NPR Scandal Reversal: The Raw Footage Shows Something Else

Reading Time: 2 minutes When I wrote a piece the other day about a scandal rocking National Public Radio over “inappropriate” comments NPR fundraising executives make on edited hidden-camera footage, I wondered whether raw footage might provide some useful context. I did not know at the time that such raw footage was there to be scrutinized.

Qaddafi, Bush And The Iraq Big Lie

Reading Time: 2 minutes While the US government expresses outrage over the brutality of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi toward his own people, we’re missing a complex but significant wrinkle that ties Qaddafi to America’s cover-up of the true path to war in Iraq.

In May, 2009, a man named Ibn Shaikh al-Libi supposedly committed suicide while being held in a Libyan jail. Al-Libi is a deeply, deeply interesting fellow. Back in 2002, he was tortured by Egypt under US direction. It appears that the reason the US government had him tortured was not to stop some imminent attack on the United States, but to generate alleged—and false— links between Al-Qaeda and Saddam Hussein that could justify invading Iraq.

Seymour Hersh…And The Men Who Want Him Committed

Reading Time: 11 minutes It seems unusual for a staid, respected publication (one that has received three National Magazine Awards in just this past decade) to start treating a celebrated journalist (who himself has won two National Magazine Awards in just this past decade) as if he were nothing more than a paranoid crank. [Read the rest]

Unanswered Questions as Obama Anoints HW Bush

Reading Time: 5 minutes On February 15, President Obama bestowed the Medal of Freedom, the United States’ highest award, to a group of people which includes former president George H.W. Bush. Having spent five years researching the elder Bush and discovering a staggering array of secrets to the man’s life—none of them favorable, I was curious why Obama gave Bush the medal.

Giving Chase: Egypt, OK – But What About America’s Oligarchs?

Reading Time: 3 minutes With all the attention on crowds of ordinary people rising up and asserting themselves against corruption and self-dealing by an oligarchy, we’re missing what the oligarchs are doing right at home. Take, for example, the activities of one of our biggest banks, JPMorgan Chase. Newly released documents show that high officials of the bank knew Read More

Bush, Rumsfeld and Iraq: Is the Real Reason for the Invasion Finally Emerging?

Reading Time: 4 minutes In Donald Rumsfeld’s new book, Known and Unknown, out February 8, Rumsfeld offers an account of George W. Bush’s early interest in Iraq.  This was just days after the 9/11 attacks.  There were no apparent reasons for Bush to focus on Iraq, instead of on the actual perpetrators of the attacks. Here’s the Rumsfeld version Read More

Covering The Assault On Working People

Reading Time: 4 minutes A common theme runs through a variety of news stories: there isn’t enough money around, and so working people must take a hit. But is that really the only solution? First, let’s look at the stories. There’s growing talk of letting state governments declare bankruptcy so they can get out of paying pension benefits to Read More

HOW NOT TO HONOR OUR TROOPS: Obama, Daley, Chase and the Military

Reading Time: 2 minutes This week, NBC News ran an important report about improprieties at a particularly well-connected bank. According to NBC, JP Morgan Chase has been forced by a lawsuit to admit that it has been overcharging thousands of military families for their mortgages—and had improperly foreclosed on more than a dozen such families. Now, news that a Read More

Roads Not Taken: John F. Kennedy, Patrice Lumumba and George H. W. Bush

Reading Time: 3 minutes Bravo to the The New York Times for publishing Adam Hochschild’s January 17 op-ed, An Assassination’s Long Shadow. The piece marked the 50th anniversary of an event long forgotten in the United States: the U.S.-sponsored removal and murder of a democratically elected leader in Africa. Three days after the murder, our own democratically elected leader—one Read More

The Koch Brothers’ Climatologist

Reading Time: 4 minutes The other day, USA Today ran an article reporting that 2010 had tied 2005 as the warmest year since record-keeping began in 1880. That’s disturbing data, or course. But what really caught my eye was who they chose to question the significance of the news: a climatologist with….the Cato Institute. That’s a policy outfit heavily funded by the very companies whose emissions heat up the earth’s atmosphere.

Readers, Please Weigh In: K-GUN

Reading Time: < 1 minute The local ABC affiliate tv station in Tucson is KGUN. It is referred to as “K-GUN.” A man named H.U. Garrett chose those call letters when he bought the station in 1957. Wikipedia says this man sought to reflect his interest in Western lore, and in collecting guns. Now that, half a century later, the Read More

The Meaning of Daley

Reading Time: 3 minutes A few days ago, the Obama Administration floated a trial balloon to see if there would be any opposition to the appointment of William Daley as the President’s Chief of Staff. There wasn’t, and so they’ve gone ahead and made it official. That they were concerned about a backlash is evident from the original reporting. Read More

Democracy=Corruption And Eggshells?

Reading Time: 2 minutes A recent Washington Post article reported on the not-so-coincidental timing of campaign contributions from corporate interests with votes on legislation affecting those interests. As thoughtful folks might say, “well DUH.” Who can be surprised by this? Certainly, the daily corruption of Congress must be covered, and I’m glad to see the Post writing: Numerous times Read More

Covering up: A tale of two autopsies

Reading Time: 4 minutes Here’s a fine piece of work that ran on the front page of The New York Times recently. The article, written by Ellen Barry, concerns a suspicious death, a cover-up and a commission’s inquiry into the death. See if you can guess where this incident took place (“spoiler” details have been removed from the excerpts Read More