Unmasking the hype of capitalist economics

BY JEFF MACKLER The U.S. working class, the nation’s poor and oppressed, and the youth won a resounding victory on Election Day 2014 when they cast their “votes” for the most popular candidate of all—“None of the Above.” Indeed, “None of the Above” won the much-hyped midterm election “contest” hands down, when 64% of eligible…

Europe hit by economic slowdown

By MICHAEL SCHREIBER Below are portions of the World Political Situation Report, delivered by Michael Schreiber to the Socialist Action National Convention on Oct. 18. Capitalism’s offensive against the world’s working class—which gathered momentum as a consequence of the major economic recession that began in late 2007—continues unabated. Even in the major industrial nations, the…

Snowden demonized; Obama affirms spying

BY JEFF MACKLER  Thirty years after George Orwell’s futuristic and predictive novel, “1984,” Orwell’s 1949 police state prediction is here in full bloom. Wikipedia’s description of “1984” is apt indeed. Readers will forgive my bracketed insertions aimed at bringing Orwell’s Oceania to life: “Life in [the United States] the Oceanian province of Airstrip One is…

Budget deal in Congress — who won?

By JACK RASMUS This article is excerpted from The Green Shadow Cabinet website, greenshadowcabinet.org, with permission of the author.  This past week the U.S. House of Representatives voted 332 to 94 in favor of changes to the federal budget for 2014. The House vote in effect adopted the proposals of the “Joint Congressional Committee,” chaired…

Capitalism’s government shutdown scam

BY JEFF MACKLER  With blazing hyperbole and drama, corporate America pulled off yet another multi-trillion dollar rip-off of working people in the course of the fake “budget debate.” This time the consciously orchestrated scenario included a government shutdown that furloughed 800,000 federal workers and left another million working without pay. Added to the mix was…

Behind the Fed’s ‘economic stimulus’

BY JEFF MACKLER In the old days—very old days like the last Great Depression of 1929—most people understood the term “economic stimulus” to mean some form of government investment in the economy aimed at directly producing jobs for working people through various kinds of public works programs. Considerable investment in ventures like construction of massive…

The rich don’t pay taxes!

BY JEFF MACKLER Armed to the teeth with a scalding report prepared by researchers of the U.S. Senate Permanent Committee on Investigations revealing that Apple Computer had avoided paying billions of dollars in taxes on its nearly unprecedented foreign profits, members of the Senate were momentarily outraged. The senators took to the corporate media to…

The real roots of the U.S. economic crisis

By BRUCE PARDOLL I think that a comprehensive understanding of how the present U.S. economic crisis came about, and how things have considerably worsened not only since December 2007—when the Great Recession began—but also since 1974 (when wages for the working class began a steady downward slide) is greatly needed. Marxism is uniquely qualified to…

Cyprus bank crisis rocks Europe

By ANDREW POLLACK The outrage of workers in Cyprus against a plan to “save” the country’s finances by seizing cash in small depositors’ accounts forced the country’s parliament to vote unanimously in late March against it. The plan was intended to avert the wrath of the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank, and the…

Capitalism damns the environment

By JEFF MACKLER Capitalism, the system—Chinese, American, or European style—has struck yet another devastating blow against all humanity. One of the world’s largest solar-panel manufacturing plants, employing 10,000 Chinese workers at the city of Wuxi on China’s east coast, has declared bankruptcy—a victim of its own “success” and capitalism’s inherent drive to destruction. The Wuxi…

Congress makes workers pay for crisis

By JEFF MACKLER In today’s era of U.S. and worldwide capitalist austerity, not a day or month passes when the corporate media do not inform us that the nation faces yet another economic crisis. From the deficit crisis, in which the U.S. budget falls short $1 trillion yearly; to the “fiscal cliff” crisis, wherein “across-the-board”…

Congress: Smaller paychecks for workers

By USMAN KHAN YUSUFZAI New Year’s Day has come and gone; the impending “fiscal cliff” disaster that so occupied the fears of politicos and businessmen throughout the country has, at the 11th hour, been averted by heroic deal-making by Republican and Democratic legislators. They made some  “tough decisions” in the face of the (manufactured) crisis…

‘Fiscal cliff’ is like ‘austerity chicken!’

By USMAN KHAN YUSUFZAI As we head into the New Year, Washington is buzzing about the impending “fiscal cliff.” The topic was debated at length between both parties of the ruling class, the Democrats and the Republicans; and for all the wailing and doom-saying during and after the November election, one would think that we…

Youth bear brunt of economic crisis

By DANIEL XAVIER For many youth in the U.S. today the “American dream” is very far out of reach. High unemployment rates, massive burdens of student loan debt, and rising costs of living all shape the outlook of young people. Currently, only 54.3 percent of youth (ages 18-24) have a job, the lowest level of…

Occupy’s “Strike Debt” Campaign

By ANDREW POLLACK From its beginning Occupy Wall Street has had a focus on debt—student, homeowner, health care, etc.—and has encouraged debt refusal and resistance. Part of the logic behind that focus is the tens of millions affected by debt, and their common interest in rejecting the misery imposed on them by the huge financial…

Growing signs of new economic downturn

By ANDREW POLLACK Signs of a renewed, coordinated global economic downturn have grown in the last few months. Of course, given the inherent anarchy of the capitalist system, the “coordination” is more in the nature of a self-reinforcing downward spiral, as each sector drags the others down with it. One sees the spiral right away…

World capitalist crisis threatens humanity

By JEFF MACKLER A July 17 New York Times article entitled “Japanese Consumers Reconsidering Rice Loyalty” attracted my attention when it reported that “Japan’s agricultural ministry, for now, says it is not considering an increase in rice imports, which are all but shut out by a 778 percent tariff.” This enormous tariff led me to…

Stopping Home Foreclosures in the Twin Ports

Frederick Douglas once said that “Power concedes nothing without a demand.” The validity of this statement was powerfully demonstrated by Project Save Our Home‘s recent, successful campaign to save the Dunbar’s family home from foreclosure.  Project Save Our Homes is an activist group that was born from the Occupy Wall Street movement back in November of…

Greek workers resist economic free fall

ATHENS—The Memorandum No. 2 became reality by a vote in the Greek Parliament on Feb. 12. One hundred ninety-nine MPs, mainly of the ruling parties, PASOK and “New Democracy” (ND), decided to completely sell out the interests of the Greek population, working people and young people, and especially of future generations, to the dictatorship of…

Chicago workers occupy factory, win temporary reprieve

<!–[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 <![endif]–>CHICAGO—Over three years after they inspired workers across the nation by successfully occupying the Republic Windows and Door factory, on Feb. 23 members of UE Local 1110 once again occupied their workplace, now run by Serious Energy. The occupation was in response to management’s surprise announcement the same day…

Books: How the 1% screw the rest of us

The appearance of “The Trouble With Billionaires” could not have been more timely. Published in Canada by Penguin Books (Toronto, soft cover edition in 2011, 272 pages), the book is to be released in the USA under the title “Billionaires’ Ball: Gluttony and Hubris in an Age of Epic Inequality” on March 27 by Beacon…

Duluth Occupiers reach out to foreclosed homeowners

DULUTH, Minn.—The scourge of home foreclosures is sweeping the nation. Despite that fact that the Democrats and Republicans dumped hundreds of billions of public money into the vaults of the big banks, working class-homeowners are seeing no relief. And it’s no different in Duluth. This winter, a group of activists from the local Occupy movement got together…