Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Gays are good for it: The money, that is

According to the folks over at The Faculty Lounge, Massachusetts saw over $100 million injected into the state over the last 5 years as a result of legalizing same sex marriage:

"According to one study, "marriage equality resulted in an increase of younger, female, and more highly educated and skilled individuals in same-sex couples moving to the state." And according to another, same-sex couples’ weddings injected significant spending into the Massachusetts economy and brought out-of-state guests to the state, whose spending also added to the economic boost."

California voters may want to rethink their decisions on Prop 8 as they watch their state go down the economic sinkhole.

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Saturday, May 23, 2009

Is the U.S. ready for a new economic paradigm? America, Argentina, and a New Paradigm of Dignity

Back in December 2008, I compared the take over the the New Republic Window factory in Illinois with the factory take overs in Argentina in 2001.

This interview with a couple of Argentine journalists describes how the economic situation in Argentina in 2001 is similar to what is taking place in the United States today. They say we are now faced with making choice about whether we want to go back to a system in which banks control the economy, or a "new paradigm" in which work builds the economy in favor of the dignity of people and of society. Is the U.S. ready for a new anarchist inspired worker's movement?

Thanks to Latin American News Review.

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Friday, May 22, 2009

We Get Excited Easily: Habermas on Obama and Human Rights

Jurgen Habermas received the Spanish Brunet Prize for Human Rights recently. He was asked about the implication of Obama's election for human rights. Here is what he said:

"Obama is an American phenomenon. After eight years of Bush, Obama has been a great gift...Something that sets us apart from the Americans is that they have a great willingness to get excited with things. The history of Europe in the twentieth century has been quite complicated, with disasters and dictatorships. Perhaps it is appropriate that here in Europe we are less enthusiastic and have both feet on the ground."

After these last two weeks--in which Obama has adopted the Bush position on not releasing military abuse photos from Iraq and Afghanistan, has decided to keep the flawed military commissions system for trying detainees in Guantanamo, and has pledged to keep some detainees in permanent preventative detention--maybe we should learn to be more European.

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Thursday, May 21, 2009

What Good is a Philosophy Degree in a Recession?

Not much, according to business folk over at Business Week. Forget about critical thinking. Less than 5% want people with liberal arts degrees. They want you to show them that you know how to take orders.

Grad school? They say its a waste of time. Just find a job.

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Spielberg to Make MLK Biopic; Cesar Chavez Movie Far Behind?

Steven Spielberg has announced that he has cleared that way with the estate of Martin Luther King, Jr. to make a biography movie about MLK.

I wonder how long it will be before a Cesar Chavez film comes along? I'm officially throwing my hat out there to be a film consultant for whatever project materializes.

I remember speaking to Luis Valdez a few years ago about whether he thought a movie would come out about Chavez. He said that it was still too early and it would be too controversial for some people who were involved in Cesar's life.

I have some casting suggestions already though. I always thought that Clifton Collins might have a shot as a young Cesar:

Here he is in Capote (2005). Brown him up, sorta like Lou Diamond Phillips in La Bamba, and you might have a Chicano leader:

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