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18ww10may2012

18ww10may2012

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Published by Workers.org
Workers World weekly newspaper
Workers World weekly newspaper

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MAY 10, 2012 Vol. 54, No. 18 $1
OWS, inmigrantes y clase obrera
 
12
workers.org
Subscribe to Workers World
 
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Sign me up for the WWP Supporter Program.For more information: workers.org/supporters/
212.627.2994 www.workers.org
 
Name ________________________________________________Address ____________________ City /State / Zip ______________Phone _______________________________________________Email ________________________________________________
Workers World Newspaper
 55 W. 17
th
St.
#
5
C
, NY, NY 10011
Workers and oppressed peoples of the world unite!
 
NKRUMAH, AFRICA AND SOCIALISM
 
9
Continued on page 6 
By Jamila K. WilsonWashington, D.C.
“What else do you need to know about this case?There was a fourth person at the scene of the crime.
That person was identied as the shooter. The pres
-ence of a fourth person was concealed at trial, andon those bases we are saying that Mumia Abu-Jamalmust be immediately released!” With these words, Dr. Johanna Fernandez of Edu-cators for Mumia and a lead organizer of the April 24Occupy Department of Justice demonstration andcivil disobedience action, set the tone for the day’s
energy by providing specic details about Abu-Ja
-mal’s case that has, up until now, been intentionally ignored by mainstream media. Fernandez, a profes-sor at Baruch College at the City University of New  York, also spoke about the federal investigation donein 1979 by the DOJ on the entire Philadelphia PoliceDepartment for corruption and brutality charges.Over 1,000 demonstrators were privy to the ex-perience of a rally for Mumia Abu-Jamal — a spacethat invokes diversity, creativity and love. The event was categorized as a “Festival for the Oppressed”as well as serving as a celebration for Abu-Jamal’s58th birthday. Abu-Jamal was falsely railroaded toPennsylvania death row in 1982. Due to decades of mass pressure, his death sentence was overturnedin 2011. He is presently serving a life sentence in aFrackville, Pa., prison.People received information from local, nationaland international organizations that are providingalternatives and resources for people who exist notonly in the 99%, but in the bottom 1%. Speakersfrom organizations including the International Con-cerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal,the International Action Center, the Free Mumia Co-alition (NYC), the Bradley Manning Support Com-mittee, Returning Citizens, Students Against MassIncarceration, Tucson’s May 1 Coalition and the Na-tional Lawyers Guild shared statements of solidarity for Abu-Jamal and all political prisoners as well as
addressed issues of wealth disparity, racist proling
as epitomized with Trayvon Martin’s murder and thedecimation of social programs. Among the activists, community members, youthand elders present from all over the East Coast, as well as a delegation from France, was Public En-emy’s Chuck D, the voice of hip-hop’s resistance andself-determination.“Connect yourself to the planet people. When youhear people talking about, ‘I wish consciousness willcome back.’ It’s already here! It might not be here inlarge quantities, but it’s here in large quality.” His
‘Free Mumia’ echoes in D.C.
FIGHT REPRESSION
• MOVE 9, moe o Muma• Oupy eaes ou
Racist atrocities and the state
cEntErfOld
AlErt 
Save Pa. pub soos!
 
3
O
upes vs. Wes fago
 
4
Wall Street and HIV/AIDS
 
5
A tribute to Gil Noble
 
10
Next, May 20 in Chicago
 
EditOriAl 10
WW PHOTO: MONICA MOOREHEAD
 
Ap 24, Wasgo , d.c.
WW PHOTOS: G. DUNKELWW PHOTO: MONICA MOOREHEAD
MAY DAY 
 
targets the 1%
Milwaukee
As we go to press, organizers say that more than 100,000people participated in May Day actions in New York City,which started with Occupy events in many locations andculminated in a huge march from Union Square to WallStreet organized by a coalition of immigrants, unions andOccupy activists. See next week’s WW for full coverage.
WW PHOTO: BRYAN G. PFEIFER
New York CityNew York City
 
Page 2 May 10, 2012 workers.org
In the U.S.
Free Mumiaechoes in D.C...............................1Fight to save Philadelphia schools .......................3Pennsylvanias war on the poor ..........................3People occupy home, open battle against banks.........4Coke meeting zzles ....................................4Chicano activist’s supporters mobilize for May 15 trial....4ACT UP occupies Wall Street.............................5 Thousands in Detroit protest GE .........................5NYC womens march.....................................5NYC restaurant workers..................................5San Diego Occupy.......................................6Artists honor Betty Fry, Mumia...........................6Activists & Librotracantes honor Mumia ................6Racist atrocities & class consciousness ...................7Week of events to free the MOVE 9.......................7John Jay students learn of Cuban 5 ......................8An appreciation of Gil Noble............................10
Around the world
Mexican left groups back AMLO presidential bid .........8Why is Cubas May Day dierent? ........................840 years after Kwame Nkrumah..........................9Who will convict the NATO war criminals?................9
Eoas
Movement Agenda: NATO summit, RNC, DNC...........10
noas E Españo
OWS, inmigrantes y clase obrera........................12
 Workers World55 West 17 StreetNew York, N.Y. 10011Phone: 212.627.2994E-mail: ww@workers.org Web: www.workers.org
 Vol. 54, No. 18 • May 10, 2012
 Closing date: May 1, 2012Editor: Deirdre GriswoldTechnical Editor: Lal Roohk Managing Editors: John Catalinotto, LeiLani Dowell,Leslie Feinberg, Kris Hamel, Monica Moorehead,Gary Wilson West Coast Editor: John ParkerContributing Editors: Abayomi Azikiwe,
Greg Buttereld, Jaimeson Champion, G. Dunkel,
Fred Goldstein, Teresa Gutierrez, Larry Hales,Berta Joubert-Ceci, Cheryl LaBash,Milt Neidenberg, Bryan G. Pfeifer, Betsey Piette,Minnie Bruce Pratt, Gloria RubacTechnical Staff: Sue Davis, Shelley Ettinger,Bob McCubbin, Maggie VascassennoMundo Obrero: Carl Glenn, Teresa Gutierrez,Berta Joubert-Ceci, Donna Lazarus, Michael Martínez,Carlos VargasSupporter Program: Sue Davis, coordinatorCopyright © 2011 Workers World. Verbatim copyingand distribution of articles is permitted in any medium without royalty provided this notice is preserved. Workers World (ISSN-1070-4205) is published weekly 
except the rst week of January by WW Publishers, 55
 W. 17 St., N.Y., N.Y. 10011. Phone: 212.627.2994. Sub-scriptions: One year: $30; institutions: $35. Letters tothe editor may be condensed and edited. Articles can befreely reprinted, with credit to Workers World, 55 W. 17St., New York, NY 10011. Back issues and individual ar-
ticles are available on microlm and/or photocopy fromUniversity Microlms International, 300 Zeeb Road,
 Ann Arbor, Mich. 48106. A searchable archive isavailable on the Web at www.workers.org. A headline digest is available via e-mail subscription.
Subscription information is at www.workers.org/email.
php.Periodicals postage paid at New York, N.Y.POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Workers World, 55 W. 17 St., 5th Floor,New York, N.Y. 10011.
 WORKERS WORLD
 
this week ...
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tuso, Az.
 
tucson@workers.org
Washington, D.C.
P.O. Box 57300Washington, DC 20037dc@workers.orgWorkers World Party(WWP) ghts forsocialism and engagesin struggles on allthe issues that facethe working class &oppressed peoples —Black & white, Latino/a,Asian, Arab and Nativepeoples, women & men,young & old, lesbian,gay, bi, straight, trans,disabled, working,unemployed, undocu-mented & students.If you would like toknow more about WWP,or to join us in thesestruggles, contact thebranch nearest you.
‘Put your money where your mouth is.’ We’ve all heard that expression; it means to give tothe causes and endeavors you care about. These days more and more of us have less and less—money. Wages are going down, so are hours; our pensions are threatened. That is, if you’re“lucky” enough to have or have had a job. Some of us live on $2 per day. Yes, here in the USA. The system of capitalism and imperialism cannot meet the needs of humanity — the 99% because it is driven by one thingonly: making prots for the 1%. This newspaper tells the stories of conict between the 99% and the1% — the class struggle — in theU.S. and worldwide. We side withthe 99% and for a socialist revolu-tion that puts the working classand oppressed in the driver’s seatof history. Socialism is the onlysystem that can meet the needsof humanity and planet Earth.If you support what we do and whatwe say, please donate today to theWorkers World Spring Fund Drive.
THE CLASSROOM AND THE CELL:
Conversations on
Bak le  Amea
 
This book delves into the problems of Black life in America and oers real,concrete solutions. Order at: www.freemumia.com/?p=684
 
YES! I want to support the Workers World newspaper Spring Fund Drive
Enclosed is my donation of $500 $250 $100 $50 $35 $_____ otherWrite all checks to Workers World. To donate online go to: workers.org/donate
Name _______________________________________Address ______________________________________City/State/Zip _________________________________Email ________________________________________Phone _______________________________________
Return to: Workers World,55 W. 17th St., 5th oor, NY, NY 10011.
 And thanks! 
I wuld ke a ubscpin to Wkr Wld 
Four weeks trial $4 One year subscription $30
 
Enclosed is my donation for a WW subscription to a prisoner.
 JAILHOUSE LAWYERS
Psoes eeg psoes v. e U.S.A.
by Mumia Abu-Jamal
Available at: freemumia.com/?page_id=60and bookstores around the country
WW PHOTO: JOHN CATALINOTTO
$2 (plus $1 shipping)Order from Workers World55 W. 17 St., 5C, NY, NY 10011Pamphlet available at www.workers.org/books
WISCONSIN:
lgg e fes o cass Sugge
Read articles begining in February 2011when the Egypt uprising came to Wisconsinand the unions took to the streets.
Put your money ...
May Day 2012 in New York City
 
workers.org May 10, 2012 Page 3
Fight to save Philadelphia schools
By Betsey Piette
Paepa
The wholesale privatiza-tion of Philadelphia pub-lic schools is underway. A  broad-based movement will be needed to stop it. A decade ago, protests by students and parents tem-porarily blocked the mas-sive privatization of Phila-delphia’s schools by the
for-prot education man
-agement corporation, Edi-son Schools — now Edison-Learning Inc. Once again,an attempt is now beingmade to turn over control of 
education in the fth-largest
U.S. city to a handful of for-
prot corporations.
This January, the un-elected Philadelphia SchoolReform Commission, afterannouncing that the district
 was “on the brink of nan
-cial disaster,” appointed for-mer Philadelphia Gas Co. CEO, Thomas
Knudsen, as district “recovery” ofcer.
Knudsen will be paid $150,000 for six
months’ work. His rst “cost-cutting”
measure was to award a “short-term” $6million contract to The Boston Group toimplement $61 million in budget cuts overthe next six months. He is calling for morethan half a billion dollars in cuts by 2017.Knudsen’s recommendations are toclose 40 “low-performing, underutilized”schools in 2013 and 24 more by 2017. Theremaining 185 schools in the district would be broken up into “achievement networks”of about 25 schools each, to be run by pri- vate companies who bid for managementcontracts. The number of charter schools,now handling about 25 percent of the city’sroughly 200,000 students, would increaseto accommodate 40 percent. Washington Post blogger Karen Straussdescribed Knudsen’s proposal as a “des-perate Hail Mary pass with no morechance of succeeding than previous ef-forts.” (April 28)The plan is also clearly an attack onschool workers and their unions. The
central school district ofce staff, already 
only half of what it was last year, would befurther reduced from 600 to 250 workers.
Cuts in wages and benets would total
$156 million.More than 2,500 blue-collar union jobs will be outsourced, forcing workers to
give up wages and benets. Knudsen calls
for the “renegotiation” or even “abroga-tion” of existing school employee unioncontracts.Philadelphia Federation of Teach-ers President Jerry T. Jordan describedKnudsen’s proposal as “a cynical, right- wing and market-driven plan to priva-tize public education, to force thousandsof economically disadvantaged familiesto select from an under-funded hodge-podge of EMO [education managementorganizations] and charter company-runschools and to convert thousands of pro-fessional and family-sustaining positionsinto low-paying, high-turnover jobs.”(TheNotebook.org, April 24)
dsase apasm
The 2011-12 Reform Commission bud-get made draconian cuts in Philadelphia’salready underfunded schools. Knudsen’splan for 2013-17 promises even more. Itcontains no provisions for smaller class-rooms, art and music, school libraries,full-time nurses or adequate security. Andthe promise of better education throughcharter schools has proven illusory.Helen Gym, a mother of three, toldKnudsen, “You’re not speaking for me.”Gym, a community organizer active in
addressing conicts between Asian and
 African-American students at a SouthPhiladelphia high school, described theKnudsen Plan as “disaster capitalismthat tries to shock a besieged public withunproven, untested, and drastic actioncouched as ‘solutions’.”Gym challenged Knudsen’s use of termslike “achievement networks” and “right-sizing” schools when there is no plan toreduce class sizes or increase supportpersonnel, noting that “seat expansion” just means “larger class sizes without ex-tra funds.” Gym went on to criticize theplan to “expand charter populations wil-ly-nilly despite a national study showingtwo-thirds of Philadelphia charters areno better or worse than district-managedschools.” (TheNotebook.org, April 24)It’s not just in Philadelphia. A new University of Texas study found African- American high school students in Texasare three times more likely to drop outfrom a charter system than from a regu-lar public school. The rate for students who leave school because of transfers toanother state, homeschooling or by beingexpelled was 5 percent forlarge urban school districts but 15 percent for charters.In districts with less than100 African-American stu-dents, the numbers wereeven worse: 22 percentdropped out and 18 percent left. The study compared districts in Austin, Houstonand Dallas from 1998 to 2008. (AustinChronicle, April 27) Without jobs to offer, who needs edu-cated students?There is no lack of money that could be used for education. Last year’s state budget for Pennsylvania slashed nearly $1 billion in public education funding yet approved spending $600 million toconstruct new prisons. The state’s totalspending for prisons is over $2.1 billion.The state’s annual education subsidy forPhiladelphia averages $6,953 per stu-dent, while it spends more than $32,000to incarcerate each prisoner.Taxpayers in Philadelphia will pay $476.2 million in 2012 alone for the costof U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,
enough to nance the salaries of 7,029 el
-ementary teachers for a year.There has been plenty of money to bail out the banks and lending institu-tions. If you add up what the U.S. Fed-eral Reserve Bank spent to bail out bankshere and in Europe and Japan, the total
poured into the world capitalist nancial
system was close to $20 trillion. That’s$20,000,000,000,000.In the book, “Capitalism at a DeadEnd,” Fred Goldstein notes: “The systemof capitalism is facing a crisis unlike any it’s experienced before. This is not simply a cyclical problem of overproduction that will go away in a few years, but a systemicproblem aggravated by over 30 years of globalization and growing global unem-ployment.” Youth have been hit the hardest. At theend of 2009, globally there were 81 mil-lion unemployed youth ages 15 to 24. In
the U.S., ofcial youth unemployment is
20 percent, but in most urban areas it’s 50percent or higher.The new generation of workers com-ing into the workforce is largely shut out, whether or not these workers have ob-tained higher degrees of education. Withcapitalism needing fewer workers to pro-duce more and more goods and servicesin less and less time, the need for an edu-cated workforce diminishes. A new report by the Associated Pressfound that more than 53.6 percent of thepeople under 25 having a bachelor’s de-gree were either out of work or doing jobsthat need only a high school diploma orless. (FightBack!News, April 28)High tech has driven down the level of skills required for many jobs in modernindustry today. Most jobs under 21st-cen-tury capitalism are low or medium leveland require little or no formal educationabove middle or high school. Rather than
By Betsey Piette
Paepa
 Around 200 protesters condemningdraconian cuts in Pennsylvania’s welfarefunding gathered outside the NationalConstitution Center in Philadelphia on April 26, as Pennsylvania Secretary of Public Welfare Gary Alexander addresseda United Way forum inside. The cuts willtake effect May 1. Welfare advocates whoattempted to crash the party were physi-cally removed by building security, fur-ther fueling the anger of those targeted by the cuts.In his 2012-2013 budget, Gov. TomCorbett combined the funding of sev-en programs that serve people most inneed into a single block grant fund andimplemented a 20 percent across-the- board cut to these funding streams. Thefunds include Medical Assistance Outpa-tient, Behavioral Health Services, MentalHealth Services, Intellectual Disability Community Base Program, County Child Welfare, Human Services DevelopmentFund and Homeless Assistance.In addition Corbett proposed elimi-nating the General Assistance program, which provides an average monthly ben-
et of $205 per recipient. The Pennsylva
-nia State Legislature also slashed fundingfor the State Food Purchase Program, which provides money to organizationsthat stock food pantries.On May 1, Pennsylvania will imple-ment asset testing for food stamp recipi-ents. Families with $5,500 or more inassets, or $9,000 or more for households with seniors or disabled individuals, will
 be disqualied from the Supplemental
Nutrition Assistance Program.Critics noted that this new plan dis-suades poor people from saving money.Casey Morgan, executive director of theGreater Philadelphia Coalition AgainstHunger, stated, “Families need to savemoney to get off government assistance
and achieve self-sufciency. So it’s not
only inhumane, but counterproductiveto force people to drain their savings be-fore they can get any help.” Morgan not-ed that one visit to the emergency roomcould easily wipe out a low-income fam-ily’s savings. (CityPaper.net, Jan. 10)The cuts in funding for food stampprograms not only hurt recipients; they also hurt the general economy. The foodstamp program is actually a major eco-nomic stimulus. Every dollar of publicfunds spent on food stamps increases thegross domestic product by $1.73.The number of families relying onfood stamps and food pantries has nearly doubled over the last few years. Morethan 400,000 Philadelphians now rely on food pantries. Around 40 percent of them are children. One in three people inPhiladelphia relies on food stamps.The cuts in direct assistance follow ear-lier cuts in medical assistance for poorand working-class families. Since August2011, the Corbett administration has cutoff more than 150,000 people, including43,000 children, from medical assistance.In fact, the demand for all the pro-grams threatened by Corbett’s cuts is atan all-time high and increasing daily, asthe promised “economic recovery” fails tomaterialize for anyone but Wall Street’sgreedy 1%.
Pennsylvania’s war on the poor
WW PHOTOS: JOE PIETTE
Philadelphia students protest school closings and cuts in sta.
Continued on page 11

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