An article of faith on the American Right is that the “free market” can solve pretty much all problems and the government should simply get out of the way. After the debt-limit crisis, the Republicans turn to the environment, writes Don Monkerud.
As Republicans threaten to throw the U.S. economy into a new crisis by not raising the debt ceiling, Democrats have given ground time and again, erasing one line in the sand after another. But is this self-inflicted crisis real or just another political game, asks Danny Schechter.
Over the past several decades, the Right has convinced millions of Americans that Government is the source of all problems, that Corporations must have near-total freedom, and that the Rich must enjoy low taxes. The consequence has been a devastated middle class and fiscal chaos, writes Michael Winship.
The dangerous political and economic trends of the past three decades are coming to a head in Washington current debt battle. The Right is armed with its anti-government extremism and its vast propaganda machine, while the Democrats seek compromise and the Left remains disorganized, as Danny Schechter notes.
The Tea Party crowd idolizes the America’s Founders along with today’s corporate titans, whose taxes must be kept low so they can be the great “job creators.” But the contrast is striking, since the Founders risked everything for the country while today’s rich won’t even take the chance of hiring some extra workers, Michael Winship writes.
American politics is increasingly defined by a struggle that pits religious fundamentalism and anti-government true-belief against rationality and liberalism, with the former combination gaining gradual dominance over the latter. But poet Phil Rockstroh says both sides fail to grasp the coming collapse of today’s political/economic model.
South Africa is often viewed as the model for Africa’s future, an inspiring country that shed the curse of apartheid and white supremacy in a largely peaceful transition to majority black rule. But the corrupt economic culture of that earlier era continues to infect the new South Africa, reports Danny Schechter from Durban.
Rep. Michele Bachman, a rising Republican presidential aspirant, is notorious for bungling key facts of U.S. history – like starting the Revolutionary War in New Hampshire – but she also misses key points about Canada’s more robust economy. It benefited from strong banking regulation and single-payer health insurance, Michael Winship notes.
South Africa’s heroic defeat of white supremacy made the country and its leader, Nelson Mandela, icons across the world. However, the nation’s neoliberal economic policies have left many South Africans struggling in poverty and growing despair, as Danny Schechter reports from Durban, South Africa.
Like much of the U.S. news media, the Washington press corps likes a good diversion from the real problems facing the country, such as having to deal with new research confirming that the United States is dividing into a land of a few haves and many have-nots, a crisis that Michael Winship addresses in this guest essay.