February 2012, Week 4


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Portside Moderator <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Mon, 27 Feb 2012 21:04:09 -0500
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Reader's Responses for Feb. 28, 2012

1. Re: Earth to Labor - Economic Growth Is No Salvation
2. Re: Greece Lurches to Left Amid Radical Austerity
3. Re: Occupy National Convention To Be Held In Philadelphia
4. Churches Move $10 Million From Wells Fargo
5. Re: Charter Schools Quick To Suspend, Expel
6. Black Labor History: A Brief Guide to the Recent


1. Re: Earth to Labor - Economic Growth Is No Salvation

Excellent contribution to understanding the challenge posed
by the converging economic and climate crises. The issue of
the Green New Deal will be soon be discussed at several
panels of the Left Forum (www.leftforum.org/), one which
features the author of this piece, Sean Sweeney.  Degrow the
Military Industrial (Fossil Fuel) Complex, grow the new
Green Economy! This will require the radical transformation
of real existing capitalism as Sean Sweeney explains in his
article. Readers may be interested in reading two of my
recent articles on this subject, published in Capitalism
Nature Socialism, Green New Deal: an Ecosocialist
Perspective and a Critique of Degrowth and its Politics
(pdfs available upon request, [log in to unmask]).

David Schwartzman
Washington DC


2. Re: Greece Lurches to Left Amid Radical Austerity

I'm usually very reluctant to offer opinions on the
direction left movements in other countries should take, but
I'm gonna make an exception.  If the Greek left wins enough
votes to form a coalition government, they better get their
act together, overcome their sectarianism, and do it.  To
fail to do so would further open the window to fascism, or
military dictatorship, in Greece.  Important differences
between the left parties is no excuse for finding enough
common ground to form a coalition government.

Jonathan Nack
Oakland, CA


3. Re: Occupy National Convention To Be Held In Philadelphia

This conference is not a true Occupy (OWS) conference. OWS
does not organize conventions.  Please make if clear to
Portside readers!!!
Thank you,

Roz Boyd


4. Churches Move $10 Million From Wells Fargo

I left wells fargo a long time ago and also left another
bank at least 5 years ago. I'm so happy with the credit
union  they always treat me with respect and it is a joy
doing business with them.

Judy Mitchell


5. Re: Charter Schools Quick To Suspend, Expel

Usually I tend to agree with or support the agendas and
materials that Portside presents.

However, in this case, I would respectfully suggest you may
be missing the bigger picture here.

There are numerous cases, at least here in the SF bay area,
where truly disruptive and even physically abusive and
violent students are kept in the public school class rooms,
mainly because of the way that government funding for the
public schools are directly linked to classroom attendance

What this has done is create, in many cases, impossibly
difficult situations where the majority of students who
actually are trying to study and make use of their education
opportunities are victimized by the violent and completely
uncontrollable actions of some who are simply kept in the
classroom to keep the attendance numbers artificially

I know, this is perhaps not politically correct, but it is
the truth.

This is WHY the charter schools have become so popular,
because at least in those schools, there is the ability to
expel those students who are unable or unwilling to actually
participate appropriately in class.

I am as pro education oriented as anyone can be, and it is,
in fact, for precisely this reason that I make such a point.

In the current situation, many parents are quietly opting
out of the public schools by whatever means necessary, and
taking a much more serious look at the emerging charter
schools as a realistic option.

If you find this trend cause for alarm, the solution is not
in trying to crush or discredit the various charter schools
which are becoming evermore popular, but rather correct the
(sometimes) absurd enrollment requirement policies currently
common in the public schools.

Does this make sense to you?

I mean this with full respect, and would in fact welcome any
response you may care to offer, if so inclined.

Charles Ostman
Berkeley,  CA


6. Black Labor History: A Brief Guide to the Recent

International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT)
February 10, 2012


Over the past generation, the field of African-American
labor history has come into its own.    The following is a
brief introduction to some of the more recent literature
highlighting black workplace activism and trade unionism,
the relationship between black workers and the labor
movement, and the convergence of civil rights and labor
struggles in the realms of employment.


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