Despite four decades of imperial interventions, the United States was defeated in Afghanistan. Tariq Ali explains the long history of meddling in Afghanistan — and why the US's defeat will set back the broader project of American military supremacy. Tariq Ali speaks at the 2014 Support for Gaza Demonstration. (David Hardman / Flickr) Tariq Ali is a member
In response to COVID-19, EU member states have agreed to policies that once seemed inconceivable. The EU recovery fund falls well short of what’s needed, but there’s now an opening for the European left to demand more radical forms of economic redistribution. The European Union flag in the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France. (European Union 2013 —
One of Canada’s largest institutional investors, responsible for managing billions of dollars in workers’ pensions, has committed to fossil fuel divestment. It’s a good step — but without pressure from the labor movement, these promises will mean nothing. The 2018 Carr Fire in California, where climate change–driven wildfires have become a regular occurrence.
For months, Bernie Sanders has been making a case for the multitrillion-dollar reform bill he’s spearheaded in the Senate. Now, he’s taken that case to Joe Manchin’s home turf in West Virginia — and is facing backlash from the mainstream media for breaching the norms of Beltway etiquette. Senator Bernie Sanders arrives to a news conference at the US Capitol
In Mexico, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is attempting to transform the country’s overpriced energy industry by nationalizing lithium — a move essential to kicking out private mining and developing a robust and affordable public energy sector. Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador speaks during his daily morning press conference in Mexico
Far-right organizations like Project Veritas in the US and the Vox party in Spain are increasingly looking to Latin America as the key to consolidating their international network. To prevent that from happening, Jair Bolsonaro must be stopped from winning — or stealing — Brazil's 2022 election. Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro speaks at Planalto Palace
Some of those in the George W. Bush administration who were most responsible for starting the Iraq War were obvious sickos — the kind of operatives who can make bloodthirsty policy in a democracy, but could probably never get elected to anything because their public statements cause decent humans to cringe in horror. Defense secretary […]
TKTK dek Mike Miller, vice president of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), speaks to members at a rally in Los Angeles on September 26, 2021. (Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images) On Saturday night, Deadline reported that a tentative agreement had been reached between the International Alliance of Theatrical
On June 13 this year, GB News aired for the first time on British television. The presenter of the channel’s first broadcast was former BBC anchor Andrew Neil. Several of Neil’s interviews with politicians and public figures have gone viral in the past, with liberals and conservatives alike lauding the avowed Thatcherite and former editor […]
French media is saturated with the fascist pundit Éric Zemmour and his absurd, racist talk of a “great replacement” of France’s white population by immigrants. Now, he’s weighing a bid for the presidency — and his talking points are already dominating the debate. Far-right French pundit Éric Zemmour. (Chesnot / Getty Images) France’s presidential election
It’s time for Democratic leaders to make Joe Manchin, Kyrsten Sinema, and every other senator vote — and not on some gutted half measure, but on a real $3.5 trillion bill. Senator Joe Manchin at the US Capitol in Washington, DC. (Drew Angerer / Getty Images) As millions of Americans are being cut off from jobless benefits, pulverized by health care costs, bankrupted
Over two thousand people have died trying to cross from Africa to Spain’s Canary Islands so far this year. While the European Union boasts of its humanitarian migrant policy, it has made these islands into a rampart of a murderous border regime. Young migrants try to reach Spain by raft but are intercepted by the Spanish Civil Guard on May 19, 2021. (Diego Radames
Cryptocurrency promises to liberate the monetary system from the clutches of the powerful. Instead, it mostly functions to make wealthy speculators even wealthier. The ideal of “apolitical” money advocated by crypto fanatics is a fantasy. (Executium/Unsplash) Cryptocurrency is often dismissed by economists and investors alike as a purely speculative
Literature has seen an uptick in "cli-fi," fiction about possible climate dystopias and utopias. But too much of that climate-change-related fiction lacks any kind of radical political imagination. Bolivian salt flats. (Psyberartist / Flickr) It will take imagination and vision for humans to survive the climate crisis — a willingness to believe in things
Ten years after Occupy Wall Street took over a small park in downtown Manhattan, the new left that was birthed there continues to develop and grow. The occupation of Zuccotti Park — and the numerous other occupations that it inspired — was short-lived, but it transformed the political landscape in the United States and beyond. […]
Starbucks portrays itself as a “community of partners,” not an average workplace. But now that workers are organizing a union drive in Buffalo, that warm and fuzzy rhetoric has vanished, replaced by coercion and union-busting. Starbucks is desperately trying to stop its workers from organizing in Buffalo, viewing the effort as a threat to the company as a
Kyrsten Sinema could block Democrats’ drug pricing negotiation plan — which may be why pharmaceutical interests are donating big money to her. Senator Kyrsten Sinema speaking with attendees at the 2019 Update from Capitol Hill, hosted by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry, at the Arizona Biltmore resort in Phoenix, Arizona. (Gage Skidmore /
The Pentagon’s bloated budget is a colossal waste of resources that could be better used elsewhere. But it’s also an outrage to democracy. A US Army sergeant during training at a military range in Djibouti, Africa, 2018. (US Army / Flickr) Amid a climate supposedly riven by polarization and obstruction, few things remain capable of uniting America’s political
Unfortunately, any hope for a national Medicare for All is currently off the table. That’s why organizers throughout the country should launch campaigns at the state level to win M4A. The prospects of passing a single-payer health care bill in some of the state legislatures are looking much better than in Congress. (Molly Adams / Flickr) If you feel a little
Burkina Faso revolutionary leader Thomas Sankara was murdered on this day in 1987. Joséphine Ouédraogo recounts her time as a minister in his government — and their final meeting before he was ousted in a bloody coup d’état. Thomas Sankara at a press conference in Paris, 1986. (Pascal George / AFP via Getty Images) On August 4, 1983, a thirty-three-year-old
Across the US, a more militant mood among workers is beginning to make itself felt. An uptick in private-sector strikes and record numbers of workers quitting their jobs are just two signs that the pandemic has changed workers’ willingness to accept a bad deal. Workers picket outside of John Deere Harvester Works facility on October 14, 2021 in East Moline,
Climate scientists have called for Norway to stop drilling for gas and oil. But the Labor Party refuses to break its dependency on fossil fuel profits — and this week, it formed a government with centrists rather than the ecosocialist left. Norwegian Labor Party leader and new prime minister Jonas Gahr Støre. (Bernt Sønvisen / Flickr) This Thursday, Labor Party
Thomas Sankara, the socialist president of Burkina Faso, was assassinated 34 years ago today. With Global South debt levels at an all-time high, Sankara’s call for resistance to debt as a tool of neocolonial domination has never been more relevant. Thomas Sankara, leader of Burkina Faso, in 1985. (William F. Campbell / Getty Images) Today marks the thirty-fourth
From assumptions about drug traffickers and police and elected officials’ corruption to Mexicans’ economic incentives for selling drugs, the Mexican drug trade has been drenched in sensationalist and inaccurate mythology. We need to totally upend our understanding of it. A Mexican soldier stands in a poppy field in Guerrero state, Mexico, 2013. (Pedro
The late Michael K. Williams was both nurtured and vexed by Brooklyn, as though its triumphs and struggles were his own. We can’t understand his tragically short life without tracing the changing class and racial dynamics of the borough he always called home. Michael K. Williams attends the Los Angeles premiere of MGM’s Respect at Regency Village Theatre on
Joe Biden’s health secretary Xavier Becerra has called on the feds to limit pharmaceutical price gouging in the past. But now that he is in a position to actually lower drug prices, he’s dragging his feet. Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra in San Francisco, California, 2019. (Wikimedia Commons) Calls are growing for President Joe Biden’s
From the debacle in Afghanistan to the ongoing devastation of COVID-19 to the unhinged cruelty of the Republican Party, Noam Chomsky notes, there is plenty of room for despair in America right now. But he insists that, despite it all, we have ample reason for hope. Noam Chomsky in October 2016. (Nuclear Age Peace Foundation) Noam Chomsky needs no introduction.
For decades, Italy had the West’s largest Communist Party. A key part of the party’s communications to the masses of Italians were its comics, dedicated to resisting the right-wing influence of priests and fascists. Front cover of Il Pioniere, April 28, 1957, in a comic strip depicting partisans during the liberation of Florence. (ilpioniere.org) Children’s
Just as it did in its campaign for California’s Prop 22, Big Tech is claiming rideshare drivers in Massachusetts will earn as much as $18 an hour if a new pro–gig company law is passed. But new analysis finds a majority will actually make less than $5 an hour. A new report finds that a majority of Massachusetts rideshare drivers would likely earn as little as $4.82
When the United States pulled out of Afghanistan, it froze billions of dollars in Afghan assets, grinding many of the country’s most essential operations to a halt and spreading misery. The US government must release those funds. A woman receiving treatment at the Afghan-Japan Communicable Disease Hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan, on September 29, 2021.
The “Bad Art Friend” saga has held readers spellbound, launching a thousand debates about which of the two central figures in the writers’ feud is to blame. But maybe the real culprit is a bleak economic landscape that leads writers to fight for scraps. A leading editor told the New York Times in 2015 that MFA programs were “a house of cards,” because “the number
Imagine a typical Uber ride. A driver logs into the app and waits for riders to appear in their queue. A nearby rider opens the app and sees the driver’s name and photo appear as the car approaches. Between driver and rider, however, another worker intervenes who remains invisible to both. At random intervals, drivers […]
John Deere is in the midst of its most profitable year ever. Yet workers say the company is stiffing them at the bargaining table — which is why 90 percent of voting members rejected the most recent contract proposal and are poised to strike tomorrow. John Deere workers on Sunday, October 10, voted down the first tentative agreement negotiated by the United Auto
Corporate Democrats are trying to prevent the government from securing lower prices for drugs — drugs that were already funded by the US government itself. Merck is planning to charge Americans forty times its cost for a COVID drug. (Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp.) Last week, we learned that Merck is planning to charge Americans forty times its cost for a COVID
Novelist Sally Rooney is under attack for endorsing the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel. Rooney’s stand for Palestinian rights is brave and necessary — she deserves our full support. Sally Rooney at the Hay Festival on May 28, 2017, in Hay-on-Wye, United Kingdom. (David Levenson / Getty Images) An article published in the
In Greece, the right-wing government’s authoritarian measures have sparked important social struggles. But after Alexis Tsipras’s dismal spell in government, the Left faces an uphill battle to overcome Syriza’s legacy and show that an alternative is possible. Demonstrations organized by Syriza, the umbrella union of civil servants ADEDY, and the Communist–affiliated
The superrich often claim their philanthropy is meant to “change the world.” But it’s really meant to keep it exactly the way it is. Bill Gates speaks during the Bloomberg New Economy Forum in Beijing, China, on November 21, 2019. (Takaaki Iwabu / Bloomberg via Getty Images) Up until the turn of this century, the word philanthropy might have called to mind old-money
The southern Mexican state of Oaxaca is known for its tradition of left political militancy. And its indigenous people have often been at the vanguard of that struggle. Members of the Popular Assembly of the Peoples of Oaxaca (APPO) take part in a demonstration against then governor Ulises Ruiz in November 2006. (ALFREDO ESTRELLA/AFP via Getty Images) In 2006,
In last Sunday’s German election, the socialist Die Linke party slumped to under 5 percent support. If the Left is to recover, it needs to show that it's still on the side of disenfranchised working-class voters. A member of Die Linke wears a vest in support of the party in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. (Klaus-Dietmar Gabbert / dpa-Zentralbild / picture alliance
Facebook has been the target of an unprecedented flood of criticism in recent months — and rightly so. But too many critics seem to forget that the company is driven to do bad things by its thirst for profit, not by a handful of mistaken ideas. Facebook cofounder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Financial Services Committee in 2019. (Chip Somodevilla
The bulk of mainstream journalism in the US has long stood as a mouthpiece for ruling-class interests. Yet from Ida B. Wells to Ida Tarbell, a powerful tradition of “muckraking” has gone against the grain to hold the powerful accountable. American journalist and civil rights activist Ida B. Wells (1862–1931) in 1920. (Chicago History Museum via Getty Images)
The intellectual godfathers of neoliberalism knew they needed to attach a philosophy of high-minded ideals to the vicious free-market system they wanted to spread around the globe. They found such a philosophy by perverting the idea of human rights. Economist Friedrich Hayek sought to revive international liberalism to counter the rise of socialism and
The Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions has dissolved after months of media and government attacks. It’s a blow to worker organization across China. The Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions (HKCTU) voted on October 3 to disband. Here, committee members hold hands as they pose for one last photo as the HKCTU committee. (Tsz Yuk Alex Chan / SOPA Images /
Global pharmaceutical companies sell their medications in every country around the world. But only in the US do they get away with charging the extortionate prices Americans have become familiar with. Public Citizen found that US residents spent nearly double the entire rest of the world for the top twenty best-selling drugs on the globe. (Laurynas Mereckas
Big Pharma needed a senator to do their dirty work to kill or gut Democrats’ drug pricing plan. They found someone willing and able in Kyrsten Sinema. Senator Kyrsten Sinema on June 16, 2021. (Tom Williams / CQ-Roll Call Inc via Getty Images) “The pharmaceutical lobby is very savvy,” Democratic representative Ro Khanna (D-CA), said earlier this week during
After Gladys Berejiklian’s resignation last week, New South Wales has a new premier. The rise of Dominic Perrottet — with links to Opus Dei, a raft of reactionary opinions, and close ties to big business — is bad news for Australia’s most populous state. Newly elected premier of New South Wales Dominic Perrottet speaks at his first press conference as leader
In 1944, in exile from Nazi Germany, Theodor Adorno began writing Minima Moralia. Playing on the title of an ethical treatise attributed to Aristotle, Adorno’s book takes up the fundamental question of modern ethics: How do we live meaningfully in a world built on exploitation and barbarity? A pessimist, Adorno refuses to offer easy comforts […]
More than 1,400 workers at Kellogg’s cereal plants across the US are on strike. Fed up with 12- to 16-hour days, seven days a week, with mandatory overtime, they were pushed over the edge by the company’s drive to downgrade wages and benefits for new workers. Kellogg’s cereal plant in Battle Creek, Michigan, the company’s hometown and the site of its headquarters.
There’s good reason to speculate that the Pandora Papers, the massive leak exposing the tax-dodging practices of the global superrich — which includes plenty of Russians and Chinese, but almost no Americans — is a CIA plant. Nevertheless, it’s a newsworthy story that deserves the attention it’s gotten. A shadow cast on the logo of the Pandora Papers, in Lavau-sur-Loire,
Last Sunday, Berliners voted to nationalize the big landlords and win housing justice. We managed to get over a million people to vote to expropriate 240,000 apartments owned by mega-corporations. Thousands of Berliners march near the Brandenburg Gate to protest against rising residential rent prices. (Omer Messinger / Getty Images) In a time of defeats
French philosopher Jacques Derrida is best known as one of the champions of postmodernism. But in the early 1990s, at the height of capitalist triumphalism, Derrida took up the cudgels in defense of Karl Marx — and inadvertently spawned a whole musical genre. French theorist Jacques Derrida in France in 1994, about a year after he published Specters of Marx.
Legislation to hold the Purdue Pharma Sackler family accountable is stalled as the Chamber of Commerce begins lobbying on the bill. Congress can’t let the criminals that fueled the opioid crisis get away with murder. Bottles of Purdue Pharma OxyContin medication sit on a pharmacy shelf in Provo, Utah, on Wednesday, August 31, 2016. (George Frey / Bloomberg
Loretta Preska, the judge who did Chevron’s bidding in the case against activist Steven Donziger, has a history of conflicts of interest and pro-corporate rulings. And she's not alone — corporate influence and conflicts of interest are rampant in the courts. Attorney Steven Donziger speaks to his supporters as he arrives for a court appearance in Manhattan
Like Parasite before it, Netflix’s survival thriller Squid Game dramatizes the horrors of modern inequality and exploitation in South Korea — and shreds the capitalist myth that hard work guarantees prosperity. The new dystopian survival drama Squid Game reflects rising discontent with South Korean socioeconomic inequality. (Netflix) While foreigners
NBA great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar writes in Jacobin arguing that athletes like Kyrie Irving aren’t making a “personal choice” by refusing the COVID vaccine — they’re jeopardizing the public health of all through their platforms. Former NBA player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar during a ceremony at Pauley Pavilion in Los Angeles, 2017. (John W. McDonough / Sports Illustrated
Conservative ideologues have dismissed the French Revolution as an unnecessary bloodbath. But a fresh look at the Revolution shows us its vital relevance to contemporary political issues, from demands for economic equality to the struggle against racism. Anonymous, Storming of the Bastille, painting circa 1789–91. (Wikimedia Commons) Today, more than
We asked our film critic — who has somehow never seen The Sopranos — to watch HBO’s new prequel film The Many Saints of Newark to see if it could work on its own merits. Alessandro Nivola portrays Tony Soprano’s uncle, Dickie Moltisanti, in The Many Saints of Newark. (Warner Bros.) I have to assume that The Sopranos is fifty times better than its prequel The Many Saints