From the Left

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Politics

In This Season of Feasting, Let's Celebrate AgriCULTURE, Not AgriBUSINESS

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

In December 1972, I was part of a nationwide campaign that came tantalizingly close to getting the U.S. Senate to reject Earl Butz, Richard Nixon's choice for secretary of agriculture.

A coalition of grassroots farmers, consumers and scrappy public interest organizations (like the Agribusiness Accountability Project that Susan DeMarco and I ...Read more

Once Again Congress Exposes Its Butt-Ugly Morality

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

Here they come again -- the usual gaggle of Washington politicos and pundits who keep assailing President Joe Biden's package of FDR-ish proposals that, at long last, would begin lifting up America's infrastructure and working class.

"Too big," screech these small thinkers and servants of the established plutocratic order. "Too costly, too ...Read more

Taking On Monopolies

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

From our school years forward, the Holy Keepers of the Corporate Order drum it into our little heads that -- HALLELUJAH! -- we Americans are blessed to live in a "free market" economy. Wow -- let's all thank our lucky stars!

But what exactly is a free market?

Well, explain the mystics, it's an economy ruled by the invisible but ...Read more

The Republican Supremes Are Defrocking Themselves

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

Ralph Waldo Emerson told about a dinner guest in his home who spent the entire evening prattling on about his belief in virtue, honesty and his own integrity: "The louder he talked of his honor," Emerson wrote, "the faster we counted our spoons."

Today, America has not one, but six guests in our national home babbling about their integrity. ...Read more

No Vote, No Work!

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

The corporate hierarchy has long tried to diminish labor activism in the U.S. by insisting that strikes and other workplace agitations have never had broad support or impact because they are fundamentally un-American. The corporatists cluck that from the get-go America's cultural zeitgeist has been grounded in veneration of individualism, ...Read more

Why Would We Let Wall Street "Care For" Our Pets?

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

For many people, the animals they adopt and love become more like family members than pets. We form deep relationships, not just with the 164 million dogs and cats in our country, but also with the beloved parrots, goats, horses and other fellow critters who at least pretend to love us back, providing comfort and joy all around.

Sadly though, ...Read more

Pantry Power

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

In June, Beto O'Rourke and I had the pleasure of visiting with some 650 workers in Beaumont, Texas, who have been locked out of their refinery since May 1 by the oil giant ExxonMobil. Just walking into the United Steelworkers' hall gives a palpable sense of real "union spirit." It's not some "Solidarity Forever" singalong, but something ...Read more

The Beaumont Story

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

In the 1954 race for Texas governor, the corporate powers were panicking. It looked like the incumbent -- right-wing millionaire Allan Shivers -- might be upset by his union-endorsed rival, progressive firebrand Ralph Yarborough. To portray the sheer awfulness of that possibility, the moneyed interests had bought TV airtime for "The Port Arthur ...Read more

Sanity Rising

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

Sometimes real life catches up with unreal politics, and the good news is that this is happening at last for universal child care. In many -- if not most -- families, mothers still have primary responsibility for the care of children, and yet, whether out of preference, economic necessity or both, 57% of women are now in the workforce, including...Read more

We Should Look Back for Our Future

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

"If you think education is expensive, try ignorance," the old bumper sticker says. Yet for decades, national and state lawmakers have flaunted their ignorance of what makes a good society by stupidly shortchanging our investment in our youngest minds. At the same time, corporate and governmental policymakers have intentionally rigged our ...Read more

Work, Sweat, Die: The Price of Really Hot Jobs

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

Here's a hot topic for Labor Day: Heat.

It's been a hell of a hot summer, exploding the tops off thermometers with deadly triple-digit readings across the country, including in far northern regions that've almost never seen such extremes. As we're learning, week after week of debilitating heat intensifies wildfires, causes electric grids to ...Read more

Can the Rest of the Nation Follow Alabama?

From the Left / Jim Hightower /

Here are two terms that you don't expect to see together: "the state of Alabama" and "progressive leader." (OK, I'm a Texan and so have no standing to point at the rank regressiveness of any other state government ... but still, Alabama?) And yet -- even with its well-earned reputation as a bastion of Jim Crow vote theft, plutocratic anti-worker...Read more

 

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RJ Matson Jeff Koterba Bob Englehart Jack Ohman David Horsey A.F. Branco