|by Argeo T. Quiñones-Pérez and Ian J. Seda-Irizarry||Winter 2016|
After ten years of economic contraction, many of the citizens of Puerto Rico find themselves watching the secular decomposition of a reality that in its heyday was painted by many as one of relative socio-economic welfare.
|by Michael Hirsch January 28, 2016|
The figure of a gryphon, the legendary feral, clawed, winged creature that nests above the one-square mile City of London, Britain’s financial industry (akin to Wall Street, but with its own legal authority, too) is an apt symbol for an untrammeled center of global capital. A creature of prey, it is redolent as the guardian of ill-gotten, even murderous gain. What else is the financial center of the United Kingdom, which introduced the tax-free zone that modeled capital flight around the world? The City predates the Cayman Islands or Switzerland as tranches for tax avoidance and is a main locus for starving the welfare state.
A view from the Puerto Rican diaspora
|By Manuel E. Melendez Lavandero December 3, 2015|
Puerto Rico is undergoing a profound fiscal crisis. Our country is besieged by the big interests of Wall Street’s credit agencies and vulture funds, which as they’ve done in other parts of the world, such as Spain, Greece and Argentina, only seek an uncontrolled increase in their profits. These profits come at the cost of great sacrifices to working people, which include drastic cuts to social services that will have a special impact on education and health care.
In order to impose their inhumane demands, they use their powerful influence within government structures, in the courts and in the mass media to guarantee payment of the immoral and odious debt, with no concern for the deterioration of our quality of life and the elimination of hard-won labor rights. They establish, de facto, a dictatorship of oligarchic and monopoly capital over the whole of society, the working class majority stripped of the financial resources needed to insure a dignified subsistence.
|Leandros Fischer October 17, 2015|
The radical left strategy of working within broad left parties has suffered a major setback after SYRIZA´s capitulation. The answer to this crisis lies neither in continuing “business as usual,” nor in ignoring the question of political power. SYRIZA´s capitulation to the austerity diktat, the ensuing emergence of Popular Unity and the fresh elections looming ahead, have brought the question of organization for the radical left at the forefront of debate. SYRIZA, which used to be the prime example of left unity against austerity, is giving way to an increasingly fragmented political landscape of the Greek left, as Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras declared his will to implement the new memorandum.
|October 16, 2015|
The English translation of this article was originally published by International Boulevard
From Al Safir Al Arabi
Behind the violence shaking occupied Jerusalem, writes Haneen Naamnih in Al Safir Al Arabi, is a vast colonial enterprise slowly remaking the city.
|Neil Davidson October 5, 2015|
The neoliberal era can be retrospectively identified as beginning with the economic crisis of 1973, or, more precisely, with the strategic response of state managers and employers to that crisis. Previous eras in the history of capitalism have tended to close with the onset of further period of systemic crisis; 1973, for example, saw the end of the era of state capitalism which began in 1929. The neoliberal era, however, has not only survived the crisis which began in 2007, but its characteristic features are, if anything, being further extended and embedded, rather than reversed.
|September 28, 2015|
Considering the harsh reality of austerity, New Politics is encouraged by the struggles against it. One place where this fight has taken place is Puerto Rico. There, colonial capitalism has forced a new massive migration from the island. More Puerto Ricans currently live in the Diaspora than in the country itself.
To understand this situation better we invite you to a talk with Rafael Bernabe, a socialist activist and member of the Working People's Party of Puerto Rico.
Greece still has alternatives. What mix of compromise and confrontation could yield something better than more austerity?
|by Nantina Vgontzas September 25, 2015|
|Nikos Evangelos (Nicholas Levis) September 12, 2015|
The Greek Drama of 2015: What Next?
a talk by Nicholas Levis (Nikos Evangelos)
The preliminary report of the parliamentary Truth Committee on Public Debt declared the entire Greek debt to be odious, unethical, unsustainable and illegal. Do they have a case?
Sunday, September 13, 2015
2:00 - 3:00pm
International Affairs Building, Room 409
Columbia University, Manhattan
Entrance at 118th Street and Amsterdam
|by Ricardo R. Fuentes Ramírez August 7, 2015|
Paul Krugman’s analysis of the Puerto Rican debt crisis has subtle problems, but with big policy implications. Overall, his piece hits key points that other economists continue to miss: 1) Puerto Rico’s fiscal crisis is closely related to its economic depression, 2) the government patched up the problem with borrowing, instead of going to the root of it, 3) Puerto Rico’s low rate of labor force participation is not necessarily a result of welfare, 4) the situation is exacerbated by the Jones Act, 5) too much austerity can be self-defeating, and 6) it would be a terrible idea to give the hedge funds what they want (destroying the island’s education system in the name of fiscal responsibility). All of these points demonstrate Krugman understands the Puerto Rican case better than many Puerto Rican policy makers and economists. However, the subtle problems in his piece should be further discussed.
|by Gary Zabel July 26, 2015|
While in Athens, I have gotten into the habit of ending the day by enjoying an iced coffee with cream in an outdoor cafe in a park about one mile from my hotel. It is there that I have been writing these dispatches. As I remarked in my first report, the park the cafe is in is filled with children, teenagers, young couples, the middle-aged, and old people until quite late. The cafe does not start to empty until after midnight.
|by Carlos Rovira July 25, 2015|
For the many people who have engaged in the struggle for Puerto Rico’s independence, July 25 has a special significance. On that date in 1898, U.S. troops invaded Puerto Rico, beginning a period of U.S. colonial domination on the island that continues to this day. The United States invaded Puerto Rico, along with the Philippines, Guam and Cuba, in the setting of the Spanish-American War. That war was the opening of what would be the menacing role and predatory nature of the U.S. capitalist class in the Caribbean, Latin America and the entire world.
|by Heriberto Martínez-Otero and Ian J. Seda-Irizarry July 20, 2015|
In this brief essay we offer a general and immediate overview of the socioeconomic situation in Puerto Rico. We do it while recognizing that such an analysis is incomplete if the historical, institutional, and political dimensions within the uneven development of capitalism are left out. In this particular case we do not explicitly deal with the colonial relationship of the island with the United States or provide a structural analysis of the economy (these dimensions will be treated in a forthcoming comprehensive article).
|by Dan Swain July 17, 2015|
Dan Swain discusses the contested ambitions and leaderships within our movements. This article was originally published in the Summer 2015 issue of the rs21 magazine.
Throughout the history of socialist movements and ideas, the fundamental divide is between Socialism-from-Above and Socialism-from-Below