Budget

Taxing the Movement of Money

The symbol of the Internal Revenue Service.

If U.S. budget gridlock had not ground rational thought to a standstill, creative options for revising the tax code might be possible, such as a tax on stock transactions to raise money and discourage micro-second trades. Another option would be a toll tax on money movement, as ex-prosecutor William John Cox suggests.

Blaming the Poor for Poverty

A classic photo of a poor mother and children in Elm Grove, California, during the Great Depression. (Photo credit: Library of Congress)

Unrestrained free markets destroy the middle class, push working people down the economic ladder and concentrate wealth at the top. But promoters of this hyper-capitalism, who dominate the U.S. media debate, simply blame the poor for poverty, as Lawrence Davidson explains.

The Tea Party’s Confederate Roots

For “branding” purposes, the Tea Party pretends to reflect the views of the Constitution’s Framers but it actually follows the Slave South’s hostility to the strong federal government that the Framers created. That historical link to the Confederacy is crucial for understanding the Tea Party’s goals, as Beverly Bandler explains.

Right-Wing Ideology Run Wild

The Radical Right – reflecting the overlapping ideologies of Ayn Rand capitalists, Christian fundamentalists and neo-Confederate white supremacists – is set on crippling the federal government and humiliating the first African-American president. But the extremism could shatter the Republican Party, writes Lawrence Davidson.

The Abject Failure of Reaganomics

Exclusive: House Republicans got next to nothing from their extortion strategy of taking the government and the economy hostage, but they are sure to continue obstructing programs that could create jobs and start rebuilding the middle class. What they won’t recognize is the abject failure of Reaganomics, writes Robert Parry.

The Anarchy of the Tea Party

As a catastrophic U.S. debt default looms, Republicans keep demanding they “get something” in exchange for reopening the government and removing a gun from the head of the economy. The new talking point is that “Democrats won’t negotiate!” But ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar sees an anarchic method behind the madness.

The Koch Brothers’ ‘Samson Option’

Exclusive: The fiscal crisis in Washington is not simply a threat to economic and government stability, as serious as that is. It is a premeditated scheme to carve out a new constitutional structure that gives the Koch Brothers and other right-wing billionaires the power to void the democratic process, writes Robert Parry.

How Shutdown Hurts National Security

The Republican-induced shutdown of the federal government underscores the Right’s populist contempt for the nation’s democratic institutions. But the fiasco also has undercut America’s standing in the world and thus undermines U.S. security and global leadership, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Playing Chicken with Food Safety

The U.S. Constitution empowers the federal government to “provide for the … general Welfare,” but free-market ideologues have distorted the Founding document’s plain language to fit their desires, including their new demands that food-safety rules be gutted, as Michael Winship explains.

America’s Government by Extortion

Exclusive: By forcing a U.S. government shutdown – and threatening a first-ever credit default – Tea Party Republicans are creating a new constitutional system which lets a determined white minority impose its will on the diverse American majority by inflicting so much pain that the extortionists prevail, writes Robert Parry.