Tag Archives | Activism

Chicago’s Austerity Mayor Might’ve Won, But A Progressive Movement Is Percolating

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Garcia giving his concession speech (photo by Aaron Cynic).

The race for Chicago mayor has wider implications than just how the nation’s third largest city will govern itself for the next four years. The city has long been a testing ground for disastrous “free market” reforms in education and home to many other privatization schemes, which only grew larger under Rahm Emanuel. While another four years with him as mayor could push this agenda forward, the recent electoral race has helped coalesce what could be a powerful movement of resistance.

Aaron Cynic writes at Chicagoist:

During the last four years in office, many have criticized Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s imperial-like qualities. Between his “Mayor 1%” moniker, his style of legislating by press release along with a City Council that voted with him nearly 100 percent of the time, Emanuel garnered a reputation for running Chicago like a king, rather than a mayor.… Read the rest

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Kris Kuksi’s ‘False-Patriot Revolution’

Disinfo.com features this iconic work by an artist making some of the most influential and recognizable art of our time.

Kris Kuksi ‘False-Patriot Revolution’ was exhibited at the Mark Moore Gallery, Los Angeles

KRIS KUKSI – Antiquity in the Faux Nov 15 – Dec 20, 2014 | All photos by Kris Kuksi.

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Kris Kuksi’s ‘False-Patriot Revolution’

Kris Kuksi Interview with Disinformation

Disinfo: What can you tell us about the guillotine piece  ‘False-Patriot Revolution’?

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Chilean artist Cecilia Avendaño’s strange and evocative portraits

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Cecilia Avendaño Bobillier. Santiago, Chile 1980.

Cecilia Avendaño Bobillier graduated from University of Chile where she studied visual arts and photography. Cecilia began exhibiting her work in 2002, participating in numerous group exhibitions in Chile and abroad. She’s participated in outstanding one person shows including Sala Cero at Animal Gallery, National Museum of Fine Arts, as well as BAC! Festival in Barcelona’s MACBA, Museum of Contemporary Art at the University of Chile, Centro Cultural Borges in Buenos Aires Argentina. Her most recent work includes digital post production operations on photography where she composes images that become portraits, but operates with different concepts related to identity construction. She has been selected twice for the National Fund FONDART, plus obtaining the second place in the art contest “Artists of the XXI Century” organized by the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and Banco Santander. She currently lives and works in Santiago, Chile.

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Portrait by Tomas Eyzaguirre

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EMERGE / CECILIA AVENDAÑO.Read the rest

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Undiscovered Outsider Artist Marian Spore Bush Goes To Auction

The works of Marian Spore Bush (1878-1946) will head to auction at Slotin Folk Art April 25 2015

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Marian was the first female dentist in Bay City, MI. She left her practice and became a self-taught painter in NY in 1920 after the death of her mother. Marian became well-known using a special technique in which she used paint so thick that it seemed as much sculpture as painting. She claimed her large surrealistic works were inspired by long-dead artists who were communicating with her from “beyond the veil.” Her paintings seemed to forecast world events and conditions. In the early 1930s, she began to paint huge stark canvases in black and white, often depicting images of war. Edward Alden Jewell, art critic for the New York Times, said of her 1943 New York exhibition, “All the war paintings are symbolic in nature, if accepted as manifestations of psychic phenomena.” Bush even created an eerie example of this psychic phenomena with a painting entitled “New York City,” which depicts two airplanes and burning buildings amidst the skyscrapers of New York.Read the rest

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5 years after a deadly coal mine disaster, what’s changed?

Mason Adams Via Grist:

It was mid-afternoon on the Monday after Easter, April 5, 2010, when a 1,000-foot longwall shearer, a massive piece of industrial coal-mining equipment, bit into sandstone, kicking up sparks and igniting a methane fireball that traveled down the Upper Big Branch mine in Raleigh County, W.Va., into an area rich with coal dust.

The resulting explosion ricocheted in several directions, tearing through two and a half miles of mine, killing 29 of 31 men working in the area and searing the mine into history as the site of the most deadly coal-related disaster in nearly 40 years.

Five years later, the explosion continues to reverberate, in the courts and elsewhere.

Former Upper Big Branch supervisor Gary May was sentenced to 21 months in prison after pleading guilty to disabling a methane gas monitor, falsifying mine records, and generally obstructing safety inspectors.

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Internalized Oppression and its Impact on Social Change

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Allison Jones writes:

I just finished reading Grassroots and Nonprofit Leadership: A Guide for Organizations in Changing Times. This is the best book I have read on activism and leadership and is now a staple in my social change library. The book is full of tangible leadership techniques and pushes activist to consider how their leadership and the structure of their organizations hinders or furthers their cause. You can download the book for free.

One major challenge to effective leadership that they highlight is low morale brought about by internalized oppression. Internalized oppression (also called “self-hate”) is when a member of an oppressed group believes and acts out the stereotypes created about their group. This extends beyond race, gender, and class internalized oppression to how we see ourselves as activist (waiting to get a “real job” for example).  The authors outline four ways that internalized oppression negatively affects the function of a group (p.

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The Hedge Clippers: Exposing Hedge Fund Politics

The Hedge Clippers are taking up where Occupy Wall Street left off, picketing the homes and meeting places of prominent hedge fund titans, reports the New York Times:

Two weeks ago, several busloads of New Yorkers made a pilgrimage to Greenwich, Conn., to visit the waterfront estate of the hedge fund titan Paul Tudor Jones II, where, suffice it to say, they were not invited in to see the china. It was a rainy Saturday afternoon and the protesters, many of them ordinary working people who have felt cheated by the inequities of a tax system that favors the rarefied few, were there to call attention to Mr. Jones’s educational agenda, built on the premise that theextravagantly rich know better how to teach reading, and to his support of Republican candidates and causes in the New York State Legislature that disadvantage the poor and working class.

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It is this kind of political spending, a total of $1.6 million over the past 12 years, they maintain, that undermines his philanthropic efforts through the Robin Hood Foundation, the poverty-fighting charity he created.

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The White House Celebrates Transparency Week by ENDING Transparency

In honor of “Sunshine Week”- where activists push for a more transparent government- the White House issued an end to FOIA requests, and Jen Psaki accidentally reveals the US’ long-standing tradition of supporting coups around the world.

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Can a documentary move a social issue agenda forward?

As a member of the film distribution community, most notably relating to documentaries, I have watched more than my fair share of non-fiction films, and studied over years the release patterning of even more. One thing I have learned is that there are no shortage of topics to choose from when it comes to a filmmaker selecting a theme to focus on. From a tour that guides you through Hermitage Masterpieces to a biography of Aleister Crowley (In Search of the Great Beast), films are created and released on a broad spectrum of non-fiction subjects. That was the case in 1984 when I first entered the industry, and that is the case now… 31 years later.

One area that I have seen great expansion is that of films addressing a social or political issue with the agenda of raising awareness or causing viewer perspectives to sway in one direction or another.… Read the rest

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Cruz Won’t Say How Much Wife Makes at Goldman Sachs

Zaid Jilani Via Alternet:

Why Did Ted Cruz Refuse to Disclose How Much His Wife—a VP at Goldman Sachs—Makes?

Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz has announced his intention to run for the presidency. He is widely expected to tap into the Tea Party base of the Republican party and posit himself as anti-establishment – in this case, an establishment that is too weak-kneed and too willing to compromise with the Democrats.

But a curious statement on Cruz’s financial disclosure shows that he may not be so opposed to the establishment he rails against. See, Cruz’s wife is a vice president at Goldman Sachs, the megabank so close to the powers in Washington that it is often jokingly referred to as “Government Sachs.” Because spousal income is shared, it is required for Members of Congress to list their spouse’s employement if it gives them over $1,000. They are not required to list the exact income their spouse receives, but they are certainly allowed to if they are willing to be that transparent.

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