The Progressive Populist, a newspaper that believes people are more important than corporations, has published its premiere issue as a monthly tabloid newspaper based in Austin, Texas, and Storm Lake, Iowa. Free sample copies are available by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
Three journalistic brothers have launched the Progressive Populist on a mission of reporting from the Heartland of America on issues of interest to workers, small businesses and family farmers and ranchers.
Vol. 1, No. 1 of the Monthly Journal of the American Way features original essays by Iowa Senator Tom Harkin on "Why I am a Progressive Populist," an answer to calls for a populist movement independent of the Democratic Party; former Senator Eugene McCarthy on "The Caesarian Solution," a proposal to tax the assets of the wealthy who have profited while running up the the national debt rather than tax future generations to pay off the debt; and A.V. Krebs, research director of PrairieFire Rural Action in Des Moines, on the agricultural underpinnings of the populist movement.
Staff reports include an article by Editor Jim Cullen from Austin on the prospects for Democrats taking back Congress next year, and why that leaves some union Democrats cool. Managing Editor Art Cullen in Storm Lake reports on an Iowa farmer who is fighting the expansion of mammoth pork feeding operations that threaten to pollute water supplies as well as change a way of live in rural America. He also has an interview with Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman, who says he is willing to fight the "vertical integration" of meat and poultry industries that place producers at the mercy of a few packing houses. And he reports on the resistance of telecommunications giants such as U.S. West to upgrading telephone lines in rural areas so that small-town businesses and individuals can tie in to the Internet.
The Progressive Populist includes regular syndicated columns by Jim Hightower, Ralph Nader, Jesse Jackson, Molly Ivins and media critics Jeff Cohen and Norman Solomon, as well as contributing editor Ronnie Dugger, whose "Call to Hope and Action," proposing an independent Populist movement, is reprinted from The Nation.
Other featured writers include:
In addtion to reports from staff and freelancers, the Progressive Populist will print interviews with progressive activists, texts of populist speeches and articles from alternative newspapers and magazines from around the country.
Stories are edited in Austin by Jim Cullen, former associate editor of The Texas Observer, and transmitted to Iowa, where the newspaper is published by brothers Art and John Cullen, who also operate a twice-weekly newspaper, the Storm Lake Times.
Too many well-meaning, frustrated blue-collar and middle-class people--the Reagan Democrats--are attracted to the pluto-populist rhetoric of Newt Gingrich, Pat Robertson, Phil Gramm, Pat Buchanan and Bob Dole, or they have lost faith in politics altogether, Jim Cullen said. The Progressive Populist will provide a vehicle for organizing a populist movement with progressive values. It will amplify those populist voices and tell people how they can make a difference.
The Progressive Populist will be an independent paper. The Progressive Populist will not be a Democratic Party organ; we will support progressive Democrats, progressive independent or alternative candidates if they have a chance of winning, and, if any progressive Republicans show themselves, we will give them a hearing.
We will not be an apologist for President Bill Clinton, but we will tell you what his administration has done on behalf of working Americans and contrast that with the records of his predecessors and the rivals who would take his place.
Mainly, we will give progressive populists a forum, we will give our readers the news and views they may not be getting from their corporate-owned daily, and we will deflate some pompous plutocrats along the way.
We aim to make the Progressive Populist the antidote to the monopoly daily news, throw a lifeline to progressives who feel like they are stranded in a sea of conservatives, and maybe play a role in reviving political debate.
The premiere issue can be sampled at an Internet home page set up at http://www.eden.com/~reporter. In addition to stories from the current issue and information about the Progressive Populist, the web site contains texts of speeches, essays and links to other political and media resources.
Our home page is not fancy by Web standards but we will add to it as we learn the tricks and we will maintain it as a progressive populist resource, Cullen said.
The trial subscription rate will be $18 for a year (12 issues). A free sample copy can be obtained by calling 1-800-205-7067, by sending email to email@example.com or by sending name and address to Progressive Populist, P.O. Box 487, Storm Lake, Iowa 50588. Note whether you would prefer a newsprint version or an email version.