Sunday, April 01, 2012

Winter Issue Editorial

This issue comes at the end of a mild winter on our warming world and it isn't just the climate, but the working class anger that's heating up. Though official statistics report a slight betterment of the economy for those at the top, unemployment and home foreclosures remain high. The poems in this collection describe the pride and satisfaction of productive work as well as the visceral rage at our exploitation and abuse by the greed-driven business model that ruins work as well as our health. Also emphasized are the difficulties faced by women in their primary role of caring for children and of our care-taking of aging and dying parents.

The growing recognition of the monster of brutal corporate dictatorship and the realization of an emerging police state are reflected in this collection as is our commitment to struggle for our own survival even as the corporate and religious right escalate their attacks against women, working people, and minorities.

After the birth last fall of the Occupy movement and in preparation for its inevitable and impending spring re-emergence, the power of the National Security apparatus has grown. The National Defense Authorization Act passed last December grants the President the power to detain us, citizen and non citizen alike, indefinitely without charges. Though the wording emphasizes that it is aimed at those giving loosely defined support to "associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners." many with long involvement in the government including 40 retired admirals and generals, have publicly protested this. Lawrence Wilkerson, chief counsel to Colin Powell stated that it was done as a reaction to the Occupy movement and not terrorism. In other words, the class struggle has reached the level where the government of the 1% is taking off its mask and declaring the rest of us the enemy. Our struggle to survive will continue. We have no choice. This year promises to be a turning point in the history of our country as the paradigm shift in public awareness and class consciousness runs headlong into the resistance of an entrenched corporate oligarchy that has outlived its time. This moment has been a long time in coming.

The Blue Collar Review has consistently been the journal of the 99% since 1997 and we have the back issues to prove it. We would like to think that fifteen years of publishing the strongest poets and writers of our working class has helped fertilize the seeds of this emerging struggle. Our ability to do this, and to continue doing it, relies not only on the continuing contribution of finely honed words and the perfected language of poetry, but on the financial support to actually print and mail them. The winter issue is where we traditionally begin our fund drive so we can make it through the year. Our printer is hanging on -- barely and our old computer is slow and feeble. This is a collective project. That we are still publishing is a testament to the dedication of our readers and contributors. You will find a donation request in this issue, as we had in the previous issue. We are thankful to those who already contributed. Partisan Press is a 501(c) 3 not-for-profit so donations are tax-deductible. We look forward to publishing your work as well as to meeting you on the front lines of the struggles to come.

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