Archive | December, 2017

  • At an establishment in Sydney, Australia, that accepts payment in bitcoin.

    Making merry on bitcoin

    Bitcoin has left the world of finance gasping. Although the total market value of all that cryptocurrency in circulation is only a fraction of the value of the world’s financial assets, the rapid rise in the value of the currency has made it the most wanted of those assets. On January 1, 2017, the currency was trading between $972 and $990 a unit. By December 7, it was trading between $14,063 and $17,363.

  • Dozens of pro-immigration demonstrators cheer and hold signs as international passengers arrive at Dulles International Airport. | Photo: Reuters

    Somali deportees from U.S. exposed to “slave ship conditions”

    92 Somali nationals who were deported from the United States earlier this month are suing the Trump administration over “slave ship conditions” on the plane back home. They were denied access to food, water and bathrooms for nearly two days while on the plane.

  • What this study finds: In 2015 and 2016, a total of $2 billion in stolen wages ($880.3 million in 2015; $1.1 billion in 2016) were recovered for workers (Photo Credit:

    Two billion dollars in stolen wages were recovered for workers in 2015 and 2016—and that’s just a drop in the bucket

    The last four decades have been marked by rising wage inequality, with the vast majority of American workers experiencing wage stagnation while those at the top rung of the economic ladder reap the benefits of growth in productivity. These dynamics mean that many workers struggle to make ends meet; in 2016 one in five families in which at least one person worked were living below 200 percent of the federal poverty line (U.S. Census Bureau 2017).

  • The Battle of Plassey (Palashi, India)

    Marx on imperialism

    On February 19, 1881, Karl Marx had written a remarkable letter to N.F. Danielson, the renowned Narodnik economist who had also gone under the name of Nikolayon and whose work had been much discussed by Lenin.

  • Social leaders of the Bajo Atrato Choacano and Urabá of Antioquia denounced the persecutions, threats and selective murders they are exposed to in a press conference in Bogotá last December 14.

    “Social leaders are murdered because of fights over women”, said Colombia’s Defense Minister

    Just a week ago, Colombian social leaders denouncing the murder of another one showed up to the press conference with masks covering their faces in order to avoid risking to lose their own lives—such is the danger of defending human rights in Colombia.

  • Mao Tse-tung [also spelled Mao Zedong]

    Reiterating Mao on December 26, his birth anniversary

    Reiterating Mao’s teachings is one of the essentials in the area of political education as a new generation is joining people’s struggle.

  • Strike

    Taxes, inequality, and class power

    No doubt about it, the recently passed tax bill is terrible for working people.  But as Lance Taylor states in a blog post titled “Why Stopping Tax ‘Reform’ Won’t Stop Inequality”: “Inequality isn’t driven by taxes—its driven by the power of capital in relation to workers.”  Said differently we need to concentrate our efforts on shifting the balance of class power.  And that means, among other things, putting more of our energy into workplace organizing and revitalizing the trade union movement.

  • Power to the People: In Italy, Potere al Popolo, a new left-wing movement is born

    The meeting, attended by thousands of people, was thrilling and inspiring; all Italian communist parties and organisations, as well as environmentalist groups, social and community centres and workers associations took part in it.

  • Trump Tower and Flag.

    From progressive neoliberalism to Trump and beyond

    Whoever speaks of “crisis” today risks being dismissed as a bloviator, given the term’s banalization through endless loose talk. But there is a precise sense in which we do face a crisis today. If we characterize it precisely and identify its distinctive dynamics, we can better determine what is needed to resolve it.

  • US-based socialist Tithi Bhattacharya responds to questions from rs21 on her new book about social reproduction theory.

    Capitalism’s life source: the domestic and social basis for exploitation

    Social reproduction theory (SRT) sounds quite intimidating, but the (rather grandiose) anthology of big words masks a relatively simple question: if capitalist production is fundamentally the production of commodities, and it is workers who produce such commodities, who ‘produces’ the worker?

  • Marx Library

    The productive base as the ground of society and history: Marx’s base-superstructure theory

    Base-Superstructure Theory (BST) is Marx’s guiding general theory, but is long misunderstood. Deeply embedded in a monumental corpus of system-challenging analysis, it has become lost in secondary interpretations with partial takes and opposed propagandas militating against coherent comprehension.

  • Laurent Joffrin and Alain Badiou

    Alain Badiou debates reformist Laurent Joffrin

    Alain Badiou is former chair of philosophy at École normale supérleure and author of In Praise of Politics. Laurent Joffrin is editor of Libération newspaper—and a reformist who defends existing social democracy. Alain Badiou recently announced that he would stop running his seminar. He also announced that he would soon be publishing The Immanence of Truths, completing […]

  • Planetary boundaries

    Capitalism, exterminism and the long ecological revolution

    teleSUR spoke to Monthly Review editor John Bellamy Foster about climate change & the need to fight for an ecosocialist, revolutionary alternative to the profit-driven world capitalist system.

  • Utopia © NottsExMiner | Flickr

    Concrete utopia

    Where is Utopia today? Is this question relevant? One might argue that the term utopia is incongruous with the politics of our time, to say the least. Not only does the term ‘utopia’ indicate no place, when it found a place, it was mistreated and mutilated. What would be the place for utopian thinking in a world that is desperate to solve the accrued problems that it has created for itself? Would utopian thinking distract us from the real tribulations besetting the world?

  • Victor Grossman in Berlin in November 2009

    No Berlin Bulletin—just birds and hopes

    The fights which must be fought and difficulties endured may perhaps be a mite easier and lighter if accompanied by occasional deep breaths of nature with its simple joys, and the freedom hopes, the values and solidarity I sometimes found there and enjoyed so greatly, may also contribute just a little to efforts of good people everywhere in our good cause.

  • Photo Credit: Investig’Action

    Yemen: A western-sponsored genocide

    The lack of media interest makes it seem like a crisis unfolding in slow motion. But that is only because outrage and compassion are now meant to be weaponised when they can be useful in justifying imperialist interventions. For the Yemeni people the agony is real and there is no escaping it.

  • Protesters in St. Petersburg, Russia, on Sunday. The nationwide demonstrations were the most extensive show of defiance in years.

    Poll finds growing demand for reform in Russia

    According to a survey by the Russian Academy of Sciences, 51% of Russians believe the country needs “significant reform” over “stability.” Though a small majority, that’s the first time “reform” has won out since before 2003, perhaps indicative of a changing political mood locally. Per the polling, the younger generation is the most pro-reform, with 62% in favor.

  • Protest photo (Photo Credit: Amy Osika)

    Debt comes for us all

    “DON’T LET YOUR CHILDREN GO INTO CRIPPLING DEBT LIKE I HAVE!” I shout, as I and a group of students with SENS-UAW make our way to a major intersection just off Union Square. We wave signs, hoist our banner and merge into the crowd. We are protesting the new GOP tax bill, which will affect the lives of current, previous, and prospective students in critical and long-lasting ways.

  • Rolling Rebellion demonstration in Seattle to defend Net Neutrality • Photo by Backbone Campaign

    Net neutrality and the socialist moment

    In recent months, one of the United States’ most important debates has revolved around the broad concept of Net Neutrality (NN). Without delving into the technicalities, the concept of NN is that internet service providers (ISPs) cannot privilege or restrict internet data. Basically, once you’ve purchased your internet package with the requisite bandwidth parameters, your ISP cannot make your access to a certain site easier or harder, faster or slower.

  • Used until just 30 years ago, the humble canary was an important part of British mining history.

    Division, distraction, and domination: Revisiting the miner’s canary

    A magazine owned by billionaire Michael Bloomberg recently reported on workers’ declining share of national income. “Why don’t workers get the full benefit of rising productivity? No one has good answers,” it stated, to the merriment of left Twitter. A raft of memes reminded Bloomberg Businessweek of the lessons of Piketty, Marx, and political economy generally.