Hawes Spencer is a journalist who has reported for the New York Times, NPR, the Hook, and other publications. He has taught journalism at Virginia Commonwealth University and James Madison University. For over two decades, Hawes Spencer edited two weekly newspapers in Charlottesville,
Like many in my generation, undoubtedly including Donald Trump, I went into space early (and I’m not even counting all those hours in my early teens I spent reading Isaac Asimov’s Foundation trilogy or H.G. Wells’s War
By Dave Lindorff
In the preface to his remarkable three-volume History of the Russian Revolution, Leon Trotsky, writing in 1930 about earth-shaking events in which he was a key actor, explains his view of writing history. Citing the reactionary French historian Louis Madelin, who wrote that “…the historian ought to stand upon the wall of a threatened city, and behold at the same time the besiegers and the besieged” in
Don’t say that Donald Trump isn’t consistent! No one was ever more so when it came to avoiding the truth! On lies and falsehoods of every sort, he’s the greatest! Outstanding! Fantastic! Tremendous! Amazing! Give him credit! He’s never wavered! Not for a moment! Not since he
In a recent interview on National Pentagon Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson discussed the interactions between (1) the U.S. military and (2) astrophysics. The former is an enterprise that I consider evil and Tyson seems to consider mildly worthy of discomfort but the necessary producer of the research for which he lives. The latter is a field of human endeavor that Tyson
It was the rarest of graphics in the American news media: a CNN map in which recent Saudi air strikes in Yemen were represented by little yellow explosions. Below them were the number of civilians killed (“97,” “155,” “unknown casualties”) and, below those,
Do we need new laws or adherence to the old ones?
The United States has an ancient Constitution. It doesn’t ban slavery as punishment. It doesn’t ban bribery as campaign funding. It doesn’t protect the natural world. It doesn’t guarantee basic human rights to food, shelter, education, healthcare. Its system of “representative” government doesn’t fairly represent. New laws are needed.
On the other hand, the United States has numerous laws on the books that just aren’t enforced.
The Richmond (Va.) Times Dispatch recently published an editorial, republished by other papers with the headline: “Remembering why we still fight in Afghanistan.” It’s a rather striking piece of writing, because it does not even attempt to offer a single reason why anyone would “fight” in Afghanistan. The
When I discovered that militarism is one of the top destroyers of the natural environment, I piled that onto my case against war. I did the same when I found out war wasted more money than anything else, was a major promoter of bigotry and racism, was the primary justification for government secrecy and the erosion of civil liberties, was the top barrier to the rule of law and global cooperation, militarized local police, etc., etc. When I came to see how counterproductive war was, increasing