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Jan Baughman and Gilles d'Aymery


Note from the Editors

We begin this edition with Jan Baughman's moving tribute to her father, a member of the Greatest Generation who did more than live up to its legacy. We owe it to his generation to carry on that legacy in its honor, and preserve all it fought for and implemented on behalf of a greater good. An appropriate starting point to understand the battles we face is Manuel García, Jr.'s taxonomy that allows for classification and comparison of all orientations in American politics, the results of which may surprise you. A similar taxonomy would be a challenge in the French political circus, where the "nominally socialist" president François Hollande is morphing into his former rival Nicolas Sarkozy, while Sarkozy's UMP party implodes in a power struggle. Add all this to the sinking economy, the relocalizing companies and individuals, and it's not a pleasant sight, as Gilles d'Aymery explains. Similarly, President Obama continues to be as enamored of the neoliberal economic model as were his two predecessors, and Glenn Reed shares his experience at the Seattle WTO protests, reminding activists to bring the fight against unfair trade agreements and undemocratic global institutions back to the forefront. Meanwhile, Michael Barker continues his exploration of anthroposophy, and he interviews Peter Staudenmaier, who has done extensive research and writing on the New Age philosophical movement. And remember the Cold War? If you've forgotten those crazy days, read Paul Buhle's review of Jon Wiener's keen analysis and dark humor in How We Forgot the Cold War: A Historical Journey Across America.

As Northern California and Swans headquarters dry out from the veritable monsoon that wreaked havoc for 5 days and dropped a foot of rain -- though for once we did not lose electricity -- the East Coast is still reeling from the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy. Jonah Raskin visited New York City in the aftermath, and reports on the power of nature and the resiliency of New Yorkers. Turning from nature-made to man-made disasters, Peter Byrne looks at the demise of Detroit, which has become something of an art form, from plays to picture books, documentaries, and novels. Heading to Canada, Isidor Saslav makes the pilgrimage to North America's theatrical Mecca, the Shaw Festival. And finally, we close with poetic offerings from Raju Peddada and Guido Monte, along with your letters on David Jordan's post-election thoughts, New Age flying objects, and questioning the established views.

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In memoriam

Jan Baughman:  The Greatest Generation

In memory of a beloved member of the Great Generation, the author's father.   More...


US Elections & Democracy

Manuel García, Jr.:  Left Conservatives Under Right Progressives

This political taxonomy allows for classification and comparison of all political orientations.   More...


French Corner

Gilles d'Aymery:  Cirque De France

On the French political circus, from the nominally-socialist president Hollande's surprise metamorphosis into former president Sarkozy, to the implosion of the opposition conservative UMP party -- it's not a pleasant sight.   More...


Patterns Which Connect

Glenn Reed:  Anniversary of the Seattle WTO Protests

November 30 marks the anniversary of the pivotal WTO Protests in Seattle.   More...


Michael Barker:  An Interview with Peter Staudenmaier

Anthroposophy and social change: An interview with Peter Staudenmaier.   More...


Hungry Man, Reach For The Book

Paul Buhle:  The Forgotten War

A review of Jon Wiener's keen analysis and dark humor in How We Forgot the Cold War: A Historical Journey Across America.   More...


America the 'Beautiful'

Jonah Raskin:  New York On The Rebound

A visit to New York City in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy reveals the power of nature and the resiliency of New Yorkers.   More...


Peter Byrne:  Going, Going, Gone: Jeffrey Eugenides's Detroit

A look at the demise of Detroit, from the myriad documentaries to the novels of native Jeffrey Eugenides.   More...


Arts & Culture

Isidor Saslav:  Report from Canada's Shaw Festival -- 2012

Isidor Saslav reports from Canada's Shaw Festival -- North America's greatest theater company.   More...



Raju Peddada:  Killing Fields Of Love

A poem on the killing fields of love.   More...


Multilingual Poetry

Guido Monte & Claudine Giovannoni:  Hades

Guido Monte and Claudine Giovannoni talk about Hades and unknown worlds.   More...


Letters to the Editor


Two attacks on David Jordan's post-election thoughts, and thoughts on New Age flying objects and questioning the established views.   More...


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SWANS - ISSN: 1554-4915
Created: December 3, 2012