NM heroes

At the state convention of the New Mexico Federation of Teachers this past weekend, we were given the honor of being presented to the group as “everyday heroes of labor,” and given a check for $200!

What better way for us “heroes” to spend it than give it to the People’s Weekly World fund drive, where real everyday heroes work year in and year out to produce labor’s best paper.

Rose and Emil Shaw

Rio Rancho NM

Tortured times

We live in perverse times when a prominent U.S. senator feels comfortable justifying torture by claiming that it “worked” for the Catholic Church during the Spanish Inquisition. That’s what Sen. Lindsay Graham said by way of trying to excuse the Bush administration’s so-called enhanced interrogation techniques.

These astounding remarks, uttered by a leading Republican widely touted as moderate, provoked little if any indignation in media circles, or even among Democratic politicians.

Instead, torrents of rhetorical abuse rained down on the head of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who had the unmitigated temerity to suggest that, during secret intelligence briefings, the CIA had “misrepresented” to her the government’s use of illegal water torture. She said the spooks had, in effect, lied to Congress, a practice the Agency has been proven to employ from time to time.

So, it seems we are to accept as appropriate the heinous practice of torturing helpless prisoners in the custody of our nation’s most powerful agencies, even as we are expected to believe that the CIA never, ever lies.

We have become a nation largely populated by credulous fools. At least, that’s what GOP torture apologists have concluded. As for most of the Democrats, foolish is too charitable a description.

Cord MacGuire

Boulder CO

We survived

I survived Bush and I’m sticking to it. When 300 million people survived Bush II up to November 2008, the entire world breathed a sigh of relief.

Due to economic instability after the dotcom bust (1999) it became necessary to take bold steps to jumpstart the economy. The theft of a U.S. election in 2000 required reorganization of the state in order to restore lost credibility. In collaboration with the neoliberal model of a globalized world economy dominated by economic and financial elites, the Bush regime fashioned a policy of unending war. This plan, conveniently named the war against terrorism, was initiated to reaffirm government legitimacy among a ruling class drunk with power. World domination, economic greed and massive denial of civil and constitutional rights headlined daily activity.

After September 2001, the nightmare of what was to become the Bush legacy unfolded in a climate of secrecy and shame. Only an unshakeable faith in working class struggle and organization can explain the persistent efforts of men and women to overcome adversity, joblessness and government irresponsibility. In retrospect, a complete breakdown of communication between financial institutions and their regulators coupled with excessive reliance upon market-oriented solutions fed by privatization schemes and unsustainable speculation led to a Wall Street meltdown.

Let it now be said we lived to fight another day. Onward to victory.

Richard Grassl

Via e-mail

Bad dream

Am I dreaming or has George W. Bush crept back into the White House? I mean, doesn’t the following sound like Bush?

The president went back on his word.

The president refuses to release 44 photos showing abuse of Iraqi detainees after earlier agreeing to their release.

“The release of the photos could endanger U.S. troops abroad and threaten national security,” said the White House.

Doesn’t that sound like Bush?

The ACLU immediately accused the White House of adopting “stonewalling tactics and opaque policies.” Sounds like what the ACLU and others said about George W. Bush, doesn’t it?

The White House press secretary responded by saying, “These photos serve no purpose other than to be used to recruit future jihadists, hinder our mission in Iraq and Afghanistan and risk the lives of our troops.”

Well, Mr. Bush, oops, excuse me, Mr. President Obama, what’s really causing the recruitment of jihadists and risking American troops is the troops being there in the first place, don’t you think? And with more on the way.

Yes, Mr. President, you are a breath of fresh air in so many ways after the nightmare of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the rest of that infamous crowd.

But in other ways, like the above, the air is a bit stale.

Support the troops! Bring them all home now!

Lawrence H. Geller

Philadelphia PA

You might like socialism

In 1939, Corliss Lamont wrote a book “You Might Like Socialism.” It has been reprinted with a bit of updating and a new introduction by his surviving wife, Beth. You can read the whole book online if you have the stamina. Or print out just a part of it. It is now published and I am in the process of obtaining a copy.

Go to www.Corliss-Lamont.org.

Betty Smith

New York NY

Need more Marxism

I am an avid reader of PWW and Political Affairs online and although the PWW is good I have found it lacking in some important areas. I receive various papers from other Communist parties around the world and I truly appreciate, in the other Communist Party papers, the coverage that is given to the world communist movement. Their coverage includes the directions that other countries’ Communist parties are taking in everything from combating the worldwide depression, to organizing workers to meet capitalist assaults at their workplace, to how they are recruiting new members, to excellent Marxist economic analysis of their respective countries’ economic problems and of the world economic crisis, and, finally, how the world Communist movement can join and work together to change the world for the better.

I would like to see historical commentary on past Communist achievements and past leaders, like Gus Hall or William Z. Foster. To gain this knowledge I have to go online and purchase books and articles about these two men, or about people like Elizabeth Gurley Flynn and others, from online bookstores and web sites.

There is one final thing, a section devoted specifically to Marxism and how we, as individuals, can apply Marx’s and Lenin’s ideas and teaching to our daily lives. To me, Marxism is a very alive philosophy which can help all people, especially people committed to social justice and change, live a better life.

Gary De Santis

Hamilton Township NJ

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