Articles Socialism

  • The Regina Manifesto at 85: More Relevant Than Ever?

    Socialism

    Despite the NDP leadership race’s left candidate, Niki Ashton, talking about how the party needs to return to the “bold socialist vision” offered in the 1933 Regina Manifesto — the founding programme of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation — few have discussed what that actually would mean. This is an oversight of some significance, because the Manifesto is remarkable for its painstaking description of what a socialist Canada would look like.

  • Revolutionary Optimism: Journeys in Radical Politics Past and Present

    Socialism

    On the “Reality Asserts Itself” program of The RealNews network, Prof. Leo Panitch is interviewed by host Paul Jay. Panitch talks about the political culture of his family, shaped in Winnipeg’s radical Jewish community before and after World War Two; Labour Zionists, Social Democrats and Communists debated and organized within the Jewish working class movement. This is a four-part interview – recorded in March 2018. Transcript available here.

  • Social democracy without social democrats: how can the left recover?

    Socialism

    If Keir or Keira Hardie were to create a party today to make the 21stcentury both social and democratic it would look nothing like the Labour Party. Can Labour and other social democratic parties change? Or will they be replaced? On one hand the omens aren’t good. The tribalism and the arrogance of Labour runs deep. But then organisations can reinvent themselves. But this time it’s more than a switch back to Blairites or the continuation of Corbynism that is required.

  • Why Antonio Gramsci is the Marxist thinker for our times

    Socialism

    The defining Gramscian concept is that of hegemony. This denotes a level of political domination that extends beyond control of a state or a parliament into the realm of culture and ideas. Gramsci was preoccupied by the question of why the 1917 Russian revolution had not been followed by others in western Europe. He located the answer in the persistence of capitalist ideas among civil society institutions (political parties, trade unions, churches, the media).

  • The Bankruptcy of the American Left

    Socialism

    There will be no economic or political justice for the poor, people of color, women or workers within the framework of global, corporate capitalism. Corporate capitalism, which uses identity politics, multiculturalism and racial justice to masquerade as politics, will never halt the rising social inequality, unchecked militarism, evisceration of civil liberties and omnipotence of the organs of security and surveillance. Corporate capitalism cannot be reformed.

  • Net Neutrality and the Socialist Moment

    Socialism

    The fight for Net Neutrality is but the first salvo in a longer battle over the age-old debates about democracy. Capitalists and their ideological brethren have lined up to fight NN as a barrier towards their profit-making enterprise, and socialists can make the case that if capitalism means antagonism to the very concept that manifests a free internet, perhaps the owners of private industry shouldn’t be trusted with other important aspects of our daily lives.

  • Protagonism and Productivity

    Socialism

    To build the new socialist society, it is necessary to develop new, socialist concepts. So, let me end by paraphrasing Che from his Man and Socialism in Cuba: the pipe dream that socialism can be achieved through capitalist accounting and capitalist concepts of efficiency can lead into a blind alley. And you wind up there after having travelled a long distance with many crossroads, and it is hard to figure out just where you took the wrong turn.

  • Mitch Podolak: ‘A Citizen of Earth’

    Socialism

    Mitch is constantly thinking of where to go next. His medical problems have given him plenty of time for introspection and he wards off any negativity by staying focused on his projects. Throughout the years, Mitch has kept in touch with his siblings, cousins, nephews and nieces. He appreciates family and the connections it brings. He calls it the core Podolak: people caring about other people.

  • “Adventure it was”: The Impossible Revolution of 1917

    Socialism

    Many profound things will be written for the centenary of the 1917 revolution in Russia. But few will better capture its electricity. In a world drowning in blood and misery, a revolution had conquered power in the name of Bread, Peace and Land. Czars and generals, factory owners and wealthy landowners had been stripped of their offices, power and privileges.

  • They Dared: The Legacy of the October Revolution

    Socialism

    The legacy of the October Revolution for the left today is, in fact, the least ambiguous. It can be summed up in two words: “They dared.” By that, I mean that the Bolsheviks, in organizing the revolutionary seizure of political and economic power and its defence from the propertied classes, were true to their mission as a workers’ party: they provided the workers with the leadership that they needed and wanted.

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