168-3 DSA News

The Emancipation of Cecily McMillan

Sunday, November 6, 3 PM to 5 PM at the Seminary Co-op Bookstore, 5751 S. Woodlawn, Chicago: Author, activist, prison advocate, DSA member Cecily McMillan will give a talk on her new memoir and on her fight against mass incarceration, in conversation with Maya Schenwar, editor-in-chief of Truthout, sponsored by the City of Chicago Branch CDSA. MORE INFORMATION.

Election 2016!

Saturday, November 12, Noon at the NNU Conference Room (7th floor), 850 W. Jackson, Chicago: The November membership meeting will NOT be at the Chicago DSA office but at the NNU office. There will be an abbreviated business meeting at Noon, followed by a 1 PM forum on November’s election where we will be joined, via Skype, by Harold Meyerson for a discussion of: What happened in the 2016 election? Why did it happen? And what does it mean for politics going forward? MORE INFORMATION.

DSA in the News

compiled by Bob Roman

At Front Page Magazine (an extreme-right propaganda site, ICYDK), Mark Tapson interviews Trevor Loudon, and of course DSA comes up. Loudon also claims to have attended the national People’s Summit… Damn, now I regret not having gone. For a similar site, Aaron Bandler mentions DSA as Robert Creamer’s badge of evil at the Daily Wire. DSA also gets mentioned by Jerome Corsi in an article linking Robert Creamer and Hillary Clinton with another favorite conservative hate-object, Saul Alinsky, at World Net Daily. World Net Daily also promotes Trevor Loudon’s and Stephen Payne’s new video propaganda features, mentioning DSA by-the-by. Stephanie Block, resident Alinsky expert at Spero News, notes new leadership at Interfaith Worker Justice, mentioning DSA in case you still didn’t get it. ObamaCare is a gateway drug to socialized medicine, according to William Haupt (#3 & counting) at Watchdog.org, and DSA knew this all along. It’s a plan! On the other hand, Jim Tynen dismisses “democratic socialism” as basically misguided, using DSA as an example, at NC Capitol Connection.

Christopher Cook mentioned DSA eventually in a “what’s next” article at The Progressive. Bob Fitrakis interviewed DSA National Director Maria Svart along similar lines at Columbus Community Radio. David Olson also interviewed Maria Svart about “what’s next” at Medium (this will eventually be a chapter in a book).

DSA was an element of satire by “Anant Gururaj” at Northwestern Flipside. DSA also came up in an odd article about the Philadelphia 76ers by David Roth at Vice.

Daniel Nguyen examined socialism and Bernie Sanders, using DSA, at The Hofstra Chronicle.

Anonymous white-nationalist propaganda on campus provoked a response from YDS, according to Chris Anderson at Iowa State Daily.

Young Democratic Socialists

Before mid-terms rolled around, YDS had four new chapters. Read about them HERE.

168-3 Politics

Day of Action Against the TPP:
November 17: Two actions in one day.

  • 2:30 PM — Rally at the Water Tower, 806 N. Michigan in Chicago then march to undisclosed corporate target. Questions or RSVP: Toby Chow or 260.224.1760.
  • 4 PM — Representative Mike Quigley: Which Side Are You On? Rally at the north end of Dickinson Park then march to Representative Quigley’s office at 4345 N. Milwaukee in Chicago. (Dickinson Park is a triangular park at Belle Plaine (4100 N.), Lavergne (5000 W.), and Dickinson, just west of Milwaukee. Questions: Tom Broderick.

Sponsors: National Nurses United, Food and Water Watch, Chicago Religious Leadership Network, The People’s Lobby and Chicago Democratic Socialists of America.

How Clinton Came to Oppose the TPP

With Clinton having come out against the TPP, it’s tempting to assume she will oppose its passage in the lame-duck session of Congress, post-election. At In These Times, Branko Marcetic examines her campaign staff’s wikileaked emails and finds:

What is striking about the Clinton campaign’s various discussions about her TPP stance is how little policy or principle came into the campaign’s decision-making. Advisers, supporters and staffers were overwhelmingly focused on the optics of Clinton’s shifting stance and the benefits — or drawbacks — they would face in terms of the voting public.

In the few emails that did consider policy implications as reasons to support or oppose the deal, almost none were about the most controversial elements of the deal, such as its potential impact on workers, its effect on access to affordable medicine and the possible loss of national sovereignty it heralded.

When Renteria sent Sullivan a highly critical report on the TPP by Michigan Rep. Sander Levin, a member of the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee, that “goes through why he’s against it and how TPP makes all the issues HRC cares about worse,” Sullivan’s only reaction was: “Tough stuff.” As Schwerin’s line that the TPP is “a very close call on the merits” suggests, Clinton’s staff — like her — believes in the benefits of TPP.



If you’ve not already voted, early or absentee, vote on November 8. In Illinois, polls open at 6 AM and close at 7 PM. It probably won’t change the world (though in this instance, who knows?), but what do you expect from less than a half hour’s work? Just do it.

Disgust Anger Trump
With apologies to the late Satoshi Kon

168-3 People

Timuel BlackTimuel Black

will be among the honorees to be inducted into the Illinois Labor History Society’s “Union Hall of Honor” this year, the others being Milton McDaniel; Elwood Flowers, Sr.; and Elcosie Gresham. The theme of this year’s event is “Illinois Labor and the Great Migration: 100 Years.” To be held Friday, December 2nd, at Local 399 Operating Engineers Hall, you can find more information HERE.

168-3 Democratic Socialism

Michael Harrington on Socialism

This particular speech by Michael Harrington was given in early 1971 at the Reynolds Club at the University of Chicago. The meeting was sponsored by the University of Chicago chapter of the Young Peoples Socialist League. In many ways, the speech is classic Harrington: a mix of the pragmatic and the utopian, with an awareness of the complexities that ideology often obscures. Some parts of the speech are 1960s quaint, but with the consequences of the Sanders movement still unfolding in this second decade of the twenty-first century, there are also aspects of the speech that are very worthwhile keeping in mind if we want the revolution to continue.

Download to listen later [right click]:

MP3 (49.4 MB) or OGG VORBIS (29.6 MB) (51:30)

The Rise of the Third Way

At Dollars & Sense, Alejandro Reuss begins:

The idea of a united Europe was not unique to neoliberal politicians or financial capitalists, even if their vision was the one that ended up winning out. Rather, this idea cut across the entire political spectrum, from forces clearly associated with giant capitalist corporations and high finance to those associated with the working-class movement. Just as there have been “anti-Europe” or “euroskeptic” forces on the political left and right, there were also diverse forces in favor of European unification, each with its own vision of what a united Europe could be.

Going back to the mid-20th century, leaders of the social democratic, reformist left envisioned a future “Social Europe.” The European Social Charter, adopted by the Council of Europe in 1961, promulgated a broad vision of “social and economic rights,” including objectives like full employment, reduction of work hours, protection of workers’ rights to organize and bargain collectively, rights to social security and medical assistance, protection of the rights of migrants, and so on.

Figures on the revolutionary left, like the Belgian Marxist economist and Trotskyist leader Ernest Mandel, advocated a “United Socialist States of Europe.” This was an expression not only of revolutionary internationalism, but also of Mandel’s view that the working class could no longer confront increasingly internationalized capital through political action confined to the national level. In other words, the question was not just whether Europe would become united, but (if it did) what form such unification would take.


168-2 DSA News

Save the Date: “The Emancipation of Cecily McMillan”

Sunday, November 6, 3 PM to 5 PM at The Seminary Co-op Bookstore, 5751 S. Woodlawn in Chicago. Activist and prison advocate Cecily McMillan will give a talk on her new memoir, her experience as an incarcerated person, and the fight against the carceral state. MORE INFORMATION.

Also, the Greater Chicago DSA local will be having its monthly meeting on Saturday, November 12, at the National Nurses United Midwest office because we’ll be having, via Skype, DSA National Vice-Chair and Executive Editor of The American Prospect Harold Meyerson to discuss: What happened in the 2016 election? Why did it happen? And what does it mean for politics going forward? More information to follow soon.

DSA in the News

compiled by Bob Roman

In another post-Convention article, the Young Democratic Socialists get a shout-out from Harold Meyerson at The American Prospect. DSA gets a mention in what’s more of a post-Occupy article by Jake Johnson at Common Dreams.

DSA gets mentioned in passing in the course of an interview of Bob Fitrakis by Eric Scott Pickard at The Fifth Column News (a site whose politics seems stuck somewhere in 1969’s “underground”). From a different end of the left spectrum, DSA gets mentioned when Martin Thomas and Sacha Ismail interviewed Peter Frase at Workers’ Liberty regarding his tour flogging (in the British sense) his new book Four Futures: Life After Capitalism and about Jacobin.

Michigan State University radio station WDBM-FM reporter Naina Rao interviewed MSU’s Young Democratic Socialists. Brendan Baxter at The State News interviewed Ali Hammoud about the Young Democratic Socialists.

Chris Woodward mentioned DSA to make sure readers understand just how evil Ben & Jerry’s is at One News Now. DSA got a mention in Linda Bentley’s coverage of a local Tea Party meeting at Sonoran News. Then again, Metro Atlanta DSA were pictured tabling at the Many Rivers to Cross Festival at the Atlanta Black Star.

DSA comes up in the course of an argument by Ty Moore and Patrick Ayers that urging a vote for Clinton just sets the stage for more Trumps at CounterPunch. On the other hand, Amber A’Lee Frost also mentions DSA at The Baffler.

John T. Martin mentioned DSA in connection with Cornel West’s then upcoming appearance at the University of Southern Indiana at the Evansville Courier & Press (actually, it was in the university press release). Sarah Roger made the connection also in her coverage of that appearance at The Shield.

Afkar Magazine posted material from and about a retrospective conference in Ohio from a few years ago about Michael Harrington’s The Other America.

In Baltimore, DSA Member Ian Schlackman Hopes to Turn the City Council Green

Alec Shea begins:

It is rare for third party candidates, even those that end up winning, to outdo their opponents in terms of fundraising. In Baltimore’s 12th City Council District, Green Party candidate and DSA member Ian Schlackman has achieved that rare milestone; he raised almost $10,000 more than his Democratic opponent, Robert Stokes. Schlackman is an IT worker who runs a small company that manages software systems in Baltimore schools. A fixture in Baltimore’s organizing community, he has succeeded in uniting a number of the groups on Baltimore’s left in support of a campaign based on issues of housing, anti-racism, and workers’ rights.


Socialist International Congratulates António Guterres on Nomination as UN Secretary-General

Your editor is posting this link as bait for Trevor Loudon, Cliff Kincaid (both of whom deserve some credit for publicizing DSA) but most especially for the other more hysterical (e.g. Agenda 21 freakouts) conspiracy mongers. Watch for those blue helmets popping up in your back yard, folks; there’ll be roadblocks down the street. For everyone else, it’ll be of interest if Guterres makes a difference or if it’s “where you sit is where you stand.” Read about it HERE.

168-2 Politics

Illinois People’s Summit: A Pep Talk

The Illinois People’s Summit was a follow-up to the national event held in Chicago this June. At Chicago Progress, Jessica Creery sets the stage by beginning:

I’ll be honest, I’m feeling a little lost after the primaries. While disillusioned and disappointed describe it, most of the time what it really comes down to is that I’m overwhelmed. A particular presidential candidate symbolized a massive number of issues and injustices I care about deeply. Once that symbol was removed, and all of the individual issues were exposed, the task of addressing any issue felt massive. I needed a pep talk.


Tuition Free Illinois

State Representative Will Guzzardi began his campaign for free tuition to public colleges and universities with a townhall event at the UIC Forum on October 7. On September 29, Guzzardi was a guest on The Wayne Bensen Show, where the Tuition Free Illinois campaign was a topic of discussion.

The Campaign for Fee College Tuition has released a report that estimates the cost of such a program for each state. For additional discussion from 2014, see Talkin’ Socialism: Drop Student Debt.