Old Mole Variety Hour


The Old Mole burrows down to the roots of the great issues of our time – the struggles of ordinary people for democratic and sustainable ways of life.  The Mole goes where corporate media fear to tread, supporting grassroots challenges to top-down authority and giving voice to movements that shake the foundations of an unjust society.  The Moles' perspective is democratic, broadly socialist, and feminist.  (We count Karl Marx as a friend).

Here is why we call this show "The Old Mole"

Old Mole on Facebook

 Our theme "Mole in the Ground" is by Bascom Lamar Lunsford  (1924), somtimes blended with a newer versions, like the one  by dj/rupture, sung by Sindhu Zagoren.  It's on the album Special Gunpowder

Our graphic lettering is  by Charlie Ertola. Host portraits by Clayton Morgareidge.

For individual segments and information about episodes, click the "audio" tab.

You can leave comments for the Moles at  oldmolevarietyhour@gmail.com or by clicking on the comment section for any of our audio pieces.  


Coming Soon

Labor and climate change; capital punishment; stopping gun violence

Episode Archive

Old Mole Variety Hour on 03/11/13

Air date: 
Mon, 03/11/2013 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
What's next for Venezuelans, republican critique of wage-slavery, Movie Review: Snitch, left press

Tom Becker hosts this Old Mole and we hear:

Old Mole Variety Hour on 02/18/13

Air date: 
Mon, 02/18/2013 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
Soccer and Israeli bigotry, Pervert's Guide to Ideology, Big Pharma, and rethinking psychiatry films


Iven Hale hosts this episode and we hear:

Old Mole Variety Hour on 02/11/13

Air date: 
Mon, 02/11/2013 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

Old Mole Variety Hour on 01/21/13

Air date: 
Mon, 01/21/2013 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
MLK v Obama, guns, "Django Unchained," anarchism and marxism today


Clayton Morgareidge hosts this MLK day episode of the Old Mole, featuring --

  • Commentary on why Martin Luther King would not be supporting Barack Obama;
  • Conversation about gun violence, gun control, and mental health;
  • A review of "Django Unchained;"
  • A discussion of anarchism and marxism in today's political movements; and
  • Music made in Portland in honor of MLK

Old Mole Variety Hour on 01/14/13

Air date: 
Mon, 01/14/2013 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
Anarchism and Marxism, Movie Moles: Zero Dark Thirty, book review of "Sasha and Emma"

 Denise Morris hosts this Old Mole and we hear:

Old Mole Variety Hour on 01/07/13

Air date: 
Mon, 01/07/2013 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
Neoliberal assault on schools, top eco-stories of 2012, feminist analysis of Newtown Shooting

Laurie Mercier hosts this first Old Mole of the year and we hear:

Old Mole Variety Hour on 12/31/12

Air date: 
Mon, 12/31/2012 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
Against Thrift, movie reviews on GasLand and Promised Land, reading from the left press


Iven Hale hosts the last Old Mole of 2012! We hear:

  • Bill talks with James Livingston, a historian who's latest book "Against Thift" argues why consumer culture is good for America.
  • Movie Moles, Joe Clement and Jan Haaken, review two films about fracking. One a 2009 documentary called GasLand (available on NetFlix streaming) and a just released Gus Van Sant film starring Matt Damon called Promised Land.
  • Iven Hale reads something from the LeftPress. 

Old Mole Variety Hour on 12/17/12

Air date: 
Mon, 12/17/2012 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
A program of social and political commentary from a socialist-feminist point of view.

Old Mole Variety Hour on 12/10/12

Air date: 
Mon, 12/10/2012 - 9:00am - 10:00am
Short Description: 
Climate Talks, Anti-Oppression and Privilege Workshop, Book Review, Remembering Studs Turkel

 Denise Morris hosts this episode of the Old Mole and we hear:


Ismael Hossein-zadeh on Middle East Politics

program date: 
Mon, 09/28/2015

Bill Resnick talks with Ismael Hossein-zadeh about events in the Middle East. Hossein-zadeh is Emeritus Professor of Economics at Drake University and an expert on Middle East issues. He describes the legacy of the cold war, when "Arab socialism" was supported by the USSR while monarchies and dictatorships were supported by the US. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Americans hoped for a post-cold-war "peace dividend," in which the military budget would be redirected to supporting social needs. Instead the US military has turned to attempts to change 'unfriendly regimes': those the US has opposed not because of their tyranny but because of their resistance to US influence and corporate control.  Ismael and Bill  also discuss the continuing importance of both multinational corporations and the Arab spring of 2011.

[map via wikipedia]

Movie Moles on Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution

program date: 
Mon, 09/28/2015

Movie Moles Jan Haaken and Denise Morris discuss the new documentary The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution. The film opens in Portland next week at the  Hollywood theatre with a benefit event for the NAACP. Noting the impossibility of fully addressing all the many issues in the history of the Panthers--their relations to other social movements in the US and around the globe; their commitment to armed self-defense; their contributions as community service organization; their seductive style and media savvy; their complex politics of vanguardism and grassroots activism; their erosion and destruction by government infiltration and murder--Denise and Jan stress the importance of the film and the new material it offers to viewers.

Fear of Marx

program date: 
Mon, 09/28/2015

Tom Becker reads from Why the US Press is Afraid of Marx (and Jeremy Corbyn) by Conor Lynch in Counterpunch.  

In Marx’s analysis, widespread inequality and economic instability (and to a lesser degree environmental degradation) are inherent in the capitalist system, and they will eventually result in its collapse.

The problems of capitalism that he wrote so extensively about have returned, and capital is stronger than before. It seems that radical ideas are needed today more than ever, and admiring an intellectual who diagnosed the contradictions of capitalism better than anyone else is not a burden, but an advantage.

[public domain image]

Gaining Ground Farming Doc

program date: 
Mon, 09/28/2015

Jan Haaken talks with Elaine Velazquez and Barbara Bernstein about their new documentary: Gaining Ground tells the stories of two rural farms in Oregon and an urban farm in inner city Richmond, California, resisting the systems of agribusiness and changing their farming practices so they can feed their local communities healthy sustainably grown food. Bridging urban and rural, challenging the simplistic romance of the small family farm in favor of wider community solutions, the film explores both problems in our food system and inspiring stories. The filmmakers will be present at the 7pm Sept 1 screening at Cinema 21.

Changing Cities and Teachers' Unions

program date: 
Mon, 09/21/2015
Bill Resnick talks with Arun Gupta about how Portland, along with many other cities, is changing as it gentrifies the core and pushes poorer people out to the periphery. They also discuss the leading role that teachers' unions can have in organizing against these changes. 
Photo by MsSaraKelly

The Love to Save the World

program date: 
Mon, 09/21/2015
 W.H. Auden wrote "We must love one another or die." What kind of love could save the world? Not the love we sing of in love songs. In this commentary, Clayton Morgareidge explores the possibility of a world organized and moved by love instead of competition for money. 

Why Save the Postal Service

program date: 
Mon, 09/21/2015
Long time postal worker and activist Jamie Partridge talks with Bill Resnick about political threats to the postal service and why it's important to save it. People wishing to support the postal workers will be gathering between 7 and 9 am on Wednesday, September 23 at the Portland Art Museum to meet the Postmaster General and protest cuts in service. 

The Old Mole Variety Hour for September 21, 2015

program date: 
Mon, 09/21/2015
Bill Resnick hosts this show featuring music about love and a better world by Michael Jackson. The segments of the show are these:
  1. Journalist Arun Gupta talks with Bill Resnick about gentrification and the role of teachers' unions in resisting it.
  2. Jan Haaken explains some of the psychology behind the rhetoric of Republican presidential candidates in debate.
  3. Clayton Morgareidge reflects on what kind of love could change the world.
  4. Jamie Partridge talks with Bill about the US postal service and how to save it.
To hear the whole show, use the play button below. To hear individual pieces, follow the links above. You can follow us on Facebook to keep up with us and comment on shows and topics. 

Old Mole engineer Patsy Kullberg's novel, mentioned on the show, is Girl in the River. It takes place in 1940s and '50s Portland.

GOP Debaters on the Couch

program date: 
Mon, 09/21/2015
Psychologist Jan Haaken offers a psychoanalytic interpretation of the Republican debate last week, drawing out the way these candidates mobilize human anxieties over threats, mostly imaginary, and longings for a strong, protective leader. Progressives need to go beyond the tendency to frame these tactics as simply "negative campaigning" and expose the paranoid and pathological ideas that fuel right-wing campaigns--ideas that Democrats also often employ, but less crudely.  
Photo credit: DonkeyHotey


Avatar's Jake Sully is ---- Tarzan - - -


A great review I've seen on Avatar (and how the soldier will save the people):


There is a link from there that exposes Cameron's plot as a mirror of Pocahontas, amazing parallel!      http://failblog.org/2010/01/10/avatar-plot-fail/


Since watching Avatar, I have viewed older videos on DVD and would rate that ahead of Avatar.






commentary transcripts

It's convenient to have the Old Mole audio files available.
Even more useful for some of us would be transcripts of the commentaries (Clayton Morgareidge). Written material allows a person a chance to review, consider, digest and refer to mentioned references & thinkers. The "Well Read Red" commentary from 4 Aug 08 is a good example of a piece I'd like to read at my own pace.


We will see to it that this happens whenever there is a prepared text. Thanks for the suggestion. Clayton Morgareidge The Old Mole Variety Hour

These folks are so profound

These folks are so profound and fascinating, especially the Resnick guy. Wow!


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