The reason why Americans don’t have universal health care, a living wage, free college, and more is American workers are nothing more than tools of production. Sure, American politics is corrupt. Every politician in both parties is a corrupt corporate tool. But the corruption exists to maintain the system of American capitalism that makes us tools of production.
an underpublicised reason why we don’t have universal health care is capitalism needs workers to be dependent on employers. I regularly see people on social media lamenting the lack of widespread collective action on the part of American workers. People look at the huge general strikes that take place in France and wonder why they don’t happen here.
The reason they don’t happen here is American workers, unlike French workers, depend on employment for critical benefits. In France, workers can strike absent the fear of losing health care, child care, and the ability to send their children to college.
As we all know, American workers who strike are at greater risk than are workers in France and other countries. If American workers lose their jobs, even temporarily, they lose health insurance (if the had it), for many their wages are so low they can’t afford to miss even one paycheck, and much more.
Simply put, American capitalism has been designed to make workers as dependent on employers as possible. In America, workers are nothing more than tools of production. Every aspect of society and every government policy works to force workers to produce for employers if they have any chance at a decent life. American people are entitled to little unless they produce for the capitalists.
The idea that the American worker is an expendable tool of production is supported by the system of Social Security Disability Insurance. Even after a worker can demonstrate they are too injured or disabled to do any job in the economy, an absolutely brutal standard, they receive 80 percent or less of their salary. At a time when someone usually needs more money to adjust to a life-altering disability they are given less and they have their dignity assaulted.
American workers are nothing but tools of production for the capitalist class. That may sound harsh, but it’s the truth.