#JusticeForMikeBrown in Providence

Got back from the court house a lil’ while ago: all PVD arrestees from last night’s ‪#‎JusticeForMikeBrown action are out of police custody!! Folks are pleading innocent and I’ll have information for further court support soon: one comrade has severely higher charges than the others and there will be specific info about how to stand in solidarity and support his case. I’ll write a full report soon, but for now, what folks really need to know is that at some point in the march a couple hundred people went over the fence across from the police station and shut down rt 95-s in a beautiful act of civil disobedience. Continue reading

A terrifying real-life documentary that feels like a major suspense movie

A Review of Citizen Four, Directed by Laura Poitras

4 ½ stars (out of 5)

Some people have been unconditionally supportive of Edward Snowden and his supposed but technical “crime” of exposing massive government surveillance beyond what anyone could imagine possible. Other (mostly white and older) Americans have felt the exact opposite. Continue reading

Profits Over People (With a Little Help from Their Friends)

Florida is the latest state to have on its November 4 ballot an initiative that would legalize medicinal cannabis sativa (aka marijuana) for people with debilitating medical conditions such as cancer and cerebral palsy. Florida has already legalized the use of Charlotte’s Web for children suffering from epilepsy. A recent poll believes 62% of Floridians will vote for Amendment 2, a slim margin over the 60% needed for passage. [Editor’s note: this piece was written before the election; in the event, the measure failed, with only 57% voting in favor. Advocates vow to continue the struggle.]

Hopefully Florida will not follow corrupt Rhode Island’s path through this process. Continue reading

The Union’s Election Day Dilemma

I had meant to write something about the election before now. But with these candidates, what is there to write? They are all corporate tools. A vote for any of them, even the “less worse”, is nothing more than a vote for more corporate control over Rhode Island’s teachers, parents and students. Continue reading

The ISO and “Leninism”

In my mind, the thorniest of questions – the $64 question is: what do/can we take from Lenin, Trotsky, and the Bolsheviks that can actually be useful to us today in 2014 under US Imperialism? I first want to quote from Lenin himself at the beginning of The State and Revolution where he decries the fate of leaders after death under bourgeois society’s relentless propaganda machine: Continue reading

Time for a New Environmental Movement

I attended the Peoples’ Climate March in New York City on September 21st . Actually, I really wish I stayed the entire weekend instead of rushing through one day. I don’t remember seeing so many people attend a rally at least since the announcement of a troop surge into Iraq by President Bush in early 2007. It would be very difficult to count the number of people who came because crowds literally stretched the streets further than the eye could see. The organizers put together a team of 35 crowd spotters, who took their results to a mathematician, at Carnegie Mellon University who crunched their results and estimated 311,000 people marched along the route.  Continue reading

Occupy and the ISO

Editor’s note: the following piece was written in January 2014, in the midst of the factional fight inside the International Socialist Organization (ISO), to which the members of the RISocialism.org editorial collective belonged at the time. This piece was meant as a contribution to the work of the ISO Renewal Faction, though it was not published during the period of the faction fight. The faction was expelled from the ISO in February 2014; the documents of that struggle, however, are still available on externalbulletin.org. Though the internal organizational suggestions are now obsolete, we nonetheless believe that the points raised are still salient, and thus have decided to publish this piece. Continue reading

Eyewitness from Flood Wall St.

On September 23rd, at 5:30am, I picked up my personal belongings and exited New York City jail, along with a handful of others. We were arrested during #FloodWallSt, one day after the #PeoplesClimateMarch. It was an exhilarating and beautiful few days of action that reminded me how much we can still accomplish in the streets, and made clear to me what issues are going to help unify the climate justice movement in the coming years. Continue reading

Theses on Workers’ Democracy and the Role of Socialist Militants

The following theses are offered as a starting point for discussion on all questions of how socialist militants should orient in the given period. Our previous models, in particular the model of the “Leninist” sect, have run aground. Whether this is due to a fatal flaw in the model, or simply to a change in material conditions that have made a once-viable model no longer so, it is clear that we need to rethink our approach as socialists to basic questions of democracy and workers’ power from the foundations up. It is also likely that comrades who prefer “communist” or “anarchist” (at least: class-struggle anarchist) terminology will find something that resonates here, and I invite those comrades to engage in this discussion. Continue reading

Remembering Occupy

A review of Occupying Wall Street, The Inside Story of an Action that Changed America, by Writers for the 99%.

Three years ago this fall, an intrepid group of 100 young people set up camp at an obscure park near Wall Street in downtown Manhattan. Out of this modest beginning, a great social protest movement was born. It was called Occupy Wall Street and would soon spread across the US and the World.

Occupying Wall Street, The Inside Story of an Action that Changed America tells that story. It includes a detailed account of the experiences of OWS at Zucotti Park, with stories from other cities intertwined in the narrative. Continue reading