Thursday, January 4, 2018

#4 / Here Comes The Sun (Subscribe Now)!

I have recently become a subscriber to The Sun magazine. I am not sure how I missed it before, but better late than never. Since I have started subscribing, I have been consistently amazed at the power and the value of the writing it delivers. A lot of the writing comes directly from the readers, and every edition of the magazine I have received, since I received the first promotional issue that got me hooked, has had at least one piece of writing, or a letter, from someone who lives in Santa Cruz County. The Sun is definitely my kind of a magazine!

The January 2018, edition of The Sun has reprinted a 2006 conversation with Tom Hayden, titled "A More Perfect Union." Hayden is pictured above. I am encouraging you to subscribe to The Sun, to get your own hard copy edition of the Hayden interview, and to benefit from whatever writing comes later, in the editions to follow (click right here). 

Here are some excerpts from the Hayden interview to whet your appetite. I am sorry Tom is no longer with us, but his writing is:

  • Elements of the CIA now seem to be secret unto themselves, and the Pentagon has developed its own intelligence network and spying capacity. I think of these powerful elites as being on the run; others think that they’re wielding more power over us than ever. Whatever the case, I think we have to fight all the time to keep participatory democracy the norm.
  • We’re in a phase in which corporations are trying to burst the fetters of the welfare state and the New Deal and the sixties reforms, and it makes me more inclined to believe that they have an inherent unwillingness to coexist with democracy and will always try to do away with it. 
  • I don’t think there’s any assurance as to how things will turn out, but I’ve always believed that the action we take, successful or not, reminds people that progress is possible. If we don’t take action, we give the appearance that it’s impossible to change things. Any action, while not guaranteeing change, creates possibilities that weren’t there before.
  • Just as hostility toward people of color and the fear of crime are turning our suburbs into gated fortresses, the so-called war on terror is turning the country as a whole into a fortress against much of the rest of the world. This is not a defense against terrorism; it’s part of the framework in which terrorism arises. But that framework is not discussed. Terrorism is said to be a result of “evil,” rather than a symptom of profound dislocation.
  • Just as they succeeded in avoiding the charge of being racists, the Republicans have succeeded in avoiding the charge that they are greedy capitalists by speaking of “small business” and “market solutions.” They don’t generally get out there and speak unapologetically in favor of more capitalism. 
  • The word that they’ve deceived the public with the most is growth, which always sounds appealing. Progressives have to establish a quality-of-life index that challenges the gross national product as a measure of how we’re doing as a society. It’s not a question of growth versus no growth; it’s which type of growth do you prefer: growth in prenatal care, or growth in the number of AK-47s on the street? This is an ideological battle that the Left has to win.
  • If the Quakers had had their way in colonial times, we could have had peaceful coexistence with the Native Americans. There were attempts to create an Indian state. Can you imagine the thirteen colonies adding a fourteenth, Indian state? There were other attempts throughout history, but the voices for coexistence were just drowned out.
  • You can’t bring about justice without personal transformation. The effort to abolish sweatshop labor, for example, has to arise from a personal disgust with sweatshops ... Change begins in the individual lives of countless people when they no longer accept existing conditions as inevitable.

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