FDL Book Salon Welcomes Ben Freeman, The Foreign Policy Auction: Foreign Lobbying in America

By: Sunday December 2, 2012 1:59 pm

In The Foreign Policy Auction: Foreign Lobbying in America, Freeman unpacks the ways in which governments from around the world attempt to use finance capital to ensure that the sausage factory on Capitol Hill churns out American foreign policy in their favor. The book is unrelentingly thorough, engaging, and sober. “There is no arch-villain here,” Freeman warns at the start, “no dark lord, no one to unmask at the end of the show. There are only politicians seeking reelection, lobbyists seeking more revenue, and foreign governments competing for influence over the most influential government the world has ever known.”

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Seth Rosenfeld, Subversives: The FBI’s War on Student Radicals, and Reagan’s Rise to Power

By: Sunday November 11, 2012 1:59 pm

In 1977, The Daily Californian, Berkeley’s student paper, filed a Freedom of Information Act request for documents bearing on FBI surveillance in Berkeley during the 60’s and early 70’s. In 1981, Seth Rosenfeld, then a Daily Cal reporter, started reading those files that the FBI turned over. He published some initial reports. Later that year, having observed how many files were missing or blacked out (“I wondered whether the bureau was America’s biggest consumer of Magic Markers,” he writes), he filed an additional request for “any and all” records on former UC President Clark Kerr, former Free Speech Movement leader Mario Savio, and more than a hundred other individuals, organizations, and events.

Five lawsuits, many more Magic Markers, and 30 years later, he had succeeded in retrieving more than 300,000 pages of records, a federal judge having ruled that the FBI had no legitimate law enforcement purpose in keeping them secret. His venture in unearthing records about illicit espionage and political operations by America’s chief cops extended throughout, and outlasted, Rosenfeld’s distinguished career as an investigative reporter for San Francisco’s Examiner and Chronicle.

The resulting book is not only about campus surveillance but political causation.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Sasha Issenberg, The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns

By: Saturday October 27, 2012 1:59 pm

Why do we vote? Why do some stay home? And with the right persuasion techniques, can the political industrial complex manipulate those patterns?

These important questions are at the heart of a new book exploring the science behind campaigning, because for all the hullabaloo made over television ads, this election will be won and lost by the ground game.

The Victory Lab, The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns, by journalist Sasha Issenberg, has been called the Moneyball of politics. It takes readers into the minds of pollsters and field operatives to reveal some of the tactics behind getting-out-the-vote.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Todd Gitlin, Occupy Nation: The Roots, the Spirit, and the Promise of Occupy Wall Street

By: Saturday September 8, 2012 1:59 pm

Right now, members of Occupy Wall Street are preparing to mark the one year anniversary of the occupation of Zuccotti Park on September 17 with an event halfway between a celebration and a protest. Meanwhile, Occupy’s energy and influence can be seen in a range of activism and dissent that stretches from coast to coast in America and beyond, from anarchist grand jury resisters in the Pacific Northwest to the solidarity networks supporting the forthcoming teachers’ strike in Chicago.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Deanna Zandt, Share This!

By: Sunday June 27, 2010 2:00 pm

Long before she wrote Share This!: How You Will Change the World with Social Networking, Deanna Zandt was my social networking guru. Of course, I had the benefit of being her friend, so I was privy to her frequent and useful insights on the value of joining Twitter, Foursquare and Facebook, and the most effective ways to use these technologies to promote my ideas and my activism. It was Deanna who convinced me that it benefits your activism to humanize yourself on social networks, and even that you can really spread information far and wide 140 characters at a time. So I have to start off by saying: you rule, Deanna! Your guidance has been invaluable to me.

Sneak Preview: FDL Rises in April Wikio Rankings

By: Monday April 5, 2010 7:46 am

The new Wikio blog rankings are about to be released, and because of our rather impressive surge, they gave us an advanced peek. FDL has jumped to ninth place among all political blogs, and considerably higher if you are looking at the so-called left side of the blogosphere.

I’d like to think that FDL’s growth is the result of contributors, moderators, support staff and all the commenters and readers working tirelessly to provide original reporting, meaningful analysis, and a place where policy is valued over personality, and results mean more than rhetoric.

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