Jonathan Simon: In the age of Bush and Obama, American punishments reflect a level of viciousness and degradation that no principled person should be willing to accept for themselves or others.
Robert Reich: I wish President Obama and the Democrats would explain to the nation that the federal budget deficit isn’t the nation’s major economic problem and deficit reduction shouldn’t be our major goal.
Robert Reich: omney admits to an income of over $20 million a year for the last several decades. Which makes his 13 percent — or even 20 percent — violate the principle of equal sacrifice that lies at the core of our notion of tax fairness.
Robert Reich: The First Amendment is being stood on its head. Money speaks, and an unlimited amount of it can now be spent bribing and cajoling politicians. Yet peaceful assembly is viewed as a public nuisance and removed by force.
Gareth Porter: A July United Nations report asserting that only 30 civilians died in targeted raids in Afghanistan during the first six months of 2011 reflected only a very small fraction of night raids in which civilians were killed.
Gareth Porter: Obama’s speech announcing that the 33,000 “surge” troops in Afghanistan will be withdrawn by “summer” 2012 indicates that he has given priority to the interests of the military and the Pentagon over concerns by key officials in his administration over the impact of the war’s costs on domestic socioeconomic needs.
Robert Reich: Happy Birthday Wall Street. Party away. Just know that most Americans aren’t joining the celebration.
Robert Reich: In political terms, a strong stand enables the President to clearly demonstrate who’s side he’s on (the working and middle class that’s still bearing the brunt of this lousy economy) and who’s side the Republicans are on (the powerful and privileged who brought much of this on, and who are now doing just fine).