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Michael Winship
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Michael Winship is senior writer of Moyers & Company on public television, senior writing fellow at the policy and advocacy group Demos, and president of the Writers Guild of America, East.

Entries by Michael Winship

Kent State and the Frisbee Revolution

(0) Comments | Posted May 3, 2015 | 1:03 AM

Thinking I'd write a piece on the 45th anniversary of the deaths at Kent State, I realized I'd already written it -- five years ago. There's not a lot I'd change in this, although there's some comfort in the knowledge that unemployment has dropped from the 9.9 percent of 2010,...

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Populism2015: Construction Crew for Democracy

(0) Comments | Posted May 1, 2015 | 7:03 AM

To the blare of sounding brass and booming drums, some 800 activists and community organizers from around the country recently converged on Washington, D.C. We are living, breathing proof, they announced, that if we can't get change from our representatives in the capital, we'll bring it to them, and work...

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Living the High Life After Congress

(81) Comments | Posted April 8, 2015 | 8:29 AM

As the latest chapter in the curious saga of Congressman Aaron "Fly Me" Schock recently came to an end, there was an unintentionally, darkly comic moment. It happened just after the Downton Abbey fanboy announced his resignation from the House of Representatives.

In an interview, his father, Dr. Richard...

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Netanyahu's 'Us or Them' Is Nothing But Trouble

(72) Comments | Posted March 24, 2015 | 7:19 AM

For a long time now, American political consultants have benefited from a lucrative sideline, selling their alleged expertise to politicians in Israel. (It was Democratic strategist James Carville who, after working on a campaign for former Prime Minister Ehud Barak, joked that the key to victory in Israel was who...

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Albert Maysles, RIP

(1) Comments | Posted March 12, 2015 | 8:01 AM

A word about documentary filmmaker Albert Maysles, who died last week. He was, as New Yorker film journalist and essayist Richard Brody aptly wrote, "one of the crucial artists of modern documentary filmmaking -- or, simply, one of the most important filmmakers of the past half-century."

I...

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Netanyahu Speaks, Money Talks

(330) Comments | Posted March 5, 2015 | 7:29 AM

Everything you need to know about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to Congress Tuesday was the presence in the visitor's gallery of one man -- Sheldon Adelson.

The gambling tycoon is the Godfather of the Republican Right. The party's presidential hopefuls line up to kiss his assets, scraping and...

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The Awesome Life of an American Congressman

(26) Comments | Posted February 24, 2015 | 6:02 AM

We could go on about the inherent contradiction of "Downton Abbey" as the biggest hit on public television -- that a series about a fading, genteel (and Gentile) British aristocracy and its servants dominates the schedule of a broadcasting service mandated to promote diversity and give a voice to the...

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The Super-Rich Can't Hide From the Rest of Us

(255) Comments | Posted February 3, 2015 | 7:36 AM

My friend Craig Zobel just premiered his new movie at the Sundance Film Festival. Z for Zachariah is based on a young adult novel from the '70s about a post-apocalyptic world and a woman who lives on a farm in a remote valley. A geographic anomaly, the valley has been...

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Not So Fast, Net Neutrality...

(14) Comments | Posted January 27, 2015 | 7:43 AM

Over the last few months, things have been looking good for keeping the Internet open to everyone. A little too good, as far as Congress is concerned, which is why members and the corporate lobbyists who write them hefty checks have launched a last-ditch legislative effort to scuttle net neutrality.

...
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In SOTU, President Punts on Income Inequality

(53) Comments | Posted January 22, 2015 | 7:41 AM

Much of the buildup to President Obama's State of the Union address made it sound as if he was going to read chapter and verse from French economist Thomas Piketty's book, Capital in the 21st Century -- you know, last year's 700-plus page best seller, the one that was unexpectedly...

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You Have the Right to Remain Obnoxious

(19) Comments | Posted January 14, 2015 | 5:00 PM

Here in New York City, the past few weeks have been fraught. First, in early December, protesters took to the streets to protest a Staten Island grand jury's decision not to indict a policeman involved in the choking death of African-American Eric Garner. The police were attempting to place Garner...

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It's a Wonderful Life, Comrade

(9) Comments | Posted December 24, 2014 | 4:12 PM

The Hollywood Christmas classic was once accused of hiding a subversive Communist message.

A number of years ago, I was telling a longtime city dweller friend of mine yet another story about the small, upstate New York town in which I grew up.

Simultaneously baffled and captivated, he said, "I...

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Dividing the Spoils

(6) Comments | Posted November 24, 2014 | 9:05 AM

Previously published on BillMoyers.com.

We've been watching Congress since the mid-term elections and reading Zephyr Teachout's terrific history book, Corruption in America: From Benjamin Franklin's Snuff Box to Citizens United. That snuff box was a gift from King Louis XVI of France. His Majesty was a...

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Don't Let Them Silence You: Vote, Dammit

(13) Comments | Posted October 27, 2014 | 10:03 AM

Previously published on BillMoyers.com.

Our country's oldest and longest struggle has been to enlarge democracy by making it possible for more and more people to be treated equally at the polls. The right to participate in choosing our representatives -- to vote -- is the very right that...

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Chevron Greases Local Election with Gusher of Cash

(0) Comments | Posted October 22, 2014 | 8:28 AM

When the Citizens United decision came down in 2010, many feared the Supreme Court had unleashed vast and unfettered campaign contributions from corporations bent on tightening their hammerlock on government and politics.

That hasn't happened as much as anticipated - yet. Individual billionaires and millionaires have dominated the scene instead....

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Warsaw Has Lots of Apples -- and Candles

(11) Comments | Posted October 10, 2014 | 8:24 AM

WARSAW -- People in Poland are eating apples these days. Lots of apples. Here in Warsaw, they're pressed into your hands at a street festival, or baked into piles of pies and cakes. You see them everywhere.

It's an act of defiance. Moscow has banned the importing of fruits and...

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Climate Change You Can Believe In

(303) Comments | Posted September 19, 2014 | 11:40 AM

Previously published on BillMoyers.com

Just as Sunday's big People's Climate March and next week's UN global summit on climate converge here in New York City, the nation and world are experiencing weather of an intensity that should rattle the stubborn false convictions of even the most fervent climate...

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Politicians Show Their Gratitude Where It Count$

(21) Comments | Posted September 3, 2014 | 12:00 PM

Previously published on BillMoyers.com

There shall be eternal summer in the grateful heart, a poet wrote, and as this year's summer winds toward its end and elections approach, gratitude is indeed what our politicians have flowing from that space where their hearts should be.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch...

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Why Ferguson's About Net Neutrality, Too

(0) Comments | Posted August 22, 2014 | 8:30 AM

At the end of the classic Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Jimmy Stewart, as Senator Jefferson Smith, is in the midst of his filibuster against the corruption of the political machine that sent him to Capitol Hill as their lackey. Now he knows the truth and he's taken over the...

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Richard Nixon: Honk If You Think He Was Guilty

(1) Comments | Posted August 7, 2014 | 11:05 PM

In August 1974, forty years ago this week, commentator Alistair Cooke faced a dilemma. The events of the Watergate scandal - "a Laurel and Hardy absurdity in the beginning," Cooke recalled - had snowballed since 1972 from a farce of botched burglary into a severe constitutional crisis, and events were...

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