Democratic Left

A DSA Night School

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By Jarek Ervin and Melissa Naschek

Philadelphia DSA is piloting a political education series called the Socialist Night School. Despite the name, the program is not a “school” in the traditional sense: there are no fees, grades, or enrollments, and anyone can attend as many or as few sessions as they like.

 

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Disaster Socialism: Inequality in Recovery After a Fire

By Richard Neve

Fire, City and Demographics

Wild fires are seasonal phenomena here in California. From October through April "Santa Ana" winds blow hot dry air westward from the interior  towards the more populated coastal regions. These types of fires “burn fast and dangerous,” spreading almost as fast as the wind blows. Climate change is causing these fires to be more intense, more destructive.  The winter fire season is beginning to merge with the summer fire season. 

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Educating for Socialism

By Christine Darr

 

At the DSA National Convention in August, members voted to adopt a national training strategy to help chapters sharpen their skills in organizing and member retention as well as to teach members the history of socialism and inculcate DSA values, structure, and strategy. In listserves and in other online forums, conversations about how better to educate ourselves abound. 

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Solidarity With Ahed Tamimi

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Statement of the DSA National Political Committee, January 5, 201

Ahed Tamimi is a 16 year-old Palestinian girl living in Occupied Palestine. She is also a political leader, a global symbol of resistance to occupation and oppression. Palestine is under Israeli occupation and last month Ahed was filmed standing up to Israeli soldiers at her family home. Israeli forces had recently shot her 15 year-old cousin, Muhammad Fadel Tamimi, in the face with a rubber bullet at a protest against U.S. President Trump.

 

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Using Trade to Develop Nations and Protect Workers

Daniel C. Adkins

 

Our current trade treaties focus on building a global market dominated by multinationals and soon a mercantile China.  This market is used to pit nations and workers against each other while maximizing profits for the few.

 

A different approach could be a trade goal to create a more equal development of the world’s nations.  There is no good reason that trade could not aid the development of India or a trade group of South American or African nations.  If there were a more even development of nations, then a major crisis, like climate change, would be less of a threat to global stability because nations would have more equal capabilities and self-reliance.  

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Class War on the World Wide Web: The Rhetoric Powering DSA’s Twitter Account

By Hannah Zimmerman

The internet became my activist outlet as soon as I started working at Organizing 2.0, a left-wing digital political consulting firm, a little over a year ago. With access to a plethora of verified Facebook and Twitter accounts, I would watch as hashtags and tweets born out of my fingertips reached millions online and sparked hundreds of conversations, all while I sat at a cramped desk in Brooklyn. While working, I paid close attention to which one of my hashtags or tweets would trend and why. I realized this: the difference between a flop and a successful hashtag often came down to the rhetoric of my hashtag and whether or not it was clear what audience it was for. Nevertheless, working with political twitter accounts, I was struck by one radical account that always seemed to have a grasp on what their rhetoric was and who it was for. This was the Democratic Socialists of America’s Twitter account (@demsocialists.) Through the use of confrontational rhetoric, DSA’s Twitter account is able to recruit and mobilize new, current, and prospective members to commit to the “socialist revolution.”

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DSA Across the USA

By Dan DiMaggio

DSA members in Gainesville, Florida, took part in the protests against far-right troll Richard Spencer’s visit to the University of Florida in October. Despite being urged to stay home by the university’s president, more than a thousand protesters showed up. “Spencer barely got a word out. As soon as he opened his mouth, there was continuous chanting,” says Roxanne Palmer of Gainesville DSA, who estimates that 90% of those inside the event were protesters. “We showed that we have collective people power in our community.” Palmer emphasized that the protest was successful in part because organizers tried not to appear like outsiders coming in, but rather emphasized they were part of the community (including chanting “Let’s go, Gators!” and “Orange and Blue!”).

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Our hearts are with Erica Garner and her family

Erica Garner, a movement leader and fierce advocate for justice, is in critical condition after a heart attack. She and her family are in our thoughts and prayers. After her father, Eric Garner, was killed by the NYPD in 2014, Erica dedicated her life to championing his memory and became a relentless fighter in the struggle against police brutality. Erica’s conviction was uncompromising. Every Tuesday and Thursday for a year, she protested in honor of her father and all those who were lost to police brutality. Her struggle didn’t stop at the rallies. She recognized that her father’s death and the oppression of Black people more broadly were symptoms of a society in need of wholesale change. She believed that Bernie Sanders was a step towards that change, appearing in a powerful campaign ad linking her struggle to Sanders’ program. Erica has been more than an activist, she’s a beacon of resistance, of resolve, of courage. We, the National Political Committee of the Democratic Socialists of America, encourage all our chapters across the country to take a moment to reflect on Erica’s life and wish her and her family well.

Statement of the DSA National Political Committee, Christmas Day, 2017

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