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Clayton Morgareidge hosts this edition of the Old Mole which deals with austerity policies in Greece and around the world, how the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) writes the right-wing agenda into law, how the underground economy is becoming the model for a "new" economy, and how City Repair and the Village Building Convergence are changing lives and neighborhoods in Portland.
On the eve of the recall election in Wisconsin, Old Mole Denise Morris talks with Wisconsin baker, activist, and journalist Andrew Sernatinger about the struggles between Governor Scott Walker and public service workers that have led up to this event. Sernatinger has written for Labor Notes and contributed to the book Wisconsin Uprising: Labor Fights Back
What does the story of Robin Hood from medieval England have to do with American politics today? Quite a lot, as we learn from historian Paul Buhle in this conversation with the Old Mole's Bill Resnick. Buhle has written a graphic novel about Robin Hood and is co-editor of a book about the protest movement in Wisconsin that led to, and continue beyond, the recall election there.
Is capitalism's latest fix for the problems of overproduction and overaccumulation to put the excess into our poor bodies? The new HBO series "The Weight of the Nation" explores the "epidemic" of obesity in the US without making some important connections. They are made here in this commentary by Frann Michele.
You can read her remarks and find links to her sources here.
Does it make sense for a libertarian writer to complain about having to conform to a narrow editorial line laid down by his or her publication? Blogger and political scientist Corey Robin explores the hidden contradictions in libertarian thinking about individual freedom and the work place in this piece read for us here by Old Mole Joe Clement.
Frann Michele hosts this edition of the Old Mole, featuring discussions of Wisconsin's recall election, the legend of Robin Hood and its continuing resonance today, the so-called "obesity epidemic," and what happens when libertarians think about (their own) working conditions.
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Old Mole Jan Haaken talks with Alan Wieder about the film "Searching for Sugar Man", now playing in Portland. The film tells two stories: one about the US rock singer known as Rodriguez who became popular and politically influential in South Africa but forgotten in his own country; and the story of South Africa in the apartheid era.
Leo Panitch is a Distinguished Research Professor at York University, renowned political economist, Marxist theorist and editor of the Socialist Register. He is the co-author, along with Sam Gindin who appeared on last week's Old Mole, of The Making of Global Capitalism -- and many other works. They discuss the outdated idea that European nations are generous welfare states and the future of resistance to austerity measures engineered by neo-liberal governments.
Should we heap scorn on people who try to live on public assistance like food stamps while making art? A recent article on Salon, and especially the readers' comments, indicated how strongly many working-class people feel about living well on the dole. Here Old Mole Joe Clement reads a piece by Peter Frase from Jacobin Magazine arguing that everyone should have the right not to work for wages and be paid for the work everyone does to maintain family and community life.