Democratic Left

Women: The Longest Revolution

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Juliet Mitchell (1971)

By Christine R. Riddiough

This year is the 50th anniversary of the publication of Juliet Mitchell’s pamphlet “Women: The Longest Revolution.” Written just three years after Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique, Mitchell’s work garnered nowhere near the notoriety of Friedan’s. It was, nonetheless, as important. Around August 26, 2016 — the 96th anniversary of the passage of the 19th amendment to the Constitution granting women in the United States the vote — we reflect on the contribution of Juliet Mitchell to our understanding of the struggle for women’s liberation and socialist feminism.

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The DNC's Right Realignment

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Enter Stage Right: Patrick Murphy (U.S. Rep. Florida) 

By Elizabeth Mahoney

On July 26, concurrent to the Democratic National Convention’s star-studded attempt to make everybody forget everything that transpired during the primary, New York Mag published a great piece on the Florida senatorial race. What they call “the second-strangest campaign of the season” is worth reading about for a few reasons; because the general election might be able to defeat Marco Rubio’s mercurial reentry into national politics and hand a rare Florida win to the Democrats; because Alan Grayson — the $16-million-tax-haven owner, who, policywise, lands on the left wing of the Democratic Party — is great entertainment; and because Grayson’s primary rival, Patrick Murphy, is a quiet, but powerful, signal of where the Dems are headed.

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DSA Members Run for Office to Continue the Political Revolution

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(San Diego Convention Center/Flickr)

By Alec Shea

Individually signed posts do not necessarily reflect the views of DSA as an organization or its leadership. DSA’s perspective on the 2016 elections can be found here. Democratic Left blog post submission guidelines can be found here.

During the past year, Bernie Sanders has called for a "political revolution" and urged his supporters to run for office at the state and local level. Helping to build a democratic socialist political force, DSA members have stepped up to run for political office around the United States. Their campaigns represent the next stage of the organizing that began with the Sanders campaigns, and their successes will reflect the strength of socialist organizing beyond national politics. In the months and weeks leading up to elections everywhere from Maine to Texas, DSA members will be volunteering and donating to help elect candidates who will fight for economic and social justice. DSA members running for office include:

Tom Wakely (Texas)

Texas’ 21st Congressional District, which covers northern San Antonio, last elected a Democrat in 1974. DSA member Tom Wakely is hoping to change that. Tom, who manages a hospice for veterans, won the Democratic nomination with 59% of the vote and will face Republican Lamar Smith in the general election. Wakely is a long time activist who started out as an organizer helping Cesar Chavez organize boycotts. He hopes to combine the energy generated by the Sanders campaign in Texas with the support he has received from unions and progressive organizations to win election in what is often considered to be a safe district for Republicans. His opponent is a climate change denier who chairs the House Science Committee. In November, Tom is hoping to prove that even the parts of the country considered to be Republican strongholds can foster a political revolution.  

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Battle Against Trans-Pacific Partnership Can Be Won in Congress

By Susan DuBois

After years of secretive negotiations, Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiators reached an agreement in early October 2015. Despite a near-blackout of news about the trade agreement in the corporate media, many organizations across a broad spectrum of politics are opposing it and could still stop it.

The TPP trade agreement has been called “NAFTA on steroids” (referring to the disastrous North American Free Trade Agreement) and a “corporate coup against people and the planet.” It is one of three neoliberal trade agreements currently in the works. The TPP involves the United States, Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam, although other countries could join later.

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Women and the Paris Commune

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A barricade on Place Blanche during Bloody Week, whose defenders included Louise Michel and a unit of 30 women (Wikipedia)

By Gay Gullickson

Women played crucial roles in the French revolution known as the Paris Commune, during which they raised issues of women’s social and political rights. The Commune began with a day of high drama in the working-class neighborhoods of Paris on March 18, 1871. It followed another drama, the triumphal march of the Prussian army through the streets of Paris that signaled the end of a five-month Prussian siege of Paris and the defeat of France in the Franco-Prussian War. In advance of the Prussian procession, Parisians dragged the city’s cannons to the hills of Paris for safekeeping. After the Prussians left the city, the French national government, composed primarily of political conservatives and royalists who had no love for republican, working-class Paris, passed a series of decrees that further alienated and humiliated the city. Finally, Adolph Thiers, the government’s ultraconservative head, ordered the army to disarm the city by removing the cannons.

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DSA Leads Socialist Caucus at DNC

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By Joseph M. Schwartz

A rapidly growing DSA held a coming-out party of sorts at the Democratic National Convention. Over 300 Sanders activists attended DSA’s “Socialist Caucus” on Wednesday afternoon, July 27th. In the audience were over  100 Sanders delegates, including most of DSA’s 55 member-delegates; they were joined by Larry Sanders, Senator Sanders’ brother, and the Senator’s son, Levi Sanders. See the extensive media coverage links below..a dozen stories we know of, including substantive articles in the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal and the New Yorker).

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Dump the Racist Trump; Continue the Political Revolution Down-Ballot; Build Multiracial Coalitions and Socialist Organization for Long-term Change

Statement of the DSA National Political Committee

Democratic Socialists of America believes that the Left must balance two crucial tasks in the November 2016 elections. On the one hand, the progressive movement must roundly defeat Donald Trump’s racist, nativist, Islamophobic and misogynist presidential campaign, as well as isolate and delegitimize the far-right hate groups that his campaign has strengthened. On the other hand, the Left must sustain and expand the independent electoral and social movement capacity built by the insurgent Sanders campaign, while broadening it out in an explicitly antiracist and multiracial direction. Thus, through November, DSA will prioritize two goals:

  1. Building an independent “Dump Trump” movement, primarily in swing states where we have the capacity to make an impact, and
  2. Developing local multiracial coalitions and campaigns that can build independent socialist organizing capacity and challenge neoliberal, pro-corporate Democrats in November 
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Tours For Justice in Atlanta

The large crowd of students, social activists, and community activists gathered eagerly at the Peoplestown Community Center in Atlanta, Georgia, on a Saturday in March. They were about to get on board for the annual Metro Atlanta DSA (MADSA) bus tour of “Resilience, Tenacity and Self-Determination in Peoplestown, Mechanicsville, Pittsburgh and Summerhill.” Designed to shine a light on inner-city Atlanta and the challenges faced by residents due to rapid gentrification, the tour is co-sponsored by longtime MADSA coalition partners Occupy Our Homes Atlanta (OOHA) and the Peoplestown Revitalization Corporation (PRC). Our tour guides of the evening were Tim Franzen of OOHA and Columbus Ward, president of the PRC.

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Researching Officials & Companies (4pm Eastern)

September 10, 2016 · 6 rsvps
Webinar, RSVP required for sign in information

Are you facing an official -- elected or appointed? A corporation? Base your tactics on the real facts of the situation. Learn how to get the information that gives you the upper hand.

In Researching Officials & Companies you will learn:

  • How to do detective work
  • How to find a guilty party that advances your organizing
  • What to look for before meeting with an elected official
  • What to ask for
  • Where to start
  • What you can and can't learn about corporations.

Join us for our latest organizing training for democratic socialist activists: DSA’s (Virtual) Little Red Schoolhouse.

Instructor:

  • Steve Max, DSA Vice Chair and one of the founders of the legendary community organizing school, The Midwest Academy

Training Details:

  1. Workshops are free for any DSA member in good standing.
  2. You need a computer with good internet access.
  3. Your computer must have preferably headphones or else speakers; you can speak thru a mic or use chat to "speak".
  4. If you have questions, contact Theresa Alt talt@igc.org 607-280-7649.
  5. If you have very technical questions, contact Tony Schmitt schmittaj@gmail.com 608-355-6568.
  6. You can participate in every webinar or just attend once in a while.
  7. Workshops will generally be on weekends or evenings.
  8. Participation requires that you register at least 36 hours in advance -- by midnight Thursday for Saturday's webinar.

NOTE: This training is scheduled for 4:00pm Eastern Time (3pm Central, 2pm Mountain, 1pm Pacific, noon Alaska, 10 am Hawaii).

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DSA New Member Orientation Call

September 13, 2016 · 2 rsvps
DSA New Member Orientation

You've joined DSA - Great. Now register for this New Member Orientation call and find out more about our politics and our vision.  And, most importantly, how you can become involved.  8 PM ET; 7 PM CT; 6 PM MT; 5 PM PT.

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