John Lennon would have turned 70 this month. Over the next couple of months there are several noteworthy, commemorative releases and events, including: all of John Lennon’s solo recordings, re-mastered and released this month; a new documentary called LennonNYC, an independent film called “Nowwhere Boy” that focuses on Lennons teen years, and the annual Imagine Peace Tower lighting in Iceland that Yoko Ono will preside at and present Peace awards.
Immigrants are proud of their cultural heritage, but they are also proud of being part of the American Dream. The “Papers Please” law that was passed in Arizona earlier this year brought new attention to the immigration debate. Immigration has also come up in discussions about controlling spending and in the healthcare reform debate. In 2005, Senator Dianne Feinstein said, “We know that people come to this country illegally. They come for many different reasons. Some out of fear of persecution, some for work, all for opportunity…About 50% of the agricultural workforce are illegal workers…With respect to agricultural work, I know that it is extraordinarily difficult, if not impossible, to get Americans to work in agricultural labor.”
George Clooney said, “this is better than Ocean’s 11, but this is real!”
The Cove exposes the slaughter of more than 20,000 dolphins and porpoises off the coast of Japan every year, and how their meat, containing toxic levels of mercury, is sold as food in Japan and other parts of Asia, often labeled as whale meat. The majority of the world is not aware this is happening.
Is Obama a socialist?
This is a question that many are asking. Right-wing pundits, from Hannity and Beck to Palin and Gingrich, are claiming that President Barack Hussain Obama is a socialist. I have actually never heard of a Indonesian Muslim, black liberation theology-believing, socialist (as conservatives are alleging).
As a genuine socialist, Maaass sums up his view of Obama like this: “Barack Obama’s journey from ‘Yes We Can’ to ‘No We Won’t’ has been a bitter disappointment to his supporters” (p.138). “Like Bush before him, Obama’s policy is shaped by the interests of the U.S. corporate and political establishment and expanding American empire around the world” (p.60-61).
What does Obama really think about our free market capitalist system? He has said, “I believe in the free market, competition, and entrepreneurship, and think no small number of government programs don’t work as advertised” (The Audacity of Hope, p. 10). Hardly the words of a socialist. Yet Sean Hannity insists that Obama “sees the world in Marxist, class-warfare terms…every fiber of his being exudes resentment toward the productive, successful, and well-off in society…[he wants to] turn this nation into a full-blown socialist state…[he doesn’t] believe in the inherent fairness or goodness of the capitalist system…he is a leftist to his core…” (p. 68-107).