The 2019 Socialism Conference, sponsored by American leftist juggernauts the DSA, Jacobin magazine, and ISO’s Haymarket Books, features regime-change activists from multiple US government-funded NGOs
From July 4 to 7, thousands of left-wing activists from across the United States are gathering in Chicago for the 2019 Socialism Conference.
At this event, some of the most powerful institutions on the American socialist — but avowedly anti-communist — left have brought together a motley crew of regime-change activists to demonize Official Enemies of Washington.
One anti-China panel at the conference features speakers from two different organizations that are both bankrolled by the US government’s soft-power arm the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), a group founded out of Ronald Reagan’s CIA in the 1980s to grease the wheels of right-wing regime-change efforts and promote “free markets” across the planet.
Another 2019 Socialism Conference panel rails against the socialist governments of Nicaragua and Cuba — two-thirds of John Bolton’s “troika of tyranny” — with outspoken proponents of regime change. One of the speakers, Dan La Botz, hosted an event in 2018 that featured right-wing Nicaraguan activists wearing masks and disguised as students, who were junketed to meet with Republican lawmakers in Washington by the US government-funded right-wing organization Freedom House.
The 2019 Socialism Conference is advertised under the catchy slogan: “No borders, no bosses, no binaries.”
Each ticket comes in at a neat $105 per person (or a $250 “solidarity rate,” for the hardcore supporters) — and this doesn’t include the rate for the rooms at the hotel where it’s held.
For years, the Socialism Conference functioned as a platform for the International Socialist Organization (ISO)
Also featured in the February 5 photo of the meeting with US-backed coup leader Juan Guaidó was the anti-Maduro liberal intellectual Edgardo Lander, who is popular in anti-communist left-wing circles in the US but almost unknown inside Venezuela. Like Marea Socialista, Lander has enjoyed very positive coverage in the progressive Anglo press.
Democracy Now, which has advanced regime-change propaganda on Syria on repeated occasions, offered its platform to Lander this May. Hosts Amy Goodman and Nermeen Sheikh lobbed softball questions at the intellectual, and failed to disclose that he met with Guaidó.
In his Democracy Now segment, Lander admitted that his outfit is a “small collective,” whereas the Chavista movement he criticizes is massively popular in working-class barrios across the country.
The International Socialist Organization has played a similar role in the US, with little visibility outside the left and almost no grassroots base.
Now that the ISO has disbanded, its veterans can reach into the rapidly growing ideologically diffuse world of Democratic Socialists of America, using platforms like Socialism 2019 to infect DSA’s youthful core with the imperial politics of regime change – but always “from the left,” and always “from below.”