Alternative Radio

Sunday 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

A weekly one-hour public affairs program, Alternative Radio provides information, analysis and views that are frequently ignored or distorted in other media.

Alternative Radio is a weekly one-hour public affairs program offered free to all public radio stations in the U.S., Canada, Europe, South Africa, Australia, and on short-wave on Radio for Peace International.

Established in 1986, AR is dedicated to the founding principles of public broadcasting, which urge that programming serve as "a forum for controversy and debate," be diverse and "provide a voice for groups that may otherwise be unheard." The project is entirely independent, sustained solely by individuals who buy transcripts and tapes of programs.

Its "headquarters" is situated to correspond with its position in the mainstream mass media: down an alley, behind a house, on top of a garage in Boulder, Colorado. From this rarefied location, AR's programs manage to reach over 125 radio stations and millions of listeners. AR is part of the non-profit Institute for Social and Cultural Change.

05/24/2015 - In a May 1976 column in The Boston Globe Howard Zinn wrote "Memorial Day should be a day for putting flowers on graves and planting trees. Also, for destroying the weapons of death that endanger us more than they protect us, that waste our resources and threaten our children and grandchildren." Sadly his column in the Globe was discontinued soon after. And even more sadly his words are evergreen. Veterans are still returning from foreign wars with lost limbs, bodies and souls.

05/17/2015 - In democratic societies some things have long been considered sacrosanct. Such as the right to privacy. Not any more. It is violated on a routine and systematic basis. States scream: national security or terrorism to justify their expansion of surveillance. In terms of the sheer scope of spying the USA puts the old USSR to shame. Without privacy there is neither freedom nor democracy. There has to be a space where you can express your innermost thoughts, emotions and vulnerabilities. The cameras, microphones, and drones eliminate that possibility.

05/10/2015 - An effective propaganda system encourages people to be discouraged. Hey! Worry about the Kardashian’s latest news. Leave the complicated matters of domestic and foreign affairs to the smart guys. This is a recipe for disaster because the ruling class will attend acutely to its interests at the expense of everyone and everything else including the planet. This indifference to the 99% and the environment was dramatically revealed in a 2015 poll of CEOs at Davos. Every year the so-called “masters of the universe” meet in the Swiss Alps.

05/03/2015 - Rights exercised by large corporations have never been stronger in the United States. They respond to distant policy initiatives, lawsuits, and latent threats to their bottom lines with lightning speed and a full court press. Their lobbyists vet new regulations and bills with legislators. They kill bills. They write bills.

04/26/2015 - In 1915, the Turkish government launched a premeditated organized campaign to eliminate the millennia-old Armenian people from their traditional homeland in what is now southeastern Turkey. The Turkish officials responsible for the genocide were never brought to account. This was not lost on Adolf Hitler. Just days before launching World War Two he told his generals, "Who today, after all, speaks of the annihilation of the Armenians?" What makes this genocide unique is that Turkey refuses to acknowledge it ever happened.

04/05/2015 - 2015 marks the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta, which established the founding principle of modern law: presumption of innocence.  Today that principle is largely a casualty of the so-called war on terrorism. Trials, evidence, juries. Who needs them when we have an Oval Office assassination program carried out by drones? These pilotless aircraft have become the weapon of choice for Washington. They are efficient machines killing not only their intended targets but also whoever happens to be nearby. Collateral damage in Pentagon-speak.

03/29/2015 - Lousy job prospects got you down? Deep in debt? Welcome to 21st century capitalism. The dominant ruling class has one mantra: More for Me, Less for You. That has certainly proven true. Workers' incomes have gone flat while the rich have gotten richer. Maybe Desperate Housewives should be replaced with a series called Desperate Workers. The global economic crisis continues to take an enormous human toll. In many ways, Greece has become the symbol of an economic system in disarray.

03/22/2015 - Xenophobic tendencies in U.S. immigration policy are nothing new. The creation of a “permanent impermanent status” for millions of undocumented immigrants today can be seen in a historical context when we learn about The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the Asiatic Barred Zone in 1917, and the mass deportations of Mexicans in the 1930s and 1950s. Currently there are nationalist sentiments demanding the deportation of 12 million undocumented immigrants no matter how impractical, no matter the cost.

03/15/2015 - The rigid and dogmatic decades-old policy of Washington toward Havana left the U.S. in virtual total isolation internationally. The lopsided UN General Assembly votes condemning the policy made Washington a global laughing stock. Thus, Obama’s December 2014 announcement on re-establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries came as a relief. The diplomatic move, he said marked “a new chapter” between the U.S. and Cuba. The old chapters were pretty sordid. There was Henry Kissinger who wanted to “smash” and “clobber” Cuba and its “pipsqueak” leader.

03/08/2015 - ISIS, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, is the latest chapter of the so-called war on terror. One should point out that you can’t have a war on a tactic. ISIS has displaced al-Qaeda. It is violently addressing unresolved issues relating to European imperialism and the creation of artificial borders and states. After WWII, the U.S. supplanted Britain, France and Italy in the region and became its self-appointed guardian. Washington’s footprint in the Middle East is enormous. It has created a network of allies consisting of emirs, sheikhs and generals.