People arrive in a ballot office to vote on whether to give every adult citizen a basic guaranteed monthly income of 2,500 Swiss francs ($2,560), in a school in Bern, Switzerland, June 5, 2016. The sign reads, "Ballot office."    (Ruben Sprich for Reuters.)

Free income for all? Swiss say ‘no thanks’

Swiss voters rejected by a wide margin on Sunday a proposal to introduce a guaranteed basic income for everyone.
Jun 6, 2016
Presidential candidate Rodrigo "Digong" Duterte talks to the media before casting his vote at a polling precinct for national elections at Daniel Aguinaldo National High School in Davao city in southern Philippines, May 9, 2016. (Photo by Erik De Castro for Reuters.)

Maverick mayor Duterte looks to clinch presidency of Philippines

Rodrigo Duterte outpolled rivals with incendiary rhetoric, criticism of political establishment and advocacy of extrajudicial killings to stamp out crime.
May 9, 2016
Liliana Caracoza takes the oath of citizenship at a ceremony in Tacoma in September 2014. (Photo by Alex Stonehill)

Apply for citizenship! America needs your vote in November

There’s still time for Legal Permanent Residents to apply for citizenship and vote to choose our next President in November.
Jan 28, 2016
(Photo from Flickr by Eric Hersman)

Should Seattle give noncitizens the vote?

Politically active Seattleites who aren't citizens say they're frustrated to be excluded from local elections.
Sep 18, 2015
(Photo from "Desert Dancer" Facebook)

‘Desert Dancer’ film’s Western bias denies audiences a more accurate view of Iran

Do "Desert Dancer" producers equate "positive" with depicting Iranians as Westerners?
Apr 17, 2015
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El Salvador shows signs of progress in the shadow of U.S. intervention

With popular media influencing U.S. perceptions of El Salvador, it's easy to forget the progressive democratic changes that are underway.
Mar 24, 2015
Migrant domestic workers lay low on a Sunday afternoon at Victoria Park. Sundays are their only day off in Hong Kong. (Photo by Chong Kai Xiong)

Exchange connects Seattle Black liberation to Hong Kong Umbrella movements

How a transpacific exchange connects Seattle Black liberation to Hong Kong Umbrella movements.
Jan 22, 2015
The boy who painted this visual story dreamed of a world where impoverished ethnic Burmese villagers were considered as worthy of human rights as wealthy city dwellers. (Image courtesy of Erika Berg)

Young refugees from Burma speak through art

By 2009, Burma became our state's largest refugee community.
Nov 19, 2014
A classroom full of students in Japan, where class sizes average around 30 students. (Photo by Shintaro Ozawa)

I-1351 tied, but global data shows one class size doesn’t fit all

What do Japan and South Korea have to say about the value of small class sizes?
Nov 7, 2014
A Syrian refugee in Beirut holds a ballot from Tuesday's multiparty presidential elections. Bashar Al-Assad (right) is almost assured victory. (Photo from Reuters)

As Syria holds sham elections, some in Seattle keep hope alive

A lot has changed in the seven years since Syria’s last presidential election back in 2007. But the expected result hasn’t. After all the lives lost in the country’s three-year civil war, it’s hard to imagine these — officially the first multiparty elections in Syrian history — will have any impact on the lives of those on […]
Jun 4, 2014
(Photo courtesy PramilaJayapal.com)

Pramila Jayapal racking up endorsements for State Senate run

Just months after Democrat Adam Kline announced his plans to leave the State Senate, Pramila Jayapal has emerged as the candidate to beat in an already crowded race for the 37th District seat. Jayapal — longtime resident of the Southend district — is most widely known as the founder and former executive director of OneAmerica, the […]
Apr 23, 2014
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Immigrant farm workers at center of GMO food-labeling debate

Some of the people with the most at stake in the I-522 debate won’t be able to vote on it either way.
Nov 3, 2013
Mayor McGinn signing a memorandum of understanding with counterpart in Seattle sister city Chongqing, China. (Photo courtesy McGinn Campaign)

Candidates for Seattle mayor tout their global credentials

The race between Mayor Mike McGinn and his opponent, state Sen. Ed Murray, is an opportunity to recognize what a global city Seattle has become.
Oct 18, 2013
A wheat farm in eastern China, where the government is making a big investment in genetically modified crops. (Photo by Imaginechina via AP Images)

What Washington should know about GMO’s

This fall we get to vote on an initiative that requires labeling of genetically modified foods. But it may not be an obvious choice.
Jul 3, 2013
Soldiers lower the Pakistani flag in Karachi. (Photo by Alex Stonehill)

Tigers, tumbles and Taliban: Making sense of Pakistan’s election

Pakistan beat the odds last week and held relatively peaceful elections. But was the Taliban the real winner? 
May 19, 2013
President Obama meets enthusiastic supporters during a campaign rally in Florida last weekend. (Photo from REUTERS/Jason Reed)

In Kenya, as in US, adjusted expectations for Obama

At the White House Correspondents Dinner in 2010, Obama joked about his abysmal approval ratings: “My approval ratings are still very high in the country of my birth.” At the time, it was a funny quip about the far right’s insistence that Obama was actually born in Kenya. But now election day is looming, and […]
Nov 5, 2012
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No on I-1240: Why charter schools aren’t the answer

Unless you are immersed in the education world, your exposure to charter schools might be limited to the 2010 documentary Waiting for Superman. But with Initiative 1240 on the Washington ballot this year, you’re being asked to make a major decision regarding our education system with little information other than the ample evidence that our […]
Nov 1, 2012
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You might be a socialist if… An interview with Kshama Sawant

Update: Sawant lost the below-mentioned election for State Legislature, but she just won a seat on the Seattle City Council. To the best of our knowledge, everything else she said in this interview from last year is still true. Kshama Sawant is a pretty cool lady. She’s a socialist who won the opportunity to challenge […]
Oct 30, 2012
Volunteers from immigrant rights non-profit OneAmerica campaigning for civic engagement by immigrants at Seattle Central Community College this past August. (Photo courtesy OneAmerica)

Minority representation still a challenge in hyper-diverse 9th district

When Washington’s congressional districts were redrawn last January, the State Redistricting Commission made a bold move: They split the city of Seattle between two districts in order to create the state’s first ever “majority-minority” district. The 9th Congressional District was shifted northward, leaving behind the Fort Lewis area and rural Pierce County to take in […]
Oct 28, 2012
Farm laborers harvest asparagus in Eastern Washington. Many of the low-wage migrant laborers that harvest our fruits and vegetables depend on food stamp programs that are on the chopping block in the proposed version of the Farm Bill (Photo by Alex Stonehill)

Why the food fight over the Farm Bill matters to you

The Farm Bill is a classic democratic-process-headache: a 1,000 page piece of legislation that takes on all things food and agriculture related. It covers everything from food stamps to farmland conservation to nutrition programs to farm subsidies. Past versions have mostly benefited big farmers of soy, corn, and other commodity crops, along with large corporations […]
Jul 18, 2012