Socialist candidate shares his dream for the working class

Dylan Boyle

A native Nicaraguan wants to erase political standards by highlighting the need for a different kind of government in America.

Socialist Workers Party presidential candidate and labor activist Roger Calero spoke Tuesday about the plight of the working class and the need for a labor party movement in America in a political science class taught by Mack Shelley, university professor of political science and statistics.

“We need a workers’ and farmers’ government,” Colero said, “which is the best tool for workers to fight for their rights.”

Colero worked in meat packing plants in Minnesota and Iowa before getting involved in the labor movement, the 2004 presidency and running for a senator’s seat in New York.

Colero said his working-class background makes him the most qualified to represent the working class in a socialist party.

“I’ve been a worker all my life,” Colero said. “I understand the plight of the working people.”

The Democratic and Republican parties promote the same capitalist ideals that allow the rich to grow and force the poor to remain oppressed, he said.

Colero said a labor party is the one way the working class can be truly represented.

He expressed the outrage many workers feel when productivity in factories increases, but bosses continue to cut wages and benefits and downsize companies to keep profits up.

“Working people are bearing the brunt of the capitalists’ economic crisis,” Colero said, who believes an economic crisis is inevitable.

He emphasized that the crisis would affect both class segments of society.

“We have a housing crisis, the capitalists have a mortgage crisis,” he said.

Colero also criticized the recent economic stimulus package, comparing it to the bonuses corporate bosses give out instead of raising wages to the working class.

“The economic stimulus package is a bribe to buy your silence,” Colero said, claiming that it would not prevent the oncoming economic crisis.

Moving away from economic issues, he said that health care and social security should not be viewed as individual responsibilities, but as an individual right.

If elected, Colero would work to create a government-funded public works system to fix the infrastructure of America and ultimately create more jobs.

One hurdle Colero would have to overcome is that he is not a natural born citizen, so he cannot be elected president.

“This is not really a problem,” Colero said. “Laws can be changed, and the Constitution is amendable. There are capitalists, like Arnold Schwarzenegger, who support this change as well.”