Seen on nametags at Let Forum 2010—Places: Brooklyn, NY; Oak Park, IL; Essex, CT; Bloomington, IL; Boise, ID; Washington, DC; Philadelphia; Canada… Affiliations: Socialist Appeal, WBAI, Hive Radio, Brecht Forum, Dissent, Verso, Haymarket Books, Revolution, AK Press, The World Can’t Wait, The Mantle (of course!), Z Magazine.
Seen: Democracy Now cameras. A man in hospital gown and fake plastic butt handing out fliers for a rally for free health care. Pamphleteers galore. Jazz musician Abby Smith.
Heard: Danny Schechter telling me of an interview he conducted with Jon Lennon, with the microphone unplugged.
Audio interview with Greg Palast, author of the two New York Times bestsellers, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy and Armed Madhouse. When Palast, an investigator of corporate fraud and racketeering, turned his skills to journalism, he was quickly recognized as, "The most important investigative reporter of our time" (Tribune Magazine) in Britain, where his reports first appeared in The Guardian newspapers and on BBC television.
Audio interview with Brian Tokar, an ecological activist and author, director of the Institute for Social Ecology, and a lecturer at the University of Vermont. He is the author of The Green Alternative and Earth for Sale, edited two books on the politics of biotechnology and co-edited the forthcoming collection, Crisis in Food and Agriculture: Conflict, Resistence and Renewal (Monthly Review Press).
Audio interview with Muhammad Ahmad, the former Field Chairman of the Revolutionary Action Movement and founder of African People's Party in the 1970's. Muhammad worked closely with Malcolm X, Amiri Baraka, James and Grace Lee Boggs and Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael). He is the author of We Will Return in the Whirlwind, African Americans Since 1900, and Selected Writings, Volume 1. He is a member of the Philadelphia Community Institute of Africana Studies and of N'COBRA.
Audio interview with Jeremy Glick, the co-editor of Another World is Possible: Conversations in a Time of Terror, Professor of English at Hunter College, and currently working on a book on dramatic and operatic representations of the Haitian Revolution.
Audio interview with Steve Brier, Professor of Urban Education in the History department at the CUNY Graduate Center, founder of the American Social History Project and co-author of the "Who Built America?" multimedia curriculum in History.
Audio interview with Margaret Yard, a sociologist, psychologist, nurse practitioner in geriatrics and psychiatry, lyricist, writer and an activist.
Head swimming from the weighty conversation right across the hall, I jumped into the middle of a discussion on Mass Media, Islam and the War on Terror, starring Anthony DiMaggio, Deepa Kumar, Adel Iskandar, and Danny Schechter. I landed at the tail end of Iskander’s opening remarks; here are some highlights from what I could pick up before jetting to meet our intrepid intern, Himeka Hagiwara, at the press table.
Another stunningly beautiful day in New York City. The NYC half-marathon is being run, and you would think Left Forum attendees are participants: with the café closed until 10am there’s nonstop sprinting back and forth to Starbucks for that morning jolt. With my giant iced coffee and crumb cake in hand, I head to the morning heavyweight panel, Critical Theory and Social Movements. Breakfast for my stomach and my mind.
Verso hosts this panel. Boris Groys and Todd May hold court. Simon Critchley, expected to be on the panel, is decidedly absent(!). Perhaps he’s still waiting in line for his coffee…
Audio interview with Mike Bonanno, co-founder of the Yes-Men and a co-Director of The Yes-Men Fix the World.