Mike Palecek

Mike Palecek

 Mike Palecek

Lives in Sheldon, Iowa with his family. He works at a group home. He has been a federal prisoner for peace. He met Fr. Dan Berrigan while in the Catholic seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. Berrigan told him things about America and the Catholic Church that changed Mike's life. So, Mike went to jail, went crazy, went home, like that.

And Mike has worked as a reporter, editor, publisher on small-town newspapers in Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota. The small newspaper Mike & Ruth owned and operated in southeast Minnesota won the Minnesota Newspaper of the Year Award from the MNA in 1994, and went out of business later that year. Mike was the Iowa Democratic Party nominee for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2000. He received 65,000 votes in a conservative district on an anti-military, anti-prison, pro-immigration platform, even after endorsing Ralph Nader over Al Gore.

One thing you might not know about Mike Palecek: He once spent an overnight in Leavenworth Federal Penitentiary and did not like it.

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Chuck Gregory

Chuck Gregory

Chuck Gregory

Chuck lives in Fort Lauderdale, FL with his wife Lorraine and their rabbit Crystal. They've been married for 25 years and survived many a change in fortune. Chuck's mom is 94 years young and lives a mile or two away, in her own home, by herself. Lorraine's mom and brother live in Houston.

Chuck was first involved in the Peace movement when in high school, at Friends Central School in Philadelphia. He received his Bachelor of Arts from Wesleyan University in 1974 with the unlikely double major Mathematics and Theater. He was awarded his Master of Science in Computer Science from Nova University in 1981. He worked as a software engineer for nearly 30 years before migrating into the creation and sale of print (and later web) publications. He now runs a couple of one-person companies that provide little or no income and finds himself much happier than he was when he made the big bucks working for the big companies. Now people can actually understand and hopefully benefit from what he does and that's a big plus.

Several years ago Chuck wrote a review of one of Mike Palecek's novels, The Truth, and posted it on the Blue Ear Forum, a now-defunct website that pulled together writers, newspaper people, and interested observers from all over the world. From that review grew a friendship that has remained solid as Chuck progressed from reviewer to publicist to editor to publisher to website host, with some roles visited more than once. Mike's book The American Dream was the first book to be published by Chuck's company CWG Press, and to date it 's the only one published the traditional way; the expense caused Chuck to redefine CWG Press as a Print-on-Demand publisher.

In addition to CWG Press, Chuck provides editing for web and print, website design, newsletter design, computer consulting, custom programming, and research under the name CWG Services. He hosts a number of websites including this one. He occasionally updates his blog Things I learned while looking up other things. He contracts directly or through oDesk.

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Ben Heine

Ben Heine is a political artist born in Ivory Coast in 1983. He now lives and works in Brussels, Belgium. He studied Art and Journalism and currently produces political illustrations, portraits and photos. He has collaborated with several printed papers as well as with numerous online references. He created book covers and illustrations for renowned authors and also made CD covers, posters, and t-shirts designs. He has been deeply influenced by movements such as Social Realism, German Expressionism, Belgian Surrealism and American Pop Art. He has exhibited in Belgium, Great Britain, Canada, USA and Palestine. More info: benheine.com.

Note: Ben Heine's art is often about issues that could be seen as outside the scope of The New American Dream — however, it is our belief that one of the obstacles we Americans need to overcome is our lack of curiosity about the rest of the world.

So, we present Ben's work as a vital part of our dream.