Black Love Matters

Black Love Matters feature image
July 30, 2015
A dispatch from the inaugural gathering of a proudly diffuse, rapidly growing, hyper-local movement for black lives.
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Judge Fines Greenpeace after Portland Protest

Judge Fines Greenpeace after Portland Protest feature image
July 30, 2015
A Shell icebreaker in Portland turned back Wednesday, avoiding a showdown with protesters dangling from a bridge. The company hasn't announced its next move.
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5 Reasons to Care About Verizo Negotiations

5 Reasons to Care About Verizo Negotiations feature image
July 30, 2015
In anticipation of their current contracts expiring on August 1st, CWA and IBEW recently announced that an overwhelming majority of their members voted to authorize a strike in case labor and management fail to reach fair contracts.
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Bernie Sanders House Party

Bernie Sanders House Party feature image
July 30, 2015
The national organizing day, which featured more than 3,500 events and house parties across the country, centered around a technological infrastructure that uses text-messaging sign-ups and a deep database of volunteers. Attendees at the house parties were asked to text a number to opt in and show interest.
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A Crash With Chinese Characteristics

A Crash With Chinese Characteristics feature image
July 30, 2015
The massive $3.2 trillion destruction in financial value hasn’t sparked a broader financial crisis in China — an illustration of how China’s financial system is different from other major powers. While the People’s Bank of China has sufficient firepower to reverse a crash of several trillion dollars (far more than most other countries), China’s financial system is also comparatively isolated relative to both global finance and China’s own domestic population.
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The Return Of The Ugly German

July 29, 2015
The massive conflict with France and Italy, the eurozone’s second and third largest economies, is not over, because, for Schäuble, Grexit remains an option. By claiming that debt relief is “legally” possible only outside the eurozone, he wants to turn the issue into the lever for bringing about a “voluntary” Grexit.
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'Special Needs' Jim Crow in Georgia Schools

July 29, 2015
"It's a warehouse for kids the school system doesn't want or know how to deal with," a parent told the Justice Department of the program. The Justice Department detailed its findings in a letter earlier this month to Georgia's governor and attorney general.
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Open Letter Against Autonomous Weapons

July 29, 2015
This open letter was announced July 28 at the opening of the IJCAI 2015 conference on July 28. Journalists who wish to see the press release may contact Toby Walsh. Hosting, signature verification and list management are supported by FLI; for administrative questions about this letter, please contact
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Judge's Ruling Against Detention Hailed

Judge's Ruling Against Detention Hailed feature image
July 29, 2015
Judge Gee also decried the “deplorable” conditions of the temporary holding centers along the border dubbed “hieleras” or ice boxes. Testimony from recent detainees said that the overcrowded rooms sometimes held as many as 100 people “which forced children to sleep standing up or not at all.”
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Amnesty Charges Israeli War Crimes

Amnesty Charges Israeli War Crimes feature image
July 29, 2015
"This report presents an urgent call for justice that must not be ignored. The combined analysis of hundreds of photos and videos, as well as satellite imagery and testimony from eyewitnesses, provides compelling evidence of serious violations of international humanitarian law by Israeli forces which must be investigated."
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Portside Culture

Curiosity by Alberto Manguel

Caspar Henderson
The Guardian
"Humans are the most curious among animals," writes Caspar Henderson in this review of Alberto Manguel's meditation on inquisitiveness.

'JIMMY'S HALL' - Ken Loach’s New Film About Irish Working Class Heroes

Ed Rampell
Hollywood Progressive
Based on a true story, 'Jimmy’s Hall' is about Jimmy Gralton the only Irishman deported as an illegal alien from Ireland, the land of his birth – without so much as a trial! Of course Gralton’s true crime was to fight against the reactionary church, aristocratic landowners and narrow nationalism by setting up a hall where ordinary people could dance to jazz music, study art and pursue a more class conscious politics during the Depression.

Why Junk Food Is Hard to Resist

By Alicia Ault
Smithsonian Magazine
Research suggests that junk food like sodas, chips and fries trick the brain into thinking no calories were consumed. Via pathways that are similar to those observed with the ingestion of powerfully addictive drugs, junk food rewards the brain but it does not enhance the body.

A Line Breaking

Renny Golden
Naugatuck River Review
On July 27, 1919, the appearance of an African American swimmer near a white beach provoked a citywide pogrom in Chicago. Poet Renny Golden depicts the incident and a wade-in that integrated the shores during the 1960s.

The Moynihan Family Circus

Stephanie Coontz
BookForum - June/July/Aug 2015
Looking back after 50 years at the few pros (the real lack of jobs) and the many cons (an over-reliance throughout on allegedly debilitating cultural factors) of Daniel Patrick Moynihan's explanation for high African American poverty rates in his Report on the Black Family and Poverty.

The End of Feminism? Far From It

Rinku Sen
Public Books
In this look at three new and “valuable contributions to our cultural thinking and political thinking on today’s feminist movement,” Rinku Sen finds much to praise; however, she criticizes these authors because they “treat these two realms as largely disconnected from each other.” That’s too bad, Sen adds, because the movement is strongest “when cultural and political interventions reinforce each other.”

Portside Labor

How Migrant Farmworkers Are Cross-Pollinating Strategies and Winning

Sonia Singh
Labor Notes
When farmworkers migrate, they carry with them their organizing experience and transnational networks—and a powerful potential for cross-pollinating fights. Recent struggles in Baja California, Washington State, Vermont and Ontario all demonstrate the power of those connections.

Guardian US Votes Unanimously To Unionize

Michael Calderone
Huffington Post
The Guardian US staff voted unanimously Wednesday to unionize under the News Media Guild which is part of the Communication Workers of America. This continues a spate of labor organizing in newsrooms.

Unions Win Court Ruling that Chicago Pension Cuts are Unconstitutional

AFSCME Council 31
"This ruling that overturns city pension cuts and protects the life savings of city workers is a win for all Chicago," AFSCME Council 31 executive director Roberta Lynch said. "All city residents can be reassured that the Constitution--our state's highest law--means what it says and will be respected, while city employees and retirees can be assured that their modest retirement income is protected."

How the American South Drives the Low-Wage Economy

Harold Meyerson
The American Prospect
There is nothing new about Northern factories moving to the south for lower labor costs, but starting in the 1960s, higher value manufacturing made the shift and had a more profound impact on the economy, reducing the economic divide. Meanwhile, the political divide between North and South has deepened, and the South has attempted to impose on the rest of the nation its opposition to worker and minority rightst-hrough the vehicle of a Southernized Republican Party.

Can Auto Shed Its Tiers?

Alexandra Bradbury
Labor Notes
Eight years after accepting a drastic two-tier system of wages and benefits—and nearly a decade since the first tier got a raise—the United Auto Workers are bargaining with the Big 3 automakers.

Nurses Union on Black Lives Matter

National Nurses United
National Nurses United
While there are clear correlations between structural racism in the criminal justice system and economic and social justice, each area is also a clear and present danger to life and health, as well as an infringement on the human rights of those affected and on American democracy. As nurses, we are dedicated to preventing all forms of illness, protecting health, and alleviating human suffering.

My Support for Jeremy Corbyn is About Much More Than ‘Reclaiming Labour’

Hilary Wainwright
Red Pepper
While it has become clear in the past three or four decades that electoral politics is a blunt instrument for radical change against the global strength of the corporate market, it is equally clear that the full realisation of people’s transformative capacities will be enhanced if those organising and sharing these capacities gain support from state bodies, local and national, through legislation, redistribution and measures.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on July 24, 2015

An animated short film by acclaimed artist Molly Crabapple, with narration by Bryan Stevenson, illustrating facts about American slavery and the elaborate mythology of racial difference that was created to sustain it. That mythology persists today. Slavery did not end in 1865, it evolved. #SlaveryEvolved

Posted by Portside on July 24, 2015

Larry Wilmore discusses the minor traffic stop in Texas ultimately led to the violent arrest and posssible suicide of Sandra Bland. 
Posted by Portside on July 24, 2015

Alex Landau, an African American, was raised by adoptive white parents to believe that skin color didn’t matter. But when Alex was pulled over by Denver police officers one night, he lost his belief in a color-blind world. Alex tells what happened that night.

Posted by Portside on July 24, 2015

It's common knowledge that humans share 99% of their DNA with chimpanzees. But is it true? What does it mean? And why does it matter?

Posted by Portside on July 24, 2015

Jordan Klepper explains why Donald Trump's brazen attitude makes him an inspiration to brusque Americans everywhere. 

Posted by Portside on July 17, 2015

Stephen Colbert and Neil deGrasse Tyson riff, with scientific rigor and lots of humor, about the New Horizons findings, Pluto weirdness, and the demotion (or elevation?) of Pluto from planet to king of the Kuiper Belt.

Posted by Portside on July 17, 2015

Another stunning collaboration by Playing for Change, a movement created to inspire and connect the world through music, featuring musicians in Israel, Congo, South Africa, Ghana, the United States, India, Ireland (and Bono).