[Marxism] has the Dissentary really cleared up?

Andrew Pollack acpollack2 at gmail.com
Thu Dec 19 09:14:08 MST 2013


Progressive at home, reactionary abroad? US social democracy back to its
old tricks.

Someone may have already posted on this list the slimy piece by Michael
Kazin in the New Republic attacking the ASA's pro-BDS vote. It's also
posted at Dissent:

http://www.dissentmagazine.org/blog/universities-boycotting-israel-overshadow-more-worthy-campus-activism


I mention it here because there has been justified praise for Dissent's
crop of new young editors and reporters and their great reporting on labor
and other issues -- yet the journal remains mired in its historic support
for Zionism.

This contrast is on display in Kazin's piece, where he explicitly
counterposes activism around domestic labor issues to support for BDS,
encouraging dropping the latter to focus on the former.

This stance is reminiscent of that taken by LID leaders in the early '60s
when they recoiled with horror at the willingness of their offspring, SDS,
to move beyond Cold War anticommunism. A couple years later some of these
same social-democrats would urge King not to jeopardize alleged domestic
reforms in the offing with his new antiwar, anti-anti-communist positions.
King of course was correct in pointing out the impossibility of winning on
either front without addressing the other.

Dissent also has a new piece by long-time union bureaucrat Jo-Ann Mort, who
sees hope in a two-state "solution" if only Israeli and Palestinian
business figures could come to realize their common interests:

http://www.dissentmagazine.org/online_articles/peace-and-pessimism-in-the-promised-land

This same domestic/international dichotomy is also seen in the person of
RWDSU President Stuart Appelbaum. His union is doing some of the most
aggressive organizing of low-wage immigrant workers. Yet he is also the
most rabidly pro-Zionist union official in the US.

Seems the ability of Dissent and like-minded social dems to digest a
rounded progressive diet remains characteristically inadequate.



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