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Author Archive | Michael Dawson

Big Brother Is Watching. By Rutherford Institute.

Trouble in the ministry of truth

Apple has touched off a pretty major row in the halls of marketing. Apparently, the next version of its Safari browser will restrict the creation and retention of “cookies,” which are little computer codes that allow big businesses to collect increasingly rich data, without acknowledgement or permission, on internet users.

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The Power of Monopoly Capital

I’m not at all somebody who wants to enshrine Monopoly Capital: An Essay on the American Economic and Social Order as the new centerpiece in the old “what Marx said” religion.  But, really, I do stand by my conclusion that Baran and Sweezy’s 1966 book was the #1 social science book of the century, Marxist […]

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Obama’s Victory: A Sociological Prayer

I’m a sociology teacher, a member of the Pacific Green Party of Oregon, an almost-pacifist, and a libertarian socialist.  My intellectual heroes are people like Karl Marx, Thorstein Veblen, C. Wright Mills, and Noam Chomsky.  I believe democracy is much more in the streets than in the halls, and that Mohandas K. Gandhi and Martin […]

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Peace Talk Translations

Peace Talk Translations

The corporate media is abuzz with the notion that there is a Palestine-Israel peace conference now happening in Maryland.  That this claim is being taken seriously six years into the Cheney Administration is another remarkable proof that, in this bought-and-paid-for corporate capitalist society, journalism is doornail-dead. The real truth, as reported (as a low-paragraph aside, […]

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Capitalism’s Beverage & the Obesity Epidemic

The Los Angeles Times reports that Disneyland is retooling its boats-on-water rides because of the raging obesity epidemic in the United States, “to deal with the delicate problem of bottoming-out boats.” People are simply getting too fat for the existing rides, including the now satirically named “It’s a Small World”: “Forty-one years after the whimsical […]

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Racism in Corporate Marketing

In the last years before his historically catastrophic assassination, Martin Luther King used to lament to his closest comrades that he was “afraid we’re integrating ourselves into a burning house.”  How apt that fear turned out to be is still under-appreciated.  Among the burning rooms that have yet to be discussed is this one: corporate […]

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Michael Dawson

Inequality among “Consumers”

Contrary to both mainstream dogma and received cultural-leftist/neo-Marcusian canon, access to commodities has never been anything like equal in the United States.  In fact, in this epoch of escalating income and wealth polarity, the newest statistics show that inequality among U.S. “consumers” is now at an all-time high. Bradley Johnson of Advertising Age magazine’s “American […]

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Michael Dawson

Four Virginia Techs Every Day

The reign of the automobile in the United States is imperiling the entire planet.  Meanwhile, in 2005, a wholly typical year, automotive collisions took the lives of 43,443 residents of the United States.  That is 119 people killed per day, almost four times the 32 people murdered this Monday at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State […]

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Michael Dawson

“Our” Real Addiction: Capitalist Waste in Transportation

“America is addicted to oil.”  Thus spake George W. Bush in his 2006 “State of the Union” speech. At first hearing, this sounds like a remarkable breakthrough in public discourse.  A sitting U.S. President admitting that the nation’s relationship to petroleum is one of addiction?  Sounds like a major advance in honesty, doesn’t it?  And, […]

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An Inconvenient Truth

An Even More Inconvenient Truth

Last night, I saw Al Gore’s new movie, An Inconvenient Truth.  There is much to like in this film, not least its clear presentation of stark and convincing evidence about the reality of global warming.  But, as you might guess from knowledge of its star’s balsa-wood political career, this movie is a sheep in wolf’s […]

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Portland, Oregon, 18 March 2006

Portland, Oregon, USA, 19 March 2006

10,000 people, with a strong labor feeder march and speakers from Venezuela! Quite encouraging! Click on the image for a larger view. Michael Dawson works for pay as a paralegal and sociology teacher in Portland, Oregon.  He is presently writing a book, Automobiles Ueber Alles: Corporate Capitalism and Transportation in America, forthcoming from Monthly Review […]

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