Category: Uncategorized

For Nicaraguans April Never Ended

This awakening was not about ideologies, but for the country and against a common adversary: the Ortega-Murillo dictatorship. Nobody prepared us or financed us.
By Lesther Aleman*  (Confidencial)
HAVANA TIMES – We all asked for changes, but never thought of demanding, living and writing . . .

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Notes on DSA Pre-Convention

We publish here an account of the discussions taking place in the Democratic Socialists of America, now the largest left organization in the United States with over 50,000 members , as it prepares for its national convention to take place . . .

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An Open Letter to the NAACP About Puerto Rico

The 109th annual convention of the NAACP Read more ›

Vivek Chibber’s "Road to Power" Is Not

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Vivek Chibber’s “Our Road to Power” published recently in Jacobin—oddly enough written as a commemoration of the Russian Revolution of October 1917—codifies a strategy for what is one of the dominant tendencies in the American left today: social democracy. The principal argument of “Our Road to Power” (a title chosen by Jacobin’s editors, perhaps alluding to German Social Democrat Karl Kautsky’s The Road to Power) is that a “ruptural strategy” is off the agenda. By “ruptural strategy” Chibber means one that is predicated upon a crisis of the economic and political system leading to the breakdown or to the overthrow of the state. Chibber believes that since the power of the state is so great today—because of its legitimacy, its coercive power, and its power of surveillance—a revolutionary strategy is ruled out. It would be, he says, “hallucinatory” to think otherwise.

Post-Modern Trumpism and Loneliness: The Rise of Vulgar Authoritarianism

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In Hannah Arendt’s pioneering book The Origins of Totalitarianism, she criticized the failure of many to understand the appeals of fascism to modern citizens. She wrote that many observers gave fairly rote justifications for its rise and appeal in an apparently advanced and enlightened country like Germany, the birthplaces of Goethe, Kant, and Beethoven. Some claimed that it was the depressed economy that was responsible. Others in the German context pointed to defeat and humiliation in the First World War. Some reactionary conservatives claimed it was declining moral standards and the collapse of religiosity. And Arendt accepted that many of these might have something to do with it. But her ultimate explanation was far simpler and yet strangely more acute. Modern Germans were lonely.

After 121 Years, the First Indigenous Singer Performs at Brazil’s Teatro Amazonas

[1]Djuena Tikuna during her performance at the Teatro Amazonas. Image: screenshot, Jornalistas Livres (Youtube)

On 23 August, Djuena Tikuna [2] became the first indigenous singer to perform on the stage of the Teatro Amazonas [3] (“Amazonas Theatre”) — a bastion of European culture in the middle of the world’s largest tropical forest.

Why Socialists Shouldn’t Believe In Human Nature

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Let’s set the scene.

You just had dinner with your family and argued about the viability of the creation of socialism in the United States while fighting off their tired and false rebuttals of human nature as your uncle Steve got broccoli stuck in his teeth. Exhausted from the argument in a way that only your family can cause, you head to your home and get ready for bed. A notification appears on your phone that a new article from Jacobin.

The Founding Fathers: “Neoliberals” Avant le Mot

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“Who is to blame for the election of Donald Trump?” It’s a question that was asked more than a few times after November. We’re all familiar with the answers that were given: James Comey, the electoral college, the DNC’s leaked—not hacked—emails, the characteristically shameful performance of the mainstream media in its focus on personalities rather than substance, the stupefying incompetence of Hillary Clinton’s campaign, the elitist insularity and corruption of the Democratic Party, etc.

DSA’s Convention – Back to the Democratic Party or an Independent Course?

A Reply to Joseph Schwartz and Bhaskar Sunkara

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When the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) meets in convention in Chicago this weekend the central question will be this: Will DSA return to the Democratic Party or chart an independent course? DSA members Joseph M. Schwartz and Bhaskar Sunkara have written an article in which they argue that DSA should follow the example of the Communist Party USA in the Popular Front period of the 1930s when it supported Democratic Party president Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The FBI Takes Charge: The Establishment May be Done with Trump

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[Updated May 19, 2017] After nearly four months of President Donald Trump’s chaotic presidency surrounded by controversies and scandals, the American establishment has decided to take things in hand. That is the meaning of deputy attorney general Rod J. Rosenstein’s appointment of Robert S. Mueller III to serve as special counsel to investigate ties between the Trump administration and Russia. Mueller, who had served as the FBI director from 2001 to 2013 under presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, has both the confidence of the establishment and the political independence that will allow him to pursue the issue without fear of presidential interference.

Trump In Power: The First 100 Days

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President Donald Trump is neither the populist champion of working-class underdogs that some of his supporters hoped, nor is he is the fascist dictator that some feared. Co-opted by the Republican establishment, he is a dangerous, authoritarian, militarist whose programs threaten the American people, world peace, and the planet.

As Trump took office, the majority of Americans were anxious, worried.

Overcoming Adjunctification & Contingent Labor

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The neoliberal policies implemented since the 1980s in Mexico and around the world have worsened the conditions of academic workers, imposing labor flexibility and precariousness on most of the teachers in higher education. This new academic majority needs a political revival. The reorganization of this sector has become an urgent task for academics and their unions.

Syria and the Left

 

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Behind the humanitarian disaster of the Syrian civil war is a political crisis the Left urgently needs to understand.

The Syrian tragedy is a key moral and political question today. Yet it has not been easy for leftists around the world to decide where they stand on Syria.

What labor should learn from Trump’s victory

Michael Hirsch, Saulo Colon, Murray Schneider, and Lois Weiner respond to an exchange between  Larry Cohen and Randi Weingarten and Leo Casey in New Labor Forum about what organized labor could and should have done differently so as to avoid Donald Trump’s victory. We hope to encourage wide-ranging debate among labor activists and supporters about these issues. You can reply on our blog, below, or in the comments section of the New Labor Forum reprint of our article.

Day of Support for Standing Rock Struggle

Irish Anti-Colonial Solidarity with Indigenous People

#NoDAPL

In 1847 as a famine created by both climate and man was unleashing death and destruction across Ireland, a group of charitable people across the Atlantic ocean raised money for those affected. They raised 170dollars and these people who managed to raise such a considerable amount of money were themselves without any prosperity but gave what they had because they knew the hardships famine and opression brought, they were Native Americans of the Choctaw Nation.

Letter from Standing Rock

ImageWe arrived at the Standing Rock encampment late afternoon on Thursday as the sun was beginning to go down. Driving into the site was truly amazing:  it is enormous! It is a village of about 500 (probably more) tents, vans, RVs, etc, some of them huge and housing dozens of people.  Lots more people who are participating in the daily activities, as I am, are staying at the Sioux-run Prairie Knights Casino Hotel. The hotel and casino are enormous too.The land defining the reservation is vast and the scenery is beautiful, calm and wide. Thousands of people have participated in the protest since it started in the spring.

Towards an Anarchist Money and Monetary System: An Interview with Nathan Cedric Tankus

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Though conceived out of conversations concerning the Eurozone crisis in summer 2015, this interview with Nathan Cedric Tankus engages with heightened focus by the left on finance capita. Tankus is research scholar at the Modern Money Network, an organization committed to: “The creation and improvement of monetary and financial institutions governed by the public and directed in support of public purpose; The universal, enforceable and inalienable right of every person to participate in economic life in a manner consistent with basic principles of justice, fairness, equality and dignity; The security of individuals, families and communities, the development of autonomous, non-state entities and the flourishing of civil society as critical components of economic freedom” as well as principles of ecological sustainability and intellectual freedom.

Trump’s Sexual Assaults Spark Revival of Women’s Movement

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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s bragging about his sexual assaults on women appears to be sparking a revival of the women’s movement.

Trump’s remark that he could “grab women by the pussy”—followed by more women coming forward to describe his sexual assault on them over many years—has led to social media protests and to demonstrations in New York City and Washington, D.C.

Trump’s outrageous remarks prompted women of all ages, races, and ethnicities who had been silent for years and even decades to speak out, sit-in, and protest. We seem to be at a “Women’s Lives Matter” moment and perhaps at the beginning of a new women’s movement.

Mexico – Behind the Protests

 ImageTwo new articles provide useful, accurate analysis about what's behind the protests in Oaxaca Mexico about education reform. One explains the economic factors that compel the government to respond with such vicious repression and are behind its refusal to compromise about its policy to replace the existing teacher workforce with contract labor.

A Story from El Salvador: Julio Molina, Saving Historic Memory

ImageThere are 500 delegates from more than 100 political organizations in the Americas here at the São Paolo Forum being held this year in San Salvador. Yesterday at the opening session I found myself seated next to Julio Molina, a delegate from the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) of the host country, El Salvdor. We introduced ourselves and when the session ended went out to talk about our mutual interest in history.

Imperialism’s Junior Partners

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On May 12, Brazil's democratic government, led by the Workers’ Party (PT), was the victim of a coup. What will the other BRICS countries (Russia, India, China, and South Africa) do? Will they stand by as the reactionaries who took power in Brasilia pivot closer to Western powers, glad to warm Dilma Rousseff's seat at the BRICS summit in Goa, India in five months’ time? Or take a stronger line, following the lead of Latin American progressive countries (Venezuela, Cuba, Ecuador, Bolivia, Nicaragua and El Salvador)?

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