Old Mole Variety Hour

 

The Old Mole burrows down to the roots of the great issues of our time – the struggles of ordinary people for democratic and sustainable ways of life.  The Mole goes where corporate media fear to tread, supporting grassroots challenges to top-down authority and giving voice to movements that shake the foundations of an unjust society.  The Moles' perspective is democratic, broadly socialist, and feminist.  (We count Karl Marx as a friend).

Here is why we call this show "The Old Mole"

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 Our theme "Mole in the Ground" is by Bascom Lamar Lunsford  (1924), somtimes blended with a newer versions, like the one  by dj/rupture, sung by Sindhu Zagoren.  It's on the album Special Gunpowder

Our graphic lettering is  by Charlie Ertola. Host portraits by Clayton Morgareidge.

You can leave comments for the Moles at  oldmolevarietyhour@gmail.com or by clicking on the comment section for any of our audio pieces.  

 

Episode Archive

Old Mole Variety Hour on 06/22/09

Air date: 
Mon, 06/22/2009 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

On this program, hosted by Frann Michel, the Moles discuss

  •  The Supreme Court ruling that convicted inmates have no right to an appeal based on DNA tests.
  • The new movie about the food we eat,  Food, Inc.
  • Is  economic recovery underway?
     

Old Mole Variety Hour on 04/20/09

Air date: 
Mon, 04/20/2009 - 9:00am - 10:00am

Laurie Mercier hosts on this Monday after tax day. The moles discuss who controls the wealth and how it can be redistributed more fairly to insure participatory democracy and social justice.  Along with reviews and commentaries they’ll speak with Jo Comerford, Executive Director of the National Priorities Project (NPP).  The NPP analyzes and clarifies federal data so that people can understand and influence how their tax dollars are spent, and Comerford will help us understand how 40% of tax revenue that currently supports military spending could be redirected to more critical and productive needs.

Old Mole Variety Hour on 02/02/09

Air date: 
Mon, 02/02/2009 - 9:00am - 10:00am

Norm Diamond and Clayton Morgareidge co-host. They focus on the 1919 Seattle General Strike anniversary--and feature an  interview with Rob Rosenthal, who with the Fuse produced the rock opera "Seattle 1919" http://depts.washington.edu/labhist/strike/music.shtml.  They'll also discuss the meaning and significance of the strike today.

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 01/12/2009 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

Well-known writer and activist Holly Sklar talks with Bill Resnick about the deep changes in the economy needed to solve the problem of poverty.  The Moles  also cover the war in Gaza, and the Movie Moles tell us why the original version of The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) is better than the new one now playing. 

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 01/05/2009 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

The housing crisis continues as more people become homeless  because of foreclosures.  On this program, Bill Resnick talks with Chester Hartman, Director of Research for the Poverty and Race Research Action Council, about  the problem and how it could be solved. The Movie Moles will  review Slumdog Millionaire, and Tom Becker will read from the Guardian on the Palestinian-Israeli struggle. 

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 12/29/2008 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

This program revolves  around the prospects for universal health care in the Obama years and beyond.   Can we have real universal coverage in a profit-driven insurance system?   Why are other nations better at this than the US?   And we hear a review of  Kaye Gibbons' novel Sights Unseen in which issues of mental health are raised.  

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 12/22/2008 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

Topics on this edition of the Old Mole include:
•    How Obama’s foreign policy might affect the poorer nations of the world
•    the role of remorse in granting parole, with reference to Diane Downs
•    the dying death penalty; and
•    why Eric Holder is the only cabinet pick the  Republicans fear.
 

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 12/08/2008 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

Topics on the Old Mole Variety Hour for December 8 include
•    the music of John Lennon,
•    Gus Van Sant’s movie Milk,
•    the hearts and minds of anti-gay marriage voters, and
•    the auto industry bailout. 
 

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 12/01/2008 - 9:00am - 10:00am

Today's topics include creating an economy that works for peace, sustainable production, and compassionate human caring in the current crisis and a look at the roots of the Mumbai massacre.

Old Mole Variety Hour

Air date: 
Mon, 11/24/2008 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

On the Old Mole Variety Hour, film theorist Robert Samuels talks with Jan Haaken about the politics of comedy and irony in entertainment, as for example in Madagascar 2, Tropic Thunder, Religulous, and W.  Bill Resnick and Economist Arthur McEwan discuss the spiraling economic crisis.  And Clayton Morgareidge looks at the situation in Afghanistan in light of President-elect Obama’s policy to ramp up the war there.  

Audio

January 18, 2010 Old Mole Variety Hour

program date: 
Mon, 01/18/2010

 Hosted by Bill Resnick, this show features music of the Great Depression, a discussion of what Obama has and has not done to create jobs, putting Haitian poverty in historical context, a conversation about how to save journalism (and what it needs to be saved from); and a review of a novel about the confusions of bi-racial identity.  

For information about our theme music and our graphics, go to our main page. You can follow us on Twitter, and see us on Facebook.

To hear the whole show, use the play button below. To hear individual pieces and find more information, follow these links:

1.  Dedrick Muhammad talks with Bill about unemployment and what to do about it, and about Obama.

2.  Frann Michel, the Well-read Red, reviews the history of Haiti.

3.  Robert McChesney and Denise Morris discuss the future of journalism.

4.  Larry Bowlden reviews The Girl Who Fell From the Sky.

5.  Protest songs from the Great Depression, plus conversation with musicologist Brad Duncan.

Great Depression Protest Songs

program date: 
Mon, 01/18/2010

 In times like these -- times like the 1930s and 40s -- a tradition of protest music emerges that sings from the viewpoint of working people and people who can't find work.  Last week's show was about contemporary rap music.  This week, we feature music from the Great Depression by the likes of Pete Seeger and Josh White. These musicians consciously made music that touched on many aspects of the growing working class movement: unemployment, Jim Crow and lynching, union organizing, anti-fascism, etc. They wanted to bring a generalized pro-working class perspective to the popular arts.  Radical musicologist Brad Duncan is back to talk with with Bill Resnick about all this.  

Political Hip Hop

program date: 
Mon, 01/11/2010

Radical musicologist Brad Duncan talks with Bill Resnick about the political rap artists The Welfare Poets,  Chosan, and Black Skeptik.   We hear samples of their music followed by a discussion of  their music as the poetry and the politics of everyday life.  Here are links to videos of Black Skeptik, "Rent";  Chosan,  "This is My America;" and The Welfare Poets,  "Warn Them."

January 11, 2010 Old Mole Variety Hour

program date: 
Mon, 01/11/2010

 Hosted by Clayton Morgareidge, this show discusses Oregon tax measures with Steve Novick; the blockbuster movie "Avatar," making the power grid democratic, and the latest in political rap music.  

For information about our theme music and our graphics, go to our main page. You can follow us on Twitter, and see us on Facebook.

To hear the whole show, use the play button below. To hear individual pieces and find more information, follow these links:

1.  Steve Novick talks about taxing wealthy Oregonians and corporations.

2.  Movie Moles  Frann Michel and Denise Morris have serious fun taking down Avatar.   

3.  Bringing electricty home: democratizing the grid -- Judy Barnes and Bill Resnick.   

4.   Rap music as the poetry and politics of everyday life -- Brad Duncan talks with Bill Resnick (includes music samples).

Taxes, with Steve Novick

program date: 
Mon, 01/11/2010

 Oregonians will be voting on two state tax measures that increase what corporations and wealthy individuals contribute to State government.  Steve Novick  from the Yes For Oregon campaign talks with the Old Mole's Bill Resnick about what the measures would do and the fallacies in the arguments of the opposition.  You can contact the campaign at  411 N.E. 19th Ave. Portland, OR 97232 | 503-234-0444 or through their  website.

Movie Moles: "Avatar"

program date: 
Mon, 01/11/2010

 James Cameron's new blockbuster movie Avatar has been widely debated: what is it really saying about people with disabilities, the environment, racism, colonialism, and other important social questions?   Our Movie Moles Frann Michel and Denise Morris have a rousing good time taking down the pretensions of this huge  movie phenomenon.   Their blog has lots of quotes from and citations of the ongoing discussion of the film.   

Democratic Energy

Categories:
program date: 
Mon, 01/11/2010

 Can electricity be produced locally where it can be controlled by local communities?  Yes, claims Judy Barnes of Oregonians For Renewable Energy Policy in this conversation with Bill Resnick.  She points to the example of Germany where  it is possible for  residents to sell back to the system the energy they produce themselves with solar panels or windmills -- or maybe even by riding their stationary bikes!  Barnes will be speaking at a Community Forum on Building a Green Oregon, Saturday, January 16 and the First Unitarian Church,  SW 12th and Salmon, starting at 10 am.  

  

Better Policing

program date: 
Mon, 01/04/2010

 Kristian Williams, Portland writer and author of Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America, continues his discussion of last week with Bill Resnick about police violence.  In this second part of the interview, Bill and Kristian look at what it would take to make policing non-violent.  

Terrorism: Motives & Solidarity

program date: 
Mon, 01/04/2010

Examining the case of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the young Nigerian man who tried set off an explosion on a plane from Amsterdam as it approached Detroit on Christmas day, Clayton Morgareidge suggests that terrorist acts can result from the frustration of the democratic desire for solidarity.   For the text of this commentary and links to sources, go here.  

Badiou's Communist Hypothesis

program date: 
Mon, 01/04/2010

 Alain Badiou enunciates the communist hypothesis:  The subordination of labor to a dominant class, (whether it be a class of capitalists or a class of party bureaucrats)  is not inevitable.  If so, then the existence of a coercive state, with the violent policing we heard about at the beginning of this show, is not inevitable either.  Here is the Old Mole’s Frann Michel making the case for this hypothesis, and for the courage to weather the hard times of struggle.  You can read the text and find her sources here.  

Comments

Avatar's Jake Sully is ---- Tarzan - - -

 

A great review I've seen on Avatar (and how the soldier will save the people):

http://www.progressive.org/mp/danto010510.html

There is a link from there that exposes Cameron's plot as a mirror of Pocahontas, amazing parallel!      http://failblog.org/2010/01/10/avatar-plot-fail/

 

Since watching Avatar, I have viewed older videos on DVD and would rate that ahead of Avatar.

 

mel

 

 

 

commentary transcripts

It's convenient to have the Old Mole audio files available.
Even more useful for some of us would be transcripts of the commentaries (Clayton Morgareidge). Written material allows a person a chance to review, consider, digest and refer to mentioned references & thinkers. The "Well Read Red" commentary from 4 Aug 08 is a good example of a piece I'd like to read at my own pace.

transcripts

We will see to it that this happens whenever there is a prepared text. Thanks for the suggestion. Clayton Morgareidge The Old Mole Variety Hour

These folks are so profound

These folks are so profound and fascinating, especially the Resnick guy. Wow!

 

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