Revolution #208, July 25, 2010

BAsics Open Mic Night in NYC

Saturday night, July 10 at Revolution Books in NYC was a BAsics "open mic" night to promote and raise money and encourage ideas and volunteers for the BAsics project—the publication later this year of a pocket sized book of about 100  Avakian quotations. 23 people read some 36 "favorite Bob Avakian quotes" from 20 different works by Avakian. Some people came without a particular quote to read, but were literally inspired to on-the-spot search out a quote they wanted to read. Several people who were there, and others who could not make it, have said, "we have to do this again." And the point was made that some version of this could be held in different places and venues around the city and country-bookstores, homes, a supportive coffee shop, and more.

The evening began with Peter Tosh's "Lessons of My Life" song, and a reading of the section in Bob Avakian's memoir, From Ike to Mao and Beyond: My Journey from Mainstream America to Revolutionary Communist, Chapter 27 "Perseverance and Inspiration", "Money Can Make Friendship End" where he writes to comrades about his sadness at the murder of Tosh, but of the lessons of that song and Tosh's life. People gave short introductions about why they selected their quote, and at one point another song and quote focused on the Oscar Grant murder and verdict, and the police killing of others with impunity.

A program like this, including the raising of funds, is both a strong, creative promotion of Bob Avakian and his leadership and of BAsics, and of "The Revolution We Need... The Leadership We Have" campaign.

Everyone is encouraged to send in their suggestions of Avakian quotes for BAsics by July 31. And all kinds of ideas and volunteers are needed for all aspects of the BAsics project: fundraising, layout and design, translation, proofreading, production, promotion and distribution. To get your quotes and ideas in, and to volunteer, email

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What Humanity Needs
From Ike to Mao and Beyond