The ruling FOG (Forces of Greed) spin news stories in their favor and keep the masses distracted with celebrity gossip and reality shows. Each week on Clearing The Fog, we feature guests who are working to expose the truth and offer real solutions to the current crises faced by our nation and the world. Knowledge is power, and with this knowledge you will be empowered to act to shift power to the people and weaken the corporate stranglehold on our lives. Our podcast is brought to you each week without advertising.

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The Hawaiian Kingdom Still Reigns: Alleged Statehood Is Illegal

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

In a textbook United States regime change operation, wealthy businessmen manufactured a revolution in Hawai’i and executed a coup d’état in 1893. The Queen of the Hawai’ian Kingdom surrendered the administration of the country, but never its sovereignty. A Hawai’ian Kingdom government continues to operate to this day and is working to regain its sovereignty. We speak with Hawai’ian Kingdom Foreign Minister Leon Siu about the story of Hawai’i’s struggle for independence and the broken promises of the US government over the past century. This struggle is escalating through the current protests at Mauna Kea and has big plans in store this fall. We discuss where people in the US can learn more and how to support the Hawai’ian independence movement.

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Guest:

H.E. Leon Kaulahao Siu is the Minister of Foreign Affairs for Ke Aupuni Ko Hawaii Pae Aina — the Kingdom of the Hawaiian Islands
— and has served in that capacity since the year 2000. Mr. Siu has been involved since the mid 1990s with the reactivation of the lawful Hawaiian Kingdom as an independent nation-state. In 1997 he was appointed the Deputy the Minister of Foreign Affairs by the Privy Council of Ke Aupuni O Hawaii and became the Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2000.

His duties are to revive, develop, nurture and advance diplomatic, trade and other forms of friendly relations with sovereign states and international bodies.

He was nominated in 2016 for the Nobel Peace Prize — the only Hawaiian to have had that distinction.

Mr. Siu participates in numerous international fora concerning human rights and the rights of original peoples and nations, particularly with regard to self-determination in governance, economic development, human rights, maintaining sovereign and cultural integrity, and so forth. He has advocated these matters before the UN Human Rights Committee, Human Rights Council, Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Permanent Forum on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, World Intellectual Properties Organization, and others.

He has also led the reentry of the Hawaiian Islands into crucial discussions on global sustainability. He participated in the Marshall Islands conference on climate change at Columbia University, and attended and contributed to regional discussions on sustainable development in the Pacific conducted by the Melanesian Spearhead Group, the Pacific Islands Development Forum and the Pacific Islands Forum.

Minister Siu is the current chair of the Decolonization Alliance a coalition of original nations and supporting organizations working to improve the UN’s decolonization process in order to provide the opportunity for self-governance to original peoples and nations. Minister Siu was nominated for the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize for his collaborative work in espousing the legal basis for independence for West Papua. He was also a recipient of the Decree of Consecration Diploma and Gold Medal UN Peacemaker Sergio Vieira de Mello award from the International Parliament in 2017. In 2015 he was awarded the Knights Grand Cross of the Royal Order of Kamehameha. Minister Siu is the co-author of the book, Modus Vivendi Situation of West Papua (2017) the seminal analysis of the West Papua situation under international law.

Mr. Siu attended the University of Hawaii, majoring in fine arts and minoring in history. He has an illustrious career as a musician, composer, recording artist and a pioneer producer of multi-arts, multi-media projects using cutting edge technology.

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Busting The Myths Of American Exceptionalism And Innocence

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese,Clearing the FOG. -

The United States has long considered itself to be above the law, and it has gotten away with it by manufacturing public support for its actions, no matter how heinous, through the myths that we are better than everyone else and that we mean well even when things don’t work out. Roberto Sirvent and Danny Haiphong’s new book busts through these myths and shows why all of the problems of today are consistent with the history of what “America” has always been. Every chapter exposes truths and raises questions about who we really are. We can only live up to the values we claim to support if we understand these hard truths and recognize that to fix anything, we must fix everything. While it sounds daunting, the world is changing and this book provides essential knowledge for a path to a better place.

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Guest:

Danny Haiphong is a socialist activist, writer, and political analyst. For the last five years, Haiphong has been a weekly contributor to Black Agenda Report. His articles have also appeared in publications such as MintPressNews, Counterpunch, The American Herald Tribune, The Center for Global Research (Canada) and The Herald (Zimbabwe). Haiphong has frequently appeared on Black Agenda Radio, CPRNews with Don Debar, The Taylor Report, RT, and Sputnik International. His work was recently featured in former Congresswoman and Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney’s latest book How the U.S. Creates “Sh*thole Countries (2018).

Haiphong’s new book, co-authored with Roberto Sirvent, is “American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People’s History of Fake News – From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror,” available from Simon and Schuster.

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Puerto Ricans’ Revolt Is Deeper Than The Governor’s Chats

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Puerto Ricans have suffered over the past several years from deep debt, a faltering economy and the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Struggling to hold on, the final straw came when hundreds of chats between the Governor and other officials were published showing their blatant disregard for the living and the thousands who died after Maria. Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have mobilized to demand the Governor’s resignation. We speak with Natasha Bannan, a lawyer who lives in Puerto Rico and is active in the protests about the corruption and subversion of democracy behind this mass uprising, what the people want and how activists can support Puerto Ricans.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Natasha Bannan‘s work focuses on the economic exploitation and discrimination against low-wage Latina/o immigrant workers, as well as legal support in the face of the economic and humanitarian crisis in Puerto Rico. She works on both domestic litigation and international advocacy before human rights mechanisms concerning issues including: state-sanctioned violence and failure to protect; self-determination and decolonization processes; gender justice; and immigrants’ rights.

Prior to joining LatinoJustice PRLDEF, Natasha worked at the Center for Reproductive Rights and clerked for the Hon. Ronald L. Ellis in the Southern District of New York. Natasha graduated from CUNY School of Law, where she was editor-in-chief of CUNY Law Review and was a fellow at the Center for Latino/a Rights and Equality.

Natasha is president of the National Lawyers Guild, the nation’s largest and oldest progressive bar association, and co-chairs its subcommittee on Puerto Rico. She is a board member of the Center for Constitutional Rights and MADRE, an international women’s human rights organization. She is a member of the New York City Bar Association’s Task Force on Puerto Rico and Inter-American Affairs Committee. Natasha is an adjunct faculty member at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Natasha has written several articles, including Puerto Rico’s Odious Debt: The Economic Crisis of Colonialism, 19 CUNY L. Rev. 287 (2016), and has been featured in numerous news outlets.

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Militarized Fossil Capitalism Is The Problem; There Are Solutions

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

“The Earth Is Not For Sale.” That is the title of David Schwartzman’s new book, written with his son Peter. Both are environmental scientists who have worked on climate change issues for a long time. Schwartzman says the problem is that right now the earth is for sale and it shouldn’t be. He discusses what he calls “militarized fossil capitalism,” and  explains why it is a fundamental problem driving the climate crisis. Schwartzman outlines the possible scenarios for the future, what needs to be done to have a chance for a positive outcome (he believes that is still possible) and how we get there. We also cover recent news and actions.

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Guest:
David Schwartzman is Professor Emeritus, Howard University and is a biogeochemist and environmental scientist.  He is an active member of the DC Statehood Green Party/Green Party of the United States and of Democratic Socialists of America and numerous other community organizations in Washington DC. His newest book is “The Earth is not for Sale: A path out of fossil capitalism to the other world that is still possible.”

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What To Do In An Age When Crossing The Border Is A Crime

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

It wasn’t always a crime to cross the border, but now it is not only a crime but we are also housing immigrants in concentration camps under severe conditions and prosecuting those who try to assist them. As awareness of the inhumanity of immigration policy in the United States grows, people are taking action to change it. We speak with immigration attorney Heather Benno about how the laws have changed (hint: it started way before Trump) and practical advice for immigrants and human rights advocates about how to handle ICE raids, plus information about upcoming actions. Being a human and seeking asylum are not crimes.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Heather Benno is an immigration attorney in the Washington, DC metro area, currently with Immigrant Justice Solutions. Heather has worked in immigration law for twelve years. She is an officer on the immigration court committee for the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

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How Many Coups (And Lives) Will It Take Before The US Surrenders In Venezuela?

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Venezuela used to be an “oil republic,” which made oil executives from the United States and the wealthy class in Venezuela very rich. That lasted until the election of Hugo Chavez in 1998 when the Bolivarian Process began and oil profits were used to provide for basic needs of all the people. Ever since then, the US and its allies have used everything they have to overthrow the revolution, but like Cuba, the people have resisted, despite great suffering being inflicted on them, and the US has failed. We speak with Dan Kovalik about his newest book, “The Plot to Overthrow Venezuela” and the tremendous resistance of the Venezuelan people. We also cover some recent news and have a tribute to Bruce Dixon, co-founder and editor of Black Agenda Report, who died last week of cancer.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Dan Kovalik is a retired Senior Associate General Counsel of the United Steelworkers, AFL-CIO (USW). He worked for the USW since graduating from Columbia Law School in 1993. While with the USW, he has served as lead counsel on cutting-edge labor law litigation, including the landmark NLRB cases of Lamons Gasket and Specialty Health Care. He has also worked on Alien Tort Claims Act cases against The Coca-Cola Company, Drummond and Occidental Petroleum – cases arising out of egregious human rights abuses in Colombia. The Christian Science Monitor, referring to his work defending Colombian unionists under threat of assassination, recently described Mr. Kovalik as “one of the most prominent defenders of Colombian workers in the United States.” Mr. Kovalik received the David W. Mills Mentoring Fellowship from Stanford University School of Law and was the recipient of the Project Censored Award for his article exposing the unprecedented killing of trade unionists in Colombia. He has written extensively on the issue of international human rights and U.S. foreign policy for the Huffington Post and Counterpunch and has lectured throughout the world on these subjects.

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How To Move Away From The Brink Of War With Iran

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The United States has been waging an economic war against Iran ever since the Iranian Revolution overthrew the US-backed brutal shah in 1979, but that war has escalated recently with the US-imposed oil embargo. Oil is a major source of revenue for Iran. Add to that the US pulling out of the nuclear agreement, the attacks on oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz and Iran shooting down a US drone, and we are extremely close to a hot war that would destabilize the entire Middle East. We speak with Patrick Hiller, a conflict resolution expert who traveled to Iran with us earlier this year, about just how dangerous the current situation is, what the potential consequences are and what we can do to reconcile the hostilities. We also cover recent news and analyses.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Patrick Hiller holds a Ph.D. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from Nova Southeastern University and a M.A. in Human Geography from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich, Germany. He teaches at the Conflict Resolution Program at Portland State University. Following an interdisciplinary approach, his work and research interests encompass war and peace, conflict resolution, peace studies, environmental issues, ethnicity, human rights, nationalism, social justice, Mexico, Latin America, social/peace movements, identity formation, culture and conflict and migration. He studied and worked on those topics while living in Germany, Mexico and the United States. His writings and research are almost exclusively related to the analysis of war and peace and social injustice and, most often in the form of structural violence and power dynamics with an emphasis on human dignity, solidarity among all peoples, equal participation of all peoples, the role of the governments and the promotion of peace. Patrick seeks to contribute to the growth of the still young peace and conflict studies field. Patrick is the Vice-President of the International Peace Research Association Foundation and served on the Executive Committee of the Governing Council of the International Peace Research Association (2012-2016). He served on the Coordinating Committee of World Beyond War (2013-2016), he is member of the Advisory Council of the organizations International Cities of Peace and PeaceVoice/PeaceVoiceTV, member of the Board of Directors of the Oregon Peace Institute, member of the Peace and Security Funders Group as well as member of the Peace and Justice Studies Association. He is the founding editor of the Peace Science Digest.In his free time, Patrick enjoys the outdoors and is a committed triathlete. He lives in Hood River, Oregon with his wife and son.

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The Ongoing American Genocide Against Indigenous Women And Girls

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Canada issued a report two weeks ago on thousands of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) calling them victims of Canadian Genocide and connecting a root cause to colonization, racism, and sexism. This report came after decades of pressure by families of the victims and validates what indigenous communities have been reporting as a major problem. We speak with Annita Lucchesi (Cheyenne), a founder of the MMIW Database, who organizes to track these cases, raise their visibility and change policy throughout the Americas. She recently started the Sovereign Bodies Institute. as a home for the database. Lucchesi discusses what it will take to protect indigenous women and girls and how everyone can play a role in this movement.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Annita Lucchesi is Executive Director of Sovereign Bodies Institute, a research institute dedicated to community-engaged research on gender and sexual violence against Indigenous people. Sovereign Bodies Institute (SBI) builds on Indigenous traditions of data gathering and knowledge transfer to create, disseminate, and put into action research on gender and sexual violence against Indigenous people. For more information on SBI, please visit their website, at sovereign-bodies.org. 

Annita is also a doctoral student at the University of Lethbridge, in the Cultural, Social, & Political Thought program. She earned her BA in Geography, with a minor in Global Poverty & Practice, from the University of California, Berkeley in 2012, and graduated with highest honors. She graduated Washington State University with her MA in American Studies in 2016. Her research interests include indigenous and critical cartography, indigenous feminisms, postcolonial geographies, and indigenous research methodologies. Her dissertation work brings critical indigenous cartography and feminist studies together, by examining the ways in which maps can help us to better understand the international issue of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls, and the movement to honor them and bring them to safety. As part of this work, Annita maintains one of the largest databases of cases of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls in Canada and the United States. This data is used not only in her own work, but is also made available to tribal advocates, activists, policy makers, service providers, and community leaders.

Annita is a Southern Cheyenne descendant, and her ancestors traditionally made their home in northeastern Colorado and southern Wyoming. Her Indian name is Hetoevėhotohke’e, which translates to Evening Star Woman. 

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A Look At Cuba: Democracy And Resistance To US Interference

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

The Trump administration designated Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela as a “Troika of Tyranny” and has been ratcheting up pressure on all three countries through economic blockades, creating dissent and covert attacks. This includes manipulating popular opinion in the US to demonize them and build support for intervention. All three countries have in common that they are resisting US domination. Recently, President Trump announced a travel ban to Cuba, which will curtail the possibility of people being able to visit and see for themselves that things are not as they have been told by the media. We speak with Netfa Freeman, who just spent two weeks in Cuba and who has done Cuba solidarity work since the early 1990’s, about the situation there, how the US is interfering and what Cubans are doing to resist.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Netfa Freeman was Director of the Institute’s Social Action & Leadership School for Activists (SALSA) from 2000 to 2010 and is now the coordinator for events of the other IPS projects. SALSA provided affordable workshops covering all aspects of grassroots activism.

Netfa holds a B.A. in History from the University of the District of Columbia (UDC) and has been a political organizer/activist since 1985. He served as coordinator of the Committee for Political Education at the Pan-African Resource Center (1985-1989) and has worked as a phone-bank fundraiser for the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES 1988-1990).

Netfa has been intimately involved with many movements, such as the 1986 International Peace Gathering in response to the U.S. bombing of Libya, the 1997 Advocates Plus Save UDC movement, and the People Before Profit Community Healthcare Project that was organizing DC residents to take their healthcare needs into their own hands. He served for many years as boardmember for Empower DC, as well as on the advisory board of M.O.M.I.E.S. TLC, was U.S. liaison for the Ujamma Youth Farming Project in Gweru, Zimbabwe, and a founding member and a lead organizer in the DC-Havana Sister City Project and the No War On Cuba Movement. He is an organizer in the International Committee for Peace, Justice & Dignity for the People, formerly the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5. Netfa is also a radio co-producer/co-host for Voices With Vision on WPFW 89.3 FM that airs Tuesdays from 9-10am. In 2011 Netfa was a recipient of the Washington Peace Center’s Activists of The Year Awards and has been a workshop facilitator as part of the Educator’s Collective for the Wayside Center for Popular EducationTrain the Movement: A Trainers of Color Collaborative, and completed the “Amandla! Black Community Organizing Internship” of BOLD, Black Organizing for Leadership & Dignity.

His writings have been published in Black Star News (Ode To Black Women, Zimbabwe: Psychosis of Denial, What Happy Thanksgiving, Zimbabwe Election Deja Vu), Black Commentator (From Negro History Week to Pan-African Historical Context, Zimbabwe: More Than Complicity of Silence, Africa Advocacy & The Zimbabwe Factor), and Black Agenda Report (Zimbabwe And The Battle of Ideas), Pambazuka News, Global Research, and beyond. He also serves often as a commentator on radio and TV outlets.

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What’s In An Eco-Socialist Green New Deal?

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

Each new report indicates the need to take urgent action on the climate crisis. The impacts in the US so far this year are already devastating – much of the farmland in the Midwest is still unsuitable for planting because of flooding and severe storms. In the European Union, climate was a major factor in the parliamentary elections with Green Party candidates surging toward the top in many countries. Will there be a similar awakening in the United States? We speak with Howie Hawkins, the person who brought the Green New Deal to the US and who recently announced that he is seeking the Green Party nomination for president, about the details of the eco-socialist Green New Deal he proposes and how to win it.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Howie Hawkins  is the original Green New Dealer, the first US candidate to campaign for a Green New Deal in 2010.

He is also one of the original Greens in the United States, having participated in the first national meeting to organize a US Green Party in St. Paul, Minnesota in August 1984.

Howie became active in “The Movement” for civil rights and against the war in Vietnam in the 1960s as a teenager in the San Francisco Bay Area. Repelled by the racism and warmongering he saw in both major parties, he asked, “Where is my party?”

From the start, he was committed to independent working-class politics for a democratic, socialist, and ecological society. He supported the Peace and Freedom Party in 1968, the People’s Party in 1972 and 1976, and the Citizens Party in 1980. Since that first national meeting in 1984, Howie has been a Green Party organizer.

As the Green Party’s candidate for governor of New York in 2010, 2014, and 2018, each time he received enough votes to qualify the Green Party for a ballot line for the next four years. In 2014, he received 5 percent of the vote, the most for an independent progressive party candidates for governor in New York history except for Socialist candidates who received 5.7% in 1918 and 5.6% in 1920.

As a Green Party candidate many times for local office in Syracuse, his vote grew from 3% for at-large councilor in 1993 to 48% for a district council seat in 2011. In 2015, he received 35% of the citywide vote for city auditor.

Outside of electoral politics, Howie has been a constant organizer in peace, justice, union, and environmental campaigns.

When his draft number was called in 1972, Howie enlisted in the Marine Corps while continuing to organize against the Vietnam War. He remains a member of Vietnam Veterans Against the War as well as a member of the American Legion Dunbar Post 1642 in Syracuse.

After studying at Dartmouth College, Howie worked in construction in New England in the 1970s and 1980s. He helped organize a worker cooperative that specialized in energy efficiency and solar and wind installations.

When the Socialist Party of Eugene Debs, A. Philip Randolph, Helen Keller, and Norman Thomas re-established itself as an independent party in 1973, Howie joined and remains a member. He is also a member of Solidarity, which promotes “socialism from below” and international solidarity because the fight for freedom against all dictators and imperialisms is worldwide and indivisible.

Howie was a co-founder of the anti-nuclear Clamshell Alliance in 1976. In the 1970s and 1980s, he was also a leader in the anti-apartheid divestment movement to end US corporate investment in the racist system of oppression and labor exploitation in South Africa.

Howie moved to Syracuse in 1991 to develop cooperatives for CommonWorks, a federation of cooperatives that promoted cooperative ownership, democratic control, and ecological sustainability in the local economy.

From 2001 to 2018, he worked as a Teamster unloading trucks at UPS. Now retired, he remains a supporter of Teamsters for a Democratic UnionUS Labor Against the War, the Labor Campaign for Single Payer Healthcare, the Labor Network for Sustainability, and the Labor Notes network.  Howie’s articles on politics, economics, and environmental issues have appeared in Against the Current, Black Agenda Report, CounterPunch, Green Politics, International Socialist Review, Labor Notes, New Politics, Peace and Democracy News, Roll Call, Society and Nature, Z Magazine, and other publications. He is the editor of, and a contributor to, Independent Politics: The Green Party Strategy Debate(Haymarket Books, 2006).

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The Power To Withdraw Our Consent From Systems Of Violence

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

According to the director of the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research, Renata Dwan, the risk of nuclear war is the highest it has been since World War II. Last year, seven plow shares activists entered the Kings Bay Naval Base in Georgia to protest the Trident submarine, calling it “the world’s deadliest nuclear weapon,” to bring attention to this risk. They poured blood on it and beat on it with hammers to symbolize the biblical statement, to “beat swords into plow shares.” We speak with four of the seven, the other three are in prison, about why they took this action, how it connects to the triple evils identified by Martin Luther King of “racism, extreme materialism, and militarism,” and what can be done to stop this threat.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guests:

Clare Grady has lived for many years in Ithaca, NY, on Cayuga People’s land, in Haudenausaunee territory. She comes from a big loving family, and is the mother of 2 grown daughters, Leah and Rosie. Drawing deeply from her Irish Catholic roots, she is grateful that her parents, Teresa and John,  raised their five kids in a community of faith-based resistance.

Martha Hennessy is the seventh child of Dorothy Day’s only child Tamar, divides her time between the family farm in Vermont and volunteer work at Maryhouse Catholic Worker in New York City. She is 62, a retired occupational therapist, and grandmother of eight. She has been arrested and imprisoned protesting nuclear power, war, the use of drones, the torture of prisoners in Guantanamo and other prisons, and the use of starvation as a weapon of war in Yemen. She has traveled to Russia, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Jordan, and Palestine to understand the effects of war on other peoples. Martha travels and speaks on the topics of life and work in community, Catholic Social Teaching, and peacemaking efforts in the tradition of the Catholic Worker movement.

Patrick O’Neill is 61 years old and the father of six daughters and two sons. His wife, Mary Rider, and he co-founded the Fr. Charlie Mulholland Catholic Worker House in Garner, N.C. in 1991, an intentional, pacifist, Christian community that works to uphold the Consistent Ethic of Life. Their daughter, Brianna, is married to Ricky Bennett. She is the administrator of the Women’s Birth and Wellness Center in Chapel Hill, N.C. Daughter, Bernadette, is married to Jeff Naro, and is a Catholic campus minister at Marist High School in Atlanta, GA. Daughter, Moira, works in the area of Food Justice at the Tucson, AZ, Food Bank. Daughter, Veronica, is a Bonner Scholar at Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C. Son, Timmy attends the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Daughter, Annie, and son Michael, attend Raleigh Charter High School, and daughter, Mary Evelyn, attends the Exploris School in Raleigh, N.C. In addition to Catholic Worker responsibilities, Mary is a social worker and Patrickis a journalist. As Catholics, they try to put into practice God’s call to Love One Another. Their peacemaking efforts include extensive work opposing nuclear weapons, working for abolition of the death penalty, supporting immigrants, participating in the N.C.-based Moral Monday Movement, the new Poor People’s Campaign, Black Lives Matter and other anti-oppression and anti-racism efforts. He and Mary both participate in nonviolent direct action as a tactic for justice. Mary has been jailed three times and Patrick has spent more than two years in jail and prison for his peace work.

Carmen Trotta has been a member of the New York Catholic Worker for over thirty years.  He is an integral part of the community which operates two houses of hospitality on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, caring for the poor and homeless, offering meals, clothing and shelter. Carmen is also an associate editor of The Catholic Worker newspaper which is published seven times annually and has been in constant publication since 1933. He is a graduate of Grinnell College, where he played football and studied religion. More recently Carmen has been spending three days a week with his ninety-three year old father on Long Island, caring for him in his home where he wants to remain. Carmen’s large family – he has 5 brothers and 1 sister — have greatly appreciated the flexibility of his work at the Catholic Worker making it possible for him to spend so much time caring for their father

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The US-Led Coup In Venezuela Comes To Washington

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

For 37 days, from April 10 to May 16, activists calling themselves the Embassy Protection Collective stayed at the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, DC 24/7 to prevent the United States from perpetuating its coup attempt and violating the Vienna Convention by turning the embassy over to the US-supported coup leader, Juan Guaido. The activists, including the show hosts, were there with the permission and support of the elected government of Venezuela. The United States government used everything it could to force the activists out, including cutting off access to food, electricity and water and surrounding the embassy with violent fascists. Adrienne Pine, a professor of anthropology who has studied the coup in Honduras and who was an Embassy Protector until the end, joins us to discuss what happened, what it was like and what comes next.

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And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Adrienne Pine is a militant medical anthropologist who has worked in Honduras, Mexico, Korea, the United States, Egypt, and Cuba. In her book, Working Hard, Drinking Hard: On Violence and Survival in Honduras, she argues that the symbolic violence resulting from Hondurans’ embodied obsession with certain forms of ‘real’ violence is a necessary condition for the acceptance of violent forms of modernity and capitalism. Dr. Pine has worked both outside and inside the academy to effect a more just world. Prior to and following the June 2009 military coup in Honduras, she has collaborated with numerous organizations and individuals to bring international attention to the Honduran struggle to halt U.S. government-supported state violence (in its multiple forms). She has also conducted extensive research on the impact of corporate healthcare and healthcare technologies on labor practices in the United States. Her current research focuses on the intersections of nursing and democracy in Honduras, Cuba, and the United States.

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Activists Stay In Venezuelan Embassy 24/7 To Protect It

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

On March 18, opposition leader Juan Guaido’s people took over the Venezuelan consulate in New York  City and the military attaché office in Washington, DC. They announced they will take over the Venezuelan embassy in Washington, DC next. Activists, with permission of the legitimate Venezuelan government, have been staying at the embassy 24/7 for over two weeks now to protect it from opposition people entering. They may attempt to do so as soon as April 25. The US is setting a new precedent by failing a coup attempt but pretending it succeeded and turning assets over to the opposition anyway. We speak with Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODE PINK, who is staying with us in the embassy.

Listen here:

Review us on iTunes! Click here … Then click on “View in iTunes … Then click “Ratings and Reviews.”

Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Medea Benjamin is the co-founder of the women-led peace group CODEPINK and the co-founder of the human rights group Global Exchange. She has been an advocate for social justice for more than 40 years. Described as “one of America’s most committed — and most effective — fighters for human rights” by New York Newsday, and “one of the high profile leaders of the peace movement” by the Los Angeles Times, she was one of 1,000 exemplary women from 140 countries nominated to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the millions of women who do the essential work of peace worldwide. She received numerous prizes, including: the Martin Luther King, Jr. Peace Prize from the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the Peace Prize by the US Peace Memorial, the Gandhi Peace Award, and the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation Award. She is a former economist and nutritionist with the United Nations and World Health Organization.

In 2000, she was a Green Party candidate for the California Senate. During the 1990s, Medea focused her efforts on tackling the problem of unfair trade as promoted by the World Trade Organization. Widely credited as the woman who brought Nike to its knees and helped place the issue of sweatshops on the national agenda, Medea was a key player in the campaign that won a $20 million settlement from 27 US clothing retailers for the use of sweatshop labor in Saipan. She also pushed Starbucks and other companies to start carrying fair trade coffee.

Since the September 11, 2001 tragedy, Medea has been working to promote a U.S. foreign policy that would respect human rights and gain us allies instead of contributing to violence and undermining our international reputation. Medea has also been on the forefront of the anti-drone movement, publishing Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control in 2013. She organized the first-ever International Drone Summit, led delegations to Pakistan and Yemen to meet with drone strike victims, and directly questioned President Obama during his 2013 foreign policy address. The campaign against weaponized drones has helped reduce the number of civilian casualties and force the government to compensate the families of innocent victims.

Medea’s work for justice in Israel/Palestine includes taking numerous delegations to Gaza, organizing the Gaza Freedom March in 2010, participating in the Freedom Flotillas and opposing the policies of the Israel lobby group AIPAC. In 2011 she was in Tahrir Square during the Egyptian uprising and in 2014 she was detained, beaten and deported by the Egyptian security forces. In 2012 she was part of a human rights delegation to Bahrain in support of democracy activists; she was tear-gassed, arrested and deported by the Bahraini government. In 2015 and 2018 she participated in Women Cross the DMZ, an international delegation of women calling for peace in Korea.

Her groundbreaking work on the negative consequences of the US-Saudi alliance include the 2016 book Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connectionand the 2016 International Summit on Saudi Arabia. Her latest book, Inside Iran: The Real History and Politics of the Islamic Republic of Iran, is part of a campaign to prevent a war with Iran and instead promote normal trade and diplomatic relations.

Medea is the author of ten books.  Her articles appear regularly in outlets such as The Guardian, The Huffington Post, CommonDreams, Alternet, and The Hill. Medea can be reached at: medea@codepink.org or @medeabenjamin.

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How Momentum Is Growing To Tax The Rich And Reduce Inequality

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

In the middle of the last century, there was a large and secure working class. Then, changes to the tax structure distributed more and more of the wealth to the richest and hollowed out the middle class. Now, levels of inequality in the United States are unsustainable as the top one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) has wealth equal to the bottom 80%. Momentum is growing to make the tax system more fair at both the state and federal levels. We speak with Sam Pizzigati about the history of taxes and what policies are currently being proposed.

Listen here:

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Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Sam Pizzigati is a veteran labor journalist and Institute for Policy Studies associate fellow who co-edits Inequality.org, the Institute’s weekly newsletter on our great divides. He also contributes a regular column to OtherWords, the IPS national nonprofit editorial service.

Sam, now retired from the labor movement, spent two decades directing the publishing program at America’s largest union, the 2.8-million-member National Education Association, and before that edited the national publications of three other U.S. trade unions.

Sam’s own writing has revolved around economic inequality since the early 1990s. His op-eds on income and wealth concentration have appeared in periodicals all around the world, from the New York Times to Le Monde Diplomatique.

Sam has authored four books and co-edited two others. His 2004 book, Greed and Good: Understanding the Inequality that Limits Our Lives, won an “outstanding title” honor from the American Library Association’s book review journal. His 2012 title, The Rich Don’t Always Win: The Forgotten Triumph over Plutocracy that Created the American Middle Class, 1900-1970, explores how average Americans ended the nation’s original Gilded Age. Sam’s most recent book, The Case for a Maximum Wage, offers a politically plausible path toward ending that Gilded Age’s second coming.

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Busting The Myths About NATO; Why NATO’s Got To Go

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG. -

On April 4, 2019, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) foreign ministers met in Washington, DC to celebrate its 70th anniversary. While both parties in Congress applauded NATO, peace and justice activists held a week of action in protest, disrupting meetings, shutting down an entrance to the State Department and taking the streets. Activists are trying to expose the truth about NATO as an institution founded to prevent the rise of left movements, protect capitalism and provide cover for illegal wars. We speak with Yves Engler, a Montreal-based author and activist, about the history of NATO and why it’s time to abolish it.

Listen here:

Review us on iTunes! Click here … Then click on “View in iTunes … Then click “Ratings and Reviews.”

Subscribe to Clearing the FOG on Patreon and receive our bonus show, Thinking it Through, plus Clearing the FOG totes, water bottles and T shirts. Visit Patreon.com/ClearingtheFOG.

And visit the new Popular Resistance Podcast Network at www.PopularResistance.org/prpn/

Guest:

Yves Engler is a former Vice President of the Concordia Student Union, Yves Engler is a Montréal-based activist and author. He has  published ten books: Left, Right — Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada; A Propaganda System—How Canada’s Government, Corporations, Media and Academia Sell War and Exploitation, Canada in Africa — 300 Years of Aid and Exploitation, The Ugly Canadian — Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, Lester Pearson’s Peacekeeping — The Truth May Hurt, Stop Signs — Cars and Capitalism on the Road to Economic, Social and Ecological Decay (with Bianca Mugyenyi), The Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy (Shortlisted for the Mavis Gallant Prize for Non Fiction in the Quebec Writers’ Federation Literary Awards), Playing Left Wing: From Rink Rat to Student Radical and (with Anthony Fenton) Canada in Haiti: Waging War on The Poor Majority and Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid. Yves was born in Vancouver, where he grew up playing hockey. He was a peewee teammate of NHL star Mike Ribeiro at Huron Hochelaga in Montréal before playing in the B.C. Junior League. After being suspended from Concordia University, he turned to research and writing, but he’s still a fan of the great Canadian sport. To contact Yves email Yvesengler(at)hotmail.com

Yves first became active in Canadian foreign policy issues in the early 2000s. Initially focused on anti-corporate globalization organizing, the year he was an elected vice president of the Concordia Student Union Benjamin Netanyahu was blocked from speaking at the university. The protests sparked a massive backlash against student activism on campus. Later in the school year the US invaded Iraq. In the lead-up to the war Yves helped mobilize students to attend a number of massive antiwar demonstrations and co-founded a small collective called Block the Empire, which organized an early morning blockade of the US consulate in Montréal. Later Block the Empire organized a number of events targeting arms manufacturers, including a tour of Montréal’s weapons industry.

While these efforts challenged Canadian foreign policy, it was only after Ottawa helped overthrow the democratically elected Haitian government in 2004 that Yves began to seriously question Canada’s peacekeeper self-image. As he learned about Canada’s contribution to violent, anti-democratic policies in Haiti Yves began to directly challenge this country’s foreign policy. Over the next three years he traveled to Haiti and helped organize dozens of marches, talks, actions, press conferences, etc. critical of Canada’s role in the country. Yves also co-authored Canada in Haiti: Waging War Against the Poor Majority and helped establish the Canada Haiti Action Network.

As the situation in Haiti stabilized Yves began reading everything he could find about Canadian foreign policy, which culminated in the Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy. This research began a process that later led to Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid, Lester Pearson’s Peacekeeping: The Truth May Hurt, The Ugly Canadian: Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, Canada in Africa: 300 Years of Aid and Exploitation, A Propaganda System: How Canada’s Government, Corporations, Media and Academia Sell War and Exploitation and Left, Right — Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada.

While Yves regularly attend rallies and demonstrations in Montreal, since the release of the Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy in 2009 the bulk of his activism has focused on organizing and coordinating hundreds of speaking events concerning the subject of his books. Through these efforts Yves has worked with antiwar, mining justice, as well as Palestine, Africa, Haiti and Latin America solidarity groups across the country.

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