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Extraordinary Threat: The U.S. Empire, the Media, and Twenty Years of Coup Attempts in Venezuela

Forthcoming in June 2021

In March 2015, President Obama initiated sanctions against Venezuela, declaring a “national emergency with respect to the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by the situation in Venezuela.” Each year, the U.S. administration has repeated this claim. But, as Joe Emersberger and Justin Podur ague in their timely book, Extraordinary Threat, the opposite is true: It is the U.S. policy of regime change in Venezuela that constitutes an “extraordinary threat” to Venezuelans. Tens of thousands of Venezuelans continue to die because of these ever-tightening U.S. sanctions, denying people daily food, medicine, and fuel. On top of this, Venezuela has, since 2002, been subjected to repeated coup attempts by U.S.-backed forces. In Extraordinary Threat, Emersberger and Podur tell the story of six coup attempts against Venezuela. | more…

Korean peninsula

In Line of Fire: The Korean Peninsula in U.S.-China Strategy

This article will be released in full online August 2, 2021.

The war against fascism was transformed into the Cold War. U.S. imperialism, subdued somewhat by post-First World War isolationism, came into full flower. Washington implemented this sea change in many ways, including the division of the Korean Peninsula. | more…

5G technology booth

The Political Economy of the U.S.-China Technology War

This article will be released in full online August 9, 2021.

One of the key components of U.S.-China strategic competition is the technology war, the essence and implications of which can be further understood in the broader context of the international division of labor and the two countries’ internal contradictions. From this front, we can decipher the antagonism between different classes/groups within and across the two countries. | more…

How to Read Marx's "Capital"

How to Read Marx’s “Capital”: Commentary and Explanations on the Beginning Chapters

Forthcoming in August 2021

With the recent revival of Karl Marx’s theory, a general interest in reading Capital has also increased. But Capital—Marx’s foundational nineteenth-century work on political economy—is by no means considered an easily understood text. Central concepts, such as abstract labor, the value-form, or the fetishism of commodities, can seem opaque to us as first-time readers, and the prospect of comprehending Marx’s thought can be truly daunting. Until, that is, we pick up Michael Heinrich’s How to Read Marx’s Capital. | more…

"Dollar hegemony" by Luo Jie for China Daily

Five Characteristics of Neoimperialism

Building on Lenin's Theory of Imperialism in the Twenty-First Century

Neoimperialism, the specific contemporary phase of historical development, can be summed up on the basis of five key features: the new monopoly of production and circulation; the new monopoly of finance capital; the monopoly of the U.S. dollar and intellectual property; the new monopoly of the international oligarchic alliance; and the economic essence and general trend. | more…

Illustration of the Paris Commune from Cassell's History of England

The Paris Commune: Marx, Mao, Tomorrow

Today the political visibility of the Paris Commune is not at all evident. At least, that is, if what we mean by “today” is the moment when we have to take up the challenge of thinking politics outside its subjection to the state and outside the framework of parties or party.… And yet the Commune was a political sequence that, precisely, did not situate itself in such a subjection or in such a framework. [To tackle] the political facts and determinations of the Commune…[it is necessary to utilize] a completely different method…[than that of the classical interpretation]. | more…

Monthly Review Volume 72, Number 11 (April 2021)

April 2021 (Volume 72, Number 11)

Many factors are involved in COVID-19 mortality rates. Nevertheless, it is clear that the more socialist-oriented countries—by prioritizing social needs and public health, plus aggressive testing, tracing, and enlisting the aid of their populations—have generally been more effective in limiting the effects of the disease on their societies. The failure of the wealthier capitalist countries to do so is largely a result of their prioritization of profits over people. | more…

Marx in Motion: A New Materialist Marxism by Thomas Nail

What Sort of Kinetic Materialism Did Marx Find in Epicurus?

In his Theses on Feuerbach, Karl Marx suggests that the main flaw of all previous materialism has been to uncritically accept and champion a notion of matter that has its proper place in a dualistic framework, where matter is passive and the mind is active. If this is so, true materialism will conceive of matter as an active principle, and of material beings as perfectly capable of conscious sensation and agency. | more…

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