Columns & Articles

"Voices of Resistance Sing On"

Strong voices for peace have left us this year, people who used their art for social change, often at a high personal price. A look at the lives and politics of Odetta, Miriam Makeba and Eartha Kitt.

Listen to this Column

December 31, 2008 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, Art & Politics

"One Man’s Bid to Aid the Environment"

A Utah student’s disruption of a federal auction has temporarily blocked a Bush-enabled land grab by the oil and gas industries.

Listen to this Column

"Workers Laid Off, Executives Paid Off, Bernard Madoff"

The global financial crisis deepens, with more than 10 million in the U.S. out of work, according to the Department of Labor. Unemployment hit 6.7 percent in November. Add the 7.3 million “involuntary part-time workers,” who want to work full time but can’t find such a job. Jobless claims have reached a 26-year high, while 30 states reportedly face potential shortfalls in their unemployment-insurance pools.

Listen to this Column

"A Tale of Two Nobel Nations"

While the Nobel prizes recognize lifetime achievements in medicine, chemistry, physics, literature, economics and peace, and Sweden is a paragon among progressive, social democracies, there is another side to Sweden and the Nobels that warrants a closer look.

Listen to this Column

"Chevron in the White House"

President-elect Barack Obama introduced his principal national-security Cabinet selections to the world Monday and left no doubt that he intends to start his administration on a war footing. Perhaps the least well known among them is retired Marine Gen. James Jones, Obama’s pick for national security adviser. The position is crucial—think of the power that Henry Kissinger wielded in Richard Nixon’s White House. A look into who James Jones is sheds a little light on the Obama campaign’s promise of “Change We Can Believe In.”

Listen to this Column

"Tutu, Obama and the Middle East"

As President-elect Barack Obama focuses on the meltdown of the U.S. economy, another fire is burning: the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. You may not have heard much lately about the disaster in the Gaza Strip. That silence is intentional: The Israeli government has barred international journalists from entering the occupied territory.

Listen to this Column

"A View From the South"

Evo Morales knows about “change you can believe in.” He also knows what happens when a powerful elite is forced to make changes it doesn’t want.

Listen to this Column

"President Obama Can Redeem the White House"

Alice Walker is the first African-American woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. But Monday, I called her to talk about a true story. The Obamas had just visited the White House. The first African-American elected president of the United States had visited his soon-to-be residence, a house built by slaves.

Listen to this Column

November 13, 2008 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, African-American History

"Organizer in Chief"

You could almost hear the world’s collective sigh of relief. This year’s U.S. presidential election was a global event in every sense. Barack Hussein Obama, the son of a black Kenyan father and a white Kansan mother, who grew up in Indonesia and Hawaii, represents to so many a living bridge—between continents and cultures.

Listen to this Column

"Election Protection"

Election Day approaches, and with it a test of our election system’s integrity. Who will be allowed to vote; who will be barred? Who will get paper ballots; who will use electronic voting machines? Will polls be open long enough to accommodate what is expected to be a historic turnout?

Listen to this Column

"Change Big Donors Can Believe In"

The candidates’ coffers are swelling with larger and larger bundles of cash, but don’t hold your breath waiting for the extended television discussions of this, because it’s the broadcasters who profit the most.

Listen to this Column

"Mickey Mouse Won’t Try To Vote"

The 2008 presidential election may see the highest participation in U.S. history. Voter registration organizations and local election boards have been overwhelmed by enthusiastic people eager to vote. But not everyone is happy about this blossoming of democracy.

Listen to this Column

"Open the Debates"

The reviews are in, and the latest U.S. presidential debate, the “town hall” from Nashville, Tenn., was a snore. One problem is that in a debate it is important for the debaters to actually disagree. Yet Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain substantively agree on many issues. That is one major reason that the debates should be open, and that major third-party or independent candidates should be included.

Listen to this Column

"Invasion of the Sea-Smurfs"

A little-noticed story surfaced a couple of weeks ago in the Army Times newspaper about the 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team. “Beginning Oct. 1 for 12 months,” reported Army Times staff writer Gina Cavallaro, “the 1st BCT will be under the day-to-day control of U.S. Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command, as an on-call federal response force for natural or manmade emergencies and disasters, including terrorist attacks.” Disturbingly, she writes that “they may be called upon to help with civil unrest and crowd control” as well.

Listen to this Column

"Troy Davis and the Supreme Decision"

Troy Anthony Davis was scheduled to die by lethal injection Tuesday. Two hours before the state of Georgia was to execute him, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay until Monday. It had earlier agreed to hear Davis’ case on Sept. 29, but Georgia set his execution date six days before the hearing.

Listen to This Column

September 25, 2008 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, Troy Davis, Death Penalty

"Wall Street Socialists"

The financial crisis gripping the U.S. has the largest banks and insurance companies begging for massive government bailouts. The banking, investment, finance and insurance industries, long the foes of taxation, now need money from working-class taxpayers to stay alive. Taxpayers should be in the driver’s seat now. Instead, decisions that will cost people for decades are being made behind closed doors, by the wealthy, by the regulators and by those they have failed to regulate.

Listen to this Column

"The Party Police"

The Democratic and Republican national conventions have passed, but controversy surrounds how they were funded and how they were run.

Listen to this Column

"Why We Were Falsely Arrested"

Government crackdowns on journalists are a true threat to democracy. As the Republican National Convention meets in St. Paul, Minn., this week, police are systematically targeting journalists.

Listen to this Column

September 03, 2008 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, RNC 2008

"Poverty Is the Real Scandal"

Former Sen. John Edwards was supposed to speak in Denver at the Democratic National Convention, but he had an affair. Will the Democrats now forget about his signature issue?

Listen to this Column

"Cheney, Bush and Habbush"

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is on a book tour, where she is being hounded by activists and questioned about her pledge that "impeachment is off the table." She responded on the TV talk show "The View," "If somebody had a crime that the president had committed, that would be a different story." Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ron Suskind may have provided the evidence she doesn’t want to see.

Listen to this Column

Xml