Recent ZMagazine

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David Bacon: Union Wins Election At Ucsf Stanford Healthcare

  When the polling began at the two big, state-of-the-art hospitals on the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto, over 1,000 workers on dozens of work schedules were ready to vote on whether or not to join a union. Many of them had tried before–this was the latest of multiple attempts made over the last Read more…

Dennis bernstein and larry Everest: Cops That Maim And Kill

  The following passage comes from a recent report by Amnesty International’s historic, 150-page report–United States of America: Rights for All. "There is a widespread and persistent problem of police brutality….Thousands of individual complaints about police abuse are reported each year….Police officers have beaten and shot unresisting suspects; they have misused batons, chemical sprays and Read more…

Ahmed Bouzid: No End in Sight

place. On a "good day," the toll is two or three, but often the count is in the dozens. The victims, indiscriminately range in age from old men and women to infants. They are slaughtered by knife, decapitated, mutilated, or burned alive with a ghastly barbarity obviously aimed at shocking and horrifying. During one particularly Read more…

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Michael Bronski: Civil Rights & Patriotism

"stoke of the pen"– that the current administration’s infamous "don’t ask/ don’t tell" compromise has actually made the situation of gay men and lesbians in the armed forces worse. This emphasis on overcoming anti-gay discrimination in the military has, however, prevented the movement from taking a more progressive, and harder, look at the symbolic and Read more…

Sandy Carter: Remembering Betty Carter

As with the passings of most jazz performers, the death of singer Betty Carter (age 69) from pancreatic cancer in late September of last year was little noted in the mainstream press. Although jazz is often applauded as America’s greatest indigenous art form, an African-American defined genre that commands only 5 percent of the music Read more…

Daniel Faber: Central America: A Disaster That Was Waiting to Happen

  Hurricane Mitch was the deadliest disaster to ever strike Central America. More than 11,000 people have died. In Honduras, the hardest hit country, one in every 1,000 is dead or missing. Millions of Central Americans are homeless; and millions more face disease and starvation. Entire neighborhoods have disappeared, and most of the crops have Read more…

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Robin Hahnel: Capitalist Globalism In Crisis

  In today’s global economy what is produced, consumed, and invested in every country is largely determined by the logic of wealth holding in the highly leveraged, largely unregulated global credit system. Usually the credit system–and production, consumption, and investment that depend on it–hum along relatively smoothly benefiting some people far more than others, to Read more…

David Kotz: Russia and the Crisis of Neoliberalism

  This past summer Russia suffered a financial crisis so severe that it not only brought down former Prime Minister Sergei Kiriyenko’s government but also shook financial markets around the world, including on Wall Street. This episode may appear to be just one more failure of the post-Soviet Russian regime, in its so far futile Read more…

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Joel Kovel: So You Want To Be A Senator?

  When I was asked by the Green Party to run for Al D’Amato’s senate seat in New York, I faced a starkly unfavorable prospect. The winner-take-all election system is designed to keep small parties out, in contrast to the proportional representation system of many parliamentary democracies, such as Germany, where Greens have been able Read more…

James Petras: title(“Who’s Lying to Who in the Gulf?”)

  The Clinton-orchestrated worldwide military campaign to bomb Iraq has created one of the broadest coalitions in recent history. European Social Democrats and Middle Eastern Sheikdoms; Chinese and Russian ex-Communists join with free marketeers in Latin America to echo Washington’s rhetoric. The list is long and the military threats are real–echoed in the United Nations Read more…

Susan Raffo: Thinking about Hate Crimes

  Like many others, I attended a vigil in my hometown to honor Matthew Shepard. This vigil was a perfect example of the organizing power contained within the Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender (GLBT) community. Within three days, a site had been selected, a full outdoor sound system found, a series of speakers scheduled, and a Read more…

Aurora levins Morales: none

Morales South End Press, 1998; Paperback, 135 pp. Review by Margaret Randall   This small collection of straightforward, easy to read, essays will make some among us angry but give those willing to stay with it the clarity of the author’s vision. It is a vision rooted in history, her own and her time’s. Levins Read more…

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David Bacon: title(“Fraud In Oakland’s Garbage Sweatshop”)

When 70 workers walked out of a west Oakland recycling facility August 21, they simply wanted a raise. But the increasingly bitter East Bay strike uncovered, not just abusive working conditions and poverty wages, but de facto municipal sanction of a garbage-sorting sweatshop, operated for years in violation of its own city contract.  As the Read more…

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Site Administrator: “New Global Architecture” Poses Questions for the Left

Jeremy Brecher and Tim Costello   Global capitalism has entered a crisis that few of its architects anticipated. As a result, the air is abuzz with proposals for a “new architecture” for the global economy. An era of debate and struggle over the design of the global economy lies ahead. But popular movements, progressives, and Read more…

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Michael Bronski: The Oscar Wilde Fad

  There has also been a explosion of Oscar Lite–a plethora of new "wit and wisdom" books that recycle every epigram, aphorism, and clever turn of phase Wilde ever penned, uttered, or was overheard muttering to himself. He was one of the first public figures to cultivate a cult of personality. Adam Gropnick noted recently Read more…

Sandy Carter: Indie Land

While a record company Big Six have been dominating music industry market space for almost 25 years, earlier this year Seagram gobbled up Polygram, bringing the major label music biz down to a Big Five (Bertelsmann, EMI, Sony, Seagram, and Time-Warner). If we can trust music industry rumors, it also seems likely that sometime in Read more…

Corey Dolgon: Anatomy of a Victory

Corey Dolgon Nor was it in the best interests of the students, faculty, staff, and community members who formed the Coalition for Justice, a group whose main objective was to have the college cancel its private contract with LARO Management Services and rehire the outsourced custodians. As first reported in Z, June 1997, the Coalition Read more…

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Z Staff: Editorial: What Lies Ahead

core programmatic tenets they believe progressives might rally around. Doing that seems like a good idea to us. The trouble is, the progressive politics that West and Unger offer seem too vague and too tied to the presumption that particular institutions are beyond critique, notably the market. The broad principles or values in the article Read more…

Mark k. Anderson: Interview with Martxedn Espada

I got my law degree from Northeastern University in 1985, but I had legal experience even prior to that. I did mental health law, welfare rights, civil rights. That was all before I went to law school. I got there in 1982, and Northeastern is structured in such a way that you continue to gain Read more…

Bob Harris: Pinochet

U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee. Turns out U.S. intervention began as early as 1958, when the leftist physician Salvador Allende first came close to being elected Chile’s president. Can’t have that. So up to 100 CIA and State Department operatives were dedicated to an ongoing operation, "creating propaganda and organizational mechanisms capable of influencing key sectors Read more…

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Edward Herman: Bombing A La Mode

The U.S. leadership and elite are ready, willing, and often eager to drop bombs on the lesser peoples of the world. They can do this without fear of retaliation because of the huge military advantage of a superpower and the subservience of the "international community." U.S. leaders are also never constrained by any sense of Read more…

Laura Lane: Bootstraps Literacy And Racist Schooling In The U.S.

In December 1996 the school board in Oakland, California passed a resolution meant to change the current racist schooling of African-American students. The media coverage of the resolution resulted in a national spectacle dubbed, "Ebonics." The Ebonics controversy focused on whether African-American speech patterns constitute a dialect of English or another language. The national consensus Read more…

Julien Lapointe: Death to the MIA

that the agreement was not "reformable." According to the French daily Le Monde (October 22), the MAI, as had been originally conceived, is dead. The same article quotes Leon Brittan, the European Commisary for International Relations. Addressing the parliament of Strasbourg, he adhered to the already leveled criticisms that the OECD is an inadequate forum Read more…

Robert Weissman: Pulp Non Fiction: The Ecologist Shredded

After 28 years of continuous publication, The Ecologist, England’s leading environmental magazine, is having a tough time finding its audience. Perhaps that has something to do with the subject matter of the current issue: Monsanto and genetic engineering. Penwell, a small Cornwall-based company that has printed The Ecologist for the past 26 years, decided in Read more…

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Greg Ruggiero: Microradio Broadcasting Aguascalientes of the Airwaves

  Excerpted from notes prepared for a presentation given at the "Festival of Resistance" organized by the NY Zapatistas, 10/12/98.   "Where there is even a pretense of democracy," writes Noam Chomsky, "communications are at its heart." Given the present state of our society, however, it’s no surprise that we find communications not at the Read more…

Hannibal Travis: Congress Privatizes the Net

Buried deep in the mammoth spending bills recently passed by Congress, with barely a whimper from the "all-Lewinsky, all-the-time" news media, were two complex pieces of legislation that threatened to further erode privacy and free speech on the Internet. Between them, the Child Online Protection Act (COPA) and Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) criminalize speech Read more…

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Michael Bronski: Right Wing Nixes Gay Christ

Bronski Corpus Christi, Terrence McNally’s dramatic refiguring of the Passion with a queer Christ and a sincere message of tolerance for everyone, has opened on Broadway. While the charge of anti-Catholicism and the threat of violence still hangs over the production and the theater, the relative post-opening night calm provides time for some serious reflection Read more…

Sandy Carter: Citizen Wayne Kramer Does The Work

  During the late 1960s, Detroit’s legendary MC5 played loud, raging rock and roll laced with bold, incendiary rants against the established order. Although far too abrasive for mainstream success, the band’s frenzied energy and raw, feedback-drenched guitar sound laid out an influential blueprint for punk and hard rock of the future. Driven by a Read more…

Phil Cox: Free Speech in the Academy

What do Amnesty International, the Students of NOW, th’e International Socialist Organization, the Campus Women’s Center, Wisconsin PIRG, and the Madison AIDS Support Network all have in common at the University of Wisconsin? According to a 7th <D>Circuit Court of Appeals panel, those student groups, or student affiliates of national groups, are banned from receiving Read more…

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Z Staff: Capitalism In Crisis?

The toppling economies are big news because rather than only the poor suffering this time those of ample means are suffering too. Indeed, if the value of stocks declined while other prices and wages went unchanged and economic activity proceeded unabated, only those owning stocks would lose, and the share of total wealth in elite Read more…

Tom Gallagher: Everybody Loved It, But…

  Everyone was telling us, ‘You’re golden’,” Los Angeles Manufacturing Action Project (LAMAP) founder Peter Olney recalls. In 1995 the organization did seem charmed, its success seemingly guaranteed by its arrival at precisely the moment the American labor movement was waking from a half-century nap.                The AFL-CIO was having the first open presidential race Read more…

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Edward Herman: Corporate Sovereignty And (Junk) Science

  One of the great myths and ideological rationales of capitalism is that consumers are sovereign, their demands ultimately ruling the system, with producers only responding to consumer needs and wants. In reality, by virtue of their immense resources and power, producers, not consumers, are sovereign. This is dramatically evident in examining the recent history Read more…

Matthew Murray: The Suburban Economy

  Several years ago, a friend in Atlanta told me about the latest resource planning problem facing that city. New construction was underway to extend the subway lines further out into the suburban sprawl, with extra bus routes scheduled to feed off from the most distant terminals. The purpose of this expansion was not to Read more…

Brian tokar and gary Oliver: The Texas-Vermont-Maine Nuclear Dump

  In April 1994, the Vermont legislature passed a bill establishing an unprecedented compact with the states of Maine and Texas to dispose of nuclear waste. Now that this nuclear deal has passed the U.S. Congress and been signed into law by President Clinton, “low level” nuclear waste from the three states—actually all of the Read more…

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Ward Churchill: Smoke Signals in Context

  —Rennard Strickland, Tonto’s Revenge 1998   Meanwhile, Edwin Carewe, a Chickasaw, had completed The Trail of the Shadow in 1917. The film was distinguished enough to land him the director’s berth in a whole string of movies over the next decade, culminating in the sensitive and critically-acclaimed 1928 screen version of Helen Hunt Jackson’s Read more…

Lisa Brown: Religiously Affiliated Hospital Mergers

Reproductive Rights Religiously Affiliated Hospital Mergers By Lisa Brown   With the latest trend of religiously affiliated hospital mergers, particularly Catholic hospitals, a female tax-payer’s right to the full range of health care is becoming incidental. In many cases, when two hospitals merge, women’s reproductive rights become a bargaining tool. Often, a Catholic hospital will Read more…

Sandy Carter: Short Cuts

Slippin’ & Slidin’ Adventures in Mutations By Sandy Carter   This month’s reviews feature artists who make music that owes little or no loyalty to genre purity. Though their sound may be based in a particular musical idiom, their creative vision mutates so many musical elements that their style becomes singular. While this sort of Read more…

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Neve Gordon: The Jewish Lobby

Mideast Matters The Jewish Lobby By Neve Gordon   A few of you here don’t like the Jews and I know why,” Jerry Falwell declared in a 1979 I Love America rally. In 1993, he made a disparaging reference to “the little Jewish lawyer” who was handling a lawsuit that challenged the eligibility of Falwell’s Read more…

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Edward Herman: The Vietnam War and the myth of a liberal media, Part 3

Fog Watch: All The News Fit To Print The Vietnam War and the myth of a liberal media, Part 3 By Edward S. Herman   It is part of conservative mythology that the mainstream media, especially the New York Times<D>, opposed U.S. involvement in Vietnam, and, effectively “lost the war.” Liberals, on the other hand, Read more…

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Lydia Sargent: Too Many Young Males

Hotel Satire Too Many Young Males By Lydia Sargent    Welcome to Hotel Satire where we have been sickened by the sex scandal in the White House. We agree with the Christian Coalition that Clinton is Satan and are hoping that Kenneth Starr appoints the very moral and upstanding Dan Quayle as president, the Constitution Read more…

Donna m. Hughes: Women in Iran

  Women in Iran want equality, respect, and the right to participate in all social, political, and economic activities. They want to live their lives productively and with dignity. Throughout the 20th Century Iranian women have organized and fought for human and political rights, from the Constitutional Revolution at the turn of the century to Read more…

Daniel Burton-rose: Long-Distance Running

Being Left Long-Distance Running An Interview with Staughton and Alice Lynd By Daniel Burton-Rose   In the process of putting together their classic work of oral history Rank and File: Personal Histories by Working-Class Organizers, Staughton and Alice Lynd met several extraordinary workers from Youngstown, Ohio. These men, Ed Mann and John Barbero, were, as Read more…

James Petras: The New Revolutionary Peasantry

Latin America The New Revolutionary Peasantry The growth of peasant-led opposition to neoliberalism By James Petras   I was invited to give one of the inaugural speeches at the Second Latin American Congress of Rural Organizations (Congreso Latinoamericano de Organizaciones del Campo, CLOC) that took place in Brazil November 3-7, 1997. There were approximately 350 Read more…

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Z Staff: Scandal

Quiddity   Scandal Z Staff   Somewhere in the tawdry mire of the “Clinton Crisis” there are interesting issues commentators could address. For example, what is the proper role of a Grand Jury and have Grand Juries become tools for prosecution and persecution for political or material gain, rather than tools for protecting and enlarging Read more…

Vincent Romano: Inspecting the Inspectors

Disarmament   Inspecting the Inspectors By Vincent Romano   It is August 1998 and for the umpteenth time, a crisis with Iraq looms. The government of Saddam Hussein has barred UNSCOM inspectors from implementing their mandate to root out all suspected hidden weapons of mass destruction. The U.S. is enraged. Major media pontificate on the Read more…

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Mark Weisbrot: Neoliberalism Comes Unglued

Neoliberalism Comes Unglued By Mark Weisbrot   With the stock market plummeting, an economic and political crisis in Russia, and a regional depression in Asia, a lot of people are wondering if we are staring into the abyss. It’s no longer just the left, which has predicted six out of the last three world economic Read more…

Ali Zaidi: Adjuncts Arise

  Earning as little as $1,000 per course, adjuncts now teach about half of the university courses in the U.S. Because so few have health and retirement benefits, job security, intellectual freedom, or involvement in the decision-making process of their institutions, adjuncts are organizing to improve their lives. Part-timers recently won representation at New Jersey Read more…

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David Barsamian: Navigating the Media

Ben Bagdikian is a respected critic of the media. He is winner of almost every top prize in American journalism, including the Pulitzer. His career as a reporter and editor spans more than 50 years. He is former Dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley. His memoir is Read more…

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Barbara Ehrenreich: Transcendence, Hope, & Ecstasy

      Perhaps the best kept political secret of our time is that politics, as a democratic undertaking, can be not only “fun,” in the entertaining sense, but profoundly uplifting, even ecstatic. My generation had a glimpse of this in May 1968 and at other points in that decade, when strangers embraced in the streets and Read more…

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Elizabeth Martinez: Weaving A Net That Works

  It was lunchtime in a dusty barrio near Tijuana, Mexico, where the Southwest Network for Environmental and Economic Justice (SNEEJ) had come to meet in July 1993. The schedule called for us to march to a transfer station for hazardous waste, one of many plants poisoning the area, and picket it. I asked how Read more…

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