CIA’s Push for Drone War Driven by Internal Needs

Gareth Porter: When David Petraeus walks into the Central Intelligence Agency Tuesday, he will be taking over an organisation whose mission has changed in recent years from gathering and analysing intelligence to waging military campaigns through drone strikes in Pakistan, as well as in Yemen and Somalia.

MLK Would Oppose Today’s Wars

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William Loren Katz: Would Dr. King have called for withdrawal from Vietnam and, had he lived, not called for a withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan? Would he have failed to see parallels that are as obvious as they are frightening?

CIA: Business As Usual Under Petraeus

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Sherwood Ross: By now substantial majorities the American public, like their European cousins, want all their troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq, yet their elected officials betray the sound instincts of their citizenry.

At What Point Does the GOP Become a Hate Group?

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David Love: There is no question, based on the evidence, that the GOP is that peculiar institution in which people thrive, based on an alternate set of facts, divorced from reality.

Obama Not Likely to Call for Major Afghan Drawdown

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Sherwood Ross: Outside of the White House, is it possible to find an American anywhere who believes that the presence of U.S. troops on the ground in Afghanistan is essential to our national security — particularly when we have some 800 bases around the world ready to deploy troops at the drop of a bomb?

Labor Needs Organizing, Not Politics

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Randy Shaw: Many feel that unions have invested far too much time and money in electoral work that has not produced promised results, at the expense of ongoing worker organizing to build membership.

This Jobs Crisis Is Obama’s Kryptonite

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David Love: Obama can solve this whole thing tomorrow if he just calls for a new New Deal program already. But will he have the courage? Time will tell, but the President, like this sad nation, is short on time.

Progressive Caucus Urges Significant Afghan Troop Withdrawal

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On behalf of one of the largest and most active caucuses in the California State Democratic Party, we are writing to thank those of you who have worked to end the war in Afghanistan and urge you all to take advantage of every opportunity to push for a significant military withdrawal in July and a clear end date for the war.

New Food Safety Threat Emerges

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Marian Wang: Also unclear is whether the federal agencies in charge of changing the food safety system will be adequately funded. Republican proposals to cut the FDA’s budget and the USDA’s inspection budget could cut into efforts to update the system.

U.S. Uses Peace Talks to Divide Taliban from Pakistan

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Gareth Porter: Senior Obama administration officials hope to use the talks to sow suspicion between the Taliban and their main ally, thus weakening the Taliban resolve to negotiate on a peace settlement only if the United States offers a timetable for troop withdrawal.

Matt Drudge, the Great Communicator

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Brent Budowsky: The Times is making the point I have made repeatedly in the past, where I have suggested that (for better or worse) Matt Drudge has more influence on American media than any other single media figure.

After Bin Laden Hit, U.S. Aides Raise Dubious Hopes for Peace

President Obama with National Security Advisor Tom Donilon. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Gareth Porter: Barack Obama and top administration officials have taken advantage of the killing of Osama bin Laden to establish a new narrative suggesting the event will pave the way for negotiations with the Taliban for peace in Afghanistan.

Beware the “Middle Ground” of the Great Budget Debate

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Robert Reich: If people knew that the Ryan plan would channel hundreds of billions of their Medicare dollars into the pockets of private for-profit heath insurers, almost everyone would be against it.

Deficit Debate Ignores War, Labor Leaders Speak Out

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Tom Hayden: It’s ridiculous to claim to be a deficit hawk and a war hawk at the same time.

A New Perspective on the Israel-Palestine Conflict

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Review of Breakthrough: Transforming Fear into Compassion: A New Perspective on the Israel-Palestine Conflict, by Richard Forer Demosthenes, a Greek, said, “All Greeks are liars.” Prosterman, a Jew, said, “Many Jews are big phonies.” He’s careful not to overly-generalize or self-incriminate, as Demosthenes did. When this was presented to Steve Bhaerman (who assumes the guise [...]

Budget Cuts Obama’s Transparency Sites

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Marian Wang: Though the budget deal struck by lawmakers over the weekend averted a shutdown of the federal government, it still has open-government advocates worried about a shutdown of another sort: a shutdown in transparency.

Restrictive Immigrations Measures Dying

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Seth Hoy: The legislative graveyard got a little bit bigger this week as lawmakers in Mississippi pronounced a series of restrictive immigration measures dead.

Chamber of Commerce Attacks Anti-Corruption Law

Marian Wang: Even as anger over governmental corruption has exploded into protests across the Middle East, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has been working to weaken the law that bans companies from bribing foreign officials.

Libya: What Happens When Sound Bites Don’t Work?

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John Peeler: No wonder the hyper-cautious Obama is moving as if he were in a minefield that’s been covered with grease. Anything he does (including nothing) will elicit ferocious criticism from both opponents and supporters.

Treasury Slow Fixing Foreclosure Prevention Program

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Marian Wang: By the end of last year, the program had given nearly 1.5 million households “a chance” of a mortgage modification through a trial modification. For most, that chance never turned developed into permanent help.

The Rally Against State Immigration Legislation Continues

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Seth Hoy: Until people honestly consider how these copycat laws will affect their own fiscal bottom lines—states with ailing budgets are only going to enforce themselves in the same tired and costly circle without really solving our federal immigration problems.

American Competitiveness, and the President’s New Relationship with American Business

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Robert Reich: President Obama must not be seduced into believing — and must not allow the public to be similarly seduced into thinking — that the well-being of American business is synonymous with the well-being of Americans.

HSPD 12 Will Stand at JPL

On January 19, 2011 the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it had decided in favor of the government in the matter of NASA, et al., v. Robert M. Nelson et al. In a unanimous decision, the court found that the questions the 28 JPL employees challenged were appropriate for the protection of JPL as a federal facility.

The Four Most Dangerous Words To Your Portfolio

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Manisha Thakor: “How Should I Invest?” are the four most dangerous words to your portfolio. The answer to that question is often given as if one size fits all, when it’s anything but. To protect yourself, here are 5 things to think about to make sure your hard earned money is invested in a way that is appropriate for your specific situation.

Republican Assault on Health Care Could Backfire

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Robert Reich: If successful—either in Congress or in the courts—a Republican victory could turn into a Phyrric one by opening the way to the alternative model, based on the system Americans seem to prefer: payroll taxes and public insurance.

Stop the Persecution of Julian Assange

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Ivan Eland: Assange is either a modern-day Job or there is an orchestrated campaign (presumably) by the U.S. government to compel his Web site to desist in its publication of classified U.S. government documents and diplomatic cables.

Government Sexual Molestation in Airports Over the Top

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Ivan Eland: Outrageous fondling by government employees has caused a rising tide of public outrage and may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

Fox News Must Fire Glenn Beck For Mocking A Holocaust Survivor

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David Love: This time, Glenn Beck has managed to outdo even himself. Finally, can we say enough is enough?

Banks Face New Rules on Foreclosures from Skeptical State Judges

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Marian Wang: As banks resume foreclosures and claim to have added safeguards to their processes, it’s been left up to state court judges to decide whether they buy what the banks are saying. Many judges haven’t.

Out-Sourcing Pharmaceuticals Can Be Dangerous

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Tracy Emblem: Up to 40% of the drugs Americans take are now imported, and up to 80% of the active pharmaceutical ingredients in drugs are manufactured by companies in foreign countries.

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