NATO: What’s It Good For?

General George Joulwan

Carl Bloice: What we should hope for is that White House leadership will be employed to unite the governments involved in giving full support to the efforts of the African Union to find a negotiated path out of the deepening and costly quagmire.

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The Swamp of Washington and the Morass of the Economy

robert reich richard shelby

Robert Reich: If the Democrats remain silent, the vacuum will be filled by the Republican snake oil of federal spending cuts and cut taxes on big corporations and the wealthy.

Politics of Inaction: The Reality Behind the Jobless Stats

looking for work

Carl Bloice: Our principle concern here must not be the 2012 Presidential election but the condition of the almost 12 milion people who want to work and can find no employment.

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How to Get Washington’s Attention

wall-street-follies-wide

Robert Reich: The leaders of the Street and big business may now have to wake up to a reality they’ve tried to avoid — that the central economic problem of our time isn’t the long-term budget deficit but the immediate deficit in aggregate demand.

More Truth About the American Economy

economy-wide

Robert Reich: Democrats are behaving as if they’re powerless to affect the economy even though a Democrat occupies the White House and his appointees run the federal government.

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Depression, Not Recession Rocks U.S. Ghettos

chicago-ghetto-wide

Sherwood Ross: Instead of investing in a framework to help blacks advance by their own initiative, the Federal government has flushed billions down the toilets of friendly foreign strongmen such as Egypt’s Hosni Mubarek.

Ed Asner Supports Marcy Winograd for Congress

marcy-wide-2

Join Ed Asner and PDA at a Fundraiser to get Marcy Winograd Elected to Congress

Sleepwalking into the Imperial Dark

empire

Tom Engelhardt: Facing the challenges of a world at the edge — from Japan to the Greater Middle East, from a shaky global economic system to weather that has become anything but entertainment — the United States looks increasingly incapable of coping.

The Coming Shutdowns and Showdowns: What’s Really at Stake

deficit wolves

Robert Reich: Public budgets are in trouble because revenues plummeted over the last two years of the Great Recession. They’re also in trouble because of tax giveaways to the rich.

When “Good” Dictators Go Bad

hillary

Norman Solomon: And so, the secretary of state condemns awful Iran, invoking “our sense of human dignity, the rights that flow from it and the principles that ground it.” But don’t hold your breath for any such condemnation of, say, Saudi Arabia — surely an “awful” government that “routinely violates the rights of its people.”

The End of America’s Middle East Empire

middle east empire

As we’ve watched the dramatic events in the Middle East, you would hardly know that we had a thing to do with them.  Oh yes, in the name of its War on Terror, Washington had for years backed most of the thuggish governments now under siege or anxious that they may be next in line [...]

The Reagan Centennial: Celebrating Reaganomics

ronald reagan

Joseph Palmero: If you like the way things are in the United States today — with Gilded Age levels of inequality, weak labor unions, low-wage service jobs for most of the workforce, and a public sector that’s dying on the vine — then you can thank Ronald Reagan.

Brisenia Flores: The Little Girl That You Don’t Know

brisenia flores

Jessie Daniels: Brisenia Flores was a 9-year-old girl murdered in Arizona by anti-immigrant vigilantes, yet her death – unlike that of the 9-year old killed last week in Arizona – is getting almost no attention in the U.S. mainstream media.

The Jasmine Revolution: Testing Time for the White House

Carl Bloice: To do something meaningful the Obama Administration must go beyond lecturing the local establishment leaders about human rights and political plurality. It must be to move to respond positively to the aspiration of the kids with the rocks in the streets. It should not involve telling the Pakistanis how to price gas.

Reliving the Soviet Experience in Afghanistan

russian troops in afghanistan

Tom Engelhardt: If, as 2011 begins, you want to peer into the future, enter my time machine, strap yourself in, and head for the past, that laboratory for all developments of our moment and beyond.

Jerry Brown’s Karma

California Governor Jerry Brown

Tom Hayden: It’s possible that Brown will take to blaming Washington’s priorities for California’s ills, but not any time soon. For now, he wants Californians to see themselves in the mirror.

The American Jobs Emergency Requires Action

economy

Robert Reich: Not only do we need extended unemployment benefits. We need a new WPA, modeled after the WPA of the Great Depression, to put jobless Americans to work. We need a national infrastructure bank to rebuild our crumbling highways and water and sewer systems, thereby putting additional people back to work.

A Helleva of a Choice (but I’ma Have to Support My President)

Anthony Samad

Anthony Samad: As ugly as it is out there for some Democrats, one in particular-in California-y’all know who I’m talking about, I’m going to have to trust the President on this election.

The Fed’s New Bubble (Masquerading as a Jobs Program)

economic collapse

Robert Reich: The latest jobs bill coming out of Washington isn’t really a bill at all. It’s the Fed’s attempt to keep long-term interest rates low by pumping even more money into the economy (“quantiative easing” in Fed-speak).

The Revolution Will (Barely) Be Publicized

one nation working together

Sylvia Moore: The pro-corporate, anti-tax Tea Party movement has gotten wall-to-wall press coverage, even though only about 30 percent of the population actually supports it. Saturday’s event did get some national coverage from the major television networks, but that paled in comparison to the kind of attention the Tea Partiers are getting on a routine basis. Locally, all I could find was this 37-second clip from ABC7 News. Kudos to ABC for showing up.

Bob Woodward and All the President’s Men

bob woodward

Andrew J. Bacevich: Once a serious journalist, the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward now makes a very fine living as chief gossip-monger of the governing class.

The President’s Backyard Discussion of the Economy (as It Could Be)

obama backyard

Robert Reich: As Obama continued his economic tour with backyard discussions on the challenges currently facing the middle class, according to the White House. Here’s an imagined version of that discussion

Washington May Be Broken Now, But the Future Is Up for Grabs

Rep. Wilbur Mills, long-time former Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, with chief aide and swimming instructor Fanne Foxe.

Michael Sigman: But lest the healthy anger of progressives during the Bush years curdle into full-blown, hide-under-the-covers depression, it’s worth asking: When did Washington work, anyway?

The Jobs Emergency

camp foreclosure

Robert Reich: We need a response proportional to the crisis. Obama, Pelosi, and Reed should summon Congress back to Washington for action on the jobs emergency.

Versus China, We’re Not Even in the Right Game

denis campbell

Denis Campbell: We are so screwed. We simply don’t get it in the USA and EU. After three weeks spent travelling around the globe, I see that the Chinese eat our lunch while we busy ourselves in silly ideological Left vs. Right fights over control of Washington, Westminster, and Brussels.

Budget Cowardice Compounds Problem

deficit hawks

Steve Hochstadt: When conservative Republicans controlled Washington under George Bush, they spent government money on their pet projects with little regard for the long-term budgetary consequences. Now Republicans at the national level have made the deficit one of their major points of attack against the Democrats in preparation for the November elections.

Obama Suggests Lincoln-Like Humility

President Barack Obama's spring 2010 commencement address at the University of Michigan will come 10 years and one day after President Bill Clinton delivered the commencement address at Eastern Michigan University in 2000.  (AP Photo)

Walter Moss: One of the great ego traps for any president is being surrounded by “yes men and women” who tell him (and maybe someday her) that he is always right. In The Audacity of Hope, Obama wrote of an occasion when President Bush’s “eyes became fixed, his voice took on the agitated, rapid tone of someone neither accustomed to nor welcoming interruption. His easy affability was replaced by an almost messianic certainty. As I watched my mostly Republican Senate colleagues hang on his every word, I was reminded of the dangerous isolation that power can bring, and appreciated the founders’ wisdom in designing a system to keep power in check.”

End the Filibuster and Pass a Lot of Stuff

Joseph Palermo: The Democrats must pass a lot of legislation before the midterms or they’re going to be very sorry. Soon enough, given the Supreme Court’s recent 5-4 ruling in Citizens United v. FEC, we’re going to see campaigns where our choice for U.S. Senator will be between the “Doritos Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chips” candidate and the “Pepsi/Pizza Hut/KFC/Frito Lay/Taco Bell” candidate. Former President George W. Bush is raking in the bucks speaking at the National Grocers’ Association. First he defiled the presidency by getting John Yoo to turn the Justice Department into a law factory for monarchical presidential powers, now he shares the stage as an inspirational speaker with Terry Bradshaw. Our elections are about to become a satirical skit that Stephen Colbert of the Colbert Report did a long time ago.

Why Freeze Spending on Only Part of the Budget?

Budget-Pie

Ivan Eland: President Obama’s rationale for not including these security expenditures in his discretionary spending freeze is that he is prosecuting two wars. Aside from the obvious solution of ending the two conflicts—which are part of the “war on terror” but have had the counterproductive effect of increasing retaliatory terrorism—and cutting back the defense budget, defense spending could be reduced even if the two war efforts are sustained.

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