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COVID-19

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United States: Now is the time for solidarity - Democratic Socialists of America statement on COVID-2019

 

 

March 12, 2020  — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Democratic Socialists of America — From the 2008 global financial collapse to the natural disasters caused by climate change that rocked Northern California, New Orleans, New York, and Puerto Rico, capitalism is causing devastating human crises. During each of these crises, it has been poor, working-class, and already marginalized people who have suffered the most — while banks, energy companies, and the real estate industry have been bailed out.

Inoculating against globalization: Coronavirus and the search for alternatives

 

 

By Sam Gindin

March 12, 2020  — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist Project — Social developments constantly surprise. The latest anxieties over the economic contradictions of extreme globalization haven’t been triggered by a trade war, inter-imperial rivalry, a financial meltdown or riots in the streets. They’ve rather been sparked by an apparently non-economic and contingent event: the coronavirus outbreak. As precautionary measures send workers home in a place few of us have ever heard of and the ramifications shut workplaces in places most of us never knew were connected, a business panic has set in. Grown men (and women) stare in horror at stock market screens and the business press fretfully anticipates an imminent recession.

Mike Davis on COVID-19: The monster is finally at the door

 

By Mike Davis 

March 12, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — COVID-19 is finally the monster at the door. Researchers are working night and day to characterize the outbreak but they are faced with three huge challenges.

First the continuing shortage or unavailability of test kits has vanquished all hope of containment. Moreover it is preventing accurate estimates of key parameters such as reproduction rate, size of infected population and number of benign infections. The result is a chaos of numbers.

There is, however, more reliable data on the virus’s impact on certain groups in a few countries. It is very scary. Italy and Britain, for example, are reporting a much higher death rate among those over 65. The ‘corona flu’ that Trump waves off is an unprecedented danger to geriatric populations, with a potential death toll in the millions.

Canada: Fight against COVID-19 should focus on most vulnerable, including First Nations

 

 

By Karl Nerenberg

March 12, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Rabble — Health-care experts and public health officials are expressing a high degree of concern over the potential impact of the COVID-19 virus on poor and vulnerable populations.

From the onset of this disease, the rich have made sure to take care of themselves, as the New York Times reported last week. Those for whom money is not an object are using private jets rather than commercial flights, vacationing in remote and isolated tropical paradises, stocking up on costly designer masks, and signing up for concierge medical services (or, as the Times calls them, "VIP emergency rooms"). 

The picture for poor and marginalised communities is the opposite. 

Coronavirus: "Agribusiness risks millions of deaths"

 

 

Yaak Pabst interviews Rob Wallace

March 12, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Marx21 — The coronavirus is keeping the world in a state of shock. But instead of fighting the structural causes of the pandemic, the government is focusing on emergency measures. A talk with Rob Wallace (Evolutionary Biologist) about the dangers of Covid-19, the responsibility of agribusiness and sustainable solutions to combat infectious diseases

United States: Demands from grassroots organizers concerning COVID-19

 

 

March 10, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Transformative Spaces — The Trump administration has botched its response to COVID-19. Due to incompetence and an unwillingness to acknowledge mistakes, the administration has worsened an already serious situation. COVID-19 is a deadly public health threat that must be taken seriously. We are a group of organizers whose work addresses a variety of issues, and we recognize that there is no organizing community or area of our work that will not be touched by this crisis. We hope this list of demands will serve as a tool for organizers and activists who are crafting their own responses to COVID-19. Panic is dangerous and often accompanied by violence against marginalized people. We believe responsible, productive dialogues about the needs of our communities must be initiated throughout the country.

Coronavirus – Apocalypse Now?

 

 

By Phil Hearse

March 9, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist Resistance — Pentecostal Christians – and probably many others – believe that at the ‘end of days’, which precedes the second coming of Christ, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse will ride out. The four horsemen are generally interpreted as being pestilence, death, famine and war. If Pentecostals are thinking logically (as if) they should be expecting to see the Lamb of God some time soon. In the wake of wars that have killed more than 500,000 since 2001 and an accelerating environmental crisis dramatised by the Australian firestorms, the current Covid-19 outstrips dystopian science fiction stories like Outbreak. What American Marxist author Mike Davis described as The Monster at our Door has, in a rather different form, burst through the door. At the time of writing (6 March) more than 100,000 people globally are now thought to have the virus, and 3,400 or more have died. There seems little hope now of significant containment, especially as many states lack the health infrastructure or social organisation to impose Chinese-style restrictions. In Britain the full horror of the virus is yet to be unleashed. But it is coming.

Britain: How should the left and labour movement respond to coronavirus?

 

 

By Mark Findlay

March 8, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist Resistance — Over the few days there has been a significant escalation of cases of coronavirus cases in Britain with numbers currently at 90 – more than double the figures of 40 two days earlier. Cases have appeared in people who haven’t travelled abroad and where no contact with a known carrier has so far been found. And it appears that some people may be more liable to pass on the virus than others; “superspreaders

No, the coronavirus is not responsible for the fall of stock prices

 

 

By Eric Toussaint

 

March 5, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from CADTM — We are witnessing a big crisis in the stock markets of the Wall Street, Europe, Japan and Shanghai, and many blame the coronavirus for it. In the last week of February 2020, the worst week since October 2008, the Dow Jones fell 12.4%, the S&P 500 fell 11.5% and the Nasdaq Composite fell 10.5%. The scenario is similar in Europe and Asia for the corresponding period. On the London Stock Exchange, the FTSE-100 fell by 11.32%, in Paris the CAC 40 fell by 12%, in Frankfurt the DAX lost 12.44%, on the Tokyo Stock Exchange the Nikkei fell by 9.6%, the Chinese stock exchanges (Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hong Kong) also fell.

South Korea's COVID-19 crisis: The work of a millennial sect?

 

 

By Youngsu Won

March 2, 2020 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — The abrupt mass outbreak of COVID-19 has shocked most of South Korea - with the exception of a small millennial sect. 

By March 1, the number of diagnosed cases of COVID-19 had risen to more than 3700, including 20 confirmed deaths, representing a huge rise compared with the less than 100 cases just two weeks before.

More than 60% of those infected are members of a religious sect: the Shincheonji Church of Jesus. Shincheonji means New Heaven and Earth in Korean and implies a millennial Christian utopia. Its leader, Lee Man-hee, controls this monolithic organism from top to bottom.

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