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Gender: Female
Hometown: Wisconsin
Current location: Tejas
Member since: Thu Jan 17, 2008, 01:44 PM
Number of posts: 31,861

About Me

The most violent element in society is ignorance. Emma Goldman

Journal Archives

That Big Red Arrow Pointing Right (toon)


Educate, Agitate, Organize

We’re trying agitate the citizenry: not to tell people their interests (which they usually know) but to persuade them that if they act collectively, they can get those interests, which is something most people don’t know.

The Left’s engagement with the Sanders campaign is about more than one nomination in a rotten and compromised party.
by Corey Robin ~ 3/9/16

Last night, Bernie Sanders achieved a stunning upset in the Michigan Democratic primary. Many leftists are riding high on the victory, a blow in equal measure to the pundits, the pollsters, and the political class. I’m one of those leftists. It sucks to lose. I’ve done it more times than I care to remember, and believe me, it’s no picnic. And, as I’ve been saying over and over again, Sanders has a genuine shot.

But lest we get too caught up in the question of delegate counts, which Sanders is still trailing in, we’ve got to remind ourselves that there is a much more important long-term battle going on here. Not merely to gut the Democratic Party, but also to educate, agitate, and organize the body politic.

The Left loves social movements. I do, too. But social movements don’t happen in a political vacuum; they’re not immune to the mood and medium of electoral politics. There’s nothing quite like a presidential campaign for taking pots and kettles long simmering on the Left’s back burner and bringing them to a furious boil ...

More here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2016/03/michigan-primary-bernie-sanders-nomination/

Love Trumps Hate (Thank You Michigan)

International Women’s Day

The following article was published in Pravda one week before the first celebration of the “Day of International Solidarity among the Female Proletariat” on March 8, 1913. In St Petersburg this day was marked by a call for a campaign against women workers’ lack of economic and political rights and for the unity of the working class, led by the self-emancipation of women workers.

The first International Women’s Day was celebrated 103 years ago by revolutionaries in Russia.
by Alexandra Kollantai ~ 3/8/16

<snip intro>

“Women’s Day” is a link in the long, solid chain of the women’s proletarian movement. The organized army of working women grows with every year. Twenty years ago the trade unions contained only small groups of working women scattered here and there among the ranks of the workers’ party . . . Now English trade unions have over 292,000 women members; in Germany around 200,000 are in the trade union movement, and 150,000 in the workers’ party; and in Austria there are 47,000 in the trade unions and almost 20,000 in the party.

Everywhere — in Italy, Hungary, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Switzerland — the women of the working class are organizing themselves. The women’s socialist army has almost a million members. A powerful force! A force that the powers of this world must reckon with when it is a question of the cost of living, maternity insurance, child labor, and legislation to protect female labor.

There was a time when working men thought that they alone must bear on their shoulders the brunt of the struggle against capital, that they alone must deal with the “old world” without the help of their womenfolk. However, as working-class women entered the ranks of those who sell their labor, forced onto the labor market by need, by the fact that husband or father is unemployed, working men became aware that to leave women behind in the ranks of the “non-class-conscious” was to damage their cause and hold it back ...

More here: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2016/03/international-womens-day-kollontai/

Consequences of a Warming World

The researchers say cautiously that climate change—driven by greenhouse gas emissions from the combustion of fossil fuels in the last century or so—“can reallocate natural capital, change the value of all forms of capital, and lead to mass redistribution of wealth”. And it isn’t obvious, they suggest, that even the better-off will always benefit from changes of natural capital, such as a shift in the fishing grounds. An influx of desirable species off the more northerly fishing ports could actually reduce the cash value of catches.

A Warming World Would Rob From the Poor and Give to the Rich
Posted on Mar 7, 2016

By Tim Radford / Climate News Network

LONDON—Climate change could seriously redistribute resources and reallocate wealth—but not in a fair way.

In a reverse of the famous Robin Hood folklore, it could rob from the poor to give to the rich, according to researchers. Yet even the rich may not feel any richer.

In one clear instance, as scientists have repeatedly warned, fish stocks are likely to move away from the equator and towards the poles, as the tropics heat up and expand.

This means that at least one valuable resource will move away from some of the world’s poorest nations, and in the direction of societies that are relatively wealthier—if only because economic power has for so long been vested in the temperate zones. And this shift will have economic consequences ...

More here: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/a_warming_world_would_rob_from_the_poor_and_give_to_the_rich_20160307

Happy Birthday Rosa

Rosa Luxemburg was a Marxist theorist, philosopher, economist and revolutionary socialist of Polish-Jewish descent who became a naturalized German citizen. She was, successively, a member of the Social Democracy of the Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania (SDKPiL), the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), the Independent Social Democratic Party (USPD), and the Communist Party of Germany (KPD).

Luxemburg's last known words, written on the evening of her murder, were about her belief in the masses, and in what she saw as the inevitability of revolution:

"The leadership has failed. Even so, the leadership can and must be recreated from the masses and out of the masses. The masses are the decisive element, they are the rock on which the final victory of the revolution will be built. The masses were on the heights; they have developed this 'defeat' into one of the historical defeats which are the pride and strength of international socialism. And that is why the future victory will bloom from this 'defeat'. 'Order reigns in Berlin!' You stupid henchmen! Your 'order' is built on sand. Tomorrow the revolution will already 'raise itself with a rattle' and announce with fanfare, to your terror: I was, I am, I shall be!"

3/5/1871 - 1/15/1919 (47 years old).

Rest in Power, Sister.

Honduran Women on Hillary

Do Feminists Support Coups? Honduran Women on Hillary Clinton

teleSUR talked to feminists in Honduras, where the U.S. State Department backed a military coup in 2009, about Hillary Clinton’s so-called feminism:

U.S. Democratic Party presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton has built her campaign around her self-proclaimed dedication to fighting for women’s rights, as well as her superior experience in the realm of foreign policy.

Many feminists have disputed that, and the women on the receiving end of her foreign policy, in particular Latin America, are even less likely to see the former Secretary of State as a champion of their rights.

For Honduran feminist artist Melissa Cardoza, Clinton’s policy in Central America has shown her true colors as an instrument of empire representing patriarchal, not feminist, ideology.

“As is well known, she supported the coup d’etat in my country, which has sunk a very worthy and bleeding land further into abject poverty, violence, and militarism,” Cardoza said of Clinton’s legacy in Honduras. “She is part of those who consider only some lives to be legitimate, obviously not rebel women and women of color that live here and who do not, at least not all, fit in with imperial interests.”

This content was originally published by teleSUR at the following address:
"http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Do-Feminists-Support-Coups-Honduran-Women-on-Hillary-Clinton-20160225-0050.html". If you intend to use it, please cite the source and provide a link to the original article. www.teleSURtv.net/english

Berta Cáceres Assassinated

TBF Note: And I'm not even going to go into Hillary Clinton's role in the coup whether as a participant or bystander ... but it certainly is also a topic to discuss

Since the 2009 military coup, that was carried out by graduates of the U.S. Army School of the Americas, Honduras has witnessed an explosive growth in environmentally destructive megaprojects that would displace indigenous communities. Almost 30 percent of the country’s land was earmarked for mining concessions, creating a demand for cheap energy to power future mining operations.

Breaking: Honduran Indigenous Leader Berta Cáceres Assassinated, Won Goldman Environmental Prize
March 03, 2016

Honduran indigenous and environmental organizer Berta Cáceres has been assassinated in her home. She was one of the leading organizers for indigenous land rights in Honduras.

In 1993 she co-founded the National Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH). For years the group faced a series of threats and repression.

According to Global Witness, Honduras has become the deadliest country in the world for environmentalists. Between 2010 and 2014, 101 environmental campaigners were killed in the country.

In 2015 Berta Cáceres won the Goldman Environmental Prize, the world’s leading environmental award. In awarding the prize, the Goldman Prize committee said, “In a country with growing socioeconomic inequality and human rights violations, Berta Cáceres rallied the indigenous Lenca people of Honduras and waged a grassroots campaign that successfully pressured the world’s largest dam builder to pull out of the Agua Zarca Dam.”

More here: http://www.democracynow.org/2016/3/3/honduran_indigenous_leader_berta_caceres_assassinated

The Next Majority

TBF Note: Congratulations to Bernie Sanders on wins in Oklahoma, Colorado, Minnesota & Vermont (and nearly Massachusetts - where shenanigans involving Bill Clinton were occurring - more about him below). Forward!

The zero-sum nature of elections often causes us to miss the ways in which a loss can also mark a victory. Barry Goldwater lost his presidential bid in 1964 to Lyndon Johnson. But his presidential campaign helped pave the way for the next generation of conservative politicians in the Republican Party. Sanders has not lost yet. But even if he does, a sea change already appears to be under way. A new generation of liberal Democrats and radical activists is emerging, hoping to push the Democratic Party to the left. This is not a silent majority. It is outspoken and willing to do what it needs to be heard.

The Next Majority
David Marcus ▪ March 1, 2016

Ever since Nixon uttered the taunt a year after cruising past Hubert Humphrey in 1968, Democratic Party elites have been in hot pursuit of the “silent majority.” The Coalition for a Democratic Majority rose to the challenge in 1972 and tried to recapture the Democrat’s working- and middle-class base by resurrecting the party’s more hawkish Cold War policies. The Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), founded after Reagan’s crushing defeat of Walter Mondale, went even further. Composed mostly of young southern and midwestern Democrats, the DLC tried to roll back much of the state-centered liberalism of the New Deal and Great Society. Arkansas’s popular governor Bill Clinton carried the momentum of this strategy, becoming the DLC’s chair in 1990 and winning the White House in 1992. He was the second Democrat to have done so since the late 1960s.

The rise of Clinton and the “New Democrats” also came with significant political and human costs. They may have won a new majority for the Democratic Party. But they also turned against many of their constituents. With the passage of NAFTA, large swathes of industrial workers found themselves out of work. With the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act in 1996, Clinton got rid of “welfare as we know it.” And with an omnibus financial deregulation bill in 1998, the party eroded many of the constraints that kept American banking from the types of practices that led to the crisis of 2008. Seeking a “third way” between the liberal egalitarianism of the old Democrats and the free-market orthodoxies of the Reagan Republicans, Clinton ended up not only alienating much of the Democrats’ young, black, and working-class bases; he helped diminish the differences between the parties. The party of “big government” had become, like its rival, a party for big businesses.

It was into this political world that my generation came of age in the early and mid-2000s. September 11 and the catastrophic “war on terror” that followed were the hallmarks of our coming of age, bringing many of us out into the streets and into politics for the first time. But so were the experiences of economic uncertainty and precarity created by policies of the Clinton and New Democrat years. None of us wanted another Republican in office. But it was also unclear how the Democrats, still under New Democrat control, could offer us much of an alternative ...

More here: https://www.dissentmagazine.org/blog/next-majority-sanders-democrats-party-insurgency

The Long Haul -

I have met so many wonderful folks who envision a better future - both here in the Bernie group, on JackPine Radicals, on Twitter, and Bernie Meetups IRL.

We will have to motivate each other and stay focused and positive as we go into Super Tuesday. We will do well, I believe, in Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oklahoma and Vermont. These are proportional delegates so he will pick up what he can while Hillary takes the bigger southern states like Texas (remembering that she is winning these southern states that are very conservative - they will not vote for her in the general).

After that it gets brighter as we move on to the Western and Northern states - Bernie's firewall. These states will take us to the convention. Bernie's got to hang in there and so do we - you never know what will happen along the way. Even if it seems that Hillary is ahead we still have the email situation lurking in the background, with a democratic administration still reviewing what she did as Secretary of State. If she is forced to pull out Bernie needs to be ready - whether he is ahead in delegate count or not.

I would also like to say this morning is that I am so proud of all of us. I am sticking with Bernie and the movement for change. Ultimately it goes beyond whether he wins or not. This movement has attracted so much energy and youth that I feel like it is not just an outlier but a fight for the democratic party itself. That is the reason I am still posting on this site. I want folks to know that those of us on the fringe are still here and will not give up. We are not giving in to the Hillary Clintons and Donald Trumps of the world. Capitalism is a horrible, inherently unequal system. I may be getting older now but I am still working for that better world for my kids. It doesn't have to be like this and frankly this oppressive system is not sustainable.

How we help Bernie:

1. Phone bank
2. Canvass
3. Donate

Go to Bernie Sanders.com, Click on "events", and put in your zip code to see what you can do to help!

In Solidarity, TBF

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