Letters from our readers

30 August 2012

On “Sri Lanka: Colombo public meeting hears US SEP presidential candidate

Really great to see Jerry in Sri Lanka visiting the brave comrades out there. The picture on the cover of the story was worth a thousand words. Real solidarity across borders, that's working class politics. Great job.

Vance O
California, USA
27 August 2012

On “US SEP presidential candidate declines to meet LSSP

This reader is delighted after having read Jerry White’s reply to the LSSP request. The betrayal of the Marxist principles by a political organization which called itself Trotskyist marked the antithesis of the socialist revolution that is much required to safeguard working class and suffering masses internationally. We in Sri Lanka turned out to be a people whose sufferings cannot be described in words. The LSSP’s role in ushering in destructive politics via organizations such as JVP and LTTE is unpardonable. In my view they are destined to disappear along with their second cousin, the Communist Party, once the setting is effectively prepared for the international socialist revolution. The LSSP’s place is the dustbin of human history. Every success to Jerry White and the SEP.

IVE
Sri Lanka
29 August 2012

On “Britain’s Socialist Workers Party and Socialist Party back extradition of Assange

If the SWP and the SP were genuine in their belief that Julian Assange should answer the rape allegations, why don't they support Assange when he suggests the Swedish prosecutor should come to London and question him at the Ecuadorian embassy? It's common knowledge by now that Swedish police went to Serbia to interview a murder suspect there and surely people in the SWP and SP know that too?

Jennifer H
27 August 2012

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One aspect of this situation that no one seems to address is that when the US can't bring clear and defined charges against some one, they trump up some sexual allegation. They did it with Scott Ritter and with the Muslim Chaplin in Guantanamo. These charges were later dropped. This is nothing more than a tactic to discredit the person and turn public opinion against the person they are after.

Nelson C
27 August 2012

On “Rising incidence of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in South Africa

Your analysis rightly identifies South Africa's existing rural labour system as "semi-feudal". This is because apartheid, the ultimate legal expression of the "separate development" favoured by Afrikanerdom, was a feudalistic system rooted in Afrikaner backwardness. Well into the 20th century, it was intent on arbitrarily keeping certain people tied to certain parcels of land.

Only to the extent that it uprooted and relocated black peasants, could apartheid further the work of the Land Act of 1913; namely, the proletarianisation of the black majority. This was indispensable to foreign, and especially British mining capital.

But later on, the monomaniacal focus of Afrikaner politics on the separation of the races, chafed on the capitalists. They complained that apartheid, carried to its logical conclusion, strove for the economic separation of the races when the opposite, economic integration, was already too far gone.

This is what led the more sophisticated elements of the English-speaking bourgeoisie (most visibly in the person of Helen Suzman) to oppose apartheid. It's not surprising that shortly before the unbanning of the party, ANC leaders met with a delegation led by the chairman of Anglo American, to haggle over South Africa's post-apartheid landscape, in Zambia in 1985.

One expression of the understanding reached between these two elites, one financial and the other political, is today's policy of Black Economic Empowerment. This is a sweetener and designed to hasten the emergence of bourgeois blacks from the ranks of politics and reformist trade unions. But the fundamental deal accords one side untrammelled economic power, and the other, political ascendancy. This is on the understanding that the hopes of the masses be sacrificed to a noxious quasi-feudalism that only the working class can overturn.

Thabo
29 August 2012

On US “‘Fifty Wealthiest Lawmakers’ list: A Congress of the rich, by the rich, and for the rich

If a CEO could hire a child at half the price to do a job he was paying a man he would lay off the man and hire the child.

RD
27 August 2012

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And lest we forget, Diane Feinstein’s husband got a $50 million contract from the Bush administration supposedly to set up electricity for the Iraqi population—yeah, that really got done, didn’t it? (No wonder she was in full support of the war.)

Marta B
California, USA
27 August 2012

On “US moves toward two-track education system

I can say with experience that my life would have been very different with today’s proposed testing tracks. My early years in school were very hard for me. However in my teenage years I had a terrible accident that changed everything and gave me the drive to change my grades and graduate college, with multiple degrees. If I had been tested and put on a “jobs” path, that opportunity to change my course may not have been possible. Putting students on a future trajectory as soon as 5 years old will cause irreparable harm for many. Leaving them with little ambition or motivation. An equitable public education must be the corner stone of any prosperous society.

Steven M
New Hampshire, USA
28 August 2012

On “US West Nile virus cases double in one week

While the federal government is cutting back on health and environment programs, more alien species are introduced into our environment. An example is the mosquito that carries Dengue Fever. This mosquito has been found in the San Gabriel Valley of Southern California. The mosquito not only is the carrier of Dengue Fever from the Philippines it carries West Nile as well as other diseases and parasites. This introduced mosquito came into the country by way of “lucky bamboo” shipments from Asia. There is an eradication program in the area.

Bonnie
27 August 2012

On “Australian government pushes electricity privatization

Great article, Terry. It clearly articulates just how the working class in Australia has been sold out by the Labour parties in favour of unbridled capitalism and corporate greed.

Hopefully we can look forward to an article by you on the recent decision by the Gillard government to up the persecution of refugees seeking asylum in Australia. Racism at its most obnoxious level.

Regards,

James S
Australia
27 August 2012

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