Movement. It’s essential, Satish Kumar tells me as we stroll along the North Devon coast, sea air swirling, waves smashing the rocks, wildflowers quivering in the breeze. “Only by moving can things change and transform. And walking is movement of the body. When you’re walking, you’re transformed. Your mindset, your health, your ideas. You get new, fresh thinking.” Now 84 years old, Satish has moved more than most. Born in Rajasthan, northern India, he started walking as a child (“My mother was a great walker. If somebody offered her a horse, she’d say, how would you like it if a horse rode you?”). Then, aged nine, he became a Jain monk: “For nine years, no bicycle, no train, no car, no nothing,” he recalls.
Not long after moving to Topeka, Kansas, in the early 1980s, community organizer Curtis Pitts learned about a hidden slice of that city’s history that would come to shape his life’s work over the next four decades. He was introduced to the Kansas Technical Institute, or KTI, a Black vocational college that had prospered throughout the early twentieth century, only to close in the mid-1950s. Founded in 1895, KTI enjoyed the distinction of being the second Black college established west of the Mississippi. Built in part by its own students, the school became a self-sustaining campus, training them in agriculture, nursing, printing, tailoring, and theology, among other subjects.
I was the only person associated with the CIA’s torture program who was prosecuted and imprisoned. I never tortured anybody. But I was charged with five felonies, including three counts of espionage, for telling ABC News and the New York Times that the CIA was torturing its prisoners, that torture was official U.S. government policy, and that the policy had been approved by the president himself. I served 23 months in a federal prison. It was worth every minute. There is certainly no easy fix to this situation. The New York Times reported in March 2022 that prosecutors had opened talks with attorneys representing Khalid Shaikh Muhammad and four co-defendants to negotiate a plea agreement that would drop the death penalty in exchange for sentences of life without parole and promises that the men would be allowed to remain in Guantanamo.
The 20th Century saw a great global uprising against European imperialism as the former colonial countries shook off their shackles and rose up for independence. More than a half century later, global inequality is sharper than ever before. To understand the current predicament of the vast majority of the world’s people, we must understand the intervening decades. Matt Kennard and Claire Provost‘s book, Silent Coup: How Corporations Overthrew Democracy, looks inside the international architecture of global corporate governance that exists to flout and crush any attempts by the former colonial world to enact development on their own terms. Matt Kennard joins The Chris Hedges Report for a look at this intriguing and essential history.
In Bamako, Mali, on September 16, the governments of Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger created the Alliance of Sahel States (AES). On X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, Colonel Assimi Goïta, the head of the transitional government of Mali, wrote that the Liptako-Gourma Charter which created the AES would establish “an architecture of collective defense and mutual assistance for the benefit of our populations.” The hunger for such regional cooperation goes back to the period when France ended its colonial rule. Between 1958 and 1963, Ghana and Guinea were part of the Union of African States, which was to have been the seed for wider pan-African unity. Mali was a member as well between 1961 and 1963.
In Mr. Associated Press, Gene Allen investigates the Associated Press (AP) and its trajectory from a pony express news agency founded in 1846 to the international stage, by way of the person most responsible for that transformation, Kent Cooper (1880-1965). As exceptional as every era believes itself to be, the history chronicled in these pages reveals that many of the problems currently facing the media and the public’s relationship to it are reiterations of the past. Some one hundred years on, Allen—a professor emeritus of journalism at Toronto Metropolitan University—analyzes Cooper’s time in the news industry and spotlights evergreen issues, including the politicization, polarization, and corporatization of the news.
This past Thursday night, just hours before the expiration of the United Auto Workers contract with Detroit’s Big Three, UAW president Shawn Fain had plenty on his mind. Most of that plenty would be obvious and predictable. The impending expiration of his union’s auto industry contract, with no new pact in sight. The state of the union’s readiness for what could be the UAW’s most pivotal strike since 1937. But Fain had something else on his mind as well: the continuing and unforgivable maldistribution of America’s income and wealth. “Just as in the 1930s,” Fain reminded his fellow auto workers, “we’re living in a time of stunning inequality throughout our society.”
The memory of the event that occurred 25 years ago today will forever remain in the Cuban people. On September 12, 1998, five Cuban men were targeted by the extreme hatred of those in Miami who have not ceased in attacking Cuba. That day, they were arrested, and their long battle for justice began. Gerardo Hernández, Ramon Labañino, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González, and René González were given brutal sentences, ranging from 15 years to two life sentences, without being proven to be a danger to US national security. They came to the US unarmed—except for the love of their homeland—to monitor the activities of heavily financed anti-Cuba terrorist groups, who were operating with impunity out of Southern Florida
Indianapolis proudly claims Elvis’ last concert, Robert Kennedy’s speech in response to Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination, and the Indianapolis 500. There’s a 9/11 memorial, a Medal of Honor Memorial and a statue of former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning. What few locals know, let alone tourists, is that the city also houses one of the largest dry cleaning Superfund sites in the U.S. From 1952 to 2008, Tuchman Cleaners laundered clothes using perchloroethylene, or PERC, a neurotoxin and possible carcinogen. Tuchman operated a chain of cleaners throughout the city, which sent clothes to a facility on Keystone Avenue for cleaning.
The phrase “Never Forget” is often associated with the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. But what does this phrase mean for U.S. students who are too young to remember? What are they being asked to never forget? As education researchers in curriculum and instruction, we have studied since 2002 how the events of 9/11 and the global war on terror are integrated into secondary level U.S. classrooms and curricula. What we have found is a relatively consistent narrative that focuses on 9/11 as an unprecedented and shocking attack, the heroism of the firefighters and other first responders and a global community that stood behind the U.S. in its pursuit of terrorists.
More than 323,000 workers – including nurses, actors, screenwriters, hotel cleaners and restaurant servers – walked off their jobs during the first eight months of 2023. Hundreds of thousands of the employees of delivery giant UPS would have gone on strike, too, had they not reached a last-minute agreement. And nearly 150,000 autoworkers may go on a strike of historic proportions in mid-September if the United Autoworkers Union and General Motors, Ford and Stellantis – the company that includes Chrysler – don’t agree on a new contract soon. This crescendo of labor actions follows a relative lull in U.S. strikes and a decline in union membership that began in the 1970s.
Gerhardt has a firm grasp of the extensive literature on Internet culture over the past fifty years – the critiques, histories, and technical controversies. What distinguishes his book from many others about the Internet is his political acuity in assessing the challenges. He offers chapters on “democratizing infrastructure” such as the electric grid and the Internet itself, as well as on how to support “design global, manufacture local” production. Unlike many techies, Gerhardt is also mindful of the limits of the natural world, so he devotes space to localism, urban waste, and agriculture as a renewable resource.
Taxi workers in the late 1960s and through the 1970s struggled against the transformation of their industry from regulated and unionized jobs to deregulated independent contracting work. This meant the loss of collective bargaining rights for taxi workers and a sharp rise in precarious working conditions as employers were able to shift business risk onto workers, cut expenses on benefits, and increase profits in-turn. In a spirited response, taxi workers self-organized and sustained union-like alt labor groups, for example the New York Taxi Workers Alliance in New York and United Taxicab Workers in San Francisco, that fought for better working conditions for taxi workers through municipal and city regulations.