Link Roundup: April 8

Good morning, Flood readers! Today’s link roundup is marked by an image of jellyfish, simply because I went to a party a few weeks ago where tentacles formed a significant part of the general aesthetic, and they’ve been on my mind ever since. I’m sure there are some good articles out there diving into the various symbolic, cultural and ecological implications of the jellyfish, but they do not appear in this roundup. Anyway! As always I have a bevy of treats in store for you, so please read on …

Local Brisbane writer, radio presenter, troublemaker and all-around good egg Andy Paine has written a thought-provoking blog post on Chelsea Manning, which I recommend for your reading this morning. Andy uses Chelsea’s predicament (she is in prison again, although since this blog was published she has been released from solitary confinement) to think more broadly about solidarity, especially with those who are not ‘like us’ or whose views we might disagree with. This is especially pertinent given that Julian Assange - who, as Andy notes, Chelsea has failed to stand in solidarity with - is possibly about to get evicted from the Ecuadorian Embassy and face extradition to the US.

I haven’t written much about Brexit here because frankly nothing ever seems to happen with it. Theresa May and the Tories seem to have been circling the drain now for about a year, and continue to do so at an ever-more excruciating pace, despite dramatic headlines about Brexit crunch-time nearly every week. Nonetheless, in an effort to keep somewhat up with the times, here’s a piece by migrant rights’ organiser Gracie Mae Bradley on Brexit and migrant workers’ rights. “The risk is that rather than recognising that Brexit presents a threat to the rights of every worker and therefore a moment for a solidarity that has previously been absent, trade unions, political parties and civil society will accept concessions for certain workers that sell others – invariably migrants – up the river, as has already been the case for far too long.”

Can you imagine a more exciting and outrageously stressful job than being Bernie Sanders’ campaign manager? I frankly cannot. Ari Rabin-Havt has that honour, and his Twitter is full of interesting and exciting little tidbits. Here’s one: “The city of Malcom, IA has a population of 287. 230 showed up for @BernieSanders town hall.” That is organising!

Last week, Griffith student, activist, and purveyor of Brisbane culture Andrew Beitzel posted about a cooked racist Indigenous Studies lecture he attended, wherein students were told (among other things) that German missions were good, actually. The post went viral, Andrew and others got a meeting with the Griffith Pro Vice Chancellor and the relevant head of department wherein they presented a set of demands to address the situation, and they won. As a result of their organising, the lecturer in question has stepped down from the course (which will now be led by an Aboriginal lecturer), Andrew and other community members will be on the panel of the course to discuss the issues he raised in his post, and Griffith has agreed to restructure the Indigenous Studies major entirely. Big fkn well done to Andrew and all involved. Andrew has also discussed this on community and indigenous radio project The Wire, which is well worth a listen.

In advance of the Israeli elections on April 9, New York Magazine journalist Abraham Riesman went to Israel/Palestine in search of the Israeli left. This article honestly leaves quite a bit to be desired in its mealy-mouthed-ness (ed: definitely a word) around Israel and its strange final-paragraph embrace of a wholly imaginary ‘good Zionism’, but I suppose you can’t expect much more from the mainstream American press these days. For me, it was still worth reading to get a handle on how leftists in both Israel and Palestine think about political ‘change from within’, and the nuances and contradictions of modern Zionist liberalism.

To finish up this week’s roundup, please feast your eyes upon the most wholesome exchange ever recorded in human history. So much for the dirtbag left, hey.

Until next week!

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash