The pandemic and the climate and ecological crisis struck when the world capitalist system had shown its inability to extricate itself from a prolonged economic slump. They deepened it. Despite the happy face that government and corporate economists paint, the opposite story is told by people’s lives.
Since the developmentalist projects posed by the new “Left” Mexican administration are aimed at generating profits and not at solving human needs, they will just mean more exploitation and misery for the masses.
The retreat from even modest efforts to control nuclear weapons has brought humanity closer than ever to annihilation. President Donald Trump’s suspension of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) with Vladimir Putin’s Russia gins up an already accelerating new arms race.
During this time of economic, political and societal crisis, including shortages of food and medicine, can Venezuela’s people build a society that is truly human, thus showing the way for the rest of the world?
The lightning move by Republicans in Congress to prepare to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or Obamacare—before Donald Trump even took office, with only the vaguest idea of what is to replace it, and with full knowledge that a large majority of Americans oppose the repeal of its most important provisions—gave a sign of how far the new single-party government intends to roll the clock back, with dizzying speed.
Worldwide, the refugee crisis is unprecedented and is fueled by war, terrorism and climate change. The worldwide response is paltry with country after country turning away or deporting frantic and desperate people in search of a safe haven.
In celebrating the first 60 years of News and Letters Committees, we reprint excerpts from the Draft Perspectives for 1975-76 by Raya Dunayevskaya, the first printed in News & Letters.
THE MOVEMENT KNOWS, of course, that the class enemy is at home, within each country. It knows full well that each existing state power is weighted down with fear of revolution. And it does not fail to appreciate that, no matter how deep the intra-imperialist rivalries, capitalist class solidarity holds tightest and strongest against its own people.
The electoral victory of Greece’s Syriza party was an important first step in resisting austerity imposed on the Greek and European working classes as capitalism’s response to its own intractable crisis. Nothing could be in greater contradiction to the movement that lifted Syriza to prominence than the parliamentary alliance with the racist, theocratic Independent Greeks party.
In today’s economic crisis, Europe is haunted by the specters that were supposed to be overcome by the European economic union and the single currency Eurozone: the 20th century tendency to degenerate into vile nationalism, genocidal racism and the barbarism of total war.
Protests erupted after the cops who murdered Michael Brown and Eric Garner were let off. They mark a new moment of rebellion against a social order in which Black youth are made to live continuously suspended over an abyss of non-existence.
The passion to tear up this deeply racist society by the roots calls for the fullest development in activity and thought.
The U.S. government took an ominous, reactionary political turn in the 2014 midterm elections, with Republicans taking control of the Senate. Extreme pro-war Senators like Joni Ernst in Iowa and Tom Cotton in Arkansas join veterans like Senator “Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran” John McCain, who will now control the Armed Services Committee and is hell-bent for new “boots on the ground” in Syria and Iraq. The whole Republican campaign—including these pro-war, pro-fossil-fuel, pro-“fetus is a person” candidates—ran on a cynically deceptive anti-Obama mantra….
Bucharest, Romania—Romania and many European countries are living in times of an unprecedented crisis. Politics of economic austerity combined with populist and nationalistic rhetoric occurring in a constant realm of corruption have increased the growing distance between citizens and authorities throughout the continent. Street protests in various countries showed the level of popular disenchantment with [=>]
OFFICIAL CALL FOR CONVENTION
to Work Out Marxist-Humanist Perspectives for 2012-2013
February 26, 2012
To All Members of News and Letters Committees
Where we must begin is with the world in upheaval, from Occupy Wall Street to Arab Spring, still going after more than a year.
Nothing better shows the old order’s bloody desperation to prevent a [=>]
Protests began in September in Wukan, a village of 20,000 people in Guangdong province on the South China Sea, against seizure of more than 100 acres of Wukan’s common land to be sold to those with insider ties to the village Communist Party leadership. Village authorities escalated the conflict by identifying protest leaders and hauling [=>]
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 the ratification process, when it became apparent in [=>]
A statement from News and Letters Committees:
‘You can’t evict an idea whose time has come!’
The Occupy movement defies police state attacks
City governments have carried out police raids on occupations across the U.S. in a vain attempt to crush the movement with brute force. A new level of violence was achieved in mid-November, as raids from [=>]
Below is the text of a leaflet issued by News and Letters Committees members in New York.
News & Letters Committees stands in solidarity with the Occupy movements. We denounce the 1%-orchestrated forceful actions to stop our protests, from evictions at home to state-sponsored murders of innocent Syrian youth!
To help this young movement develop to its [=>]
From the writings of Raya Dunayevskaya
Editor’s note: As the world experiences a new stage of revolt–from the Arab Spring to Wall Street–and seeks ways to make it a revolutionary new beginning, we present excerpts of Raya Dunayevskaya’s Perspectives Report to the 1977 national gathering of News and Letters Committees. Originally titled, “IT’S LATER, ALWAYS LATER–except when [=>]
by Gerry Emmett and Susan Van Gelder
The Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement, since beginning in New York City’s Zuccotti Park–renamed Liberty Plaza–on Sept. 17, has spread to hundreds of cities and towns across the U.S. and linked with the occupation movements in Europe. On Oct. 15, Occupy demonstrations took place in 951 cities in 82 [=>]
by Gerry Emmett
The killing of 24-year-old Mark Duggan by London police on Aug. 6 set off the largest urban rebellion in Britain in decades. The situation was made worse by police lies that Duggan had pointed a gun at them, and by their rude, smirking response to family and community members who came to the [=>]
by Gerry Emmett
Israel has seen an unprecedented protest movement grow in the wake of the Arab Spring. Around 250,000 people marched through Tel Aviv, Israel, on Aug. 6 in the biggest protest rally the country has ever experienced. Another 50,000 participated in other cities and towns. It is being seen as a direct challenge to [=>]
by Gerry Emmett
Protests against deteriorating economic conditions, fuel shortages and government repression were met with brutal force by authorities in Malawi on June 20-21. Police fired on large crowds in a number of cities, attacking with tear gas, and forcing protest leaders into hiding. At least 19 people were killed in two days of clashes [=>]
From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya
Editor’s note: Written in the midst of the last double-dip recession in the U.S., the piece excerpted here was originally titled, “In the U.S. and globally: deep recession, military buildup and the pulling apart of political alliances.” It was published as the lead article in the April 1982 N&L.
The depth of [=>]
by Ron Kelch
At the end of a months-long political spectacle in Washington–manufactured over irrelevancies concerning what should have been a routine raising of the national debt limit before the Aug. 2 deadline–reality struck with a bombshell: the anemic “jobless” recovery in the U.S. has stalled. The economy is getting worse and there is no solution [=>]
News & Letters, Vol. 56, No. 5
Political spectacles cannot hide reality of deranged capitalism
At the end of a months-long political spectacle in Washington–manufactured over irrelevancies concerning what should have been a routine raising of the national debt limit before the Aug. 2 deadline–reality struck with a bombshell: the anemic “jobless” recovery in the U.S. [=>]
Since May 25, a people’s assembly has been in session in Greece’s Syntagma Square outside of parliament. Through an open mike, tens of thousands from all walks of life have been coming to express their total indignation with Europe’s politics of austerity. The people’s assembly of self-described “angry ones” is a new dimension to the [=>]
by Ron Kelch
In one of the biggest demonstrations in Ireland since its revolutionary birth in 1916, 100,000 marched in Dublin on Nov. 27 against the terms of an 85 billion euro loan package put together by the European Union (EU) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The marchers were outraged over the Irish government agreeing [=>]
Capital on strike
Today capital is on strike even as it wages a two-pronged war against workers: automation and forcing cuts in living standards. In the U.S., 500 of the largest non-financial firms are sitting on a cash hoard of over a trillion dollars, yet capitalists have refused to invest in the real economy ever since [=>]