, and the day of our liberation would be delayed. Deadlines must be set in a way that helps us avoid any delays while also being flexible to any changes that may arise. Deadlines are necessary to assess progress in our work and whether our time and resources are being used effectively. Determining an appropriate deadline can be a daunting task, but it can be made easier by starting at the end and working backwards.
For example, consider the first major goal we have set for the CWPUSA: holding a founding convention. Originally, we ambitiously decided to hold the convention in May of 2022, a mere three months after our original founding. However, after evaluating the progress of the committee in charge of logistics, this deadline was moved back to the end of the year. That’s an important feature of most deadlines: they are not set in stone. They are guidelines that can, and should, be amended when tasks take longer than anticipated. Learning how to monitor progress and accurately determine the appropriate deadlines for tasks is of vital importance for communists.
With that in mind, what deadlines should we set for the tasks needed to hold the founding convention? The appropriate deadlines should not be immediately before the convention since members need time to read and discuss drafts of the convention documents to prepare any amendments. Moreover, any groups invited to the convention would also need time to review these documents and prepare any comments or criticisms. With all of this in mind, the minimum amount of time needed to complete these pre-convention discussions would be one month. In other words, all of the tasks elaborated thus far must be completed no later than November 15th, 2022, to allow for ample pre-convention discussion.
However, setting this deadline alone is still insufficient for an effective plan of action. We need a method for regularly evaluating progress to make better decisions on the effective use of our time and achieve our goals as quickly as possible. The time between now and the final deadline should be divided into equal thirds, each marking the date for an evaluation of our progress. This leaves July 26th and September 20th as the intermediate deadlines.
At least a third of the total work must be completed between each date, or else the deadlines for the plan of action will need to be reevaluated. Currently, we have made the most progress on planning the logistics of the convention, followed by cadre development for the convention, and finally the preparation of the convention documents, which is the area in which we’ve made the least progress. The CWPUSA has recognized this lopsided development and taken steps to remedy the issue, such as by restructuring some of the existing committees and work groups and placing the others on indefinite hiatus. The executive, writing, education, and membership committees remain active, with members of the inactive groups reassigned to the active ones.
The working class has been disarmed for too long, forced to endure decades of class struggle without the greatest weapon of the class struggle: the communist party. No surprise, then, that there has been no reprieve from the barbarity of capitalist-imperialism. For decades, the US communist movement has been trapped in the mire of opportunism, revisionism, and reformism. Nevertheless, Marxism-Leninism shows that every ebb in the revolutionary movement gives rise to another flow.
When the forces of capital can no longer manage the ever-sharpening contradictions between the exploited and the exploiters, when the working class and popular strata can no longer tolerate their conditions and stand up militantly, a revolutionary situation will be born. Whether this situation culminates in the realization of a socialist revolution shall be determined by the development of the communist party. Communists must be prepared to raise the red banner high once more. The scale and difficulty of this historic task cannot be underestimated. There will be challenges and setbacks, perilous obstacles, but they must be overcome to catch the train of history. Here is the beginning of the map that shall guide the work of the CWPUSA down the path of Marxism-Leninism, towards the defeat of capitalist-imperialism and the victory of socialism-communism.