Sign in

Writer, Activist, Leftist.

#1: There’s no such thing as a good Republican.

On January 6th, 2021, as Congress was in the process of certifying Republican President Donald Trump’s defeat, thousands of Republicans attacked the capital resulting in a lockdown, delay, and four deaths.

For months prior to this, Republican politicians openly supported the idea of contesting the election results to prevent Trump from leaving office, while dozens of Republican attorneys, legislators, and donors actively campaigned to change the outcome of the election.

For decades prior to this, Republicans have courted white supremacy, adopted fascist foreign policy programs, and worked to undermine democracy. In 2000, Republican President Bush came to power on a…

In 10 years, no one will talk about COVID

To date, more than 640,000 Americans have died from COVID-19. We’ve endured an astounding 39,300,000 cases. More than 1 in 10 Americans have caught COVID at some point. Its victims have been disproportionately nonwhite, poor, and urban, and even its survivors can expect to live with lung scarring, heart and auto-immune disorders or even long-term neurological conditions known as “brainfog.

The scale of this suffering — impacting every American from kids who learned remotely to Amazon workers who caught the virus — should be enough to inspire massive uprisings. It should be enough to justify demonstrations at every state capital…

What else could we be right about today?

In October of 2001, a stunning 90% of Americans supported Bush’s invasion of Afghanistan.

Two decades later, as Biden has finally ended America’s military occupation, we can tally the final cost of this disaster. The AP estimates ~150,000 casualties of the war, at least 1/3rd of which were civilians. They go on to estimate the war cost $2,000,000,000,000 (enough to give every American $6700) in cash, and another $6,500,000,000,000 in future interest payments.

It’s hard to imagine 90% of Americans agreeing on anything today — much less a war started by a far-right oil heir (President George W. Bush) who…

1.) Is there any update on the new precinct? How was the city council helpful or unhelpful in your goal of preventing its funding (and defunding overall)?

By “new precinct” are you referring to the public safety building that’s supposed to go up at 90 Washington Street? I know it’ll be used by both our police and fire departments. I honestly don’t have much to say about it other than that. I personally haven’t been following it very closely.

There haven’t been any new cops submitted to our city council’s committee for Confirmation of Appointments and Personnel Matters since they…

How do we move forward from so much past?

Cover Art from Dan Simmon’s “Hyperion”

Recently I finished the second book in Dan Simmon’s epic sci-fi series Hyperion. Composed first of independent narratives told on a pilgrimage and then as a more focused narrative of one magnificent battle, Hyperion is about many things. It’s about religion. It’s about time travel. It’s even about fatherhood. But as I read it last month, I was struck by one particular theme: its obsession with history — not as a topic, but as an antagonist.

You see, in the far future which Hyperion illustrates, the question of human purpose becomes unexpectedly daunting. In a universe where every planet, mountain…

Run everywhere, run against injustice, and fight for your own communities.

Since AOC’s 2018 victory in her primary challenge against powerful Democratic incumbent Joe Crowley, American socialists (at least, the sort that bother with elections) have gained a small but increasing number of seats across the US. Although DSA-backed and self-described-socialist Bernie Sanders tragically came up short in the 2020 Democratic Primaries, the victories of Cori Bush, Jamal Bowman, Mondaire Jones, Zohran Mamdani, Jabari Brisport, and others (including my very own state rep Erica Uyterhoeven!) …

Inside the Democratic Party’s Civil War

Human societies — at least, in the forms we’ve known — require a basic shared understanding of reality to function. Called “mores” in sociology, “shared myths” in the study of nationalism, and “Li” in Confucianism, the idea that people ought to share some concept of what it means to live together permeates social philosophies. Whether they take the form of church on Sundays or even just a respect for science and scientists, shared understandings seem unavoidable if your goal is to organize and participate in a functioning society.

It’s a shame, then, that the Democratic Party has so few left.

The line between censorship and freedom may be different than you think

On June 30th, 1918, presidential candidate, union member, and lifelong socialist Eugene Debs was arrested by federal law enforcement and charged with ten counts of sedition. His crime? Giving a speech against US involvement in the first world war. In his address to the court, Debs did not grovel nor equivocate. He stood proudly in defiance of unjust laws, steadied by his “kinship with all mankind.”

Debs told the judge:

Your Honor, I ask no mercy and I plead for no immunity. I realize that finally the right must prevail. I never so clearly comprehended as now the great struggle…

A Story in 6 Graphs

This February, the New York City Police Department lost an appeal to keep thousands of disciplinary records hidden.

While there is no way of knowing exactly what will be found in those records once they are released, the NYPD review board complaint data leaked to ProPublica last year gives us some idea. …

Our political future depends on it.

If you’ve ever chafed at an Aunt’s casual racism, attacked a Grandfather’s sexist commentary, or pointed out a historical figure’s moral depravity, you’ve likely heard the refrain: “they were from a different time.” This argument — that morality is somehow time-barred — not only obscures historical crimes, but misses the point of criticizing people altogether.

As I discussed recently, we have become obsessed with judging by intentions rather than by actions. Criticism of Joe Biden in America, even in the most concrete and data-grounded terms, is seen as an attack on his moral character. Consequently, people feel a need to…

Matthew Barad

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store