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Tidbits - June 22, 2017 - Reader Comments: GOP's Secret Health Bill; Verdicts Protect Cops Who Kill; Trump Investigation - Follow the Money; Progressive Electoral Politics, People's Summit, Socialists; On the United Front; Gig Work; and more...

Reader Comments: GOP's Secret Health Bill - not popular in Red states; Across the Country, Verdicts Protect Cops Who Kill; Naomi Klein; Mueller's Trump Investigation - Follow the Money; Readers respond to various Portside posts - Progressive Electoral Politics, People's Summit, Socialists and Electoral Politics; On the United Front; Gig Work; and more...


White Working-Class Voters and the Future of Progressive Politics

Michael Zweig New Labor Forum Blog
The working class constitutes roughly 63 percent of the U.S. labor force. Crucially, it consists of both men and women and is multiracial and multiethnic.2 White people are, of course, a big part of the working class, but if we settle on “the white working class” as a class in itself, and with the force of white supremacy, even a class for itself, we lose track of the role blacks, Native Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and other non-whites play in the working class.

Sixty Years Ago: Congressional Red-Hunters Set Their Sights on Bridgeport

Andy Piascik Portside
Passed into law in 1940, the Smith Act made it illegal to "teach, advocate or encourage the overthrow" of the government and extended to any member of an organization that allegedly did so. The notion that in 1956 the Communist Party was interested in, let alone capable of, overthrowing anything was patently absurd. From a 1940's peak of around 80,000, the CP's national membership had dwindled to perhaps 10,000 by the time of the hearings in Connecticut.

Hillary Clinton's Win in New York Raises Tough Questions for Bernie Sanders and His Supporters

D.D. Guttenplan The Nation
Bernie Sanders should keep running, but he needs to lay out what exactly he's fighting for. Time and again the Sanders challenge has forced Clinton off dead center. Sanders's supporters can also take comfort in the certainty that it is they - the millions of $27 donors-who represent not only the future of the Democratic Party and the only hope for democracy in this country.

Why Progressives Need a National Electoral Strategy - and Fast

Bill Fletcher, Jr. AlterNet
In the current cycle are two related but distinct problems. First, progressives have no national electoral strategy to speak of. Second, elections cannot be viewed simply or even mainly within the context of the pros and cons of specific candidates. Progressives are very divided about the relative importance of electoral politics, and our near exclusive focus on the candidates, that there is no coherent national progressive electoral strategy.

I'm a State Senator, and I'm Not Afraid of Race

By Pramila Jayapal The Nation
It's way past time for everyone, and certainly anyone who considers themselves a progressive, to center race in our conversations...I'm able to work on a broad range of issues that affect people's lives, while at the same time building trust back with discouraged people who feel like maybe they can start to trust government again.


How Long Have We Really Been `One Nation Under God'?

Molly Worthen The Nation, June 8, 2015 edition
With its numerous religious awakenings and repeated instances of religiosity as political theater, it's easy to forget US civic life is secular. Author Kevin Kruse argues that the effort to ground political rights in spiritual authority and not in democratic discussion and decision-making originated with a coterie of corporate heads, right-wing politicians, reactionary pastors and cultural icons as a bulwark against progressive politics and New Deal legislation.

Emanuel Won the Mayor's Race, But Progressives Won the Election

Amisha Patel; John Nichols; Thomas A. Corfman
The grass-roots progressive movement that defeated Rahm Emanuel on Feb. 24 and made him struggle to keep his seat on April 7 is not going away. Just next week, thousands of us will take the streets to demand a $15-per-hour minimum wage. This summer and fall, we will be fighting for a state and city budget that adequately funds the public services we need to build strong, healthy communities. Here, Portside shares three early election analysis articles.

Midterm Lesson - Elizabeth Warren Should Run

Joel Bleifuss; column by Elizabeth Warren
After the pity party's through, let's get organized. There was one exception to the dearth of Democratic leaders who championed populist proposals. Sen. Elizabeth Warren crisscrossed the country attempting to galvanize the electorate in key Senate races. One thing has not changed: "The stock market and gross domestic product keep going up, while families are getting squeezed hard by an economy that isn't working for them." Now is the time for Warren or Bernie Sanders.
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