Setting the record straight

It isn’t something that a lot of people lose sleep about, and that includes me. But it bothers me when I see someone assert that the retreat of the working class, social democratic, communist, and people’s movement in recent decades began with the implosion of the Soviet Union. Perhaps at first glance this seems reasonable, but with a bit of reflection it quickly becomes an untenable claim. It strikes me as an ideological construction to fit someone’s political disposition rather than serious analysis.

The reconfiguring of global power to the advantage of the imperialist states and transnational corporations and the retreat of the above-mentioned movements that followed was well on its way by the time things went south in the socialist world in the late 1980s. Even a quick glance at the facts locates the beginnings of this offensive in the mid 1970s. That’s more than a decade before the Soviet Union went belly up.

Is full employment possible under capitalism?

“Is full employment possible under capitalism?” first appeared on on February 27, 2013. Read it on

Editor’s note: The following are remarks given by Communist Party USA chair Sam Webb at a Feb. 25 University of Georgia debate sponsored by Phi Kappa Literary Society. The debate topic was “Is full employment possible under capitalism?” Webb debated Greg Morin from the Libertarian Party of Georgia. See video at end of article.

Billed as “The Debate That Never Happened,” UGA’s Phi Kappa Literary Society decided to recreate an attempted 1963 debate between CPUSA’s Arnold Johnson and UGA economist David Wright. That attempt had been squelched by a unanimous vote of the Faculty Committee on Student Affairs. The society was accused of attempting to “incite riot.” In the spirit of free speech, the society hosted this debate during its 50th anniversary.

Thank you, and thanks to Phi Kappa Literary Society for the invitation to participate in this debate on this beautiful campus and in this historic chapel. Thanks also to Speak Progress.

The debate question – “Is full employment possible under capitalism” – is by no means an academic one.