Category Archives: Revolution

The Revolution is Live

August 6, 2011

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Echoes of a visionary poet and his revolutionary voice shook the room at Busboys and Poets in Washington, DC last Sunday.

Up to 150 people packed the Cullen Room at the restaurant’s 5th and K Street location to celebrate the life and work of Gil Scott-Heron, the musician and legendary spoken-word artist whose powerful voice gave political and cultural inspiration to movements against racism, inequality and injustice.

Scott-Heron died in May at the age of 62, leaving a generation of artists and activists reflecting on his impact on music, Black culture and struggle. And on Sunday, the sound of live jazz and blues bouncing off of walls adorned with the images of Harlem Renaissance icons provided the perfect backdrop for “celebrating a master of artistic creation and impassioned resistance.” Read the rest of this entry

Reconciling Anti-Imperialism and Democracy in Libya

June 24, 2011

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Preface: Since starting this website, I am sad to report that I’ve yet to receive any hate mail. So, partly in the interest of attempting to change that and partly for the sake of expressing my views on the subject, I offer a brief commentary here about the US-led NATO war in Libya, based on a Daily Kos article linked below.

A recent article in the Daily Kos describes a forum organized by A.N.S.W.E.R. (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) to discuss the war in Libya and Western intervention there. The A.N.S.W.E.R. forum was part of a larger tour in which former congresswoman and Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney presented her observations after returning from a kind of pro-Qaddafi “fact-finding” mission in Libya . The author describes a situation in which anti-Qaddafi Libyans were allegedly barred from the event by A.N.S.W.E.R. organizers. The article is well-worth reading in its own right. But it also speaks to the larger dynamics at work in the debate on the left about Libya. Read the rest of this entry

Profit Against People and the Planet

June 3, 2011

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Some Favorite Articles this Week from a Favorite Website

The race for profit is the singular driving force behind capitalism. There is no altruistic motivation that trumps the private thirst for accumulating capital from what should otherwise be the public domain. That domain consists of two fundamental components: natural resources and the human labor that works off of those resources. Today, the corporate drive for profit necessarily runs roughshod over these two forces. It operates with a spectacular disregard for the well-being of both human and natural resources.

A conflict between labor and capital that erupted in the early 1920s in West Virginia between coal miners and bosses marked the largest insurrection in U.S. history after the Civil War. The Battle of Blair Mountain saw thousands of armed miners descending from the mountains and battling the hired thugs of the coal companies in Mingo County. The companies used violence in the form of goons that murdered and terrorized workers, strikers, organizers and their families – all in the name of preventing the workers from organizing a union and to keep the United Mine Workers union out of southern West Virginia. Martial law and the use of violence – as was touched upon in the last SubterraneanDispatcher article – revealed the bloody measures that both bosses and the state resort to in order to protect the wealth of a few. Read the rest of this entry

The Wisconsin Effect: Union Power Rediscovered

March 9, 2011

First published at Common Dreams and Counterpunch

Only four months ago the consensus among the political establishment was that of a right-wing resurgence in U.S. politics. After relegating the Republican Party into the political wilderness in 2008, the Democratic Party managed to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory, conceding a midterm electoral sweep to the GOP which now had the wind of the tea party “movement” at its back.

The left, it seemed, was on the retreat and workers were bracing for further attacks while Corporate America returned to prosperity.

Four months later and the picture could not be more different. Suddenly state capitols are being swarmed with protesters and workers are taking action to stop the ideological assault on their union rights. Read the rest of this entry