Why We Publish
New Politics is an independent socialist forum for dialogue and debate on the left. We support unions and workers’ struggles throughout the world. We are committed to the advancement of the peace and anti-intervention movements. We stand in opposition to all forms of imperialism and oppression, and we are uncompromising in our defense of the rights of women, people of color, lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people. The multiple ecological crises facing humankind are a new challenge that must be integrated into all our work. In our pages there is broad coverage of labor, social movements, environmental struggles and the international scene, as well as emphasis on cultural and intellectual history. Above all, New Politics insists on the centrality of democracy to socialism and on the need to rely on mass movements from below for progressive social transformation.
These are critical times. The White House is occupied by a creature so shocking and vile – racist, xenophobic, dictator-loving, extravagantly corrupt, and probably insane – as to have no precedent in American history. The forces of white supremacy are on the march. Not since before the New Deal have working-class people in this country been so vulnerable, and perhaps never before have big business and the right been so aggressive and dominant. Right-wing populism is resurgent throughout Europe and in India. Brutal dictators and semi-dictators rule in Russia, China, Turkey, Syria, Hungary and a host of other countries. Abroad, U.S. military and corporate power continues to grip the world. And above it all are the looming eco-crises that give new meaning to the slogan “socialism or barbarism.”
There are hopeful signs: the rebirth of a socialist left in the British Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn, the Yellow Vests movement in France, workers’ resistance in China and South Africa, mass protests against authoritarianism in Algeria, Hungary, and Sudan, the electoral triumph of the left in Mexico, heightened global outrage at the repressiveness and intransigence of the Israeli state, and a militant, fast-growing global anti-capitalist movement in response to austerity, grotesque inequality, and the urgency of the climate change crisis.
And here in the United States, there are immensely encouraging developments: Black Lives Matter, a wave of teachers’ strikes, a determined defense of immigrant rights, the vibrant #MeToo movement, and a massive, multi-faceted resistance to the outrageous Trump administration. The demand for a Green New Deal is a hopeful first step toward the kind of just transition we need to take. Not since the days of Eugene V. Debs has some version of the socialist idea been embraced by so many Americans. Yet on the whole the left remains too fragmented and too entangled in the corporate-dominated Democratic Party to pose a serious threat to the Establishment.
New Politics seeks to revitalize the left and encourage its political independence as a step toward the creation of an international movement to replace capitalism, as well as non-capitalist exploitative systems, with socialism. NP is not attached or subordinated to any political party or institution. We stand for popular empowerment and democratic control at every level, opposition to all forms of authoritarianism, no matter how leftist their rhetoric — in short, a politics of socialism-from-below.
During the Cold War, NP was a beacon of principled socialist clarity. It tirelessly exposed the lie that identified the socialist legacy with Communist states. NP championed the struggles of the 60s and 70s movements against the Vietnam War and U.S. intervention in Central America, for women’s and black liberation, for union democracy and affirmative action. We enthusiastically supported struggles for democracy in the Soviet bloc. We have firmly defended the rights of both Palestinians and Israeli Jews to self-determination and security.
Since the Cold War, we have spoken out against the ravages inflicted by neoliberalism and the menacing rise of the authoritarian right in this country and throughout the world, and we have exposed U.S. imperial aggression in Somalia, the former Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti and elsewhere.
NP has been inspired throughout by the vision of a “third camp.” During the Cold War it meant “Neither Washington nor Moscow! For International Socialism!”; since then it has meant opposing Washington’s imperial aggression while making no apologies for its antagonists when they are anti-democratic, be they Milosevic, Saddam Hussein, Putin, Assad, Ortega, or authoritarian Islamists.
Today, in the face of the Trump presidency and its horrors, some argue that the left should make cautious electoral alliances with the political center and be modest in our ambitions. We dare not do this. Not caution, but bold and imaginative radicalism is needed.
The aim of NP is to provide a voice to help transform popular struggles for equality, peace, sustainability, social justice and freedom of cultural expression into a conscious, intelligent movement for a democratic, just and peaceful world.