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Archives from September 2012
Why are Conservation Groups Advocating Logging Public Forests?
GEORGE WUERTHNER
“I am the Lorax, I speak for the trees.” — Dr. Seuss It seems more and more there are fewer conservation organizations who speak for the forest, and more that speak for the timber industry.  Witne...
Political Science at the EPA
ALAN FARAGO
Global warming emerges as a very important issue for undecided voters despite the fact environmental issues have been held underwater this election cycle by a right wing tidal wave of campaign cash. According to a recent poll by ...
An Open Letter to the Anti-War Movement
RAHA and HAVAAR
The upcoming anniversary of the invasion of Afghanistan is a crucial time for activists to reflect on the urgent need for an anti-war movement that is committed to opposing systematic oppression, domination and violence. In the spirit of moving us towards this goal, we...
Immigration Detention and the Private Prison Industry
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Immigration Detention and the Private Prison Industry ...
Romney and Churchill’s Bust
VIJAY PRASHAD
In the Mandarin Oriental Hotel at the edge of Hyde Park in London in late July 2012, Mitt Romney raised $2 million over drinks. His remarks were wistful. “As I drive past the sculpture of Winston Churchill,” he said, “it tugs at the heart strings to remember the kin...
Japan v. China: a Real Conflict?
CONN HALLINAN
Could Japan and China—the number two and three largest economies in the world—really get into a punch-out over five tiny islands covering less than four square miles? According to the ...
America’s Own Loose Nukes
ROBERT ALVAREZ
The government can’t simply bury its uranium-233 problem. If you knew that more than 200 pounds of nuclear bomb material may be missing from government nuclear facilities in the United States, would that worry you? Recently, three activists, including ...
Heading for a Hollow Victory
DEEPAK TRIPATHI
Important commitments have kept me from my writing interest for some time, but events never wait. We have run into greater turbulence following the appearance of a blasphemous film, Innocence of Muslims, about the Prophet Mohammad. The film was supposed to have been made ...
Upward Redistribution
DEAN BAKER
There has been much public discussion of who exactly pays taxes and who gets government benefits ever since Mitt Romney’s now-famous fundraising speech was made public. Almost all of this discussion has focused narrowly on what the government actually takes from peo...
Going Mad With Drones
BINOY KAMPMARK
Without imagination, predictability is bound to become a vice.  Australia’s explosive, uncontainable opposition leader Tony Abbott has made his latest splash in policy waters by suggesting that his frightened country should propel itself into the twenty first century w...
What Really Happened in Chicago
GUY MILLER
First, there was Madison, a welcome flash of lightning awakening us from the long, quiet night of labor passivity. The events came fast and hard and thousands flowed into the capital square and were ready for a showdown. But, with a vacuum of street leadership, it ...
How the Israel Lobby Gets What It Wants
LAWRENCE DAVIDSON
Much is being made of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s involvement in the on-going American presidential campaign.  His public stance has been characterized as an Israeli effort to  “openly…topple [President] Obama.”  The truth is that the only...
Washington’s Open Door for Terrorists
NICK ALEXANDROV
The U.S. government has a double standard for terrorist organizations.  Groups that hinder Washington’s aims are denounced, while those furthering the goals of U.S. power are trained, funded, and rebranded as “freedom fighters” or “bulwarks against insurgency.”...
Condem Iran or Else: Targeting the Anti-Imperialist Left
PHIL WILAYTOO
It’s late September 2012, and tensions between Iran and the Western powers have seldom been more intense. The Democratic and Republican presidential candidates are desperately trying to outdo each other in militaristic rhetoric against the Islamic Republic. The late...
The Real Economic Impact of EPA Rules
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The Real Economic Impact of EPA Rules ...
Living (and Dying) Under Drones
ANDREW COCKBURN
Last week, the Obama Administration argued in front of the First Circuit Court of Appeals that there is no official evidence we are waging drone warfare in northern Pakistan. The ACLU has sued under the Freedom of Information Act for details of the widely reported drone s...
Insults, Incitement and Islam
GRAHAM PEEBLES
London. Across the Muslim World there is rightly outrage and hurt at the latest calculated attack on Islam, in the form of the film trailer Innocence of Muslims. All who hold human rights and moral decency close to their heart share their indignat...
Taxes and the Super Rich
ROBERT HUNZIKER
Mitt Romney claims his tax rate of 14% on investment income of $20 million is “fair,” which means he is comfortable with the fact that he has a lower tax rate than average middle class American families. He made this proclamation on CBS’s 60 Minutes on Sund...
The French Left in a Minefield
PHILIPPE MARLIERE
London. Here we go again. Less than a year after provoking a similar controversy, Charlie Hebdo, a French satirical weekly, has published cartoons “mocking” the prophet Muhammad. Last November, following the publication of an issue subtitled “Charia ...
Fighting Keystone XL in the Heart of Texas
SCOTT PARKIN
Near the Dallas, TX suburb of Garland, where I grew up, is what I’ve always called “Deep East Texas.” The area holds a lot of memories for me to say the least. My parents owned a piece of property near Lone Oak, TX where I learned to drive. I spent two years in Comm...
Romney and the Royals
PATRICK COCKBURN
It is always gratifying to find a politician or celebrity behaving in the same way as malign caricatures of themselves. In Dickens’s Hard Times the stereotypical capitalist is Mr Bounderby, a banker who denounces his workers for expecting “to be set up i...
The US is Still Executing People for Crimes Committed as Teens
DAVE LINDORFF
The United States never misses an opportunity to castigate other countries for “uncivilized” behavior, and certainly there is enough of that to go around almost anywhere you look in the world. But there’s plenty of it here in the U.S. too. Just consider the c...
How Hawkish Are Americans?
LAWRENCE S. WITTNER
In the midst of a nationwide election campaign in which many politicians trumpet their support for the buildup and employment of U.S. military power around the world, the American public’s disagreement with such measures is quite remarkable. Indeed, many signs point to ...
The Death of Free Speech in France?
GEARÓID Ó COLMÁIN
Every year the French communist Party ( PCF) organizes the Fête de l’Humanité in Paris, a left-wing festival where concerts are held and communist parties from all over the world erect stands to exchange books, pamphlets and ideas. Many authors, journalists and ...
Solidarity in the New Gilded Age
DAVID MACARAY
Assuming that the polls and surveys are correct, and Barack Obama earns himself a second term as president, what are the odds that he will evolve into the kind of pro-union Democrat organized labor always hoped he would be? Given what we’ve seen so far, the odds ...
Australia and the Security Council
BINOY KAMPMARK
“Australia, for the most part, is invisible in international politics and rarely rates a mention in international media” M. Connors, New Global Politics of the Asia...
The Tar Sands Lobby
YVES ENGLER
Last Tuesday Ambassador Gary Doer spoke at Washington D.C.’s Johns Hopkins University in support of heavy polluting tar sands oil. According to Sun news, Doer touted the job benefits of Calgary-based TransCanada’s plan to build a $7 billion pipeline ...
Victories in Quebec!
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Victories in Quebec! ...
Who Will Create More Jobs: Romney or Obama?
FRANKLIN C. SPINNEY
My prediction: The eventual answer will turn out to be a distinction without a difference.  Here’s why. Both political parties and their candidates for President now accept neoliberal ideology as being the incontrovertible truth.  This belief is more theologica...
The Slash Marks of White Supremacy
HANK SANDERS
Selma. He lectured me. “It would be so much better if y’all quit raising these kinds of issues and helped the City instead of hurting the City.” And on and on. He was talking about the protests of the new Nathan Bedford Forrest Monument being constru...
Neither Candidate
BILL QUIGLEY
Neither candidate is interested in stopping the use of the death penalty for federal or state crimes. Neither candidate is interested in eliminating or reducing the 5,113 US nuclear warheads. Neither candidate is campaigning to close Guantanamo prison. ...
Diplomat: Iran Offered Deal to Halt 20 Percent Enrichment
GARETH PORTER
Iran has again offered to halt its enrichment of uranium to 20 percent, which the United States has identified as its highest priority in the nuclear talks, in return for easing sanctions against Iran, according to Iran’s permanent representative to the International At...
American Militarism
DAVE LINDORFF
There is a massive deception campaign in the US, and in its global propaganda, which seeks to portray the United States as a poor set-upon nation that would like world peace but just has to keep a military stationed around the globe to “police” all the world’s “tr...
The Villainy of Teachers
BRUCE NEUBURGER
  We were having a conversation in the teachers’ room and discussing the Chicago teachers’ strike and remarking on how the politicians and the media tried to bully the Chicago teachers with all this talk about how they were harming the interest of their st...
Flunking Charter Schools
PAUL BUCHHEIT
Now we know our ABCs. And charter schools get an F. The Chicago teacher strike is over, but the assault on our nation’s children has just begun. As with all free market systems, the price is set high enough to ensure a profit for the companies doing business,...
Romney Rescues the Democrats From Themselves
MICHAEL BRENNER
Mitt Romney’s meltdown has Democrats in a celebratory mood. They are so accustomed to living on thin political rations that their enthusiasm waxes whenever fortune smiles upon them. This sudden brightening of prospects in the Presidential election may have nothing t...
La-La Land Liberalism
THOMAS H. NAYLOR
When I moved to Vermont in 1993, it was considered to be the most radical state in the Union.  A few years earlier, when Ronald Reagan was still president, 180 Vermont towns passed nuclear-freeze resolutions in their town meetings.  Burlington’s socialist mayor Bernie...
To Vote or Not to Vote?
BRUCE E. LEVINE
“I don’t vote. On Election Day, I stay home. I firmly believe that if you vote, you have no right to complain. Now, some people like to twist that around. They say, ‘If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain,’ but where’s the logic in th...
Recognizing the Importance of Goldwater
THOMAS S. HARRINGTON
If you get a chance, you should take a look at the debate between Glen Ford and Michael Eric Dyson that aired as part of the September 7th edition of Amy Goodman’s Democracy Now. The extended interchange is valuable for many reasons. The most ...
Black and Hispanic Males Being Pushed Out of Schools
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Black and Hispanic Males Being Pushed Out of Schools ...
Mitt’s Bad Week
ROB URIE
It was Spring of 2010, less than a year after the official end of the last recession but still deep in the throes of the Great Recession, that Barack Obama’s ‘deficit commission’ met for the first time. With close to twenty-five million people unemployed ...
So, Really, Why Do They Hate Us?
PAUL ATWOOD
Recent attacks on American embassies and consulates in numerous Muslim countries are claimed to be irrational and undue reactions to a film portraying the Muslim prophet Mohammed in a degraded manner. The film is intentionally sacrilegious and incendiary toward Islamic be...
The Full Romney
RALPH NADER
There was something missing from the release of a tape showing Mitt Romney pandering to fat cats in Boca Raton, Florida with these very inflammatory words: “There are 47 percent who are with him, (Obama) who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victi...
Romney and Netanyahu
URI AVNERY
Once upon a time, President Richard Nixon wanted to appoint a certain lawyer to the US Supreme Court. “But the man is a complete moron!” one senator exclaimed. “So what,” answered another, “There are a great many morons in the US, and they have a r...
The Free Speech Diary
ESAM AL-AMIN
Cairo, Egypt – September 15, 2012 With few exceptions, such as the Al-Jazeera network, many media outlets in Egypt and much of the Arab world are unprofessional and maintain questionable standards. Today at least four prominent publicati...
Medical Professionals Who Torture
STEVE REISNER and KATHY ROBERTS
In the history of state-sponsored torture, a rarely acknowledged truth is that accountability only takes place in countries where the torturing government has fallen from power.  Victors tend neither to acknowledge nor to hold themselves accountable for torture. ...
The Politics of Blasphemy
ANDREW LEVINE
It is unwise to displease deities – especially when they have human temperaments and superhuman powers.  It doesn’t take much to displease them either.  It’s as easy as hurling an insult their way. Deities don’t care either for affronts to anyone or anyth...
Why the Minimum Wage Shrinks
STEVE BREYMAN
It’s not easy to find a voter who believes that the United States Congress provides much value for the money. Were any of the rest of us to perform as poorly as our Member(s) of Congress, we’d be looking for new jobs. Congress has joined the oil industry and the banks...
An Interview With Paul Craig Roberts on Torture
NILANTHA ILANGAMUWA
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts was educated at Georgia Tech, the University of Virginia, the University of California, Berkeley, and Oxford University where he was a member of Merton College. He has been the Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury in the Reagan administration, a...
Rahm Machiavelli
ELLIOT SPERBER
A considerable degree of confusion appears to be attending the ostensible conclusion to the Chicago Teachers’ strike. Indeed, with various interests proclaiming victory, it is difficult to arrive at a clear understanding of just what the outcome portends. Before add...