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Tidbits - Dec. 27, 2018 - Reader Comments: Green New Deal; Affordable Housing; Syria Troop Withdrawal; Immigration; Migrants; Science and Religion; Resources; Announcements; and more....

Reader Comments: Green New Deal Push On; Capitalism and Affordable Housing; Syrian Troop Withdrawal; Immigration; Honduran Migrants; Science and Religion Debate; Resources; Announcements; and more....

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Dec. 27, 2018-Reader Comments, Resources, Announcements, Portside

Border Closed - No Refugees: Merry Christmas  --  Street Art by Plastic Jesus
RBG - Healthier than Trump Bone Spurs  --  cartoon by Jesse Duquette
Re: Democrats Just Blocked Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Push for a Green New Deal Committee (Charles Patrick Lynch; Paul Thomas Kingstob; John Case)
Re: Gearing Up for a Green New Deal - Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the plan to change everything (Daniel Shays; Marilyn Albert)
Re: The Decline of African-American and Hispanic Wealth since the Great Recession (Robert Politzer)
Re: Capitalism Can’t Give Us Affordable Housing (Cliff Gulliver; Philip Specht; Larry Smith; Lawlor Lee; Anthony Rivera; Frank Millspaugh; Daniel Millstone; David Berger; Lawrence Gulotta)
Re: We Know How Trump’s War Game Ends (Pierre Martineau; Seymour Joseph; Ted Robak)
Re: Veterans For Peace Statement: Withdrawal of U.S. Troops from Syria (Andrew Berman)
Re: It’s Never ‘Just the Immigrants’ (Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression; Philip Specht)
Re: Why Hondurans See Migration as an Act of Civil Disobedience (Alan Lemke; Yvette Aguirre)
Re: Half of Americans Have Family Members Who Have Been Incarcerated (Wilf Hanson; Joseph Maizlish)
Re: Reviving the Nuclear Disarmament Movement: A Practical Proposal (Michael A. Dover)
Re: U.S. Police Under Pressure to End Their Relationship With Israel (Dante Lore; Stan Nadel; Larry Smith; Barry Cuthbert; David Peterson)
Re: The Language of Capitalism Isn’t Just Annoying, It’s Dangerous (John Gallo)
Re: Yes, There Is a War Between Science and Religion (Gordon Galland; Barry Cuthbert; Oscar Lozano; John Gidley; Tom Trumper; Pablo Millan-Sepulveda; Wayne Gravelle; Bruce Swanson; Lucy MacDonald)

Resources:

Latin American News and Analysis From a Critical Perspective (Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung)

Announcements:

40th Birthday Party For Labor Notes - New York - February 1
Save The Date! Mobilizations and Migrations Conference - New York - April 12 - 13

 

Border Closed - No Refugees: Merry Christmas  --  Street Art by Plastic Jesus
 

Plastic Jesus is a Los Angeles based street artist that specialises in bold stencil and installation work, inspired by world news events, society, the urban environment, culture and politics. “Border Closed No Refugees” Merry Christmas ! Rear of the vintage T shirt store Melrose ave LA. MELROSE AND SPAULDING. #streetart #streetartla #stencil #stencilart #urbanart #Xmas #christmas #refugees #refugeecrisis #refugeeswelcome #jesus #maryandjoseph #nativity #nativityscene #compassion #border #borderpatrol #immigration (at World of Vintage Tee Shirt)
December 22, 2015
By STREETIAM

Plastic Jesus inc  
5042 Wilshire Blvd #443,
Los Angeles, CA, 90036,
United States
info@plasticjesus.com

 

RBG - Healthier than Trump Bone Spurs  --  cartoon by Jesse Duquette
 

Jesse Duquette
December 21, 3018
Illustrator, The Daily Don

[Jesse Duquette is a freelance illustrator and creator of "The Daily Don," an art project documenting every day of the Trump administration with 1-2 drawings related to that day's events. He is currently based in the mountains of Western Massachusetts where he passes the time playing with his son and watching "Twin Peaks."] 

 

Re: Democrats Just Blocked Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Push for a Green New Deal Committee
 

What is really stupid is that the damn Democratic leadership either thought we wouldn't find out, or wouldn't care. Stupid, stupid, stupid, why they lost in 2016. Better smarten up...

Charles Patrick Lynch
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Okay, so remember that voting thing from a little over a month ago we did?

Yeah- that was great, but now it’s time to start holding feet to the fire.

Here’s Nancy Pelosi’s #’s

San Francisco office- (415)556-4862

Washington, DC office- (202)225-4965

Tell her not to put anyone who won’t take the “No fossil fuel money” pledge on the Climate Change, Ways and Means, Energy and Commerce, or Appropriations committees.

Tell her to make a real Green New Deal committee.

And remind her that primaries are real and she’s not safe.

Here’s Kathy Castor’s (who will likely head the Climate Change committee) #’s

Tampa office- (813)871-2817

Washington, DC office- (202)225-3376

Tell her to take the “No Fossil Fuel money” pledge and require her committee members to do the same.

You’ll probably wanna mention primaries with her, too.

Paul Thomas Kingstob
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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I confess I don't put much weight on this critique, at least not now. Do I support a green new deal? Yes. But nothing will be accomplished without first deposing Trump, on any front. The coalition to remove Trump requires forces esp in Congress wider than supporters of the green New deal. The fascist forces we confront are prepared to rip up democracy and the Constitution before ANY expansion of public goods if any kind. InDeed, the EPA, HEALTH CARE, energy, labor, wages are all being rolled back. This is still defense not offense

John Case

 

Re: Gearing Up for a Green New Deal - Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the plan to change everything
 

We love AOC and the Green New Deal but it needs a bit of tweaking on this Winter Solstice Day: Wood Biomass energy should not be included in the list of renewable energy. We don't have the luxury of waiting 100+ years for logged forests to regain all the CO2 lost during harvesting and burning trees for electricity or heat emits more carbon and pollution than coal! Regarding reforestation emerging science shows older trees sequester carbon at a higher rate than younger trees and the rate increases as the trees grow older. The simplest and cheapest way to get the biggest forest carbon benefit would be to dramatically reduce logging of federal, state, and municipal forests.

Daniel Shays
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Love the FDR like picture.

Marilyn Albert
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: The Decline of African-American and Hispanic Wealth since the Great Recession
 

The great irony is that if wealth were better distributed, the economic growth that would result would probably make the uber wealthy even wealthier. Henry Ford gave his workers a raise and Ford sales grew. At a minimum, it would make them safer. But Class War has been around ever since Humans started to farm so we probably can't rely on the uber wealthy to make this necessary change. It is up to the progressive wing of the Democratic Party to insist that this gets done, starting with the total repeal of the recent Tax Scam.

Robert Politzer
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Capitalism Can’t Give Us Affordable Housing
 

Won’t

Cliff Gulliver
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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There are no profits in affordable housing.

Philip Specht
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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The more our social problems increase (homelessness, inadequate health coverage, decaying infrastructure, cost and quality of education, neglect of the climate crisis, etc.), the less I see private profit making as a viable solution in addressing any common human need. We need systemic change.

Larry Smith
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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We should have learned this long ago.

Lawlor Lee
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Ferrari for a few...
Footsteps for the rest..

Anthony Rivera
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Let's stop calling it "free market." It's market capitalism.

Frank Millspaugh

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Of course capitalists don't' give us anything. They take stuff. When we say "Housing is a human right," we challenge private property and profit. En route to socialism, but before we get there, we can building actually affordable housing for all of us. Tax the rich to pay for it.

Daniel Millstone
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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You’re contradicting yourself.... It can’t and won’t be done under capitalism.

David Berger
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Really? Public housing was never built under capitalism? Non-profit housing was never built? Are you sure? I seem to remember differently from you.

Daniel Millstone
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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As someone who has been a "State Financier" of affordable housing for over 30-years in NYC & NYS, I believe affordable housing can certainly be created under "capitalism" and to think otherwise is foolish. I'd rather we sold housing bonds to create affordable housing than curse the darkness. Under Koch, Dinkins & Mario Cuomo, the BRONX was rebuilt and repopulated. All under "capitalism" but with 1% monies. What is now required is the vast expansion of the "limited equity coop" such as the ownership model of Penn South, 1199 Plaza, and other union-sponsored housing developments.

Capitalists built Parkchester & Stuyvesant Town. They moved away from housing development to chase rising Internal Rates of Return (IRR) in the commercial office markets. Now, their employees are stuck with shabby public transportation; lose millions of dollars in productivity.

Lawrence Gulotta
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: We Know How Trump’s War Game Ends
 

Colonel Trump, as glorious now as he was at the great battle of the Bone Spur Hill.

Pierre Martineau
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Matt Taibbi hit the nail on the head with respect to NATO and those never ending wars in the Middle East. And he’s also right about Trump being “a madman, a far-right extremist and an embarrassment.” But I question a few things. 

His depiction of MSNBC as a “liberal” channel [Taibbi’s quote marks] “seems to be populated… by ex-neocons and Pentagon dropouts,” is unfair. Yes, there are some of those, but the mainstays of the channel are thoughtful, well-versed moderators, such as Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell and Joy Reid. 

And I disagree with him in his simplistic view that the real line of political power in this country is “between a war party, and everyone else.” This implicit lumping together of Democrats and Republicans is not only cockeyed, it’s especially off the wall in the reign of Trump and his GOP enablers. Is Taibbi telling us it doesn’t matter who wins the White House in 2020? Say it ain’t so, Matt.

Seymour Joseph

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By doing it this way, Trump has almost ensured the decimation of the Kurdish allies of the US by Erdogan, Assad and Putin. Ending the war would be great if done right. Instead he's made things so much worse.

Ted Robak
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Veterans For Peace Statement: Withdrawal of U.S. Troops from Syria
 

The Veterans for Peace statement in support of Trump's stated intention to withdraw US troops from Syria fails to deal with the reality that the hell in Syria is caused mainly by the brutal Assad regime and its patrons Russia and Iran. VFP sadly has a history of following the Assad narrative that US intervention alone is the source of the war. The current VFP president drank tea with and praised the tyrant while Assad was burying children alive with his barrel bombs in Aleppo. Of course the US should get out of Syria, but so should Russia and Iran. That alone will allow the Syrian people to regain sovereignty in their nation.

Andrew Berman, US Army 1971-73. VFP chapter 27

 

Re: It’s Never ‘Just the Immigrants’
 

The targeting of immigrants is intimately linked to a long record of labor repression and civil liberties violations — which eventually target the native-born, too.

Kentucky Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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"It would be awfully naïve to expect such repression to be confined to those without the protections of citizenship. It’s no coincidence that “Alien” and “Sedition” Acts often come in pairs, as in 1798, 1918, and 1940. The dismal, unceasing fact is that when we allow the government to chase down unruly foreigners with little to no regard for their civil liberty, a wider spiral of state-sponsored lawlessness is set in motion."

Philip Specht
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: Why Hondurans See Migration as an Act of Civil Disobedience
 

Not simple and not false news but is apparently a good overview of relevant Honduran history. Around the world exploited people are looking for Better Lives and have to leave their countries to find it. Wonder why? We should wonder and ask our leaders for more than refugees are bad guys

Alan Lemke
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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This was an excellent article, I am not from Honduras but I understand and support the goals of the caravan. It is always the strongest people that immigrate seeking justice and a better life.

Yvette Aguirre

 

Re: Half of Americans Have Family Members Who Have Been Incarcerated
 

America should stop locking up it people .
America locks up more people than most if not all countries that are dictatorships

Wilf Hanson
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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My hunch is that the high numbers of people who have direct and indirect involvement with being incarcerated -- AND the willingness of some of them to step forward and speak out -- could be a contributor, perhaps a big one, to the bits and steps of humane reform in the last few years.  Thanks to all those who spoke despite the prejudice and persecution.

Joseph Maizlish,
Los Angeles

 

Re: Reviving the Nuclear Disarmament Movement: A Practical Proposal
 

I am responding to Lawrence Wittner's Foreign Policy in Focus article and the response in the December 20 Tidbits by Anthony Donovan.

Anthony argued that Larry is "not in touch with the realities" of current social movement practices. As much as I found Anthony's reports of current activism accurate, so were Larry's historical observations, and the urgency of his current proposals. Larry called for ideas for a comparable strategy today to the FREEZE campaign. He presented one idea, but also concluded: "Of course, this proposal suggests only one of numerous possible ways to develop a broad anti-nuclear campaign. Even so, there should be little doubt about the necessity for organizing that campaign. The alternative is allowing the world to continue its slide toward nuclear catastrophe."

A great source of ideas for how to proceed can be found in the two websites of the People's Decade for Nuclear Abolition. Their archive can be scrolled through here.  There one can find five columns by Lawrence Wittner and my proposal in an op-ed in the Cleveland Plain Dealer that the peace movement strive for an interim step: namely the nuclear disarmament of two former colonial powers (United Kingdom and France) and of two now independent states (India and Pakistan).

Recently, North Korea has insisted that "denuclearization" not be merely unilateral, and that there be broader denuclearization. I'm in no position to assess the sincerity of North Korea's proposal, and certainly nothing should be proposed that would stall a final peace treaty and its provisions for a nuclear-free Korean peninsula. That would be a very important step in its own right. But if imagine if as part of that there were agreement to support an effort to provide incentives, security guarantees, and technical assistance that would permit the United Kingdom, France, India and Pakistan to disarm as part of a wider agreement, and that the three superpowers also agree to negotiate a plan for complete and total nuclear disarmament.

One response to my proposal that India, Pakistan, France and the UK disarm has been that I am failing to recognize the widespread agreement that the next step should be a nuclear free Middle East.  That was and is surely an admirable proposal, but none other than Noam Chomsky has recognized Israel would never disarm as long as Pakistan has the bomb, in part due to a fear of nuclear terrorism. But there is also the fear that as long as North Korea and Pakistan have the bomb, the danger of further nuclear proliferation would remain in the region. Would Israel agree to disarm were the other five non-superpowers to do so? Quite possibly. Here I am trying to reinforce one of the values of Larry's column. We need to generate new ideas and seriously re-think how we can re-build a mass movement that links nuclear disarmament to a decisive move away from nuclear power and to a green energy movement and global green movement that prioritize human needs in the era of climate change.

Michael A. Dover
Cleveland

 

Re: U.S. Police Under Pressure to End Their Relationship With Israel
 

Not enough pressure.

Dante Lore
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Congratulations on circulating a fair analysis rather than an anti-Israel propaganda rant.
 
Stan Nadel

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I agree with the Jewish Voice for Peace on this. How could it not have a detrimental affect on minorities and many who are falsely labeled as “terrorists” when they are simply trying to protect themselves from authoritarian aggression?

Larry Smith
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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They should never have had any relationship with Israel in the first place! All they teach is how to murder!

David Peterson
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Re: The Language of Capitalism Isn’t Just Annoying, It’s Dangerous
 

Another key capitalist word, perhaps more damaging than "entrepreneur", is "The Middle Class". This category, shed by the triumphant bourgeoisie, has been retooled to divide the working class by verbally removing higher paid workers from their class and fostering a degree of superiority. This term is widely used not only by capitalists and their lackeys, but by liberals, progressives, labor leaders and too many workers. 

See:  Workers Are Not Middle Class By John Gallo

John Gallo

 

Re: Yes, There Is a War Between Science and Religion
 

Back in the day (300AD), Tertullian could get away with stating “Credo quia absurdum est (I believe because it is absurd)”

Well, that doesn’t cut it anymore. To be taken seriously today, any assertion must marshal scientific backing; no matter how twisted and out-of-context.

This illustrates just how far religion has retreated...

Gordon Galland
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Faith is believing in the supernatural, science proves the supernatural religion can't co exist with truth and science proves man made religion is bullshit contained within the pages of books while the universe continues to expand

Barry Cuthbert
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Science is completely compatible with faith. The problem arises when scientist's are bent on proving theology is wrong instead of getting their sorry asses to formulate theory's and prove them.

Oscar Lozano
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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You mean wishful-thinking like believing in evolution.

John Gidley
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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John Gidley why do you think they have to come up with a new flu vaccine every year or new antibiotics to fight infection.

Tom Trumper
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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... and religion is loosing it.

Pablo Millan-Sepulveda
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Equally bad.One will destroy our world with religious dogma and hatred.The other with poisons, nuclear arms and stupidity

Wayne Gravelle
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Of course one sees them at war when one defines them as opposites.

When one defines them as very similar, one looks for what they have in common.

It’s much too easy to compare old science and old religion, and view them with an old left side brain that, surprise surprise, finds left brain science so different from right brain religion.

It’s only when one combines the left and right brains’ different perceptual modalities, that one can see true science and true religion are essentially two sides of an interdependent same thing.

This is gobbly gook, to those not into cutting edge sub atomic physics, and awakened spirituality, wherein the observer creates the observed.

This article and thread are too “old school” to be of much interest or validity.

Bruce Swanson
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

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Both are distractions to keep us from discovering the Truth within ourselves.

Lucy MacDonald
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Latin American News and Analysis From a Critical Perspective (Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung)
 

We are pleased to announce that the Fundación Rosa Luxemburg Oficina Región Andina has now launched a new, English-language website providing news, analysis, and critical debates on Latin American politics and society to an international audience. Visit our new website and be sure to follow us on social media!

The Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung began its work in the Andean region in 2009 and has maintained a regional office in Quito, Ecuador since 2010. Our work here focuses largely on strengthening democratic struggles in the region and supporting the regional and historical alternatives to development in order to face the local and global challenge posed by climate change and capitalist world order.

Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung
Franz-Mehring-Platz 1
10243 Berlin

Phone: +49-(0)30-44310221
Fax: +49-(0)30-44310222 
info@rosalux.org

 

40th Birthday Party For Labor Notes - New York - February 1
 

Come celebrate 40 years of making trouble with Labor Notes at our anniversary issue release party in New York City on February 1st.

There will be speakers from four generations of troublemaking, cash bar, dance party!

WHEN: Friday, February 1st, 7:00 p.m.

WHERE: The People's Forum, 320 West 37th Street (between 8th & 9th Avenues), NYC

Tickets for entry can be purchased at the door or online here.

There is a sliding scale for registration: $15, $25, and $45.

First time subscribers to the magazine get one year free.

Registration Details: (sliding scale)
Click here.

 

Save The Date! Mobilizations and Migrations Conference - New York - April 12 - 13
 

 

MOBILIZATIONS AND MIGRATIONS CONFERENCE

THE CENTER FOR PLACE CULTURE AND POLITICS PRESENTS ITS 2019 ANNUAL CONFERENCE, MOBILIZATIONS AND MIGRATIONS

Friday April 12: Elebash Recital Hall, Graduate Center, CUNY (365 Fifth Avenue).

Saturday April 13: The People’s Forum (320 West 37th St)

However the international order is characterized, it is clear that various forms of internationalism are in distress. These are at work both in producing violent conflagration and in generating moving populations across the globe (migrant labor, refugees, asylum seekers, exiles, emigres, etc.). How, then, can internationalism be thought and articulated anew? How can it productively and creatively address various modes of encounter and representation? How can it build on radical genealogies of international solidarity in ways that interlink vital discussions of borders and walls with the systemic relations of racial capitalism and its spatial fixes in the current conjuncture? How do migrations mediate mobilizations as political possibility? Do revolutionary/decolonial reconfigurations of people in/against territories represent the new horizon of internationalism? How does culture, for instance, mediate the complex parameters of space, place, and the movements between both to fathom contemporary crises and to enable a positive knowledge of their solution?

The 2019 CPCP Conference intends to bring together activist scholars/scholarly activists from across the disciplines and beyond in order to figure new dimensions of mobilization as and from migrations. The focus on movement and movements offers the possibility of constructive dialogue on specific spatial constellations in the present that does not lose sight of their historical constituents and political differences yet is willing to meet the challenge of their articulation.

Speakers include:

Sónia Vaz Borges, Ana Naomi de Sousa, Nick Estes, Javiela Evangelista, DeeDee Halleck, Christina Heatherton, Shahram Khosravi, Angela Naimou, Sana N’Hada, A. Naomi Paik,  Vijay Prashad and Mamyrah Dougé-Prosper, and Alper Sen.

MORE INFORMATION TO FOLLOW!

Organized by the Center for Place, Culture and Politics at the Graduate Center, CUNY. Cosponsored by The Center for the Humanities, Graduate Center, CUNY.-, and the People's Forum. The conference is free and open to the public.