Exclusively in the new print issue of CounterPunch
FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
Archives from January 2006
The Meddlesome Mr. Bolton
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
Is there a person anywhere in the world who still thinks there is an ounce of sanity in the Bush administration? If so, let that person read John Bolton’s orders to Syria in the January 24 online edition of the Israeli newspaper ...
The Core of Zionism
MICHAEL NEUMANN
Editors’ Note: This month CounterPunch Books publishes MICHAEL NEUMANN’s The Case Against Israel, a bracing and tightly argued counterblast to the nonsense peddled by Alan Dershowitz in The Case For Israel. What follows is Neumann’s...
A Vaster Conspiracy?
JASON LEOPOLD
Over the past few months, Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has been questioning witnesses in the CIA leak case about the origins of the disputed Niger documents referenced in President Bush’s January 2003 State of the Union address, according to several...
Listening to the Voices of Palestine
GILAD ATZMON
The consequences of today’s Hamas victory aren’t yet clear, however the election results have revealed beyond doubt some fundamental information about Palestine and the Arab world: *Democracy = Islam. Once again the West and especially th...
Extraordinary Alito
MICHAEL CARMICHAEL
"He who is prudent and lies in wait for an enemy who is not, will be victorious." Sun Tzu, The Art of War At the end of last week, Senate Minority Whip, Richard Durbin informed the press that there was intense Demo...
Of Nukes and Oil
JOSHUA FRANK
Secretary of State Condi Rice doesn’t think the United States and European Union should continue talking to Iran about their potential nuke development. Diplomacy should end and the UN Security Council must now take action, she says. Rice admitted to reporte...
From Chennai with Love
VIJAY PRASHAD
Chennai is, as a new book puts it, "an unhurried city." Each morning, most of its English-reading public, opens its copy of the city’s premier paper, The Hindu. (The paper is misnamed ­ it holds no water for any religious community, indeed it i...
Gen. William Odom on Iraq
KEVIN ZEESE
Retired General William Odom, who served as a national security adviser to President Ronald Reagan, spoke last Thursday to the Committee for the Republic in Washington, DC. He described the Iraq War as a historic blunder that the United States should end. ...
The Bush Regime’s War Crimes Dodge
DAVE LINDORFF
Could George Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and maybe Alberto Gonzales all end up sucking poison gas? That, apparently, is a concern now being taken seriously by Attorney General Gonzales, who is quietly working with senior White House officials and fr...
Why Some Stay Silent
JOAN ROELOFS
The military-industrial complex is elephantine, yet it is rarely taken into account by political commentators. Connected to almost everything, it is one reason why the home front sustains our aggressive, illegal, military interventions and occupations throughout t...
Domestic Spying, Now and Then
SAUL LANDAU
"If somebody from al-Qaeda is calling you, we’d like to know why. In the meantime, this program is conscious of people’s civil liberties, as am I. This is a limited program designed to prevent attacks on the United States limited...
Washington’s Best Ally?
JAMES PETRAS
On January 14, 2006 Veronica Michelle Bachelet was elected President of Chile, by a margin of 54 per cent to 46 per cent with 40 per cent abstentions, mostly from young people under 30 years. Heading a coalition of two nominally "socialist" parties, the ...
Senate Filibuster More Urgent Than Ever
LAWRENCE R. VELVEL
...
Exporting Jobs and Security
BRUCE K. GAGNON
Ford Motor Company announced On January 23 that it will be cutting as many as 30,000 jobs and will shut down 14 factories as a result of continuing losses. Ford, now hires about 123,000 workers in North America and lost $5.5 billion in those operations in 2...
When a Mother Gets Killed Does She Make a Sound?
ALISON WEIR
Why don’t Americans Know what’s going on in Israel/Palestine? The answer is unclear at this point, but some disturbing patterns are beginning to emerge. They implicate some of our major news media, and, perhaps most of all, the Associated Press,...
Smoke and Mirrors in the Defense Budget
WINSLOW T. WHEELER
Understanding how Congress allocates spending in the defense budget requires a comprehension of obscure terms, opaque practices, and sometimes complex ruses. The explanation below of the gimmicks in Congress’ 2006 Department of Defense Appropriations Act is ...
Bolivia’s Evo Morales
ROGER BURBACH
Cochabamba, Bolivia. The inauguration of Evo Morales as the first president of Bolivia of indigenous origins marks a watershed in the history of the Americas. The "caras" as they are called, the whites and mestizos who have dominated Bolivia for ...
The Terrorist in the Mirror
NOAM CHOMSKY
"Terror" is a term that rightly arouses strong emotions and deep concerns. The primary concern should, naturally, be to take measures to alleviate the threat, which has been severe in the past, and will be even more so in the future. To proceed in a seri...
Bush’s War Viewed from the South
JORGE MARISCAL
Last summer when cable news made Cindy Sheehan the face of all those U.S. families who have lost a child in Iraq, communities of color rallied around her but could not help but wonder whether the majority of the American public cared as deeply about their loss. La...
Liberation and Deliverance
KATHY KELLY
Barely a week goes by when I don’t think about the nuns who were so much a part of my childhood. I grew up in a working class neighborhood on the Southwest side of Chicago where most families identified closely with the nearest Catholic parish. Ours...
Why We Picket John Kerry
JOHN WALSH
At the time of the 2004 presidential election, the country was almost evenly split on the question of the Iraq war, but sentiment was moving steadily and irreversibly against the war. And yet neither major candidate opposed the war in 2004. Republican George Bush ...
Letter from a Haitian Prison
Fr. GERARD JEAN-JUSTE
Port-au-Prince, Haiti. It is not easy for me to communicate to you through the media. It is forbidden by my jailers. That order comes from the Big Boss, the invisible one in Haiti. With heart broken I have followed most of the big events in Haiti. Ye...
The Growing Israel Divestment Movement
WILL YOUMANS
and NADEEM MUADDI The Palestine Solidarity Movement (PSM) recently announced it is holding its fifth annual divestment conference at Georgetown University in Washington DC during the weekend of February 17-19, 2006. A broad based grassroots movement, the PSM a...
Patriot Police
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
A provision in the "Patriot Act" creates a new federal police force with power to violate the Bill of Rights. You might think that this cannot be true as you have not read about it in newspapers or heard it discussed by talking heads on TV. Go to ...
Radical Environmentalist on Death Row
JOSHUA FRANK
The government drops bombs on kids in the Middle East, while a hand full of activists torch some yuppie ski resort in Colorado: Bush gets reelected and the radical environmentalists are issued warrants. Where the hell is the justice? On Friday Januar...
Cheney’s War Workshop Plots Another Attack
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
2006 is a dangerous year for Americans. The Bill of Rights and Americans’ civil liberties are being sacrificed on the alter of unaccountable executive power, as is the separation of powers, the foundation of our constitutional system. The Supreme Cou...
Classified Leaks and Journalists
NORMAN SOLOMON
Ever since the disclosure of Valerie Plame’s identity as an undercover CIA operative in July 2003, prominent Democrats have denounced that leak — often with some kind of rhetoric about the sanctity of classified information. But reverence for keeping s...
The Goon Show of Bush and Bin Laden
CHRIS FLOYD
Let’s see now: President dropping in the polls; impeachment talk over illegal wiretaps gaining traction; majority of Americans now supporting withdrawal from Iraq; Abramoff scandal reaching into the White House; big push starting for war with Iran; the Bush ...
Pity the Orphan
URI AVNERY
It was a colorful day in Bil’in. Political flags of many colors were fluttering in the brisk breeze, the vivid election posters and the colorful graffiti on the walls adding their bit. It was the biggest demonstration in the beleaguered village for a long ti...
Working for the Railroad
JACKIE CORR
"It’s nice work if you can get it and you can get it if you can" The above line is from a 1930’s Depression era tune by George Gershwin. And since I came across some numbers in a Securities and Exchange report...
Diebold in Florida
SUSAN PYNCHON
I was one of ten people present at the "hack" of the Leon County, Florida voting system, which took place on Tuesday, December 13, 2005 around 4:30 in the afternoon at the county elections warehouse. Leon County’s voting system is the Diebold Accu-...
Harry Belafonte Reaffirms a Proud Tradition
WILLIAM LOREN KATZ
"President George W. Bush] lied to the people of this nation, distorted the truth, declared war on a nation who had not attacked us . . . put Americas sons and daughters in harm’s way . . . and destroyed the lives of tens of thousands of [I...
Bush’s IRS
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
When there is an income tax, the just man will pay more and the unjust less on the same amount of income. Plato, The Republic The poor are still with us and once again it’s George Bush’s IRS that is insuring they...
Bush-Linked Florida Company and the Katrina Evacuation Fiasco
TIM SHORROCK
Memphis. The U.S. Department of Transportation may hold the key to one of the biggest unanswered questions from Hurricane Katrina: Why did it take nearly a week for the Federal Emergency Management Agency to mobilize private buses to evacuate thousan...
The Gospel Roots of Wilson Pickett
DANIEL WOLFF
I listened, yesterday morning, to "The Exciting Wilson Pickett," the Atlantic album from 1966. I have it on vinyl, and it played its lopsided self while my wife, my 16-year-old son and I read the morning papers. In southern India, "indigenous...
Why are They Rounding Up Tookie Williams’ Friends?
TOM KERR
On December 9, 2005, four days before Tookie Williams’ execution, ten of his fellow inmates were dislodged from their cells by guards in full riot gear and put in solitary confinement in the San Quentin Adjustment Center, where they remain as of this writing...
Rumsfeld: Venezuela "Overspending"
DAVE LINDORFF
What are you supposed to do when the world’s most over-armed, belligerent and dangerous nation, which outspends all the rest of the world combined on arms, and which is the major arms supplier to the rest of the world, tells a little country like Venezuela t...
Better Not Drive While Black on I-91
TIM MATSON
Vermont felt a long way from Manhattan when the twin towers went down. Isolated by tall mountains, long winters, and primordial memories of rural independence, many of us watched the fires from a deep remove. It was horrible, and yes, things would be different now...
"Metabolic Syndrome" is to "Clinical Depression" as Acomplia is to Prozac
FRED GARDNER
Even before Eli Lilly began selling Prozac in 1988 the company was selling the concept of "clinical depression" -the alleged disease that Prozac allegedly cures, or mitigates the symptoms of. Lilly also began educating doctors and the public about "...
Casualties of War
PETER FENG
The recent controversy surrounding the plan to rebuild New Orleans and the passage of the first anniversary of the Asian tsunami cap a year in which a host of catastrophic disasters caused widespread death and destruction and garnered worldwide media attention. In...
CIA Bombs Pakistan, Hits America
BRIAN CLOUGHLEY
Well done the CIA! In an act of astonishing incompetence the Agency has in one fluid motion created millions more enemies for America, fostered a recruiting drive for the anti-American Taliban that will keep it in dedicated manpower for the next couple of decades,...
What We’re Listening to This Week
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR, JESSE WALKER And PHYLLIS POLLACK
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR 1. Wilson Pickett: It’s Harder Now (Rounder) ...
Feds Hand Down Eco-Sabotage Indictments
MICHAEL DONNELLY
January 19th saw the release of a previously sealed 65-count federal ...
The Emperor’s Clothes
JOHN BOMAR
A look back at the history of men and nations can be a good teacher in viewing the events and leaders of today. In its newfound role of unopposed supreme world power, the United States of America has come under increasing criticism from much of the world for its h...
Struggle and Lose, Struggle and Win!
RON JACOBS
"Some readers, some scholars may protest this writer’s method of departing from academic "objectivity," and rooting enthusiastically for the coal miners. That is too bad." Imagine yourself in a tavern or ...
Debunking Democracy
BECKY AKERS
Attention Deficit Democracy by James Bovard. Palgrave Macmillan 2005...
Betting on Biscuit
MATTHEW KOEHLER
It’s rare to find two diametrically opposed sides using the same exact posterchild to support their views. However, that’s essentially what’s developed over the past few years as the logging industry have locked horns with conservation groups and...
Congressional Ethics After Abramoff
RALPH NADER
The Abramoff scandal has spurred one of the episodic "reform" moments on Capitol Hill. Republicans and Democrats are competing to offer ethics reform packages that ignore entirely their past entanglement in the very activities they now seek to reg...
Abortion Before Roe
ELIZABETH SCHULTE
Throughout history, women have had unplanned and unwanted pregnancies. And throughout history, women have found ways to terminate those pregnancies. But what has not always been guaranteed is whether they can do so legally, with the medical care necessary t...
Victory in the War on Terror
BRIAN J. FOLEY
We’re told that a new Osama Bin Laden audiotape has emerged, and America’s Most Wanted said he would like to strike a deal with the US: Let’s stop fighting. You leave us alone, we’ll leave you alone. The Bush Administration rejected ...