SALT  OF  THE  EARTH  LABOR  COLLEGE

SPRING 2017 SCHEDULE

 

The US, China and the global class struggle

 

Presentation and discussion with Wadi'h Halabi, Marxist Political Economist

 

Saturday, January 21st            2:00  pm

 

The US ruling class has been significantly weakened, and the international working class has gained strength since 2007-8, when the crisis of capitalism finally hit Wall Street.  So argues Marxist political economist Wadi’h Halabi, who studies the material basis for revolutionary optimism today, and has for 16 years been a frequent guest of the Academy of Marxism and other institutes of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.  

Few things in history have been more dangerous than a weakened but well-armed ruling class. Workers and oppressed would be foolish to ignore the danger, even more foolish to ignore the weakening -- or to ignore gains in the objective strength of the world's working class.   The task of tasks is to consciously mobilize that strength to complete humanity’s historic transition from capitalism to socialism. China and the other four states with Communist Parties in power can be decisive in changing the relationship of forces in favor of the working class.

 

The USW and International Labor Solidarity   

 

Presentation and Discussion with Bob LaVenture, Director of United Steelworkers District 12  

 

Saturday, February 4th          2:00  pm 

 

Among American trade unions the United Steelworkers have been in the forefront of the drive to build international labor solidarity.  We have witnessed the growing solidarity of the USW with Mexican and South American miners in the face of anti-worker attacks by Grupo Mexico which owns ASARCO mines in Arizona.  This has included united solidarity around environmental issues.  USW has also been working closely with metal and other industrial unions in England, Ireland and elsewhere.  For example, USW, which represents rubber workers in the US, helped an organizing drive by Liberian rubber tree tappers - from the tree to your tire.  Corporations have merged and gotten huge and multinational.  So must our unions.

 

 

 

Criminal Injustice:  Class, Race, Police, and Border Enforcement 

 

Presentation and Discussion with Isabel Garcia, Human Rights Advocate and Activist

 

Saturday, February 18th                  2:00  pm

 

Why have migrants become the "international criminals"?  With our economic and political structures hijacked by the corporate/police/military sector, how can democratic processes survive? 

 

 

Salt of the Earth

 

Saturday. March 4th          2:00 pm

 

In honor of International Women's Day.  This classic labor film depicts the bitter strike by Chicano miners in New Mexico that challenged racist discrimination in the mines and male supremacy in the home.  When an injunction was issued against the striking miners, their wives and sisters took up the struggle with a fury, leaving the men to care for home and children.  The film was shot on location in 1953 by blacklisted filmmakers and completed in the face of vigilante attacks.  Script written by academy award winner Michael Wilson.

 

A Marxist view of Climate Change Danger

 

Presentation and Discussion with Marc Brodine, Chair of CPUSA Environmental Commission

 

Saturday, March 18th           2  pm

 

Brother Brodine will provide a Marxist approach to understanding Climate Change, the danger it poses for humanity and all living things on this planet, and some of the ways a broad world mass movement  might save Mother Earth.  Clearly, we can't wait for corporate America, Congress, or the Trump administration to save us.   What can we do about the looming danger?  How can we move the American working class majority into the struggle before it's too late?     

 

 

Tucson Exports War - Raytheon, Davis-Monthan AFB, and Trump

 

Presentation and Discussion with Jack Cohen-Joppa, Co-Publisher of the "Nuclear Resister"

 

Saturday, March 25                     2:00 pm

 

Two months into the new administration, is anything really new? Jack Cohen-Joppa will review the panoply of weapons and local politics that tell the world, "Tucson banks on war".  Jack will also outline Trump’s emerging nuclear weapons policy.

Jack and Felice Cohen-Joppa have published the Nuclear Resister newsletter since 1980, supporting peace prisoners and highlighting nonviolent resistance to war and the nuclear threat on Facebook and nukeresister.org  as well. For nearly 20 years they have been inviting community  participation in monthly vigils for peace at Raytheon and D-M.

 

 

Latin America and US Imperialism

 

Presentation and Discussion With Chuck Kaufman, National Coordinator, Alliance for Global Justice

 

Saturday, April 8th             2:00  pm 

 

In recent years several Latin American countries have been able to escape the clutches of US imperialism and chart an independent course.  Others have fallen back under US dominance.  The Alliance for Global Justice has been doing solidarity work with Latin American democratic forces for decades rallying broad support for popular struggles and with regular visits and delegations.  Chuck, who has been in the thick of this solidarity work for some 30 years, will assess the current political situation in Latin America, and how the new US administration might impact hemispheric relations.