Wed 3.16.11| Capitalism and the Internet

John Bellamy Foster & Robert W. McChesney, "The Internet's Unholy Marriage to Capitalism" Monthly Review, March 2011

Free Press

 

 

Two decades into the internet revolution, what's the state of a medium that was supposed to create new, perhaps utopian, relationships between people around the world? Why is it not dominated by collaborative, non-profit efforts like Wikipedia?  Media critic Robert McChesney describes how capitalist interests have managed to enclose the non-commercial promise of the internet -- and argues that it doesn't have to be so. He also considers the state of online journalism.

Tues 3.15.11| Fleecing the Poor

If you don't have the time or inclination to do your taxes, many national tax-preparation outlets are waiting to help. Or, maybe "help" isn't the appropriate word. According to Gary Rivlin, instant tax-prep chains, payday lenders, and a host of other outfits are preying on -- and making billions of dollars off -- the working poor. The veteran journalist discusses the widespread fleecing of low-income people and the desperately poor.

Mon 3.14.11| Class Struggle in Wisconsin, Labor Struggles with Itself

Last Friday, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed into law a bill that strips the state's public workers of most of their collective bargaining rights, following almost a month of mass demonstrations. Where did the protests come from and who sustained them--the national leadership of unions or rank and file members? Labor journalist Steve Early discusses organizing in a time of austerity. And he considers the trajectory of a generation of Sixties activists into the leadership of unions that have gone to war with each other over the last several years.

Wed 3.09.11| Leary, Weil, Smith, and Ram Dass

Don Lattin

Don Lattin, "Leary's Legacy" California magazine

 

 

 

Four men who would have a profound impact on U.S. culture converged at Harvard in the early 1960s. In The Harvard Psychedelic Club, Don Lattin tells the story of what Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, Andrew Weil, and Huston Smith did, how they interacted, and how they influenced the psychedelic and countercultural and spiritual and holistic-health movements of the 1960s and '70s and way beyond.

Tues 3.08.11| Feminist Visionaries

They were socialists, free love advocates, birth control campaigners, and trade unionists. Feminist historian Sheila Rowbotham describes the women who transformed gender relations in the US and the UK at the turn of the last century, prefiguring in many ways the New Left, and embodying an optimism about social change that is sorely lacking today. (Encore presentation.)

Mon 3.07.11| Meeropol on Assange and Espionage Law

As efforts intensify to have Julian Assange extradited to Sweden, many continue to demand that the WikiLeaks director be tried in this country for espionage. Robert Meeropol's parents Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were executed in 1953 after being convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage. Meeropol talks about the WikiLeaks controversy in the context of the 1917 Espionage Act, recent treason law, and his parents' case.
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