Archive | August, 2011

  • The Great Unity of the Libyan Rebels

    Victor Nieto is a cartoonist in Venezuela.  His cartoons frequently appear in Aporrea and Rebelión among other sites.  Cf. C. J. Chivers, “Libyan Rebels Accused of Pillage and Beatings” (New York Times, 12 July 2011); Kim Sengupta, “Libyan Rebels Have Conceded Ground since Bombing Began” (Independent, 27 July 2011); David D. Kirkpatrick, “Death of Rebel […]

  • Cuba Opposes Any Attempt to Undermine the Independence, Sovereignty, and Territorial Integrity of Syria

      We wish to express our deep concern for the treatment of Syria’s internal situation at the United Nations Security Council, beginning with strong pressures exerted by the Western powers who are members of this organ, in order to adopt decisions against the legitimate government of Syria. Taking into account the experiences of, and precedents […]

  • Employment Rate Hits New Low as Economy Creates 117,000 Jobs in July

    The employment rate for blacks hit its 4th consecutive low for the downturn. The Labor Department reported that the economy created 117,000 jobs in July and revised prior months’ growth up slightly to bring the average over the last three months to 72,000.  This rate of job growth is below the 90,000 a month needed […]

  • Hidden by the Debt Ceiling “Crisis”: A Double Looting of the State and the Working Class

    The political posturing around the debt ceiling “crisis” was mostly a distraction from the hard issues.  The hardest of those — underlying US economic decline — keeps resurfacing to display costs, pains, and injustices that threaten to dissolve society.  Its causes — two long-term trends over the last 30 years — help also to explain […]

  • What Everyone Should Know about the “Debt Crisis” in the U.S.

    Since the U.S. “Debt Crisis” has been a big international story for the last few weeks, it is worth clarifying what is real and what is not.  First, the U.S. government does not have a “debt crisis.”  The U.S. government is paying net interest of just 1.4 percent of GDP on its public debt — […]

  • Labor Idle As Obama, Democrats Back “Raw Deal” for Working People

      After it was too late to make a difference, SEIU President Mary Kay Henry denounced the debt-ceiling agreement as “a raw deal for working people and the 30 million Americans who are still looking for work.”  In fact, neither SEIU, the AFL-CIO, nor AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka aggressively mobilized union members against the deal […]

  • Unraveling the Unemployment Insurance Lifeline: Responding to Insolvency, States Begin Reducing Benefits and Restricting Eligibility in 2011

      Excerpt: State lawmakers enacted a range of policies in 2011 to amend their unemployment insurance (UI) programs, most of them motivated by insolvent state trust funds.  Most notably, six states passed unprecedented cuts in the duration of benefits, for the first time reducing benefit weeks to less than the decades-long accepted standard of 26 […]

  • Syrian Tweets: “Peaceful Protests”?

    Syrian Commando (2 August 2011): “Peaceful demonstration tools in #Hama #Syria for Ramadan“ Eslam Jawaad (2 August 2011): “Father is Druze.  Mother is Alawite.  They raised me as Muslim.  My wife is Sunni.  Brother’s wife Christian.  F#$k sectarianism.  Pray for #Syria“ 3arabiSouri (2 August 2011): “Syrians r so grateful to our Libyan brothers, if […]

  • Iran and al-Qa’ida: Can the Charges Be Substantiated?

    Last week, the Obama Administration formally charged the Islamic Republic of working with al-Qa’ida.  The charge was presented as part of the Treasury Department’s announcement that it was designating six alleged al-Qa’ida operatives for terrorism-related financial sanctions.  The six are being designated, according to Treasury, because of their involvement in transiting money and operatives for […]

  • Interview with Joshua Landis: Sanctions against Syria Will Only Hurt People

      Joshua Landis: Hama, which is the center of this crackdown, left government control about three weeks ago.  The governor called off the troops and withdrew security from the town.  He was summarily fired.  The government realized that this was a big mistake. . . .  The government is clearly trying to take control of […]

  • Creative Cities

    Josephine Berry Slater and Anthony Illes.  No Room to Move: Radical Art and the Regenerate City.  Mute Books.  124 pp. “Gentrification was already coming.  The feta-cheese footprint.” — Stewart Home Broadway I Located on the historic drovers’ road that led from Essex to the slaughterhouses of Smithfield, Broadway Market in Hackney is one of the […]

  • Syria: What Is Going On in Hama?

      Hama has suffered for the (at least) past three weeks from lawlessness and nearly complete absence of the entire state and its organs, and from control by groups of armed teenagers and criminals who (left without any other choice, in the opinion of the US and French ambassadors) actually erected roadblocks and expropriated the […]

  • Venezuelan Government Condemns Bombing of Libya’s State Television

    Communiqué The president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Comandante Hugo Chávez, in the name of the Venezuelan people and government, categorically condemns the illegal bombing perpetrated on Saturday, 30 July 2011 by the NATO military forces against the installations of the Jamahiriya, the Libyan state television. This barbaric act of the NATO constitutes the […]

  • Why Does the Guardian Ignore the Assassination of Peasant Activists in Venezuela?

    Dear Guardian editors: We, the undersigned, ask why the Guardian has ignored one of Venezuela’s most serious human rights problems — the assassination of hundreds of peasant activists since 2001 by gunmen hired by wealthy land owners. On June 8, reported a 10,000 person march on the National Assembly to demand justice for the […]

  • On the Debt Ceiling Deal

    The protracted negotiations over the debt ceiling, as well as the final package agreed to by President Obama and the congressional leadership, show what happens when a small minority is allowed to gain control over national debate.  While polls consistently show that the vast majority of the public sees jobs as the main problem facing […]