Policing and Politics Create Maze of Barriers

Policing and Politics Create Maze of Barriers feature image
November 26, 2015
National discussion about access to reproductive healthcare remains a hot topic, like the most-recent campaign to defund Planned Parenthood based on a falsified video that is supposed to show that the organization is “selling baby parts.” High stakes and numerous hurdles that undocumented immigrants face to get basic care often remain out of the spotlight. there are literal borders set in place that prevent many immigrants from accessing federally funded clinics.
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7 Ways Southerners Are Fighting Hate and Fear

7 Ways Southerners Are Fighting Hate and Fear feature image
November 26, 2015
While hostility to Syrian refugees has dominated the national debate, many local leaders — among them elected officials, community advocates and direct service providers — are sending a different message by calling for compassion instead of fear. Here are seven efforts underway across the South to support Syrian refugees and fight Islamophobia.
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Toward Honest Commemoration of War In Vietnam

Toward Honest Commemoration of War In Vietnam feature image
November 26, 2015
When lies are propounded about the American war in Vietnam, they legitimize and justify present USA and future dangerous adventures and prevent us from escaping the dangerous “logic of war” as promoted by our rulers and media.
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Employer Political Coercion: A Growing Threat

 A Growing Threat feature image
November 29, 2015
Managers and supervisors can now legally require their workers to participate in politics as a condition of employment. For instance, in most states, managers have the legal right to mandate worker attendance at a political rally for a favored candidate—and fire or punish workers who decline to participate.
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Russians May Have a Strong Case in Shootdown

Russians May Have a Strong Case in Shootdown feature image
November 29, 2015
While President Obama is certainly correct in saying that "Turkey, like every country, has a right to defend its territory and its airspace," exactly how it may do so is more complicated than the president implies. In fact, the Russians may have strong legal arguments that any such right under international law was wrongly asserted in this instance.
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How Humans Evolved Supersize Brains

How Humans Evolved Supersize Brains feature image
November 29, 2015
Fossils established the Brain Boom as fact. But they tell us next to nothing about how and why the human brain grew so large so quickly. In the last eight years, however, scientists have started to answer the “how” of human brain expansion — that is, the question of how the supersizing happened on a cellular level and how human physiology reconfigured itself to accommodate a dramatically enlarged and energy-guzzling brain.
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Justin Trudeau and Canada’s Mining Industry

Justin Trudeau and Canada’s Mining Industry feature image
November 29, 2015
Despite a long list of abuses by Canadian mining companies in Africa (and elsewhere) it’s incredibly difficult to hold them accountable domestically. The previous Stephen Harper government opposed legislation modeled on the U.S. Alien Torts Claims Act that would have allowed lawsuits against Canadian companies responsible for major human rights violations or ecological destruction abroad. Is Justin Trudeau prepared to defy Canada’s powerful mining industry?
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A Populist’s Run for the Presidency

A Populist’s Run for the Presidency feature image
November 29, 2015
Though the People's Party lost, Weaver managed to win 5 states (Kansas, Colorado, Nevada, Idaho and North Dakota) and 22 electoral votes—the most electoral votes won by a third party since the Civil War. The impressive third-party turnout illustrated the bipartisan frustration of the period and the extent to which Populist rhetoric resonated with voters at the time.
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Chicago’s Police Problem

Chicago’s Police Problem feature image
November 28, 2015
It should shock no one that the odds are even longer if you’re not white, and awful if you’re black. Black Chicagoans lodged 61 percent of the complaints that comprise the CPDP data and white Chicagoans only about 20 percent. Twenty-five percent of the charges deemed sustainable were leveled by black people;58 percent were brought by whites.
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After Planned Parenthood Attack

After Planned Parenthood Attack feature image
November 28, 2015
GOP presidential candidates incited against reproductive health group before Paris terror provided a more lucrative target.
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Pages

Portside Culture

Review; "The Big Short"— Capitalism Gone Mad

Ed Rampell
The Progressive
Based on actual events and characters, Short focuses on the fall of the housing market, leavening what many might find extremely dry, complicated subject matter with humor. While the so-called business press completely missed the story until this 'shit' hit the fan, the film tells how a few investment outsiders stumbled upon the unfolding crisis and bet against it. ('Short' is Wall Street-ese for 'bet').

Geopolitical Fictions: Fantasy, Reality, and International Diplomacy on ‘Madam Secretary’

SULAGNA MISRA
Flavorwire
Most international political thrillers rely on the interplay of fantasy and reality, using real countries and familiar politics in the frame of a fictional narrative. What makes CBS’s Madam Secretary unusual, even within that context, is that its episodes actually borrow from recent international events, relationships, and histories. The show’s universe can often feel like a surreal look into a parallel reality.

Work

James Scruton
Poet Lore
James Scruton dedicates this poem about his own white-collar labors to the late Philip Levine, the poet who celebrated working-class people who spent their lives “digging or pounding…wrenching or drilling.”

Marxism and Ecology: Common Fonts of a Great Transition (long)

John Bellamy Foster
Great Transition Initiative
Socialist thought is re-emerging at the forefront of the movement for global ecological and social change. In the face of the planetary emergency, theorists have unearthed a powerful ecological critique of capitalism at the foundations of Marx's materialist conception of history.

Have Guns, Will Liberate

Chase Madar
The Baffler
This ethnographic study of America's gun culture focuses on Detroit and Flint, Michigan, and it both confirms and challenges aspects of received wisdom about our country and our firearms.

Portside Labor

Socialists Should Aspire Beyond Labour’s Post-War Consensus

Matt Widowson
Morning Star
By all means, look to the past. Learn and be inspired, but do not try to turn the clock back. The ultimate aim of socialism should be the abolition of capitalism — anything less than this is reformism in the service of capital. Socialists may disagree about the pace of transition, or the means of enacting revolutionary change — but their ultimate aim must be the end of capitalism.

Big There Contracts: Who Won?

Dianne Feeley
Against the Current
The 2015 UAW/Big Three contracts took 67 days and multiple attempts to ratify, resulting in what most autoworkers see as a partial victory.

Mexican, U.S. Workers Bring Employer Charges Under NAFTA

Mario Vasquez
In These Times
A transnational coalition of labor unions and community groups in the United States and Mexico charged multinational retail corporation Chedraui Commercial Group with violations of municipal, federal, and international labor law on November 12, filing unprecedented dual claims under compliant mechanisms embedded within the North American Free-Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Four reasons for labor to cheer in the South

Joe Atkins
Facing South
Labor activists and other progressive folks in the South have four new reasons to cheer: a United Auto Workers victory in Chattanooga, the rare criminal conviction of a coal mining boss in connection with the death of miners who worked for him, the victory of a populist Democrat in Louisiana's gubernatorial race, and a union victory in Laurel, Mississippi.

The Bangladesh Accord - a Model to Secure Workers Rights in Global Supply Chains?

Frauke Banse
Global Labour Column
The Bangladesh Accord negotIated by global labor and lnternational human rights groups after the Rana Plaza building collapse in 2013 contains important protections for workers. Nonetheless, its effectiveness is limited by the weakness of unions on the ground in Bangladesh and by the pro-corporate global regulatory framework.

Portside Aims to Provide Varied Material of Interest to People on the Left - How You Can Help

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Portside aims to provide varied material of interest to people on the left that will help them to interpret the world, and to change it. Every day, we try finding and sharing the most interesting and useful material we can, aimed at helping remaking the world into a fairer and more peaceful place. Once a year we appeal to readers to contribute to sustain the infrastructure that makes Portside possible. It may be the biggest return on investment you'll ever get.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on December 11, 2015

Jordan Klepper sets out to determine the likelihood of another gun owner stopping an active shooter.

Posted by Portside on December 11, 2015

Curtis Mayfield's "People Get Ready" was a 1965 single by The Impressions, reaching #3 on the Billboard R&B Chart and #14 on the Billboard Pop Chart. The gospel-influenced track reflected Mayfield's growing of social and political expression.

Posted by Portside on December 11, 2015

The Nightly Show's Mike Yard and Ricky Velez struggle to find the hilarity in Donald Trump's Islamophobic immigration plan.

Posted by Portside on December 11, 2015

Driver is the founder of Arts in the Armed Forces, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing thought-provoking and impactful contemporary theater currently “in theater” to American military personnel.

Posted by Portside on December 11, 2015

From the outrageous mind of director Adam Mckay comes The Big Short (Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt) with the true story of the traders who 'shorted' the world economy.

Posted by Portside on December 5, 2015

Texas senator and presidential hopeful Ted Cruz is rising in the polls, but he may also be the the man most hated by his congressional colleagues.

Posted by Portside on December 4, 2015

Will Smith portrays Dr. Bennett Omalu, a medical doctor (and immigrant) who confronts the power of the NFL when he investigates and publishes proof of the systematic brain damage and dementia among professional football players.