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Archives from January 2008
Stoning Martin Luther King, Jr.
SAM HUSSEINI
Yesterday, the Washington Post lead editorial prominently quotes King: "’When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American...
Labor’s Grim Dilemma
DAVID MACARAY
Union people regularly complain about how the Democratic Party isn’t doing enough to assist or support organized labor. While Democrats continue to receive tens of millions of dollars in labor contributions, when it comes time to show some genuine patronage ...
Leaping Steelhead!
DAN BACHER
In 2005 I instituted a new set of fishery conservation awards, the "Leaping Steelhead" awards, for those who have gone out of their way to restore and enhance our fish populations in the face of decades of state and federal government mismanagement of Ca...
Protest and Trial in Washington, D.C.
JOE DeRAYMOND
There are still writers and activists making the case for impeachment. They make the earnest, comprehensive and correct case that Bush and/or Cheney should be impeached by Congress. I believe it is time to get the message that "impeachment is off the table&qu...
Playing the Race Card
KEVIN ALEXANDER GRAY
I hesitantly step into the Hillary Clinton – Barack Obama family scuffle over South Carolina’s black vote. Both candidates are products of the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC), the conservative wing of the Democratic Party. Clinton is a DLC star, ch...
Philip Agee Versus the CIA
JEAN-GUY ALLARD
Philip Agee, the former CIA agent who in 1968 had the courage to resign from an agency that was known for its criminal support of bloody dictators, claims that he made up his mind, one year before, the moment a woman he was sitting with in a restaurant in Mexico b...
Why Islam Should Tolerate Images
B.R. GOWANI
Every now and then one hears that Muslim "sentiments" are hurt because a picture or a cartoon of Mohammad (the Prophet and founder of Islam) was published. There are instances, such as in Denmark, Sweden, etc. where the cartoons, the one where Mohammad i...
Europe’s Collusion in Israel’s Slow Genocide
OMAR BARGHOUTI
The European Union, Israel’s largest trade partner in the world, is watching by as Israel tightens its barbaric siege around Gaza, collectively punishing 1.5 million Palestinian civilians, condemning them to devastation, and visiting imminent death upon hund...
Look Who’s Talking
URI AVNERY
Sometimes something is said about you, and you are not quite sure whether to take it as a compliment or an insult. Two prominent journalists, whom I respect very much, mentioned me in connection with the Prime Minister. Akiva Eldar of Haaretz asked last mo...
How Wall Street Blew Itself Up
PAM MARTENS
The massive losses by big Wall Street firms, now topping those of the Great Depression in relative terms, have yet to be adequately explained. Wall Street power players are obfuscating and Congress is too embarrassed or frightened to ask, preferring to just throw ...
Deferring Dreams
LINN WASHINGTON, Jr.
What happens to a dream deferred renowned poet Langston Hughes asked in his resonate poem "A Dream Deferred" published in the early 1950s. This question poised by Hughes carries contemporary interest during the dawning weeks of the Year 2008 when ...
The False U.S. Economy
SHEPHERD BLISS
While tending berry vines on my small farm this fall and winter, I’ve observed the sharp decline of the US’s artificial economy. Nature has a seasonal cycle of expansion and contraction. Now contracting, the US’s manufactured economy has been bui...
The Drug Industry Takes Another Hit
MARTHA ROSENBERG
If Hillary and Obama think the press is picking on them, they should look at Big Pharma. The ink isn’t even dry on the massive Vioxx settlement and already Big Pharma’s been accused of burying clinical data, spinning journal articles and selli...
Dodging Ecocide
MICHAEL DONNELLY
US Greenhouse Gas emissions increase by 2% per year. If everyone did everything recommended in Al Gore’s movie as their personal contribution to curbing their share of the toxic releases–and mind you 100% compliance with Gore’s suggestions is wha...
High Crimes and Economics
SETH SANDRONSKY
Can a recent history of the U.S. economy read a bit like a crime story? Yes, in the hands of Michael Perelman, an author and economics professor at CSU Chico. His new book, ...
A Tax Rebate Won’t Fix This Mess
DAVE LINDORFF
When you hear a number like $100 billion (the amount Bush is proposing to give back to people in the form of tax rebates, at about $800 per adult family member) or $145 billion (that $100 billion, plus another $45 billion in business tax breaks-mostly accelerated ...
Good Time Charlie’s War
SAUL LANDAU
George Crile (Charlie Wilson’s War, 2003) credits the Houston Congressman with convin...
Starbucks Shortchanges Dr. King
DANIEL GROSS
In the watered-down version of what passes for history these days, what the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was doing when he was assassinated is left out. In the current atmosphere of unbridled hostility to labor organizing, it’s worthwhile to recall those...
So You Want to be My President, Eh?
DAVID MICHAEL GREEN
One of the greatest deficiencies of American democracy –such as it is nowadays –is the near complete lack of accountability to which elected and selected officials are subjected. There are other problems, to be sure, but the degree to which thes...
The Ordeal of Dr. Safdar Sarki
PATRICK IRELAN
In a strange way, the "war on terror" may have claimed another victim, at least for now and perhaps forever. Safdar Sarki, who earned his medical degree in Pakistan, is a member of the World Sindhi Congress. The congress seeks greater influence fo...
Woody Allen Meets Tongue Fu
PAUL KRASSNER
[Note: A small independent publisher, Ronin, has just released a new edition of my...
In Memory of Milton Wolff, 1915 – 2008
PETER N. CARROLL
Milton Wolff, the last commander of the Lincoln-Washington Battalion consisting of the North American volunteers in the Spanish Civil War and an iconic leader of the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade since the war ended in 1939, died of heart failure in Berk...
Unimpeachable
JAMES ROTHENBERG
The following conversation is not meant to demoralize the pro-impeachment community. The very opposite. This does not mean I am optimistic about the prospects. If civil advancement depended on optimism we should have given it up long ago. We fight for certain thin...
No Retreat
RON JACOBS
"Antiwar groups retreat on funding fight" read the headlines. The story underneath describes a retreat by MoveOn and other liberal elements of the antiwar movement who, after failing to get a withdrawal deadline passed in the US Congress in 2007, are now...
Croakin’ on Hudson
SUSIE DAY
Last December, New York Governor Eliot Spitzer and other state officials announced that the Indian Point nuclear power plant, 35 miles north of New York City, should be shut down. They almost spoiled your Christmas. Giant blinking reindeer, strings of elec...
Desert Mirage
CONN HALLINAN
So what was that Sept. 6 Israeli bombing of Syria all about? The official line is that Israel flattened a Syrian nuclear reactor, which may have been designed by the North Koreans, although with all the chaff being thrown up, it hard to tell what really happened (...
The Campaign in Black and White
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
He’s a smart fellow and so Barack Obama surely knew what was in store for him if he ever looked like taking the Democratic nomination away from Hillary Clinton. The Clintons’ relationship with African-Americans has always been starkly instrumental. Whe...
Canada’s Glaring Double Standards on Torture
ANDY WORTHINGTON
How humiliating. The story begins with the shameful case of Maher Arar, a Syrian-born Canadian who was kidnapped by US agents as he changed planes in New York in 2002, and rendered to Syria, where he was tortured for a year on behalf of the Americans befor...
Making the World Safe for Despots
SHERWOOD ROSS
"In the last six years, Washington has stepped up its sales and transfers of high-technology weapons, military training, and other military assistance to governments regardless of their respect for human rights, democratic principles, or nonproliferation,&quo...
Endgame for Pakistan?
CHINA HAND
Reports of Pervez Musharraf’s survival may have been greatly exaggerated. The same goes for the opposition alliance of Bhutto’s PPP and Nawaz Sharif’s PML-N. Musharraf’s government reached out to Nawaz Sharif and his PML-N, ho...
What’s the Going Price for a Joint?
PAUL ARMENTANO
What’s the current price for a bag of weed? According to the latest figures from the FBI, the human cost is roughly 739,000 a year. That’s the number of American citizens arrested in 2006 for possessing small amounts of pot. (Another 91,000 wer...
Private Insurance is Bad for Your Health
JOHN JONIK
Private health insurance is "oil" in the "water" of Public Health. They do not belong together. We have heard much about the redundancy, and excess, unnecessary costs of private insurance, and a lot about the horrors faced by those with and wit...
Pity the Brahmins
P. SAINATH
A signal achievement of the Indian elite in recent years has been to take caste, give it a fresh coat of paint, and repackage it as a struggle for equality. The agitations in the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences and other such institutions were fine ...
Terrorism and Preventative Detention
JOANNE MARINER
Since the September 11 terrorist attacks, pressure to combat terrorism effectively, speedily, and decisively has warped–or even rendered unrecognizable–basic legal rules and institutions. Suspects taken into U.S. custody have, in some instances, been &...
Beyond Steinem’s Feminism
R. F. BLADER
On January 14, Ishmael Reed asked us to consider the story of Ma and Pa Ferguson, the corrupt Texans whose tale of local political hillbilly corruption resembles that of Hillary and Bill Clinton. In 1923, the story goes, Miriam Ferg...
This Time Next Year?
DAOUD KUTTAB
President George Bush, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert have committed themselves to give the world a new year’s gift in 2009: an independent state of Palestine. After decades of war and homelessness, oppression and occ...
Precision Bombing in Iraq and Afghanistan
ALLAN NAIRN
CNN’s Ed Henry, their White House correspondent, recently spotted the President of the United States "walking in the footsteps of Jesus along the Sea of Galilee" (CNN International, January 17, 2008 [WIB]). The Washington Post reports that...
A Letter from Guantánamo
ANDY WORTHINGTON
Yesterday, the Associated Press reported on a letter from Guantánamo written by Al-Jazeera cameraman Sami al-Haj. The letter was dated December 27, 2007, and had just been declassified by the Pentagon’s censors. It was translated from the Arabic by hi...
Bhutto and the "State Within a State"
BEENA SARWAR
The assassination of Benazir Bhutto has left a huge vacuum in Pakistani politics at a juncture where her presence was vital to the transition towards democracy. The widespread riots following her death provided the government with a pretext to postpone the electio...
Leadership, Bush and the New York Times
ROBERT FANTINA
In one of his very first editorials as a brand new columnist with the New York Times, Mr. William Kristol showed a skewed perception of world events. The article, ‘The Democrats Fairy Tale,’ highlights the decrease in violence a year after President Bu...
End of the Left?
ADAM FEDERMAN
There is no greater fallacy than the intellectual claim that a once commonly accepted truth or paradigm has at last come to an end. More often than not it is wishful thinking. To declare the end of or the death of something was a fashionable twentieth century conc...
Eternal War
PATRICK IRELAN
In the early 1990’s, Robert Kaplan went to West Africa and saw the future: Disease, overpopulation, crime, war, refugees, private armies, scarce resources, ecological disasters, and various other evils were about to reduce the entire region to a condition in...
Bush Legacy in Texas Sours
BRENDA NORRELL
South Texas. South Texans woke up to dismal skies this morning, as the rain was falling and the news came that the US filed suit Monday to seize the first of 102 private lands of people and city governments to build the US Apartheid Border Wall between Texa...
Change and the Establishment
WALTER BRASCH
All of the presidential candidates are spouting "CHANGE" as their "catch-word of the day." Change the health care system. Change the economy. Change the corporate hold on middle-class Americans. The only thing they’re not relying upon to ...
When the Big Boys Get in Trouble, Who Pays the Ultimate Bill?
RALPH NADER
I was at a large wedding reception in New York City that I saw Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan, sitting down to dinner one spring evening in 2000. Having heard on the grapevine that the Federal Reserve was finally going to do something about predat...
The Stimulus and the Meltdown
ALAN FARAGO
It is astounding: if you only read the mainstream media (with a few notable exceptions like the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal) you would wake up to this morning’s headline in The Miami Herald, "How would an economic stimulus package help Sou...
Leader and Vassal
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
After pandering to Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert’s right-wing government last week, US president George W. Bush carried the Israeli/neoconservative campaign against Iran to Arab countries. Sounding as authentic as the "Filipino Monkey," Bush t...
When the Rich Pay No Taxes
PAUL A. MOORE
During his eight-year reign as governor of Florida, Jeb Bush fashioned an economic time bomb. On his way out the door he lit the fuse. His handiwork will soon devastate this state and visit unprecedented suffering on its people. It will be a nightmare, part of whi...
Institutionalized Spying on Americans
STEPHEN LENDMAN
This article reviews two police state tools (among many in use) in America. One is new, undiscussed and largely unknown to the public. The other was covered in a December article by this writer called Police State America. Here it’s updated with new informat...
The FBI’s Bills Come Due
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
It’s only money. And when most of your effort is devoted to making sure that the country is safe from terrorists it’s easy to see how keeping track of money can just be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. And it’s doubly annoying that w...