Lay Offs Rock Virginia

Colonial Downs workers protest lay offs. Taken from CBS 6.

Despite false claims that the unemployment rate is shrinking, Governor McAuliffe of Virginia recently announced that he would lay off 565 state employees in order to close Virginia’s $2.4 billion budget gap. He also said the government would not hire as many new state police as intended. Not hiring more police is a good thing for the working people who have routinely been turned into targets and scapegoats by authority figures, but the fact that they are even cutting back police is telling.

Cut backs on federal spending have also lead to job losses for Virginians who work for, or are contractors for, the federal government, especially in Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia.

In the private sector, Colonial Downs, the state’s only horse racing track, will soon be closed. Management was unable to come to an agreement with its horsemen’s association, resulting in the owners giving up their racing license. All workers will lose their jobs on November 1st.

The unemployment rate for the whole country may be going down on paper, but in reality it is unchanged. Less people are considered unemployed because their benefits ran out, not because they were able to find work. At least half of the available jobs are only part-time, making it hard for working-class people to get enough hours to support themselves. Given that it is the end of the year, many of the new jobs are only seasonal and will end in lay offs by February at the latest. The real unemployment rate is 12.6 percent.

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Richmond Landlord Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison

A local slumlord in Richmond, Virginia was sentenced to twenty years in federal prison earlier this week. Landlord Billy G. Jefferson Jr. took advantage of historic tax credits in order to commit multi-million dollar acts of fraud.

Jefferson was originally arrested on state charges for his tax credit scam, and the investigation lead to federal charges. Not only did he lie and say he was going to renovate historic sites in order to gain tax credits, he attempted to hide the money he owed to the government. His methods included hiding the money in a camouflaged PVC pipe, gambling it away in Las Vegas, and an aborted attempt to flee the country for the United Kingdom.

What the media isn’t covering, however, is the way he treated his tenants. Many former renters have come forth on social media to criticize Jefferson. He is accused of doing things like not returning security deposits after being ordered to by a judge, leaving his apartments in disrepair, intimidating tenants, falsely accusing them of writing bad checks, and trying to force his tenants to switch to a specific cable and internet provider. Of course, these are not the crimes that landed him in prison. When you lie and cheat the government or a large corporation, you get in trouble. When you do the same to regular people, such as your tenants or customers, it is overlooked.

Capitalism is a system where the big thieves jail the smaller thieves, and the best honest, working-class people can hope for is to be ignored instead of preyed on like field mice.

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Our Streets Bucket of Junk Mail Challenge!

Guess what, all of my WordPress and Facebook followers have been challenged. You have 24 hours to make a video of yourself dumping a bucket of junk mail on your head. If can’t do it, you have to share something from Our Streets. If you take the challenge, you can challenge three other people yourself.

To highlight the wasteful nature of capitalism, I decided to dump a bucket of junk mail on my head. Over 100 million trees are cut down annually to create junk mail, and over 51 million metric tons of greenhouse gases are created by junk mail production.

Here is a video of me explaining this concept, then dumping some junk mail on myself.

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Swedish Police Trample Protesters With Horses for Being in Road

Taken from RT.com

At least 10 people were injured after mounted police charged into a crowd of anti-fascist protesters in Malmö, Sweden yesterday. 1,500 people gathered in the city’s Limhamn Square to protest, and hopefully block, a hate rally featuring a speech from Stefan Jacobsson. Jacobsson is the leader of a neo-Nazi group known as the Swedes’ Party (Svenskarnas Parti).

Demonstrators are reported to have been using firecrackers and smoke bombs, but video shows protesters simply getting in the middle of a road, prompting the police to charge them and trample them with horses. 10 people were injured, and five suffered serious injuries for simply being in the road.

Jacobsson was booed when he appeared on stage, and the crowd chanted “no Nazis on our streets.”

From Ferguson to Malmö, from Florida to Greece, the police are the stormtroopers of fascism. Their job is not to protect the people, but the property of the rich. Their jobs are not to keep the peace, but to maintain “law and order” by behaving lawlessly against the poor and the working-class. The police and their wealthy state and business masters want racism to divide us regular people so we will fight each other and not them.

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Raoul Vaneigem on Invention

“When the conditions in which time is money have been abolished, occupations will cease being dominated by profit and social representation and will be organized according to the criteria of pleasure. Do-it-yourself activities, though they are now usually rather trivial, contain a kernel of a creativity that only awaits the moment when it can develop without constraint. Once it is able to make full use of the most sophisticated technologies, this creativity will enrich humanity within a few months with more ingenious and enjoyable discoveries and inventions than were produced in centuries of forced labor.” – Raoul Vaneigem, From Wildcat Strike to Total Self Management

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Anarchists Target Chapel Hill Police HQ

Originally published here.

In the early hours of August 14th, three police cruisers were smashed out at the Chapel Hill Police Department Headquarters in Chapel Hill, NC. A message was also painted on one of the cars, reading, “For Luke.”

This was done as a small gesture of solidarity with Luke O’Donovan, of Atlanta, GA, who was recently sentenced to two years in prison for defending himself against five homophobic attackers. We hope this brings a smile to his face.

We also carried out this act in solidarity with the rioters and looters of Ferguson, MO, who, in the face of continued brutality by racist police, have inspired the world with their courageous resistance against the forces of state, capital, and white supremacy. May their insurrection spread.

Both as small groups and entire neighborhoods, it is possible to fight back.

- some anarchists

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What is Marxism? (Karl Marx + Super Mario Bros.) – 8-Bit Philosophy

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