Economy

World Military Spending Still Rising

Despite economic recession and government austerity, the world’s military spending continued to grow last year, exceeding $1.7 trillion, with the United States accounting for more than two-fifths of that money, as Lawrence S. Wittner reports.

‘Occupy’ Eyes May Day ‘Strike’

The Occupy movement vows to reemerge this spring with a focus on May Day, the traditional day of workers’ protests. But Occupy’s call for a general strike on May 1 may be undercut by the movement’s unwillingness to lay out specific reforms to help the 99 percent, notes Danny Schechter.

A Voice for Domestic Workers

For 15 years, Ai-jen Poo has been fighting for the rights of domestic workers in the United States, an organizing task that many labor experts thought impossible given the sketchy information about who these housekeepers and caregivers are and where they work. But she has scored some stunning successes, Dennis J. Bernstein reports.

Measuring Obama’s Record

It seems Campaign 2012 will turn more on how Americans view President Obama and what he has done than how they view his likely Republican challenger Mitt Romney, who comes across as a conservative cipher. So, Beverly Bandler says Americans should make a fair and clear-headed assessment of Obama’s record.

The 1%’s Hand in the Afghan Murders

Exclusive: Army Sgt. Robert Bales stands accused of murdering 17 Afghan civilians, a crime that some trace to the financial pressures his family faced back home. However, to the rich financial swindlers, the ruining of Bales’s family – and many others – is just another day’s work, writes Mark Ames.

Romney’s Upside-Down Constitution

Exclusive: Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney wowed a convention of gun enthusiasts with a flowery talk about the Constitution and his fears about what a re-elected President Obama would do to it. But Romney’s speech reflected an American history that never was, reports Robert Parry.

Is Occupy’s ‘Purity’ Under Assault?

Hardliners in the Occupy movement have begun equating police infiltrators and other enemies with Occupy supporters who favor some practical electoral and legislative goals. There is alarmist talk about the need to protect Occupy’s revolutionary purity from these reformers, as Danny Schechter explains.

Some Ultra-Rich Abandon Obama

Some of the ultra-rich who backed Barack Obama in 2008 are switching to Mitt Romney in 2012 because the President has called for closing tax loopholes that allow hedge-fund and private-equity billionaires to pay lower tax rates than working stiffs, Bill Moyers and Michael Winship write.

Are Drugs Behind Dementia Epidemic?

Millions of Americans, when facing depression or even just anxiety, turn to powerful psychiatric drugs marketed by pharmaceutical giants, whose ads gloss over the risks in fast-talking fine print. A counter-movement warning of the dangers from an over-prescribed society is emerging, as Gary G. Kohls describes.

Botox of Late-Stage Capitalism

As America’s Great Middle Class crumbles, the Rich are again grasping for every possible regulatory rollback and tax cut, all the better to fund some final bacchanal of late-stage capitalism, a well-catered cocktail party of aging men and women wearing the false face of Botox, as poet Phil Rockstroh observes.