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Three Things to Know about Black History Month

This year the theme is Black Resistance. "African Americans have resisted historic and ongoing oppression, in all forms, especially the racial terrorism of lynching, racial pogroms, and police killings since our arrival upon these shores."

Voters Prioritize School Basics Over Culture Wars

Poll participants are not interested in an agenda prioritizing political fights over things like book bans and limitations on how to teach about race and gender and instead support real solutions, like getting our kids and teachers what they need to recover and thrive

Americans Want Government-Run Health Care

It’s true that the number of uninsured Americans has dropped to an all-time low. But that fact obscures the failures of our patchwork, profit-driven health care system.

Groups Demand Biden Reverse Course on Willow Project

"Greenlighting the Willow Project would banish President Biden’s climate legacy to one of irreparable and downright shameful environmental destruction," said a campaigner with Friends of the Earth.

Global Left Midweek – February 1, 2023

Dig a little deeper with new international theory

The Word That Makes Brutal Budgets Sound “Truly Evil”

Austerity was once a conservative rationale for cutting spending. Now, it’s an explanation of the consequences.

Santiago Declaration Envisions End of Neoliberalism

A new manifesto calls for building "a sustainable social pact for the 21st century" in which "our rights are guaranteed, not based on our ability to pay, or on whether a system produces profit, but on whether it enables all of us to live well together in peace and equality."

What Should Rent Control Accomplish?

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu is backing a return of rent control, decades after it was banned in a state referendum. But disappointment among tenant activists raises questions about what rent control is supposed to achieve.

Systemic Racism Is the Death of Us All.

We live in a country where recognizing Black humanity has always been a fight.

Dispatches From the Culture Wars – January 31, 2023

A reign of terror from coast to coast
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Culture

books

Making Sense of the Ukraine War

Eric Draitser Tempest
In a critical assessment of this new book, reviewer Draitser challenges some widely-held views and assumptions about the Russia-Ukraine war.

film

The Responsibility of Watching

A.O. Scott The New York Times
The Responsibility of Watching the video of Memphis police beating Tyre Nichols challenges public complacency — and complicity. What are our duties as citizens and as human beings?

food

Cacao Makes a Comeback in Puerto Rico

Jen Ruiz Modern Farmer
In the 1900s, tax incentives lured major pharmaceutical corporations to the island. Puerto Ricans left the land for the office. But gourmet crops like cacao have enticed islanders to return to agriculture, building a burgeoning chocolate hot spot.

tv

‘Anne Rice’s Mayfair Witches’ Will Ask ‘How Should Women Use Power?’

Danielle Turchiano Metacritic
Spaulding noted that there are two clear paths someone could take: finding new ways to wield the power or modeling the patriarchy. The central question of the show, which she added will get "answered in various ways over the course of each episode and this season and beyond" is, "As female power emerges, how should a women use power?"

poetry

Big Bird Died for Your Sins

Martín Espada Virginia Quarterly Review
The poet Martín Espada recounts a childhood encounter of death, mourning the loss of baseball’s Puerto Rican star, Roberto Clemente.

books

The Problem of Democracy

Jonathan Freedland The Guardian
In this book, author Hamid writes about what he calls a "democratic dilemma" facing U.S. policymakers, who, he says, "want democracy in theory but do not necessarily want its outcomes in practice.”

Labor

labor

Most Schools in England Affected by Strikes

Hazel Shearing BBC
Teachers in England and Wales were among thousands of workers taking action during what was said to be the biggest strike day for a decade.

labor

Picket Crosses Worker Lines

Hanna Raskin The Food Section
Workers on picket line. The newly formed Union of Southern Service Workers holds its first strike.

labor

How We Began To Bring the Mail Back

Jamie Partridge Labor Notes
In the 1980s and 1990s, after we secured local contract language against delivery in the dark (“both inefficient and unsafe”), carriers in Portland would bring the mail back, instead of delivering in the dark.

Friday nite video

video

When Culture Changes Our DNA

Thanks to our ability to develop and share complex learned behaviors across generations - a thing we sometimes call culture - we have become the ultimate niche builders.

video

Life And Death 3,000,000 Years Ago

What was life and death like for some of our earliest ancestors, like famed australopith  Lucy, who lived almost three million years ago?