Anti-Fascism

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

In recent days, anti-Semitism has returned with a vengeance, alongside Islamophobia, anti-communism, and an anti-capitalism of fools that substitutes conspiracy theory for critical theory. At the same time, political power is concentrated as never before in the hands of the far right, and wielded indiscriminately against its political opponents on the left. Spikes in anti-Semitism tend to track closely with times of war, social unrest, and economic crisis—and with upticks in nationalist, anti-communist, and anti-capitalist sentiment. How can we respond to the concurrent rise in anti-Semitism and anti-Communism, on the one hand, and in the “anti-capitalism of fools,” on the other? This panel will include antifascist labor organizers and militants from the Jewish left from a variety of political tendencies. Presenters: Michael Gould-Wartofsky, author, educator, & cofounder of OLT-NYC Tobi Erner, social worker & labor organizer Savannah Gordon, worker & cofounder of OLT-NYC Ronny Nuñez, organizer from Occupy Sandy & OLT-NYC Chair person: Savannah Format: Roundtable/moderated dialogue w/audience Q&A at the end

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

Escalating fascist and racist violence grows out of the bipartisan capitalist offensive against immigrants: not only Trump’s border wall with Mexico and anti-Muslim ban, but Obama’s record deportations and Democrats’ policy of border militarization. Key to fighting anti-immigrant hysteria is mobilizing the power of the multiethnic working class. The Internationalist Group calls for workers action to stop deportations and crush the fascists. In the Pacific Northwest, Class Struggle Workers – Portland sparked union motions to mobilize against racist/fascist provocations, and initiated Portland Labor Against the Fascists that brought out some 300 unionists and supporters in 2017. It calls to form workers defense guards to defeat the fascist threat. In the 2016 elections Painters Local 10 called to break with all bosses’ parties, and for a class-struggle workers party. In Los Angeles, transit workers have marched with Teamsters defending Salvadoran immigrants. In New York, Trabajadores Internacionales Clasistas has joined in unionizing immigrant workers, demanding full citizenship rights for all immigrants.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

In recent years the fascist movement in India has been growing. Led by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), their electoral wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and sponsored by the big corporate houses in India, this fascist movement has sponsored and carried out viscous attacks on Muslims, Dalits (the so-called "untouchables"), women, Adivasis (indigenous people), religious minorities, and national minorities. All this has been coupled with extractive neoliberal policies aimed at maximizing corporate profits while undercutting the most basic and meager social welfare programs that still exist in India. Recently, a series of poets, human rights lawyers, professors, and civil liberties activists have been arrested on trumped-up charges and accused of terrorism. This is all part of the government's plan to forcible evict 800 million people from their land and move them from the countryside to the city by 2050. When coupled with draconian laws like the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (which give the state legal cover for arresting and killing activists with impunity), it clear that the people of India face a very dire situation. This panel will examine the growing fascist movement in India, speak on the dire situations that people face, and highlight the courageous resistance being waged across the country. We will also examine the role of US imperialism in supporting and sponsoring the fascist movement in India and the associated neoliberal extractive policies.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

In this presentation, we will explore the philosophical and political affinities between the composer Richard Wagner and the militant philosopher Mikhail Bakunin, beginning with their joint action on the barricades of revolutionary Dresden in 1849. We consider Wagner’s Ring cycle as depicting the Proudhonian idea of theft and the figures of Siegfried and Brünnhilde as Bakuninist-Feuerbachian heroes. By examining Wagner and Bakunin’s common anti-Semitism, feminism and anti-feminism, and revolutionism, we discuss how anarchism and anti-theism influenced the creation of The Ring as an epic opera that depicts the rise and fall of capitalism.

Nevertheless, in light of the anti-Semitism that drives The Ring, we cannot overlook the undeniable Aryanist, national-anarchist, and proto-fascist aspects of Wagner’s approach, which represent disturbing lines that connect typically left-wing notions of anti-statist and anti-capitalist upheaval with ultranationalist myth. To delve into these matters, we will consider how the fascist creep applies to Wagner and Bakunin and compare the “dangerous minds” of Friedrich Nietzsche and Martin Heidegger to those of the pair in question.