Saturday, September 01, 2012

The Other Convention held in August

(Richard Lipsitz, President- Western NY Federation of Labor, speaking at the SDUSA convention)

The SDUSA, a group that I interviewed earlier this year, held their national convention in Buffalo last week. While the group is small and not running candidates for office, they did bring in speakers to address issues important to social democrats in the US. You can read a synopsis of the event at Social Currents.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Back in Action and Around the Web

I spent the summer in the Mediteranian (specifically Israel, Turkey, Greece, and Egypt), and had a great, eye opening set of experiences. I'll speak more about some of my adventures there later.

Although I wasn't here to post, thanks to the advent of smartphones, I was able to read a great deal while traveling and kept up with some of the debates circulating in our little corner of the web. Here are a few choice pieces, even if they are a few months old.

Alan Johnson critizes the Eurabia postulation that Europe is turning into a Muslim continent.

Bhaskar Sunkara talks about the Italian Communist Party in the 1960s.

Adam Holland addresses the vile Antisemitism at Counterpunch.

Bob addresses the Julian Assange rape /extradetion ordeal, argung that contrary to what some left leaning groups claim, we are not all Julian Assange.

Plump addresses  the Greek crisis.

Elizabeth Faue has a great piece in Dissent about the internal battles and changes in the labour movement.

James Stavridis argues that the West is winning in Afghanistan in the Guardian.

Marko's important and timely piece on the Henry Jackson Socity's right-ward drift away from its centrist/liberal roots.

Martin writes about his family lineage during the Age of Revolution.

Michael Totten on the anti-imperialism of fools.

Shiraz Socialist and the anatomy of the new Stalinism.

Ron Radosh and his early life at a predomintly communist school in NY.

Return to Work, and Return to History

It's been a long summer in the Middle East, but I am back in California and prepping my classroom for the coming school year. Since I will be teaching US Government and American History, I felt this piece in the new issue of Jacobin Magazine was worth a read. James Oak's piece challanges the lazy narrative adopted in recent decades that the American Civil War was about anything but Slavery. He writes:

"Unwilling to take seriously what contemporaries were saying, historians have constructed a narrative of Emancipation and the Civil War that begins with the premise that Republicans came into the war with no intention of attacking slavery – indeed, that they disavowed any antislavery intentions. The narrative is designed to demonstrate the original premise, according to which everyone at the time was mistaken about what the Republicans intended to do."

Definitly worth a read. Just avoid the totalitarian ramblings of Richard Seymour on the front page.