Podemos: Threat or Promise? — CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

Click here for my latest article on this fast growing new party, in CounterPunch.

Podemos: Threat or Promise? 

For background, you may also be interested in my earlier articles, on the movements in Spain that have now converged to create Podemos.
  • Historic Reversal: Bombs and Bullets in Spain. Op-ed on the 2004 election of the socialist government in Spain in wake of terrorist bombing of Madrid's Atocha railway station. The Philadelphia Inquirer, Mar. 16, 2004
  • Spain's "Indignados". On the political occupation of public spaces across Spain through the summer of 2011 ("15-M"). The Voorhis Voice (Claremont Democratic Club) , June 2012
  • Spain's many currents of protest. Discussion of protests actions spurred by "15-M". Originally published in Norwegian translation on the website Radikal Portal, August 2013.


One reason I am not a Super Anchor

TV News in the Age of the Super Anchor — CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names
"The Deeper You Dig, Any Story Collapses.” That maxim is attributed to Cy Romanoff, who ran the local news wire in the city of Chicago many years ago. …
In fact, most of life is played out in shades of gray. When you start digging into any supposed scandal you usually find that the bad guy is not all that bad; the good guy not all that good, and often the supposed villain is not really a villain at all. Such subtleties, though fascinating to uncover, don’t make for the kind of clear-cut morality plays that are the staple of the major news shows. 

The producer frequently finds he no longer has “a story.”
From the article by Barry Lando, posted today. For me, as a sociologist, the "subtleties" are the story, the story of how things really work. How are we ever going to make sense of conflict in Ukraine, or the rise of phenomena such as Syriza in Greece or Podemos in Spain, or "Charlie Hebdo," or anything else that matters, if we have only black and white caricatures in our repertoire?

Nowadays, if you hunt, you can find investigators of subtlety — though not on prime time TV news. Analysts, not actors, posing sharper questions rather than looking for  facile answers. I try to be one of them. And CounterPunch in one place to look for them.