A father hid his young son in a dumpster as he searched for the rest of his family amid rapid gun fire…
Since January 2021, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed 412 bills (See: Congress.gov) and sent them to the Senate. Unfortunately, the Senate hasn’t acted. “What?” you say, “don’t the Democrats control both Chambers of Congress?” Sure, by the barest of margins. Handcuffed by the filibuster, a Senate rule (not a federal law) requires 60 votes to pass legislation in what Senators of yore called the “world’s greatest deliberative body.”
with Michael Parenti
Writer, Dandelion Salad
May 23, 2022
“You can’t have rich corporate conglomerates unless you have wage and salary workers who will work a whole lifetime and at the end of that lifetime not know any kind of economic security of any sort, own nothing but maybe a mortgage on the house or whatever, if that. So the secret to getting rich, ladies and gentlemen, is not to work hard but to get others to work hard for you.” — Michael Parenti
I know I should consider myself lucky to have located anybody at all in the United States who opposes the latest $40 billion “for Ukraine.” But from both the right and the left, those who oppose it almost universally express resentment of spending money “on Ukraine” instead of keeping that money in the US of A or spending it on “Americans.”
I thought it would be good to talk about the FBI because they talk about us. They don’t like to be talked about. They don’t even like the fact that you’re listening to them being talked about. They are very sensitive people. If you look into the history of the FBI and Martin Luther King—which now has become notorious in that totally notorious history of the FBI—the FBI attempted to neutralize, perhaps kill him, perhaps get him to commit suicide, certainly to destroy him as a leader of black people in the United States. And if you follow the progression of that treatment of King, it starts, not even with the Montgomery Bus Boycott; it starts when King begins to criticize the FBI. You see, then suddenly Hoover’s ears, all four of them, perk up. And he says, okay, we have to start working on King.
Six years is an eternity in politics. Consider what was common opinion at the start of 2016: That changing demographics in the United States favored the Democratic Party; it would soon be impossible for Republicans to win a national election unless they sharply changed from their primary strategy of sending dog whistles to their base of conservative white people, a dwindling percentage of the U.S. population.
On May 22, 1856, Preston Brooks, a Democrat from South Carolina, beat Charles Sumner, a Republican from Massachusetts, with a walking cane on the floor of the US Senate. Brooks was a pro-slavery lawyer with a history of violent altercations. Sumner was an outspoken and passionate abolitionist.
Sixty percent of the U.S. populace backs Roe v. Wade and just 27 percent back its undoing even as the nation’s right-wing Supreme Court is strongly predisposed to reverse the decision by next summer. Where is the call for millions in the streets to defend women’s right to control their bodies over and against this anti-democratic outrage? Where is the uprising against a government structure and social order that permits this and numerous other forms of authoritarian insanity? It’s shocking to hear liberal talking heads say (basically) “oh well there goes Roe v. Wade for a generation, until we can get the votes and a better court back some day.” Are these shrugging accommodationists aware that the nation’s right-wing Minority Rule party is actively and effectively working (in the name of “stop the steal”) to permanently suppress and nullify votes and elections and policies that don’t go their patriarchal, white-nationalist way? How do they not understand that, as the leading feminist and communist Sunsara Taylor notes:
Many people, especially those with eyes open to the ravages of capitalism, know what they don’t want. Fewer know what they do want. That is understandable, given that the task of building mass movements on so many fronts is daunting. But while what is meant by the creation of a better world can’t be precisely the same for everybody, movements nonetheless have to have some basic concepts of what a better world might look like.
There is a line I keep seeing repeated on social media. It goes something like this: “They are allowed to decide what is acceptable to post and what is not. It’s free, after all.” Things like that may make snappy and snarky comebacks to people complaining about internet censorship. Only it isn’t true. Not by a long shot.
The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity by David Graeber and David Wengrow is, I think, a terrific contribution to human knowledge and guide to pursuing more of the same — as well as a notable accomplishment for the Davids of the world, who have perhaps been falling a bit short lately. A few of the points it documents and persuades of are: