Friday, 20 January 2017 / TRUTH-OUT.ORG
  • What Happens to Innocent People When They Are Freed?

    We have the words exoneration, exonerate, exonerated -- but no word for the people freed from prison, innocent of the crimes that sent them there.

  • The Last Day Before Donald

    William Rivers Pitt of Truthout: "So this is the precipice, I guess, and we're all about to fly out over the edge like Wile E. Coyote holding a sign that reads, 'Was This Trip Really Necessary?'"

Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

Our presidential election confers access to an Online Nuclear Launch System, the gravest responsibility of a US president. A modernized US nuclear arsenal with smaller nuclear weapons may be arguably more likely to be used, which, for the sake of all humanity, mandates that our votes look beyond partisanship.

Apr 07

Preparing for the End of Consumer Society

By Maurie J. Cohen, Speakout | Op-Ed

By famously implementing the $5 per day wage in 1914, Henry Ford was the first industrialist to recognize that a consumer society can only function when workers have access to ample income to finance discretionary purchases. During the 1930s, under the tutelage of John Maynard Keynes, this understanding became a key tenet of macroeconomic policy in many parts of the world.

If you thought that poisoning a city of 100,000 people would be a bridge too far for Michigan's urbane, oh-so-reasonable business elite, think again. Last week, the Economic Club of Grand Rapids welcomed Gov. Snyder -- fresh from his Congressional grilling on the Flint Water Crisis -- with nothing less than a standing ovation. 

I recently had a vivid encounter with neocolonialism when I visited my parents' homeland Kenya. A friend who'd recently returned to the country from the diaspora had organized a group of fellow young physician colleagues for anice lunch. We were all separately eager to meet up, and I looked up a trusty international travel site that rates lodging and restaurants, which I have used time and again for innumerable international trips. Atop the list on this site was a restaurant, located in a reclusive, well-to-do neighborhood in Nairobi.

Over the past few years, the debate over the state of K-12 public education has intensified. Some have made the claim that public education is in a state of crisis for reasons such as crumbling school buildings, uneven quality and availability of teaching staff and rising poverty rates among students and disengaged parents. In response, policymakers have championed new policy ideas in search of a path forward to "fix" public education.  

Apr 05

A West Coast Battle Over Big Money in Politics

By Steve Early, Speakout | Film Review

Richmond, California's next municipal voting is less than seven months away. But memories of our last election -- one of the most expensive in local history– remain fresh in the minds of many participants. For Richmond residents whose recollections are fading, we now have a fascinating 90-minute video history of that campaign. Entitled Nat Bates for Mayor, it provides a timely reminder of the stakes involved in a key Left Coast battle against big money in politics that resonated nationally.

This spring, French authorities (supported and funded by the UK government to the current balance of £62 million)  have been demolishing the "Jungle," an area saturated with landfill-derived toxins on the edge of Calais. Formerly a landfill site, 4 km² it is now populated by approximately 5,000 refugees who have been pushed there over the past year. A remarkable community of 15 nationalities adhering to various faiths comprises the Jungle.

Obama finds himself in no-man's land, tossed haplessly by the endless contradictions and way-winds of the imperial US and his blood brothers, institutional racism and capitalism. How does his recent trip to Cuba inform us about the importance of remembering our past, lest human rights misadventures revisit in spanking new forms?

Adam Smith is often claimed by conservative Republicans that reflexively support business interests with top-level Democrats not far behind. Advocacy organizations and right-wing think tanks that often promote the name of Smith strive to advance policies that contradict the sentiment found in his writings.

I'm tied up with many other things, but since folks asked, I will give a quick comment/explanation of the Vox analysis of Bernie Sanders' tax plans. For those who haven't seen it, Vox put together a calculator that allows people to plug in their income and then see how their tax bill would change under the tax plans proposed by Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders. For the first two, most people get tax cuts. There is little change with Clinton, but big tax increases with Sanders.

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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

Our presidential election confers access to an Online Nuclear Launch System, the gravest responsibility of a US president. A modernized US nuclear arsenal with smaller nuclear weapons may be arguably more likely to be used, which, for the sake of all humanity, mandates that our votes look beyond partisanship.

Apr 07

Preparing for the End of Consumer Society

By Maurie J. Cohen, Speakout | Op-Ed

By famously implementing the $5 per day wage in 1914, Henry Ford was the first industrialist to recognize that a consumer society can only function when workers have access to ample income to finance discretionary purchases. During the 1930s, under the tutelage of John Maynard Keynes, this understanding became a key tenet of macroeconomic policy in many parts of the world.

If you thought that poisoning a city of 100,000 people would be a bridge too far for Michigan's urbane, oh-so-reasonable business elite, think again. Last week, the Economic Club of Grand Rapids welcomed Gov. Snyder -- fresh from his Congressional grilling on the Flint Water Crisis -- with nothing less than a standing ovation. 

I recently had a vivid encounter with neocolonialism when I visited my parents' homeland Kenya. A friend who'd recently returned to the country from the diaspora had organized a group of fellow young physician colleagues for anice lunch. We were all separately eager to meet up, and I looked up a trusty international travel site that rates lodging and restaurants, which I have used time and again for innumerable international trips. Atop the list on this site was a restaurant, located in a reclusive, well-to-do neighborhood in Nairobi.

Over the past few years, the debate over the state of K-12 public education has intensified. Some have made the claim that public education is in a state of crisis for reasons such as crumbling school buildings, uneven quality and availability of teaching staff and rising poverty rates among students and disengaged parents. In response, policymakers have championed new policy ideas in search of a path forward to "fix" public education.  

Apr 05

A West Coast Battle Over Big Money in Politics

By Steve Early, Speakout | Film Review

Richmond, California's next municipal voting is less than seven months away. But memories of our last election -- one of the most expensive in local history– remain fresh in the minds of many participants. For Richmond residents whose recollections are fading, we now have a fascinating 90-minute video history of that campaign. Entitled Nat Bates for Mayor, it provides a timely reminder of the stakes involved in a key Left Coast battle against big money in politics that resonated nationally.

This spring, French authorities (supported and funded by the UK government to the current balance of £62 million)  have been demolishing the "Jungle," an area saturated with landfill-derived toxins on the edge of Calais. Formerly a landfill site, 4 km² it is now populated by approximately 5,000 refugees who have been pushed there over the past year. A remarkable community of 15 nationalities adhering to various faiths comprises the Jungle.

Obama finds himself in no-man's land, tossed haplessly by the endless contradictions and way-winds of the imperial US and his blood brothers, institutional racism and capitalism. How does his recent trip to Cuba inform us about the importance of remembering our past, lest human rights misadventures revisit in spanking new forms?

Adam Smith is often claimed by conservative Republicans that reflexively support business interests with top-level Democrats not far behind. Advocacy organizations and right-wing think tanks that often promote the name of Smith strive to advance policies that contradict the sentiment found in his writings.

I'm tied up with many other things, but since folks asked, I will give a quick comment/explanation of the Vox analysis of Bernie Sanders' tax plans. For those who haven't seen it, Vox put together a calculator that allows people to plug in their income and then see how their tax bill would change under the tax plans proposed by Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders. For the first two, most people get tax cuts. There is little change with Clinton, but big tax increases with Sanders.