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 April 2006
Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle: 100 Years Later
CONTRATIEMPO
In 1906, Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle was published. Almost immediately, it had an imp...
Proposals for Rationally Improving the City of Paris
LETTRIST INTERNATIONAL
The Lettrists present at the September 26 meeting jointly proposed the following solutions to the various urbanistic problems that came up in discussion. They stress that no constructive action was considered, since they all agreed that the most urgent task is to ...
What We’re Listening To This Week
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR, DAVID VEST And TOM D'ANTONI
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR My Own Private, Springsteen-Free Jazzfest, Week One Louis Armstrong: ...
Neil Young Kicks Out the Jams
RON JACOBS
On April 30, 1970, Richard Nixon told the world that US forces were invading the country of Cambodia. Within twenty-four hours of his announcement, the streets of many cities and towns around the United States and elsewhere were filled with angry protests against ...
Break Up the Big Oil Cartel
RALPH NADER
What a week it has been for the giant oil companies! Billions in record quarterly profits rushing into their coffers. An even bigger round of quarterly profits coming up. Gargantuan executive pay bonanzas. And a pile of "forces beyond our control" excuse...
Corruption Reform?
DON MONKERUD
In November, the investigation of lobbyist Jack Abramoff for bribing Congress sent a chill through Washington. Additional indictments were on the horizon and politicians pledged to tighten restrictions on lobbying and clean up government corruption. Backed ...
Forgotten Memories, Personal and Political
FRED GARDNER
It’s no coincidence that the new O’Shaughnessy’s includes five articles on post traumatic stress disorder and t...
Xenophobia in a Land of Immigrants
JOHN CHUCKMAN
"One of the important things here is that we not lose our national soul." George W. Bush Was George Bush speaking of some truly shattering event in American affairs? Perhaps the imprisonment and tortur...
Opening a New Movement
LEE SUSTAR
More than 120 activists from around the U.S. met in Chicago April 22 to coordinate plans for national May Day protests for immigrant and worker rights. While Congress debates "compromise" legislation on immigration that will likely include a guest...
Securing the Homeland for Whom?
SETH SANDRONSKY
Recently, U.S. Department of Homeland Security agents helped to arrest over a thousand undocumented immigrant laborers in more than two dozen states. Some of them were deported. These immigrant laborers had produced wealth for IFCO Systems North America, a ...
A Fork in the American Road
BEN TRIPP
The United States of America recently came to a fork in the road of history. One path led to the fulfillment of the promise that America has made to the world: that it would champion freedom, justice, and opportunity by its own example. The other path led to slave...
JazzFest, Tears and the Renewal of New Orleans
TOMMY STEVENSON
A year ago I wrote a somewhat self-congratulatory column about attending my 30th consecutive New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. The column was full of remembrances of "Jazz Fest moments," the close circle of friends from all over the country ...
War and Immigrants Rights: "It’s the Same System Behind Both Injustices"
ERIC RUDER
Camilo Meija was the first U.S. soldier to be jailed for refusing to redeploy to Iraq. Since his release in February 2005, Camilo has organized tirelessly against the war in Iraq, taking part in last month’s Latino march for peace from Tijuana, Mexico, to Sa...
May Day with Heart
PETER LINEBAUGH
The moon and hours have revolved again, dear hearts, and May Day is upon us. Spring has sprung as usual, though a strike, a boycott, a holiday, a refusal–call it what you will–looms hopefully on Monday morrow, and that is unusual. We’ll wear whit...
The Franken Plane
ROBERT BRYCE
It’s the Franken plane. No matter how many times the V-22 crashes, no matter how many people it kills, no matter how much it costs, the tiltrotor aircraft known as the Osprey just keeps on sucking down taxpayer dollars. The tab thus far: a staggering $18 bil...
Praying for Peace or Preying on Peace?
Rev. WILLIAM E. ALBERTS
The United Methodist Church should be bringing disciplinary action against President George Bush for war crimes. Evidence continues to mount that Bush, a United Methodist, deliberately used his religious faith to deceive the American people in the run-up to his ad...
What You Won’t See in Flight 93, the Film
JAMES RIDGEWAY
The only people to defend the United States on 911 were the passengers and crews of the 4 hijacked planes. The President and the Secretary of Defense, the two top officials in the chain of command responsible for defense the country were o...
Hamas’ Impossible Mission
RAMZY BAROUD
It should be established by now that most Western governments are the least interested in honoring the decided democratic choice of the Palestinian people, which elevated to power a movement that is branded ‘terrorist’ by Israel, thus by much of t...
Operation Canned Meat and Its Derivatives
WERTHER
“Mundus vult decipi” (“the world wants to be deceived”) Martin Luther (1483-1546) Item: On the evening of 31 August 1939, members of the S.S. took a concentration camp...
Off With His Head!
WILLIAM S. LIND
On the surface, the question raised by six (at last count) retired generals of whether Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld should resign has an obvious answer: of course he should. He was a key man in the cabal that lied us into the war in Iraq, and he may h...
"You Get What You’re Ready to Fight For"
SARAH KNOPP
Nativo López is president of the Mexican American Political Association and a spokesperson for the Great American Boycott 2006–a national day of action for immigrant rights on May 1. Where did these protests come from...
The United States of Israel?
ROBERT FISK
Stephen Walt towers over me as we walk in the Harvard sunshine past Eliot Street, a big man who needs to be big right now (he’s one of two authors of an academic paper on the influence of America’s Jewish lobby) but whose fame, or notoriety, depen...
Why Leftists Mistrust Liberals
ROBERT JENSEN
Some of my best friends are liberals. Really. But I have found it is best not to rely on them politically. Bashing the left to burnish credibility in mainstream circles is a time-honored liberal move, a way of saying “I’m critical of the e...
Making America Safer
DAVE LINDORFF
So after as long as four and a half years in captivity, no doubt complete with torture and abuse of all sorts, 141 of the remaining 500 captives at Guantanamo are going to be released by the Bush administration, which has finally determined that they, after a...
Honor and Injustice
JOSÉ PERTIERRA
Last Valentine’s Day, the Federal Court of Appeals heard oral arguments concerning one of the greatest injustices in the history of U.S. jurisprudence. The lives of five innocent men hang in the balance, awaiting the decision of the 11th Circuit. Althou...
How Much is the War in Iraq Costing?
WINSLOW T. WHEELER
The Congressional Research Service has just released a new report on the past and possible future costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Pending Congress’ action on the new emergency supplemental, which should complete fiscal year 2006 expenses, the...
Immigration Endgame
JUAN SANTOS
We can no longer use the term loosely –America’s war against migrants is real, and the nation’s rulers mean to sweep the nation’s barrios the way Katrina swept the Black wards of New Orleans. And like the military operations visited up...
Democrats, Their Apologists and Abortion
SHERRY WOLF
If nothing else, the Democratic Party was at least pro-choice—or so we were told. Ever since Ronald Reagan heralded the rise of social troglodytes in the early eighties, liberal leaders have scolded into line those disgusted with the Democrats’ s...
Zig-Zagging Through the War with John Kerry
JOSHUA FRANK
The search is finally over. Sen. John Kerry is believed to have found his heroic voice. He apparently misplaced it back in the early ’70s after standing up to the U.S. war in Vietnam upon his saluted return from battle. Now many antiwar liberals believe...
"The Secret Cabal Got What It Wanted: No Negotiations."
GARY LEUPP
It was May 2003. President Bush had declared “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq. The State Department, which had been unenthusiastic about that war, was not inclined to provoke another with Iran and indeed had been calling for diplomatic engagement wi...
The Rich Life of Jane Jacobs
ROBIN PHILPOT
Jane Jacobs died on Tuesday, April 25, in Toronto at the age of 89. The following article is based on one of the last interviews she granted on May 2, 2005. She agreed to the interview because it was to deal with the toughest question in Canadian politics, na...
Media Red-Baiting About the Revolution in Nepal
PRATYUSH CHANDRA
As sniffing K9s in the hands of the global hegemony, the corporate media around the globe smelled Maoist activists’ and pamphlets’ presence in the post- April 6 protests as proofs of the Maoist infiltration. A BBC reporter reported on April 24: &q...
Katrina: Eight Months Later
BILL QUIGLEY
On Monday, April 17, 2006, two bodies were found buried beneath what used to be a home in the Lower 9th Ward. Their discovery raised to 17 the number of Hurricane Katrina fatalities that have been discovered in New Orleans in the past month and a half. Katrin...
Is the US Waging Israel’s Wars?
LINDA S. HEARD
Many throughout the Muslim world and beyond are asking this question: What are the real reasons behind the US invasion of Iraq and its wish to overthrow the governments of Syria and Iran? For all their grandiose posturing, in truth, Iraq, Syria and Iran hav...
Preparing for the Economic Typhoon
MIKE WHITNEY
Gold traders love George Bush. They know that his blundering mismanagement of the economy will keep gold soaring well into the future. In the last year alone gold increased nearly $200 an ounce capping off a 5 year run that has taken it from $274 per ounce to $635...
Political Science
RALPH NADER
Newt Gingrich has been called a "futurist", a "policy wonk", an advocate of adapting technology to human efficiencies, among other less flattering descriptions. So what did he do the year he took over the House of Representatives from the Democ...
The World is Uniting Against the Bush Imperium
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
Is the United States a superpower? I think not. Consider these facts: The financial position of the US has declined dramatically. The US is heavily indebted, both government and consumers. The US trade deficit both in absolute size and as a percentage of GD...
Lutherans Betray Michigan’s Loon Lake Wetlands for Pieces of Silver
MICHAEL DONNELLY
In the early 1980s, Michigan YMCA Camp Mahn-go-tah-see had run up against hard times. Though thousands of youth attended Summer Camp there since the 1930s, kid camps everywhere were getting harder and harder to maintain as camper numbers dropped off. Late 20th Cen...
Strike Iran, Watch Pakistan and Turkey Fall
JOHN STANTON
"Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I’m liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That’s what’s insane about it." ...
Hotel Rwanda
AMADOU DEME
A small convoy of refugees is confronted by a murderous mob at a roadblock in the widely praised film Hotel Rwanda. The UN troops protecting the convoy, led by a bold white commander, brandish their weapons. After some scuffling, threats and a few shots being fire...
Dangerous Times Ahead
DAVE LINDORFF
The noose is tightening around George Bush and his gang of White House crooks and liars, with prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald reportedly getting closer to an indictment of Karl Rove, and now with the Illinois and California state legislatures considering resolutions...
15 Minutes of Radical Fame
MICKEY Z.
Search the archives of any left-of-center website and you’ll find no shortage of prose extolling the importance of "getting the message out there." If only the huddled masses could consume something more than a steady diet of corporate propaganda&#...
What Kind of Card is Race?
TIM WISE
Recently, I was asked by someone in the audience of one of my speeches, whether or not I believed that racism–though certainly a problem–might also be something conjured up by people of color in situations where the charge was inappropriate. In other w...
Obama’s Game
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
I was harsh about Senator Barack Obama of Illinois here a couple of weeks ago, and the very next morning his press aide, Tommy Vietor, was on the phone howling about inaccuracies. It was an illuminating conversation, indicative of the sort of instinctive reflexes ...
Berlusconi Defeated
STEVE SHORE
Italy has survived a brutal campaign with a new government of the left. In a turnout that Americans can only dream of, almost 84 percent of the electorate, for the first time including Italians living abroad throughout the world, has demonstrated what happens in a...
Lee Raymond’s Unconscionable Platinum Parachute
RALPH NADER
Exxon Mobil reports that it is sending retiring chairman Lee Raymond off with one of the most lavish executive compensation and retirement packages in history–an estimated $398 million in total. This unconscionable windfall cannot be justified by any...
The Courage of Sophie Scholl
DAVID KRIEGER
If young people today would like to learn something about courage, they should see the movie "Sophie Scholl–The Final Days." Sophie Scholl was a 21 year old student at the University of Munich in 1943. Her older brother, Hans Scholl, was a medical ...
The General, GM and the Stryker
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
On December 10, 2003, two Strykers, the Army’s newest armored personnel carrier, were patrolling near Balad, Iraq, when the embankment beneath them collapsed and the vehicles plunged into a rain-swollen river. Three soldiers died and another was severely inj...
Out Now
THOMAS P. HEALY
Anthony Arnove’s new book, Iraq: The Logic of Withdrawal (The New Press, 2006) is tai...
Saddam and Me: a True Story
JEFF KLEIN
The crimes of Saddam Hussein and his henchmen during the 1980’s have been in the news lately as their on-again off-again trial has resumed in Baghdad. Even though a court established under US military occupation has questionable legal standing and legitimacy...