Marxism

Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Escalating fascist and racist violence grows out of the bipartisan capitalist offensive against immigrants: not only Trump’s border wall with Mexico and anti-Muslim ban, but Obama’s record deportations and Democrats’ policy of border militarization. Key to fighting anti-immigrant hysteria is mobilizing the power of the multiethnic working class. The Internationalist Group calls for workers action to stop deportations and crush the fascists. In the Pacific Northwest, Class Struggle Workers – Portland sparked union motions to mobilize against racist/fascist provocations, and initiated Portland Labor Against the Fascists that brought out some 300 unionists and supporters in 2017. It calls to form workers defense guards to defeat the fascist threat. In the 2016 elections Painters Local 10 called to break with all bosses’ parties, and for a class-struggle workers party. In Los Angeles, transit workers have marched with Teamsters defending Salvadoran immigrants. In New York, Trabajadores Internacionales Clasistas has joined in unionizing immigrant workers, demanding full citizenship rights for all immigrants.
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My Mis-Education in 3 Graphics documents the filmmaker’s darkly humorous journey through the mind-boggling constructs of mainstream economics. Critics offer some clear-sighted alternatives to the dominating economists' beliefs and models. The film is a visually fun satire deconstructing the current orthodox version of "the dismal science". Filmed introductory economics course lectures and interviews with economists reveal the enormous rift between the economic textbook models and the filmmaker’s and other critics’ understandings of economic reality. The first part of the film explores how mainstream economics (mis)represents markets, the next is a presentation of their befuddling model of the firm, and the final section, on macroeconomics, points to some of the major issues hidden by the models: financial debt’s contribution to inequality, and the unaccounted for destruction of the natural world. Mainstream economists such as N.Gregory Mankiw, George Borts, Timothy Taylor, and Lawrence Summers are critiqued by Herman Daly, Michael Hudson, Randall Wray, Richard McIntyre, Richard and Max Wolff, Robert Pollin, Nancy Holmstrom, Richard Smith, Costas Panayotakis, Doug Henwood, John Foster, Susan Feiner, and Stephen Marglin.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
A proper material analysis of the world requires constant engagement with developments in science and philosophy. This panel hopes to explore the ideas how complexity science, evolution, computation, sync, and similar scientific and philosophical insights might inform today's left politics. The presentation will start with a discussion of basic principles of complexity theory such as linear vs non-linear systems, replication, feedback, emergent behavior, and sync. Within this framework we will look at some example phenomena in today's political discourse such as individual and systemic racism, third party politics, comparative revolutionary processes, and how complex systems inform debt unionization.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
At the panel speakers will argue that the decline of neo-liberalism and the growth of a new conservative wave are objectively conditioned. The prevailing model of late capitalism that has led to the domination of the market of simulacra, financialization and stagnation, called the ‘new normality’, cannot ensure the progress of the productive forces that are on the verge of not just another technological revolution, but a qualitative change – the genesis of the economy in which a decisive role will be played not by reproductive, but by creative work. Not just re-industrialization – the coming creative revolution – necessitates at least a deep reform of the currently dominant social and economic system. The non-realization of these changes is fraught with conservative regress of both the economy and society. The main directions of reforming the system of economic relations that respond to the challenges of the progress of the productive forces will be discussed at the panel.
Location: 
NYC
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Race, Class, Gender, and the University: Struggles within and beyond the Campus Walls The university under capitalism is a site of political unevenness and contradiction. While academia promotes an image of impartiality and liberality in terms of viewpoints, scholarship, and diversity, those who don’t adhere to the restricted parameters of institutionalized “neutrality” are often marginalized, slandered, and sometimes dismissed. Indeed, as Steven Salaita argues, “disinterest and objectivity” are more often aligned with ruling powers both within and outside the walls of the academy. While identitarian positioning is often encouraged, solidarity that challenges systems of racial and gendered oppression or that exposes the symbiotic relationships between academic knowledge-production and imperialism are systematically repressed. At this same time, the university--perhaps especially our austerity-prone public universities, which often serve 'majority minority' and working-class students-- still can provide fertile ground for radical thinking and new social connections with the potential to resist hegemonic capitalist regimes of 'divide and rule.' Accordingly, this panel seeks to discuss the intersections of race, class, and gender struggles that challenge the status-quo politics within the university, or that use the base of the university to challenge capitalism and imperialism beyond the campus walls. While we intend to address some of the limits of critique offered by institutionalized identity politics, primarily this panel will offer first-hand accounts and theorization of alternative models for radical social justice organizing within the university space, with a view towards building resistance beyond the confines of campus-oriented politics.
Location: 
NYC
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Has America always been capitalist? Today, the US sees itself as the heartland of the international capitalist system, its society and politics intertwined deeply with its economic system. This book panel and discussion looks at the history of North America from the founding of the colonies to debunk the myth that America is 'naturally' capitalist. From the first white-settler colonies, capitalist economic elements were apparent, but far from dominant, and did not drive the early colonial advance into the West. Society, too, was far from homogeneous - as the role of the state fluctuated. Racial identities took time to imprint, and slavery, whilst at the heart of American imperialism, took both capitalist and less-capitalist forms. Additionally, gender categories and relations were highly complex, as standards of ‘manhood’ and ‘womanhood’ shifted over time to accommodate capitalism, and as there were always some people challenging this binary. In this context, this panel will discuss these themes in the context of the publication of the recent book: How America Became Capitalist: Imperial Expansion and the Conquest of the West.
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
In recent years the fascist movement in India has been growing. Led by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), their electoral wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and sponsored by the big corporate houses in India, this fascist movement has sponsored and carried out viscous attacks on Muslims, Dalits (the so-called "untouchables"), women, Adivasis (indigenous people), religious minorities, and national minorities. All this has been coupled with extractive neoliberal policies aimed at maximizing corporate profits while undercutting the most basic and meager social welfare programs that still exist in India. Recently, a series of poets, human rights lawyers, professors, and civil liberties activists have been arrested on trumped-up charges and accused of terrorism. This is all part of the government's plan to forcible evict 800 million people from their land and move them from the countryside to the city by 2050. When coupled with draconian laws like the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (which give the state legal cover for arresting and killing activists with impunity), it clear that the people of India face a very dire situation. This panel will examine the growing fascist movement in India, speak on the dire situations that people face, and highlight the courageous resistance being waged across the country. We will also examine the role of US imperialism in supporting and sponsoring the fascist movement in India and the associated neoliberal extractive policies.
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Location: 
NYC
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Description/Abstract of your Event: 
Thanks to the Global Action Project's Movement History Timeline Technology, we were able to create an online, interactive timeline of the history of the NYC Tenant Movement. We also created curriculum to help folks teach and facilitate a workshop or session on the history of the tenant movement. The goal for the workshop is to learn together about the history of the tenant movement as well as to leave the workshop feeling confident in facilitating your own workshop or session on the history! We hope the workshop will remind us there is a vast and powerful history that should be accessible to all of us, to honor those who came before us, to inspire us to act and to hold us accountable to our future which is as bright as we make it.
Location: 
NYC
Description/Abstract of your Event: 
This year, in contrast to the 2018 “red state” teacher revolt, strikes in Los Angeles and Oakland confronted Democratic Party bosses and rulers at every level. The strikes were militant and massive, with broad working-class community support. But the union bureaucracies, chained to the Democrats, rammed through settlements that betrayed the struggle to stop the spread of charter schools, the drive to privatize and sharply reduce class size. Class Struggle Education Workers campaigned to mobilize workers’ power – shut down the ports! – to win the strikes. In New York, an ongoing fight against adjunct poverty at CUNY poses broader issues of linking the fight to defend public education to class struggle in the center of finance capital. The key: ousting the pro-capitalist bureaucrats, breaking with the Democrats and forging a class struggle leadership. As Leon Trotsky wrote, “The independence of trade unions in the class sense, in their relations to the bourgeois state, can, in the present conditions, be assured only by a completely revolutionary leadership.”
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Location: 
LA
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This panel is inspired by the bicentennial of Karl Marx’s birth on May 5, 1818. On June 30, 2018, the NY Times published a column headlined: “The Millennial Socialists Are Coming.” Is “the spectre of communism [still] haunting” America and the world 200 years after Marx was born? Panelists representing different leftist parties and perspectives will tackle these questions and more. Speakers will explain their conceptions of what Marxism is and explore whether Marxism is still relevant 170 years after Marx and Engels wrote The Communist Manifesto. Is Marxism a Stalinist police state with a command economy and gulags? Or is Marxism a utopian pie-in-the-sky fantasy of a classless society? Is this just an outdated philosophy from 1848 that is no longer relevant in the 21st century? Or is Marxism a participatory, direct democracy of the workers, by the workers and for the workers? Is Marxism applicable in 2018? Come the revolution, how will Marxism impact on economics? Race? Gender? Class? Militarism? Endless war? Can Marxism solve inequality across the board and create an egalitarian social system? Is Marxism a workers’ paradise, “an association in which the free development of each is the condition for the free development of all,” where the golden rule is “from each according to their abilities to each according to their needs”?