Archive | October, 2007

  • J. R. R. Tolkien: Saving the Ecosystems of Middle Earth

      In J.R.R. Tolkien‘s Lord of the Rings trilogy (1955-56) the ring is at the center of an epochal ecological struggle over the fate of Middle Earth.  Received as fantasy, in its own way this tale nevertheless encapsulates nearly a century of geological, biological, and botanical lore that followed Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species (1859).  […]

  • Israel’s Military Court System Is the Model to Avoid

      Should the United States, seeking to recalibrate the balance between security and liberty in the “war on terror,” emulate Israel in its treatment of Palestinian detainees? That is the position that Guantanamo detainee lawyers Avi Stadler and John Chandler of Atlanta, and some others, have advocated.  That people in U.S. custody could be held […]

  • How Can Anybody Be Persian? [Comment peut-on être Persan ?]

    Dans son chef-d’oeuvre Les Lettres persanes, publié en 1721, le grand philosophe français Charles-Louis de Montesquieu s’interroge sur les comportements surprenants des Français : lorsque Rica, son voyageur iranien arrivé à Paris, décide de s’habiller à la française, il constate avec étonnement que ses amis français ne le traitent plus avec l’admiration qu’ils lui portaient […]

  • On the Ninetieth Anniversary of the Russian Revolution: Why Socialism Did Not Fail

    When the Russian Revolution of October 1917 took place, it raised the hopes of the working class worldwide that a socialist state was possible.  The civil war that followed plus the intervention of foreign powers devastated the economy, necessitating a postponement in the transition to socialist relations of production.  The New Economic Policy was a […]

  • Surmounting Sectarianism in the Middle East: An Interview with Hisham Bustani

    In a recent interview with the Qatari daily al-Raya, the Jordanian Marxist writer and activist Hisham Bustani analyses current issues: the situation in the Arab region; threats against Iran; the “Broader Middle East Initiative”; the U.S., Arab regimes, and Islamists; and prospects of the Arab liberation project.  This interview, conducted by the journalist As’ad al-Azzouni, […]

  • Bush, Mambí?

    Viva Cuba libre! (Long live free Cuba!). That was the war cry throughout the plains and the mountains, forests and sugarcane fields, identifying those who began Cuba’s first war of independence on October 10, 1868.

  • Financial Capital: Crises Are Part of the Game

    Everything went well during the summer of 2007.  The economy was in an upswing and stock-market prices rose even faster.  Then the end of the housing boom in the United States triggered an international financial crisis.  Up to now it has been contained by heavy central-bank intervention; but the euphoria is gone.  The world of […]

  • “We Would Like to See Them Work Together”

    From Dictatorship Watch, via Al Musawwir. | | Print

  • Iran: Bernard Kouchner’s Declaration [Iran : Déclaration de Bernard Kouchner]

    La déclaration de Bernard Kouchner appelant à se préparer à la possibilité d’une guerre avec l’Iran est inquiétante.  Cette déclaration venant après le discours de Nicolas Sarkozy sur une alternative entre « la bombe iranienne ou le bombardement de l’Iran », simplifiant à l’outrance le problème du dossier nucléaire iranien, vise en réalité à préparer […]

  • A World at War

    A savage war is being waged against the majority of the people on Earth by the governments of the North on behalf of their multinational companies.  This war is not being fought with bombs or bullets; it is being fought through neo-liberal economic policies.  Its weapons are not being delivered by stealth bombers; they are […]

  • Conceptual Notes on a Design for Cities of Socialism

      (Mainly regarding Urban Development Themes) If we had to give a brief definition of the city under socialism, we might say that it is a sustainable human settlement with a life project planned and carried out collectively. If we wanted to flesh out this definition with some descriptive characteristics, we might add that it […]

  • Trapping Republicans: The New York State Driver’s License Controversy

    City of Troy Rensselaer County New York My county clerk, Frank Merola, has been making a name for himself lately.  Reacting to NY State Governor Eliot Spitzer’s change in the requirements for a NY State Driver’s license, which would drop the need for a social security number, Merola told the press “As long as I […]

  • The CAW and Magna: Disorganizing the Working Class

    In the neoconservative Canada of the late 1990s, the labour movement needs to become more militant, less accommodating to the demands of corporations and governments.  If this sounds like a return to the days of the 1930s or 1950s, so be it.  It’s either that or watch decades of hard-won gains disappear.  This resistance will […]

  • “Interview with Kathryn Mills and Pamela Mills”

    In 1956, C. Wright Mills wrote a personal letter to his friends Harvey and Bette Swados.  “Let’s not forget,” Mills advised the Swadoses, “that there’s…more that’s useful in…the Sweezy kind of Marxism than in all the routineers of J.S. Mill [a.k.a. variants of modern political liberalism] put together.”

  • Abuse of Iran’s President in New York Fits a Pattern

    Many Iranians, ranging from university presidents in Iran to immigrants here in the United States, feel insulted by the treatment president Ahmadinejad received in New York in September.  This is understandable, coming in the midst of a larger media campaign to demonize Iran, including the newspaper cartoon last month that depicted Iranians as cockroaches crawling […]

  • The Big Red Songbook

      THE BIG RED SONGBOOK Archie Green, David Roediger, Franklin Rosemont, Salvatore Salerno (eds.) BUY THIS BOOK The 2007 publication of The Big Red Songbook is long overdue.  Folklorist Archie Green has been in possession of 29 editions of the legendary Little Red Songbook of the IWW since Wobbly folklorist John Neuhaus entrusted them to […]

  • The elections

    Our elections are the antithesis of those held in the United States, not on Sundays but on the first Tuesday of November. Being very rich or having the support of lot of money is what matters the most there. Huge amounts are later on invested in publicity, specialized in brain washing and the creation of conditioned reflexes.

  • Russian and Iranian Presidents’ Joint Statement

    Wednesday, October 17, 2007 Tehran, 16 October: A joint statement has been signed following today’s talks in Tehran between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinezhad.  Here is its full text. On 16 October 2007, which corresponds to 24 Mehr 1386 in the Iranian calendar, Russian President Vladimir Putin, at the head of […]

  • “Resistance Is Part of Our Culture and History”: Interview with Khaled Hadadeh, Secretary General of the Lebanese Communist Party (PCL) [“La résistance fait partie de notre culture et de notre histoire”: Interview de Khaled Hadadeh, secrétaire général du PCL, parti communiste libanais]

    Le Parti communiste libanais participe à la résistance contre l’occupation israélienne, résistance politique, sociale, mais aussi armée, malgré le peu de moyens dont il dispose.  Nous avons passé une journée entière à Jamaliya, dans la vallée de la Bekaa, où 7 militants communistes sont tombés les armes à la main lors d’une opération israélienne en […]

  • The Majority Strike in Public Opinion [La grève majoritaire dans l’opinion]

    Mouvement social . Selon un sondage CSA pour l’Humanité, 54 % des Français expriment leur soutien à la mobilisation du 18 octobre.  Les diversions du gouvernement sont mises à mal. Et si la tendance s’inversait. . .  Pour la première fois, une majorité de Français soutient la journée d’action du 18 octobre contre la réforme […]