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Archives from December 2013
The Age of the Billionaires
RODOLFO ACUÑA
Every day I realize more how little we have progressed since the nineteenth century in terms of ideas. Our technological advances dwarf our ability to conceptualize new ...
Washington’s Real Aims in Colombia
NICK ALEXANDROV
Last Sunday’s Washington Post carried a front-page article by Dana Priest, in which she revealed “a CIA covert action program that has helped Colombian forces kill at least two dozen rebel leaders.”  Thanks to “a multibillion-dollar black budget”—“no...
When the Unimaginable Happened
URI AVNERY
I HAVE just seen the new movie “Mandela”, and I am so full of impressions that I cannot abstain from writing them down. It is a very good film, with very good actors. But that’s not the main point. It is a very accurate film, depicting what actually happened ...
Boeing’s Union Workers in the Crosshairs
DAVID MACARAY
A brief summary of what’s been happening in Seattle between the Boeing Corporation and its union workforce, the IAM (International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers).  Aware they have the upper hand, and that thousands of relatively well-paying jobs hang ...
The Bernanke Legacy
DEAN BAKER
Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke gave his last press conference as chair and already the ...
Yasakuni Blues
PETER LEE
Myth: Shinzo Abe is a leading member of the team of world and Asian democracies standing up to China in the name of universal values like “freedom of navigation” and to help ensure the shared peace and prosperity of Asia. Reality:  Shinzo Abe is a revisionist ...
The Dirty Business of Coal
JOSHUA FRANK
Coal powers America. But at what cost to the environment and human health? That’s the question documentarian Peter Bull and the Center for Investigative Reporting attempt to tackle in the latest documentary, ...
The Killings Fields of Gaza
COLIN GREEN
Revelations from Israeli sources such as ‘Breaking the Silence’ and ‘Physicians for Human Rights-Israel’ that the Israeli assaults on Gaza in 2008/9 (Cast Lead) and 2012 (Pillars of Defence) were planned many months ahead pose many questions about the real motives...
The End of Freedom in America?
ROBERT P. ABELE
As must appear self-evident to both historians and astute observers by now, the United States, in its history, has had a rather facile and at times acrimonious relationship to the idea of domestic democracy (If this is not self-evident, see Noam Chomsky, Hegemony or Su...
Why Many Charities are Corporate Scams
BRAD YU
#1 TIPPING 101: So I’m the owner of Company X.  My workers’ used to be paid a whopping 7.25 per/hour because of the ridiculous “minimum wage” labor laws that are seriously cutting into my profits.  I only want to pay them 2.13 per/hour, wh...
Tancredo’s Creed
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
The Lord is my shepherd. —  Psalm 23 He’ll probably be calling on the Lord again.  When he needs to change his mind he lets the Lord do it for him.   It all came to mind when the Denver Post reported that it had invited T...
Congress Must Not Cede Its War Power to Israel
SHELDON RICHMAN
The American people should know that pending right now in Congress is a bipartisan bill that would virtually commit the United States to go to war against Iran if Israel attacks the Islamic Republic. ...
Thinking About a Recovered Identity
JOSÉ M. TIRADO
dentity is not always a clear-cut thing. For example, I´m not the best Puertorican, by any standard. There are those who might say I´m not Puertorican, at all. I was born in New York City, and then raised mainly in Miami, Florida. My spoken Spanish is just OK, ni...
“Crony Capitalism” and “Corporatism”
KEVIN CARSON
Recently Mike Konczal (“‘Corporatism’ is the Latest Hysterical Right-Wing Accusation,” The New Republic, December 15) attacked “corporatism” as a pernicious right-wing meme, ostensibly aimed at exposing Obama’s policies for “enriching the well-off” but i...
State of the Nation, 2013
DAVID ROSEN
The New Year season is a good time to reflect on one’s life and the U.S.’s true standing in the world.  If you are honest with yourself, you known something fundemenal is taking place in early-21st century America.  The nation is being restructured, ye...
Understanding Karzai’s Role in Determining Afghanistan’s Future
SAM KIERSTEAD
The controversy surrounding the bilateral Security Defense Cooperation Agreement between the United States and Afghanistan is more complex than a stubborn Afghan president. President Karzai is playing the weighing game. On one side of the scale rests the centerpiec...
Kidnapping Jesus at Christmas
MICHAEL DICKINSON
I’m back in England after a fruitless searchfor teaching English work in Spain and Morroco.  I arrived practically penniless. To my great relief there was a Western Union agent at Luton airport and I was able to Access the 161 pounds my brother sent, so the mone...
No White Christmas for Brown Immigrants
ALVARO HUERTA
The recent controversy over the comments made by Megyn Kelly—the new media darling of Fox News—telling kids on the air that Santa “is just white,” rings truthful for millions of brown, undocumented immigrants in this country. Latino immigrants who lack legal statu...
Is Peace Obsolete?
MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE
I’d like to age in peace. Peacefully. I suppose this is impossible. And despite saying nothing surprises me anymore, I’m often outraged. I shouldn’t be astonished though by a resolution intro’d by Senators Robert Menendez, Chuck Schumer, and Mark Kirk that gives I...
Letter to Boeing’s Boss
RALPH NADER
Dear Mr. McNerney: The squeeze that you and Boeing are putting on your machinist workers’ pensions, pay scales and your stance on other labor issues regarding the assembling of the new 777X airliners is unseemly for several reasons. First, consider your pa...
Searching for Truth and Reconciliation in Bangladesh
WILLIAM GOMES
Dear Mr. Imran Khan, I am writing to you on the birthday of Mohammad Ali Jinnah to share my sincere thanks to you for protesting the judicial murder of Abdul Quader Mollah before the Pakistan National Assembly. I was heartened by your speech which showed moral cour...
Nuremberg Set a Valid Precedent for Iraq War Trials
DR. CESAR CHELALA
As the number of deaths continues unabated in Iraq –the worst since 2008- so do calls for the prosecution of those that led both the United States and Great Britain into war, George W. Bush and Tony Blair. In December alone there were 44 deaths in just one day, over 766...
Canada’s “Dutch Disease”
YVES ENGLER
A clear diagnosis of the Oil Sands fever variant of Dutch Disease may be just what the doctor ordered to rally Canadian workers in the fight against global warming. A rapid increase in natural resource investment and revenue usually drives up a nation’s currency....
The Futility of Top Ten Lists
WALTER BRASCH
The mass media have a fixation upon throwing up lists. Sports editors run innumerable lists of the “Top 10” high school and college teams. Arts and entertainment editors run lists of the top books, movies, songs, and even video games. Financial an...
Ethan’s Christmas Eve
CHARLES ORLOSKI
That no one can deny, a sure way for a writer to lose an audience is to re-hash one’s Catholic 1950s-era Christmas Eve experiences. Very disingenuous, such would be better left unsaid, but I shall begin at the beginning (Genesis) – the Scene, a humble downstairs-a...