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Tidbits – Jan. 26, 2023 – Reader Comments: What Price “Defense”?; Monterey Park; Readers Respond – Ukraine War; Israel; Argentina 1985; George Santos; Gun Control; Student Activist Scholarship Applications Available; Lots of Announcements; More…

Reader Comments: What Price “Defense”?; Monterey Park; Readers Respond - Ukraine War and The Left; Israel; Argentina 1985; George Santos; Gun Control; Lots of Announcements; Student Activist Scholarship Applications Available; More....

Tidbits - Reader Comments, Resources, Announcements, AND cartoons - Jan.26, 2023,Portside



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Portside Readers Respond:






Re: Rightwing Group Pours Millions in ‘Dark Money’ Into US Voter Suppression Bid

The Heritage Foundation, since its founding, has attacked voting rights in the USA, and more so lately.

“The advocacy arm of the Heritage Foundation, the powerful conservative think tank based in Washington, spent more than $5m on lobbying in 2021 as it worked to block federal voting rights legislation and advance an ambitious plan to spread its far-right agenda calling for aggressive voter suppression measures in battleground states.”

Norm Littlejohn

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Re: What Price “Defense”?

"Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also".

Our addiction to military spending stands in the way of sincere and effective approaches to peace. We even invent enemies on a regular basis to justify invasions and arms shipments. The big money goes to these arms manufacturers. But to complicate matters, every state takes part in providing parts and support, and jobs for their citizens. So even Bernie Sanders votes for these military budgets.

The fallout is draining resources from every social need, most ironically from mental and physical care for veterans.

The solution lies in insisting on solutions other than wars combined with a skilled program of repurposing the arms industry for peaceful solutions, such as mass transit and clean energy.

Please do not participate in romanticizing the military, but work to find other ways to solve problems.

Sonia Cobbins

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Monterey Park, New Year, Old Problem  --  cartoon by Lalo Alcaraz


Lalo Alcaraz

January 24, 2023

Re: In Major Rebuke, New York Senate Committee Rejects Gov. Kathy Hochul’s Court Pick

Since the only way for Hochul and LaSalle to prevail even in a full Senate vote would be for her to rely on the Republican minority aligned with some Democrats she strong arms (shades of Cuomo’s IDC), this is really starting off her relationship with the Legislature on a very bad footing. I suspect she is listening to Jay Jacobs who sees this as a battle to suppress progressives in the body whom he mistakenly blames for the devastating State Congressional midterm losses. None of this is in any way good for the working people in NY.

Rachelle Kivanoski

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Re: The MAGA Threat Is Greater Today Than It Was in 2020

It’s going to take an outpouring of resistance even greater than 2020 to simply hold the MAGA vs. anti-MAGA stalemate we have now, much less push MAGA to the margins and start a new progressive cycle in U.S. politics. Resistance must be full-spectrum – electoral engagement to defeat MAGA candidates at every level in the 2024 balloting is absolutely essential but not enough. Year-round organizing in key constituencies; day-in and day-out fights over issues that affect the rights, health, and well-being of the popular majority; and the construction of a more united social justice trend that can take independent initiative are also a must.

Michael Henry Starks

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Re: It Didn’t Start With Trump: The Decades-Long Saga of How the GOP Went Crazy

Go back even further, and look at the dalliance between the 1930s Wall Street Republicans and the crypto fascist "Liberty League."

Eleanor Roosevelt

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Book Bandit  --  cartoon by Mike Luckovich

Mike Luckovich

January 25, 2023
Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Re: Nothing Is Worse Than Silence in the Face of Aggression

Bill Fletcher, Jr.: “In response to the history of US interference in the internal affairs of, quite probably, most countries on planet Earth, many of us became understandably suspicious of any actions around the world that seemed to meet with an endorsement by the USA, regardless of the internal dynamics of such actions. Could this be, we wondered, another example of US imperialist interference? Is this just another US-supported puppet movement attempting to realign a country?”

Norm Littlejohn

Posted on Portside's Facebook page


Sounds like Bill Fletcher is ready to '"fight Russia to the last Ukrainian." Are you too? And to the last living creature in a nuclear conflagration? The U.S. has been pushing for this war since at least 2008, but in the eyes of these "leftists", Uncle Sam is essentially blameless.

Alan Hart

Posted on Portside's Facebook page


How is what Bill Fletcher is advocating different from what NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenbeg stated at the Davos gathering of billionaire war mongers: "Weapons are the way to peace"?

John Thompson

Posted on Portside's Facebook page


If indeed, as Bill Fletcher suggests, "Nothing is Worse Than Silence in the Face of Aggression," one would have expected him to be vociferous in his condemnation of the nearly nine-year effort to punish the people of the Donbass for their desire for autonomy. Instead after targeted assassination, shelling, brutality that screams 'war crimes,' they are to be dismissed as "Russian-backed secessionists" who presumably on that basis have no grounds to expect our sympathy or solidarity.

We do not have the right, asserts Fletcher, to dictate to Kyiv how much territory it ought to concede for the sake of averting global nuclear catastrophe. But apparently he has assumed the right to dictate to ethnic Russians who wish to retain their language and culture, free from persecution, that they must submit to the dictates of the central government which has waged war on them since 2014.

It is instructive that Angela Merkel, Francois Hollande, and Ukraine's Petro Poroshenko have all indicated that the Minsk II Accords were a sham, a means to buy time for Ukraine to train and equip an expanded army for the purpose of crushing the opposition in the eastern provinces. Truly, if "nothing is worse than silence in face of aggression," how awful and perverse the silence from Fletcher as Ukraine's aggression and war crimes continue.

Having shared Bill Fletcher's unconvincing attempt to put a left spin on State Department policy, I hope you bring forward other views, especially from a genuine left and anti-war position.

Peter E. Gilmore


It seems to me that Ukraine is being destroyed by this war not Russia. Both sides need to cease fire and begin negotiations.

Judy Atkins

Posted on Portside's Facebook page


Shame on this author for using a very limited analysis of the Ukrainian crisis to shame the global anti-war movement. This is nothing but a straw man argument that ignores all of the reasons why left-wing groups are critical of those who support escalation. For example, at no point does he mention the fact that the US military complex has supplied billions of dollars in weapons with the explicit goal of having Ukraine fight a proxy war to weaken Russian society--before the invasion. We are just expected to be good neoliberals and pretend that this invasion was started in some free market vacuum. Imagine if China started arming Mexico in this way? I do not support Putin's administration or Russian oligarchs, but I do not support the Biden administration and US oligarchs, either. It seems aggression in this instance is a two-way street, which is what these groups have been saying the entire time! I refuse to be silent about any of it!

Brandon Mouser

Posted on Portside's Facebook page


It is sad but not amazing that Bill Fletcher falls for the overwhelming propaganda barrage that surrounds the war in Ukraine. He is wrong, because he ignores two vital elements of the conflict: 1) its geopolitical context, and 2) the reality of the Ukraine.

Analysts from George Kennan, to Kissinger, to Mearsheimer have spelt out how NATO's expansion, driven by the USA, would lead to conflict. This is now a proxy war, provoked as part of the desperate attempts by US imperialism to destroy potential threats to its world hegemony. Why has NATO now transformed the Indian and Pacific Oceans into part of the North Atlantic? For the same reason.

The provocation started before 2014, but that year the USA played a major role in the coup that toppled a fairly neutral, elected government in the Ukraine. It was replaced by one of rabid nationalists, devotees of Stepan Bandera who helped the slaughter of millions of Jews, Poles and Russians in WWII. He is now an official hero, and his anti-Russian, anti-communist policies were put in place after 2014. Naturally, Russian-speaking parts of Ukraine rejected these and sought autonomy and, in the case of Crimea returning to Russia. Does Bill not recognise those moves as 'national self-determination'? Presumably not, the only valid decisions are taken by Ukrainian nationalists, after severe repression of all opposition.

The Minsk accords of 2014/5 recognised the need for negotiated autonomy for the Donbass but Merkel and Hollande have now recognised that they were ignored, to allow time for NATO to expand, arm and train the Ukrainian army. At some time it would have moved to take back the Donbass, having shelled it for 8 years in a non-reported conflict that cost about 14,000 lives (UN figure). Putin might have fallen into a trap, and his nationalist rhetoric is reactionary, but his desire to protect Russians left him little choice.

The need now is to stop this horrific war, not by arming Ukraine in the vain hope of 'victory' but by demanding cease-fires and negotiation for realistic aims like the Minsk agreements.

Few countries outside the imperialist blocs have implemented sanctions on Russia – they recognise the hypocrisy on the part of the 'West'. Imperialist aggression across Asia, and attempts to control Africa and Latin America, are widely known and rejected, despite the imperialist control of much of the media across the world. It behooves people living in the belly of the beast to try and understand how the rest of the world sees it, and to lift their eyes beyond the smoke-screen created by our media.

Dan Morgan, Chile.

Re: The Israeli Right Is the Minority — The Left Need Only Realize It

This analysis seems to rely on a sketchy definition of “Left” because all the numbers I see point to an overwhelming right wing/conservative/centrist majority in Israel….and after reading the article everyone should note that the left wing majority this author presents is barely achieved by including Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank who are completely disenfranchised in the Knesset and Israeli society

Brandon Mouser

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Re: Will Biden Save Israel From Its Worst Instincts?

This may be a good time to tell people about the new documentary (streaming on several sites), "Tantura" with interviews. 50 years after the fact of the Holocaust Refugees who committed genocide in one small Palestinian Village (Tantura). These survivors had different opinions: Horror at what they had done; Rationale that it was war and this is what war is; and it was so long ago, why bring it up now (pretty ironic).

Not being great record keepers like the Nazis (maybe Israel wasn't so proud of their achievements), we have no idea how many other villages there were or even how many people were slaughtered in this village. The interviews were done for an Israeli's PhD Dissertation, which was originally approved but then rescinded.

Seeing this film now, the same weekend as the meeting at the Press Club on Assange and Reporter Suppression in the US and around the world was horrifying. The 2-1/2 hour Press Club meeting from Friday Jan. 20 (available at Democracy Now) and a 45-minute summary at DN on Monday Jan 23 are incredible. This is vital information for all Americans.

Throw in the over-classification of information that is now making the news and the recent news from Harvard Kennedy School of its failed attempt to silence Ken Roth of Human Rights Watch, it is all mind boggling. With all this release of information, maybe we are finally starting to win this battle in the US, Israel, and ultimately around the world, since we hold ourselves up as the world's example

Arlene Halfon

Re: ARGENTINA, 1985 | Movie

(Posting on Friday Nite Videos)

If you haven't seen this yet, you should - available now on Prime -

Eight years ago we were in Buenos Aires. One of the most moving sites I ever visited was the Monument to the Victims of State Terrorism -  erected near the Argentine Naval Academy (ESMA) - the site of torture for many of the 30,000 of the disappeared during the seven years of the Dirty War. At the memorial - the memorial wall contains the names in seven panels, one for each year, listing 30,000 of the disappeared, listed alphabetically. You see their ages, and the names of family members, and for many of the women, are the words, "with child," the reference to the children that were stolen by the military junta before their mothers were dropped from military planes into the nearby rivers.

While in Buenos Aires, we were able to find the apartment building were my aunt lived with her husband. My aunt and my father were separated in 1921 at the time my father emigrated to the United States from the Ukraine. When his family applied for a U.S. visa in 1919, she was not married, now two years later, she was married and the U.S. would not allow her to board the boat in Germany as part of the family unit. So the family came to the U.S. and she and her husband ended up in Argentina. My father did not see his sister for 50 years, until the family convinced her to come in 1974 after the beginning of the Dirty War. She later went back after two-half-years. She said she would be safe, that the military junta was not concerned with older leftists. Visiting this memorial, we could see that the ages of the disappeared were those under 35.

Never Again. No to Fascism! 

Jay Schaffner

Posted on Portside's Facebook page

George Santos Hand Gestures  --  cartoon by Adam Zyglis

Adam Zyglis

January 19, 2023
The Buffalo News

Demand Gun Control Now — Poster of the Week (Center for the Study of Political Graphics)

Enough is Enough

Doug Woodhouse

Digital print, 2018

Roslindale, MA

As much as we love sharing posters from CSPG’s collection, sharing posters for the same tragic event over and over is infuriating. This week’s repeat offender is once again gun violence—there have been 40 mass shootings in the U.S. so far this year.

Saturday evening, 11 people were killed and 10 injured at a dance hall in Monterey Park, California, a majority Asian American community, during the Lunar New Year celebration of the Year of the Rabbit.

Sunday evening, 12 people were injured at a Baton Rouge, Louisiana nightclub.

Earlier this month in Goshen, California, a family of six were killed execution style outside their home.

After a 2019 mass shooting in New Zealand, the government amended their gun laws within weeks. There has not been a mass shooting since.

After a mass shooting in Britain in 1987, the government banned semiautomatic weapons, and after a 1996 shooting they also banned handguns. Britain now has one of the lowest gun-related death rates in the world.

A 1996 massacre in Australia resulted in the mandatory buybacks of guns and only one mass shooting has happened since.

While writing this newsletter, yet another mass shooting occurred in Half Moon Bay,

California, killing seven people.

Other countries have passed similar gun control laws in response to tragic mass killings. But not the US.

Last June, the US Supreme Court ruled that a New York law requiring permits to carry a concealed weapon was unconstitutional. The law had been in place since 1913. California, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Rhode Island have similar laws which may now be challenged.

In a country with more guns than people, and more gun violence than any other nation, what will it take?


Center for the Study of Political Graphics

3916 Sepulveda Blvd

Suite 103

Culver City, CA 90230

Book talk! Troublemaker: Saying No to Power! - February 2 (The Progressive)

Thursday, February 2, from 7:00 p.m. CDT

Please join us for an online book discussion with Frank Emspak and his new memoir Troublemaker: Saying No to Power, on Thursday, February 2 at 7:00 p.m. Central Standard Time. 

The event will include panelists Steve Early, (free-lance journalist and author or co-author of five books about labor, politics, and veteran’s issues), Alice Herman (a reporter focusing on labor, politics, and healthcare whose work has appeared in The ProgressiveIn These Times, and other outlets), and Norman Stockwell (former Board member of Workers Independent News and publisher of The Progressive magazine), along with questions from the audience.

You can join the conversation on Zoom.

The event will also stream live on YouTube and Facebook.

Supporters of The Progressive can receive a signed copy of the book for a donation of $50 or more.

Please join us!  

Thursday February 2, 2023

7:00 p.m. CDT 

Streaming at:

Via Facebook Live

Via YouTube Live 

All donations will benefit The Progressive, Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit.

Donors who contribute $50 or more will receive a signed copy of Troublemaker: Saying No to Power  – mailed to their address.

P.S. - A donation of any size goes a long way in supporting our work. Monthly sustainers who donate $5 or more will also receive a complimentary subscription to our print magazine. 

Since 1909, The Progressive has aimed to amplify voices of dissent and those under-represented in the mainstream, with a goal of championing grassroots progressive politics. Our bedrock values are nonviolence and freedom of speech. For more information and great articles, please visit

The Progressive, Inc.  

P.O. Box 1021 • Madison, Wisconsin 53703 • (608) 257-4626

Celebrate the Life and Work of Jeffrey B. Perry - New York - February 4

Faculty House 64 Morningside Drive

(116th & Morningside Drive)

Saturday, February 4, 2023, 2:00  – 5:00 PM EST

For over 50 years Jeffrey B. Perry was a committed fighter for social justice in anti-racist, labor, anti-apartheid, anti-imperialist and anti-war movements. Jeff was an outstanding athlete at Paramus HS in NJ, graduated from Princeton, cut sugar cane with the Venceremos Brigade in Cuba, participated in the Puerto Rican Socialist Party, and was a member and leader in the postal Mailhandlers’ Union for 30 years.

As an independent working-class scholar, he made major contributions with his writings about two of the 20th century’s most important thinkers on the relationship between race and class, Theodore W. Allen, and Hubert Harrison. While working on, and after receiving a Ph.D. from Columbia University, Jeff began decades of work documenting the life of Hubert Harrison (the “Father of Harlem Radicalism”), culminating in a masterful two volume biography. The second volume, “Hubert Harrison: The Struggle for Equality, 1918-1927,” was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. He also chronicled the life of Theodore W. Allen, the author of “The Invention of the White Race,” and was his literary executor.

Harvest: California Farmworkers and the Struggle for Health Care - Sacramento - February 9 (California Health Care Foundation and Capital & Main)

Join award-winning news publication Capital & Main for an in-depth discussion of the challenges facing California farmworkers seeking health care for themselves and their families. This event will draw on Capital & Main's recent series on farmworkers and health care access, which was co-published by media outlets across the state.

Thursday, Feb. 9, 12-1:30 p.m.

1118 10th Street Sacramento, CA 95814 (CA Teachers Association)


Testimony from California farmworkers

RSVP by Feb. 2 — space is limited

Lunch will be served. Proof of vaccination is required.

Parking available at 10th and L Street Capitol Parking Garage

Sponsored by California Health Care Foundation

Film Premier Showing : Rabble Rousers: Frances Goldin and The Fight for Cooper Square - New York - March 24 - - 26

Q&As: Fri 3/24 7pm with Filmmakers Kelly Anderson, Kathryn Barnier, Ryan Joseph and Dave Powell

In 1959 New York City announced a “slum clearance plan” by Robert Moses that would displace 2,400 working class and immigrant families, and dozens of businesses, from the Cooper Square section of Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Guided by the belief that urban renewal should benefit - not displace - residents, a working mother named Frances Goldin and her neighbors formed the Cooper Square Committee (CSC) and launched a campaign to save the neighborhood. Over five decades they fought politicians, developers, white flight, government abandonment, blight, violence, arson, drugs, and gentrification - cyclical forces that have destroyed so many working class neighborhoods across the US. Through tenacious organizing and hundreds of community meetings, they not only held their ground but also developed a vision of community control. Fifty three years later, they established the state’s first community land trust - a diverse, permanently affordable neighborhood in the heart of the “real estate capital of the world."

Firehouse: DCTV’s Cinema for Documentary Film

87 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10013

The cinema’s entrance is around the corner on White Street between Lafayette and Centre Streets.

Student Activist Applications Available for 2023/24  - Deadline is April 1, 2023 

The Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund would like to announce the availability of our online application and the launch of our new website.

Our online application for academic scholarships up to $15,000 is available for student activists who are organizing for radical social change and building progressive movements for liberation, self-determination and social and economic justice in their communities. These need-based scholarships are awarded to students who are enrolled at a college or university or in a trade or technical program.

Learn more and apply at:

Deadline is April 1, 2023

DPSF Website Launch

Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund is proud to announce the launch of our newly designed website! Our new website includes updated, insightful content to help potential applicants, former grantees, donors, and community members find out more about us and the work we do for social change. The new site has a clean look, modern design and accessible site navigation, and we also used this opportunity to update and modernize the DPSF branding.

We hope the new fresh look and expanded offerings will make our site more user friendly for donors and potential applicants interested in being a part of the DPSF community. We are excited to share it with you and hope you will share with your networks.

Explore our site now.

Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund

P.O. Box 7307

New York, NY 10116