Our Times 3

Social Movements

  • Researching the right

    Unlike the oppositional right, our fight is for collective liberation. We seek to overturn ruling relations and institutions that produce domination, exploitation, and oppression. We aim to create a world in which everyone can flourish. In order to do this, we need to be real about our opponents. This means going beyond caricatures and quips. We can out-organize the far-right, but only if we’re serious about understanding them.

  • ‘Defund the police’ means re-fund the community

    On February 16, a group of abolition organizations across the country released a historic declaration to divest from prisons and policing and build safer communities for all. It gained immense traction nationally, with prominent signatories from the public sector and mainstream unions. But what is the deeper meaning of this movement, and what has happened since the historic protests of the summer?

  • André Frappier’s journey as a class struggle militant

    I first met André Frappier in the late 1970s, when we were members of the Revolutionary Workers League, a pan-Canadian Marxist cadre organization. When the league decided to hoist its banner in the 1980 federal election campaign, André was chosen as our candidate in a downtown Montréal riding. For André, this was by no means the end of his political activism, quite the contrary, as this recent interview by Pierre Beaudet shows.

  • Fighting the extreme right, building the left

    The federal government’s addition of the far-right group the Proud Boys to the Criminal Code list of terrorist entities has sparked some debate among progressive groups, including in the pages of Canadian Dimension. While street mobilization is important and necessary, it alone will not be enough to defeat the extreme right. We take this opportunity to reflect on the necessary perspectives for the left.

  • Organizing in the face of crisis

    The pandemic will continue to shape our lives for a long time to come yet. However, even when it is finally behind us, the economic fallout and deeper problems of global capitalism will be left in its wake. As workers and as members of communities under attack, we are going to have to be able to assert the popular will through powerful and united social movements.

  • Critical infrastructure protection: Dangerous politics in Manitoba, Alberta and beyond

    Critical infrastructure protection is a class project designed mainly to criminalize opposition to the destructive practices of fossil fuel companies. Despite their claims to being neutral entities enforcing the “rule of law,” the policing and security agencies responsible for critical infrastructure protection act as agents of Canada’s ruling class against Indigenous sovereignty movements defending their land.

  • Michael Spourdalakis on Leo Panitch, Syriza, and challenges for the Greek Left

    In December of last year, COVID-19 took the life of one of Canada’s most widely respected public intellectuals, Leo Panitch. Leo was a researcher, teacher and author whose work had a profound impact on the thinking of democratic socialists around the world. One of the countries in which Leo took a passionate interest, and in which he exercised considerable influence among leftists, was Greece.

  • Is Russia waking up?

    For more than a decade, the Russian economic and political system has ceased to develop. Most of the population is barely surviving. We need to prepare ourselves for a transformation, to set to work wherever we find people who are ready for constructive joint action in the trade unions, in organizations of teachers and medical staff, in social movements. This is what we, the members of the Russian left, are seeking to do.

  • More than ever, let’s imagine a possible new world

    Against the backdrop of a global crisis, the World Social Forum proposes a renewed formula that will allow thousands of people to participate in the construction of new solidarities and collectively draw the horizons of another possible world. If going online sometimes represents a barrier to participation, it also makes it possible to welcome other people who have never had the opportunity to enter this arena of international solidarity.

  • Banning the Proud Boys—be careful what you ask for

    Governments, even with liberals in charge, won’t stop the right today anymore than Hindenburg stopped Hitler. Governments of the discredited neoliberal centre won’t contain the social dislocation and discontent that feeds the growth of fascism. The threat will only be stopped by powerful working class action that drives the fascists off the streets and challenges the system that produces them.

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