Paul Mason, author of Meltdown, Newsnight economics editor and father of the Newsnight National Union of Journalists chapel, joined BBC colleagues on the picket line this morning at Television Centre.
Speaking to the Guardian, Paul criticised the BBC management for "systematically disparaging their own work force ... We're sorry to the British public, who have to rely on Rupert Murdoch and Richard Desmond [for their news today]."
Reviewing The Verso Book of Dissent for PopMatters, John L. Murphy praises the breadth and depth of this collection spanning 4000 years:
Commemorating four decades of radical publishing at Verso, whose name comes from the "left" side of the page, Andrew Hsiao and Audrea Lim gather hundreds of contrarian voices "from Spartacus to the Shoe-Thrower of Baghdad." The currency of their effort extends their coverage past these two markers. It begins with an anonymous "Tale of the Eloquent Peasant" ca. 1800 BCE. It ends with Swedish mystery writer Henning Mankell's judgment on the flotilla he boarded that challenged Israeli forces to end the Gaza blockade this past May: "I believe so strongly in solidarity as an instrument to change the world, and I believe in dialogue, but it's the action that proves the word."
Malalai Joya, who in 2005 became the youngest person to be elected to the Afghan parliament, writes in the Guardian about the grim reality behind the so called 'good war.'
As the civilian death toll mounts and corruption increases, Joya writes of popular disillusionment with Hamid Karzai's government:
The vast majority of Afghans have lost all hope in Karzai. For us his words and actions have no value, and that includes his latest "peace negotiations" and other measures. Including killers like Mullah Omar and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar in the government is not about negotiating for peace, but completing the decades-old circle of warlordism and fundamentalism.
Sukhdev Sandhu's Night Haunts garners yet more praise, this time in the Independent.
Sandhu's model for nocturnal rambles was The Nights of London, a 1926 volume from HV Morton, “a beat—not Beat—journo”. The result is a luminous series of sketches in Orwellian style, from cabbies and sewer flushers ("fat is the bane of their lives") to exorcists and Thames bargers ("Nobody knows we're here. Nobody"). This book is an atmospheric and witty companion, especially for those who, like Sandhu, spend the dark hours awake.
Visit the Independent to read the review in full.