On The Lower Frequencies: An Interview with Author Erick Lyle

"Every time there's a natural disaster you see this wave of people suddenly organized into this help-mode… It's in moments of crisis that the system is actually peeled back and you see people naturally organize into these situations of mutual aid…It's interesting that the government is always trying to sell itself to us, that without the government it would instantly be like Mad Max and we'd all be killing each other for the last drops of oil. But I'm not so sure that that's true." - Erick Lyle


The American Harvest Film and The “Pro-Immigration”, Anti-Worker Argument

A few weeks ago, I attended the premiere of "American Harvest," a new documentary by an independent Rochester, New York, filmmaker. The promotional materials for the film promised viewers an "even-handed," "non-political" look at the agricultural industry in the United States, with an emphasis on the role played by immigration. What we got instead was a naïve, incomplete, and shamefully ignorant portrait of agriculture in the United States-with the same skewed approach to the immigration question that has been all too popular in recent years.

Photo from VOA News

Justice and Genocide in Sudan

Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir
On July 14, 2008, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) presented to a three-judge panel a request for an arrest warrant against Sudan's president, Omar Hassan al-Bashir. He is to be charged with genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes related to the war in Darfur. Moreno-Ocampo presented solid evidence of a policy of genocide against the Fur, Massaliet and Zayhawa peoples. This is the first time that a charge of genocide has been made against a Head of State in power.


Barack Obama: The New Jimmy Carter

Jimmy Carter, 2008
Since Barack Obama emerged as the Democrat's choice for president, the national mood has frequently been compared to the late 1960s, another time when an unpopular war polarized the nation. A recent ad for Republican candidate John McCain makes this explicit, starting off with clips of 60s protesters and "flower" children before warning that hope can be a slippery slope. But the dynamics in 2008 may have more in common with 1976, when a GOP discredited by Watergate, Richard Nixon's resignation (under the threat of impeachment) and his pardon by Gerald Ford was defeated by a newcomer to national politics, Jimmy Carter.

Pro-Morales Rally in La Paz, Bolivia in May, 2008

Total Recall in Bolivia: Divided Nation Faces Historic Vote

Pro-Evo Morales Rally
In early July in Sicaya, Cochabamba, Bolivian President Evo Morales announced that if he wins the August 10 recall vote on his presidency, "I'll have two and half years left." But if he loses the vote, "I'll have to go back to the Chapare" to farm coca again. Though the recall vote is likely to favor Morales, it's unclear if it will resolve many of the divided nation's conflicts.