Rouge Forum Update : Upcoming Actions, Current Conditions, Resources, and FUN

Dear Friends,

The Rouge Forum No Blood for Oil web page is updated.

There you will also find links to the Rouge Forum Conference, May 15 to 17 in Ypsilanti, Michigan, and the new Spring Issue of the Rouge Forum News, the only radical education publication in the US. The conference schedule is linked here.

Let’s break this update in parts: Upcoming Action, Current Conditions, and Resources.

Upcoming Actions:

In California and some other states, we are on the brink of test season and, perhaps, boycotts. Opt out of the tests. Tell parents and kids. Walk away. Set up freedom schooling where kids can learn, again, how to learn.

March on Mayday! Mayday, the International Workers’ Holiday, started well over 100 years ago but it was given new life in the US (where the government had declared it “Obedience to Law Day”) three years ago when immigrant rights activists created some of the largest demonstrations in the last 30 years. This year, it is more than likely youths will pour out of schools to join the marches. We should all be on the march, and supporting kids who rightly say that marching on Mayday is more important than the testing drill and kill that goes on in school that day. Here is the Rouge Forum Flyer from last year.

Current Conditions:

You would never know it from the complete silence from the AFL-CIO and NEA on the reality of 650,000 layoffs in the last month, but workers all over the world are fighting back. In Greece, there was a general strike. In France, uprisings sparked by students and teachers, building seizures, bosses kidnapped. In Italy, hundreds of thousands of people marched against the right wing government.
And in Thailand Protestors Smash Rich Folks Meeting.

It is class war. An international war of the rich on the poor with the poor children of each nation fighting poor children of other nations, on behalf of the rich. The core issue of our times is rising color coded inequality vs the potential of mass class conscious resistance.

World Unemployment to Boom in 2009: IL.

Here is Howard Zinn on class in America (video).

States Slash Social Program, but $10.9 trillion went to the banks so far.

DPS to Cut 600 and Close 23 Schools.

The banking crisis deepens as the contradiction between accumulation and consumption sharpens, the banks interested in profits alone and the consumers unable to buy. “Said Frank Pallotta, a former mortgage trader at Morgan Stanley, now a consultant to institutional investors, “if every bank was forced to sell at the market-clearing price, you’d have only five banks left in the market.”

New School Students Seized a Building and the Cops Attacked.

Gutting and Selling the US Manufacturing Base: Quote from the end of the article: Suter was cleaning out a tool shed that might have some resale value to some yuppie who collects such things. He pulled out a bound contract from 2000 between the UAW and The Company. He read from Article V Section 1: “The Union reaffirms its adherence to the principle of a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay, and agrees to use its best efforts toward this end …” “If only everybody would have lived up to their end of the bargain,” he said. And then he tossed the contract in the garbage.

How the “New Labor Movement” Would Mirror GM’s Failed Structure.

The PIRATES! spectacle. We are being lied to again: PIRATES!

The Obamagogue, Torture Enabler, by Ted Rall: http://informationclearinghouse.info/article22390.htm

Prove again that you are a good teacher, the New Mexico Model.

Tomgram: Michael Klare, Boom Times for Criminal Syndicates.

Resources:

Political Economy For Beginners.

Meszaros on the Great Financial Crisis.

And a quote worth remembering:

“Commerce is at a standstill, the markets are glutted, products accumulate, as multitudinous as they are unsaleable, hard cash disappears, credit vanishes, factories are closed, the mass of the workers are in want of the means of subsistence, because they have produced too much of the means of subsistence; bankruptcy follows upon bankruptcy, execution upon execution. The stagnation lasts for years; productive forces and products are wasted and destroyed wholesale, until the accumulated mass of commodities finally filter off, more or less depreciated in value, until production and exchange gradually begin to move again.

Little by little the pace quickens. It becomes a trot. The industrial trot breaks into a canter, the canter in turn grows into the headlong gallop of a perfect steeplechase of industry, commercial credit and speculation, which finally, after breakneck leaps, ends where it began–in the ditch of a crisis… The fact that the socialised organisation of production within the factory has developed so far that it has become incompatible with the anarchy of production in society… The whole mechanism of the capitalist mode of production breaks down under the pressure of the productive forces, its own creations.

It is no longer able to turn all this mass of means of production into capital. They lie fallow, and for that very reason the industrial reserve army must also lie fallow. Means of production, means of subsistence, available labourers, all the elements of production and of general wealth, are present in abundance… For in capitalistic society the means of production can only function when they have undergone a preliminary transformation into capital, into the means of exploiting human labour power.”

Frederick Engels’s “Socialism: Utopian and Scientific” part of Anti Dühring New York: International Publishers, 1935, pages 64-65

Congratulations to Fred Jerome for his new book: Einstein on Israel and Zionism.

With sadness, the death of Mark Fidrych.

Fun:

The Fox Tea Bag Problem.

Song:

The Internationale, for Mayday.

Thanks to Amber, Joe B and the entire committee for the conference, Adam and Gina, Wayne, Perry, Figora, Donnie A., Milt R, Peter M, Steve R, Ricky C, Sue H, Penny, Dan H, Jim3, Phillip, Gordon, Natalia, Harry K, Kathy K, Jim B, Kim B, Pam R, Tony H, Tommie and Bob, and Nereyda.

All the best and good luck to us, every one.
r