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Chris Hedges – Shut Down the Democratic National Convention

On July 25, opening day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Cheri Honkala, leader of the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign, who was denied a permit to march by city authorities, will rally with thousands of protesters outside City Hall. Defying the police, they will march up Broad Street to the convention. We will recapture our democracy in the streets …

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Leid Stories – Election 2016: What We Should Have Learned By Now – 05.18.16

As Election 2016 progresses toward various parties’ nominating conventions this summer, (for Republicans, July 18-21 in Cleveland, Ohio; for Democrats, July 25-28 in Philadelphia, Pa.; the Green Party, Aug. 4-7 in Houston, Texas; the Libertarian Party, May 27-30 in Orlando, Fla.), presidential hopefuls are in the final stretch of the primaries, looking to claim their spots as their parties’ standard bearers in the general election. The duopoly has outdone all other major parties in the still-ongoing battle of attrition. Donald Trump is the last person standing in the Republican field of 17; Hillary Clinton is being touted as the presumptive Democratic nominee.

By all indications, Election 2016 will be a watershed moment in U.S. electoral politics—though for reasons that should alarm even a casual observer. Leid Stories has been looking at this historical moment in terms of what politics and the political process have come to mean and be for the masses of people. We continue this discussion, focusing on what we are learning, or have learned, about our relationship to the political apparatus, and ways in which we can affect political outcomes through an increased consciousness and strategic use of power.

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CARMEN YARRUSSO – Lesser of Two Evils Vote is Counterproductive and Morally Corrupt

There’s probably never been a US presidential election where both likely nominees are more despised by more people. Millions on both sides plan to vote for the least despicable candidate. Do you need more proof our political system is corrupt to the core? If you’re a Hillary Clinton supporter and plan to vote for her, that’s fine. But Bernie Sanders …

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Black Agenda Radio – 05.09.16

Welcome, to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective with your host Glen Ford and co-host, Nellie Bailey.

– Thousands of teachers went on sick-out in Detroit, last Monday and Tuesday, shutting down the city’s public schools. The sick-out was led by Steve Conn, who was elected president of the local teachers union but deposed at the urging of the national American Federation of Teachers. Steve Conn and activists from the BAMN organization, By Any Means Necessary, have been holding teacher sick-outs since November, to protest Governor Rick Snyder’s efforts to privatize the public schools, which are already more than half charter.

– The Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations plans events in a number of cities, to put together a National Black Political Agenda. The project came out of a Black Is Back Coalition national conference, in Harlem, last month. Coalition chairman Omali Yeshitela, explains.

– In Seattle, Washington, city councilwoman Kshama Sawant, head of the Socialist Alternative Party, has launched a petition calling on Bernie Sanders to run as an Independent candidate for president, after he fails to win the Democratic presidential nomination, in Philadelphia, this summer. Sawant says the nation needs a third party, to represent the 99 percent. But, what about the Green Party, which is already on the ballot – or will be – in a majority of states in November?

– Paul Street is an historian, an activist and author, who wrote early on that Barack Obama was a corporate politician who, as president, would side with Wall Street and the Pentagon. Paul Street’s latest book is titled, “They Rule: The One Percent Versus Democracy.” Street says Hillary Clinton will pull the Democratic Party even further to the Right, packing it with Republicans who prefer her to Donald Trump.

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Dave Lindorff – Takin’ It to the Street, and Pushing Bernie to Not Endorse Hillary and Instead Run as an Independent

Philadelphia — You wouldn’t know it from reading or watching or listening to the corporate media, or even, incredibly, to most of the alternative media, but a huge grass-roots campaign has sprung up promoting a mass four-day demonstration in Philadelphia during the July 25-28Democratic Convention . The promoters of this campaign so reminiscent of the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago are backers of …

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This Can’t Be Happening – 05.04.16

Seattle’s socialist councilwoman Kshama Sawant talks about her efforts, including a petition at movement4bernie.org/run-all-the-way, to get Bernie Sanders to reject endorsing Hillary Clinton if she wins the Democratic nomination, and to instead continue to run for the general election, either as an independent or as the Green Party Candidate. Host Dave LIndorff also talks about a grass roots effort being organized to bring hundreds of thousands of Sanders backers to Philadelphia for the July 25 Dem Convention, to demand that Sanders not back Clinton if he doesn’t get the nomination, but to run as an independent or a Green. Go to: https://veritynow.com/2016/04/23/thousands-prepare-to-march-on-the-dnc/

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Paul Rosenberg – Gutless Democrats Fear Fights: Why Triangulating Neoliberal Clintonites Back Big Business Over People

As the Democratic primary heated up to the boiling point, one particular line of attack on Bernie Sanders had the distinctively Karl Rove-ian stench of attacking Sanders’ strength. Vox [3], Slate [4] and AEI [5] all bought the spin and struck the same theme: “If Bernie Sanders cares about poor people, how come he doesn’t want to trade with them?” But even more than Rove, we can catch …

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Black Agenda Radio – 04.18.16

Welcome, to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford with my co-host, Nellie Bailey.

– Half of this summer’s political drama will play out in Philadelphia, where the Democrats are holding their national convention. Bill Clinton launched into a political tirade, earlier this month, when activists from the Philly Coalition for REAL Justice denounced the former president’s mass Black incarceration and anti-poor peoples policies. Bill Clinton ranted and raved for 13 minutes, and then issued a back-handed, non-apology the next morning. We asked Megan Malachi, spokesperson for the Philly Coalition for REAL Justice, if they were surprised at the venomousness of Clinton’s response.

– Dr. Anthony Monteiro is a Duboisian scholar and veteran activist who was one of the founders of the Black Radical Organizing Committee, which held a national conference on the Black Radical Tradition, earlier this year. We asked Dr. Monteiro what kind of reception Black Philadelphia will give the Democrats when they hold their national convention, in July.

– St. Mary’s Church, in New York’s Harlem, was packed, this month, for a national conference on the 2016 Elections and Black Self-Determination. The event was organized by the Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations. Coalition chairman Omali Yeshitela said the electoral process is not the only means of struggle. In fact, it’s not even the most important means of political struggle.

– Diop Olugbala is an African Socialist Party activist, based in Philadelphia. He spoke on one of the Black Is Back Coalition’s principal demands: Black community control of the police.

– Our own Nellie Bailey, co-host of Black Agenda Radio, addressed the Black Is Back Coalition national conference. Bailey is a veteran Harlem tenants organizer. She spoke on the demand for Black self-determination and the centrality of the housing issue.

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Leid Stories – Election 2016: The Duopoly’s Best Gift Ever—A Rigged Election and Massive Voter Fraud – 04.11.16

On the Democratic side, there’s nary a whimper from the candidate who’s been winning the popular vote but lagging in party delegate votes. Bernie Sanders is playing by party rules, hoping to win delegate and super delegate votes from Hillary Clinton at the party’s nominating convention (in Philadelphia) in July.

But there’s an all-out war in the Republican camp, with Donald Trump, the party’s winningest candidate, railing against a “corrupt” and “crooked” system that is denying him his fair share of delegates. Trump isn’t waiting to persuade nominating delegates to switch at the GOP’s national convention in Cleveland; the party’s “rules,” he says, are patently unfair because they are being manipulated to favor the will and choice of the party elite.

Leid Stories in a commentary contends that the battle over delegates and the charges of corruption in the parties’ primary process are one of the best gifts the duopoly can give. It brings into plain view why neither party can be trusted to respect the sanctity of the people’s vote.

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Leid Stories – Election 2016: So, What Does It All Mean? – 04.07.16

The frenzied fight over delegates continues as the 2016 presidential primaries reaches its apex this month. But Democrats and Republicans already are fixing their focus on their June conventions (Philadelphia for the Democrats; Cleveland for the Republicans), where epic battles are expected over the delegate-driven nomination process.

As we have been doing since the political season began, Leid Stories “polls” listeners on their current attitudes about the presidential race and what choices they are likely to make in the general election.