About Peter Dreier

Peter Dreier teaches politics and chairs the Urban & Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College. This article draws on the last chapter (called "The 21st Century So Far") of his book, The 100 Greatest Americans of the 20th Century: A Social Justice Hall of Fame, published by Nation Books in July: http://100greatestamericans.org/

Why Is Public Television Against Public Schools?


Peter Dreier: PBS has nary a word to say about the big money that has been funding the attack on public schools and teachers unions.

If Paul Ryan Is a ‘Moderate,’ I’m the Easter Bunny


Radical Paul Ryan: Let’s hope that the mainstream media will remind voters of Ryan’s consistently ultraconservative views.

Paul Ryan Is a Liar and Charlatan, Not a Serious “Policy Wonk”


Paul Ryan Policy Wonk: Yes, he’s chair of the House Budget Committee, but that just means he’s an ambitious pol, not a smart policy maven.

‘Champion of Labor’ Sheila Kuehl’s Next Challenge: LA County Government


Sheila Kuehl: When talking with other politicians, her years of legislative and legal training make her a persuasive advocate.

‘America The Beautiful’ Author Is Rush Limbaugh’s Favorite Lesbian Socialist


Katherine Lee Bates — As long as we’re educating the Limbaugh lunatics, the “Pledge of Allegiance” also written by a Christian socialis.

Keeping Ramon Onboard


Peter Dreier: Questions raised about PUSD contract with former Board member Ramon Miramontes

Meet the People Who Gave JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon a $9.5 Million Raise


Peter Dreier: CEO compensation decisions are made by fellow board members who live in a rarified world where multi-million dollar salaries are taken for granted and where they often blame a company’s poor performance on forces outside the CEO’s control.

Is America Ready for a New War on Poverty?


New War on Poverty — We need to combine targeted anti-poverty programs with broader policies to revitalize the economy.

Ralph Nader’s Hypocrisy


Ralph Nader Hypocrite — Without Nader, there’d have been no President George W. Without George W., no war in Iraq.

10 Lessons Villaraigossa Can Teach De Blasio


Lessons for New York City — Remember, all liberals and progressives have a stake in your success as mayor of America’s largest city.

25 Best Progressive Victories for 2013


Progressive Victories 2013 — The strategic question is whether compromises are dead ends or stepping stones to further progress.

Will Heartless Republicans Screw Themselves By Screwing the Jobless?


Extending Unemployment Insurance – Americans understand that being laid off can happen to hard-working people through no fault of their own.

How Max Baucus, the Next Ambassador to China, Killed Progressive Health Care Reform


Ambassador Max Baucus — It’s just unfortunate that Obama couldn’t send Baucus to a democratic country.

Radicals in City Hall: An American Tradition


Socialists in Office — The time appears to be ripe for a new wave of urban reform, who could popularize “left wing of the possible” ideas.

Watt Now? (Or, Can Mel Watt Fix the Housing Crisis?)


Mel Watt: Housing and bank reform advocates view his confirmation as a major victory.

Getting Real About America’s Declining Murder Rate

murder meme

Declining Murder Rate — No other well-off, democratic society has a murder rate even close to that of the United States.

NPR’s Robert Siegel Needs a Reality Check


Peter Dreier: If anyone still suspects that National Public Radio has a consistently liberal bias, listen to Robert Siegel’s interview with Brigid Flaherty on Wednesday’s All Things Considered.

Walmart Workers: TGI Black Friday

thanksgiving black friday white saturday (2)

Peter Dreier: The Black Friday rallies and demonstrations represent a dramatic escalation of the growing protest movement among employees of America’s largest private employer.

Labor Board Sides With Workers: Walmart Can’t Silence Employees Any Longer


Peter Dreier: A landmark ruling by the National Labor Relations Board says Walmart unlawfully harassed and fired employees for protesting.

LA Times Gives Walmart Protests a Pass


Peter Dreier: If you want to learn how thousands of Walmart’s poverty-wage workers in the region will be coping with this year’s holiday season, don’t look for it in Los Angeles’ paper of record.

Do Tuesday’s Progressive Victories Show a Turning Tide?


Peter Dreier: Despite a few setbacks, progressives had much to cheer about, sensing that the tide is turning against the unholy alliance of big business, the Tea Party, and the religious right.

Missing Movements?


Peter Dreier: For the most part, however, reporters for the mainstream media cover the political maneuvering in Washington, D.C., or state capitals, or city halls. They don’t cover the day-to-day lives of ordinary workers and immigrants, nor the movement groups that help give them voice.

Activists Confront Financial Titans Larry Fink and William Gross

Larry Fink and Bill Gross

Peter Dreier: Although the two plutocrats live in the economic and social stratosphere, Peggy Mears and Jono Shaffer tried to educate Fink and Gross about the everyday lives of people who live month-to-month on working class incomes.

Remembering W.E.B. Du Bois


Peter Dreier: Overshadowed by the recent celebration of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom and Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech was another half-century milestone — the death of W.E.B. Du Bois.

What Would Martin Luther King Jr. March for Today?

mlk monument

Peter Dreier: King began his activism as a crusader against racial segregation, but he soon recognized that his battle was part of a much broader fight for a more humane society. Today, at age 84, King would no doubt still be on the front lines, lending his voice and his energy to major battles for justice.

A Warning to Mitch Daniels: My Book Is Dangerous, Too!

mitch daniels

Peter Dreier: Surely as the head of a prestigious university and as a concerned citizen, you will want to warn your university’s board of trustees and professors about my book.

Alicia Keys Should Get a Divorce — From Walmart

alicia keys

Peter Dreir: Walmart invites big-name celebrities not only to entertain the shareholders but also to lend legitimacy to the company, which for years has been the target of substantial criticism from human rights groups, environmentalists, women’s and immigrant rights activists, unions, small business organizations, and many others.

Will Trayvon’s Killing Catalyze a Movement Like Emmett Till’s Did?

trayvon protest

Peter Dreier: The eerie parallels between the shooting of Trayvon Martin and the murder of Emmett Till 58 years ago remind us that despite many years of racial progress, our criminal justice system remains a bastion of bias and bigotry.

How Rep. Paul Ryan Attacks Programs That Benefited His Mom

paul ryan lasgna

Peter Dreier: Rep. Paul Ryan is back to his old tricks, demonizing people who rely on government to improve their lives. This week, his target was food stamp recipients.

25 Ideas for Mayor Garcetti

garcetti speaks

Peter Dreier: A successful mayor and council cannot be satisfied with merely coping as issues arise, but must be able to anticipate and define the city´s needs for the next four years. As our newly elected leaders prepare for their roles, we´ve asked writers to share their thoughts about what lies ahead for Los Angeles.

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