Aug 07

Socialist Party Presidential Ticket Will Be on MI Ballot

The Presidential Ticket Will Also Be Joined by Socialist Party State House Candidate Michael Anderson (70th district)

For Immediate Release
August 7, 2016
Official Presidential Campaign Website: www.rev16.us

LANSING – The 2016 Socialist Party USA presidential campaign of Emidio “Mimi” Soltysik and vice presidential running mate Angela Nicole Walker will be included among the six presidential tickets appearing on MichiSoltysikWalkerlogosketchgan’s ballot this November. The ticket was officially added to the Michigan Secretary of State’s November general candidate listing this week, along with a clickable hyperlink to its campaign website (rev16.us).

Due to the Socialist Party’s longstanding exclusion from direct access to the Michigan ballot, its Michigan state party branch has, for the past two decades, relied on qualifying its nominees through combinations of independent candidate petitions, dual party nominations, and write-in campaigns. Accordingly, the Soltysik / Walker ticket will be ballot-listed with the label of Michigan’s Natural Law Party, which has independently retained its state ballot status since its national affiliate’s 2004 disbandment.

The 2016 election will be the first to include the Socialist Party’s presidential nominees on Michigan’s ballot since 2004. In the last two presidential elections of 2012 and 2008, the Socialist Party’s ticket was limited to certified write-in status in this state, amid the Michigan NLP’s nominations having then gone to the independent campaigns headed respectively by Rocky Anderson and Ralph Nader.

Citing recent national poll findings that two-thirds of U.S. voters want “radical change,” Socialist Party of Michigan State Chair Matt Erard noted that the Soltysik / Walker ticket represents the only presidential campaign confronting the capitalist system as the root social force driving ever-expanding inequality, political plutocracy, environmental devastation, police and foreign-policy aggression, debt strangulation, and austerity. Uprooting capitalism, he contends, depends most critically on the working class asserting its political independence.

“The Democratic Party is this nation’s premier apparatus for restraining working people from fighting back in the class struggle.” Erard said.  “If the choice must be between ‘wasting one’s vote’ or perpetuating the corporate oligarchy, which is the real lesser evil?”

In reference to the victory of nominal ‘socialist’ Bernie Sanders in Michigan’s presidential primary, Erard noted that every Michigan voter who sought to cast her vote against the Wall Street overclass last March is now assured a choice for political expression in November. At the same time, he argued that Sanders’ recent realignment of his ‘political revolution’ behind the neoliberal banner is a direct reflection of the Democratic Party’s essential class character.

The Socialist Party’s presidential ticket will also be joined on Michigan’s November ballot by Socialist Party State House candidate Michael Anderson (www.anderson2016.spmichigan.org), who will be challenging Republican Jim Lower and Democrat Ken Hart in the 70th district—covering portions of the central region counties of Montcalm and Gratiot. In contrast to the Socialist Party’s presidential nominees, Anderson’s name will be listed on the ballot with the label of Michigan’s Green Party.

The Socialist Party’s National Platform, as fully shared by its presidential and Michigan State House candidates, calls for a democratically planned economy, centered on worker- and community control of all major industrial firms and financial institutions, with production tailored to use and sustainability, rather than private profit.  Other policy priorities include:

  • An immediate 50% in the U.S. military budget, followed by further rapid cuts to less than 10% of its current funding level; Withdrawal of all U.S. troops stationed overseas and closure of all overseas bases; Abolition of the CIA; Prohibition on the manufacturing and use of weaponized and surveillance drones; Withdrawal from NATO; Support for a constitutional amendment requiring a binding vote of the people on all issues of war and military intervention; Cessation of all U.S. aid to Israel; Elimination of all U.S. military aid and arms sales; Forgiveness of all Third World debt; Withdrawal from the IMF, World Bank, WTO, and NAFTA.
  • A maximum wage of ten times the minimum wage; Comprehensive single-payer health care for all; Tuition-free college/university education; Forgiveness of all outstanding student loan debt; Full-funding for quality childcare facilities; A 30-hour work week with no loss of pay or benefits, and six weeks annual paid vacation; 16-months paid new-parent leave; A steeply graduated income and estate tax and abolition of regressive payroll taxes; Right of retirement at age 55 with minimum 25k/yr benefits; Rent control for all existing rental units; A sliding-scale utility-fees index to ensure affordable access; A national moratorium on home foreclosures, Automatic union recognition based on card-check; Elimination of all anti-labor legislation, including restrictions on public-sector strikes, hot cargo agreements, and secondary strikes and boycotts.
  • Publically elected and fully-empowered police oversight councils, and structural overhaul of the contemporary police force model; Decriminalization of drug-use, and amnesty for all non-violent offenders; Abolition of for-profit prisons; Abrogation of all three strikes laws; A moratorium on new prison construction; Demilitarization of U.S. borders; Full-citizenship rights upon demonstrating six-months residency; Abolition of the NSA, FBI, and Department of Homeland Security; Repeal of the USA PATRIOT and Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty acts.
  • Free abortion on demand; A federal ban on all forms of job discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity; Vigorous affirmative action programs; Federal reparations for slavery, and for genocide of Native American populations; Abolition of the death penalty; Publicly financed elections; Free and equal access to mass media for all candidates; Uniform ballot-access laws for all states.
  • Public ownership of all natural resources and energy plants; Strict carbon emission limits, and ratification of the Kyoto Protocol; Development of solar, geothermal, wind, hydropower, and biomass energy sources; Phasing out of all nuclear plants and waste incinerators; Elimination of open-pit mining, Protection of minority communities from targeting for harmful waste disposal sites and operations.

—END—

Contact:
Matt Erard
Chair, Socialist Party of Michigan
313.437.2865
mserard [at] gmail.com

Mimi Soltysik
SPUSA Presidential candidate
310.***.****
info [at] rev16.us

Angela Nicole Walker
SPUSA Vice Presidential Candidate
414.***.****
feistybutterfly19 [at] hotmail.com

Michael Anderson
SPMI State House Candidate
989.***.****
contactmichaelanderson [at] gmail.com

###

May 03

Vote No on Proposal 1: Socialist Party Statement on Michigan’s May 5, 2015 Special Election Ballot Proposal

voteno_may5The Socialist Party of Michigan encourages all working class voters of our state to reject the proposed new road-maintenance funding scheme in the May 5, 2015 statewide Special Election (Proposal 15-1). In response to rising corporate investment concerns over the crumbling state of Michigan’s road conditions, the state legislature’s Proposal asks voters to approve a constitutional amendment to authorize raising the state sales tax from six to seven percent, as well as an additional net increase in motor fuel taxes.

Without even considering any rollback to the state’s 86% corporate income tax cut, let alone any reduction to the 20% of general fund dollars allocated to the state’s prison system; the legislature has crafted Proposal 1 with the intent of further saddling the state’s working class and poor with an even greater disparate share of the state’s tax burden. According to current figures from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, the average cost of sales and excise taxes already amounts to 5.1% of household income for Michigan families in the lowest three-fifths of the income range — and 6.2% of household income for families with incomes in the bottom one-fifth. By contrast, the average percentage of household income paid in sales and excise taxes by Michigan families in the top one-percent of the income range amounts to a mere 0.8%.

In effort to wheedle support from low-income voters, the Proposal would also restore the state’s earned income tax credit to its pre-2011 percentage level. Yet, in at most providing an offset to the accompanying sales and fuel tax hike, the net effect of the state’s earned income tax credit reduction would still essentially remain unchanged. Thus, far from reflecting any intent to mitigate low-income workers’ disparate share of the state’s tax burden, the Proposal is truly aimed at adorning such an imbalance with the badge of state electorate approval.

The Socialist Party of Michigan’s Platform calls for a steeply graduated state income tax to fully replace the state’s regressive sales and fuel taxes, as well as the complete cessation of all private corporate tax breaks and subsidies. Ultimately, we further call for the creation of a massive social surplus to fund Michigan’s public service and community needs through the socialization of the state’s major industries under a democratically planned economic framework.

In order to move beyond the constantly recurring need for band-aid surface fixes, we also call for a significant enhancement to the durable quality of road repair surface-materials—distinctly specified to Michigan weather cycle conditions, as well as the development of ecologically sound alternatives to salt-based snow removal. Furthermore, we call for the wide scale expansion of viable alternatives to roadway-vehicle travel through the development of fully-funded high-speed rail transit systems connecting Michigan’s major cities.

There can be little doubt that the public message sent by Proposal 1’s approval would further embolden legislative efforts to push through other similarly regressive measures, if not also further attempts to leverage the status of public-benefit reductions as a means to elicit voter-acceptance of other future class-targeted attacks. In view of the Proposal’s main objective of shielding the rich from any felt share of the state’s infrastructural maintenance expenses, and correspondingly entailed ratification of the state’s regressively disparate tax burdens, Proposal 1 is altogether no less intolerable than the current conditions that it is framed to address.

Jan 22

State of the Union: SPUSA Response

225px-SPUSA_logo
by SPUSA Co-Chair Stephanie Cholensky

The political theater of a State of the Union Address, while certainly absurd in its disconnect with the struggle of the people,  does serve as a reminder of our commitment to democratic socialism. While we are not insensitive to the impact, undoubtedly temporary in a two-party capitalist system, that incremental reform may have for the working class, the Socialist Party USA continues its fight for a revolutionary change impervious to market fluctuations and two-party politics.  A question frequently asked is: “What would the United States look if the Socialist Party USA Platform was adopted?”  Here is a small sample highlighting what the people could expect:

  • A minimum wage of $15 per hour, indexed to the cost of living.
  • A full employment policy and the provision of a livable guaranteed annual income.
  • Comparable worth laws and affirmative action for women.
  • A steeply graduated income tax and a steeply graduated estate tax, and a maximum income of no more than ten times the minimum as well as an end to regressive taxes such as payroll tax, sales tax, and property taxes.
  • The restoration of the capital gains tax and luxury tax on a progressive, graduated scale.
  •  The closing of all U.S. military facilities at home and abroad that train foreign military and paramilitary personnel.
  • An end to the U.S. occupation of the province of Guantanamo, Cuba.
  • An end to all U.S. aid to Israel, as a precondition for peace.
  • Reparations from the federal government for its role in the slave trade and the genocide of Native American nations, with the reparations programs administered by the oppressed communities themselves.
  • The end of all anti-gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBTQ) restrictions in law and the work place, the repeal of all sodomy laws, and the legalization of same-sex marriage.
  • The forgiveness of all outstanding federal student loans.
  • Full and equal funding of public education;  the restoration of a comprehensive K-12 curriculum, including art, music, world languages, and physical education; an end to all public funding of private schools; and free tuition and full-time teachers with full benefits (not “adjuncts”) at the post-secondary level.
  • Public child care starting from infancy, and public education starting at age three, with caregivers and teachers of young children receiving training, wages, and benefits comparable to that of teachers at every other level of the educational system.
  • A socialized health care system based on universal coverage, salaried doctors and health care workers, and revenues derived from a steeply graduated income tax.
  • The prosecution of the criminal activities of politicians, corporate managers, and other privileged individuals, rather than the over-emphasis on minor infractions by working class people and for a sliding scale of fines based on income.
  • The decriminalization of drug use and the regulation of narcotics by doctors through the use of prescriptions rather than by the criminal justice system.
  • The development of alternative energy sources including solar, geothermal, wind, hydropower, and biomass to end dependence on fossil fuels.

President Obama is eloquent and articulate. He is well aware that a masterful spin job is vital to maintaining the capitalist status quo. Truth is the enemy of our elected officials, an enemy that is becoming increasingly apparent in the day of information-sharing.  We stand to highlight that truth, and to use that truth to defeat the oppressive and brutal capitalist system and implement a humane system, a just system, a peaceful system, a democratic socialist system.

Dec 11

Socialist Sunday in Ypsilanti

whittaker_locationThe next state membership meeting of the Socialist Party of Michigan will be held in Ypsilanti at the Whittaker Library at 2:00pm on Sunday, January 11th, 2015.

The library is located at at 5577 Whittaker Road.

SPMI members have full voting, motioning, and proposal-making rights at all SPMI state membership meetings.

The meeting is open to interested public observers, and members are encouraged to bring along guests.

Join us at the Tap Room after the meeting.  Meet other socialists and radical leftists over a drink and a bite to eat.

The Tap Room is located just a few minutes away from the library at 201 West Michigan Avenue.

WE HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!

Oct 11

Socialist Party Billboard on I-75

billboardphoto2Throughout the month of October drivers heading along northbound I-75 into Detroit will see the the Socialist Party of Michigan billboard pictured to the left. The billboard is located on the east side of the freeway between the Outer Dr. and M-39/Southfield Rd. exit points (42°15’38.1″N 83°10’41.2″W) . Many thanks to all those who contributed to putting this billboard on display!