Class Wars Blog
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Welcome to ClassWars, the home of Activist Radio, a weekly program for all Americans who are not in the wealthiest one percent of the US population.

Class wars have been going on since the beginning of recorded history. As societies become more powerful and wealthy, they often become more corrupt. Towards the end of each cycle, a few rich families own practically everything and rule with an iron fist. Imperial wars for empire and military over-expansion are other trademarks of a debased and undemocratic society. Empire brings about great poverty and suffering not only in the occupied and exploited lands, but at home as well.

Class wars is a dirty term in our media, which always implies that America is above such crudeness. But the very rich are not above that at all. They have been waging an especially intense attack on working people since the 1970's, and have accumulated immense wealth and power at the expense of the rest of us.

Of course, America's class wars are not fought with tanks and bombs, but with crooked politicians, right wing think tanks and corporate owned media. For the very rich to maintain and increase their share of the national wealth, they have to fool you. How else could one percent of our population call the shots for the other ninety-nine percent?

Well, there is another way. The very rich can bankroll a fascist demagogue who then uses racial fears and hatreds to overcome any form of worker resistance. Mussolini and Hitler are examples of how this was done in the 1930s. Trump is, of course, the most dangerous demagogue of the 21st century. To understand how he has gotten this far, check out: "The Unspoken Spread of Fascism."

Activist Radio will attempt to show you how the few richest of our citizens lie to the rest of us to expand their power and wealth. They are sick with greed, of course. But so far, the rest of us are what might be worse, and that is stupid. None of the information presented is particularly new or really very hard to find, although you won't read it in the mainstream press or see it on TV. If that is what you are relying on for news, you are being suckered, my friend. I don't know how to put it any nicer.

So sit back, relax, and listen to Activist Radio streamed live:

Thursdays from 5 - 6 pm ET

Sundays from 5 - 6 pm ET

Activist Radio can also be heard: Thursdays 5-6 pm on WVKR 91.3 FM at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY; Thursdays from 9-10 pm on WBDY 99.5 FM at The Bundy in Binghamton, NY; Sundays 1:30-2:30 pm on WESU 88.1 FM at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT; Sundays 4-5 pm from WIOF 104.1 FM in Woodstock; and Sundays 5-6 pm from the Progressive Radio Network at Past programs are available as a podcast, and you can find them by searching for "Activist Radio" on iTunes, Google Play, Digital Podcast, Stitcher. or Spotify. Our last ten programs can also be heard by clicking on the dates to the right.

Recent stories on Activist Radio may have you thinking about some important issues. Put another way, you could be wondering if most of what we say is totally made up, since you probably haven't seen it on TV. But here are some links to stories we have done recently.

News fashioned by the people in charge, the corporations and your government. Each week, we cover the stories that are just left out of the US propaganda machine.

Fred Nagel is a Vietnam Era veteran and political activist whose articles have appeared in CounterPunch, Global Exchange, LA Progressive, Mondoweiss, Peace & Planet News, Popular Resistance, and Z Magazine. He also hosts a show on Vassar College Radio, WVKR (


Eli wishing Assange a Happy Birthday

Eli and Fred "take a knee" for racial justice
while Jimi Hendrix goes out over the airwaves.

Reporting from the veteran's
encampment at Standing Rock

Fred at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London,
standing with a vigil for Julian Assange

Dave, Heather, Fred and DJ James Poe
at WABG - AM 960 in Columbus, MS

Dahr Jamail and Gary

Fred and Gary with Pete Seeger

Kathy Kelly and Gary

Thanks to Martha for this time
on the set of Democracy Now.

Fred and Gary on the air

The late 19 Century had its very own Gilded Age.

Milton Friedman, guru of deregulation and
self interest, made millionaires into billionaires
by robbing everyone else.

Listen to recent shows

You can also right click on the date to read your browser's other options. Listening in iTunes works nicely if that is available.

November 24

GUEST: Ahmad Abuznaid, cofounded of the Dream Defenders, and Executive Director of the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, talks about the links between Black Lives Matter and the fight for justice in Palestine.

US Campaign for Palestinian Rights
AIPAC spent over $4 million trying to stop Summer Lee
The ADL’s latest front against US high school students and educators

SONG: Roger Waters ... We Shall Overcome
SONG: Mistahi ... No to NATO

November 17

GUEST: Andrea Bauer, Managing Editor of the Freedom Socialist newspaper and author of "Thwarting the Cuban Revolution – the long U.S. war and its bitter fruits,” talks about imperialism being the highest stage of capitalism.

The Ravaging of Ukraine
Hot war, Cold War, and irrepressible revolution
Freedom Socialist Party

SONG: Eric Bibb, Migration Blues ... Masters of War
SONG: Willie Dunn ... I Pity the Country

November 10

GUESTS: Kwame Holmes, faculty adviser to the Bard College Prison Initiative, and Shaina Low, Advocacy Officer at Defense for Children International, discuss the systemic mistreatment, abuse and arrest of Black American and Palestinian youths in the US and Israel. (prerecorded panel discussion)

Defense for Children Palestine
Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children in the US Congress
Defense of Children International

SONG: Eric Bibb, Migration Blues ... Brotherly Love
SONG: Leon Bridges ... Sweeter

November 3

GUEST: Mazin Qumsiyeh, Palestinian scientist and author, faculty member of Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities, former faculty at Duke, and Yale Universities, and founder and director of the Palestine Museum of Natural History. (prerecorded panel on "Holding Our Ground: Resisting Colonialism and Environmental Destruction")

An Interview with Prof. Mazin Qumsiyeh
Qumsiyeh: A Human Rights Web
Restoring our Environment with Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh

SONG: Peter LaFarge ... The Ballad of Ira Hayes
SONG: Watermelon Slim, Watermelon Slim & The Workers  ... Flooding Money Blues

October 27

Guest: Daniel Atonna, political activist and New York City Coordinator of For the Many, talks about his recent focus, Homes Are Not Hotels, the campaign to expose the role of absentee investors and AirBnB in the scarcity of affordable housing.

For The Many
Graphic of the commodification of housing
What is the “Homes are not Hotels” movement?

SONG: Michael Franti & Spearhead, Yell Fire! ... Light Up Ya Lighter
SONG: Eliza Gilkyson, 2020 ... Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

October 20

Guest: Michael Leonardi, Italian activist and author of the Counterpunch article “Introducing Giorgia Meloni: How the US opened the door for Fascism’s Return to Italy" talks about the ascendency of the right in Italy. He currently lives on the island of Procida in the Gulf of Naples.

How the US opened the door for fascism's return to Italy
Nuclear proliferation and European hypocrisy
Invasion of Ukraine Highlights Some Ugly Truths About U.S. and NATO

SONG: Leonard Cohen, The Future ... Democracy

October 13

GUEST: Sarahana Shrestha, first generation immigrant from Nepal, surprise winner of a Democratic primary for NY State Assembly, and committed reformer who does not take corporate money, talks about her strong focus on working families and climate.

Surprise Democratic State Assembly primary winner
Sarahana for NY State Assembly
How Sarahana Shrestha pulled off an election upset

SONG: Fred Nagel ... Palestine On My Mind
SONG: Watermelon Slim and the Workers, The Wheel Man ... Judge Harsh Blues

October 6

GUEST: Jeffrey Sommers, Professor of Political Economy & Public Policy in Global Studies and a Senior Fellow, Institute of World Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, talks about how Gorbachev became the most reviled man in Russia.

How Gorbachev became the most reviled man in Russia
African and African Diaspora Studies
Mikhail Gorbachev’s Project Was a Noble Failure

SONG: Sheryl Crow ... God Bless This Mess
SONG: Tracy Chapman, New Beginning ... The Rape of the World

September 29

GUEST: Steve Early, writer for the Jacobin, longtime union representative for the Communications Workers of America, and author of several books, discusses his latest one, Our Veterans: Winners, Losers, Friends and Enemies on the New Terrain of Veterans Affairs.

Our Veterans Duke University Press
Steve Early and Suzanne Gordon: Our Veterans
Jacobin articles by Steve Early

SONG: Eliza Gilkyson, 2020 ... Beautiful World of Mine
SONG: Buffy Sainte-Marie, Medicine Songs ... Universal Soldier

September 22

GUEST: Sleydo (Molly Wickham), spokesperson an Indigenous reoccupation site in British Columbia, talks about her people's resistance to the Coastal Gasoline pipeline. This interview is a replay from this spring.

The Unspoken Spread of Fascism
Gidimt’en Access Point
‘Gut-wrenching:’ Drilling starts under Wet’suwet’en river

SONG: Fred Nagel ... Chosen People

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Some Favorite Lies
of the Very Rich

  1. Class wars don't exist in America, the land of the free. (The very rich have taken the rest of us to the cleaners, especially since the mid 1970's. Democracy in America has become little more than a useful fiction.)
  2. The two party system promotes the will of the people. (Both parties are paid for by the major corporations, leaving the people with very little power to change domestic or foreign policy.)
  3. Multinational corporations encourage free enterprise. (They spend most of their time getting handouts from governments while trying to eliminate workers' rights and environmental regulations through "free" trade.)
  4. The billions spent on defense contracts make Americans safer. (Most defense contracts are no-bid, billion dollar scams. Of the first world countries, only America spends so much on weaponry that there is nothing left over for the poor and middle class: no education, no health care, and no housing.)
  5. High drug costs are necessary to pay for research. (Most drug profits go towards advertising and CEO stock options. Other first world countries, like Canada, control drug prices.)
  6. Charter schools increase the quality of the nation's education. (Charter schools allow corporations to control what students learn, while draining dollars from public schools.)
  7. US foreign policy is used to spread democracy and to make the world a safer place. (Most US policy is military action aimed at countries that threaten corporate profits. In America, the poor fight the wars, the middle class pays for them, and the very rich make out like the bandits they are.)
  8. Free health care, daycare, and college tuition for all are simply unaffordable. (The most successful capitalist countries provide their citizens with all these benefits and much more.)
  9. Social Security needs reform to save it. (Social Security is good for another 40 years, and with a little more paid by top earners, good forever. That is if we can keep Wall Street thieves from getting their hands on it.)
  10. It's all Trump's fault! Vote for the Democrats to change the system. (If you believe that whopper, you are part of the problem.)

The Hidden Verses
to Woody's Song

Was a high wall there that tried to stop me
A sign was painted said: Private Property,
But on the back side it didn't say nothing --
This land was made for you and me.

One bright sunny morning in the shadow of the steeple
By the Relief Office I saw my people --
As they stood hungry, I stood there wondering if
This land was made for you and me.

WOODY G. (Feb. 23, 1940)

One blue sky above us
One ocean lapping all our shore
One earth so green and round
Who could ask for more
And because I love you
I'll give it one more try
To show my rainbow race
It's too soon to die.

-Pete Seeger

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Crony capitalists have always been with us.
Here is Boss Tweed of New York's Tammany
Hall sometime in the 1860's.

The policy of the American Empire since World War II.

I see in the future a crisis approaching that fills me with anxiety. As a result of the war, corporations have become enthroned, and an era of corruption in high places will follow. The money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its rule by preying upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is concentrated in a few hands and the Republic destroyed.

Abraham Lincoln

And above all Fascism denies that class-war can be the preponderant force in the transformation of society.

Benito Mussolini

The first truth is that the liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself. That, in its essence, is Fascism - ownership of Government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power.

Franklin D. Roosevelt

A revolution is a class struggle. It was one class - the oppressed, and that other class - the oppressor.

Fred Hampton

Surely, in the history of lies told to the population, this is the biggest lie. In the history of secrets, withheld from the American people, this is the biggest secret: that there are classes with different interests in this country. To ignore that--not to know that the history of our country is a history of slaveowner against slave, landlord against tenant, corporation against worker, rich against poor--is to render us helpless before all the lesser lies told to us by people in power.

Howard Zinn

The clinical definition of "fascism' is when private concentrated economic power takes government away from the people, turns government into a guarantor, a subsidizer, a covering of corporate power.

Ralph Nader

There's class warfare, all right, but it's my class, the rich class, that's making war, and we're winning.

Warren Buffet

This [$700 billion bailout] was the largest single act of class warfare in the modern history of this country.

Dennis Kucinich

I think this has been a class war waged by the rich against the poor, and I think that they won. And I think the poor are fighting back.

Naomi Klein

The solution is revolution, first in the spirit of the gospel; Jesus could not accept people going hungry. It is a conflict between classes, rich and poor. My role is to preach and organize.

Jean-Bertrand Aristide

The effect of the [European Central Bank] policies is to weaken the welfare state measures and to reduce the power of labor. That's class war. It's fine for the banks, for financial institutions, but terrible for the population.

Noam Chomsky

The US has a highly class-conscious business class. If you read the business literature, it's like reading Mao's "Red Book." The values may be inverted, but the terminology is the same. They're fighting a bitter class war constantly. They never relax for a minute.

Noam Chomsky
The breakdown [of American society] is not caused by economic laws. They are policies, a kind of class war initiated by the rich and powerful against the working population and the poor. This is what defines the neoliberalism period, not only in the United States but in Europe and elsewhere.

Noam Chomsky
For 45 years there has been a war in this country waged by the corporate elite against the working class of America.

Bernie Sanders
If there is going to be class warfare in this country, it's about time the working class won that war.

Bernie Sanders
The theft of public resources for the military and militarism domestically and abroad represent a one-sided class war waged on the working class in the U.S. The 6 trillion dollars spent on U.S. wars since 2003 are resources that could have been directed to address the increasing desperate plight of workers and poor people in the U.S.

Ajamu Baraka
You look at the reality, neoliberalism translates as bitter class war. That’s the meaning of it, everywhere you look, every component of it.
Noam Chomsky