Exclusively in the new print issue of CounterPunch
FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
Archives by Tag 'immigration'
A Review of Al Jazeera’s “Borderland”
ANDREW SMOLSKI
Al Jazeera America’s recent program “Borderland” int...
The Draconian Calculus of Immigration Reform
LAURA CARLSEN
The United States has always had mixed feelings about its immigrants. The country and its people take pride in their history as a “nation of immigrants”, and celebrate the diversity and bold spirits of pioneers who came from other countries in search of freedom...
An Anti-Immigrant Bill Masked as Reform
JUSTIN FELDMAN
On Monday, 67 senators voted for cloture on Hoeven-Corker, a “border security” amendment to the immigration reform bill. The vote virtually guarantees that immigration reform will pass in the Senate. At the same time, it also guarantees the bill’s costs ...
A Graveyard for Migrants
DAWN PALEY
One of the women lay face up, her torso cutting a diagonal line across the railway track. The other lay face down, her right leg splayed over the same track at the thigh. Both wore reddish tank tops and pants that went down just below the knee. A police officer with an au...
The Lautenberg Amendment
JEFFREY B. PERRY
Adam Clymer’s New York Times article on the death of New Jersey Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (June 4, 2013) briefly mentions a “Lautenberg measure [that] gave refugee status to people from historically persecuted groups without requiring them to show that they...
Stockholm Smolders
S.C. HAHN
Stockholm. Stockholm has been the scene of riots this week, to much of the world’s surprise, with the unrest flaring up in immigrant-dominated neighborhoods on the city’s periphery. The Stockholm media reports cars burning in at least fifteen s...
Why the Senate’s “Border Security Triggers” May Leave Millions in Limbo
GEOFFREY BOYCE
On May 21st the Senate Judiciary Committee concluded debate on the “Gang of 8” immigration reform proposal, passing the amended proposal onto the full Senate for consideration. A significant component of the bill is a set of “border security triggers” t...
Don’t Mess with Meskins
RODOLFO ACUÑA
In West Texas, during the struggles to desegregate the schools in the later part of the 1960s, I listened to attorney Mark Smith caution a small audience that, “You may not like Meskins, but the Constitution gives them the right to equal access to schools. Things have c...
Dr. Kyenge’s Crusade
FREDERICK B. HUDSON
In 1933, the writer Arna Bontemps, a fellow member with Langston Hughes of a collection of writers, artists, and musicians that history has dubbed “the Harlem Renaissance,” in recognition of the creative contributions they offered to the world, penned a moving...
From the I-Word to the I-Deed
JOSEPH NEVINS
On April 2, the Associated Press announced that it would no longer sanction the term “illegal immigrant” or use “illegal” to describe ...
Mexicans in the Photos
RODOLFO ACUNA
By now most of you are getting the message that there will be a photo exhibit at Chicana/o Studies at California State University at Northridge on Saturday, April 27, 2012 from 5 to 10 PM. – free of charge. I consider this to be an important event – not just because i...
Reinventing Cesar Chavez
JUSTIN FELDMAN
Last Sunday was Cesar Chavez’s birthday. The United Farm Workers, founded by Chavez in 1962, marked the occasion by organizing five pro-immigration reform marches throughout California. Other groups organized Cesar Chavez Day events in San Antonio and Phoenix ...
The Death of the Chicano Left
RODOLFO ACUÑA
Prior to 1986 a clear Left voice could be heard on immigration reform. Among its priorities was that there would be no guest worker program, there would be no employer sanctions, there would be a more humane border enforcement policy, and there would be a clear path to ci...
Solitary Confinement and the Totalitarian Abyss
NORMAN POLLACK
Chalk up another victory to the dark forces of the hegemonic demiurge, the unrestrained, irresistible thrust of monopoly capitalism in the throes—we are speaking here of the US, because, as a world system, capitalism is still capable of thrusting up new centers of globa...
Meet the Private Prison Lobby
LAURA CARLSEN
As the immigration reform debate heats up, an important argument has been surprisingly missing. By granting legal status to immigrants and ordering future flows, the government could save billions of dollars. A shift to focus border security on real crime, both local and ...
Why is LA So Boring?
CLANCY SIGAL
For the first time in my life, like 84% of Los Angeles registered voters, I failed to cast a ballot in last week’s election.  It was a primary to select front-running mayoral candidates and city council members, a city attorney, controller,  community college trustees...
Obama’s Mass Deportations
TANYA GOLASH-BOZA
The United States has witnessed a tremendous rise in the number of people detained and deported since 1997. Between 1892 and 1997, there were 2.1 million deportations from the United States. Since then, there have been nearly twice as many: the sum total of deporta...
Being Political in Arizona
RODOLFO ACUÑA
For the past forty years, the most pressing issue for Mexican Americans and other Latinos has been immigration reform. It has dominated our conversations, our agendas, and for the more politically conscious among us, it goes to the core of who we are. Seemingly the...
The Fight to Save Mexican-American Studies in Tucson
DAVE FELDMAN
As increasingly hi-tech military equipment continues to drastically shape the manner in which industrial powers wage war around the world, most modern “liberal democracies” must now frame cultural attacks in a way that is compatible with the prevailing democratic idea...
The Argument for Amnesty
MARK VORPAHL
Millions experience the repressive nature of the U.S. immigration system on a daily basis, lifting its need for reform to a level of urgency. And fixing this broken program is integral to building the unity among U.S. workers that is required to challenge corporate Americ...
Immigration and Debt
TOM BARRY
The Ixil Triangle –the rugged mountain home of the Ixil Maya in Guatemala’s Altiplano — was the center of the Guatemalan Army’s counterinsurgency campaign three decades ago. It was also a destination for progressive writers, researchers, and photographer...
The Politics of Integration in Turkey
MATHEW NASHED
My friend Sema and I were sitting on the rooftop of her parents’ house. We overlooked the landscape of her little village called Aknehir, a name which in English translates into white river, and a suburb of the southern Turkish province of Hatay. Focused in our v...
Obama’s Unprecedented Number of Deportations
TANYA GOLASH-BOZA
Between 1892 and 1997, a total of 2.1 million people were deported from the United States. A change in laws in 1996 permitted the number of deportees to increase from 70,000 in 1996 to 114,000 in 1997. In 1998, the number of deportees rose to 173,000. The numbers stayed f...
Crossover Drones
TOM BARRY
The rapid advance of drone technology has sparked interest by police and sheriff offices in acquiring drones. This new eagerness of many nonfederal law enforcement agencies to acquire drones has been also closely nurtured by the federal government. The Departments ...
African Odyssey Turns to the South
GUILLAUME PITRON
It’s noon, and Etienne Bokoli, a Congolese translator, is getting impatient. Babasar, from Senegal, has been inside the refugee reception centre since seven this morning. The high winter sun is beating down on the tin roofs of Messina, a small South African town near th...
The Border Security and Criminal Alien Consensus
TOM BARRY
Democracy in America works. One has only to observe the surge of bipartisan support for immigration policy reform following the November elections. Election results revealed the new demographics of a multiracial, multiethnic America that is pushing aside the anti-i...
Surviving the Prairies of Illinois
ALEX E. CHÁVEZ
A palpable enthusiasm has emerged over the 2012 Presidential election and how its outcome signals a major demographic shift in the United States. The excitement pairs with heightened anticipation that “Latina/o issues”—principally comprehensive immigration r...
The ACHIEVE Act Sham
AMALIA PALLARES AND TANYA GOLASH-BOZA
One of the supposed lessons of Obama’s electoral victory was that Republicans could no longer afford to advocate an enforcement-only position on immigration reform. So it says something that the party’s first nod in that direction was extraordinarily weak. At t...
How Private Prisons Profit From the Criminalization of Immigrants
LAURA CARLSEN
How a nation uses its power to deny a person’s freedom has always been a critical measure of authoritarian rule. Massive incarceration based on race, ethnic origin or nationality, political beliefs, class, sexual orientation, age or other inherent characteristics is a f...
Beyond the Border
MATEO PIMENTEL
Far too many Americans are settling for less. Accepting the popular rhetoric and philosophy shrouding the Mexican-US border and immigration is mindless step in the wrong direction. Too many have acquiesced to ubiquitously spoon-fed solutions that do not seek an earnest pr...
The Schism in France
BARRY LANDO
Paris. France is in deep trouble. This country has spent several billions of Euros over the past 11 years sending its troops, planes and ships, to join the War against Terrorism in Central Asia. Now, however, the French are finally discovering the threat o...
Shooting to Kill Immigrants on the Mexican Border
DAVE LINDORFF
Sometimes it takes a small tragedy to call attention to expose a much bigger one. The small tragedy happened when Nicholas Ivie, a US Border Patrol agent, was shot dead on a dark night in rough terrain along the border with Mexico in Arizona, a state that has been ...
Endependence Day
RODOLFO ACUÑA
Instead of the usual 16th of September celebrated in most Mexican American communities, MEChA students at California State University at Northridge hold an “Endependence Day.” The event has the blaring of the mariachis, the jarabe tapatio, and gritos, but i...
When the Police Team With ICE: More Racial Profiling
TANYA GOLASH-BOZA
The Justice Department released a report on September 18, 2012 that found that deputies in Alamance C...
The Best Democracies Money Can Buy
SAUL LANDAU and NELSON P. VALDES
“Do you really want to live in a country where one party is so desperate to win the White House that they go around trying to make it harder for people to vote if they’re people of color, poor people or first generation immigrants?” &#...
White Lies and Arizona’s Culture of Fear
RODOLFO ACUÑA
When I was a kid there was what we used to call white lies.  You distinguished them from lies that were untrue. You told white lies because you did not want to reveal a secret or hurt someone’s feelings. Children would easily get caught telling lies – we were not too...
The Old Anti-Trafficking Propaganda
NANDITA SHARMA
Over the last two decades, many national governments and a variety of non-governmental organizations have sounded a loud drumbeat against “human trafficking”—the transporting and harboring of people through coercive means in order to exploit their labor. But as a ...
An Interview With Cheri Honkala
LEE BALLINGER
Cheri Honkala was born into poverty in Minneapolis in 1963. For the past twenty-five years she has served as national director of the ...
The Need to Fight Border Regimes Worldwide
FRANKLIN GRAHAM IV and GABRIEL KUHN
In March 2001, a random group of travelers, artists, and aid workers gathered on the rooftop of a budget hotel in Essaouria, Morocco, a town best known for inspiring the Jimi Hendrix song “Castles in the Sand” – at least according to legend. Among the people sharing...
Divided Families
LAURIE MELROOD
It’s a steamy, overcast monsoon morning in Nogales, Sonora, just across the border from the United States. I’ve come to learn more about what happens to Mexican deportees, many parents of children, who are left off by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)  in do...
The Gas Bath Riot and Other Tales of Mexican-American Resistance
RODOLFO ACUÑA
If you haven’t read David Dorado Romo’s “Ringside Seat To a Revolution: An Underground Cultural H...
Along the Border of the Surreal
PAUL IMISON
San Diego. If the Mexico-US border is the most surreal international boundary in the western hemisphere – often described as the only place where the so-called “First World” meets the Third, with all the envy, prejudice and distrust that implies – ...
The Missing Racial Profiling Argument in the Arizona Case
JUSTIN FELDMAN
CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS: Before you get into… what the case is about, I’d like to clear up at the outset what it’s not about. No part of your argument has to do with racial or ethnic profiling, does it? Saw none of that in your bri...
Immigration, Racism and the Supreme Court
MARJORIE COHN
The issue of immigration has been tossed about like a political football for some time. Democrats argue that migrants who have spent many years in the United States should be permitted to apply for lawful status. Republicans criticize these proposals as “amnesty.” But...
Criminalizing Thinking
RODOLFO ACUÑA
I am having trouble getting into this essay on the war on critical thinking. I cannot figure out whether it is dumb or ignorant.  My mother would say that the people conducting the war are malditos, mean. The reality is that the criminalization of rational thought goes...
Gone Banana Republic
LINH DINH
On top of its brusque and decidedly unromantic sexual fondling, TSA agents have also been caught stealing electronics, jewelry and cash. A TSA manager ran a prostitution ring from a motel room, and a supervisor is a defrocked priest, kicked from the pulpit for molesting t...
Don’t Cry for Us, Arizona
ROBERTO RODRIGUEZ
If Gov. Jan Brewer and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio are cheering and excited about the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision on Arizona’s SB 1070, then you know something is wrong. And when both promise that there will be no racial profiling, that’s akin to the...
The Great Pretender Throws His Base a Bone
MIKE WHITNEY
Barack Obama has the worst record on immigration of any president in US history. No one else comes close. In the last 3 and a half years, Obama has rounded up, detained and deported more than 1.2 million immigrants, roughly 400,000 per year. That’s more than double...
A Dream Deferred
JOSEPH NEVINS
Yannick Grijalba would seem perfectly suited to benefit from the immigration policy reform announced by the Obama Administration last week, one that one will postpone the threat of deportation for many young people living in the United States without government authorizat...
Rajat Gupta to Rodney King and In-between
FARZANA VERSEY
Mumbai. Between a man in a dark grey suit and a bright-eyed bride in white, they seem to have covered the American dream. Insider trading and ‘marrying well’ are common occurrences, but when these things happen in the United States of America they beco...