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New Canadian International Labour 10-Minute

Global Intern Strike!

20 February 2017.


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On February 20th, young people across the world will come together to push for an end to the exploitative and exclusionary practice of unpaid internships. Decentralised actions will take place in a range of cities, to call on employers and leaders to ensure that quality intern opportunities are paid and accessible to all - regardless of their socioeconomic background.

There is an increasing tendency around the world to hire interns, often without pay and with very little possibility of achieving a real education or a stable job. In the last few years, the rise of the intern economy has attracted the attention of journalists and activists; sociologists, however, are still paying inadequate attention to this phenomenon and its causes. This inattention contributes to a growing ambiguity surrounding the term ‘internship’, making it difficult to understand its aims and to evaluate its abuses. In other words, sociological analysis is very much needed not only to explain the explosion of the intern economy, but also to develop a critical compass to raise awareness about the uses and abuses of internships.

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If You Don't Understand the Second Product, You Understand Nothing About Marx's Capital

Athens — 14 January 2017.


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The following talk was given at the International conference “150 years Karl Marx's Capital - Reflections for the 21st century” held in Athens, Greece on January 14-15, 2017. Organized by the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung - Athens Office in cooperation with Theseis, the conference discussed the actuality of Marx's theoretical system of the critique of political economy 150 years on from the publication of Capital Volume I.

In this presentation, Lebowitz notes: “Unfortunately, for many who have followed Marx in name and others who never pretended to do so, there is only one product – the change in circumstances, the change in the object of labour. The second product – the change in human beings, the change in the subject of labour – is ignored. The political effects of this blindness can be seen everywhere. In the countries of ‘real socialism’ where the absence of self-government and self-management produced a working class with neither the capacity nor the will to prevent the restoration of capitalism. In the social democrats who, convinced that they are cleverer than capital, use the strength of the working class as a credible threat in their negotiations rather than as a force to be built and built and, accordingly, emerge from the most disgraceful defeats as immaculate as they were innocent. In political parties of the left which, rather than treating social movements as multiple sites for developing the capacities of the working class, view them as fertile ground for the recruitment of cadres for their disciplined phalanxes and celebrate in their solitary gatherings the distilled purity of their brands and their preparedness for the next October. It is not only political practice, however, that has suffered from the eclipse of the second product. Without an understanding of the centrality of the key link between human development and human capacity, we are blind to the limitations of Marx's Capital.”

Michael A. Lebowitz is professor emeritus of economics at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada, and the author of The Contradictions of “Real Socialism”: The Conductor and the Conducted, The Socialist Alternative: Real Human Development, Beyond Capital: Marx's Political Economy of the Working Class, Build It Now: Socialism for the 21st Century and Following Marx: Method, Critique, and Crisis. His latest book is The Socialist Imperative: From Gotha to Now.



What's the Matter with America?

Toronto — 26 January 2017.


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Introductions by Byan Evans and Ron Vogel, Department of Politics and Public Administration at Ryerson University.

Organized by Phyllis Clarke Memorial Lecture and Department of Politics and Public Administration, Ryerson University.


LS #Date PublishedTitle 
102. 22 May 2011 May Day 2011
A militant celebration of International Workers' Day organized by May 1st Movement and No One Is Illegal-Toronto. Recorded 1 May 2011.
101. 15 May 2011 Universities in Crisis James Turk
What Are The Problems and What Faculty and Students Can Do. Recorded 4 March 2011, Ottawa.
100. 8 May 2011 Austerity, Security and Resistance
George Rigakos, Justin Paulson and Greg Albo discuss issues of austerity and who will pay and who will profit as the transition from rescue to recovery increasingly returns not just to neoliberalism, but a more authoritarian form at that. Recorded at Left Forum in New York City.
99. 17 April 2011 From Wisconsin to Toronto Workers Say Enough is Enough!
Frustrated with your job being referred to as 'gravy'? Angry to see that workers' hard-won gains are being eroded? Want to defend public services and good jobs for all? Greater Toronto Workers' Assembly forum recorded in Toronto, 8 April 2011.
98. 10 April 2011 Raise Welfare and Disability Rates, Restore the Special Diet!
Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP) and friends and allies marched through the streets of Toronto demanding a raise to the welfare and disability rates, and a restoration of the Special Diet!
97. 27 March 2011 State of the Siege, State of the Struggle Barghouti, Riham; Ali Abunimah
Riham Barghouti and Ali Abunimah make presentations at the 2011 Israeli Apartheid Week event in Toronto - recorded 11 March, 2011.
96. 20 March 2011 Global Crisis, Fiscal Restraint and Public-Private Partnerships Loxley, John
Dr. John Loxley is a professor in the Department of Economics, University of Manitoba. He specializes in International Money and Finance, International Development and Community Economic Development and has published extensively in these areas. Part of the Phyllis Clarke Memorial Lecture - recorded 10 March 2011.
95. 13 March 2011 Book Launch: Global Slump McNally, David
The Economics and Politics of Crisis and Resistance. Recorded in Toronto, 20 January 2011.
94. 12 March 2011 Interrogating Apartheid: Campus as a Site of Resistance Rebick, Judy; Abigail Bakan
Presentations by Judy Rebick, Abigail Bakan; part of the Israeli Apartheid Week in Toronto. Recorded 7 March, 2011.
93. 8 March 2011 Giant Steps: Radical Women in the Black Freedom Struggle Woodard, Komozi
A talk by Komozi Woodard on the role of women in the struggle for Black liberation. Woodard is the Esther Raushenbush Chair at Sarah Lawrence College and co-editor of Want to Start a Revolution?
92. 27 February 2011 Developing a Political Fightback
The fightback against Mike Harris and Mel Lastman consisted of community mobilizations, large strikes and impressive Days of Action. How were they successful and how did they fail? Recorded in Toronto, 19 February 2011.
91. 20 February 2011 A Movement To Change the World Stokely, Brenda
Brenda Stokely is a human rights activist dedicated to ending all forms of national oppression, racism, sexism and exploitation of workers. She co-found and built several key organizations, including the 2004 Million Worker March Movement, NY Labor Against the War (co-convener), founding member of Troops Out Now, Coalition to Save Harlem and many more.
90. 18 February 2011 Revolution in the Arab World... Achcar, Gilbert
With Gilbert Achcar - Professor of Development Studies, University of London, author of The Clash of Barbarisms: The Making of the New World Disorder and The Arabs and the Holocaust: the Arab-Israeli War of Narratives.
89. 13 February 2011 Faith Nolan and the CUPE Freedom Singers
Faith Nolan and the CUPE Freedom Singers performed before the opening session of the GTWA labour forum - Sunday morning, January 30, 2011.
88. 6 February 2011 Assessing Current Struggles
The opening panel on Saturday includes key activists from different sections of the working class movement: representatives of non-union generally precarious workers, the public sector, the chronically unemployed and poor. They assess the state of their own struggles and address key issues in developing the class capacities and mobilization to collectively move on.
87. 2 February 2011 Hamilton Day of Action: Steelworkers United!
USW Local 1005 and its 900 members and 9,000 pensioners are waging a battle on behalf of ALL of us. Foreign-owned companies, like U.S. Steel, are attempting to steal our futures by attacking our pensions while the Harper government is attempting to hand public pensions over to private banks. Winning this battle for Hamilton Steelworkers is the first step in a national campaign to defend retirement security for everyone.
86. 29 January 2011 Launch of the 2011 Socialist Register: The Crisis This Time Panitch, Leo; Sam Gindin, Bryan Evans and Greg Albo
Introduced and moderated by Leo Panitch, co-editor of the Socialist Register, Sam Gindin, Bryan Evans and Greg Albo. Recorded in Toronto, January 20, 2011.
85. 23 January 2011 Key Union Struggles - Building the Fightback Ferguson, Mark; Gary Howe; Marion Pollack
As the economic crisis continues, governments and employers are bringing in austerity measures, lowering our living standards and working conditions. A number of unionized workplaces are particular targets, and have the potential to become key centres of resistance. This forum considers the strategies and political approaches needed to win and is a build-up for the January 29th/30th Workers' Assembly Labour Conference.
84. 2 January 2011 Emerging Powers: Allies or Rivals? Kagarlitsky, Boris; Chaohua Wang
Presentations by Boris Kagarlitsky and Chaohua Wang. Part of the "Global Crisis and Hegemonic Dilemmas" conference - recorded in Delhi, India - November 9, 2010.
83. 26 December 2010 21st Century Socialism: the Strategy of the Left and the Latin American Experience Lebowitz, Michael; Marta Harnecker
Marta Harnecker and Michael Lebowitz were invited by the N. Poulantzas Institute and Transform Magazine to present lectures on "21st Century Socialism."
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