This is an important analysis that has important policy and political implications.

A big deal

House Democrats passes BBB (human infrastructure) today. It’s a big deal for many reasons. Should be celebrated and talked up. The next – bigger – hurdle is the Senate.

Measure of maturity

As significant and encouraging as the recent strike resurgence (actually it continues a trend that began in 2018) is, I would still argue that the best measure of the maturity and level of consciousness of the working class and labor movement at this particular moment remains the degree to which it engages in and gives leadership in the streets and voting booth to the diverse, cross class coalition (in the middle of which is the Biden administration and Democratic Party) arrayed against and in an existential battle against Trumpists and Trumpism.

This isn’t to counterpose one form of struggle or understanding against the other. Ideally, they reinforce one another. But only to remind ourselves that the prospects of the labor movement beyond this or that strike will depend on the ability of labor and its allies to politically and decisively defeat Trump and Trumpism


Today I rose early – 4am. Made some strong and very tasty coffee and toasted a slice of whole wheat bread. To the latter I added a little jam as a reward for getting up before dawn made her appearance. Then I sat quietly for 45 minutes and tried not to think about the state of the world, unsuccessfully. Around 4:55 am, jumped into my car and drove off to my 5:15am spin class.

There, a youngish woman with lots of energy lead what is mainly an over the hill gang in frenetic peddling for 45 minutes. Today, we warmed up to Tom Petty’s “You don’t know how it feels” and cooled down to Barry White’s “Can’t get enough of you love baby.” I quietly sang along to both.

After cleaning my bike, I drove home on the still dark streets of Kingston. At home I made another pot of coffee, woke up my wife and dog, and drank one more cup even though a mini nap awaited me. All and all, a good start to what looks like a beautiful late fall day.


This article, critically analyzing the Ortega government and Nicaraguan society, will likely generate controversy. A couple of general observations. In the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union, I’m not so ready to take on face value the claims – including the democratic character – of left governments. Another is – and this is a reconsideration – that the path to socialism lies in the expansion and deepening of democracy. In other words, it’s an indispensable means as well as an end of socialist development.

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