Does housing in Detroit in 2017 mean large tracts of vacant land and substandard houses ripe for development and easy slumlord profit, or a focus for community organizing to take back our city? .
Report of the pro-choice Feb. 10 rally in Chicago, a day before anti-abortion fanatics planned to mob Planned Parenthood clinics across the U.S.
Reports from the huge Women’s March from participants in Chicago, Ill., Detroit, Mich., Oakland, Calif., Nashville, Tenn., Memphis, Tenn., Los Angeles, Calif., and New York City.
Latina union activist in Detroit questions how working people lost out in the school board elections and the ballot measures in the recent election and, noting that the AFL-CIO supported the Dakota Access Pipeline, asks, “Which side are you on?”
Readers’ Views on: Racism and Revolt Put U.S. on Trial; Life and Death Under the Class Divide; Environmental Struggles; War and Atrocities; and Women’s Lives at Stake.
The book Mapping the Water Crisis: The Dismantling of Black Neighborhoods in Detroit and the film Detroit Minds Dying, expose that the preponderance of water shutoffs in Detroit occur in poor neighborhoods and neighborhoods of color, the lies of Detroit city officials, and the difference determined activists can make.
Chinese university students’ struggle at Tiananmen Square for better living conditions; Kaiser workers’ fight against two-tier wages and the continuous miner; and today’s Hong Kong Youth’s Umbrella Revolution, Occupy Movement and Black Lives Matter all show that workers are alive in struggle.
Readers’ Views on: Environment, Labor, Race and Philosophy; Queer Liberation; Black Lives Matter; Bolivian Social Movements; Trumpery’s Fascism & Racism.
Workers at Nexteer Automotive dealt a blow to the United Auto Workers bureaucracy and the company when 97% of the rank and file rejected the contract the UAW had negotiated, forcing sharp revisions on two-tier wages and healthcare benefits in the contract they ratified.
In remembering Olga Domanski, Ron Kelch writes that she embodied organization as beginning from Hegel’s idea of freedom as a self-moving process that inspires generations of humanity
A remembrance of Olga Domanski by Kevin O’Brien, who felt that Olga knew what revolution meant and strove persistently, tirelessly and cheerfully for it.
Discussion of the fight against water shutoffs in Detroit by a participant and a Flint resident discusses the problem of lead in the City of Flint’s drinking water.
Remembrances of Olga Domanski by comrades and friends.
readers views nov dec 2015 part 1
UAW workers reject Chrysler contract and force an improved one, showing the power of their strike.
The United Auto Workers, claiming to represent over 55% of the workers at the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Tenn., has demanded exclusive bargaining rights for the workers. The company, however, is resisting.
“Caravana 43” includes some of the parents of 43 students who were “disappeared” in September from the Normal Rural School Raúl Isidro Burgos in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, Mexico, and are touring the U.S. Here are in-person reports from their trips to Berkeley, Calif., and Detroit, Mich.
The article excerpts a summary of a talk by Dunayevskaya to a conference on Women’s Liberation in Detroit. The purpose of the meeting was to help Dunayevskaya work out the final chapter of her book then in progress, Philosophy and Revolution. That last chapter would take up the “New Passions and New Forces” for the reconstruction of society. The Conference was also the beginning of the News & Letters—Women’s Liberation Committee.
Detroit—Meeting on March 24-25, some 900 delegates from more than 800 local unions representing automotive, aerospace, education, healthcare, public work and other areas of the economy heard reports and discussed strategies for the United Auto Workers (UAW) contract that expires in September 2015.
There will be a laundry list of grievances presented at the United Auto Workers (UAW) union bargaining convention to be held in Detroit, Mich, in March. Many of these grievances have been festering throughout auto plants in the country since 2009, when General Motors and Chrysler went bankrupt.
Detroit—Instead of holding an election of rank-and-file workers at the Mercedes-Benz auto plant in Tuscaloosa, Ala., the United Auto Workers union (UAW) in October simply declared that Local Union 112 was in existence to represent workers at the plant. UAW officials said they hoped to convince a majority of the 3,400 full-time workers there to join the union, and are seeking to persuade Mercedes-Benz management to accept the union as the sole representative of the workers….
From the May 2003 issue of News & Letters.
From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: Marxist-Humanist Archives
Editor’s note: Raya Dunayevskaya’s “Letters on Hegel’s Absolutes” were a philosophic breakthrough that led to the birth of Marxist-Humanism. We are reprinting this 1987 commentary by her where she reexamined them in light of her effort to work [=>]
From the September-October 2014 issue of News & Letters
U.S. CRISES: RACISM, POLICE, LABOR STRUGGLES
New York News and Letters Committee prepared a flyer on Eric Garner (see: “NYC Police murder Eric Garner” this issue) headlined: “Wanted For Murder: Daniel Pantaleo.” It denounced the fact that the cops who killed Garner are [=>]
“Water is a Human Right!” chanted over 1,000 on July 18. Detroit’s Water and Sewerage Dept. had shut off water to 15,000 residents.
Thousands of people packed into Daley Plaza on Aug. 14 for the National Moment of Silence. Observed in 90 cities, it was called to respond to the police killing of Michael Brown, an 18-year-old African American, in Ferguson, Mo.
From the July-August 2014 issue of News & Letters
UNCHAINING THE DIALECTIC
Raya Dunayevskaya’s 1953 breakthrough on Hegel’s Absolute Idea enabled her to illuminate a path not traveled by previous generations of revolutionaries. She is quite emphatic in raising the importance of “Unchaining the Revolutionary Dialectic” (May-June 2014 N&L), and capturing what [=>]
Intense pressure builds as 38,000 retired Detroit City workers approach a voting deadline on the fate of their pensions and healthcare benefits under the Plan of Adjustment of the unelected Detroit Emergency Manager for the city’s bankruptcy filing.
From the July-August 2014 issue of News & Letters
Detroit—The United Auto Workers (UAW) union elected Dennis Williams, former UAW secretary-treasurer, as president for a four-year term during the union’s Constitutional Convention held in Detroit on June 4-5. Following his election, Williams pledged to eliminate the existing two-tier wage system that pays new hires [=>]
Readers’ Views from the March-April 2014 issue of News & Letters, part 1.
We don’t want our neighborhoods razed for “profit-making capitalist folks.” Detroit residents are concerned with improved quality of life in our communities.
Jacqueline Jones’ new book, A Dreadful Deceit: The Myth of Race from the Colonial Era to Obama’s America, is not a call to ignore effects of the concept of race in law and practice. She finds the definition of race repeatedly twisted to suit the needs of the ruling class and wielded as a tool for subjugation of Black and white labor alike.
More than 300 people of all races came out to confront a handful of Nazis rallying in Kansas City.
As a contribution to Black History Month we reprint Raya Dunayevskaya’s memorial for Charles Denby (1907-1983), her comrade of 35 years, Editor of News & Letters from its founding in 1955 until his death and the author of Indignant Heart: A Black Worker’s Journal.
Yesterday, a judge approved Detroit bankruptcy. Emergency manager Kevyn Orr outrageously claimed that the attack on workers’ pensions would be “thoughtful, measured and humane.” Read the News & Letters article for a view from the other side of the class struggle.
The new November-December 2013 issue of News & Letters is online.
News & Letters, Vol. 58, No. 6
November – December 2013
The Syrian Revolution as the test of world politics
On Aug. 21 the genocidal regime of Bashar al-Assad murdered over a thousand civilians, mostly women and children, with sarin gas in the Damascus suburbs of Eastern Ghouta. [=>]
A different Detroit is struggling to be realized in the minds and hearts of its citizens: individuals (unrecognized thousands of whom routinely maintain nearby abandoned property) as well as organizations—from churches and small businesses to youth and athletic programs, block clubs and neighborhood associations, and social and environmental justice organizations.
Detroit Eviction Defense came out of the Direct Action Workgroup of Occupy Detroit about two years ago. We work with people who want to save their homes. We have saved about 60 so far.
“Abolish the slums!” was so clearly and loudly the demand of the Negro Revolt in every single part of the country–North, South, East, West–that even President Johnson couldn’t pretend not to have heard it. In words, the President even claimed that that was part of his “war on poverty.” Hadn’t he asked for rat control, and hadn’t Congress denied him even that piddling sum? … As Commander-in-Chief he need not plead. He orders, and his orders were clear and unequivocal: 1) Shoot first…
The entire state of Michigan voted against the harsh emergency manager law, Public Act 436, last November only to have the lame-duck state legislature vote it right back in before year’s end. On the day, March 28, that Act 436 took effect, Detroit Public Schools Emergency Manager fired the interim superintendent of schools. … Meanwhile, neighborhoods languish under mounting piles of trash, abandoned houses, stores, factories and vehicles. City services are reduced by mandatory budget cut “furloughs.” The challenge for Detroit residents is: can we stand up and organize ourselves for quality living and working conditions, some of which includes wresting support and services from our unelected new leaders? Can we articulate and realize a future Detroit developed for human needs?
The rulers are not about to sit back and let revolt freely develop. All sorts of reactionary ideas and attitudes have been ushered into the mainstream of politics and the media.
The new May-June 2013 issue of News & Letters is available on the web:
News & Letters, Vol. 58, No. 3
May – June 2013
You may view this issue of News & Letters in pdf form here
Draft for Marxist-Humanist Perspectives, 2013-2014
Capitalism’s violence, masses’ revolt show need for total view
The world today is riven between the creativity of masses in [=>]
From the March-April 2013 issue of News & Letters:
AT THE CROSSROADS OF HISTORY
When the Green Movement started in Iran over the 2009 election, the so-called leaders were part of the government who were against Ahmadinejad. The growth of the movement of women and youth got so big it became “out of control” by the [=>]
From the March-April 2013 issue of News & Letters:
Detroit—Four years after discovering 11,303 untested rape kits in a Detroit Police Department warehouse, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy’s appearance on NBC’s “Rock Center” gained national attention for her efforts to bring justice to victims of rape. Worthy obtained a million dollars in federal money [=>]
From the September-October 2012 issue of News & Letters:
You’re invited to a nationwide series of five Marxist-Humanist discussions on:
Global Crises, Global Rebellion, and the Needed Philosophy of Revolution
Central to today’s reality is the worldwide capitalist economic crisis, the deepest since the Great Depression of the 1930s, and the context for occupations and revolutions across the [=>]
From the January-February 2012 issue of News & Letters:
Flint’s emergency manager targets labor
Flint, Mich.—In November, Flint was placed under the control of an emergency manager for the second time. This time is different, because under a law passed in March of last year the financial manager can end collective bargaining agreements (with state approval), run [=>]
From the November-December 2011 issue of News & Letters:
UAW and Big 3 still fear rank and file
Detroit—The new auto industry contract just approved by the autoworkers created a huge well of discontent among the rank and file that will surely manifest itself in many ways during the four-year contract. Indications of this were evident during [=>]
From the September-October 2011 issue of News & Letters:
Permanent army of the unemployed
Detroit–The unemployment crisis is reaching far into the future. Whereas many government and private economists have been predicting that the economy will pick up in the next quarter or the next year, new reports conclude that in 50 U.S. metropolitan areas, it will [=>]
From the July-August 2011 issue of News & Letters:
What UAW workers must take back
Detroit–Many challenges face the rank-and-file auto workers as the stage is being set for auto contract negotiations in July. Their future is not promising, despite the rhetoric of United Auto Workers union President Bob King that emphasizes the restoration of benefits lost [=>]
From the new issue of NEWS & LETTERS, May-June 2011:
Militant labor and corporate attacks
Detroit–A new militant spirit in labor is now coming into play, sparked by the militant struggle against the onslaught of Wisconsin unionized public workers. This opposition is re-energizing the union movement and producing new leaders who are expressing their opposition to their [=>]
From the March-April 2011 issue of News & Letters:
Michigan support rally
Lansing, Mich.–It was a dreary, overcast, cold day at the Capitol building here on Feb. 26 when over 2,000 came from all over the state to show solidarity with workers in Wisconsin and elsewhere. Driving in from Detroit, one could pick out those heading for [=>]