Articles Social Movements

  • Extinction Rebellion

    Environment

    There is one desperate chance left to thwart the impending ecocide and extinction of the human species. We must carry out nonviolent acts of civil disobedience to shut down the capitals of the major industrial countries, crippling commerce and transportation, until the ruling elites are forced to publicly state the truth about climate catastrophe, implement radical measures to halt carbon emissions and empower an independent citizens committee to oversee the termination of our binge on fossil fuels. If we do not do this, we will face mass death.

  • Youth climate conference builds momentum around Canadian Green New Deal

    Environment

    Several hundred youth are gathering in Ottawa to kick off a recurring youth climate conference called PowerShift. This year’s event, called “PowerShift: Young and Rising,” is a four-day convergence starting February 14 that draws young people from across the country for workshops and keynote lectures by prominent activists like Kanahus Manuel, Harsha Walia, Derek Nepinak, and Romeo Saganash. Organizers say the aim of the conference is to galvanize youth around the climate change and Indigenous rights movements.

  • Resistance Is the Supreme Act of Faith

    Social Movements

    The struggle against the monstrous radical evil that dominates our lives—an evil that is swiftly despoiling the earth and driving the human species toward extinction, stripping us of our most basic civil liberties and freedoms, waging endless war and solidifying the obscene wealth of an oligarchic elite at our expense—will be fought only with the belief that resistance, however futile, insignificant and even self-defeating it may appear, can set in motion moral and spiritual forces that radiate outward to inspire others, including those who come after us.

  • The Psychology of Fascism

    Social Movements

    The continuing rise of fascism around the world is drawing increasing attention particularly as it takes firmer grip within national societies long seen to have rejected it. Some recent studies have reminded us of the characteristics of fascist movements and individuals, particularly as they manifest among politically active fascists. For example, in his recent book How Fascism Works: The Politics of Us And Them Professor Jason Stanley has identified ten characteristics shared by fascists which have been simply presented in the article ‘Prof Sees Fascism Creeping In U.S.’

  • The 1919 Winnipeg General Strike

    Social Movements

    The General Strike of 1919 was not only Winnipeg’s climactic event, but a watershed of some consequence in the evolution of Canada. It stands, too, among the great class-confrontations of capitalist history. It was far more massive and disciplined than the Seattle General Strike which barely preceded it, even without counting the general sympathetic strikes that occurred simultaneously in a dozen other Canadian cities — often massive affairs themselves, though barely mentioned in any record.

  • The rise of the Right and the challenge of building a Left alternative

    Social Movements

    Europe and North America had been relatively sheltered from the crisis until recently, mainly because of their position of dominance vis-à-vis the global south, gained through economic exploitation and militaristic policies, with the U.S. leading the way and Canada following. The resulting permanent environmental and economic crises have now reached our shores. The lasting recession that has taken hold in Europe, and the United States is now knocking at our door, both in Canada and Québec.

  • Learning from the past, fighting in the present

    Social Movements

    Facing an urgent present, why dig into history? The short answer is that it’s invaluable for helping us to struggle more effectively. In the pace of movements and mobilizations, years can sometimes feel like decades and, with frequent activist turnover, we all too easily end up repeating similar mistakes and debates over and over again. Coming to know movement history can help us to learn from our missteps.

  • Five Ideas for Building the Manitoba Activist Left

    Social Movements

    There are a number of existing and emerging initiatives that you can get involved in like the Manitoba Energy Justice Coalition, Communities Not Cuts, and emerging initiatives like Fight for $15 and a potential campaign around public transit. Recent union protests have largely been one-off actions, so if you are in a union, push for a longer-term campaign rather than one-off rallies.

  • Why is the Manitoba Left Struggling?

    Social Movements

    Decades of neoliberalism have helped create a culture in the prairies and other parts of Canada where unions place the bulk of their “political action” on parliamentary and electoral politics. Conversations with elected union leaders in Manitoba confirmed this. One elected union leader said a core means to get rid of the Tories is “being active and being engaged and involved in the Party. Volunteering and working for them and encouraging others to do the same.”

  • Climate change and the next left

    Environment

    Climate change is already happening. But the really bad news is that there’s very strong evidence that capitalism will deliver a future of catastrophic climate change that will have far-reaching effects around the world, especially in the imperialized countries of the Global South. There is a vast gap between the continuing growth of greenhouse gas emissions and the massive reductions of emissions are needed to prevent widespread catastrophes.

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