History They Don’t Want You To Know

MLK Identified ‘America’s Triplets’ — Racism, Yes, But What About Our Militarism & Materialism?

We are now a nation of citizen-consumers, held in thrall to the extreme materialism that Dr. King decried. By Andrew Bacevich TomDispatch (6/23/20) In the wake of the police killing of George Floyd, Americans are finally—or is it once again?—confronting the racism that afflicts this country and extends into just about every corner of our national life. Something fundamental just might be happening. Yet to state the obvious, we’ve been here before. Mass protests in response to racial inequality and discrimination, including police brutality, have been anything but unknown in the United States. Much the same can be said of riots targeting black…


“Light ‘Em Up”: How America’s Forever Wars Came To Our Streets & Neighborhoods

Warrior-Cops Are the Law — And Above the Law — As State Sanctioned Violence Grips America. [Editor’s Note: This is one of the best assessments of what has happened with our now ‘occupying’ police force. Our wars of empire have come home. Think of it as a kind of brutal karmic payback for what the US has been doing to other nations for decades. There is a short introductory comment on the link, so scroll down for the rest of the story. — Mark L. Taylor] By William Astore TomDispatch (6/7/20) From their front porches, regular citizens watched a cordon…


History They Don’t Want You To Know: The Story Of Juneteenth

  AL.com (7/20/18) We look at where the holiday of Juneteenth came from and why it’s still a mystery to so many people. Link To 4-Minute Video ***** The Rebellion Against Police Repression Must Guard Against ALL Enemies, Whether Red, Blue, Or Green   As movements develop, the need to define the character of the enemy system and its overseers becomes more acute. By Danny Haiphong Black Agenda Report (6/17/20) The terrain of struggle will need to expand for the movement to avoid a Democratic Party-induced slumber. “The movement’s enemies in blue not only include the cops but also the entire…


New Film Profiles Trump’s Mentor: Inside The Sinister, Brutal World Of Roy Cohn

By Charles Bramesco The Guardian (6/17/20) Back in 2004, with the documentary Heir to an Execution, Ivy Meeropol began the decades-spanning project of exorcising the demon haunting her family. The Academy-shortlisted film sheds some light on the dark heritage of the Meeropol kids, descended as they are from Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, the couple executed by the United States government in 1953 having been convicted of sharing military secrets with the Soviet Union. When not teaching as an economics professor, Ivy’s father Michael spent most of his adult life on a crusade to restore and advocate for the reputation of his…


It’s Time To Kick Police Unions Out Of The Labor Movement. They Aren’t Allies

For centuries, the police have in fact been the tool of oppression wielded to crush working people. By Hamlton Nolan The Guardian (6/13/20) The ultimate power of the labor movement lies in solidarity. Together, working people are strong. So what can the movement do in this moment of national struggle against racism and police violence? The obvious answer is to deny the power of solidarity to police unions, which function as barriers to the very reforms that Americans are now fighting for. The time has come to put police unions on a raft and set them adrift. Perhaps they can…


The Enemy In Our Backyard: Milwaukee’s Bradley Foundation Funneled Millions Into Voter Suppression, Union Busters, Climate Deniers, Right-Wing Media & Hate In 2019

By David Armiak Exposed / Center For Media & Democracy (6/8/20) In 2019, the Milwaukee-based Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation gave millions to groups working to suppress the vote, bust unions, and spread climate misinformation, and to right-wing media outlets. The 2019 spending was detailed in an annual review document prepared by Bradley staff and examined by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD). Bradley, one of the largest funders of right-wing infrastructure in the United States with $854.2 million in assets as of December 2018, states that it distributed $42.1 million in grants in 2019, a marginal increase over the $40.1 million it gave out in…


Cornel West Offers Hope — And Warns Of ‘neo-fascist’ Backlash

“We have to get ready for the neo-fascist clampdown, because it is coming. It is coming.” “We refuse to get in the gutter, and we’ll go down swinging like Ella Fitzgerald, Muhammad Ali, in the name of love and justice. We do it for Brother Wyatt, we do it for my daughter, we do it for the Asians and for the whole world. Because that is the only hope of the world and that kind of love is always tragedy, comic and crucified with that kind of love. And you need to keep dishing it, generation after generation after generation….


Time To Get Real: Donald Trump Is A Nazi

He’s found his bliss, and it’s in remaking this country in his own image: sour, ugly, hateful, and miserable. By Drew Magary Medium (6/2/20) He’s a Nazi. He’s not scarily reminiscent of a Nazi. He doesn’t have alarming Nazi-like qualities. Your president, my president, is a fucking Nazi. That’s not a standard bit of tweeted hyperbole. It’s a truth. It’s bedrock. There’s no sly coding to it. You don’t get to go OH DEAR PRESIDENT TRUMP IS SAYING THE QUIET PART OUT LOUD when there has never been any quiet parts to Donald Trump, nor any disguising his zeal for outright fascism. If the past…


Way Back In 1920, Journalist H.L. Mencken Predicted A Trump

“As democracy is perfected, the office of the President represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be occupied by a downright fool and a complete narcissistic moron.” — H.L. Mencken, writing for the Baltimore Evening Sun on 26 July 1920, in an article entitled “Bayard vs. Lionheart” (and reprinted in the book On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe) (Cartoon by Seth L. Taylor, 2020.)


Letters From An American: What Real Leadership & Courage Looks Like

By Heather Cox Richardson Letters From An American (6/6/20) On June 5, 1944, General Dwight D. Eisenhower was preparing to send Allied troops across the English Channel to France, where he hoped they would push the German troops back across Europe. More than 5,000 ships waited to transport more than 150,000 soldiers to France before daybreak the following morning. The fighting to take Normandy would not be easy. The beaches the men would assault were tangled in barbed wire, booby trapped, and defended by German soldiers in concrete bunkers. On the afternoon of June 5, as the Allied soldiers, their…


If You’re Shocked By Police Violence, You Don’t Understand US History

Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, kneeling on the neck of George Floyd, resulting in Floyd’s death, Memorial Day, 2020. The image — and especially the entitled expression on Chauvin’s face — encapsulates the war waged by American law enforcement against African American and other minority citizens since the days of slavery and occupation of Native lands. (Screenshot) The billions of dollars that governments spend on increasingly militarized police can be better used to address the underlying socioeconomic conditions that contribute to police encounters. By Malaika Jabali The Guardian (6/5/20) Amid worldwide protests against the police killing of George Floyd, activists around…


The Rebellion: Defense Of Black Lives Is Rooted In U.S. History. So, Too, Is Trump’s Authoritarian Rule

  By Jeremy Scahill Intercepted (6/3/20) DONALD TRUMP IS threatening to escalate the violent crackdown on national protests against police killings of African Americans. This week on Intercepted: With the threat of a widespread military deployment in U.S. cities looming, the president is acting as an authoritarian dictator. Keisha Blain, author of “Set the World on Fire: Black Nationalist Women and the Global Struggle for Freedom,” discusses the history of black rebellion against police violence, the deadly “Red Summer” of 1919, and the life of journalist Ida B. Wells. Blain, a history professor at the University of Pittsburgh, also discusses the context…


Pentagon War Game Includes Military Response To Possible Domestic ‘Gen Z’ Rebellion

Plotting war against our children. [Editor’s Note: Here’s a radical idea for all those geniuses planning out warfare against our children: How about addressing the very real issues they are facing that you think could lead to rebellion? If you ever thought the military was for our defense, think again. As we saw in D.C. this past week, it is solely an instrument of the bipartisan corporatocracy. — Mark L. Taylor] By Nick Turse Intercept (6/6/20) IN THE FACE of protests composed largely of young people, the presence of America’s military on the streets of major cities has been a controversial development. But this isn’t…


Amy Goodman Talks About Her 2008 Arrest In St. Paul: Journalists Under Attack Across The Nation!

By Thom Hartmann (6/1/20) Amy Goodman from Democracy Now!, was arrested during protests in St. Paul in 2008. Last week, a CNN journalist was arrested while live on-air. Do we live in a dictatorship which is worse than Russia or North Korea? Amy Goodman from Democracy Now! joined Thom and shared her experience under arrest for several hours with her press credentials ripped from her neck. Trump has called the media the enemy of the people. Are we now seeing suppression of the media and the US turning in to a police state? Link To 10-Minute Video ***** Settlement Reached…


James Baldwin’s “The Fire Next Time”

From thepostarchive This is the full audio book of James Baldwin’s the Fire Next Time (1963) read by Jesse L. Martin. It contains two essays: “My Dungeon Shook — Letter to my Nephew on the One Hundredth Anniversary of Emancipation,” ( 0:00 – 12:00 ) and “Down At The Cross — Letter from a Region of My Mind” ( 12:00 – ). Check out this playlist of other Baldwin videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list… Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair…


Now, Who Exactly Is Doing The Looting & Who’s Being Looted Of What?

We live in an Orwellian era, in which working-class people pilfering convenience store goods is called “looting.” Rich people stealing hundreds of billions of dollars, on the other hand, is just well-functioning “public policy.” By David Sirota Jacobin (5/29/20) Headlines this morning are all about looting — specifically, looting in Minneapolis, after the police killing of an unarmed African-American man was caught on video. In the modern vernacular, that word “looting” is loaded — it comes with all sorts of race and class connotations. And we have to understand that terms like “looting” are an example of the way our media often imperceptibly trains…


VIDEO: I.F. Stone’s One Weird Trick To Do Great Journalism

  By Jon Schwartz The Intercept (5/7/15) I.F. Stone was arguably the greatest investigative journalist of the last 100 years, the “Patron Saint of Bloggers” and one of the main inspirations of “Unofficial Sources.” If you already know and love Stone, check out parts one (above) and two (below) of a new video, “The Legacy of I.F. Stone.” If you don’t know Stone but want to find out why he’s so beloved, the videos describe his approach and some of his accomplishments. They also feature Michael Moore, Glenn Greenwald and Jeremy Scahill explaining why they love him. Most important is Stone’s bedrock principle: reporters should start from the presumption that powerful…


Dear, Jesus! Groveling To Evangelicals, CDC Drops Warning About COVID-19 Risks In Choirs

The federal health agency backs off its guideline even though a single choir practice in Washington state infected 52 people and led to 2 deaths. By Mary Papenfuss HuffPost (5/29/20) The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday suddenly dropped its warning about the risk of choirs spreading COVID-19 at religious services after being told to do so by White House officials, The Washington Post reported. The warning was omitted even though choirs can become “super-spreader” events infecting large groups of people at once. Singing can increase the intensity of “aerosol emission” of the coronavirus. Nearly all 61…


Our System Of Government Failed The Test Of Trump

Trump is a swindler, but the Trumpocalypse of 2020 represents something a lot bigger and a lot worse than a swindle. By David Frum The Atlantic (5/2/20) Have you ever known anyone swindled by a scam? It’s remarkable how determined they remain to defend the swindler, and for how long—and how they try to shift the blame to those who tried to warn them of the swindle. The pain of being seen as a fool hurts more than the loss of money; it’s more important to protect the ego against indignity than to visit justice upon the perpetrator. We human…


If Joe Biden Is Supposed To Be The Anti-Trump — Why Does He Support Trump’s Border Wall & Other Proposals?

Perhaps it’s now better to ask the same question that has applied to every Democratic president of the last forty years: Which outrageous parts of the hard-right Republican agenda will he make permanent this time around? By Branko Marcetic Jacobin (5/30/20) Since Joe Biden started running for president, it’s been easy to dismiss his frequent calls to “restore the soul of the nation” as mostly cosmetic moral gesturing meant to get him off the hook for a lack of vision or bold policy commitments. And now it’s even easier. Asked point-blank recently what would happen to Donald Trump’s border wall, given it has hundreds…


‘System Update’ With Glenn Greenwald – The Murderous History & Deceitful Function Of The CIA

Building American empire through mass murder & torture for the benefit of international corporate power. By Glenn Greenwald System Update / Intercept (5/21/20) On this week’s episode of System Update, Glenn Greenwald talks to journalist Vincent Bevins about his newly launched book, The Jakarta Method: Washington’s Anticommunist Crusade and the Mass Murder Program That Shaped Our World. The book examines the series of mass murder programs engineered by the CIA with the purported goal of fighting communism during the Cold War, and how the consequences of these programs shape the global order — and U.S. politics — to this day. Link…


Why MILLIONS Of Americans Choose Not To Vote

Non-voters could tip the results in particular states. [Editor’s Note: Among the many interesting facts in this study the one that stands out is that non-voters are about evenly split between those leaning Dem and GOP. Imagine — just IMAGINE — if the dems could get their stupid heads out of lobbyist back pockets and give people a reason to vote for them. Unfortunately, as history has shown, there is little reason to believe they will. — Mark L. Taylor] By Gabriella Novello Who.What.Why (5/21/20) If voter turnout is indicative of a democracy’s health, then the US is clearly ailing….


History They Don’t Want You To Know: What We Can Learn From FDR’s ‘New Deal’ During An Earlier Period Of National Collapse

By Adam Waller & Meghna Chakrabarti On Point / WBUR (5/27/20) Lessons from the New Deal. It wasn’t one big package wrapped in political consensus. We look at the real, messy process that pulled the U.S. out of the Great Depression. Lizabeth Cohen, professor of American Studies at Harvard University. Author of “Saving America’s Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age.” (@Harvard) Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst. (@JackBeattyNPR) From The Reading List: The Atlantic: “The Lessons of the Great Depression” — “Americans are out of work. More than 20 million lost their…


Four Dead In Ohio: What The Kent State Massacre Meant For The Left

Remembrance is one thing, truth another. [Editor’s Note: A treacherous case of state murder, plain and simple. The intentional division and stirring of hate and racism by the Nixon administration is now SOP — Standard Operating Procedure — by the government. Note, one of the lessons of Kent State is to document any protest — now with cell phone video. — Mark L. Taylor] By Michael Goldfarb 1A / NPR (5/21/20) May 4th 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the Kent State massacre in Ohio. On the day the shootings occurred, Michael Goldfarb was in his second year at another university…


A Veteran’s Memorial Day Reflection: We Have Done Far Too Much Killing

Try Peace now before it’s too late! By Buzz Davis Veterans For Peace We approach Memorial Day honoring the ultimate sacrifices made by 1.4 million American military men and women who died in America’s wars since 1775. We must discuss the horrific impact of war on surviving soldiers and civilians. For only they can teach us working for peace is a better option than fighting wars. Each death in war brings everlasting tragedy to a family. Each death damages the hope of loved ones. Humans are brutal. We have many wonderful traits. But we must admit to a brutal streak. And we must hope that…


Black Americans Are Caught In An Abusive Relationship With The Democratic Party

Biden’s friendship with one black person does not mean that he’s a friend to black people. By Derecka Purnell The Guardian (5/21/20) I am very tired of Joe Biden. My vote for him was already hanging by a thread before his disastrous interview with Charlamagne tha God on Friday. Interrupting the Breakfast Club host’s explanation that black people needed assurances that our communities will benefit from his presidency, Biden asserted: “If you’ve got a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or for Trump, then you ain’t black.” Again, I am very tired of Joe Biden. Not because I am a purist, or have inflexible…


Time To Indict & Punish The Perpetrators Of Systemic Racial Covid Mass Death

  By Glen Ford Black Agenda Report (5/21/20) Not just Trump, but the whole US ruling class must pay for the mass Covid death toll among Blacks, because only the ruling class has the power to systematically allocate life-death chances for whole populations over generations. “To limit the indictment to Donald Trump and his administration would be an insult to today’s dead and dying.” The United States finds myriad ways of killing Black people – of negating the term “Black lives matter.” The novel, or new, coronavirus is ending the lives of African Americans at a nationwide rate that is 2.6 times…


Why Don’t Americans Trust Experts Anymore?

“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.” ― Issac Asimov Amanpour & Company (5/15/20) A tussle between science and politics is defining the pandemic response of the Trump administration. How did this increasing rejection of expertise get started? Professor Tom Nichols wrote a prescient book on the subject in 2017, and joins Hari Sreenivasan to discuss. Link…


What The 1918 Flu Pandemic Can Teach Us About The Coronavirus Outbreak — If Only We Are Willing To Learn

  By Wes Martin & Meghna Chakrabarti On Point / WBUR (5/15/20) It’s been more than 100 years since all of humanity has had to respond to a global pandemic on the scale of coronavirus. We’ll take a deep look at the origins, responses and lessons of the flu pandemic of 1918. Guests: John Barry, professor at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Author of “The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History.” (@johnmbarry) Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst. (@JackBeattyNPR) Link To Story, Transcript And 57-Minute Audio (Commoner Call photo by Mark L. Taylor,…


The Democratic Party Cannot Defeat Trump By Returning To Past Failures

We don’t have to choose between the failed paths of the past. By Winnie Wong Morning Consult (5/12/20) The Democratic Party needs to make a decision about how to confront the most corrupt and dangerous president in modern U.S. history. President Donald Trump poses an existential threat to the health and welfare of the people of this country, as his grossly negligent conduct during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has vividly illustrated. During his tenure in the White House, Trump has repeatedly demonstrated his contempt for the working people of this country, while giving succor to the most hateful and bigoted elements of society. Trump has repeatedly…


‘Murder Most Foul’ — What Everybody Is Missing About Bob Dylan’s JFK Song

Premeditated. Foul. Strange. Unnatural. Mark those words. They were carefully chosen. By Richard Eskow WhoWhatWhy (5/9/20) In the rash of hot takes that followed Bob Dylan’s release of a previously unknown track, most commentators tiptoed around the true news value: a major cultural icon has boldly given voice to a widely held, but professionally radioactive belief: that John F. Kennedy was killed, not by the “lone nut” Lee Harvey Oswald, but as part of a plot that was tantamount to a coup d’etat. And one that reshaped and misdirected his own generation and those that followed. This is an intriguing topic, but…


What’s Really Going On Behind All The Headlines, News Updates & Trump Tweet Storms

Now the oligarchy is striking back. Forget Trump. He is just their useful idiot du jour.  By John Lemberger The Commoner Call (5/10/20) Trump is many ugly things. He is a serial liar, a sexual abuser of women, a swindler, a narcissist, grifter, and  psychological chameleon capable of converting from a sociopath to a psychopath right before our eyes. But he is also a Libertarian of the worst kind — the Charles Koch kind — which means he will lie, cheat and steal to destroy our majority-democracy and replace it with minority-rule Libertarianism. The important battle right now in America…


Secretive “Dark Money” PAC Organized Specifically To Prevent Sanders From Primary Wins

“After Sanders’ path to the presidential nomination became a near-impossibility, Big Tent Project’s activity dropped precipitously—further evidence that its major purpose was defeating a federal candidate.” By Brendan Fischer Common Dreams (5/7/20) Voters from across the political spectrum are concerned about the rise of secret spending in our elections and rightly so. Political transparency is a means to advance the principles of the First Amendment by encouraging the exchange of ideas needed for voters to make informed decisions. Campaign Legal Center (CLC) filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) against “The Big Tent Project” for illegally hiding the identity…


WORKER STRIKES! The Only Tool Left To Resist Corporate Terrorism On American Families

  By Mark L. Taylor The Commoner Call (5/11/20) One of the best new sources on the failing of the liberal elite and even many elected progressives will not be found on MSNBC or any of the big players in other perches in the mainstream corporate media. no, some of the best news and commentary is to be found on the Jimmy Dore Show, a daily independent, viewer-supported YouTube broadcast. A self-described “Jagoff Comedian”, Dore has a brash — and at times, yes, profane — ‘take-no-prisoners’ approach to the news honed by 30 years of being a night club entertainer…


What True Leadership In Crisis Sounds Like

Campaign button from FDR’s 1932 campaign. “Out of every crisis, every tribulation, every disaster, mankind rises with some share of greater knowledge, of higher decency, of purer purpose…. I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people. Let us all here assembled constitute ourselves prophets of a new order of competence and of courage. This is more than a political campaign; it is a call to arms. Give me your help, not to win votes alone, but to win in this crusade to restore America to its own people.” — Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s speech accepting the…


Just Stop! George Bush Is Bad. He Is Not Relevant To Reality

  By Daid Sirota TMI (5/4/20) This weekend, George W. Bush released a video calling for national unity during the coronavirus emergency. This video, which has gotten almost 6 million views, prompted an outpouring of praise for Bush by those who pine for his presidency in comparison to our current leader. Donald Trump deserves a lot of criticism right now. A lot. However, there are ways to rightly and righteously criticize Trump without touting the alleged honor, decency and humanity of George Bush, who was one of the most dishonorable, indecent and inhuman presidents in the history of our country. I actually can’t believe I…


A Letter From Henry David Thoreau To Literature Faculties At Cushy Liberal Arts Schools

“Who’s laughing now, assholes?” By Ron Fein McSweeney’s (4/29/20) Dear Professors — It’s been a minute, right? A few months ago, you were talking smack about my year in a cabin. Now you’re trapped in your condo in Yonkers or the backside of Amherst or wherever, and you’d trade it in a heartbeat for 150 square feet and a whole forest full of owls and frogs and shit. Don’t play dumb, bruh. You’ve spent most of your short career trash talking me. Every damn fall, you tell your first-year Am Lit seminar that I’m completely full of shit. You stand…


Author Paul Ehrlich Looks Back On The 50 Years Since Publication Of His Book ‘The Population Bomb

  The world population has doubled since publication in 1968. Climate One (2018) In 1968, the best-seller “The Population Bomb,” written by Paul and Anne Ehrlich (but credited solely to Paul) warned of the perils of overpopulation: mass starvation, societal upheaval, environmental deterioration. The book was criticized at the time for painting an overly dark picture of the future. But while not all of the Ehrlich’s dire predictions have come to pass, the world’s population has doubled since then, to over seven billion, straining the planet’s resources and heating up our climate. Can the earth continue to support an ever-increasing…


Lockdown Protests Echo The Anti-Mask League During 1918 Pandemic

  “The protests back in 1918 and 1919 were organized. That sort of distrust of experts, distrust of the government’s point of view was very strong.” By Peter Lawrence Kane The Guardian (4/29/20) San Francisco seems to have done a good job of flattening the coronavirus curve. Initially perceived as an overreaction, the shelter-in-place order issued on 16 March now seems prudent in light of the sustained public health crisis that New York has endured. San Francisco has seen roughly 1,450 confirmed coronavirus cases and 23 deaths but the city wasn’t always so good at heeding the advice of experts. A century ago,…


Martin Luther King On Dithering White Liberal Centrists

“I must make two honest confessions to you, my Christian and Jewish brothers. First, I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree…