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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All We Have Now Is The People Versus The Pipelines

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

The northern portion of the Keystone XL Pipeline is stopped for now, but there is another pipeline, Enbridge’s Line 3, that will also carry tar sands from Canada under construction. Resistance to the pipeline is widespread and escalating with direct actions to shut down construction and solidarity actions. Clearing the FOG speaks with Dawn Goodwin, co-founder of the RISE Coalition, about the history of the pipeline, the harm it will cause, and how people can take action to stop it.

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Guest:

Dawn Goodwin is a representative of the Indigenous Environmental Network and a co-founder of the RISE (resilient indigenous sisters engaging) coalition that is working to stop the Line 3 pipeline in Minnesota.

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The Myth Of Black Buying Power Is Robbing Black People Of Their Power

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

The myth of black buying power – that black people collectively hold trillions of dollars in wealth and that they could improve their economic status if only they ‘spent their money more wisely’ – has been used for more than a century to take the focus off the systemic racism and uphold capitalism. Dr. Jared Ball, author of “The Myth and Propaganda of Black Buying Power,” explains what is behind this myth and why it is still actively embraced today despite evidence to the contrary. He talks about what power is and what we must do to build it.

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Guest:

Dr. Jared Ball is a father and husband. After that, he is a Professor of Communication and Africana Studies at Morgan State University in Baltimore, MD. and is founder/curator of imixwhatilike.org a multimedia hub of emancipatory journalism and revolutionary beat reporting. Ball is also author of The Myth and Propaganda of Black Buying Power (Palgrave, 2020).

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‘Progressives’ In The US Are Openly Supporting Biden’s War On Syria

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

The Biden administration is doubling down on aggression toward Syria and a small group of progressives is openly supporting US intervention. Clearing the FOG speaks with Max Blumenthal of The Grayzone about who is behind a recent open letter taking leftists to task for opposing the US’ foreign policy in Syria, the truth about the US’ military presence and economic warfare there and how the corporate media are misleading the public as well as how Syria fits into the Pentagon’s global great power conflict strategy. Blumenthal is the author of “The Management of Savagery: How America’s National Security State Fueled the Rise of Al Qaeda, ISIS, and Donald Trump” and is an expert on the region.

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Guest:

Max Blumenthal, the editor-in-chief of The Grayzone, is an award-winning journalist and the author of several books, including best-selling Republican GomorrahGoliathThe Fifty One Day War, and The Management of Savagery. He has produced print articles for an array of publications, many video reports, and several documentaries, including Killing Gaza. Blumenthal founded The Grayzone in 2015 to shine a journalistic light on America’s state of perpetual war and its dangerous domestic repercussions.

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While Biden Plots To Divide Iraq, Resistance To US Occupation Is Growing Stronger

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

Last year, after the United States so brutally and openly assassinated the Iranian General Qassem Soleimani and the commander of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces, Abu Mahdi al -Muhandis, the Iraqi Parliament voted for the United States to cease its occupation of the country. The United States has not done that, but the resistance to US occupation in Iraq is growing. Clearing the FOG speaks with Iraqi sociologist Sami Ramadani about the history of internal resistance to the Saddam Hussein regime, how the devastation caused by the United States impacted that and the current state of the resistance. Ramadani described the “Biden Plan” to divide Iraq into three sectors and to maintain the US presence in the region to protect US oil interests.

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Guest:

Sami Ramadani is an Iraqi-born lecturer in sociology and writes on Iraq and Middle East current affairs. He was a political exile from Saddam’s regime but campaigned against US-led sanctions and the invasion and occupation of Iraq. He is a member of the steering committee of Stop the War Coalition. Find him on Twitter at @SamiRamadani1

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Nicaragua Is Teaching Us How To Put People Over Profits

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

Members of the Sanctions Kill coalition are currently in Nicaragua as guests of the Friends of the ATC (the Association of Rural Workers) to learn about the Sandinista Revolution and the impacts of the recent economic war being waged by the United States against it. The ATC is a member of the global Via Campesina movement. Nicaragua is putting concrete programs in place to uplift its people by focusing on eradicating poverty, providing basic necessities such as health care, education, retirement security and more and empowering sectors of society that are typically at a disadvantage. A major focus of the Nicaraguan government is achieving food sovereignty using farming methods that are rooted in sustainable and organic methods and supporting small farmers. Clearing the FOG speaks with Erika Takeo of the Friends of the ATC, Antonio Tovar of the Farmworkers Association of Florida and Paul Oqwist of the Nicaraguan government.

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Guests:

Erika Takeo is a Nicaragua-based organizer and national coordinator of Friends of the ATC, a solidarity network with the Asociación de Trabajadores del Campo (ATC, or Rural Workers Association), an organization of struggle that defends rural workers and peoples.

Antonio Tovar is a Principal Investigator at the Farmworker Association of Florida (FWAF), where he works since 2005 as researcher, organizer, educator, and director. Before moving to Florida in 1998 Antonio worked as a journalist in his native Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. In Florida, he studied Medical Anthropology at the University of Florida and join research teams at University of South Florida College of Medicine and Public Health, University of Florida Department of Nursing, Bureau of Business and Economic Research, the College of Law, and the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. At the Florida Department of Health, he was the Pesticide Poison Investigator at the Department of Epidemiology Pesticide Surveillance Program. Antonio is Fellow at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Interdisciplinary Research Leaders, and Board member of the Community-Campus Partnership for Health (CCPH) and the Florida Immigrant Coalition. He represent the FWAF, a 39 years old grassroot statewide membership organization, at La Via Campesina North America and the US Food Sovereignty Alliance.

Dr. Paul Oquist is Minister-Private Secretary for National Policy for the President of the Republic of Nicaragua, Commandant Daniel Ortega Saavedra.

Dr. Oquist is a former Member of the Board of Directors of the Green Climate Fund, and he was elected by the developing countries in the Green Climate Fund to represent them as Co-Chair of the Board of Directors in 2018 and now remains an Advisor. Dr. Oquist lobbied for the organization of the Green Climate Fund in COP-16 in Cancun, served on the Transition Committee (2010–2011) that produced a proposal, while Nicaragua was named for the final negotiation in Durban by the G-77+China with the United States that represented the developed country constituency.

Dr. Oquist is a third-term member of the Standing Committee of Finance (SCF) of the UNCCC. He represented the SCF in the Interim Directorate of the Warsaw Mechanism of Losses and Damages.

He was a member for two consecutive terms (2010–2017) of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Committee of Experts on Public Administration (CEPA).

Dr. Oquist has been Nicaragua´s Head of Delegation in every Conference of the Parties of the Framework Convention on Climate Change since the last part of COP-15 in Copenhagen. In COP-21, in Paris, Dr. Oquist communicated the Nicaraguan position not to sign the agreement and to demand a greater level of ambition from large emitter countries in accordance with their historical responsibilities, in order to limit global warming to 1.5°C in this century. By COP-23 in 2017 in Bonn, the need for greater ambition was a consensus position of most countries, and Nicaragua signed and ratified the Paris Accord. President Daniel Ortega Saavedra in his message to the UN General Assembly in 2015 maintained that countries with climate change losses and damages have a right to claim indemnization and compensation from the largest historical emitters (1880–to date) in proportion to their level of responsibility. The Nicaraguan delegation has maintained this as the only position that is both scientific and just.

Dr. Oquist was also the spokesperson for the ALBA countries at COP-15 in Copenhagen in their defense of the multilateral negotiating process in the face of the attempt to impose a parallel document initiated by the largest emitters without multilateral negotiations that take into account developing countries. The one-sided document was successfully blocked.

In recent COPs Nicaragua has stressed the urgency of the current situation based on the latest scientific information available and given the gravity of recent catastrophic climate events. The Report on the 1.5°C. on which Nicaragua and Bolivia insisted in COP-15 was assigned to IPCC and presented in October, 2018. The findings are that to limit climate change to 1.5°C. average world temperature in this century, it is necessary to reduce emissions 45% by 2030 and achieve a zero-emission, sustainable society by 2050.

Dr. Oquist was Senior Adviser to the President of the 63rd General Assembly of the United Nations, Father Miguel D’Escoto Brockmann. In that capacity he was Chief Negotiator for the Second Financing for the Development Meeting held in Doha, Qatar, in November, 2008, which surprisingly approved a high-level United Nations meeting on the “Financial and Economic Crisis and its Impact on Development” that Dr. Oquist coordinated on behalf of Father D’Escoto in June, 2009. He was also liaison with the group of high-level economists who prepared an Expert Paper for the Conference under the direction of Nobel-winning Professor Joseph Stiglitz of Columbia University.

Dr. Oquist was Regional Expert on Governance for the Asia Division of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) based in Islamabad, Pakistan (1998–2006). He was Senior Technical Adviser for the UNDP Management Program in Mongolia (1993–1998) and Director of UNDP Public Administration Projects in Quito, Ecuador (1975–1979). In addition, Dr. Oquist was a consultant for UNDP and UNICEF at the highest level of government in Colombia, Ecuador, Kyrgyzstan, Vietnam, and the Philippines, where he undertook eight policy assessments on “Peace and Development in the Southern Philippines” for the Multi-Donor Support Group between 1999 and 2006.

In 2019, Dr. Oquist represented Nicaragua in the 49th Session of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (Kyoto, Japan); in the United Nations Climate Action Summit (New York, U.S.A.); in the Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (New Delhi, India); in the 2019 Forum of the Standing Committee on Finance on “Climate Finance and Sustainable Cities” (Beirut, Lebanon); in the High Forest Cover and Low Deforestation Conference on Climate Finance Mobilization (Paramaribo, Surinam); in The Fourth Session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-4) (Nairobi, Kenya); in the Petersberg Climate Dialogue X (Berlin, Germany); the XVII Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the Non Aligned Movement (Baku, Azerbaijan); the CELAC V Think Tanks Forum (Beijing, China); in The Our Oceans Conference (Oslo, Norway); in the CEPAL Sustainable Development Conference (Mexico City, Mexico); in the Italy – Latin America and the Caribbean Conference (Rome, Italy); and the 10th Bosphorus Summit (Istanbul, Turkey).

In 2018 Dr. Oquist represented Nicaragua with interventions on Nelson Mandela in the General Assembly and in defense of Venezuela in the Security Council of United Nations (New York, U.S.A.); in the Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Science and Technology (Vienna, Austria); and the Global Insurance Forum (Berlin, Germany).

In recent years he has represented Nicaragua in water summits (Hungary, 2013; Abu Dhabi, 2014); Protected Maritime Areas (Marseilles and Ajaccio, 2013) and Convention of Cartagena on protection of Caribbean (Cayenne, French Guyana, 2016); renewable energy (IRENA, Abu Dhabi; Government of Great Britain, London, U.K., 2015); and political affairs (NO-AL, Bali, Indonesia, 2013). He has represented the President of the General Assembly in NO-AL, (Havana, 2009); Organization of African Unity, (Addis Abeba, 2008) and UNDP at the British Commonwealth Conference on Local Governance (Aberdeen, Scotland, U.K, 2005), Conference of Asian Political Parties (Bangkok, Thailand, 2002) and Millennium Conferences (Seoul and Tokyo, 2000); among others.

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The Major Struggle For The Rights Of Transgender People Is In The States

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

While the Equality Act that passed recently in the House is getting attention, the critical struggle for the rights of transgender people is taking place in state legislatures. This year, 26 states have legislation that would criminalize the provision of gender-affirming care to youth, ban transgender students from participating in athletics and more. This is an increase from 20 states last year. These bills are being pushed through by conservative Christian groups. Clearing the FOG speaks with Chase Strangio, a lawyer with the ACLU LGBT project, who is tracking the bills and working to stop them. We discuss what these anti-transgender rights bills would do, where they are imminent and what people can do to stop them.

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Guest:

Chase Strangio is a Staff Attorney with the ACLU’s LGBT & AIDS Project. Chase’s work includes impact litigation, as well as legislative and administrative advocacy, on behalf of LGBTQ people and people living with HIV across the United States. Chase has particular expertise on the treatment of transgender and gender non-conforming people in police custody, jails, prisons and other forms of detention.

Prior to joining the ACLU, Chase was an Equal Justice Works fellow and the Directive of Prisoner Justice Initiatives at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, where he represented transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in confinement settings. In 2012, Chase founded the Lorena Borjas Community Fund, an organization that provides direct bail/bond assistance to LGBTQ immigrants in criminal and immigration cases. Chase is a graduate of Northeastern University School of Law and Grinnell College. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @ChaseStrangio.

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This Is Why It Is Imperative That President Biden, Not Congress, Cancels Student Debt

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

The current student debt burden is over $2 trillion and it is crushing the economy. Defaults on student loans are high and for most borrowers, especially those who are people of color, their loan balances are rising instead of falling. Clearing the FOG speaks with Alan Collinge of Student Loan Justice about the impacts of the student loan burden and how to resolve this crisis. He makes a critical point about why it is President Biden, as he promised on the campaign trail, and not Congress, who cancels student debt and why that would be a powerful way to stimulate the economy.

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Guest:

Alan Collinge is Founder of StudentLoanJustice.Org, a grassroots organization, and political action committee. He holds B.S., M.S., and Eng. Degrees in aerospace engineering from the University of Southern California.

Since Founding StudentLoanJustice.Org in March, 2005 as a result of his own personal experiences with college loans, Collinge has been featured on60 Minutes, and also in print media includingFortune Magazine, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Boston Phoenix, The Village Voice, Inside Higher Ed, and others. He has published editorials inthe Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, Denver Post, and many other outlets.

Prior to founding StudentLoanJustice.Org, Collinge was Associate Scientist of Aeronautics at the California Institute of Technology, and also was regional project director for a government loan program administered by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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Building Black Working Class Power In Maryland

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

The state of Maryland and Baltimore City in particular have been dominated by Democratic Party politics for decades, yet many residents struggle under a repressive police force, a lack of affordable housing, gentrification, inadequate investment in schools and in majority black communities, environmental pollution, and more. Black workers in the state have spent the past ten years building their own political structure, the Ujima People’s Progress Party, to challenge the Democrats and now having established a base of support, they are working to achieve ballot access. Clearing the FOG speaks with the state organizer, Nnamdi Lumumba, about building black worker power in the state by engaging with communities around the struggles they are facing, building self-sufficiency and providing political education. He explains why this is necessary at this moment in time and how it fits into the broader picture of building political power on the Left.

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Guest:

Nnamdi Lumumba is the state organizer for the Ujima People’s Progress Party in Maryland.

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Firsthand Report On The Crisis In Haiti: ‘The People Are Screaming For Help’

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

Jovenel Moïse’s term as president in Haiti ended on Sunday, February 7, but he is refusing to leave office with the support of the Biden administration, the United Nations and other western imperialist countries and institutions. Moïse was placed in power by the United States and is ruling unilaterally by decree. He is violently repressing anyone who challenges his power. Clearing the FOG speaks with Wilkenson Bruna, a filmmaker and political activist in Haiti, about the dire situation, the events surrounding Moïse’s refusal to step down and what people in the United States can do to support the rights of the Haitian people.

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Guest:

Wilkenson Bruna is a filmmaker and political activist in Haiti.

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The Black Antiwar Movement Demands Biden Take Concrete Steps To End The Wars At Home And Abroad

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

President Biden declared early in his presidency that he wants to advance racial equity. The new Secretary of Defense, General Lloyd Austin, the first Black person to serve in that role, announced his intentions to root out racism in the Pentagon. The Black Alliance for Peace (BAP) recently launched two new campaigns calling for specific actions the Biden administration can take to end militarization of black and brown communities and to end the ‘forever war’ on Afghanistan. Clearing the FOG speaks with Ajamu Baraka, the national organizer for BAP, about these initiatives and the imperative to build the antiwar, anti-imperialist movement during the Biden administration.

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Guest:

Ajamu Baraka is a human rights defender whose experience spans four decades of domestic and international education and activism, Ajamu Baraka is a veteran grassroots organizer whose roots are in the Black Liberation Movement and anti-apartheid and Central American solidarity struggles.

Baraka is an internationally recognized leader of the emerging human rights movement in the U.S. and has been at the forefront of efforts to apply the international human rights framework to social justice advocacy in the U.S. for more than 25 years. As such, he has provided human rights trainings for grassroots activists across the country, briefings on human rights to the U.S. Congress, and appeared before and provided statements to various United Nations agencies, including the UN Human Rights Commission (precursor to the current UN Human Rights Council). Read more here.

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As The Doomsday Clock Nears Midnight, We Can Abolish Nuclear Weapons

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

On January 22, the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons went into effect. This treaty, which is supported by more than two-thirds of the countries in the world but none of the nuclear states, is groundbreaking in many ways and is a significant step toward nuclear disarmament at a time when the threat of nuclear war is the highest it has ever been. I speak with Seth Shelden of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons about the treaty, how it came about, what it will do and what people in the United States can do to press our government to ratify it.

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Guest:

Seth Shelden is the United Nations Liaison for the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize-winning coalition working to prohibit and eliminate nuclear weapons. In this capacity, he assists governments in signing, ratifying, and otherwise acceding to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, and he represents ICAN in promoting the entry into force and universalization of the treaty.

Mr. Shelden has a background in law. After nearly seven years at the international law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, in their Intellectual Property and Technology Group, today he is a partner at the law firm of Farkas & Neurman and an Adjunct Professor at the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Law. In the past, Mr. Shelden has held visiting professorships at the Cardozo School of Law (also as an Adjunct Professor), the University of Latvia (as a Fulbright Scholar), and Toyo University (as a Fulbright Specialist). He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy.

Mr. Shelden has a J.D. degree from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law and a B.A. degree, with Honors and Distinction, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as well as a certificate of completion in International Nuclear Safeguards Policy from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

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Understanding The Politics Of Urban Apartheid In The United States

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

Baltimore Maryland is a majority-black but hyper-segregated city. Following the uprising in Baltimore in 2015 in response to the police murder of Freddie Gray, Dr. Lawrence Brown, a public health expert at Morgan University, a historically black university in Baltimore, found that historical context and data were missing from the conversation about what was happening. Thus, he wrote “The Black Butterfly: The Politics of Race and Space in America.” In this book, Dr. Brown describes the history of and the players who created the urban apartheid and how Baltimore became a template for many cities across the country. His book, available through Johns Hopkins University, provides the data, language and solutions necessary for the struggle to dismantle systemic racism.

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Guest:

Dr. Lawrence T. Brown is the founder and director of the Black Butterfly Project, a racial equity education and consulting firm in Baltimore City. From 2013–2019, he served as an assistant and associate professor at Morgan State University in the School of Community Health and Policy, where he launched the #BmoreLeadFree initiative. In 2020, he directed the US COVID Atlas work and response for the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps program in partnership with the University of Chicago Center for Spatial Data Science.

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Reclaiming The Radical Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

In the last years of his life, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. rejected duopoly politics and challenged the roots of the crises we face, what he called the triple evils of racism, capitalism and militarism. As many people active in the Civil Rights Movement moved into the Democratic Party, Dr. King taught that the movement must be independent of political parties and be “the conscience” of them. For this, Dr. King was shunned and hated. In this interview from MLK Day in 2015, Kevin Zeese and I spoke with Kymone Freeman, co-founder of We Act Radio in Washington,DC, JasiriX, an activist and artist out of Pittsburgh, PA, and Cat Brooks, an activist in Oakland, CA about the revival of the radical Dr. King and how they are continuing his work in their communities.

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Guests:

Papi Kymone Freeman (guerrilla artist) is the director of the National Black LUV Festival recognized as a Washington, D.C. Mayor’s Art Award Finalist for Excellence in Service to the Arts in 2006 and received a Mayoral Proclamation in 2007. est. 1997 NBLF has since become the largest annual AIDS mobilization in WDC. Freeman has appeared along side Mark Twain and Harriet Tubman in newspapers and subway cars throughout WDC metro area as a Clinical AIDS Vaccine Trial Participant and NIH “Everyday Heroes” Ad Campaign Model to bring attention to this pandemic. Freeman is a founding board member for Words Beats & Life, a Hip Hop Non-Profit and co-founder of Bum Rush the Boards the largest annual youth chess competition in WDC. He is the subject of one chapter of the book Beat of A Different Drum: The Untold Stories of African Americans Forging Their Own Paths in Work and Life (Hyperion). He has authored a collection of poetry entitled Blood.Sweat.Tears.

His dedication to art and activism lead him to accept the position of NYC spokesperson and official poet of the anti-war independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader during his campaign in ’04. A scholarship received from American Friends Service Committee to spend the summer in Nairobi, Kenya for an international leadership conference resulted in him returning to the states as a playwright. He received the 22nd Annual Larry Neal Award for Drama for the successful play Prison Poetry that has appeared at the Historic Lincoln Theatre and Source Theatre during the Hip Hop Theatre Festival, THEARC Theatre, Oak Hill Juvenile Detention Facility and several college campuses where his work has been included in the Black History curriculum of Maryland’s Easternshore. He has conducted production workshops at the National Black Theatre Festival and Institute of Policy Studies.

His second stageplay was commissioned by Jive Recording Artist Raheem DeVaughn entitled the Love Experience. He has studied under the legendary independent filmmakers Haile Gerima, Raoul Peck and Sam Greenlee. Freeman’s second screenplay Nineveh: a conflict over water a futuristic drama that paints a post-oil depleted world has been produced as a short film and is pursuing a feature length release.

He is currently Program Director of We ACT Radio 1480 AM DC’s new progressive radio station.

Jasiri X: Emcee and community activist Jasiri X is the creative force and artist behind the ground breaking internet news series, This Week with Jasiri X, which has garnered critical acclaim, thousands of subscribers, and millions of internet views. From the controversial viral video What if the Tea Party was Black?, to the hard hitting hilarity of Republican Woman…stay away from me, Jasiri X cleverly uses Hip-Hop to provide social commentary on a variety of issues. His videos have been featured on websites as diverse as Allhiphop.com and The Huffington Post and Jasiri has been a guest on BET Rap City, The Michael Baisden Show, Free Speech TV, Left of Black, and Russia Today.

Jasiri X first burst on the National and International Hip-Hop scene with the powerful hit song Free The Jena 6 which was played on more than 100 radio stations and was named Hip-hop Political Song of the Year. His debut album, American History X, was named Album of the Year at the Pittsburgh Hip-Hop Awards. A six time Pittsburgh Hip-Hop Award winner, Jasiri recently became the first Hip-Hop artist to received the coveted August Wilson Center for African American Culture Fellowship. A founding member of the anti-violence group One Hood, Jasiri started the 1Hood Media Academy to teach young African-American boys how to analyze and create media for themselves.

Jasiri has performed from New York City to Berlin, Germany and various cities in between, including recently in front of 30,000 at the Our Communities Our Jobs Rally in Los Angeles. He has toured colleges and universities across the country presenting his innovative workshop, How to Succeed in Hip-Hop Without Selling Your Soul, and is working on a book of the same name. He also blogs for Jack and Jill Politics, Daveyd.com, and The Black Youth Project. Jasiri X signed a record deal with Wandering Worx Entertainment and has recently released his album, Ascension with acclaimed producer Rel!g!on.

Cat Brooks is an organizer with the ONYX Organizing Committee. With other groups, they are launching “96 hours of action as part of national call to ‘Reclaim King’s Legacy.’” They are based in Oakland and San Francisco.

Similar protests are planned in other cities. See from The Real News: “Baltimore Activists Participate in National Day of Action Against Police Brutality.”
The group states: “We will join thousands around the country responding to a call from Ferguson Action to reclaim Dr. King’s legacy of militant direct action in opposition to economic violence as well as police violence and discrimination. This weekend’s events culminate in a Jobs and Economy March for the People on Monday, Jan. 19, beginning at 11 a.m. at Oscar Grant Plaza.

“Monday, we will connect the dots between police violence and economic violence with a march at 11 a.m. from Fruitvale Station, where Oscar Grant III was murdered by BART police, in solidarity with Ferguson, New York, Cleveland, Sanford, Salt Lake City, and countless others who too have lost young black men to police terror. …

“The upcoming 96 hours of direct action across the Bay Area will highlight the unjust economic and political structures that King fought fiercely to defeat. Thousands will unify, regardless of skin color, religion, or creed, as we reclaim King’s legacy and act, in tandem, against police and economic violence; two primary tools of white supremacy. Actions will take place throughout the city, at BART stations, community meetings and street corners and come in the form of shut downs, guerrilla theater, teach-ins and concerts. Monday, we march through the neighborhoods where systematic and state sanctioned murder of black, brown, and poor people occur most.”

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History Teaches Us Three Critical Steps To Stopping Fascism

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

On January 6, 2021, thousands of Trump supporters rallied in Washington, DC at the White House with President Trump and then marched to the Capitol as the presidential election was being certified. Some of them entered the Capitol illegally, either with the assistance of police, as the police passively allowed them to enter or by breaking in through windows and doors. Some of them sought out and threatened lawmakers and ransacked offices. I speak with longtime DC organizer, Brian Becker, who is the national coordinator for the ANSWER Coalition about the events of January 6, the rising extreme right wing movement in the United States and what can be done to turn the current dangerous situation around.

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Guest:

Brian Becker is the National Coordinator of the ANSWER Coalition. He is a founder of and a central organizer for the Party for Socialism and Liberation. He is the host of the podcast, The Socialist Program.

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This Is The Time To Push For National Improved Medicare For All

By Margaret Flowers, Clearing the FOG. -

This past weekend, new members of Congress voted for the speaker of the House. Given the slim majority of Democrats, progressives urged members of Congress who ran on a platform of Medicare for All to negotiate a floor vote for the Medicare for All bill in exchange for their support for Nancy Pelosi. Given the recession, pandemic, the millions who have lost their health insurance, growing support for Medicare for All and this rare opportunity of holding political power, the floor vote was seen as an important demonstration that progressives in Congress would fight for the people’s interests this year. The campaign went by the hashtag #ForceTheVote. I speak with Nick Brana of the Movement for a People’s Party about the campaign and next steps to win National Improved Medicare for All.

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Guest:

Nick Brana is the National Director with the Movement for a People’s Party, the national nonprofit at the helm of the rapidly growing movement for a new progressive political party in America. With nearly sixty thousand members and interviews in more than a hundred mainstream and independent media outlets, the Movement for a People’s Party is building a coalition of labor and progressive organizations for a nationally-viable party for working people. Formerly Draft Bernie, MPP was founded in 2017 by Bernie 2016 staff, delegates and supervolunteers.

Nick was the National Political Outreach Coordinator with Bernie Sanders presidential campaign, where he lobbied the superdelegates and elected officials for Bernie, organized his political meetings, and planned convention activities. He went on to become a founding member of Our Revolution and its first Electoral Manager, where he created an endorsement plan and assembled the candidates.

Before that he was the Deputy Director of Voter Protection on Terry McAuliffe’s gubernatorial campaign and worked on then-Sen. John Kerry’s PAC. He earned his BA in sociology and environmental policy at William & Mary and lives in Virginia, outside of Washington D.C. When he isn’t building a people’s party, you can find Nick hiking with friends, reading sci-fi and envisioning the post-scarcity world of the future.

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