David Swanson – Michael Nagler has just published The Nonviolence Handbook: A Guide for Practical Action, a quick book to read and a long one to digest, a book that’s rich in a way that people of a very different inclination bizarrely imagine Sun Tzu’s to be. That is, rather than a collection of misguided platitudes, this book proposes what still remains a radically different way of thinking, a habit of living that is not in our air. In fact, Nagler’s first piece of advice is to avoid the airwaves, turn off the television, opt out of the relentless normalization of violence.
LAWRENCE WITTNER – Your doctors are worried about your healthâ€•in fact, about your very survival. No, theyâ€™re not necessarily your own personal physicians, but, rather, medical doctors around the world, represented by groups like International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW). As you might recall, that organization, composed of many thousands of medical professionals from all across the globe, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1985 for exposing the catastrophic effects of nuclear weapons.
JOHN LAFORGE – Benjamin Franklin said there never was a good war or a bad peace, but youâ€™d never know it from Memorial Day in the United States.
DAVID SWANSON – A president is not legally allowed to invent criteria for killing people. Never mind that he doesn’t meet his own criteria. We should not be so indecent or so lawless as to engage in such a conversation. We should not want to see the blood-soaked memo.
MICHAEL N. NAGLER – Maybe a kind of awakening is beginning. Former New York Mayor Bloomberg is setting up a $50 million fund to counteract some of the political muscle of the NRA, which is an interesting first step. But most politicians, when in office, are apparently unprepared to listen to this kind of reason. When that happens it is opportune to start small â€“ simply donâ€™t expose yourself to violent media and try to live in trust instead of fear. We make a difference as individuals, and we must make our difference in the right direction.
DAVID HARTSOUGH – I recently returned from three weeks in Korea and Vietnam, countries which have in the past and are still suffering from the ravages of war.
MATT SMITH – As the kids trooped back into the suburban Atlanta elementary school that was stormed by a gunman on Tuesday, August 20, 2013, everyone was talking about Antoinette Tuff. The bookkeeper, an eight-year veteran of the DeKalb County school district, talked suspect Michael Brandon Hill into surrendering after a brief standoff with police.
LAWRENCE S. WITTNER – Is overwhelming national military power a reliable source of influence in world affairs? If so, the United States should certainly have plenty of influence today. For decades, it has been the worldâ€™s Number 1 military spender. And it continues in this role.
DAVID SWANSON – The author of Brazil’s Dance With the Devil, Dave Zirin, must love sports, as I do, as billions of us do, or he wouldn’t keep writing about where sports have gone wrong. But, wow, have they gone wrong!
“JOEY” – The message below was sent by Joey, a member of the San Francisco Pride Board. Please circulate and go on-line to add your comments and support on the sites listed. This victory comes as a result of months of insurrection in support of Manning inside the SF Pride movement, resulting in the ouster of most of the pro-corporate, pro-military Pride Board.
K.C. GOLDEN – Having aligned myself against a battalion of seemingly irresistible forces over the years, I’ve become a student of “inevitability.” How do environmentally destructive choices become inevitable? Near as I can tell, it starts when the people who will benefit from these choices simply begin to assert their inevitability. We’re especially receptive to inevitability right now.
PRITAM K. ROHILA, PhD. – Unprovoked shootings at Fort Hood by army personnel in 2009, and 2014, require serious discussion. The truth is that young men and women who are trained to kill and destroy the “enemy” sometimes turn against their own colleagues, members of their families and community, and even themselves!
SCOTT NEUMAN – Georgians will now be able to carry firearms in such places as schools, bars, churches and government buildings under a sweeping new law signed by the governor on Wednesday.
ROBERT C. KOEHLER -â€œWe cannot afford to lose another decade.â€ My God. Thereâ€™s more darkness in this quote than the New York Times intended. I winced when I read these words of Ottmar Edenhofer, co-chairman of the committee that wrote the latest United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC report, which the Times quoted in a recent editorial headlined â€œRunning Out of Time.â€
JUAN COLE – Hundreds of leftist and secular youth demonstrated on Saturday [April26] against Egyptâ€™s Draconian law forbidding demonstrations, demanding the release of revolutionary activists jailed under it. They marched from Serai al-Qubba to the presidential palace. Activists said that they did not believe the presidential elections scheduled for late May would be on the up and up if the protest law remains in place.
GRETCHEN MORGENSON – â€œThe game is rigged and the American people know that. They get it right down to their toes.â€ Thatâ€™s Elizabeth Warren talking, the former consumer advocate and law school professor and now a Democratic senator from Massachusetts. I interviewed her about her new memoir, â€œA Fighting Chance,â€ in which she discusses one of Americaâ€™s biggest challenges: how to level the playing field so that Main Street doesnâ€™t always come second to Wall Street.
SEAN MCELWEE – Both last month’s Senate Climate Talkathon and Tom Steyerâ€™s $100 million dollar pledge to back environment-friendly candidates indicate the same thing: Democrats are getting serious about global warming again. But even when Democrats have managed to close ranks behind previous legislative efforts like Waxman-Markey, Republicans have stymied them. Can the left forge a coalition to tackle the problem?
GOVERNOR JOHN KITZHABER – The future for Oregon and the West Coast does not lie in nineteenth century energy sources. The 21st century will mark the transition to clean energy sources, and the regions that lead this transition will be the places where our families will find the jobs of the future. I intend that this will be one such region.