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.

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Our Healthcare System Is So Broken, Even Non-Profits Are Failing Us

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG Radio. -

Since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, there has been an unprecedented consolidation in the healthcare industry. Giant medical corporations are investing in “vertical integration,” which basically means they own everything, including the hospitals, doctor’s practices, long term care centers, pharmacies, insurances (both public and private), and more. This gives corporations the power to have control over hospitals and health professionals. Their interest is a healthy bottom line, not the health of patients and communities. Non-profits are just as ruthless as the for-profits, and on top of that they don’t pay taxes. We speak with Dr. Anna Reed about the way this is playing out in Maryland and putting children and the poor at risk.

 

Listen here:

Relevant articles and websites:

Patients Protest MedStar for Terminating Their Doctor without Cause by Bill Hughes

MedStar is a Non-Profit with For-Profit Policies; Closes Critical Programs

The US is Entering a Golden Age of Corporate Medicine by Adam Gaffney

StopMedStarDiscrmination.org

 

Guest:

Dr. Anna Reed is a graduate of University of Virginia School of Medicine and Children’s Memorial Hospital Pediatric Residency in Chicago, Illinois.  Upon graduating from residency, she worked in the Children’s Memorial Hospital Pediatric Intensive Care Unit as a hospitalist and sedation attending until her family moved to Baltimore.  Here, she took a position as a Pediatric Emergency Room Physician at Greater Baltimore Medical Center.

After four years at GBMC, she craved more patient continuity and worked in private practice for two years. There, her interest in childhood development and nutrition intensified. She is the former Director of Pediatric Rehabilitation at MedStar Franklin Square where she evaluated patients in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Developmental Follow-Up Clinic. She also saw pediatric patients at the Franklin Square Family Health Center, and worked in the pediatric emergency room, inpatient unit, and nursery.

Dr. Reed organized the pediatric outpatient curriculum for the MedStar Franklin Square Family Medicine residency program and is committed to resident teaching.  She is actively involved in the Baltimore County Public Schools Health Council with a focus on nutrition as well as the Early Childhood Advisory Council to promote public awareness about the importance of early childhood health and development.  She is currently working on increasing autism screening in underserved communities.

Undergraduate: Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
Medical School: University of Virginia School of Medicine, Charlottesville, VA
Residency: Children’s Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL

Professional Activities

  • Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Georgetown University 2013 – present
  • Fellow, American Academy of Pediatrics October 2006 – present
  • Childhood Obesity Section Member
  • Developmental Pediatrics Section Member
  • Member, Academic Pediatric Association 2013 – present

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Entering The ‘Brave New World’ Of Corporatized Education

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

First there were charter schools and high stakes testing, and now we are entering a whole new realm of corporate education that treats students as commodities and views schools and teachers as obstacles to profits. Education corporations are pushing computer-based learning on students and crowding out classroom-based instruction, even though studies show online learning is less effective. On top of that, new education tech also monitors students’ eye movements, vital signs and emotional state. It is mining data on students from preschool on up that can be sold to marketers and used to determine a student’s future. We speak with Morna McDermott, an educator and mom who co-founded United Opt Out of the opt out of testing and has launched a new campaign, “Classrooms, Not Computers.”

 

Listen here:

 

In the News:

High Alert for Palestinian Slaughter and Conflict with Iran

Trump’s Withdrawal from Iran Nuclear Deal Gives Europe a Choice: Become Vassals or be Independent

Gaza Protests: 58 Palestinians Killed and More than 2,700 Injured

Ecuador Hints It May Hand Over Julian Assange to Britain and the US

A Decisive Election for Venezuela: Will the Bolivarian Revolution Continue?

Ray McGovern Arrested and Abused Protesting #BloodyGina

Weedkiller Products More Toxic Than Their Active Ingredient, Tests Show

California Becomes First State Requiring All New Homes be Built with Solar

The Battle for Net Neutrality Continues

 

Relevant articles and websites:

Educational Alchemy

Wrench in the Gears

Classrooms, Not Computers

 

Guest:

Morna McDermott is a professor of education at Towson University and a founding administrator of United Opt Out. She has worked in and with k-12 public schools for 25 years.

As an educator devoted to the preservation of PUBLIC education as a fundamental right for ALL children, she focuses on writing essays, mad rants, and research based articles that address the concerns, fears, hopes and imaginings she shares with others. Alchemy is key. Common lore describes alchemy as the work of madmen attempting to change base metals into gold. But true alchemists know that the art of alchemy is about transformation of self and world in tandem with one another.

Known traditionally as a pseudo-science of turning lead into gold, alchemy is also according to many scholars (Jung, 1968; Highwater, 1996; Briggs, 1985) the belief in and practice of “self” as a creative aesthetic process with the aim of transforming “self” into a relational being that connects the alchemist with the world; using the sensory world of “prima materia” (the elements of earth, fire and water) as a metaphor for empathetic and socially responsible action. As an educational practice that “works from within,” alchemy uses metaphor to access and express the ineffable knowledges emerging from the complex and shifting relationships between self a other, and between our inner self and acts of social change within the world. Based on the premise that “what is within is also without,” alchemy as inquiry taps into changes within “self” to spark change within our socially constructed systems of meaning-making. As such, those of us dedicated to transforming public education, not “reforming” it,  know that “the work” is the highest goal. Profit cannot be the motivation to drive meaningful, equitable,  and sustainable educational practices. Nor can glory, fame, or self-gratification.  As people like Michelle Rhee make $30,000 a speaking engagement and Pearson bilks 45 billion dollars from educational coffers while public schools starve and communities struggle. This is unacceptable.  The alchemist knows that the work and the self are directly intertwined. The purpose must be greater than the self alone.  Creativity and the arts have the power to provoke change in the hands of communities inspired by socially responsive purposes.  Because “art enables us to glimpse a reality that lies outside the realm of what we are normally aware of” (Highwater, 1996, p. 116) alchemical inquiry draws on art from within the self to create more socially responsive modes of aesthetic meaning making.

The self becomes an agent of change only by changing the self. Using alchemical processes in arts inquiry we forge visions rather than findings, inviting others to tap into their own creative reserves and draw out other ways of seeing the world. How might we access sensory and artistic conceptions in inquiry so that they might in turn help transform our work and worlds?

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“Climate Change Is More Of A Problem Than We Anticipated”

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG -

Each new study on climate change shows that not only is the crisis here now, but changes are happening a century earlier than predicted. We speak with respected climate scientist, Dr. Michael Mann, about what we can expect in the next decades and what we need to do to mitigate and adapt to the climate crisis. We also cover recent movement news and upcoming actions.

 

Listen here

 

News

‘The Plot to Attack Iran’: A Tool to Combat Washington’s Middle East Wars

“We have the Right to Live”: Why Palestinians in Gaza will keep Protesting

Mumia seeks to show Top State Judge Doubled as Prosecutor and Jurist reviewing his Appeals

Philadelphia DA’s Office Stonewalls at Hearing for Mumia Abu-Jamal

Oakland Passes “Strongest” Surveillance Oversight Law in US

Native Leaders Bring Attention to Impact of Fossil Fuel Industry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

The United States has a Second Public Bank

 

Relevant articles and websites

Earth Day: Conflict Over the Future of the Planet

Michael Mann

Freedom Flotilla

Beyond Extreme Energy

 

Guest

Dr. Michael E. Mann is Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science at Penn State, with joint appointments in the Department of Geosciences and the Earth and Environmental Systems Institute (EESI). He is also director of the Penn State Earth System Science Center (ESSC).

Dr. Mann received his undergraduate degrees in Physics and Applied Math from the University of California at Berkeley, an M.S. degree in Physics from Yale University, and a Ph.D. in Geology & Geophysics from Yale University. His research involves the use of theoretical models and observational data to better understand Earth’s climate system.

Dr. Mann was a Lead Author on the Observed Climate Variability and Change chapter of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Third Scientific Assessment Report in 2001 and was organizing committee chair for the National Academy of Sciences Frontiers of Science in 2003. He has received a number of honors and awards including NOAA’s outstanding publication award in 2002 and selection by Scientific American as one of the fifty leading visionaries in science and technology in 2002. He contributed, with other IPCC authors, to the award of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. He was awarded the Hans Oeschger Medal of the European Geosciences Union in 2012 and was awarded the National Conservation Achievement Award for science by the National Wildlife Federation in 2013. He made Bloomberg News’ list of fifty most influential people in 2013. In 2014, he was named Highly Cited Researcher by the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) and received the Friend of the Planet Award from the National Center for Science Education. He received the Stephen H. Schneider Award for Outstanding Climate Science Communication from Climate One in 2017 and the Award for Public Engagement with Science from the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2018. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, the American Meteorological Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. He is also a co-founder of the award-winning science website RealClimate.org.

Dr. Mann is author of more than 200 peer-reviewed and edited publications, numerous op-eds and commentaries, and four books including Dire Predictions: Understanding Climate ChangeThe Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front LinesThe Madhouse Effect: How Climate Change Denial is Threatening our Planet, Destroying Our Politics, and Driving Us Crazy and The Tantrum that Saved the World.

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Historic Opportunity For Peace On Korean Peninsula

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG -

The meeting between President Moon Jae-in of South Korea and Chairman Kim Jong Un of North Korea resulted in an agreement to end the Korean War and work toward unity. Their declaration was a major breakthrough where the two Koreas announced Koreans will determine their own fate and end hostilities on the Korean Peninsula. We speak with Hyun Lee, an editor of Zoom In Korea and a peace activist who is a member of the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea, about the importance of their meeting and what to expect from President Trump’s upcoming meeting with Kim Jong Un. We also provide news and activism updates.

 

Listen here:

 

In the News:

Tree-sits in Virginia to stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline

Teachers are on strike in Arizona

War on Syria continues

US closes ears to testimony on alleged chemical attack

Critical time for Net Neutrality

 

Relevant articles and websites:

Women Cross DMZ Statement of Congratulations on Historic Inter-Korean Summit 

Korean Public Service & Transport Workers Union hails Panmunjom Declaration

Panmunjeom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula

Here’s What Kim Really Wants Out of His Meeting With Trump 

Koreas Reach Agreement on Peace, Prosperity and Unity by Kevin Zeese

North Korea And US: Will Real Aggressor Please Stand Down? by Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers

The Long History Of US Abuses To Korea by Anthony Gronowicz

Who Really Started The Korean War? by Justin Raimondo

Popular Resistance coverage of the Korean conflict

Zoom In Korea

Korea Policy Institute

 

Guest:

Hyun Lee is the managing editor of Zoom in Korea, an online resource that provides news and analysis on peace and democracy in Korea. She is an associate of the Korea Policy Institute. Hyan is an anti-war activist and organizer who has traveled to North and South Korea  and also serves on the steering committee of the Task Force to Stop THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) in Korea and Militarism in Asia and the Pacific.

Read More

“We Need To Act Now”: An Interview With Chelsea Manning

By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese, Clearing the FOG -

Chelsea Manning is running for U.S. Senate in Maryland in the Democratic Party primary against career politician, Ben Cardin. She explains why she is running, her concerns about the future, which should be of concern to all of us, and what we should be doing right now. We also bring you news and upcoming actions that you can join.

 

Listen here:

 

News:

Earth Day Newsletter by Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers

Police Urging Anti-protest Bills in at Least 8 States by Simon Davis-Cohen and Sarah Lazare

Korean Peninsula in Historic Peace Talks – Thanks to Activists by Ben Norton

As Israel Marks 70 Years, What have been the True Costs? by Jonathan Cook

Views from a Changing Cuba as Raul Castro Steps Down by Nat Winthrop

Popular Resistance School

Common Censored

 

Relevant articles and websites:

Chelsea Manning: “I’m a very different person than I was ten years ago” by Ed Pilkington

The Long, Lonely Road of Chelsea Manning by Matthew Shaer

Donate to Chelsea’s Senate campaign here

 

Guest:

Chelsea Manning is a trans woman, a network security expert and former intelligence analyst who was imprisoned for seven years after providing documents to Wikileaks. Since having her sentenced commuted and being released in 2017, she has been active on a range of issues. Chelsea is currently running for US Senate as a Democrat in Maryland. Follow Chelsea on Twitter @xychelsea.

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On Syria – “The United States Is Not In Control”: An Interview With Vijay Prashad

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

We speak with Vijay Prashad, who provides insightful analysis of the situation in Syria and the aerial bombing of Damascus by the US. The US’ claims, which were used to justify the bombing, of attacking Syrian chemical weapons facilities make little sense. If the US knew of such facilities, the information should have been provided to the UN so they could be inspected. Prashad finds it strange that the US attacked Damascus while chemical weapons investigators were in Syria and had not yet completed their investigation of the alleged chemical attack. The attack did not change the balance of power. Syria continues to regain control of its territory and the rebels, along with their allies, i.e. the US, UK and France, have been routed. These and other issues around the Syrian war are discussed and Prashad also examines the impact of US actions on conflicts with North Korea and Iran.

 

Listen here:

 

In the News:

National Days of Antiwar Actions

J20 Defendants

TransPacific Partnership

Six weeks of Protest in Palestine

Suicide Protest by David Buckel

John Boehner profiting from Marijuana

Teachers’ Strikes

 

Relevant websites:

Vijay Prashad

The Tricontinental

Black Alliance for Peace

CODEPINK – Divestment campaign

March on the Pentagon

No Trump Military Parade

No US Foreign Military Bases

United National Antiwar Coalition

World Beyond War

 

Guest:

Vijay Prashad is an Indian historian, journalist, commentator and a Marxist intellectual. He is the Executive Director of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research and the Chief Editor of LeftWord Books.

He was the George and Martha Kellner Chair in South Asian History and Professor of International Studies at Trinity College in Hartford, ConnecticutUnited States from 1996 to 2017. In 2013–2014, he was the Edward Said Chair at the American University of Beirut and has been a Senior Fellow of the Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs in Beirut.

Prashad is the author of twenty-five books. In 2012, he published five books, including Arab Spring, Libyan Winter (AK Press) and Uncle Swami: South Asians in America Today (The New Press). His book The Darker Nations: A People’s History of the Third World (2007) was chosen as the Best Nonfiction book by the Asian American Writers’ Workshop in 2008 and it won the Muzaffar Ahmed Book Award in 2009. In 2013, Verso published his The Poorer Nations: A Possible History of the Global South. He is author of No Free Left: The Futures of Indian Communism (LeftWord Books, 2015) and the editor of Letters to Palestine (Verso Books, 2015), a book that includes the writings of Teju ColeSinan AntoonNoura Erakat, and Junot Diaz. His most recent book is Red Star Over the Third World (LeftWord, 2017).

Prashad is a journalist who writes for FrontlineThe HinduAlternet and BirGun. Each Friday, he writes a column called Radical Journeys for Newsclick. He has reported from around the world for the Indian media – from Latin America to the Middle East to Africa.

In 2015, Prashad joined as the Chief Editor of the New Delhi-based publisher LeftWord Books. He is also an advisory board member of the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, part of the global BDS movement.

Read More

50 Years Later, The Poor People’s Campaign Continues

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

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Poor People’s Campaign, called for by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Although Dr. King was murdered a month prior to the Poor People’s Campaign, it happened anyway. Resurrection City was built on the Mall in Washington, DC and people stayed there for six weeks. Fifty years later, widespread poverty exists and the “evils” of racism, capitalism and militarism are still in crisis. Two major campaigns are organizing poor people across the country. We speak with Cheri Honkala of the Poor People’s Economic and Human Rights Campaign and Rev. Robin Tanner of the Repairers of the Breach.

 

Listen here:

 

Relevant articles and websites:

Thoughts about the Greatness of Selma, Unity and King by Alan Gilbert

Huge Organizing Effort, ’40 Days of Action’ Launching to Fight Poverty by Eleanor J. Bader

America Needs a New Poor People’s Campaign by Rev. William J. Barber, II

Poor People’s Economic and Human Rights Campaign

March for Our Lives

Repairers of the Breach

 

Guests:

Cheri Honkala is an American anti-poverty advocate, co-founder of the Kensington Welfare Rights Union (KWRU) and co-founder and National Coordinator of the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign. She has been a noted advocate for human rights in the United States and internationally.She is the mother of actor Mark Webber.

She was featured prominently in the 1997 book Myth of the Welfare Queen by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Zucchino. In 2011, Honkala was the Green Party candidate for Sheriff of Philadelphia, running on the promise of refusing to evict families from their homes. She is best known for being the Green Party’s nominee for vice-president in the 2012 U.S. presidential election.

On January 31, 2017 Honkala announced she is running for Representative of Pennsylvania House District 197 in the March 21 special election to replace Leslie Acosta, who was the second state representative in the 197th District to resign on federal fraud charges. She is considered to have more name recognition than her Republican and Democratic opponents. Honkala ran as a write-in candidate against Republican Lucinda Little; there was no Democrat on the ballot in the heavily Democratic district.

Honkala was endorsed many progressives and organizations including Bernie Sanders’ group Our Revolution, Tim Canova’s group Progress for All, environmental activist Josh Fox, progressives Rosario Dawson and Tom Morello, former Director Emeritus of Philaposh (a labor organization) Jim Moran, former Philadelphia Health Commissioner Walter Tsou, the PEOPLE Committee of the AFSCME District Council 47, Philadelphia Neighborhood Networks, the Philadelphia chapter of Socialist Alternative, and many other local clergy and leaders.

In March 2017, Honkala lost a special election to represent the 197th district in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives to Democratic write-in Emilio Vazquez when the votes were counted. However, this election is under investigation by the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office and the Pennsylvania Attorney General. Honkala, alongside the Green Party of Pennsylvania, Lucinda Little (the Republican candidate), and the State and City Republican parties filed a lawsuit in United States District Court against Emilio Vazquez, the Philadelphia Democratic Committee, Philadelphia City Commissioners, PA Secretary of State Cortes, and the State’s Bureau of Commissions, Elections, and Legislation. The lawsuit alleges widespread election fraud and voter intimidation on the part of Vazquez and the Philadelphia Democratic Committee, and failure to properly supervise the elections for the other defendants.

Claims in the federal lawsuit include electioneering inside the polling place, money exchange between Democratic poll workers and election officials, a ballot box being at Vazquez’s “victory” party, tables set up outside by Democratic poll works made to look like voter sign-in tables, election workers asking people who they are voting for, Democratic ward leaders handling the voting machines, Vazquez meeting with election officials on election day inside of the polling place, and other claims. Despite the investigation, Vazquez was officially sworn in as a member of the Pennsylvania state House of Representatives on April 5, 2017.

Rev. Robin Tanner is a Unitarian Universalist minister, poet, and activist who serves as the Minister of Worship and Outreach at Beacon Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Summit, New Jersey

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“Israel Has No Legitimacy”: An Interview With Miko Peled

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

In Palestine, on Friday, March 30, Land Day, thousands of Palestinians demonstrated. This began six weeks of protests leading up to the 70th anniversary of the Nakba on May 15. Israeli soldiers fired at the demonstrators with live ammunition killing 17 and wounding over one thousand. We speak with author and activist Miko Peled about the violent occupation of Palestine by Zionists. The United States is a top supporter of the occupation through funding of the Israeli military and providing cover for Israeli violations of international law in the United Nations. Peled emphasizes that activists in the US have a responsibility to take action to end the occupation of Palestine and outlines many ways to do this, including an aggressive BDS campaign and support for legislation in Congress. Peled says “Israel” is an illegitimate state and the area should be called Palestine. He also speaks about his newest book, “Injustice: The Story of the Holy Land Foundation Five.”

Listen here:

Relevant articles and websites:

History of Ethnic Cleansing in Palestine: the Nakba by AlJazeera

Palestinians will not Cease to Demand their Rights by Basem Naim

For the First Time in 70 Years, Palestinians return to their Villages by Shatha Hammad

Violence Continues in Palestine, Israel Denounced by AlJazeera

Miko Peled

BDS Movement

McCollum Bill HR 4391: Promoting Human Rights by ending Israeli Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act

 

Guest:

Miko Peled is a writer and activist born and raised in Jerusalem.  Driven by a personal family tragedy to explore Palestine, its people and their narrative he has written a book about his journey called “The General’s Son, Journey of an Israeli in Palestine.” The book covers the work in which Peled’s family has been involved since his grandparents immigrated to Palestine in the early 20th century, describing their work and their life in detail. Peled’s maternal grandfather, Avraham Katznelson was a signer on the Israeli Declaration of Independence; his father Matti Peled was a General in the Israeli army; in the 1970’s his father pioneered an Israeli Palestinian dialogue and eventually met with Yasser Arafat in an effort to convene him to recognize the State of Israel and adopt the Two State Solution.  In 1997 Miko’s sister Nurit lost her daughter Smadar in a suicide bombing in Jerusalem and that was what finally drove Miko to embark on the journey to discover Palestine.

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Resistance Is Necessary To Overcome The Climate Crisis

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

The science is clear that we must no longer build new fossil fuel infrastructure and we must invest in clean sources of energy, yet oil and gas companies continue to receive permits to build more pipelines, compressor stations and refineries. in response, communities are organizing to stop these projects. We speak with Tim DeChristopher about how communities are using the necessity defense to defend their actions to stop the projects. And we discuss the state of the climate justice movement, how Big Greens are failing on climate justice and strategies for action.

Listen here:

Relevant articles and websites:

Defendants Acquitted based on Climate Necessity Defense by Kevin Zeese

The Boston Climate Trial that Might have been by Wen Stephenson

The Futility of “Big Green” Activism: An interview with Tim DeChristopher by Richard Heinberg

Climate Disobedience

We Are Cove Point

 

Guest:

Tim DeChristopher as Bidder 70, disrupted an illegitimate Bureau of Land Management oil and gas auction in December of 2008, by outbidding oil companies for parcels around Arches and Canyonlands National Parks in Utah. His actions and 21 month imprisonment earned him a national and international media presence, which he has used as a platform to spread the urgency of the climate crisis and the need for bold, confrontational action in order to create a just and healthy world. Tim used his prosecution as an opportunity to organize the climate justice organization Peaceful Uprising in Salt Lake City. Tim is a Co-Founder of the Climate Disobedience Center, and after graduating from Harvard Divinity School, continues the work to defend a livable future. Read More.

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Farming For The Health Of People And The Planet

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

Our current food system has a large negative impact on the climate crisis and our health. Factory farms produce large amounts of Greenhouse Gases (GHGs), pollute the land, air and water and deplete the nutrients in soil. We are eating foods that contain low levels of nutrients and contain hormones, antibiotics and pesticides that harm our health. Regenerative farming techniques ameliorate these problems by restoring the nutrients to the soil, lowering the need for chemicals (and water) and sequestering carbon. We speak with Pat Kerrigan of Organic Consumers Association about the growing move toward regenerative agriculture and what people need to know about the food we eat.

 

Listen here:

Relevant articles and websites:

David Montgomery and Anne Biklé

Organic Consumers Association

Regeneration International

Main Street Project

Natural Resources Conservation Services

Four per Thousand Initiative

Rodale Institute

 

Guest:

Patrick Kerrigan is the Retail Education Coordinator for the Organic Consumers Association.

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The Public Banking Movement Is Taking Off In The U.S.

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

Public Banks exist around the world. They are used to hold public dollars, such as taxes and fees, to keep the money local so it serves the public interest, instead of giving it to Wall Street banks who charge high fees and interest rates. There is only one public bank so far in the United States, the Bank of North Dakota. It has been in existence for almost 100 years. Now, thanks to the work of the Public Banking Institute, there is a vibrant movement to create more public banks in the U.S. at the city and state level. We speak with Walt McRee and John Comerford about the reasons to support public banks, how they would serve people instead of Wall Street profits and current efforts across the country.

 

Listen here:

Relevant articles and websites:

Public Banking Institute

Banking on New Jersey

Washington Public Bank Coalition

 

Guests:

Walt McRee was Chair of the Public Banking Institute (PBI) Board from 2015 – 2017. He continues to donate his time to PBI by coordinating the monthly coalition and coordinator calls. Prior to becoming Chair, Walt was a Senior Advisor to PBI from its earliest days in early 2011 while also serving as a Director of the Pennsylvania Public Bank Project. Following a career in broadcasting, Walt became a media strategist and consultant, writer, producer, marketing entrepreneur, voice talent. In these roles, he developed national media campaigns for world hunger, the environment, public broadcasting and the arts. As Founder and CEO of the Alliance for Public Broadcasting, Inc. he pioneered and implemented new fundraising principles and programs for use in public radio and TV stations nationwide. Walt produces and co-hosts the bi-weekly radio program “It’s Our Money with Ellen Brown,” hosts PBI’s TV program “The Public Bank Solution” and has written and produced a number of videos for PBI.

John Comerford is the President of The United States Retirement Corporation, a Seattle based pension consulting firm (www.retirecorp.com). Both John’s business career and his academic research have been focused on the interrelationship between public policy and organizational/individual decision making. John graduated from the University of Massachusetts (1970) and has earned graduate degrees from Harvard University (1984), the American College (2002), the University of London (2006) and the University of Cambridge (2008). 

Over the course of his career, John has served as founder and CEO of several successful banks, including the National Cooperative Bank, Prime Bank and The Bank of Massachusetts. He began his career overseeing the outside managment of trust fund assets for the City of Boston. He has also served as a Managing Director of StockAmerica, Calvert Group and Farmers New World Life Insurance Company, a Zurich Financial Services subsidiary.

John recenty served a six year-term as Vice Chair of the Investment Advisory Board for the $3 billion City of Seattle’s Public Employees Retirement System. He is currently Treasurer and Trustee of the Seattle World Affairs Council and Chair of the Queen Anne Food Bank at Sacred Heart. Governor Inslee has appointed John to his second term on the Board of the Washington Economic Development Finance Authority and the Speaker of the House and President of the Senate have appointed John to the Task Force on Infrastructure and Public Banking. John also serves on the Finance Committee of the Rainier Club and is a founding member of the Northwest Friends of the Carter Center, having served in the Administration of President Jimmy Carter, where he organized a White House Conference on Economic Development.

John has also served as a member of the University of Cambridge Governing Board and on President Obama’s Committee for Retirement Security as well as on the National Community Investment Advisory Board. Through the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Defense, John currently provides pension and retirement related financial counseling to military service members.

John holds honorable discharges from the U.S. Air Force and was nominated for the U.S. Congress in 1992 and 1994 and Washington State Treasurer in 2016.

John and his wife Sheia live in Seattle and have one daughter.

Earned Industry Designations

ChFC (Chartered Financial Consultant) 

CLU (Chartered Life Underwriter)

RHU (Registered Health Underwriter)

GPHR (Global Professional in Human Resources) 

REBC (Registered Employee Benefits Consultant)

RF (Registered Fiduciary

AIF (Accredited Investment Fiduciary)

PPC (Professional Plan Consultant)

CEBS (Certified Employee Benefits Specialist)

FLMI (Fellow, Life Management Institute)

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Marches On Washington To End The Wars

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

President Trump formally requested the Pentagon to organize a military parade in Washington, DC on November 11, celebrated as Veteran’s Day. However, groups of veterans want to stop the glorification of war and are organizing to reclaim the holiday as Armistice Day. This November is the 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended World War I. We speak with Brian Becker of the ANSWER coalition about the many groups organizing opposition to the military parade and calling for an end to wars at home and abroad. We also speak with Cindy Sheehan about the October Women’s March on the Pentagon, which was organized in response to the Democratic Party-affiliated Women’s Marches that omitted anti-war messages. Both Becker and Sheehan expose the bipartisan nature of the war machine in the United States.

 

Listen here:

 

Relevant articles and websites:

Mass Mobilization Against Trump Military Parade by Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese

Trump gets his Unpopular Military Parade, Counter March Planned by Walter Gelles

ANSWER Coalition Mobilization Against Trump Military Parade

No Trump Military Parade

Raining on Trump’s Parade: An Interview with Margaret Flowers by Ann Garrison

Cindy Sheehan and the Women’s March on the Pentagon: A Movement, Not Just a Protest by Whitney Webb

Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox

March on Pentagon

Women’s March on Pentagon Facebook Page

 

Guests:

Brian Becker. is the National Coordinator of the ANSWER Coalition and a leader of the Party for Socialism and Liberation. Becker has been a central organizer of the mass anti-war demonstrations that have taken place in Washington, D.C. over the past decade. He is a convenor of the People’s Congress of Resistance and co-hosts Loud and Clear with John Kiriakou.

 

Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Specialist Casey Austin Sheehan who was killed in Iraq on 04 April 2004, in the USA’s illegal and immoral occupation for profit and control of natural resources.

Cindy was a liberal Democrat before Casey was killed, but in her quest for answers as to why her son was killed and why the people who were responsible for his death were not held accountable, Cindy has had a political transformation that eventually led her to Revolutionary Socialism as the solution to the Imperialist/Capitalist two-party stranglehold on not only US politics, but, by extension, the world.

Cindy has traveled all over the world and has seen Socialism in practice and is convinced that a new world is not only possible, but also practical and desirable.

In 2008, Cindy Sheehan, challenged then House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) for her Congressional seat, and although a political novice and independent, Sheehan received 2nd place in a field of seven with almost 50,000 votes. Pelosi had not seen such a fierce challenger before and has not been challenged to such a successful degree, since.

Cindy’s platform called for, among other things: end to all wars and profound reduction of US military bases around the world; nationalization of banks and the Federal Reserve; single-payer health care; heavily subsidized education from Pre-School through University; electoral reform; democratization of the economy and the work place; decriminalization of marijuana and the end to the Federal Government’s drug wars and harassment of California’s growers and medicinal dispensaries; sustainable and renewable energy free from fossil fuel production and usage; freedom of political prisoners held in US prisons; and much more. Sheehan had a labor platform that was hailed by workers all over the world.

Cindy learned a lot from that campaign and she has no delusions or illusions about the current US paradigm, but Cindy believes in Roseanne Barr’s commitment, intellect and heart and is honored by the nod and excited to have a larger platform to talk about peace and Socialist Revolution. Sheehan has been a registered member of the Peace and Freedom Party since 2009.

Sheehan has published seven books, is the host and director of Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox Radio Show. Cindy still travels the world working for peace and justice and her home base is Vacaville, CA where she loves spending time with her three surviving children and four grandchildren.

Cindy is here for the long haul to insure her grandbabies and all the grandbabies of the world have a sustainable and peaceful future.

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Public Unions Under Attack Fight Back

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

Above photo: Erik McGregor.

The Supreme Court has entered the final phase in its deliberation of Janus vs AFSCME and is expected to announce its decision this June. If the decision is made against public sector unions, as is expected, it will be one more nail in the coffin of collective bargaining and protection of worker’s rights. Union leaders and workers are taking this assault seriously. They recently held a national day of action, #UnrigTheSystem. Unions are educating their workers about the case to overcome billionaire-funded propaganda being aired in support of it. And in West Virginia, teachers and other public school employees are now in the eighth day of a wildcat strike for better pay and health benefits. Oklahoma teachers are planning to go on strike too. We speak with Elizabeth Davis, president of the Washington Teachers Union and Dale Lee, president of the West Virginia Education Association.

 

Listen Here:

 

Relevant articles and websites:

The Radical Roots of Janus by Joseph A McCartin

Union Busters Set Themselves Up for Janus Backfire by IUOE Local 150

Billionaires behind Supreme Court Case Poised to Dismantle Public Sector Unions by Mary Bottari

Worker’s National Day of Action for Unions, #UnrigtheSystem by Kevin Zeese

West Virginia Teachers are Now out on a Wildcat Strike by Kate Arnoff

West Virginia Teachers Occupy Streets in Statewide Strike by RT

West Virginia Strike continues as Teachers Reject Union’s Back-to-work Order by Joseph Kishore

DONATE: West Virginia Teachers’ Strike Fund

 

Guests:

Elizabeth A. Davis – After winning an upset election on a platform of reform, Elizabeth “Liz” Davis was sworn into office August 1 as President of the Washington Teachers Union. In her successful campaign, Davis promised to…

  • Restore democracy and involve more members in the union to strengthen teachers’ voice.
  • Build strong alliances with parents and community organizations round issues of common concern, from the need for more transparency and fairness in school budgets to the ways in which the district’s alarmingly high teacher churn negatively impacts learning.
  • Engage on the content of education reform, teaching and learning within DCPS, including curriculum, instruction, and assessment.
  • Work to improve the climate in schools to create a more respectful place to work and for students to learn.

Davis, an award-winning educator, has taught in DC Public Schools for 41 years, most recently as an Information Technology teacher at Phelps High School. After being recruited to teach drafting at Jefferson Junior High School in 1972 by the superintendent who was impressed by a course she designed, the school’s principal tried to bar her from the job because she was female. Fighting for her right to teach – and her female students’ right to take classes – in a male dominated vocational education field set the tone for a life as an activist.

During decades when many DCPS facilities were literally falling down around students and staff, Davis became known as a teacher who was unafraid to stand up to unsafe conditions, from water contaminated with unsafe levels of lead to tar fumes that were sickening students and teachers forced to stay in a school with a collapsed roof.

While working at Sousa Middle School, a National Historic Landmark associated with the struggle to desegregate schools in the nation’s capitol, DCPS put forth plans to close the school. She inspired her students to create their own design for a new school building and organize their parents, community, and political allies to save their school. After helping students and teachers lobby city officials to pass then-Mayor Fenty’s school modernization bill, speak out for much-needed resources like adequate books in their library, and even taking her class to Capitol Hill to speak before the Congressional Black Caucus, DCPS officials changed course, invested in modernizing the school, and even integrated student ideas into their renovation plans. A donor funded much-needed books for the school library.

When DC Voice was trying to understand the concerns of the community on school issues, the organization asked Davis to convene roundtables with parents and teachers. She has also been active in Empower DC, Save Our Schools, and the Ward 5 Education Council as well as the Delta Kappa Gamma International Society for Women Educators and the National Commission on Writing.

After watching strong students struggling to write, Davis developed a keen interest in nurturing literacy and writing skills among the youth she taught. She became a teacher consultant to the DC Area Writing Project in 1995, and also has been active in the Telling Stories Project of Teaching for Change.

In 2008, Davis co-authored an op-ed “Bargaining for Better Teaching” in The Washington Post about the failure of the WTU to bring good ideas to the bargaining table with Michelle Rhee on how to support and improve teaching and the quality of education in DCPS. Her union activism has included many years as a Building Representative for the WTU and service on the union’s contract negotiating team in 2007-2008. Her tenure in nine different DC public schools included a stint working alongside Jason Kamras, DCPS’s Chief of Human Capital.

Davis has been honored by DCPS as a highly effective teacher, and awards over her long career have included the MetLife Foundation Ambassador in Education Award and the Masonic Scottish Rites Excellence in Teaching Award. She is a graduate of DC’s Eastern High School and holds a BS in Technology Education from American University and a MA in Educational Administration.

Dale Lee – A native of Wyoming County, Dale Lee is a graduate of Clinch Valley College (Wise, VA) and obtained his special education certification through the West Virginia College of Graduate Studies (WV COGS). He is completing his Master’s degree through Salem International University. A veteran teacher of 22 years, Dale’s assignment was teaching special education at Princeton Senior High School. He is currently on a leave of absence to serve as WVEA President. As WVEA President, Lee is the leader of the state’s largest education employee organization. He first assumed the full-time duties of WVEA President on June 15, 2008. His was recently reelected to his fourth three-year term. Lee will serve as WVEA President through June 15, 2020. Prior to being elected WVEA President, Lee served for three years as Vice President, five years as WVEA Treasurer and was a member of the WVEA Executive Committee for three years. He has also been active in the Mercer County Education Association since he began teaching in 1986 including serving as its president. Lee’s immediate priorities include a salary increase for all school employees to begin to move teacher salaries to the national average. In addition, Lee wants to ensure public education funding remains a priority for our elected leaders at both the state and local level. He also wants to increase the level of respect shown to education employees for the tremendous jobs they do. Lee’s wife, Brenda, recently retired from her teaching position in Mercer County. They are the parents of two daughters. Danielle is a teacher in Mercer County. Jessica is a 2008 graduate of Princeton High and a graduate of Concord University. She works in the Princeton area.

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Indigenous Wisdom Provides Path For Positive Change

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

Sherri Mitchell, Penobscot, an Indigenous lawyer, writer and activist, has a new book, “Sacred Instructions: Indigenous Wisdom for Living Spirit-Based Change,” which explains her personal journey to activism and both how our societies have arrived at this time of grave threats and what we can do to create change. Some of our tasks are to recognize that colonization has not ended, the ways it manifests itself and how to begin the process of decolonization. We can do that, in part, by working to protect water sovereignty. Sherri talks about the mobilization at Standing Rock and the rise of Water Protectors. Then we speak with RaeLynn Cazelot, United Houmi and Pointe-au-Chien, who is a Water Protector working to stop the Bayou Bridge Pipeline (BBP). The BBP is being built by Energy Transfer Partners, the same company that built the Dakota Access Pipeline in the Dakotas. Currently, Water Protectors are holding a week of action against the BBP in Louisiana.

 

Listen here:

 

Relevant articles and websites:

Sacred Instructions: Indigenous Wisdom for Living Spirit-Based Change

Publisher’s Weekly Review of Sacred Instructions

Sacred Instructions on Facebook

NoBayouBridge.Global (for the week of action)

NoBPP.org

L’eau Est La Vie (Water is Life) Camp Facebook Page

Louisiana Bucket Brigade Facebook Page

 

Guests:

Sherri Mitchell was born and raised on the Penobscot Indian reservation. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Maine, and received her Juris Doctorate and a certificate in Indigenous People’s Law and Policy from the University of Arizona’s James E. Rogers College of Law. Sherri is an alumna of the American Indian Ambassador program, and the Udall Native American Congressional Internship program. In 2010, she received the Mahoney Dunn International Human Rights and Humanitarian Award, for research into Human Rights violations against Indigenous Peoples. In 2015, she received the Spirit of Maine Award, for commitment and excellence in the field of International Human Rights. In 2016, Sherri’s portrait was added to the esteemed portrait series, Americans Who Tell the Truth, by artist Robert Shetterly. And, she is the recipient of the 2017 Hands of Hope award from the Peace and Justice Center of Eastern Maine.

Sherri was a longtime advisor to the American Indian Institute’s Healing the Future Program and currently serves as an advisor to the Indigenous Elders and Medicine People’s Council of North and South America. She is the Founding Director of the Land Peace Foundation, an organization dedicated to the global protection of Indigenous rights and the preservation of the Indigenous way of life. Prior to forming the Land Peace Foundation, Sherri served as a law clerk to the Solicitor of the United States Department of Interior; as an Associate with Fredericks, Peebles and Morgan Law Firm; and a civil rights educator for the Maine Attorney General’s Office, and; she was the Staff Attorney for the Native American Unit of Pine Tree Legal.

Sherri speaks and teaches around the world on issues of Indigenous rights, environmental justice, and spiritual change. Her broad base of knowledge allows her to synthesize these many subjects into a cohesive whole, weaving together the legal, political, and spiritual aspects surrounding a multitude of complex issues. Her work is featured in the documentary film titled Dancing with the Cannibal Giant, released in October of 2017 by New Story Film, and her first book Sacred Instructions is now in print. Sherri is also the cohost of the radio program Love (and revolution) Radio, which focuses on real-life stories of heart-based activism and revolutionary spiritual change.

RaeLynn Cazelot (United Houma Nation, Pointe-au-Chien) is a Water Protector from Louisiana.

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Latin American Resistance And US Imperialism

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

Latin America is described as the back yard of the United States. There is a long history of US intervention in Latin American countries and vibrant resistance both to the US and to vicious right wing governments. Current hot spots are Venezuela, where the US is now openly advocating regime change, Colombia, which is struggling to live up to its peace agreement, and the Honduras, where the new president is being heavily protested after a fraudulent election. We speak about these countries and more with James Jordan and Chuck Kaufman, co-coordinators of the Alliance for Global Justice.

Listen here:


Relevant articles and websites:

Regime Change Fails: Is A Military Coup or Invasion of Venezuela Next? by Kevin Zeese

Venezuela Prepares After Tillerson’s US Tour of Latin America to Gain Support for a Venezuela Coup

Alliance for Global Justice

 

Guests:

James Patrick Jordan has lived in Tucson, Arizona since 1983. He has a long history of grassroots organizing in peace, labor, international solidarity and environmental movements. James has published articles on these subjects in a variety of outlets and has authored or co-authored two plays about Colombian prisons. His main duties at AfGJ are in regards to Colombia solidarity, ecology, labor and prison issues.  He serves on the Board of the Liberty Tree Foundation and represents AfGJ in the Coordinadora Americana por los Derechos Humanos y las Víctimas de Prisión Política (American Coordination for Human Rights and the Victims of Political Imprisonment) and the Observatorio de Derechos Humanos de los Pueblos (Peoples Human Rights Observatory).

Chuck Kaufman is National Co-Coordinator of the Alliance for Global Justice. He has been a leader of the Central and Latin America solidarity movements since joining the staff of the Nicaragua Network in 1987. He gave up his successful advertising business out of disgust at Congress’ cowardice during the Iran-Contra scandal. He went on his first coffee picking brigade to Nicaragua that same year. Chuck has been in the front ranks of the movements to support the right of people in Latin America and the Caribbean to dignity, sovereignty, and self-determination. He has led delegations to Nicaragua, Venezuela, Haiti and Honduras.

Chuck has written and spoken often about US democracy manipulation programs through the National Endowment for Democracy and US Agency for International Development as well as what he calls the need to look to the Abolition Movement as our inspiration to change the culture of US militarism. He is a board member of the Latin America Solidarity Coalition and a leader of the LASC’s effort to build a stronger movement to oppose US militarism and the militarization of relations with Latin America. He was a founder of the Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER) Coalition and has spoken at most of the major Washington, DC anti-war demonstrations. He is a board member of the Honduras Solidarity Network and a founder of the Venezuela Solidarity Network. He has a B.A. in Government and Politics from George Mason University. His first political activism was as a high school student in 1969 when he organized student walk-out in four county high schools in his native Indiana.

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