Readers’ Views, January-February 2012 (part 2)

From the January-February issue of News & Letters:

Readers’ Views (part 2)

FROM FUKUSHIMA TO NEW YORK

Shut Down Indian Point Now! is calling a press conference immediately prior to a New York State Assembly hearing to determine energy alternatives to the Indian Point plant in January. As the Fukushima, Japan, meltdown shows, nuclear power can never be made safe.

People are becoming increasingly aware of the madness of maintaining Indian Point, a potential Fukushima-on-the-Hudson, located just 24 miles north of New York City. More than 20 million people live within 50 miles of the plant, and a meltdown would create an unimaginably horrific health, environmental, social and economic catastrophe for the region, the country and the planet.

A new Synapse Energy Economics report states, “Even if Indian Point is retired, there is no need for new capacity until 2020 for meeting reliability needs, either in New York State or the City.” We don’t need Indian Point!

The New York State Assembly is holding a public hearing to determine if the energy generated by Indian Point can be provided through other sources.

We must not allow this hearing to degenerate into a forum for those who wish to maintain the status quo. We must be allowed to make our case:  replace Indian Point with safe, renewable energy sources.

Tom S. for Shut Down Indian Point Now!

New York

***

The myth of a “safe nuclear power plant” was broken completely by the Great Disaster of March 11 last year.

Narihiko Ito

Japan

LABOR ISSUES 2012

In a recent article you printed on the auto contract negotiations, there was a reference to local union contracts that might result in strikes.

I noticed in a recent newspaper article that a GM local union near Lansing, representing 3,430 workers, had authorized a strike if the local’s unresolved grievances were not settled. This doesn’t mean there will be a strike, but it also means that there could very well be one.

Auto labor observer

Detroit, Mich.

***

On Dec. 15, over 1,000 of us activists gathered at La Placita (the historical center of Mexican history in Los Angeles) to protest ICE’s (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) raids, detentions and deportations of Mexican and Latina/o immigrant workers. Union workers and leaders joined Immigrant Rights and Occupy L.A. protesters against ICE’s criminalizing and separating families of immigrants.

Workers were from CLEAN Carwash, Justice for Janitors, the grocery and healthcare industries, Airport Workers Unidos, United Service Workers West, the U.S. Postal Service, Good Jobs L.A. and others.

In high spirits Occupy LA youths chanted, “We are the 99%,” as immigrant workers answered with, “El Pueblo Unido, Jamás Será Vencido.” The spirited noontime rally ended with a walk back to La Placita.

Basho

Los Angeles

***

The solidarity statement sent to the unions in Iraq by “U.S. Labor Against the War” recognized that the end to formal U.S. military occupation of Iraq does not automatically end “continuing U.S. interference in the internal affairs of Iraq.”

It would be important to hear from workers here what thoughts they might have on such a solidarity statement. I hope that kind of dialogue can appear in Readers’ Views in future issues.

Long-time reader

Philadelphia

***

I always enjoy reading  N&L as it refrains from the usual crude-vanguard style of telling everyone how mean and nasty capitalism is and how we should now all join them for “revolution.”

The fact that it’s open to the workers themselves reflects its continuity to the positive  Iskra tradition, something which I pay a lot of attention to.

Dan

England

LIVING FANON

A new special issue of Pambazuka, dated Dec. 6, 2011, has as its theme “50 years on: Frantz Fanon lives.” The 18 articles include activist and scholar Nigel Gibson’s reflection on Frantz Fanon’s interpretations of postcolonial politics within the context of current revolutions in North Africa. Gibson’s article begins:

“What better way to celebrate, commemorate and critically reflect on the fiftieth year of Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth than with a new North African syndrome: revolution—or at least a series of revolts and resistance across the region.”

More can be found about this important publication and event at http://

http://www.pambazuka.org/en/issue/561.

Comments are requested online.

Fanon fan

Chicago

HAVE-NOTS FIGHT BACK

Somebody asked what I think of the American Economic Association. Well, I don’t think very much of them. That’s why we’re here protesting. These are people, who themselves are privileged, who want to crush the have-nots. Protesting this economic injustice is continuing what we began in the Civil Rights Movement.

Black Senior

Chicago

***

It is disgusting that some on the Left are willing to ally with Ron Paul’s supporters, especially now that his racist and anti-Gay history is better known. It shows what they will be willing to settle for when they give up on the idea of revolution.

Bolshevik Youth

Chicago

***

I think that Mayor Emanuel is stepping far across the line in trying to curb the Constitutional rights to assemble and protest at the NATO/G-8 Summits. To me, he seems to be inviting confrontation in a way that will distract attention from his own cuts of funding for schools, libraries and mental health clinics, which would certainly be a notable part of the protest. These are the same type of cutbacks that others from around the world will be here opposing. But I think the Mayor might prefer a simpler, law-and-order narrative even if he has to provoke it into existence.

Fred M.

Chicago

PRISONERS SPEAK

I enjoy the articles from all the towns and cities. I don’t have a TV so you are the only news I get. Please keep up the good work!

Prisoner

Bridgeton, N.J.

***

Fortunately, the prison administration allows this most important publication, which allows me to stay in tune with the free world’s resistance—which is just as much a concern of the prisoner as the prisoner should be a concern of the free world.

Prisoner

Huntingdon, Penn.

***

The “Arab Spring” really helped me begin to understand the principles of perpetual revolution, with the revolutionaries creating the theory as they proceed. Thanks for all your lucid articles and to the donor who paid for my sub.

Prisoner

Huntsville, Texas

***

TO OUR READERS: Can you donate the price of a subscription ($5) for a prisoner who cannot pay for one? It will be shared with many others.

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