The desecration of Marx’s grave: A warning

19 February 2019 — WSWS

There have now been two attacks on the grave of Karl Marx in Highgate Cemetery in the space of just two weeks. The first and most damaging was an attempt to obliterate with a hammer Marx’s name from the original headstone marking the burial place of Karl and his wife Jenny, which was incorporated into the monument erected in his memory in 1956. The second was this weekend’s daubing of anti-communist slogans on the plinth supporting the monument’s bronze bust of Marx.

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The Socialization of Society By Rosa Luxemburg

19 January 2019 — Socialist Project

One hundred years ago this month, on January 15, 1919, the great revolutionary thinker and anti-war activist, Rosa Luxemburg, was murdered in Berlin by the Freikorps paramilitary group, with her body dumped into the Landwehr Canal. Her comrade in opposition to the Social Democratic Party of Germany support for German involvement in World War 1, and in splitting from the SPD to eventually form the Communist Party of Germany, Karl Liebknecht, was also murdered in the course of the same events. Luxemburg occupies a special place in the traditions of the global left for her powerful political interventions and ceaseless invocation of revolution to break the hammerlock of capitalism on democracy and development, and for her major economic text, The Accumulation of Capital (1913), linking capitalist development to dispossessions, imperialism and militarism. Her searing critique of capitalist democracy was central to a political strategy that combined an insistence on the capacity for revolt and self-organization of the masses with recognition of the role of the socialist party in education, agitation, and parliamentary representation and struggle in the interests of the working classes. One hundred years on, Luxemburg remains a source of political inspiration and integrity for socialists around the world.

We reprint here her call (published in December 1918) for political control of the state and socialization of the economic system in the midst of the German revolts of 1918-1919. “While we are enlisting fighters for the revolution, we are creating Socialist workers for the future, workers who can become the basis of a new social state…. There is still an old world to be overthrown. A new world must be built!”

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Revolutionaries in the Gorbals – one hundred years on from Red Clydeside By Henry Bell

30 November 2018 — Open Democracy

As the First World War drew to a close, John Maclean – the ‘accuser of capitalism’ – was seen as the most dangerous man in the country – but he was released from jail to a hero’s welcome.

Image: John Maclean, from the cover of Pluto Press’s book “John Maclean, Hero of Red Clydeside”

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There is no left-wing case for Brexit: 21st century socialism requires transnational organization

26 November 2018 — LSE Blog

The contribution of traditional social democracy to the consolidation of neoliberalism in Europe illustrates the difficulties of developing a nationalist left alternative in the contemporary capitalist state, argues Lea Ypi. Contemporary socialism requires new ways of organising and must be transnational. Using the British case, she explains why neither Remain nor Leave fully capture the demands of the left.

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‘Karl Marx’s Ecosocialism’ wins the 2018 Deutscher Prize

25 November 2018 — Climate & Capitalism

Kohei Saito honored for his brilliant study of Marx’s views on the relationship between society and nature


I’m thrilled to report that Kohei Saito’s brilliant bookKarl Marx’s Ecosocialism: Capital, nature, and the unfinished critique of political economy, has won the 2018 Deutscher Memorial Prize. The prize, named for the great Marxist scholar and historian Isaac Deutscher, is awarded annually to “a book which exemplifies the best and most innovative new writing in or about the Marxist tradition.”

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The Defence of Humanity Requires the Radicalisation of Popular Struggles By Samir Amin

12 October 2018 — Socialist Project

In August this year, the acclaimed socialist writer and activist Samir Amin (1931-2018) passed away. Born in Egypt and educated in Port Said and Paris, he eventually settled as director of the Third World Forum in Dakar, Senegal from 1980. Samir was author of numerous books including his well-known Accumulation on a World Scale (1970), De-Linking (1990) and Capitalism in the Age of Globalization (1997), and more recent texts such as The Liberal Virus (2003), A Life Looking Forward (2006), From Capitalism to Civilization: Reconstructing the Socialist Perspective (2010), and many others. Amin was a central figure in the pantheon of thinkers from the so-called Global South who reworked Marxism and the theories of imperialism to examine the dynamics of capitalism and the world market from the territories marginalized – but integral – to global accumulation. We publish here one of Samir Amin’s important assessments of the challenges of political resistance to global neoliberalism – first published in the 2009 Socialist Register. Continue reading

THE PERENNIAL QUESTION: TO WORK IN OR OUTSIDE THE LABOUR PARTY?

22 May 2018 — theplanningmotivedotcom

A reformist party can be compared to a ship whose captain and officers either wilfully or negligently set sail ignoring adverse weather reports or the state of the tides. The result is a ship running aground or out of fuel or, even, a ship sinking before its destination. Of course, the brochure promoting the reformist ship is silent about the storms ahead. And of course, the reformist liner appears to be much more attractive and comfortable compared to the smaller, older but sturdier revolutionary tug alongside, a ship presently with no passengers but only a working crew.

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200th Anniversary of the Birth of Marx and a Revolution in Understanding History

5 May 2018 — TRNN

Historian Gerald Horne and host Paul Jay discuss the ongoing relevance of Marx’s Materialist Conception of History; to understand and fight ideas that defend injustice today, people must know the economic roots the give rise to, and perpetuate, such ideology (inc. transcript). Continue reading

Agrotowns could be the way of the future

11 January 2018 — The Morning Star

[Here’s an interesting and stimulating essay on the kind of possibilities a humane and socialist future could offer us instead of this plastic madness that threatens to completely overwhelm us, and the planet! No byline unfortunately but some useful references to other sources and stimulations. WB]

IMAGINE living in a town surrounded by ecologically friendly farms, walkable, green, with world-class cultural and health institutions, and flexible working schedules allowing you to get your hands dirty and exercise by working on a farm in the morning and studying, creating art or playing with your children in the afternoon.

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