Author Archives: Pat Simpson

Third Act Comes to C-U and is Creating “Good Trouble”

It’s March 21,, 2023, a cool, just barely spring day, and the sidewalks surrounding JPMorgan Chase Bank’s downtown Chicago headquarters are filled with hundreds of chanting, white-haired elders. The cops flanking the bank’s entrance seem more bemused than wary as … Continue reading

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Pre-Roe Reproductive Rights Underground: The Story of the Janes

We are back in pre-Roe Chicago. A doctor speaks about sepsis, the emergency rooms overflowing daily with feverish women dying from botched efforts to rid themselves of unwanted pregnancies. Another woman recalls her phone interactions with a mob operative. Yes, … Continue reading

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For Whom the Bell Tolls

For whom does the bell toll? These days it tolls for our children, gunned down in our streets and schools because of gun violence. And as if this were not enough, there are the child laborers among us and the … Continue reading

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Graduate Employees Go Wild—For Unionization

Workers are on the move across America. Strikes rose by an astounding 50 percent between 2021 and 2022, and the pace of organization was equally impressive, with new fields of organizing opening in the service sector, the art world, and … Continue reading

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It Can Happen Here: Medicare Advantage Disadvantages Retirees Nationally and in C-U

The New York Times recently published a story about how Medicare Advantage (MA) plans rip off consumers and taxpayers through a range of dubious practices up to and including fraud. These practices contribute to higher profit levels which, in turn, … Continue reading

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The Anti-Democratic Movement Against Public Schools

“The path to saving the nation is very simple—it’s going to go through the school boards.” – Steve Bannon The workingmen’s parties of the nineteenth century pushed hard, very hard for public schools and were key to their creation. Yes, … Continue reading

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Union Women on the Move

Hopeful signs of a labor resurgence are everywhere. Despite another decline in the unionized percentage of the labor force and the stalemate in efforts at labor law reform, new frontiers in union organizing have emerged, strikes are on the upswing, … Continue reading

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It’s Not a Labor Shortage, It’s a Workers’ Rights Shortage

The Great Uprising, the Great Resignation, even the unofficial General Strike: analysts and pundits—left, right and center—speak of mounting worker unrest in the US in awestruck terms. What these labels certainly do capture is the expansive scale of this unrest … Continue reading

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On the Front Lines of the Climate Crisis: Our Farmworkers Face Heat’s Deadly Dangers

Heat kills, and it kills farmworkers with distressing regularity. The list of the dead includes migrants like 17-year-old Maria Isabel Vasquez Jimenez in the grape fields of California; 38-year-old Francisco Perez working in a tree nursery outside Portland; Miguel Angel … Continue reading

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The Haters Among Them

The number is thirty so far, thirty police officers charged with the act of participating in the Capitol insurrection last January. Many, many Americans felt shock, and media analysts expressed particular outrage, to find men in blue—perhaps even waving blue-line, … Continue reading

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Turn Off the Spigot: Money vs. Med4All

The COVID pandemic has exposed the flaws in the US health care system as never before, reinforcing longstanding arguments for creating an expanded Medicare for All system in the country. The Public i has previously published articles (see June, November … Continue reading

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