|by Dan La Botz||Summer 2016|
Surveying the political scene in America, we are now witnessing the shattering of the last remnants of the American ideology that has maintained itself—despite strains—for almost 70 years. The ideas that justified the American economic and political system in the minds of most of our citizens throughout that long period came under stress during earlier storms—from the 1950s to the 1970s in particular—and a few beams and joists cracked but did not give way. Today the manifold crises of capitalism mean that the entire existing intellectual structure of American capitalism is breaking up. And because of the role that the U.S. capitalist class plays in the world, this represents a crisis of world capitalist leadership and legitimacy. The question then arises: What will the country’s rulers attempt to put in its place, and what alternative explanation will we on the left and in the labor movement be able to offer to the country’s workers?
America and the World in 2016 and Beyond
|by Joanne Landy||Summer 2016|
The world today is faced with crises on virtually every front, and any assessment of the foreign policy positions of the two major parties’ 2016 presidential candidates must measure how well they respond to these crises.
|by Nancy Romer June 22, 2016|
Three thousand Bernie Sanders supporters from all over the US gathered in Chicago to share ideas, hear about each other’s movements, learn about becoming “down-ballot” candidates, and collectively grieve. The Summit started by acknowledging that the Bernie Sanders for President movement suffered a loss: he will, very likely, not be running for President of the United States in 2016, either on the Democratic Party ticket or any other. While the Summit celebrated the joy of the movement, having a candidate to actually believe in, the shared energy of working so hard on concrete tasks like phone banking and door-to-door canvassing, meeting new friends and building new alliances, the big question hanging over the crowd was “Where do we go from here?”
|Dan La Botz June 21, 2016|
The mood among the 3,000 Bernie Sanders supporters meeting in Chicago McCormick Place was improbably optimistic this past weekend, with many of the speakers proclaiming to cheering crowds that the movement has been victorious—even though Hillary Clinton, the presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party has received a majority of the popular votes and a majority of elected delegates and super-delegates, as well as the endorsements of President Barack Obama, Vice-President Joe Biden, and Senator Elizabeth Warren.
That disjuncture—between the Sanders’ movement’s belief that we have achieved something quite important and Clinton’s clear victory in the primary—provides the contradictory context for this conference of progressives, radicals, and socialists searching for the way to the future, I among them.
|By Steve Bloom et al. June 19, 2016|
Now that Donald Trump, an overt racist, has wrapped up the Republican nomination for U.S. President, a chorus of voices is proposing a “left strategy” which can “defeat Trump” by electing the more covert racist, Hillary Clinton, whom the Democratic Party will almost surely be nominating.
|John Halle and Noam Chomsky June 18, 2016|
|by Bahar Mustafa January 16, 2016|
The Stonewall riots kicked off in protest against a police raid on the Stonewall Inn on June 28, 1969. Especially after Orlando, we should resist the co-optation of Gay Pride and instead remember the revolutionary spirit of the queer and trans militants who fought against oppression and violence against them.
|by Kent Worcester June 16, 2016|
[This interview was originally published in Left History, vol. 18, no. 1 (2014).]
Phyllis Jacobson (1922-2010) and Julius Jacobson (1922-2003) were socialist activists in New York City from the mid-1930s through the first years of the twenty-first century. They were members of a radical generation that came of age during the great depression and embraced the language of socialism, communism, and Marxism. They were also the children of working class Jewish immigrants who grew up in the city’s outer boroughs. For their parents, the First World War, the Bolshevik Revolution, and the general strikes and mass uprisings that convulsed many countries after the war were all recent events. The near collapse of the global economy in the early 1930s confirmed for many of their cohort the basic assumption that capitalism was inherently impermanent. Adopting a socialist outlook in a period characterized by social upheaval and economic crisis was easy; the challenge had to do with selecting a suitable group or tendency from a fissiparous menu of options.
|by Gemma Short June 15, 2016|
On Sunday 12 June, 49 people were murdered in an LGBT club in Orlando, Florida, in the largest mass shooting in US history.
At around 2am the attacker Omar Mateen entered the Pulse nightclub and opened fire; shortly after he took a number of people hostage, barricading them and himself in a bathroom. Police used an armoured vehicle to demolish the wall into the bathroom, before engaging in a gun battle in which Mateen was killed. 53 more people were injured in the attack. The victims ranged from 20 to 50 years old, and were apparently overwhelmingly from black and Latino communities.
|Dan La Botz June 15, 2016|
For a year now presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has been the hope of millions in the United States, people who were disgusted with the role of the banks and corporations in politics, angered by the increasing inequality in society, appalled by our country’s racial injustice, and opposed to a foreign policy based on military intervention. Throughout the nation millions rallied to Sanders’ slogans calling or a fight against the “billionaire class” and for a political revolution. Taking up the demands and embracing the spirit of Occupy Wall Street first and then of Black Lives Matter, the Sanders campaign has been an unprecedented radical, populist movement, rejecting Wall Street and Washington and suggesting a more democratic, egalitarian, and peaceful future.
|by Reginald Wilson May 7, 2016|
I grew up in the Great Depression era and so I grew up with Joe Louis. That was my marker. If you walked down the street when he was having a fight, every radio in every house was tuned to that fight. You could hear the fight walking down the street, literally. So, of course, Blacks were very proud of him.
And certainly having Joe Louis as the heavyweight champion you felt thrilled on the one hand, but on the other hand you felt ashamed because he was a very humble man and didn't push against the barriers, which were much stronger then, of course. Still we thought that with his fame, he might have pushed harder against those barriers.
All Hands on Deck! Two Ways To Build The Revolution in the CA Primary
|by Jill Stein June 7, 2016|
California voters have a chance to put us on the road to revolutionary change in the June 7 primary.
At this historic moment, as voters reject the Clinton and Trump campaigns with record high levels of dislike and mistrust, I ask not just for your vote for me, but also for your vote for Bernie. These votes are powerfully synergistic as we build an historic grassroots movement and a political vehicle to carry it forward.
|Dan La Botz June 5, 2016|
After Muhammad Ali refused induction--we had the champ in our corner.
When in June of 1963 I graduated from Mar Vista High School in Imperial Beach, just south of San Diego, California, I went to my local Selective Service Board—the draft board—and registered as a conscientious objector. My paternal grandfather, a Dutch immigrant and baker, was a socialist pacifist and his four sons had registered as conscientious objectors (C.O.s) in World War II and two of them—my father Herb and my uncle Bert—had been drafted and had done what was called alternative service (the alternative to serving in the military) at a former Civilian Conservation Corps camp in Big Flats, near Elmira, New York.
|Dan La Botz June 3, 2016|
Douglas Schoen, a former advistor to Bill Clinton, predicts in a column in the Wall Street Journal that Hillary Clinton may not be her party’s nominee. He suggests that if Sanders wins California, which he may well do, Clinton, with her legal problems and negative ratings in the polls, may be dumped and the convention could choose Vice-President Joe Biden and Senator Elizabeth Warren. Schoen says in a Fox News interview that Biden is “chomping at the bit.”
This scenario may be unikely, in a year when politics has brought us many unlikely developents, but it's worth thinking through. Certainly Sanders' supporters should think about how they would react to such a development.
|by Bryant Sculos and Maylin Hernandez May 21, 2016|
The Question of the Lesser Evil
In a recent article for Counterpunch, Gary Leupp details the long history of Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy record and concludes with the question: is the possibility of her winning the general election in November 2016 really that much less frightening than the possibility that Donald Trump does? Here, we want to explore a potential answer to that question.