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New Ground 73

November - December, 2000


  • Considering Gore and Nader by Mark Weinberg
  • Young Democratic Socialists Fall Conference by Elizabeth Brandt and Tyler Grosshuesch
  • Comments and Opinions: Reconsidering Gore and Nader by Robert Roman
  • Religion and Socialism Commission by Alex Mikulich
  • Other News compiled by Bob Roman
  • Erratum
    Studies in the Street
    Amnesty for Immigrants
    Do You Have Kids?
    43rd Debs - Thomas - Harrington Dinner
    Harrington - Hamer Institute
    National Office Notes
    Campaign to Build Illinois Transit
    Campaign for Better Health Care
    Illinois Committee of Correspondence
    Mountain Moving Time
  • Letters

  • Considering Gore and Nader

    by Mark Weinberg

    Approximately 150 attended the debate at the Hot House on Monday October 16, co-sponsored by CDSA with Open University of the Left and In These Times magazine. The debate was professionally moderated by WVON talk-show host Clifford Kelley.

    Speaking first, for Nader was DSA's own Quentin Young, M.D., of Physicians for a National Health Program. Testifying to Nader's long history of integrity in opposing corporate America's violations of consumer and worker rights, he concentrated on Nader's support for national health care and lamented that the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) dictated Democratic platform did not include this for the first time in many years. Denise Miles of the Black Radical Congress questioned the working class credentials of those who won't support Gore, the choice of organized labor and people of color.

    Sam Smucker of the United Electrical Workers contrasted Gore's support of NAFTA and "free" trade with China without guarantees of worker's rights with Nader's call for repealing the Taft-Hartley Act which limits labor's ability to organize; he lamented that the UE was one of the few unions to support Nader. Bruce Bostick of District 7, United Steel Workers spoke passionately of a need to support Gore to avoid the dismantling of labor rights, affirmative action and civil liberties that might occur under a Bush presidency with Bush nominees on the Supreme Court.

    Chris Geovanis of Hammerhard MediaWorks summarized the case against Gore: that he represents the least progressive elements in the Democratic Party as does his DLC cohort and running mate Lieberman. She mentioned Nader's much stronger stance on Palestinian rights, among other things, and reminded the audience, as did Smucker, that Gore voted to confirm Antonin Scalia for the Supreme Court. James Weinstein, an historian of American socialism as well as publisher emeritus of In These Times, spoke of the futility of third party campaigns in the United States and demeaned the Green Party base. He seemed to suggest that it was egotistical of Nader to run a campaign that could result in an ultra-right wing candidate winning the White House. Chris Geovanis asked him why his pragmatic viewpoint didn't apply to Eugene Debs' Socialist Party campaigns early in the century. He didn't answer, but gave the audience a more promising alternative, to run a broad-based progressive candidate in Democratic primaries.

    Questions and comments from the audience followed, mostly from Nader supporters. They began with a few words from a special guest, Alexander Cockburn, in town for a promotional event for the book he co-authored bashing Gore; he was pleased that Geovanis had quoted the book and reminded the audience of Gore's deplorable environmental record, at odds with the image he projects. Other speakers defended the Green Party ecological agenda apart from Nader.

    Although I suspect few minds were changed, the forum was generally well balanced, with much fine oratory and more than a little hyperbole. I suspect most Nader supporters on the left feel there is a significant difference between Gore and Bush and most left Gore supporters find him severely wanting as a candidate. As a Nader supporter I wish he had a broader base in organized labor and with the communities of color. On the day of the forum, Salim Muwakkil's Chicago Tribune column spoke of Nader's strength on African-American problems, such as economic injustice, reparations, labor rights and the health related problems of inner city pollution. It would have helped if we had more of this earlier in the campaign.

    Young Democratic Socialists Fall Conference

    by Elizabeth Brandt and Tyler Grosshuesch

    The University of Chicago chapter of the Young Democratic Socialists (YDS) hosted this year's annual Fall Conference, October 12th-15th. YDS Fall Conferences are internal, focused on choosing and preparing this year's campaigns, decision making, and networking between chapters (read: drinking). We've expanded a good deal in the last year, so it was good to meet new YDSers from Arizona State University, Colorado University- Boulder, Wayne State University, Cornell, Louisville (the Asner-Debs Chapter) and our visitor from Young Socialist Movement of France.

    We adopted a Statement on Racial Justice, and decided to focus our campaign work on anti-prison issues by forcing Sodexho-Marriot off our campuses. Sodhexo-Marriot is the world's largest investor in private prisons. It also provides really bad campus food service. The privatization of the prison system has led to the degeneration of inmate health care, and decreases in staffing levels piles oppressive workloads on guards and endangers inmate safety. The criminal justice system has a history of racial discrimination and criminalizing non-violent offenders who are of very little danger to society. In additions to this, the private prison lobby encourages stricter sentencing laws and other criminalization measures because full prison beds translate into increased profit.

    Educational workshops were an important part of the weekend. On the opening night, there was a panel discussion on the Prison-Industrial Complex with Rishi Nath of Raptivism Records, Nicolas Le Roux of the French Young Socialist Movement, Kevin Pranis of the Prison Moratorium Project and Geoffery Banks, of First Defense Legal and a youth activist.

    On Friday we had workshops on chapter organizing, international labor support, literature and flyer design, the abc's of socialism, and the global economy. Working groups discussed the proposed statement on racial justice, our activist agenda, the political program and the constitution. Later Quentin Young of Physicians for a National Health Plan spoke about socialist health care reform. When the day was done we hauled out the "Wheel of Socialism" (great for drinking games) and partied at a comrade's apartment.

    Saturday we met in regional groups to coordinate our anti-Sodexho campaigns. That day's educational plenaries included Sue Klonsky speaking on racism and the student movement and Kevin Pranis leading an organizing workshop on prison issues. Conferees attended an AFL-CIO sponsored rally demanding amnesty for undocumented immigrants. Next came a marathon decision making plenary. We stayed up late fine tuning our constitution, activist agenda, political program, and statement on racial justice.

    Early the next morning the plenary continued with officer elections. Business was finished up, and Erin Kaiser of the New Democratic Youth of British Columbia led an educational workshop on defending women's reproductive rights. She pointed out that choice politics is about much more than abortion rights; real choice means having access to resources that make the choice of parenthood manageable regardless of one's economic status.

    Officer elections saw many new members stepping up into leadership roles and the "retirement" of some older YDS activists. "It was an important and pretty inspirational turning point for the organization," said Peter Frase, our new male co-chair. "A new generation of activists is staring to take the lead in YDS." Joan Axthelm of the new Chicago Metro chapter is our new female co-chair.

    Our next conference will be in conjunction with the DSA conference in Washington, D.C. this winter. This conference will be focused on outreach and building connections between YDS and DSA members. We hope to see you all there!

    Comments and Opinions:

    Reconsidering Gore and Nader

    by Robert Roman

    It almost doesn't matter who won the Presidential election. I'm not saying it makes no difference. It makes a difference in more or less obvious ways, such as in the appointment of judges, appointments to the NLRB. It makes a difference in less obvious ways, as in the administration of countless obscure programs that have a subtle yet intimate consequence in people's lives. And while legislation in Congress is bounded by the need for consensus and thus largely limited to that range of possibilities, the President does have an important role in shaping that consensus. It does make a difference.

    But an election is only the beginning of politics and any outcome presents its own set of opportunities and hazards. The general consensus of the moment among pundits is that the next President will be damaged goods; that Congress, evenly split to begin with, will be poisoned by "we was robbed": a polarized, contentious situation. While this has probably been overstated (remember the reaction to closing down the government during earlier games of "budget chicken"; beware the cry for "bipartisanship"), it will limit the possibilities for change from either side.

    A polarized polity and divided ruling class should be a good situation for insurgents, but this election also revealed the weakness of the left. There was no "left" candidate in the Democratic primaries (remember Wellstone for President?). The issues were no better; the most progressive proposal for national health, for example, was actually Bradley's inferior retread of Senator Dole's counter proposal to Clinton's national health plan.

    That Gore was just barely able to win a plurality of the electoral vote should come as no surprise. In this entrepreneurial candidate driven electoral system, a system that treats issues and candidates as if they were commodities, it is only that Bush is of the same ilk that made Gore's campaign viable. François Mitterand said it best: "You cannot make politics that alienate your own clientele. It is fatal."

    And what can be said of the Nader campaign? Nader failed to reach his goal of 5% nationally thus failing to qualify for matching Federal funds in the next Presidential election. Only 19 Green candidates won their elections, exclusively on the municipal and county level; with a few notable exceptions, local Green candidates generally ran substantially behind Nader. (Some 74 Greens hold public office, exclusively at the county and municipal levels.) The Nader campaign had virtually no labor support (the major exception being the United Electrical Workers) and no grassroots support among the minority communities: this despite the fact that Nader had almost ideal positions on labor and trade. Which is precisely the point. Positions don't count without also having the ability to do more than just talk about them. Until the Greens have something beyond nice words, something concrete to offer Labor and minorities, they should not be surprised to find themselves regarded as "spoilers" rather than as saviors.

    Yet the Nader campaign was not regarded by most of its activists as being about today; the point was to build a new party. But party building is problematic both specifically for the Greens and in general. Specifically for the Greens, there are Greens and there are Greens. There is the Green Party USA. There is the Association of State Green Parties. There is Nader's campaign organization which both straddles and exceeds those two organizations. Given the historical animosity between the two, the Greens are almost lucky they did not achieve 5% of the vote. Consider the fate of the Reform Party.

    The general problem with building parties in the United States is beyond the scope of this article, especially as much of it involves the minutia of election laws. Suffice it to say that with the fiasco in Florida and the Electoral College, election law reform will be higher on the political agenda. The left should take advantage of this. And while the history of national third parties has been pretty dismal, there is a history of success for municipal, county and state third parties (in descending order). This implies an organizing strategy of building from the ground up may be successful. Nader's campaign may have been organizationally premature.

    Certainly Labor would argue that Nader's campaign was politically premature. Even though organized labor tends to have an arrogance of resources (It claims almost a third of Gore's vote; the total spent by Labor on the election and election related activities is greater by an order of magnitude than the total budget of the Greens. Not to mention the number of people mobilized by organized labor!), it's become clear just how vulnerable the movement is. If the movement is to survive, at least, and rebuild, the desire to have a government that is not actively hostile to labor's very existence is surely understandable. Organized labor is in essentially a defensive political posture.

    The more serious problem is keeping the "Teamsters and Turtles" together. Some of the pre-election nastiness is at least understandable, but the polemics on both sides have not ceased. Talk is talk. We will not, we should not, have a left that does not quarrel among its various parts. But these are times of peril and opportunity. To take advantage of these opportunities and to effectively defend what we have, we need to work together.

    Religion and Socialism Commission

    by Alex Mikulich

    One of DSA's best kept secrets might be the Religion and Socialism Commission, DSA's largest and possibly most active Commission. Celebrating a time of transition and breaking new ground for the 21st century, the Executive Committee of the Religion and Socialism Commission recently held its annual meeting in New York City.

    The transition is marked, most significantly, by the resignation of John Cort as co-editor of our newsletter, Religious Socialism. We only began to celebrate the great contributions of John Cort over the past sixty-five years. One of the first participants and activists in Dorothy Day's Catholic Worker movement, John Cort challenged Catholic Workers to reduce the numbers of people in the bread lines by contributing to the development of trade unionism. In his recent biography of Michael Harrington, Maurice Isserman pays tribute to Cort's devotion to trade unionism and his challenge to all Catholic Workers. John affectionately refers to himself as the "early Michael Harrington" at the Catholic Worker.

    But that is not all. I first met John Cort as a divinity student when John presented his newly published Christian Socialism: An Informal History (Orbis Books) in 1988. Christian Socialism demands reading for the way it draws upon ancient traditions of faith and social justice, rooted in scriptures, Catholic theology, and Catholic social thought, and for the way it details Catholic socialist movements in France and Germany. I was immediately impressed by John's energy, sharp mind and wit, and deep commitment to faith and socialism. The Religion and Socialism Commission will do well to continue to draw upon the wisdom of the founding editor of our newsletter, Religious Socialism, and celebrate his contributions as we enter the 21st century. I am deeply honored and humbled that John nominated me to take his place as co-editor of our newsletter. I am thankful for the warm welcome of my colleagues and look forward to continuing the work of producing a provocative and informative newsletter.

    Religion and Socialism Commission members are not only members of the largest group within DSA but also the International League of Religious Socialists (ILRS). One hundred thousand strong, the ILRS is one of the largest and most active groups within the Socialist International (SI). Andrew Hammer, member of our US Religion and Socialism executive committee and a co-editor of Religious Socialism, reported on the recent meeting of the ILRS in Hungary where he was elected as its new Secretary-General. Over the past year, Hammer has been helping the ILRS plan a campaign "Against Religious and Political Extremism" aimed at confronting the right in both religious and political life. This campaign includes planning a major conference in Jerusalem that will bring together Jews, Christians, and Muslims to explore common political ground in each of our faiths. Hammer is also attending the next SI meeting in Mozambique where discussions will focus on campaigns to address African poverty and world debt. Look for Hammer's report on Africa in an upcoming issue of Democratic Left.

    The Religion and Socialism Commission in the USA is planning a panel for the Socialist Scholars Conference that explores the relationships between religion and public space. How might we think creatively about the ways we relate our faiths to the multiple public spaces we inhabit without falling into religious or secular fundamentalisms?

    We hope to address this topic not only at the Socialist Scholars Conference but in the pages of our newsletter. In a continuing effort to produce a provocative and informative newsletter, we agreed to broaden our religious, intellectual, and geographical perspectives. Developing an editorial collective in Chicago can help broaden Religious Socialism. If you are interested in contributing to an editorial collective for our national newsletter or would like to help build a Chicago Religion and Socialism Commission, contact me at (773) 973-3516 or amikuli@luc.edu.

    Other News

    compiled by Bob Roman


    In the previous issue of New Ground, "Other News" noted Chicago DSA's endorsement of the 7th annual protest of Chicago's Air and Water Show. Brother Paul Bossie called to point out that these protests are not organized by the Eighth Day Center but rather by the "What will we give/leave the children of the world coalition". If you'd like more information about the coalition, you can call Brother Bossie at 773.275.9516 or email him at anacent@compuserve.com.



    Some 300 people took part in the various parts of the Chicago demonstrations in solidarity with the protests in Prague, Czech Republic, around the World Bank International Monetary Fund's semi-annual meeting on Tuesday, September 26. The event consisted of a march that rambled through the Loop financial district with mini-rallies at various deserving targets along the way. The demonstration was organized by the Chicago May Day Coalition and endorsed by Chicago DSA.


    Studies in the Street

    Chicago DSA has cosponsored a number of educational forums that examine extra-parliamentary direct action and their possible application here in the States.

    On Friday, October 27, Chicago DSA was among the cosponsors of a meeting organized by Jubilee Chicago and the American Friends Service Committee which brought to town Oscar Olivera, a union officer and a central leader of La Coordinadora de Defensa de Agua y de la Vida (Coalition for the Defense of Water and Life). The meeting also served as the Chicago premier of the film "This Is Our Water, Damn It!" by 1world Communications. The movie tells the story of successful Bolivian resistance to Bechtel Corporation and a World Bank plan to privatize the water system. Oscar Olivera is a short man of immense dignity. He was able to elucidate a number of aspects of the struggle that were not entirely clear in the documentary. Mr. Olivera is also a wisely cagey spokesman. The Coalition is a militantly non-partisan movement. When a member of the audience asked a leading question intended to elicit some indication of ideology or affiliation, he answered with diplomatic vagueness, only indicating, obliquely, an appreciation of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

    On Saturday, November 11, Chicago DSA was among the cosponsors of a meeting organized by the Chicago May Day Coalition featuring Canadian John Clarke. The meeting was held at the Hot House in Chicago's South Loop neighborhood. It was attended by maybe 40 people. John Clarke is the leader of the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP). OCAP is a direct action group that resembles groups like National Peoples Action or the National Welfare Rights Union or ACORN here in the States. In addition to doing collective direct action in support of broad issues of public policy, OCAP also does direct action case work, successfully using sit-ins, demonstrations and other direct action techniques to resolve individual instances of injustice.

    On Tuesday, November 14, (as New Ground goes to press) Chicago DSA cosponsored a meeting organized by the Chicago Socialist Party featuring two activists from El Salvador: Elsa Miriam Linares de Quintanilla, a teacher, member of the National Teachers Association of El Salvador and a leader in the anti-privatization struggle, and Roger Blandino Nerio, an organizer for the FMLN and lead organizer for the Salvadoran Vendors' Association.

    The meeting was part of a national tour organized by the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador.


    Amnesty for Immigrants

    An estimated 10,000 people filled Daley Plaza in Chicago's Loop on Saturday, September 23 to demand amnesty for undocumented immigrant workers and immigrants who have become entangled in the draconian laws passed as part of the Republican "revolution". The demonstration clearly illustrated the popular support for the issue, though it's not likely that much of substance will be accomplished legislatively until next year, if then.

    Chicago DSA was among the many endorsers of the march, but the organizing was done by the Grassroots Collaborative. Based in the American Friends Service Committee offices, the Collaborative also includes the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, ACORN/SEIU Local 880, AFSC - Midwest, Community Renewal Society, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, among others. The Grass Roots Collaborative has two projects at present. One is the amnesty campaign. The other is a campaign in support of Kid Care, an Illinois program that offers health care coverage to children and pregnant women and help in paying premiums of employer-sponsored or private insurance plans. The Collaborative seems to be an evolution and expansion of the collaboration developed between some of the elements of the Living Wage campaign in Chicago.


    Do You Have Kids?

    There has been a Young Democratic Socialists chapter at the University of Chicago since 1987, but the youth section has never been able to escape the black hole of Hyde Park. Now a second YDS chapter is being organized: Metropolitan Chicago. The new chapter is just stretching its legs and considering becoming something to trifle with. Composed of working youth and students from schools without chapters in the Chicago metropolitan area, the chapter is only few months old but looking promising. The participants have been challenging each other with readings on democratic socialism, racism, and radical feminism (and how those all relate) and are planning a guerrilla caroling session to protest sweatshops in front of Marshall Fields on Dec. 3rd, at 11:30am (meeting on the northeast corner of State and Jackson). We hope to get others involved in our educational anti-sweatshop action. If your kids are rad (or if you're a rad kid), give Joan Axthelm a call: 773.871.3942, or email joanaxe@yahoo.com.


    North Lake Front DSA got off to a good start with a meeting at the No Exit Cafe in Rogers Park. The meeting featured Rogers Park Community Action Network President David Smathers speaking about the Spanish Mondragon Cooperatives. The house was about half full, including a few folks who wandered in with no knowledge of what was going on and found it interesting.

    At press time, two more meetings are being scheduled: one in late November and another in late December. If things continue to go well, an organizing meeting is intended to take place in January. For more information, call John Chavez-Pedersen at 773.206.7202.


    43rd Debs - Thomas - Harrington Dinner

    We've started planning the next Debs - Thomas - Harrington Dinner. At press time, there's not much to report, but if you'd like to be involved, whether it's for a specific task that you'd like to do or as part of the ongoing planning, please contact us: 773.384.0327 or chiildsa@chicagodsa.org.


    Harrington - Hamer Institute

    DSA's latest 501c3 vehicle is "wheels up" and beginning its flight. This summer, the Harrington - Hamer Institute did a training for Detroit DSA that focused on organizing and fundraising. The DSA forum in connection with the Los Angeles Democratic National Convention also served as an initial public event for the Institute. Now the Institute is organizing a fundraising benefit in New York on December 5.

    The Institute has two initial projects in mind. One is the "Listening Project" which is to be an oral history compilation of older DSA members' experiences. The interviews will be preserved in both audio and video and manuscript formats, possibly resulting in a documentary that could be carried on cable or presented in movie houses.

    The other is a "Civil Rights Leadership Camp" which is intended to be a multi racial and cultural camp for young people ages 15 - 18. The camp could be based at the Highlander Center, one of the places where the Civil Rights Movement was nurtured and spread. Participants will be instructed by the people who actually participated in the movement.

    Finally, the Institute intends to do four regional training schools in 2001. The curriculum will include organizing, fundraising, planning, community development and media strategies.

    For more information, call the DSA National Office: 212.727.8610.


    National Office Notes

    In addition to "kicking off" the Harrington - Hamer Institute, the DSA forum at the Los Angeles Democratic National Convention also served to successfully revive the defunct Los Angeles DSA Local. Done on the proverbial shoe string, more than 150 people paid at least $15 each to attend. DSA National Director Horace Small was pleased with the outcome:

    "Compare that to the Nation, the Progressive Challenge and Public Citizen, with far more resources than we, a full complement of staff, and high priced PR firms, and they drew 400, 75 and 39, in that order. And their events were free."

    Not to mention that participants were treated to a small political event: Bradley, having formally folded his campaign, left Cornel West feeling free to declare his support for Ralph Nader.

    DSA's biennial National Conference (held alternately with the biennial National Convention) will be held a bit late: January 28th in Washington, DC. The Young Democratic Socialists will also be holding its annual Winter Conference in conjunction with it. The focus of the conference will be the need to act locally on the globalization issue, developing organizing campaigns, tactics, and activities that mobilize and educate people on the issue. A strong emphasis will be placed on training in empowerment skills. This conference will be as much for non-members as it will be for members.

    DSA has come up with two interesting tools for local organizing: two model ordinances around which campaigns can be organized. One is a bill that requires city employee pension funds not be used to purchase stock in companies or organization that perpetuate the globalization problem, exploit women and children or fail to pay a living wage: companies like Nike or the Gap, for example. The other is legislation requiring cities not to purchase uniforms that use sweat shop labor or who don't pay their employees a living wage. Copies of these model ordinances are available from the DSA National Office: 212.727.8610.

    Alas, Solveig Wilder has left DSA's employ to pursue a PhD degree. Ms. Wilder took over the almost thankless task of Membership Services, a disaster area, and brought order to it. It may be that some previous staff have done this job as well as she has, but it hasn't been recently. She also took over editing Democratic Left and was largely responsible for the two "Millennium" issues. Unless we can use her work as a new minimum standard, we are less for her absence.


    Campaign to Build Illinois Transit

    The Campaign to Build Illinois Transit announced that over 160 legislative officials, local municipalities, community organizations and transit providers are now members of the coalition. September 14th was Transit Voter Day, and some 20 organizations registered over 3300 people at CTA Rapid Transit, METRA, and bus stops in Chicago, Cook County, Waukegan and Rock Island. The organizers were sufficiently pleased that they did it again on October 10, the last day of registration in Illinois.

    Transit Voter Day was in fact part of a national campaign for public transit. A good source for information about this campaign can be found on the web: http://www.transitvote.org.


    Campaign for Better Health Care

    The Campaign for Better Health Care is holding its annual meeting on Friday, December 8th, at the Congress Plaza Hotel, 520 S. Michigan, Chicago. Entitled "Collaborating for Universal Health Care", more information may be had by calling the Campaign's Chicago office: 312.913.9449 or email jkane@cbhconline.org.


    Illinois Committee of Correspondence

    The Committees of Correspondence (CoC) has been working on reactivating its Illinois chapter. The CoC's Labor Taskforce met in Chicago in September. A Midwest regional meeting was held in Chicago on November 19. And CoC's National Coordinating Committee will be meeting in Chicago on December 8, 9 and 10. In connection with that meeting, Illinois Committee of Correspondence will be holding a public forum featuring Angela Davis. Entitled "The Struggle Against the Death Penalty", the forum will be held on December 9 at the UIC Chicago Circle Center, 750 S. Halsted, Room 605, Chicago. For more information, call Carl Davidson at 773.384.8827.


    Mountain Moving Time

    Out of the ferment of the Civil Rights and anti-Vietnam War movement came a feminist movement. Like much of radical history, Chicago was one of the centers. From 1969 to 1977, the Chicago Women's Liberation Union was a vital center of politics, education, culture and services. Much of what we regard as a "normal" part of mainstream America got its start in the Feminist movement of the 1970s. While the achievements of the movement remain, albeit embattled, the memory of the Chicago Women's Liberation Movement has become obscure.

    The CWLU Herstory Website comes to the rescue. One of the absolutely wonderful things about the world wide web is the ability to construct a museum without having to invest in expensive bricks and mortar. The site is located at http://www.cwluherstory.com. A large base of information is located there and they're not done yet!

    But it's clear that this is intended as more than just a memorial or an old grrrls network. The site hopes to be a resource for a contemporary feminist movement, not just as a gift from the past but a venue where new lessons and perspectives might be developed. Check it out.


    Dear Editor,

    I'd like to commend Will Kelley for his excellent review of Jack Metzgar's Striking Steel: Solidarity Remembered (New Ground #72, Sept./ Oct. 2000). I found the review to be a fine example of thoughtful, engaging, and constructive praise and critique. I would, however, like to add an important point: Jack Metzgar, who teaches labor history at Roosevelt University, is a dues paying member of Chicago DSA and "regular" Debs/Thomas/Harrington dinner attendee. This may be important to readers who may wish to discuss his book with him in person next spring!

    In Solidarity,

    Ron Baiman

    Greater Oak Park DSA

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