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Pierre Beaudet's Blog
Pierre Beaudet, active in international solidarity and social movements in Quebec, is founder of Quebec NGO Alternatives, and Editor of the Nouveaux cahiers du socialisme. He blogs on rabble.ca in English and French.
Everyone here knows that Harper’s neo-conservative government represents a serious threat. In the last election the Conservatives elected only five MPs (out of a total of 75) and there is nothing to suggest that this massive rejection by Québec voters is about to change. The latest polls show support for Harper at less than 12 per cent. Naturally, the Québec left -- both the people active in social movements and those involved in progressive politics (mostly Québec Solidaire) -- is in sync with popular opinion on this score. The question, however, is what options remain for the left beyond an ‘anything-but-Harper’ position.
Published twice annually beginning in 2009, the Nouveaux Cahiers du socialisme grew out of the efforts of a group of people involved in Québec social movements and the political left. In 2006 we formed a collective called the Collectif d’action politique (CAP). Not affiliated with any political party or group, CAP seeks to partake in and contribute to the debates and struggles of today’s progressive social movements. At the same time, we want to develop an in-depth analysis of contemporary capitalism and participate in re-imagining socialism for the 21st century.
There is probably no one more qualified to describe the 60-year struggle in Quebec to build a democratic and progressive left party than Paul Cliche. As a journalist and union activist, Cliche (who will be 80 years old in May of this year) was at various times a member of the Parti social-démocratique (PSD), the Parti socialiste du Québec (PSQ), the Front d'action politique (FRAP), and is currently a prominent member of Québec solidaire (QS).
The carnage of January 7 in Paris will remain in our memory as a criminal act against the freedom of expression. Over the years, the scathing humor of Charb, Cabu and the other members of Charlie Hebdo made us sit up and take notice even when we disagreed with them. They, wherever they are, must be laughing mirthlessly now that the right and the far right, whose nostalgia for colonialism was regularly denounced by the magazine, now beatify them as victims of the enemies of "civilization."
La tuerie du 7 janvier à Paris restera dans la mémoire comme un acte criminel contre la liberté d’expression. Charb, Cabu et les autres animateurs de Charlie-Hebdo nous avaient pendant des années fait réfléchir avec leur humour décapant. Aujourd’hui que la droite et l’extrême-droite les sanctifient comme des victimes des ennemis de la 'civilisation', ils doivent rire jaune quelque part dans les nuages du firmament, eux qui avaient dénoncé le colonialisme tellement prisés par les nostalgiques du colonialisme.
For decades, intellectuals have asked themselves what they could do best to participate in the process of transformation. In the earlier stage of the socialist movement, the paradox was that on the one hand, the working class was to lead that process, and on the other hand, it was unable, on its own, to develop the "scientific" theory required to push the struggle forward. In the fissures of that tension, leading intellectuals became the de facto leaders of the mass socialist parties of the early 1900s.
Après la conquête, l’Empire britannique a mis en place dans ce qui n’était pas encore le Canada un violent système de prédation. Les paysans dans la vallée du Saint-Laurent étaient réduits à la misère, d’où l’exode continu vers les États-Unis. Les marchands anglais vivaient dans l’opulence pendant que dans les villes, la misère faisait des centaines de morts, notamment avec la maladie des « pauvres », la tuberculose. Pire encore était le sort des autochtones, refoulés dans leurs « réserves », pourchassés pour avoir commis le crime de réclamer leurs terres. Cette histoire bien sûr, plus personne n’en parle aujourd’hui.
Canadian Imperialism and Militarism: Fighting Back
Event organized by the Nouveaux Cahiers du socialisme and Canadian Dimension at the Social People’s Forum. University of Ottawa, August 23, 2014, 9h00 August 23, at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Ottawa U.
There have been many discussions and meetings about the People's Social Forum (PSF) in Quebec lately, and generally speaking, most people think it is a timely and necessary event. If you check the website of the PSF, you will see many on-going and forthcoming events in Quebec concerning it, which show the commitment and engagement of many Quebec social movements.