Alternative Radio - November content

enadmin, 16th October 2014

If you need a distraction from the distraction that is Australia’s political class, tune in to Alternative Radio and suck up some really interesting and intelligent comment.

Here's a rundown of the November lectures set to play on stations via the Community Radio Network. This month's line-up includes Australian-focused content, with John Tognolini investigating Gallipoli myths. Program website.

03 Nov 2014 - Deepa Kumar and Arun Kundnani - Racism and Surveillance

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has a long history of spying on African Americans including Nobel Prize winner Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The great writer Richard Wright, who was also snooped on, wrote the poem "The FB Eye Blues" - "Woke up this morning/FB Eye under my bed/Said I woke up this morning /FB eye under my bed/Told me all I dreamed last night, every word I said." Racism and surveillance are closely intertwined. Today, state security agencies and police departments profile and target Muslims. Their organizations and mosques are infiltrated. If your name is Hussein or Fatima you might be asked questions at airports. A broad net is cast. Civil liberties are tossed aside. Culturally, irrational fear of Muslims is reinforced by popular TV shows such as "24" and movies such as "Zero Dark Thirty"

Deepa Kumar is an Associate Professor of Media Studies and Middle East Studies at Rutgers University. She is the author of "Outside the Box: Corporate Media, Globalization and the UPS Strike" and "Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire". She appears on numerous media outlets around the world. Arun Kundnani teaches Media, Culture and Communication at New York University. He also teaches terrorism studies at John Jay College. He is the author of "The End of Tolerance: Racism in the 21st Century Britain" and "The Muslims are Coming!"

10 Nov 2014 - John Tognolini - Gallipoli: Myths, Race and War

The Australian government and its corporate partners are spending almost $400 million dollars celebrating the so-called ANZAC spirit in the centenary of the landing at ANZAC Cove. Schoolchildren will study the legends of ANZAC and attend special events. Public gatherings will be organised and songs will be sung so that we don't forget. Yet, when we look closer at the huge public relations exercise that is being undertaken, like most propaganda, the truth is buried under layers of confection, obfuscation and distraction.

How many school children will be taught that Muslim, Hindu, Indigenous, Chinese and Japanese men fought alongside the white men from Australia? How many of the recreations of the battles will include the long, painful screaming deaths of the men who sometimes took days to die in the no-man's land between combatants? Rather, the focus will be on the "glory" of war and the pomp and ceremony that bears no relation to death. Rather than condemn wars, our government and its corporate partners will encourage a new generation to sacrifice more than they would ever consider.

John Tognolini is a history teacher, radio broadcaster, historian and writer. He's worked as a scaffolder, labourer, rigger, dogman, fettler and painter and docker. He is a regular contributor to the "Green Left Weekly" and has produced documentaries for the ABC. He established "Tog's". in 2006 and posts regular commentary and links to a wide variety of article on many topics. He currently teaches history at Wellington High school in central New South Wales. His third book is "Brothers: Part 1, Gallipoli  1915" and is the first of four books dealing with the First World War and is available through

17 Nov 2014 - Arundhati Roy - Gandhi and Caste

States have their iconic heroes. Founding Fathers. Jinnah in Pakistan, Ataturk in Turkey, George Washington in the U.S., Gandhi in India. To criticize them is risky business as they have been elevated to god-like status. Gandhi is no exception. He is revered and honored. His portrait hangs in many buildings and homes. His statue graces many public squares.

And he is on the rupee note. The adulation extends outside of India. The British government recently announced that his statue would be placed in Parliament Square. But all people have chinks in their armor. Gandhi supported the highly elaborate Hindu caste system of social segmentation and stratification, and hereditary class division. While deploring discrimination and oppression of Dalits, formerly known as untouchables, Gandhi did not see the hierarchical caste system as morally wrong and undemocratic.

Arundhati Roy is a world-renowned writer and global justice activist. The "New York Times" calls her, "India's most impassioned critic of globalization and American influence." Among her many honors are the Lannan Foundation's Cultural Freedom Award and the Sydney Peace Prize. She is the author of many books including "The God of Small Things", "The Chequebook and the Cruise Missile", "Field Notes on Democracy", "Walking with the Comrades" and "Capitalism: A Ghost Story". Her introductory essay to B.R.Ambedkar's "Annihilation of Caste" is "The Doctor and the Saint."

24 Nov 2014 - Bruce Schneier - The Internet, Privacy and Power

Edward Snowden's remarkable revelations leave no doubt. Big Brother is here. The National Security Agency's PRISM program is a clandestine mass electronic surveillance and data mining system. In plain English: it enables state spying on citizens. The American Civil Liberties Union says, "The things we do and say online leave behind ever-growing trails of personal information. With every click, we entrust our conversations, emails, photos, and much more to Facebook, Microsoft, Google and Yahoo. But what happens when the government asks these corporations to hand over their users' private information?"  What happens to our rights and expectations of privacy? The Information Superhighway as the Internet was once called has turned into a marketer's dream and a place where our messages and intimate details of our lives disappear into the NSA's new $1.5 billion, million square-foot complex in Bluffdale, Utah.

Bruce Schneier is a cryptographer and specialist in computer security technology. He is a fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard. He has briefed members of Congress on the NSA. He is the author of many books including "Liars and Outliers: Enabling the Trust Society Needs to Thrive" and "Carry On".


Alternative Radio (55'50 mins) plays live-to-air via satellite on Mondays at 10:04 EDT, and is available for DDN capture. For further information contact CRN staff at the CBAA office on 02 9310 2999 or email [email protected]


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Access special broadcasts for your station this Anzac Day, 25 April.


With the nation unable to gather together in person to commemorate those who served, the CBAA and community stations nationwide are doing what we can to pay tribute. 


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