Author: Talia Baroncelli

Extraction, Destruction of Ecosystems, and Fires in North America – Éric Pineault
|

Extraction, Destruction of Ecosystems, and Fires in North America – Éric Pineault

Éric Pineault, professor of ecological economics at the Institute of Environmental Sciences at the University of Quebec in Montreal, explains how the fires raging in Canada are a corollary of the paradigm termed Extreme Oil. He discusses various oil and gas projects across North America, as well as the Canadian government’s support for the Trans Mountain Pipeline project, and how terms such as “net zero” and “carbon neutral” are misleading and conveniently serve Big Oil’s aims. 

His recent book A Social Ecology of Capital presents an empirical analysis of capitalist societies, which both builds on and enhances Marxist theories by accounting for the energy extraction and colonization of ecosystems, a characteristic of what he terms our “fossil-industrial” society. His conception of capitalist metabolism outlines extractivism, production, consumption, and waste dissipation, which leads to an absorption of surplus energy, capital accumulation, and profit maximization. Most importantly, how is this understanding of social ecology useful for furthering a project of emancipation?

U.S.-Iran: An Unwritten Agreement on the Horizon? – Trita Parsi

U.S.-Iran: An Unwritten Agreement on the Horizon? – Trita Parsi

Trita Parsi, Executive Vice President of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, discusses reported negotiations between the U.S. and Iran to agree to an unwritten deal. The JCPOA, or Iran nuclear deal, which was a legacy of the Obama administration, seems to be a thing of the past; yet de-escalation and an agreement on a smaller range of issues would be advantageous to both the U.S. and Iranian administrations. As in the case of Saudi-Iranian rapprochement, the role of China, Oman, and Iraq in facilitating these discussions is politically noteworthy. While the U.S. and Iran are nowhere near signing a comprehensive written deal which could be legally enforced and regulated internationally, a more limited unwritten deal would unfreeze at least 7 billion US dollars’ worth of Iranian assets, which would go towards purchasing food and medicine for Iranians.

Haiti’s Predatory Ruling Families and Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier – Jafrikayiti part 2/2

Haiti’s Predatory Ruling Families and Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier – Jafrikayiti part 2/2

In part 2, Jafrikayiti recalls that after Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide was overthrown, Canada Haiti Action Network asked officials on Parliament Hill in Ottawa as to why free and fair elections weren’t being held in Haiti. The response was that Lavalas, the movement headed by Aristide, “occupied too much space,” and foreign actors wanted to “level the playing field” to ensure that Lavalas wouldn’t regain power. Furthermore, he delves into the myths surrounding former policeman Jimmy “Barbecue” Chérizier. Chérizier, whose victims have notably not been members of the predatory Haitian oligarchy, has subsequently been armed and granted impunity from arrest. Jafrikayiti calls for genuine solidarity with Haiti from people in the U.S., Canada, and France in order for there to be a paradigm shift in policy.

U.S. and Canada Continue Meddling in Haitian Affairs – Jafrikayiti part 1/2

U.S. and Canada Continue Meddling in Haitian Affairs – Jafrikayiti part 1/2

Jafrikayiti is an artist, author, activist, and radio show host, and works for Solidarité Québec-Haiti. Part 1 of his analysis of foreign intervention in Haiti presents a scathing critique of French, U.S., and Canadian powers who have dismantled Haitian democracy, as well as looted the country for countless decades. He argues that political leaders who are appointed by western powers, such as the current interim Prime Minister Ariel Henry, are illegitimate figures who continue to do a disservice to Haiti’s political institutions. Furthermore, Jafrikayiti explains how the exploitation of Haiti cannot be understood without examining the racial underpinnings of imperialism and capitalism.

Political Resistance in Senegal Through Food Sovereignty
|

Political Resistance in Senegal Through Food Sovereignty

Famara Diédhiou is the West Africa Program Officer at the Alliance for Food Security in Africa (AFSA). He is also one of the producers of a documentary feature film called The Last Seed, which was produced by the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation in cooperation with AFSA, Biowatch South Africa, and PELUM Tanzania. In this interview, Famara discusses why food security is not enough in a country such as Senegal, whose farming practices and dietary consumption have been negatively affected by agrochemical companies. He makes the case for food sovereignty, as well as the establishment of an agroecological approach to farming and rural planning which not only benefits local populations but also facilitates climate adaption strategies. What sort of socio-economic system would create the conditions necessary for this agroecological approach?

Libyans Caught Between Warring Elites and Foreign Powers
|

Libyans Caught Between Warring Elites and Foreign Powers

Anas El Gomati is the founder and director of the Libyan think tank, the Sadeq Institute. He discusses how so much of Libya’s history has been shaped by European colonial powers and other foreign states meddling in its affairs. On the flip side, E.U. developments and the rise of right-wing populism and racist anti-migrant sentiment cannot be disentangled from what transpires in Libya. In light of the ongoing fighting between rival government structures, how can the control of oil resources and state assets shift from elite strongmen to civilian bodies?

Modern Iran: National Identity as a Tool of Resistance or Coercion?

Modern Iran: National Identity as a Tool of Resistance or Coercion?

Historian, Assal Rad, explores identity formation in modern Iran, both under the Pahlavi dynasty as well as after the 1979 Revolution under the Islamic Republic. Her book “State of Resistance: Politics, Culture, and Identity in Modern Iran” examines top-down and bottom-up manifestations of national identity as narrated by state structures and popular culture, respectively. Her fascinating analysis is based on a historical assessment of how modern state-building in Iran inculcated a sense of national belonging in the population, as well as on interviews with people in Tehran and examples taken from popular music and film. Can national identity play a positive role in liberation struggles?

Massive French Protests Continue – Renaud Lambert

Massive French Protests Continue – Renaud Lambert

Renaud Lambert, journalist at Le Monde diplomatique, discusses the nationwide anti-pension reform protests in France, which have consisted of over a million people taking to the streets on more than one occasion. He underscores how French President Emmanuel Macron’s tax cuts for the wealthy have increased the current deficit, exposing how workers will now need to work longer to make up for the decreases in government revenue.

Yemen: Biden’s Hypocrisy and Possible Peace?
|

Yemen: Biden’s Hypocrisy and Possible Peace?

Shireen Al-Adeimi, Professor of Language and Literacy at Michigan State University, lays out the U.S., U.K., and Canada’s role in perpetuating the brutal Saudi-led blockade of Yemen. She exposes Biden’s continued military support of Saudi Arabia, despite the administration’s pledge to only send defensive support, and calls into question the misleading dichotomy of “offensive” vs. “defensive” military support. Is a peace deal more likely now that the Houthi and Saudi representatives have met in Sana’a?

Capitalism Has Never Been This Irrational – Paul Jay (pt 3/3)
|

Capitalism Has Never Been This Irrational – Paul Jay (pt 3/3)

Talia Baroncelli interviews Paul Jay; “The financial elites know how dangerous the climate crisis is, but they won’t acknowledge the only solution is central planning, government regulation, and intervention. They know market mechanisms won’t work within a time frame that matters, if at all. They’re not against central planning. What is the Pentagon if not central planning? What is the Fed and bank bailouts if not central planning? Central planning in their interests and under their control is okay. But government planning that transforms the economy and phases out fossil fuel, is unacceptable. They hate any form of socialism more than they hate risking the end of civilization.”

End of content

End of content