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You are here: Platypus /Archive for category Issue #109
HISTORIANS HAVE LONG GRAPPLED with the contradiction of a revolution under the banner of "all men are created equal" being largely led by slave owners. Once free of England, the U.S. grew over the next 89 years to be the largest slave-owning republic in history. But the July 4th, 1776 Declaration of Independence (DI) was in-itself a revolutionary document.
I RECENTLY ATTENDED THE 2018 LABOR NOTES CONFERENCE, which is probably the largest rank-and-file union conference of organized labor in the United States. I went to find out what labor has been doing across the country and for my own interest in the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, to see what struggle had broken out amongst its members. Labor Notes has a special place in my heart, not just because it has stood as a bastion for radical organizers since the 80s, but also because it represents, as I see it, the last pillar of labor in the age of Trump.
IN MAY AND JUNE 1968, somewhere around ten million workers were on strike in France. They occupied their factories and marched in the streets, singing the “Internationale” and calling for an end to the ten years of Gaullist rule. Students, too, were on strike, occupying their schools and marching in the streets, singing the “Internationale” and calling for an end to the ten years of Gaullist rule.
“THE WORD 'CONSERVATIVE' IS USED by the BBC as a portmanteau word of abuse for anyone whose views differ from the insufferable, smug, sanctimonious, naïve, guilt-ridden, wet, pink orthodoxy of that sunset home of the third-rate minds of that third-rate decade, the nineteen-sixties.” Writing for the Independent back in 1990, former Conservative cabinet minister, Norman Tebbitt, demonstrated how the 1960s counter-culture still enraged traditionalists. Hard to believe today, but for conservatives the impact of the 1960s was as problematic as trade unions and flying pickets.
FORTY-FIVE MILLION AMERICANS collectively owe upward of $1.4 trillion in student loan debt. Yet there is no need to worry. The magic of the free market has a solution for all of your problems. On July 10, 2018, "Paid Off" premiered on TruTV, a new game show that offers contestants a chance to escape a lifetime of debt peonage. “We're capitalists. That's just the way it is.”