Tully (politics and history, Victoria Univ., Australia) is a committed author with a fine ear for the apt and evocative phrase, whether it be from Bertolt Brecht, Jack London, or Karl Marx. The story he has to tell is that of an unsuccessful strike that took place at London’s massive Silvertown works in the wake of the more famous match girls strike of 1888 and the London dock strike of 1889.
Join Cal Winslow, editor of the new Monthly Review Press title E.P. Thompson and the Making of the New Left: Essays and Polemics, for a book talk in Mendocino, California, on Friday October 17th, 6:30 PM at Gallery Bookshop.
In the opening line of his essay on The Contradictions of ‘Real Socialism’: the Conductor and the Conducted, Alex Cistelecan proposes that my book should be read as ‘an exercise in the moral psychology of “human development”‘; and he proceeds to riff on this theme by speaking of my ‘moral supplement to Marxism’, ‘the moral supplement of human development’, ‘the moral approach to Real Socialism’, and my apparent claim that the classical elements of socialism should be supplemented ‘with a vital third element’—namely, that my ‘revised formula for 21st century socialism’ would be ‘soviets+ electrification+ human kindness’. HA! Not only is this unrecognisable as a description of my book on ‘real socialism’ book but it is precisely contrary to what I have argued in that book and developed in my immediately preceding work, The Socialist Alternative: Real Human Development (2010).
For the past three decades, the world has been subjected to the ideology of “free trade.” Remove all barriers to trade, and a consumerist paradise would be the international result. Or so we were promised. Three decades later this ideology rings hollow; not only have the promised benefits failed to materialize, but those who have benefited have been overwhelmingly the ruling class, “the 1%,” while the rest of us have been forced to face a grimmer reality. Fortunately we have writers such as Martin Hart-Landsberg on our side to examine the actuality of capitalist globalization, as he does in his book by the same name.
It’s no secret that the U.S. labor movement is in distress. To those who care about how to turn that situation around, Steve Early has a message worth reading in his Save Our Unions: Dispatches from a Movement in Distress. The book describes the problems facing workers—and some possible solutions such as organizing more union members, waging successful strikes, or developing new union leadership at the local or national level The chapters are essays (many have appeared previously in various magazine and labor publications), most of which tell stories of real people and struggles.
Join us Saturday, October 25th to celebrate Cal Winslow and his latest book, E.P. Thompson and the Making of the New Left, in Sausalito, CA. In his early years, Cal studied with the brilliant scholar and activist, E.P. Thompson, author of the acclaimed historical masterpiece The Making of the English Working Class. Thompson was also a political activist and strategist who played a key role in shaping the New Left of the 1960’s. He engaged with workers, unions, political parties, elections and co-founded the New Left Review. Cal’s new book explains the critical role that Thompson played in shaping New Left thinking in Britain, America and around the world – with insights that remain valuable and relevant for political activists today.
Leo Panitch, Greg Albo and Vivek Chibber edit probing essays in “Registering Class: Socialist Register 2014”. Contributors focus in part on the economics and politics of workers’ fragmentation. Capital’s constant breaking up of the laboring class and its re-composition is a recurring theme throughout. Merchant capital looms large.
Before corporate and governmental leaders arrive in New York City this September for the UN Climate Summit, System Change Not Climate Change together with the Global Climate Convergence will be laying the groundwork for an alternative summit: the New York City Climate Convergence. The objective is to build and strengthen an environmental movement that addresses the root causes of the climate crises; a social-economic system that values profits above people, planet and peace. John Bellamy Foster and Fred Magdoff will be speaking on Saturday, September 20, at St. John’s University.
Visit the MR Press table at this year’s Brooklyn Book Festival, on Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014, 10am—6pm, at Brooklyn Borough Hall and Plaza. Alan Wieder, author of Ruth First and Joe Slovo in the War against Apartheid, will be at the MRP table for a book signing at 10:30 AM, and will be participating in a festival panel discussion at noon, “Mandela: An American Perspective.” We hope to see you there!
Question 1: Both your new book Save Our Unions: Dispatches From a Movement in Distress – and your previous one, The Civil Wars in U.S. Labor – draw on your experience as a union negotiator and longtime single payer activist. In 2008, liberal foundations, major unions, and the AFL-CIO created and financed Health Care for American Now! (HCAN). This lobbying coalition had a name similar to ours but it soon distanced itself from the goal of single payer. In retrospect, what impact did HCAN have on labor’s quest for a better health care system?