Friday, May 28, 2010


The reluctant cannibal by Flanders & Swann, circa 1956.

Shelley - The Mask of Anarchy:
'Rise like Lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number -
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you -
Ye are many - they are few.'
mayakda: LA congressman breaks down during oil spill testimony

Daily Kos: French health insurance redux

Malcolm X: Legacy of a revolutionary:
Just days before his death, Malcolm told a group of Columbia University students that it was 'incorrect to classify the revolt of the Negro as simply a racial conflict of Black against white, or as purely an American problem. Rather, we are seeing today a global rebellion of the oppressed against the oppressor, the exploited against the exploiter.'

...In one of his last speeches, he described how imperialism had changed its methods, with the old colonial powers in Asia replaced by the U.S. "They switched from the old, open colonial, imperialistic approach to the benevolent approach," he said. "They came up with some benevolent colonialism, philanthropic colonialism, humanitarianism, or dollarism."

..."So I had to do a lot of thinking and reappraising of my definition of Black nationalism," he said in an interview with Young Socialist magazine. Malcolm stopped using this term to describe himself. He also spoke out in favor of "women's freedom," a break from the Nation of Islam's conservative views.
A bit more of that speech shortly before he was killed, via Plasticity: "I, for one, will join in with anyone—I don’t care what color you are—as long as you want to change this miserable condition that exists on this earth."

International Socialist Review has a nice history of the invention of race: "As the Trinidadian historian of slavery Eric Williams put it: “Slavery was not born of racism: rather, racism was the consequence of slavery.” And, one should add, the consequence of modern slavery at the dawn of capitalism. While slavery existed as an economic system for thousands of years before the conquest of America, racism as we understand it today did not exist."

Sharon Smith: Arizona's Rancid History:
The statistics below show the shift in public opinion between the late 1950s and the 1960s, as the Civil Rights Movement grew:

In 1958, fully 94 percent of respondents to a Gallup Poll opposed interracial marriages.
In 1959, 53 percent said that the Brown decision “caused more trouble than it was worth.”
By 1964, 62 percent supported a law to guarantee blacks 'the right to be served in any retail store, restaurant, hotel or public accommodation,' according to a Harris survey.
Only one in five said they sided with Alabama authorities when police broke up a protest march in Selma in 1965.
By 1964, a majority of the U.S. population said they supported the 1964 Civil Rights Act and opposed segregation laws.
By 2003, 73 percent said they approved of interracial marriage and 90 percent said they would be willing to vote for a Black presidential candidate.