Mike Ely at the Platypus International Convention, March 31, 2012: Communism and this moment

Originally posted over at Kasama on May 13, 2012

The Kasama Project

State of the left: three great arcs and a beginning
Talk to the Platypus conference plenary, March 31

How people radicalize
Q & A, Platypus conference plenary, March 31

“Breaking with illusions and old models
Q & A, Platypus conference plenary, March 31

After the death watch over social-democracy
Q & A, Platypus conference plenary, March 31

Several people have asked for a written text of this talk. We have added below the notes from which Mike spoke. It is not a transcript of the  talk…it is the prepared text, and so is somewhat different from the spoken talk itself.

Three Revolutionary Arcs & This Moment for Communists

Trayvon Martin is dead.  Let’s start there.

He was stalked on the street like dangerous animal and shot in the heart by a crazed, armed wannabe cop.

That’s bad enough.

Then all the machinery of this society conspired to protect him.  The police chief of Sanford arrived to oversee it personally.  Zimmerman was never arrested.  He was released — obviously no danger to the community — and left to cook up elaborate lies with his father, a well-connected retired judge.

And (in ways amazing to many of us watching) Trayvon was killed again — portrayed as a drug user, wannabe gangster, as the violent aggressor, and someone who should be watched, suspected, and contained.

Or consider this: that in the United States, a central question in the U.S. election has become whether states should, once again, be allowed to criminalize birth-control — and if the availability of birth control to young women is only state approval of their right to carry out an immoral lifestyle.  And while the Republicans pick over such madness, the Democrats celebrate — because this frees them of any necessity to defend the right to abortion, which is under massive assault by law, propaganda and budget.

Young women are blown away that their private parts and sexual choices are the target of wholesale attempts at reactionary social control.

Well, don’t be surprised.

If you want a sense of the need for revolution in the U.S. — just look there. Or at the ongoing U.S. and Israeli threats at Iran, here the phrase “nothing is off the table” means that millions of Iranian people go to bed each night wondering if they will be incincerated.

Read the rest at the Kasama Project’s website