Could there be a store where everything is free? Why must every exchange be a commercial one? To question the idea that you never get anything for nothing, The Portland Free Store has been established. Its founder Karen Carr talks here with the Old Mole's Joe Clement about how it works. This is an extended web-only version of the interview in which Karen and Joe discuss the larger political questions the store hopes to raise.
The next Free Store will be held this coming Saturday, July 26, from 1 to 3 pm, at the Community Supported Everything Building at 1626 NE Alberta.
Bill Resnick and Norm Diamond discuss worker-cooperative businesses and their significance for the left. Do they prefigure the democratic production of socialism and empower participants? Or are they fragile small businesses that either become as cutthroat as other capitalist enterprises to survive, or else fail after having distracted their members from more promising mass organizing?
Norm Diamond is an organizer and sometime Old Mole, as well as co-author of The Power in Our Hands. 19:44 minutes (9.04 MB)
Bill Resnick talks with Arun Gupta about how the $15 minimum wage ordinance that was recently passed by the City Council in Seattle came to be. Arun points out how people are agitated by the bank-bailouts, the role played by Socialist Alternative and Kshama Sawant's election to the City Council, the contentiousness about and limitations to the final ordinance. They also consider what kind of organizing is or is not behind getting the ordinance passed. In this vein, they talk about "militant shopfloor organizing" vs. electoral organizing, the role played by independent media, weilding control at the "point of production, and the problem of finding solidarity as "all that is solid melts into air."
23:00 minutes (15.79 MB)
Tom Becker hosts this latest report from the Old Mole, and we hear about threats to privatize our Postal Service; the contradiction between capitalism and a survivable planet; a novel about coming of age in a small town; and the music and radical politics of saxophonist Fred Ho who died recently.
You can hear the whole show by using the play button below. To hear individual segments, follow the links below. You can keep up with us on Facebook -- become our friend and receive links to shows and other interesting stuff. Or leave a comment in the comment section on this page. 51:38 minutes (35.46 MB)
A healthy economy is one that is growing; but how long can a healthy planet sustain a growing economy? In a recent blog post, Alyssa Röhricht lays out the contradiction between capitalism and the survival of life on Earth. Tom Becker reads it for us. 8:14 minutes (5.66 MB)