Comrade Anklebiter's Fun-Timey Revolutionary Socialism Thread


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Belated Happy Birthday wishes, Anklebiter!


Why, thank you, but my b-day isn't for another month.

Unless you mean the Bolshevik Revolution, in which case, indeed! Many happy returns!


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Anarchist Monopoly


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Good news and bad news:

Bad news first: We abandoned our office at the end of October. There was significant water damage to the ceiling from an overflowing sink on the floor above and they never fixed it. Apparently, the landlord moved to Hawaii and after, two months, we bailed. Sorry to waste your money, Comrade Longears.

Good news: The dining hall workers at UMass Lowell, who used to meet in our office, won recognition of UNITE-HERE Local 26 as their bargaining-unit representative. Huzzah!

Victory party this Saturday and, then, onwards to the fight for a first contract!

Organize the unorganized!

Vive le Galt!!!

Scarab Sages

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Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Organize the unorganized!

Maybe it's just me, but this sounds less like a Communist Party credo and more like one for the Royal Society for Putting Things On Top of Other Things.

By the way, what do you think of/know about Gloria La Riva? I don't know much about her, but she got my vote this year (and I'm going to preempt attacks by saying that that's not why Trump won, because A] Hillary won the popular vote by a wide margin, and B] both the state I reside in and the state I call home went to her anyways).


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I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Organize the unorganized!

Maybe it's just me, but this sounds less like a Communist Party credo and more like one for the Royal Society for Putting Things On Top of Other Things.

By the way, what do you think of/know about Gloria La Riva? I don't know much about her, but she got my vote this year (and I'm going to preempt attacks by saying that that's not why Trump won, because A] Hillary won the popular vote by a wide margin, and B] both the state I reside in and the state I call home went to her anyways).

It's less a slogan of communists (although, it is) and more of a slogan of the labor movement. For example, it's printed on my Teamsters membership card.

I don't know much about La Riva personally, but her Party of Socialism and Liberation is a pretty well-known quantity. Locally, they run the Mass Action Against Police Brutality coalition and their spokesman, with the awesome name (given or assumed, I'm not sure) of Nino Brown, worked with us at our anti-Trump rally in Lowell last January, as well as speaking at our mass anti-Trump rally in Boston last week.

Nationally, they have been prominent in the anti-Trump rallies, they were key organizers in the Akai Gurley case, and they are usually neck deep in any direct action against ICE and deporting undocumented workers.

They have a few "tankie" positions that I don't like, but, tbh, there are far worse groups one could join and they certainly teach their members how to organize.

LIBERATION: Newspaper of the Party for Socialism and Liberation

Oh yeah, and Celebrity Leftist Heartthrob, Abby Martin, is dating one of their members. Here, she interviews La Riva: The Empire Files: Meet the Socialist Woman Running for President


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'Rotherham 12' cleared after fight with fascists

And:

Acceptable ways to insult Kim Jong Un in China

TL; DR: 'Kim Fatty the Third' is not OK; Kim Fat Fat Fat is. So now you know.

Community & Digital Content Director

Unlocking.


For Purposes of Continuity

Secret Underground Commie Hideout


Arise, ye prisoners of starvation,
Arise, ye wretched of the earth
For justice thunders condemnation
A better world's in birth!

No more tradition's chains shall bind us,
Arise ye, slaves, no more in thrall
The earth shall rise on new foundations,
We have been naught, we shall be all!

'Tis the final conflict,
Let each stand where he may
The internationale unites the human race

So, comrades come rally
And the final fight we'll face
The internationale unites the human race

Scarab Sages

Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Here's a 1917 centenary website.

Creepy. 100 years since the October Revolution...

...and guess what's scheduled to happen this October?

It might lead somewhere - and before the obvious is stated, there's frankly no telling who will be in charge by then. :P

Scarab Sages

@Scythia: Regarding your claim that "human nature" is all about chimp-like dominance...

1) Mine's not - then again, I'm probably not human.

2) I think talk of "human nature" is pretty much always a setup for baloney and post hoc fairy-tales. If there IS any such thing as "human nature," it's the capacity to be able to change.

3) There certainly are *some* people who behave like you describe; they're called bullies. The vast majority of human beings aren't them, and don't like them - the problem is cowardice, learned helplessness, and the institutionalization/rationalization/mass internalization of an abusive figure shouting "YOU NEED ME!" installed in people's minds.

I honestly believe we're presently at a big-ass turning point. The main danger is Chaophobes sabatoging the rightful course of events out of sheer fear of the unknown (and for what it's worth, I'm not quite a Marxist quite the same way as Comrade Anklebiter and some others here might be, I kind of have my own self-developed "petty bourgeois liberal" - again, words probably defined differently than Comrade Anklebiter would - thing going on that I'd say has a lot in common with Marxism's spirit but departs radically on the level of theory).


Free Marissa Now Statement on Marissa Alexander's Freedom


Last night, nice little impromptu anti-Trump rally in Manchester; nice speeches by a Navy vet who went to Standing Rock and Mr. Comrade who took aim on the Democrats, although he neglected to bring up how the DP speaker was one of the people who pissed off our Black Lives Matters friends by dissing intersectionality at the Portsmouth Women's March.

Checking and double checking my Events list and it looks like nothing until Wednesday. What am I going to do til then? (Probably paper sales and tabling.)

Wednesday--First new CAJE meeting. Huzzah! Getting the band back together, although I expect a fall out between the IdPol 3. One dude started talking about reviving the group, presumably under his stricter control, when the other two popped back up and organized (well, half-organized, we did the rest) the Stand with Devante! protest without conferring with the other one. Hee hee! Can't wait to watch the bickering and then end up doing the gruntwork for both sides. Politics is a thankless task...

Saturday--First, raise the black nationalist flag in Lowell and chill and then, maybe down to Cambridge for resistance training from our friends in UNITE-HERE Local 26.

Resisting Trump: Lessons from the HUDS Strike

Sunday--Solidarity Lowell general meeting; once more unto the breach with the liberals!


When Mr. Comrade and the Nigerian Princess broke up, I laid claim to one of her paintings that she hated. I told her I was going to put it on Facebook, and she cursed me royally. Well, I never did...but Mr. Comrade did last night:

Clown with Balloons

I'd like to point out the D&D miniature in front of Dreiser's An American Tragedy.


IT LIVES


It sure does. Taxi driver strikes in NYC, spontaneous demos at airports and immigrant rights demos all over the place.

Vive le Galt!


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Also played some 5th ed last night.

Fought 10-foot tall ratmen boxers, used my shield other power (or whatever it's called) in conjunction with another fighter with the same power to make an impenetrable wall of defense.

Later fought some giant centipedes.

Huzzah!


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

The Canadian take on "Alternative Facts" long before the term started being used or the web became what it is today.

I always really wanted a house hippo...


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The path of the Black Flag - introducing Anarchy into Pathfinder

I've not read it, mind, but might be of interest to some.


Forgive my ignorance, but what do all these demonstrations actually accomplish, other than getting some of the demonstrators tear-gassed or whatever? (Don't get me wrong -- I'm totally sympathetic and it looks like fun, but I'm a very results-oriented satyr.) It seems to me that, for all the demonstrations in the late '60s and early '70s, none of them accomplished anything at all until things got out of hand at Kent State and someone finally said, "Wait a minute -- we're shooting our own children now?"


I assume the major effect is to show those folks impacted by something bad (in this case most recently the the people hit with the Muslim Ban) that people in this country strongly reject something.

and the protests also at least give some backing for politicians in the areas where the protests are occurring to take a stand.

Bugging local representative is probably more effective however in the long run, at least if you continually keep at it.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
Forgive my ignorance, but what do all these demonstrations actually accomplish, other than getting some of the demonstrators tear-gassed or whatever? (Don't get me wrong -- I'm totally sympathetic and it looks like fun, but I'm a very results-oriented satyr.) It seems to me that, for all the demonstrations in the late '60s and early '70s, none of them accomplished anything at all until things got out of hand at Kent State and someone finally said, "Wait a minute -- we're shooting our own children now?"

It's had the desired effect. Trump and his cabal know they're being watched.

From Robin Middlebrooks:

For everyone who DID something, small or big, your efforts have been successful. Because of you:

1. Federal hiring freeze is reversed for VA (Veteran Affairs).
2. Court order Partial stay of the immigration ban for those with valid visas.
3. Green card holders can get back in country.
4. Uber pledges $3M and immigration lawyers for its drivers after #DeleteUber trends on Twitter.
5. Obamacare (Affordable Care Act) enrollment ads are still going to air.
6. The ACLU raised 24M over the weekend (normally 3-4Mil/year).
7. HHS, EPA, USDA gag order lifted.
8. EPA climate data no longer scrubbed from website.
9. More people of different career/religious/economic/race backgrounds are considering running for political office than ever before.
10. MOST importantly, since we live in a participatory democracy, the people are engaged.

While more is needed, sometimes you have to celebrate your wins.
Stay vigilant, but also take self care seriously. Activist burnout is a thing. Marathon, don't sprint.
#resist

The world is watching. They're not going to be able to throw up so much BS and cause as much confusion as Bannon thought they could.

He's really the Goebbels, here, and he knows we're on to him. We do NOT have to go down his Leninist path of total destruction.

We mustn't.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
(Don't get me wrong -- I'm totally sympathetic and it looks like fun, but I'm a very results-oriented satyr.) It seems to me that, for all the demonstrations in the late '60s and early '70s, none of them accomplished anything at all until things got out of hand at Kent State and someone finally said, "Wait a minute -- we're shooting our own children now?"

No, that's not how it happened. In the Nixon tapes you can hear him feeling threatened by all the protesters outside the Whitehouse and in DC.

Knock Their Heads Off
"They've got guys who'll go in and knock their heads off," Nixon told H.R. Haldeman, who was then chief of staff on May 5, 1971 -- only two days after Washington police, backed by federal troops, used tear gas and mass arrests to thwart protesters who had threatened to close down the federal government.

The Kent State massacre was in May 1970. One of the larger anti-Vietnam protests (over 200,000 people)was in April 1971. A march in May of that year had over 10,000 people arrested

Jane Fonda didn't go to Hanoi until 1972.

The Paris Peace Accords weren't signed until 1973

Kent State was important but it wasn't the final blow, and the protesting continued for several years.


Invisible Kierkegaard wrote:

While more is needed, sometimes you have to celebrate your wins.

Stay vigilant, but also take self care seriously. Activist burnout is a thing. Marathon, don't sprint.
#resist

I've been to four protests since Trump was inaugurated, and I skipped most of the really big ones. (Benefits of having a communist collective: division of labor.)

Kirth Gersen wrote:
Forgive my ignorance, but what do all these demonstrations actually accomplish, other than getting some of the demonstrators tear-gassed or whatever? (Don't get me wrong -- I'm totally sympathetic and it looks like fun, but I'm a very results-oriented satyr.) It seems to me that, for all the demonstrations in the late '60s and early '70s, none of them accomplished anything at all until things got out of hand at Kent State and someone finally said, "Wait a minute -- we're shooting our own children now?"

In addition to what others have said, I am particularly heartened by the spate of labor actions that have popped off recently. I haven't had much of a chance to really follow the news (four protests and another half dozen meetings, I'd wager), but there was the work stoppage on the Oakland docks on J20, Northeastern Univeristy dining hall workers same day, NY Taxi Workers Alliance and, from what I've read, other taxi unions in other cities over the past weekend; not much, I admit, but there must be more, Mr. Comrade said he was talking to one of Comrade Omar's old organizing pals over at UE and she said they were doing all kindsa shiznit.

Hopefully, the Trump presidency has ushered in the rebirth of the American political labor strike.

[Crosses fingers]

Scarab Sages

Invisible Kierkegaard wrote:


It's had the desired effect. Trump and his cabal know they're being watched.

From Robin Middlebrooks:

For everyone who DID something, small or big, your efforts have been successful. Because of you:

1. Federal hiring freeze is reversed for VA (Veteran Affairs).
2. Court order Partial stay of the immigration ban for those with valid visas.
3. Green card holders can get back in country.
4. Uber pledges $3M and immigration lawyers for its drivers after #DeleteUber trends on Twitter.
5. Obamacare (Affordable Care Act) enrollment ads are still going to air.
6. The ACLU raised 24M over the weekend (normally 3-4Mil/year).
7. HHS, EPA, USDA gag order lifted.
8. EPA climate data no longer scrubbed from website.
9. More people of different career/religious/economic/race backgrounds are considering running for political office than ever before.
10. MOST importantly, since we live in a participatory democracy, the people are engaged.

HOLY S@!+! This is the best news I've heard in months! I never thought I'd be hearing it here! :D


Have to give back the Latest Recruit's new pamphlet at the meeting tonight, so I went looking for the articles on the internet to post so I can finish it quicker.

Part 1, Section 3, "The Rise of Capitalism and the Emergence of Racism"

Spoiler:
are excerpts from a pamphlet by our South African comrades which is happily posted here:

CLASS AND RACE: MARXISM, RACISM & THE CLASS STRUGGLE

Which I think I linked before, but, whatevs.

Part 2, Section 2, "Black Lives Matter, Two Years After Ferguson"

Spoiler:
is from a very, very lengthy Perspectives document that is posted here:

2016 SOCIALIST ALTERNATIVE U.S. PERSPECTIVES DOCUMENT--Historic Opportunities for Rebuilding the Workers and Socialist Movements
U.S. Capitalism Passing Through Profound Crisis and Upheaval

About two-thirds of the way down, a subsction entitled "Black Lives Matter" in "Part III: Perspectives for Labor, BLM and Other Struggles."

Which leaves only 15 or so pages, "Black Lives Matter and Marxism" that were previously published in an internal bulletin and hence not on the internet. Which I already read back when that came out, but I guess I should re-read them before giving the pamphlet back.

Also, while looking all these up, I noticed an on-topic article we put out yesterday:

THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION AND BLACK FREEDOM MOVEMENT LEGACY

but I haven't read it yet.


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This is what I missed the most about political threads not being 'open'. Every day we learn something new, and this thread has been a consistent source of information.

I may not agree with all of it, but it *is* informative.


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I understand that capitalism is the root of many problems, yet I am still tempted to start selling ammo to the Democratic Party circle-firing squad. #MayBeTurningLawfulEvil #MurderHoboEconomics


My third-party friends, you've gotta have ammo to sell it. ;)


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
My third-party friends, you've gotta have ammo to sell it. ;)

I just watched episode 4 of Taboo the other night. They showed what is needed to make gunpowder. It doesn't even sound that difficult.


Pillbug Toenibbler wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
My third-party friends, you've gotta have ammo to sell it. ;)
I just watched episode 4 of Taboo the other night. They showed what is needed to make gunpowder. It doesn't even sound that difficult.

MUSQUETOONS FOR ALL!

Scarab Sages

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Pillbug Toenibbler wrote:
I understand that capitalism is the root of many problems, yet I am still tempted to start selling ammo to the Democratic Party circle-firing squad. #MayBeTurningLawfulEvil #MurderHoboEconomics

#Dungeons&DragonsDemocrat: Kill Them and Take Their Stuff!

Scarab Sages

So...this thread was able to give me some surprising good news last time I looked, anything to help me not worry about the Democrats caving on the stolen Supreme Court seat? Or at least not feel like Senator Merkley's bid for Justice-Justice has already been struck down by the "caving-man" crowd?


I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:
So...this thread was able to give me some surprising good news last time I looked, anything to help me not worry about the Democrats caving on the stolen Supreme Court seat? Or at least not feel like Senator Merkley's bid for Justice-Justice has already been struck down by the "caving-man" crowd?

I suspect they won't. It won't really matter beyond symbolism - the GOP will change the rules to remove the filibuster to get a SC nominee.

No caving required. This one can't be stopped.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


This is what I missed the most about political threads not being 'open'. Every day we learn something new, and this thread has been a consistent source of information.

I may not agree with all of it, but it *is* informative.

[Blushes]


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Not too long ago I had an exchange in the Good Books thread with Comrade Samnell about the "identity" vs. "class" politics debate that is (was?) going on in the Democratic Party. This was an extension of a bit of an exchange going on over on Comrade Samnell's Facebook page, from which I quickly learned that the debate over identity vs. class bears little to no resemblance to the debate over identity vs. class in the commie movement.

Anyway, in Paizoland, I was moved by Comrade Samnell's comments about Adolph Reed, Jr. whose quip, "Identity politics is the left-wing of neoliberalism" I've had occasion to throw around.

Spoilered for Length, Boringness, and Self-Indulgence

Spoiler:
I talked to La Principessa's Single Mother Comrade about him, learned that he was the son of a black academic active in the Civil Rights Movement, and that he was a mover and shaker in the attempt to build a US Labor Party in the nineties, led by Tony Mazzocchi's Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers union (since merged with the Steelworkers), and, hence, a semi-comrade of ours since we were working in the Labor Party back then, too. ("Really smart guy," she said.) Since then, of course, he returned to the Democrats, was active in the Bernie campaign, and wrote that "Vote for the Lying Neoliberal Imperialist Warmonger, It's Important" essay that I linked in the election thread, or whatever it was called.

Anyway, more digressions: Back when CAJE started, there was this unaffiliated red activist in the Carpenter's Union. Not too long into it, he busted his knee, was out of work for a long time, and moved back to his parents' home in Cape Cod. There he organized a Jacobin reader's circle, got blacklisted from the Carpenter's because of his activism in Labor for Bernie, ended up getting a job in a grocery store and recently joined Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) which is going through a huge growth spurt (they claim 11,000 members) (which, if I were to be cynical, is mostly made up of comrades who left my party [Ex-Mrs. Comrade, her new boyfriend, a founder of the Worcester branch, etc., etc.--the big irony is, of course, that some, not all, of these comrades left over what I call "the Bernie turn"--saying vaguely supportive things about Bernie while denouncing the Democrats--is betraying the working class and then ended up in an organization whose entire purpose, including its hipster youth Jacobin wing, is to reform the Democratic Party]).

Anyway, Carpenter dude was posting on Facebook about finally reading The New Jim Crow and I tried to gently razz him about it because back when CAJE organized a NJC reader's circle, he pooh-poohed it as "too popular," much like a snobby teenage Doodlebug turning up his nose at Pearl Jam.

Then along comes Mr. Comrade's Former Mentor. He lives in New Orleans now, and is active in the railroad union down there. He quit over the Bernie turn, too, but at least he didn't join DSA, he started his own group, the New Orleans Socialist Network. He is, however, sniffing around DSA, which is how I ran into him on Carpenter Dude's FB page.

Anyway, whole point of all of this: Mr. Comrade's Former Mentor claimed that Adolph Reed had a great critique of NJC, "noting that Alexander's analysis gives a transhistorical agency to race, as opposed to the concept that the main conflict in society is the one between class. At root in her analysis is philosphical idealism, and liberal identitarianism."

I objected that I thought NJC was pretty rooted in class, actually, and did he have a link? He replied with a private message saying how "Brother Reed has sent him a bunch of his writings" and forwarded me an article which, I later noticed, is published on Common Dreams.

Anyway, looked for Adolph Reed's books in the interlibrary loan system, they didn't have any, so I guess I am left only with the following essay with which to judge Comrade Samnell's non-flattering characterization of Brother Reed.

THE CRISIS OF LABOUR AND THE LEFT
IN THE UNITED STATES
MARK DUDZIC AND ADOLPH REED JR

Hopefully, I will get a chance to read it tonight.


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"Identity politics" is literally just a buzzword for "we're tired of hearing about civil rights, worry more about white men".


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
"Identity politics" is literally just a buzzword for "we're tired of hearing about civil rights, worry more about white men".

As opposed to, "Hell with the economy, let us be good serfs to our corporate overlords, as long as white men are serfs on the same (or, preferably, lower rung) than a transgendered biracial person." Which is something I hear a lot of, just not in those exact words.


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You don't actually hear "or, preferably, lower rung" (that's just something reactionary white guys tell ghost stories about—"reverse racism", "misandry", etc), but otherwise, yeah, New Democrats are a problem. New Democrats like Booker fight for social justice, which is great, but don't care about economic justice, which is bad.

Scarab Sages

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Both of these things are called "divide and conquer."

The conflict between ethnic minorities and the economically disadvantaged is an ILLUSION, people!

Being autistic, I actually think the real conflict is between people who depend on group identity vs people whose power comes from within (which I view in D&D terms: "Lawful VS Chaotic"). Group identity is also a maleficent illusion.


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Let me clarify that I'm strongly in favor of civil rights for all. If it were up to me, for example, we'd all have unisex bathrooms so that no one ever had to feel out of place. But I also feel those goals are far more likely to be attained when we don't have to get our corporate masters' permission to use the restroom in the first place, so I prioritize differently.

Scarab Sages

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The rise of Chelsea Manning and Caitlyn Jenner has made me realize something:

We don't need gender pronouns at all, really. 1st-person and 2nd-person in English already don't even have them; what's the point, really, of "he/she/hers/his" except as more needless marbles in our mouths?


I'd be in favor. Hell, our nouns for inanimate objects don't get genders -- unlike in, say, French and German -- so why should animate objects be different?

I increasingly don't like using "they" to mean "he/she/other," though, because of the confusion between singular and plural. But I'd be fine with being called "it" if everyone else was, too.

Scarab Sages

Kirth Gersen wrote:
But I'd be fine with being called "it" if everyone else was, too.

Me too - heck, I'd be okay with it even if not everyone else was! I've read about attempts to introduce a unisex pronoun into English over the years, and the one I liked was "ith," which I've tried using occasionally on these forums.

My family hosted an au pair from the Czech Republic when my little brother was very little. From her we learned that in Czech, almost everything has a gender - houses, boats, you name it - but one of the few exceptions are children, who are referred to as neuter.

It would be interesting to look up pedophilic behavior/crime rates in countries where the language works like that and see if they're any better than in countries that give kids genders.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
"Identity politics" is literally just a buzzword for "we're tired of hearing about civil rights, worry more about white men".

Maybe in the Democrats, where I believe the debate is over how to get various groups to vote for the Other Party of Racism and Class Exploitation.

In commie land, the question is "How do we forge unity among the multiracial, multiethnic, multigendered, multisexualitied, etc. working class in order to overthrow capitalism?"

And the answer is "get the workers movement to fight all forms of injustice and champion the cause of all the oppressed."


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The corporate dark money behind transatlantic unpleasantness

Don't know that this is super shocking new news, but it's interesting to see it all laid out clearly.


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A superb new effort from Dr. Chuck Tingle

EDIT: Very much NSFW, if that's an issue.


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
"Identity politics" is literally just a buzzword for "we're tired of hearing about civil rights, worry more about white men".
Maybe in the Democrats, where I believe the debate is over how to get various groups to vote for the Other Party of Racism and Class Exploitation.

It's not really a Democrat thing. I was just explaining what the term now means in broader parlance. "Identity politics" is a broad dogwhistle for any sort of fight for social justice.

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