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Tidbits - Oct. 25, 2018 - Reader Comments: GOTV Phonebanks, Voter Suppression, 2018 elections; Trump Conspiracy with Saudis; Migrant Caravan; Syria; Marx in Music; Solidarity with Cuba; Announcements - NYC, Berkeley; and more ....

Reader Comments: GOTV Phonebanks for People of Color Voters; Voter Suppression, 2018 elections; Trump Conspiracy with Saudis; Migrant Caravan; Syrian Civil War; Marx in Music; Solidarity with Cuba; Announcements - New York and Berkeley; and more ...

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Tidbits - Reader Comments, Announcements and Shorts - Oct. 25, 2018, Portside

GOTV Phonebanks for Community of Color Voters (People Demanding Action and Center for Common Ground)
SUPPRESSION 2018  --  cartoon by Rob Rogers
Trump Justice  --  another cartoon by Rob Rogers
Re: The Future Of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid Is On Midterm Ballot (Leanna Noble; Miguel Ponce de Leon; Philip Specht)
Re: As Trump Accused of Conspiring with Saudis Over Khashoggi Murder, Dems Demand Full Disclosure of Financial Ties; Saudis Transfer $100 Million as Secretary Pompeo Arrives (Disraelly Gutierrez Jaime; Peggy MacLean; Judyth Hollub)
Re: Trump Tweeted He Has No Ties to Saudi Arabia ... (Roberta Histed)
Re: Jobs Are No Excuse for Arming a Murderous Regime (Aida Rivera; Roberto Esteves; Susan Dupont)
Migrants to Trump: We're Workers, Not Criminals (CNN video)
Re: "Migration Is a Form of Fighting Back" (Frank Eric; Brian Folk)
Re: Caravan of 3,000 Central American Migrants Crosses Into Mexico (Progressive Truth Seekers; Marianne Hitchen)
Re: The Rise of the Robot Farmer (Kerry Pollard; Robert Aldridge)
Re: Bloody Strikes Created the America We're Now Losing to the Super Rich (Joseph Kaye)
Re: Syria's Long War Will Be Decided in These Three Theaters (Vince Cushite)
Re: The Karl Marx of Music (Michael Munk; John; Leonard J. Lehrman)
Re: Marx at the Chicken Shack (Gene Glickman)
Re: Dads in Space: Review of 'First Man' and 'High Life' (Bruce Rosen)
Solidarity Group Debates Strategies against US Blockade on Cuba (Prensa Latina)

Your Action Needed:

Jailed for Dissent - Max Zirngast, a Jacobin contributor and socialist activist, has been imprisoned in Turkey for more than a month. Here's how you can help.

Announcements:

Calling all peace activists, history lovers, students of World War I! - World War I: The Resistance - New York - November 12 (New York Labor History Association)
Book-launch/Forum for Mike Withey’s “Summary Executions: The Assassination of Domingo and Viernes" - Berkeley - November 13 (UC Berkeley Labor Center)

 

GOTV Phonebanks for Community of Color Voters

Welcome to the Voter Project. Our phonebanks have transitioned to Get Out the Vote for community of color voters in the following states:

  • Virginia
  • North Carolina
  • Alabama
  • Texas
  • Arizona
  • Georgia
  • Mississippi

This weekend phonebanks will be added for the following states:

  • Florida
  • Pennsylvania

In order to use these phonebanks you will need to have an ActionID. If you have ever used an ActionID for MiniVan or to make phonebanking calls, just sign-in with your email address and password and you are good to go. If you don't have an ActionID, you can watch this 3 minute video to learn how to create one and how to use the new Open Virtual Phonebanks

Phonebanks are open from 9:00am to 9:00pm local time every day.

As phonebanks are added for different states, states will be changed to Yellow indicating that there are now phonebanks that are active in that state; simply click on the state to see voter information for that state along with the phonebanks currently running in that state. As phonebanks are completed, new phonebanks will be added.


 

People Demanding Action
Center for Common Ground
443-878-2071

 

SUPPRESSION 2018  --  cartoon by Rob Rogers
 

Rob Rogers
October 23, 2018
RobRogers.com

 

Trump Justice  --  another cartoon by Rob Rogers
 

Rob Rogers
October 17, 2018
RobRogers.com

 

Re: The Future Of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid Is On Midterm Ballot
 

Unless everyone wants their great-grandparents and grandparents living with them or in tents in the front yard or alley, we all better make sure these criminal rightwing Repubs and Dems do NOT get re-elected! Time for a tent city on White House front lawn!!

Leanna Noble
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====
 

Vote BLUE. Stop the attack on our Social Security by the Trump and his white collar crime republicans bunch like McConnell and Ryan. Our life and future are under attack by the republican's crook Congress.
 
Miguel Ponce de Leon
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

The Republicans would love to convert Social Security into an investment program, instead of an insurance program. It's consistent with the Republican philosophy of individuals taking all the financial risk, instead of spreading risk over the population through a government program. If you win, you win; if you lose, you lose. There is no safety net.

Philip Specht
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: As Trump Accused of Conspiring with Saudis Over Khashoggi Murder, Dems Demand Full Disclosure of Financial Ties; Saudis Transfer $100 Million as Secretary Pompeo Arrives
 

$100 million is the sound of silence and cooperation for murder not to talk of the mass murders in Yemen. But what can you expect from a misogynist ethnocentric criminal.

Disraelly Gutierrez Jaime
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

This is why not divesting himself of his personal business enterprises affects the safety of the US

Peggy MacLean
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

Can we please impeach the son-of-a-bitch now???????????

Judyth Hollub
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Trump Tweeted He Has No Ties to Saudi Arabia ...
 

Trump says "for the record". Is he referring to the record of his lies? He tells us plainly that having a job is far more important than having ethics, morals, or compassion. Apparently Pat Robertson agrees with him. Apparently also, Pat Robertson's god agrees with him.

Roberta Histed
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Jobs Are No Excuse for Arming a Murderous Regime
 

I guess the world is waiting for what US will do in this situation. I think they will wait a long time. Trump seems to be giving excuses to the Saudis. I believe he will do nothing but continue with his arms deals and contributing to the destruction of Yemen and its people. A new world order for the USA.

Aida Rivera
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

Some kind of business benefit is obtained by Trump that's for sure. This person's only interest in life is money.

Roberto Esteves
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

BRAVO!  Thank you William Hartung for summarizing this most deplorable situation so well. Trump and the supply of arms to Saudi Arabia must be stopped.

Susan Dupont
Wisconsin

 

Migrants to Trump: We're Workers, Not Criminals (CNN video)
 

A chaotic scene unfolded as a massive caravan of Honduran migrants reached the Guatemala-Mexico border. CNN's Bill Weir reports.
Source: CNN

Watch full video here.

 

Re: "Migration Is a Form of Fighting Back"
 

(posting on Portside Labor)

"The migration of Central Americans has benefited our labor and social justice movements. One big example was Justice for Janitors in Los Angeles, where Central American janitors defied the police and were beaten up in Century City, but finally won a contract. ... many immigrants bring organizing skills and working-class political consciousness with them, depending on where they come from, and their previous experiences."

Frank Eric
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

So much respect for comrades on the line:

For eight years at the West County Detention Center in Richmond, Calif., monthly vigils were organized by faith communities and immigrant rights organizations to support those inside. These protests, and the testimony of detainees' families, were so powerful that the county sheriff in July announced he was canceling the contract he signed long ago with the federal government to house the prisoners.

Brian Folk
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Caravan of 3,000 Central American Migrants Crosses Into Mexico
 

Illegal immigration to the US from Mexico is much lower than in the early 2000s, but growing numbers of families are fleeing the "northern triangle" of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to escape poverty and violence.

Progressive Truth Seekers.
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

Another human tragedy created by US interference.

Marianne Hitchen
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: The Rise of the Robot Farmer
 

The downside? Loss of jobs so corporations can make bigger profits. But of course that will effect the poorest so who cares?until the corporations come for your job. There are those of us who understand why you need to sell this idea the same as bank machines to put tellers out of work... Cooperate greed is cannibalistic what happens when people can no longer afford YOUR products? Good luck...

Kerry Pollard
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

Someone still has to grease the machine and fix the flats.

Robert Aldridge
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Bloody Strikes Created the America We're Now Losing to the Super Rich
 

(posting on Portside Labor)

The narrative always seems to be that everything was just fine until now -- presumably because of Trump and the Republicans.  With regard to Labor's loss of rights, one should be reminded of the Taft-Hartley Act, and the
Landrum-Griffith Act back in the early days of the Cold War, the "right-to-work" laws, which, of course are not recent, although they are being expanded.

Joseph Kaye

 

Re: Syria's Long War Will Be Decided in These Three Theaters
 

see:  Cheney, Rothschild, and Fox News' Murdoch to Drill for Oil in Syria, Violating International Law
By Justin Gardner
January 11, 2016
The Free Thought Project

While Syria is torn apart by the warring of U.S. imperialists and Islamic fundamentalists-leaving its children to die of starvation-another country plans to take advantage of the chaos by stealing resources from Syria's southern region. The theft will be carried out by the most notorious pushers of military hegemony, and they don't care that it violates international law.

Together, these warmongers and would-be ethnic cleansers will soon be drilling into a vast oil and gas reserve located in the Syrian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, known as Golan Heights. The move would be in clear violation of international law, specifically the Annex to the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Israeli authorities granted Genie Energy's subsidiary, Afek Oil and Gas, exclusive petroleum exploration rights in a 153-square-mile region in Golan Heights. In 2015, above-ground geophysical tests discovered the presence of oil and natural gas reserves that could make Israel energy self-sufficient. Afek has already drilled three exploratory wells.

Israel has benefited from its illegal occupation of Syria's Golan Heights for decades, drawing one-third of its entire water supply from the region and providing a tourist and skiing destination at the Mount Hermon Ski Resort. Despite persistent international pressure, including from the U.S., the occupation continues and will reach a new level with the extraction of fossil fuels.

Rupert Murdoch heralded his involvement in Genie Energy by touting the prosperity and freedom it will bring to the world.

Vince Cushite
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: The Karl Marx of Music
 

Alex Brown writes in Jacobin:

"Eisler’s first contribution in 1949 was to compose the GDR’s national anthem Auferstanden aus Ruinen (Arisen from Ruins) with lyrics from poet Johannes R. Becher.

The song captured the optimistic mood of the times, the hope and determination to build a socialist society from the ruins of German fascism and war." 

Brecht wrote the lyrics to the same music for the marvelous "Children's Hymn"
Hear Eisler sings it on youtube

Read Brown's article here.

Michael Munk

     =====

In this otherwise fascinating piece, Alex Brown incorrectly states that the House Un-American Affairs Committee (HUAC) was led by Senator Joseph McCarthy.  First of all, HUAC was a House Committee, not a Senate Committee. It was led by Texas representative Martin Dies.  Second, McCarthy hadn’t even been elected to the Senate in 1946.  Please issue this correction and tell Jacobin to do a better job with their fact-checking process.

John

     =====

This important and otherwise very good article unfortunately omits any mention of what may have been Hanns Eisler's best score ever: the 14 songs he wrote for the Brecht play DIE RUNDKOEPFE UND DIE SPITZKOEPFE.

Brecht supervised a 1936 production of it in Denmark, it was performed in Halle shortly before Eisler's death, and the US premiere came in 1971 at Pomona College with only 2 of the Eisler songs and in 1973 at Cornell with the whole score (directed by me, in my translation with Gesa Valk). At the time musicologist William Austin called the music "even better than THE THREEPENNY OPERA."

Martha Schlamme chose my translation for a workshop she conducted with my co-adaptor Bill Castleman at Aspen in 1981. There were productions in East and West Berlin, for which I was a consultant, in 1983 and 1984. (I brought the East German director Alexander Lang a copy of the audiotape of the Cornell production, which the authorities at first would not let across the border, until I told them: "You have to let this in! The composer of this work wrote your national anthem!" As the result, I'm sure there's a Stasi file on me somewhere.:>)

West-Park Presbyterian Church presented the whole score in a 45-minute version with narration in 1998. Present for the event, Eric Bentley said that was perhaps the best way to present the work, highlighting its best aspect: the music.

The original 5-hour play itself went through 14 versions, beginning as an adaptation of Shakespeare's MEASURE FOR MEASURE and then integrating Kleist's MICHAEL KOHLHAAS, along with elements of Swift, Zola, and others.

The 1998 version, inspired by a Brecht note indicating that the score could be performed by a total of 6 singers, will be heard next January at the Puffin Cultural Forum Jan. 13, Community Church of NY Jan. 20, and Long Beach Library Jan. 26. Also on the program will be the Finale from Elie Siegmeister's cantata I HAVE A DREAM and the world premieres of Marc Blitzstein's 1934 CHILDREN'S CANTATA ("Workers' Kids of the World, Unite!"), written in honor of Eisler's first coming to America, and my new opera, A LOVELETTER FROM ROSA LUXEMBURG.

Leonard J. Lehrman
ljlehrman.artists-in-residence.com

 

Re: Marx at the Chicken Shack
 

(posting on Portside Culture)

Just a small disagreement on Mike Davis's "Marx at the Chicken Shack," an intriguing title and a thought-provoking article: Mike writes (about patriarchal tendencies in the Second International): "Indeed, between Flora Tristan and Clara Zetkin, no woman was able to claim leadership in any of the major labor or socialist formations."

I don't see how it is possible to overlook Rosa Luxemburg or her contributions, either to the German Social-Democratic Party or to the formation of the Spartacist League or to Marxist theory, especially her work against Bernstein's (and, later, Kautsky's) revisionism, or her perceptive evaluations of Lenin, Trotsky and the Russian Revolutions of 1905 and 1917. Luxemburg was murdered early in 1919 precisely because she was so very important.

Gene Glickman

 

Re: Dads in Space: Review of 'First Man' and 'High Life'
 

(posting on Portside Culture)

One demographic of color:

see full listing here.

Bruce Rosen

 

Solidarity Group Debates Strategies against US Blockade on Cuba
 

Prensa Latina
October 21, 2018

Minneapolis, USA, Oct 20 (Prensa Latina) The National Network of Solidarity with Cuba (NNOC) in the United States debates on Saturday actions to demand the lifting of the blockade imposed by Washington against the island and other issues related to bilateral relations.

After opening last night at the University of Augsburg in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the annual conference of the organization, participants at the meeting are addressing the importance of resolutions endorsed by authorities in several US cities to demand the end of the economic siege on Cuba, which has already lasted for more than 55 years.

Alicia Jrapko, NNOC's co-director, told Prensa Latina they are working to make more people aware of the need to lift the unjust blockade, and recalled that on October 31 a new vote will be held at the UN to condemn that hostile policy. 'We need to be present there,' she said.

She added that during the debates, which will close on Sunday, participants will discuss trips that network members want to make to Cuba next year, with special emphasis on the Venceremos Brigade, an initiative that will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2019.

They will also talk about preparations for the First of May Brigade, and there will be a discussion on the racial issue and the differences between that issue in one country and the other.

All participants in the event agree that it is necessary to put an end to the blockade, the travel ban that prevents Americans from going freely to Cuba and the subversive policy of regime change, while supporting the return to Cuba of the territory illegally occupied by the US military base in Guantanamo.

At the opening session, a message sent to participants was read by Republican Congressman Tom Emmer, who said he was confident that this event 'will take us one step further in our coordinated effort to lift the blockade and improve bilateral relations.' 

 

Jailed for Dissent - Max Zirngast, a Jacobin contributor and socialist activist, has been imprisoned in Turkey for more than a month. Here's how you can help.
 

By Güney Işikara and Alp Kayserilioğlu

October 24, 2018
Jacobin

 


Sincan-2, the high-security Turkish prison where Max Zirngast is being held.

Our comrade and coauthorJacobin contributor Max Zirngast, has now been in Turkish custody for more than a month. Authorities still haven’t brought a formal indictment against him, yet Max is being held in a high-security prison — Sincan-2, about forty miles west of Ankara — and experiencing severe restrictions on his written correspondence, his visits from friends and family, and his ability to conduct his usual journalism and research.

As with other jailed dissidents in Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Turkey, it is unclear when the prosecutor will bring formal charges against Max or when his trial will begin. Applying domestic and international pressure is therefore extremely important — otherwise his pre-trial detention could stretch on indefinitely.

Max, an Austrian national who’s lived in Turkey for the last three years, was arrested in the early morning hours of September 11 by Turkish anti-terror police. Authorities are accusing him of “being a member of the illegal TKP/K” — a patently absurd charge that is being leveled simply because Max has written about, and organized against, Turkey’s authoritarian turn under Erdoğan.

The response of Austrian officials since Max’s detention has been disappointing. Following a one-month silence, Austrian minister of foreign affairs Karin Kneissl recently stated that the government “demanded a fair process from the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs. As usual in such cases, the path of diplomacy is taken.” In another press release, she admitted that the government doesn’t know how long pre-trial custody will last, and emphasized again that the means of “silent diplomacy” are being employed.

We find it totally unacceptable that the Austrian government, as well as the international media, is playing the game according to the rules of the Turkish government. Analogous cases in the past — including those of Deniz YücelPeter Steudtner, and Meşale Tolu — teach us one thing: the only way to make the Erdoğan regime act is to increase the pressure. Simply asking for a “fair process” is ridiculously inadequate.

To that end, we’ve launched an international solidarity campaign, #FreeMaxZirngast. Here are a few actions that supporters can take:

  • Sign the petition calling for Max’s release.
  • Send a letter or postcard to Max. The campaign takes care of translations  into Turkish.
  • Volunteer to translate for the campaign (especially German to English and German to Turkish).
  • Donate. Because Max is a vegan animal rights activist, he must feed himself through private purchases at the extremely overpriced prison market. Donations are therefore very important to help finance his expenditures. For more information on sending a letter or donating, contact freemaxzirngast@riseup.net.

In recent days, in the wake of Jamal Khashoggi’s murder, Erdoğan has positioned himself as something of a defender of free speech. Max’s case — and so many like it — show just how perverse that claim is. We stand resolutely with all those fighting for democracy in Turkey and demand Max’s immediate release.

 

Calling all peace activists, history lovers, students of World War I! - World War I: The Resistance - New York - November 12
 

This program commemorates the Armistice of World War 1, which was signed on Nov. 11, 1918 and celebrates the resistance to that war. the "Americans who tried to stop their nation from fighting in history's most destructive war and then endured the wrath of a government that punished them for refusing to change their minds."

  • Michael Kazin - Historian, Author, War Against War: The American Fight For Peace, 1914-1918
  • Irwin Yellowitz - Historian, President, New York Labor History Association
  • Susan Schnall - Peace Activist, President, Veterans for Peace, New York City Chapter

Monday - Nov. 12, 2018 - 6:00 p.m.-8 p.m.

The Center for Worker Education /The City College of New York
25 Broadway, 7th Fl.
Manhattan

Photo ID required to enter building at front desk
Subway stops 4, 5 to Bowling Green, 2,3 to Wall St., 1 or R to Rector St.

Seating is limited so please RSVP to Jane LaTour at: jlatour13@gmail.com

Sponsor: New York Labor History Association
Co-sponsor: The Center for Worker Education

Refreshments! Free!

Sponsor: New York Labor History Association

 

Book-launch/Forum for Mike Withey’s “Summary Executions: The Assassination of Domingo and Viernes" - Berkeley - November 13
 

Please attend the  book-launch/forum for Mike Withey’s “Summary Executions: The Assassination of Domingo and Viernes”.

Tuesday, November 13 -- 6:00-7:30 PM.

UC Berkeley Labor Center
2521 Channing Way, Spc 5555
Berkeley

On June 1, 1981, U.S. intelligence agencies knew that a murder was about to take place at a union hall in Seattle, Washington.

The FBI did nothing to stop it, and evidence reveals that they sent an informant to simply observe these killings of Silme Domingo and Gene Viernes, two ILWU union leaders and anti-Marcos-dictatorship activists.

The FBI did not intervene to prevent the murders.

The assassinations of Silme and Gene were masterminded and carried out by agents of the Philippine dictator.

A successful U.S. civil suit filed by the families of Silme and Gene awarded damages against the Marcos estate for the perpetration of these murders.

The FBI knew that Marcos agents were operating in the U.S. against pro-democracy Filipino-American activists.

The FBI coordinated activities and shared information with these Marcos agents - who then brazenly carried out murders on U.S. soil, and with the prior knowledge of the U.S. government.

The U.S. government, and the FBI, must now be held accountable for their foreknowledge of, complicity with, and cover-up of the murders of Silme and Gene.

Published by WildBlue Press