July 23, 2011


A floating think tank? We can't think of a better way to describe The Nation Magazine's annual seminar cruise. And this year, I'm tickled pink and honored to welcome Medea Benjamin, Jodie Evans and other members of CODEPINK on this, our 14th fundraising cruise. Destination: The Caribbean.

The plan? Well, to get inspired as we exchange ideas about how to shake up the progressive world. To give supporters of both CODEPINK and The Nation a chance to meet and talk and to share ideas and tactics, face-to-face, one-on-one. To enjoy a much needed vacation that will bring us back to our workday worlds refreshed and reinvigorated. And most importantly, to raise much needed funds to support the work of CODEPINK and The Nation Magazine. By joining us on this year's cruise, you will be supporting the work of CODEPINK, the worldwide network of women and men committed to working for peace and social justice, and making possible CODEPINK's ability to confront warmongers and to wage peace around the world.

The special guests who will be with us this year:

Julian Bond, Chairman Emeritus of the NAACP
Van Jones, Founder of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, Former Green Jobs Adviser in the Obama White House
Jeremy Scahill, Nation Investigative Reporter & Author of Blackwater
Ramona Ripston, Former Executive Director of the ACLU of Southern California
Jessica Valenti, Founder and Executive Editor of Feministing.com
John Nichols, Nation Washington Correspondent
Kai Bird, Pulitzer Prize winning author
Special Musical Guests Steve Earle & Allison Moorer

Your shipmates will include provocative panelists and political portsiders (watch a slideshow from our 2009 cruise) plus a daily array of stimulating seminars and enlivening discussions. Mingle with Nation and CODEPINK supporters alike. Enjoy spirited dinner-table debates and dancing after. And join Medea and Jodie at workshops on organizing and protests, including how to organize a flash mob!

Here's Henry Alford's 2008 description of his experience on a Nation Cruise in The New York Times:

"The diversity and intellectual accomplishments of the 460 cruisers were fairly staggering - included were many academics, several judges, a founder of The Chronicle of Higher Education, a scientist who worked on the Manhattan Project, a retired Army major, a steel company vice president, a former drug trafficker, four granddaughters aged 15 to 22, State Representative Mike Boland of Illinois, the public health expert Dr. Quentin Young and the feminist author Marilyn French."

And there's always time to relax…shore leave at ports of call including San Juan, St. Maarten and Grand Turk...work the body as well as the mind with all-weather pools, fully-equipped gym, aerobics classes, personal trainers, court sports, jogging tracks, full-service salon, hydrotherapy pool, yoga classes. Plus wine tastings, cooking classes, art auctions, first-run movies, a piano bar, gambling casino with table games and slots, late night action in the Crow's Nest lounge, and Club Hal for kids and teens (bring the kids!)

The reason The Nation sponsors these cruises is to help us pay our bills. The income we generate from our cruises (a good portion of the proceeds will go back to support CODEPINK and The Nation) has become an important part of our budget. Remaining independent is our primary goal and finding other sources of revenue is the only way to do this without compromising our editorial integrity. We asked CODEPINK to invite their members to join us this year to help raise much needed funds to support their own critical work. We look forward to the energy and synergy that CODEPINK members will bring to the ship, and to the opportunity to introduce CODEPINK's programs and values (and tactics!) to a new and appreciative audience.

Please make your plans now to join us! Certain cabin categories will sell out fast. We look forward to seeing you on board in December!

Katrina vanden Heuvel
Editor and Publisher,
The Nation

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