Barnard-Columbia International Socialist Organization

November 26, 2008

Upcoming ISO events: Same-Sex Marriage is a Civil Right!

Filed under: ISO Events — Barnard-Columbia ISO @ 12:23 pm

Below are a list of some of the upcoming events we’ll be participating in during the next couple weeks. Thanks to all of you who came to the Northeast Socialist Conference and thanks to everyone who has been with us at the protests against Proposition 8 (the anti-gay marriage ballot measure in California). We’ll also be joining protests against the proposed NY state budget cuts in the next couple weeks. Write us here for more informaton:

Washington Heights/City College/Barnard-Columbia
Week of November 23, 2008

I. Upcoming Meetings & Events

1) A Study Group on “The Democrats: A Critical History” A book by Lance Self
Join us as we discuss chapters 4 & 5 of this great book on the historical and current role of the democratic party as one of the two parties that serve the interests of big business and the US empire. You don’t have to have read the book in order to attend.

7PM Thursday, December 4th, 2008
City College of New York
North Academic Center (NAC) Room 1/211
138 St. and Convent
(1 train to 137 St. or A/B/C/D to 145 St.)

2) Why Same-Sex Marriage Is a Civil Right & How We Can Win It
On November 15, 2008, the national spotlight settled on a newly invigorated civil rights movement. In New York and over 300 cities across the country, gay and straight alike took to the streets in the tens of thousands in a national day of action to oppose the passage of Proposition 8, a California ballot measure eliminating the legal right of same-sex couples to marry.

Coming on the heels of Barack Obama’s election as the first Black U.S. president and the ousting of George Bush, there’s been an overriding sense — both on the streets after the election and on recent demonstrations — that history is on our side and anything is possible. And growing numbers feel increasingly confident in calling for marriage equality now.

Despite the election confirming a general shift in the country to the left, ballot measures on November 4 banned same-sex marriage in three more states as well as lesbian and gay adoption in another.

Come discuss why civil rights for lesbians and gays are under attack now, and what we can do to broaden the movement and win this important struggle.

7PM Thursday, December 11, 2008
City College of New York
North Academic Center (NAC) Room 1/211
138 St. and Convent
(1 train to 137 St. or A/B/C/D to 145 St.)
3) Papersales/Tablings This Week!
Join us as we distribute Socialist Worker and collect petition signatures against Proposition 8 and for Same-Sex Marriage in NY State!

5:45PM Wednesday, November 26, 2008
City College of New York
North Academic Center (NAC) Rotunda, 2nd Floor
138 St. and Convent
(1 train to 137 St. or A/B/C/D to 145 St.)

4) A Day Without A Gay!
A call for a nationwide strike and economic boycott by all members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered community AND STRAIGHT ALLIES on December 10th, 2008, International Human Rights Day.

-Because LGBT workers, business owners, consumers and taxpayers contribute over $700 billion to the American economy and we deserve the
same rights as all other Americans.
-Because marriage is a basic human right for ALL Americans, regardless of gender, race OR religion. (See the US Supreme Court Case LOVING v VIRGINIA).

-Strike! Call in gay, shut down your business, or just take the day off.
-Boycott! Don’t buy anything, spend money or support the economy.
-Participate! Give back, fight back, build bridges to help raise awareness about marriage equality.
For a list of things to do in your area, go to

    Want to know what the International Socialist Organization is doing in NYC?
    Or check out past events, where we stand, links to our publications, videos, and more?
    Visit and pass it along to your friends and coworkers…
    Put at the bottom of your flyers and forwarded emails…
    Or include a link right in your email signature (see below).

    Spread the word, and visit the new website today!

    II. Selected Socialist Worker articles from the past week!

    Sherry Wolf makes the case that leftists ought to stand unapologetically with the struggle for marriage equality.

    Tens of thousands protest the Proposition 8 same-sex marriage ban in San Francisco (Brian Cruz | SW)

    Barack Obama’s election isn’t the end of the process, but the start of the possibility of bringing about real change.

    Supporters of Barack Obama at a campaign rally in Leesburg, Va. (Emmanuel Dunand | AFP)


    Paul D’Amato discusses what exactly the wealthy does to “earn” the vast fortunes that they possess.

    Lee Sustar talks to labor activists about what it will take to win the Employee Free Choice Act, which would provide workers with an opportunity to unionize their workplace.

    Union members rally on the steps of the Capitol in support of the Employee Free Choice Act (Larry Downing | Reuters)

    III. Selected International Socialist Review Article From New Issue “Crisis of Capitalism”

    >Capitalism’s Worst Crisis Since the 1930s

    Joel Geier explains the cause of the current economic crisis and why such crises are systemic to capitalism.


    November 10, 2008

    This Weekend at Columbia: Northeast Socialist Conference 2008

    Filed under: ISO Events — Barnard-Columbia ISO @ 9:31 pm

    Obviously, it’s been hard *not* to talk about politics all the time over the past week. Obama’s election has raised a lot of questions about what activists and people who want to see change materialize should be doing now. This weekend at Columbia is the Northeast Socialist Conference, an event that I hope will make a serious contribution to this discussion. 350 activists have already registered from all over the Northeast. You don’t need to think of yourself as a socialist to attend, check out the list of discussion below and you’ll probably find a bunch that you’re interested in. What’s next for the US occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan? The most excellent Professor Michael Schwartz, author of War Without End – The Iraq War in Context, will be speaking. Given the recent protests over anti-gay ballot measures in California and elsewhere, you should check out Sherry Wolf, author of the forthcoming, Sexuality and Socialism: History, Politics, and Theory of Gay Liberation. Economic crisis still confusing? Don’t miss Joel Geier, Associate Editor of the International Socialist Review and honestly, one of the few people who can explain it with clarity for those us who are not economics majors.

    You can register on the day(s) of the conference, or buy a ticket ahead of time. We encourage people to get tickets ($10) ahead of time because it helps us front the money we need to rent the space at a nearby church, helps defray the cost of airline tickets for some of the speakers, etc. So, write us if you’d like to pick up a ticket:



    The Northeast Socialist Conference 2008
    A Time of Crisis and Change: Building a Revolutionary Alternative

    Saturday and Sunday, November 15th and 16th, 2008
    New York City @ Columbia University
    $15/$10 students and low-income

    (complete location, schedule and registration info below)

    Featuring: Sherry Wolf, Joel Geier, Ashley Smith, Dave Zirin, Michael Schwartz, Sam Farber, Helen Scott, Deepa Kumar, Mostafa Omar, Lois Weiner, Brian Jones and dozens more.

    As the economy goes into the worst crisis since the Great Depression, banks and billionaires are being bailed out while workers continue to lose their homes and jobs. A majority of Americans oppose the war in Iraq, but instead of bringing the troops home, both candidates want to send more troops to Afghanistan and expand the war. It is clear that fundamental change is needed. Come to the Northeast Socialist Conference to discuss and debate with hundreds of others how we can build a genuine alternative that can put the needs of workers and ordinary people around the world first.


    To see the full conference schedule and list of talks, click here.


    Morning: After the Elections: What’s Next for the Left?

    Featuring Sherry Wolf, author of the forthcoming Sexuality and Socialism: History, Politics, and Theory of Gay Liberation and editorial board member of the International Socialist Review.

    Evening: Resistance in a Time of Crisis and War

    Featuring Michael Schwartz, author of War Without End – The Iraq War in Context and Joel Geier, associate editor of the International Socialist Review

    Special Brown Bag Lunch: Dave Zirin on A People’s of History of Sports


    The Widening War: Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan
    New Cold War: US, Russia, and the Caucuses
    Class Struggle in the Middle East
    Blood and Oil: War for Energy?
    The Demonization of Youth
    Crisis, Crime and Class: Politics of the Criminal Injustice System
    Marxism versus Oppression
    Backlash: The War on Women
    Resisting the Raids–Defend Immigrant Rights
    Communists in Harlem During the Depression
    The American Working Class Today
    From Unemployed Councils to Factory Occupations: the Class Rebellion of the 1930s
    The Future Socialist Society
    Why the Working Class Can Change Society
    Why We Need a Revolutionary Party
    Free Market Failure: The Crisis Today
    Whatever Happened to the Gay Liberation Movement?
    Burning Down the House: Capitalism and Climate Change
    Lessons of 1968
    Marxism versus Anarchism
    Introduction to the ISO
    Revolt and Reaction: What’s Next in Latin America?
    Global Assault on Education


    Rosa Luxemburg’s The Mass Strike
    The Comintern
    The Spanish Revolution and Civil War
    Myths of Male Dominance
    Trotsky’s Marxism
    Forging of the American Empire
    Marx’s Dialectics
    Teamster Rebellion
    Marx’s Theory of Crisis and the Crisis Today
    The Classical Marxist Theory of Imperialism and its Critics
    Marxist Theory of Alienation
    Rights of Nations to Self-Determination
    How Capitalism Underdeveloped Africa
    Trotsky’s History of the Russian Revolution
    What Do Socialists Say About ‘Political Islam’?



    9:30am: Registration opens at Broadway Presbyterian Church, 114th and Broadway (entrance from street)
    10:30am: After the Elections: What’s Next for the Left?

    Afternoon Registration and workshops held at Columbia University, Hamilton Hall – enter campus at 116th and Broadway

    Noon: Workshop Session I
    3:15pm: Workshop Session II
    5:15pm: Workshop Session III
    6:45pm: Dinner
    8pm: Resistance in a Time of War and Crisis, Broadway Presbyterian Church
    10pm: Party!

    (Sunday sessions and registration at Hamilton Hall)
    10:30am: Workshop Session 1
    Noon: Lunch
    1:30pm: Workshop Session 2

    For more info: call (646) 452-8662 or email
    Or visit – updates will be posted to the website
    To reserve free on-site childcare, please call by November 3rd

    Sponsored by:

    The International Socialist Organization
    The Center for Economic Research and Social Change
    The International Socialist Review
    Haymarket Books
    Socialist Worker

    Solidarity with Professor Khalidi

    Filed under: Solidarity — Barnard-Columbia ISO @ 9:23 pm

    In the closing hours of his doomed campaign, McCain and crew decided to launch one last racist smear campaign against Columbia’s very own Professor Rashid Khalidi. Khalidi is a distinguished scholar of the Middle East and Palestinian history in particular.

    Read our defense of Professor Khalidi from our newspaper, Socialist Worker, right here.

    While it is disgustingly predictable that the McCain/Palin camp would attempt to deride anyone who dares to assert the humanity of Palestinians, as the article points out, President-elect Obama has been very silent on the question of Palestinian rights, instead pledging to maintain unconditional U.S. support for Israel during the campaign. Obama’s victory is exciting on many levels, but we’ll have to be loud and visible to make sure he keeps his promise of “change” – and demand that he support Palestinian self-determination!

    November 3, 2008

    ISO Election Night Social

    Filed under: ISO Events — Barnard-Columbia ISO @ 7:51 pm

    It’s that time. The International Socialist Organization is putting on an election night party tomorrow in Harlem to celebrate the end of far too many years of republican rule (and yea, we’re pretty confident about that!) All the details are below and everyone is welcome.

    Feel free to check out our perspective on the elections at Socialist Worker online.
    We’re already thinking about and focused on Nov 5th and the importance of our own actions and activism in the coming weeks, months and years…let’s get ready to raise some demands of our own.

    Drop us a line if you want to walk/train it up there, it’s just a few blocks from campus:


    The 2008 Presidential election is monumental.
    We have seen the first African American named as the Democratic Party nominee.
    CHANGE has been the theme of the election.
    What are the POSSIBILITIES and limitations of the incoming President to bring about change?
    What can activists do to press their demands on the next administration?

    Join us for election night. CELEBRATE the end of decades of Republican rule!
    PARTY with people who are interested in POLITICS and ACTIVISM.
    Share your views and predictions. Talk about the future struggles to come.

    When: 7:30pm November 4, 2008

    Place: 145 W 122nd St, Apt. #3 between Malcolm X Blvd and Adam Clayton Powell Blvd (Lenox and 7th).

    Closest train stops: A/B/C/D 125 St., 2/3 125th St.

    Admission is based on a sliding scale, but we’re asking for about $5 (Refreshments are included)

    For more information, contact

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