Barack Obama recently lectured protesters about the need to move past protesting and focus on electing Democrats. The former president misunderstands the power of protest, which is not just to “raise awareness,” but to actually disrupt the institutions that control policy and force them to make concessions.
Kevin Young teaches history at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is the co-author, with Tarun Banerjee and Michael Schwartz, of the new book Levers of Power: How the 1% Rule and What the 99% Can Do About It (Verso, July 2020), parts of which are excerpted in the second section above.
Trump wants to seem all-powerful, but big business has a lot of leverage over his administration.
It's not just "money in politics" — capitalists get what they want through structural power over the economy.
Social movements should focus on targeting corporations and oppressive institutions rather than politicians.
Hillary Clinton isn't a champion of women's rights. She's the embodiment of corporate feminism.