Stories by contributor

By Contributor on March 12, 2014

Millions of U.S. citizens have voiced their opposition to the Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline in recent months, with more than 2 million public comments opposing the project hand delivered to the State Department last week. But the American Petroleum Institute (API) and other oil industry groups have been directing state legislators to make public and legislative statements in favor of the pipeline project, and have provided legislators with draft legislation, language for op-eds and testimony to be presented as their own.

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By Contributor on March 11, 2014

Question and Answer of Bill Moyers, who announced he will resume his PBS show, Moyers and Company, after his initial decision to retire was met with a public outpouring of letters and emails urging him to reconsider.

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By Contributor on March 07, 2014

Putin and Netanyahu gain, as Obama becomes a bystander.

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By Contributor on March 05, 2014

We need to do a better job educating our students about how to handle essential financial decisions.

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By Contributor on March 05, 2014

The Oscars did the right thing by bestowing the honor of best picture to "12 Years a Slave." The movie earned it.

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By Contributor on March 04, 2014

As we celebrate Women's History Month, two women are on my mind: Grace Lee Boggs and Yuri Kochiyama.

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By Contributor on March 03, 2014

As we celebrate National Patient Safety Awareness Week, we should ask ourselves why so many doctors are violating the Hippocratic Oath: "First Do No Harm."

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By Contributor on March 03, 2014

This week is National MS Awareness Week, and as someone with multiple sclerosis, I urge you to join me in recognizing it.

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By Contributor on February 27, 2014

Since the death of President Hugo Chavez, Venezuela has gone through two elections. The ruling coalition led by Chavez's successor, President Nicolas Maduro, won both of them.

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By Contributor on February 25, 2014

So another Black History Month is ending, and I'm not sure we, as black people, are any wiser.

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By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.


Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).


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