February 26

Amber pages:

Victor Hugo, French author, born today in 1802.

We think of Hugo, like Voltaire, like Zola, among the great intelligentsia of French literature and thought, the compassionate ones, who brought to the world's attention the "miserables" of the world. But in their own time: Voltaire was locked up, then exiled; Zola was forced to flee to England, where he was assassinated by government agents (see July12). Hugo spent fourteen years at Hauteville House on the Isle of Guernsey, hounded out of France for his liberal views (click here). Plus ├ža change!

The Communist Manifesto, by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, published today in 1848 - the most needed book amongst the workers of the world today, but so far derided, derogated and discredited by the political propaganda of the bosses, that few workers would even want to have a copy on their shelves.

What will you do when there is a bot, a hologram, a drone, an AI, a self-drive, programmed and ready to take over your job(it is estimated, by conservatives like the Governor of the Bank of England, that 65% of "service industry" jobs will be replaced by technology by 2050)? 

Where are the humanist alternatives to the necessary but divisive social work of the religious communities (why do we need, for example, a Jewish Blind Society, a Moslem Blind Society, a Hindu Blind Society... are cataracts prejudiced?), given that there is no profit to be made from social welfare in the flea-market of parasitic capitalism?

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