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Vol. 74/No. 2      January 18, 2010

25, 50 and 75 years ago
January 18, 1985
NEW YORK—The capitalist media here continues to give massive favorable coverage to the attempted murder of four Black teenagers on a subway by racist vigilante Bernhard Goetz. On December 22, Goetz shot Barry Allen, 18; Daryl Cabey, 19; Troy Canty, 19; and James Ramseur, 18. Cabey, paralyzed for life from the wounds inflicted on him by Goetz, slipped into a deep coma on January 9.

Since the shootings, working people have been bombarded daily with television, radio, and newspaper reports painting Goetz as a hero.

Right-wing commentators, such as columnist Patrick Buchanan, hail Goetz as a hero who decided to take on “crime in the streets.”

Goetz says that the four youths he shot asked him for $5. Goetz then reportedly said, “I have $5 for each of you” and pulled out his gun. He shot all four Blacks—two in the back as they fled.  
January 18, 1960
The anti-Semitic vandalism that began in Cologne on Christmas and then swept around the world now appears to be subsiding, although in the United States reports are still coming in about the daubing of Nazi symbols and slogans on public buildings like foul words on latrine walls. The problem remains, however, of accounting for it and of drawing what lessons we can.

Anti-Semitism is endemic in capitalist society like a smoldering plague of the days before modern drugs. It feeds on the frustrations, the insecurities, the fear of the future which capitalism imposes on people. It is actively fostered by the hatred for everything but the sacred dollar that pours down from the top levels of society in a thousand forms.

If the anti-Semitic smallpox should jog us about anything, it is to get on with the job of putting capitalism on the scrap heap before social conditions ripen for another Hitler.  
January 19, 1935
Just what is it, when the capitalistic state writhes in the agonies of depression, which “unbalances” the Federal budget? If we listened to the President, if we heeded the daily press, we might get the idea that relief expenditures are to blame; whence, the conclusion is drawn, cut down on relief.

Let us, instead, look at the record as displayed in the recent Treasury report and set forth in the President’s budget message. Some 750 million went to meet interest on the public debt; 850 million more to retire part of the debt outstanding. In short, over a billion dollars was devoted to the support of bondholders.

The Army and the Navy took between them another half billion dollars for the current needs of the military and naval establishment. In sum, considerably more than 2 billion dollars was expended upon the luxuries of imperialist war, past, present, and future.  
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