Closed Shave: T. O. Bobe, the Girl and Curl

Frank’s Barber Shop was located on the north side of Chicago, slightly off Milwaukee Ave. Aside from his perfect turnedoutedness, Frank also played some mean cuatro-style on his guitar while reclining between cuts on a vacant chair. The TV never got an antenna, so telenovelas shorted in and out while people came and went with … Continue reading “Closed Shave: T. O. Bobe, the Girl and Curl”

To Help Pay Off Bondholders, Solar Panel Owners Will Be Hit Hard in Puerto Rico

Environmentalists have long been accused of being closet austerians: hair-shirted hippies shaming everyone else for their wasteful ways. The Green New Deal even wants to take away your burgers, and you’ll only be able to watch television when it’s windy out. Yet it’s always been the capitalists, the people most opposed to curbing carbon emissions, … Continue reading “To Help Pay Off Bondholders, Solar Panel Owners Will Be Hit Hard in Puerto Rico”

Roaming Charges: Slouching Towards Tehran

The Battle of Borodino by Peter Von Hess, 1843. + It’s easy to plot wars when you’re at no personal risk after your plans go to shit. At the Battle of La Moscova (or Borodino, if you’re Russian) in 1812, 70 generals were killed in a single day. In all US military campaigns since the … Continue reading “Roaming Charges: Slouching Towards Tehran”

Bolton and the Road to the War He Wants

Isn’t it obvious? A moronic president with no firm principles other than the preservation of his base’s support chose as his third national security advisor the notorious John Bolton. Bolton is using his position to try to guide the supposedly isolationist president into more wars of imperialist aggression. He is the Wormtongue in Trump’s court, … Continue reading “Bolton and the Road to the War He Wants”

Silent Spring’s Encore

Drawing by Nathaniel St. Clair Rachel Carson’s famous and brilliant book Silent Spring (1962), which literally ignited the environmental movement, has never been more relevant than it is today. A mimeo of Silent Spring is scheduled for publication by the UN, as the most comprehensive study of life on the planet ever undertaken, an 1,800-page … Continue reading “Silent Spring’s Encore”

Breaking the Grip of Militarism: The Story of Vieques

Vieques is a small Puerto Rican island with some 9,000 inhabitants. Fringed by palm treesand lovely beaches, it attracts substantial numbersof tourists. But, for about six decades, Vieques served as a bombing range, military training site, and storage depot for the U.S. Navy, until its outraged residents, driven to distraction, rescued their homeland from the … Continue reading “Breaking the Grip of Militarism: The Story of Vieques”

Ephéméride des luttes : le 1er mai

Dans l’éphéméride des luttes, le premier mai a une place à part. Contrairement aux manifestations souvent bon enfant auxquelles on associe aujourd’hui cette date, le premier mai est la date de la commémoration d’une combativité dans la lutte, de radicalité, d’un internationalisme révolutionnaire. Tout au long de l’histoire, les manifestant-e-s réuni-e-s à cette occasion ont … Continue reading “Ephéméride des luttes : le 1er mai”

In the Time of the Orange Pig

Photograph by Nathaniel St. Clair I’ve been following and writing about United States politics and society for more than twenty years. I often find that things here are much worse than people want to let themselves think. This is one of those times.  The situation is very dire, and we must face it head on. … Continue reading “In the Time of the Orange Pig”

Post-Trump Sex Disorder(s)

It’s just one of multiple kinds of PTSD suffered by many in the Trumpocalypse. But no, “Post-Trump Sex Disorder” is not (necessarily) Trump Derangement Syndrome. In fact, not feeling it at all (ever!) might be a sign of derangement, denial or a Herculean ability to compartmentalize. And you know what happened to Hercules; the world’s … Continue reading “Post-Trump Sex Disorder(s)”

Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy will make hurricane recovery brutal – here’s why

The United States had already seen its share of disasters, from back-to-back hurricanes that devastated Texas, Florida and the U.S. Virgin Islands to roaring wildfires in the West. Then, after battering the rest of the Caribbean, Hurricane Maria left the island of Puerto Rico facing a humanitarian crisis. About a dozen people died in the … Continue reading “Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy will make hurricane recovery brutal – here’s why”

In the Caribbean, colonialism and inequality mean hurricanes hit harder

A satellite image of Hurricane Irma spiraling through the Caribbean. NOAA/APHurricane Maria, the 15th tropical depression this season, is now battering the Caribbean, just two weeks after Hurricane Irma wreaked havoc in the region. The devastation in Dominica is “mind-boggling,” wrote the country’s prime minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, on Facebook just after midnight on September 19. … Continue reading “In the Caribbean, colonialism and inequality mean hurricanes hit harder”

The Blue Ocean Event and Collapsing Ecosystems

Photograph by P J Hansen – CC BY-SA 2.0 Sometime in the near future it is highly probable that the Arctic will no longer have sea ice, meaning zero ice for the first time in eons, aka: the Blue Ocean Event. Surely, the world is not prepared for the consequences of such an historic event, … Continue reading “The Blue Ocean Event and Collapsing Ecosystems”

Donald Trump, or the Difficulties in Bar Tendering

Traditionally, bartending was considered a profession of low reputation. However, in more recent years, bartenders go through a process of training that makes it a key profession in the hospitality industry. As a result, bartending today is considered a profession of choice, rather than of necessity. In many countries, bartending includes specialized education. For example, … Continue reading “Donald Trump, or the Difficulties in Bar Tendering”

Pentagon’s $1 Billion for Wall: A Door-Opener to Crucial Fixes for Infrastructure, Environment?

Now that President Donald Trump’s sleight-of-hand has just moved $1 billion and soon possibly $5.1 billion more from the Pentagon’s $674 billion  FY2019 allocation to furnish labor and materials to build his border wall, he’s opened precedent to actions he’s probably never imagined. But domestic activists surely can—and will—if fast enough. So could those in Congress once they stop … Continue reading “Pentagon’s $1 Billion for Wall: A Door-Opener to Crucial Fixes for Infrastructure, Environment?”

Arctic Permafrost No Longer Freezes … Even in Winter

Global warming is starting to hit hard like there’s no tomorrow, and at current rates of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, there may not be a tomorrow, as emissions continue setting new records year-by-year, expected to hit a 62-year record in 2019. So much for the Paris 2015 climate agreement! The most sensitive areas to global … Continue reading “Arctic Permafrost No Longer Freezes … Even in Winter”