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In these times, as Murdoch, Maxwell & Co. gobble up media companies worldwide, it is reassuring to note some anniversaries marking sustained resistance to this culturally homogenizing trend.

The Washington Monthly, which believes that there's nothing wrong with capitalism that a little neoliberal tinkering can't fix, recently began celebrating twenty years of memorandum mocking, culture-of-bureaucracy analyzing and Washington windmill tilting. Even though the best and the brightestof editor in chief Charles Peters's amazing alumni would chip away at some of our favorite constitutional amendments (see Mickey Kaus on the Fifth) and are too suspicious of government subsidies for their own good (see Michael Kinsley on why the Postal Service should end its special rates for mailing journals of opinion), we continue to find The Monthly an indispensable decoder and deconstructer of the men and myths governing our nation's capital. (Why not help the magazine celebrate its birthday by sending $33 for a year's subscription to 1611 Connecticut Avenue N.W., Washington, DC 20009.)

Meanwhile, Monthly Review, which believes that there's something endemic to capitalism that no amount of BandAiding - neoliberal, liberal or otherwise - can cure, gears up to celebrate its first forty years as an independent socialist magazine. Edited by Paul Sweezy and Harry Magdoff, the current number begins typically by arguing convincingly that the most important fact about the United States today is that it "could easily produce at least 50 percent more than it is now producing." It derives what it terms this "conservative" estimate based on our wartime experience, the labor power currently available but unused, and the productive capacity already in place. (To find out more and get on Monthly Review's subscription list in time for May's gala fortieth anniversary issue, send $22 to the Monthly Review Foundation, 122 West 27th Street, New York, NY 10001.)

Then there is Pacifica Radio, the oldest listener-sponsored radio network in the country, which in Berkeley this April and Washington this fall will celebrate its fortieth birthday. Pacifica is a forum for radical, alternative and other unheard news and voices.

Add to these such new entries in the independent progressive ranks as Zeta and Tikkun (which has entered stage left to join Present Tense as a liberal Jewish counterpoint to the neoconservative Commentary), and one is again reminded that often dissonant voices can together constitute a chorus against the monotony of official opinion. As McCarthy in William Saroyan's The Time of Your Life observed many years ago, "The thing to do is to have more magazines. Hundreds of them. Thousands." (And listener-sponsored radio and citizen access cable TV too)

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Title Annotation:anniversaries of independent magazines
Publication:The Nation
Article Type:editorial
Date:Mar 13, 1989
Previous Article:New North wind?
Next Article:'Shame'.

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