Letters from our readers

5 September 2009

On “Afghanistan war escalation: The Nation seeks to ‘protect’ the Obama administration from itself

Great essay.  Your write, “that the vast energy reserves in Central Asia and the Middle East might be of interest to the US ruling elite, that the collapse of the USSR has witnessed the vast expansion of American military operations in the region, that the US is engaged in a ferocious global competition with its rivals over cheap labor, markets and raw materials—the Nation’s authors consider none of this”.

This reminds me of the old quote that goes something like, “when a liberal sees a beggar, he says the system isn’t working.  When a Marxist sees a beggar, he says the system is working.” 

Personally, I suspect that the editors of The Nation are more self-deluded than manipulative about Obama’s intentions, but either way the important thing is that supporting the Democratic Party isn’t helping matters. One would hope that the current struggle over health care would make it obvious to many.  Democrats once again control both Congress and the White House, but there are always enough “moderates” among them to make sure that no matter what the public sentiment there will be no universal, not-for-profit health care system.

Keep up the good work!

Greg S
New Hampshire, USA
4 September 2009

On “Michigan: Oakland University professors walk out

Of course, as you know, more than 70 percent of instructors-professors in the humanities in US colleges are what’s known as “contingent faculty”—that is, part-time wage/salary slaves with no rights and benefits, who are paid nothing.  The drive to eliminate tenure is a way for the business heads who run things to have their way in everything.  The sad part is what students have to pay for all this. Without a major change, higher education will be completely out of range for the working class, if it isn’t already.

Oh, I have been one of the wage slaves, at first as a graduate student and later as a part-timer.  Without tenure/protection, one must be constantly on guard not to say something to offend the powers that be, or confuse the students—whose evaluations at the end of class are the sole means by which instructors are measured, a truly ridiculous and awful situation.

Rob M
4 September 2009

On “Japan’s new government: Promise and reality

The parallels between the Obama election campaign and that of DPJ is palpable and instructive. Apparently you can fool a people twice (at least), especially if they have no alternative to turn to. Still, the pent-up anger, and, especially in Japan, the collective loss of face for having been lied to by successive governments, has the potential for a real social upheaval in the near future, as Hotoyama is incapable of delivering on his electoral promises.

Potential for a left revolutionary party in the second biggest economy in the world exists as never before, as John Chan quite rightly points out. This opportunity should be seized by revolutionary socialists to agitate for an alternative for the working class. Unfortunately, the hands of WSWS are somewhat tied, as it does not have Japanese as one of the languages that it edits this excellent socialist resource. Perhaps something can be done in this regard, as well as for Mandarin?

Mirke
Australia
2 September 2009

On “Lockerbie: More evidence of cynical machinations behind Megrahi’s release

You also seem to forget there wasn’t much evidence there to put al-Megrahi in jail in the first place. There was no evidence linking him to putting the bomb on the plane, and there have been claims that the some evidence, particularly the circuit board for the timer was planted.

Brown’s getting a lot of flak at the moment, but that won’t worry him, neither will accusations of betrayal by the US government. The so-called “special relationship” will survive, even though it’s one sided.

David G
2 September 2009

On “Inglourious Basterds: Quentin Tarantino goes to war

Hi,

I have a tendency to greatly disagree with the WSWS film reviews; I’ve sent in several emails about this. But this time I’m writing to say thank you for a good analysis of Tarantino’s barbaric work. He really is the most overrated director working today—certainly talented on a purely technical level, but so lacking in insight and a sense of context or reality that most of his films are dangerous to the human brain.

Cheers,

Jonas K
3 September 2009

On “Letters on Inglourious Basterds

I cannot believe how some of these comments go into such depth analyizing this film. Personally, I enjoyed the film. I took it at what it was, an entertaining film, no not a masterpiece but a fun enjoyable experience. If people would just lighten up a bit and stop digging too deep, maybe they would enjoy the film a little more. The subject matter of WWII is a serious and tragic event in history; we have two wars going on and a fledging economy. I go to the movies to escape reality for a couple of hours and be entertained and for me, that is what this film did.  Quentin Tarentino’s films are always a bit over the edge (i.e., Kill Bill’s, Pulp Fiction), so going in you knew what to expect, so loosen up!

Elyse
3 September 2009