Category Archives: Social Justice

George Monbiot REGENESIS: Feeding the World Without Devouring the Planet

George Monbiot’s latest book is Regenesis: Feeding the World Without Devouring the Planet, published by Penguin Books.

Since the 1980s, he has traveled the world doing on-the-ground investigations of how global dominant systems destroy crucial wildlife habitats and displace peoples from their ancestral homelands, while contributing to catastrophic climate change. This has led to his being made persona non grata in seven countries, sentenced to life imprisonment in absentia in Indonesia, shot at, beaten up by military police, shipwrecked, stung into a coma by hornets, and pronounced clinically dead in Lodwar General Hospital in North-western Kenya from cerebral malaria.

From the first of his 13 books published in 1989, POISONED ARROWS: An Investigative Journey Through the Forbidden Lands of West Papua; to Feral: Searching for Enchantment on the Frontiers of Rewilding; to his radio programs, and long standing weekly columns in The Guardian, he has informed us in delightful prose through the powerful lens of his political philosophy for social and ecological justice and sanity.

We spoke with him via Skype on January 24, 2023.

Articles pertinent to this interview:

Embrace what may be the most important green technology ever. It could save us all https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/nov/24/green-technology-precision-fermentation-farming

Do we really care more about Van Gogh’s sunflowers than real ones? https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/oct/19/van-gogh-sunflowers-just-stop-oil-tactics

It’s democracy v plutocracy – this is the endgame for our planet https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/jul/06/power-wealthy-earth-politics-democracy-plutocracy

The most damaging farm products? Organic, pasture-fed beef and lamb https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/aug/16/most-damaging-farm-products-organic-pasture-fed-beef-lamb

From the Amazon to Australia, why is your money funding Earth’s destruction? https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/nov/30/amazon-public-money-earth-destruction-fossil-fuels-subsidies

How a violent land seizure story led to my ‘death’ in Brazil https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/dec/31/land-seizure-death-brazil-george-monbiot

My burning shame: I fitted my house with three wood-burning stoves https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/dec/27/wood-burning-stove-environment-home-toxins

The US is a rogue state leading the world towards ecological collapse https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/dec/09/us-world-climate-collapse-nations

To change our future, we should change how we teach history to children https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/oct/18/change-future-teach-history-children

Nate Gowdy INSURRECTION

Seattle photographer, Nate Gowdy, has documented over 340 political events and protests across 25 states. He flew from GA to Washington, D.C. the night before January 6, 2021 to cover the much publicized so-called “Stop the Steal” Rally on the Ellipse.

He was about a mile away and heading to that rally along the national mall, when a couple of hundred Proud Boys marched toward him and the US Capitol from the Rally at 10:45am – hours before Trump was scheduled to speak. Having photographed many political events and demonstrations, he recognized some of them, and made the decision to turn and follow them, soon becoming swept along the growing flood of extremists to the very steps of the Capitol.

“10:43:47 am I recognize Ethan Nordean, a notorious Proud Boys brawler from the Seattle area known as ‘Rufio Panman,’ holding a bullhorn. To his left are Zach Rehl of Philadelphia and Joe Biggs of Florida. The three Proud boys lieutenants, each of whom is later charged with seditious conspiracy, lead chants of ‘Fuck Antifa!’ as they trek across the otherwise sparsely populated National Mall.”

His photographic compilation, Insurrection, not only documents the events of that day when our democracy hung by the thinnest of blue lines, but contributes to the art form of war photography in the highest traditions of Robert Capa, Margaret Bourke-White and Matthew Brady. We spoke with him via Skype on January 11, 2023.

“3:35:18PM – ‘Cowboys for Trump’ founder, Couy Griffin, incites the mob in insurrection. In September 2022, a New Mexico state judge rules that, under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, the Otero County Commissioner is disqualified from public office. The decision is the first of its kind since 1869, and the first time that any court rules the events of January 6th, 2021, an insurrection. In August 2022, I travel to Santa Fe to serve as the plaintiffs’ eyewitness in the landmark two-day trial.”

You can find out more about his work here: http://www.nategowdy.com

Clarence Lusane Twenty Dollars and Change: Harriet Tubman and the Ongoing Fight for Racial Justice and Democracy

Professor Clarence Lusane is the interim Chair of Howard University’s Department of Political Science and current Director of the International Affairs program.  For more than 40 years he has written about, and been active in, national and international human rights, anti-racism politics, democracy building, and social justice issues such as education, criminal justice, and voting rights. 
Among his books are The Black History of the White House; Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice: Foreign Policy, Race, and the New American Century; and Pipe Dream Blues: Racism and the War on Drugs.

We spoke with him about his most recent book, Twenty Dollars and Change: Harriet Tubman and the Ongoing Struggle for Racial Justice and Democracy, published by City Lights Books.

Nate Gowdy’s book, INSURRECTION, of photos he took on January 6, 2021, as he was swept by a mob of Proud Boys and Three Percenters onto the steps of the US Capitol Building came to my attention. In the second part of today’s Forthright Radio, we share excerpts from an extended interview with Nate Gowdy about his work, and what he experienced that day.

You can hear the extended interview with Nate Gowdy here: https://forthright.media/2023/01/13/nate-gowdy-insurrection/

Howard French BORN IN BLACKNESS: Africa, Africans, and the Making of the Modern World, 1471 to the Second World War

Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism Professor, Howard French, was awarded 2022’s Museum of African American History (MAAH) Stone Book Award as well as The Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, for his latest book, BORN IN BLACKNESS: AFRICA, AFRICANS, and the MAKING of the MODERN WORLD, 1471 to the SECOND WORLD WAR, published by Liveright.

Before returning to academia, he was a New York Times foreign correspondent in West and Central Africa, as well as the Times’ bureau chief in the Caribbean and Central America, before becoming their Tokyo bureau chief and then their bureau chief in Shanghai, China. In addition to the New York Times, he has contributed to the New York Review of Books, The Atlantic, The Guardian Longreads and Foreign Policy.

His earlier books include A Continent for the Taking: The Tragedy and Hope of Africa; China’s Second Continent: How a Million Migrants are Building a New Empire in Africa; and Everything Under the Heavens: How the Past Helps Shape China’s Push for Global Power.

We spoke with Howard French on December 20, 2022 via Skype, overcoming numerous technical difficulties.

Articles pertinent to this interview:

World Politics Review Articles written by Howard W. French https://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/author/howard-w-french/

How Africa Can Avoid Getting Scrambled https://foreignpolicy.com/2022/12/19/us-africa-leaders-summit-china-russia-competition-scramble/

Abu Bakr II: Did the King of Ancient Mali go to America? https://www.historicmysteries.com/abu-bakr-ii-america/

The Songhai Empire – Africa’s Age of Gold https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GfUT6LhBBYs

African leaders gather in US as Joe Biden aims to reboot rocky relations https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/dec/13/african-leaders-gather-in-us-as-joe-biden-aims-to-reboot-rocky-relations

Archbishop of Canterbury apologises over Church fund’s link to slavery https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-61834511

Netherlands slavery: Saying sorry leaves Dutch divided https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-63993283

US House to remove bust of judge who wrote Dred Scott decision defending slavery https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/15/house-votes-remove-bust-roger-taney-dred-scott-us-capitol

For U.S. Museums With Looted Art, the Indiana Jones Era Is Over https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/13/arts/museums-looted-art-repatriation.html

We ended the 12/23/22 broadcast version of this program with the Ukrainian folk song, Shchedryk, from a recording by Helena Androsova singing all of the voices first with English then Ukrainian Lyrics. It is known in the U. S. as Carol of the Bells. You can hear/view her performance here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqeJ38DThVc

‘Carol of the Bells,’ a Christmas Staple from Ukraine, a Century Later https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/20/arts/music/carol-of-the-bells-shchedryk-ukraine.html?action=click&module=Well&pgtype=Homepage&section=Music

Michael Shermer CONSPIRACY: Why the Rational Believe the Irrational

Dr. Michael Shermer is a Presidential Fellow at Chapman University. He is the co-founder of The Skeptics Society and founding publisher of Skeptic magazine. He has been a college professor since 1979, teaching courses such as Skepticism 101. He was a monthly columnist for Scientific American for 18 years.

Among his books are WHY PEOPLE BELIEVE WEIRD THINGS; WHY DARWIN MATTERS; THE SCIENCE OF GOOD AND EVIL, and GIVING THE DEVIL HIS DUE: REFLECTIONS OF A SCIENTIFIC HUMANIST. His latest book, CONSPIRACY: WHY THE RATIONAL BELIEVE THE IRRATIONAL, is published by the Johns Hopkins University Press.

We spoke with him via Skype on December 5, 2022. The next day, a New York jury found The Trump Organization guilty of 17 felonies, including conspiracy. The day after that, 3,000 officers conducted searches at 130 sites in 11 of Germany’s 16 states against the group, Reich Citizens, whose members it said adhered to a conglomerate of conspiracy theories, including the QAnon cult and the so-called Reich Citizens movement.

Articles and videos pertinent to this interview can be found here:

My Gentle, Intelligent Brother Is Now A Conspiracy Theorist And His Beliefs Are Shocking https://www.huffpost.com/entry/brother-conspiracy-theory_n_61dd94afe4b061afe3b83cec

Attacks on Pacific north-west power stations raise fears for US electric grid https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/09/us-power-grid-pacific-northwest-attacks

Far-Right Group Suspected in German Plot Gained Strength From QAnon https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/08/world/europe/germany-plot-qanon.html?action=click&module=Well&pgtype=Homepage&section=World%20News

Peru’s President Tried to Dissolve Congress. By Day’s End, He Was Arrested. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/07/world/americas/peru-pedro-castillo-coup.html

Bonhoeffer‘s Theory of Stupidity https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww47bR86wSc

Bonhoeffer on Stupidity (entire quote) http://southsidemessenger.com/bonhoeffer-on-stupidity-entire-quote/

The Five Laws Of Stupidity https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3O9FFrLpinQ

‘Extinction is on the table’: Jaron Lanier warns of tech’s existential threat to humanity https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/nov/27/jaron-lanier-tech-threat-humanity-twitter-social-media

The size of the U.S. Jewish population < 4% of population https://www.pewresearch.org/religion/2021/05/11/the-size-of-the-u-s-jewish-population/

Skeptic Check: Shared Reality http://bigpicturescience.org/episodes/skeptic-check-shared-reality

David Daley & Paul Pierson: Post-midterms 2022

This Forthright Radio is devoted to digesting the results of the 2022 mid-term elections. Days after the election, there are still many crucial races that are too close to call, and it is too early to know which parties will control either chamber of congress. However the predicted Red Wave – or what some were projecting as a Red Tsunami – has not occurred. So, we were delighted to welcome back two distinguished guests, David Daley and Paul Pierson.

Dave Daley was our guest in June of 2020, when his book, UNRIGGED: HOW AMERICANS ARE BATTLING BACK TO SAVE DEMOCRACY, came out. His earlier book, RATF**KED: THE TRUE STORY BEHIND THE SECRET PLAN TO STEAL AMERICA’S DEMOCRACY, did much to educate us about the nationally organized, anti-democracy efforts to seize political control from the majority of voters via gerrymandering, and what citizens across the country are doing to wrestle majoritarian democracy back. His articles appear in many outlets, including The Guardian, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, among others.

Paul Pierson was our guest in July of 2020, when his book, co-written with Jacob Hacker, director of the Institution for Social and Policy Studies and a Political Science Professor at Yale University, LET THEM EAT TWEETS: HOW THE RIGHT RULES IN AN AGE OF EXTREME INEQUALITY, came out. Paul is is the John Gross Professor of Political Science at U. C. Berkeley. They have many earlier books, including, WINNER-TAKE-ALL-POLITICS: How Washington Made the Rich Richer and Turned Its Back on the Middle Class; and Off Center: The Republican Revolution and The Erosion of American Democracy.

Articles pertinent to this interview:

Will this Ohio judge’s retirement spell the end of fair elections in the state? https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/jan/26/ohio-judge-maureen-oconnor-republicans-gerrymandering-elections

Midterms bring major constitutional wins for abortion rights https://www.axios.com/2022/11/09/abortion-election-results-midterm-constitution-amendment

‘I never doubted it’: why film-maker Michael Moore forecast ‘blue tsunami’ in midterms https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/nov/14/us-midterms-film-maker-michael-moore-blue-tsunami

Mike’s Midterm Tsunami Truth #41 https://www.michaelmoore.com/p/midterm-tsunami-truth-41?utm_source=post-email-title&publication_id=320974&post_id=83466690&isFreemail=true&utm_medium=email

Critical Maine Congressional Race Heads To Runoff https://www.huffpost.com/entry/maine-race-runoff-golden-poliquin_n_636bea42e4b04925c8939612

Marijuana Is About to Be Legal for Half of the U.S. https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/marijuana-legalization-midterm-results-1234628966/

‘Canary in the Coal Mine’: Did Elissa Slotkin’s Win Reveal Trumpism’s Self-Defeating Toxicity? https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2022/11/11/elissa-slotkin-michigan-election-00066278

Let’s talk about Republicans losing more than the youth https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5QOwb_7cTf0

Young voters hailed as key to Democratic successes in midterms https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/nov/11/young-voters-us-midterms-democratic-youth

Hispanics could make more historic gains in U.S. House https://www.axios.com/2022/11/10/midterm-elections-latino-democrat-republican

New York Democrats spoil House party https://www.axios.com/2022/11/10/new-york-democrats-house-majority

Putin ally Yevgeny Prigozhin admits interfering in US elections https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/nov/07/putin-ally-yevgeny-prigozhin-admits-interfering-in-us-elections

See Which 2020 Election Deniers and Skeptics Won in the Midterm Elections https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2022/11/09/us/politics/election-misinformation-midterms-results.html

Trump Is the Republican Party’s Biggest Loser https://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trump-is-the-gops-biggest-loser-midterm-elections-senate-house-congress-republicans-11668034869?mod=hp_opin_pos_4#cxrecs_s

The Fever Is Breaking https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/10/opinion/the-fever-is-breaking.html

Young Voters Helped Democrats. But Experts Differ on Just How Much https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/12/us/young-voter-turnout-election-democrats.html

The Biggest Election Wins And Losses For America’s Public Lands https://www.huffpost.com/entry/public-lands-wins-losses-2022-elections_n_636eb9aee4b002e88211aa66

The Supreme Court’s Hands Are All Over The 2022 Midterm Election Results https://www.huffpost.com/entry/2022-midterm-supreme-court_n_636ea0f2e4b002e882118a88

A Running List Of All The Election Deniers Heading To Congress In 2023 https://www.huffpost.com/entry/election-deniers-congress-big-lie_n_63694188e4b0eb51ab12d3cd

Adam Hochschild AMERICAN MIDNIGHT: The Great War, A Violent Peace, and Democracy’s Forgotten Crisis

Award winning author and journalist, Adam Hochschild, is the author of eleven books. He returned to Forthright Radio to discuss his latest book, AMERICAN MIDNIGHT: THE GREAT WAR, A VIOLENT PEACE, AND DEMOCRACY’S FORGOTTEN CRISIS, published by Mariner Books.

While a college student in the early 1960s, Adam Hochschild worked on an anti-government newspaper in South Africa, and he was also a civil rights worker in Mississippi. He was a writer and editor for Ramparts magazine, and a co-founder of Mother Jones. He has been a lecturer in the UC Berkeley School of Journalism for many years. In 2014, he was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

In our earlier interviews, he discussed his books, BURY THE CHAINS: PROPHETS AND REBELS IN THE FIGHT TO FREE AN EMPIRE’S SLAVES, and KING LEOPOLD’S GHOST: A STORY OF GREED, TERROR AND HEROISM IN COLONIAL AFRICA.

Military Intelligence Chief for NYC and virulent anti-immigrant proponent, John B. Trevor’s, “ethnic battle map” of upper Manhattan. Red for Jews, brown for Italians, grey for Blacks, blue for Irish. Circles are meeting halls. Stars are publication offices.

We spoke with him via telephone from his home in the Bay Area on October 25, 2022.

Articles pertinent to this interview:

A Forgotten Assault on the Constitution https://ucbjschool.wpenginepowered.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/10/A-Forgotten-Assault-on-the-Constitution.pdf

What You Don’t Have and Why https://tomdispatch.com/what-you-dont-have-and-why/

When Is a Lynching a Lynching? https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/oct/25/lynching-michael-williams-iowa-police-prosecutors

Supreme Court Declines To Take Case Aimed At Overturning 100-Year-Old Racist Precedents https://www.huffpost.com/entry/supreme-court-insular-cases-racist_n_634d7c5fe4b051268c4c6a17

To change our future, we should change how we teach history to children https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/oct/18/change-future-teach-history-children

Fiona Hill: ‘Elon Musk Is Transmitting a Message for Putin’ https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2022/10/17/fiona-hill-putin-war-00061894

Jailed for their words https://www.montanapbs.org/programs/JailedforTheirWords/

The Palmer Raids | The Bombing of Wall Street https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvFZmBJNZUc

Emma Goldman https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTCMcO4WTjE

Utah Phillips covers Joe Hill’s “Pie in the Sky” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJ236CwhlPw

Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones A Question of Standing: The History of the CIA

On September 18, 1947, the National Security Act, a major restructuring of the US Military and intelligence agencies went into effect. It created The National Security Council and The Central Intelligence Agency, headed by the Director of Central Intelligence. Our guest today on Forthright Radio is Professor of American History, emeritus, at the University of Edinburgh, Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones. His latest book, A QUESTION OF STANDING: THE HISTORY OF THE CIA, published by Oxford University Press, examines how the influence of the CIA has shifted with its standing with different presidents, Congresses, and the US as well as international public over time.

His reputation as an intelligence authority has been long established
with earlier books such as, THE CIA AND AMERICAN DEMOCRACY; CLOAK AND DOLLAR: A HISTORY OF AMERICAN SECRET INTELLIGENCE; IN SPIES WE TRUST: THE STORY OF WESTERN INTELLIGENCE; and THE FBI: A HISTORY. We spoke with Professor Jeffreys-Jones on October 11, 2022 via Skype from his home in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Articles pertinent to this interview:

The inside story of the CIA v Russia – from cold war conspiracy to ‘black’ propaganda in Ukraine https://theconversation.com/the-inside-story-of-the-cia-v-russia-from-cold-war-conspiracy-to-black-propaganda-in-ukraine-188550

Has the C.I.A. Done More Harm Than Good? https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2022/10/10/has-the-cia-done-more-harm-than-good?utm_source=nl&utm_brand=tny&utm_mailing=TNY_Magazine_Daily_100322&utm_campaign=aud-dev&utm_medium=email&bxid=5be9dcd924c17c6adf43abf9&cndid=24611174&hasha=a6252e8e1a4afcf8f16af402c223ed5a&hashb=41a28f2320837a2fbc8a7a5a890aad11f1bcae9f&hashc=c69dd0ac8ee9b9f68834963c34476bde472773e79c68ee6c6f59d276224b5c0d&esrc=&utm_term=TNY_Daily

Covert CIA websites could have been found by an ‘amateur’, research finds https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/sep/29/cia-websites-security-sources-communication-safety

China ‘dismantled’ CIA spying operations and killed sources – report https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/20/china-dismantled-cia-spying-operations-new-york-times

64 Years Later, CIA Details Long-Hidden Role in Iran Coup https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wihoBNG94QQ

Julian Higgins GOD’S COUNTRY

The Bozeman Film Society is screening the film, God’s Country, based on Montana author, James Lee Burke’s short story, Winter Light, as interpreted by filmmaker, Julian Higgins. It is being shown at the Ellen Theater on October 19, 2022.


Julian Higgins directed a short film, based on Winter Light, of that same name in 2015. It followed closely the characters and action of Burke’s short story.
This full length film, God’s Country, is shot entirely in Montana with half of the production team Montana based. His first feature length narrative film, it expands Burke’s story and explores even more contemporary issues as a response to the repercussions of the 2016 election.

You can view Julian’s award winning short film, Thief, on his website, https://julianh.com/thief

Thanks to Lisa McGrory for production assistance. You can find out more at https://www.bozemanfilmsociety.org/

Kay Roseen Gallatin Valley Packathon for Haiti 2022

A year ago we interviewed Kay Roseen, president of Future Forward for Haiti, about the 2021 Gallatin Valley Packathon for Haiti. Over 400 local volunteers gathered at Hope Lutheran Church and packed 8 tons of food into packets to be prepared and served to the school children of the small village of Bois Negresse near the southeastern border of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. That provided over 75,000 meals – one meal every week day to those children for a full year.

This year, Future Forward for Haiti is again organizing a Gallatin Valley Packathon for Haiti at Hope Lutheran Church on October 15, and they are looking for 500 volunteers to pack 10 tons of food, which will yield 100,000 meals!

We spoke with Kay Roseen to find out more about the packathon, as well as the challenges in getting food and other assistance to the children of Haiti under increasingly difficult and dangerous circumstances. She tells us that Miraculously, Future Forward For Haiti and their partner, Feed the Hunger, with their local partners in Haiti, are succeeding – where larger, international organizations are less successful.

For more information, to register, or to donate, click on this link: https://www.futureforwardforhaiti.org/gvpackathon

To read the article referenced in this interview:

‘This Is It. This Is Our Chance.’ It’s Time for Everyone to Get Out of Haiti’s Way. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/10/12/opinion/haiti-montana-accords-reparations.html

Haiti looting caused loss of some $6 million in relief supplies, WFP says https://news.yahoo.com/haiti-looting-caused-loss-6-213631343.html