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

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Published by: Workers.org on Aug 24, 2012
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MAY 24, 2012 Vol. 54, No. 20 $1
Lucha en China
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Workers and oppressed peoples of the world unite!
What NATO wrought
Protest vs. U.S. visit
Economy slows
By Dante StrobinoCharlotte, N.C.
More than 1,000 people deed police threats andarrests to protest the Bank of America shareholders’meeting here May 9. Their three main demands wereto end home foreclosures, end the nancing of dirty coal, and assert workers’ rights against banks’ con-trol of politicians and the electoral system.The action showed that a ghting movement is brewing across the United States. This movement ispassionately ghting for people’s needs to be placed before the needs of private prots of the banks andcorporations.Protesters in Charlotte included domestic workersfrom Atlanta, migrant workers from New Orleans,state workers from across North Carolina, and pub-lic housing residents from New York City to Dur-ham, N.C. Students, workers, the structurally unem-ployed, immigrants and many others joined. Threeissue-based feeder marches joining the protesterssymbolized the three main demands of the protest.This action was part of the “99% Spring” protestsagainst shareholder meetings of such major corpo-rations and banks as General Electric, Wells Fargo, Walmart, RJ Reynolds Tobacco and others all acrossthe country. The recently formed North CarolinaCoalition Against Corporate Power coordinated theCharlotte protest.Charlotte’s city government used the May 9 protestto trigger a new repressive ordinance that restrictedpeople’s ability to assemble and speak freely. The or-dinance was passed in response to Occupy Charlotteand in preparation for the upcoming Democratic Na-tional Convention.Raul Jimenez Arce, member of Raleigh-DurhamFight Imperialism, Stand Together (FIST), told Workers World, “I joined the protest against Bank of  America because I am tired of big corporations decid-ing our future, buying politicians and creating theirown agenda at the expense of the working class.”Despite the new restrictions, protesters bravely marched into the streets without permits and oc-cupied two different intersections for a few hours,shutting down trafc to stop business as usual. SinceBank of America and Wells Fargo own most uptown buildings, this was truly a bold step.
Demand end to foreclosures
By 9 a.m., the marchers had taken over the inter-section at 5th and College streets in uptown Char-lotte, directly in front of where the rich shareholders were meeting and where they had just passed a pay package of $7 million for CEO Bryan “Big Banks”Moynihan.The occupiers assembled behind a 10-foot-tall ball and chain marked “debt.” This symbolized allthe debt that state and city governments, students,homeowners and others are strapped to because of the Bank of America’s capitalist, predatory practices.Trapped also by long-term unemployment, many marchers will never be able to pay back their debt.Bonita Johnson, a low-wage kitchen worker in astate mental health facility in Butner, N.C., and mem- ber of the North Carolina Public Service WorkersUnion, Electrical Workers (UE) Local 150, told WW:“These big banks are making mega money and notpaying any taxes. We, as state employees, are strug-gling, working two and three jobs and paying taxeseven on the little that we do have. I knew I had to jointhis protest.”Sylvia Sanchez was the rst speaker at the rally. A member of a community group, Action NC, Sanchezis a Latina mother of a disabled child. Bank of Ameri-ca is about to foreclose on her Charlotte house.Marchers demanded that Sanchez’s home besaved and that principal loan costs be written downon all “underwater” loans to help keep families in
‘99% Spring’ targetsWall Street South
Marchers descend on Bank of America headquarters in Charlotte, N.C., on May 9.May 12 in Barcelona: ‘The people are the solution.’ See page 8.
Mass protests in Spain
3, 4
North Carolina vote
Huey P. Newton speaks
Obama & same-sex marriage
Editorial 10
Alan Blueford
Carlos Montes
Marissa Alexander
CeCe McDonald
Continued on page
Page 2 May 24, 2012 workers.org
In the U.S.
‘99% Spring’ targets Wall Street South. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1Our visit with Mumia Abu-Jamal. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2Attacks on teachers aim to weaken unions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3Forces behind the privatization of education. . . . . . . . . . . . . 3U.S. student debt at all-time high . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4Homecare workers ght back. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4‘Marxism sampler’ commemorates birth of Karl Marx. . . . . 5U.S. premature birth rate among world’s worst. . . . . . . . . . . 5Book review: ‘Samurai Among Panthers’. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5Oakland police kill another Black youth. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6Carlos Montes’ trial sparks protests. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6Anti-gay amendment spurs solidarity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 The conviction of Marissa Alexander. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7Campaign to free CeCe McDonald continues. . . . . . . . . . . . . 7Protest calls for moratorium on debt service . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8Huey P. Newton on gay, women’s liberation. . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Around the world
Protesters tell Spanish gov’t: ‘No bread, no peace!’. . . . . . . . 8Bangladeshi protest vs. U.S.-India state visitors. . . . . . . . . . . 9Result of U.S.-NATO war on Libya . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9Struggle in China, part 7. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
 The president and same-sex marriage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Noticias En Español
Lucha en China, Parte 5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
 Workers World55 West 17 StreetNew York, N.Y. 10011Phone: 212.627.2994E-mail: ww@workers.org Web: www.workers.org Vol. 54, No. 20 • May 24, 2012Closing date: May 15, 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.
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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.
Conversations on Black Life in America
Mumia Abu-Jaml & Marc Lamont HillThis book delves into the problems of Black life in Americaand oers real, concrete solutions.Order at: www.freemumia.com/?p=684
 join us
 join us
Political prisoner o death row
Our visit with Mumia Abu-Jamal
By Monica MooreheadFrackville, Pa.
Larry Holmes and I have been visiting political prisonerMumia Abu-Jamal for 16 years. We started visiting him when he was on death row at State Correctional Institution-Greene in Waynesburg, Pa., which is near the West Virginia border. Our trips there by car from New York City wouldtake at least seven hours, and even longer by bus.Our rst visit with Mumia — in March 1996 — was alsothe last face-to-face independent video interview of him,thanks to the late Key Martin, a founding member of thePeoples Video Network, who persisted in forcing the prisonto grant this three-hour interview. All of our visits at SCI-Greene gave us a glimpse intoMumia’s almost 30 years on death row — that is, the inhu-mane conditions that he and others were forced to endure,including spending 23 and a half hours a day in a tiny,poorly lit cell; being deprived of exercise, which caused theswelling of legs and ankles; and inadequate food and medi-cal care.Before every visit, Mumia was subjected to an invasivestrip search. His wrists and ankles were shackled during visits. But when we met with him and discussed worldevents from a revolutionary perspective, these very oppres-sive conditions would seemingly melt away. Mumia had theability to make each visit an illuminating political experi-ence despite the repressive environment.This past December, following the overturn of Mumia’sdeath sentence, he was moved to SCI-Mahanoy, a generalpopulation prison in Frackville, not far from Harrisburg,Pa. Larry and I had the incredible opportunity to visitMumia on May 6. We were ecstatic to be able to physically hug and shake hands with him for the rst time in 16 years.He was in very good spirits, smiling and very animated.The visiting room had the atmosphere of a large cafete-ria, including a commissary to allow family members andfriends to purchase food for their loved ones in prison. It was very heartening to see and hear children running andlaughing throughout the room, and to see open affection being shown towards prisoners, all of whom were wearing jumpsuits with “DOC” — which stands for Department of Corrections — written on the back. When we asked Mumia what it was like to be off death row after 30 years, he re-plied, “It is still a major adjustment.”He told us how surprised he was that so many prison-ers knew of his case, and the respect they had for him asa political prisoner. A Mumia activist told me how a rela-tive of a white prisoner had reproduced Mumia’s rst book,“Live from Death Row,” for him to read. Mumia’s books are banned outright by the prison.Mumia also told us how he has become a mentor for anumber of prisoners, especially young ones. One prisonerin particular is only 20 years and was sentenced to a 40- year prison sentence for attempted murder, not murder! According to Mumia, the prison population is 60 percentBlack, with a large number being Muslim.
‘Profoundly encouraged’ by OWS
For most of the three and a half hours we visited withMumia, the main discussion focused on the Occupy WallStreet movement. Mumia acknowledged that Occupy Phil-adelphia forces helped play a decisive role in getting himoff of death row by joining forces with veteran pro-Mumiaactivists like Pam Africa.Mumia told us that when a number of Black activists ex-pressed to him some misgivings about OWS, his response was to encourage them to recognize OWS as an evolvingmovement — a dynamic, evolving movement that activistsmust nd ways of engaging, ideologically and strategically.Mumia spoke about the economic basis for OWS, in thatthe predominantly white youth-led movement has beencut loose by capitalism, especially in this particular stageof deepening global economic crisis. These white youth arending out that they have more in common with Black andBrown youth, who have historically known that the only future that capitalism offers is racial proling and mass in-carceration.These white youth are becoming disillusioned with capi-talism because, while they have been told they would havea better life than their parents, in reality they cannot ndany good-paying jobs despite their college degrees. They are also nding out, as they face increasing repression, thatthe police as an armed force are neither their friends nor workers.Mumia stated: “I am profoundly encouraged by the Oc-cupy movement. It’s good news for revolutionaries every- where when those who once thought that they were privi-leged start to rebel against the system and join with thoseof us who have no illusions about or love for imperialism.” After we said our goodbyes to Mumia, Larry commentedto me: “It was an incredible experience to be able see andtouch Mumia without his ankle-to-wrist shackles and en-closed in a small booth behind a plexiglass window, which was the only way he could see visitors on death row. Wemust not be content or rest until Mumia is free.”
 Moorehead, a WW managing editor, and Larry Holmes, Workers World Partys First Secretary, are bothSecretariat members of WWP. To view excerpts from the1996 PVN interview, go to tinyurl.com/827fdvq; tinyurl.com/87e79be and tinyurl.com/76spkgw.
Monica Moorehead visiting Mumia on death row in 1996.
workers.org May 24, 2012 Page 3
Attacks on teachers aim to weaken unions
By G. DunkelNew York 
 A wave of teacher layoffs, the rise of charter schools, and a claim that teachersand their unions are opposed to evalua-tions have turned into a U.S.-wide assaulton teacher unions.The two major educational unions, the American Federation of Teachers andthe National Education Association, areamong the largest unions in the UnitedStates. Even in states like North Dakota, where unions represent only 3.2 percentof workers, or South Carolina and Geor-gia, where it is illegal for public employersto bargain with teacher unions, they stillexist and function. A staggering 300,000 teachers losttheir jobs from August 2008 to August2011, a 7.1 percent decline. According tothe White House report “Teacher Jobsat Risk,” another 280,000 educational workers face layoffs in 2012.Rightists have targeted teacher unionsfor the educational system’s decienciesand failures, whatever the teacher’s role.Staff shortages, overcrowded classrooms,crumbling buildings, rooms too hot or toocold, rain entering classrooms through windows that don’t close, etc., are allignored. Plus teachers lose weeks of in-struction time grading tests that are oftenincompetently produced.Chicago and San Francisco teacherunions have announced they may strikenext fall. In San Francisco, the districtplans to cut wages and benets by $30million in the next two years.In Chicago, teachers are protestingchanges in the school day, in how teacherpay is determined and how performanceis evaluated. Chicago Teachers UnionPresident Karen Lewis said, “I have never,in my 22 years of teaching and being inthe classroom, seen this kind of hostility and this disrespect for teachers.” (Huff-ington Post, May 13)
NYC unions ght school closings
New York City has about 1.1 millionK-12 students in public schools. New  York’s United Federation of Teachers, thelargest AFT local, has withheld its signa-ture on an agreement with the Board of Education regarding a scheme for AnnualProfessional Performance Reviews. In re-sponse, the administration of billionaireMayor Michael Bloomberg has closedschools arbitrarily dened as “failing.” After laying off half the staff, his admin-istration will re-open them in the fall withdifferent names.Generally, the BOE sweeps out the old-er, more experienced teachers, who alsoearn the highest pay. Their replacementsare younger, less experienced and — of course — paid less.This is the turnaround model estab-lished by the federal government forschools it deems are “failing.” A teacher in a specialized New York City high school, whose classes have been videotaped and posted on a national web-site, told Workers World, “I feel attackedas a woman, teacher and union member by [Bloomberg’s] administration.”Mayor Bloomberg has closed 117 schoolssince taking control of the school systemin 2002, while opening 396 new schoolsthat rarely serve the same high-needs stu-dents. Parents, students and teachers haveoften protested these closings; they say thereal solution is more resources.On April 26, the city’s Panel for Edu-cational Policy, appointed by Bloomberg, voted to shutter 24 additional “strug-gling” schools, using the federal turn-around model. Earlier that day, MichaelMulgrew, UFT president, led a protest of parents and teachers outside City Hall with signs that read “Support our kids”and “True reform requires investment.”On May 7, the UFT and the princi-pals’ union sued the city to prevent theclosings. Ernest Logan, of the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators,called them “sham closings” and “an at-tempt to go around collective bargaining.”(Daily News, May 7) Bloomberg’s attack on the union over the suit got wide mediaplay. The UFT and the CSSA have suedthe city twice before without much effect.The UFT has made some efforts to build coalitions involving the parents andother unions. It has also organized teach-ers at non-union charter schools. But itsmain thrust has been to support the Dem-ocratic Party in elections.More than this will be required to savethe city’s schools for students and teach-ers.
Forces behind the privatization of education
By Betsey Piette
The basic formula behind thedrive for for-prot education varies little from state to state:Close public schools, open pri- vately managed schools, cut the budget. It is usually coupled withthe negation of union contractsand lower wages and benetsfor school workers. While char-ter schools are paid out of publictax funds, they are exempt frommany state and local regulations,especially those protecting work conditions and employee rights. According to a January report fromthe National Education Policy Center and Western Michigan University, 35 percentof all U.S. charter schools are operated by private education management organiza-tions (EMOs), accounting for about 42percent of all school enrollment. By 2010,there were around 5,000 charter schools inthe U.S., with around 1.5 million students.The name EMOs was coined by WallStreet after its name for Health Main-tenance Organizations. HMOs were thehealth insurance industry’s business mod-el for increasing prots by denying ser- vices. The rst EMO was legalized in Min-nesota in 1991, but nancial deregulationin the 1990s provided Wall Street with theincentive to get into the education busi-ness. Recently, the Obama administrationhas pumped hundreds of millions of dol-lars of federal “education” money to facili-tate the privatization drive.Charter schools drain money away from local public school districts. Unlikepublic schools, EMOs can dismiss stu-dents who have “disciplinary problems”or even refuse to admit them.Charter schools are not obliged to pro- vide instruction in English as a secondlanguage. National studies have shownthat EMOs are more likely to increaseschool segregation and isolate students by race and class than public schools. A 2010 Western Michigan University-sponsored study found charter schoolsspent proportionately more on admin-istrative costs than traditional publicschools and less on instruction. It foundthat student support services averaged$858 per year for public schools com-pared to $517 for charters.
Surge in for-prot EMOs
 While nonprot EMO corporationshave grown from 46 in 1999 to 197 in2011, with total enrollment growing from20,133 to 384,067, for-prot EMO corpo-rations increased from 33 in 1999 to 99 in2011, with total student enrollment grow-ing from 70,743 to 394,096.Enrollment in EMO-operated onlinecharters has grown from 11,500 in 2003-04 to around 115,000 in 2010-11. These virtual schools account for 10 percent of all for-prot EMOs. A considerable por-tion of public funding for online schoolsends up paying for advertising. (nepc.colorado.edu, Jan. 12)Charter schools are heavily concen-trated in urban areas in lower-income, working-class and poor communities.U.S.-based online schools have expandedto Britain, Chile and Mexico.Historically, the largest for-prot EMO was EdisonLearning (formerly EdisonSchools), whose revenues grew from $12million in 1995 to $217 million in 2000.Edison was the rst for-prot EMO tomove into the Philadelphia school dis-trict, despite massive opposition fromstudents, parents and teachers.
Behind privatization: ALEC
In 2012, the major EMOs nationally include The Apollo Group, K12 and theNational Heritage Academies,
 which allshare a common connection — mem- bership in the American Legislative Ex-change Council. With the drive to privatizepublic schools picking upsteam over the last decade,education management cor-porations are raking in lucra-tive prots. Several of thesecompanies are members of  ALEC, whose Next Genera-tion Charter Schools Act has been used as a model forcharter school legislation in42 states and the District of Columbia. ALEC is the right-wing power behindFlorida’s racist “Stand Your Ground” law, which George Zimmerman will use in hisdefense for killing unarmed Black teenagerTrayvon Martin on Feb. 26. It’s also behindother reactionary legislation targeting un-documented workers and women and sup-porting the prison-industrial complex.On the website alecexposed.org, theCenter for Media and Democracy givesa summary of the provisions of the NextGeneration Charter Schools Act. CMDdescribes this “model” legislation as an“attempt to have state taxpayers subsidizecharter schools … to compete with publicschools, while exempting charter schoolsfrom complying with any of the legal re-quirements that govern public schools.”Under the model legislation, charterschools don’t have to adhere to qualica-tion standards when hiring teachers orprincipals, nor do they have to stick toprevailing wage and hourly requirements,giving them a competitive edge over pub-lic schools.The act gives state governors “unilat-eral power to appoint separate, un-demo-cratic charter school boards, whose mem- bers would not be compensated by thestate,” with “no rules against conict of interest by whomever actually employs”them. The act also removes limits on thenumber of charter schools in a given state.
Top three for-prot EMOs
 Among the for-prot education corpo-rations with membership in ALEC is theleading online EMO, The Apollo Group,a Phoenix-based company known for itschain of for-prot career colleges andother for-prot educational institutions.The corporation’s FY2010 earnings were$4.93 billion. Apollo’s Connections Academy andConnections Education had total rev-enues of $2.1 billion in 2010. Connections Academy is also a member of ALEC. As of 2011, Mickey Revenaugh, the company’sco-founder and a vice president, was co-chair of ALEC’s Education Task Forces. Apollo initially ran the online InsightSchool in Washington state. Most of In-sight’s teachers were non-union and part-time. Staff ratio was one teacher for every 53 online students. State records foundmany Insight students were struggling.In school year 2009-10, only 50 percent were passing their classes, 45 percent haddropped out, and only 7.2 percent wereexpected to graduate on time. (KING 5News, Oct. 31)In school year 2010-11, a new for-protcharter corporation, K12, took over theInsight schools. Also an ALEC member,K12 was established as a publicly tradedentity in 2007, with $90 million from Mi-chael R. Milken, the junk-bond dealer andsecurities-fraud felon.K12 now has 81,000 students in 27states. While K12′s schools are designated“nonprot,” states hire them as a for-prof-it management company. This arrange-ment allowed K12 to corner the Penn-sylvania online charter market whereit received 80 percent of the funding of traditional schools — $8,000 per student— while providing no buildings, books orteachers. Its students are home-schooled. According to a 2011 study by West-ern Michigan University, three-quartersof K12’s students failed to achieve An-nual Yearly Progress goals. In June 2011,Pennsylvania led a complaint againstK12 for its students’ failures in readingand math prociency. (Bloomberg Busi-nessweek, June 2) K12 generated $500million in revenue in 2011.One of the largest for-prot EMOs isNational Heritage Academies, another ALEC supporter, which has led the way in proting off public education. Basedin Grand Rapids, Mich., the company operates 71 schools across the country,
Philadelphia students protestschool closings and cuts in sta.
Continued on page 4

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