In Chicago, Teachers and Black Lives Matter Activists Partner to Build a Bigger Movement

by Leah Fried

When the Chicago Teachers Union goes on strike, it doesn’t walk alone; Movement 4 Black Lives organizations have their back. And, when young Black activists campaign against police terror, the teachers union is with them. When it comes to the school-to-prison pipeline, the teachers and Black Youth Project 100 are on the same side.

When Slaveholders Controlled the Government—An Interview with Matthew Karp

by Timothy Shenk

In order to downgrade the centrality of slavery to the development of the United States and global capitalism, mainstream historians attempt to depict the slaveholding classes as provincial actors. However, the slave owners were the most powerful people in the country. “Southerners imagined—and worked to build—an American republic whose foundation was slavery.” They wanted a strong United States, with a strong military, to protect slavery.

The Deteriorating Situation in Ethiopia

by Yohannes Woldemariam

The minority ethnic regime in Ethiopia now faces multiple rebellions. The regime’s foreign friends are part of the problem. “Faced with increased intrusion into their lands by so-called international investors, by displacement and by the breakdown of their social fabric, Ethiopians are mobilizing to resist.” The once formidable government coalition “is beginning to unravel.”

Black Agenda Radio for Week of Nov. 7, 2016

Hi-Tech Production in the Service of Humanity in Mississippi

Renaissance Jackson, the organization that briefly won the mayor’s office in predominantly Black Jackson, Mississippi, has launched a campaign to purchase a coding and programming capacity and a 3-D fabrication facility. They call it “Fab Lab.” This technology, “if it is democratically controlled, could actually serve humanity,” said Cooperation Jackson spokesman Kali Akuno. These kinds of projects are crucial, “first and foremost, to satisfy some of the basic needs of our community, and -- on a deeper level -- to really put this means of production directly in our community’s hands.” High tech is “one of these areas of the so-called ‘digital divide’ that Black people have been sorely and strategically absent from,” said Akuno. “So, we are doing it for ourselves.”

Obamacare “Imploding and Beyond Repair”

The current wave of insurance rate hikes and medical service cutbacks is the predictable result of an Affordable Care Act (ACA) that “was pretty much a gift to the health insurance industry” when Congress passed it, in 2010, said Dr. John Geyman, professor emeritus of family medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, in Seattle. ACA “was never designed for affordability -- it’s a misnomer in the name of the bill,” he said. Obamacare is “imploding and beyond repair,” and unsustainable. “Tweeks cannot work in the long term. The main fight should be for what will save money and give universal coverage to everyone: namely, single payer national health insurance.” Dr. Geyman said single payer healthcare could save $500 billion a year -- about the same as the entire U.S. “defense” budget.

The Fight for Education for Liberation in Detroit

At a “Community Conversation on the Crisis in the Schools,” Detroit activists, educators and parents gathered to address the question: “Who Created the School Crisis, and How are We Responding to it?” Among those wrestling with the issue was Dr. Thomas Pedroni, professor of Curriculum Studies at Wayne State University. He said the decline began with the state takeover of schools in the 1990s, and worsened dramatically after the imposition of state-appointed “emergency managers.” “School could be one of the most meaningful places for our communities, but instead, it’s deadened,” Dr. Pedroni told the crowd at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. “But, we’re going to fight to get back to the place where we have culturally relevant curriculum, not just producing a test score but to develop people who are self-empowered and who know how to fight for their community.”

Venezuela Weathering Financial Storm, Despite Disinformation Campaign

“I challenge you to find one item of news that is positive to Venezuela in these last 16 or 17 years,” said Maria Paez Victor, a Venezuelan-born sociologist living in Toronto, Canada, and author of an article titled “Hating Venezuela.” Ms. Victor said the United States and its rightwing allies in Venezuela have kept up a non-stop disinformation campaign ever since the late Hugo Chavez and his Socialist Party were democratically elected in 1998. A crisis triggered by the collapse of world oil prices allowed the opposition to capture the legislature, last year, but Victor says the government is coping. “Venezuela has managed to weather a terrible financial situation, but this is bad news for corporate capitalism and for the United States, because they want Venezuela to be controlled by their lackies.”

Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:00am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.
 
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Hillary’s “Big Tent” is Obama’s “Grand Bargain” on Steroids

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Barack Obama tried to woo Republicans into a “Grand Bargain” that would have gutted Social Security. Bill Clinton let loose the banks. But Donald Trump’s destruction of the Republican Party will allow Hillary Clinton to “gather the whole of the ruling class under the same party banner, in one Big Tent, where the grandest of bargains can be conceived and achieved without crossing an aisle.” The rich are about to get their best deal yet.

Freedom Rider: Russophobia: War Party Propaganda

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The world’s most reactionary regime, the head-chopping, terror-sponsoring Saudi Arabian kleptocracy, was awarded the chair of the UN Human Rights Council, while Russia has been kicked out. The travesty was engineered by the Superpower of Lies to punish Moscow for resisting the U.S.-led war of sectarian massacre and regime change in Syria. The War Party is on the march, to the cheers of corporate media – and Hillary hasn’t even been elected yet.

The Lords of Capital Sic Crazy Hillary on the World

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

The capitalist ruling class is frightened, for good reason: the empire cannot peacefully contain the rising economic powers of the South and East. “The Lords of Capital know there is no future for them in a world where the dollar is not supreme and where Wall Street’s stocks, bonds and derivatives are not backed by the full weight of unchallenged empire.” War is the only card they have left to play – and Hillary Clinton is their favored dealer.

 
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Green Party’s Margaret Flowers Challenges US Senate Debate in Maryland as Undemocratic

by BAR editor and columnist, Dr. Marsha Adebayo

The “revolving, rigged system” that purports to be American democracy was revealed in all its corporate vulgarity on a Baltimore university stage, last week. Two U.S. Senate candidates of the duopoly parties pretended to support the Green Party’s candidate’s right to join the debate, but failed to protest when cops hauled her away. “This was their ‘Rosa Parks’ moment when they could have stood for integrity and democracy” -- but failed the test.

Break the Silence or Support Self-Determination? In Syria, the Answer Should be Obvious

by Danny Haiphong

Syria is “the target of one of the greatest misinformation campaigns in recent history.” The author regrets that left analyst Eric Draitser has contributed to the confusion. Draitser criticizes leftists who firmly support the Syrian government. Danny Haiphong counters that “the left must act with uncompromising dedication to the principle of self-determination in every case where US and Western imperialism wages wars of neo-colonial plunder.”

“When You Speak Up for the MOVE 9, You Speak Up for Yourself”

by MOVE People

The Philadelphia-based MOVE family was horribly victimized by police in 1978 and 1985. The first atrocity led to the mass imprisonment of MOVE members; the second assault killed five adults and six children and burned down a city block. No cops have ever been punished, but the MOVE 9 remain in prison, and were this year once again denied parole. “They couldn't kill us that day, so they are trying to finish the job in these prisons.”

To Remake the World: Slavery, Racial Capitalism, and Justice

by Walter Johnson

Now that serious Marxists are agreed that chattel slavery was not only capitalist, but the basis of global capitalism, it is time to reexamine our notions of rights and reparations for injustice. The author calls for “essaying a notion of justice that is rooted in the history of slavery and goes beyond liberal notions of human rights.” Historical wrongs are identified and weighed differently in “the experiences of the dark and the dispossessed.”

LesserOfTwoEvilism

by Matt Sedillo

Hillary Clinton is, no doubt, a threat to life on Earth. But the duopoly electoral system is a menagerie of warmongers. “The response to the white nationalism of Donald Trump has been the rainbow coalition of hawks.” Barack Obama has proven an awesomely prolific war maker. Bernie Sanders is no peacenik. “It is only the white nationalist orange demon -- guided only by his own whims and twitter feuds -- that is at all off script on this question.”

Realities Faced by Black Canadians are a National Shame

by Robyn Maynard

Canada, including its French-speaking regions, is home to much the same kind of systemic racism as its southern neighbor, according to a United Nations Working Group report. Black women’s poverty rates are “almost five times higher than that of white Canadian women.” In Montreal, “a 2008 study found that black girls are three times more likely than white girls the same age to have been arrested two times or more.”

An Open Letter to Black South African Police Officers

by Black Power Front

With students joining workers in revolt against South Africa’s neoliberal regime, young people are demanding to know why Black police are engaged in the same kind of repression that was previously used by white governments “to systematically counter Black resistance?” In a letter to Black cops, activists note “an increase and worrying pattern of anti-Black police violence.”

Black Agenda Report for Week of Oct 31, 2016

The Missing Black Movement Ingredient: Self-Determination

The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations will hold a National Black Political Convention on Self-Determination, November 5 and 6, in Washington, DC. “If you go through history, the fundamental thing that we’ve confronted is the loss of our self-determination as a people,” said Black Is Back chairman Omali Yeshitela. The Coalition has put forward a 19-point position on the need to put self-determination at the center of Black struggles. The 19 points “give us the beginning of some kind of a plan,” said Yeshitela. “It says, specifically, here is our view on self-determination and the subject of reparations, Black women, the question of police invasion and brutality in our community,” and many other issues.

The “Moment of Truth” for the Empire

“We are entering a new moment in American history,” said Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Duboisian scholar and Black Radical Organizing Committee activist. “It is a moment of truth for the ruling class, for the ruling elite. What do they do when they are trumped at home -- forgive the pun -- and trumped internationally?” he asked. “Do they back off of empire, do they readjust, do they become peaceful, or do they up the stakes and attempt to resolve all problems with war abroad and oppression at home?” Dr. Monteiro is one of the planners of a Revolutionary Science for Radical Times conference, in Philadelphia, December 9 and 10.

Hard Times in Venezuela

Despite what the corporate media are telling you, Venezuelans are not starving and the Socialist Party government will not be toppled any time soon. However, the rightwing opposition “is smelling blood” due to an economic crisis that “has made it very difficult for people to get access to imported goods, and many goods are very expensive,” said political science professor George Caccariello-Maher, of Drexel University, author of We Created Chavez: A People’s History of the Venezuelan Revolution. Corruption, smuggling and money speculation are serious problems, said Caccariello-Maher. However, the strength of the Left lies in the nation’s grassroots organizations and communes. “It would be very difficult for an opposition government to come in and attempt to throw them off their land” or return property to the private sector, he said.

Happy Birthday, Rev. Pinkney!

Benton Harbor, Michigan, human rights leader Rev. Edward Pinkney, currently serving a 2 ½ to 10 year sentence on election tampering charges, turned 68 years old this month. Marcina Cole, a courtroom observer at Pinkney’s trial, teamed up with David Sole, of the Michigan Emergency Committee Against War and Injustice, to throw a birthday party for Pinkney, in absentia, in Detroit. “He’s definitely in support of other inmates, doing ministry work, and looking forward to being out very soon,” said Cole. She reported that Green Party vice presidential candidate Ajamu Baraka visited the political prisoner on October 19. “This was historical,” said Cole. “They know how powerful Rev. Pinkney is” -- and that he has allies on the outside.

Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:00am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.
 
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Malcolm X on Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by Bruce A. Dixon

When astute political commentary from a half century ago eloquently describes the current political conundrum it means we’ve been stuck in a bad place for a long time. Do we really want Malcolm’s observation to apply four or eight or twenty years further into the future?

 
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Fighting Ghost Fascists While Aiding Real Ones

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

An architect of regime-change, coups, no-fly zones, rule of the rich and mass incarceration is about to become Commander-in-Chief, yet the bulk of what passes for the Left is “engaged in a 1930s-style ‘united front’ against a ‘fascism’ that was never a threat in 21st century America.” Donald Trump, the orange menace, didn’t have a chance of becoming president. Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, is a 21st century fascist and threat to life on Earth.

Freedom Rider: Organizing in the Age of Hillary

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The resistance to a Hillary Clinton presidency has already begun. Activists gathered in Chicago “to strategize the fight against police violence, neoliberalism and imperialism,” all of which promise to be hallmarks of her administration. The Black Misleadership Class plays its usual, toadying role. “The liars who said they would hold Obama’s feet to the fire are repeating their empty words and hoping no one pays attention.”

An African Stampede Out of the International Criminal Court?

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

The International Criminal Court has a worldwide jurisdiction, but only indicts Africans. Yet, it has taken 14 years for African nations -- first Burundi, and now South Africa -- to begin quitting this African Jim Crow Court, “a tool of the United States and the former colonial powers.” Other African nations are expected to begin the process of exiting the ICC before the next African Union Summit, in January.

 
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