Top Obama Official Speaks at Northampton Group’s Meeting

The Northampton-based group Free Press held a public meeting in Washington, DC on May 14 about how the public can successfully lobby the government to increase public funding for journalism, and to create universal high speed internet access. Among the speakers at the event were Susan Crawford, a member of President Barack Obama’s National Economic Council and a graduate of Yale Law School. This one-minute video shows part of Crawford’s speech, and the line of people waiting to use computers with extremely slow internet connections at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, also on May 14.

1,000 at Vermont Rally: 'Healthcare Is a Right'

Sheila Linton of Brattleboro spoke at a "Healthcare Is a Human Right" rally at the Vermont statehouse on May 1. The event was organized by the Vermont Workers Center. The U.S. is the only rich nation that does not provide universal health care. More information on the rally is at www.workerscenter.org photos by Eesha Williams

Workers Unite

About 30 years ago, the middle class in the United States was the biggest it’s ever been. Today, the U.S. is looking more like a country in Europe in the 1600s: thousands of rich people, and almost everyone else living in varying degrees of poverty. Why does that matter? Well, if you ask Derek Dobiecki, a worker at the Cingular Wireless store in the Holyoke Mall, the answer is "leanin'." "They took away our chairs," he told me in a 2006 interview. "If it's busy, with a lot of customers, you don’t really notice. But when it's slow, you're just leanin' for like eight hours."