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Socialism

Cooperatives In China And Prospects For Their Significant Growth

During my recent visit to China from April 14th to 24th, 2024, I had the opportunity to engage with seasoned members of the cooperative movement, among whom were British nationals who live in China. A highlight of my trip was spending a substantial part of a day, together with colleagues from ‘Friends of Socialist China’, exploring an agricultural cooperative in the north-eastern Jilin province. The law on Specialised Farmer Cooperatives was passed by the National People’s Congress, coming into effect on July 1 2007. As stated by Tim Zachernuk In his excellent study of cooperatives in China: “The law acknowledges international cooperative experience as codified in the cooperative principles formulated by the International Cooperative Alliance.

Venezuela Hosts World Gathering To Unite The Left For A Social Alternative 

From April 18 to 20, more than 500 activists from around the world gathered in Caracas, Venezuela for the "World Gathering for a Social Alternative." The meeting was convened by the Simon Bolivar Institute and the ALBA Movement, and it was followed by an ALBA-TCP leaders summit, which included the ten ALBA countries and Honduras. Clearing the FOG speaks with Carlos Ron, president of the Simon Bolivar Institute, about the urgency of the gathering, what will come out of it and the next steps. Ron shared the progress Venezuela has made under the Bolivarian Revolution, the retaliation against Venezuela primarily by the United States and the importance of connecting social movements to confront the many global crises of this era.

ALBA-TCP Is The Alliance Of Solidarity, Unity, And Development For The People

The gathering in Caracas saw participation from heads of state and ministers from the 10 member states of the body as well as a representative from Honduras who attended as a special invitee. The closing declaration from the summit states, “We reaffirm our firm commitment to strengthening the ALBA-TCP, as a mechanism for unity, dialogue and political coordination, based on the principles of solidarity, social justice, cooperation, and economic complementarity, which allows us to face in better conditions the dangers and challenges that arise from the complex world scenario, characterized by the deepening of disrespect and the constant threat to peace, security, sovereignty, and self-determination of nations.”

A Tale Of Two Labor Candidates

In late October, 2018, East Bay DSA members and other progressives organized a pre-election rally at a Berkeley High School auditorium. A wildly-cheering crowd of several thousand came to hear Senator Bernie Sanders and Congresswoman Barbara Lee.  Welcoming everyone to the event was 34-year old Jesse Arreguin, who was backed by Sanders when he ran for mayor of Berkeley two years before. On the platform with them was Jovanka Beckles, a former Richmond City Council member then running—with backing from DSA, Sanders, and Lee—for a State Assembly seat against a corporate Democrat named Buffy Wicks.

Vijay Prashad: ‘Socialism Or Ruin’

Monroeism is barbaric. It’s brutal. Sometimes the word imperialism doesn’t capture, emotionally, how brutal imperialism actually is, how brutal, how barbaric, inconsiderate it is towards the lives of ordinary people. 50,000 people have probably already been killed in Gaza. There are 7,000 people missing. Of them, 5,000 children, 15,000 children dead in Gaza – A generation lost. That is the brutality, the callousness of imperialism. We have decided, in our text Hyper-Imperialism, to use the term hyper-imperialism to capture some of that brutality, that barbarism. You see the thing about hyper-imperialism, led by the United States, is that it is dangerous and it is decadent.

US Reimposes Illegal And Inhumane Oil Sanctions On Venezuela

A minute after midnight on April 18, the US reimposed coercive economic measures designed to cripple Venezuela’s oil industry. Later that day, the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a new sanctions bill on Nicaragua. Meanwhile, Cuba protested the US’s six-decade blockade as talks resumed between the two countries on migration. At a time of challenged US dollar hegemony and questioning of the neoliberal order, the three countries striving to build socialist societies in the Americas pose a “threat of a good example.” Also on April 18,  Biden announced new sanctions on Iran.

There Will Be Reading And Singing And Dancing Even In The Darkest Times

It is nearly impossible to think of joy while Israel continues its genocidal violence against Palestinians and while the terrible war escalates in the eastern flank of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Tens of thousands of people have been killed and injured and millions displaced in Gaza and near Goma (DRC). In both these places, the immediate demand must be to end the violence, but rising alongside it is the need to end the root of this violence (such as ending the occupation of Palestine). When there are conflicts of this kind, we get trapped in the present, unable to think about the future.

Red Books Day: 176 Years Since The Communist Manifesto Was Published

February 21 marked 176 years since the publication of the Communist Manifesto, and socialists around the world marked the date by celebrating the Manifesto and all “Red Books” that shaped the world. Throughout India, socialists celebrated the 176th anniversary of the publication of the Communist Manifesto. In Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, Communist Party of India (Marxist) Kerala State Secretary MV Govindan gave an opening speech and read from the book “Leninism and the Approach to Indian Revolution” by EMS Namboodiripad, the first Chief Minister of Kerala and former General Secretary of the CPI(M).

25 Years Into The Revolution, Venezuela Resists US Interference

February 2 marked the 25th anniversary of the inauguration of President Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, which was the beginning of the Bolivarian Revolution. Over the past 25 years, Venezuela has made remarkable gains in reducing poverty, ending illiteracy and building social infrastructure such as housing, health care, education, transportation and more, despite persistent interference by the United States to impose an economic blockade, fund an opposition, attempt coups and assassinations, delegitimize the elections and threaten military attacks. Clearing the FOG speaks with Leo Flores, a Venezuelan activist, about the progress of the revolution, Venezuela's deep democracy and current efforts by the US to stop it. There is much to learn from Venezuelan's struggle for a better life.

How We Move Forward Together: The Rank And File Project

Most major advances toward a more equal and just society come about because organized working people use their power to disrupt capitalist profits. And we think that’s the only force that can ultimately end capitalist exploitation and establish a truly democratic society. For that reason, many on the Left see labor unions as essential to making radical change. But unions today are often top-down and undemocratic in structure, weak, defensive and even conservative in their politics. The labor movement lacks a coherent, organized left-wing leadership that could help re-found the movement on a democratic, class-struggle basis.

Learning From Lenin Today

Not long after I joined the socialist movement as a student at the Polytechnic of Ibadan in 1980, I was introduced to Marxist literature at the Progressive and Socialist Bookshop which was the sole depot of many left-wing publishers from UK, USSR and China that included Zed Books. By the time I entered university as a mature student, I had already worked as a full-time revolutionary assisting Ola Oni, a foremost Marxist revolutionary and scholar at the University of Ibadan where he lectured. He also owned the bookshop. My generation were inspired by the history of Russia, the only country that achieved a successful socialist revolution in October 1917.

The Forgotten Socialist History Of Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1952 a 23-year-old Martin Luther King Jr. wrote a love letter to Coretta Scott. Along with coos of affection and apologies for his hasty handwriting, he described his feelings not just toward his future wife, but also toward America’s economic system. ​“I am much more socialistic in my economic theory than capitalistic,” he admitted to his then-girlfriend, concluding that ​“capitalism has outlived its usefulness.” King composed these words as a grad student on the tail end of his first year at the Boston University School of Theology. And far from representing just the utopianism of youth, the views expressed in the letter would go on to inform King’s economic vision throughout his life.

Talking Socialism On The Job

With a new generation of socialist activists entering the workforce to build unions and the socialist movement, experiences from 45 years ago may provide lessons about what works and what does not work when talking socialism on the job. I joined the Young Socialist Alliance in 1971 and the Socialist Workers Party in 1973, resigning from the party in December 1983. I was a student activist in California, Massachusetts, and Illinois, before becoming the labor reporter for The Daily Calumet newspaper in southeast Chicago in 1976. While a journalist at The Daily Calumet I covered the United Steel Workers of America (USWA) and Ed Sadlowski’s campaign for union president in 1976-77.

World’s Economic Centre Of Gravity Is Returning To Asia

In October 2023, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) published its annual Trade and Development Report. Nothing in the report came as a major surprise. The growth of the global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) continues to decline with no sign of a rebound. Following a modest post-pandemic recovery of 6.1% in 2021, economic growth in 2023 fell to 2.4%, below pre-pandemic levels, and is projected to remain at 2.5% in 2024. The global economy, UNCTAD says, is ‘flying at “stall speed”’, with all conventional indicators showing that most of the world is experiencing a recession.

Vermont’s New AFL-CIO President Is A Democratic Socialist, Labor Reformer

Unlike some local and national unions, the AFL-CIO’s state and local bodies rarely hold contested leadership elections with opposing slates offering alternative strategies for reviving the labor movement. Yet in Vermont, there have been two such contests for the state federation in the last four years, both producing a mandate for change. In 2019, a group of local union officers and staff members created a reform slate called “Vermont AFL-CIO United!” Fourteen of its candidates got elected — taking all the top officer jobs and forming a majority on the state labor council’s executive board. Their goal was to revitalize a moribund organization through membership education, mobilization, and direct action, plus greater independence from the Democratic Party.
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