Comedian Graham Elwood, comrade of Jimmy Dore, gets a chance to rant about the twin horrors of the D and R Conventions and why the lesser of two evils argument is bullshit. Where else would the lesser of two evils even be satisfactory? he asks. It's like discovering that your only two choices to watch your kids for the night are a pedophile and a meth-head. And that whole impeachment thing? Srsly? Last point: Legalizing weed can help us avoid the civil war that this nation is on the brink of. Get people together and get 'em high, and reap the economic benefits like Colorado.
Brana: Who decided to give the Republicans two conventions this year?
Actor Danny Glover is worried about having to follow Elwood, but he's equal to the task. He's also speaking against US imperialism but more as a matter of rearranging the nation's fiscal priorities. He's even hinting at Richard Wolff–style (neo-Marxian) democratization of the workplace to empower working people.
Half of me wishes that Brana had decided to dress up a bit to MC this thing. He's just in a blue and white checked button-down shirt.
Climate scientist Peter Kalmus (memo to self: follow this guy on Twitter) reminds us that the future will be a terrifying place, with all the ways Mother Nature is reminding us that we have fucked with the climate beyond her level of tolerance: fires, floods, storms, heat waves, droughts, massive crop failures, etc. "It's not the new normal. We're on an escalator toward getting worse." Half-measures won't cut it, massive and swift reduction of fossil fuel use is required, along with a complete remaking of society. "This is a task of cosmic importance." Chris Hedges will have a tough time out–gloom & dooming this guy. @ClimateHuman.
The youngest speaker on the bill: National Student Coordinator, founder of Beyond Bernie Amaya Wangeshi. Her topic: the challenges and importance of organizing youth. She started in middle school, kinda like Greta Thunberg, motivated by anger and frustration at a world getting worse and authority figures not doing enough to reverse that. Adults can learn something from activist youth, their idealism, their understanding that compromise on climate and other existential issues is not an option (I agree).
Chris Smalls, leader of the Amazon walkout in NYC over COVID-19 concerns (now an ex-Amazon fulfillment center employee), founder of the Congress of Essential Workers. His labor activism and subsequent termination, he says, illustrates the intersection of capitalism and racism. Going to work for Jeff Bezos, probably worst decision of my life; rising up against unsafe working environments, best decision. He's calling for a minimum wage of $30/hour, which makes sense because the Fight for 15 is more than 15 years old, and the $15 has about half the buying power now. Media coverage of the demonstration at the Bezos residence focused more on the guillotine demonstrators brought than their actual message. As he reminds us, though, Bezos is not the only robber baron whose obscene wealth needs to be run through the guillotine.