Works from Buffy trimmedThe name of the blog is a line from Buffy the Vampire Slayer that made me laugh. It’s also what a lot of people say about socialism.

If you repost

The content of posts is subject to change (with corrections, additions, improvements), so I don’t recommend copying and pasting an entire article from my site onto another site. If you do that, you may be stuck with something that becomes obsolete. The safest thing to do is to quote the beginning of an article and give a link for the rest.

In any case, please credit me by name and give a link back to this site.

About me

When I was growing up in an all-white suburb of Cleveland, the movements of the 1960s pointed me in the direction of radical social activism. It was the Black Panthers and especially Malcolm X who pointed me in the direction of revolution. I started to write and organize as a revolutionary socialist in the early 1980s, and I joined the International Socialist Organization in 1988. I remained an active, and sometimes a leading, member of the ISO until March 2019, when I voted with the majority to dissolve the organization.

I’m still a revolutionary socialist. I live in Oakland, about a mile, as it happens, from where the Panthers were founded. I now belong to the Democratic Socialists of America.

3 thoughts on “About

  1. Here are some sources I used for that talk.

    On law and order in the European Middle Ages:

    Tigar, Michael. Law and the Rise of Capitalism. New York: Monthly Review Press, 2000.

    On the working class and the police in England:

    Thompson, E. P. The Making of the English Working Class. Vintage, 1966.

    Farrell, Audrey. Crime, Class and Corruption. Bookmarks, 1995.

    For some history in the US and insight into the functions of the police:

    Williams, Kristian. Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America. Revised Edition. South End Press, 2007.

    Silberman, Charles E. Criminal Violence, Criminal Justice. First Edition edition. New York: Vintage, 1980.

    The key source on the evolution of the police in the major cities of the US:

    Bacon, Selden Daskam. The Early Development of American Municipal Police: A Study of the Evolution of Formal Controls in a Changing Society. Two volumes. University Microfilms, 1939.

    Specific sources on New York, Philadelphia and the South:

    Gilje, Paul A. The Road to Mobocracy: Popular Disorder in New York City, 1763-1834. The University of North Carolina Press, 1987.

    Steinberg, Allen. The Transformation of Criminal Justice: Philadelphia, 1800-1880. 1st edition. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1989.

    Starobin, Robert S. Industrial Slavery in the Old South. New York: Oxford University Press, 1970.

    On the early years of public schooling in the US:

    Bowles, Samuel, and Herbert Gintis. Schooling In Capitalist America: Educational Reform and the Contradictions of Economic Life. Reprint. Haymarket Books, 2011.

  2. Hi, I love love love your writing style! It makes learning about history easier. Can you write something about the National Anthem, Francis Scott Key, War of 1812, etc.? Thank you!

    • Thanks Aimee! The style for a lot of this stuff starts with spoken word. In a speaking situation, anything complicated needs to be spun out in connected steps if the audience is going to follow it. And the thread has to circle back fairly often to consolidate points well enough to build on them.

      I’m researching the time period you’re talking about, but right now my focus is deeper South than FS Key and Fort McHenry. Trying to follow up some threads in Louisiana and Florida.

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