Patrick Cockburn finds us not learning from our Middle Eastern adventures in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria very well. Key point: "in most of these countries, where Islam is the dominant religion, extreme Salafi-Jihadi movements, including the Islamic State (IS), al-Qaeda, and the Taliban are essentially the only available vehicles for protest and rebellion. By now, they have completely replaced the socialist and nationalist movements that predominated in the twentieth century." Which you'll find resonant, not just if you read about the growing gap between rich and poor in Syria, but if you remember that our troubles with Iran started with a CIA-aided overthrow of the popularly-elected nationalizer-of-BP-oil Prime Minister Mossadeq, which paved the way for the Shah, which paved the way for the Ayatollahs.
Beverly Silver at Roar finds declarations of the death of the working class and/or the labor movement to be premature. They declared the labor movement dead in the early 20th century, of course, before its heyday starting with the New Deal, and though it's easy to look at the data and call what's been happening over the last 20 years a "race to the bottom," Ms. Silver notes that whenever corporations look for cheaper labor, they wind up creating new working classes wherever they land, who will soon have new grievances that corporations ignore at their own peril. Will there, one day, really be "nowhere left for capital to run?" We can only hope!
Josmar Trujillo at FAIR reminds us that "The Busted Theory of Broken Windows Still Has Media Defenders." So when even the NYPD Inspector General reports that cracking down on low-level lawlessness actually doesn't reduce felony-level lawlessness, what does the "liberal" media do? Act like it's the "bombshell" revelation it's clearly not, regurgitate the Broken Windows gospel with their fingers in their ears, or launch truly hysterical attacks against the report (with one "liberal" media outlet claiming the NYPD IG report was flawed because the NYPD IG's office is "filled with prosecutors and cops," which phrase I had not previously encountered from the "liberal" media as a criticism).
Over 100 community/environmental groups ask the EPA to investigate whether the EPA's Science Advisory Board Chair, Dr. David Allen, produced fraudulent research on methane leakage. When the inventor of the Bacharach Hi-Flow methane sampler goes on the record saying his machine has a fault that causes it to tend to low-ball methane emissions from gas drilling, I'd think you'd at least have to look into that -- but Dr. Allen, of course, doubled down on his research rather than be a grown-up and admit he might be wrong. The punchline: Dr. Allen gets some of his research money from oil and gas corporations.
Finally, two-time Oscar-winning actress Olivia de Havilland turned 100 on July 1, so Thomas J. Stipanowich at the Los Angeles Times recalls the time Ms. de Havilland "Took on the Studio System and Won." Finding herself unexpectedly not at the end of her seven-year contract in 1943 -- for years she'd been "arm candy" in films with male stars, and had even willfully taken on suspensions-without-pay so she could avoid such roles -- Ms. de Havilland sued her employer, Warner Brothers, and a California appeals court agreed with her that Warner couldn't lawfully "tack on" all that suspension time to her contract. Then she won her two Oscars, and actors began to find contractual terms considerably more favorable to them. She took on big money and not only lived to tell about it, but she thrived. That makes her a hero.