July 29, 2022

July 29, 2022



Applications open for 2nd round of local DSA endorsements

Labor WG hosts DMV-area Labor Notes Conference debrief & meet-up — July 30 at 12pm

Montgomery County council delays vote on rent control bill

Applications open for 2nd round of local DSA endorsements

After our successful first set of endorsed campaigns during the primaries in Maryland and DC, the chapter is now accepting applications for endorsement again. This week, the Steering Committee reset the schedule for candidates to submit endorsement questionnaires to the Political Engagement Committee and for chapter members to submit resolutions for endorsement. Both must be completed by September 1st.

Chapter members will have time to debate endorsements in the slack and write statements for and against endorsement before the September GBM on the 18th, when the chapter will debate possible new endorsements. For any questions, please ask in #2022-pec or email pec@mdcdsa.org.

Resolutions for endorsement require 5 cosponsors. You can find both our general candidate questionnaire and our Board of Education candidate questionnaire here, and you can read our Endorsement Handbook here.

Labor WG hosts DMV-area Labor Notes Conference debrief & meet-up — July 30 at 12pm

4,000 union members and activists, including several MDC DSA members, met at the Labor Notes Conference in Chicago to “put the movement back in the labor movement.” The Labor Working Group will host a meet-up to discuss what we learned, how it can be applied to our work in the DMV and opportunities to get involved. 

Join the Metro DC DSA Labor working group at Denizens Brewing (1115 East-West Hwy, Silver Spring, MD 20910) on Saturday, July 30 at 12pm for food, drinks and union power!

Montgomery County council delays vote on rent control bill

On July 27, tenants and community activists rallied outside the Montgomery County Council to stress the need for rent stabilization in the county. Despite a strong showing by local activists (which included local DSA members, CASA Maryland, and dem nominee for District 5 MoCo Council Kristin Mink), the Council declined to move a temporary rent stabilization bill forward. Council president Gabe Albornoz made several dismissive remarks about the need for stabilization. Read more from DCist here.


Rents in Montgomery County are expected to skyrocket while the Council takes a vacation (the last stabilization measure ended in May with a three-month warning period that landlords had to wait before raising rents; that period ends in August). Tenants in the County are already facing rent increases of 20% or 50%, translating to hundreds or thousands of dollars per month in increased housing costs. It is no exaggeration to say that thousands face imminent displacement. Residents will have the opportunity to push through stabilization in September, when the Council reconvenes. Maryland residents interested in getting involved in this push can join the #montgomery-county channel in the chapter slack.


Tell McDuffie: We need the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights!

A Domestic Workers Bill of Rights would be a huge and much needed first step to ensuring that domestic workers in DC are able to work with safety and dignity – but the bill’s journey to passage just suffered a major setback. In March, At-Large Councilmember Elissa Silverman introduced the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in the DC Council. And, in June, the bill had a hearing in the Labor and Workforce Development Committee, where over 90 witnesses testified in strong support. However, after that hearing, Chairman Mendelson changed the committee referrals of this bill to add a third committee referral, the Committee on Business and Economic Development. Click here to contact Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie, who chairs that committee. Tell him why DC needs a Domestic Workers Bill of Rights!

Stomp Out Slumlords DMV wide meeting — Aug 8 at MLK Library

On August 8th, Stomp Out Slumlords will host an in-person DMV meeting with tenant leaders and organizers from across DC, Maryland and Virginia. The delegation that attended the Autonomous Tenants Union Network Convention last month in Los Angeles will report back on the experience and the lessons learned from other tenant unions. We will also discuss next steps for building the tenant movement across the DMV. The event will take place at 6pm at MLK Library (901 G St NW, Washington, DC 20001).


Ward 4 Democrats forum showcases benefits of social housing in DC — legislative hearing expected this fall


On July 9th, DC’s Ward 4 Democrats hosted a panel on the benefits of social housing – a policy proposal designed to decommodify housing and address rising housing costs in the District (see full recording here). Democratic Socialist Janeese Lewis-George (DC’s Ward 4 Council Rep) introduced the groundbreaking legislation earlier this year. The bill currently enjoys majority support on the DC Council and CM Anita Bonds has committed to hearing this fall.

Want to learn more about social housing? On a recent episode of WPFW’s community watch and comment, CM Janeese Lewis-George outlined the proposal and the benefits it would bring to District residents. You can also read about social housing in a brief recently released by the DC’s Tenants Advocacy Coalition (TENAC).


Political Education WG seeking reading group coordinators

Sign up here if you’re interested in coordinating a reading group for our fall sessions! We’ve got a great lineup already but welcome additional reading groups and coordinators. We’re happy to help you develop an idea and turn it into an engaging reading and discussion group. Use the form to get in touch with Jackson and Liz.

NoVA Branch Exec Committee is seeking new Co-Chair 

Current NOVA Branch chair Janette C is stepping down to better manage her DSA workload. Please nominate yourself and/or someone else to run for this seat. You must be a NoVA resident and DSA member to nominate or be nominated. This will be a short term appointment. More info and nomination form here. Relatedly, NoVA members should attend the August 11th Branch Meeting at which we will vote on a critical bylaws amendment to expand the three-person NoVA Exec to a five-person Steering.


Elect socialists in Northern Virginia — electoral meeting Sunday, July 31 at 7pm

MDC DSA’s NoVA branch will be hosting a kick-off meeting this Sunday at 7pm to discuss electoral strategy in Northern Virginia. 


PLUS – NoVA Tenant Organizing monthly meeting next Wednesday, August 3rd at 6pm – so please RSVP. Join the NoVA branch to support fired-up tenants ready and willing to fight their exploitative landlords in Northern Virginia.


Migrant justice organizers disappointed by Mayor Bowser’s response to immigrant busing

After weeks of requested support by migrant justice organizers in the DMV, DC Mayor Bowser submitted a request by the DC National Guard to aid in arrival processing for migrant buses arriving in DC. Sanctuary DMV, a migrant justice group operating in the DMV, released a statement yesterday expressing disappointment over Bowser’s move: “Instead of recognizing that the DC community has responded beautifully in recent weeks…[Bowser] is choosing to further traumatize people arriving to DC with a militarized response…as always, the Mayor continues to invest in a militarized response to all social and humanitarian problems in our city, by means of investing in police and requesting the national guard. The continued militarization and criminalization of poverty and immigration will contribute to harms to both arriving migrants and the DC community at large.” 

For the past few months, Texas Governor Greg Abbott had been bussing migrants to DC as part of a cynical stunt designed to frustrate Democratic leadership. Mutual aid networks in DC had been responding to meet the needs of migrants, but had become exhausted as political leadership both locally and nationally avoided responding to the crisis.

Build Back Less — tentative deal reached on limited federal government spending package

There’s plenty of MSM coverage of the Schumer/Manchin Build Back Less Bad deal announced in midweek, but the best one-liner comes (via Punchbowl News) from a reliably progressive source: ‘Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, added “It’s never too late to do the right thing.” Read more about these developments in The American Prospect.


Publications Schedule:

Weekly Updates will be tirelessly published during the running-dog days of August, on Fridays, August 5, 12, 19 and 26. The July/August issue of the Washington Socialist newsletter will add new articles to those Updates during August as they are submitted and edited (look for some great upcoming articles on the primary election results). 

The next full newsletter issue is our Labor Day special, scheduled for September 2 as the Labor Day weekend begins. Send articles anytime; hit us up at thesocialist@mdcdsa.org or join the permanent gaggle and get early reactions to your work in our Slack channel, #publications — non-judgmental collaboration is what we do. 

Need to get fired up about writing for the Labor Day issue? Here are some fine past examples from the Washington Socialist Archives: on labor history, labor’s essential relation to the climate change fight, labor, DSA and the Bernie campaign (both of them), focusing on our own workplaces and still more. So make it about today and tomorrow.

And dip into our Washington Socialist Topic Hub to explore specific socialist issues as we have grappled with them over the years in the pages of the newsletter. A beach read on your phone; no need to protect paper from coconut oil.


Saturday, July 30th

noon – 4pm | DMV-Area Labor Notes Conference Debrief & Meet-Up

Sunday, July 31 

7 – 8:30pm | NoVA Branch DSA Electoral Strategy Meeting


Monday, August 1

6:30 – 7:30pm | Medicare 4 All Working Group biweekly meeting

Tuesday, August 2

7:30 – 9:30pm |  Caliban and the Witch reading group week 6

Wednesday, August 3 

6 – 7pm | NoVA Tenant Organizing Committee monthly meeting

7 – 8pm | Post Scarcity Anarchism reading club week 7 

8 – 9pm  Why You Should Join DSA/New Member Orientation

Thursday, August 4

6:30 – 7:30pm | Cuba Campaign Committee planning meeting

6 – 8:30pm | NoVA Branch DSA Social Meetup  (in person)

Wednesday, August 10

7 – 8pm | Post Scarcity Anarchism reading club week 7 

8 – 9pm  Why You Should Join DSA/New Member Orientation

Thursday, August 11

6:30 – 7:30pm | Cuba Campaign Committee planning meeting

6:30 – 8pm | NoVA Branch MDC DSA Monthly Organizing Meeting (hybrid meeting)

Monday, August 15

6:30 – 7:30pm | Medicare 4 All Working Group biweekly meeting

Sunday, August 21 

7 – 9pm | MDC DSA General Body Meeting

Sunday, August 28


5 – 7pm | International Working Group Monthly Meeting



Abortion Access Fundraisers | DC Abortion Fund

Organizations and advocates across the DMV have been hosting fundraising events to benefit reproductive care access and our very own DC Abortion Fund (DCAF). The last events of July include: DC Brau/Eat Well fundraiser at The Pig, Logan Tavern, or Commissary where 100% of the proceeds from their beer “The Public” will benefit DCAF (runs through 7/31); Good Vibrations on Saturday, 7/30 for Union Market early birds (8:30-10am), mindfulness, breathwork, and even some disco will be on tap with all proceeds benefiting DCAF.

Panel Event, 77 Years Later: Eliminate Nukes, Not Life on Earth | World Beyond War

On August 5, 2022 from 7-9pm, Busboys and Poets (2021 14th St NW) will host a panel event on ending nuclear war sponsored by World BEYOND War, RootsAction.org, Defuse Nuclear War, International Peace Bureau, CODE PINK, NuclearBan.us, Iran Podcast and Veterans For Peace. This is a free event, attendees may order their own food and beverage of choice as desired. Speakers from the movement and additional details via the RSVP page.

Eco-Socialism in Practice | Transition US

Transition US is co-sponsoring a free online discussion, “Eco-Socialism in Practice” on August 13 from 3-4:30pm. Speakers include Kamau Franklin (Community Movement Builders), Meleiza Figueroa (Chico TEK, GEN), Michelle Eddleman McCormick (Cooperation Vermont) and Moderator David Cobb (GEN, Dishgamu Humboldt). RSVP here

Defund the Police Deep Canvass | SURJ-DC

The SURJ-DC Deep Canvass and Trans & Queer teams are hosting their next deep canvass day on Sunday, August 14. Through these events, SURJ-DC is working to build a community that learns together about community safety and alternatives to policing. The canvass will run from 10am-2:30pm and take place in the Columbia Heights neighborhood. Morning training will be indoors (with AC and masks required), lunch will be provided, then canvassers will get out on the doors together with a script focused on shifting resources from policing to community needs. Find more information and sign up here! 


From Harold Meyerson, a balanced view of the late Gerald McEntee’s contribution to the labor movement, including DSA, DSOC and SP connections. Our MoCo and AFSCME comrade Carl Goldman puts this in our “attention must be paid” file in particular for the rich look at the political conditions of McEntee’s time. 


There is nothing the least bit socialist about this Guardian article other than a reference to Pete Seeger and the Weavers. But it is about one of the singular pop songs of the past half-century and those who have not heard of it need to remedy their oversight.


Lots of socialism and elected socialists in Southern California, we read here – but Santa Cruz, at the upper end of Monterey Bay? Believe it, says the new-ish online chronicle Socialism on the Ballot.


Our comrades at People’s Action are noting “Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a fierce critic of Amazon’s market power, is urging the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate the e-commerce giant’s proposed $3.9 billion acquisition of primary health care provider One Medical.” The linked article on the transaction is from The Hill.

Young Workers Are Bridging the Climate and Labor Movements From Truthout via Portside: Young people in the labor movement want to bargain on climate issues in contract negotiations. Many young racial justice and climate justice activists have now found themselves in the fastest-growing demographic in the labor movement, Joshua Dedmond, youth organizer with the Labor Network for Sustainability (LNS), told Truthout. [Note: LNS is based in Takoma Park, and is an underutilized resource for GND activists].


Who are the “good guys with guns,” again? Though the military has a reassuring buffer against raw politics, the same doesn’t hold true for domestic policing. We already knew that, but now sheriffs are being recruited by the Right to put a thumb on the electoral scales.


Other than the gyrating costs of fossil-based transportation, no sector matches housing costs as a steady fire under the boiling inflationary pot. Previously unruffled middle-class housing consumers have joined working families as self-aware victims, so there is a window for social housing to have wide appeal, as this account from American Prospect relates. 


It’s a queasy feel to see elements of past and current Russian culture treated like Putin avatars – closed exhibitions, discharged dancers, forbidden musical compositions. N. Khrushchev’s granddaughter, a prof at the New School, decries these practices in an interview on Democracy Now (transcript furnished), which includes a link to her recent article on the topic.

The flame of thought, the magnificence of art, the wonder of discovery, and the audacity of invention all belong to revolutionary periods when humanity, tired of the chains of its restrictions, shatters them, and stops inebriated to breathe the breeze of a vaster and freer horizon.

Virgilia D’Andrea