It is now seven weeks since the police attacked students from the Ayotzinapa teacher training college and then kidnapped 43 of the survivors and handed them over to a drug cartel. The brutal incident in the town of Iguala, Guerrero, acted as the proverbial last straw, opening up a wave of mass protests which continues to grow and spread.
Private ownership of the means of production has hit a dead end on a world scale. The system is dying on its feet, and this inevitably has profound political and social consequences in the country par excellence of capitalism. Francis Fukuyama, who, upon the fall of the USSR, famously declared “the end of history,” now says that America “suffers from the problem of political decay in a more acute form than other democratic political systems.” In plain English: capitalism and its institutions are in big trouble.
More than a month after the killing of Michael Brown, an unarmed 18-year-old black youth, Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot him multiple times despite Brown having raised his arms in surrender, remains free and safely in hiding. The St. Louis region is tense in anticipation of the grand jury's ruling on whether or not to file charges against Wilson. Brown's shooting has drawn attention to the chilling fact that an average of two black men are killed by police every week in the United States. Michael Brown's killing, however, is not just another repetition of this tragic cycle. In many ways, it was "the straw that broke the camel's back," opening up a new stage in the changing consciousness of young Americans, and young blacks in particular.
What if they held an election and nobody came? In some ways, the 2014 midterm election was very much like this. Just 36.6 percent voted, only 13% of them under age 30, and as many as 70 million eligible voters are not even registered. The main capitalist parties—the Democrats and Republicans—do not deal with real issues related to the lives of the overwhelming majority of the population. This is true bourgeois democracy. That is, democracy for the top 1% or 2%, but not for the rest of us!
Ottawa was rocked on Wednesday by news that a lone gunman shot, and killed, a Canadian Forces reservist on Parliament Hill, before storming Parliament itself. This attack came just two days after a similar incident in Quebec. The fact that these two individuals recently converted to a fundamentalist form of Islam, and apparently expressed support for ISIS, has raised fears that Canada is now facing a wave of terrorist attacks.
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