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Archives from September 2008
In Cold Bold
AHMAD FARUQUI
The headline was “Five women buried alive.” Readers wondered if the victims had been felled by a natural disaster. As they read on, they discovered to their horror that it was not a mudslide or earthquake that was responsible for these tragic deaths. The ...
Blaming the Labor Unions
DAVID MACARAY
“The modern Little Red Riding Hood, reared on singing commercials, has no objection to being eaten by the wolf.” —Marshall McLuhan The Republicans’ campaign to portray themselves as “plain folks&rd...
The Power of No
DAVE LINDORFF
Incredible! This time, when the People spoke, Congress listened. At least 228 members of the House listened. They voted early this afternoon to reject the Bush Administration’s scaremongering, and the cowardly Democratic Congressional leadership’s ...
The Attack on Zeev Sternhell
JONATHAN COOK
The words “Jewish” and “terrorist” are not easily uttered together by Israelis. But just occasionally, such as last week when one of the country’s leading intellectuals was injured by a pipe bomb placed at the front door of his home, the...
A Biological Walk Down Wall Street
STEPHEN MARTIN
It will be a great mistake for the community to shoot the millionaires, for they are the Bees that make the most honey, and contribute most to the hive even after they have gorged themselves full. So wrote Andrew Carnegie. Of ...
What Wall Street Hoped to Win
PAM MARTENS
“I got a lot of Ph.D. types and smart people around me who come into the Oval Office and say, ‘Mr. President, here’s what’s on my mind.’ And I listen carefully to their advice. But having gathered the device (sic), I decide, ...
What Obama Could Have Said
FATEMEH KESHAVARZ
Presidential debates are not meant to be in-depth or analytical exchanges. The candidates are unlikely to reveal new information or venture into unexplored and risky territory.  Neither are they encouraged to make bold and original comments. However, as safe and...
Time for a General Strike?
MANUEL GARCIA, Jr.
Monday the 29th of September 2008, was a memorable day: public sentiment swayed government action. More precisely, public sentiment against the proposed Wall Street Bailout (WSB) swayed a majority of the members of the US House of Representatives to vote again...
Will the Bride Wear White?
JOHN CHUCKMAN
It is reliably reported (The Times, London) that the McCain camp is expecting a miracle, its expectations rather resembling those of a millenarianist group camping on a hillside awaiting The Second Coming. The anticipated miracle is the shotgun marriage of Sa...
When the Betting Goes Bad
MARK ENGLER
Rarely in politics do we witness such a rapid transformation as Senator John McCain’s recognition of America’s current financial crisis. Until the middle of September 2008 — throughout myriad home foreclosures, personal bankruptcies, and even the fa...
The Shadow of the Pitchfork
CHRIS FLOYD
The vote by the House of Representatives on Monday to defeat the Wall Street bailout plan is the first act of political courage that the Congress of the United States has mounted in the last seven years. The fact that it was due largely to right-wing Republicans afra...
A Bitter Harvest in Afghanistan
DEEPAK TRIPATHI
The audacity of recent attacks by the Taleban and their Al-Qaeda allies in Pakistan and Afghanistan has caused alarm in the region and beyond. The bombings of the Indian embassy in Kabul in June 2008 and the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad on September 20 have been devas...
Why America Should Listen to Ahmadinejad
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
The full text of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s speech to the UN General Assembly last week was printed in the Israeli newspaper, ...
Take This Shrimp Slayer!
BILL HATCH
Dear Congressman Sarbanes, We are writing from Merced, CA, one of three top foreclosure-rate counties in the nation. Our congressman, Dennis Cardoza, Shrimp Slayer, now resides in the 3rd Congressional District of Maryland, which you represent. Therefore, sinc...
"Just Say No!" to the Robin Hood-in-Reverse Bailout
JEFF GIBBS
"I’m disappointed and disgusted with my own Republican Party as I watch them attempt to strong-arm a bailout of some of America’s biggest corporations by asking taxpayers to suck up the staggering results of the hubris, greed, and arrogan...
Hell to Pay
ALAN FARAGO
In May, 2005 The Miami Herald printed a guest editorial by one of Miami’s Growth Machine advocates, Willy Bermello; "Build them and they will come". "Lately," Bermello wrote, "There has been more written about the "condo bu...
Racism as Reflex
TIM WISE
If hypocrisy were currency, conservatives would be able to single-handedly bail out the nation’s free-falling financial system in less than a week, without the rest of us having to front so much as a penny. So on the one hand, folks like this always tel...
Is Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Running the 9/11 Trials?
ANDY WORTHINGTON
It could all have been so different. Between September 2002 and April 2003, the five defendants in the forthcoming 9/11 trial at Guantánamo — Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Ramzi bin al-Shibh, ...
Black Monday?
MIKE WHITNEY
Today the US House rejected Treasury Secretary Paulson’s $700 billion Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. Paulson said he has the votes, but Paulson was wrong. The House bucked the Paulson’s claim that buying up the illiquid mortgage-backed asse...
Postcards from the DNC
IRIS KELTZ
"Wake up America,” the Kucinich rally cry, charged one thousand and one exhilarating moments during the Democratic Convention. My decision to go to Denver was made with visceral memories of the 1968 Chicago Convention. Ah, yes, I remembered it well. Being ...
The Bailout and the Economy
PETER MORICI
The US trade deficit has grown to $US700 billion, which of course is money not spent on US goods and services. This has killed off well paying jobs, has slowed the economy and created unemployment. Net imports from China and oil account for a large proportion ...
The Elephant in America’s Room
DAVID MICHAEL GREEN
The second most astonishing thing about American politics is that John McCain and Sarah Palin have a respectable chance of winning the White House in 2008.  (Or, for that matter, that any Republican could have a shot at any office for which the Democratic candid...
Capitalism on Steroids
CARL FINAMORE
Never before has the half-century decline of American labor revealed itself more clearly than in the last several weeks. Largely relegated to the sidelines, national union officials are making little effort to interject independent working-class solutions int...
It Can Happen Here
URI AVNERY
The German name Sternhell means bright as the stars. The name fits: the positions of Professor Ze’ev Sternhell indeed stand out sharply against the darkness of the sky. He warns against Israeli fascism. This week, Israeli fascists laid a pipe-bomb at the entran...
Sarah Palin is a Rotten Mom
JOHN WALSH
Full disclosure.  Interest in Sarah Palin has provided the reason, perhaps the excuse, for buying two issues of the National Enquirer, the first such purchases of my life and not cheap at $3.95 a pop.  But the Enquirer did such a good job on John Edwards&rs...
The Unspoken War
ANTHONY DiMAGGIO
"We’re on the brink of war with Pakistan…the fact remains that American forces have and are violating Pakistani sovereignty…the Bush administration’s decision to step up attacks in Pakistan is fatally reckless, because the c...
Election Drizzle
SAUL LANDAU
Unrelenting gossip drenches the presidential election, nonstop media nattering about Sarah’s qualities or lack of thereof, McCain’s “heroic” character, Obama’s link with real people or lack of. In between such “ana...
Sadism in the Desert
KIM NICOLINI
I was looking up something on French Extreme Cinema recently when I stumbled upon this 2004 a...
Rethinking Charter Schools
SETH SANDRONSKY
Keeping the Promise? The Debate Over Charter Schools (Rethinking Schools, March 2008) details a growing trend in U.S. public education. That is the chartering of public schools to non-profit and for-profit operators. To this end, six essays and one interview ...
How McCain Blew It
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
In whatever years remain to him – and the health prognoses for McCain are cloudy at best – McCain should look back at the 48 hours up to and including Friday night’s  debate in Mississippi as the Rubicon he was too frightened to cross. He spurn...
Meltdown in American Markets
LIAQUAT ALI KHAN
Call it the consequences of irresponsible American invasions, call it the irrational exuberance of short sellers, call it the catastrophe of subprime lending, call it the mismanagement of leveraged products, blame it as you may, American markets are facing unpreceden...
Hank-ering for a Bailout
RICHARD RHAMES
“Section 8: Decisions by the [Treasury] Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.” – ...
Keep the Germ Labs Quarantined
STAN COX
Scientists, farmers and government officials for 80 years have kept the U.S. mainland free of the virus that causes foot-and-mouth disease — a horrific, highly contagious killer of cloven-footed livestock such as cattle. But our government may soon bring the vi...
Bailing Out the Foes of Public Eduction
TODD ALAN PRICE
We live in dubious times when staunch deregulators howl for vigorous and immediate regulation. Lessons from the past In 1983, the release by the Reagan administration of the report A Nation at Risk, launched over two decades of attacks ...
The Great Fear
DAVID ROSEN
The worst outcome of the upcoming election is a McCain-Palin victory followed by McCain, a year or so into his presidency, becoming physically incapable of running the country. Worse than dropping dead, McCain could end up much like Wilson and Reagan in their last ye...
Pakistan Through the Eyes of a Native Son
RON JACOBS
Tariq Ali opens his new book The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power, with the...
An Israeli Trojan Horse
CHRISTOPHER KETCHAM
Since the late 1990s, federal agents have reported systemic communications security breaches at the Department of Justice, FBI, DEA, the State Department, and the White House.  Several of the alleged breaches, these agents say, can be traced to two hi-tech commu...
The People vs. the Banksters
MIKE WHITNEY
The financial system is blowing up. Don’t listen to the experts; just look at the numbers. Last week, according to Reuters, "U.S. banks borrowed a record amount from the Federal Reserve nearly $188 billion a day on average, showing the central bank went to...
The U.S.-India Nuclear Proliferation Deal
DAVID KRIEGER
When geopolitics comes up against principle in the US Congress, it is generally principle that is forced to give way.  In the case of the US-India nuclear deal, originally proposed by President Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2005, the deal woul...
Their Assets; Our Debts
MARY LYNN CRAMER
Sometime ago, Bank of America took over my AAA credit card company.   Now my bank statement lists the amount I owe on my credit card as an “asset” of mine.  The more debt I owe, the higher the value of my overall “wealth” accord...
The Red and White Bird in Gaza
MATTS SVENSSON
The young girl from Gaza tells me how she yearns for the red and white bird.  It used to come every morning to the little veranda where her mother served a breakfast of bread, tea, water and fruit when the weather was good.  Each morning her father left...
McCain and the Economy
ROBERT FANTINA
As the U.S. economy implodes, following decades of unregulated greed and legalized abuses, President George Bush vainly attempts to stave off yet another black mark on his disgraceful legacy. In a desperate attempt to gain bipartisan support for a $700 billion golden...
Dear Mrs. Abacha
CHARLES R. LARSON
  Lady Maryam Abacha sa1412@yahoo.com                      &n...
War Jokes Wanted
MARC LEVY And SUSAN ERONY
Colonel:  What is that you’ve got written on your helmet? Pvt. Joker:  Born to Kill, sir.  Colonel:  You write "Born to Kill" on your helmet and you wear a peace button.  What’s that supposed ...
Race in the Race
KEVIN ALEXANDER GRAY
Barack Obama’s stump line is: “They will try to scare you about me. They’ll say he has a funny name.., and they’ll say, ‘Oh by the way, he’s black.’” John McCain says he “plays race” with the line (to gin up...
Alaska’s Blacks and Palin: a Strained Relationship
LINN WASHINGTON, Jr.
While many across America consider GOP VP candidate Sarah Palin some kind of phenomenon, many blacks in Alaska see the Governor of their state as a person closing down the open-door inclusive posture of her predecessors. Alaskan blacks fault Palin for not hiri...
Passport Fraud and Torture
JOANNE MARINER
A landmark trial is scheduled to begin this week, in which a senior government official is accused of responsibility for vicious acts of torture committed in the name of fighting terrorism. Alas, the defendant is not one of the many Bush Administration officia...
When Archaeology Becomes a Curse
JONATHAN COOK
From just outside Jerusalem’s Old City walls, the simple stone and cinder-block homes of Silwan cascade southwards into a valley known as the Holy Basin. The Palestinian residents are used to living in the shadow of history and religion, given dramatic ...
Ralph’s Management Indicted by Federal Grand Jury
DAVID MACARAY
Although the announcement didn’t get much play in the media, on Friday, September 19, a federal grand jury handed down indictments against eight former and current Ralphs management employees, accusing them of 23 counts of violating federal labor law.  The...
The Financial Crisis
DAN La BOTZ
Faced with the failure of the financial sector and the possible collapse of the economic system, Republicans and Democrats are working together feverishly to come up with a plan and find the funds to save the American financial system. The Congress that has been unab...