Our Times 3


  • Building Twenty-First Century Socialism

    A spectre is haunting capitalism: the spectre of twenty-first century socialism. Increasingly the outlines of this spectre are becoming clear, and we are able to see enough to understand what it is not. The only thing that is not clear at this point is whether this spectre is actually an earthly presence.

  • The Gold Bug

    Guided by resource discovery and the heavy-handed rule of the free market, the mining of gold today is “rush-mining,” much as it was a century ago. From the Indigenous lands of Brazil to those in Canada, from Tanzania to the Philippines, whenever gold is discovered, local communities are forced to migrate or attempt to adjust to the new industry. In fact, only eleven per cent of the gold mined worldwide has a practical use in technologies like biomedicine or electronics. Meanwhile, seventy per cent is used for jewellery, with the rest going to investment.

  • There Is No Honour in the Crown

    On May 28, after more than two months in jail, six members of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nation in northern Ontario were released following a decision by the Ontario Court of Appeal. On March 17, KI Chief Donny Morris, Deputy Chief Jack McKay, councillors Sam McKay, Darryl Sainnawap and Cecilia Begg, and band member Bruce Sakakeep had been sentenced to six months in jail after they interfered with drilling for platinum on their traditional lands.

  • High Schools Against Israeli Apartheid

    In July 2005, 171 Palestinian civil-society organizations issued a call to the “international civil society organizations, and people of conscience all over the world, to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel, similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era.” This call came after 57 years of ethnic cleansing, 38 years of military occupation and one year after the International Court of Justice issued its advisory opinion declaring Israel’s apartheid wall to be illegal under international law.

  • From Apathy to Activism

    Regarding the deeply rooted apathy that many students exhibit, my observation, and that of those with whom I have consulted in writing this article, is that it is an offshoot of a sense of self-entitlement. Most students have yet to experience any political upheaval or economic hardship for themselves. The wave of relatively steady economic growth in Canada, and the consumer culture that accompanies it, results in a dangerous combination of political complacency and consumer insatiability. Coupled with the demolishment of the welfare state, the resulting competitive individualism produces a sense of hostility expressed as self-entitlement, which has had a potent demobilizing effect across campuses nationwide.

  • Something Is Happening in Indian Country

    Is the movement for Indigenous rights and self-determination reaching a tipping point in Canada? Recent events give grounds for optimism. This spring in Ontario, the Indian Act chief-and-council from Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, grassroots traditionalists from Grassy Narrows and non-status Ardoch Algonquins joined environmentalists, urban radicals, unions and students in an unprecedented coalition to pressure the Ontario government for First Nations’ right to say no to unwanted development on their traditional territories.

  • To Eat Like Our Ancestors Did

    In our overweight society – processed food at our fingertips every way we turn – it is a breath of fresh air to find a way to survive in a healthy fashion and get back to the basics of eating real, all-natural foods the way that our ancestors did.

  • Power to the Students!

    Bertell Ollman is a professor of political science at New York University, and is well known for books like Alienation and Dialectical Investigations, and for well over fifty articles and commentaries on a variety of left-wing subjects. In this book, directed to American university students, Ollman makes a deal with his readers.

  • The Global Gang Thang

    With A World of Gangs: Armed Young Men and Gangsta Culture, author John Hagedorn heeds Antonio Gramsci’s call for “pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will.” “Gangs aren’t going away soon … no matter what we do,” Hagedorn says gloomily, but with Gramscian optimism he continues, “this means we better figure out how to reduce the violence and encourage gangs and others in ghettoes, barrios, favelas, and townships to join movements for social change.”

  • Close to Addiction

    Walking with Dr. Gabor Maté through Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside is like being on the arm of the Pope. He knows everyone, and stops, again and again, to chat and check-up on patients and area residents he’s come to know over the past decade.

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