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

WikiLeaks—Where’s the Oil?

Reading Time: 5 minutes By Charlotte Dennett Ever since the first WikiLeaks “dump” of classified documents began during the summer of this year, I’ve been looking for official documents that confirm what many serious — but often censored — journalists have known for a long time: that the war on terror is really just the latest stage in the Read More

One President's Secrets—And The Media That Keeps Them

Reading Time: 5 minutes There’s still a striking double standard between the way the big American media treat American officials and foreigners. Let’s compare Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and former President George H.W. Bush. Have a look at a recent New York Times article about Putin’s response to leaked diplomatic cables that cast him in a negative light. Read More

Voters: The Horror Movie

Reading Time: 3 minutes It’s like some kind of horror movie in which people are behaving verrrry strangely. First, though, we don’t see anything odd at all. For example, The Associated Press reports in a new poll that More than half the country backs raising taxes on the richest Americans But then there’s the vague notion of something slightly Read More

Bones to Pick With Obama

Reading Time: 2 minutes Barack Obama is on the road these days, taking off after the special interests and elites, and defending the middle class. He is talking about equity and openness. He wants to end tax cuts for the wealthiest. Given Obama’s rhetoric, one might think that in his appointment recently of a new chairman of the White Read More