USA/Canada

Labour's martyrs: the story of Sacco and Vanzetti

Workers' Liberty 3/53, published as a pull-out in Solidarity 397. The story of the Sacco and Vanzetti case, told by James P Cannon and Max Shachtman, who were leading activists in the defence campaign. Click to download as pdf

Letters: US election; Exams and algorithms; Ballot school workers?

Help defeat Trump Socialists in the US should be trying to build a working-class campaign to throw Trump out of power. In the last six months the Trump Administration has moved decisively in the direction of open fascism. Violent racist, transphobic and anti-left rhetoric was always part of his repertory. Since the start of the pandemic and the resurgence of Black Lives Matter protests that has stepped up decisively. Trump has effectively celebrated far right shootings of anti-fascists and Black Lives Matter protesters. He encourages followers to take up arms against BLM and Antifa. He is...

A socialist voice in difficult times

Workers' Liberty backs the Green Party US campaign of Howie Hawkins and Angela Walker, as the only campaign in the US presidential election to raise explicit socialist demands and have a labour movement orientation. There are other socialists of some stripes running, but on a purely sect-building basis. Hawkins is a member of the revolutionary socialist group Solidarity, and has been a long term activist in the third camp socialist tradition. In some ways, his is the best socialist Presidential campaign for many years. But it also faces great difficulties. His choice to run as a Green Party...

QAnon: growth of a fascist cult

On 17 September, Q urged his followers in two posts to distance themselves from the toxic QAnon name, and to try to "redpill" ["enlighten"] people without associating their claims with the movement. For those out of the loop, those claims posit the existence of a Satan worshipping paedophile cabal, who drink the blood of children, before sacrificing them to Moloch. Q himself is supposed to be a military intelligence officer, working with Trump to bring down the cabal, while communicating with his followers on sketchy anonymous image boards. Who is behind the posts is in fact unknown, but all...

Trump's rigged election bid

On 13 September, one of Donald Trump’s political dirty tricksters, Roger Stone, signposted a Trumpian future. Though convicted, Stone has avoided prison thanks to a presidential pardon. To pay back the favour, he has suggested that should Trump lose the 3 November election, he should declare martial law and arrest political opponents such as Bill and Hillary Clinton and Mark Zuckerberg. According to the Washington Post, Donald Trump has made over 20,000 false or misleading claims during his presidency. The serial liar did however let the truth slip when he admitted that the Republican Party...

Union battle over New York school re-opening

The USA currently has a much higher rate of infection than the UK, with a Covid-19 death rate about 120 times bigger (proportional to population) than the UK, and a proportion of tests showing positive about 10 times bigger. In most big cities in the USA, schools are restarting online-only. New York was the hardest-hit area early on, but now has a lower rate of infection than many areas in the USA: about three times as many confirmed infections and deaths per day as the UK, relative to population. New York City’s schools are due to reopen to students on 21 September, with workers going into...

Whipping it up for "The Storm"

By now, you have probably already heard about the American conspiracy theory known as QAnon. What exactly do QAnon followers believe? The answer is complicated. By this point, QAnon has snowballed into an all-encompassing super-conspiracy. Believers frequently disagree with each other on details, but there’s room for you in the movement whether you believe that the Earth is hollow or that it is flat. QAnon centres around a supposed military intelligence officer, “Q”, who is exposing a corrupt cabal in the US government by posting cryptic messages on anonymous imageboards. The first “Q drop” —...

Five times the risk in pregnancy

Healthcare in pregnancy, or lack of it, is one of the starkest examples of racial health inequalities in the United Kingdom and in the United States. Work in the UK by University of Oxford researchers has found that between 2014 and 2016 the rate of death in pregnancy was 8 in 100,000 white people, compared with 15 in 100,000 Asian people and 40 in 100,000 black people. It’s a similar picture in the US, where African-American, Native American, and Alaska native pregnancies are three times more likely to result in death, according to a May 2019 report by the Centers for Disease Control. The...

Trumpism in vilgilante mode

It was only a matter of time before a white supremacist vigilante murdered opponents of Donald Trump. The surprise was that it hadn’t happened sooner. There will be more of this in the run-up to the Presidential election. This fresh outrage in the Wisconsin town of Kenosha followed days of protest after local police shot unarmed black man Jacob Blake seven times in the back. 17 year old Kyle Rittenhouse (above, left), a keen attender of Trump rallies, answered the call of a vigilante website and his mother drove him and his illegally owned AR-15 rifle twenty miles across the state line to...

Resonances from the 70s

Mrs America is a mini-series charting the battles in the 1970s between the rising feminist movement in the United States and its enemies over the Equal Rights Amendment (an amendment to the Constitution which still hasn’t been ratified by enough states to become law). It shows us well-known figures from the American women’s movement at that time, like Gloria Steinem (played by Rose Byrne) and Betty Friedan (Tracey Ullman), but focuses also on the woman who set out to defeat them, Phyllis Schlafly (Cate Blanchett). Steinem herself, and others, have criticised the series for overstating this...

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