Manufacturing Dissent Since 1996
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Episode 986

State / Farm

Jan 13 2018

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James C. Scott

Beyond Leviathan's reach: On labor and freedom in humanity's deep history.

Anthropologist James C. Scott explores the politics of accumulation and reproduction both in and outside the earliest agrarian states - from new evidence showing that hunter-gatherers understood and rejected sedentism and its resulting coercions, to the ways a history under the state has shaped our understanding of ourselves and the natural world.

James is author of Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States from Yale University Press.

Interview transcript via Antidote Zine



Sarah Kinosian

Democracy can't interfere with the right's hold on power in Honduras.

Journalist Sarah Kinosian reports on the collapsing state of democracy in Honduras - from the 2009 coup that placed the right in power, to the highly irregular 2016 election that kept Juan Orlando Hernández in office - and explains why the US and Western governments have tacitly accepted anti-democratic abuses in Latin America in return for short-term stability and cooperation on drug and migration policies.

Sarah wrote the articles Families fear no justice for victims as 31 die in Honduras post-election violence and US recognizes re-election of Honduras president despite fraud allegations for The Guardian.



Ed Sutton

Notes on solidarity, opportunity, and the self-destructive left.

Correspondent Ed Sutton watches the left run out the clock fighting itself - from the growing strains of conspiracism in post-Occupy Europe, to the fractured, cannibalized nature of the online left in the US - while the fascist creep keeps creeping, disinformation spreads and the planet heats to the boiling point.

Ed references the pieces The Origins of Antifa: A short historical analysis of Antifascist Action and The War Is (Also) In Our Heads, both translated and posted at Antidote Zine.



Anne Fleming

Finance on the fringes: Public policy and the big business of small-sum loans.

Law scholar Anne Fleming examines a century of shifting power dynamics between small-sum lending businesses, poor customers and the state - from small-scale loan shark operations in the early 20th century to the growth of a modern multi-billion dollar national industry operating in the growing gaps in the economy, and provoking questions about federalism's role in financial regulation.

Anne is author of City of Debtors: A Century of Fringe Finance from Harvard University Press.



Rebecca Burns

Flint in slow motion: Segregation, environmental racism and East Chicago's poisoned ground.

Investigative reporter Rebecca Burns surveys the toxic legacy environmental racism and housing discrimination in East Chicago, Indiana - as a public housing complex built over the site of a former lead smelter poisoned generations of people, far beyond the concern of developers and politicians responsible for the site's location.

Rebecca wrote the article On Poisoned Ground: East Chicago’s legacy of lead pollution for The Baffler.



Jeff Dorchen

A fever dream of the last President of the United States of America.

In an influenza-soaked Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen peers through the shirthole of history at the long line of (mostly same-y) con-men that got themselves elected in this country, and asks himself 'is this the best we can do?' and asks himself 'is this even the worst we can do?' before the fever takes him away to a better place.

Read the transcript here