Full remarks of Cornel West at the Left Forum 5/30/2014. Cornel West is an American philosopher, academic, activist, author, public intellectual, and prominent member of the Democratic Socialists of America. He has taught at Harvard and Princeton and teaches at the Union Theological Seminary.
Finance in today’s world has become war by non-military means. Its object is the same as that of military conquest: appropriation of land and basic infrastructure, and the rents that can be extracted as tribute. In today’s world this is taken mainly in the form of debt service and privatization. That is how neoliberalism works, subduing economies by indebting their governments and using unpayably high debts as a lever to pry away the public domain at distress prices. It is what today’s New Cold War is all about. Backed by the IMF and European Central Bank (ECB) as knee-breakers in what has become in effect a financial extension of NATO, the aim is for U.S. and allied investors to appropriate the plums that kleptocrats have taken from the public domain of Russia, Ukraine and other post-Soviet economies in these countries, as well as whatever assets remain. Continue reading →
Putin’s takeover of Crimea scares U.S. leaders because it challenges America’s global dominance.
American red lines, in short, are firmly placed at Russia’s borders. Therefore Russian ambitions “in its own neighborhood” violate world order and create crises.
The point generalizes. Other countries are sometimes allowed to have red lines—at their borders (where the United States’ red lines are also located). But not Iraq, for example. Or Iran, which the U.S. continually threatens with attack (“no options are off the table”). Continue reading →
ON MAY 1, 1886–125 years ago this month–hundreds of thousands of workers were taking the streets of cities around the U.S. to demand an eight-hour day.
The epicenter of this great labor struggle was Chicago, where the eight-hour movement inspired defiant protests and strikes–and inspired fear and repression from bosses and their loyal servants in law enforcement. Continue reading →