Supreme Error

Supreme Error feature image
August 19, 2013
The conservative justices’ decision this past June in Shelby County v. Holder, striking down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, has already unleashed in North Carolina the most restrictive voting law we’ve seen since the 1965 enactment of the VRA. Texas is restoring its voter ID law which had been blocked (pursuant to the VRA) by the federal government. And more is to come in other states dominated by Republican legislatures.
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Time to March on Washington—Again

Time to March on Washington—Again  feature image
August 19, 2013
The Supreme Court’s decision gutting the Voting Rights Act in late June and the acquittal of George Zimmerman less than three weeks later make this year’s march “exponentially more urgent” with respect to pressuring Congress and arousing the conscience of the nation, says Ben Jealous, president of the NAACP, a co-sponsor of the march.
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How to Keep the NSA Out of Your Computer

How to Keep the NSA Out of Your Computer feature image
August 19, 2013
Scores of communities worldwide have been building these roll-your-own networks—often because a mesh can also be used as a cheap way to access the regular internet. But along the way people are discovering an intriguing upside: Their new digital spaces are autonomous and relatively safe from outside meddling.
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Movements Without Leaders

Movements Without Leaders  feature image
August 19, 2013
In recent months -- and it’s the curse of an author that sometimes you change your mind after your book is in type -- I’ve come to like the idea of capital L leaders less and less. It seems to me to miss the particular promise of this moment: that we could conceive of, and pursue, movements in new ways.
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Our Ministry of Planning

Our Ministry of Planning  feature image
August 19, 2013
In the case of energy policy, what's holding back innovation and domestic production is the absence of assured markets for startups. But in this anti-government, laissez-faire nation, the military gets a safe conduct pass to do something that no other branch of government is ideologically allowed to do -- commit the sin of economic planning.
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AFL-CIO: New Investments in Alt-Labor/Texas

 New Investments in Alt-Labor/Texas feature image
August 18, 2013
The AFL-CIO is discussing “the next stage” in alternate formations and there “will be some limited, thoughtful experiments in different places through various affiliates.” The AFL-CIO also plans to support an ambitious multi-union effort to organize in Texas. “The AFT has come to us and said, ‘We want you to convene other unions to make a long-term investment in Texas and we’re going to do it.”
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CPS-No $ For Local Schools But $ For Charters

CPS-No $ For Local Schools But $ For Charters feature image
August 18, 2013
Kelly, the district’s largest school, also took the biggest budget hit for what CPS called a projected enrollment drop of 200-250 students, though CPS still considers it overcrowded as well. The school has laid off 23 teachers, 10 support staff and will also lose seven security guards, as well.“Our enrollment is supposedly down, which is why they explained the $4 million in cuts, but apparently we need new schools,” said Carolyn Brown, one of the teacher representatives.
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Why Our 1% is Richer Than Other 1%s

Why Our 1% is Richer Than Other 1%s feature image
August 18, 2013
How did our 1 percent get so darn rich? And what would happen if we took some of their money away?
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Did Darwin cheat Wallace of his Reputation?

Did Darwin cheat Wallace of his Reputation? feature image
August 18, 2013
The myth: Darwin's friends cooked up a scheme to rob the working-class Wallace of his priority and instead put their friend Darwin first. The fact: every substantive claim in the popular narrative about Wallace turns out to be incorrect. As Wallace himself wrote: "this vast, this totally unprecedented change in public opinion has been the result of the work of one man, and was brought about in the short space of twenty years!"
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Fighting Landlords from Stuy-Town to Detroit

Fighting Landlords from Stuy-Town to Detroit feature image
August 18, 2013
Other People's Money: Inside the Housing Crisis and the Demise of the Greatest Real Estate Deal Ever Made was what the trade calls OPM, or other's people's money, that was lost, mostly in investments from pension funds that were then bundled and sold as mortgage-linked securities. With many mortgages shaky, these securities made for a toxic stew, and that practice nationwide fed the housing collapse and the onset of the Great Recession in late 2007.
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Pages

Portside Culture

West Africa steams over jollof rice war

Anisa Subedar & Iqbal Ahmed
BBC News
Jollof rice is a dish hugely popular in countries such as Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, Gambia, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Cameroon. Somehow, Mark Zuckerberg got into the fray about which country's recipe is best.

Outlander Introduces Slavery Into Its Narrative So Claire & Jamie Can Make Heart Eyes in Jamaica

Princess Weekes
The MarySue
The moral of the story is “don’t tell stories about these big topics if you can’t do it well.” And by “well,” I don’t mean create a post-racial utopia. I mean have the ability to give that story its own weight and importance beyond what it does for your two white leads. I mean the very least you can do is not make Jamie and Claire white saviors. At the very least. But that isn’t possible because they are the people this story is about.

Anonymous

Peter Neil Carroll
Chiron Review
"Oral history we call it: I want his past, he hopes/ for my future." So poet/historian Peter Neil Carroll traces the story of a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade who fought the good fight, stuck to his principles to the end.

We Know About Bad Books, But Are There Bad Readers, Too?

Merve Emre
Boston Review
The author queries the existence of bad readers, linking causes not to illiteracy or injuries of class or the diffusion of mass culture, but to a Cold War literary trend sporting "an abundance of paraliterary works," such as memoirs, diaries, biographies, diplomatic studies, and feature reports as primers for engaging with literary texts as seemingly historically accurate yet stressing outcomes and expectations consonant with systemic social ends.

Acting Natural

J. Hoberman
The New York Review of Books
The camera, just by its presence, altered human behavior. The motion picture camera changed the nature of acting. Among other things, it created that apparent oxymoron, the non-actor, the subject of an unusually rich and stimulating series now at the Film Society of Lincoln Center entitled "The Non-Actor".

How Food Packaging Claims Can Fool You

Sally Wadyka
Consumer Reports
Food manufacturers use language to magnify the desirability of a product and can lead you to believe it’s something to make you healthier—even though what’s inside that box may not be all that good for you.

Portside Labor

Leaving the Fortresses: Between Class Internationalism and Nativist Social Democracy

Gareth Dale
Viewpoint Magazine
The left often falls victim to the myth that globalization and migration pose big threats to jobs and wages. This is a mistake. International migration is high, but not significantly so. And the idea that labor market competition can be overcome by raising borders, defending the “nation,” and excluding immigrants is a Sozialismus der dummen Kerle [a socialism of chumps, of numpties].

Where to Begin? Lessons from the Fight for $15 Beyond North America

Jonathan Rosenblum Interviewed By Yuri Lobunov
Socialist Project
Jonathan Rosenblum lives in Seattle, Washington, and is a member of UAW 1981/National Writers Union. He is the author of Beyond $15: Immigrant Workers, Faith Activists, and the Revival of the Labor Movement (Beacon Press, 2017). More about him can be found at jonathanrosenblum.org. The interview was counducted by Yuri Lobunov, editor-in-chief of socialistalternative.ru, where this interview was published in Russian.

#MeToo Solidarity

Lane Windham
Working-Class Perspectives
Many women aren’t surprised by the accusations that dominate news headlines. What’s new is that we are openly recognizing and naming the hidden dangers that women have long navigated at work wordlessly and alone. The question is whether women will be able to turn their solidarity into an inclusive movement that can transform the workplace.

Fordham Adjuncts, Instructors Vote Union Yes

The Catholic Labor Network
The Catholic Labor Network
In an election concluded in November, contingent faculty at Fordham University have voted overwhelmingly to form a union and bargain collectively.

As The Gig Economy Grows, Advocates Raise Concerns About Workers' Safety

Samantha Raphelson
Here & Now, NPR
"Workers who work in the gig economy are making money but missing out on other standard benefits of having jobs: health care primarily but also paid sick leave and worker's compensation," says Jessica Martinez, co-executive director of the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health. "It's essentially the Tinder economy. When a temp worker is done with his or her shift, the boss swipes left and claims to have no further obligation."

A Plan To Win The Socialism Sweden Nearly Achieved

Peter Gowan
People's Policy Project
The status quo is both undemocratic and morally repugnant. The only long-term alternative is to take control of our economy — and the moral imperative is to do so as soon as possible. Here is a plan to do that.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on December 8, 2017

Former President Barack Obama urged voters this week to stay engaged in democracy, warning that complacency was responsible for the rise of Nazi Germany.

 

Posted by Portside on December 8, 2017

Preacher Celebrates his 69th birthday at the Granite Rail in Quincy MA (2011)!

 

Posted by Portside on December 8, 2017

Russian cyber experts were arrested for treason a year ago because they helped the U.S. figure out who was responsible for the DNC hack.

Posted by Portside on December 8, 2017

Republican women are divided on Roy Moore in the Alabama Senate race following sexual abuse allegations against Moore.

Posted by Portside on December 8, 2017

Washington Post reporters detail how they broke the story that multiple women accused Alabama senate candidate Roy Moore of pursuing, dating, or sexually assaulting them when they were teenagers.

Posted by Portside on December 1, 2017

Rachel Maddow looks at the warnings Donald Trump received about Mike Flynn and the inexplicable way Trump held Flynn in favor even after he left office.

Posted by Portside on December 1, 2017

Struggling to survive, two families work the same land in the Mississippi Delta but live worlds apart. Directed by Dee Rees, Mudbound | A Netflix film, now streaming on Netflix.