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In retirement, Bob Anschuetz has applied his long career experience as an industrial writer and copy editor to helping authors meet publishing standards for both online articles and full-length books. In work as a volunteer editor for OpEdNews, he has specialized in helping improve, where needed, the readability of articles submitted by authors for whom English is not their native language. With a background that also includes four years as a college English teacher, Bob points to Henry David Thoreau as a major intellectual influence. He cites Thoreau's many writings promoting conscience-based independent thought and action as instrumental in shaping his own continuing commitment to the progressive social and political values of economic fairness, social justice, non-violent conflict resolution, and global community. Bob also continues to pursue a lifelong love of learning. He has been a regular participant in political-science and philosophy seminars, a volunteer discussion-group leader on a variety of topics, and a literacy tutor. Bob is also a strong supporter of the Network of Spiritual Progressives, associated with Tikkun Magazine, where he served as a volunteer archives editor for two years and published several articles online. His extended Letter to the Editor on the widespread triumphalism in America's response to the killing of Osama bin Laden was included in the Summer 2011 issue of Tikkun.
America's Motto Can't Be "America First." It Must Be "People First."
The U.S. should begin to shift its foreign policy away from waging war or providing military aid to benefit the regional ambitions of countries whose principal virtue is that they serve America's geopolitical interests. Instead, its foreign policy should be aimed primarily at helping all undeveloped countries gain access to life essentials such as clean water and food. The defense dollars saved could be put to much better use.
Compared to the Benefits of Peace, Spending Money on War Is Insane
Few people fail to regret the death, destruction and suffering inflicted by war. Another of its consequences, however, is in the long run even more damaging to the cause of human well-being. That is the waste of resources in preparing for, and waging, war that could otherwise be used to help meet the physical, economic, social, and cultural needs of ordinary people. Series: War Must and Can Be Ended (8 Articles, 9580 views)
Thursday, September 7, 2017(8 comments)
Distorted Views of the Enemy and Bush's "Axis of Evil"
The willingness of our government to kill and bring misery to millions of powerless people in nations like Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq, which represent no direct threat to us, cannot be justified alone in terms of vague strategic concerns. It must be further rationalized by psychological projections that distort perceptions of the adversary's true motivations and justify making war against him. Series: War Must and Can Be Ended (8 Articles, 9580 views)
Tuesday, September 5, 2017(3 comments)
America's Wars Are Making Us Less Free and Safe
America's best course as the world's only superpower is not to try to force small developing nations to remake themselves in ways that serve our own security and economic interests. We should instead help them realize their own national aspirations by offering them the economic, political and technological assistance they may need to do so. Isn't this, in the end, the only sensible approach for dealing with North Korea? Series: War Must and Can Be Ended (8 Articles, 9580 views)
War Can Be Ended: It Is a Product of Cultural Choice, Not of "Human Nature."
A prominent meme in American foreign policy is "Peace through Strength," but what I want is "Strength through Peace." Guided by that principle, our foreign policy would no longer be driven by the imperatives of strategic dominance, but by the empathic impulse for creative collaboration with our neighbors around the world, aimed at ensuring every individual physical security and the freedom to pursue his
or her own happiness. Series: War Must and Can Be Ended (8 Articles, 9580 views)
Tuesday, August 8, 2017(7 comments)
War Not Only Kills People: It's the Single Biggest Destroyer of the Environment.
The global anti-war activist organization World Beyond War is seeking to increase its impact by joining forces, where possible, with environmental activist groups. The two movements are natural allies: Militarism is the single biggest destroyer of the environment, and government spending on war and war preparation diminish financial resources available for other pressing needs, including fast-paced creation of a green economy. Series: War Must and Can Be Ended (8 Articles, 9580 views)
We Can, and Need To, Negotiate with Putin, Not Demonize Him.
To my mind, the current obsession of American politicians and mass media with Russian interference in our presidential election is both blatantly hypocritical--considering America's own misdeeds--and demonstrative of an inability to walk a mile in the other guy's moccasins. The far bigger fish we Americans have to fry is avoiding a nuclear war with Russia. That will require negotiating with Putin, not demonizing him.
"Manglehorn": A Call to the Authentic Life
The 2014 Al Pacino movie "Manglehorn," available on DVD, is a psychological drama that also seems to me an artful meditation on the theme of inauthenticity in American life. The title character, Manglehorn, played by Pacino, avoids facing life's realities until a harsh in-your-face challenge to his own sense of self sets him on a different course.
Wednesday, August 10, 2016(4 comments)
We Need a Creativity Revolution to Meet Real Human Needs and Spark Personal and Social Joy.
We human beings are the most successful product of biological evolution on earth, the only species with the capacity to create the necessary conditions for our own happiness. The key to that happiness is to make conscious use of our inborn talents to produce, in creative interplay with others, new ideas, tools, products, and other resources that add objective value to society and the world by meeting genuine human needs.
Saturday, January 16, 2016(5 comments)
How To Add Staying Power to the Sanders Campaign
In my book, Bernie Sanders of all presidential candidates has the best ideas for America and can be trusted most to back his ideas to the hilt. But for staying power to win the presidency, his campaign needs to be strengthened in two ways: by broadening its message to include the One Percent, and by quickly planning and mobilizing an activist people's movement with a comprehensive strategic plan.
Living Out the Creative Self: It's the Key to Bridging Differences and to a Meaningful Life.
As de Toqueville noted, Americans are "joiners," deriving a large part of their self-identity from the values of the groups to which they are attached. The insularity of many value-based groups makes outreach to groups with other views and values difficult or impossible. This article argues that meaningful communication is only possible when it reflects the powers of creativity and insight innate in individual group members.
Friday, January 6, 2012(4 comments)
Let's Stop Waging War To Advance America's "Interests."
This article argues that, though it is rarely acknowledged by opinion makers, it is a moral outrage that the American government has felt free throughout the twentieth century and into the twenty-first to undertake wars of choice on weak nations -- effectively wrecking their societies and killing countless civilians -- whenever it believes they pose a problem for perceived "national interests."
THE CHALLENGE OF THE CONSERVATIVE MINDSET
Conservatives may view the world in terms of competing interests that must be allowed to sort out winners and losers, while progressives tend to look past individual interests to a common humanity that underlies them and demands a politics dedicated to ensuring the general welfare. For many reasons, the progressive view must prevail, but conservatives can help to ensure that it is effectively implemented in the real world.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011(22 comments)
We Need a Progressive Primary Challenge to Obama in 2012!
Following the President's failure to argue progressive values persuasively in the debt ceiling negotiations, and in view of the minimal attention to those values that can be found in the mainstream media, it's time to encourage a progressive primary challenge to Obama in 2012 that can help educate the public about what it is progressives stand for. It's time to lay a foundation for progressive governance in the future!
Monday, July 11, 2011(4 comments)
Progressive Leadership To Serve the Common Good
This article argues for "progressive" solutions to the nation's critical debt and employment problems, but makes the larger point that the approach proposed can help heal widespread popular alienation by overtly addressing the common good, rather than the narrow needs of a ruling elite.