The Washington Socialist <> May 2017
A collection of online articles of interest to progressives and leftists – and you may have missed them…
Gordon Lafer, a political scientist in Oregon, examined pro-corporate legislation in states around the country to develop an anatomy of anti-worker activism. http://portside.org/2017-04-05/class-war-capital-city
The always-unpredictable Georges Monbiot on a proposed escape hatch from the capitalist growth trap – more diagnosis than prescription, some might say, and all too dependent on the kind of good intentions that are in short supply in today’s politics. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/apr/12/doughnut-growth-economics-book-economic-model
A plan to devote the April Salon to public banking was postponed for later on, but in the meantime here’s an In These Times take on how the practice is getting some traction. It has BTW been a state-level priority of the Maryland Green Party for at least two years. http://inthesetimes.com/article/20044/the-fight-for-public-banking
Mother Jones provides a skeptical look at DSA’s growth and that growth’s sustainability in the post-Trump / resistance era. David Duhalde provided a rejoinder here, too. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2017/04/democratic-socialists-america-trump
This wide-ranging article on work in capitalist society was posted on Facebook by our comrade Merrill Miller and drew praise from others, including expressions of pleasure that The New Republic might be emerging from its neoliberal funk. https://newrepublic.com/article/141663/united-states-work
This is vintage Tom Frank in a new Guardian piece about his home region, the industrial Midwest. The professional-elite Democrats, he observes, are already seizing on every excuse for their loss to Trump that distracts from their own failure to address Midwestern pain. “One thing we must never forget about the Midwest, however, is that radicalism lurks just beneath the surface. The region has always swung back and forth between contentment and outrage; between Chicago Tribune-style business-worship and Eugene Debs-style socialism.” https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/apr/27/democratic-party-2018-races-midwest-populism-trump?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+USA+-+Collections+2017&utm_term=223494&subid=7923761&CMP=GT_US_collection
The most effective resistance to Donald Trump will be not be a coordinated opposition but rather a “decentralized swarm,” according to author and academic Eric Liu. In an interview posted on the Washington Post website on April 25, Liu points to the successes of Occupy, Black Lives Matter and January’s Women’s March which he attributes in part to their decentralized leadership structures. Although some have faulted Occupy for failing to generate a lasting movement, Liu likens it to a “nurse log,” a fallen tree that provides nutrients for a new generation. Liu, author of You’re More Powerful Than You Think: A Citizen’s Guide to Making Change Happen, believes that “majority rule is always shaped by minority will,” citing the role of minority movements in forcing issues onto the national agenda – examples including both the right-wing Tea Party but also the successful organizing campaign by Immokalee, Fla., immigrant tomato workers. – Bill Mosley
And four from Kurt Stand: First an article from the Huffington Post on the DSA chapter in Upper Manhattan and the Bronx that can perhaps provide some context for folks looking at how we are organizing here:
Next a very good article by Ethan Young on the challenges and possibilities of rebuilding an anti-war presence nationally:
Then an excellent step-by-step article by Chip Gibbons on how an attempt to undermine criticism of Israel in Maryland by a legislative attack on BDS -- a measure that would have limited the use of boycotts and sanctions for any cause -- was defeated: https://rightsanddissent.org/news/grassroots-activists-score-yet-another-free-speech-victory-maryland/
And finally an interview with Asad Haider, critiquing identity politics, which could be a basis of discussion amongst ourselves. It originally appeared in Viewpoint magazine and was reposted on Portside:
About The Washington Socialist
.The Washington Socialist is Metro DC DSA's monthly e-newsletter. Focusing on our local's events, socialist analyses of current events and book reviews, among other topics, The Washington Socialist is a great way to stay on top of the progressive goings-on in DC, Maryland and northern Virginia. We also encourage our readers to submit their own articles! Contact Editor Woody Woodruff for more info at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get the Washington Socialist delivered directly to your inbox every month!
Past issues of The Washington Socialist from 2012-June 2016 are available for viewing on our archive page.