In These Times

Magazine focusing on movements for social, economic, and environmental justice.

Articles from Vol. 36, No. 11, November

After the Gold Rush
ART HOUSESince 2008, bank seizures of millions of homes have left windows dark, lawns overgrown and families uprooted. But for one house in Los Angeles' Glassell Park, foreclosure has meant transformation - via a coat of gold paint- into a "radical social...
'A Giant Sucking Sound'
PRESIDENTIAL CONTENDERS BARACK OBAMA AND Mitt Romney have been spending a lot of time in Ohio, promising the swing-state voters they'll bring back middleclass manufacturing jobs by getting tough on China. Obama says he'll continue to haul China before...
A Heathcliff We Haven't Seen Before
The new film adaptation of Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, directed by Brit newcomer Andrea Arnold, bears a stroke-of-genius casting concept: the reimagining of Heathcliff, that "darkskinned""gipsy" grown into a heartbroken vengeance machine, as a...
A Poverty of Empathy
The GOP's social welfare philosophy dates back to 1818In 1818, the Society for the Prevention of Pauperism, New York's first anti-poverty organization, issued a report advocating the need to relieve "the community from the pecuniary exactions, the multiplied...
A Third-Party Breakthrough
The Working Families Party tips a race in upstate New YorkIn the Democrats' battle to take back control of the House, few races are as close or as important as Dan Maffei's contest in upstate New York.Maffei, who represented New York's 25th Congressional...
Back to School in the Bronx
None of these children can be held accountable for choosing where they had been born or where they led their childhood; writes Jonathan Kozol in his latest book, Fire in the Ashes. At 76, Kozol is a defender of teachers, an advocate of school desegregation...
Big Money Can't Buy You Memes
WHEN THE DUST SETTLES AROUND THIS SEEMINGLY endless presidential race- the most expensive campaign in world history - one question to address will be how the various media may have affected the outcome of the election. In other words: Was it worth it?In...
Canvassers Gone Wired
Labor's get-out-the-vote efforts go digitalCOLUMBUS, OHIO- THERESA BRUSKIN, A FIELD director for Working America (the AFL-CIO's community arm), passed a jarring mix of well-maintained bungalows and abandoned homes as she worked her way through Hilltop,...
Dear ITT Ideologist
I'm addicted to political persiflage and dream of the day when campaigns become continuous. Having no money, brains or talent, I haven't been able until now to indulge my obsession. Happily, I won $100 million in the Lithuanian lottery last week. Now...
Fighting Voter Suppression
The battle for a basic civil right continues to rageON OCTOBER 2, PENNSYLVANIA COMMONWEALTH Court Judge Robert Simpson blocked the state's voter ID law from being put into effect for this Novembers election. He was concerned the law would disenfranchise...
For the Welfare of All
In this month's cover story ("The Welfare State of America," page 20), Peter Frase and Bhaskar Sunkara propose that the Left inaugurate an anti-austerity campaign that focuses on the expansion of government social welfare programs. I agree.The Left should...
Learning from Karen Lewis
The Chicago Teachers Union president has the formula for changeThere's no bulldozing Karen Lewis. As the president of the Chicago Teachers Union and the public face of its historic strike, she held her ground against opeds by billionaires, liberal media...
Letters
The fantasticksIn his editorial, Joel Bleifuss wrote: "A Democratic victory also requires that those voters who supported the Democrats in 2008 do so again in November rather than stay home or support a third-party fantasy" ("Express Yourself, But Vote,"...
Mothering Hypes
Mothering HypesFor women, the question of whether or not to have a child can feel less like a personal choice than a litmus test. Having (or not having) children serves, even in 2012, as a measure of one's womanly value, a more or less final statement...
Progressive Star of Texas
Beto O'Rourke is on his way to shake up CongressONE OF THE MAJOR UPSETS of the 2012 election season has already happened, and it was a big win for progressives.In late May, Robert "Beto" O'Rourke won the Democratic primary contest in Texas' 16th Congressional...
Rich Deserts
On the first anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street protests, Americans got a pointed reminder of the country's steady drift into plutocratic rule: Mother Jones magazine released the now-infamous video of GOP nominee Mitt Romney speaking at a Florida...
Robin Hood Goes to Capitol Hill
blueprintsTake from the rich, give to the poor. The legendary robber's credo found new expression in U.S. law on September 14, when Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) introduced the "Robin Hood tax" bill. Formally known as the Inclusive Prosperity Act, it...
Talking Union
IN THESE TIMES STAFF WRITER Sady Doyle and I spoke with CTU President Karen Lewis. Here is some of what she had to say:Where does this idea that teachers are the root of the problem originate?The United States is almost back to the levels of income inequality...
The Ice Man, Radioactive
When the Ice Man told Karl Rove, "I'm in," he wasn't fooling around. The Ice Man, Texan Harold Simmons, is one of the largest donors to the Republican Party. The Ice Man, who got his nickname for his merciless, cold-hearted tactics as a corporate raider,...
The Novels We Write for Ourselves
Perhaps I should say something about this new British film version of Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, which I don't plan to see. You might have read about its being filmed for the most part in an old film studio just outside London, done up to look like a derelict...
The War on Teachers: Pick a Side
In September, as picket lines of teachers in red T-shirts filled Chicagos streets, the majority of Chicagoans were cheering on Karen Lewis, the president of the radically democratic Chicago Teachers Union (CTU). (See "Lessons from Karen Lewis," page...
The Welfare State of America
A manifesto for how to build social democracy in the age of austerityMitt Romney was ridiculed by the liberal media when he complained to wealthy donors, "There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what." To Romney,...
Trans Prisoners Fight Abuse
Imagine being told, 'You have no right to be who you are,' " says Faith Phillips, remarking on her first days in prison. The transition was even harder for Phillips than it is for most prisoners: Phillips, a transgender (trans) woman, was held in a men's...
Voting for Obama with No Illusions
AH, THE WEEKS BEFORE THE GENERAL ELECTION: THE season of panic when presidential campaigns hit their fever pitch, and the Left is at its most tortured. To vote or not to vote for the Democratic candidate, that is the question.But frankly, for me, the...
You Are Not a Loan
Is a debt strike the future of Occupy?Though the Occupy camps have disbanded, many organizers believe they've found the next big tent under which the yearold movement can regroup: debt. At the one-year anniversary celebration of Occupy Wall Street, members...