New Politics magazine

New Politics magazine Founded in 1961, New Politics is a bi-annual journal of the Left. Why We Publish
New Politics is an independent socialist forum for dialogue and debate on the left.
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We support unions and workers’ struggles throughout the world. We are committed to the advancement of the peace and anti-intervention movements. We stand in opposition to all forms of imperialism and oppression, and we are uncompromising in our defense of the rights of women, people of color, le****ns, g**s and the transgendered. In our pages there is broad coverage of labor, social movements, and the international scene, as well as emphasis on cultural and intellectual history. Above all, New Politics insists on the centrality of democracy to socialism and on the need to rely on mass movements from below for progressive social transformation. These are critical times. Not since before the New Deal have working people in this country been so vulnerable, and perhaps never before have big business and the right been so aggressive and dominant. Abroad, U.S. military and corporate power embraces the world in a stranglehold. There are hopeful signs: resistance to austerity policies in Greece and France, strikes in China and South Africa, a violently-repressed but still living movement for democracy in Iran, new progressive social movements and socialist political parties in Latin America, heightened global outrage at the repression and intransigence of the Israeli state. And here in the U.S., there have been some encouraging developments: a vibrant immigrant rights movement, growing opposition to the war in Afghanistan, grassroots demands for jobs and a real stimulus program, the beginnings of a backlash against Tea Party fanaticism. Yet the left remains too organizationally and intellectually weak to seriously challenge the Establishment. New Politics seeks to revitalize the left as a step towards the creation of an international movement to replace capitalism, as well as non-capitalist exploitative systems, with socialism. NP is not attached or subordinated to any political party or institution. We stand for popular empowerment and democratic control at every level, opposition to all forms of authoritarianism, no matter how "leftist" their rhetoric -- in short, a politics of socialism from below. During the Cold War, NP was a beacon of principled socialist clarity. It tirelessly exposed the lie that identified the socialist legacy with Communist states. NP championed the struggles of the 60s and 70s movements against the Vietnam War and U.S. intervention in Central America, for women's and black liberation, for union democracy and affirmative action. We enthusiastically supported struggles for democracy in the Soviet bloc. We have firmly defended the rights of both Palestinians and Israelis to self-determination and security. Since the Cold War, we have spoken out against the ravages inflicted by neoliberalism in this country and throughout the world, and we have exposed U.S. imperial aggression in Somalia, the former Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti and elsewhere. NP has been inspired throughout by the vision of a "third camp." During the Cold War it meant "Neither Washington nor Moscow"; today it means opposing Washington's imperial aggression while making no apologies for its antagonists when they are anti-democratic, be they Milosevic, Saddam Hussein, Ahmadinejad, or authoritarian religious fundamentalists. Today, surveying the bleak political landscape, especially in the U.S., some argue that the left should trim its sails and be modest in its ambitions. We dare not do this. Not caution, but bold and imaginative radicalism is needed. The aim of NP is to provide a voice to help transform popular struggles for equality, peace, social justice and freedom of cultural expression into a conscious, intelligent movement for a democratic, just and peaceful world.

Operating as usual

A conversation about how the pandemic has raised the stakes for the abolition movement, collective care, and a world wit...
03/30/2021
Abolition Is a Collective Vision: An Interview With Mariame Kaba

A conversation about how the pandemic has raised the stakes for the abolition movement, collective care, and a world without prisons

A conversation about how the pandemic has raised the stakes for the abolition movement, collective care, and a world without prisons.

Kim Moody: 'Left to their own devices, the Democrats in power will not deliver Medicare-for-All, a Green New Deal, the p...
03/29/2021
Analyzing the 2020 Election: Who Paid? Who Benefits?

Kim Moody: 'Left to their own devices, the Democrats in power will not deliver Medicare-for-All, a Green New Deal, the pro-union Pro Act, or much of anything else. So long as labor and social movement activists pin their hopes on this “other” party of the rich and richer, the outcomes will be more rubber stamps of an unacceptable status quo — or rather a rapidly deteriorating status quo.'

Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, old/new neoliberal centrism back in charge of Congress. WHATEVER THE ULTIMATE outcome from the chaos of January and the Republicans’ own internal problems, the…

Criticism of the Chinese government is justified, but warmed-over anti-communism won’t get us anywhere
03/29/2021
The West’s Greatest Folly - New Politics

Criticism of the Chinese government is justified, but warmed-over anti-communism won’t get us anywhere

Criticism of the Chinese government is justified, but warmed-over anti-communism won’t get us anywhere.

'Disreputable writers and outlets, often operating under the aegis of “independent journalism” with purportedly “leftwin...
03/27/2021
Erasing People through Disinformation: Syria and the “Anti-Imperialism” of Fools - New Politics

'Disreputable writers and outlets, often operating under the aegis of “independent journalism” with purportedly “leftwing” views, are spreading corrosive propaganda and disinformation that aims to strip Syrians of political agency.'

Disreputable writers and outlets, often operating under the aegis of “independent journalism” with purportedly “leftwing” views, are spreading corrosive propaganda and disinformation that aims to strip Syrians of political agency

"We are entering a period that resembles the early twentieth century, when the rival great powers challenged the hegemon...
03/24/2021
Biden’s Plan to Revamp American Imperialism - New Politics

"We are entering a period that resembles the early twentieth century, when the rival great powers challenged the hegemony of Great Britain, leading to World War I. Today, rival powers challenge the United States, and American socialists face the task of opposing American imperialism while showing internationalist solidarity with struggles for democracy, social reforms, and socialism in countries around the world."

American socialists face the task of opposing US imperialism while showing solidarity with struggles for democracy, reforms, and socialism around the world.

Kim Moody: "Union democracy or more accurately the transformation of major unions into living democratic participatory o...
03/21/2021
Union Democracy and “The Final Goal” - New Politics

Kim Moody: "Union democracy or more accurately the transformation of major unions into living democratic participatory organizations and cultures is a necessity precisely because of the corporations’ massive powers of resistance."

Union democracy is a necessity precisely because of the corporations’ massive powers of resistance.

"The problem with the campist perspective is that it so fixates on the role of imperialism and places so much emphasis o...
03/20/2021
When Your Enemy's Enemy is Not a Friend - New Politics

"The problem with the campist perspective is that it so fixates on the role of imperialism and places so much emphasis on its ‘anti-imperialist camp’ that it ends up taking a very forgiving view of oppressive regimes."

We cannot build a global movement with one list of countries where we celebrate the class struggle and another where we frown on it.

"Democrats claim that Biden’s ARP continues the work of Roosevelt and Johnson and that it will transform America. Yet, w...
03/17/2021
Does Biden’s American Rescue Plan Open a New Era of Reform? - New Politics

"Democrats claim that Biden’s ARP continues the work of Roosevelt and Johnson and that it will transform America. Yet, while these reforms are much needed, none of the programs begins to transform the fundamental structures of American capitalism, a system that generates an economy and a society among the most unequal in the world."

The ARP programs fall far short of any social democratic welfare state.

"Although the current number of Israeli Jewish BDS supporters is apparently only a couple hundred, and although Israeli ...
03/17/2021
In Support of Joint Struggle - New Politics

"Although the current number of Israeli Jewish BDS supporters is apparently only a couple hundred, and although Israeli Jewish support for a shared, democratic country is shrinking, down from 19% in 2018 to 10% in 2020, this could change."

Hal Draper proposed that Jews and Arabs could engage in “joint struggle from below. What Draper contended in 1954 is still true today.

'For Piketty, a prehistoric flint tool, a cave, and a computer assembly plant are all capital. If we believe him, “capit...
03/13/2021
Thomas Piketty and Karl Marx: Two totally different visions of Capital - New Politics

'For Piketty, a prehistoric flint tool, a cave, and a computer assembly plant are all capital. If we believe him, “capitalistic” [sic] accumulation goes back as far as the first assembly of a few pieces of flint that had been chipped and shaped. That definition throws no light on the historic specificity of capital, its genesis, how it is reproduced and accumulated, to which class it belongs, or the social and property relations to which it corresponds.'

We should question the meaning Piketty gives to words like “capital” and define revenue from capital and revenue from labor differently.

"Can little David beat Goliath? That’s the question in Bessemer, Alabama, where 5,800 warehouse workers will vote this m...
03/13/2021
Can Amazon Be Organized? In Alabama They’re Trying - New Politics

"Can little David beat Goliath? That’s the question in Bessemer, Alabama, where 5,800 warehouse workers will vote this month on whether or not they want a union at the Amazon facility there. If they vote to unionize, it will be the first successful union campaign at Amazon in the United States."

In Bessemer, Alabama, 5,800 warehouse workers will vote this month on whether or not they want a union at the Amazon facility there.

Incarcerated journalist and former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal has tested positive for COVID-19 and has congestive hea...
03/06/2021
Mumia Time or Sweeney Time - New Politics

Incarcerated journalist and former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal has tested positive for COVID-19 and has congestive heart disease. Supporters are calling for Abu-Jamal and other medically vulnerable prisoners to be immediately released and allowed to recover in freedom. This article by David Roediger originally appeared in 2000.

Dave Roediger wrote in 2000, "[T]he extent to which Abu-Jamal knows that he needs to identify with the labor movement, and that some in the labor movement know that they need to support him, signals what the working class movement is becoming and can be."

"Trump’s attempts to retain office despite losing the election failed for a simple reason: the complete absence of any i...
03/06/2021
The coup that wasn’t: Why Donald Trump failed to steal the White House - New Politics

"Trump’s attempts to retain office despite losing the election failed for a simple reason: the complete absence of any interest among leading capitalists or state bureaucrats to eradicate or even weaken the Constitutional order in order to extend Trump’s presidency."

Contrary to many expectations President Trump was unable to launch a coup d’etat in order to remain in power.

Sam Farber contributes to the ongoing debates among Cuban critics, dissidents and oppositionists about U.S. financing of...
03/06/2021
U.S. Politics and the Financing of Political Groups in Cuba - New Politics

Sam Farber contributes to the ongoing debates among Cuban critics, dissidents and oppositionists about U.S. financing of Cuban political groups

Sam Farber contributes to the ongoing debates among Cuban critics, dissidents and oppositionists about U.S. financing of Cuban political groups.

Last month, grassroots Indigenous and youth-led movements helped the ecosocialist Indigenous candidate Yaku Pérez and hi...
03/03/2021
Open Letter to Editors of Jacobin and Monthly Review - New Politics

Last month, grassroots Indigenous and youth-led movements helped the ecosocialist Indigenous candidate Yaku Pérez and his Pachakutik party make surprising gains in Ecuador’s election. In this context, the U.S. socialist magazines Jacobin and Monthly Review published spirited attacks on Yaku Pérez and the anti-extractivist views of his supporters.

Last month, grassroots Indigenous and youth-led movements helped the ecosocialist Indigenous candidate Yaku Pérez and his Pachakutik party make surprising gains in Ecuador's election. In this context, the U.S. socialist magazines Jacobin and Monthly Review published spirited attacks on Yaku Pérez ...

'The recent growth of anti-Asian hate can be attributed largely to former President Donald Trump who referred to COVID-1...
03/03/2021
Movement Grows to Stop Anti-Asian Hate - New Politics

'The recent growth of anti-Asian hate can be attributed largely to former President Donald Trump who referred to COVID-19 as the “China virus” or the “Kung Flu” to the cheers of the tens of thousands of supporters at his rallies.'

The recent growth of anti-Asian hate can be attributed largely to former President Donald Trump who referred to COVID-19 as the “China virus.”

"Palestine is one of the most controversial issues among liberals and even among some socialists. In the U.S., politicia...
03/02/2021
Review of Palestine, A Socialist Introduction - New Politics

"Palestine is one of the most controversial issues among liberals and even among some socialists. In the U.S., politicians and university administrators war against the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, also labeling it as anti-semitic."

This new book explains clearly why anyone concerned with equality and democracy should support the Palestinian cause.

"This is a mobilization of very diverse discontent and aspirations that are expressed for the moment in a surge of solid...
03/02/2021
Navalny and the protests: some clarification - New Politics

"This is a mobilization of very diverse discontent and aspirations that are expressed for the moment in a surge of solidarity from a people recovering their dignity. Navalny is not the leader but the detonator— the Navalny who risked his life to show that we could resist."

The rejection of politics is so deep that none of the political coordinates known in the West make sense in Russia to most people.

"Twenty years ago, Republicans took over Texas’ governorship, house, and senate and then deregulated and neglected the s...
02/24/2021
Climate Change Comes to Republican Texas Producing a Disaster - New Politics

"Twenty years ago, Republicans took over Texas’ governorship, house, and senate and then deregulated and neglected the state’s energy systems, leading to this catastrophe."

Twenty years ago, Republicans took over Texas’ governorship, house, and senate and then deregulated the state’s energy systems, leading to this catastrophe.

"These protests foretell how Indian farmers, who are already in debt, will become increasingly vulnerable to the fluctua...
02/20/2021
State-Corporatist Alliance and Farmers’ Unrest in India - New Politics

"These protests foretell how Indian farmers, who are already in debt, will become increasingly vulnerable to the fluctuations of open-market conditions."

The ongoing Indian farmers’ protest in reaction to corporatisation of agricultural land and access to Mandis (open markets) and demands an urgent legal reexamination on its impact on agrarian labour and small-scale farmers

"The concept of the global police state calls attention to the breakdown of capitalist hegemony and the turn toward coer...
02/20/2021
Against the Global Police State - New Politics

"The concept of the global police state calls attention to the breakdown of capitalist hegemony and the turn toward coercive domination on the part of the global ruling class, as more and more global economic activity becomes centered around the development and deployment of mechanisms of mass social control, repression and warfare."

The concept of the global police state points to the breakdown of capitalist hegemony and the turn to coercive domination by the global ruling class.

"In the last election 35 percent of voters registered as independents as the Republicans shrank, and since January 6, te...
02/17/2021
Trump Acquitted, Biden Builds Business Support for Relief - New Politics

"In the last election 35 percent of voters registered as independents as the Republicans shrank, and since January 6, tens of thousands more have left the party. While Republican disarray benefits Democrats, Biden’s party still faces COVID, economic depression, climate change, and racism."

While Trump remains a major figure and his mass base a serious problem, today his party is weaker than ever.

"Union democracy is achingly difficult to win, a huge challenge to sustain, and absolutely essential to workers’ exercis...
02/15/2021
Union Democracy is Our Goal But Is It Practical? Responding to Nelson Lichtenstein - New Politics

"Union democracy is achingly difficult to win, a huge challenge to sustain, and absolutely essential to workers’ exercise of their collective power to protect the conditions of their labor and win social justice."

[PDF][Print] Nelson Lichtenstein and I agree on two major ideas that I think distinguish our shared viewpoint from the practice of many union officials and some of their supporters on the left. One is the importance of . . . Read more ›

Orwell and Camus on a Hanging and the Guillotine
02/13/2021
The Techniques of Justice - New Politics

Orwell and Camus on a Hanging and the Guillotine

Camus and Orwell both understood that the justification for state violence depends on describing it in such a way as to not convey too specific an image of the actual event.

"The Wall Street establishment’s swift suppression of GameStop trading starkly exposed the most powerful elements of bus...
02/12/2021
How the GameStop Saga Fell Short - New Politics

"The Wall Street establishment’s swift suppression of GameStop trading starkly exposed the most powerful elements of business rigging the market in favor of hedge funds. The episode has illuminated how the endless drive for profit, inherent in capitalism, extends not just to destroying the lives and jobs of the working class, but even to thwarting the market itself."

The endless drive for profit extends not just to destroying the lives and jobs of the working class, but even to thwarting the market itself.

"President Joseph Biden, in office for less than a month, continued to move ahead with his plan to solve the American he...
02/12/2021
Biden Moves Ahead as Republicans Line Up Behind Trump - New Politics

"President Joseph Biden, in office for less than a month, continued to move ahead with his plan to solve the American health and economic crises and to reassert U.S. global dominance. As he pushes ahead with his relief program, Republicans have lined up behind Trump, whose impeachment trial in the Senate has begun."

Biden continued to move ahead with his plan to solve the American health and economic crises and to reassert U.S. global dominance.

Nelson Lichtenstein replies to Lois Weiner
02/10/2021
Unions and Democracy: A Response to Lois Weiner - New Politics

Nelson Lichtenstein replies to Lois Weiner

[PDF][Print]I agree with Lois Weiner (writing in the Winter 2021 issue) that democracy in a union has to be linked to a program that will generate enthusiasm and which is “transitional” toward some greater militancy and . . . Read more ›

Lois Weiner analyzes debates among labor leftists about how a commitment to socialism “from below” should inform union a...
02/08/2021
Unions, Democracy, and the Third Camp - New Politics

Lois Weiner analyzes debates among labor leftists about how a commitment to socialism “from below” should inform union activity

An analysis of debates among labor leftists about how a commitment to socialism “from below” should inform union activity.

Au Loong Yu reviews "China’s Engine of Environmental Collapse" by Richard Smith (Pluto Press, 2020)
02/05/2021
A Leftist Perspective on China’s Environmental Destruction - New Politics

Au Loong Yu reviews "China’s Engine of Environmental Collapse" by Richard Smith (Pluto Press, 2020)

[PDF][Print]As “part of China,” we Hong Kongers have seen how China’s economic growth has contributed to the degradation of its environment. To be fair, Hong Kong’s economic takeoff had already harmed its environment before China took . . . Read more ›

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Hi
#Trump and #GOP Governors’ Move to Prematurely Reopen U.S. Economy Will Trigger New Wave of #COVID19 Infections and Death. Interview with Dr. Michael Carome, director of Public Citizen's Health Research Group, conducted by Scott Harris - https://btlonline.org/trump-and-gop-governors-move-to-prematurely-re-open-u-s-economy-will-trigger-new-wave-of-infections-and-death/
please share ...
Theodore W. Allen’s Work on the Centrality of the Struggle Against White Supremacy at New Politics http://newpol.org/content/theodore-w-allen%E2%80%99s-work-centrality-struggle-against-white-supremacy
Join us at the @LeftForum for a panel on the future of the #ResistTrump movement: Sun, June 4, John Jay College, NYC https://www.leftforum.org/sessions/strategies-and-tactics-sustain-effective-resistance-long-haul