Blogs

Ten Examples of Welfare for the Rich and Corporations

by Bill Quigley

All told, pubic subsidies and props to the wealthiest Americans total in the trillions of dollars. Federal, state and local governments have become profit centers for corporations. “Each major piece of legislation contains new welfare for the rich and corporations.

Obama, the Great Dis-Equalizer

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Barack Obama has used up his people-friendly rhetoric over the past five years, and is now repeating promises he’s already made and broken: to raise the minimum wage, strengthen worker rights, establish truly universal health care, and fight for the common man and woman. Obama’s new rhetorical target is gross income inequalities – a catastrophe that has worsened on his watch.

Freedom Rider: Prosecuting Black Victims

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Prosecutors go to bizarre lengths to put Black victims of police gunfire in prison. A young man blinded by a cop’s bullet may spend 35 years in prison. A unarmed, mentally ill man who was shot at by police faces 25 years behind bars because the cops wounded two bystanders. Who cares? “The black misleadership class are unconcerned with the plight of the people who are targeted by the system.

The Budget Deal and Neoliberalism: The U.S. and South African Connection

by BAR editor and columnist Ajamu Baraka

Capitalism has made good use of the world’s two most prominent Black men. Barack Obama and Nelson Mandela served as the faces that defused Black opposition to the neoliberal agenda. “What mattered in South Africa in the 90s as it does in the U.S. today is a relatively stable environment in which state power is used to realize the interests of national and international capital.”

The African National Congress: The Rise and Tragic Fall of a Revolutionary Movement

by Anthony Monteiro

Black “rule” in South Africa is illusory. “White supremacy without the obvious hand of white people is the form of social and political control, which replaces legal apartheid.” The revolution was derailed. “The road from the Freedom Charter, to the Morogoro Consultative Conference, to the 1994 elections, to the murder of 34 miners at Mirikana in 2012, is the ANC’s road to counter-revolution.”

Imagine: If Mayor DeBlasio Really Were a Socialist

by Cliff Conner and Michael Steven Smith

Lots of people who call themselves socialists have high hopes for Bill de Blasio, the new mayor of New York City. If de Blasio is really as “left” as some imagine, he could use his bully pulpit “to rally public support to fight for socially progressive measures.” The authors have some suggestions.

Madame President? No, Madame Prisoner: Rwanda’s Victoire Ingabire

by Ann Garrison

The Obama administration and its European allies lavish praise, weapons and money on Paul Kagame’s military and ethnic dictatorship in Rwanda. Meanwhile, Victoire Ingabire, a woman of peace, languishes in Kagame’s prisons. If she were president, “there would be a major change in how Rwandans and Congolese live as neighbors, because that would be the end of Rwanda invading Congo.”
 

On the Front Lines of Class War: Why the Fight for a Livable Wage is Everyone's Fight

by Colin Jenkins

“Solidarity unionism” has energized thousands of workers in low wage industries, especially fast food. The movement has been building for more than a decade, in response to the pauperization of the U.S. working class. "There are millions of workers in this industry living in poverty, with no consistent scheduling, no job security and no respect.

Last Hope For Change: An Interview with Cynthia McKinney

by Adam Engel

Writer Adam Engel describes former Georgia congresswoman Cynthia McKinney as a person who doesn’t merely speak truth to power, but acts in accordance with such truths. In this extended conversation, the former Green Party presidential candidate explores “how we end the lived nightmares of the world’s billions.”

Nelson Mandela’s Long Death

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

As Nelson Mandela lay for nine months near death, the world got an education on his legacy – including the scope of the deal that he and his African National Congress comrades cut to abandon the Freedom Charter. Blacks got the vote, and little else, while whites held on to economic power. Imperialism got a new lease on life in Africa.

The Obama Legacy, Part 1 of Many: Why Secret Trade Negotiations? Because TPP & TAFTA are NAFTA on Crack & Evil Steroids

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Thanks to WikiLeaks, a chapter of the secret agreement being negotiated by the White House has been made public. It will enshrine corporate profits as sacred rights, above the ability of local governments to make health, safety, wage, and “buy-local” regulations, and enable corporations to patent drugs, trivial techniques, diseases and living organisms.

Freedom Rider: Edward Snowden: Person of the Year

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Edward Snowden is vilified as a “traitor” by politicians of the American political duopoly, and hunted like Public Enemy Number One by the global imperial apparatus. However, for a large proportion of Earthlings, Snowden has made the singular contribution to humanity of the year 2013.

Eyewitness to America’s Betrayal of Mandela’s South Africa: The Gore-Mbeki Commission – Part II

by BAR editor and columnist Marsha Coleman-Adebayo

The author learned first hand how the U.S. collaborated with white Afrikaners in Nelson Mandela’s new government to accept unwanted private sector programs. A Black administration was in place, but the Freedom Charter was a dead letter. “Mandela and his colleagues were aware that moving forward to implement the Charter would be considered an act of aggression against global capital.”

Nelson Mandela, Free Market Capitalism and the South African Crisis

by Anthony Monteiro

The veil must be lifted from the deliberations and machinations that led Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress to discard the people’s Freedom Charter in favor of an accommodation with white capital, in the early Nineties. Why, at South Africa’s most critical juncture, did the ANC make a pact with the Devil? And why did they keep it?

South Africa and Zimbabwe: A Tale of Two Land Reforms

by Harold Green

When Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe attended the memorial service for Nelson Mandela, he “received the loudest cheers and applause” among the dignitaries. Zimbabwe’s successful land reform stands in stark contrast to South Africa, where “barely 10% of farm land has been redistributed,” and the wealth gap – which is a race gap – “has become one of the most unequal in the world.”

Race, Religion and Rounding Up Africans in Israel

by David Sheen

Israel has launched a wholesale roundup of African immigrants, whom members of the ruling parties call a “cancer” on the Jewish state. To circumvent court rulings against imprisonment without trial, the government has packed the refugees into a detention center in the desert. The aim is to convince the Africans “to give up all hope of a normal life in Israel” and go back where they came from.

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