The Party of white supremacy and reactionary insurrection. by Fred Klonsky

January 7, 2021

The Party of white supremacy and reactionary insurrection.
by Fred Klonsky

The Republican Party is a white supremacist reactionary insurrectionist Party. Its storm troopers are in the streets outside and inside the capitol. It political representatives sit in the halls of Congress. Its leader is in the White House, momentarily banned from Twitter and Facebook but with his finger still on the nuclear button. His toadies heading the Defense Department and other government agencies.

Hours after the white supremacists in Georgia were defeated by Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Osoff for seats that gave Senate control to the Democrats, Trump gave his storm troopers orders to march on the Capitol and “go wild.”

Some claim elections have consequences.

But not to the white supremacist reactionary insurrectionist party.

They have no interest in elections, because the future of true representative voting does not favor them.

For them the election of Joe Biden by an overwhelming popular majority means nothing more than a call to arms.

For them the election of a Black preacher from Martin Luther King’ s home church and a southern Jew to the Senate from Georgia is the future and a call to go wild.

Four million votes in Georgia in an open and fair election simply provided the excuse to an attempt a coup d’etat.

So far it has failed.

But they are not done.

The white supremacist insurrectionist party organized insurrectionary actions in state capitals across the country.

Springfield included.

In the national Capitol, police opened the barricades to let the insurrectionists in.

Their are videos on the internet of them showing the insurrectionists the way in.

A few dozen were arrested.

Chicago’s head of the Fraternal Order of Police dismissed concerns about the insurrection.

In less than two weeks we may see a new president.

But even if we do, the white supremacist reactionary insurrectionist party and its followers will still be here.

There will be talk of reconciliation. Reaching across the aisle.

That’s all nonsense.

We should be talking about a new Reconstruction.

Under the Tree: A Seminar on Freedom

January 6, 2021

Episode # 19: “A Word on Statistics”

The idea of a “seminar” provides us a vast metaphor, offering infinite roads to travel and pathways to pursue: Poems and Free-writes, Language Arts and Current Events, History and Geography, and much much more. Today, we’ll get to something we’ve been missing up until now: the wide and wonderful world of Mathematics. Of course, everything we humans produce is created in context, and the stuttering cliche that math is just the objective truth neither explains nor justifies the manipulation, deception, damage, and fraud as well as the beauty and power that flies at us from every direction in the name of facts and figures—the mantle of math. Numbers don’t express the gospel—they can easily hide injustices and conceal reality. We’re joined in conversation today with Kari Kakko, an Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education at the University of Pittsburgh, and one of the most thoughtful people working today to rescue math from the many myths and misunderstandings that seem to cling to it like a tangle of ugly barnacles.

The Fight for the Right to Vote

January 5, 2021
“I just want to find 11,780 votes.” Vote theft didn’t start with Fred Klonsky

Do we forget that James Cheney, Micky Schwerner and James Goodman died in Mississippi and were murdered by the Klan for trying to register Black voters there?

Donald Trump caught on tape trying to overturn the results in Georgia is just a dot on a straight line drawn from Reconstruction to today to deny Black votes.

The turnout in November produced the largest number of votes in U.S. history.

This was in spite of continued Black voter suppression across the country.

We can imagine the number if everyone could vote.

Fascists in the Republican Party went after and continue to go after Black voters, city voters and suburban voters who are more than ever not white.

From the poll tax to murder in Mississippi to the seven hours many had to wait to cast a vote to Trump’s phone calls.

A straight line. Year after year after year.

In spite of the huge voter turnout to defeat Trump and in the midst of a pandemic, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott restricted each county in his state to one mail-in ballot drop-box location, regardless of population.

Texas counties with only a few thousand residents had the same number of locations as Harris County which includes parts of Houston, the third-largest county in America.

In Alabama, state officials stopped counties from implementing curbside ballot drop-offs in spite of the raging pandemic

In Florida, less than a month before Election Day, the secretary of state’s office issued new that added requirements for county election officials to meet for setting up ballot drop-off locations.

Charles Blow put it right.

Conservatives in America — whether they were acting under the banner of Democrats a hundred years ago or under the Republican one today — have engaged in a campaign for racial exclusion at the ballot ever since Black people — only Black men at first — gained access to the franchise.

Trump not only attempted to erase Black votes after they were cast, he attempted to suppress them before they were cast. This is nothing new among conservatives, but Trump has dragged the practice out of the back rooms and into the light of day once again, giving it a telegenic, digitally contagious persona.

Fred Klonsky | January 4, 2021 at 8:26 am | Categories: Uncategorized | URL:

Under the Tree, Episode # 18: Violence is…

January 2, 2021

18) “Violence is as American as Cherry Pie”

America’s hyper-violent history of generational slavery based on African ancestry, of genocide, ethnic cleansing and land theft rolls seamlessly into the ongoing crisis of white supremacy, militarism and  militarized police forces, the massive prison-industrial complex, and more. Bullets and bombs aren’t the only ways to kill people—bad hospitals and a predatory health care system kill people; government sponsored enclosures kill people; decomposing schools and brainwashing curriculums kill people. In this episode Bill Ayers and Malik Alim meditate on the word “violence,” and pay attention, not only to the violence that’s visible and overt, but also to the violence that’s cloaked and hidden, and the accompanying feigned innocence—the hypocrisy—which can compound and intensify the original crimes.


BBC interview

January 1, 2021

News from SF

December 30, 2020

Big Guns, Little Butter

December 24, 2020

The U.S. sends a whopping $3.8 billion in military funding to the Israeli government every year. It’s enraging to see this line item in the recent spending bill passed by Congress, especially contrasted by the pathetically inadequate Covid-19 relief package.
As our national crisis deepens, more and more Americans are realizing the deep injustice of U.S. domestic and foreign policy. As Noam Chomsky wrote earlier this week, hope for Palestinian liberation “lies with the public opinion in the U.S. – and public opinion is changing rapidly.”

December 22, 2020

Stop Using Black Children as an Excuse to Open Your Schoolsby Black&Smart (gloria ladson-billings)

It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog. The Corona Virus has forced me to address so many things virtually, that the last thing I’ve had the energy for was sitting down in front of the computer for yet another thing. I didn’t even want to think about an Op-Ed. However, the current chatter about returning to schools has me thinking about how Black children are once again being used to serve the needs of Whites. This is not a new slight-of- hand—claim something serves the needs of “the least of these” but in reality, the rich continue to get richer.The current conversation regarding re-opening school is all about how closed schools are hurting the most vulnerable students—Black students, Latinx students, English Language Learners, poor students, and students with disabilities. But, in truth the parents clamoring the most about opening schools are the parents of the most privileged children. They are concerned that their children’s resumes are being tarnished by missing all of this school. They are comparing their children’s progress with that of their private school peers who they perceive to be moving ahead of them. They are concerned that their kids’ inability to participate in varsity sports and athletics may be hurting their scholarship chances. They are recognizing that having their kids at home and having to plan for each and every hour of their school day or perhaps having to sit beside them and assist with their virtual learning does not help one climb the corporate ladder. Actually, none of these reasons for wanting schools to be opened is a bad one. Just say that’s why you want schools to open!Don’t pretend you have some deep conviction to the education of Black children. If that’s your motivation, where was it last year when school was in session? Weren’t Black children struggling then? Weren’t they over identified for special education placement? Weren’t they more likely to be suspended and expelled? Weren’t they least likely to be placed in honors or Advanced Placement courses? Weren’t their high school graduation rates lower than other students? The rush to open schools “for Black children” is disingenuous and merely a way to cover up the desires of the more privileged students.I decided to write this blog because I was contacted by 2 different reporters who said they heard that Black parents were leery of sending their children back to school and they wanted to understand their rationale. The first reason Black parents are reluctant to have their children return to school is health and safety. More Black children are likely to live in multi-generational homes. This means that even though children are less likely to manifest COVID-19 symptoms, they can still contract and shed the virus and infect a grandparent or parent with underlying conditions. Given the high rate of COVID infections and death in the Black and Brown communities, Black families are not willing to take the risk of transmission. Also, many of the schools our children attend are in buildings that have problems with their HVAC systems. What evidence do Black families have that their children’s schools have been retrofitted with upgraded filters and proper air circulation systems? What is the evidence of improved cleaning and disinfecting in the buildings? Who is monitoring PPE in the schools?Second, Black families are keenly aware that school was not the haven of comfort and safety that some professionals try to pretend they are. Yes, some children live in unsafe and unstable homes, but rather than solve their problems, some students find that school exacerbates their problems. School is the place some students are stigmatized by standing in the “free lunch” line or being pulled out of class for special services. School is the place where their academic struggles are magnified and what they don’t have (i.e., two parents at home. new clothes, fancy school supplies) is on constant display. School is a place where adults yell at them for not knowing an answer or not completing an assignment or project. No, school can be a place of a special kind of violence.I understand the American Academy of Pediatrics encourages students to return to school to address their social emotional needs. However, what has your local school said or done that suggests students’ social emotional needs will be a priority? How have Black students’ teachers conveyed that to them? Indeed, I have heard from a number of Black parents that their children are less stressed and less anxious in virtual school. Some Black parents indicate that the school has reached out to them more during the pandemic than they ever did when students attended face-to-face school. Many Black parents are finally having a school year that does not involve constantly running up to the school to deal with school personnel.The decision to return to in-person school is deeply personal. We all have our own reasons for why we think it’s a good idea (or not). Just don’t pretend you want schools opened for those “poor Black kids” when what you want is school opened for your own kids!Stay Black and Smart!


December 21, 2020

Capitalism 101

December 18, 2020

Here’s another reason you (who are reading this) would be terrible capitalists, and will have to leave that filthy work to the well-mannered barbarians with their MBAs:“The New Hot Investment on Wall Street: Cold Storage of Vaccines” NYTimes, Headline, 12/16/20