Director Michael Moore reveals America's
excessive love affair with capitalism. Get your copy of this revolutionary documentary film
that Entertainment Weekly called "The most important and urgent political
film of our time."
Join in the dialogue on politics, health care, current events and more! CLICK HERE to read and post your comment.
Plus: "CAN BLOGGING SAVE JOURNALISM?" Is print media in peril? Does cyberjournalism pose a threat to in-depth investigative reporting? Read this fascinating article by Jason Lee Miller, editor of WebProNews.com.
This newspaper is dedicated to my mother and father, who taught me to always stand for my truth, remain fearless and never ever give up.
The Sedona Observer also dedicates this site to our literary heroes - writers, journalists, muckrakers and social reformers - whose work helped to shed light on the social injustices of their time: Voltaire, Thomas Paine, Henry David Thoreau, John Swinton, Jacob Riis, Upton Sinclair, Ida Tarbell, Karl Marx, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Charles Dickens and others.
Their legacy to expose corruption through the tip of their pens serves as an inspiration for our work here in these media-impaired times.
It is our intention to carry their torch and keep the spirit of muckraking alive in an era when it remains more desperately needed than ever.
"It is very important that you only do what you love to do. You may be poor, you may go hungry, you may lose your car, may have to move into a shabby place to live, but you will totally live.
And at the end of your days you will bless your life because you have done what you came here to do.
Otherwise, you will live your life as a prostitute, you will do things only for a reason, to please other people, and you will never have lived and you will not have a pleasant death."
- Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
A LABOR OF LOVE
We do not accept advertising to prevent outside control of our editorial content. So we're not making a penny off this publication. The Observer, therefore, represents a gift to the Sedona community, Arizona and all of America to uphold the First Amendment and to eliminate censorship.
How about making a donation to support a free press? That way we can hire more professional journalists and offer them a living wage for their contributions.
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Click here to make a donation or to sponsor a free press.
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Just what, exactly, is The Sedona Observer?
Changing the ME-dia to "WE-dia"
Telling the news the way our forefathers told us to do it:
with plenty of fiery subjectivity
without ads, without cost and without corruption
We're going to have to stop trying to be 'objective' and start telling the truth, and it has to start with the media.
– Jane Fonda on CNN News, Dec. 7, 2011
The Sedona Observer is a NATIONAL, NONPROFIT, NO-COST online newspaper dedicated to reporting the truth behind the facts of today's pressing issues. Produced by professional veteran award-winning journalists, it currently serves a global audience disenchanted with the current state of the world's media.
In addition to representing a new business model for genuine public service media and Emancipatory Journalism, the Observer is not just another online news site but a media MOVEMENT designed to emancipate journalism from its current shackles as a profit-based commodity serving the interests of the rich elite and runaway corporate power.
"Changing America by Changing Its Media FIRST" remains the Observer's slogan.
Its primary focus is to present content largely neglected by the mainstream press: the truth about the economy, medicine, the workplace and health care; the voices of the 99% and other downtrodden, forgotten and invisible citizens such as the homeless and working poor; and to reveal the stories about modern-day debtors' prisons and slaughterhouses in the literary style of the first muckraking journalists.
Therefore, The Sedona Observer is NOT just a localized community or regional newspaper, nor does it represent a blog or citizen journalism project. It is for all communities everywhere.
Named for its initial production site in the city of Sedona, Arizona, and retaining its original banner, the Observer presents many Sedona-based stories since the city serves as a metaphor for America - from medicine and media to the environment, big business, housing and the workplace, as well as all the good things surfacing in our communities: unsung heroes and blithe spirits reaching out to others to keep the spirit of humanity alive.
In essence, by observing Sedona we are observing America.
Whether it rises to the occasion and sets a precedent for citizen activism and leadership for other communities across the nation... or even when it stumbles a bit and spills toxic waste into its precious waterway [see story preview below], Sedona represents the quintessential "microcosm of the macrocosm."
The city offers a wide array of big-picture national issues long overdue for closer journalistic inquiry, investigation and illumination. From corruption in its medical facilities and local media to "green" business operations posing as eco-friendly while polluting the environment, Sedona has it all. Like so many other cities.
The stories here serve as a catalyst to open minds and hearts in other cities around the nation by offering possible "soul-utions" to similar challenges. And we write them in the same narrative-style, subjective, fiery, literary journalism format as our forefathers.
More importantly, the Observer represents a JOURNALISMMOVEMENT designed to transform the media by emancipating it from its current homogenized format as a business commodity obsessed with profit and celebrities and restoring it to the format intended by this nation's forefathers as an integrity-based practice for genuine public service and a voice for all people, not just the powerful elite.
We think that America's first journalists -- Ben Franklin, irreverent publisher of the shocking Gazette and Isaiah Thomas, indignant publisher of the daringly radical Massachusetts Spy and William Livingston, outraged publisher of the Watch-Tower, where subjective descriptions such as "villainous," "corrupt" and "unconscionable" commonly appeared in reference to the runaway powers of the day -- would wholeheartedly approve of The Sedona Observer and its call to resurrect the lost art of muckraking, investigative reporting and literary journalism for the common good.
Coming This Month
Our 6th anniversary edition
Story highlights from our award-winning archives plus
People no longer have to ride the roller coaster of hormone imbalance. In his new book, pioneering hormone physican Dr. Gino Tutera explains how SottoPelle offers a simple solution based on safe medicine that combines "good science and common sense."
CLICK HERE to read more about an effective and proven method restoring health and vitality to thousands of men and and women.
While the ubiquitous Pepto-Bismol pink appears on everything from NFL uniforms to toilet paper and donuts in "search for the cure," the sad truth is that a cure already exists but remains suppressed to ensure the profits of a multi-trillion dollar industry laughing all the way to the bank off women's unnecessary anguish. It takes the greed of the American medical system to tie up women's health care rights with an innocent and worthless pink ribbon and to turn a disease into "pinkwashing," with a blatant marketing opportunity that profits from women's suffering and leaves them with "awareness" overkill every October but no prevention or cure.
Winner of a Community Journalist of the Year Award
by Catherine J. Rourke
This ongoing series of exposés reveals the truth about the everyday reality of the city's invisible people in an affluent community. While the stories take place in the small town of Sedona, it could be Anywhere, USA. They chronicle the triumphs, trials and tribulations of the nation's "Invisible People" -- the forgotten working and the vanishing Middle Class, celebrating their contributions to society and posing possible solutions to every city's socioeconomic challenges.
As employees blow the whistle on allegations of toxic waste dumping by their company in the pristine waters of Oak Creek, the Observer looks at who's minding the store at a runaway operation that apparently considers itself above the law. From EPA violations and insurance coverups to immigration laws, unjust terminations and workplace atrocities, this business seems to have it all.
We're diving in for a thorough journalistic investigation in our traditional Observer style; stay tuned for our report coming soon.
Americans need workplace rights now more than ever in the 21st century -- at least those few who still have their jobs left. Read how the labor movement dropped the ball and left workers holding empty bags with no rights, no raises, no medical benefits and, in ever-increasing numbers, no job and no unemployment at all.
Global spiritual film distributor and environmental activist Jim Law, of Sedona-based, visionary film company VOICE Entertainment, is one of those people moved to tears of joy by a tree. In 2007 he led a grass-roots citizen campaign to save Sedona’s sycamores – approximately 60 heritage, 300-year-old trees slated for demolition due to the Highway 179 road expansion project near the city’s Tlaquepaque landmark.
As a result of his collaborative effort with many other community leaders and activists, a majority of the trees were salvaged. While the serial story -- “Barking Up the Wrong Tree” and "Secrets of the Sycamores" (The Sedona Observer, Oct. 21, 2007) -- documents a chronology of this remarkable campaign, it’s time to revisit the status of the road reconstruction project and gauge its influence over the past year on the trees and surrounding environment. MORE ...
It’s no secret that many people are experiencing tremendous upheaval right now. In times of such dramatic change, we can find more wisdom in nature than on all of the Worldwide Web by watching how other creatures manage unpredictable and often treacherous conditions to their distinct advantage.Click here to read this encouraging message.
Medical pioneer and SottoPelle® founder saves lives by promoting good health through hormonal balance
What medicine and media aren't telling you about hormones can cost you your health, your wallet and, in some cases, even your life. In his new book, Life Regained: The Real Solution to Menopause and Andropause, Dr. Tutera reveals the secret to hormonal balance and for men and women alike. MORE...
PLUS: YOUR HORMONES, YOUR HEALTH!
CLICK HERE TO JOIN IN THE DISCUSSIONS ON DR. TUTERA'SBLOG
The Sedona Observer is the only professional media upholding the tradition of labor journalism and workplace reporting in the interest of the working person and NOT in the interest of big business like most mainstream newspapers today that have eliminated labor and workplace beats. We feature an entire Labor and Workplace page.
In the 1940's there were more than 85 staff labor beat journalists in American newsrooms; today there are less than five and most are hog-tied by corporate news administrations that fail to deliver the truth. The Observer's editor and publisher is a longtime professional labor journalist with no union ties and who created this paper to uphold a great American tradition that brought you the weekend and fights for what's left of your dwindling workplace rights.
Sedona’s Health Care Emergency Siren Keeps Resounding − Two Years Later – as One Resident’s Cry for Help Remains Ignored by a Heartless Health Care System
Everyone in America knows Joe the Plumber. Now meet Joe the Handyman, of Sedona, Ariz. − shortchanged, defaulted, repossessed and practically foreclosed on everything he’s ever worked for, saved for and lived for. Then, in March 2008, Joe Dimarcolost the most precious thing of all: his beloved wife, Andrea, to cancer. Joe believes her life could have been saved with proper medical and financial support. MORE…
For many Americans, the dream once included a home of one’s own, a good job with decent pay, affordable health care and a sense of security that would carry them into retirement. Now, with that dream shattered by a blizzard of pink slips, foreclosures, lost benefits, bankruptcies, frozen wages and mounting medical bills, people are wondering what happened to the American dream. MORE ...
Special report from a demonstrator on the front lines
at New York's Liberty Square
From unconscionable foreclosures and banking practices to the loss of health care and jobs, Americans are speaking truth to power and saying "Enough is enough!" It began on New York's Wall Street and spread across the nation's Main Streets in dozens of cities to evolve into a global people's movement against runaway power and rampant corruption.
In this report, "American Autumn," which was read aloud and distributed at the protests in New York City last weekend, a demonstrator reminds his fellow activists that they share much in common with their forefathers who stood up to similar oppression exactly 235 years ago. Not much has changed as citizens face a caliber of tyranny on Wall Street that mirrors the "go eat cake" mindset of Versailles, as the privileged 1 percent feed off the peasant majority like vultures, no less than they did three centuries ago.
[Scroll down this page to the Observer's March 2009 report calling for citizens to storm the Bastille... At last, we're finally doing it!]
Social Insecurity: Left for Dead
Homeless in Sedona
"The most beautiful place in America..."
With the highest unemployment and foreclosure rate in history and a severe lack of social services, America has turned its back on its bankrupt citizens and left them for dead, without medical care, jobs, financial assistance, short-term disability or even a home.
In Sedona, the community heralds a publicly funded theater while it lacks a shelter for increasing numbers of homeless individuals and families. Now, as the Observer reports the truth behind the facts in the voice of one homeless man, we learn how it really feels to be homeless in "the most beautiful place in America."
We also hear what one agency -- Catholic Charities -- is doing to help those left to fend for themselves out in the cold and the tireless efforts of many dedicated and caring people to provide a roof and support for their forgotten friends and former neighbors.
As increasing numbers of Americans lose everything they ever had, the question becomes: WILL YOU BE NEXT?
As of press time, Senate Republicans continue to block the nomination of Hilda Solis due to her progressive stance in support of the nation's workers. With nearly two months lapsing since the December 19 nomination, the Senate will finally determine this week whether or not Solis will serve as the nation's next Secretary of Labor. For American workers, their fate inevitably hangs in the balance. MORE ...
DOWN AND OUT IN SEDONA
As jobs crumble and Yavapai County holds the highest unemployment rate in the state, the Working Poor are fast becoming the Hungry Poor in this affluent city.
The filmmaker reflects on the past, present and future of his movies, as well as the state of media and medicine in America.
"It's up to the media to do its job.Print newspapers have about a year of life left. We have to figure out new media, new voices and A NEW FORM OF JOURNALISM WITH NEW BUSINESS MODELS that run MORE CONTENT and FEWER ADS..." -- Michael Moore, answering a public question during the Sedona Film Festival after the screening of "Capitalism: A Love Story."
It's Thanksgiving Day across America, a land divided between economic extremes, of excessive have-mores and forgotten have-nots. Many people find themselves struggling to save their homes and jobs this holiday season, in a futile chase of the ever-elusive American dream and shrinking dollar. Both fade into the horizon as the U.S. comes closer to a Third-World nation, poised on a critical cusp between gluttonous excess and total disintegration.
The following story represents the epitome of everything gone haywire in America.
Among the invisible, forgotten and downtrodden citizens hanging by a thread, Arizona resident Rachael Collins battles a callous and corrupt insurance industry that left her for dead after an auto accident. More than five years later, she continues to fight for her life and her rights - what few remain in the United States of Hypocrisy, formerly known as a democracy.
The Observer reviews Michael Moore's newest film about the very paradigm this newspaper loves to hate and blames for every malady in American life, from the health care debacle and poverty to unemployment and even the demise of journalism. MORE...
"We need to challenge the insurance companies, not appease them. There’s no evidence that suggests they’re constructive players, or are likely to do anything except defend their own parochial interest." Read MORE from Seattle-based political essayist and author Paul Rogat Loeb ...
Seattle-based political essayist Paul Rogat Loeb offers profound insights for our times in these excerpts from his books
The Impossible Will Take a Little While: A Citizen's Guide to Hope in a Time of Fear and
Soul of a Citizen: Living with Conviction in a Cynical Time.MORE...
TIME FOR A NEW REVOLUTION?
Published March 21, 2009
The Sedona Observer encourages readers to burn their credit reports and listen to the following call from Thomas Paine for a Second American Revolution. We agree it's time for Americans to raise their pitchforks and storm the detached Bastille in Washington forking our taxes over to the "Let them eat cake" financial elite in our modern-day Versailles on Wall Street.
What are the social, economic and spiritual trends transforming capitalism into a new, more holistic version of itself? It is our time.This is our place. We are creating the future now by the level of consciousness we invoke in everyday choices and activities. MORE...
The Beatitudes often come in handy for someone like Father John Dear, a 49-year-old Jesuit priest who has dedicated his life to a path of nonviolence. Like Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Jr., and many other change agents before him, the passion for peace has only paved the way to prison. MORE ...
Sedona Community News - Video
Published February 9, 2009
Mr. Adams Goes to Washington
Sedona Mayor Rob Adams talks about his recent meeting with senators and other political reps in Washington, D.C., to obtain $15 million for three vital city projects
No corporate jets, no tin cups. Just straight talk from the Sedona mayor to congressional leaders about obtaining the city's share of the
2009 Stimulus Appropriations Bill
for various municipal enhancements by the end of 2009.
Demand affordable and accessible health care for all Americans now and put your money back in your wallet. We'll deliver this petition along with your comments to our representatives in Washington. SIGN HERE.
Changing the Economics of Journalism: No government control, no corporate monopolies, no advertisers. Why The Sedona Observer offers readers the best of all worlds, blending 18th century journalism principles with 21st century technology to uphold our First Amendment freedoms.
Join a New Media Movement designed to end the fragmentation and fierce competition currently dividing members of the Fourth Estate, who should be bound together to report the truth. Click here for more information.
We know they're out there. Nurses, doctors, healing centers and practitioners who go the extra mile and treat people with compassion, dignity and respect. Send your story suggestions, ideas and comments to: editor@SedonaObserver.com.
Muckraking Investigative Report
AT&T Hangs Up on Consumers
Enough is enough! What will it take to regulate runaway phone company bandits with their oppressive contracts, cryptic fees, hidden costs and unethical marketing campaigns that manipulate and dupe American consumers? Read this Observer undercover investigation of one company's unethical and fraudulent attempt to ditch the truth.
The Sedona Observer is published by First Cold Press, a not-for-profit, independent publishing organization that advocates First Amendment rights and social justice. Expressed views and opinions are not necessarily those of The Sedona Observer. Permission to post or reprint articles, editorials and columns that appear in this newspaper must be obtained from the writer or contributor by contacting the publisher. Since we encourage the free exchange of ideas and information, please distribute at will.