The Militant (logo)  
   Vol. 70/No. 3           January 23, 2006  
25, 50 and 75 years ago
January 23, 1981
A dramatic shift in Washington’s public stance toward civil liberties and political rights has been exposed in trial preparations for the Socialist Workers Party and Young Socialist Alliance lawsuit against the federal government.

The government is now putting forward the most sweeping claims it has ever made of a legal “right” to spy on, harass, blacklist, and deport those whose political views it disapproves of.

“This is the biggest turn in our case since the fall of 1976, when the government pretended to drop its ‘investigation’ of the SWP and YSA,” said Larry Seigle, the SWP Political Committee member who coordinates the lawsuit.

“We have successfully blown away the smokescreen of phony reforms of the FBI, CIA, INS [Immigration and Naturalization Service], and the rest of the secret police,” Seigle said.

“Our party is exposing all the cover-ups. The cover-up that was just Nixon. That it was just J. Edgar Hoover. That the FBI has changed.”  
January 23, 1956
Jan. 18—A. Philip Randolph, a vice-president of the AFL-CIO and president of the International Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, yesterday demanded that President Eisenhower call out federal troops “to liberate the Negro in the South.”

“If we can send our Army to Korea for the protection of Koreans 6,000 miles away,” he told a luncheon of the Urban League in New York, “the time has come when the President must send some armed forces to protect American citizens in the South.”

Randolph was seconded in his demand by Transport Workers Union President Michael J. Quill. “If Federal troops can by used against labor during strikes,” said Quill, “they certainly can be used to implement decisions of the Supreme Court.” Last December the Pittsburgh Courier, leading Negro newspaper in the country, addressed an open letter to Eisenhower, calling for federal troops to protect Negroes from the white-supremacist terror.  
January 1, 1931
As the present world crisis grows in scope and intensity, gripping one industry after another furrowing its way to the very core of the complex capitalist structure, a good deal of ideological hardware undergoes a process of rapid corrosion. Not so long ago, “American” rationalization “scientific management” and the “technical revolution” were the inspiration of the entire capitalist world. This wave of enthusiasm undulated from the desperate Right wing of the bourgeoisie, the Fascists, to its most servile Left, the Social Democrats, who pointed to America as the “workers’ paradise.”

Today when the super-capitalist Arcadia has blown up, with millions of workers pounding the pavements with an unprecedented tie-up in trade and an overloading of warehouses while countless families go unfed, unclothed and unprovided for—a different song is being sung.  
Front page (for this issue) | Home | Text-version home