One hundred and fifty years ago, on June 2, 1865, Confederate General Edmund Kirby Smith, commander of Confederate forces west of the Mississippi, signed the Union Army’s terms of surrender. This marked the final end of the Civil War which, as Patrick Ayers explains, can also truly be described as America’s Second Revolution.
Joseph Bien-Kahn interviews Boots Riley.
When I say, “We have hella people, they have helicopters,” I’m trying to point out that they can have this technology, but we’re the ones that have to operate it. They’ve got our eyes on the details of technology, but the truth is, this whole world is run through the power of the working class. We’re who creates the profit and we can reorganize it. Helicopters won’t matter.
“Sometimes, I have dared to dream … that one day, history may even say that my voice—which disturbed the white man’s smugness, and his arrogance, and his complacency—that my voice helped to save America from a grave, possibly even fatal catastrophe,” Malcolm wrote.
Read the entire essay: Chris Hedges: Malcolm X Was Right About America – Chris Hedges – Truthdig.
Here’s a happy little tune from The Coup. Sending this one out to the Supreme Court of the United States.
From an interview with economics journalist David Cay Johnston:
We will either, through peaceful, rational means, go back to a system that does not take from the many to give to the few in all these subtle ways, or we will end up like 18th century France. And if we end up in that awful condition, it will be the bloodiest thing the world has even seen. So I think it’s really important to get a handle on this inequality.
Read the full interview. “Bloodiest thing the world has seen”: David Cay Johnston on inequality’s looming disaster – Salon.com.
“In earlier decades, the working class fomented reform. The labor movement led the charge for a minimum wage, 40-hour workweek, unemployment insurance, and Social Security. No longer. Working people don’t dare.”
Read the full essay: Robert Reich (Why There’s No Outcry).
Turkish Journalist Ece Temelkuran writes at New Statesman.
My friend, who was completely uninterested in politics until six days ago, had never been in conflict with the police before. Now, like hundreds of thousands of others in Turkey, she has become a warrior with goggles around her neck, an oxygen mask on her face and an anti-acid solution bottle in her hand. It is like a civil war between the police and the people. Yet nobody expected this when, six days ago, a group of protesters organised a sit-in at Istanbuls Gezi Park to protect trees that were to be cut down for the governments urban redevelopment project.
In Taksim Square, on the building of Atatürk Cultural Center, some people are hanging a huge banner. There are only two words on it: “Don’t surrender!”
“Submitting oneself to labor discipline—supervision, control, even the self-control of the ambitious self-employed—does not make one a better person. In most really important ways, it probably makes one worse. To undergo it is a misfortune that at best is sometimes necessary. Yet it’s only when we reject the idea that such labor is virtuous in itself that we can start to ask what is virtuous about labor. To which the answer is obvious. Labor is virtuous if it helps others.”
Read the Full Article: A Practical Utopian’s Guide to the Coming Collapse | David Graeber | The Baffler.
The Port Huron Statement was completed fifty years ago today. It remains a visionary document, and a call to continue the unfinished work of my generation.
Let us rededicate ourselves to this work, so that The Psalmist’s words may be true:
“Justice shall flourish in those days, a profound peace from sea to sea and to the ends of the earth.”
Another world is possible.
★ ★ ★
What The Port Huron Statement Still Has To Say – Commentary from Tom Hayden
Earlier Posts on Port Huron:
“Stay loose, play jazz, keep the faith…capitalism is in terminal crisis and our movement has just begun.”
Battle for the Soul of Occupy. [Adbusters Culturejammer Headquarters] – It’s up to you to decide if our movement goes the way of Paris ’68, the dust bin of could-have-been-insurrections, or something more daring, more inspiring, something not yet dreamed.
May 1st, 2012
No Work * No School * No Shopping * No Banking
Thousands of activists began to gather in the early morning hours today to protest at ports along the West Coast of the United States. Events are planned throughout the day from San Diego to Seattle.