Days of Outrage

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson Will it ever end? Each day seems to bring another outrage. Today I’m fuming over President Obama’s statement in last night’s speech to the nation that he has the prerogative of ordering air and sea action against any country where he thinks a government is dealing harshly with civilians. Humanitarian aid, [...]

Revolution: A History Lesson

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson There’s a marvelous essay by Robert Freeman comparing the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt with those that began in Europe in 1848.  It begins In 1848, a series of revolutions convulsed Europe.  From Berlin to Budapest, Venice to Vienna, Paris to Prague, people rose up and overthrew the authoritarian monarchies that [...]

Street Heat Rises

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson While I write this I’m listening to the speakers at a rally at the Lansing, Michigan, state house. It’s a live video feed arranged by Michael Moore, god bless him. I don’t know how long the rally will continue, or when you’ll read this, but if you want to see whether [...]

Out in the Street

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson The more of us that show up at rallies and demonstrations, the sooner we’ll get our country back. Libya to the contrary notwithstanding, it may be a little easier to get people out in the streets to overthrow a dictator than to defeat a legislature that promotes union busting, unbridled capitalism, [...]

Media Blindness

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson If 50,000 tea party people gathered at state houses in all 50 states on Saturday, the media would have talked about nothing else on Sunday. Some 50,000 progressives gathered at state houses in all 50 states on Saturday, and all we got from the media was a collective yawn. I’m not [...]

US Uncut

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson Three new progressive organizations, with three distinct but complementary purposes, have surfaced over the last few weeks.  Last week I told you about Cognitive Policy Works, its Progressive Strategy Handbook, and the strategy group that is at work developing the progressive brand, so that people will know at once what progressive [...]

If They Can Do It, Why Can’t We?

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson Egypt has given us the most persuasive reason to believe that peaceful – that is, non-violent – revolution is possible. But it’s not the only example. Last month there was Tunisia’s “Jasmine Revolution.” A 29-day protest movement overthrew Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, an autocrat who had ruled for 23 years with [...]

Revolution at the Speed of Light

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson Surely, the upheavals going on in North Africa and the Middle East were not caused entirely by WikiLeaks/FaceBook/Twitter. But just as surely, their contributions cannot be denied. The role of the Internet in human events has just been bumped up a notch or ten. Only a fool would be tempted to [...]

How to Become a Dictator — and How to Prevent It

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson In 1994, and for several years thereafter, I chaired the Western Massachusetts local of a trade union for freelance (independent) writers. Bill Clinton was in his second year as president. The morning after the mid-term election, in which the Democrats lost their majorities in both the House and the Senate, I [...]

Descent Into Madness? Updated 3/30 11:30a ET

By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson I’ve been thinking, and hinting here from time to time, that I fear America’s descent into madness, what with last summer’s near-violent town hall meetings, politicians and reality-show wannabees using words like “reload” and crosshair gunsights to indicate legislators who should be defeated in November, with rocks through windows and veiled [...]