Mar 16

Kalamazoo SP Public Forum on American Socialism & Radical Labor Movements March 28, 2019

The Kakzooteachin2lamazoo Socialist Party invites the broader Kalamazoo community to a lively presentation and discussion about:

“American Socialism & Radical Labor Movements”

Many mainstream media pundits and political analysts have painted the recent return of socialism into the American lexicon as a new and novel phenomenon following the Bernie Sanders campaign and election of prominent members of the Democratic Socialists of America to the United States Congress. To the casual observer, they would be correct.

But in reality Socialism in the United States in hardly a new phenomenon, and particularly in its heyday in the early 20th century saw vast numbers of Americans embracing the core tenets and values of the party. There was a time where cities were electing Socialists in large numbers, from city council members to mayors, and Socialist presidential candidate Eugene Dens peaked at %5 of the vote in the national election.

There is also the oft forgotten role American Socialists and Communists played in labor movements of the time, often acting as the radical vanguard taking on entrenched business interests and pushing for workers rights with a militancy lost in modern labor politics. It was also many of these groups who were most outspoken and involved in organizing black and brown workers, bearing the brunt of American capitalism’s particular white supremacist character.

Members of the Kalamazoo Socialist Party will lead a teach-in and discussion about this important but buried history.

We will be providing FREE DINNER and refreshments for attendees.

Join us Thursday March 28, 2019, 6PM
Kalamazoo Public Library – Central Branch
Van Deusen Room
315 S. Rose. St., Kalamazoo, MI 49007

Feb 17

‘Hands Off Venezuela’ Action Feb. 19th in Kalamazoo

Feb. 19th, 2019 5pm – Columbia Plaza (U.S. Rep. Upton local office)
350 E. Michigan Ave., Kalamazoo, MI 49007

On Tuesday, February 19th the Kalamazoo Socialist Party and Kalamazoo Non-Violent Opponents of War will be holding a protest in front of U.S. Representative Fred Upton’s office in opposition to the U.S. government’s attempted coup in Venezuela.

The United States backs Juan Guaido, an opposition member of the Venezuelan assembly who is both unelected and virtually unknown to a majoritvenezuelahandsy of the population. As people in the Trump administration such as John Bolton beat the drums of war, and render the desire for access to Venezuela’s oil reserves explicit, we see the push for intervention made stronger with lies, fabrications, and pro-interventionist bias from the very same media that made the case for the disastrous Iraq war.

Venezuela is also the most recent on a sad history of South and Central American nations who have faced meddling, CIA backed coups, and wanton destruction from the U.S. government. As the current administration has signalled, particularly in the selection of Elliot Abrams as envoy, a convicted criminal and facilitator of War crimes implicated in the Contra scandal and others, and it’s propensity to use sanctions and the suffering of Venezuelans as a bargaining chip, they have very little interest in the actual lives of the Venezuelan people and all the interest in the world in Venezuela’s resources.

When we say hands off Venezuela, we say:

-NO to the attempted coup! The U.S. has no right to meddle in other country’s affairs and select their leaders.

-NO to the sanctions, oil embargo, and economic warfare being waged by the U.S. to undermine and weaken Venezuela

-NO to U.S. intervention and war from the U.S. military, CIA, and their proxies in the region

We will stand against this brazen act of imperialism on Tuesday at 350 E. Michigan (Columbia Plaza, located next to Sakozy’s Bakery and housing the local office of Rep. Upton)

Oct 09

2018 Michigan Statewide Ballot Proposals

Vote YES on Proposal 1
The Socialist Party of Michigan supports approval of Proposal 18-1 to bring legalizefistan end to 80 years of cannabis prohibition in our state and strip the capitalist police of a routine pretext for targeted harassment and repression of minority and working class communities. Although we oppose the imposition of regressive excise taxation, this measure will unquestionably provide tremendous relief from the draconian status quo. The Socialist Party of Michigan State Platform calls for the decriminalization of victimless crimes, including drug possession, and the regulated legalization of all controlled substances.

Vote YES on Proposal 2
The Socialist Party of Michigan supports approval of Proposal 18-2 to abrogate the brazenly antidemocratic practice of partisan gerrymandering. The SPMI State Platform calls for all post-census legislative redistricting to be conducted by a non-partisan commission, employing the latest in computer-aided design and database technology.

Vote NO on Proposal 3
The Socialist Party of Michigan calls for rejection of Proposal 18-3. Although we support this proposal’s provisions easing voter registration and absentee voting, we stand fully opposed to constitutionally enshrining the ballot device of straight-ticket voting, which is empirically proven to exacerbate the immensely inequitable advantage enjoyed by candidates of the two corporate parties. Because this proposal’s limited facilitation of voting rights is substantively offset by further entrenching the major parties’ supremacy, we call on Michigan voters to vote ‘no’

The SPMI State Platform calls for automatic voter registration upon reaching voting age, based upon the most recent address provided on a drivers’ license application, state ID application or state tax return, whenever available. Additionally, we call for extending voting rights to incarcerated and non-citizen residents, implementing instant run-off voting for all executive officials and proportional representation for all legislative bodies, equal public financing and airtime for all candidates, lowering the eligible voting age to 14, and abolition of all exclusionary ballot access strictures.

Sep 18

Vote Socialist in 2018: Matt Kuehnel for State House

The Socialist Party of Michigan has officially nominated SPMI member Matt Kuehnel for 22nd District State Representative in Michigan’s November 2018 election. Kuehnel, a heating and cooling tech and working class activist, is running to provide an independent voice for working people in the prime rust belt communities of Warren and Roseville where decades of disaffected contempt for both corporate parties has drawn an endlessmattphoto3 stream of narrative inversion by ruling establishment pundits.

Along with Republican Arthur Blundell, Kuehnel is challenging incumbent Democrat John Chirkun, a former police sergeant and current stalwart of the state’s prison industrial complex, best known for his strident opposition to reform measures to limit arbitrary denials of inmate parole.

Due to Michigan’s undemocratic ballot access laws preventing the Socialist Party from fielding candidates under its own label, Kuehnel will be listed on the ballot with the Libertarian designation, reflecting his dual support from the LP’s Libertarian Socialist Caucus, while running on the Socialist Party of Michigan’s State Platform.

Kuehnel Campaign Website

Kuehnel Campaign Facebook Page

May 22

Occupy the PGA – May 26, 2018 in Benton Harbor!

Saturday, May 26, 2018, 11am
Benton Harbor City Hall
200 Wall Street
Benton Harbor, MI 49022 (map)

The Socialist Party of bentonharbor2018Michigan has endorsed the Occupy the PGA demonstration against the Whirlpool corporation’s war on the people of Benton Harbor. We urge all members and supporters to turn out and participate in this important event!

Socialist Party of Michigan Statement for Occupy the PGA 2018
Adopted May 22, 2018

Following its own key role in the decimation of Benton Harbor’s manufacturing-base, Whirlpool has leveraged both the city’s economic desperation and its own decades of control over the wider Berrien County political machine to compel the pending transformation of the city into a wealthy ruling class resort town. As a biennial showcase of its expanding luxury developments geared to that objective, Whirlpool is now once again hosting the Senior PGA Championship in the state of Michigan’s poorest city.

For the site of its Harbor Shores Golf Club, opened in 2010, Whirlpool took over 465 acres of prime lakefront land for under a million dollars, including 22 central acres of the public lakefront park comprising the city’s crown jewel civic asset. In turn Whirlpool availed itself of $150 million in state tax incentives for the resort’s development, while predictably reneging on its promised 2000 jobs and major tax revenue boost for the surrounding populace.

With greed as pervasive as its political reach, however, Whirlpool continues to show that it won’t be content until it has the whole pie. Rather than merely expanding its private luxury housing investments to accelerate financial gentrification, Whirlpool has marshaled all resources at its helm to escalate hardship for the poor and minority population it aims to drive out. In addition to christening the 2010 opening of its resort with the four-year reign of Emergency Manager’ dictatorship, Whirlpool continues to pull the strings of all surrounding governing bodies to maintain a permanent state of austerity coupled with unbridled police repression and judicial injustice reminiscent of the Jim Crow era South.

Whirlpool’s colonial conquest of Benton Harbor provides a stark illustration of the modern day character of capitalist industrial firms as insatiably predatory institutions that traffic in the spoils of their own local economic destabilization. Having dispossessed so many community residents of their livelihoods, Whirlpool now aims to capitalize on the hardships borne from its desertion in order to dispossess such residents of their community itself.

The Socialist Party of Michigan stands in full solidarity with the struggle of the Black Autonomy Network Community Organization and all Benton Harbor residents fighting to resist corporate takeover, and we likewise echo the demand that Senior PGA transfer 25% of its local profit to the cash-strapped city. Additionally, we call for the immediate placement of Whirlpool and all other major manufacturing firms under public ownership and democratic control; a democratically planned economy with guaranteed full employment for all; a 100% capital flight tax on runaway industry, overhauling and replacing the present systems of policing and legal injustice; a massive public works program to rebuild our cities and communities; and legal recognition of the right of communities of color to autonomy, community control, and self-determination, including the right to self-defense by any means necessary against reactionary violence and police harassment and brutality.