Democratic Left

Turning the March Into a Movement

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 A crowd fills Independence Avenue during the Women's March on Washington, Saturday, January 21, 2017 in Washington.    AP Photo/ Alex Brandon  

By Peter Dreier and Donald Cohen

Saturday’s day of protest—against Donald Trump and for women’s equality—was successful in two significant ways.

First, it was the largest one-day protest in American history. Based on news reports from cities around the country, as many as 4.5 million people took to the streets. From 750,000 people in Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles to 250,000 in Chicago, 60,000 in Atlanta, 26,000 in Des Moines, and 271 in Morris, Minnesota (with a population of 3,500 and only two stoplights), protesters took over America on Trump’s second day in office.

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Populists, the Elites, and Us

By Michael Hirsch

My Turn: Hillary Clinton Targets the Presidency
By Doug Henwood, OR Books, 2016

Trump Unveiled: Exposing the Bigoted Billionaire
By John K. Wilson, OR Books, 2016

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What an election! First, shock and bore throughout; then, fright night. During the course of the tortuous presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton and the feral Donald Trump both had large, tub-thumping support sections and ample rubbishers. With the outcome now history, is there any reason to reopen the trash bin? I think yes, because two books released during the campaign elaborate on far more than its detritus. They warn not only that the struggle against far-right nativism and neoliberal austerity continues but also that the political center is cracked.

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We Are Witnessing the Birth Pangs of a Third Reconstruction

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By Rev.William J. Barber

On election night I felt a great sadness for America — not a Democratic or Republican sadness, but a sadness for the heart and soul of the nation. It is impossible to react to the election of Donald Trump with anything less than moral outrage. Trump is, as David Remnick wrote for The New Yorker, “vulgarity unbounded [1],” and his election has not only struck fear in the hearts of the vulnerable but also given rise to hundreds of documented cases of harassment and intimidation

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Militias and the “New Normal”

Donald Trump’s presidential campaign brought the menace of the “Patriot” movement from the margins to the center of national politics, and there is no reason to think the militiarization of our politics will now fade into the background.

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Hope in a Dark Era:

In the Face of Barbarism, Thousands Turn to Democratic Socialism

By Jake Johnson

In his book The American Left and Some British Comparisons, published in 1971, the renowned economist John Kenneth Galbraith sought to analyze the persistent shortcomings of the Democratic Party. The stakes, he believed, were quite high, as the collapse of the New Deal order seemed imminent. Almost 50 years later, Galbraith's study makes for striking reading. Take, for example, the following observation:

"Everything considered," Galbraith wrote, "if the test of the success of a party is the quality and number of its office holders, the Democrats are not doing well."

 

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Lump of Coal

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By Rosemary Fuerer

I’ve been thinking about Santa Claus and the lump of coal threat from folklore. Thinking about it in relationship to this month, which is the anniversary of one of the highest miner death tolls in a single month  in US history, December 1907.

Two of those December 1907 disasters were forever associated with Santa Claus, or at least St. Nicholas when immigrant lives were saved by their refusal to give up their holiday to their corporate masters.  In Monongah, West Virginia, and Jacobs Creek, Pennsylvania, it seemed to some that St. Nicholas had intervened on some workers’ behalf, sparing them.  Catholic immigrants were still celebrating St Nicholas in the western tradition on December 6 when the Monongah disaster struck. In the eastern tradition, the feast day was on December 19, saving Slavic immigrants celebrating near the Darr mine at Jacobs Creek. It became known as the great intercession, a tale handed down through the years and in the icons of the Church.

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A First Step Towards a Peace Process

DSA’s National Political Committee’s Statement on the UN Security Council Resolution 2334
January 2, 2017

Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) commends the UN Security Council vote of 14-0-1 in favor of Resolution 2334 on December 23, 2016, a resolution that condemns all Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem as having “no legal validity” and amounting to a “flagrant violation of international law.” We wish that the United States government had voted in favor of the resolution, but we note that the U.S.’s abstention enabled the first Security Council condemnation of the illegal Israeli occupation of the West Bank since 1980.

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DSA Welcomes New Office Staff

By the DSA National Office

During a surge in membership because of Bernie Sanders’s campaign, DSA hired new staff, who were in place when the wave of new members joined after the presidential election. By freeing the national director of administrative tasks, they allow program staff to be in the field and respond more quickly to organizing opportunities.

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