Tidbits - May 4, 2017 - Reader Comments: We Remember-May 4, 1970; Korea; Peace Movement; Pre-Existing Conditions; March on McDonald's; Boycotts; Responses to Culture posts; Know Your Rights: What To Do; European Left; and more...

Reader Comments: We Remember - May 4, 1970; New Korean War?; Where is the Peace Movement; Pre-Existing Conditions; March on McDonald's May 23; Boycotts; Workers; Luddites; Marine Le Pen; California Single-Payer; Responses to Culture posts - Identity Politics; Picasso's Guernica; The Zookeeper's Wife; The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks; Lunch and Bologna; Donna Leon; The Handmaid's Tale; KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: What To Do If You're Stopped; The European Left; and more...
May 4, 2017
Tidbits - Reader Comments, Resources and Announcements - May 4, 2017
Portside

 

Resources:
Announcements:
 
 
 
 
 
 
Guards firing on Kent State students. 
Photo by John A. Darnell, Jr. //  Viet Nam Generation: A Journal of Recent History and Contemporary Culture
 
 
 
West stairwell entrance to Alexander Hall, a women's dormitory, where Jackson police and Mississippi highway patrolmen fired on a crowd of black students.
photo by David Doggett // Viet Nam Generation: A Journal of Recent History and Contemporary Culture
 
Susie Erenrich, editor
Viet Nam Generation, Inc. & Burning Cities Press
Second Edition, 1995
ISBN: 1-885215-04-5
 
This book was originally published as a special issue of Viet Nam Generation: A Journal of Recent History and Contemporary Culture (Volume 2, Number 2) 1990. ISSN: 1042-7597.
 
Published by Viet Nam Generation, Inc. & Burning Cities Press
18 Center Rd., Woodbridge, CT 06525
 
 
 
 
 
Important article. It concludes:
 
The Korean War was central to the militarization of our society and to the creation a national security state. It was an essential element in fostering racism, sexism and in the strangulating of social programs - contributing to growing inequality. At this moment, the threat of a cataclysmic war between Washington and North Korea cannot be discounted. It is vital for the US public to know that North Korea has been asking for a peace treaty with Washington and Seoul (only an armistice is in place) for sixty-four years. At one point, North Korea dismantled a key nuclear facility; it had agreed with the Clinton administration to disband its nuclear weapons program in exchange for material aid and equipment to pursue peaceful atomic development - only to have the agreement scuttled by the incoming George W. Bush administration.
 
North Korean paranoia and its rigidly controlled political culture are often the stuff of ridicule. Yet, the presence of tens of thousands of US troops in South Korea, annual joint US-South Korean war games on North Korean borders, nuclear armed US naval forces off North Korean waters - all give that paranoia rational grounding.
 
A small and besieged peace movement in the fifties spoke out admirably at a time of intense McCarthyite repression. Today, there is a far broader and deeper movement for social and economic justice. However, the present-day movement for peace, despite that fact that peace is essential to all progress, has been muted or absent. There is a compelling need to repeat and deepen the demand for peace articulated by those courageous activists years ago. It is not possible exaggerate the stakes. Voices for peace must be heard - now.
 
 
Cynthia Cuza
 
     ====
 
Growing up as military brat I remember my pilot father's growing skepticism and then dis-illusion and then rejection of military after his role in USA's WWII carpet-bombing of civilians and Korea mass bombings. Literally shook his core values. Better late than never for him. Makes me responsible to never forget and to STAND UP, FIGHT BACK!
 
Leanna Noble
 
     ====
 
U.S. mass media has kept us extremely ignorant about Korea and the Korean War, which happened during the hysteria of the Cold War This is a rare and useful article to see.
 
Diane Laison
 
     ====
 
Let’s take a step back and ask a question about North Korean nukes:
 
Can anyone, including Kim Jong-Un, think that North Korea can defeat the United States by launching a few nuclear weapons on ICBMs in our direction?
 
Since the answer to the question is clearly “No,” then the next question can only be:
 
Why would North Korea want nuclear weapons and ICBMs?
 
Could it have anything to do with over six decades of hostility and massive U. S. armed forces on the borders of North Korea, including nuclear forces for most of that time?  Could it have anything to do with the fact that the Korean War has never official ended with a peace treaty? The Cold War never ended on the Korean Peninsula.
 
It seems clear to me that the only defense North Korea has against aggression from any direction is the promise that the price of such aggression will be a horrible counterstrike.  Nuclear weapons make that a real possibility. The Koreans have learned well the lessons of the Cold War – the way to deter aggression is to threaten quick and massive pain and destruction on the aggressor.
 
The solution should be obvious: remove all threats to North Korean sovereignty, and the demise of North Korean nuclear ambition will follow.  But can the North Koreans trust the U. S.?  Only if we make the commitment to North Korean sovereignty public, legal, and internationally enforceable, by formally ending the 65 year-long continuing state of war on the Korean Peninsula.  Only by signing a peace treaty (not an armistice, which is all that exist today), with the North.
 
John F. Kennedy ended the threat of nuclear missiles in Cuba by solemnly and bindingly agreeing never to attack Cuba.   The same must be done with North Korea.
 
Maybe some in the U. S. ruling class and its military-industrial complex are still itching to “win” the Korean War.  If North Korea’s leaders believe this could be the case, they are acting very rationally, using the only deterrent they have.
 
So who’s irrational now?  Only an aggressor sees his target’s defensive posture as a threat.
 
Ted Pearson
 
     ====
 
The Korean conflict (WAR) couldn't have happened if the Soviet Union wasn't boycotting UN sessions over the terms of the treaty with Japan ( ending WW 2) ! They would have vetoed that resolution empowering a UN command in Korea !
 
Aaron Libson
 
 
 
 
 
It is still alive and well in Racine, WI!  We have our PEACE and JUSTICE movement out at our representative's (Paul Ryan's) office weekly.  Picketing still goes on in Racine!
 
Not to mention NETWORK, the national Catholic movement for Peace and Justice begun by the Nuns on THE BUS!
 
When I heard Fareed Zakaria on CNN say that launching 59 tomahawk missiles into Syria was the moment "Trump "became President," I nearly threw my TV across the room. When Brian Williams quoted Leonard Cohen for MSNBC's viewers, talking about the "beauty of our weapons," I realized we had a real problem on our hands. And when Geraldo Rivera said that watching America drop bombs was "one of my favorite things in the 16 years I've been here at Fox News," I decided it was time to fight back.
 
War is not entertainment and waging it does not make you presidential. But the media is glorifying Donald Trump's war making, and it's time we make them stop.
 
Tell CNN, MSNBC, and the corporate media to stop glorifying war. When U.S. presidents order military action, the American people need and deserve a strong, vibrant, and independent news media, one that not only challenges the assumptions that lead us to war, but also one that holds our leaders accountable for the way in which they are conducted.
 
When President Trump illegally launched military strikes on Syria, and later, when the U.S. military dropped one of the largest conventional weapons in its arsenal on a target in Afghanistan, we witnessed some of the *most irresponsible and reckless coverage* from the corporate media since they helped President Bush launch the Iraq war.
 
War is not beautiful and it's not entertainment. It's incredibly irresponsible for reporters to glorify it or, in the case of the MOAB attack in Afghanistan, use it to encourage a trigger-happy Trump to escalate tensions with North Korea.
 
 
The American media cheered President Bush to war in Iraq in 2002 and 2003 to disastrous effect. And now, particularly with President Trump in the Oval Office, we cannot afford another complacent media leading us to more war. It took us years of demanding the media change its ways before they started reporting more responsibly on Iraq, helping shift public opinion against that disastrous war. This time, we have to demand change now, before it's too late.
 
Barbara Suetholz
 
     ====
 
Pacifism does not have to be an absolute position: it is simply the belief that less war is better than more war. When there is a global conflict (say, in the Middle East today), a pacifist will tend to support peace talks over military escalation. When voting for a candidate, a pacifist will tend to support less military spending, and will be turned off by "let's bomb them!" rhetoric.
 
A pacifist is not against all reasonable self-defense, and does not have to believe that the problem of war can be solved completely. Dwight David Eisenhower was stating a pacifist position when he said these words: "In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex." Eisenhower was also one of the toughest military leaders of the 20th Century, and led the invasion of Europe to defeat Hitler during World War Two.
 
Pacifism is a broad position. A pacifist may be left wing or right wing, liberal or conservative, capitalist or socialist, Occupy or Tea Party, Christian or Jewish or Muslim or Buddhist or Hindu or agnostic or atheist. A pacifist does not have to reject violence 100% of the time, does not have to dress like Mahatma Gandhi, is not required to sing folk music.
 
If you declare yourself a pacifist, you are joining a practical movement to reduce the incidence of military escalation around the world. It's a common-sense idea: the idea that war is a terrible disease that we ought to try to cure, and that we ought to be able to cure.
 
Jerry Mander
 
     ====
 
There's no draft to recruit for it
 
Matt Maggio
 
 
 
 
 
Trump is not thinking of the repercussions of a first attack on N. Korea. No surprise; Trump often does not think before acting - just look at so many of his tweets.
 
Ken Kazmerski
 
 
 
 
 
Although I don't agree with Robinson's thesis that international capital has crystallized into a new,  homogeneous ruling class , and the old national rivalries have disappeared, his article below is an excellent if somewhat partial description of the current global capitalist crises. He ignores the reality of the sharp rivalry between distinct capital centers, even tho they also cooperate when they have concrete interests in common, while demanding the support of their home countries in the fierce rivalries that are inevitable between large ,distinct concentrations of capital which are characteristic  of modern capitalism. Other then this disagreement, I admire this article as a brief but thorough description of the current conjuncture.
 
Mel Rothenberg
 
    ====
 
Portside you should be ashamed and arrested for sedition
 
Greg Haring
 
 
 
 
 
Good dictators? Kinda like good cancer
 
David Nefzger
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Maria M Fadli
 
 
 
 
 
The GOP's obsession with repealing Obamacare at all costs is costing the people who need it the most. Yes, changes are needed to improve coverage, affordability and access. Repealing it would be a disaster.
 
Rob Rogers
April 30, 2017
 
 
 
 
 
 
From the NSICD. The average annual Arctic temperature is -24C, so the +3 increase will simply put it at -21C. How much ice melts at -21C. If you want to be credible, do some research, apply some logic, before posting a "OMG" moment. "The Arctic or the Earth's Northern Polar Region has pretty extreme weather!
 
Okay, so you know the Arctic is cold, right? But did you know that minimum temperatures of -90°Fahrenheit (-68° Celsius) can be reached in Greenland and northern Siberia during winter months?!? That's pretty cold! Now it's not that cold all the time all over the Arctic. The average Arctic winter temperature is -30° F (-34°C), while the average Arctic summer temperature is 37-54° F (3-12° C)"
 
Peter Thompson
 
     ====
 
University of V[ancouver] is studying emerging forests from retreating glacier in BC. These forests are 2000 or so years old. Portside please explain why these forests were covered by ice and why are the emerging today.
 
Norman Mckenzie
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I got two words for McDonald's: Get. Ready.
 
Hardworking people everywhere are demanding $15 an hour and union rights.
 
States like Illinois and Massachusetts are the latest to push for $15 an hour minimums - and even the US Senate and House introduced a new $15 per hour bill just yesterday!
 
McDonald's stands against us ALL. On May 23, we FIGHT BACK - with the March on McDonald's in Chicago, IL.
 
Share THIS right now on Twitter to let McDonald's know we're coming. 
 
I'm a single mom working hard to raise my son right. But child care costs me hundreds each month - I can't afford the bills.
 
I work all day at McDonald's - but how am I supposed to survive on the poverty wages they pay?
 
 
 
 May 23 is the day before McDonald's annual shareholder meeting - their most important business meeting of the year.
 
The people, the key people, will be in that room, who can decide to do the right thing and agree to the $15 and union rights McDonald's employees need.
 
They need to hear from us. They will hear from us.
 
Sharing is easy - and it really does help us spread the word. Share now >>
 
Stay strong.
 
Adriana Alvarez
McDonald's Employee
Chicago, IL
 
 
 
 
 
Al Hart and the UE strike again with pointed reminders of who we've been
and who we could be once again!
 
Jim Young
Harrisburg, PA
 
 
 
 
When I was active in Long Island CORE in the 1960s and `70s, I was told a story about some Southern State which had outlawed secondary boycotts.
 
The response of those who wanted to continue the boycott, I was told, was to make new signs and carry them outside the offending supermarkets; these signs simply stated, "YOU KNOW."
 
Every shopper knew what the signs were about, and they were, apparently, quite effective.
 
Gene Glickman
 
     ====
 
Whoever writes an article on boycotts without even a mention of BDS should be boycotted
 
Don Maroc
 
     ====
 
Yes they help because corporations and big money buy America.So yes boycotting works.Save your money because we are gonna need it.
 
Cindy Gibson
 
     ====
 
Yes they have and will continue to do so.
 
Walter Jackson
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Labor)
 
 
Unions and non union entities working together for better working conditions for non unionized workers. AI say a good sign 
 
William Friesen
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Labor)
 
 
"The Iron Workers union this month leaped to the cutting edge of the effort, becoming the first building trades union to offer up to eight months of paid maternity leave to pregnant women and new moms."
 
 
 
 
 
 
`The Simpsons' on Trump's First 100 Days: Death and Prozac - Everyone else is weighing in on President Trump's first hundred days - why not The Simpsons? 
 
In a new clip, we see what's going on in the White House, and the Simpsons` writers are pretty grim. Press secretary Sean Spicer has hanged himself, with a sign on his corpse saying, "I quit." Jared Kushner and Steve Bannon are squeezing each other's throats the way Homer usually throttles Bart. Ivanka Trump has replaced Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court.Meanwhile, the president sits in bed, fingering his smartphone, books scattered across his blanket. (Among them, Bill O'Reilly's apparent latest: Killing a Good Thing.) An aide brings him a print copy of a thick new tax bill proposal and tells the president he needs to read it immediately. Trump whines, "Can't Fox News read it, and I'll watch what they say?" (Prediction: Look for this clip to turn up on Fox and Friends in the morning.)
 
Cut to Homer and Marge, who've been watching all this on television. Homer is self-medicating with his usual Duff beer, but Marge is now guzzling Prozac and whimpering that this prescription was "supposed to last me the whole four years." A voice-over concludes by trying, and failing, to put a good face on all this.
 
Marc Batko
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Labor)
 
 
"Every 12 days, a member of my union, the United Steelworkers (USW), or one of their non-union co-workers, is killed on the job. Every 12 days. And it’s been that way for years.These are horrible deaths. Workers are crushed by massive machinery. They drown in vats of chemicals. They’re poisoned by toxic gas, burned by molten metal. The company pays a meaningless fine. Nothing changes. And another worker is killed 11 days later.
 
Of course, it’s not just members of the USW. Nationally, at all workplaces, one employee is killed on the job every other hour. Twelve a day."
 
 
     ====
 
Don Blankinship should have been convicted for 29 counts of involuntary manslaughter. His action and callous disregard for safety led to the death of 29 men.Involuntary Manslaughter is defined as a type of manslaughter, which results in the untimely death of an individual as a result of the actions of another individual.
 
Ernie Workman
 
     ====
 
These are the issues that we are taking granted everyday in the work place as we let multi-billion corporations destroy our safety in the work place as they continue to make a mockery of our Labor laws as they continue to destroy our environment and rid us of the EPA as they continue to abolish our Unions that fight for workers rights and if you take a moment to contemplate this you will it is all done in the name profit that we continue to under-value a human life for the want of a dollar.
 
Julio Gonzalez
 
 
 
 
 
People work using the energy supplied by food, a renewable resource.
Automation runs on fossil fuel energy in one form or another. How do we know there will be enough energy to power all this automation?
 
Per Fagereng
 
     ====
 
I tend to call myself a Luddite, thus a sail boat or a row boat versus a stink pot. A lot slower means of moving on the water, but much less harmful to aquatic life, and exercise as well.
 
John Schwarzenbach 
 
     ====
 
Just a little irony in discussing Luddites on Facebook.
 
Allan Pickman
 
 
 
 
 
Just the alternative minimum tax saves Trump 31 million 
 
Matthew Reed
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
There is no one explanation for Clinton's loss. A Perfect Storm of converging factors. This book describes accurately the "internal" reasons from inside the campaign. But, there was THE IDIOT PRESS giving Trumplethinskin wayyyyyy more air time than the dick deserved. Then, there was dirty cop, Comey, with the stupid e-mail story just before the election--like no other FBI asshole EVER did before to tilt a national election. Then, the was, of course, Russia doing it's best to tamper and influence the vote for their property, Trumplethinskin, who THEY OWN, through their criminal OLIGARCHY that lent him millions in the late-1990's and early 2000's. A Perfect Storm of converging factors. A shit-show for the rest of us.
 
Jack LaSalle
 
 
 
 
 
She leads the French branch of the Global War Against the Enlightenment. The latter is an intellectual and cultural movement that is by no means perfect, but on the whole has had a beneficent impact on the human race.
 
Wahhabism, Putinism, European Neofascism, the "Religious Right," Trumpism...they're all part of the same global movement and have the same agenda, to control us by denying reason and tolerance, and by dividing us up into mutually suspicious tribes.
 
John F. Michalski
 
     ====
 
Good history! It is too bad voters didn't know more of it before they elected Donald Trump. He and Ryan could tear up every social program it has taken a century to pass. If the workers still had their jobs and unions they would have known not to back Trump. Let us hope French voters are better informed and will not back Le Pen. 
 
Laurel MacDowell
 
 
 
 
 
No country except the U.S. would tolerate a system that does not provide basic health coverage for all its citizens. Join the civilized world
 
Iris Parker
 
     ====
 
Affordable health care: yes... free/cheap health insurance: no. And, yes, thee is a difference.
 
Stuart Welch
 
 
 
 
 
Republicans aren't afraid of voter fraud, they're afraid that their best friend, low voter turnout, may become a thing of the past. I mean, how can one fraudulently register, when the state will be using data that's already stored? AVR is a good idea.
 
Rodney Junakin
 
 
 
 
 
what we really need is to just have people work 24x7 ; work em til they drop over dead. there are far more people than jobs. so this way you get to maximize profits, cull the population and really weed out the ones who can't hack it, leaving only the very best of the best worthy of subsistence.
 
Shawn Quinn
 
 
 
 
 
Theodore W. Allen did not maintain that “the white workers had been bribed” and he consistently argued against that position.
 
Fifty years ago he explained that such a statement “confuses the white-skin privilege in general, which is the prerogative of every white person living in the United States, with the special form of that privilege, the payment (direct or indirect) to the ‘aristocracy’ of labor above what would be necessary according to the laws of normal competition, and which enables those few workers to escape in all but a formal sense from the proletarian to the petit-bourgeois life.” He added, “The white-skin privileges of the masses of the white workers do not permit them nor their children to escape into the ranks of the propertied classes. In the South, where the white-skin privilege has always been most emphasized and formal, the white workers have fared worse than white
workers in the rest of the country.”
 
Allen was clear that while the system of “white skin privileges” was not in the interest of the mass of laboring class European-Americans. He was also clear that the system of “white skin privileges” was in the interest of ruling-class “whites.”
 
Allen consistently called for efforts to “dismantle the ‘white race’” and he urged European-American workers to challenge white supremacy, to struggle in ongoing efforts to repudiate the system of white privileges, to break from “the incubus of white identity,” and to “resign from the white race,” which he understood to be a “ruling class social control formation” and a principal form of “class collaboration.”
 
Theodore W. Allen offered a “class struggle approach” to “The Invention of the White Race” and to “The Origin of Racial Oppression in Anglo-America” (the title and subtitle of Volume 2 of his “classic work”).
 
I encourage people to read Theodore W. Allen. Here is a link with writings, audios, and videos by and about him.
 
Here is a link to “The Developing Conjuncture and Some Insights From Hubert Harrison and Theodore W. Allen on the Centrality of the Fight Against White Supremacy,” which offers the fullest treatment of the development of his thought.
 
Jeffrey B. Perry
 
 
 
 
 
Excellent information about Picasso and his painting of his monumental historic artwork against war.
 
Susan Ackoff-Ortega
 
     ====
 
Thank you for this. My father was a Lincoln.
 
Claire Carsman
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
Thought this was a great film. Shows the inhumanity of fascism, and the resolve of people to fight back - both victims of fascism, and their allies. That this one Polish family could save the lives of 300+ Jews, right under the noses of the Nazis, and this is not widely known, shows the hidden story that still waits to be told. Would like to see a movie about the heroism of the Red Orchestra.
 
Jay Schaffner
 
     ====
 
I believe a society that loves violence and displays of macho dominant male behavior is in danger of replicating this type of horror.
 
Cathy Ryder Thomas
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
I watched this HBO program, produced, directed and starring Oprah Winfry. I knew next to nothing about this historic narrative. Justice was finally served to the family of Henrietta Lack by the best selling book by writer Ms Skloot. This doc-drama beautifully illustrates the power and importance of liberating personal narratives to restore justice.
 
In Ms Winfrey's production, the daughter of the deceased Ms Lack is highly suspicious of anyone, most especially anyone white, in particular any white woman, who is trying to capture this most compelling historic narrative. Frankly I did not find this tribute "Uneven" Quite the contrary! There is only so much one can accomplish in an HBO framework. Whatever is lacking or missing, is made up by the recognition given to this remarkable story.
 
This is about an egregious cover-up by the institution of Johns Hopkins University Medical School who captured a clump of Ms Lack's diseased cervical cancer cells) only to discover that they could be magically kept alive and made to produce forever, for medical research, continuing to this very day! Hence the reference to immortality!
 
The cells are famously known as "Hela cells." Turns out if the name of the donor is never made known, there is no legal requirement to provide compensation to the patient's family. (He from Henrietta, and La for Lack). Hela cells have been used in all manner of medical research beginning in the lat 50's, research into the cause and cure of almost every know human disease: Polio, AIDS, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, a gazillion forms of cancer.
 
Henrietta's Black family was systematically denied any knowledge of all the astounding medical achievements gained through the world wide studies on Hela cells. They received no compensation. Ironically, the copyrights and subsequent profits did not go to Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, but to the pro-pharmaceuticals.
 
Above all, this HBO documentary is also a remarkable tale of the evolving relationship between the researcher/writer Ms Skloot and Henrietta's daughter and other siblings. Its also the racist history of Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Black Baltimore. (I do not get "Uneven' save for the fact that most scholarly intellectualism leads to a pervasive disconnect the direct result of a profound lack emotional empathy for Black suffering. This is the result of privilege whites' denial and avoidance of white supremacy!) Period. FULL STOP!!!
 
In fact Ms Skloot established a foundation to compensate the Lack family. I am assuming that the generous and charitable Ms Winfrey has done the same.
 
Larry Aaronson
 
     ====
 
Wonderful book! Great movie! Oprah is fabulous as Deborah!
 
Ilene Lerner
 
     ====
 
Larry -- you should read the book, for sure. And, it shoulda been a miniseries. And, fun fact, back in the day when I worked in a genetics lab, I worked with HeLa cells.
 
Linda Lipkin
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
Kahn's Club Deluxe Bologna in the Greater Cincinnati metro area rocks. Locally it's referred to as " Kentucky Round Steak ".
 
Elliott Tommyfrank
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
In a twist of kismet, a good friend of the store was raving about her today.
 
 
 
 
 
(posting on Portside Culture)
 
 
It's not a warning, it's a dream.
 
Dan Jordan
 
     ====
 
It was written a couple of decades ago, and it seemed like science fiction to me when it came out. Now it seems like something that could really happen because there are so many bozos out there that are blind to the threat of far right wing conservatism.
 
Mary Gilbert
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
We rely on the police to keep us safe and treat us all fairly, regardless of race, ethnicity, national origin or religion. This card provides tips for interacting with police and understanding your rights.
 
This information is not intended as legal advice.
 
DOWNLOAD A PRINTABLE VERSION (IN ENGLISH AND OTHER LANGUAGES)
 
 
 
Justice is within your reach.
 
 
 
 
Take the ACLU on the go, for free. Download the Mobile Justice app now on your iOS or Android device.
 
 
 
 
 
 
For 15 years now a group of scholars, party functionaries and activists (many participants are in all three of these categories) have carried out research that speaks to the needs and interests of the movements of the European Left. They are associated with such institutions as the Nicos Poulantzas Institute in Greece, Espaces Marx in France, and the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation in Germany, as well as newer national transform! organizations from Norway and Hungary, Italy and Moldavia, among other nations. 
 
They form a network for alternative thinking and political dialog supportive of the foundation of the Party of the European Left, which brings together parties to the left of social democracy — such as Die LINKE, Izquierda Unida, Syriza, the Dutch Socialist Party, and the French Communist Party. The network engages both social movements and the political parties to the left of the centerleft, and is serious about both the electoral process and activism in the streets. Its reports and debates should be of value to everyone on the left interested in events and struggles in Europe. In a short review it is not possible to engage the contributions, but only to give the readers a sense of the book’s broad coverage. 
 
I do think that while readers will find things to criticize — how could they not in such ambitious essays? — the overall reaction will be a learning experience and a good deal of nourishing food for thought.
 
The 2016 transform! yearbook is an excellent introduction.
 
edited by Walter Baier, Eric Canepa and Eva Himmelstoss
Paper, £16.95 ($23.95)
London: Merlin Press, 296 pages
September 1, 2016
ISBN-10: 0850367212
ISBN-13: 978-0850367218
 
 
transform! — the very name (and the exclamation point) — suggest the perennial questions: What is to be done?, and: Who is to do it? The authors share both a commitment to socialism and an understanding that in the contemporary conjuncture more than at any time since the 1930s we do not have a stable form of capitalism, although there are no acute symptoms of collapse.
 
Bill Tabb,
Science & Society, Vol. 81, No. 2, April 2016, 282–287
 
Thanks to the author for sending his review to Portside. Thanks to the editor of Science and Society for permission for Portside to re-post.
 
 
 
 
 
Blanche Wiesen Cook will discuss her new book Eleanor Roosevelt, Volume 3: The War Years and After, 1939-1962 (Penguin Books, 2016) on Tuesday, May 9 (6:00 PM) at the Tamiment Library. A reception with wine and cheese will follow the lecture. This event is co-sponsored by the Frederic Ewen Center and the New York Labor History Association.
 
 
Tuesday, May 9 (6:00 PM)
 
Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
70 Washington Square South
10th Floor
New York, NY 10012
 
 
 
 
 
BLANCHE WIESEN COOK is a distinguished professor of history at John Jay College and Graduate Center, City University of New York. In addition to her biography of Eleanor Roosevelt, her other books include The Declassified Eisenhower and Crystal Eastman on Women and Revolution. She was featured on air in Ken Burns's recent documentary, The Roosevelts.
 
Copies of Eleanor Roosevelt, Volume 3 will be available for purchase.
 
RSVP: email tamiment.events@nyu.edu with guest name(s) & event title.
 
 
 
 
 
Join us, as WRL hosts a reportback from members of the Iraqi Transnational Collective (ITC), recently returned from working with refugees in Athens, Greece. Learn about the remarkable groups ITC collaborated with, the ways refugee communities are supporting each other in the face of war trauma and harsh criminalization, and discuss the role diasporas and campaigning can play to build solidarity across closed borders.
 
Wednesday evening, May 10th, 5:00 PST/7:00 CST/8:00 EST
 
 
Speakers:
 
  • Loubna Qutami is a founder, member, and central organizer of the Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM), an international body of young Palestinians spanning 33 countries. In their April 2011 2nd International General Assembly in Istanbul, Qutami was elected as the movement's International General Coordinator.
 
  • Vanessa Faraj has nearly fifteen years experience as a community organizer and social worker. She loves righteous collective struggle, making Arabic Youtube mixes, and warm weather. She is Palestinian-Iraqi-American, a member of the Iraqi Transnational Collective, and currently resides in Atlanta, GA.
 
  • Ali Issa is the National Field Organizer with WRL, where he co-coordinates #NoSWATzone a campaign to end police militarization, and the author of Against All Odds: Voices of Popular Struggle in Iraq. ?He is a member + co-founder of the Iraqi Transnational Collective and lives in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.
 
  • Moderator: Sarms Jabra is a refugee of the Gulf War, a talented organizer and strategist currently working as a project manager for the City of Detroit. As a Challenge Detroit Fellow, he serves as a consultant to social organizations in the city. Sarms is also a member of a National Lawyers Guild, the National Committee of War Resisters League and the Iraqi Transnational Collective - a grassroots collective of Iraqis working for a just Iraq, with members in over 10 cities around the world.

 

May 4, 2017