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 May 2008
Death-Wish Hillary Primes Manchurian Candidate
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
Ever since she realized back in early March that Obama was going to take the nomination Hillary Clinton’s long-term strategy has been to do her best to ensure McCain will win this November so she can become the Democratic nominee in 2012. But she h...
Apathy Doesn’t Live in the Bronx
ALLISON KILKENNY
Last Wednesday more than 160 students in six different classes at Intermediate School 318 in the South Bronx refused to take another standardized test. The students boycotted the test not out of laziness or fears of failing, but because they are sick of being dragged...
A Nation of Sheep
RICHARD RHAMES
“The Labour proposal is modeled on a compulsory system in America where parents are threatened with jail if children are not immunized.” “No MMR jab, no school under new plans,” Telegraph, UK, 5/10/08 Ag...
U.S. Fourth Fleet in Venezuelan Waters
NIKOLAS KOZLOFF
With U.S. saber rattling towards Venezuela now at its height, the Pentagon has decided to reactivate the Navy’s fourth fleet in the Caribbean, Central and South America.  It’s a bold move, and has already stirred controversy with...
Celebrating Ethnic Cleansing
KATHLEEN M. BARRY
Dear Nancy Pelosi, Check your history books.   Celebration of the 60th Anniversary of the State of Israel is celebration of the Zionist ethnic cleansing of Arabs from Palestine, the celebration of the expulsion of 750,000 Arabs who generatio...
The Buying of "Democracy" Agents in Cuba
NELSON P. VALDÉS
"The populace may hiss me, but when I go home and think of my money, I applaud myself. "  Horace (c. 25 BC) "Unequal exchange, as practiced by the conquerors with the natives p...
Yellowstone: the Vision Thing
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
This is an excerpt from JEFFREY ST. CLAIR’s new environmental history of the American West, ...
Dam Legacies, Damned Futures
BARBARA ROSE JOHNSTON
This world is clearly in a state of crisis. Unchecked violence and war has forced tens of millions from their homes and into crowded refugee camps. Earthquakes, cyclones and other natural disasters are crippling government ability to meet basic humanitar...
The Search for a Token Right-winger
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
There is more than one way for a university to receive national recognition. One is to employ a faculty member who receives a Nobel Prize for his discovery.  The other is to be governed by a Chancellor who proposes a folly. The University of Colorado, has done b...
The Environment and the 2008 Elections
ADRIANA KOJEVE
Joshua Frank is an environmental writer and author, who has recently co-edited a new book with Jeffrey St. Clair titled ...
Mexico’s Narco Opera Reaches for High Note
JOHN ROSS
Mexico’s on-going Narco Opera is straining to reach new dramatic heights.  Springtime 2008 has been for killing.  Since Good Friday (March 21st) when 22 citizens were slaughtered in gun battles from Quintana Roo to Chihuahua, the daily bo...
Bush’s War on Children in Iraq
DAVE LINDORFF
Surely nothing that President Bush has done in his two wretched terms of office—not the invasion and destruction of Iraq, not the overturning of the five-centuries-old tradition of habeas corpus, not his authorization and encouragement of torture, ...
Justice Department’s Revelations on Torture
ROBERT FANTINA
It has long been an accepted fact of life that the U.S. not only condones but also practices the torture of political prisoners. While President George Bush, Cabinet members and members of Congress decry the human rights violations of other nations, they...
Orangeburg, 1968
FRED GARDNER
Forty years ago on the campus of South Carolina State College, which is in the city of Orangeburg, three students were killed and 27 wounded when police fired into a group expressing outrage over the exclusion of Black people from the only bowling alley in town. It w...
Remembering the Wendy’s Massacre
DANIEL GROSS
This Sunday marks the eighth anniversary of what has come to be known as the Wendy’s Massacre.  On that fateful day, workers at one of the hamburger chain’s locations in Queens were busy closing down the store – wiping down counters, emptying t...
Can the Whole World be Fed?
ELIZABETH SCHULTE
The depth of the global food crisis is best expressed by what poor people are eating to survive. In Burundi, it is farine noir, a mixture of black flour and moldy cassava. In Somalia, a thin gruel made from mashed thorn-tree branches called jerrin. In Haiti, i...
Pakistan’s Futile Constitutional Amendment
LIAQUAT ALI KHAN
The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) will soon propose to the Parliament the 18th amendment to the 1973 Constitution.  The proposed amendment would reportedly abolish Article 58 (2)(b) of the Constitution, which empowers the President, in his sol...
The World After Bush
MARK ENGLER
Picture January 20, 2009, the day George W. Bush has to vacate the Oval Office. It’s easy enough to imagine a party marking this fine occasion, with antiwar protestors, civil libertarians, community leaders, environmentalists, health-care ad...
The Kurds and American Neo-Imperialism
KAMRAN MATIN
Today the Kurdish people, particularly in Iraq and Iran, find themselves in a critical conjuncture. The American imperial project in the Middle East seems, at least in the short term, to be compatible with the Kurdish national struggle whose strengthenin...
War Abroad, Poverty at Home
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
The US Senate has voted $165 billion to fund Bush’s wars of aggression against Afghanistan and Iraq through next spring. As the US is broke and deep in debt, every one of the $165 billion dollars will have to be borrowed. American consumers...
An Uphill Battle
CINDY SHEEHAN
A man may fulfill the object of his existence by asking a question he cannot answer, and attempting a task he cannot achieve. Oliver Wendell Holmes When one reflects on ones life, there are several ways to do it. We can look back in a linea...
The Radical Extremists of the Building Industry
ALAN FARAGO
"No better time to buy a new home, no better place" reads the faux headline in The Miami Herald paid advertisement section for real estate; describing a platted subdivision in Homestead, Florida. It is a line for suckers. And another li...
A "Holey" Instrument of Peace in Iraq
ROBERT WEITZEL
On October 23, 2006 a U.S. soldier or marine peered through the telescopic sight of his M24 sniper rifle and trained it on the face of Nora, a five-year-old Iraqi girl. Her pretty face was close enough to...
Cars and Cows
GEORGE WUERTHNER
The family of a friend of mine used to say they were “living large” whenever they were enjoying something that was a bit decadent like having two desserts after dinner or buying something frivolous that they really didn’t need like anot...
Ballots and Bullets
CONN HALLINAN
May has been a month of upheaval, from the streets of Beirut, where the Bush Administration appears to have miscalculated disastrously, to Santa Cruz Province in Eastern Bolivia, where a continent’s new political realignment is trying to checkmate ...
The Long Incarceration of Pol Brennan
SANDY BOYER And SHAUN HARKIN
TWENTY-SIX years ago, Pol Brennan was an Irish Republican Army (IRA) prisoner in the H-Blocks of Long Kesh, watching his friends die on hunger strike. Today, he is in solitary confinement in a Texas immigration holding center. His story reveals a ...
From Obama to the PRTs in Iraq
BRENDAN McQUADE
"We are change.” With that simple three-word rallying cry, Barack Obama claims to transcend all the problems of Washington’s entrenched status quo and bridge all the divisions segmenting American society. Obama&rsquo...
60 Years of Apartheid
SHARON SMITH
South Africa’s white minority government was finally overthrown in 1993, after decades of black popular and working-class resistance. That year, the black majority democratically elected the African National Congress–previously derided as a &...
Racist Grammar
VIJAY PRASHAD
THE “race card” is out in full force. In Tupelo, Mississippi, the birthplace of Elvis Presley, Republicans want to make their stand against Democrats. The city is at the centre of the 1st Congressional District, where a special election was h...
Immoral Hazard
STEPHEN LENDMAN
Jeremy Grantham, co-founder of Boston-based investment firm Grantham, Mayo and Van Otterloo, now known as GMO, has been called the philosopher king of Wall Street because of his highly insightful views on markets and the economy, usually with a longer-te...
A Military Commissions Cheat Sheet
JOANNE MARINER
In the more than six years since President George Bush first announced the creation of military commissions to prosecute detainees allegedly responsible for terrorism, war crimes, and other misdeeds, there has not been a single full-blown military commis...
Disaster Redux
JEFF BIRKENSTEIN
I hadn’t planned it; just came up with the idea when my student was introducing herself to the class.  Of course, I hadn’t planned to land in Shanghai on the same day as the largest natural disaster to hit so-called ...
What I Want to Ask Mary Tillman
DAVE ZIRIN
This Friday, I will have the privilege to interview Mary Tillman, the mother of the late Pat Tillman: former NFL player turned Army Ranger, turned casualty of a criminal war. Mary Tillman has written a book along with Narda Zacchino c...
The Sorry State of the Banking Industry
PETER MORICI
Friday, the National Association of Realtors will report April existing home sales and prices. These are expected to continue the down trend of recent months and reflect the sorry and dysfunctional state of the banking industry. Existing home sal...
Restoration Boulevard
NIRANJAN RAMAKRISHNAN
With great admiration for her spirit and tenacity, a fraction of which if either Al Gore or John Kerry had he would have become President, I still refuse to support Hillary Clinton. My reason: no senator who helped start the Iraq War deserves to ...
Miami, Cuba and the Presidential Campaign
ALAN FARAGO
Already the shape of the presidential campaign over Cuba is forming around the tired rhetoric of the past. It reminds me of a story. As a child, one of my contemporaries lived in a large house with his grandparents. They seemed impossibly old to me at...
U.S. Military Bases in South America
NIKOLAS KOZLOFF
Despite his record unpopularity, it would appear that President Bush wants to go out of office with a bang.  Having failed to overthrow Hugo Chávez through an attempted coup, the White House now hopes to escalate pressure on Venezuela’s...
Lebanon Gets a President
FRANKLIN LAMB
Tent City, Beirut. "The agreement was not ideal for either party and I hope that it will serve as a launch pad for decent relations between the majority and the opposition. We will tackle the other issues in Beirut and there is n...
Genocide in Iraq?
DAVID MODEL
Despite the precipitous plunge in his popularity and growing criticism of his competency, character, and style, George W. Bush is not really that much different from other presidents with respect to his hegemonic ambitions or his proclivity to use force ...
Who is the Enemy?
ERIC WALBERG
Twenty years ago this week the Soviet Union began its withdrawal from Afghanistan, eight and a half years after it was invited by the desperate People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), which had degenerated into intra-party squabbling and w...
The Gothic Politics of Hillary Clinton
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
Hillary Clinton famously found her voice in New Hampshire, but it took the senator until West Virginia to relocate her inner child. Yes, she’s once again embraced the Goldwater Girl of her youth. Once upon a time while she was still the front-ru...
Tax Against Tyranny
KENNETH COUESBOUC
The governments of the world can be seen as belonging to either of two categories. There are those that depend on taxes for their spending and there are those that do not. And the extent of its dependence on taxes will largely determine the form of a par...
Sacrifice in a Time of War
BRIAN M. DOWNING
Last week President Bush humbly and movingly announced that to show his “solidarity” with our troops fighting in the Middle East he would refrain from playing golf. The magnanimity of the act, evocative as it is of our nation’s long tra...
Big John and the Scary, Scary Iran Threat
DAVE LINDORFF
Mighty war hero John McCain has a troublesome perceptual problem. He sees things as being bigger than they really are. When he was flying fighter-bombers over North Vietnam, he, like many in the military, imagined that he was fighting against a mighty...
Skating Around the Tanker Issue
CHRIS GENOVALI
A well known Victoria, British Columbia radio talk show host once told local  Conservative MP (Member of Parliament) Gary Lunn on air that he was such a  good skater (as in skating around the issues) that he should be competing in  the upc...
The UAW Strike Against American Axle
DAVID MACARAY
On Friday, May 16, negotiators for the United Auto Workers (UAW) reached tentative agreement on a contract with American Axle and Manufacturing Holdings Inc., which, if ratified (the membership votes on it later this week), would end the UAW’s 80-d...
Come Out, Admiral Fallon, Wherever You Are
RAY McGOVERN
Dear Admiral Fallon: I have not been able to find out how to reach you directly, so I have drafted this letter in the hope it will come to your attention. First, thank you for honoring the oath we commissioned officers take to protect and defen...
Merck is a Repeat Offender
MARTHA ROSENBERG
Even as Merck seeks closure on its Vioxx nightmare by paying $4.85 billion to tens of thousands of plaintiffs who took the painkiller–not that it did anything wrong–the bad ink continues. Articles about Vioxx, withdrawn from the market in ...
Birmingham, Israel and the Nakba
IBRAHIM FAWAL
The Birmingham Jewish Federation is hosting a 60th birthday party for Israel this weekend with a tour of Israeli cities, but there is an undeniable reality that the festivities will likely conceal. As Birmingham residents travel through these cities, the...