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Archives from January 2011
Another Professor Fired for Views on Middle East
JOSHUA SPERBER
Brooklyn College fired PhD student Kristofer Petersen-Overton yesterday, one day after New York state assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) sent a letter to BC president Karen Gould accusing Petersen-Overton of being an "overt supporter of terrorism." Hikind ...
The Dissolving Constitution
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
While people in Tunisia and Egypt have taken to the streets in attempts to gain their liberty, Americans are losing their liberty with minimal protest.  Even the American Civil Liberties Union seems unfocused.  At a time when we are being surrounded by a po...
Wal-Mart, Food Deserts and Genuine Sovereignty
DEVON G. PEÑA
Let us begin with a "defining moment," courtesy of the Oxford World Dictionary: Commissariat (k?m??s??r??t) Definition: chiefly Military department for the supply of food and equipment. ...
Technological Fundamentalism
ROBERT JENSEN
If humans were smart, we would bet on our ignorance. That advice comes early in the Hebrew Bible. Adam and Eve’s banishment in chapters two and three of Genesis can be read as a warning that hubris is our tragic flaw. In the garden, God told them they c...
Hezbollah is the New Government of Lebanon. Now What?
FRANKLIN LAMB
This observer tends to get a haircut about every four months whether he needs it or not.  But this morning I got more than a trim from my Hezbollah friend and barber, Abass, named after Abass ibn Ali, the brother of Hussein, both martyrs and  heroes of the ...
Americans on Austerity
ANTHONY DiMAGGIO
The public rebellion against the bi-partisan campaign to cut entitlement and welfare spending appears to be gaining steam among the American public.  Nothing close to the rebellions in the streets against austerity that we’ve seen throughout the rest of th...
President Gasbag
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
After watching President Obama’s state of the union, plus the first Republican response to it by Rep Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, and the second response by Rep Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota, chair of the Tea Party caucus in Congress, it‘s  hard to ...
Inside Obamanomics
ISMAEL HOSSEIN-ZADEH
President Reagan did not make any bones about his intention to reverse the New Deal economics when he set out to promote the Neoliberal economics. Likewise, President George W. Bush did not conceal his agenda of aggressive, unilateral militarism abroad and curtailmen...
Two Systems of Justice
RUSSELL MOKHIBER
Leandro Andrade, 52, sits in Ironwood State Prison, about 200 miles east of Los Angeles, California. He’s there for life. What did Leandro do wrong? In 1995, he stole five videotapes from a K-Mart in ...
A Welcome End to the Hariri Era
RANNI AMIRI
Parliamentary democracy is a tricky thing. Prime ministers come and go as alliances shift and majorities change. As this week’s uproar in Lebanon proved, it is a reality outgoing Prime Minister Saad Hariri has yet to grasp. Lebanon’s sectarian po...
Seems Like Old Times in Honduras
BILL QUIGLEY And PAM SPEES
In recent  remarks on U.S.-Latin American relations made at the Brookings Institute, Arturo Valenzuela, a State Department official with responsibility for the region, commented that  Honduras, two years removed from a coup that U.S. officials on the ground called illeg...
Torture in US Prisons
SHERWOOD ROSS
The corrosive, solitary confinement being inflicted upon PFC Bradley Manning in the Quantico, Va., brig is no exceptional torture devised exclusively for him. Across the length and breadth of the Great American Prison State, the world’s largest, with its 2.4-million...
When Palestine Was at Stake
HARRY CLARK
The future of Palestine was at stake in the 1940s, and the fundamental clash of interests, between Zionist Jews and Palestinian Arabs, was also a fundamental clash of principles. The differences are shown by a comparison of the liberal Arab nationalist, the Zionist binati...
Pictures of Devastation
SARA MANN
To me, the word is Moonscape. It is a sanitary color of manilla or yellow. It is sterile. It is a phone call from a woman who will be making three phone calls soon after mine. It is a broken light bulb laying near a trash bag. It is a pile of laundry to be washed. It is a...
The Return to Social Darwinism
DAVID ROSEN
The Great Recession of 2007-2009 was more than a financial and political crisis. At root, it was a moral crisis. Bernie Madoff and a handful of other racketeers were prosecuted, but all those actively or passively involved in the financial scam were ...
The UAW vs. Indian Casinos
DAVID MACARAY
Looking back on it, was it wildly optimistic for organized labor to assume that a people who’d been as screwed-over as Native Americans—who’d been disrespected, slandered, lied to, disenfranchised, and systematically murdered—would automatically be sympathetic to ...
Bach Amid the Turbid Floodwaters of Sin
DAVID YEARSLEY
Flood waters are coursing through three continents. After the devastating Asian floods of last summer, the latest flooding has claimed more than a hundred lives in South Africa; the Canadians are now darkly forecasting Spring floods in Manitoba that could surpass the Floo...
What Class Says About Food
LIAM HYSJULIEN
It’s hard to get behind any food movement (if they can even be categorized as such) these days. While I tend to eat healthy—spending roughly a third of my income (which as a graduate student isn’t very hard) on organic, local foodstuff (mostly bulk grains, v...
Lebanon
CONN HALLINAN
Lebanon is a complex place indeed, but it is not quite the labyrinth it is made out to be, and, if France, the United States, and Israel would stop putting their irons in the fire, the country’s difficulties are wholly resolvable. But solutions will require some und...
Cutting the Corporate Income Tax
RAHUL MAHAJAN
I listened to the State of the Union speech. What I heard, though, was not President Obama’s string of irritating platitudes, but the sound of a nation bent on self-destruction. I don’t say this lightly. Intellectuals have been talking about the fall of...
Balancing the Budget by Starving the Students
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
Republicans have begun describing how the United States of America at the state and national level can become a better place by spending a lot less money and not raising taxes. Congress took the first step at the end of 2010 when it dealt with the tax law. It decided to e...
The Revolution Shall be Tweeted
BINOY KAMPMARK
The prophets of social media are getting excited.  Not only can such forms of media as Twitter and Facebook often prove to be banal time wasters, they can also generate revolutionary excitement.  Communities connected by messages instantaneously gather to promote their ...
The Egyptian Revolution
GARY LEUPP
January 28, 2011, Day of Rage. I’m watching live coverage of the Egyptian revolution on Al-Jazeera TV.  Cairo is swarming with hundreds of thousands, defying the curfew, hurling stones at the police. The images recall the Palestinian youth waging ...
Blasts From the Past
RON JACOBS
It’s funny how one can remember the very first time we heard a particular song.  Usually, it’s because that song dramatically shifts the idea of what music can be.  Other times, it’s because that song speaks so accurately to the listener about somethin...
Reliving Duvalier; Waiting for Aristide
LAURA FLYNN
In the 1980s, when the armed forces of Jean-Claude Duvalier’s regime set about exterminating "Haiti’s Creole pigs", they would come to Haiti’s rural villages, seize all of the "pigs", pile them up, one on top of the other, in lar...