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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

Not So Fast, Net Neutrality...

(14) Comments | Posted January 27, 2015 | 8:43 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 | 8:41 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 | 6:00 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 | 5:12 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 | 10:05 AM

Previously published on

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 | 11:03 AM

Previously published on

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

(14) Comments | Posted October 22, 2014 | 9:28 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 | 9:24 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 | 12:40 PM

Previously published on

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 | 1:00 PM

Previously published on

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

(8) Comments | Posted August 22, 2014 | 9:30 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 8, 2014 | 12:05 AM

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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Deep in the Tell-Tale Heart of the Texas GOP

(58) Comments | Posted July 24, 2014 | 9:50 AM

Imagine the official presentation of a worldview concocted by conspiracy theorists and an assortment of cranks and grumpy people. Conjure a document written by scribes possessed of poison pens soaked in the inkpots of Ayn Rand and the Brothers Grimm, caught in the grip of a dark dystopian fantasy of...

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Influence Peddling and Inequality in London: Nobody Expects a Monty Python Fourth of July

(4) Comments | Posted July 16, 2014 | 9:27 AM

A nostalgic London trip reminds that the power of money in politics corrupts both our democracies.

For a very good reason, this year my girlfriend Pat and I were in London for the Fourth of July. The British feigned indifference to the anniversary of our breakaway, like disappointed...

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How DC's Political Intelligence Biz Made Fat Cats Fatter

(4) Comments | Posted July 2, 2014 | 1:56 PM

Looking over the last few weeks of news, if you would seek a single headline that sums up the Hulk-like grip in which corporate America holds the US Congress, this might be it: "Eric Cantor's Loss a Blow to Wall Street."

So wrote The Wall Street Journal, that Pravda of...

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What We Can Learn From Lawrence of Arabia

(15) Comments | Posted June 30, 2014 | 12:02 PM

Previously published on

As fears grow of a widening war across the Middle East, fed by reports that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) envisions a region-wide, all controlling theocracy, we found ourselves talking about another war. The Great War -- or World War I,...

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Shots Fired. Madness in Progress.

(748) Comments | Posted June 2, 2014 | 9:03 AM

This is the way it goes, because this is the way it always goes.

First, another horrific spree of violence and mass murder as we saw just last Friday in Santa Barbara, California, fueled by irrational fury, much of it perpetrated with guns obtained legally in the hands of someone...

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Memorial Day: For Vets, Too Many Delays and Not Enough Parades

(12) Comments | Posted May 26, 2014 | 10:13 AM

I love a parade. And in the small upstate New York town in the Finger Lakes where I grew up there were not enough of them as far as I was concerned.

There was the occasional special event: a parade to honor the Scottish racer Malcolm Campbell the summer he...

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The Fight Goes On: FCC Votes to Consider Rules That Could End Net Neutrality

(4) Comments | Posted May 15, 2014 | 6:52 PM

The vote was taken at the Federal Communications Commission Thursday morning, as drums pounded and hundreds of demonstrators supporting Net neutrality chanted outside FCC headquarters.

In a packed meeting room -- from which a handful of vocal protesters was ejected -- the majority of commissioners approved a so-called Notice of...

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Still Time to Speak Your Mind on Net Neutrality

(0) Comments | Posted May 14, 2014 | 3:11 PM

"Occupy Maine Avenue" may not have quite the same zing as "Occupy Wall Street," but protesters camped outside the Federal Communications Commission's headquarters on Maine Avenue in southwest Washington, D.C., are just as determined to be seen and heard as those who set up camp in Manhattan's Financial District in...

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