Author: Jason Schulman

The Green New Deal Promises Peace and Progress. Will Nuclear Advocates Undermine it?

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The environmental policy centerpiece of the incoming Democratic House of Representatives is what’s now known as “The Green New Deal.” But it’s already hit deeply polarizing pushback from the old-line Democratic leadership. And it faces divisive jockeying over the future of nuclear power.

The French Yellow Vests: A Self-Mobilized Mass Movement with Insurrectionist Overtones

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The White-Hot Anger of French Working People as a Real Fact

After rumbling on social media for weeks, the Yellow Vests (Gilets Jaunes) movement emerged suddenly on November 17, when no less than 300,000 protestors occupied roads, traffic circles in exurbs and rural areas. They wore the yellow safety vests the government requires all motorists to purchase, and which immediately became the emblem of the movement.  That week and the next, Yellow Vests also ventured into the heart of Paris, blocking the gilded Boulevard Champs-Elysées and almost reaching the nearby presidential palace.  From the beginning, women were unusually prominent in the local occupations and the street marches.  At the same time, the Yellow Vests chased away many politicians who visited their protest sites, including some from the left.

Confronting China’s War on Terror

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For some eighteen months now, ethnic minorities in the region of Xinjiang in northwest China have been living through unprecedented wave of repression. The most extreme element of this crackdown is a network of camps across the region, designated “re-education and training centres,” where anywhere from a few hundred-thousand to upward of a million Muslim minorities have been indefinitely interned. Most victims are Uyghurs – the main non-Chinese ethnic group of the region, but the sweep has also caught Kazakhs and Kirghiz, who, like the Uyghurs, practice Islam.

Statement on Threat of Turkish Planned Military Invasion Against Northern Syria

Internationalist Solidarity Needed

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Donald Trump’s sudden decision to withdraw 2,000 U.S. troops from Syria is a green light to Recep Tayyip Erdogan to decimate the Kurds in what remains of Rojava in northern Syria. Earlier this year, Turkey invaded the Afrin area with the assistance of Syrian reactionary armed opposition groups, leading to the forced displacement of large sections of Afrin’s Kurdish population and continuous violations of the human rights of the local population.

The Soaring Writer Who Landed on His Feet

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Bill Fletcher, Jr. The Man Who Fell From the Sky. Hard Ball Press, $15, trade paperback, 350 pp.

“Race” as a biological category differentiating humans has been a spurious and discredited marker for more than a century. From Franz Boas’ early pioneering studies of the Inuit to Barbara Fields’ contemporary savaging of race-based ideology, we should all understand that humans are one race, end of discussion!

They Took Control of Their Workplace — and They Won

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Ten years ago, members of UE Local 1110 made history by occupying their factory, Republic Windows and Doors. They captured the imagination of a nation reeling from financial collapse, won an endorsement of their cause from the president-elect, and forced one of the nation’s most powerful banks to come to the table and negotiate.

Working People Will Make a Better World

ImagePriscilla Murolo is a professor of history at Sarah Lawrence College, where she formerly directed the graduate program in Women’s History. She also teaches in the Union Leadership and Activism Master’s Program at the University of Massachusetts. Beginning in the 1960s, she has been involved in the women’s movement, labor organizing and many community campaigns and organizations.

Yellow vests: Macron’s fuel tax was no solution to climate chaos

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The French government has decided to suspend a planned eco-tax on fuel in response to mass protests. While the movement of the ‘yellow vests’ (gilets jaunes) has turned into a broader revolt against inequality and Macron’s neoliberal reforms, economist and climate activist Maxime Combes (Attac France) argues that as a way to tackle climate change, the tax is neither fair nor effective.

Analysis originally published on the daily internet journal of ideas AOC and translated by Taisie Tsikas.

Journalists Are Calling Trump’s Caravan Claims ‘Evidence-Free’: It’s Worse Than That

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As the GOP’s fears of a progressive wave in November grow, Donald Trump has made it his personal mission to make everyone else afraid, too.

He Got the Story

ImageSeymour Hersh. Reporter: A Memoir. Knopf, 2018. 368 pp. 

Writing in 1940, George Orwell opined in a review of a Bertrand Russell book that “we have now sunk to a depth at which the restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men.” Much the same can be said about the more than fifty-year career of journalist Seymour Hersh, whose pioneering exposés of the lies of the Great Powers report and affirm facts that follow Orwell’s dictum.

Hard Questions in Israel-Palestine

ImageJamie Stern-Weiner, ed. Moment of Truth: Tackling Israel-Palestine's Tought Questions. OR Books, 2018. 518 pp. 

The fact that, after fifty years of Palestinian support efforts, the Israeli occupation is more entrenched than ever should inspire some intellectual humility among those hawking solutions to the conflict, notes Jamie Stern-Weiner in the introduction to his edited collection Moment of Truth: Tackling Israel-Palestine’s Toughest Questions. It is humbling as well to read through the volume, with more than seventy essays and rejoinders by more than fifty different authors, from almost every one of which something new can be learned.

The Enduring Importance of Arthur Miller: The Price and The Hook

ImageSeventy-two years after his initial Broadway success with All My Sons and 14 years after his death, Arthur Miller continues to cast a long shadow over theater in the United States. His plays are staples of high school drama clubs, college and university theater departments and regional theaters around the country, and his best-known works – Death of a Salesman, The Crucible, All My Sons, A View From the Bridge and After the Fall – have been revived many times on Broadway.

The Collected Writings of Stanley Heller

ImageStanley Heller, The Uprising We Need. Amazon Digital Services LLC, 2017. 332pp. $5.99 on Kindle. 

Apart from the many valuable insights contained inside The Uprising We Need, Stanley Heller’s collection of articles published over the period between 2003 and 2017, the book is a fascinating look back through that fourteen-year span in which so much has happened. There is a tendency in our isolated, consumer-disciplined culture to focus on the shiniest thing out there right now with little reference for how that particular thing got there in the first place.

How NGOisation Provides Cover for the Murder of Shack Dwellers

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In South Africa ten members of a militant shack dwellers organisation have been assassinated in the past six years. Yet many progressive organisations have distanced themselves from these militants. Jared Sacks exposes the complicity of a mainstream NGO that could have played an important role defending the movement against these political assassinations. Sacks argues that when movements refuse co-optation, repression, including assassination, become necessary to maintain power.

MST Open Letter on Brazil Election

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Comrades and Friends of MST () around the World,

We would like to share some of our views on this delicate moment of Brazilian politics in the last week of the election campaign:

Marx Turns 200: A Mixed Gift

A World to Win: The Life and Works of Karl Marx
By Sven-Eric Liedman
Translated by Jeffrey N. Skinner
Part of the Marx 200 series
Verso Books, 2018, 768 pages, $40 hardcover.
Amid an outpouring of discussion and new works marking the bicentennial of Karl . . .

Read more ›

Wars In The Middle East Since Trump

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Following his new sanctions instituted against Iran, the dismissal by Donald Trump of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal is the continuation of the capitalist logic of militarization of the Middle East that was escalated by the last Bush administration and which has brought genocide and disastrous humanitarian crises to the region. 

Cancel Kavanaugh – Walkout October 4th

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CANCEL KAVANAUGH. WALK OUT AGAINST PATRIARCHY.
WE ARE SURVIVORS, BELIEVE US.

Gangster Politics

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In The Communist Manifesto, Marx and Engels referred to the state as “the executive committee of the ruling class.” Reflecting the collective capitalist interest in maintaining its accumulation process, capable of forging compromises among competing sectors of its own and other classes, this committee was also meant to enforce legal norms, contracts, and other rules of the game.

"They Count on You Not Knowing"

East Bay DSA Blows The Whistle On Corporate Dem Donor Class

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Wealthy Bay Area investor David Crane is a leading promoter of the neoliberal agenda within the California Democratic Party. A former advisor to Republican governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Crane is a widely-published critic of state and local tax initiatives, publicly-funded health care, public education, public employees and their pensions. He raises lots of money for “courageous” candidates willing to put “citizen interests” ahead of such “special interest” causes.

In Memoriam: David McReynolds, 1929-2018

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David McReynolds was the first “Old Leftist” I ever met, back in 1996, at one of a number of ill-fated 1990s meetings of representatives of socialist organizations in New York City hoping for some sort of “left unity” around a common project. Strictly speaking, David wasn’t an “Old Leftist” – that label was affixed to members of the Socialist Party (SP), Communist Party (CP) or the Trotskyist grouplets of the 1930s and 1940s. David was “inbetween” the Old and New Lefts, joining both the SP and the radical-pacifist War Resisters League (WRL) in 1951.

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