US Presidential election 2008

Their morals and ours: the case of John Edwards

John Edwards was once the shining hope of American progressives; today, he’s a disgraced former politician. Last week, his trial in federal court ended with an acquittal. The trial, and the public reaction to it, showed yet again a very ugly side to American politics and culture.

John Edwards was once the shining hope of American progressives; today, he’s a disgraced former politician. Last week, his trial in federal court ended with an acquittal. The trial, and the public reaction to it, showed yet again a very ugly side to American politics and culture.

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Politics in the New Depression

Author: 

Barry Finger

America is a centre-right nation. Or so the pundit class in America tirelessly insists. The Obama administration is ubiquitously warned, from quarters both friendly and hostile, that failure to adhere to this truism augers political calamity. At first glance it might seem very curious that a President, who ran as a moderate and who made no secret of his desire to reach across the political aisle to create a new political center, should require such constant and persistent admonishments.

America is a centre-right nation. Or so the pundit class in America tirelessly insists. The problem is that not only did the Democrats win in the last election, they won big.

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Obama signals drive for a deal

Author: 

John Nihil

So long as the Jewish and Arab workers in the Middle East remain subordinate to the forces of Israeli and Arab (or Islamic) chauvinism — as they are now — the only hope for Palestinian progress towards their own state is from intervention on their behalf from outside governments.

Of those, the USA is the decisive one.

The US government has the power to force Israel out of the West Bank and to insist that Israel accept the creation of an independent Palestinian state

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The Obama presidency

Author: 

Ruben Lomas

The inauguration of Barack Obama, the first black president of the United States of America, is a source of intense hope for a great many American workers. More people than ever before, including more people from Afro-American and Latino backgrounds, turned out to vote for Obama in the November 2008 elections.

Obama has promised “change”, but we know that lasting, fundamental and meaningful social change can only be won by workers' struggle from below.

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What’s wrong with the Green “New Deal”?

Author: 

Paul Vernadsky

In recent months the idea of a “Green New Deal” has become an ubiquitous answer to the current economic and environmental crises. Barack Obama has alluded to it. The TUC has backed the idea. The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has come out for it, endorsed by UK Environment Minister Hilary Benn.

A self-selected Green New Deal Group includes Caroline Lucas MEP, Guardian economics editor Larry Elliott, Friends of the Earth director Tony Juniper and others. In July this year the group published its first report.

The politics of the Green New Deal are little more than a mild, reformed green capitalism on the model of... Norway. The only other model is a wacky reference to “the Cuban experiment”

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The first black president of the USA

Author: 

Martin Thomas

On 4 November Barack Obama was elected as the first black president of the USA. He got 60% of the votes of the relatively hard-up (household income less than $50,000 a year) and only 49% of the votes of the well-off (household income above $100,00 a year).

He got 95% of the African-American vote, 66% of the Hispanic vote, 62% of the Asian vote, and 43% of the white vote. He won 56% of the female vote, and 49% of the male vote.

We can only rejoice at the barrier-breaking involved in the election of a black person as president of the USA. Obama will surely disappoint his supporters, and revolutionary socialists could not vote for him; but the symbolic significance remains.

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Obama elected: now "everything depends on workers getting organised to fight back from below"

Author: 

Kim Moody

Kim Moody, an American socialist activist living in London who was formerly the director of the US rank-and-file labour movement publication Labor Notes (www.labornotes.org), spoke to Sacha Ismail

What do you think will happen in the election?

Kim Moody, an American socialist activist living in London who was formerly the director of the US rank-and-file labour movement publication Labor Notes, talked to Sacha Ismail about what an Obama presidency will mean.

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US Election: What Choice For Workers?

America will vote in the 'world's most powerful person' in November. George Bush has become a hate figure for the big money and world-conquering ambitions of the US. But will the world be a better place when he's gone?

The Republican candidate, John McCain, promises more of the same, but with an older, friendlier face.

This week, both the Republican and Democratic candidates have pledged to shelve their political differences to save capitalism from its own inbuilt crisis. American politics is dominated by big money parties, who do not represent working class people.

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Socialists and Barack Obama

Author: 

Malik Miah

The following article is by Malik Miah, one of the editors of the US socialist magazine Against the Current. We print it in the interests of debate and to relate to an issue that extends beyond the American left. We invite our readers to write contributions to this discussion.

Now that Illinois Senator Barack Obama has become the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, what does it say about US civil society? What stance should progressives and socialists take?

"I cannot vote for a Democrat or Republican candidate... [but] I consider the priority to be positive engagement with Obama supporters..."

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Letter: why the left should back Obama

Author: 

Eric Lee

The latest issue of Solidarity contains two articles about the American presidential elections, offering two different perspectives with the aim of stimulating debate. That’s certainly positive, except for one thing. I can’t tell the difference between the two points of view.

In one corner, Malik Miah argues for not voting for Obama and possibly backing Nader or the Greens. In the opposite corner, Sacha Ismail urges socialists to ... not vote for Obama.

Unions have a very specific reason for hoping for both a Democratic victory in the Presidential election and, equally important, in Congress.

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