Thursday, July 29, 2010
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Tuesday, July 27, 2010
The Capitalist Oil Catastrophe Is NOT Over People Must Act to Stop It
BP and government officials are putting out the message that "the worst is over" and "the end is now in sight." But whether or not the gusher is really capped—and this is NOT yet totally clear—this oil disaster is far from over. The environment and the people, particularly along the Gulf coast, remain seriously threatened:
* Within days of the announcement of the capping, there were reports that there was "a detected seep a distance from the well and undetermined anomalies at the well head," and that the Coast Guard commander in charge had ordered BP "to draw up an emergency plan for the possible reopening of the cap." (Washington Post and Agence France-Presse, both July 19, 2010). So while the cap may be working, it is also possible that the capping process will drag on for weeks, perhaps longer.
* It is also possible, according to various engineers, that what has been done so far may have actually damaged the well and made completely capping it more difficult, perhaps even impossible. At each point in this disaster, BP and the government have systemically withheld information and outright lied about what is really going on. So it is possible that more is going on with this latest "fix" than is being revealed to the public, and people must remain vigilant.
* Enormous amounts of crude oil remain in the Gulf. According to official estimates (which may be too low), 35,000-60,000 barrels a day of crude oil have poured into the Gulf from the blown well everyday from April 20 until its capping. BP and the Coast Guard now claim that a major portion of the surface oil has been removed through skimming, burning, and weather effects and that the rest is breaking down "quickly." But there are now at least 100-200 million gallons of toxic crude still in the Gulf.
* As much as 80% of the oil may be under the surface—much of it in giant plumes, some stretching 10 miles. The existence of these plumes—which government officials in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) initially discounted, has now been proven by scientists.
* Oil has already washed into 630 miles of precious wetlands and ocean shores. But the bulk, a vast pool, remains offshore. There have been reports that it could get into the Gulf loop current and be carried to Florida and up into the Atlantic. Cuba and other Caribbean countries, even Europe, could be impacted.
* Hurricanes could sweep huge amounts of oil and toxic dispersants on shore—and the hurricane season has just started. The recent storm Bonnie turned out to be a "tropical depression," not a hurricane, but cleanup and drilling operations had to be stopped and there was talk of a possible 2-4 foot storm surge pushing oil into Louisiana marshes and beaches. Residents in low-lying areas were warned that oil-contaminated water could flood their homes and were told to avoid any contact with the water. Marine biologist Dr. Chris Pincetich of the Sea Turtle Restoration Project raised the question—what would happen if New Orleans is flooded again, but this time with water contaminated with oil and dispersants?
* No one knows the full extent of the devastation of marine life and other wildlife from this massive toxic nightmare, which has spread across huge regions of ocean filled with dolphins, fish, and turtles; into beautiful and amazing wetlands bursting with birds, crabs, oysters, alligators; into the barrier islands where brown pelicans and migratory birds have been nesting. Hundreds of birds, sea turtles, and dolphins have been found dead—the vast majority of animals killed by the oil disaster will never be found. Some scientists estimate that thousands of dolphins have already been killed. The next generation of hundreds of species of sea and coastal wildlife could well be devastated. Food webs in the Gulf will be laced with poison for no one knows how long and they could even face collapse.
* Scientist Samantha Joye, who has just been on the Gulf taking samples of the water, reported that the oil is now much more concentrated than when she first went out in May, and that 40% of what's gushed out of the well is methane gas—some concentrations at 100,000 times normal levels. Bacteria feed on this methane/oil mix and in the process use up oxygen, which may already be causing dead zones (water so depleted of oxygen that life can't even exist).
* There's been no systematic, publicly-available survey of the full extent of the threats to human health and lives posed by the catastrophe. Fumes and contact with this environment have poisoned people who are out on the waters or on the coastline. People's lives and livelihoods in many regions of the Gulf have been devastated and ruined.
* There are unknown and potentially catastrophic long-term impacts on ecosystems, marine life, wildlife, and human health. In 1989 the Exxon Valdez oil tanker spilled nearly nine million gallons of crude into the rich waters off the Alaska coast. It was four years later that much of the ecosystem collapsed, as new generations of marine creatures after the spill were born very vulnerable to the toxic mess and never survived or were damaged. The herring population, once rich in the area and a source of food for many other animals, was wiped out and has not reestablished itself 20 years after that spill.
All this points to the fact that this environmental and human catastrophe is far from over. An "all-hands-on-deck" people's response to stopping the disaster is as urgently needed as ever. We need to make sure that the gusher is actually stopped, that the toxic oil and chemicals now fouling the Gulf are cleaned up, that dispersant use which has been toxic, is halted immediately, and that the shores, wetlands, wildlife, marine life, and people are protected. And we need to dig into and expose the root causes of the oil blowout and the unconscionable response by BP and the government—and what that shows about this whole system and what it will take to prevent such catastrophes in the future and to really protect the planet and the people.
The Emergency Committee to Stop the Gulf Oil Disaster (stopgulfoildisaster.org) has called for protests globally on Friday, July 30: "100 Days of Outrage…Demand 100 Actions." Anyone who wants to stop the catastrophe and protect the Gulf, the people, and the planet should take part, wherever they are, in whatever way they can!
|Revolution reporter Larry Everest at Interior Department’s Mineral Management Service the first public hearings in New Orleans on the BP oil spill.|
The Emergency Committee has called for building "a broad, determined, and powerful peoples' response." Why is this needed? Because "the government and British Petroleum have proven unable and unwilling to stop the disaster, protect the Gulf, or even tell the truth."
The response of BP, the Obama administration, and the whole power structure to the greatest environmental disaster yet in the history of the U.S. —and what may be the greatest oil disaster ever—has been shocking and outrageous:
They've taken the very opposite of an "all-hands-on-deck" approach to stopping the gusher and dealing with the enormous effects on the environment and the people. Why weren't Exxon and Shell forced to send tankers, engineers and technology to help cap the gusher? Why have the thousands who volunteered to help been met with red tape and delays or never heard back from anyone after signing up?
At each and every point, BP and the government have lied and covered up the full scope of the gusher and the reasoning for all the various fixes they have proposed and then abandoned up to now.
They've used the toxic chemical dispersant Corexit on an unprecedented scale—nearly two million gallons—even though the manufacturer's (Nalco) own data state that Corexit mixed with oil makes the oil five times more deadly than oil alone, and about 10 times more deadly than the dispersant alone. Yet the Environmental Protection Agency's tests, which were used to justify their decision to okay BP's use of Corexit, did not test the toxicity of oil and Corexit together. So BP and the government made the environmental disaster worse in order to prevent oil from washing up onshore in massive amounts and push as much oil as possible out of sight. (See "Consensus Statement: Scientists oppose the use of dispersant chemicals in the Gulf of Mexico.")
They have suppressed scientific research and public information on the size and impact of the gushing oil, the threats to human health, wildlife and marine life—which includes threatening, harassing and blocking journalists and the public—in order to prevent them from seeing and reporting on the full extent of the ecological horror BP and the government have created in the Gulf.
They have attempted to enforce passivity among the people through stonewalling and bureaucratic delays for volunteers; threats against and gag orders on people hired for cleanup efforts; town hall meetings and massive advertising campaigns aimed at falsely assuring people that BP and the government really care and are doing all that is possible; and making many people in affected communities dependent on BP for any kind of livelihood.
All this has been unconscionable and has led to enormous costs in terms of ecological destruction and human suffering.
Why have BP and the U.S. government acted in the way they have? Because this has been a capitalist oil disaster—and a capitalist response to the disaster—at every level. The disaster itself was caused by the fact that under capitalism, everything is a commodity produced for profit. Under this system, the resources of the natural world are plundered without regard for ecological consequences. Production is privately owned and driven forward by cut-throat "expand-or-die" competition on a global scale. The time horizons of capitalism are short term. The system is driven by the need to maximize profits and to gain advantage in the market. (For more background, see previous coverage in Revolution and Raymond Lotta's talk, "A Capitalist Oil Spill…A System Not Fit to Be Caretakers of the Planet…And the Revolution We Need," available online at revolutionbooksnyc.org.)
And the U.S. government—representing the overall interests of the whole capitalist-imperialist system—allowed BP and others to recklessly drill 5,000 feet underwater, with NO IDEA of how to stop an oil spill at that depth. (Previous experiences with oil blowouts were in shallow waters, like at Ixotec in Mexico in 1979, which took months and months to stop. To assume that the physics and mechanics are the same at much deeper levels is total irresponsibility and dishonesty in the service of profit.)
The question of oil and fossil fuels is bigger than BP as a major capitalist corporation. Through the 20th century and continuing today, oil has had everything to do with power and empire. Control over oil and other fossil fuels is not only a source of profits, but of leverage over other economies that depend on oil. Control over oil is a source of economic and geopolitical power in the world capitalist system. U.S. economic dominance in the world is inseparable from its military strength—from its bullying, wars of occupation and control, and global network of bases. And one of the dirty little secrets of empire is that the U.S. military is the single largest purchaser of oil in the world.
When disaster struck, the government continued to defend the interests of BP, the oil industry, and the capitalist system overall. They could not tell the truth about the catastrophe—because that would have further undermined the legitimacy of the government and the whole system. They could not mobilize the masses of people and make other corporations help in the response—because this would collide with private ownership and control (BP's). Think about it: BP's reckless pursuit of private profit has led to a monumental social disaster—that is affecting the economy, society, and environment far beyond BP's operations. And yet it has been left to BP to deal with this crisis.
Obama enacted a temporary and limited moratorium on deep-water drilling, while making clear that offshore drilling must continue to be part of the U.S. energy strategy. But already, before the BP well is even fully capped, before any investigation into the causes of the disaster is complete, and before any new technologies have been developed that could conceivably stop another blowout—there is a rising clamor from the oil giants and powerful forces in the ruling class to resume deep-water drilling immediately.
On July 12, the Obama-appointed commission on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill opened its hearings in New Orleans. This "independent" commission, which was supposedly looking into the causes of the disaster, became a platform for advocating the resumption of oil drilling. (The commission is a way to help the system deal with the deep fallout and exposure from this oil catastrophe.)
As the hearings began, a supporter of Revolution newspaper stood up, newspaper in hand, and disrupted the opening of the hearings in an action covered in the national media, including MSNBC and the Today show. He declared: "This commission is illegitimate, the people responsible for these crimes have no right to be investigating them. This is a capitalist oil spill and this system is not fit to be caretaker of the planet."
There was more truth in those few moments than in days of Commission hearings and months of official statements and bourgeois media coverage.
Turbulent, Oil-Fouled Political Waters…And the Urgent Need for a People's Response
The representatives of this system, at all levels, have been very active during this crisis—not to act on real solutions, but to limit the damage to their interests. State and national officials frequently come through Louisiana to hold press conferences and visit affected areas. Meetings take place nearly every week in various parishes (counties) involving BP, EPA, Coast Guard and other government officials, designed to reassure (often in the face of deep anger, distrust, and cynicism among the people) that the powers-that-be care, they're listening, they're doing all they can, they're sorry, blah, blah, blah.
All this is taking place amid deep contradictions and complex maneuvering among ruling class forces. Louisiana's Republican Governor Bobby Jindal is posturing as a front-line, "can-do," take-charge "general" in the battle against the oil spill. He has criticized the clean-up effort and blamed Washington and the Obama administration.
The fascist Tea Party has also been very active—going after Washington and "big government," and specifically blaming Obama, but in a way that covers up and enlists people behind the interests of the whole setup that produced this environmental and economic disaster. A July 21 "Rally for Economic Survival" organized by Republicans, business leaders, and Tea Party forces at the Cajundome in Lafayette, Louisiana, drew 11,000 people, plus 4,000 on live webcast. Speaking in the name of small businesses and the "common man," they claim that letting the big oil companies get back to "drill baby drill"—even more unregulated environmental rape and a more "hands-off" government approach to worker safety—is the only hope for those in desperate economic hardship. This when, in reality, both the enormous environmental devastation and the economic suffering and uncertainty are products of capitalism's relentless and brutal profit-seeking nature.
In this intense and rapidly changing mix, revolutionaries, radicals, progressives, environmentalists, and other political groups have also been active in various ways.
This has included the Emergency Committee to Stop the Gulf Oil Disaster. The Committee was formed following a June 19 Emergency Summit held in New Orleans in order to provide a vehicle for many, many people to act to stop the disaster in the face of BP and the government's refusal to do so. Its Mission Statement calls for mobilization of diverse forces—activists, impacted communities, environmentalists, scientists—on a nationwide, even global, basis to stop the catastrophe. It has issued seven demands that speak to all the dimensions of the crisis and provide concrete focuses for action.
In a little over a month, the Committee has actively protested the actions of both BP and the government including: holding the first demonstration at the Joint Unified Command headquarters (in charge of the response to the disaster); intervening in BP-government "town hall" meetings; protesting outside and speaking inside at the Obama Commission hearings; demonstrating when VP Joe Biden visited the area; joining the protests of other groups; and issuing many statements to the press, which have been widely covered. (See stopgulfoildisaster.org for the Mission Statement, demands, press coverage, and accounts of its actions, and other important information.)
Overall, the Committee's Mission Statement, its demands, and its actions represent an alternative pole to the authority claimed by BP and the government to continue pursuing their own interests in the crisis—rather than going all out to protect the environment and the people.
Much more needs to be done. There's an urgent need to uncover, and for people to understand, the full scope of this ongoing catastrophe. The Committee's Mission Statement, demands, and determined spirit need to reach many, many more people. The organized independent mass action and truth-telling is needed on a society-wide scale.
Taking action, marking the 100th day of the disaster on Friday, July 30 is an important juncture for pushing forward and making the voice of the people heard. As the Committee's call for the protest states, "We're not stopping until the well is sealed and the Gulf is healed."
Call from the Emergency Committee to Stop the Gulf Oil Disaster: GULF OIL DISASTER 100 Days of Outrage!
Monday, July 26, 2010
Bob Avakian on "Why do people come here from all over the world?": 5,000 total views on Thursday, July 29!
The Revolution Talk web promotion team sent this message:
On Facebook: Post the clip to your profile and to your friends' pages. Post it as a Note and tag several friends. Post it on Facebook groups and fan pages. Check www.facebook.com/revolutiontalk for frequent updates.
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On Internet discussion sites: Post the link in political discussion forums...and get the discussion going!
Please contact the web promotion team at email@example.com with any other ideas you have for reaching this goal: 5,000 views on Thursday, July 29.
Watch the full Revolution talk at http://revolutiontalk.net
The REVOLUTION is real. Watch it. Spread it.
Monday, July 12, 2010
Young & Black? Expect to be "Stopped & Frisked" if not killed by police
Below are excerpts taken from today’s NYTimes http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/12/nyregion/12frisk.html?pagewanted=4&hp about the rampant “stop and frisk” policy where each year now the NY Police Department stops and frisks over half a million people – the majority of them for reasons such as “furtive movements.” This article features the most targeted area where the average young Black man (starting at the age of 15!) is stopped on average FIVE TIMES A YEAR!
Throw this in the mix of the recent slap on the wrist given just days ago to the cop who executed Oscar Grant in front of a crowd hundreds and viewed by millions on youtube.
I don’t want to hear any more talk about how this is a “post-racial” society. Walking around young and Black still means two things. First, you are a suspect. Second, you are a target of police all the way up to and frequently including police murder.
The time is now to be exposing and resisting these outrages, and to be building up the strength to put an end to this madness through real, genuine communist revolution at the soonest possible time. Nothing can excuse what you are about to read below.
“The officers stop people they think might be carrying guns; they stop and question people who merely enter the public housing project buildings without a key; they ask for identification from, and run warrant checks on, young people halted for riding bicycles on the sidewalk.
“One night, 20 officers surrounded a man outside the Brownsville Houses after he would not let an officer smell the contents of his orange juice container.
“Between January 2006 and March 2010, the police made nearly 52,000 stops on these blocks and in these buildings, according to a New York Times analysis of data provided by the Police Department and two organizations, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the New York Civil Liberties Union. In each of those encounters, officers logged the names of those stopped — whether they were arrested or not — into a police database that the police say is valuable in helping solve future crimes.
“These encounters amounted to nearly one stop a year for every one of the 14,000 residents of these blocks. In some instances, people were stopped because the police said they fit the description of a suspect. But the data show that fewer than 9 percent of stops were made based on ‘fit description.’ Far more — nearly 26,000 times — the police listed either ‘furtive movement,’ a catch-all category that critics say can mean anything, or ‘other’ as the only reason for the stop. Many of the stops, the data show, were driven by the police’s ability to enforce seemingly minor violations of rules governing who can come and go in the city’s public housing.”
Skipping ahead in the article…
“And some, from academics to the residents of these streets in
Brooklyn, believe the stops could have a corrosive effect, alienating young and old alike in a community that has long had a tenuous relationship with the police.
“’This is an important issue, right now, that the N.Y.P.D. must get out in front of as soon as they can,’ said Richard Rosenfeld, a professor of criminology and criminal justice at the
University of Missouri, . ‘And the best way they can do that is to provide credible evidence that the stop-and-frisk campaign actually is responsible for the crime reductions the city has enjoyed.’ St. Louis
“Without that evidence, he said, the stop-and-frisks that do not result in arrests could ‘reduce the perceived legitimacy of the police in the eyes of the public.’”
Okay, that above quote is very revealing – basically this guy is pointing out that this practice of “stop and frisk” that is disproportionately targeting and terrorizing Black people so blatantly violates what most people consider decent and legitimate (even according to the proclaimed principles of the U.S. constitution and laws), that if they don’t cook up some kind of PR rational for this they could undermine the legitimacy of the very armed force and terror their system relies on to function.
Everyone who is sincere, needs to come to grips with the fact that the outrage of police violence and terror against Black people in this country is so widespread, so pervasive, so dehumanizing and degrading to Black people as a whole that IT ALONE is reason enough for revolution. Further, everyone interested in revolution ought not to fail to see how significant and strategic a potential vulnerability this kind of ongoing police terror is to the legitimacy of this entire system. There is tremendous potential to bring forward – through fighting the power and transforming the people FOR REVOLUTION – an alternate legitimate vision, authority, and specter of a radically different society, a revolutionary society, that can put an end to this madness and attract many people into this today.
The article continues later…
“Inside the project buildings and out, males 15 to 34 years of age, who make up about 11 percent of the area’s population, accounted for 68 percent of the stops over the years. That amounted to about five stops a year each, though it was impossible to tell how often someone was stopped or if that person lived in the neighborhood, because the data did not include the names or addresses of those stopped. Police officials say the age figures sound right, since most crime suspects fit that description.
“Young black men get stopped so often that a few years ago, Gus Cyrus, coach of the football team at nearby Thomas Jefferson High School, started letting his players leave practice with their bright orange helmets so the police would not confuse them with gang members.
“’My players were always calling me saying “Coach, the police have me,”‘ Mr. Cyrus said.”
Just think what that means – that the football coach had to let his players borrow bright orange helmets so that they would have a higher chance of not being stopped and harassed and humiliated and possibly beaten or killed by police! In his epic talk, “Revolution: Why Its Necessary; Why Its Possible; What Its All About,” Bob Avakian talks about how it is doubtful that any young Black man grows up in an inner city without being traumatized by the fear of being brutalized or killed by police. This story from this coach just captures one small dimension of that – but it speaks volumes.
By the way, there is an additional irony in that little excerpt in that the name of the high school is “
.” Jeffersonian democracy is supposedly what makes this country so free and guarantees all people equal rights and protections under the law. But, in reality in its original conception – and as it is clearly functioning today – it has white supremacy woven into its very fabric. At the time of Thomas Jefferson High School Jefferson, this took the form of outright slavery. Today, there is – among many other things – the situation that is described in this article from the NYTimes.
“Almost everyone in the projects has a story. There is Jonathan Guity, a 26-year-old legal assistant with no criminal record, who, when asked how many times he had been stopped in the neighborhood where he grew up, said, ‘Honestly, I’d say 30 to 40 times. I’m serious.’”
“One recent evening, the police stopped a 19-year-old man for spitting on the sidewalk, a health code violation, and entering Langston Hughes Apartments without using a key or being buzzed in, even though the doors were unlocked. ‘I’ve lived here for 19 years,’ the young man, who lived in a neighboring building, protested. ‘You see me coming into these buildings every day, and now you’re going to stop me.’”
If you can stomach all this, you have a serious problem. If you cannot, its time to get more serious about the real revolution.
Re: Oscar Grant -- The Whole Damn System Is Guilty!
There is important coverage today at revcom.us about the outrageous verdict in the police murder of Oscar Grant. I am reposting one of the pieces below, but go check out the whole paper at:http://revcom.us/
The Whole Damn System Is Guilty!
When a cop can murder a young, unarmed Black man, lying face-down in handcuffs, it's an outrage. This is what happened to Oscar Grant, as clearly shown by numerous videos. Yet his murderer has barely been given a slap on the wrist.
This same sort of outrage goes on year after year, city after city, throughout society. Sean Bell, unarmed, 23 years old and Black—New York police shot 50 bullets at him in 2006, murdering him on his wedding day. Amadou Diallo, a young African immigrant, murdered on his front steps by police who fired 41 shots at him. Patrick Dorismond, Haitian-American... Mark Garcia... Anthony Baez, Puerto Rican...Tyisha Miller, shot 12 times by the Riverside, California, police as she sat in her car, unconscious... the list goes on. All murdered by police, all committing no crime, and in all cases but one the police going totally free. The Stolen Lives Project has documented several thousand such cases—and this documentation itself is far from complete.
This is murder carried out "under color of authority." This murder is obscene. This murder is illegitimate. This murder is unconscionable and utterly immoral. AND IT MUST NOT BE TOLERATED!!
And when this kind of murder goes along with the widespread imprisonment of Black and other minority youth, with the police routinely forcing these youth to "kiss the pavement" and often beating them for the slightest show of defiance or merely to "make an example"...
when this kind of murder goes along with schools that don't teach and inescapable discrimination in jobs and whole areas being left to rot, while those who have been consigned to this fate are constantly demonized by the media...
when all this comes on top of 400 years of different forms of oppression, all preserving the essential core of white supremacy, despite oceans of blood shed by people trying to get free of this...
when all this flows out of and reinforces the basic economic workings of that same rotten society, generating untold wealth and power at the top of society and indescribable misery at the bottom... and when it finds endless echoes and constant reinforcements in the culture and ideas and institutions of that society... then:
It's A System.
The Message and Call of our Party puts it this way:
"It is a system of capitalism-imperialism...a system in which U.S. imperialism is the most monstrous, most oppressive superpower...a system driven by a relentless chase after profit, which brings horror upon horror, a nightmare seemingly without end, for the vast majority of humanity: poverty and squalor...torture and rape...the wholesale domination and degradation of women everywhere...wars, invasions and occupations...assassinations and massacres...planes, missiles, tanks and troops of the USA, bombarding people in far away lands while they sleep in their homes or go about their daily lives, blasting their little children to pieces, cutting down men and women in the prime of life, or in old age, kicking down their doors and dragging them away in the middle of the night...while here in the USA itself the police harass, brutalize and murder youth in the streets of the inner cities—over and over again—and then they spit out their maddening insults, insisting that this is 'justified,' as if these youth are not human beings, have no right to live, deserve no respect and no future."
And as we ask elsewhere in this paper, "how much more do we need to see of this system, before we decide we have had enough of it, and work with everything we have to build a movement for revolution to get rid of it...and put something in its place that would value the lives of the millions of people like the one wantonly murdered and would actually bring justice?"
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Cop Who Killed Oscar Grant Gets Slap On the Wrist -- "Post-Racial" My ASS!
From Revolution Books, Berkeley
INVOLUNTARY MANSLAUGHTER: UNACCEPTABLE!
WE DEMAND JUSTICE FOR OSCAR GRANT!
The Whole Damn System is Guilty!
"The killing of Oscar Grant, an unarmed 22-year-old Black man, was a cold-blooded murder. It was a towering crime. This verdict is a slap on the wrist. It is another crime of the system."
WATCH THE FOOTAGE OF THE COLD-BLOODED POLICE MURDER OF OSCAR GRANT:
WATCH THIS CLIP FROM BOB AVAKIAN -- "YES, THERE'S A CONSPIRACY TO GET THE POLICE OFF"
Under the law, 2nd degree murder is the unjustified, intentional killing of a human being. Involuntary manslaughter is a much lesser offense, and carries a much lighter sentence. We saw the videos. From the beginning, the cops were the ones driving the action. Detained, lying face down, putting his hands behind his back while one cop kneeled on his neck, Oscar was shot in the back. Cold-blooded murder, a totally unjustified and brutal act.
Think about it: If this case did not involve police, the situation would be completely different.
Imagine if seven ordinary people had swarmed the BART platform that night, rousted people off the train—cursing them with racist epithets—kicking, and shoving people to the ground, and then killing a man who was lying face down—shooting him in the back. Imagine if dozens of people had seen it. If they videotaped it. What had happened wouldn’t even be a question. It would be obvious. Murder.
This involuntary manslaughter verdict tells cops everywhere they can kill and get away with it. And this verdict tells the people that when we or people we love are gunned down, a slap on the wrist to a cop is the best that we can get.
Let's tell the truth—this system lets cops get away with brutality and murder every single day. The only reason that Mehserle even had to face murder charges at all—and everyone should know this almost never happens—is because the people rose up and fought for justice. And now the defenders of this system are saying that the battle for justice hurt the people. Bullshit. It’s the system the cops enforce with their brutality that hurts the people.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. We don’t have to live in a society where our youth are gunned down by the police who get away with it over and over, where immigrants are criminalized by just the way they look, where oil gushes into the gulf and marshes week after week killing rich sea life and a whole way of life for many thousands. We could build a society where police brutality and other injustices are done away with and people work together to build a new society. Building that kind of society would take a revolution. We need such a revolution and right now we are building a movement for revolution.
The system is rotten. We don’t have to live this way. We need a Real Revolution!
REVOLUTION BOOKS, Berkeley
2425 Channing Way, Berkeley, CA 94704
Monday, July 05, 2010
Re Newsweek: The REAL Revolution and Bob Avakian on the 4th of July
Yesterday, Newsweek’s feature story was on The New Revolutionaries and it featured many of the reactionary populist movements as well as the Revolutionary Communist Party’s efforts. That this was their feature story on the 4th of July gives at least a glimpse of how much the very legitimacy of the U.S. system and functioning of capitalism is coming into question.
But some things need to be made clear. All those populist movements they featured – from the Tea Party folks to Michelle Bachman to Rush Limbaugh and beyond – are all defenders and upholders of this system of capitalism-imperialism. They have a lot of beef with Obama and some of the recent policies and approaches he and others in government are taking to rescue this system (the bank bail-outs, the healthcare legislation, the only-slightly-less-fascist approach to immigration, etc.) BUT they are defenders and upholders of the same system of capitalism-imperialism that Obama is the chief representative of. The Tea Party and other populists may want to change things drastically, but they are not about changing things fundamentally.
Besides, Obama is no socialist or communist!
But, we – the Revolutionary Communist Party and many who are joining with it to build the movement for the REAL REVOLUTION – are! And, you should be too!
Meet the leader of the real revolution, Bob Avakian. And check out this clip where he breaks down what this country is really about.
Then, especially if you have the day off for this so-called holiday (the 4th of July) which is really about celebrating genocide and slavery and imperialist domination of the planet – take ten minutes to spread this around (through email, facebook, twitter, etc.) to everyone you know!
As it says in the RCP’s recent Message and Call:
“We do not need to be sacrificing even more to ‘rescue’ this system. This system needs to be swept aside…its crimes against humanity stopped cold…its institutions dismantled, and replaced by ones that empower people to build a new society free of exploitation and oppression.”
We need a REAL REVOLUTION – and a whole DIFFERENT SYSTEM. As this Message and Call goes on to say:
“It is this system that has got us in the situation we're in today, and keeps us there. And it is through revolution to get rid of this system that we ourselves can bring a much better system into being. The ultimate goal of this revolution is communism: A world where people work and struggle together for the common good…Where everyone contributes whatever they can to society and gets back what they need to live a life worthy of human beings…Where there are no more divisions among people in which some rule over and oppress others, robbing them not only of the means to a decent life but also of knowledge and a means for really understanding, and acting to change, the world.”
Friday, July 02, 2010
Bob Avakian on "What to the Slave is Your 4th of July? From the Past to the Present"
As this system celebrates its criminal empire, make a voice for real revolution heard.
On Friday, July 2, be part of a campaign to reach 1000 views of this powerful clip. This is a proper way to mark July 4th and is part of putting revolution, and revolutionary leadership, on the map.