– War & Peace
. Global Democracy
The Political Process
. Canadian Politics
. US Politics
. Politics in Struggling Nations
. Frames, Left & Right

Corporatism, Free Trade & Distorted Markets
Understanding Economics
. Consumer Power
. The Media
The Education System

updated Jan. 1, 2007

War & Peace
If War Isn’t the Answer What Is? and Another Alternative to War (April, 2003) how to change regimes peacefully
Is Your Country War-Prone? (June, 2003) the predictors of war
Hidden Landmines (July, 2003) The need to rid the world of landmines, which have no military purpose
The Cause of Violence (November, 2003) population pressure impacts how we mistreat our young, and what they become as a result
Terrorism is a Reaction not an Action (November, 2003) why humanitarian investment is the only solution to terrorism
How to Be a Bioterrorist (November, 2004) the enormous and ignored threat of biological terrorism
The Politics of Victimization (November, 2004) Mel Gilles says the only way to deal with bullies is to walk away
Peace is Not the Same as Justice (November, 2004) Arundhati Roy’s Sydney Peace prize speech
Women and Children First (January, 2005) The way in which we treat women and children says a lot about our culture
What Makes a People Commit Mass Atrocities? (Jan.20, 2005) #1412 – Stress, shame, misery, hopelessness, denial, fear: That’s the recipe
Environmental ‘Security’: Bridge or Trap? (Feb. 23, 2006) #1446 – Declaring nature an ‘enemy’ to be tackled by defense and security programs is a predictable neocon folly and doomed to extravagant failure
The War on the Desperate (August 1, 2006) #1602 – That is what the so-called “war on terror” really is
The End of Drugs (Sept. 6, 2006) #1635 – A cautionary tale on the ‘war on drugs’ and how oligopolies work

Global Democracy
Liberty Before Democracy (April, 2003) taking regime change one step at a time
Ten Things to Keep You Awake at Night (June, 2003) some seemingly insurmountable problems
Illiberal Democracy (June, 2003) Fareed Zakaria’s book on the future of freedom, & lessons for America
The Fourth Turning (November, 2003) an excellent history of Anglo-American culture, and an annoying prophecy
The Vicious Cycle of Illiberal Democracy (March, 2004) a systems chart showing how and why democracy in the absence of constiutional liberalism and uncorrupted institutions cannot work
Peter Singer’s ‘One World’ (April, 2004) the need for global responsibility, and the possibility ofglobal government
Richer, Meaner, Less Secure (June, 2004) more and more military spending is coming out of humanitarian aid budgets, creating a vicious cycle
What is Our Responsibility to People of Other Nations (July, 2004) humanitarian, peacemaking and military options and when they make sense
A Paean to Sovereignty (August, 2004) a controversial call for butting out of other nations’ business
Veil of Truth (September, 2004) the French are clued out about Islam, like everyone else
How Europe Sees the US (September, 2004) shared values with the people of America, loathing for the leader and his policies
The Power of Nightmares (November, 2004) BBC shows how fear strategies work in politics
What Conservatives and Liberals Fear (February, 2005) why we fear different things, and how Darwin would explain it
The 10 Most Important Ideas of 2004: Politics & Society (February, 2005)
There is No Justice (July 18, 2005) #1214 – With what we know about human nature and human history we should not be foolish enough to expect it in large, conservative, unwieldy governments, corporations and nation-states. And the road to peace, in the absence of justice, is a social one, not a political one
Three Philosophers: Noam Chomsky, Doug Rushkoff, George Carlin (August 25, 2005) #1254 – Three interviewees in Conversations at the Edge of the Apocalpyse make it clear that, today, no one is in control
Hurricane Stan, Darfur, Niger and the Forgotten Victims of Disaster (Oct. 21, 2005) #1313 – The six factors that unfairly determine which disasters we learn about and respond to
Our Imperialist Heritage (June 23, 2006) #1567 – The gap between affluent and struggling nations grows ever wider

The Political Process
Separation of Church & State (February, 2003) what it is and why it’s so important
Rights, Power & Revolution (March, 2003) organize, communicate, investigate: how to take back power
Corruption in Olympic Sports (April, 2003) the never-ending scandal: why don’t we fix it?
Why Has the Anti-Smoking Movement Succeeded while the Animal Rights Movement Has Failed? (April, 2003) preconditions for change
The Tipping Point (May, 2003) how political change reaches a point of no return
Commencement (June, 2003) speech by Tony Kushner to a graduating class on the courage to take power
Why Don’tPeople Vote (September, 2003) seven reasons, and how to overcome them
More on the Sports Doping Scandal (October, 2003) new steroid, new whistle-blower
Whistle-Blowers: Heroes or Fools? (October, 2003) how to do it smartly and safely
Pillar to Post: Abandoning the Mentally Ill (October, 2003) out of asylums and into prisons or the street
Voting System Integrity (October, 2003) a simple answer to ensure fair elections
When Workers Die (December, 2003) the NYT great investigation of corporate and government negligence on worker safety
Dec.10 Decision Day for American Democracy (December, 2003) the US Supreme Court deliberates on the constitutionality of gerrymandering and other redistricting abuses
Pharmacopia (January, 2004) substance abuse affects one in six North Americans, but the insane ‘drug war’ only makes things worse
Why Does Small Business Vote Conservative? (June, 2004) why the victims of corporatism support parties that perpetuate it
When Commons Can’t Be Self-Managed (August, 2004) size matters, but not in a good way
Ten Reasons to be Optimistic (August, 2004) it’s not all bad, once you get past politicians and corporations
Making Politics Politically Correct (August, 2004) re-engaging the politically disenchanted
The Decline of Democracy, Constitutional Liberalism and the Rule of Law  (October, 2004) in the new world, the rich and powerful don’t need or want citizens, soldiers, rights or dissent – only passive, dumb consumers
PR-STV A Better Way to Select a Government (October, 2004)  citizens in BC propose a system that’s rated #1 by experts and works in practice
A Theory of Balkanization (December, 2004)  why the community is the best political unit, and why it doesn’t happen in practice
The Tyranny of Structurelessness (December, 2004)  Back in 1970 Jo Freeman asked whether progressives could really get along without structure and rules, and we’re still not sure what the answer is
All About Power, and Three Ways to Topple It (February, 2005)  capacity, revolution, incapacitation, and a 4-step process to incapacitate power
Resolving Conflicts (May 11, 2005) #1141 – A discussion of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms, and where they do, and do not, work
Why We Hate Government (July 8, 2005) #1204 – The reasons why people of all 4 political stripes hate — and need — government
The Bird Feeder and the Tragedy of the Commons (Sept. 12, 2005) #1271 – Conservation is unnatural, which is why bird feeders and other commons attract squabbling
There Is No Superpower (Sept. 15, 2005) #1275 – All we need to do is to refuse to recognize czars’ and tyrants’ power over us — no, to recognize that they have no power over us — to break their hold
Spin, the Three P’s and the Politics of Learned Helplessness and Learned Optimism (Oct. 31, 2005) #1325 – We may be afraid of the wrong things, but we’re not stupid
The Impotence of (Most) Information (June 2, 2006) #1545 – Arundhati Roy explains that without detailed context, insightful analysis and potential for personal action, information is useless

Canadian Politics
Why Canadians Fear America (April, 2003) what Bush has done to the image of the US in the rest of the world
The Mad Cow Furor: a Mixed Blessing (May, 2003) how the US embargo could help the Canadian economy
Everything You Need to Know About Canada in Ten Minutes (March, 2004)
When Will They Ever Learn (April, 2004) Canada’s pathetic response to Mad Cow and Avian Flu
Canada’s Democratic Balancing Act (May, 2004) the courts sustain campaign finance reform laws, and the government allows RU486 OTC
Canada’s Federal Election (May, 2004) and Canada Heads Into Political Chaos (June, 2004) a minority government looms, with no stable coalition possible, and yet another election probable
Canada Votes (June, 2004) a fractured turn to the left, and an unstable minority government
Canadian Productivity (September, 2004) we don’t have a problem taking back our own economy won’t fix
Canada: Liberal vs Conservative Areas (November, 2004) a stark contrast to the US map shows liberals dominate almost everywhere in Canada
This is the Way the World Ends (November, 2004) Ontario farmers rebel against a bill designed to protect farmland, and the environment, from real estate speculators
Striking Out On Our Own: A Radical Course for Canada . (May 13, 2005) #1143 – A proposal to reinvent Canada as the model for a post-industrial, perhaps even post-civilization, society
Bush Shows His True Stripes on ‘Free’ Trade (August 12, 2005) #1241 – Bush flagrantly ignores a NAFTA ruling that calls for $5B stolen from Canada to be returned
Mulroney’s Revenge: The Breakup of Canada (Jan. 9, 2006) #1401 – The ‘new’ Conservative Party’s deal with the devil
Think Twice Canadians: Harper Reasserts Plan to Renege on Kyoto and Sabotage Charter of Rights with Insidious Neocon ‘Property Rights’ Clause (Jan. 13, 2006) #1405
Canadian Election Results: What They Mean and What Comes Next (Jan. 24, 2006) #1417 – Will the Liberals now commit suicide by electing Ignatieff, as the Conservatives did with Mulroney?
Canada’s Dirty Oil (Feb. 11, 2006) #1434 – The environmental disaster of the Alberta Tar Sands
An Apology for Canada’s Treatment of Animals (March 5, 2006) #1456 – Not just seals: Canada’s treatment of all animals is a disgrace for a ‘civilized’ nation
Canadian Minority PM Abandons Environmental Protection, Embraces Neocon Ideology & Tactics (April 25, 2006) #1507 – Harper’s even worse than we feared
Harper Doesn’t Speak for Canadians (May 25, 2006) #1537 – Harper misrepresents and embarrasses us on the global stage
The Canadian Terrorist Incident (June 6, 2006) #1549 – A gang of young unemployed losers get international attention just because they’re Islamic and play war games

US Politics

Psychopathic Leaders (February, 2003) Vonnegut says the Bush inner circle is clinically psychopathic
A Man Consumed With Rage (February, 2003) the madness that drives Bush
The Wisdom of Containment   (March, 2003) the need to contain Bush
Why Canadians Fear America (April, 2003) what Bush has done to the image of the US in the rest of the world
The Freedom 2004 Meme Project (May, 2003) my suggested memes for the Democrats in 2004
What the Freedom 2004 Meme Must Address (June, 2003) Bush’s dangerous domestic ideology
How the Democrats Can Win in 2004 (June, 2003) Help America Work Again: the meme we need
What’s That About Slavery, Mr. Bush? (July, 2003) the regime’s hypocrisy and neglect of Africa
Post Bush: Rebuilding the American Civil State (August, 2003) five things to start doing now to undo the damage
Advice for the Democratic Nominee in 2004 (August, 2003) how to defeat Bush
Some Questions About Howard Dean (August, 2003) is he liberal enough?
Dubya Does Niccolo (September, 2003) Bush’s behaviour sounds like he’s studied Machiavelli, the children’s edition
Environmental Damage: The Bush Legacy (September, 2003) a succinct summary of Bush’s awful environmental record from the New Yorker
Enemy Aliens (October, 2003) Ashcroft’s war at home
Maybe the Republican Establishment Doesn`t Like Bush Either (October, 2003) The party faithful aren’t faithful when voter support is tracking Nixon’s
Margaret Wheatley on America’s Darkest Night (December, 2003) America on the edge of an abyss, unaware
Anti-Democratic Forces Show Their Stuff (December, 2003) The police, goaded on by Homeland Security, lose it in Miami
Kucinich Remains the Progressive Standard-Bearer (December, 2003)
Four Stories the Media Mostly Missed (January, 2004) Republicans hack Dems database, Canadian torture victim sues Ashcroft, CIA warns Bush about Iraq civil war risk, Environment groups debate population policy
Unsteady State (January, 2004) Hertzberg on the dreadful Bush legacy, and another report showing Iraqis want the occupiers out now
Chris Britt on Bush’s Guard Duty (February, 2004) A chilling cartoon
The Boston Tea Party as Eco-Terrorism (February, 2004) new anti-terrorism laws make advocacy and corporate sabotage ‘terrorist’ acts
Advice for the Democrats (February, 2004) Issues, approaches, and who to pick for VP
John Kerry Needs an Anthem (March, 2004) The Dems’ campaign, astonishingly,  lacks passion
Global Warming & the Crime of Denial (March, 2004) Bush’s ostrich act on global warming threatens the planet
The NYT on the Environment (April, 2004) Maybe the reporters should get out more to see what’s going on
The US is No Longer Free, Nor a Democracy (April, 2004) US courts legitimize gerrymandering, and muzzle the ACLUs constitutional challenge of the Patriot Act
Essential Reading (May, 2004) on US imperialism, addiction to oil, Rumsfeld’s role in torture, why low interest rates suck, and the dangers of databases on private individuals in psychopathic hands
Bush’s Disregard for the Geneva Conventions (May, 2004) it threatens the safety of Americans everywhere — why isn’t Kerry speaking up?
The November Elections (July, 2004) terrible choices for progressives
American Progressives get Angry (July, 2004) Bill Moyers explains why they should be, and the United Progressive Alliance unifies them
Money’s On Another Republican Sweep (August, 2004) The IEM predicts Bush and his cronies will win again
Worst Case Scenario (August, 2004) Bush’s second term agenda
A Time to Weep (September, 2004) Noam Chomsky, George Lakoff and Theo Sorenson lament the death of progressive values
Crimes Against Nature (October, 2004) RFK calls Bush to account, Putin finally gets it, but Bush is unrepentent
Revenge of the Moderates (October, 2004) maybe there are more of them, and maybe they’re smarter, than the pundits give them credit for
What Do We Do if Bush ‘Wins’ (October, 2004) stepping up the resistance, the vigilance, and the public protest
Anthems, and There is a Choice (October, 2004) recaps and satires of Bush’s ghastly record
Bill Moyers on the Latest Corporate Tax Pork (October, 2004) Moyers lambastes corporate America for not doing or paying their share
A Better Plan for Energy (October, 2004) 25 ways to achieve energy self-sufficiency, save billions, and create jobs in the process
Hunting for Intelligence (November, 2004) the new FBI reformer tells staff ‘hunt don’t gather, disseminate don’t just aggregate’
Was Bush a Better Mascot Than Kerry? (November, 2004) many vote for the surrogate closest to their beliefs, not the candidate with the best ideas
The Final Polls Show Kerry Clearly Ahead (November, 2004) we may never know what really happened after that
The Suburbs, and Learned Helplessness Fears, Seem to Have Won For Bush (November, 2004)
Bush vs Kerry, County by County (November, 2004) a scary picture of conservative dominance outside the city cores
Why Not Just Ask the People? (November, 2004) a simple way to reconcile exit polls that are wildly different from actual results
We’ll Take Turns Being Strong (November, 2004) the eight fronts in the new resistance against Bush and the neocons
Predictions of Trouble Ahead (December, 2004) experts predict economic armageddon, bioterrorism risks, and threat of epidemic viral disease outbreaks
It’s Time to Move to Canada, Einstein (December, 2004) time to give up and move on?
See It Feelingly (December, 2004) Bill Moyers’ environmental award acceptance speech
Krugman on Privatizing Social Security (December, 2004) gambling recklessly with the people’s money
From Framing to Naming (February, 2005)  taking a run at renaming conservative euphemisms, and preempting the naming of important progressive concepts
The Job of the Media (February, 2005)  making what’s important interesting: five principles that could revolutionize the ‘news’ and make it relevant and actionable again
Five Questions (March, 2005)  readers explain the reactions to the Schiavo case
George Bush, Closet Anarchist (April, 2005) his behaviour could be read as that of a radical libertarian
Looks Like the Fourth Turning After All  (May 20, 2005) #1152 – Is the US predestined to slide into totalitarianism?
Bad Medicine (June 22, 2005) #1187 – The US government is stealing children deemed antisocial by government psychologists from their parents and force-feeding them expensive, experimental drugs
Are Americans Politically Ignorant, Apathetic, or Both? (June 26, 2005) #1192 – Ignorance and apathy both mitigate against change. If you’re in power and you can breed both in the electorate, you’re laughing
Another Black Day for American Democracy (July 7, 2005) #1203 – A US judge sends a reporter to jail for protecting her source
The Myth of Leadership and the Domestication of America (Jan. 11, 2006) #1403 – Have Americans been lulled into domestication so that they place undue trust in their leaders to do everything for them?
The Futility of the ‘War on Terror’ and Bush’s Apocalyptic Agenda (Feb. 1, 2006) #1425 – How the terrorists won by understanding how religious fanaticism yields dysfunctional politics, even in the US
Time for the Progressive Party in the US? (May 17, 2006) #1529 – Americans need to see past the horrific Bush regime to realize that the Democrats are not the answer to what ails them
So the US Presidential Election Was Stolen — So What? (June 1, 2006) #1544 – The political and electoral system in the US is hopelessly broken, and no one seems to have the answers or will to fix it
Racism: The Republican Trump Card in the 2006 and 2008 Elections (Oct. 1, 2006) #1661 – The broad fear and hatred of immigrants is too easy to resist
Two Legal Outrages (Oct. 18, 2006) #1678 – Property title theft, and Bush’s new foreigner torture law

Politics in Struggling Nations
What Happens Next (February, 2003) a prediction about the aftermath of the war
Who’s Next After Iraq: The Map of Freedom (February, 2003) Worldwatch’s ratings of countries by degree of freedom
The Future of Iraq: Afghanistan 1 1/2 Years Later (March, 2003) a study in contrasts
Wise Words from ‘Average’ Iraqis (April, 2003) understanding culture
An Army of Dragons   (May, 2003) the neglect of the third world outside Iraq
Is ‘Bring the Troops Home Now’ an Option? (September, 2003) we can do it fast and painfully, or slow and more painfully
What Hath George Wrought (October, 2003) Iraq’s drug epidemic
If the Shoe Were on the Other Foot (November, 2003) Imagining life in ‘post-war’ Iraq
Intelligence Failure (November, 2003) What Washington doesn’t see in  Iraq
Remembering the Forgotten (November, 2003) the ‘disappeared’, and political prisoners facing daily torture in brutal regimes
The Silent Kingdom (January, 2004) The dreadful, repressed life of Saudis
Unsteady State (January, 2004) Hertzberg on the dreadful Bush legacy, and another report showing Iraqis want the occupiers out now
The 10 Most Underreported Humanitarian Events of 2003 (February 2004) what happened outside of the West and Mideast
What’s Happening in Sudan, Iraq, and Columbia (March, 2004) my attempt at political cartooning
The System is Broken (May, 2004) the massive intelligence failures in Iraq, and their consequences
Israel vs Palestine: The Intractable, Endless War (May, 2004) extremists on both sides are using violence and racist hatred to subvert the will of the majority
The Coming Iraq Civil War (June, 2004) why it’s inevitable, and what will set it off
Darfur: Cocktail of Suffering and Genocide (August, 2004) it’s even worse than you thought
From Baghdad (October, 2004) WSJ reporter Farnaz Fassini tells what’s really going on, but only to friends
Terrorist Strategy 101 (November, 2004) an analysis of Al Qaeda motives and probable next steps
Afghanistan Unveiled (November, 2004) PBS lets Afghani women tell their country’s still-horrendous story
Three Ways of Looking at Afghanistan (March 16, 2006) #1467 – We screwed it up, and now the best course of action is to withdraw and try a humanitarian approach
The Iraq Occupation (April 8, 2006) #1491 – The country degenerates into civil war
Gang War (July 9, 2006) #1583 – A different way of looking at the ‘neighbourhood’ of the Mideast, and the complex approach that would be needed to resolve it
Colombians are Happy, Americans are Ill With Stress: The Wealth-Wellness Gap (August 3, 2006) #1604 – Happiness is all about perspective
This is Our Tomorrow, Today (Nov. 16, 2006) #1698 – The hell that is Lagos today foreshadows the overpopulated, overcrowded, economically depressed, crisis-ridden future of all of us

Frames, Left & Right
Liberal & Conservative: Lakoff’s Two Solitudes (May, 2003) liberalism’s rational approach vs conservatism’s moral approach to everything
The Truth About Frames and Drug Costs (October, 2004)  Malcolm Gladwell spreads the blame for high drug costs around, and suggests answers
Seduced by False Comforts (January, 2005)  Lakoff and Lappe on lies, metaphors & frames, and wondering out loud why we’re so willing to believe good news and unwilling to believe the bad
A Progressive Story Book (January, 2005)  Oprah shows how to tell appealing and accessible stories about progressive role models
From Framing to Naming (February, 2005)  taking a run at renaming conservative euphemisms, and preempting the naming of important progressive concepts
Why Do Progressives Like Centralization (February, 2005)  how our belief in the role of government interferes with our belief in the role of community
Seeing the Big Picture (Building a Bigger Frame) (March, 2005) Looking for synthetic, non-parochial, transcendent ways of solving the world’s problems
Domestic Security: Some Complex Thinking (March, 2005) a new way of thinking about terrorism that transcends frames
We Need More ‘If the Shoe Were On the Other Foot’ Thinking (May 15, 2005) #1147 – To break people free of frames, we need more analogous thinking based on the golden rule
More on Lakoff vs. Lappé (May 27, 2005) #1160 – The way to reopen dialogue isn’t by re-framing, it’s by refocusing on the need we all agree on, to create a healthy, happy legacy for our children
The Terrorism Debate (July 21, 2005) #1217 – How you see terrorism depends entirely on your frames of understanding
Do Events Like Katrina and 9/11 Make Us Crazy? (Sept. 1, 2005) #1261 – Worldviews are our levees, and when we feel events are careening out of control, or feel distraught by awful human behaviour, we get anxious and irrational
Why Both Conservatives and Progressives Are Out of Touch With Mainstream Americans (Feb. 9, 2006) #1432 – Michael Adams’ new book American Backlash says a 3rd force, amoral fatalistic materialists, are the new majority
Anomie Society: Disengagement, Dissociation and Attention Deficit (Feb. 10, 2006) #1433 – Continuing discussion about the new US politically agnostic majority, and what made them that way
The Definitive Lakoffian Liberal Definition of a Conservative (August 15, 2006) #1613 – “Someone unable or unwilling to engage in issues that are fundamental to the future of mankind.”
Social Conservatives’ Obsession with Crime (August 17, 2006) #1615 – The conservative frame is structured around a single, obsessive and fearful preoccupation

Corporatism, Free Trade & Distorted Markets
Globalization, Corporatism & Free Trade   (2001) response to the Economist’s witless support of all three
What’s Really Wrong With Free Trade   (February, 2003) the real alternative is regulated trade, not no trade
Do Corporations Have Too Much Power? (March, 2003) why they do, and what to do about it
Company, Halt! (May, 2003) the need to rein in corporations and return them to their original purpose
Why We Buy from Criminals
(May, 2003) the need for a corporate ethics clearing house
The New Robber Barons (August, 2003) it’s not the first time corporations have ruled America
Corporations vs. Citizens (August, 2003) Suzuki vs. Consumers Union – we lose another one
Time to Stop the Corporatist Race to the Bottom (September, 2003) how corporatism is destroying employment, souls and lives worldwide
‘Free’ Trade vs. Public Health (September, 2003) how ‘free’ trade contributes to unaffordable medicines, and hence to misery and death
The New Rulers of the World (October, 2003) Pilger’s scary state of the world analysis
The Wal-Mart Dilemma (November, 2003) The underemployed are forced by their situation to buy from the company that contributes most to underemployment
Corporatism – The New Enemy Within (November, 2003) RF Kennedy Jr. and the NRDC warn of the dangers of corporatism
Corporations vs People – A Split Decision (February, 2004) news on offshoring, outsourcing and the RIAA
How Corporatism Threatens Democracy (March, 2004)
Gambling on Free Trade (March, 2004) the WTO overturns the hypocritical Bush laws on Internet gambling
Bush’s Friends at Koch and Timken (March, 2004) exemplary corporatists trash the environment and jobs respectively
Deja Vu (April, 2004) more on the history of corporatism, and how we fixed it last time
Undermining Corporatism (July, 2004) old and new ideas, from Joel Bakan’s The Corporation
The Chemical Soup We Live In (August, 2004) the poisons in our midst
The Outrage of Injured Citizens (August, 2004) more on corporations vs citizens and consumers
Why Free Trade Doesn’t Work (August, 2004) why it hurts the third world as well
Unsafe in Any Country (October, 2004) dangerous Chinese-made crap is under-regulated and often re-exported to the unsuspecting third world
Tort Reform (October, 2004) the latest excuse for a corporatist power grab to stifle consumer dissent
Three Recipes for Smashing Corporatism (January, 2005)  Books by Bakan, Drutman and Derber tell how to defang the monster
How Corporations Became Culturally Dysfunctional and Why Simple Solutions Won’t Fix Them (March, 2005) corporations evolved as complex responses to a complex system, and simple fixes won’t work
By the Numbers: The Wal-Mart Dilemma, File Sharing and Lousy Service (May 17, 2005) #1149 – Why the economy is nothing like a free market economy
Greenwashing (July 26, 2005) #1222 – How to catch companies that lie about their social and environmental irresponsibility
GlobalCorp Annual Report: Management Discussion & Analysis (July 28, 2005) #1224 – What an honest annual report from a global corporation would really say
The Collapse of Globalism (August 4, 2005) #1231 – John Ralston Saul’s new book shows that laissez faire economics has failed again, and courage, knowledge and altruism are needed to pick the right interventions to protect citizen interest and rescue the economic system
George Monbiot’s Prescription to Stop Global Warming (Sept. 23, 2005) #1282 – Monbiot argues that if governments introduced fair uniform standards across industries with no wiggle room, companies would be pleased to comply
The Boycott List (Nov. 3, 2005, updated from Dec. 2003) #1328 – The world’s most irresponsible corporations, and a few very good ones
Ten Reasons to Halt All Trade With China (Nov. 29, 2005) #1355 – We are complicit in the disgraceful social and environmental behaviours of China when we support their regime and economy with our trade
When the Law and the Truth Cease to Matter (March 28, 2006) #1480 – When the poor and disenfranchised realize the game is rigged, and refuse to play, things will get interesting
The Precautionary Principle, and Treating Polluters as Murderers (March 30, 2006) #1482 – We can’t do so legally, because the law is stacked in polluters’ favour, but we could do so socially
The Productivity Myth (June 27, 2006) #1571 – Productivity is just a weasel word for corporate profit margins, and all the means to achieve it are contrary to the interests of the majority
Co-Dependency (August 31, 2006) #1629 – Just like addicts and abused spouses, we and the corporatists rely on each other to give each other what we need
Are Conspiracies and Oligopolies Complex Adaptive Behaviours? (Sept. 4, 2006) #1633 – Increasing complexity makes conspiracy and oligopoly more possible, and adaptability then makes them more likely
The End of Drugs (Sept. 6, 2006) #1635 – A cautionary tale on the ‘war on drugs’ and how oligopolies work

Understanding Economics (See also Alternate Economies)
Improving Canada’s Productivity (February, 2003) the numbers behind the data and what they mean
Playing Dice with the World Economy (May, 2003) the untenable value of the US dollar
Future of Business & the Next Economy (July, 2003) Zuboff’s Support Economy model falls short
Now That’s Power (August, 2003) a power chart of annual personal income distribution in America; Another View (March 2005) a logarithmic view, and an argument that the top 0.1% is permanently separated from everyone else.
The US Economy: Train Wreck Ahead (September, 2003) how incompetent management is driving the US economy to the brink
The Bankrupting of the American Middle Class (October, 2003) real incomes can’t keep pace with soaring non-discretionary costs, even for 2-income families
Economist Newspeak (November, 2003) why the reported economic ‘recovery’ is bad news for citizens and employees
Damned Lies & Statistics (November, 2003) unemployment’s understated, productivity’s overstated, and the US dollar is hanging on by a thread
How the Stock Market Could Cost You Your Job (December, 2003) the only way to get profits near expectations is to cut, cut, cut jobs
IMF Warns US Debt is Threat to Global Economy (January, 2004) with the US currency in free-fall, only a drastic change in fiscal policy can prevent global recession
The End of Work (January, 2004) how a guaranteed annual income could make everyone’s life better
Politics & Economics – The Most Important Ideas of 2003 (January, 2004)
Vital Signs (February, 2004) data on the state of the world
Bush’s Jobless Recovery & Ludicrous Employment Prediction (February, 2004)  and March Update, a calling to account on the promise of 2.6 million jobs and August Update  and October Update
Greenspan’s Folly (March, 2004) The Fed Chairman shamelessly promotes our addiction to consumption and debt to delay the inevitable crash of the economy and markets
Rich/Poor Disparity Data (March, 2004) just in case anyone should suggest that economic disparity in the US isn’t growing
The Stock Market as Ponzi Scheme (May, 2004) last ones in before the crash will lose big-time
The End of Oil (August, 2004) the economics of oil, and of living without it
Living Beyond their Means (October, 2004) the many debts of George Bush and Alan Greenspan, and what they mean to us all
The Two-Income Trap (October, 2004) why unethical lenders want consumers to live beyond their means
US & China Become Net Importers of Food (December, 2004) and other news on haves and have nots
The 10 Most Important Ideas of 2004: Business & the Economy (February, 2005)
Where the US Deficit is Headed (February, 2005) a simple picture from the NYT
How the ‘Free’ Market Ruins the Entertainment Industry (February, 2005) a lesson in how a bad economic system breeds mediocrity
In the Year 2045 (February, 2005) Ran Prieur predicts a slow crash, and I add my own predictions
A Running Out Story (March, 2005) The end of oil, and water
By the Numbers: The Wal-Mart Dilemma, File Sharing and Lousy Service (May 17, 2005)#1149 – Why the economy is nothing like a free market economy
The Factor of Four: Preparing Yourself for Economic Meltdown (June 21, 2005) #1186 – Low savings, low investment in public infrastructure, a poor under-resourced education system and a lack of investment in real innovation spell big trouble for the US economy
Income Trust: An Investment That’s Too Good to be True? (Sept. 7, 2005) #1266 – An investment that promises to hedge against an interest rate spike and against unreasonable ‘shareholder expectations’
Why is ‘Underdeveloped’ a Euphemism for ‘Poor’? (Oct. 17, 2005) #1306 – The world is now divided into affluent and struggling countries, so let’s scrap the obsolete, dangerous, demeaning terms
Why Oil Prices Are Jumping Again (Jan. 23, 2006) #1415 – Overstated reserves, fragility, market distortions, and politics all play a role
Why Republicans Want a Huge National Debt (Jan. 26, 2006) #1419 – It gives them an excuse to sell off the Commons to friends cheap, and to cancel public services as unaffordable
House of Cards: How Money Flows From the Poor to the Rich (March 6, 2006) #1457 – Global inequity in wealth distribution is astronomical and soaring; here’s how it’s happening
The Fear of Not Having Enough (April 13, 2006) #1496 – Anxiety about a coming depression is not unreasonable; there are two things you can do about it
What to Expect When the Dollar Collapses — Part One and Part Two (May 14-5, 2006) #1526-7 – What happened in the 1930s, and, since we’ve learned nothing from it, what will happen in the coming second Great Depression
What Should We Invest In If the Economy’s Going to Collapse? (May 29, 2006) #1541 – 10 ideas based on what has worked in previous serious recessions
Caledon, Canada: A Case Study in the Seeming Futility of Controlling Growth (Oct. 10, 2006) #1670 – Developers rule in land use, and the system is fixed in their interest

Consumer Power
Pledge to Buy Local (October, 2003) how to prevent job export by supporting local producers
The Boycott List (December, 2003) the world’s most irresponsible corporations, and a few very good ones
Boycott ExxonMobil (January, 2004) the sad legacy of the world’s worst polluter
Raise Your Standards (July, 2004) if we demand more, corporatists won’t be able to deliver, but local entrepreneurs will
Why Service Stinks (September, 2004) Corporate Apartheid, and two-class everything
Consumer Reports’ 10 Biggest Shopping Traps (September, 2004) consumer advice for naive shoppers
Resigning from Corporation America (November, 2004) if government acts irresponsibly, why shouldn’t we able to sue it for negligence, revoke its right to practice, and let people resign from having anything to do with it
The Take (November, 2004) Argentinian workers insist on working, and take back abandoned factories
We Need an Online Consumer Information Exchange (December, 2004) person-to-person info sharing on all goods and services
Would You Buy from a Store Where Everything Was Made Locally? (December, 2004)
The Perfect Sweetener You Can’t Buy (January, 2005)  Stevia, the FDA and Monsanto
Consumer Reports’ Best Medical Info Website List (August 5, 2005) #1234
The Moral Hazard Myth (August 26, 2005) #1255 – Malcolm Gladwell punctures the myth that if the government gives us things free or cheap, we’ll automatically take too much of them

The Media
The Dumbing Down of America (March, 2003) an uninformed electorate helps incumbents
Take Back the Airwaves (January, 2004) why ads make broadcasting worse, and how public ownership & funding could save it
Media Spin and its Impact on Public Opinion (May, 2004) how trusted sources can lead us to illogical conclusions
The Real Issues, and Why No One Talks About Them (September, 2004) why vested interests avoid the complex and controversial issues
Why & How to get the Media to Stop Reporting GDP (November, 2004) the lunacy of measuring an economy by volume of stuff made and hours worked
Reinventing The News, Putting Bloggers to Work (November, 2004)  could bloggers be good investigative journalists
The Job of the Media (February, 2005)  making what’s important interesting: five principles that could revolutionize the ‘news’ and make it relevant and actionable again
How Bloggers Can Help Defeat Anti-Intellectualism (June 15, 2005) #1180 – Media have a responsibility to inform and engage the public on matters that are important and on vanguard thinking about these matters, even if they’re difficult and make the public uncomfortable
Violence: Are the Media Just Giving Us What We Really Want? (August 3, 2005) #1230 – Attention deficit and lack of self-esteem play right into violence-mongers’ hands
We Only Pay for, and Retain, Information That’s ‘Durable’ (Sept. 30, 2005) #1289 – A proposal for a magazine of actionable news that you could pull out and file by topic in follow-up ‘workbook’ binders
My Take on Plamegate (Oct. 19, 2005) #1311 – Miller’s a hack, the NYT is embarrassed again, and the Bush top brass will get away with the Plame leak, but the principle is still important
The Future of the Media (Feb. 20, 2006) #1443 – Most of it’s already shifted to entertainment from information, but its survival depends on partnership with customers, its focus on actionable news, and its ability to organize that action
The Media: Numbing Ourselves to Pain And Others’ Suffering (Oct. 3, 2006) #1663 – There’s no other explanation for its and our obsession with violence and misery

The Education System
Reality Check for Teachers (May, 2003) we communicate much less than we think
Breeding a Nation of Drones – part 1 (August, 2003) how educators become unwitting accomplices to an elitist system
Breeding a Nation of Drones – part 2 (September, 2003) a prescription for radical reform of education
The Learning Asylum (February, 2004) a poem by a teacher
How We Learn and Why We Don’t (April, 2004) the essential process of learning, and the impediments we put in the way
What’s Wrong With Sex-Ed (October, 2004) oral sex and masturbation need to be acknowledged as normal, healthy, fun sexual activities to our young people, and they need to have access to information on them
Critical Life Skills: Learning to Learn (January, 2005) a suggested approach to overhauling the education system
Ivan Illich: Progressive-Libertarian-Anarchist Priest (February, 2005) Illich’s ideas to reform education, de-institutionalize society and de-materialize values as steps to reintegrate ourselves into a balanced ecosystem
AHA! (April, 2005) a proposal for a Discovery and  Learning Centre attuned to complex systems and an emergent and interactive way of learning
On Writing and Teaching Better, and the Colonization of Language (May 9, 2005) #1139 – Derrick Jensen says don’t be boring and teach on-to-one
A Taxonomy of Learning, and Nature as Learning Role Model (August 15, 2005) #1244 – Susan McCarthy’s Becoming a Tiger catalogues 20 ways of learning and shows how much we have to learn from nature
Health, Education, and Learned Helplessness (Feb. 17, 2006) #1440 – Our utter reliance on others for our education and our health is unwarranted, dangerous, and expensive
Ten Reasons Young People Are Afraid to Start Their Own Business (Feb. 26, 2006) #1449 – How Natural Enterprises can overcome these fears, which we have the education system to thank for