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Intellectual

The Time Of The Intellectual-Activists Has Come

By Creston Davis for Truthout - A crucial element of change happens when people realize that the current state of things no longer works. Change is a fundamental aspect of all areas of life -- growth requires change. But institutions that benefit from keeping things the same have a vested interest in resisting change. The more powerful the institution, the more it seeks to resist change. Even the threat of change is a threat to powerful economic and social institutions because change shifts perspective and imagines a different world. There are many examples of how established institutions resist change. Take the example of religion. The Christian church in both its Protestant and Catholic variants is notorious for resisting change, in part because it claims to hold absolute truths about the meaning of life, and so the act of challenging the authority of the church is to threaten the very foundations of its monopoly on the absolute. The more in debt a citizen becomes, the less likely they will participate in local democratic processes. Another example is the dogmatic belief of a "free-market" economic ideology that sides with privatization of goods and services for the 1 percent, over a public and shared commons for the 99 percent. Financial institutions like banks, insurance companies and hedge funds, private corporations like mainstream media, even the European Union and the United States are institutions that have greatly benefited from this neoliberal economic ideological monopoly.

Literary Magazines For Socialists Funded By The CIA, Ranked

By Patrick Iber in The Awl -In May of 1967, a former CIA officer named Tom Braden published a confession in theSaturday Evening Post under the headline, “I’m glad the CIA is ‘immoral.’” Braden confirmed what journalists had begun to uncover over the previous year or so: The CIA had been responsible for secretly financing a large number of “civil society” groups, such as the National Student Association and many socialist European unions, in order to counter the efforts of parallel pro-Soviet organizations. “[I]n much of Europe in the 1950’s,” wrote Braden, “socialists, people who called themselves ‘left’—the very people whom many Americans thought no better than Communists—were about the only people who gave a damn about fighting Communism.” The centerpiece of the CIA’s effort to organize the efforts of anti-Communist artists and intellectuals was the Congress for Cultural Freedom.

The Betrayal By The Black Elite With Chris Hedges & Cornel West

Interview with Cornel West by Chris Hedges in The Real News - History is so unpredictable. No one has control over that. It looks that way, the evidence tilts in that direction, but you just don't know. It could be the case, for example, that when it comes to the greedy, the greediness of the big banks, that lo and behold, people who view themselves as conservatives but are deeply victimized, who have an empathy and moral sensitivity, may even come to your side in ways that you hadn't predicted. You just don't know. You fight anyway. But most importantly is the issue of integrity, honesty, and decency. Everybody's going to die fairly soon anyway. So the question is: do you want to live a life of integrity, honesty, and decency, tell the truth, and fight for justice, and wherever the consequences flow, let it flow? Martin was like that. I mean, one of the differences between brother Martin and myself was that he's a pacifist. See, I'm not a pacifist. You see. I believe nonviolence ought to be pursued given all of the options, but sometimes you have no alternative but self-defense, no alternative but self-defense.

Domestic Terrorism, Youth And The Politics Of Disposability

Education is no longer a public good but a private right, just as critical thinking is no longer a fundamental necessity for creating an engaged and socially responsible citizenship. Neoliberalism's disdain for the social is no longer a quote made famous by Margaret Thatcher. The public sphere is now replaced by private interests, and unbridled individualism rails against any viable notion of solidarity that might inform the vibrancy of struggle, change, and an expansion of an enlightened and democratic body politic. One outcome is that we live at a time in which institutions that were designed to limit human suffering and indignity and protect the public from the boom and bust cycles of capitalist markets have been either weakened or abolished.

‘Teach Philosophy In Primary Schools,’ Says Academic

“If we leave questioning the models children have been taught until later in life, it could be too late," warns Professor Angie Hobbs. "That is why we need to start teaching philosophy in primary school.” By this the professor means that children should be taught from a young age that there are other ways of seeing the world to the one they are exposed to by their family and social circle. It's a pertinent and timely point to make, especially considering the current debate around the risk of 'radicalisation' facing young people. Hobbs is currently the only professor of public understanding of philosophy in the world. She believes that just one philosophy class a week could benefit children’s intellectual and social development. Her department at the University of Sheffield – along with organisations such as The Philosophy Foundation – are currently pioneering the teaching of ancient Greek philosophy in UK primary schools.
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