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Cultures

Critics Misjudge Vietnam War Series – A Film Review

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January 9, 2018
Critics Misjudge Vietnam War Series – A Film Review

The other day a friend at the gym mentioned that he had been watching the Ken Burns/Lynn Novick documentary The Vietnam War. “I was on the wrong side,” he concluded repeating a phrase heard in the film. “We didn’t know what we were fighting for and they had everything to fight for.” Not all...
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Vietnam War Truths vs. Iraq War Propaganda

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January 9, 2018
Vietnam War Truths  vs. Iraq War Propaganda

America is a confusing place to live at the best of times, but in Trump times it gets even more puzzling. Are we really back to Cold War nuclear arms rattling? Are the top generals serious about reviving the notion of a winnable nuclear war? Are we any safer in this Twitter-riddled circus than...
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Hip Capitalist Journalism – A Book Review

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December 25, 2017
Hip Capitalist Journalism – A Book Review

I just resurfaced from reading 500 pages of a new biography on Rolling Stone editor Jann Wenner. It’s called Sticky Fingers and my fingers are definitely feeling sticky. In fact, I feel icky all over after learning who Wenner has been all these years: unpleasant, greedy, boastful, untrustworthy, a cheat, and it goes on...
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Two B.C. Labour Rebels – A Book Review

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August 6, 2017
Two B.C. Labour Rebels – A Book Review

Labour activists Robert Gosden and Albert “Ginger” Goodwin are the subject of two books I reviewed in BC Studies (#194, Summer 2017). Rebel Life and Goodwin book review – p. 1-3
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Leola’s Magical Garden – A Photo Essay

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June 25, 2017
Leola’s Magical Garden – A Photo Essay

          It’s gardening season at our house and Leola has created a beautiful wonderland of flowers, fruit, and vegetables. Enjoy the video at vimeo.
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Making America Hate Again – A Commentary

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April 17, 2017
Making America Hate Again – A Commentary

The other day someone read me an internet post that said eight of the sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justices had rejected President Donald J. Trump’s nominee to fill the position vacated by Antonin Scalia, the long-running conservative on the court. I got excited. Did the judges really put the kibosh on Justice Neil Gorsuch,...
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Hail a Canadian Labour Hero – A Book Review

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April 5, 2017
Hail a Canadian Labour Hero – A Book Review

Jon Bartlett and Rika Reubsaat, Soviet Princeton: Slim Evans and the 1932-33 Miners’ Strike (Vancouver: New Star Books, 2016), 126 pp., $19 paper. Arthur “Slim” Evans has long been a notable figure in Canadian labour history, most often associated with the famed On-to-Ottawa Trek that he led in 1935 in an effort to improve conditions in the...
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Hell’s History – A Book Review

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March 2, 2017

With this short book, Tom Sandborn, labour reporter for the tyee.ca, and the United Steelworkers have reminded us of how deadly slow and ineffective workplace safety laws still are in spite of a law passed after the Westray disaster. RV #97 Getting away with murder  
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Farewell, Bob White – An Appreciation

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February 24, 2017
Farewell, Bob White – An Appreciation

Bob White, who died of undisclosed causes on February 19, 2017, was one of my heroes and I’ll miss him, as will many working people all over Canada. I wasn’t close friend, more an admirer from afar. As a communications representative for the Canadian Union of Public Employees CUPE, I was often awed by...
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Tarkovsky – The Poetic Russian Filmmaker

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February 19, 2017
Tarkovsky – The Poetic Russian Filmmaker

Andrei Tarkovsky, one of the great Russian directors (1932-1986), brings a poetic vision to his films that has both entranced and frustrated viewers since his first film Ivan’s Childhood won accolades at the Venice Film Festival in 1962. The maker of Alexei Rubylev (1966), Solaris (1972), The Mirror (1974), Stalker (1979) and Nostalgia (1983)...
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Books

Radical Rag by Ron Verzuh Underground Times by Ron Verzuh Selling Labour Down Under by Ron Verzuh Changing Images by Ron Verzuh Feasting With Love by Ron Verzuh Tea Leaves by Ron Verzuh Remembering Salt by Ron Verzuh