Information Digest of the Mid-Maine Progressive Forum

The digest [formerly mistakenly called a "newsletter"] is published sporadically from time to time (with the best of intentions) [right here online, instead of attached to an email] with links to our latest blog posts, links to recent important news items, cartoons and occasional videos. We send out an email to remind you that the digest exists rarely, but in the interests of not flooding you with emails we will refrain from notifying you every time there are updates or a new issue. So, rather than trickle down or trickle up, we tend to trickle out. If you missed an issue, check out the Archives tab for links to older editions. And thanks to all the contributors to this issue; especially to those I know personally!

Upcoming Events are listed on the Mid-Maine Progressive Forum landing page.

Volume 1, Issue 12 - April 2020 - "We Love You, Bernie!"

Just when you thought it was safe to ignore the many hundreds of articles and videos and political cartoons and documentaries and other material that have captured my attention since last year: sorry, I could not resist sharing what I have been watching and reading! If you are interested in a particular topic not represented here in this issue, feel free to contact me (or join us on Saturday mornings electronically with Zoom). If I have any material in my notes (or in my database), I'll be happy to send it along to you personally (or even to just update the web page with that material).

Whatever your motivation for reading this digest, you probably care about progressive ideas (or perhaps you are just curious about them). Most of us understand that pandemics, climate change, incompetence, corruption and injustice [of all kinds] must be recognized and confronted. Evidence of the effects of these ills and the impact on our own lives abounds. Knowledge is power. Use your critical thinking skills to wade through the information and disinformation, then act in whatever way you decide is right for you.

The Issues: Coronavirus and COVID-19, Presidential Politics & Class Warfare, etc.

You will also find in this issue: political news, analysis and commentary about the Trump Administration, climate change, the 2020 presidential campaigners (and much else that you just might find interesting). I have finally accepted that it isn't possible to keep up with the news cycles and carry on a normal life, so these stories and images are only 'the tip of the iceberg' for this issue (and for future issues also). I generally provide some visible indication of the last time the page or section was updated.

Links to information about the coronavirus and COVID-19 are on a separate page. . .

. . . (except for links with political and economic emphasis, which are listed below).

Economic Impact of the Pandemic

Political Impact of the Pandemic

Coping Page Portal: options to deal with anxiety, boredom, terror, ignorance, etc.

Humor, Music, Books, Movies, Games, Puzzles, Late Night Comedians, etc.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words - new political cartoons and vintage ones, too

You will find terrific cartoons sprinkled throughout the web site; at some point, I will collect the ones I have published over the years on a separate page.

News and Politics - Coronavirus is not the only thing happening nowadays:

"Everything Else" is just an exaggeration, of course!

State of Maine

  • Please consider signing up and thinking of good questions to ask at next Wednesday's Facebook Town Hall. Here is the link to sign up and ask your questions: Hilary Koch Facebook Town Hall - on 5/13/2020 at 6:30 p.m. Hilary is running for the State Senate [the 16th District].
  • more to come next time . . . [CMP project, Senate race]

National Politics

The Trump "Administration"

Capitalism and Socialism

Michael Moore - Serious Soul Searching or Losing His Way?

Science, Mathematics and Philosophy

History (for a change of pace)

Recent Blog Posts (reverse chronological order)

For more opinion and commentary from MMPF voices, check out The Grumpy Progressive. We are currently working on a blog post discussing the new Michael Moore film: The Planet of the Humans [in June]. Please feel free to join the conversation by sending us your thoughts; put in your two cents.

Some Pertinent Links Harvested From November 2019 to today:

Have you ever wondered whether what you read or hear makes sense? Have you ever been persuaded by a clever argument? Have you ever disagreed with someone without being able to make a good argument? Do you want to be able to decide for yourself whether or not you agree with a candidate or a politician when they say something controversial?

  • Income of Richest One Percent
  • The Rich in the U.S. Are Getting Richer

David Pakman made a Critical Thinking Miniseries of videos in 2018 which will help you arrive at your own conclusions, instead of being conned into agreeing with something you are not sure about. This is a critical skill for making sense of current events, the news (yes, Virginia, even "fake news"). On a good day, these skills might even help you decide whether what you are hearing at your local city council meetings is total nonsense!

For extra credit: apply your critical thinking skills to the these discussions. Here are some good examples of different people trying to influence your thinking. Who do you agree with (if anyone)? Feel free to share your views with us!

Facebook/Zuckerberg testimony - AOC - WarrenFakeAds, etc!

Recent news has been added about Facebook and Twitter above, but I have repeated much material from our previous Info Digest because of the threat social media poses to our democracy. If you have not had a chance to look at some of this material, I urge you to give it a look. The Russians are not the only ones who are trying to confuse you and rile you up.

  • Bald Face Lying Book

You will find a general listing below of where to find more news and analysis. Over time I have gravitated to several sources (many of which reveal a progressive bias, of course), but I have tried to season that diet with other views to make it easier for us to understand and interact with the rest of the world out there. I believe it is healthy and sensible to learn how to interact with others who don't see things the way we do.

Here are some important or interesting resources.