Monthly Review | March 30, 2020
In an interview with roape.net, ecosocialist and writer Ian Angus discusses the environmental crisis, the Anthropocene and Covid-19. He argues that new viruses, bacteria and parasites spread from wildlife to humans because capital is bulldozing primary forests, replacing them with profitable monocultures. Ecosocialists must patiently explain that permanent solutions will not be possible so long as capital rules the Earth.
Can you tell readers of ROAPE about yourself? Your background, life, activism and politics etc.
I was born in Canada and have lived here for my entire life. As a teenager, I was inspired by the Cuban and Vietnamese revolutions, and became active in the Marxist left while still a student. I helped organize anti-war demonstrations and support for Latin American refugees in the 1960s and 1970s, and I wrote frequently for socialist publications in Canada and the U.S. My first book, published in 1981, was Canadian Bolsheviks, a history of the early years of the Communist Party of Canada.
In view of some Asian countries slowing down the spread of the coronavirus, officially Covid-19, pandemic, the World Health Organization (WHO) experts have warned: No country should let its guard down.
“Let me be clear. The epidemic is far from over in Asia and the Pacific,” said Takeshi Kasai, WHO Regional Director for the Western Pacific.
Takeshi Kasai was talking to reporters on Tuesday.Read More »
The coronavirus pandemic is influencing the entire human world. The pandemic’s impact and the changes it will bring are searched. After the crisis is over, there will be many changes. The longer the pandemic lasts, the more people may embrace new aspects of lifestyle.
The global oil industry has been hit hard. Oil prices have crushed. Long-term viability of many of the oil producers are being questioned. In some cases, the costs of shutting down a well are so high that drillers are paying customers to take oil away.Read More »
A CHAMPION OF PUBLIC HEALTH
The demise of Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz is a huge loss to the global public health. As the leader of the island nation of Cuba for nearly half-a-century, Fidel not only led exemplary initiatives to ensure healthcare for all within the country, but also ensured that Cuban doctors were the first to reach out to people in developing countries during natural disasters. Under Fidel, Cuban medical scientists also developed cutting-edge measures to combat diseases, ranging from meningitis to cancers.Read More »
Several Caribbean island countries have expressed the gratitude of their peoples with a warm welcome as Cuban doctors arrive, offering a helping hand with invaluable medical support to the battle against Covid-19, as a gesture of solidarity.
It was already late into the night in the Lesser Antilles when an airplane landed on the main island of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to deliver its precious human cargo, Cuban health professionals arriving to help.
At the foot of the plane’s stairway, stood Ralph Gonsalves, Premier and dear friend of the Cuban Revolution, who stepped forward to receive them, and found no other words for welcome and gratitude than to evoke the founding fathers of Cuba’s vocation for healing. He thanked “the Cuba of Fidel and Raul”, and President Díaz-Canel, the “continuator.”Read More »
IT is said that in a crisis everybody becomes a socialist; free markets take a back seat, to the benefit of the working people. During the Second World War for instance, when universal rationing was introduced in Britain, the average worker became better nourished than before. Likewise, private companies get commandeered to produce goods for the war effort, thus introducing de facto planning.
Something of the sort is happening today under the impact of the pandemic. In country after country there is a socialisation of healthcare and of production of some essential goods, which markedly departs from the capitalist norm; and the more severe the crisis the greater is the degree of socialisation. Thus Spain, the second worst-hit European country after Italy, has nationalised all private hospitals to cope with the crisis: they are all now under the control of the government. Even Donald Trump is directing private companies to produce goods urgently needed during the pandemic. Tightening government control over production does not just characterise China at present; it marks US policy as well, not to mention several European countries.Read More »
The tragic pictures of migrant families walking hundreds of kilometers to their villages in India are now there for all to see. For them, the alternative was to either stay and starve, or make the perilous trek back to their villages. As they are saying, the coronavirus may kill us, but if we stay without food, hunger surely will. Is this a catastrophe that should have been anticipated, but was not? Why didn’t the government see that this would happen? Particularly, as people thronged stations and depots, leaving for home even before the “janata curfew” [ a voluntary people’s curfew called for by prime minister Narendra Modi] on March 23? Do we conclude that the government and its officials – including the PM – completely forgot the poor while crafting the lockdown policy?Read More »