[Marxism] Capitalist Catastrophism...what is to be done?

2020-06-19 Thread Dayne Goodwin via Marxism
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Capitalist Catastrophism
https://roarmag.org/magazine/capitalist-catastrophism/
by Kai Heron
ROAR magazine, Issue #10, June 17, 2020

"First, we need to return to the problem of transition. If horizontalism
failed with the Arab Spring and Occupy Movements and infiltrating bourgeois
parties and municipalities failed between 2015 and 2020, then our
collective task under capitalist catastrophism is to use our new found
powers of imagination to support the difficult and patient work of building
organizational and political forms, theories and movements to propel our
struggles forward.

"Though it is impossible to go into detail on the subject here, I am
convinced that this requires the return of the revolutionary party. For all
their flaws the movements around Syriza, Podemos, Corbyn and Sanders made a
great advance on the so-called movements of the squares
 by
demonstrating that the party-form is uniquely capable of cohering and
furthering the interests of the working class. It was the party — albeit of
a bourgeois kind — that opened the space for an affirmative, rather than a
strictly negative, critique of capitalism to develop — the most notable
example of which is perhaps the Green New Deal.

"Yet as we now know these movements ran into trouble because they tried to
do the impossible: to turn a bourgeois party machine into a party of the
working class. Our task today, then, is to strip the party *form *of its
reformist *content*, to build autonomous, *revolutionary*, working class
parties. Such parties would refuse to participate in bourgeois electoral
politics and would instead focus on building the kinds of movements,
institutions, cultures and practices that can make a real difference to our
lives within capitalism while pointing the way beyond it.

"By unifying the left, by serving to bolster and consolidate the gains of
the kinds of spontaneous uprisings that we have seen across the world in
response to George Floyd’s murder, this kind of party can serve as an agent
of revolutionary transition.

"Second, we must forge what Samir Amin calls “the possible, but difficult,
conjunction of the struggles of the people in the south with those in the
north.” Today’s crises are planetary in scale and demand a planetary
response... "
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[Marxism] Young Hasidic Jews protest in support of black neighbors, challenging history of racial tensions

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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Washington Post, June 19, 2020 at 3:35 a.m. EDT
Young Hasidic Jews protest in support of black neighbors, challenging 
history of racial tensions

By Emily Wax-Thibodeaux

On a recent Sunday, about 200 young Hasidic women in long skirts and 
wigs and men with wide-brimmed black hats and free-flowing beards parked 
their baby strollers along the tree-lined boulevards of Crown Heights in 
Brooklyn.


They picked up their bullhorns and raised their homemade posters, some 
in Hebrew and Yiddish.


“The opposite of love is not hate. It’s indifference,” one sign read, 
quoting Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace laureate Elie ­Wiesel. The 
young families chanted “Black lives matter!” and “Jews for justice!” as 
they marched through the diverse neighborhood, once home to riots that 
broke out over tensions between black and Hasidic residents.


But on this day, there was largely gratitude and curiosity. Some African 
American and Caribbean neighbors did double takes as they passed the 
improbable scene of solidarity. Others touched their hearts and called 
out “Thank you!”


“It was a way of helping our Jewish community to begin to learn from and 
listen to black ­voices in our community,” said Maayan Zik, a black 
woman who converted to Orthodox Judaism more than a decade ago.


The June 7 demonstration was organized by Zik and other young Hasidic 
Jews who wanted to build allyship with their black neighbors. It was a 
trailblazing move for a new generation in the Hasidic community, young 
people who publicly proclaimed that Jewish law requires them to stand up 
against injustice and racism, even without the backing of their 
community’s leaders.


As they organized the demonstration, they welcomed openly gay former 
members who had been shunned by the community, and asked rabbis to speak 
about how standing up to injustice and racism is at the heart of Hasidic 
Jewish values. But their plans proved divisive, unleashing tense and 
emotional discussions within the community.


“We thought it would make a profound statement as religious Jews,” said 
organizer Miriam Levy-Haim, 32. She said she was heartened by the large 
number of people who watched the march via live stream, but not 
surprised that many rabbis declined to participate.


Some of the religious leaders said the event was too political. Others 
feared that the Black Lives Matter movement was anti-Semitic and argued 
that “Jewish lives matter” should be a slogan, too, given the recent 
spate of attacks on synagogues and Jewish people in New York City.


Rabbi Chaim Leibush Rottenberg, center, leads ultra-Orthodox Jews in a 
Torah scroll inauguration ceremony outside his home in Monsey, N.Y., on 
Dec. 29. The day before, an intruder stabbed and wounded five people 
during a Hanukkah candle-lighting ceremony at Rottenberg’s home.
Rabbi Chaim Leibush Rottenberg, center, leads ultra-Orthodox Jews in a 
Torah scroll inauguration ceremony outside his home in Monsey, N.Y., on 
Dec. 29. The day before, an intruder stabbed and wounded five people 
during a Hanukkah candle-lighting ceremony at Rottenberg’s home. (Peter 
Foley/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)
On social media, the organizers received critical messages. Some 
attempted to publicly undermine their credibility. Others accused 
organizers of not being observant Jews and of rebelling against the 
Orthodox community.


For some Hasidic Jews, the chants of “No justice, no peace” during the 
rally elicited traumatic memories of the demonstrations and violence 
that enveloped the neighborhood when black and Jewish residents clashed 
during the 1991 riots.


AD

The Chabad-Lubavitch Hasidic Jews have been rooted in Crown Heights 
since around World War II. Now home to the worldwide headquarters of the 
Lubavitch movement and long-established Jewish schools, the uniquely 
diverse neighborhood includes Lubavitchers living side-by-side with 
Caribbean and African American residents, often in the same apartment 
buildings.


Voices of protest: Why protesters are standing up for George Floyd

Before the 1991 riots, the communities were largely separate and 
mysterious to one another, with tensions fueled by cultural 
misunderstandings. Hasidic Jews attend private religious schools, while 
black Americans largely go to public schools. Lubavitchers follow strict 
kosher dietary restrictions, meaning they can’t patronize Caribbean 
immigrants’ community-oriented food festivals. And because of rules that 
restrict Hasidic men from touching women outside their immediate 
families, their lack of eye contact and unwillingness to shake hands can 
be interpreted as disrespect.


Emotions had grown particularly 

[Marxism] The SEC and Mississippi's Rebel Flag

2020-06-19 Thread John A Imani via Marxism
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The South Eastern Conference and the NCAA announced that it would not hold
'championship' events in the state until it removed the Confederate flag
from its own state flag.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/19/us/mississippi-flag-sec-trnd/index.html

This, in my opinion, is as great a change as the NASCAR's to the culture of
the South as the SEC, and especially so its college football, is sacrosanct.

Until 2010 U of Mississippi still has as its mascot a rebel soldier.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonel_Reb

JAI
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[Marxism] Iraqi hospitals become nexus of infection as virus cases rise among doctors

2020-06-19 Thread Dennis Brasky via Marxism
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The number of doctors with reported infections has jumped 56 percent since
last week, raising the tally to 506 since the outbreak began in Iraq in
March, according to the Iraqi Medical Association.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/iraqi-hospitals-become-nexus-of-infection-as-coronavirus-cases-rise-dramatically-among-doctors/2020/06/19/970de5c0-af0f-11ea-98b5-279a6479a1e4_story.html
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Re: [Marxism] On the NASCAR's Banning of the Confederate Flag and its Social Implications

2020-06-19 Thread wytheholt--- via Marxism
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Thanks for these scenes from your life in the south, and then in LA, John. I 
wish I were in your Mao classes. I really like the episode where you are 
cussing the cop for being a cop (=oppressor) and he says he took the job to 
protect the poor and the weak, but my guess is that he, like most of them, do 
what cops are supposed to do when push comes to shove (apt phrasing) he will 
shoot you or otherwise harm you; there may be exceptions, but somehow you don't 
run up against them when you are marching or at an angry demonstration. Yes, it 
is the social roles that define us for the most part, and I have seen good 
people crumble under the pressure.

I was certainly not a born communist, nor were you, though you came a lot 
closer. I have grown into my political beliefs, slowly, haltingly, but the 
graph doggedly runs to the left. I am glad you will not change to meet the 
times. Me either. I am glad we met on this listserv. WH


> On June 19, 2020 at 1:48 PM John A Imani  wrote:
> 
> << the symbols of segregation NEED to be in museums today>>
> 
> Thanx for this.  RT.  I grew up a Bama football fan.  And remained so 
> subsequent to moving to LA in S '63 after finishing 9th grade.  My girl and I 
> went to Saban's first Bama championship at the Rose Bowl in 2010.  I missed 
> the UA's integration but my older sister knew Vivian Malone.  I missed that 
> but here are some of the things that happened while there:
> 
> I grew up in Mobile, AL until I was 15.  Went to Catholic school.  As all 
> boys thought I wanted to be a priest.  My barely older first cousin was and 
> became Monsignor before his early death from MS.
> 
> The South.  I was at a Mardi Gras parade about 10 years old.  There was 
> another black kid next to me bout the same age.  And a third kid same age, 
> white, walking in front of the coming parade and selling peanuts.  Little 
> black kid held out a dime and the white kid said "Y'all want some pie-nuts?"  
> The black kid said "Yes, sir. 
> 
> Or playing stickball and running after a well hit liner.  Getting ball 
> and throwing back to infield.  Saw a station wagon with a carload of nuns.  
> "Damn, they must be lost."  Ran over to help and got within 20ft and saw the 
> driver needed a shave. 
> 
> White man In a summer suit comes to our door.  5 or 6 years old, I open 
> it.Probably selling insurance or something.  Man looks down at me and 
> said, "Damn.  You look just like a li'l ole Jew."  I beamed at such a 
> description.  Meant I was white-like.
> 
> 15 years later at LACC, 1967.  Saw paramilitary-looking brothers slowly 
> marching in formation onto the school grounds.  In camouflage jackets and 
> holding a Red Book in their hands in their crooked arms.  I'm thinking, "They 
> must be communists or something".  I felt sorry for them.  "They don't even 
> know God". 
> 
> Two years later, I'm BMoC.  Chairman of Political Affairs.  Teaching 'Mao 
> Tes-Tung Thought ' to LACC BSU and Section 3A of the Black Panther Party.  
> Walking across main drag, Vermont Ave, and a older cop on a motorcycle says 
> "How do you do?"  I knew who the cops were from Selma and whole bunch of sht. 
>  Viciously I let out a blur of obscenities punctuated with "Pig" and "Donuts" 
> and a bunch of "Fuck You's".  The guy almost cried, saying, "I'ma Christian 
> man.  I got this job to look out for the poor and the weak."  As I told a 
> nun, I am in recontact with after my 50th class reunion in 2016, "I went from 
> 7 feet tall, to 7 inches small". 
> 
> I still hate the cops but, against all odds, there can be and are 
> exceptions.  But their prime directive is the preservation of the sanctity of 
> private property and (to paraphrase) it is not the nature of the men that 
> determine their social roles, it is their social roles that determine the 
> nature of the men.  90% of good men and women who go into that function are 
> changed from their evangelist roles that prompted them to sign on.  And these 
> only a minority of all those who go into that so-called 'profession'.
> 
> No one, today, is a born communist.  In truth, save in extreme fortunate 
> circumstances ('Red Diaper babies') we are closer to being 'natural born 
> capitalists' because of the pervasive invasive ethos that starts at birth and 
> continually bombard us with 'me-isms'.   Those of us who have changed, who 
> have moved 'leftwards', all have been through stages in life.  We all have 
> learned from these or we did not.  But we all had the chance to learn. 
> 
> What I am saying is, maybe I look at things the way I do cause of the way 
> I've been.  And I 

Re: [Marxism] On the NASCAR's Banning of the Confederate Flag and its Social Implications

2020-06-19 Thread John A Imani via Marxism
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<< the symbols of segregation NEED to be in museums today>>

Thanx for this.  RT.  I grew up a Bama football fan.  And remained so
subsequent to moving to LA in S '63 after finishing 9th grade.  My girl and
I went to Saban's first Bama championship at the Rose Bowl in 2010.  I
missed the UA's integration but my older sister knew Vivian Malone.  I
missed that but here are some of the things that happened while there:

I grew up in Mobile, AL until I was 15.  Went to Catholic school.  As all
boys thought I wanted to be a priest.  My barely older first cousin was and
became Monsignor before his early death from MS.

The South.  I was at a Mardi Gras parade about 10 years old.  There was
another black kid next to me bout the same age.  And a third kid same age,
white, walking in front of the coming parade and selling peanuts.  Little
black kid held out a dime and the white kid said "Y'all want some
pie-nuts?"  The black kid said "Yes, sir.

Or playing stickball and running after a well hit liner.  Getting ball and
throwing back to infield.  Saw a station wagon with a carload of nuns.
"Damn, they must be lost."  Ran over to help and got within 20ft and saw
the driver needed a shave.

White man In a summer suit comes to our door.  5 or 6 years old, I open
it.Probably selling insurance or something.  Man looks down at me and
said, "Damn.  You look just like a li'l ole Jew."  I beamed at such a
description.  Meant I was white-like.

15 years later at LACC, 1967.  Saw paramilitary-looking brothers slowly
marching in formation onto the school grounds.  In camouflage jackets and
holding a Red Book in their hands in their crooked arms.  I'm thinking,
"They must be communists or something".  I felt sorry for them.  "They
don't even know God".

Two years later, I'm BMoC.  Chairman of Political Affairs.  Teaching 'Mao
Tes-Tung Thought ' to LACC BSU and Section 3A of the Black Panther Party.
Walking across main drag, Vermont Ave, and a older cop on a motorcycle says
"How do you do?"  I knew who the cops were from Selma and whole bunch of
sht.  Viciously I let out a blur of obscenities punctuated with "Pig" and
"Donuts" and a bunch of "Fuck You's".  The guy almost cried, saying, "I'ma
Christian man.  I got this job to look out for the poor and the weak."  As
I told a nun, I am in recontact with after my 50th class reunion in 2016,
"I went from 7 feet tall, to 7 inches small".

I still hate the cops but, against all odds, there can be and are
exceptions.  But their prime directive is the preservation of the sanctity
of private property and (to paraphrase) it is not the nature of the men
that determine their social roles, it is their social roles that determine
the nature of the men.  90% of good men and women who go into that function
are changed from their evangelist roles that prompted them to sign on.  And
these only a minority of all those who go into that so-called 'profession'.

No one, today, is a born communist.  In truth, save in extreme fortunate
circumstances ('Red Diaper babies') we are closer to being 'natural born
capitalists' because of the pervasive invasive ethos that starts at birth
and continually bombard us with 'me-isms'.   Those of us who have changed,
who have moved 'leftwards', all have been through stages in life.  We all
have learned from these or we did not.  But we all had the chance to
learn.

What I am saying is, maybe I look at things the way I do cause of the way
I've been.  And I could be wrong.  Always that proposition exists.  But I
ain't changing unless I change.  And I don't care who likes it or not.  If
I went back to that motorcycle cop today I would be saying "I truly,
seriously and whole-heartedly do not give a fuck that you are a cop, you
are  a good man.  A good man in a god-awful career".  "I was so much older
then, I'm younger than that now."

This is why the symbols need not destroying but relegation to comrade
Wythe's museum.

JAI


On Fri, Jun 19, 2020 at 9:21 AM  wrote:

> The top Klansmen didn't have white robes, but brightly hued ones.  I
> discovered this when my grandfather died in the summer of 1953 and I was
> deemed old enough at 11 to help my dad and uncle clear out his huge old
> house.  I was allotted the task of seeing what was in the attic.  I opened
> a closet door and discovered hanging there a dust-ridden orange Klan robe
> complete with pointy top.  My deeply embarrassed dad, over my supposedly
> childish objections that this was important to history, immediately burned
> the robe along with most of the other effects of my grandfather in a
> bonfire in the yard.  I now muse about the irony that, the more important
> the rank of the 

[Marxism] Why There Are No George Floyds in Cuba | August Nimitz | Resumen LatinoAmericano English

2020-06-19 Thread Kevin Lindemann and Cathy Campo via Marxism
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https://www.resumen-english.org/2020/06/why-there-are-no-george-floyds-in-cuba/


Sent from my iPhone

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[Marxism] Icelandic Noir | Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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Over the past couple of months, I have been bingeing on Netflix like 
most house-bound CounterPunchers. In case you haven’t seen them yet, I 
highly recommend two series that originated on Iceland television: The 
Valhalla Murders and Trapped. Both are close relatives to the Swedish 
Marxist detective stories that I reviewed on CounterPunch in 2014. They 
succeed both as social commentary and art.


What’s surprising is that a tiny nation (364,134, a population smaller 
than Wichita, Kansas) can produce the type of television drama that not 
only competes with Sweden’s but leaves HBO and Showtime in the dust. 
After reviewing the two TV series and a couple of Icelandic films that 
also merit watching during these pandemic social isolation days, I’ll 
conclude with some thoughts about Iceland that CounterPunch author and 
Iceland citizen José Tirado helped stimulate.


https://louisproyect.org/2020/06/19/icelandic-noir/

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[Marxism] Fwd: H-Net Review [H-Africa]: Spears on Copnall, 'A Poisonous Thorn In Our Hearts: Sudan and South Sudan's Bitter and Incomplete Divorce'

2020-06-19 Thread Andrew Stewart via Marxism
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-- Forwarded message -
From: H-Net Staff via H-REVIEW 
Date: Fri, Jun 19, 2020 at 12:53 PM
Subject: H-Net Review [H-Africa]: Spears on Copnall, 'A Poisonous Thorn In
Our Hearts: Sudan and South Sudan's Bitter and Incomplete Divorce'
To: 
Cc: H-Net Staff 


James Copnall.  A Poisonous Thorn In Our Hearts: Sudan and South
Sudan's Bitter and Incomplete Divorce.  Updated edition. London
Hurst, 2017.  Maps. xxix + 317 pp.  $27.50 (paper), ISBN
978-1-84904-830-9.

Reviewed by Ian Spears (University of Guelph)
Published on H-Africa (June, 2020)
Commissioned by David D. Hurlbut

If I were a diplomat about to be posted in Khartoum or Juba, it would
be difficult to imagine a more useful book than James Copnall's _A
Poisonous Thorn in Our Hearts: Sudan and South Sudan's Bitter and
Incomplete Divorce_. Copnall has a broad understanding of Africa,
having served as the BBC Africa editor and the BBC Sudan
correspondent from 2009 to 2012. In this book, he presents the views
of politicians, scholars, artists, journalists, and other experts. He
also offers creative ways to inform his reader of all aspects of
Sudanese life and politics. In the second chapter, "People and
Identity," for instance, he introduces short vignettes from ordinary
Sudanese. For anyone who wants a more "serious" understanding of the
country, these vignettes allow Sudanese to tell their own stories
only lightly mediated by an outsider.

As a united state, Sudan was a large and complicated country. Experts
lamented the tendency to reduce its central narrative to that of a
conflict between an Arab north and Christian south. Given the
country's bewildering complexity such a short-hand was
understandable. Copnall's book, however, provides a welcome and
accessible introduction to these complexities. In this comprehensive
examination of Sudan and South Sudan, both countries are given equal
treatment in chapters titled "People and Identity," "Politics,"
"Economy," "Development," and "Insecurity." Two additional chapters
consider the countries' relationship with the outside world ("The
Sudans and the World") and the challenges of their now-separate
existence ("The Sudans"). In the most recent edition of Copnall's
book (first edition was published in 2004), a new preface and
afterword have been added to the text.

Sudan _was_ once Africa's largest country in terms of territory, but
the country was fractured along many ethnic, political, and religious
lines. Prior to its independence from Great Britain in 1956, Sudan
experienced long periods of violence and war. The 2005 signing of the
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between the Sudanese People's
Liberation Movement (SPLM) in the South and the military (and
sometimes Islamist) regime in Khartoum promised an end to the
conflict. Following a referendum and a declaration of independence in
July 2011, South Sudan seceded from the North in one of the
continent's rare instances of border change. But as Copnall says,
"splitting Sudan in two did not resolve its many problems" (p. 245).

Copnall observes that the war in South Sudan "mutated into a dizzying
array" of local conflicts and power struggles (p. xxvi). Meanwhile,
the rump state of Sudan looked ever more vulnerable, denuded as it
was of substantial oil revenues and having presided over the
country's dismantling. Even this "updated edition" does not include
the events that led to the coup that deposed President Omar al-Bashir
in April 2019. But the author correctly anticipates Bashir's imminent
demise. Copnall successfully and convincingly navigates Sudan's many
challenges, from identity (specifically both countries' ethnic and
religious diversity) to economic matters (and most specifically the
conundrum of resource exploitation). Sudan demonstrates that oil is a
curse, a frustratingly irresistible source of patronage, and perhaps
a route to development--if only the countries' leaders would make the
right choices.

Indeed, it is difficult not to wish for better leadership in both
Sudans. On two separate occasions at both ends of the book, Copnall
observes that there was not a single day of peace while President
Bashir was in office in Khartoum. He also documents the irony of how,
having participated in South Sudan's liberation from Khartoum,
members of South Sudan's opposition now "fear for [their] life" from
the regime in Juba and seek refuge in Khartoum (p. 62).

On the other hand, it seems unlikely that any single individual--no
matter how virtuous--can be counted on to bring peace to such
complicated countries. It is easier to point to individuals (and
their respective regimes) as the source of violence and instability

Re: [Marxism] On the NASCAR's Banning of the Confederate Flag and its Social Implications

2020-06-19 Thread wytheholt--- via Marxism
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The top Klansmen didn't have white robes, but brightly hued ones.  I discovered 
this when my grandfather died in the summer of 1953 and I was deemed old enough 
at 11 to help my dad and uncle clear out his huge old house.  I was allotted 
the task of seeing what was in the attic.  I opened a closet door and 
discovered hanging there a dust-ridden orange Klan robe complete with pointy 
top.  My deeply embarrassed dad, over my supposedly childish objections that 
this was important to history, immediately burned the robe along with most of 
the other effects of my grandfather in a bonfire in the yard.  I now muse about 
the irony that, the more important the rank of the Klansman, the more colored 
his robe was.  Wythe
PS -- John, when I landed the job at the University of Alabama and got to 
Tuscaloosa in September 1966, there were signs on public water fountains 
designating the proper race of a drinker therefrom.  When I left Alabama in 
2007 a group of us were working on getting actually desegregated elementary 
school classes in the state's Black Belt (the school boards were grouping the 
pupils by supposed ability, and lo and behold! almost all the most "able" 
children turned out to be white!).  Given the doggedness of continued racist 
intransigence, the symbols of segregation NEED to be in museums today, such as 
the one in Selma founded by Rose Sanders (one of my heroes, a friend, and a 
fellow worker in the desegregation trenches) which shows Selma's struggles -- 
desegregation, the marches, the bridge-crossings, the demonstrations, and the 
federal legislation such as the Voting Rights Act which has resulted from 
continuing mostly-black activism centered in Selma.

> On June 18, 2020 at 10:18 PM John A Imani via Marxism 
>  wrote:
> 
> 
>   POSTING RULES & NOTES  
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> 
> << Indeed I can imagine a world in which these symbols are removed while
> the racist conditions that gave rise to them remain.>>
> 
> And indeed I can imagine a world in which the racist conditions are gone
> while these 'symbols' remain: in books and museums where they belong.
> 
> What is the effect of the sight of a Klan hood, masked conic hat and
> chewing tobacco-stained flowing was-white robe?  What comes to mind when a
> noose is tied from a prominent tree, the grace of its Spanish moss belied?
> The burning of a cross?  The signs  "Colored",  "Whites Only" on the
> restrooms, the water fountains, the lunch counters, the bus depot, the
> trains?  The Confederate flag?  More than signs.  Warnings.
> 
> 'Symbols' speak more than the picture's words.
> 
> Socially recognized, socially understood, socially enforced conventions.
> Southern blacks were almost born knowing where the back of the bus was.
> Which school to attend.  Who to let pass on the sidewalk by stepping onto
> the unpaved easement:  "Yes, Suh", "No, Ma'am".
> 
> Yes, I can imagine a world where historians' can comment in pages and
> inscribe their analyses of such 'symbols' on plaques; where students can be
> taught in our schools; where the merely curious can leaf through a book or
> walk hallowed galleries and pause and think and shake their heads in amazed
> disgust in a land where skin color itself has ceased to be the symbol.
> 
> I join comrade Wythe as a child of the South, fleeing Mason and Dixon's
> line, at the age of 15 but having seen much, enough.  I differ with and
> from the comrade only by being born black.
> 
> JAI
> 
> On Thu, Jun 18, 2020 at 6:03 PM A.R. G  wrote:
> 
> Very much appreciate Wythe's insight as a Southerner...
> Indeed I can imagine a world in which these symbols are removed while the
> racist conditions that gave rise to them remain.
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[Marxism] Bernie Sanders Predicted Revolution, Just Not This One

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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(The title of the article should have been worded "Bernie Sanders 
Predicted 'Revolution'".)


NY Times, June 19, 2020
Bernie Sanders Predicted Revolution, Just Not This One
By Sydney EmberT

People are in the streets, confronting injustice and demanding 
fundamental change.


It is the kind of moment that Senator Bernie Sanders spoke about on the 
2020 presidential campaign trail, and for decades before that. But when 
the revolution finally came, it wasn’t his.


The rise of revolutionary sentiment, like many things, is about timing. 
The coronavirus outbreak had already renewed support for progressive 
policy proposals, including “Medicare for all.” But the disproportionate 
impact of the coronavirus on black Americans, combined with the 
galvanizing death of George Floyd at the hands of the police in 
Minneapolis, have heightened the call to address systemic racism and 
police brutality, uniting Democrats — and the country — in a campaign 
for action in a way that Mr. Sanders’s message of economic equality did not.


“People are sick and tired of police murders of African-Americans,” Mr. 
Sanders said in an interview. “People are saying enough is enough.”


Mr. Sanders, whose slogan on his campaign was “Not me, us,” described 
the protests as a validation of his theory of social change: “What I 
have said for a very long time is that real change is never going to 
come from the top on down, it’s always from the bottom on up.”


But during his presidential bid, Mr. Sanders at times seemed 
uncomfortable speaking overtly about race. At a presidential forum in 
April 2019 for women of color, he offered few specific policy details, 
and drew some groans from the audience when he referred to marching with 
the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in response to a question about how 
he would handle current challenges.


And more recently, during an event in Flint, Mich., in March that 
campaign aides had billed as an opportunity for him to speak directly to 
black voters, he decided not to deliver a planned speech and instead 
largely ceded the stage to panelists including the academic Cornel West.


When Mr. Sanders spoke about racial equality, it was often in the 
context of economic equality, championing proposals and prescriptions 
that he believed would improve the lives of all working Americans. He 
said that policies like single-payer health care would address higher 
maternal and infant mortality rates in black communities. And he wanted 
to legalize marijuana and end cash bail, policies he said were aimed in 
particular at helping black Americans and other people of color.


These proposals, however, also amounted to an implicit expectation that 
voters trust the government — an especially difficult sell for those 
including older black voters who feel they have been historically let 
down by the government.


They were shortcomings that help explain why Mr. Sanders lost to former 
Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. in the Democratic primary race: 
Unable to win over older black voters, he came in a distant second to 
Mr. Biden in South Carolina, then went on to lose to Mr. Biden in every 
Southern state on Super Tuesday. Those defeats, Mr. Sanders’s allies 
say, contributed to the perception that Mr. Biden was more electable and 
would fare better against President Trump in the general election in 
November — a notion that helped propel Mr. Biden to victory in the primary.


Now, some of the same progressive leaders who never quite figured out 
how to mobilize such a broad coalition in the primary are considering 
how to not only support the movement, but also harness its energy as 
they look toward November.


Many Sanders allies maintain that racial justice was and continues to be 
a central tenet of his ideology. “If you do parse back the things that 
our campaign was fighting for, those policies, if they were able to come 
to life, would have certainly changed the positions for 
African-Americans in this country,” said Nina Turner, a national 
co-chair of the Sanders campaign and one of his most prominent black 
surrogates.


Though she praised his agenda regarding black Americans, she conceded 
that he did not articulate it forcefully enough. “It had that kind of 
tone to it, but it wasn’t as piercing as this moment demands,” she


Yet amid a national movement for racial justice that took hold after 
high-profile killings of black men and women, there is also an 
acknowledgment among some progressives that their discussion of racism, 
including from their standard-bearer, did not seem to meet or anticipate 
the forcefulness of these protests.


Kimberlé Crenshaw, the legal scholar 

[Marxism] Wilderness and Cows - CounterPunch.org

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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(Bring back the buffalo.)

Livestock pollute water. Western Watersheds Project tested the water of 
streams passing through actively grazed lands and found excessive levels 
of E coli in nearly all waterways with cows.


Livestock compact soils, reducing the infiltration of water, making 
lands already arid, even more desert-like.


Livestock consumes forage that would otherwise support native wildlife. 
There is only so much vegetation available for animals to eat, and if 
50-90% of it is going into the gut of a cow, there is that much less for 
everything from grasshoppers to elk.


Livestock transfer disease to wild species. For instance, it is well 
established that domestic sheep can transfer pneumonia to wild bighorns, 
which is one of the significant causes of bighorn declines around the West.


Livestock trample riparian areas. These are the green line of vegetation 
found along streams. Riparian areas have a disproportional value to 
wildlife in the arid West. Some 70-80% of all wildlife will use these 
areas at some point in their life cycle, yet livestock by consuming the 
vegetation, breaking down banks, and compacting soils degrade these 
essential habitats.


Livestock damage tends to widen streams, which reduces their 
hydrological function and allows water to heat, reducing their 
suitability for cold-water fish species like trout and salmon.


Livestock by their mere presence can socially displace native species 
like elk and deer. Presumably, if an elk is using some habitat and is 
forced to move to another area, it leaves the best habitat for the 
second-best terrain.


Livestock fences and other developments can harm native species. For 
instance, fences can block wildlife migrations, in particular, 
pronghorn, which are reluctant to jump fences, while sage grouse have 
suffered as high as 30% mortality due to collisions with fences.


Livestock spread weeds, in particular, the spread of cheatgrass, which 
is considered the biggest threat to sagebrush ecosystems, is facilitated 
by livestock grazing.


https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/06/19/wilderness-and-cows/

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[Marxism] A Stock Market Boom amidst a Real Economy Crisis | Prabhat Patnaik | Peoples Democracy

2020-06-19 Thread Kevin Lindemann and Cathy Campo via Marxism
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https://peoplesdemocracy.in/2020/0621_pd/stock-market-boom-amidst-real-economy-crisis


Sent from my iPhone

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[Marxism] Class Power on Zero-Hours – The Brooklyn Rail

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://brooklynrail.org/2020/06/field-notes/Class-Power-on-Zero-Hours

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[Marxism] Why Killer Cops Go Free - CounterPunch.org

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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By Ishmael Reed.

https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/06/19/why-killer-cops-go-free/

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[Marxism] Higher Education and the Remaking of the Working Class – The Brooklyn Rail

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://brooklynrail.org/2020/06/field-notes/Higher-Education-and-the-Remaking-of-the-Working-Class

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[Marxism] The Wasp Network

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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Based on a true and gripping story: Cuban spies infiltrate exile groups 
in the 1990s to stop terrorism against the island, but at a high 
personal cost.


https://www.netflix.com/title/81000201

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[Marxism] Protesting for Black Lives in Trump Country - CounterPunch.org

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/06/19/protesting-for-black-lives-in-trump-country/

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Re: [Marxism] On the NASCAR's Banning of the Confederate Flag and its Social Implications

2020-06-19 Thread John A Imani via Marxism
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<< Indeed I can imagine a world in which these symbols are removed while
the racist conditions that gave rise to them remain.>>

And indeed I can imagine a world in which the racist conditions are gone
while these 'symbols' remain: in books and museums where they belong.

What is the effect of the sight of a Klan hood, masked conic hat and
chewing tobacco-stained flowing was-white robe?  What comes to mind when a
noose is tied from a prominent tree, the grace of its Spanish moss belied?
The burning of a cross?  The signs  "Colored",  "Whites Only" on the
restrooms, the water fountains, the lunch counters, the bus depot, the
trains?  The Confederate flag?  More than signs.  Warnings.

'Symbols' speak more than the picture's words.

Socially recognized, socially understood, socially enforced conventions.
Southern blacks were almost born knowing where the back of the bus was.
Which school to attend.  Who to let pass on the sidewalk by stepping onto
the unpaved easement:  "Yes, Suh", "No, Ma'am".

Yes, I can imagine a world where historians' can comment in pages and
inscribe their analyses of such 'symbols' on plaques; where students can be
taught in our schools; where the merely curious can leaf through a book or
walk hallowed galleries and pause and think and shake their heads in amazed
disgust in a land where skin color itself has ceased to be the symbol.

I join comrade Wythe as a child of the South, fleeing Mason and Dixon's
line, at the age of 15 but having seen much, enough.  I differ with and
from the comrade only by being born black.

JAI

On Thu, Jun 18, 2020 at 6:03 PM A.R. G  wrote:

Very much appreciate Wythe's insight as a Southerner...
Indeed I can imagine a world in which these symbols are removed while the
racist conditions that gave rise to them remain.
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Re: [Marxism] On the NASCAR's Banning of the Confederate Flag and its Social Implications

2020-06-19 Thread A.R. G via Marxism
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Very much appreciate Wythe's insight as a Southerner.

I do recall growing up the debates about the meaning of the flag,
particularly when it came up in the context of the VA Congressional
district race in 2006 between Jim Webb and that idiot who called Webb's
volunteer, an Indian-American like me, a slur. The other guy (not Webb) had
apparently been flying the Confederate flag in his office, etc.

But I think what I take the most from Wythe's comments is paradoxically not
about the flag itself -- what Wythe is describing is essentially an
unchanged historical lineage in which racism is still very much a part of
everyday life in the South (as in other parts of the country). What I take
from this is not so much that the flag, as a piece of cloth, is an
intrinsically racist symbol, but that it corresponds to a racist reality
which in turn determines the meaning of the symbol. Its meaning can only be
understood in the context in which it is used, and that context -- then and
now -- is thoroughly racialized. And I suppose the reason well-meaning
white Southerners do not see the issue or get defensive about it is because
that racist reality is one that they do not experience or only experience
as worthy of glorification, sanitized of the enslavement and subsequent
subjugation that was very clearly directed at people who are not them.

I did not know until recently that many of the Confederate monuments in the
South, including the Stone Mountain carving, are actually fairly
contemporary. Many of them were built and set up decades or even a century
after the Civil War and began popping up specifically at times that Black
people fought for their rights. I think that, more than anything, sheds
light on the purpose and meaning of these Confederate symbols.

I guess what I am trying to say is that we should not separate the meaning
of any symbol from the political reality in which it is being used
(including other symbols like the American flag, etc.). Indeed I can
imagine a world in which these symbols are removed while the racist
conditions that gave rise to them remain.

Amith R. Gupta


On Thu, Jun 18, 2020 at 8:11 AM Wythe Holt jr.  wrote:

> This is a strange submission, for one who, like myself, was born and
> reared a white racist in the American South, who has fought for decades to
> overcome his racism, and who has lived almost all of his life with people
> who still think the Confederacy is one of the most meaningful things in
> their lives.
>
> For my black friends, it (the Confederacy) is deeply negative -- it means
> thoroughgoing and tangible racism -- being "raced" every minute of every
> day, being subject to outlandish cruelty and, worse, dismissal as full
> human beings, being subjected to second class citizenship and overt haughty
> discrimination, a lesser level of imagined possible competence in many
> white minds and in much of the law and culture, in education, in
> government, in all walks of public and private life -- all offshoots and
> holdovers from the human slavery that most of their American ancestors
> suffered under.
>
> For a large number of my white friends, it often means unquestioning
> glorification of and identification with the white people who led the
> Confederacy in military defense of the institution of human slavery.  (NOT
> "states rights" -- the "state's right" that -- when I ask them -- these
> folks immediately first think about is the "right" to hold human beings in
> legal thralldom.)
>
> For all of these people the Confederate flag is centrally meaningful as a
> symbol of these wildly differing views and experiences of hundreds of years
> of the degradation and enslavement of dark-skinned people.
>
> This needs to be said again, and at length.  Anthema to the former
> (African-Americans), and a symbol of life and worth and deep if racist
> meaning to the latter (so-called Caucasians), is the Confederate flag.  It
> means "slavery" -- still -- to every Southerner born and bred there.  It
> means racism.  It means cruelty and overlordship.  It means defiance of the
> law, it means being a traitor to the original Constitution and government
> of the US, it means that equality is impossible and always nonexistent, it
> means that a whole group of people who are black are STILL TO THIS MINUTE
> thought to be inherently ignorant and uncivilized and inhuman by many white
> people, many of whom do not live in the South.  Look at the continuing
> murder of black men by white policemen, something which still seems to
> happen monthly or more frequently, 155 years after Appomattox.  For many
> black people it means constant struggle in their own minds and 

[Marxism] Moderator's note

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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A reminder. If you include more than 3 recipients in a post to Marxmail, 
it will be held in a moderation queue. We instituted this years ago to 
put a stop to comrades cc'ing to other mailing lists since that led to 
all sorts of confusion with non-subscribers replying, etc.


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[Marxism] The Unfinished Project of Enlightenment | Boston Review

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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On Nonagenarian Jurgen Habermas's new book.

http://bostonreview.net/philosophy-religion/brandon-bloch-unfinished-project-enlightenment

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[Marxism] [UCE] Imperial partition: Trump’s new order in the Balkans | Lefteast

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://www.criticatac.ro/lefteast/imperial-partition-trumps-new-order-in-the-balkans/

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[Marxism] 2020 Socially Relevant Film Festival goes virtual

2020-06-19 Thread Louis Proyect via Marxism

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https://www.ratedsrfilms.org/srff2020previewpanel

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