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Archives from February 2009
Got Farms?
RICHARD RHAMES
“This, in brief, is the bad news: the food and agriculture policies you’ve inherited — designed to maximize production at all costs and relying on cheap energy to do so — are in shambles, and the need to address the problems they h...
Bill of Rights Under Fire
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
The US Constitution has few friends on the right or the left. During the first eight years of the 21st century, the Republicans mercilessly assaulted civil liberties.  The brownshirt Bush regime ignored the protections provided by habeas corpus.  Th...
Carnival Ramble in Haiti
RICHARD MORSE
Air fares to Port-au-Prince seem to be reaching record highs. I wonder if anyone keeps records of these statistics. I’m assuming it’s the upcoming carnival season. I know of one local hotel which has risen it’s rates to three hundred dollars a night...
On the Road Again
SAUL LANDAU
“Jesus Lives” screamed the giant billboard on I-80, some 20 miles east of Lovelock, Nevada. At the bottom of the sign appears the sponsor: adsforGod.org, an “organization whose only purpose is to advertise for The only True Living God whose only beg...
Desperation in an Unavoidable Groove
LORENZO WOLFF
Back in high school my English teacher told me about a guy named Aristotle, who divided literature into two categories: comedy and tragedy. Maybe I misunderstood what he was talking about, because I have a very hard time finding the tipping point. Look at ...
Remove Our Grandmother’s Name from the Wall at Yad Vashem
MICHAEL NEUMANN
and OSHA NEUMANN Following the example of Jean-Moise Braitberg, we ask that our grandmother’s name be removed from the wall at Yad Vashem.  Her name is Gertrud Neumann.   Your records state that she was born in Kattowitz on  June 6, 1875 ...
A Closer Look at the Employee Free Choice Act
DAVID MACARAY
By now, most people have heard of the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), the bold legislative initiative introduced by the Democrats (Rep. George Miller, D-CA), intended to amend the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by making it easier and fairer for employees to jo...
A Canadian Looks at Obama
RICK SALUTIN
Stephen Harper, along with the security legions, got a discomfited look on his face when Barack Obama asked if they could step outside to wave to the crowd yesterday after arriving on Parliament Hill. Oh no, he seemed to fret. I don’t want it to end this way: t...
Slumdog Reality?
CHARLES R. LARSON
After all the international controversy about Slumdog Millionaire, if Hollywood crowns the film with an Oscar for the best movie of the year, Indians, I suspect, are going to have much to crow about.  How ironic that a half a year ago the movie’s investors...
Silver Mist Descending
STEPHEN MARTIN
Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought?… Has it ever occurred to your, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be alive who could understand such a conversation...
A Closer Look at the Employee Free Choice Act
DAVID MACARAY
By now, most people have heard of the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), the bold legislative initiative introduced by the Democrats (Rep. George Miller, D-CA), intended to amend the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by making it easier and fairer for employees to jo...
Using the Crash to Hit Workers
DAVE LINDORFF
Whatever the truth is about where this economy is heading, one thing is clear: employers are taking every opportunity to slash employment and, if they are unionized, to hammer unions for pay cuts, even when there is no justification for these actions. Take Saf...
The NY Post’s Chimpanzee Cartoon
LINN WASHINGTON, Jr.
Stop the presses! The New York Post – renowned for its unrepentant when wrong stridency – issued a public apology…well sort of…for its now infamous Chimpanzee Cartoon. This cartoon presented two policemen near a dead chimpanzee...
Slumdog Millionaire’s Dehumanizing View of India’s Poor
MITU SENGUPTA
Slumdog Millionaire, one of the most celebrated films of recent times, tells the rags-to-rajah story of a love-struck boy, Jamal, who, with a little help from “destiny,” triumphs over his wretched beginnings in Mumbai’s squalid slums.  Riding o...
Herbert Hoover Copycats
ISMAEL HOSSEIN-ZADEH
Faced with the financial meltdown of the Great Depression, the Hoover administration created the Reconstruction Finance Corporation that poured taxpayers’ money into the coffers of the influential Wall Street banks in an effort to save them from bankruptcy. Lik...
War Criminals Must be Prosecuted
MARJORIE COHN
Since he took office, President Obama has instituted many changes that break with the policies of the Bush administration. The new president has ordered that no government agency will be allowed to torture, that the U.S. prison at Guantánamo will be shuttered,...
Cricket and Cartels
BINOY KAMPMARK
Sir Allen Stanford was, at his height, valued in the billions.  His money financed an empire of sporting pursuits and tournaments, ranging from golf, tennis, football and, most notably of all, that archaic wonder called cricket.  And, like those before him,...
Cricket and Cartels
BINOY KAMPMARK
Sir Allen Stanford was, at his height, valued in the billions.  His money financed an empire of sporting pursuits and tournaments, ranging from golf, tennis, football and, most notably of all, that archaic wonder called cricket.  And, like those before him,...
The Lawyer’s Tale: Harvard Law School’s Hour of Shame
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
Early in the age of Obama, before he’d even been inaugurated, I drove down to St. Simon Island on the coast of southeast Georgia to spend a couple of days with Jonathan Lubell and his wife Dee. Jonathan is the best libel lawyer in the country, carving his way i...
Edward Said’s Greatest Musical Writings
DAVID YEARSLEY
"Music at the Limits", the recently published  posthumous collection of Edward Said’s music journalism, is a monument to a dying breed: the intellectual whose humanistic range extends not only to the fringes of music, where the art can be enjoyed...
Aftermath of a Beheading
WAJAHAT ALI
The tragic beheading of Aasiya Hassan, a Muslim Pakistani American mother of four, will finally force a community to confront and remedy the overwhelming – but frequently ignored and intentionally hidden – demon of domestic violence that has persecuted it...
Obama’s Uighur Problem
ANDY WORTHINGTON
First, the good news. Adel Abdul Hakim, one of five Uighurs (Muslims from China’s oppressed Xinjiang province), who was released from Guantánamo in May 2006, has had his asylum claim ...
Crisis? What Crisis?
CHRISTOPHER KETCHAM
More good news in crisis from down the block here in Brooklyn: The realty office that I could almost spit on from my stoop has shut its doors, boarded up the classy windows, sent its half-breed parasites home, no more to feed on the entrails of rent control.  Pr...
Choose Life!
DEB REICH
Most people will say I’m delusional; that’s okay. I will say what I have to say anyway. When your opinion is way out on the periphery, it may mean you are delusional – or it may just mean that the so-called center has gradually drifted closer and cl...
The Winding Road
BRIAN M. DOWNING
Russian geopolitical moves over the last year have been wide-ranging, ominous, and seemingly unconnected. They are often interpreted as evidence of the resurgence of Great Russian chauvinism, which had been dormant since the decline and fall of communism. Many analys...