{WISHFUL THINKING IMAGERY} ~~ MOVE OVER PUTIN! KARL MARX IS COMING BACK!!

Karl Marx Makes a Comeback

Sexy Lenin & e-smoking Stalin spearhead Russian Communist Party election drive

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Lenin is shown as a young man carrying a laptop, accompanied by an attractive woman with a mobile phone – both are wearing jeans and, appropriately, red tops and red accessories.

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Lenin looks like a college student or a hacker, hunched over a bright red laptop.

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The famous image of Stalin smoking his pipe is replaced with an electronic cigarette

All of the above images are © Igor Petrygin-Rodionov

Karl Marx Makes a Comeback

Kathy M. Newman

Several months ago the Communist party in Russia updated their visual propaganda by  giving three of their most controversial icons—Lenin, Stalin, and Karl Marx—a makeover. In their new poster series, Stalin looks handsome and serious in a puff of vaping smoke; Lenin looks like a college student or a hacker, hunched over a bright red laptop; and Marx looks like a rock star in a red t-shirt and a black leather jacket. Marx has a copy of Das Kapital tucked under one arm and is vowing, “I’ll be back.”

Ironically, Marx really is back and not just in Russia. Since the global financial collapse of 2008 Marx has become a pop icon across the globe. His image can be found graffitied throughout the world as well as on t-shirts, and mugs. Marx is for sale in a number of unusual forms, including a piggy bank and floating Marx head stickers, while in Germany you can get a credit card with Marx’s face on it, and in Japan you can buy a set of Mountain Man action figures based on Marx, Mao, Lenin, and Thoreau.

Over the last decade, Marx has also made a comeback as a serious intellectual figure. In the fall of 2008, as the global financial crisis was starting to be felt and understood, The Guardian reported on the increasing demand for his books: “‘Marx is in fashion again,’ said Jörn Schütrumpf, manager of the Berlin publishing house Karl-Dietz which publishes the works of Marx and Engels in German. ‘We’re seeing a very distinct increase in demand for his books, a demand which we expect to rise even more steeply before the year’s end.’”

Two best-selling biographies have also appeared, Mary Gabriel’s Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution (2011), a stunning, page-turning re-evaluation of Marx that incorporates much of his family life, as well as Jonathan Sperber’s Karl Marx: A Nineteenth Century Life (2013), which makes the argument—belied by the popularity of the biography itself—that Marx was more important to his own time than to ours.

In his widely-read book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century (2013), the French economist Thomas Piketty – himself sometimes hailed as a modern-day Marx – encourages economists to “take inspiration from [Marx’s] example.” Meanwhile, David Harvey, a mild mannered CUNY professor, has achieved cult status with his popular online lectures that help the average reader make their way through the hundreds of pages of Marx’s Capital, volumes 1-3.

What’s driving this resurgence of interest in Marx, as kitsch but especially as a serious thinker about economics, class, and inequality? I see a few factors here.

1) The global financial collapse of 2008 made Marx’s critique of capitalism look fresher than ever. Marx predicted cycles of collapse and consolidation, and his analysis explains how inequality deepens during times of capitalist crisis. His predictions have played out as we have seen the top .1% profit from the housing collapse of 2008 while the rest of us have suffered. In the lead up to the election last year, for example, Trump was accused of having cheered on the housing crisis of 2008, because it meant that he and his cronies could buy up scads of cheap real estate that have since risen significantly in value.

2) The collapse of Communist regimes, from the USSR, to the capitalist makeover of China, to the opening of Cuban borders, has everyone proclaiming the death and failure of communism as a political and societal toolkit. Ironically, it may be that if communism is less of a world-wide threat, then Karl Marx, as the official godfather of communism, is seen as less threatening as well.

3) The post-Cold War generation views socialism and communism more favorably than during any time since the Cold War A scholar at Tufts University has hypothesized that millennials, born into the worst job market since the Great Depression, are more skeptical of capitalism than their parents. According to this same researcher, millennials see Scandinavian countries as models for democratic socialism, rather than current or former communist countries like Russia and China.

Whatever the reasons, Marx’s comeback coincides with his impending bicentennial. On May 5, 2018, Karl Marx will be 200 years old and his magnum opus, Capital, will be 151.This year and next there are tributes and celebrations for both Capital and its author across the globe. York University held a celebration of 150 year of Capitallast May with scholars from around the world; Trier, where Marx was born, is planning an entire year of events as is the Marx Memorial Library in London. This Berlin based website, Marx200, is keeping a running tally of these events and adding to them daily.

Here in Pittsburgh, at Carnegie Mellon University’s Humanities Center, we are taking stock with our own year of events. Marx@200, running from the fall of 2017 through the summer of 2018 will feature lectures, workshops, performances, an art show, a symposium, and a conference. The celebration kick-offs on Thursday, September 14th with the Mid-Atlantic premier of The Young Karl Marx, a film by the Haitian director Raoul Peck, who was nominated for an Oscar for I am Not Your Negro. You can keep tabs on what we’re doing here.

For the last 60 years Marx, communism, and socialism have gotten a pretty bad rap across the West. Marx has been seen as an apologist for the kinds of imperialism, genocide, and repression in communist countries over the last 100 years, even though The Communist Manifesto provided a synthesis of the revolutionary European thought of 1848— not a blueprint for totalitarianism.

But capitalism, it would seem, has outdone itself in the 21st century. Inequality is worse than ever before, and the US is ruled by a capitalist oligarchy. Suddenly, Marx is cool again, but mainly because he was, and remains today, one of capitalism’s most astute critics. Happy Birthday Karl, and thanks.

MORE HERE

SUNDAY’S TOON ~~ PUTIN’S LATEST THREAT

Image by Carlos Latuff

Putin Meets Trump. Our Cartoon This Week

THE LATEST IN TOONS ~~ PUTTING THE SCREWS TO SYRIA AND PALESTINE

Images by Carlos Latuff

Erdogan's First Day of School at Kremlin Related report HERE

Erdogan’s First Day of School at Kremlin … Related report HERE

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Google blames bug for removing ‘West Bank’ and ‘Gaza’ from Israel/Palestine map -

Google blames bug for removing ‘West Bank’ and ‘Gaza’ from Israel/Palestine map –

Google blames a malfunction for removing the terms “West Bank” and “Gaza Strip” from its map of Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory.

“There has never been a ‘Palestine’ label on Google Maps, however we discovered a bug that removed the labels for ‘West Bank’ and ‘Gaza Strip’. We’re working quickly to bring these labels back to the area,” said a Google spokesperson in an email to Mondoweiss.

The bug Google blames for the erasure of the labels set off a wave of outraged Tweets and Facebook posts in the last several days, although the deletion reportedly occurred as early as July 25th. The Palestinian Journalists Forum issued a widely circulated denouncement of the removal.

“The move is also designed to falsify history, and geography as well as the Palestinian people’s right to their homeland, and a failed attempt to tamper with the memory of Palestinians and Arabs as well as the world,” the PJF said, according to Turkish Radio Television (TRT).

Andrew Kadi, a co-chair of the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation, told Mondoweiss that he feels Google is part of the problem when it comes to recognizing the occupation. Although the United States and United Nations have repeatedly in the past declared Israel’s military to be an occupying force in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, that obvious declaration has fallen out of style. Google’s omission of the word makes this amnesia possible.

“I just searched Palestine on Google Maps and it brings up Israel basically. Israel is labelled like Israel, like lots of different parts of what is now recognized as Israel, but you do not have a label that clearly states that the Golan Heights is occupied. You don’t have anything that clearly states that the West Bank is occupied. Although you have the Green Line you have nothing that indicates that East Jerusalem is militarily occupied. And these aren’t my definitions, these are the international definitions, recognized by every country including the U.S. So it’s odd,” Kadi said.

The debate over Google’s alleged bug “overlooks that Google has not been correctly labelling these areas correctly anyway.”

Kadi said that for someone unfamiliar with the history of the region, then these dashed lines, labelled in fine print “1949 Armistice Line,” don’t mean anything. If you wanted to fact check whether the Palestinian territories are occupied or not, Google’s map wouldn’t tell you much.

“If they want to be treated as a geographical information resource, then they have to take that more seriously. At a minimum, of meeting the international community’s definition of the Occupied West Bank, Occupied East Jerusalem and the Occupied Golan Heights,” he added.

Kadi also expects that Google’s investment in Israel, and its purchasing of Israeli navigation app Waze, might have inspired the “bug” to happen.

Bug or not, “Google is benefiting from the country that’s erased us,” said Kadi, who is Palestinian-American.

Waze, and human error, was at least partially to blame for a deadly incident this winter, when two Israeli soldiers wandered their vehicle into the Qalandia refugee camp, between Ramallah and Jerusalem, and ended up pinned down by a firebomb, Newsweek reported. In rescuing the wayward soldiers, Israeli forces killed a 22-year-old Palestinian man Iyad Amr Sajdiyeh. Citing a report in Haaretz, the March, 1 Newsweek article details how the Israeli military put in force “Hannibal” orders that allow for commanders to place Palestinian civilians in danger to prevent the capture of Israeli troops. Waze said the soldiers were not using the feature that prevents accidental navigation into Palestinian areas.

“Waze has and is continuing to work directly with the relevant authorities to decrease such mishaps from occurring, but unfortunately there is no ability to prevent them altogether as ultimately some prudence is in the driver’s hands,” Julie Mossler, a representative for the company, told the magazine.

The blindness of the tech industry to the mortal danger of occupation can endanger Palestinian and Israeli lives in other ways, the Daily Dot reports. Some roads are restricted to settlers solely. The author, Jonathan Brown, explains:

“If you’re Palestinian, to travel on Google-endorsed roads, you’ll need to secure a series of permits and agreements, which the Israeli authority now hands out less frequently with each passing year,” Brown wrote in 2014. “Exceptions might be made for a journey to Jerusalem, for prayers at Al Aqsa, but probably only during Ramadan. The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) calls some roads in this network ‘sterile roads.’ For Palestinians, use [of] these are prohibited entirely.”

Imagine taking your Google Maps app back in time, to Mississippi in the 1960s, and driving as an African American person through a “sun down town,” where police would arrest people of color if discovered outside after dark. Unless Google wrote the grim reality of Jim Crow into your phone, you could be driving into a lynching. The same thing applies in for Palestinians under Israeli occupation, and living near settler neighbors who threaten them.

As Google labors to fix the bug, some observers of Israel/Palestine have noted that the erasure of the words “West Bank” and “Gaza” inadvertently reflect a reality that hardly gets mentioned in American discussions of the region: the huge degree of control Israel exerts over the West Bank and Gaza. The fact of military domination renders talk of a “two-state solution” divorced from the fact that Israel and its Occupied Palestinian Territories operate as an effectively single but deeply dysfunctional and unequal political entity.

Kadi said that one of his first reactions to seeing the words removed was how much it made Palestine/Israel look like a single country. The Oslo-mandated Palestinian Authority failing to coalesce under military occupation into a sovereign government, quelle surprise, has lead to a the popularity of a “rights-based” approach becoming more popular, Kadi said.

One prominent social media figure appeared to endorse a single, equitable state as the solution to Israel/Palestine’s woes.

Dena Takruri, a correspondent for AJ+, Al Jazeera’s digital first, Facebook news reel, reshared a previous video piece about the immensity of the Separation/Security/Apartheid Fence/Barrier/Wall, with this telling take:

“If only it was one state with equal rights for all, as Google’s maps suggest…” Takruri wrote.

FROM

Hey Google it's called Palestine not Israel ! you can remove it from the maps,but can't remove it from our hearts!

Hey Google it’s called Palestine not Israel ! You can remove it from the maps,but can’t remove it from our hearts!!

#WhoReallyBacksDaesh ~~ TOONS OF THE HOUR

Images by Carlos Latuff

Who REALLY Backs Daesh?

Who REALLY Backs Daesh?

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Russia: Main Obstacle to Erdogan's Turkey/Daesh Oil Trade

Russia: Main Obstacle to Erdogan’s Turkey/Daesh Oil Trade

POLITICAL TOON OF THE DAY ~~ ‘THE GODFATHER’ … A REMAKE

From the original …..

TOON OF THE HOUR ~~ ERDOGAN’S CROCODILE TEARS

Image by Carlos Latuff

Erdogan says 'truly saddened' by Russian plane downing...sure!

Erdogan says ‘truly saddened’ by Russian plane downing…sure!

ERDOGAN WAS ONLY PROTECTING HIS FRIENDS ~~ TOON OF THE DAY

Image by Carlos Latuff

I understand why Turkey shot down a Russian plane. Erdogan is only protecting his friends...

I understand why Turkey shot down a Russian plane. Erdogan is only protecting his friends…

TIMELY THANKSGIVING IMAGE

2ca85a66-6eb8-4243-87d1-6be53588a982

TOON OF THE HOUR ~~ GUESS WHO’S CELEBRATING THE DOWNING OF THE RUSSIAN PLANE

Image by Carlos Latuff

CUl6H4dWoAAUzkM

A Russian Su-24 fighter has been shot down in Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry said, adding the plane hadn’t violated Turkish airspace and was flying at an altitude of 6,000 meters.

RUSSIA’S ATTEMPT AT POLITICAL CORRECTNESS

OR ….. Are they just being stupid as usual?

Russian bookstores began removing a graphic novel about the Holocaust from their shelves due to the large swastika on its cover.

Russian Bookstores Yank Art Spiegelman’s ‘Maus’ Over Swastika on Cover

JTA VIA

 Cover of the graphic novel Maus by Art Spiegelman.  Description of book HERE from Wikipedia

Cover of the graphic novel Maus by Art Spiegelman.
Description of book HERE from Wikipedia

Russian bookstores began removing a graphic novel about the Holocaust from their shelves due to the large swastika on its cover.

The stores reportedly removed the book “Maus” by Art Spiegelman over concerns about raids by the authorities to remove the symbol ahead of May 9, when Russia will observe 70 years since the victory over the Nazis.

The book won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992, and was first published in Russia in 2013, according to the French news agency AFP. About 10,000 copies of the book have been sold in Russia, the publisher told AFP.

Russia passed a law banning Nazi propaganda in December. Toy stores and antique shops have been raided for Nazi symbols.

The Respublika bookstore chain confirmed to the New York Times on Monday that it had removed the book because it was concerned about the raids. Inspectors seeking “book covers with Nazi symbols, in particular drawings of the swastika led the company to consult with lawyers about the legitimacy of selling this book in our chain,” Anastasia Maksimenko, a representative for Respublika, told the Times in an email.

A spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin, while confirming that Nazi and fascist symbols were unacceptable, said that “everything needs to be in moderation.”

And from The Guardian

Russian stores pull Holocaust graphic novel Maus over swastika on cover

Russian bookstores were hastily removing an award-winning graphic novel about the Holocaust from their shelves on Monday, reportedly because its cover shows a Nazi swastika.

Maus, by American artist and author Art Spiegelman won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992 and was published in Russian in 2013.

But Varvara Gornostayeva, the chief editor at the book’s publisher Corpus, said major bookstore chains were taking it off their shelves and internet sites.

“They have removed the book,” Gornostayeva told AFP. “It was selling very well and nobody had ever sent us any official complaints.”

A reporter for Echo of Moscow radio, Darya Peshchikova, toured bookstores and said staff were expecting raids by the authorities ahead of 9 May, when Russia marks 70 years since Soviet victory over Nazi forces in the second world war.

“They are waiting for checks and decided to clean up their shelves,” Peshchikova wrote on Twitter. “The reason is the swastika, employees say.”

Russian authorities have moved to censor Nazi insignia, even raiding toy stores and antique shops which carry period paraphernalia, citing a law which forbids “Nazi propaganda” passed last December.

“There is no Nazi propaganda in it, this is a book that should be on the shelves on Victory Day,” Gornostayeva argued.

“It’s one of greatest anti-fascist books, with a deep and piercing message.”

Maus tells the author’s personal story of the Holocaust through the memories of his father, a Polish Jew who moved to the United States. It uses animal metaphors and minimalist graphic style, portraying Jews as mice and Germans as cats.

The Russian book’s cover features two mice – a father and a son – and a stylised swastika image in the background, with the face of Hitler as a cat in the centre. About 10,000 copies of the book have been sold in Russia, according to the publisher.

By Monday afternoon, three of Moscow’s largest bookstores – Biblio Globus, Moskva, and Moskovsky Dom Knigi – had removed the book from their internet stores.

Cached versions of store catalogues showed that all three carried it just a few days ago, but all denied this when contacted by AFP.

“It must be a mistake,” said a woman in the PR department of Biblio Globus when asked why a days-old version of the store’s webpage show the book as in stock.

UKRAINIAN SPOOFS OF THE DAY

Both images ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

Which Empire will dominate the Ukraine?

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The Contortionist

TIMELY TOON ~~ THE RUSSIAN BEAR AWAKENS

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

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Related Report and Video

LATUFF LOOKS AT OBAMA’S ROCK, PAPER, SCISSOR GAME

Image ‘Copyleft’ By Carlos Latuff

obama-putin-syria

ADL SPEAKS OUT AGAINST DEFAMATION OF GAYS IN RUSSIA

 Is the ADL finally realising what the ‘D’ in their name stands for? They seem to be waking up to the fact that many injustices are taking place in the world today not involving Jews. This seems to be the start of a good trend, let’s hope it continues …
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Anti-Defamation League Compares Russia’s Abuse of Gays to Soviet Treatment of Jews

Calls for New Jackson-Vanik Edict for Pressure

By JTA

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The Anti-Defamation League called for a new version of the Jackson-Vanik amendment to pressure Russia to improve its treatment of gays.

Jackson-Vanik was a provision of the 1974 Trade Act that denied favored status to nations that restricted emigration. The amendment was used to pressure the Soviet Union to loosen its restrictive emigration policies.

“It is obvious that Russia is oppressing the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community in a manner similar to the ways in which the Soviet Union once oppressed the Jewish community,” ADL National Director Abraham Foxman wrote Friday in an article in the Huffington Post. “We need a new Jackson-Vanik to convince Russia that steps backward on this issue of basic human rights will be met with strong repercussions from the United States.”

In June, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed new anti-gay legislation that prohibits “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations amongst minors,” including any gay-rights literature; banned gay-rights advocacy in general; and prohibited gay pride events in Moscow for the next 100 years.

Protests against the new law have met with violent retribution in recent months.
Source

APARTHEID COMES TO RUSSIA

Photo © by Bud Korotzer


It looks like I jumped the gun two months ago when I applauded the Russian government for endorsing the creation of a Palestinian state. I said It was not surprising that Russia joined the growing number of nations recognising the State of Palestine. They too had their share of oppression and first hand experiences with nazism.

The post that was taken from can be read by clicking on the following …. MOTHER RUSSIA KNOWS THE MEANING OF FASCISM AND OPPRESSION

But, today dear ‘Mother Russia’ showed its true colours …. by welcoming the King of Israeli Apartheid’s plans to expand his operations to the heart of Moscow;

Leviev opens huge Mall in Moscow

Israeli businessman opens new shopping center in heart of Russian capital’s new business area
The full report can be read HERE

It looks like money talks louder than any commitment to the people of Palestine. It’s not as if Leviev’s activities are not known, even UNICEF has refused to accept donations from him; UNICEF does discriminate when it comes to where they accept funds from to carry out their work…. they do not want blood money!

The UN children’s fund UNICEF has severed ties with an Israeli billionaire and financial backer due to his suspected involvement in building settlements in the West Bank, UNICEF said on Friday. Lev Leviev, a real estate and diamond mogul who is one of the richest men in Israel, has supported UNICEF with direct contributions and indirectly by sponsoring at least one UNICEF fund-raiser. 

He is chairman of Africa Israel Investments, a conglomerate whose units include Danya Cebus, which the Arab rights advocacy group Adalah-NY charges has carried out settlement construction, considered illegal by the United Nations.

UNICEF decided to review its relationship with Leviev after a campaign by Adalah-NY and found “at least a reasonable grounds for suspecting” that Leviev companies were building settlements in Palestinian territory, a UNICEF official said.

So, welcome ‘Mother Russia’ to the list of countries that says one thing but continues to do the opposite.