Josephine Baker Superstar

Josephine Baker Superstar

Josephine Baker was black America’s first international stage and film star. She was a woman who, tired and angry over Jim Crow racism in the United States, was early among African American artists and intellectuals in relocating to France. Baker’s career opposed and repudiated the narrow provincialism endemic to US racism. More»

Circular Firing Squads

Circular Firing Squads

The Internet can be a cruel place sometimes. If you’re not careful, it can be all the more brutal. The online morality police are watching your every move. And even when you are careful, it can still be pretty nasty. You enter at your own peril. More»

German-Americans Against Fascism

German-Americans Against Fascism

This is a portrayal of the face of Germany. It is an answer to the question: Is this Second World War a war of the “Have-nots” against the “Haves,” as Hitler asserts, of the poor peoples against the rich peoples, of the socialist nations against the plutocratic nations? More»

Latest entries
The Plague Dancers

The Plague Dancers

France is probably not the first place that one thinks of in terms of extreme music. While it has been home to obscure black metal acts such as Deathspell Omega and Blut aus Nord, the country has not, generally speaking, shown the propensity to produce death and grind bands as Britain or Germany (to say nothing of points further north). But in recent years that has begun to change. More»

Going to Auschwitz

Going to Auschwitz

War is hell, or so the adage goes. Especially when we think back to the twentieth century, to events like Dresden, and Hiroshima. 2014 was an especially poignant year in this regard, as Europe observed the 100th anniversary of WWI, and Russia went to war again, in the Ukraine. 100 years didn’t seem like a long time, in the grand scheme of things. The world remained stuck on the cusp of the 19th century. More»

Kurdish Spring Soundtrack

Kurdish Spring Soundtrack

The Arab Spring seems like a century ago. Starting in late 2010, there was every reason to believe that it would make the Middle East synonymous with social democracy. With the exception of its most fearful critics, no one could have predicted that it would dissolve into the bloodbath currently engulfing Syria and its neighbors. More»

The Challenge of Mediocre Metal

The Challenge of Mediocre Metal

In my early years as a metal fan, in the 1980s and 1990s, everything was interesting. The process of musical discovery was a slow one, proceeding in fits and starts as I gradually managed to buy, copy and hear enough metal to become knowledgeable about the parameters of the genre. More»

None Too Pure

None Too Pure

The history of leftist politics is a history of bad habits. Whenever a goal is within reach, they return to wreak havoc: a fondness for drink, a fondness for drugs or a fondness for disputing precisely those questions that aren’t immediately pertinent. But of all the habits that have undermined the Left, the most pernicious may be the conviction that a devotion to purity is the solution. More»

Favelas in Lisbon

Favelas in Lisbon

Last Thursday night, Portuguese police once again embroiled themselves in brutal violence in the outskirts of Lisbon. Officers have been known to beat and shoot civilians, as well as known social and anti-racist activists, in Cova da Moura. More»

Trade Versus Democracy

Trade Versus Democracy

It was in late March last year that LBC Radio hosted a debate between Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, and UKIP chief Nigel Farage, over whether the UK should leave the European Union. It was meant to be a reasoned debate, where the opposing cases on the EU could be heard and judged by the British public. But, as to be expected, it failed. More»

The Right To Be Wrong

The Right To Be Wrong

The horrifying quality of the attacks at the headquarters of Charlie Hebdo and at the Hyper Cacher market in Porte de Vincennes continues to roil Europe. The immediate aftermath saw outpourings of support for the periodical, in particular, and for “free speech” in general, although the definition of the latter was (and continues to be) a matter of some debate. More»

We Are All Hypocrites

We Are All Hypocrites

We are tired of the “hypocrisy argument”. From the response of the left to the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks to the dumbing down of public discourse on domestic surveillance, too many progressives appeal to arguments about personal consistency, and avoid the harder questions about policy, ethics, race and media freedom. More»

State Versus Civilian

State Versus Civilian

More and more, the dozen years between the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and September 11th, 2001 seem like a mirage. Although horrific conflicts took place then — in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and elsewhere — they appeared to be exceptions to an increasingly inevitable New World Order, in which peace-time problems would dominate the headlines. Military budgets were slashed throughout the developed world, especially the United States and Russia. More»

Covering Labor

Covering Labor

Mike Elk, the labor reporter for Politico, is under fire. It’s not for any story in particular. It’s about who he is. Elk, a prominent labor journalist from a union family who was formerly with In These Times, is trying to organize the staff at the Beltway news organization. More»

Feminising Islamic Militarism

Feminising Islamic Militarism

Since the War on Terror began, and especially since the rise of Islamic State, analysts have been alarmed by female jihadists. Maybe “alarmed” is the wrong word. Bewildered seems more appropriate. Regardless, the topic is quickly becoming an industry in its own right. More»