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George Orwell

Pyrenees Journal I: Homage to Catalonia

Francis Levy | Posted 07.28.2014 | Travel
Francis Levy

In November the Catalan people who occupy that part of Spain that is closest to the Pyrenees (Cerdanya is the name of a part of the Eastern Pyrenees that is shared by France and Spain) vote in a referendum on the subject of independence.

Looking for Orange Shirts in Thailand

Stanley Weiss | Posted 08.17.2014 | World
Stanley Weiss

We can only hope. Thailand may be a historically-fractured, cobbled-together country, but that doesn't mean that it should pass up a golden opportunity -- an Orange opportunity -- to invent a better future for itself.

The Troubling Rise of Thoughtcrime on College Campuses

Michael Shammas | Posted 08.09.2014 | College
Michael Shammas

I wish I could have expressed surprise at the Class of 2014's immature reaction to the possibility of hearing conservative opinions at their commencement addresses last month; but my own college experiences taught me otherwise.

Obama's "Responsible End of War" Has Orwellian Ring

Steven Kurlander | Posted 07.28.2014 | Miami
Steven Kurlander

Another Memorial Day has passed. It's supposed to be a solemn occasion to honor our military men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice while in se...

'Animal Farm' Lessons

Pauline Hawkins | Posted 07.28.2014 | Education
Pauline Hawkins

Every year, I get rebellious while teaching Animal Farm; I can't help it. I see the similarities between the corruption of power and our present educational system, and I feel the intense desire to shout "Rebellion!" from the roof tops.

'REVIEW: Oh George Orwell, We Need You More Than Ever, Ever

Danny Schechter | Posted 07.22.2014 | Media
Danny Schechter

We need help, George, penetrating acronyms of government gone wild of spies and lies and the madness.

Recall Brings Twilight Zone-esque Horror and SciFi to Hollywood's Lex Theatre

Xaque Gruber | Posted 06.23.2014 | Los Angeles
Xaque Gruber

Something is clearly not right with Justine (a manic, Laura Dern-esque Karen Nicole) and her angst-y daughter (Madeline Bertani) who hide in the drear...

1936, The Spanish Civil War: They Checked in at the Hotel Florida

Jesse Kornbluth | Posted 06.22.2014 | Books
Jesse Kornbluth

The Hotel Florida, like the mythical Hotel California in the song by The Eagles, is one of those places where "you can check in but you can never leave." Or so it seemed for the foreigners who used it as their home base in Madrid during the Spanish Civil War.

George Orwell and Karl Kraus: Two Sides of the Same Argument Against Political Euphemism

Franz-Stefan Gady | Posted 06.02.2014 | Books
Franz-Stefan Gady

Kraus's perplexing aphorisms and linguistic legerdemain and Orwell's sparse prose are two sides of the same argument against political euphemism employed to dehumanize and enslave a population for the sake of a 'higher good' or grosse Zeit (extraordinary times).

Using Metadata to Catch a Whistleblower

Peter Van Buren | Posted 05.27.2014 | Politics
Peter Van Buren

What if that someone also had, as we know the NSA does, access to your social media, email, snail mail, credit card data, travel information, air reservations, and bank records? Orwell was an amateur. Metadata is the key to stripping away the haystack so that the needle is just sitting there.

Why Pacifism Was Modified: Vladimir Putin

Charles Redfern | Posted 05.25.2014 | Religion
Charles Redfern

Strict pacifism's weaknesses glare when we review a bygone era that ran on different assumptions: The fascist threat rendered the political Left less dovish in the 1930s.

Snowden's Lawyer: Forget About Orwell, Worry About Kafka

Michael Winship | Posted 05.12.2014 | Politics
Michael Winship

"All of this stuff was classified. Not just classified; it was classified at the highest level. These were the secrets that the government said were most critical to keep. But what kind of democracy would we be if the public had never learned of this information?"

Essential Reading for Writing the College Essay

Josh Stephens | Posted 05.10.2014 | College
Josh Stephens

Fortunately, Orwell, Zinsser, Lamott and all the rest demonstrate that high school doesn't necessarily matter. The process of learning to write never ends.

The Fall of Singapore and Railway of Death

Franz-Stefan Gady | Posted 05.03.2014 | Books
Franz-Stefan Gady

In addition to being an uplifting personal account of a man battling his war-induced inner demons, learning to cope with them, and even forgiving one of his former torturers, the book also unintentionally chronicles the end of European supremacy.

Watch: An Antidote to Big Brother's Chill

Bill Moyers | Posted 04.29.2014 | Politics
Bill Moyers

Like Orwell's telescreens -- through which Big Brother broadcasts propaganda and spies on citizens -- our lives are dominated by cellphones, tablets and laptops that are our real-life two-way mirrors.

In a Free-Market Economy 'Income Inequality' Will Always Be a Fact of Life

Howard Barbanel | Posted 04.08.2014 | Politics
Howard Barbanel

There has always been a top five percent and a top one percent in the U.S. In any free market capitalist society there are always going to be some folks who do exceedingly better than others.

San Francisco's Arion Press: Fine Books, Great Artwork and Good Talk

Pamela Feinsilber | Posted 03.23.2014 | Arts
Pamela Feinsilber

Here in San Francisco, we've got any number of iconic sites and sights. I'm here to add one more unique item to the list, less visible but deserving of far more widespread renown: Arion Press.

Sports Are Education

Chris Waddell | Posted 03.12.2014 | Good News
Chris Waddell

It's taken me a long time to figure out that simple is the goal. Maybe now that I know it, I can win at the start by knowing where I want to go.

Maybe It's Time to Find a New Word for "Reform"

Joseph A. Palermo | Posted 03.10.2014 | Politics
Joseph A. Palermo

Today, as Orwell predicted, we need a new political language. "Reform" is being used in our political discourse by the wealthy and corporate mouthpieces as code for privatizing and deregulating every public service they can get their greedy hands on.

Taking Snowden's Christmas Message Seriously

Jay Sterling Silver | Posted 03.08.2014 | Politics
Jay Sterling Silver

Although the media wasn't listening, Snowden's Christmas remarks broadened the message: the concept of privacy itself, and what we are to leave of it to our children, is important, is in peril, and must be added to the conversation.

Bringing Edward Snowden Home Would Be a Very Patriotic Act

Sara-Ellen Amster, Ph.D. | Posted 03.04.2014 | Media
Sara-Ellen Amster, Ph.D.

With every revelation he made last year, Snowden proved himself a person fighting for our democratic way of life at enormous personal risk, not a spy but a patriot. The U.S. Constitution should protect citizens who say the government has gone too far in trampling people's constitutional rights.

Factory Farms Of The Future: Part II

Sonia Faruqi | Posted 12.17.2013 | Food
Sonia Faruqi

Extreme genetic selection, accelerated by artificial insemination, leads farm animals today to yield far more meat, milk, and eggs -- while eating far less -- than they ever have.

Amazon Drones: Orwellian Mayhem?

Mark Weinstein | Posted 02.14.2014 | Technology
Mark Weinstein

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos unveiled his grand vision for drone attacks on our porches and personal spaces. From a warehouse to your front door, goods delivered in record time with minimal hassle. What could possibly go wrong with that? Pretty much everything and here's why.

Orwell's 'Big Brother' Prediction on a Fast Track to Reality

Diane Dimond | Posted 01.25.2014 | Crime
Diane Dimond

We're all well aware of the millions of randomly situated video cameras all across the country capturing what we do 24/7. But what you may not realize is the extent to which other types of taxpayer-funded surveillance capabilities have been put in place.

The Problem With the Common Core Math Standards

Nicholas Tampio | Posted 01.23.2014 | Education
Nicholas Tampio

When discussing politics, citizens should speak to one another as clearly and sincerely as possible. Right now, the Common Core literature uses technical terms and tortuous prose to sell an educational philosophy that may not deliver what it promises.