I'm excited for him because of all the organizations he's investigated, the folks we've heard and talked with at Workers World have been consistently knowledgable and insightful, whether they belong the the party itself or to one of the organizations that the WWP supports, such as International Action Committee and United National Antiwar Coalition. Those organizations aren't exactly socialist or communist, but they all point at imperialism, capitalism and militarism as the root causes of all the trouble we're experiencing today. A number of people sit on the boards of two or three organizations, so there's a lot of overlap.
The other day, someone I particularly admire, Sara Flounders, asked Pinko to join her for coffee yesterday to discuss WWP in general and the process of officially joining the party. Sara knows all about military stuff in the middle east, and NGOs that may do some good things but ultimately are promoting and protecting the corporate agenda. Bill Dores knows a lot about that stuff too, only I think he's more focused on Russia. If there were a fan club for Red Writers and Activists - I'd be in it since we can definitely say that I'm a fan of Sara and Bill.
I suspect it's time to recognize that I'm a communist sympathizer, but I'm not joining the party if for no other reason than I don't feel like doing the reading. Officially joining the party takes about six months of reading and conversation with a mentor. I'll be interested to hear what Pinko has to say about the readings, and I like to attend meetings where people are reporting back on conditions in places like Honduras, for example, where real estate developers have been pushing people from their homes for some years. It's kind of like in Houston years ago when one of the developers rented a house to notorious drug dealers to clear out the neighborhood. Once the hard working, blue collar folks had moved out, the developer leveled the land and built a 70s version of McMansions. The good ol' boys celebrated his business acumen. In Honduras we're seeing the same strategy on a national scale: US business interests install the bad guys, the poor people are driven from their homes and bingo - an all inclusive resort retreat appears on the pristine coastline. The main difference is that the workers in Houston could afford to move somewhere else, and the economic refugees from Honduras have so few options that they piled onto buses for a dangerous trip through Mexico, where more bad guys often murder them for kicks, only to be greeted by racists who'd cheerfully watch them starve.
I learned about Honduras from a woman named Lucy Pagoda who works with New York May 1 Coalition. She was at the Solidarity Center one night telling us about the Garifuna. I learned about real estate developers in Houston from my mother, who is practically as much of an expert about corruption in Houston real estate as Sara Flouders is about the US military in the middle east.
The point, here, though is that I would much prefer to learn about stuff by talking with interesting people than by reading philosophical texts, and there are always a bunch of interesting people at the Solidarity Center. Pinko and I went to the New Year's Eve fundraiser and Lynne Stewart was there for a little while. She's the lawyer who represented the Blind Sheikh and was sentenced to 10 years in prison for passing messages between him and some supporters. Now that I've been in the same room with her and have contributed a few bucks to WWP's publishing efforts, we can safely assume that I've landed on any lists I wasn't already on for stuff I said here on the blog back in the day when Sarah Palin's underlings and various military intelligence offices were stalking bloggers. It was all over the day I mentioned Bill Ayers visited the school where I was teaching and I got his seal of approval. Bill Ayers is interesting too, but I still haven't read anything he ever wrote.
For the record, I would like to say that I don't think killing a bunch of dissenters, or purges as the actions of Mao and Stalin might be called, is a good idea. For one, I barely know anything about the history of the Chinese revolution and Mao. And two, what I do know about communism/socialism/anarchism and revolutionary theory (again it's minimal, but still) the problem with those guys is that they were statists who thought they should be in charge of the state as opposed to simply representing the collective. It's also my understanding that any time any communists make some headway in a revolutionary sort of way - like with the Paris Communes - the surrounding capitalists undermine the process as much as humanly possible so the capitalists stay in charge. If you need an example of the lengths The Owners will go to stay in charge, just look at the Koch Brothers. There is a pile of data on those douchebags - but I like Koch Brothers Exposed, a project from Brave New Films.
Pinko will have ample opportunity to work on his revolutionary reading list now that he's got an hour commute to work and back, and a good portion of his day at work is spent at one of the airports waiting to pick up someone at the luggage claim. So far, he's enjoying his work as a livery driver - also known as For Hire driver. He looks real cute in his new black suit, and he's such a personable fellow, not to mention a good driver, that a former super model has listed him as one of her preferred drivers. The car service for which he drives handles a bunch of entertainment and media accounts. I'm pretty sure that we used this service for all our driving needs back when I worked in public relations. He's driven sports casters, comedy writers and HBO producers this week, plus some guy who was handling a family event for the Rangers hockey team.
When he comes home from work, Pinko is cheerful and chatty. I imagine that if a big dog had gone riding in a car, and came home to tell his people everything he saw while he was hanging his head out the window all day - that dog would sound a lot like Pinko when he gets home from work. Gigi says that the way I talk about Pinko sometimes reminds her of a classic children's book, Good Dog Carl. I got it for him for Christmas.
He has often mentioned that he feels like a dog that has been rescued from the pound by a very nice lady which I suppose makes him a little like Maxi the Taxi Dog - in a book I have read several times, as a matter of fact.
At first, it seemed a little odd that we feel the same way about each other as we've felt about our dogs, but having someone who loves you as unconditionally as a dog loves you is about as good as it gets.
It's so good, I'm going to declare it a thing of beauty (#079-101 in Explore Beauty, a challenge from realia).