Thursday, October 29, 2015

No Cry Zone: Episode 6: Bluster, Bravado and Ben

Join Jon, Rob and David as they discuss the ongoing soap opera that is the Republican nomination process and some substantive looks at what the dog and pony show is doing for Bernie, Hillary, etc. Stay tuned for some minor rants on Wall Street (Rob, of course), magical thinking (David) and everything else (Jon).

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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

10-27-15: Rob's Book of the Week!

Who Owns the Future? by Jaron Lanier


Jaron Lanier is the father of virtual reality and one of the world's most brilliant thinkers. "Who Owns the Future?" is his visionary reckoning with the most urgent economic and social trend of our age: the poisonous concentration of money and power in our digital networks.

Lanier has predicted how technology will transform our humanity for decades, and his insight has never been more urgently needed. He shows how Siren Servers, which exploit big data and the free sharing of information, led our economy into recession, imperiled personal privacy, and hollowed out the middle class. The networks that define our world--including social media, financial institutions, and intelligence agencies--now threaten to destroy it.

But there is an alternative. In this provocative, poetic, and deeply humane book, Lanier charts a path toward a brighter future: an information economy that rewards ordinary people for what they do and share on the web.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

No Cry Zone: Episode 5: Benghazi! Ben Garza?

Jon, Rob and Dave talk about that Republican Speaker power vacuum, the ridiculous politicizing of E-mail Gate and the way FEAR is used to control our simple, little brains!

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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

10-20-15: Rob's Book of the Week!

The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Poverty Manifesto by Tavis Smiley & Cornel West


Record unemployment and rampant corporate avarice, empty houses but homeless families, dwindling opportunities in an increasingly paralyzed nation--these are the realities of 21st-century America, land of the free and home of the new middle class poor. Award-winning broadcaster Tavis Smiley and Dr. Cornel West, one of the nation's leading democratic intellectuals, co-hosts of Public Radio's "Smiley & West," now take on the "P" word--poverty."The Rich and the Rest of Us" is the next step in the journey that began with "The Poverty Tour: A Call to Conscience." Smiley and West's 18-city bus tour gave voice to the plight of impoverished Americans of all races, colors, and creeds. With 150 million Americans persistently poor or near poor, the highest numbers in over five decades, Smiley and West argue that now is the time to confront the underlying conditions of systemic poverty in America before it's too late.By placing the eradication of poverty in the context of the nation's greatest moments of social transformation-- such as the abolition of slavery, woman's suffrage, and the labor and civil rights movements--ending poverty is sure to emerge as America's 21st -century civil rights struggle.As the middle class disappears and the safety net is shredded, Smiley and West, building on the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., ask us to confront our fear and complacency with 12 poverty changing ideas. They challenge us to re-examine our assumptions about poverty in America--what it really is and how to eliminate it now.

Friday, October 16, 2015

The No Cry Zone: 004 - Debate This!

The Democratic debate is over and Rob, Jon and Dave weigh the winners and losers. They take a look at the power vacuum in the Republican leadership and Jon has an awkward moment with Professor Lessig.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

10-14-15: Rob's Book of the Week!

Nickel and Dimed: On (not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich


Our sharpest and most original social critic goes "undercover" as an unskilled worker to reveal the dark side of American prosperity.

Millions of Americans work full time, year round, for poverty-level wages. In 1998, Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that a job -- any job -- can be the ticket to a better life. But how does anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 an hour? To find out, Ehrenreich left her home, took the cheapest lodgings she could find, and accepted whatever jobs she was offered. Moving from Florida to Maine to Minnesota, she worked as a waitress, a hotel maid, a cleaning woman, a nursing-home aide, and a Wal-Mart sales clerk. She lived in trailer parks and crumbling residential motels. Very quickly, she discovered that no job is truly "unskilled," that even the lowliest occupations require exhausting mental and muscular effort. She also learned that one job is not enough; you need at least two if you int to live indoors.

Nickel and Dimed reveals low-rent America in all its tenacity, anxiety, and surprising generosity -- a land of Big Boxes, fast food, and a thousand desperate stratagems for survival. Read it for the smoldering clarity of Ehrenreich's perspective and for a rare view of how "prosperity" looks from the bottom. You will never see anything -- from a motel bathroom to a restaurant meal -- in quite the same way again.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

The No Cry Zone: 003 - Guns, Gaffes and Goyum

Rob, Jon and Dave discuss the finer points of the Planned Parenthood witch hunt, gun use in America and why Bernie Sanders isn't getting much credit for being a rarity in Presidential politics when we Ask a Real Jew!

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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

10-06-15: Rob's Book of the Week

Corporations Are Not People by Jeffrey D. Clements


Since the Supreme Court’s Citizens United ruling that the rights of things—money and corporations—matter more than the rights of people, America has faced a crisis of democracy. In this timely and thoroughly updated second edition, Jeff Clements describes the strange history of this bizarre ruling, its ongoing destructive effects, and the growing movement to reverse it. He includes a new chapter, “Do Something!,” showing how—state by state and community by community—Americans are using creative strategies and tools to renew democracy and curb unbalanced corporate power. Since the first edition, 16 states, 160 members of Congress, and 500 cities and towns have called for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United, and the list is growing. This is a fight we can win!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The No Cry Zone: 002 - Bernie, Boehner and Bolsheviks

Jon, Dave and Rob delve into the Presidential election, Papal visits and the resignation of Speaker Boehner. They also debut the new segment, "Ask a Real Jew!"

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