Years ago, Robert Kennedy noted that making economic, political and social progress is hard because such advances require rejecting the same old business-as-usual policies that sustain the establishment's profits and power. "'Progress' is the nice word," he said. "But change is its motivator. And change has its enemies."
His recognition that ...Read more
Thanksgiving -- let's eat!
America's most food-focused holiday traces its roots back to the abundant feast that Pilgrims and Indians enjoyed together in the fall of 1621. Not even half of the 100 or so Mayflower Pilgrims and crew who had arrived at Plymouth Rock the previous December survived their grim first year in the New World ("new," of ...Read more
In December 1972, I was part of a nationwide campaign that came tantalizingly close to getting the U.S. Senate to reject Earl Butz, then-President Richard Nixon's choice for secretary of agriculture.
A coalition of grassroots farmers, consumers and scrappy public interest organizations (such as the Agribusiness Accountability Project that Susan...Read more
In building glittery enclaves like Trump Tower, luxury resorts and casinos, our shady dealmaker of a president has routinely used lies, bankruptcies, union busting and plain-old wage theft to stiff the working people who built and staffed them. So, it's no surprise that, while bombastically asserting at rallies that he's the workers' champion, ...Read more
Many years ago, literary critic Dorothy Parker skewered an unfortunate author with her sharp wit: "This is not a novel to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown with great force!"
That's how a lot of us feel about this presidential election year, which has been distinguished by an incumbent who is so self-centered, incompetent and both ...Read more
There's a mournful Peggy Lee song that asks the existential question: "Is that all there is?" Some progressives are asking that when looking at whether to vote this year -- Biden or Trump ... is that all there is?
First, for me, that's an easy choice if we want to have even a small chance of making any little-d democratic progress in the next ...Read more
Let's say you're a millionaire. That's a lot of money, right? Now let's say you're a billionaire. That's a lot more money! But how much more?
Think of all those dollars as seconds on a clock. A million seconds would total 11.5 days -- a nice stash to have in the bank of time. But how much time does a billion seconds buy you? Nearly 32 years...Read more
Little-known fact: In more and more races, the GOP doesn't have broad enough appeal to fairly produce an election majority, so it has resorted to rigging the system so a minority prevails. As far-right tactician Paul Weyrich once bluntly put it: "I don't want everybody to vote. ... Our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the ...Read more
Some people who get elected to Congress grow in office; others just bloat. Rep. Michael McCaul is a bloater.
A self-absorbed, right-wing Trumpeteer, this Texas lawmaker is about the richest guy in the U.S. House, wallowing in some estimated $113 million in personal wealth. McCaul made his money the old-fashioned way: He married it. His wife ...Read more
Shortly after taking office, President Donald Trump puffed himself up in full Trumpian pomposity to proclaim to us rubes: "We will honor the American people with the truth, and nothing else."
Well, "nothing else" ... unless you count a record-shattering number of more than 20,000 documented lies that this huckster has uttered in only three-and-...Read more
Is it really so hard? Voting, I mean -- smooth democratic elections with all citizens able to easily cast their ballots and with every ballot fairly counted. Is that too much for people to ask?
After all, the mechanisms for assuring universal suffrage are well known, and the logistics are not exactly rocket science. Speaking of which, modern ...Read more
Until recently, few people considered the sources of their meat. Then, a coronavirus walked into one after another of Meat Inc.'s humongous rural factories, where more than 90% of U.S. bacon, hamburger, chops, wings and other animal parts are processed. Within weeks, the industry's business model -- immense plants, side-by-side congestion, ...Read more
Upton Sinclair's landmark 1905 book, "The Jungle," exposed the food contamination and worker exploitation hidden in the fetid stockyards and meatpacking plants of Chicago and other major American cities. The muckraking journalist dubbed the nasty and brutish meat factories "a monster ... the Great Butcher ... the spirit of capitalism made flesh....Read more