The Sounds of Silence — Political Style

By: Saturday May 24, 2014 4:00 pm

It began late Tuesday night and, if we are fortunate, will last at least a week.

But it will return. We have no illusions that there will be continued quiet. That’s because we are in the middle of yet another election cycle.

 

How Obama Administration-Controlled Media Is Used to Avoid Scrutiny From the Press

By: Thursday October 10, 2013 2:42 pm

What makes the crackdown on leaks, increased denials of Freedom of Information Act requests and surveillance of journalists even more pernicious is how this conduct by President Barack Obama’s administration has taken place as the administration simultaneously uses its own media to pump out its own message.

Equifax Cited for Facilitating Fraud Deals

By: Thursday October 11, 2012 8:39 am

The Federal Trade Commission caught Equifax, one of the three major credit reporting companies, selling their lists of homeowners who made late mortgage payments to a third-party direct marketing specialist. This violates the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and is also about the sleaziest thing you can do – profiting off the financial difficulties of others.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Tracie McMillan, The American Way of Eating: Undercover at Walmart, Applebee’s, Farm Fields and the Dinner Table

By: Sunday May 6, 2012 1:59 pm

In her landmark book Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America published in 2001, journalist Barbara Ehrenreich went undercover working in a series of minimum wage jobs (waitress, nursing-home aide, maid, etc.) to learn what life is like for the “working poor” in America. For most of those thrown off the welfare rolls, women in particular, these were the jobs that were available to teach the former welfare recipients the “dignity” of work. What Ehrenreich found was demanding and exhausting work paying sub-poverty wages so low that workers could scarcely afford to feed and shelter themselves, no job security, no benefits, and no future.

Eleven years later in The American Way Of Eating Tracie McMillan has traced a similar path, only this time exploring the economic and societal implications of how we grow our food, harvest it, ship it, and market it in America. Why do Americans make so many bad food choices? Why do we eat so poorly? What is a “food desert” and why do we have them? The answers reside in the ever more powerful supermarkets with their massive infrastructure and distribution systems which have displaced the local grocers, and with the cookie cutter restaurant chains where the food is not so much cooked as it is assembled from pre-packaged portions which are microwaved and served to a clientele who want a night away from their own kitchens where they, most likely, would have been emptying a salad bag into a bowl while a frozen packaged entree slowly spins in the microwave. Combine that with a populace who increasingly know less about the food they eat and seemingly spend more time watching cooking shows on TV and cooking less because they “don’t have enough time” and we have serious food issues in America.

Herman Cain Knows Marketing

By: Wednesday October 19, 2011 2:15 pm

Herman Cain may have very limited political experience and lack policy depth, but so far, he’s proven to be a master at branding himself. When asked to use one word to describe the candidate, voters’ top answer for Herman Cain is 9-9-9. This is an impressive messaging accomplishment.

Biden Scolds Dem Voters for Enthusiasm Gap; Tells Progressives to “Get in Gear”

By: Thursday September 16, 2010 7:00 am

Joe Biden is your cable provider screaming that they are better than the phone company, and you know they are better than the phone company, and if you don’t know that, no matter what your experience, then it is your problem, you fucking idiot.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Catherine Lutz and Anne Lutz Fernandez, Carjacked: The Culture of the Automobile and Its Effect on Our Lives

By: Saturday March 20, 2010 2:00 pm

Carjacked joins a hefty body of literature critiquing our automotive transportation system, including my own work Divorce Your Car! Ending the Love Affair with the Automobile, released in 2000. Do we need another critique of car culture? My answer is a resounding yes. While such books all tell us about the problems cars cause and about better, greener, more economical and socially just approaches to transportation, what they say gets swamped by the ongoing tsunami of marketing messages that coax us to embrace automobiles. As the authors of Carjacked write, this relentless marketing leads us to “take the car for granted as a social good, which renders it nearly invisible as the source of a range of problems.”

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Saturday, August 30, 2014
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The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It
Chat with John Dean about his new book.

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