Pierre Devise loved to ride his bicycle around his adopted home city of Chicago. He often would ride to the Chicago Tribune newsroom to deliver his latest research findings on urban problems. As a professor of sociology at both the University of Chicago and Roosevelt University at different points during his career, Devise had earned […]
Introduction A superficial comparison of the political regimes of African and European nations in terms of “strong”, “weak”, and “failed” states conventionally places most European states in the strong category, with many African states falling into the weak and failed category. This general schema has been developed by Jeffrey Herbst, among others, through decades […]
Journalism has been described as the “first draft of history.” While it may not be literally true, in the course of daily life most of us acquire a significant portion of our knowledge of current events from a news source such as television, newspapers, radio, magazines, or, more recently, news websites. The “fourth estate” is […]
All it takes is reading another white male Marxist critique of intersectionality to remember exactly why I don’t consider myself a Marxist. (My Facebook status Sunday 5/18) [For an earlier discussion of some of these issues, see the original post.] Why should anyone care about intersectionality? What does this long strange word signify? Can’t we […]
My first videoblog in ages.
Whites who kill blacks in Stand Your Ground states are far more likely to be found justified in their killings. In non-Stand Your Ground states, whites are 250 percent more likely to be found justified in killing a black person than a white person who kills another white person; in Stand Your Ground states, […]
At the risk of being Freudian, I suspect my radical ideas stem from early childhood experiences of growing up in a dysfunctional family that relied on religious shaming, arbitrary punishment, and abuse both physical and emotional to keep us kids in line. It’s a mystery to me that my younger brother has chosen […]
I tend to encounter two general views of religion in my life. Most people consider religion an important – if not ultimately important – part of their lives and/or the world. In fact, one philosopher has suggested that we should define religion as the quest for ultimacy or ultimate values. This first group contains many […]
http://www.thenorthstar.info/?p=6662 In response to Dario Cankovic’s Socialism and Religion, Redux: “Religious distress is at the same time the expression of real distress and also the protest against real distress. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of spiritless conditions.” — Karl Marx, […]
A recording of a presentation and Q&A I did on the topic of Jesus and Communism.
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt: 600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 2,400 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 4 years to get […]
Political theorists call the present two-party system in the USA, the “Fifth Party System.” In this view, since the time our first federal government was formed in 1792 until today, this country has had 5 different configurations of political parties. Today’s “Fifth Party System” is dated from the New Deal in 1933. Prior to the […]
The whole world is my province until Africa is free. – Marcus Garvey (This essay originated as a class assignment in comparative politics. It is a polemical response to a 1990 article by Jeffrey Herbst. The class was asked to answer the question, “Is this a good theory?”) If one adopts a simple distinction between […]
Communism is defined as “to each according to need; from each according to ability.” The traditional wording is reversed with the “ability clause” placed first. However, the suffering of our times presses the question of need, desire, and fulfillment on us urgently. There are four clauses of the Communist principle: 1) To each – regarding […]
Bill Fletcher and Carl Davidson this week published a lengthy defense of voting for Barack Obama as a bulwark against the rising tide of racist reactionary politics that will surely guarantee that a Mitt Romney presidency will sink to even greater depths of social regression. “The central lesson we draw from the last four years has […]
On July 8 self-described feminist pornographer Tristan Taormino was a panel member on the Melissa Harris-Perry talk show discussing “Porn in America” with others such as Michael Eric Dyson and Zephyr Teachout. Self-described anti-pornography feminist Gail Dines created something of a buzz as she objected that her viewpoint – which she takes to speak for […]
For many, Communism is a scary, dangerous, violent word. The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989 is viewed by many as a good thing. I have sympathies with this viewpoint, though many of my revolutionary friends were more troubled by that event. I tend to side with the viewpoint that the Soviet Union at […]
“Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” Won’t Get Fooled Again. Pete Townsend. Pham Binh, a critical thoughtful activist that I’ve respected for a few years for his involvement in Occupy Wall Street and his challenges to ossified Marxist thought, has come out with an uncompromising defense of Western intervention against the Syrian government. […]
The conclusion to my interview with Derick Varn on religion and the left.