New Politics Vol. XII, No. 3, Whole Number 47

FROM THE EDITORS

LETTERS

  • Diane Hufford’s reply to Betty Mandell and Mandell’s response

SPECIAL SECTION: THE WORLD ECONOMIC CRISIS: LABOR’S RESPONSE

  • INTRODUCTION, Dan La Botz and Lois Weiner
  • THE GLOBAL CRISIS AND THE WORLD LABOR MOVEMENT, Dan La Botz
  • CHINA; END OF A MODEL . . . OR THE BIRTH OF A NEW ONE?, Au Loong Yu
  • ARE U.S. UNIONS READY FOR THE CHALLENGE OF A NEW PERIOD?, Kim Moody
  • FRENCH WORKERS FACE THE CRISIS, Léon Crémieux
  • THE CLASS STRUGGLE IN POST-SOVIET RUSSIA, Boris Kagarlitsky
  • NOTES TOWARD A VISION OF THE WORKERS’ MOVEMENT IN MEXICO, Jorge Robles

CARTOON: NATE THE NEOCONSERVATIVE, Ruben Bolling

OBAMA AND EMPIRE, Thomas Harrison

AS CUNNING AS SERPENTS AND AS INNOCENT AS DOVES: TOWARDS A WORLDLY LEFT, Roland Boer

SUPPORT OUR TROOPS . . . UNTIL THEY COME HOME?, Amir Azarvan

FRANKLIN ROSEMONT (1943-2009), AN OBITUARY AND A MEMORY, Paul Buhle

CONSTRUCTING A CRITICAL POLITICAL THEORY, Stephen Eric Bronner

GLOBAL LEVERAGED BUYOUT OR THE “LONGEST BOOM IN CAPITALIST HISTORY”? A REPLY TO ROBERT FITCH, Loren Goldner with a response by Fitch

AFTER ISRAEL’S INVASION: AN EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT FROM GAZA, THE WEST BANK, AND ISRAEL, Marie Kennedy

LOST IN THE JUNGLE, Christopher Phelps

EDWARD SAID: A PALESTINIAN VIEW, Fakhri Saleh

GLOBALIZATION AND CAPITALISM, AN INTERVIEW WITH ZYGMUNT BAUMAN, Chronis J. Polychroniou

BOOK REVIEWS

  • Marvin Mandell, ANARCHISM AND SOCIALISM, rev. of Wayne Price, The Abolition of the State
  • Bhaskar Sunkara, MARXISM AND NATIONAL LIBERATION INDIA, rev. of Satyabrata Rai Chowdhuri, Leftism In India, 1917-1947
  • Alan Aja, FROM “SÍ SE PUEDE” TO “YES WE CAN,” rev. of Jacques E. Levy, Cesar Chavez, and Randy Shaw, Beyond the Fields
  • Michael Hirsch, RETURNING POLITICAL THEORY TO POLITICS, rev. of Joseph Schwartz, The Future of Democratic Equality
  • Ophelia Benson, LIVING WITH HOPE?, rev. of Ronald Aronson, Living Without God
  • Dan La Botz, MEXICAN PEASANTS, rev. of David Bacon, Illegal People, John Gibler, Mexico Unconquered, and Tanalis Padilla, Rural Resistance in the Land of Zapata
  • Alyson M. Cole, EVERYTHING NEW IS OLD AGAIN, rev. of Susan Faludi, The Terror Dream
  • Carey Harrison, WHEN THE WHOLE IS THE UNTRUE, rev. of Jonathan Littell, The Kindly Ones

WORDS & PICTURES

  • Paul Buhle, YIDDISH CULTURE AND EARLY CARTOONING with introduction by Kent Worcester

In this issue:

China: End of a Model…Or the Birth of a New One?

By:

CHINA’S THIRTY YEARS OF NEARLY UNINTERRUPTED HIGH GROWTH has encountered great challenge as the global economic crisis has hit China’s export hard. Since China’s trade as a percentage of GDP is as high as 70 percent, the export-led growth mode has practically ended. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is aware of this. Back in April, 2008 President Hu Jintao spoke of the need to change the mode of development from export-led growth to domestic-led growth by expanding domestic demand.

Notes Toward a Vision of The Workers' Movement in Mexico

By:

TRANSLATED BY DAN LA BOTZ To the memory of Dale Hathaway and Antonioin Villalba IN ORDER TO EVALUATE AND UNDERSTAND the current situation of the workers’ movement in Mexico as power has shifted from the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) to the National Action Party (PAN), it is important to understand the character of the Mexican regime and its historical development. Does a change in the ruling party represent the beginning of a democratic transition and a change in the system?

The Class Struggle in Post-Soviet Russia

By:

TRANSLATED BY MICHEL VALE THE RESTORATION OF CAPITALISM on the territory of the former Soviet Union was accompanied not only by unprecedented attacks on the social rights of the population. (Not only rights characteristic of the Soviet system, e.g., the right to housing, were rescinded, but also many of those that in the West are considered a normal attribute of a civilized attitude toward the wage laborer). No less impressive was the ease with which the new bourgeoisie imposed its conditions on the workers. By the late eighties the topic of free trade unions had become extremely popular.

The Global Crisis and the World Labor Movement

By:

THE WORLD’S WORKING PEOPLE FACE the greatest challenge in three generations. The economic crisis that began in the banking institutions of the United States last year has rapidly spread around the globe, creating a financial and industrial disaster. In one country after another banks have failed, corporations have gone bankrupt, and millions around the world have lost their jobs.

French Workers Face the Crisis

By: newpolitics

TRANSLATED BY MICHAEL SEITZ GUADELOUPE HAS MADE AN IMPRESSION . . . but not yet on the French union movement. The capitalist crisis affects France as it does all industrialized countries.The ingredients are the same:

Are U.S. Unions Ready for the Challenge of a New Period?

By:

BY NOW IT SEEMS CLEAR that the United States has entered a new period of contradictory trends that presents a profound challenge to organized labor. First there is the deepening world recession that is bringing down some of American capitalism’s most high profile institutions from Wall Street to Detroit. At the same time, of course, it is wiping out millions of jobs, 4.4 million from December 2007 to February 2009.

Obama and Empire

By:

AS NOAM CHOMSKY OBSERVED, “Obama’s message of ‘hope’ and ‘change’ offered a blank slate on which supporters could write their wishes” (Znet, Nov. 25, 2008). Millions voted for Barack Obama in order to reverse the brutal and catastrophic foreign policy of the Bush Administration, especially the war in Iraq. But as far as fundamental change is concerned, his first months in office (this is being written in mid-April) offer no real grounds for hope.

Constructing a Critical Political Theory

By:

CRITICAL THEORY HAS ITS POLITICAL roots in what has been termed “the heroic phase” of the Russian Revolution. This was the period from 1917-1923 in which the radical democratic vision of workers’ councils — or “soviets” — dominated both the communist movement and its radical offshoots.

After Israel's Invasion: An Eyewitness Account from Gaza, the West Bank, and Israel

By:

Gaza: War on Civilians in the World’s Largest Open-air Prison[1]

review

Anarchism and Socialism

By:

WAYNE PRICE’S THE ABOLITION OF THE STATE is a well considered, well researched, and well written book. I shall try to summarize his major points in the first several chapters. Chapters 9, 10, and 11 deal with the failure of revolutions in Russia and Spain and the success of the counter-revolution in Germany, and I shall discuss them as well.

review

Returning Political Theory to Politics

By:

The odd disconnect between theorists of ‘difference’ and struggles for social solidarity

IT’S TRAINED ELEPHANTS linked tail to snout contending with accursed builders of The Tower of Babel. That’s pretty much how defenders of discourse on class and identity caricature their opposite theoretical numbers. Not so Joseph Schwartz, who shows why such binary thinking is dangerous. Schwartz instead places economic inequality and politics back into discussions of identity and difference. It’s about time.

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