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Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal seeks to promote the exchange of information, experience of struggle, theoretical analysis and views of political strategy and tactics within the international left. It is a forum for open and constructive dialogue between active socialists from different political traditions. It seeks to bring together those in the international left who are opposed to neoliberal economic and social policies, and reject the bureaucratic model of "socialism" that arose in the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe and China.

Inspired by the unfolding socialist revolution in Venezuela, as well as the continuing example of socialist Cuba, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal is a journal for "Socialism of the 21st century", and the discussions and debates flowing from that powerful example of socialist renewal.

Links is also proud to be the sister publication of Green Left Weekly, the world's leading red-green newspaper, and we urge readers to visit that site regularly.

Please explore Links and subscribe (click on "Subscribe to Links" or "Follow Links on Twitter" in the left menu). Links welcomes readers' constructive comments (but please read the "Comments policy" above).

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France: Philippe government guillotines parliamentary debate to force through pension attacks



By Lisbeth Latham

March 2, 2020  — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Revitalising Labour — On February 29, French prime minister Edouard Philippe announced that the government would use clause 49.3 of the French Constitution, which allows the government to pass legislation without a parliamentary vote, to enable the government to expedite the passing the government’s controversial pension reforms. The exercise of Guillotine was primarily aimed at blunting efforts by left parties to hold up the passage of the legislation through parliament. However, the government also hopes that the passage of the legislation will undermine the current movement to defend the pensions.

Chile: The long month of October - the class struggle returns



By Javier ZúñigaKarina Nohales

March 2, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from International Viewpoint — Chilean president Sebastián Piñera declared on television on 8 October 2019 that “Chile is a real oasis in a convulsed Latin America”. In fact, Chile has been presented to the world for almost thirty years as a model to be exported and an example of neoliberal stability. The key to “success” was the commitment of all parties, whether for or against Pinochet, to the management of the institutions and the economic model set up during the dictatorship (1973-1990). This “oasis”, based on a programme of crushing and super-exploitation of the working class, exploded ten days later, dramatically highlighting the increasingly unbearable living conditions of large sections of the population. The immediate result of this uprising was to break the conspiracy of the democratic transition, supported by the left and the right, against the class struggle. The class struggle came back to the fore in earthshaking force of which October was only the first attempt.

Chile: The debate on the Constituent Assembly



By Javier Pineda

March 2, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from International Viewpoint — Throughout these sixty days of mobilisation, the popular revolt in Chile has advanced three fundamental demands: a social agenda to immediately fight against the precariousness of life; a new Constitution through a constituent assembly; and justice and the punishment of human rights violations. These demands have been advanced both in the spaces formed in the heat of the struggle such as the territorial assemblies and in the social spaces organised before the explosion of 18 October.

The dramatic fall of Chile as Latin America’s neoliberal role model



By Ariela Ruiz Caro  

March 2, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Americas Program — After the outbreak of the most intense and massive social protests ever recorded in the history of Chile, on November 16 the government and most political parties signed an agreement to restore peace and public order and initiate a process to draft a new constitution.

The protests, triggered by the rise in subway fares on Oct. 18, called into question the supposed Chilean success story of the neoliberal economic model implemented in the country during the dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet (1973-1989). Developed by the so-called Chicago Boys, successive administrations since the 1990 return to democracy in 1990 sustained the model as state policy.

Economic and especially financial liberalization; privatization of public services, including water; the subsidiary role of the State; unlimited protection for foreign investments; and insertion in the international economy that serves US policies designed for the region were the fundamental elements of the economic model that Chile pioneered globally.

Chile's struggle to democratize the state



By J. Patrice McSherry

March 2, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from NACLA — The social uprising in Chile has now reached its fourth month. Masses of people continue to protest and demand structural change despite ferocious repression—mainly at the hands of the militarized Carabineros police force—which has revived traumatic memories. Now, Chileans are looking ahead to a plebiscite that may open the way to a new Constitution. The dictatorship-era charter has been a major obstacle to change over the past three decades. Redrafting the constitution is a key demand in Chileans’ sweeping rebuke of the status quo.  

Bolivia’s 'caretaker' government makes radical foreign policy changes ― and wins over powerful allies



By Guillaume Long  

February 27, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from CEPR — Foreign policy, an area very much in the hands of the executive branch, has afforded Bolivia´s de facto president Jeanine Añez, who does not behold a parliamentary majority, an ideal outlet for her radical program. Within days of taking power, the Añez government had cut off relations with Venezuela, expelled its diplomatic staff, recognized instead the self-proclaimed government of Juan Guaidó, and swiftly abandoned the ALBA group of states to join its right-wing counterweight, the Group of Lima. Bolivia soon reestablished diplomatic relations with Israel and rekindled close ties with the United States that had been seriously eroded since the US ambassador to Bolivia had been caught having secret meetings with key opposition figures in the midst of a violent separatist movement aimed at ousting Morales’s government in 2008.

Colombia: After the social explosion of November 2019



By Daniel Libreros C

February 25, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from International Viewpoint — On 21 November 2019 Colombia experienced a social explosion unprecedented in the history of the country since the middle of the last century. On that day, the National Strike Directorate (CNP, Comando Nacional de Paro) called for a protest march against the announcement of regressive economic counter-reforms. The CNP is made up of the central trade unions (Central Unitaria de Trabajadores – CUT, Confederación General de Trabajadores - CGT, Confederación de Trabajadores de Colombia - CTC) and by organizations of students, peasants, Indians, pensioners and environmental activists who, in recent years, have led the resistance by these social sectors to the policies of the Colombian state.

Marx and the Indigenous



By John Bellamy FosterBrett Clark and Hannah Holleman

A Green New Deal for South African workers?



By Carilee Osborne

February 24, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Africa is a Country — Speaking recently on a proposal for significant economic reform, Matthews Parks, Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) Parliamentary Coordinator, made the following extraordinary statement: “Both environmental and economic denialism are dangerous and should not be entertained. We think we can and must tackle climate change and unemployment simultaneously. All it requires is creativity, political will, planning and resources.”

Britain: Analysing a disastrous result



By Socialist Resistance Editorial Board

February 17, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist Resistance — Like many others on the left, we got the election result seriously wrong. Most thought a hung Parliament or even a Labour minority government was a real possibility. It was not.

Brexit shattered voting loyalties established over lifetimes and, along with Britain’s notorious first-past-the-post electoral system, gave the Tories an 80 seat majority in Parliament. The Tories won 43.6% of the vote, gaining 66 seats and Labour’s vote share fell by 7.8% to 32%, resulting in a loss of 42 seats.

Climate change and rebellion: an interview with John Molyneux



February 13, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Review of African Political Economy — In an interview with the socialist writer and activist, John Molyneux, ROAPE’s Leo Zeilig asks him about climate change, capitalism and socialist transformation. In an important initiative John has recently founded the Global Ecosocialist Network (GEN) which brings together activists and researchers from across the Global North and South. The network hopes to amplify the socialist voice in the struggle against environmental crisis. Africa, he argues, is crucial to the fight against climate change.

Thirteen theses on the imminent ecological catastrophe and the (revolutionary) means of averting it



By Michael Löwy

February 13, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Global Ecosocialist Network 

I. The ecological crisis is already the most important social and political question of the 21st century, and will become even more so in the coming months and years. The future of the planet, and thus of humanity, will be determined in the coming decades. Calculations by certain scientists as to scenarios for the year 2100 aren’t very useful for two reasons: A) scientific: considering all the retroactive effects impossible to calculate, it is very risky to make projections over a century. B) political: at the end of the century, all of us, our children and grandchildren will be gone, so who cares?

Marxism: Ten aspects concerning socialism in the 21st century



By Ian Parker

February 13, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from FIIMG — What can we hope for and strive for in a world in which globalised capitalism is rampant and is driving us all to destruction? We have a responsibility to link theory and practice in order to put an end to capitalism once and for all. The century of revolutions, from 1917 to 2017, has provided progressive political narratives and conceptual tools which deepen and extend revolutionary Marxism, and we need to draw on those conceptual tools to bring the Marxist tradition to life again, acting alongside other progressive forces. Now, in this century, Marxism is a theory and practice of emancipatory politics, providing a revolutionary praxis for liberation movements, and our task is to make socialism visible as an alternative, in our forms of struggle and in our vision of another world beyond capital. We can begin to imagine what a future socialist society might look like, albeit with a status of little more than fiction for us now. We need to start here, with where we are and with what we have as existing conditions of life and resources for struggle. I focus on ten aspects of Marxism, showing what it pits itself against and suggesting what kind of world it makes possible for us.

Michael Heinrich: Capital & Crisis – Actuality of Marx’s critique of political economy in the 21st century



Speech given by Michael Heinrich at 12th Subversive festival "Europe on the Edge – Towards New Emancipatory Imagination" Moderated by Stipe Ćurković.

February 13, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal via SkriptaTV — The first volume of Capital appeared more than 150 years ago. However, it didn’t just picture capitalism of 19 th century. Marx didn’t want to present a certain period of capitalist development, he claimed to present the capitalist mode of production in its “ideal average”, i.e. the core of capitalist relations, which are connected with any form of capitalism. I will discuss this claim especially with regard to value, money, crisis and class relations.

‘Capitalism, patriarchy, and racism now threaten to destroy this world’



By Dr. Laurie Adkin, introduction by Richard Fidler 

February 12, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Life on the Left — To mark its 40th anniversary, Studies in Political Economy, A Socialist Review sponsored a conference October 26 at Carleton University, Ottawa. The theme: “The Limits of Capitalism and the Challenge of Alternatives.” Among the speakers was Professor Laurie Adkin of the University of Alberta, who addressed the conference via Skype. Prof. Adkin has kindly agreed to the publication here of the notes she prepared for her panel presentation, in my opinion an outstanding contribution.

Blue Acceleration: Capitalism’s growing assault on the oceans



By Ian Angus

February 8, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Climate & Capitalism — Capitalism’s inherent drive to expand went into overdrive in the mid-20th century. Long-term socioeconomic and Earth System trends, graphed fifteen years ago and updated in 2015, show nearly simultaneous hockey stick upturns in about 1950.

Called the Great Acceleration, the speed-up is driving what Earth System scientists describe as “the most rapid transformation of the human relationship with the natural world in the history of humankind.”[1] It marks the beginning of a new historical and geological epoch, the Anthropocene — a time when “human activities have become so pervasive and profound that they rival the great forces of nature and are pushing the Earth into planetary terra incognita.”[2]

Climate change, the Green New Deal and the struggle for climate justice



By Martin Hart-Landsberg

February 6, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Reports from the Economic Front — Most calls for a Green New Deal correctly emphasize that it must include a meaningful commitment to climate justice.  That is because climate change—for reasons of racism and capitalist profit-making—disproportionately punishes frontline communities, especially communities of color and low-income.

Notes on a novel coronavirus



By Rob Wallace

February 6, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from MR Online — A new deadly coronavirus 2019-nCoV, related to SARS and MERS and apparently originating in live animal markets in Wuhan, China, is starting to spread worldwide.

Chinese authorities have reported 5974 cases nationwide, 1000 of them severe. With infections in nearly every province, authorities warned 2019-nCoV appears to be spreading fast out of its epicenter.

France: The struggle to defend the French pension system



By Lisbeth Latham

February 5, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Revitalising Labour — Since December 5, France has been gripped by ongoing strikes and mobilisations by a coalition of trade unions, high school and university student unions, as well as the gilet jaunes (yellow vests) to defeat the attack by the Macron and the Philippe government on France’s pension system. Whilst the alliance has been able to sustain a period of heightened mobilisations that have put the government under pressure, it remains unclear that the movement is powerful to defeat the attack, and there are serious barriers if the movement is to expand and grow.

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