VOICES FOR CHANGE

The Actor and the Minister
Chris Hedges
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On June 30 I was at the First Church in Jamaica Plain, Unitarian Universalist, which had turned its hall over to Michael Milligan, traveling the country performing his one-man play about a husband and wife trapped in our dysfunctional health care system. I arrived early at the stone church, whose present structure was erected in 1853, to help set up the chairs and clear the stage. The minister, the Rev. Terry Burke, who was a classmate of mine at Harvard Divinity School, officially ...

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The Political Objective and Strategic Goal of Nonviolent Actions
Robert J. Burrowes
"

All nonviolent struggles are conducted simultaneously in the political andstrategic spheres, and these spheres, which are distinct, interactthroughout. I have discussed this at length elsewhere: see 'The Strategyof Nonviolent Defense: A Gandhian Approach'

Despite this, only rarely have nonviolent struggles been conducted with aconscious awareness of this vitally important relationship. Gandhi's campaigns were very effective partly because he understood the ...

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History is Calling
Jim Hightower
"

Most of us celebrated July 4 by barbequing, doing a few 12-ounce elbow bends and setting off some fireworks. Some of us might have paused for a moment to reflect on that thing Jefferson wrote about 238 years ago: The Declaration of Independence.

"We the People" are faced — right now — with another of those "when in the course of human events" moments Jefferson wrote about. Not only is this a month to reconnect with our revolutionary heritage but ...

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The Right's Mistake Was Waking the Others
Froma Harrop
"The tea partyers made a serious blunder in Mississippi, costing them a runoff win: They carelessly slipped their magic passion potion to the opposition.

The hard right's strength comes from the nearly religious fervor that propels its small numbers to the polls at times when the larger numbers are snoozing. In Mississippi, the right woke up the larger numbers.

Hold that thought, will you?

What had been a race between an old Southern pork-master Republican and an insurgent ...

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Sacred Ponca Indian Corn Planted in the Pathway of the Keystone XL Pipeline
Christina Sarich
"

Members of the Cowboy and Indian Alliance and their allies are sending a profound message to the owners and supporters (such as the Koch Brothers) of the Keystone Pipeline. They have gathered at the farm of Art Tanderup near Neligh, Nebraska, to hand sow sacred Ponka red corn seeds along the proposed route of the Keystone XL Pipeline.

Just over a dozen volunteers planted at the Tanderup farm which is crossed by both the historic Ponca Trail of Tears and the Keystone XL ...

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The Rules of Revolt
Chris Hedges
"

There are some essential lessons we can learn from the student occupation of Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, which took place 25 years ago. The 1989 protests began as a demonstration by university students to mourn the death of Hu Yaobang, the reformist Communist Party chief who had been forced out by Deng Xiaoping. The ...

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Seattle is Right
Robert Reich
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By raising its minimum wage to $15, Seattle is leading a long-overdue movement toward a living wage. Most minimum wage workers aren’t teenagers these days. They’re major breadwinners who need a higher minimum wage in order to keep their families out of poverty.

Across America, the ranks of the working poor are growing. While low-paying industries such as retail and food preparation accounted for 22 percent of the jobs lost in the Great ...

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We All Must Become Zapatistas
Chris Hedges
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Subcomandante Marcos, the spokesman for the Zapatistas (Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional, or EZLN), has announced that his rebel persona no longer exists. He had gone from being a “spokesman to a distraction,” he said last week. His persona, he said, fed an easy and cheap media narrative. It turned a social ...

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Freedom Summer II
Robert Reich
"

I spent several days in New York last week with students from around the country who were preparing to head into the heartland to help organize Walmart workers for better jobs and wages. (Full familial disclosure: My son Adam is one of the leaders.)

Almost exactly fifty years ago a similar group headed to Mississippi to register African-Americans to vote, in what came to be known as Freedom Summer.Call this Freedom Summer II.

The current struggle of low-wage workers across ...

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Thomas Paine, Our Contemporary
Chris Hedges
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Cornel West, Richard D. Wolff and I, along with moderator Laura Flanders, next Sunday will inaugurate “The Anatomy of Revolution,” a series of panel discussions focusing on modern revolutionary theorists. This first event will be part of a two-day conference in New York City sponsored by ...

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William Worthy and Vincent Harding: Thank You and Goodbye
Amy Goodman
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The world lost two remarkable men in May, two African-Americans who helped shape modern history, yet whose names and achievements remain too little known. William Worthy, a journalist, died at the age of 92. Civil-rights activist Vincent Harding was 82. Each was a witness to some of the most pivotal events of the latter half of the 20th century. They led their lives speaking truth to power, working for a better world.

William Worthy became a journalist, working ...

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They Can’t Outlaw the Revolution
Chris Hedges
"

Update: On May 19 Cecily McMillan was sentenced to three months in jail and five years of probation, plus community service. Click on the word Guardian and the words Huffington Post to see articles on the sentencing.

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Occupying the Koch Brothers’ Lobby
Jim Hightower
"

The gabillionaire Koch brothers feel entitled to occupy the people’s elections, barging in with sacks full of corporate cash. So, how would the brothers feel if the people barged into their political affairs?

To find out, a few citizens recently paid a visit to Koch Companies Public Sector. That’s the grandiose name the brothers give to their Washington, DC, lobbying headquarters.

From there, a covey of high-dollar Koch-headed ...

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Corporate Lobbyists Challenged by a Growing ‘Populist Lobby’
Jim Hightower
"

Imagine a bold headline blaring, "An Army of 1,500 Lobbyists Swarms Capitol Hill."

But that wouldn't be news, since it happens every day. In fact, an occupying army of ...

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The Crime of Peaceful Protest
Chris Hedges
"

Cecily McMillan, wearing a red dress and high heels, her dark, shoulder-length hair stylishly curled, sat behind a table with her two lawyers Friday morning facing Judge Ronald A. Zweibel in Room 1116 at the Manhattan Criminal Court. The judge seems to have alternated between boredom and rage throughout the trial, now three weeks old. He has repeatedly thrown caustic ...

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Dear America: Climate Change’s Threatening Water, Plants, Animals No Matter What Party You Belong To
Juan Cole
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A Gallup poll has found that only 35% of Americans are concerned about climate change, and that proportion is barely up from the previous year. 

Climate change has become a partisan issue in the US, such that a majority of ...

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I Think They Can
Jim Hightower
"

Like that little choo-choo in the classic children’s book “The Little Engine that Could,” Moral Monday is the little movement that says, “I think I can” and keeps chugging up the hill.

This new progressive coalition became a full-throttle citizen uprising in North Carolina  early last year.

Led by Rev. William Barber, head of the North Carolina NAACP, they ...

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Finding Populism Today
Jim Hightower
"

Mass movements don't just appear out of the fog, fully grown, structured and mobilized. They emerge in fits and starts over many years, just as the American Revolution did, and as did the Populists' original idea of a "cooperative commonwealth." A successful people's movement has to take the long view, to ...

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Israel’s War on American Universities
Chris Hedges
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The banning of Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at Northeastern University in Boston on March 7, along with a university threat of disciplinary measures against some of its members, replicates sanctions being imposed against numerous student Palestinian rights groups across the country. The attacks, and the disturbingly similar forms of punishment, appear to be part of a coordinated effort by the Israeli government and the Israel lobby to blacklist all student groups ...

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Corporate Cronyism: The Secret to Overpaid CEOs
Dean Baker
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It’s hardly a secret that the heads of major corporations in the United States get mind bending paychecks. While high pay may be understandable when a top executive turns around a failing company or vastly expands a company’s revenue and profit, but CEOs can get paychecks in the tens or hundreds of millions even when they did nothing especially notable.

For example, Lee Raymond retired from Exxon-Mobil in 2005 with $321 million. (That’s ...

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Crowd Sourcing Our Way Out of the Crisis of Democracy
Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers
Op-Ed
Save the Bees, Ban Neonic Pesticides
David Suzuki
News Analysis
Horror and Hope
Andrea Brower
Op-Ed

FROM AROUND THE WEB

India

A Socio-Sexual Revolution in India

The passage of a bill that criminalized stalking, voyeurism, and sexual harassment was made soon after these uprisings.

Gun Rights

Target Stores Forcibly Involved in Gun Rights Fight

Gun rights activists in Texas are continuing to carry their weapons inside Target stores when shopping, while activist groups, such as Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, have gone after Target insisting the company reject firearms in its stores.

Big Oil

Oil Drilling in National Park in Africa Might be Prevented

An agreement between a London-based oil company and a wildlife protection group bans exploratory drilling in Congo’s Virunga National Park.

Gun Rights

NRA releases statement asking open-carry activists to stop being terrible

All those guys hanging around Chipotles while carrying assault rifles are making gun enthusiasts look bad, says NRA

Economy

Dr. Bronner’s Products Embrace Lefty Lifestyle Politics

Who says you can’t run a profitable company while protesting GMOs or getting busted for planting hemp on the DEA’s front lawn?

Gun Rights

Spitting, Stalking, Rape Threats: How Gun Extremists Target Women

Welcome to the dark side of America's war over guns.

Media

Protesters Rally Outside FCC to ‘Save the Internet’

Occupy-style protest against proposed “open internet” rules that protesters say will give control of the web to major corporations.

Fracking

Beverly Hills Becomes First in California to Ban Fracking

City leaders in Beverly Hills voted on Tuesday to ban fracking

Gun Rights

Rise of the “Glocker Moms”: The NRA’s Aggressive New Push for Women

In the face of controversy and demographic challenges, the gun lobby is making a dramatic pivot

Egypt

Obama Speaks Out in Support of Press Freedom

US president makes specific references to journalists who risk their liberty to report in places such as Egypt.

Koch Brothers

The Real Secret to Beating the Koch Brothers: How Our Broken Political System Can Still Be Won

A duo of activists has quietly bested the energy lobby, helping ban fracking in one hundred and seventy two towns. Here’s how they did it

Gun Rights

The NRA’s New Enemy: Moms

Watch as parents and survivors brandish a new weapon: the gun lobby’s own words.

Genetically Modified Foods

Vermont to Require GMO Labeling

Vermont joins Connecticut and Maine in passing GMO labeling laws.

Spanish Bailout

Comprehensive Disobedience: Occupying the Sharing Economy in Spain

Spanish “Occupiers” work together to fix the country’s economy with redirected taxes.

Fracking

Don’t frack this up! What really needs to happen to make hydrofracking safe

WSJ reporter Russell Gold says fracking's many problems are fixable -- if the proper steps are taken

Global Climate

Lights Out: Earth Hour Campaign a Global Success

The Earth Hour campaign is being marked in more than 150 countries, to raise money for local environmental projects.

Fukushima Progress

Japan Protesters Say No to Nuclear Power

Demonstration comes as nation considers restarting reactors, three years after earthquake triggered a nuclear disaster.

Equality

Anniversary of ‘Bloody Sunday’

Activists, in a nonviolent march forty nine years ago, were attacked by state and local police armed with billy clubs, whips and tear gas.

Egypt

Al Jazeera Launches Global Push to Free Staff

Journalists gather for global day of action calling on Egypt to release staff arrested for practising journalism.

Gay Marriage

 Trial Begins in Lawsuit Challenging Michigan Gay Marriage Ban

Lesbian couple’s challenge latest in a series of marriage equality trials.

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