[Marxism] Providence Teachers Union rally

2017-02-02 Thread Andrew Stewart via Marxism
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Please help spread this around via social media and any other methods to
build support for this important fight.

https://rimediacoop.org/2017/02/01/ptu-jan-rally-2017/

-- 
Best regards,

Andrew Stewart
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[Marxism] The Greatest Man in the World By James Thurber

2017-02-02 Thread Ralph Johansen via Marxism

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Reading the news over the past months, and seeing it all mounting in 
eerie inevitability since the inauguration, I can't be the only one who 
thought of this: 
http://www.cudaclass.info/enc1102/shortstory/greatestmantext.pdf. It 
totally ain't funny of course but what else in the meantime but a metaphor.


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[Marxism] Exclusive: Trump to focus counter-extremism program solely on Islam - sources | Reuters

2017-02-02 Thread MM via Marxism
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The Trump administration wants to revamp and rename a U.S. government program 
designed to counter all violent ideologies so that it focuses solely on 
Islamist extremism, five people briefed on the matter told Reuters.

The program, "Countering Violent Extremism," or CVE, would be changed to 
"Countering Islamic Extremism" or "Countering Radical Islamic Extremism," the 
sources said, and would no longer target groups such as white supremacists who 
have also carried out bombings and shootings in the United States.


http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-extremists-program-exclusiv-idUSKBN15G5VO
 


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[Marxism] The We Want to Live campaign: Impoverishment is a political choice

2017-02-02 Thread Andrew Pollack via Marxism
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Very broad-based, multi-issue campaign linking economic, social and
political struggles.
http://www.madamasr.com/en/2017/02/02/feature/economy/the-we-want-to-live-campaign-impoverishment-is-a-political-choice/
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[Marxism] Global women's strike March 8th?

2017-02-02 Thread Andrew Pollack via Marxism
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Given the multiplicity of countries and movements involved, and the breadth
of types of actions planned (based on local realities), IMO this could turn
into a huge next step (as opposed, I have to add, to the anarchists'
arbitrary February 17th "general strike" call).
See
http://internationalviewpoint.org/spip.php?article4852
by Cinzia Arruzza
and
http://parodemujeres.com/
the website of the global coordination
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[Marxism] Donald Trump's remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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(From Steven Salaita on FB)

Here's a transcript of Donald Trump's remarks at the National Prayer 
Breakfast:


Thank you, thank you everybody, thank you. It's great to do my first 
prayer breakfast. We've got seven more to go, at least seven more. Who 
knows. I'm winning so much they may have to change the Constitution. 
Next time we're gonna win even bigger. My people have done the 
calculations, we've looked at the polls, we expect 107, 108 percent of 
the vote. And we're just getting started. But the reason we're here is 
because of Jesus.


[APPLAUSE]

I mean, Jesus is great. Some say the greatest. Moses is pretty great, 
too. Parted the sea. Did it without the EPA, too. I'll close it down 
soon, the EPA. Moses would have hated it. Abraham, he was tough. He 
didn't cut that kid in half, Isaac I think, or was it Isaiah. Doesn't 
matter. I'd do it to Eric or Junior, but Abraham chickened out, blamed 
it on God. Isaac and Isaiah didn't grow up to be as successful as Eric 
and Junior, either, but that's okay, they didn't have a strong father 
figure, like the blacks, who love me more than they love Jesus, by the 
way. They really love me, okay. And how about Ezekiel. What a name, 
Ezekiel. Led the NFL in rushing this year. Then there's Gabriel, who's 
totally underrated. I mean, he performed IVF on Mary. Great prophet, 
that one. Solomon, Joseph, Adam, good prophets. Mohammad, not so much.


[APPLAUSE]

And what a book, the Bible. It's the second bestseller of all time, a 
few million copies behind Art of the Deal. People love that book. In 
Mexico, everybody reads it in sixth grade. They read it in Iran, Syria, 
Afghanistan, Iraq, that other country over there. It's like their Bible. 
But anyway the other Bible. Wonderful book. Amazing book. I really like 
the story about Sodom and Gomorrah. God destroyed those sinful places. 
My friend Rudy did the same thing in Times Square, put in a TGI Fridays, 
a very successful restaurant. I'm gonna do him one better, though, build 
the best resort in Israel. Dead Sea water will come out of the faucets. 
Wonderful for exfoliation. You'll get the best exfoliation there. Tons 
of old stones laying around the country, too, almost like they used to 
be part of houses. We'll use those to make the place look like old 
Israel, from the fifties and sixties. And we'll dress Arabs up as camels 
and let the kids ride them. It's gonna be spectacular. They'll write a 
new Bible story about it one day.


[APPLAUSE]

As everybody knows, I'm a religious man. Pray twenty, thirty times a 
day. Huge prayers. I even pray for all the losers in the media. Maybe 
God will convince them to stop with the fake news, am I right? I haven't 
been able to do it. But miracles are important, that's why I have 
beautiful buildings all over the world, miraculous properties. Maybe 
we'll see a miracle. God owes me a few. More than a few, but I'll settle 
for two or three. I've been negotiating with God all my life. That's 
really what prayer is. And I pray to win.


[APPLAUSE]

I know you have churches to go to, flocks and stuff, great flocks, 
terrific flocks. Like my man over here, Jerry Falwell Junior. People 
know his father, but let me tell you, the son is like that other son we 
admire so much. Wave to the crowd, Eric. Good boy. Jerry is gonna advise 
me about college. He's at Liberty. It's not as highly rated as Wharton, 
where I went, by the way, but he really knows what he's doing. Our 
universities are gonna be the best in the world. Not just in sports, 
either. We're gonna have fantastic universities, very special campuses. 
Right now they're terrible. They're a joke, folks. Filled with 
communists, women, diversity. We need better universities. It's 
terrible, this diversity. We're gonna make them great again. No more 
classes that teach useless things like writing and public speaking.


[APPLAUSE]

Thank you, everybody. It's been great. You're all special to me. God is 
special to me. Jesus. Very special, Jesus. My son in law doesn't like 
him, but we're working on that. Believe me, we're working on that. Thank 
you, God, for being great, and for the food. Amen.

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[Marxism] Fwd: Standing with Syrians: An Open Letter to an Anti-Imperialist | The Brooklyn Rail

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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http://brooklynrail.org/2017/02/field-notes/Standing-with-Syrians-An-Open-Letter-to-an-Anti-Imperialist
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[Marxism] The Police Killed My Unarmed Son in 2012. I’m Still Waiting for Justice.

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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NY Times Op-Ed, Feb. 2 2017
The Police Killed My Unarmed Son in 2012. I’m Still Waiting for Justice.
By CONSTANCE MALCOLM

Constance Malcolm last week after closing arguments in the New York 
Police Department trial of the officer who fatally shot her son Ramarley 
Graham in 2012. Credit Bryan R. Smith for The New York Times
Five years ago today, my unarmed 18-year-old son, Ramarley Graham, was 
unjustly killed when police officers burst into our home in the Bronx 
and shot him in front of his grandmother and 6-year-old brother.


Minutes before, my son was calmly walking down the street with his 
friends when he paused to pull up his pants. The officers wrongly 
thought he had a gun in his waistband, followed him home, knocked down 
our door without cause or a warrant and killed him.


To this day, none of the officers responsible have been fired.

In fact, the officer who pulled the trigger, Richard Haste, still works 
for the Police Department, which paid him $94,000 last year. It has 
allowed him to accrue time in the department and enjoy the raises that 
go with that. Although he has been stripped of his gun and put on desk 
duty, his pay last year was $30,000 more than it was when he killed 
Ramarley in 2012.


It was only last month that Officer Haste finally faced a department 
trial — a disciplinary process that grossly undercharged him for the 
extent of his misconduct.


In a department trial, there is no jury, and the person who acts as the 
“judge” (in this case the department’s deputy commissioner of trials) 
writes a report with recommendations on whether there should be 
disciplinary action and what it should be. That report then goes to the 
police commissioner, who makes the final decision (which doesn’t have to 
match recommendations). This process can take months.


Although more than a dozen officers should be investigated and charged 
in my son’s killing and surrounding misconduct, the department has 
lodged internal charges against only two besides Officer Haste. It has 
not even scheduled department trials for the two.


I was forced to take days off from work to sit in on the trial. I was 
not allowed to read the firearms discharge report from the night my son 
was killed or Officer Haste’s disciplinary record. And because my family 
was given so little notice of the proceeding, Ramarley’s father could 
not fly back from Jamaica in time to attend.


Officer Haste was indicted by a Bronx grand jury, but it was thrown out 
on a technicality. A second grand jury was convened but failed to indict 
him. The only measure of accountability left is for Officer Haste to be 
fired, following departmental trials. If I had not waged a nonstop 
campaign, even this department trial probably wouldn’t have happened. 
That’s because New York City’s leadership has also failed to push for 
justice and now appears to be doing the bare minimum.


Mayor Bill de Blasio was quick to speak with my family and call for 
action on my son’s killing when he was running for mayor and wanted the 
votes of black and brown New Yorkers. Just days after Ramarley was 
killed, Mr. de Blasio said in a statement that “part of the healing 
process for the Graham family, and for the city as a whole, derives from 
a fair, speedy and transparent investigation. That work should begin 
immediately.”


Now that he’s mayor, he has refused to meet with me or ensure any 
accountability that’s fair, speedy or transparent. His administration 
wouldn’t even provide me with basic information about the trial and 
charges against the officers.


In addition, Mr. de Blasio recently claimed his administration has 
reformed policing to make the city safer and fairer.


I wish this were true.

In New York City, crime statistics are lower and the overall number of 
reported stop-and-frisks is down. But black and Latino New Yorkers are 
still disproportionately stopped, and multiple Police Department audits 
show that around 64 percent of stops go unreported. This harassment 
continues even though more than 80 percent of stops don’t result in a 
summons or arrest.


At the same time, there is no accountability for police abuses, which 
has allowed injustices like my son’s killing to go unpunished. Mr. de 
Blasio is either willfully ignoring racial disparities and Police 
Department abuses in our communities or has a shallow understanding of 
the problem. Either way, the harm continues.


Across the country, we’ve made little real progress on police reform 
even though there is more national attention to the problem. That’s 
because the focus is on training, body cameras, “police-community 
relations” and “neighborhood 

[Marxism] [UCE] Fwd: Palestinians and the Syrian War: Between Neutrality and Dissent - Al-Shabaka

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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To move toward a more just position, the PLO and PA should rethink their 
stance of neutrality with regard to the Syrian regime’s mass atrocities 
against its citizens as well as against Palestinians in Syria. 
Palestinian solidarity movements can reject the Syrian regime’s 
appropriation of the Palestinian question and reiterate the commitment 
of solidarity networks to human rights and justice everywhere. They can 
also amplify Palestinian-Syrian voices and defend both their right to 
reparation and justice within Syria, as well as their inalienable right 
to return to their homes in Palestine. Finally, they can reiterate 
dedication to fostering global solidarity in light of the disturbing 
developments in the international political realm, such as the recent 
election of Donald Trump. No matter how dire the outlook may seem, 
through dedicated solidarity and tireless activism there will come a 
time when things will be different. In the meantime, only our moral 
compasses can guide us there.


full: 
https://al-shabaka.org/briefs/palestinians-syrian-war-neutrality-dissent/

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[Marxism] Fwd: A Syrian Astronaut Finds No Place to Go on Earth | Village Voice

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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Faris defected from the Syrian air force after witnessing indiscriminate 
bombings from military aircraft "attacking my own city and district. I 
knew they cannot discriminate between enemies and the people. I am a 
witness. We are all witnesses," he said, an empty-handed relic of lost 
and blackened Syria, cradle of civilization. "From space," Faris told 
his listeners, "I saw the world without limits. She carries us and we 
destroy her. I wonder, as the destiny of my country is being written 
every day, how will we go on?"


Just a few days after that meeting in Istanbul, Donald Trump's travel 
ban came down, bringing "Space Refugee" one step closer to reality. Now 
Faris, native of Aleppo, a city that has suffered as much as any in the 
world, and a critic of the regime, falls into the ever widening group of 
people not allowed in the United States, not as a refugee nor even as a 
visitor. In a phone call, Faris was supremely aware of the irony. Having 
fled Assad, Faris now saw the United States falling under the sway of 
the same kind of power.


"Trump does not understand anything about human history," he said, 
toggling between humor and seriousness with such ease that the only 
translated effect of his character is sheer dignity.


full: 
http://www.villagevoice.com/arts/dark-reality-catches-up-to-a-show-about-a-syrian-astronaut-9624742

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[Marxism] Fwd: 1,000 Yemeni-American bodega owners strike Thursday to protest Trump’s travel ban | New York's PIX11 / WPIX-TV

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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http://pix11.com/2017/02/01/1000-yemeni-american-bodega-owners-strike-thursday-to-protest-trumps-travel-ban/
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[Marxism] general strike?

2017-02-02 Thread Andrew Pollack via Marxism
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This new article (link at end) IMO is a good response to liberal
electioneering strategies pimping off the upsurge against Trump, and at the
end has this great Luxemburg quote:

"[I]t becomes obvious that the task of social democracy does not consist in
the technical preparation and direction of mass strikes, but, first and
foremost, in the political leadership of the whole movement.

"Political leadership matters, because as we've seen throughout history,
injustice and oppression sooner or later provoke resistance, but there is
no guarantee that resistance in itself will lead to victory."

This is very relevant now, when you have Democratic Party hacks falling all
over themselves to appear to be in the lead of the new movements; when you
have anarchists "preparing" a (probably) mythical February 17th general
strike - but when you also have real, organically-organized strikes by
South Asian/Muslim taxi-drivers and Yemeni deli owners, which in turn are
just one manifestation of the discussions going on in every workplace and
neighborhood...
https://socialistworker.org/2017/02/02/do-protests-matter
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[Marxism] Fwd: Trump lashes back at Berkeley after protests block speech by Breitbart writer Milo Yiannopoulos - The Washington Post

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2017/02/01/berkeley-cancels-speech-by-breitbrart-writer-milo-amid-intense-protests/
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[Marxism] Fwd: No ‘G’day, mate’: On call with Australian prime minister, Trump badgers and brags - The Washington Post

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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Trump is certifiably insane.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/no-gday-mate-on-call-with-australian-pm-trump-badgers-and-brags/2017/02/01/88a3bfb0-e8bf-11e6-80c2-30e57e57e05d_story.html
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[Marxism] Fwd: UC Berkeley cancels 'alt-right' speaker Milo Yiannopoulos as thousands protest | World news | The Guardian

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/feb/01/milo-yiannopoulos-uc-berkeley-event-cancelled
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[Marxism] Fwd: These Are the Groups Behind Those ‘Spontaneous’ Anti-Trump-Ban Protests - The Daily Beast

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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On the dark and cloudy morning in Brooklyn after Donald Trump’s 
election-night upset, 20 members of the nonprofit Make the Road New York 
gathered in the conference room of their office for an all-hands 
emergency meeting.


The Latino and working-class organizing group, which specializes in 
immigrant rights, had not fully prepared for its nightmare scenario of 
Trump winning the presidency. Few people in the room believed the 
Republican candidate had more than a slim chance of victory.
The mood was extremely emotional. Some were visibly distraught, some 
were furious, some even cried.


But as the day went on, the small huddle of organizers got back to work 
to chart a course forward—to prepare for what Daniel Altschuler, their 
director of civic engagement and research, would later describe as a 
“defining fight of our lives.”


full: 
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2017/02/02/these-are-the-groups-behind-those-spontaneous-anti-trump-ban-protests.html

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[Marxism] Fwd: Workless, or working less? — Crooked Timber

2017-02-02 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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That’s the title of my review of Tim Dunlop’s excellent new book, Why 
the Future Is Workless, published at Inside Story. It’s over the fold.


Donald Trump’s election to the US presidency has brought to the fore 
issues that have been simmering for some time. Despite his manifest 
unfitness, nearly half of American voters supported a candidate who 
promised to “make America great again,” most obviously by bringing back 
good jobs. As Trump’s dystopian inauguration speech made clear, good 
jobs are part of a past to which many Americans aspire.


These hopes raise the obvious question: will jobs of any kind survive in 
the future? This is the issue addressed by Tim Dunlop in Why the Future 
Is Workless.


The future (or lack of a future) of work is well-trodden ground. Dunlop 
surveys the wide variety of views to emerge in recent years and also, 
more importantly, challenges assumptions about work, labour and jobs 
that are taken for granted most of the time. As he points out, “jobs” as 
we understand them didn’t exist in significant numbers before the middle 
of the nineteenth century. When American politicians were drawing up the 
US constitution in the late eighteenth century, he writes, they 
“envisioned a nation of independent yeoman farmers and other forms of 
self-employed workers, not one of wage slaves who worked for someone else.”


Good jobs – secure and well-paid enough to support a family in 
reasonable comfort ­– only became a standard expectation in the middle 
of the twentieth century, and it is these jobs, rather than the facts of 
work and labour, that are now disappearing.


full: http://crookedtimber.org/2017/02/01/workless-or-working-less/
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[Marxism] the spat with Australia

2017-02-02 Thread Gary MacLennan via Marxism
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The Prime Minister of Australia is in deep trouble. As listers would know
he did a deal with Obama to swap refugees from the Middle East for some
from Latin America. He had a phone conversation with Trump who abused him
and then hung up.  Turnbull went on the airways and said the deal was still
on, and the President did not hang up on him.. Then the Trump Show saw an
opportunity.  They leaked and tweeted about the "dumb deal" Obama had done.
Egg  all over Turnbull's face.  As one media commentator put it "Trump
handed him his arse".

Turnbull's enemies inside his own party have been smelling blood. They have
been making pro-Trump statements and all that is heavily coded for
"Turnbull must go".

The Right in Australia though are genuinely afraid of a world with the USA
army.  That Turnbull offended the POTUS will be seen as a black mark. It is
impossible to predict things, of course, but Turnbull looks like Dead Man
Walking, such is the nature of the Trump Effect Down Under.

comradely

Gary
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