Articles Lists


Simplistic theories which relate violence to one factor and one factor only – maleness – actually serve to discourage a serious examination of what it is that leads some men and also some women to become violent. This reductionist view (people with penises are prone to violence, people without penises aren’t) is as wrong as ideologies which claim that propensity to crime is somehow linked to skin colour.
Dances with Guilt: Looking at Men Looking at Violence

Those who equate drinking and sex with drinking and driving betray their incomprehension of what the issue of consent is all about. No one, whatever their state of sobriety, wishes to hit by a car, whether it is driven by a drunk driver or by a sober one. People who drive when intoxicated inflict a considerable risk of such collisions on others, and that is why we as a society refuse to allow people to drive after they have been drinking. The question of consent never arises, because being run into by a drunk driver is never a consensual act. However, people in varying stages of sobriety do willingly engage in sex. Individuals who are too intoxicated to drive safely are still quite capable of desiring sex, of consenting to sex, and of participating in sexual activity. It may offend the sensibilities of the new puritans, but some people actually find that they desire and enjoy sex more when they have been drinking or taking certain drugs. This should not be a matter for the law.
Yes Means No?

Humber Valley, Toronto - Photo by Ulli Diemer

Moose - Photo by Ulli Diemer


Words of Wisdom

  • Since it is not for us to create a plan for the future that will hold for all time, all the more surely what we contemporaries have to do is the uncompromising critical evaluation of all that exists, uncompromising in the sense that our criticism fears neither its own results nor the conflict with the powers that be.
  • – Karl Marx


Preston Manning’s demagogic suggestion that atheists seek to deny believers freedom of conscience and expression has no basis in reality. On the contrary: no atheist would wish to deny Mr. Manning his right to believe in the Easter Bunny, or Zeus, or Jehovah, or any other supernatural being.
Preston Manning sees an Inquisition in science’s name

A rogue state, heavily armed with weapons of mass destruction, openly contemptuous of international law and the United Nations, and with a lengthy record of threatening and invading other countries, has plunged the world into crisis. How should the world respond to this threat? What can we do about the United States and its undisguised imperial ambitions?
The Iraq crisis in context

Some Favourite Sites

News & Current Events

CounterPunch - Progressive newsletter with good analysis on many issues except global warming.

Al Jazeera - English-language site of the Arabic news network. Mainstream, but at least the point of view isn’t Anglo-American.

Le Monde Diplomatique - French newspaper with in-depth analytical articles. Also in English, German, and other languages.

IPS Inter Press Service - Global news from a progressive perspective.

Countercurrents - Alternative news and analysis site based in India.

Narco News Bulletin - Reporting on the Americas with special emphasis on the drug wars.

Medialens – Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media.



Connexions - A library of documents about democratization, economic justice, environmental responsibility, civil liberties, and the creation and preservation of community.

Marxists Internet Archive - Large archive of the writings of Marx and Engels and others in the Marxist tradition.

Solidarity - A democratic revolutionary socialist, feminist, anti-racist organization which publishes Against the Current magazine.

ZNet - Extensive collection of articles and links compiled by the publishers of Z Magazine.

International Luxemburgist Network - A radical socialist network.

Marxismo Libertario - Lecturas para la Emancipacion del Proletariado

Toward Freedom - A progressive perspective on world events. - Radical news and analysis from anarchist and left-marxist perspective.

Insurgent Notes - Libertarian communist journal.


Blogs & Personal Websites - William Blum’s website.

Break Their Haughty Power - Loren Goldner’s website.

Bureau of Public Secrets - Ken Knabb’s Situationist site: “Making petrified conditions dance by singing them their own tune”. - Noam Chomsky’s website. - The films and journalist of John Pilger.

Jonathan Cook - Cook is a British journalists reporting from Israel/Palestine.

Kenan Malik - Kenan Malik’s Pandaemonium website.

Molly’s Blog - Anarchism, socialism, evolutionary biology, animal behaviour and much else.

Rootless Cosmopolitan - Analysis and commentary by Tony Karon.

Tom Wetzel - Wetzel’s articles on cities, unions, capitalism, socialism.



Toronto Public Space Initiative - Dedicated to protecting our common spaces and protecting them from political erosion, commercial influence, and privatisation.

Laneing: Toronto Laneways - Photos and maps of Toronto’s laneways.

P.S. Kensington - About Pedestrian Sundays in Toronto’s Kensington Market (and Baldwin Street and Mirvish Village), but really it’s about Kensington Market generally, with lots of photos.

Toronto Photo Gallery - Toronto photos.


Research & Reference

Sources - Expert sources and media spokespersons ready to answer questions on their areas of expertise.

The Canadian Encyclopedia - A wealth of information about Canada, especially Canadian history.

Google Advanced Search

Google Advanced Image Search - Using the image search feature to look for ’Ulli’, I was able to ascertain that roughly 50% of Ullis seem to be females, 40% males, and the rest are dogs, cats, and goats of indeterminate sex – indeterminate to me anyway: other dogs, cats and goats presumably can tell.

Wikipedia - Often the place to go for a first look at an unfamiliar topic, though not the last word on it.

Connexipedia - Social justice encyclopedia.

ibiblio - Large online library.

Improbable Research - Fun with research.

Search Engine Watch - Information about searching and about the search engine industry.



Bat Conservation International - A site devoted to bats.

Facility of the Month - Featuring photos site “dedicated to highlighting examples of how innovative design and outstanding engineering offer safety, utility, and comfort to cyclists.” Quite funny.

International Dark Sky Association - Fighting the light pollution that makes it increasingly impossible for most of us to see the stars in the night sky.

PostModernism Generator - Automatically generates post-modernist essays.

Hundreds of Proofs of God's Existence - Originally 100 Proofs of God’s Existence, but they found more. Number 17 is arguably the most persuasive, though number 145 will appeal to many people.



The Lyre Bird - David Attenborough introduces the incredible lyre bird.

Diet Coke and Mentos Experiment - There are many; I like this one.


Past Gleanings

Turn off the Canadian Media, Please Justin Podur says the Canadian media are a biased little niche of pro-Israeli spin, and should be seen that way.

Olive oil, opposition and Gaza Rick Salutin writes about increasingly widespread Jewish opposition to Israel’s actions.

Israel Is Losing This War Uri Avnery writes: What will be seared into the consciousness of the world will be the image of Israel as a blood-stained monster, ready at any moment to commit war crimes and not prepared to abide by any moral restraints. This will have severe consequences for our long-term future, our standing in the world, our chance of achieving peace and quiet.

The War Isn’t Over, But Israel Has Lost. Tony Karon: The Israelis – and their backers in the American political establishment – appear incapable of grasping that which is empirically obvious: Hamas and its ilk grow stronger every time Israel seeks to eliminate them by force.

Abettors of war crimes will be held accountable Adri Nieuwhof and Daniel Machover. Taking action to bring perpetrators of war crimes and crimes against humanity to justice.

Outcry Over Israel’s War Crimes. Jonathan Cook describes legal actions underway to hold Israel accountable for war crimes.

Women Living Under Muslim Laws An international solidarity network that provides information, support and a collective space for women whose lives are shaped, conditioned or governed by laws and customs said to derive from Islam.

The Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women Initiated by a group of activists, lawyers, journalists, and academics, who are committed to ending the stoning and killing of women.

The Brick Testament An illustrated Bible that even atheists can appreciate. In fact, you could say that it’s one that especially atheists can appreciate.

Manifestos, Political Statements, Programs, Visions A page of radical and progressive manifestos.

Against Multiculturalism Kenan Malik says that A truly plural society would be one in which citizens have full freedom to pursue their different values or practices in private, while in the public sphere all citizens would be treated as political equals whatever the differences in their private lives.

Rationality/Science Noam Chomsky defends the principles of rational inquiry against postmodernist ’critiques’

Why Israel? Jason Kunin asks: Why does Israel deserve sanctions?

Postmodernism disrobed: Richard Dawkins’ review of Intellectual Impostures by Alan Sokal and Jean Bricmont.

In Nuevo Jork, Jew Doesn’t Always Mean Jew: Tony Karon shares a New York moment.

The Stupid Opinion That All Opinions are Equal: Elsa Schieder is frustrated by illogical people.

Green Maven: Green, conscious, and sustainable websites.

Safe streets: Not pedaling can kill you

Royal Moments in Broadcasting


Off the Bookshelf: What I’ve Been Reading

The Price of Butcher’s Meat. Reginald Hill.

Death Comes for the Fat Man. Reginald Hill.

An Execution in the Family. Robert Meeropol.

Eating Fire: Family Life on the Queer Side. Michael Riordon.

A Most Wanted Man. John Le Carré.

Roads to Quoz. William Least Heat-Moon.

Preface to the Phenomenology. G. W. F. Hegel.

Mirrors. Educardo Galeano.

The World Turned Upside Down. Christopher Hill.

Our Way to Fight. Michael Riordon.

Radicalism in America. Sidney Lens.

Primitive Rebels. Eric Hobsbawm.

Ten Days That Shook the World. John Reed.

The Paris Commune of 1871: The View from the Left.

What’s the Matter with Kansas: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America. Thomas Frank.

We Make the Road by Walking: Conversations on education and social change. Myles Horton, Paulo Freire.

A Paradise Built in Hell. Rebecca Solnit.

Memories of Fire. Eduardo Galeano.

Reading Pictures: A History of Love and Hate. Alberto Manguel. 2000

Widerstand und Verweigerung in Deutschland 1933 bis 1945. Richard Löwenthal; Patrik von zur Mühlen.

Six Men. Alistair Cooke.

On the Road. Jack Kerouac.

Catch 22. Joseph Heller.

Dialogues of the Dead. Reginald Hill.

One Step Behind. Henning Mankell.

The Enemy of Nature: The End of Capitalism or the End of the World. Joel Kovel.

Lincoln Reconsidered: Essays on the Civil War Era. David Herbert Donald.

The Greatest Show on Earth: The Evidence for Evolution. Richard Dawkins.

1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus. Charles C. Mann.

The World Without Us. Alan Weisman.

Wobblies & Zapatistas: Conversations on Anarchism, Marxism and Radical Theory. Staughton Lynd & Andrej Grubacic.

Lincoln. Gore Vidal.

Intellectual Self-Defense: Find Your Inner Chomsky. Normand Baillargeon.

I Have Lived Here Since the World Began. Arthur J. Ray.

Strange Fruit: Why Both Sides are Wrong in the Race Debate. Kenan Malik.

Hell & High Water: Canada and the Italian Campaign. Lance Goddard.

The Joy of Revolution. Ken Knabb.

Eight Little Piggies: Reflections in Natural History. Stephen Jay Gould.

A Century of Noir. Mickey Spillane & Max Allan Collins.

The History of Costa Rica. Ivan Molina & Steven Palmer.

We CAN Change the World: The Real Meaning Of Everyday Life. David G. Stratman.

The Library at Night. Alberto Manguel.

Pierre Berton: A Biography. A.B. McKillop.

Beyond a Boundary. C.L.R. James.

A People’s History of the World: From the Stone Age to the New Millennium. Chris Harman.

The Scramble for Africa: White Man’s Conquest of the Dark Continent from 1876 to 1912. Thomas Pakenham.

The Slave Trade: The Story of the Atlantic Slave Trade 1440-1870. Hugh Thomas.

All That Is Solid Melts Into Air: The Experience of Modernity. Marshall Berman.

The Iambics of Newfoundland: Notes from an Unknown Shore. Robert Finch.

Amish Life. John A. Hostetler.

Darwin and the Beagle. Alan Moorehead.

Hegemony or Survival: America’s Quest for Global Dominance. Noam Chosmky.

Lincoln’s Virtues: An Ethical Biography. William Lee Miller.

The Ax. Donald Westlake.

Peanuts: The Art of Charles M. Schulz.

On the Natural History of Destruction. W.G. Sebald.

A Green History of the World. Clive Ponting

Surrealism. Michael Robinson

The God Delusion. Richard Dawkins.

The Essential Calvin & Hobbes. Bill Watterson

The Tree. Colin Tudge

To Kill a Mockingbird. Harper Lee

Don Quixote. Miguel de Cervantes.

Anne of Green Gables. L.M. Montgomery

Ted Hughes: The Life of a Poet. Elaine Feinstein

Robert Graves: Life on the Edge. Miranda Seymour

Dark Age Ahead. Jane Jacobs

The Ice House. Minette Walters

The Ability to Forget. Norman Levine

A Multitude of Sins. Richard Ford

The Bridges of Madison County. Robert James Waller

Dialogues of the Dead. Reginald Hill

The Constant Gardener. John Le Carré

Forty Stories. Anton Chekhov

Age of Extremes: The Short Twentieth Century, 1914-1991. Eric Hobsbawm

Blue Highways. William Least Heat Moon


Films I’ve Been Watching

Still Walking. 2008. Directed by Hirokazu Kore-eda. Hiroshi Abe, Yui Natsukawa, You, Kazuya Takahashi, Shohei Tanaka, Yoshio Harada, Kirin Kiki.

Le Havre. 2011. Written and directed by Aki Kaurismäki. André Wilms, Kati Outinen, Jean-Pierre Darroussin, Blondin Miguel.

Bread and Roses. 2000. Directed by Ken Loach. Pilar Padilla, Adrien Brody, Elpidia Carrillo.

The Kid with a Bike. 2011. Directed by Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne. Cécile de France, Thomas Doret.

De vrais mensonges. 2010. Directed by Pierre Salvadori. Audrey Tautou, Sami Bouajila, Nathalie Baye.

Cinema Paradiso. 1988. Directed by Giuseppe Tornatore. Philippe Noiret, Enzo Cannavale, Antonella Attili, Marco Leonardi, Salvatore Cascio, Jacques Perrin.

The First Grader. 2010. Directed by Justin Chadwick. Oliver Litondo, Naomie Harris, Tony Kgoroge.

Laila’s Birthday. (Eid milad Laila). 2008. Directed by Rashid Masharawi. Mohammed Bakri, Areen Omari, Nour Zoubi.

The Middle of the World. (O Caminho das Nuvens). 2003. Directed by Vincente Amorin. Wagner Moura, Claudia Abreu, Ravi Ramos Lacerda.

The Milagro Beanfield War. 1988. Directed by Robert Redford. Ruben Blades, Richard Bradford, Sonia Braga.

Le Quattro Volte. 2011. Directed by Michelangelo Frammartino.

Tsotsi. 2005. Directed by Gavin Hood. Presley Chweneyagae, Mothusi Magano, Israel Makoe.

Umberto D. 1952. Directed by Vittorio De Sica. Carlo Battisti, Maria Pia Casilio, Lina Gennari.

Monsieur Lazhar. 2011. Directed by Philippe Falardeau. Mohamed Fellag, Sophie Nelisse, Emilien Neron.

Je veuz voir (I want to see). 2008. Directed by Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreige. Catherine Deneuve.

Il Posto. 1962. Directed by Ermanno Olmi. Sandro Panseri, Loredana Detto.

Sugar. 2009. Directed by Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck. Algenis Perez Soto, Rayniel Rufino, Andre Holland.

The Snow Walker. 2003. Directed by Charles Martin Smith. Barry Pepper, Annabella Piugattuk, James Cromwell.

Nostalgia de la luz (Nostalgia for the Light). 2010. Directed by Patricio Guzmán.

Salt of the Earth. 1954. Directed by Herbert J. Biberman. Rosaura Revueltas, Will Geer, David Wolfe, Mervin Williams, David Sarvis, Ernesto Velázquez, Juan Chacón, Henrietta Williams.

Takva: A Man’s Fear of God.. 2006. Directed by özer Kiziltan. Erkan Can, Güven Kiraç, Meray ülgen.

20 Fingers. 2004. Mania Akbari. Bijan Daneshmand, Mania Akbari

The Informant. 2009. Directed by Steven Soderbergh. Matt Damon, Tony Hale, Patton Oswalt.

Le Voyage En Armenie. (Journey to Armenia.) Directed by Robert Guediguian. 2006. Ariane Ascaride, Marcel Bluwal, Gerard Meylan, Simon Abkarian, Serge AvÉdikian, Chorik Grigorian, Roman Avinian, Kristina Hovakimian, Madeleine Guediguian.

Eight Men Out. Directed by John Sayles. 1988. John Cusack, David Strathairn, Michael Rooker, Michael Lerner, Charlie Sheen, Christopher Lloyd, Clifton James, John Sayles, Studs Terkel

Kandahar. Directed by Mohsen Makhmalbaf. 2001. Nelofer Pazira.

High Hopes. Directed by Mike Leigh. 1988. Philip Davis, Ruth Sheen, Edna DorÉ, Philip Jackson.

Limbo. Directed by John Sayles. 1999. David Strathairn, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Vanessa Martinez.

Looking for Eric. Directed by Ken Loach. 2009. Steve Evets, Eric Cantona, Stephanie Bishop

Sunshine State. Directed by John Sayles. 2002. Angela Bassett, Edie Falco, Jane Alexander, Alan King, Timothy Hutton, Mary Steenburgen, Bill Cobbs.

Invictus. Directed by Clint Eastwood. 2009. Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon.

The Thin Red Line. Directed by Terrence Malick. 1998. Jim Caviezel, Nick Nolte, Ben Chaplin, Sean Penn, Adrien Brody, John Cusack.

The Secret in Their Eyes. Directed by Juan JosÉ Campanella. 2009. Ricardo DarÍn, Soledad Villamil, Javier Godino, Guillermo Francella, Pablo Rago.

Ballast. Directed by Lance Hammer. 2008. Michael J. Smith, JimMyron Ross, Tarra Riggs, Johnny McPhail.

Amal. Directed by Richie Mehta. 2007. Rupinder Nagra, Koel Purie, Seema Biswas, Roshan Seth, Naseeruddin Shah.

Divided We Fall (MusÍme si pomáhat). Directed by Jan Hrebejk. 2000. Boleslav Polivka, Jaroslav Dusek, Anna Siskova, Csongor Kassai.

Lemon Tree. Directed by Eran Riklis. 2008. Hiam Abbass, Ali Suliman, Rona Lipaz-Michael.

Slumdog Millionaire. Directed by Danny Boyle. 2008. Dev Patel.

1900. Directed by Bernardo Bertolucci. 1976. Robert De Niro, Gérard Depardieu, Dominique Sanda, Donald Sutherland, Alida Valli, Burt Lancaster.

Monty Python’s Life of Brian. Directed by Terry Jones. 1979. Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, Sue Jones-Davies

Padre padrone. Directed by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani. 1977. Saverio Marconi, Fabrizio Forte, Gavino Ledda

The Death of a Cyclist. Directed by Juan Antonio Bardem, 1955. Alberto Closas, Lucia Bosé

The Education of a Fairy. Directed by José Luis Cuerda. 2005. Ricardo Darin, Irene Jacob, Victor Valdina Reina.

La Vie En Rose. Directed by Olivier Dahan. 2007. The life of Edif Piaf. Marion Cotillard.

Honeydripper. Directed by John Sayles. 2007. Danny Glover, Lisa Gay Hamilton, Yaya DaCosta, Charles S. Dutton, Gary Clark Jr.

Beshkempir (The Adopted Son). Directed by Aktan Abdykalykov. 1998. Mirlan Abdykalykov.

Occupation 101. Directed by Sufyan Omeish and Abdallah Omeish. 2007. Documentary.

Das Leben der Anderen (The Lives of Others). Directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. 2007. Ulrich Mühe.

Roads to Koktebel. Directed by Boris Khlebnikov and Aleksei Popogrebsky. 2003. Gleb Puskepalis, Igor Csernyevics.

Monsoon Wedding. Directed by Mira Nair. 2001.

Offside. Directed by Jafar Panahi. 2006.

Harlan County USA. Directed by Barbara Kopple. 1976. Documentary.

Ma Vie En Rose. Directed by Alain Berliner. 1997. Georges du Fresne.

Avenge But One of My Two Eyes. Directed by Avi Mograbi. 2006. Documentary.

The Piano. Directed by Jane Campion. 1993. Holly Hunter, Harvey Keitel.

The Ramallah Concert. Daniel Barenboim and the East-West Divan Orchestra. 2005. Documentary.

Casa de los babys. 2003. Directed by John Sayles. Daryl Hannah, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mary Steenburgen.

The Straight Story. Directed by David Lynch. 1999. Richard Farnsworth.

Serko. Directed by Joel Farges. 2006. Aleksei Chadov.

Lone Star. 1996. Directed by John Sayles. Chris Cooper, Elizabeth Pena, Stephen Mendillo.

Passion Fish. 1992. Directed by John Sayles. Mary McDonnell, Alfre Woodard, Angela Bassett.

The Enigma of Kapsar Hauser (Jeder für sich und Gott gegen alle). Directed by Werner Herzog. 1974. Bruno S.

Amélie. (Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain) Directed Jean-Pierre Jeunet. 2001. Audrey Tautou.

Matewan. Directed by John Sayles. 1987. Chris Cooper, James Earl Jones, Mary McDonnell, David Strathairn, Kevin Tighe, Will Oldham, Jace Alexander.

The Brother from Another Planet. Directed by John Sayles. 1984. Joe Morton, David Strathairn, John Sayles.

The Navigator: A Medieval Odyssey. Directed by Vincent Ward. 1989. Bruce Lyons, Chris Haywood.

The Secret of Roan Inish. Directed by John Sayles. 1994. Jeni Courtney.

Schultze Gets the Blues. Directed by Michael Schorr. 2004. Horst Krause.

Vera Drake. Directed by Mike Leigh. 2004. Imelda Staunton, Jim Broadbent, Heather Craney.