Becoming Serfs: Income inequality in the United States has not been this pronounced in over a century

Monday, August 27, 2018 by Truthdig by Chris Hedges A 2016 demonstration in Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park, where the Occupy Wall Street movement started five years earlier. (Photo: Corinne Segal / pbs.org) You know the statistics. Income inequality in the United States has not been this pronounced in over a century. The top 10 percent has 50 percent of the country’s income, and the upper 1 percent …

Introducing students to labor history and worker’s rights

The Nation, March 2018 The young woman in the black sweatshirt was indignant. Across the negotiating table, a stern, occasionally sharp-tongued adversary was refusing to budge—first on wages and then on the organization’s social-media policy. “We’re a hospital,” the woman said with marked intensity. “Don’t you agree that our first responsibility is to our patients?” Nearby, a cluster of people were …

Activism is equal parts love and anger

March 2nd, 2018 by Steve Hanley on Clean Technica, The Koch Brothers Have Been Waging A War On America For 50 Years. This Is How They Are Winning  If you had to name two people who are still mad about the ’60s, Charles and David Koch would be at the top of the list. No other individuals in the history of America have …

What these early-20th-century scholars got right about 21st-century politics: Unlike many economists today, they questioned fundamental social structure

What advantages do the writers of the turn of the 20th century offer? The main difference and prime advantage, I think, lies in their holistic approach to economic and political analysis. It was holistic in the sense that they discussed the structural features of capitalism: social relations between capital owners and wage workers, distribution of national income between capital and …

“Call it democracy, or call it democratic socialism, but there must be a better distribution of wealth within this country for all God’s children.” MLK also supported a jobs guarantee, a living wage and universal healthcare

BY MATTHEW MILES GOODRICH in In These Times, Jan 2018 For King, the only solution to America’s crisis of poverty was the redistribution of wealth. In 1952 a 23-year-old Martin Luther King Jr. wrote a love letter to Coretta Scott. Along with coos of affection and apologies for his hasty handwriting, he described his feelings not just toward his future wife, but …

Big oil’s grip on power, a Guardian/Center for Public Integrity investigation into how the oil lobby has worked for decades to influence US government policy

  A Guardian US / Center for Public Integrity investigation into how the oil lobby has worked for decades to influence US government policy — and is tightening its hold Part One A century of influence: big oil and the White House Thursday Fueling dissent: How the oil industry set out to undercut clean air Next Week Venue of last …

Summary highlights from 1491 and 1493, by Charles Mann

Human populations in the Western Hemisphere—that is, the indigenous peoples of the Americas—were more numerous, had arrived earlier, were more sophisticated culturally, and controlled and shaped the natural landscape to a greater extent than scholars had previously thought. He notes that two of the six independent centers of civilization in the world arose in the Americas: the first, Norte Chico or Caral-Supe, in present-day northern Peru; and …

Historical GHG emissions, responsibility

Figures from the World Resources Institute show the top 10 nations as measured by their cumulative emissions between 1850 and 2007. The US tops the list by a wide margin – though Chinese emissions have risen significantly since these data were assembled. 1. US: 339,174 MT or 28.8% 2. China: 105,915 MT or 9.0% 3. Russia: 94,679 MT or 8.0% 4. Germany: …

Global Discontents: Conversations on the Rising Threats to Democracy, the new book by Noam Chomsky and David Barsamian

This essay is excerpted from Noam Chomsky’s new book, Who Rules the World? (Metropolitan Books) This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com. June 2016 In January 2015, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists advanced its famous Doomsday Clock to three minutes before midnight, a threat level that had not been reached for 30 years. The Bulletin’s statement explaining this advance toward catastrophe invoked the two major threats to …