Daily Reports, specials, and podcasts by The Real News Network
A hotel got $2.5 million in PPP loans but still laid off 100 workers. The workers are fighting back.
On Sep. 22, dozens rallied in support of over 100 workers who were laid off from the Merriweather Lakehouse Hotel in Columbia, Maryland, even though their hotel received millions of dollars from the federal government to keep them on payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic. Joining together with community supporters, UNITE HERE, a union that represents hospitality workers (98% of whom were laid off during the pandemic nationwide), is calling on the hotel's owner to rehire all 111 laid-off workers. In this special report, TRNN’s Jaisal Noor speaks with Ty Hughes, a UNITE HERE Local 7 member who has worked at the Merriweather Lakehouse Hotel for 17 years and is fighting to get his job back.
Canada’s big, fat, expensive, nothing-burger election
The past month has been filled with anxious predictions and endless punditry concerning Canada’s snap election, which was called by Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and took place on Sept. 20. With a whopping total of 600 million Canadian dollars spent, the election was the most costly in Canada’s history, yet voter turnout was nearly at an all-time low and the net results left the political landscape looking practically the same as before. What was the point? What has changed? And what opportunities, if any, do the election results provide for progressives in Canada?
In this installment of The Marc Steiner Show, Dimitri Lascaris joins Marc to break down the election results and to discuss how to break the iron grip of political stagnation in Canada. Lascaris is a
lawyer, journalist, activist, and he was a candidate in the federal Green Party leadership race in Canada, finishing second with just over 10,000 votes. He is also a longtime contributor and current board member at The Real News.
Tune in for new segments of The Marc Steiner Show every Tuesday and Friday on TRNN.
New evidence in police killing reveals just how brutal small town cops can be
Content warning: Some images and details in this episode are graphic and disturbing.
This week on PAR, we continue our ongoing investigation into the problem of rural overpolicing and provide a critical update on the killing of Tyler Rushing, which we reported on earlier in the year. Rushing’s case is yet another stark example of cops ignoring the needs of a civilian experiencing mental distress; instead, police brutally deployed a K-9, which bit him repeatedly, before shooting Rushing in the back of the head. Now, a police expert is speaking out, casting doubt on every action officers took the night Rushing died and raising more questions about the use of force by law enforcement and the untold consequences of abusing it.
The industrial farming monster that devoured rural America
Over the summer, TRNN Editor-in-Chief Maximillian Alvarez traveled to Wisconsin to report on a crucial struggle that has been largely ignored by corporate media. Residents of rural Polk, Burnett, and Crawford counties in Western Wisconsin have been embroiled in battles over the proposed construction of industrial "hog factories" in their communities, which would collectively house roughly 34,000 hogs. These concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) would also produce millions and millions of gallons of liquid manure a year, and residents fear they could cause irreversible damage to their land, air, water, property values, and ways of life.
What's happening in Wisconsin is part of a larger historical shift that has seen Big Agriculture and factory farming take over an industry that used to be dominated by small and mid-sized farms. The government-aided rise of industrial agriculture and meat production has pushed the independent farmers who still remain in operation today to the brink of extinction. As part of a special collaboration between The Real News Network and In These Times magazine for “The Wisconsin Idea,” Alvarez, Cameron Granadino (TRNN), and Hannah Faris (In These Times) went to Crawford, Polk, and Burnett counties to speak with residents about their concerns and about their struggles to defend themselves against Big Agriculture and the factory farming industry. You can watch their full documentary report here: https://therealnews.com/factory-farms-pose-an-existential-threat-for-rural-wisconsin-communities.
In this special Working People episode, we follow up on the reporting Alvarez, Granadino, and Faris did over the summer and speak with a panel of folks who were involved with producing and publishing those reports. We also update listeners on the ongoing struggles in Polk, Burnett, and Crawford counties to halt—or, at least, adequately regulate—the proposed CAFOs. Guests on this panel include: Forest Jahnke, Program Coordinator for the Crawford Stewardship Project; Lisa Doerr, an independent hay farmer & resident of Polk County; Hannah Faris, associate editor of "The Wisconsin Idea" at In These Times; and Maeve Conran, Program Director for Free Speech TV and host of Just Solutions.
Cuba & the US: A tale of two prison systems
In this episode of Rattling the Bars, TRNN Executive Producer and former Black Panther Eddie Conway discusses the differences between prisons in Cuba and in the United States. Of the two, only one incarcerates children, only one deliberately isolates prisoners from their families and communities, and only one uses long-term solitary confinement as a routine punishment—and it's not Cuba. "In Cuba you don't have solitary confinement," Conway says. "Because that's inhumane."
America is addicted to b******t crimes, and the six-year prosecution of a Black police chief proves it
Recent developments in a criminal case against a popular Black police chief reveal just how focused American law enforcement is on "b******t" crimes. The prosecution of Kelvin Sewell for his role in an investigation involving two parked cars has dragged on for nearly six years. Now prosecutors face a hearing over alleged misconduct, but the fact that Sewell was indicted at all raises serious questions about how much law enforcement in America is about projecting inequitable power.