My May Day Rally Speech, 2018

On this May Day I want to remind all of us of the honorable tradition that we stand firmly in. A tradition of regular people, always poor and working class, standing up against monsters of all kinds. This holiday that we call May Day was forged right here in America; forged atop stolen land by those who were brutally oppressed and exploited by the very class structure that tore its way through this land; rooted in genocide, built by slavery, and maintained through endless imperialism. From the first time colonizers touched foot on the shores of this New World, there has been resistance from the our indigenous brothers and sisters who, for millennia, called this land home. From the first time slave masters operationalized capitalist logic by kidnapping Africans from their homes and bringing them here to profit off their forced labor, there has been resistance from our African brothers and sister who stood up and rebelled against their oppressors. From the first time Chinese and Latinx people were imported by capitalists to build railroads and grow food in horrific conditions for little to no pay, immigrants of all stripes have resisted their exploitation and fought for basic human dignity and fair pay. From the first time women were subjugated to second class citizen status in a brutal patriarchal order which viewed them as the property of men, women have organized and fought back against gendered violence and oppression. And, from the earliest days of industrial capitalism, where working people of all stripes, including children, were mercilessly used, grinded to dust by toil, and thrown away by the owning class who viewed them as nothing more than mere commodities, the proletariat have armed and defended themselves and shed blood, often times their own, in the name of liberation.

It is this struggle, this lineage, and this tradition that we all stand in and that we honor today. And lets talk about today! Today, the three richest American men own more wealth than the bottom 50% of Americans *Combined*. Today, over 50 million Americans live below the poverty line, struggling to keep a roof over their head, food in their bellies, and medicine in the cabinet. Today, 25% of the worlds prisoners, an astounding 1/4th of all people locked in cages on Planet Earth, are locked in cages here in the United States of America. Today, the environment is being systematically destroyed in the zealous pursuit of profit at all costs as our children’s futures are sacrificed on the altar of endless growth. Today, trillions upon trillions of our tax dollars are funneled away from social programs like healthcare and education and into the pockets of arms manufacturers who produce weapons and bombs that are dropped on the heads of innocent human beings across the planet.

The struggles of our ancestors, who created this holiday we are celebrating right now by spilling their blood in the name of better wages, better working conditions, and a better life for their families, continues to this day. We are not trying to start a class war, how could we? Class war has already been raging for centuries. We are already in it; and the ruling class, the capitalist class, the owning class, what we Marxists call The Bourgeoisie, have been winning. We are merely standing up, as poor and working people, and defending ourselves in a class war that explodes all around us every single day.

We want a better world, a more equal world. A world where systematic oppression, injustice, exploitation, and endless war are tossed into the dustbin of history, and where every human being can live a life worth living. A life where their physical material needs, as well as their mental and emotional needs, are systematically met by society, not sneered at and neglected.

Our rulers want us to believe that there is no alternative. That this is the best we can do as a society and as a species; just like Kings and Queens of the past told their subjects that their role as rulers was ordained by God, and that nothing could be done about it. But we reject this cynicism and defeatism. We reject the lies of our masters who live lives of unimaginable luxury and comfort on the back of the international working class.

A better world is possible. A world where people of all colors, all religions, all genders, all ethnicities, and all orientations can come together in cooperation and solidarity and build a sustainable, egalitarian world.

It is true that our flag is red with the blood of our martyrs. It is true that our society is burdened by the weight of dead generations. It is true that the forces of fascist reaction and neoliberal exploitation are on the move, looking to divide us so that we can more easily be crushed. But when I look out at all of you today, and when I think of the hundreds of thousands of similar rallies being held all over the planet as I speak, my heart swells with hope and optimism. This system, and the vampires perched atop its unjust hierarchies of wealth and power, cannot last forever. And with every blow they strike against us, with every pound of pressure used to push their boots further into our throats, and with every cynical attempt to confuse and pacify us with their ideological conditioning, we are roused out of our sleep a little bit more.

Lets live lives of meaning. Lets engage in the struggle for liberation. Lets fight back against those who want nothing more than for us to go to our meaningless jobs everyday obediently, who want us to consume their shitty plastic products endlessly, and who want us, when we’ve exhausted our bodies and minds working for them, to fall silently into our graves and hand over our children to their domination in the process.

We have nothing to lose but our chains.
Solidarity to all oppressed people.
Onward!

Advertisements

Episode 2: GOP Tax Bill, Net Neutrality, Police Brutality, and The Informal Anarchist Federation

On episode two of The Guillotine, Dr. Bones from the Conjure House and Brett from Revolutionary Left Radio discuss the new GOP tax bill, the FCC decision to dismantle Net Neutrality, the murder of Daniel Shaver and the acquittal of Phillip Brailsford, and the Santiago Maldonado Cell of the Informal Anarchist Federation.

We also take live calls from listeners. 

HERE IS THE EPISODE: http://theguillotinepodcast.libsyn.com/episode-2-gop-tax-bill-net-neutrality-police-brutality-and-the-informal-anarchist-federation

—–

If you like this show, and want us to make more of them, please donate a few dollars to our Patreon here: https://www.patreon.com/TheGuillotine
Follow us on Twitter @GuillotinePod
Follow us on Facebook by searching “The Guillotine”

The Dismantling of Net Neutrality and the Socialist Solution

We are all upset and outraged at the recent dismantling of Net Neutrality; however, it’s essential to understand the broader context within which this attack on the internet is taking place. As neoliberal late capitalism spirals the drain and continues to devour everything in its path, there will be an intensified effort to dismantle and privatize what we call the “commons”: places and resources and institutions that are meant to be accessible to the general public regardless of the amount of money one happens to have in their bank account. This attack on the internet is an attack on the very idea that some things should be free and open to everyone and not privatized and sold back to us at inflated prices in order to increase the profit margins of a handful of already extremely rich and powerful corporations. If we zoom out a bit, we can see this vampiric attack on the commons in many other areas: for example, the Trump administration recently issued an executive order dramatically shrinking the size of two national monuments in Utah, reducing the acreage of protected public land by 80% in one case in order to open them up to drilling by oil and gas companies. From healthcare to prisons to education, we are facing a corporate onslaught from all angles, and working people are being robbed, beaten down, and tossed aside at every turn.

This disgusting excuse for political system has also begun dropping even the *pretense* of democracy and representative republicanism. Over 80% of Americans were opposed to the dismantling of Net Neutrality, and getting 80% of Americans to agree on anything these days is damn near impossible. Additionally, our two “choices” for president, Clinton and Trump, each had Disapproval ratings in the 60-70% range *during the campaign*. And finally, this new GOP tax bill which seeks to transfer 1.5 Trillion dollars away from working Americans and into the pockets of the already extremely rich has only a 30% approval rating from the general population. Yet despite these clear numbers, Net Neutrality was gutted, Trump and Clinton were our choices, and this horrifically cruel GOP tax bill is almost certainly going to be passed into law. We do not live in anything even resembling a democracy, and getting to choose every few years between a handful of representatives of the ruling class doesn’t change that. We live in the Dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, of the capitalist class. They don’t give a fuck what you and I think, they will do whatever they want to do, and we are expected to sit down, shut up, and take it…

But I do not want us merely to despair; if they want a fight, they will get one. And with every sociopathic policy move they make, they stir more and more of us into action. Karl Marx once said that capitalism produces its own gravediggers, and here we all are, with nothing but shovels and plenty of dirt… we weren’t born to bend the knee, we were born to knock off crowns from atop the heads of kings.

And when it comes to the internet, the liberal solution of net neutrality has failed to hold up. Now its time for a socialist solution: if the internet infrastructure is a neutral public carrier of data, then it should be publicly owned by the cities. The internet is a utility, and in this modern world, if you don’t have equal and free access to it, you are at a material disadvantage. Net Neutrality was great, but it wasn’t enough. The internet belongs in the hands of the people; it should be a public utility and access to it should be a protected right. After all, public spending built the internet, capitalists merely sold it back to us at a premium. Its time to get the corporate vampires completely out of the equation and bring the internet under democratic, collective control. That should be our goal, and every move we make in this fight, that goal should be held firmly in our minds. And its not some utopian idea either, its precisely what happened in Chattanooga Tennessee. That mid-sized city, not at all unlike our own, was fed up with private corporation’s inability to provide low cost, high speed access to the internet, so they did it themselves. Now the internet in Chattanooga is democratically owned by the people of that city, costs have gone down, and internet speeds skyrocketed past the speeds offered by the big private corporations.

This fight is just beginning, and as long as we have capitalism, we will have to keep fighting these battles off and on indefinitely. In fact, the very idea of destroying net neutrality in the first place would be inconceivable in a democratic society run by and for regular working people. *Only* in a system where the super rich and private corporations have wildly disproportionate power and influence would this ever even be an issue in the first place. But the single biggest blow we could hit them with would be to respond to this assault on the commons by wrenching their greedy, blood stained fingers off our internet and taking back what is rightfully ours. In order to do this, we have to organize here in Omaha, put massive pressure on our local representatives, and normalize this idea within our social circles as well as online. Let people know that a better way of doing things is a possibility, and then fight like hell to make it a reality.

We live in an uncertain time; the 21st century is perhaps the largest and most important crossroads in the history of our species. The class war is being intensified on every front and from every direction. What we need now more than ever is a national working class movement that can rise to the challenges of our time and fight back against the blood-soaked corporate and imperialist monsters who wish to plunder and loot every corner of this planet.

Time is running out, and our choice, in the words of the great revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg, is clearer today than its ever been: Socialism or Barbarism.

Gothic Marxism: The Horror Genre and the Monsters of Neoliberalism

TheLitCritGuy is a precariously employed, struggling academic and the internet’s foremost literary critic, bringing literary theory and criticism to the widest possible audience. He writes for a variety of online platforms about things as diverse as theory, philosophy, gothic and horror literature and film, the internet, politics and pop-culture. In his academic research he writes about gothic literature, theology, continental philosophy of religion and monsters and will be submitting his PhD in Sept 2017. He lives somewhere in the north of England, with his beautiful wife and their many books.
Jon sits down with Brett to discuss Gothic Marxism.

Topics Include: Gothic literature, Karl Marx, Neoliberalism as a mode and style of vacuous politics, Nihilism, Nostalgia, Postmodernism, Centrism, Films as Cultural Dreams, Zombies, Vampires, and much, much more!

HERE IS THE EPISODE: http://revolutionaryleftradio.libsyn.com/gothic-marxism-the-horror-genre-and-the-monsters-of-neoliberalism

——————————————–

Here is Jon’s website: https://thelitcritguy.com
Find him on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheLitCritGuy
Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheLitCritGuy

Outro Song is “Song of the Dead” by Sea Wolf. You can listen to and support his wonderful music here (it is perfect winter music): https://seawolf.bandcamp.com

Intro Song by our comrades The String-Bo String Duo. You can listen to and support them here: https://tsbsd.bandcamp.com/releases
Support Rev Left Radio on Patreon here: https://www.patreon.com/RevLeftRadio/posts
 
This podcast is officially affiliated with The Nebraska Left Coalition and the Omaha GDC. 

From Diplomat to Anarchist: The State, War, and the Fight for a Better World

Carne Ross is a former British diplomat, and Middle East and WMD expert, who resigned in 2004 after giving then-secret evidence to a British inquiry into the Iraq war. 

After he quit, he founded the world’s first non-profit diplomatic advisory group, Independent Diplomat, which advises democratic countries and political movements around the world. In 2007, his critique of contemporary diplomacy was published: “Independent Diplomat: Dispatches from an Unaccountable Elite”.  
Carne is now an outspoken anarchist, and in this episode he sits down with Brett to discuss The State and Anarchism.

Topics Include: Thomas Hobbes, the Social Contract theorists, moral culpability as agents of the State, the Iraq War, spontaneous mutual aid, the Rojavan Revolution, Participatory Budgeting, Emma Goldman, and much, much more.


HERE IS THE EPISODE: http://revolutionaryleftradio.libsyn.com/from-diplomat-to-anarchist-the-state-war-and-the-fight-for-a-better-world-0

—————————————

You can find Carne Ross’s work here: http://www.carneross.com
You can see more about Independent Diplomat here: www.independentdiplomat.org

Follow Carne on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/carneross?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.carneross.com%2F

Outro Music by QELD, you can find their music, and support them here: https://qeld.bandcamp.com

Follow Bob Savage from QELD on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/bobbynechayev?lang=en

Follow Jenre from QELD on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/jenreqeld
Intro Music by The String-Bo String Duo, you can find their music here: https://tsbsd.bandcamp.com/releases

Donate to Revolutionary Left Radio’s Patreon, and help us to continue putting out high quality content, here: https://www.patreon.com/RevLeftRadio

This Podcast is officially affiliated with The Nebraska Left Coalition and the Omaha GDC. 

NEW PODCAST: The Guillotine, Ep 1

We are introducing the first episode of a brand new spin-off podcast called The Guillotine. Brett from Revolutionary Left Radio and Dr. Bones from The Conjure House host this brand new show that covers current news around the world from a revolutionary communist and anarchist perspective and that has live call-ins from listeners.

This being our first episode ever, we had some kinks to work out and could not live stream it. However, in the future, all episodes will be live streamed as well as published through our podcast hosting site, so you can listen to the new show live and call in to talk to us; and you can also listen to the polished version a few days later on iTunes or your favorite podcast app.

HERE IS THE EPISODE: http://theguillotinepodcast.libsyn.com/episode-1-fascism-libya-sexism-and-j20

————————

Follow us on Twitter @GuillotinePod
Follow us on Facebook by searching “The Guillotine”

Our intro music is “Our Words” off the album “Nihilismo” by Sole and DJ Pain 1, you can find their music here: https://sole.bandcamp.com/album/sole-dj-pain-1-nihilismo

Our transition music between segments was a created by our comrade Ethan S., you can find that here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVEXA_RR1sA

Out outro music is “The Guillotine” by The String-Bo String Duo, you can find their music here: https://tsbsd.bandcamp.com/releases 

21st Century Marxism: Neo-Marxism and the Value of Engels

Brenden Leahy is a local organizer and revolutionary thinker. He was featured on our Ideology Episode a few months back. 
 
He sits down with Brett to discuss Marxism and Neo-Marxism.
 
Topics include: Key neo-Marxist figures, Eco-Socialism, misunderstandings of Marxism, Friedrich Engels, Dual Power, Jenny Marx, Marx’s gothic influences, Primitive Accumulation, Marxist Feminism, Post-Modernism, and much more!

HERE IS THE EPISODE: http://revolutionaryleftradio.libsyn.com/21st-century-marxism-neo-marxism-and-the-value-of-engels

——————
Outro music Insurrection! by B Complex
Please support us on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/RevLeftRadio 

and follow us on Twitter @RevLeftRadio 

Follow us on FB at “Revolutionary Left Radio”
Theme song by The String-Bo String Duo which you can find here: https://tsbsd.bandcamp.com/album/smash-the-state-distribute-bread