Fresh audio product

Just posted to my radio archive web page: April 28, 2012 James Livingston, author of Against Thrift, speaks up in favor of the consumer culture as a liberatory thing April 21, 2012 Gar Lipow, author of Solving the Climate Crisis through Social Change, on the politics of averting climate change • Edward Luce, author of Time To Start Thinking, on American decline The audio files have been there since the Friday before their broadcast on KPFA. But sometimes I take time to update the web page. Subscribe to the podcast (instructions are on the web page, or do it… Read More

Employment laggard: the public sector

Paul Krugman notes that public sector employment has declined under Obama—a sharp contrast with his two predecessors, under whom it grew (with Republican Bush ahead of Democrat Clinton). How does recent experience stack up on a longer view? Very unusually. Graphed below is the behavior of employment—total, private, and public—around business cycle troughs and recoveries. The darker lines are the averages of all the cycles since the end of World War II; the lighter lines, the most recent period, around the June 2009 trough. (Click on the graph for the full-sized version.) As… Read More

Obama’s stock market: pretty good (if you care about that sort of thing)

Republicans and business interests have been relentless in their whining about how B. Hussein Obama has the “job creators” cowering under a reign of terror, what with his socialist policies and hostile rhetoric. But how have the monied been voting their approval or disapproval in one of their favorite venues, the stock market? There, Obama’s approval rating looks even higher than Gallup’s version. Obama is now in the 40th month of his reign. Compared with the same spots in other presidential terms since 1945, Obama’s stock market is the third best, beaten… Read More

New radio product

Some of these shows have been up as podcasts for a while, but I’ve just updated the web page. If you want timely delivery, subscribe to the podcast. Here’s the show’s iTunes page. If you prefer individual access, here’s some recent product: April 7, 2012 Joel Schalit, co-editor of Souricant, on anti-minority violence in Europe 8 Saadia Toor, author of The State of Islam, on the history and politics of Pakistan March 31, 2012 Dan Lazare on the awfulness of the Supreme Court (excerpt from a 2005 interview) • Jamie Webster ofPFC Energy, on the state of the oil market… Read More

The Nation moves money, again

Forgive me if I’m looking obsessed, but someone has to do it. The Nation was out with an email blast this morning touting its branded affinity VISA card issued by UMB Bank in Kansas City. The magazine’s associate publisher, Peggy Randall, helpfully identifies UMB as “a small, regional bank recommended by the Move Your Money project, a project we  support,” and therefore in accordance with the goals of the Occupy movement. So who is UMB Bank, really? It’s yet another iteration of the classic Money Mover’s institution: flush with more money than it can invest locally,… Read More

On not staging a mock conversion to the right

Here’s a slightly edited version of my opening remarks at last night’s panel on the right, featuring Corey Robin and me, moderated by Christian Parenti, held at UnionDocs in Brooklyn. It was a fine event, and thanks to all who made it possible. Audio will be posted somewhere soon. Given the day, I’d originally thought I would rue the absence of an actual right-winger on this panel, then recount my political history as a brief libertarian in my early college days, and announce my return to the fold after a long, frustrating career on the… Read More