‘Against All Odds’ Is Required Viewing

‘Against All Odds’ Is Required Viewing feature image
May 23, 2017
Herbert presents an airtight case of structural racism in America — and it’s a case I’m laying out at length here in case you don’t see the film. If we are going to throw these words around, we better understand their meaning and use that understanding to inform the work that we — white people — must do.
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Media Bits and Bytes - Cable Commotions

Media Bits and Bytes - Cable Commotions  feature image
May 23, 2017
MSNBC leans backward; Adieu Ailes; Cloudflare; Wannacry; Internet freedom; And an interview… with Brooke
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The Right to Strike

The Right to Strike  feature image
May 23, 2017
For half a century, the loss of the right to strike has moved in lock step with the increase in income inequality. According to an International Monetary Fund study of twenty advanced economies, union decline accounted for about half of the increase in net income inequality from 1980 to 2012. The following is the start of a Boston Review discussion on US workers' right to strike.
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Trump: Don't Ask Why there Was a Civil War

 Don't Ask Why there Was a Civil War feature image
May 23, 2017
The fact that slavery caused the Civil War is troubling to people who like to ignore the long history of white supremacy in the U.S. Those in positions of privilege prefer to perpetuate myths about America as a place where people get exactly what they deserve, which is the underlying justification for social inequality in political philosophies throughout time, from the Protestant Ethic to meritocracy.
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Confederate Monuments, NOLA's Mayor's Questio

Confederate Monuments, NOLA's Mayor's Questio feature image
May 23, 2017
Last week, as New Orleans completed the controversial and long-awaited task of taking down Confederate monuments from its public spaces, Mayor Mitch Landrieu marked the occasion by delivering a speech that has since been lauded as "stunning," "incredible," "powerful," and "a clear-eyed view of our past as well as our present. "Many said the speech would go down in history.
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Oscar Lopez Rivera: Continue Fight

 Continue Fight  feature image
May 22, 2017
The former political prisoner thanked progressive movements for supporting his decades-long struggle for a free Puerto Rico. Plus articles related to Lopez Rivera's release.
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‘Crimmigration’ Need Actual Sanctuary Cities

‘Crimmigration’ Need Actual Sanctuary Cities feature image
May 22, 2017
“While many officials champion their status as ‘sanctuary cities’ and have taken meaningful steps to protect immigrant communities, sweeping criminal laws in these places leave many immigrants trapped within an arm’s reach of deportation.”
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Chelsea Manning is Free!

Chelsea Manning is Free! feature image
May 22, 2017
In a just world, Chelsea Manning wouldn’t have been jailed and tortured, but celebrated as a hero for alerting the public to the crimes of its government.
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China Funds Infrastructure, So Can We

China Funds Infrastructure, So Can We feature image
May 22, 2017
In effect, the Chinese government decides what work it wants done, draws on its own national credit card, pays Chinese workers to do it, and repays the loans with the proceeds.The US government could do that too, without raising taxes, slashing services, cutting pensions, or privatizing industries.
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America’s War-Fighting Footprint in Africa

America’s War-Fighting Footprint in Africa  feature image
May 22, 2017
Secret U.S. military documents reveal a constellation of American military bases across Africa. With the Trump administration escalating its wars in Africa and the Middle East, and the potential for more crises -- from catastrophic famines to spreading wars -- on the horizon, there’s every reason to believe the U.S. military’s footprint on the continent will continue to evolve, expand, and enlarge in the years ahead, outpost by outpost and base by base.
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Pages

Portside Culture

The Superfood Gold Rush

JAMIE LAUREN KEILES
New York Times Magazine
The latest entrant to the superfood contest is Brazilian açaí, a purplish, antioxidant-rich stone fruit — though most call it a berry — foraged from trees in the Amazon River basin.Surprising parties become heroes and scoundrels as the coveted berry changes hands in different ways. Global consumption has further increased demand, but because of the high value of good vibes, some superfood exporters have an incentive to hew to best practices.

Call Me By My Name

Jamaica Baldwin
Rattle
The poet Jamaica Baldwin writes, “This piece was written in response to the daily lies espoused by the new president and his administration, the emergence of the phrase ‘alternative fact’ in the political lexicon, and the simple fact of Trump’s presidency.”

Why Are Economists Giving Piketty the Cold Shoulder?

Marshall Steinbaum
Boston Review
Piketty's radical and largely on-target critique of contemporary capitalism, the reviewer says, was mostly greeted with hostility by the economics establishment, when not simply ignored, stonewalling Capital in the Twenty-First Century, so it would not have the impact on economics research agendas that it merits, particularly in explaining inequality — in effect a dead zone in mainstream economic analysis.

Freestyle Marxism

Max Holleran
The New Republic
This new collection of essays offers an interesting glimpse into the work of this consistently interesting Marxist thinker and cultural critic.

Portside Labor

Mothers Are Paid Less Than Fathers in Every State and at Every Education Level

Dayna Evans
New York Magazine
Mothers who work full-time and have a high-school degree make 67 cents for every dollar made by a dad with a high-school degree. More staggering is that mothers have to earn a bachelor’s degree or more in order for their earnings to outpace fathers with only high-school degrees. At every education level and in every state, mothers are paid less than fathers. On average, a mother makes about 71 cents to a father’s dollar.

AT&T Workers Start 3-Day Strike in Contract Impasse

Noam Scheiber
N.Y.Times
Workers are also frustrated that they are being asked to pay more of their health-insurance costs, he added, and that changes in retail workers’ commissions have limited or reduced their take-home pay. As part of its next contract, the union wants to bar AT&T from changing its commission structure unilaterally.

Reactionary Working Class?

Asbjørn Wahl
Spectrezine
That millions of workers worldwide become "losers" in the process of globalization, should not surprise anyone. Nor that many react with mistrust and blind rebellion. That part of the working class – lacking left political parties with strategies to address this crisis -- are attracted by the extreme right’s verbal anti-establishment rhetoric, is against this background understandable. To understand, however, is not the same as to accept, let alone support.

White Working-Class Voters and the Future of Progressive Politics

Michael Zweig
New Labor Forum Blog
The working class constitutes roughly 63 percent of the U.S. labor force. Crucially, it consists of both men and women and is multiracial and multiethnic.2 White people are, of course, a big part of the working class, but if we settle on “the white working class” as a class in itself, and with the force of white supremacy, even a class for itself, we lose track of the role blacks, Native Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and other non-whites play in the working class.

NLRB files complaint against VW over practices at Tennessee plant

Nick Carey
Reuters
The complaint is part of a lengthy battle over the NLRB's recognition of the vote by roughly 160 skilled workers at VW's Chattanooga plant in Tennessee to be represented by the United Auto Workers union. The German automaker has argued against allowing a small group within the plant to have union representation, maintaining that all 1,500 hourly workers should be treated as one unit.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on May 19, 2017

The Trump-Russia probe gets a special prosecutor, and Fox News downplays a purported memo from James Comey suggesting Donald Trump may have committed obstruction of justice.

Posted by Portside on May 19, 2017

Political satirists like Samantha Bee, John Oliver, Stephen Colbert, and Seth Meyers have demonstrated why comedy can be such a powerful antidote to bullshit

Posted by Portside on May 19, 2017

 

 

Jill Wine-Banks, Assistant Watergate Special Prosecutor, and former U.S. prosecutor Paul Butler discuss the revelations that have come to light from the Comey memo

Posted by Portside on May 19, 2017

THE ACTIVISTS: War, Peace, and Politics in the Streets is a documentary film that brings to life the stories of ordinary people who tried to stop and end the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Posted by Portside on May 19, 2017

Are we going to pretend they’re less than men and walk away?

Posted by Portside on May 12, 2017

Senator Elizabeth Warren says nobody believes Trump fired the FBI director because he was 'mean to Hillary Clinton.'

Posted by Portside on May 12, 2017

This song written and performed by bluesmaster John Lee Hooker was first released in 1965, performed here for the Seattle Folklore Society.