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Corinna Lotz: Anti-Putin movement marks end of an era

Corinna Lotz: Anti-Putin movement marks end of an era

By Corinna Lotz Russia’s street protest movement, which has shaken not only the Kremlin’s autocrats but global financial markets, is the largest for two decades, and is the end of an era. The pro-capitalist triumphalism of the early 1990s has turned into disenchantment, not just with the sham democracy which voters experienced earlier this month, but with the corruption of a mafia-style capitalism. The demands for a fair election are part of a much bigger movement of discontent which … Read entire article »

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Paul Feldman: Headless chickens rule EU roost

Paul Feldman: Headless chickens rule EU roost

By Paul Feldman A French president playing second fiddle to a German chancellor announcing a “fiscal union” to keep eurozone spending under control was patently an uncomfortable moment for Nicolas Sarkozy. His misery was written all over his face. Perhaps Sarkozy was reflecting on historical precedents from past conflicts between the two countries while he was standing next to Angela Merkel. More likely, Sarkozy realised that the idea of Germany laying down the rules about a country’s national … Read entire article »

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Corinna Lotz: Russians Revolt Against Fraud Elections

Corinna Lotz: Russians Revolt Against Fraud Elections

By Corinna Lotz The dramatic slump in United Russia’s share of the vote in Sunday’s parliamentary elections shows that voters defied a massive campaign of intimidation aimed at bolstering support for the ruling party. President Medvedev and prime minister Putin’s party saw its share fall from around 64% to just under half after a campaign in which the Kremlin tried to bully the electorate. In the run-up to the election, Russia experienced a ferocious crackdown by the authorities to … Read entire article »

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Jessica Whyte: Awakening the Giant

Jessica Whyte: Awakening the Giant

By Jessica Whyte In 2010, Slavoj Žižek, whom the New Republic once dubbed the most dangerous philosopher in the West, gave a public lecture at the London School of Economics on the necessity of communism. The audience at this elite university overflowed the auditorium into a nearby room, watching through a video link. At one point, the evening’s host, the international relations theorist David Held (also the PhD advisor to the son of Muammar Gaddafi), looked visibly agitated and managed … Read entire article »

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Boaventura de Sousa Santos: The General Strike in Portugal

Boaventura de Sousa Santos: The General Strike in Portugal

By Boaventura de Sousa Santos General strikes were quite common in Europe and the USA in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. They led to intense debates inside the labor movement and revolutionary parties and movements (anarchists, communists, socialists). The object of discussion was the importance of the general strike for political and social struggles, the conditions for its success, the role of political forces in its organization. Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919) was one the most … Read entire article »

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Brandon Jourdan: Occupied Barcelona – The Spanish Election Rejection

Brandon Jourdan: Occupied Barcelona – The Spanish Election Rejection

By Brandon Jourdan In the midst of rising unemployment rates, extensive austerity measures and increased privatization, many Spanish people are losing faith in electoral politics. … Read entire article »

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Boaventura de Sousa Santos: What is at Stake & The Lessons of Europe

Boaventura de Sousa Santos: What is at Stake & The Lessons of Europe

By Boaventura de Sousa Santos What is at stake No more civilities. As it deepened, the European crisis made possible a new radicalism and a new transparency. Up until recently, radical were the positions of those opposing the interventions of the Troika (European Union, European Central Bank and IMF) and its recipes by reason of sovereignty and democracy, or those suspecting that the crisis was the Right’s excuse to implement in Portugal the “schock policies” of privatization, … Read entire article »

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Paul Feldman: Goldman Sachs adds Italy and Greece to its portfolio

Paul Feldman: Goldman Sachs adds Italy and Greece to its portfolio

By Paul Feldman When trader Alessio Rastani told the BBC that “governments don’t rule the world, Goldman Sachs rules the world”, jaws dropped in the news room at his brazen candour. Seven weeks later, Rastani is looking more right than ever. The global investment bank’s advisors have in the past week taken control of the Italian and Greek governments, replacing elected administrations with faceless economists, academics and bureaucrats. These events are nothing less than corporate-driven coups in the heart … Read entire article »

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Jürgen Habermas: Europe’s post-democratic era

Jürgen Habermas: Europe’s post-democratic era

By Jürgen Habermas At European level, democratic institutions enter into a new constellation. One element involved in this is solidarity: once a constitutional community extends beyond the boundaries of a single state, solidarity among citizens who are willing to support each other should expand to keep pace with it. According to the scenario I propose, an extended, though also more abstract and hence comparatively less resilient, civic solidarity will have to include the members of each of the … Read entire article »

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Leo Goretti: The last days of the Berlusconi empire

Leo Goretti: The last days of the Berlusconi empire

By Leo Goretti: On Tuesday evening, at the end of another day of petty parliamentary bargaining, the Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi announced that he will resign once the Italian budget is approved by the Parliament. This step has allegedly been made to comply with the requests “of the European Commission” (this should probably read the BCE, the IMF, and the financial markets). After almost twenty years, it seems that the political trajectory of Berlusconi is about … Read entire article »

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Leo Goretti: Italy and the global neoliberal assault on democracy

Leo Goretti: Italy and the global neoliberal assault on democracy

By Leo Goretti On Friday, at the end of the G20 meeting in Cannes, the President of the EU Commission Josè Barroso announced that “Italy has asked on its initiative to the IMF to monitor its commitment to fiscal and economic reforms.”  This monitoring process will start immediately – next week, Barroso will fly to Rome with a group of IMF inspectors – and will be repeated every three months, in order “to verify” that the Italian … Read entire article »

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Kash Mansori: Italy’s Future

Kash Mansori: Italy’s Future

By Kash Mansori Italy’s Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, is apparently going to propose some “shocking measures” in an attempt to get control of the downward spiral that the market for Italian government debt is currently experiencing. Most likely (thanks to the urging of Germany and France) these shocking measures will be composed primarily of sharp cuts in government spending. This will fail to help. The market is not worried about Italian debt dynamics because of excessive government spending. … Read entire article »

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Dan Hind: Britain’s Irrational Faith in Capitalism

Dan Hind: Britain’s Irrational Faith in Capitalism

By Dan Hind The almost religious veneration of the current economic system does not allow any thoughts for a “Plan B”. For a long time British politicians have treated the world of business with something like religious veneration. The last Labour government was always trying to make the public sector more entrepreneurial and consumer-focused. They loved it when management consultants and financiers told them that they had to modernise the state through the ever-greater use of market … Read entire article »

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Federico Campagna: For an Emancipatory State of Exception

Federico Campagna: For an Emancipatory State of Exception

By Federico Campagna As the euro-mediterranean countries enter their umpteenth phase of decay, their governments are starting to consider extraordinary measures to face the situation. In Italy, on 15 October 2011, 200,000 people took to the streets to protest against the austerity measures enforced by their government. A day of mayhem followed, as the so-called ‘black bloc’ declared urban war. The smoke of petrol bombs was still lingering in the air when the right-wing Minister of … Read entire article »

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Gerry Gold: “Go Time” Has Arrived

Gerry Gold: “Go Time” Has Arrived

By Gerry Gold   The sudden appearance of the global contraction over the summer is inducing a state of chaos amongst the governments of the world’s major economies. Three years after the financial crash all attempts to bring about a recovery lie in ruins. Italy’s Berlusconi government yesterday announced VAT-rises as a further provocation to mass street protests and strikes against its previous round of austerity measures in an attempt to forestall a downgrade of its debt. Greece’s finance minister Evangelos … Read entire article »

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Joint Statement By Puerta del Sol Economics Working Group & Syntagma

Joint Statement By Puerta del Sol Economics Working Group & Syntagma

The citizens of Puerta del Sol and Syntagma Square express our indignation and invite all the ‘indignados’ in all the squares around the world to join us. From the USA to Brussels, from Greece to Bolivia and from Spain to Tunisia, the crisis of capitalism is on the rise. A crisis caused by the same culprits who are imposing the reforms to get over it: pumping public funds into private financial institutions while forcing the citizens … Read entire article »

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Anna Andersen: A Deconstruction Of “Iceland’s On-going Revolution”

Anna Andersen: A Deconstruction Of “Iceland’s On-going Revolution”

By Anna Andersen Last night, ‘Shock Doctrine’ author Naomi Klein tweeted: “#Iceland is proving that it is possible to resist the Shock Doctrine, and refuse to pay for the bankers’ crisis” with a link to an article called, “Iceland’s On-going Revolution,” by Deena Stryker. This article is full of factual errors, so we tweeted back: “@NaomiAKlein We are fans of yours, but we are sad to say that your tweet and the article it cites are both dead wrong. #Iceland” She replied: … Read entire article »

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