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Archive | August, 2010

The Sacred Cow

The early years of the Left Front government in West Bengal in the late seventies had been marked by severe power cuts in Calcutta (as it then was) and elsewhere in the state.  One evening as “load-shedding” began, a little urchin in a slum neighbouring a high-rise jumped up and down clapping his hands, shouting: […]

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Bushehr Launch a Sign of US Power Fading

“What a victory it is for all independent nations, that is, nations independent of US hegemonic power when it comes to energy interests.  And what a victory also for those Russian families and corporations outside the United States’ sphere of influence.” — Afshin Rattansi Afshin Rattansi is a journalist, currently a presenter at Press TV.  […]

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Hormel Strike a Key Event in Nation’s Labor History

From the late summer of 1985 into the early spring of 1986, the small town of Austin, Minnesota, figured prominently in the national news.  The dramatic themes and issues, twists and turns, of a labor conflict there captured the national imagination.  This interest was not merely passive, as more than thirty support committees formed across […]

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Housing Crisis, System Failure

This capitalist crisis resembles a certain kind of serious disease.  Different symptoms keep flaring up at different locations.  It began with sub-prime mortgages in residential housing.  Then, sequential flare-ups hit the private banking system, forced millions out of their jobs and homes, drastically cut world trade, and undermined the public services and national debts of […]

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Marx and Engels on Music

In 1857 Charles Dana invited Karl Marx to contribute to the New American Cyclopaedia.  Marx was the European political correspondent for the daily New York Tribune, of which Dana was the editor; Dana and George Ripley, his former mentor at the utopian colony of Brook Farm, were co-editors of the encyclopedia.  In due time Marx […]

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Will Chinese Workers Challenge Global Capitalism?

  Paul Jay: In China in June, leaders of the Chinese Communist Party said that it’s time for workers’ wages to go up.  And there’s been a lot of discussion about whether China’s actually restructuring its economy to try to boost domestic demand.  Certainly in what leaders say in other parts of the world they […]

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The Adventures of Salwa

  Salwa is an ordinary woman who is sick of sexual harassment that has become part of her daily life and decides to take matters into her own hands.  Her superpower lies in her bag. Manager Promotion Amanda Abou Abdallah is a Lebanese filmmaker. | Print  

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The Fight for a Mountaintop

  “Someday coal’s gonna run out.  And we’re going to have to have jobs, we’re going to have to have energy, when that happens.  So, why not start now?” — Lorelei Scarbro, Coal River Mountain Wind Project Produced by the New York Times.  See, also, Tom Zeller, Jr., “A Battle in Mining Country Pits Coal […]

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Power Blues: Mubarak’s Failed State

I was at the dental clinic in my neighborhood today when power went out while the doctor was in the middle of operating on my teeth.  The guy had to stop and watch helplessly as I kept spitting blood everywhere. This summer has been plagued by power cuts all across the country for long hours, […]

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Habana Vieja

  Van Royko is a photographer and filmmaker from Montreal, Quebec, Canada.  See, also, Richard Levins, “How to Visit a Socialist Country” (Monthly Review, April 2010). | Print  

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The Myth of the “Sub-prime Crisis”

Capitalism, like the proverbial horse, kicks even when in decline.  Even as the current crisis hit it, it gave an ideological kick by attributing the crisis to “sub-prime” lending; and so well-directed was its kick that the whole world ended up calling it the “sub-prime crisis”. The idea, bought even in progressive circles, was that […]

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