David Barsamian

I met with David Suzuki in November in Santa Fe at the Lannan Foundation, where he was giving a lecture.

"It’s the stupidity that will really drive me away from this country." | Read his interview from 2006.

"We're always trying to find ways that we can disturb power," says the co-founder of Code Pink.

Vandana Shiva is a burst of creative energy and intellectual power. Born in India in 1952, she is one of the Third World’s most eloquent and passionate voices on the environment, women’s rights, and sustainable development. She directs the Research Foundation for Science, Technology, and Ecology in New Delhi. In 1993 she received the Right Livelihood Award, also known as the alternative Nobel Prize.

Amartya Sen of India won the Nobel Prize in economics in 1998 for his pioneering work on development issues. He has focused attention on the social sources of famine, poverty, and inequality, and he has highlighted the need for women’s empowerment.

More than a decade after she burst onto the world literary scene with The God of Small Things, Arundhati Roy is again working on a novel. She wouldn’t say much about it, other than that Kashmir figures in it. She once told me, “Fiction is the truest thing there ever was.” But she is also drawn to write about politics.

"When you have a liberal class that no longer functions, then you cede power to very frightening, deformed figures."

There is a high-stakes drama playing out in India these days, and the novelist Arundhati Roy is one of its most visible actors.

“Bush is a thug. I think there is something really wrong with him,” says the writer.


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Trump's politics are not the problem.

The fiery Milwaukee Sheriff is on the shortlist to head the Department of Homeland Security.

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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