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The Return Of Fascism

Energy and food bills are soaring. Under the onslaught of inflation and prolonged wage stagnation, wages are in free fall. Billions of dollars are diverted by Western nations at a time of economic crisis and staggering income inequality to fund a proxy war in Ukraine. The liberal class, terrified by the rise of neo-fascism and demagogues such as Donald Trump, have thrown in their lot with discredited and reviled establishment politicians who slavishly do the bidding of the war industry, oligarchs and corporations. The bankruptcy of the liberal class means that those who decry the folly of permanent war and NATO expansion, mercenary trade deals, exploitation of workers by globalization, austerity and neoliberalism come increasingly from the far-right.

The Chris Hedges Report: The Monstrous Myth Of Custer

The playwright Eugene O’Neill said that one of the few events worth celebrating in American history took place on June 25, 1876, when Lakota, Northern Cheyenne, and Arapaho, led by Crazy Horse and Chief Gall, annihilated a unit of the 7th Cavalry under the command of Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer. There are few battles in American history that have generated as much controversy or been as meticulously dissected and examined. And with good reason. The death of Custer and his command stunned the nation. It turned Custer into a martyr for the cause of western expansion and imperialism. His death, portrayed as the ultimate sacrifice for the nation that was at the time celebrating its centennial, was used to justify a massive military campaign against Native Americans that would culminate in the massacre of some 300 Native Americans in 1890 at Wounded Knee.

The Genius Of Ella Jo Baker

Ella Jo Baker will be inducted into the Cooperative Hall of Fame as an “Unsung Hero” at a ceremony at the National Press Club on Oct. 6 in Washington DC. Ella Baker is well-regarded as a giant in the Civil Rights Movement, known for her unique participatory grassroots organizing style and also for her ability to galvanize young people to bring a militancy in the struggle to end segregation. But Baker is less known for her innovative organizing prowess before the 1960s – forming a network of self-help cooperatives to bring economic relief to black people during the Depression. “Ella Baker was one of the most effective, original and masterful organizers of the 20th century,” one scholar noted about the woman who became a Civil Rights legend (Tutashinda, 2010, p. 33).

Why Full Employment Was A Great Idea, But Is No More

Hoping to recapture the White House in the United States’ bicentennial year, Congressional Democrats introduced legislation to guarantee  a job to nearly every adult who wanted one.  Sponsored by Minnesota’s liberal lion, U.S. Senator Hubert Humphrey, and California Congressman Augustus Hawkins – one of the founders of the Congressional Black Caucus – the bill would’ve required the executive branch to establish nationwide quotas for industrial output, and forecast the number of jobs necessary to meet those annual  benchmarks. However many jobs the private sector could not – or would not – provide would be absorbed by the federal government at the prevailing wage.

Dr. Gerald Horne On The Life And Legacy Of W.E.B. Du Bois

Decades after his death, W.E.B Du Bois stands as one of the great intellectual giants of the 20th Century. Born in Massachussets after the Civil War, Du Bois became the first Black man to earn a doctorate from Harvard University, and was one of the founders of the NAACP and the Niagara Movement. He authored works such as The Souls of Black Folk, The Philadelphia Negro, and Black Reconstruction in America, and is widely considered to be one of the founders of American sociology. Du Bois’s brilliance extended beyond the academy to the world of politics. He denounced accommodationists such as Booker T. Washington, thundered against Jim and Jane Crow and the reign of terror in the South with its segregation, race laws, and lynch mobs, along with the evils of imperialism and colonialism and the inherent cruelty and injustices of capitalism.

The Twin City Co-op Wars: An Interview With Erik Esse

In this episode of All Things Co-op, Cinar and Kevin talk with Erik Esse, the producer of the new documentary The Co-op Wars. The Co-op Wars traces the history of the food cooperative movement in the mid to late 1970s in Minnesota's Twin Cities. The rapid development of the food co-op network in the area prompted a split between anarchist "hippies" and Bolsheviks who styled themselves as the “Cooperative Organization” and set about taking over the People's Warehouse by force. The film provides powerful lessons for cooperative organizations and activists today. As Erik and the ATC guys dissect the film and its implications, they touch on the role of traditional politics, the limits of "third-worldism" in the first world, the mainstreaming of co-ops, the potential influence of COINTELPRO, and much more.

Foundational Fairytales And The Lies They Tell On Books, Children And Truth

There used to be a time in occupied America when only whites were allowed to write, read, and publish books. In fact, when Europeans started occupying the continent in 1492, one of the first things they did was burn the thousands of existing books Indigenous people had written in an attempt to destroy peoples' existing relationship with books and their contained knowledges. According to those initial colonizers, destroying the written ensured we lost access to writing, to our ways of thinking, and to centuries-old acquired knowledges on mathematics, medicine, astronomy, maps, history, plant science, poetry, literatures, and even tax-records. Only four books survived the first 100 years of the occupation, in the entire continent.

Independent Unions Can Help Break Through The Economic Crisis

In a period of extreme social and economic crises, when the major labor unions have reduced their organizing programs to a fraction of what they once were and the courts stand athwart any effort to protect workers’ interests, scrappy new independent unions raise hope against hope that maybe — just maybe — workers can fight back and win. I’m writing, of course, about the early 1930s. A newly published book finds some surprising parallels between that era and our own. An eleventh volume in the prolific Marxist labor historian Philip S. Foner’s History Of The Labor Movement In The United States has just been published, after it was discovered that Foner had completed the manuscript before he died in 1994. Subtitled The Great Depression 1929–1932, the book covers a period in which the established unions of the American Federation of Labor were not conducting many organizing campaigns or strikes and had little idea how to successfully contest for power in the large mass production industries that played a dominant role in American life.

The Chris Hedges Report: Psychology Of A Klansman

On Jan. 9, 1966, the White Knights of the Mississippi Ku Klux Klan murdered the Black civil rights activist Vernon Dahmer in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, after firebombing and shooting into his house. It was one of thousands of hate crimes conducted in the South by whites who waged a reign of terror against Blacks to frighten them from abandoning calls for desegregation and voting rights. Terrorism by white vigilantes against religious and ethnic minorities is ingrained in the DNA of American society going back to the slave patrols—and has only escalated in recent years. The FBI recorded 8,263 reported hate crimes in 2020, a 13% jump over 2019.What motivates these people? How do they look at the world? How do they justify to themselves and others these acts of terror?

Lessons From A Radical Past: One Man’s Journey Into The Factories In The 1970s

A national direct election will be held in the fall for the United Auto Workers (UAW), which held its 38th constitutional convention the week of July 25 in Detroit. Once an industrial union power with almost 1.5 million members in 1979, the union has been reduced to roughly 400,000 active members (though it has nearly 600,000 retirees) — and about a quarter of its members are graduate teaching assistants and other university workers in higher education. The union, for decades, has been governed by the Administration Caucus, which perpetuated its rule by tightly managing the conventions to elect union officers (though the leadership of UAW has been resistant to charges that it is undemocratic). But after the federal government brought suit against the union’s leaders for rampant corruption, the settlement reached in 2020 forced the union to give members a vote on whether to directly elect officers.

We Are Not The First Civilization To Collapse

I am standing atop a 100-foot-high temple mound, the largest known earthwork in the Americas built by prehistoric peoples. The temperatures, in the high 80s, along with the oppressive humidity, have emptied the park of all but a handful of visitors. My shirt is matted with sweat. I look out from the structure—known as Monks Mound — at the flatlands below, with smaller mounds dotting the distance. These earthen mounds, built at a confluence of the Illinois, Mississippi and Missouri rivers, are all that remain of one of the largest pre-Columbian settlements north of Mexico, occupied from around 800 to 1,400 AD by perhaps as many as 20,000 people.

Black August Builds On Our Black Radical Traditions

The 31 days of August hold a particular and special meaning you will not find in the celebrations that come with Juneteenth, Black History Month or Kwanzaa. For 43 years now since 1979, Black August commemorates and highlights political prisoners and their crucial role in the Black liberation/freedom struggle. Black August is directly tied to the Black prison movement that started in the San Quentin prison and through relentless organizing spread to other prisons as well as to the streets. The story of Black August begins immediately behind the prison walls after Jonathan and George Jackson were killed in August 1970, and 1971 respectively, as well as W.L. Nolan (killed January 1970), James McClain, William Christmas (killed with George) and Khatari Gaulden (killed August 1st, 1978).

Moby Dick And The Soul Of American Capitalism

Moby Dick, by Herman Melville, is among America’s greatest novels. It is a prescient portrait of the American character and our ultimate fate as a nation and perhaps a species. Melville makes our murderous obsessions, our hubris, violent impulses, moral weakness, and inevitable self-destruction visible in his chronicle of a whaling voyage. Melville’s description of the ship’s captain, Ahab, is a description of the bankers, corporate boards, politicians, television personalities, and generals who through the power of propaganda fill our heads with seductive images of glory and lust for wealth and power. We are consumed with self-induced obsessions that spur us toward self-annihilation. Melville is our foremost oracle. He is to us what William Shakespeare was to Elizabethan England, or Fyodor Dostoyevsky to czarist Russia.

‘Mothers Of Gynecology’ Monument Exposes Horrors Of Slavery

A righteous tidal wave of anger followed people seeing the nine-minutes-plus videotaped police lynching of George Floyd in Minneapolis late May 2020. Racist monuments glorifying the slave-owning Confederacy came tumbling down, especially in the Deep South. These acts to take down the statues were part of historic mass protests that swept the country during the summer of 2020 during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Two years earlier the monument paying homage to J. Marion Sims, once praised as the “father of modern gynecology,” was removed from Central Park in New York City, following many years of protest. What led to the removal was a growing understanding and anger that Sims, a 19th century gynecologist in Montgomery, Alabama, used enslaved Black women as guinea pigs, experimenting on them with new medical techniques without using anesthesia or obtaining their consent.

The West Is Experiencing A Power Contraction, Not Necessarily Decline

What Westerners call the West or Western civilization is a geopolitical space that emerged in the 16th century and expanded continuously until the 20th century. On the eve of World War I, about 90 percent of the globe was Western or Western-dominated: Europe, Russia, the Americas, Africa, Oceania, and much of Asia (with the partial exceptions of Japan and China). From then on, the West began to contract: first with the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the emergence of the Soviet bloc, and then, from mid-century onward, with the decolonization movements. Terrestrial space, and soon after, extraterrestrial space, became fields of intense disputes. Meanwhile, what Westerners understood by the West was changing. It began as Christianity and colonialism, then changed to capitalism and imperialism, and then metamorphosed into democracy, human rights, decolonization, self-determination, and “rules-based international relations”—it was made clear that the rules would be established by the West and would only be followed when they served its interests—and finally into globalization.
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