Volume , Number
NOTE: Z Magazine subscribers and sustainers have access to all Z Magazine articles here and in the archive. The latest Z Magazine articles available to everyone are listed in the Free Articles box at the top of the table of contents, and are starred in the list below. Questions? e-mail Z Magazine Online.
Liberals In Search of a Foreign Policy: Imperialism as democracy?
It is very interesting watching the liberals seek a foreign policy position that will differentiate them from the conservatives. After all, they cant just go along with Bush, who, as Michael Tomasky acknowledges in his chapter Between Cheney and Chomsky in George Packers edited volume The Fight Is for Democracy, is throwing aside all international agreements and restraint and has announced a prescription for empire. Of course most of the liberals went along with Bush on the Afghanistan attack, but they began to splinter in the months leading up to the Iraq invasion, some like Paul Berman favored it, others liked the idea, but only with UN sanction and collective action. Some didnt approve it on any basis.
Tomasky has the solution: liberals can fight for democracy abroad as the basis of U.S. foreign policy. This is the theme of the Packer volume, as suggested by its title, with Tomaskys lengthy chapter immediately following the introduction by Packer, and with Berman providing the concluding chapter, which features his Bush-compatible vision of the struggle between Islamic totalitarianism and democracy.
Tomasky never explains why we should take on the project of fighting for democracy abroad, as opposed to leaving foreigners to work out their own destinies, concentrating on building democracy at home, and diverting resources from the military-industrial complex to pressing needs here. Tomasky advances the project as a political strategy for the Democrats, who need a foreign policy that will prevent the conservatives from effectively tagging liberals and Democrats (and Tomasky merges the two) as wimps and incapable of defending our national security. So the power structure dictates an interventionary foreign policy and the problem for the liberals is to construct their own distinctive rationale for interventionism that is presumably compatible with liberal values and will not be a prescription for empire.
This kind of idiocy arises from the inability of liberals to question the basic structures of power. They cant challenge the immense military establishment and a forward foreign policy because these are built-in to a political-economic order that they take for granted. This power structure has tightened its control over society and badly weakened democracy at home. In his introduction Packer acknowledges that growing corporate power and inequality has caused money and its influence [to] claim a greater and greater share of political power, so that for thirty years or more the musculature of democracy has atrophied, culminating in 2000 with a stolen presidential election. This suggests that the big challenge for U.S. liberals should be establishing a real democracy at home, rather than looking for places abroad where their own atrophied democracy can bring a supposedly good one to somebody else by military intervention.
other absurdity here is the pretense that the Democrats are potential
vehicles for this policy of intervention-for-democracy. Common sense
and history tell us that the huge U.S. military apparatus was not
put in place for do-gooder purposes, but rather to serve those same
business and financial interests that Packer concedes have obtained
a greater and greater share of political power. The
Democrats draw their campaign funding from those same interests
and have become more conservative as their dependency on these funders
has increased and as the corporate media has pressed them away from
populism. Can anyone but a fool or self-deceiver believe
that these admittedly strengthening power interests are going to
accept a policy of spending large resources to bring democracy
to the benighted, as it shrivels at home and contrary to systematic
historical practice up to the present?
However, we must recognize that it is always possible to rationalize attacking some target on the grounds of dedication to enhancing democracy. Most, if not all, countries have very imperfect democracies, quite a few dont even have a nominal democracy, and many countries have dissident ethnic or other sub-national groups who feel put upon and whose cause can be taken up in the alleged interest of democracy or human rights; and the dissident group can be funded and encouraged to rebel more forcibly to justify external intervention in an alleged good cause. So the democracy objective can easily be fitted to serve the same ends as a strictly geopolitical or economic objective, or even to play a wag the dog political function. Thus a liberal like Clinton can attack Yugoslavia on the alleged grounds of principle while simultaneously servicing Turkish ethnic cleansing of the Kurds and appeasing our good friends in Indonesia as they upset the UN-sponsored referendum in East Timorand the liberals at home are pleased. They argue that it is better to have selective humanitarian intervention than none at all. They easily swallow claims of humanitarian purpose and effects that are fraudulent (as in the Balkans wars). They fail to see that the claims of humanitarian purpose in case A provide a cover for supporting inhumanitarianism in cases B, C, and D. After all, they say, we cant do everything, while they ignore the technical ease of simply terminating support for our goons of convenience.
So the democracy project will be able to serve as a cover for an imperialist projection of power in the same way as stopping communism did for the Cold War era, for Democratic and Republican leaders alike. Both have regularly engaged in foreign policy actions that served corporate and geopolitical interests, very often at the expense of democracy. In their weakened, more corporate-dependent position today, there is a snowball-in-hells chance that the Democrats will alter their traditional pattern.
Tomasky devotes much space in his chapter to an attempted showing that liberal leaders (Democrats) have been better in the foreign policy arena than the conservatives (Republicans), so that presumably getting them into power would make the democracy project feasible. He argues at length that Lyndon Johnson didnt want to fight the Vietnam War, but was driven to it by the belief that if he withdrew he would be vilified and suffer electoral defeat. So it was really a conservatives war: they pushed him into escalating and invading Vietnam. Tomasky supports this by a few quotations of Johnson speaking with friends in private saying the war was a losing proposition and that political considerations forced his hand.
proof is worse than puny. Johnson made hundreds of statements that
fluctuated with his mood. The crucial fact about Johnson is that
he did escalate the war. It was his war and whether he was doing
it because he believed in it or for political reasons is beside
the point. Tomasky fails to recognize that if a liberal Democrat
will go to war contrary to his/her beliefs for political reasons,
this condemns him/her even more than if he/she did it based on true
belief. If fear of conservative backlash dominates policy decisions,
why should we want a liberal Democrat in office? But Tomasky also
misses the fact that Johnson was surrounded by liberal advisers
who urged him on. Joseph Califano claims, All Kennedys
top advisers save one pressed him [Johnson] to escalate more
(The Triumph and Tragedy of Lyndon Johnson). This was liberals
in power making these decisions. We may note also that it was Nixon
who eventually withdrew from Vietnam, not Kennedy or Johnson
(and that it was Eisenhower, not Truman, who ended the Korean
Tomasky also ignores the fact that Lyndon Johnson invaded the Dominican Republic in 1965 to prevent the return of the democratically-elected Juan Bosch; that his Administration supported the Colonels takeover of Greece in 1967, displacing a democratic government there with a regime of torture; and that he helped Suharto impose a military dictatorship on Indonesia in 1965, the liberals in power celebrating this takeover and massacre of perhaps a million civilians, an event described by James Reston as a gleam of light in Asia and by Robert McNamara as a dividend from our investment in military aid to Indonesia.
Johnson also supported the military overthrow of the elected government of Brazil in 1964, quickly expressing his warmest good wishes to the coup leaders and congratulating them that the matter had been settled within the framework of constitutional democracy. U.S. Ambassador to Brazil, and later, president of Johns Hopkins University, Lincoln Gordon, described the new regime as totally democratic and the imposition of the military dictatorship as the single most decisive victory for freedom in the mid-twentieth century. During the liberal Kennedy and Johnson administrations there were 18 turnovers of government in Latin America, 11 of them displacing elected governments with dictatorships.
Tomasky puts a similar positive gloss on other Democrats from Truman onward, with comparable selectivity and bias. On Trumans murderous counterinsurgency war in Greece that killed several hundred thousand people and established a right-wing dictatorship run by important remnants of the World War II Nazi collaboration, Tomasky says it probably did save Greece from becoming a Communist state, which was handy for Americans and rather more than that for the Greeks. It doesnt bother Tomasky that we didnt allow the Greeks to decide this for themselves (Stalin was honoring Yalta and not intervening in Greece at all); and as noted earlier, after the Greeks finally succeeded in ousting the U.S.-sponsored collaborationist regime in 1967, another liberal Democrat, Lyndon Johnson, supported a right-wing military coup, again on the spurious claim of saving Greece from becoming a Communist state. Tomasky of course does not mention that it was under Truman in 1947 that the United States began to organize and subvert the new democratic regime in Guatemala, timed, as Blanche Wiesen Cook has shown, with the regimes recognition of the rights of workers to form unions.
Tomasky argues that the Cold War was righteous, although it did have bad features and its rhetoric led us into the Vietnam War. But it contained an idea about liberal democracy that was grounded in Enlightenment principles and tried to bring those principles to life in the institutions it built. So liberals can view the late 1940s as the beginning of a struggle on behalf of defending and spreading the values of democracy. As in Greece and Guatemala? As in Thailand, where the Truman administration in 1947 supported the first pro-Axis dictator to regain power after the war? As in the Kennedy-Johnson era support and underwriting of the rise of the National Security State in Latin America?
This brings me to Tomaskys juxtaposition of the two extremists, with Tomasky and his allies situated Between Cheney and Chomsky. Tomasky says that liberals must make a clear break with Chomskyism, which represents a worldview that suggests equivocation about Americas capacity as a moral force, but also involves a matter of adapting to the world as it now is. On these points Tomasky is clearly much closer to Cheney than to Chomsky. Cheney doesnt equivocate on U.S. capacity as a moral force; he would certainly agree with Tomasky that bringing democracy everywhere is at least one of our objectives in force projection, and the Bush government has moved further on that point, making liberation our alleged chief objective in Iraq. Tomasky is explicit that the aim of spreading democracy would have been a reasonable basis for attacking Iraq. Cheney and his associates have in the past acknowledged geopolitical and economic grounds for the attack, and of course in the runup to the war constructed a series of lies in their effort to gain public and UN support. Tomasky liberals in power would have been less open and crass: while gaining support and doing what the power structure and main lobbies wanted done for their own reasons, the liberals would have focused more intently on democracy and human rights.
Packer, Berman, Gitlin, and company hate Chomsky for many reasons.
One is that he so effectively undercuts their claims with facts
and coherent analyses, which is why they always mention him only
in hit-and-run attacks, never confronting his arguments. They also
often lie in these attacks. Thus in his only other mention of Chomsky,
Tomasky says, The first reaction to September 11 was easy,
at least for everyone this side of Noam Chomsky. A country is not
only justified in answering such an attack but has a moral obligation
to do so. The implicit lie is the claim that Chomsky didnt
think the attack had to be answered: he did, but against the attackers
and their direct supporters and within the framework of international
law. Tomasky slithers over such matters and, like many liberals,
he follows the Bush party line according to which international
law is for somebody else.
Chomsky has unearthed and used in his writings internal U.S. planning documents that have shown U.S. intention to control and dominate in pursuit of U.S. economic interests that fly in face of any notion of democracy (see On Power and Ideology, Lecture One). The Grand Area concept developed during World War II spoke explicitly about the need to arrange things via the use of power to serve the needs of the U.S. economy, with Latin American countries (among others) to be kept in a dependent and raw materials supplier mode. Later National Security Council documents were quite clear on the threat of nationalistic regimes [seeking] immediate improvement in the low living standards of the masses, with the result that most Latin American governments are under intense domestic political pressures to increase production and to diversify their economies. These internal documents make clear that such concern for the masses and pressures from those masses are a threat and they also make clear that the vast military aid and training programs developed for Latin America, that produced such a great dividend in Indonesia, were designed as a political counterweight to these democratic threats.
These documents and Chomskys analysis make Tomaskys conventional clichés about the noble ends of Cold War liberals look like the ideological baloney they really are. His documentation on the rise of the National Security State in Latin America and its regimes of torture, regularly supported by Democratic as well as Republican leaders, is also hard to swallow and impossible to confute, so Tomasky and company simply ignore these and rely on strands of compatible evidence, frequently misrepresented as well as decontextualized (as in the Truman-Greece case). But one conclusion is possible: Chomsky refuses to ignore or apologize for U.S. sponsorship of violently undemocratic states while Tomasky and his colleagues in The Fight for Democracy offer de facto apologetics for this sponsorship that departs a bit from the pursuit of Enlightenment values.
Tomasky et al. also hate Chomsky because he is a critic of Israel and of U.S. support for Israeli policy. Tomasky says that one of the great accomplishments of U.S. Cold War policy was that it created a democratic Jewish state. This exhausts his discussion of the issue. But that Jewish state was created in a massive process of ethnic cleansing and that ethnic cleansing continues with U.S. support (opposed by virtually all the rest of the world) up to today. This is approved ethnic cleansing, supported by both major political parties in the United States, and the ongoing violations of international law and elemental morality do not bother Tomasky and company. Furthermore, Israels democracy is very constrained within Israel and the notion of a Jewish state, rather than a state of all its citizens, should bother believers in democracy, but Berman and company are greatly bothered only by the notion of an Islamic state. The occupation is also not only illegal and ruthlessly racist, it obviously violates all democratic standards. So here again, the liberal Fight for Democracy turns out to be limited and politicized in accord with seriously non-Enlightenment principles.
Even on the domestic scene, whereas Chomsky has stood steadfastly for a democratization of increasingly concentrated corporate structures and media and has called for grass-roots organization and a revitalized labor movement to move the country toward a real democracy, Tomasky and his associates are more complacent. As noted, Packer mentions the increasingly plutocratic character of the political system and its atrophy, but neither he nor his fellow liberals seem very urgent about structural repair. They have spent far more time and energy in attacking Chomsky, Nader, the left, and protest movements than in writing about and organizing for ways to move from plutocracy to democracy.
They are preoccupied with getting Democrats in office and give the impression that that will suffice, despite the constraints now placed on who can run and what the victor can do. Tomasky does not equivocate on the moral force that a Democrat would bring to his democracy-enhancing project even under present plutocratic conditions. He seems to believe, like Berman, that the Bush administration, despite its imperial project, is also exercising a moral influence abroad. But we need liberal Democrats in office to carry out the democracy project effectively. In short, the Fight for Democracy is not here at home, despite the atrophy. Here it is only a fight to get Democrats in office and fend off the left critiques that may impede our pursuit of democracy elsewherean aim that neither Democratic or Republican leaders have ever pursued in the past.
Edward S. Herman is an economist, author, and media analyst.
Z Magazine Archive
AnnouncementsLABOR - May 1 is May Day. Workers of the world will celebrate the 124th anniversary of International Worker’s Day. Born out of a call for an 8-hour workday in the United States, this day is an opportunity for all workers to show their solidarity with one another, as well as to renew the call for labor rights.
FARM CONFERENCE - The Farm Conference on Community and Sustainability will be held May 24-26 in Summertown, TN, in partnership with the Fellowship of Intentional Communities. Tour green homes, see sustainable food production, learn about solar installations, alternative education, midwifery, and more.
Contact: Douglas@thefarmcommunity.com; http://www.thefarmcommunity.com/.
PALESTINE - The Conference of the Palestinian Shatat in North American will be held June 3-5 in Vancouver. The conference will examine the future of the Palestinian liberation movement.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.palestinianconference.org/.
LABOR - The Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s 45th annual conference will be held May 3-5, in Portland, OR. This year’s theme is Labor Under Attack: Learning from the Past and Preparing for the Future. A call for presentations, workshops and papers is currently underway.
Contact: PNLHA, 27920 68th Ave. East, Graham, WA 98338; 206-406-2604; PNLHA1@aol.com; http://www3.telus.net.
MARIJUANA - On the first Saturday of May marijuana legalization activists will hold informational and educational events, rallies and marches in over 300 cities around the world.
ECONOMICS - The Union For Radical Political Economics will hold its 39th annual conference May 9-11 in New York City.
RECLAIM THE DREAM - The 2013 Poor People’s Campaign & March from Baltimore to Washington D.C. will be May 11. Communities, schools and unions interested in participating are encouraged to contact the Baltimore People’s Assembly.
Contact: 410-500-2168; 410-218-4835; BaltimorePeoplesAssembly@gmail.com; Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Baltimore and the Baltimore Peoples Power Assembly, 2011 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218.
MOTHER’S DAY - The 17th Annual Mother’s Day Walk For Peace will be May 12th, in Dorchester, MA. The walk began in 1996 for families who had lost children to violence. The day has become a way for thousands of people to financially support the work of the Louis Brown Peace Institute.
Contact: http://www.ldbpeaceinstitute.org/; http://mothersdaywalk4peace.org/.
NATO 5 - An International Week of Solidarity with the NATO 5 has been called for May 16-21. Supports call on supporters to raise awareness of the NATO 5 and support funds for the defendants on the one-year anniversary of their preemptive arrests.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; https://nato5support.wordpress.com.
MOUNTAINTOP - The 2013 Mountain Justice Summer Activist Training Camp will be held May 19-27 in Damascus, VA. It will be a week of workshops, field trips to view Mountain Top Removal coal mines, direct actions, and service project.
FEMINIST SCI-FI - The feminist science fiction convention WisCon 37 is scheduled for May 24-27 in Madison, WI.
Contact: WisCon, ? SF3, PO Box 1624, Madison, WI 53701; email@example.com; http://www.wiscon.info/.
ANARCHY FEST - A month-long Festival of Anarchy is scheduled for May in Montreal. The festival includes The Montreal Anarchist Bookfair (May 19-20).
Contact: http://www.anarchistbookfair.ca/; http://www.radicalmontreal.com/.
LABOR - The International Labor Rights Forum will present: Down the Supply Chain, Driving Corporate Accountability, on May 22 in Washington, DC. The Labor Rights Awards Ceremony and Reception will honor pioneers in supply chain worker organizing, working solidarity and international labor rights policy.
MULTICULTURE - The 26th annual National Conference on Race & Ethnicity in American Higher Education (NCORE) will take place May 28-June 1, in New Orleans.
Contact: SWCHRS, 3200 Marshall Avenue, Suite 290, Norman, OK 73072; 405-325-3694; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.ncore.ou.edu.
MEDIA - The 2013 Alliance for Community Media Annual Conference will be held May 29-31, in San Francisco, CA. Participants will include educators, community leaders, media professionals, journalists, nonprofit leaders, policymakers and students.
RADIO - The 38th Annual Community Radio Conference is schedule for May 29-June 1, in San Francisco, CA, with discussions and workshops.
Contact: 1101 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20004; 202-756-2268; email@example.com; http://www.nfcb.org/.
BRADLEY MANNING - On June 1, a rally will be held at Fort Meade in support of Bradley Manning.
BIKES - Bikes Not Bombs is holding its 24th annual Bike-A-Thon and Green Roots Festival in Boston, MA on June 3, with several bike rides scheduled, music, exhibitors and more.
Contact: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory St., Jamaica Plain, MA 02130; 617-522-0222; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.bikesnotbombs.org.
LEFT FORUM - The 2013 Left Forum will be held June 7-9, at Pace University in New York City.
Contact: 365 Fifth Avenue, CUNY Graduated Center, ? Sociology Dept., New York, NY 10016; http://www.leftforum.org/.
VEGAN FEST - Mad City Vegan Fest will be held in Madison, WI, June 8. The annual event features food, speakers, and exhibitors.
Contact: 122 State Street, Suite 405 B, Madison, WI 53701; email@example.com; http://veganfest.org/.
ADC CONFERENCE - The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) holds its annual conference June 13-16, in Washington, DC, with panel discussions and workshops on civil rights, media and other topics.
Contact: 1990 M Street, Suite 610, Washington, DC, 20036; 202-244-2990; firstname.lastname@example.org http://convention.adc.org/.
CUBA/SOCIALISM - A Cuban-North American Dialog on Socialist Renewal and Global Capitalist Crisis will be held in Havana, Cuba, June 16-30. There will be a 5 day Seminar at University of Havana, plus visits to a cooperative, urban garden, community development project, social research centers, and educational & medical institutions.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.globaljusticecenter.org/.
NETROOTS - The 8th Annual Netroots Nation conference will take place June 20-23 in San Jose, CA. The event features panels, trainings, networking, screenings, and keynotes.
Contact: 164 Robles Way, #276, Vallejo, CA 94591; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.netrootsnation.org/.
MEDIA - The 15th annual Allied Media Conference will be held June 20-23, in Detroit.
Contact: 4126 Third Street, Detroit, MI 48201; http://alliedmedia.org/.
GRASSROOTS - The United We Stand Festival will be hosted by Free & Equal, June 22 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The festival aims to reform the electoral process throughout the U.S.
SOCIALISM - The Socialism 2013 Conference is scheduled for June 27-30 in Chicago, featuring talks and panel discussions.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.socialismconference.org.
LITERACY - The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) will hold its conference July 12-13 in Los Angeles under the heading, Intersections: Teaching and Learning Across Media.
Contact: 10 Laurel Hill Drive, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003; http://namle.net/conference/.
IWW - The North American Work People’s College will take place July 12-16 at Mesaba Co-op Park in northern Minnesota. The event will bring together Wobblies from branches across the continent to learn new skills and build One Big Union.
PEACESTOCK - On July 13th, the 11th Annual Peacestock: A Gathering for Peace, will take place at Windbeam Farm in Hager City, WI. The event is a mixture of music, speakers and community for peace. Sponsored by Veterans for Peace.
Contact: Bill Habedank, 1913 Grandview Ave., Red Wing, MN 55066; 651-388-7733; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.peacestockvfp.org.
CHILDREN’S DEFENSE - July 15-19, join clergy, seminarians, Christian educators, young adult leaders and other faith-based advocates for children at CDF Haley Farm in Clinton, Tennessee, for five days of spiritual renewal, networking, movement building workshops, and continuing education about the urgent needs of children at the 19th annual Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.childrensdefense.org.
ACTIVIST CAMP - Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp will have sessions in July and August in Ben Lomond, CA; Portland, OR; Charlton, MA. YEA Camp is designed for activists 12-17 years old who want to make a difference in the world.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://yeacamp.org/.
LA RAZA - The annual National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Conference is scheduled for July 18-19 in New Orleans, with workshops, presentations and panel discussions.
Contact: NCLR Headquarters Office, Raul Yzaguirre Building, 1126 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036; 202-785-1670; www.nclr.org.
LABOR - The Eastern Conference For Workplace Democracy: Growing Our Cooperatives, Growing Our Communities, will be held at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, July 26-28.
Contact: email@example.com; http://east.usworker.coop/.
WOMEN/LYNNE STEWART- Radical Women is asking for support letters and cards to be sent to Lynne Stewart. Stewart is a civil rights attorney and political prisoner who is currently in jail. She has breast cancer and authorities have denied her request for transfer from her Texas prison to the New York City hospital where she received medical attention during a prior bout of breast cancer. Send messages and cards to: Lynne Stewart 53504-054, Federal Medical Center Carswell, P.O. Box 27137, Fort Worth, TX 76127.
Contact: 747 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109; 415-864-1278; RadicalWomenUS@gmail.com; http://lynnestewart.org/; http://www.radicalwomen.org/.
HAITI/WOMEN - Haiti’s government is considering a legal reform measure that would prohibit and punish all sexual assault, including marital rape. MADRE and the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict are launching a petition to raise international support for this push to address violence against women in Haiti.
Contact: 121 West 27th Street, #301, New York, NY 10001; 212-627-0444; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.madre.org.
SYRIA/MIDDLE EAST - The Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) is currently seeking funds to assist more than 200,000 refugees fleeing violence in Syria.
FOLK FESTIVAL - The Falcon Ridge Folk Festival will be held August 2-4, in the Berkshires, NY.
Contact: http://www.falconridgefolk.com/; email@example.com.
WAR RESISTERS - The War Resisters League will hold its 90th anniversary conference, Revolutionary Nonviolence: Building Bridges Across Generations and Communities, August 1-4, at Georgetown University. The event will focus on the U.S.’ long history of antimilitarism.
Contact: 339 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012; 212-228-0450; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.warresisters.org.
POPULAR ECONOMICS - The Center for Popular Economics is holding its 2013 Summer Institute August 4-9 at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA. No background in economics is needed for this intensive training. This year’s theme is, The Care Economy: Building a Just Economy with a Heart.
Contact: Center for Popular Economics, PO Box 785 Amherst, MA 01004; 413-545-0743; email@example.com; www.populareconomics.org.
VETERANS - Veterans for Peace is holding the 28th annual convention August 6-11 in Madison, WI. This year’s theme is, Power To The Peaceful.
DEMOCRACY - The Democracy Convention will take place August 7-11 in Madison, WI. The convention brings together nine conferences including topics such as media, education, defense, race, environment and others.
MEN - The 38th National Conference on Men & Masculinity: Forging Justice: Creating Safe, Equal and Accountable Communities, presented in partnership with HAVEN, will be held in Detroit, MI, August 8-10.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.nomas.org/.
OCCUPY - An Occupy National Gathering will be held in Kalamazoo, MI, August 21-25.
Contact: email@example.com; http://occupynationalgathering.net/.
COMMUNITIES - The Communities Conference is a networking and learning opportunity for co-operative or communal lifestyles, with workshops, events and entertainment; scheduled for August 30-September 2 at the Twin Oaks Community in Louisa, Virginia.
LABOR DAY - The 29th annual Bread and Roses Festival, a celebration of the ethnic diversity and labor history of Lawrence, MA, will be held September 2, in honor of the 1912 Bread and Roses Strike. There will be music, dance, poetry, drama, ethnic food, historical demonstrations, walking & trolley tours.
Contact: PO Box 1137, Lawrence, MA 01842; 978-794-1655; http://www.breadandrosesheritage.org/.
OCCUPY WALL STREET - September 17 is the two-year anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Events are planned in New York City and worldwide.
TEACHERS - The 13th Annual Conference, “Teaching for Social Justice: The Politics of Pedagogy,” will be held October 12 in San Francisco, CA. The free event features workshops, resources, and free childcare.
Contact: 415-676-7844; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.t4sj.org/.
HAITI - International Action, which brings clean water and chlorinators to Haiti, seeks office space capable of housing up to six people and their office equipment.
Contact: Zach Bremer, Zbrehmer@haitiwater.org; 202-488-0735; http://www.haitiwater.org/.
MEDIA - The Union for Democratic Communications and Project Censored are sponsoring a joint conference on media democracy, media activism and social justice to be held November 1-3 at the University of San Francisco. Proposals for presentations, workshops and panels from activists and critical scholars are invited.