Who We Are

THE PROGRESSIVE POPULIST, a newspaper that believes people are more important than corporations, premiered in November 1995 as a monthly tabloid publication based in Storm Lake, Iowa, with editorial offices in Austin, Texas. In October 1999 it expanded to twice-monthly publication. In 2005, the editorial offices were moved a few miles south, to Manchaca, Texas.

The Progressive Populist reports from the heartland of America on issues of interest to workers, small-business owners and family farmers and ranchers. It serves as "The People's Voice in a Corporate World."

In addition to reports from staff and contributing writers, the Populist prints populist essays, speeches and articles from independent newspapers and magazines. It publishes progressive and populist columnists whose points of view are blocked out of most daily newspaper op-ed pages.

The newspaper is edited by Jim Cullen, formerly a veteran daily newspaper reporter in Texas and Louisiana and associate editor of the Texas Observer, and Art Cullen, editor of the twice-weekly Storm Lake (Iowa) Times.

Too many well-meaning, frustrated working people are attracted to the rhetoric of the corporate-owned Republican Party, or have lost faith in the Democratic Party, on which corporations have held a long-term lease. The Progressive Populist provides a vehicle for organizing a populist movement with progressive values. It amplifies those populist voices and tells people how they can make a difference.

The conventional wisdom is that working people won't read a newspaper. In fact many don't trust the newspapers and magazines they see nowadays, and why should they? The corporate media is compromised and in most cases offer only pro-corporate points of view. We think it would be an exciting innovation to have a newspaper that would take the people's side on any given subject and expose scoundrels like George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and others for the big-business shills that they are.

Our web site helps us promote our journal and also serves as a resource for advocates of progressive populism.

Our regular columnists include plutocrat pluckers such as Jim Hightower, Amy Goodman, Ralph Nader, Arianna Huffington, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Donald Kaul, Alvena Bieri, Gene Lyons, Patrisia Gonzales & Roberto Rodriguez, John Buell, Margot McMillen, Alexander Cockburn, Froma Harrop, Amanda Griscom Little, Hank Kalet, Joan Retsinas, A.V. Krebs, Joyce Marcel, Russell Mokhiber & Robert Weissman, Wayne O'Leary, Ted Rall, Norman Solomon, Tom Tomorrow, Mark Weisbrot, occasional columns by writers such as Hal Crowther and other points of view you won't find in the mainstream press.

We report on issues of interest to the middle class of America:

• the plight of working Americans who face the choice of watching their wages and benefits be stripped to make their company more productive, or watching their jobs being exported to Latin America and the Far East;

• small, mom-and-pop businesses that are up against chain stores, tight credit and monopolistic business practices;

• government policies that give tax breaks to big corporations that move their operations overseas;

• farming families that are being whipsawed by government policies geared toward the multinational agribusinesses; and

• consumers (as well as workers) whose health and safety are considered to be secondary to the right of a corporation to make a profit for its stockholders.

We know you lead a busy life and you might not feel you have enough time to read another publication. But we offer a mix of easy-to-digest reports as well as substantial features that you can read according to your schedule. We give you ammo to counter the blather of the right-wing talk machine.

We also offer an electronic mail version of the newspaper.

We run interviews and profiles of newsmakers, progressive organizers and other Americans who are making a difference in fighting for the interests of working people.

We also feature the best work of independent newspapers and magazines around the country.

In an era when basic political and governmental reporting is dismissed by editorial consultants as "insider baseball," we run hard news on the hardcases who are running Washington, D.C., and the state capitols.

And we tell you some of the things you can do to help turn things around.

We call for fair trade laws that support the right of workers to organize and bargain collectively, whether they are in Singapore, Mexico or Texas. And we explain why, in the "new world order," workers' rights in India and China have an impact in workers' rights in Iowa and Texas.

We support equal opportunity for all races and classes of people.

We fight efforts by the Republicans, with the complicity of conservative Democrats, to enact the Contract on America that would roll back nearly every progressive advance since the days of Teddy Roosevelt.

And we resist attempts to amend or ignore the Bill of Rights, which we consider to be the greatest accomplishment of the American democracy.

The Progressive Populist is not a Democratic Party organ; we support progressive Democrats, progressive independent and third-party candidates who promote progressive democracy and, if any progressive Republicans show themselves, we will give them a hearing.

Mainly, we give progressive populists a forum, give our readers the news and views they may not be getting from their corporate-owned daily, and deflate some pompous plutocrats along the way.

We aim to make the Progressive Populist the antidote to the monopoly daily news, throw a lifeline to progressives who feel like they are stranded in a sea of mossbacks and right-wingers, and maybe play a role in reviving political debate.

With the selection of George W. Bush as president of the United States by judicial fiat of the Supreme Court, and his re-election engineered with the manipulation of public fear of terrorism, we think that populist voices are needed now more than ever.

If you would like to hear more about this project, or if you would like to receive a sample copy, drop me a line by email or regular post.

-- Jim Cullen, Editor

THE PROGRESSIVE POPULIST is a publication of Ampersand Publishing Co., P.O. Box 487, Storm Lake, IA 50588. Ampersand Publishing Co. is a family-owned small corporation, incorporated in Iowa and registered with the Texas Secretary of State.

The PROGRESSIVE POPULIST is printed by the Times Printing Co., an employee-owned shop, in Storm Lake, Iowa, on 100% soy ink and recycled paper. For high-quality, full-color printing on web presses at reasonable prices, call 1-800-732-4992 and ask for Art Cullen. We also do addressing and mailing services.
E-mail populist@usa.net

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