The Six Most Common Middle East Conspiracy Theories


Common Dreams Dec.  15, 2016 Reese Erlich I speak about the Middle East to people of various political persuasions around the US, from leftist college students to conservatives on AM radio talk shows. Most Americans are wary of further US military intervention in the region and ask intelligent questions about this very complicated topic. But … Continue reading

Cheapskates Unite to Save Environment


 The Original Cheapskate  Thoughts on environmentalism and the shocking election outcome. By Reese Erlich East Bay Monthly, December 2016 As the holiday season gets into gear, many East Bay residents spend far more than they can afford on gifts that end up in closets. So let me put in a word for the much-derided Ebenezer … Continue reading

Quaterback Kaepernick makes history


  Going Down in History | Kaepernick effectively quarterbacks an antiracism movement.  By Reese Erlich East Bay Monthly, November 2016 When San Francisco 49er quarterback Colin Kaepernick first refused to stand for the national anthem, it appeared to be a brave but futile protest against racism and police brutality. The professional sports machine started a … Continue reading

Barbara Dane still singing progressive music


EAST BAY MONTHLY – OCT 2016 Oakland’s Barbara Dane Gets Around | Plus Bay Area bassist and composer Jeff Denson promotes a new CD. By Reese Erlich Barbara Dane is Oakland’s musical icon. Her career as a folk, blues, and jazz vocalist goes back more than 65 years. And she has just issued a new … Continue reading

Turkey: Why Yet Another Country Invaded Syria


The Progressive, September 2, 2016 by Reese Erlich On August 23, Turkey sent troops, tanks, and artillery into the mainly Kurdish region of northern Syria, ostensibly to fight the Islamic State (IS). Turkey joins the United States, Russia, Iran, and Lebanon’s Hezbollah in stationing troops in Syria in what has become an international proxy war. … Continue reading

What’s a jazz festival with almost no jazz?


FROM THE LEFT SIDE OF THE BALCONY By Reese Erlich The East Bay Monthly, August, 2016 At the recent Oakland Jazz Festival, most of the performers weren’t jazz musicians. The event featured fine R&B and soul groups but only a smattering of jazz. I see the same phenomena at such famous events as the North … Continue reading

A Little Advice for Hollywood: What current films say about the empire’s collapse


James Bond vs. Jason Bourne By Reese Erlich The East Bay Monthly, October 2016 Movies are both a reflection of our political culture and a means to shape it. For example, the James Bond films of the 60s and 70s helped maintain a distain for communists, whether a cruel Soviet spy or a machine gun … Continue reading

US Companies Are Missing Out On Billions as Iran Opens Up to International Trade


By Reese Erlich, VICE News, March 20, 2016   Chinese and European companies are scrambling to invest in Iran and bringing home multibillion-dollar deals — while US corporations, barred from doing business with a newly-opening Islamic Republic, are forced to watch as their competitors tap into a market of 80 million people.   The nuclear … Continue reading

Moving and shocking: play condemns solitary confinement in USA


Reese Erlich, East Bay Monthly, July 2016 Sarah Shourd was held in solidarity confinement for 410 days in Iran as one of the three American hikers. The experience nearly drove her insane.   “I fluctuated between rages where I beat at the walls of my cell until my knuckles were bloody,” the Oakland resident told … Continue reading

The verdict is in on Northern California’s best politically correct wines


Reese Erlich, East Bay Monthly, June 2016 The right wing has hijacked the term “politically correct.” It has become a catch-all insult to hurl at anyone left of center who dares to stand up to their bullying.   The media mashers at Fox News, for example, propagate the myth that leftist professors enforce political orthodoxy … Continue reading