January 15, 1968: Sisterhood is Powerful – The Jeannette Rankin Brigade Marches on the Capitol

Fifty years ago, on January 15, 1968, the Jeannette Rankin Brigade, a coalition of women’s peace groups, organized an anti-war march in Washington, D.C. that would become the largest march by women since the Woman Suffrage Parade of 1913. Rankin led five thousand participants from Union Station to the steps of the Capitol Building, where they presented…

Democracies Require the Most Sophisticated Propaganda

From Taking the Risk Out of Democracy by Alex Carey (1995). Contrary to common assumptions, propaganda plays an important role – and certainly a more covert and sophisticated role – in technologically advanced democratic societies, where the maintenance of the existing power and privileges are vulnerable to popular opinion. In contrast, under authoritarian regimes power…

Woodrow Wilson & Permanent Counterrevolution as U.S. Global Policy – Tariq Ali

Text from The Dilemmas of Lenin (2017), by Tariq Ali. Chapter 8: October, p 184. Images added. Even as Lenin was presenting the April Theses to the Petrograd Soviet, the war party in Washington was almost ready to move into Europe. Woodrow Wilson was in discussions with close advisors regarding US entry into the First World…

Whose War? by John Reed

Whose War? John Reed The Masses, April 1917 edition By the time this goes to press the United States may be at war. The day the German note arrived, Wall Street flung the American flag to the breeze, the brokers on the floor of the Stock Exchange sang “The Star Spangled Banner” with tears rolling…

January 1918: Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points and Empire as a Way of Life

An excerpt from Empire as a Way of Life, by historian William A. Williams (1980) on the subject of President Woodrow Wilson. His great admirers, beginning with himself, have sought to discount or even deny his understanding of the capitalist imperative to expand the marketplace, and his enjoyment in exercising police power in order to…

The Russiagate Woes of the Profit-Driven Press Continue

Here are two reports – from Democracy Now! on January 2 and The Real News Network on December 11 – detailing yet another false mainstream media story that purportedly proved Russia/Trump/WikiLeaks collusion. In its zealous effort to prove the Russiagate narrative it has promoted for more than a year, much of the corporate press continues…

Sonoma County Chicken Farmer Joe Rapoport on the War & Revolution That Led Him to Petaluma

This is another post in the Raucous Rooster’s series on war and revolution in the early 20th century, and how the extremely consequential events of 1914 – 1918 helped shape the world we live in today. The excerpt below is from Kenneth Kann’s oral history of the life of labor organizer and radical Sonoma County…

What We Don’t Talk about When We Talk about Russian Hacking – Lessons The Resistance Needs to Learn

Rutgers historian Jackson Lears has published the most cogent critique yet written of the ongoing Russiagate hysteria in the January 4, 2018 edition of the London Review of Books. Difficult though it will be, we would all be well-served if our citizens among the mainstream corporate press, Congress and the general public who remain sufficiently…

You Have Cosmic Companionship, All Life is Interrelated – Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 1967 Christmas Eve Sermon on Peace

Drew Dellinger has written in the New York Times recently on Martin Luther King’s 1967 Christmas Eve Sermon on Peace, and how far ahead of his time King’s vision of the interconnectedness of the struggles for civil rights, and against war, racism, and militarism was. Dr. King was, writes Dellinger, “tying his vision of justice and…

Net Leaders Tell Congress the Effort to End Net Neutrality is an ‘Imminent Threat to the Internet’

According to World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee, Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak, Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle and a host of other internet pioneers, “The FCC’s rushed and technically incorrect proposed Order to abolish net neutrality protections without any replacement is an imminent threat to the Internet we worked so hard to create”, they wrote…

FCC’s Mignon Clyburn Offers Helpful Edits to Chair Ajit Pai’s Net Neutrality Proposal

Federal Communications Commissioner Mignon Clyburn has helpfully proposed some simple edits to Chairman Ajit Pai’s proposal to end Net Neutrality. Pai’s proposal is likely to be approved by the FCC on Thursday, and would be a major gift to the largest telecom providers in the country, including Pai’s former employer, Verizon, at the expense of…

Calls for a National Strike in Honduras, While Authorities Proceed with Electoral Theft

Social Movements in Honduras Call for National Strike Telesur 12/11/17 Honduran democracy on the brink  Al Jazeera 12/11/17 Honduras Election Body Says Partial Vote Recount Shows Same Result Telesur 12/10/17 Honduras opposition requests annulment of election results Deutsche Welle 12/9/17 No Democracy Here: Ousted Honduran Pres. Zelaya Says 2009 U.S.-Backed Coup Led to Election Crisis…

It’s Human Rights Day – Celebrate the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in its 70th Year

An important message from the United Nations on Human Rights Day. The goal – guaranteeing the universality of the human rights of all peoples – seems at first glance more remote and unlikely a possibility as ever. Yet everywhere one cares to look, assuming the willingness to seek information beyond the for-profit corporate media gatekeepers so…

Honduran Opposition, U.S. Senator Leahy Call for a Recount or New Election; Honduran Police Refuse to Crack Down

Yesterday Senator Patrick Leahy (D) of Vermont made the statement below for the public record on the situation in Honduras, where the government is attempting to steal the November 26 election. Unfortunately the 2009 decision by the U.S. State Department to support what it initially admitted was a coup d’etat has led to an emboldened…

Urgently Needed Poor People’s Campaign Returns Today – A National Call for Moral Revival

The Poor People’s Campaign first announced on December 4, 1967 by Martin Luther King, Jr., resumes today, exactly fifty years later, with an event at the Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C. Watch the official launch video below. Visit The Poor People’s Campaign website for more information and to join the movement. It’s time to tackle…

The Long Roots of Anticommunism in the U.S.

Actually, “anticommunism” had a long and nasty record in American history. The same spirit was expressed decades before the Russian Revolution under a variety of labels. Campaigns and vigilantism were undertaken against those who were called “anarchists,” “aliens,” “terrorists,” and, of course, “communists.” Invariably, these were individuals active in protesting one or another of the…

War is the Health of the State – Woodrow Wilson Led a Reluctant U.S. into World War I – A People’s History of the United States

War is the Health of the State Chapter 14 of A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn (1980) “War is the health of the state,” the radical writer Randolph Bourne said, in the midst of the First World War. Indeed, as the nations of Europe went to war in 1914, the governments…

Autumn 1917: John Reed and Albert Rhys Williams Report on The October Revolution in Russia

Russia, Autumn 1917. Excerpted from The Dilemmas of Lenin, by Tariq Ali, Verso 2017. Two American journalists, John Reed and Albert Rhys Williams, were observing the events in Russia close-up and summarising the day to each other before sending their reports back to the United States. Reed had arrived in the country later than Williams…

Russia in October 1917 – No Mere Coup, This Was Revolution from Below

Right-wing historians often describe October as a Bolshevik ‘coup’ made possible by the ‘anarchy’ into which Russia had fallen by autumn 1917. The misunderstanding is profound. Their basic error is to view history from above, not below. What looks to them like ‘anarchy’ was, in fact, the leaching away of state authority and the rise…

Chicken Scratch: A Critical Media Reader’s Digest – How to Read the News, Propaganda Made in the USA, When Fake News is Not Fake News

Getting to the News that Matters, via journalist Antonia Juhasz, shared on Facebook: There’s been a lot of breaking news lately about a lot of critically important things. And there’s been a lot of spreading of misinformation. As a writer, I’d like to offer a few friendly reminders to help you steer your way through…

Democratic Party on Life Support – Progressives Push for Reform Now

Is there hope for the Democratic Party? I believe so. I certainly hope so, as the alternatives appear terribly insignificant at the moment. Given the prospects, it’s probably smart to prepare alternative courses of action, in the event the Democrats are beyond resuscitation. Though I left the party after Bill Clinton steered it toward the…

All Petaluma Pie Co. Proceeds on Sunday, November 5 Benefit the UndocuFund for Fire Relief

Special thanks to Lina and Angelo for supporting the UndocuFund tomorrow! All day long, your purchase at the Petaluma Pie Co. will benefit the UndocuFund. After your pie, head over to the Aces over Eights tattoo parlor and you’ll be benefiting the UndocuFund as well. For more information about the UndocuFund, visit their website. Here’s…

No Dutra Asphalt Plant – Your Letters to Water Quality Control Board Needed Now

Joan Cooper and David Keller of the Friends of Shollenberger Park have just shared this urgent call to action. Please take a moment to contact the officials below with your concerns over the possible construction of a pollution-spewing asphalt plant at the gateway to Petaluma and the North Bay. The people of Petaluma don’t want…

Gov’t Efforts to Fight Childhood Obesity ‘Inexplicable’ ‘Nutritional Nannying’ According to Trump White House

Last week the Center for Disease Control released the latest data it’s compiled on obesity among the U.S. population. The trends continue upward for both children and adults, though advocates and the food industry had hoped that a plateau of the childhood rate in recent years would begin to turn into a decline. The rates…

Love and Justice 2017 – A Benefit for the Graton Day Labor Center & the UndocuFund for Fire Relief, October 28

Please support the Graton Day Labor Center by attending the Love and Justice 2017 benefit this Saturday at Shone Farm in Forestville. You may purchase your tickets here. The Center supports some of the most vulnerable members of our community, who also happen to be an indispensable part of our labor force. Here’s one of…

Petaluma Bounty Hosting a Harvest Celebration – Sunday, October 22, 1 – 3 pm

The Petaluma Bounty farm has been busy busy busy functioning as a local food hub of late, with staff and a whole bunch of volunteers harvesting produce, collecting food donations from other farmers in the area and distributing it to those who can use it, on top of the farm’s many other activities. They seem…

What Does a Compassionate Community Approach to Crisis Recovery Look Like? Petaluma ER on KPCA

Petaluma residents Ralph Scott & Kendra Murray – both of the Petaluma Radio Players – plus PCA’s John Bertucci, Rob Tomaszewski, Dennis Murphy and a host of volunteers and producers too numerous for the disorganized likes of me to list have put together a remarkable show debuting on Petaluma’s new community radio station, KPCA, Sunday,…