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  • Some Thoughts on the Nature of the Period

    Nov 15, 2009

    I. The US Economy

    The economic recession in the United States, part of a global contraction and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s, appears to have bottomed out, and a recovery now seems to be underway.

    As most people know, the United States and the world recently experienced the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. Although the downturn in the US has been classified as a recession (officially defined as two or more consecutive quarters of a decline in a country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the total amount of goods and services produced within its borders), this downturn has been qualitatively more severe than others of the post-World War II period. It has already seen:

    *The layoffs of millions of workers, with official unemployment rates rising to close to 10%. Unofficial rates, that is, those that include workers who have given up looking for work and those working part-time but who would like full-time jobs, are much higher, around 17%. (In the Depression of the 1930s, official unemployment was 25%, while unofficial rates were probably close to 40%.)


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  • Hasta siempre compañero | Obit for Daniel

    El lunes 24 de agosto, al agonizar la tarde, se fue el querido compañero Rafael Spósito Balzarini -Daniel Barret, para los que le acompañamos en la cotidianidad de la lucha contra el Estado-capital desde tiendas libertarias- víctima de un cáncer que a penas le otorgó el tiempo necesario para despedirse de compañeros, amigos y familiares y, de concluir alguno de los múltiples textos que acostumbrada elaborar de manera simultánea.

    Hijo de El Cerro, tierra dispendiosa en ácratas y rebeldes, en Montevideo, Uruguay, desde su más tierna adolescencia, Rafa contribuyó con sus aportaciones y esfuerzos a la difusión de las ideas anarquistas, defendiendo siempre los ideales de libertad por los que luchó toda su vida y por los que sufrió persecución y exilio, mismos que jamás significaron sacrificio alguno para su integridad libertaria.


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  • Vivir la Anarquía | Living Anarchy

    Nov 30, 2009

    During the night of Thursday, October 1, barely a few minutes before midnight, on a fateful day for Mexico - a day symbolic of repression and brutality- a dear comrade told me that in the early morning hours, Alfredo Maria Bonanno had been arrested again, this time in the city of Trikala, in northern Greece.

    En la noche del jueves 1ro de octubre, apenas faltando unos minutos para que iniciara el día 2  ―fecha fatídica, símbolo indiscutible de represión y barbarie, en México― un entrañable compañero me comunicó que, en horas de la mañana, había sido detenido nuevamente Alfredo Maria Bonanno. Esta vez en la ciudad de Trikala, al norte de Grecia.

     


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  • Dialogue on Expropriations - Dialogo sobre las expropriaciones

    Dec 19, 2009

    Although I am in favor of publishing your article about the arrests of comrades Bonanno and Stratigopolous and extending solidarity to the comrades, I have to tell you that I am very much opposed to the tactic of “expropriation.” In my opinion, it’s a stupid tactic. It does not advance either the anarchist movement or the anarchist cause.

    Aunque estoy en favor de publicar tu artículo sobre la detención de los compañeros Bonanno y Stratigopolous y de extender la solidaridad hacia los companeros, tengo que decirte que estoy muy en contra de la táctica “expropriatoria”. Para mi, es una táctica estupida. No avanza ni el movimiento anarquista ni la causa del anarquismo.


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  • Orlando Zapata Tamayo

    Dec 1, 2009

    Cuando los amanuenses profesionales vierten sus escritos de veneno y basura sobre la muerte de Orlando Zapata Tamayo (Enrique Ubieta Gómez “Cuba : ¿Para quién la muerte es útil?” en rebelión y kaosenlared, Ángeles Diez “El caso Zapata, nueva agresión mediática contra Cuba” en Rebelion) con el mejor estilo calumniador del socialismo real, es útil recordar cositas.


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  • The Death of Orlando Zapata - La muerte de Orlando Zapata

    Dec 1, 2009

    The recent death of Orlando Zapata after 85 days of hunger strike - demanding an end to the beatings he endured, the continuous moves from prison to prison...demands taking a clear position, without ifs, ands, or buts, against the regime of the Cuban generalísimos.

    La reciente muerte de Orlando Zapata tras 85 días de huelga de hambre para exigir que se acabasen las palizas que sufría, los continuos traslados de prisión en prisión...exige una toma de posición neta y clara, sin peros ni excusas contra el régimen de los generalísimos.


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  • ON ORGANIZATION

    Sep 1, 2010

    Many people who have limited knowledge of anarchism believe that anarchists are, by definition, against all organization; this is what they think anarchism means. In fact, historically anarchists have held a range of opinions on the question. Probably most well-known has been the position of anarcho-syndicalists, who are in favor of organizing the mass of workers in trade unions or trade union-like organizations, while differing among themselves over whether conscious anarchists should form a distinct organization of their own, either in or separate from the unions.


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  • Cuba: El eterno drama de la Libertad y el Socialismo

    Sep 26, 2010

    Diálogo es el vocablo de orden o, al menos, la palabra cotidiana más recurrente. En este mismo instante, la inmensa mayoría de los cubanos hablan al unísono─ de la necesidad de diálogo.  Y bueno, eso de que hablemos todos a la vez de un mismo tema, no tiene nada de particular ni debe causar  asombro, por lo menos a aquellos que conozcan a fondo eso que denominan “idiosincrasia cubana”. Lo que ocasiona extrañeza es el empleo indiscriminado del término, aunque tiene cierta lógica si tenemos en cuenta los últimos titulares que se han venido empleando para reseñar la más reciente puesta en escena de la tragicomedia ─¿o zarzuela?─ del partido-Estado cubano.


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  • On the Need for Organization - Response to Ron

    Oct 1, 2010

    When I began to read Ron’s essay, On Organization, I thought that I agreed with most of it, but that it had an odd focus. When I finished it, I realized that I did not agree with it at all, because Ron did not advocate a special organization of revolutionary anarchists.


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  • Anarchist Solidarity Against the Political Police!

    Oct 20, 2010

    We stand firmly opposed to the raids carried out by the FBI, America’s political police, against a number of antiwar and labor activists across the country on Friday, September 24th, 2010. We give our solidarity to those threatened by these raids and to those subpoenaed to appear before a government Grand Jury next month. These attacks must be resisted.


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  • Bright Sky over North Africa

    Jan 30, 2011

    The sky is bright over northern Africa, not only because of the burning government buildings and police stations, but because of the new dawn of mass struggle and potential liberation. Since Jan. 14, less than three weeks ago, the Ben Ali dictatorship in Tunisia has fallen and its successor regime has been shaken up several times, the Mubarak dictatorship in Egypt has suffered a mighty blow from ever-growing protests seeking the president’s downfall.

     


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  • Egypt at the Turning Point

    Feb 3, 2011

    Although it is extremely unfortunate that people have been killed and hurt, these events may well be a positive turning point for the Egyptian Revolution. Up until today, the protesters appeared to be almost complacent about what would be needed to overthrow Mubarak and bring about an improvement in their lives.... Now, at least, the anti-Mubarak demonstrators realize where the army really stands. As anarchists have long argued, the army is one of the chief pillars of the state, which, in turn, is the main instrument through which a tiny elite (that lolls in luxury while the majority of people struggle in poverty) defends its rule.


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  • Day 14 of the Egyptian Revolution

    Feb 6, 2011

    As the Egyptian Revolution has entered its fourteenth day, the political situation in Egypt appears to have reached a stalemate.  The anti-Mubarak demonstrators, with great courage and tenacity, defended themselves and Tahrir Square from assaults by pro-Mubarak thugs, many of them employees of the state intelligence apparatus. They have also vowed to stay in the square until Mubarak leaves.... For its part, the regime has dug in its heels. 


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  • Showdown in Egypt

    Feb 12, 2011

    (Written Feb. 11; updated Feb. 12.)

    The Egyptian Revolution is intensifying, and the stakes are getting raised ever higher. Rather than the demonstration in Cairo’s Tahrir Square dissipating as the Mubarak regime had hoped (and I had feared), over the last few days the number of protesters has mushroomed. In addition, some of the demonstrators, tired of being cooped up in the square by the army, have spread the protests to other parts of the city. Among them, several hundred militants have sat down in front of the building in which Mubarak’s puppet parliament holds its sessions, while, as I write, several thousand demonstrators are marching on the state-owned TV station and a similarly-sized crowd is marching on the presidential palace.


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  • Egypt: Seize the Moment, Keep Up the Struggle

    Feb 15, 2011

    Fortunately for the people of Egypt (and for the rest of us), the brass have not yet succeeded in putting the genie back into the lamp. Like soda in a bottle of soda that's been shaken and then had the cap removed, workers throughout Egypt have erupted in a wave of strikes and demonstrations to address their long-standing grievances, particularly low wages and shabby working conditions.... Now, more than ever, the workers, the unemployed, the rural poor, and all those oppressed by Egypt's rotten social structure need to step up the struggle. In addition to striking and demonstrating for their immediate needs, they need to organize for another mass demonstration to be held as soon as possible.


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  • Call to Arms: What Working People Need to Do in the U.S.

    Feb 22, 2011

    I think the big job is still to break the hold of the Democratic Party on the working class and the unions. AFSCME’s entire strategy has been to elect Democrats instead of organizing workers to fight. We are in a class war and are getting our asses kicked. Elections won’t turn this around. Direct action by the workers will.


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  • On Wisconsin! For Mass Actions, Occupations & a General Strike!

    Feb 23, 2011

    This movement - directly inspired, it must be said, by the heroic people of Egypt and the Middle East - with its contagious energy, determination, humor, and optimism has taken everyone by surprise. The politicians, bosses, unions, and media were all unprepared for the wave that has crashed ashore. But this upsurge is at a crossroads and must push forward defiantly or risk being co-opted or crushed leaving us with yet another heroic defeat or false “victory” to lament for years to come.


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  • Wisconsin Protests Lead Public Workers Fight!

    Feb 26, 2011

    Highly organized anti-union attacks are being advanced by capitalists in alliance with conservative politicians across the country that aim to destroy unions, cut social programs, and give huge tax breaks to corporate interests. The direct attack on public unions in Wisconsin is clear. After union representatives there agreed to all financial givebacks, Governor Walker refused to concede because his essential goal is to break the public unions in order to decrease the power of workers’ opposition to this conservative agenda now and in the future. With all kinds of lies about how public employees get more pay than private sector workers, he unleashed a massive attack against public employees.


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  • The Middle East in Flames

    Feb 27, 2011

    Two weeks after Egypt’s revolution, the firestorm of people’s uprisings that is transforming the Middle East continues, and yet the ruling elites are reasserting themselves, threatening to destroy everything the people have suffered and sacrificed for. Part of the mortal danger to the still-bright rebellions comes from these elites, part from the United States, and part from the class nature of the rebellions themselves. That is a bitter pill to swallow, but it is the truth.


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  • Ohio Workers Fight Back

    Mar 9, 2011

    Thousands of public/state workers, many unions, and supporters like veterans and environmentalists have been peacefully and noisily fighting back in many Ohio cities against Ohio Governor Kasich’s support of Bill SB5. The bill passed the Ohio Senate. If passed by the Ohio House this coming week, it will all but eliminate collective bargaining by state workers over wages, pensions, healthcare, working conditions, and the right to strike.

    [Click at right to read full story with update.]


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  • War in Libya

    Mar 28, 2011

    The no-fly zone, under which US and NATO fighter planes can attack Libyan civilian and military targets virtually at will, seems to have succeeded in halting Kadafi’s offensive and saving the rebels, at least for now. Yet, although the anti-Kadafi struggle has been rescued, this may come at considerable cost. This is because the aims of the United States and the other NATO countries may not coincide with those of the opposition forces, or at least of some factions among them.


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  • FROM OCCUPATION TO EXPROPRIATION!

    Oct 10, 2011

    The ongoing Occupy Wall Street demonstrations, encampment, and related actions around the country are a significant development. These events may well be the beginning of a 1960s style movement of great potential. Because of its focus on the economic crisis, the financial/corporate shenanigans that contributed to it, and, most important, jobs, the movement has the potential to strike a resonant chord in the hearts of millions of people who have been slammed by the events of the last few years and who are aching to do something about them. This is particularly true of those who have lost their homes and/or their jobs, as well as those who have little prospect of finding work.


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  • Occupy Oakland: The Port Shutdown and Beyond–All Eyes on Longview!

    Feb 14, 2012

    On Monday December 12, the Occupy movement shut down the major west coast ports of Oakland, Portland, Longview (Washington), and Seattle. There were partial shutdowns or support actions at the ports of San Diego, Vancouver, and Long Beach, as well as in Hawaii and Japan. Wal-Mart distribution centers were blockaded in Denver, Salt Lake City, and Albuquerque. Other actions occurred in New York, Houston, Tacoma, and Anchorage. The Seattle, Long Beach, San Diego, and Houston protests were met with police violence.


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  • MARXIST PHILOSOPHY-PART II

    Nov 25, 2017

     

    MARXISM, KNOWLEDGE, AND TRUTH

    Integrally involved with the issues discussed in the last chapter is the question of Marxism’s attitude toward the nature of truth and the veracity of human knowledge. What is truth? What is knowledge? How much can we know? Is our knowledge certain or probable, precise or approximate? Does our knowledge give us an accurate picture of reality, does it somehow just enable us to manipulate it, or is it merely an illusion? Is reality independent of all observers or is it connected to the act of observation? Is reality even real? These are some of the questions philosophers, scientists, and other thinkers have asked and debated over the centuries. And the answers they have offered range from the supremely confident (Lenin believed that our knowledge represents an accurate reflection, or copy, of reality) to the extremely skeptical (the ancient Sceptics questioned the validity of all knowledge claims, even their own).

     


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  • The Nature of the Period

    Apr 26, 2012

    Aside from the current economic crisis, the most significant development of the period we are now in is the qualitative decrease in the global influence of the United States and western Europe. We might call this “The Decline of the West.” This was the title of an influential book published in two volumes, in 1918 and 1922, respectively, by Oswald Spengler. As we can now see, the treatise was prescient but also, as it turned out, about a century premature. 


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  • Defend Anarchist Prisoners in Mexico!

    Jul 4, 2012

    Como Grupo Abogados en Solidaridad con los Presos Anarquistas y representantes del ahora indiciado Mario Antonio López Hernández queremos hacer una denuncia pública respecto de las notorias irregularidades y las graveas violaciones en el proceso de nuestro defenso....

    As the Lawyers Group in Solidarity with Anarchist Prisoners and legal representatives of the accused, Mario Antonio Lopez Hernandez, we wish to issue a public denunciation of the flagrant irregularities and grave violations of process that have been perpetrated against our defense efforts....

     


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  • Communique of Mario López / Comunicado de Mario López

    Aug 31, 2012

    My position remains the same: I forthrightly declare myself an Anarchist and the only one responsible for my acts. For now, I’ll limit myself to thanking my compañer@s for their solidarity and to “denouncing” just a few of the many misdeeds that have occurred during this deceitful process, which all began the moment I proclaimed myself an Anarchist, which I do not regret. ¡Never apologetic!

     


     

    Mi posicionamiento sigue siendo el mismo: mi reivindicación absoluta como Anarquista y único responsable de mis actos. Por ahora, me limitaré a agradecer toda la solidaridad de lxs compañerxs afines y a “denunciar”, sólo algunos hechos de todo este viciado proceso que comenzó al momento de reivindicarme Anarquista, de lo cual no me arrepiento ¡Arrepentido jamás!


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  • WHAT IS VIOLENCE?

    Dec 2, 2012

     

    Violence is not only the crime that we are shown on the TV news, it’s not only the hand holding the gun, the kicking and punching, or the bodies that are'brutalized... like the deaths and victims that we remember today.

    Violence is here with us each day: it comes from above and we reproduce it and suffer it down here.

     


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  • Joint Statement on Affiliation of M1 and The Utopian

    Sep 3, 2012

    We are excited to announce a formal relationship between the First of May Anarchist Alliance (M1) and The Utopian.


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  • DIGNITY CAMPAIGN RESPONSE TO THE SENATE IMMIGRATION REFORM BILL S. 744

    As organizations participating in the Dignity Campaign for Immigration Reform Based on Human and Labor Rights, we are very concerned about the harsh impact the Senate's immigration reform bill will have on immigrants. Rather than 'bring immigrants out of the shadows' this bill will hold millions in an underclass, vulnerable to exploitation and relegated to the ranks of the working poor, with no access to basic services. Millions will have no hope of receiving permanent legal status, let alone citizenship.


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  • Trayvon Martin—A Personal Response

    Jul 16, 2013

    It is very difficult to write about the outcome of the Trayvon Martin case. What happened hurts more than anything in years. My most basic thought is simply: that poor boy. And his parents—what they are going through would be unimaginable, except for the long line of Black parents and family before them who have suffered the same way: a son blown away by the police, by vigilantes, by a mob, youths lined up by dealers and executed on outdoor basketball courts, drive-by shootings, little children killed by stray bullets. All this is horrible beyond words and yet for one’s son’s killer to be indicted, tried, and then acquitted adds insult and dishonor—a weighing of the precise importance of a Black person’s life in the United States—to the pain of death. And so Trayvon Martin’s parents had to use the stoicism of so many thousands before them. It is all they have.


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  • Toward an Anarchist Policy on Syria

    Sep 7, 2013

    At the center of the turmoil is Syria, now in its third year of civil war with no sign of any resolution in sight. Given the centrality of Syria to global politics, it is essential that anarchists understand what is going on there and develop a critical attitude toward the events that are unfolding. [...] 

    It is impossible to understand what is going on in Syria today without some knowledge of the international and historical context in which the events are taking place. 


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  • Cincinnati City Workers’ Pensions Under Attack by Many Tea Party Groups

    Nov 4, 2013

    Well, the tea party is back at it again. This time they are attacking city workers’ retirement pensions.... The tea party is for destroying workers’ organizations; our health care, our wages, our retirement, our working conditions and collective bargaining. They won the right-to-work law in Indiana and Michigan; really, it is the right-to-work-for-less law. And for less essential government services. They won in Wisconsin and they lost in Ohio. The tea party wants to snatch Cincinnati City workers retirement pensions and place the funds in Wall Street. The tea party is no friend to working women and men. 


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  • Review of Ronald Tabor’s The Tyranny of Theory

    Oct 31, 2014

    Peter Rush is a long-time activist and theorist.--Eds.

    If the crisis deepens, much less if it becomes another major recession, or even a depression, the impulse toward Marxism, as well as toward other forms of leftism, will be that much more intense. Perceiving the same danger, Ronald Tabor, a noted anarchist writer and analyst, wrote The Tyranny of Theory, A Contribution to the Anarchist Critique of Marxism (2013), to analyze the substance of Marxism in hopes of preventing it from becoming popular again if there is another period of political radicalization in the United States (and abroad, for that matter). 


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  • Wayne Price Response to Peter Rush

    Dec 15, 2014

    Marx expected that a mass working class movement for socialism would develop which would culminate in (successful) socialist, workers’, revolutions. This has not happened—yet. Maybe it will and maybe it won’t, but it certainly does not look “inevitable.”  Given the failure—so far—of a socialist revolution or even a mass movement for one, what do we make of this? 


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  • Wayne Price’s “Anarchism and the Philosophy of Pragmatism”—An Exchange

    Dec 16, 2014

    Price: If I thought that the world society would or could gradually, over time, respond to pressures to make enough changes to avoid economic crashes and suffering, (nuclear) war, and ecological catastrophe--then I would not advocate a revolution. 

    Tabor: I admire your faith (for such it is) and your perseverance. Looking at the world and the state of humanity, I do not see much hope for an anarchist revolution any time in the foreseeable future. In the various struggles of the present, I am astounded at the lack of any socially transcendent vision. 


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