Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Fall Issue Editorial

As this issue goes to press, we are witnessing the playing out of the corporatized culture and attitudes the public has been fed for decades. Cop culture, military, or "warrior" culture, rape culture, and Wall Street culture are inseparable. All are racist, misogynist, inherently violent, alienated, antisocial, and ego-centric. Vengeance, greed, and prejudicial judgment are key to this mindset. Sadly, many working people have bought into it to our social and class detriment.

This is the cultural perspective that justifies worker abuse, victim-blaming, criminalization of poverty, racism, sexism, police abuse, torture, exploitation, corporate theft, destruction of the ecology, imperialism, and war. It is the fascist ideology of raw power or, "Power of the Will" where the brutal rule of those with power is justified and under which illness and poverty are seen as character flaws and deserved conditions of the weak.

Fortunately, not all are taken in by this pathology. As the ugly reality of corporate right-wing culture is bared, the best remedy is the recognition and rejection of this destructive paradigm, reclaiming and recreating our older, healthier, more community-focused working class culture.

In rejecting the corporate, militarized police state, we affirm our common humanity and solidarity, realizing that our class commonality and collective interests include and transcend differences of gender, race, religion and national origin.

This is what gives us, as working people, the strength to survive. This is what this journal is about.

In these pages are poems about the satisfaction of work and caring for and about our co-workers, as in the poem "Henion Bakery" by Virginia Schnurr and in "The Man Who Made Your Breakfast" by Christy Passion. We have several strong poems about union organizing -- its basis in humanity and working class empathy which includes the joy of real empowerment over our lives when we realize that together, united, we have more power than our bosses, and even more than the politicians that represent them.

Poems in this issue get to the nitty-gritty of bad jobs, poverty and homelessness. These poems also speak with outrage, disgust and horror at the abuses of our corrupt system and of the nightmare of torture and murder unleashed by our police and our military, both at home and around the world.

We are proud to be able to continue presenting the strongest poets and writers of our awake and aware working class and hope to be able to continue. This project is a collective effort. We can't do it without you. We are grateful for your support and your inspiration.