The Activist

Housing in Red Vienna

by Leo Thuman

Denmark? The Netherlands? Maybe it's time for democratic socialists to look at turn of the century Vienna as inspiration.  In the second,third, and beginning of the fourth decades of the twentieth century, Austria’s capital was known as “Red Vienna” and by most leftist accounts run ably by the Social Democratic Party.  The legacy of this period is one that socialists should emulate and look upon as a standard upon which to measure progressive and social reforms in housing and social services.

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Education, Solidarity, and Political Revolution

by Steven Spires

On Sunday June 16th, six protesters died after conflicts between civilians, members of National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) and police took a violent turn in Oaxaca, Mexico following the arrest of union leaders on charges of corruption by the federal government. Protesters and union members took to the streets throwing molotov cocktails and burning down vehicles in protest of the arrests seen as covers for dismembering labor and the new education reform program being introduced by the government. The reform, turning the focus of national education onto standardized testing, efficiency, and accountability, immediately faced resistance by the teachers, seeing it as working towards the dismembering of unions and teacher’s rights as workers . This clash brings back memories of the 2006 teachers strike in Oaxaca. The 2006 strike, similarly against education reform, prompted the launch of the “Oaxaca Commune”, which ended up mobilizing not only teachers but also large swathes of the working class to take on the education system and open their governor carrying out the will of Mexico’s ruling class. This re-emergence of violent class struggle in the classroom brings up the vital and often underutilized role of teachers in our struggle against capitalism.

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The Development of a Progressive Third Party

by Pranay Somayajula

With the volatile political climate of 2016 and the deep rift in the Democratic Party between its far-left and more moderate members, there have been numerous talks of the formation of a viable third party in the United States. Unfortunately, attempts to do so in the past few decades have never met with any major success, largely because of the way our governmental system has molded itself to fit the two-party system. The way things are now, it looks as though a revolution would be needed to make change. However, that is not the case. There is a simple solution to the problem that is staring us in the face as we speak.

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YDS Conference Report: From Sanders to the Grassroots

by Meghan Brophy, YDS-CC

From August 5-7, members of Young Democratic Socialists (YDS), College Students for Bernie, and the Student Labor Action Project gathered for a joint gathering, “From Sanders to the Grassroots.”  The D.C. area conference represented what speaker Bill Fletcher Jr. called for: unity between progressives and socialists to amplify each other.

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The Case for Socialist Internationalism

by Zane Dundon

Corporate politicians and journalists have a few favorite lies about capitalist globalization. When challenged on the desirability of neoliberal trade agreements or international financial institutions, they generally claim the following: one, globalization benefits everyone in the long run, two, even if globalization hurts some workers in the developed world, it helps poor citizens of developing countries, and three, opponents of globalization are just narrow-minded xenophobes who care more about nationalism than their own well-being. These arguments are clever rhetorical strategies for corporate liberals in particular, because they frame the debate over capitalist globalization as one between enlightened and compassionate (yet realistic) liberals on the one hand and racist, immigrant-hating conservatives on the other. With this framing, they avoid addressing any arguments that challenge capitalist globalization on different terms: in particular, the arguments of socialist internationalism.

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