Health Reform

Too Many VA Delays, Too Many Wars

Graves at Arlington Cemetery

The scandal about excessive waiting times for U.S. veterans to get medical coverage is a fresh reminder about the delayed costs from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, indeed from the excessive use of the American military, as Michael Winship reflects on the message from Memorial Day.

The Fat Cats of Fast-Food

A protest for higher pay in the fast-food industry. (Photo by Annette Bernhardt)

Pay inequity has worsened across the U.S. economy, but perhaps nowhere more than in the fast-food industry where CEOs and other top executives fatten their compensation as their fast-food workers subsist on taxpayer-provided food stamps, as Michael Winship explains.

Pope Francis Signals Eased Moral Strictures

Pope Francis. (Photo from Casa Rosada)

For decades, the Catholic Church has alienated many followers with its rigid stance on sexual behavior and marriage. But there are indications that Pope Francis is seeking a less judgmental approach toward these issues, as moral theologian Daniel C. Maguire notes.

Is Government Inept or Sinister?

George Orwell's image of Big Brother.

The image of a bumbling government, fumbling the Healthcare.gov rollout, clashes with the image of NSA running a terrifying Big Brother dystopia. But these sharp contrasts often reflect the viewer’s opinions – or political needs – more than the shaded realities, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

The War on Poverty at 50

President Lyndon Johnson

The Right has long cited President Johnson’s War on Poverty as proof that “guv-mint” has no place in providing for “the general Welfare,” that the “free market” must rule as the master of American society. But there are real lessons to be learned from the past half century, writes Alice O’Connor.

Obama’s Not-So-Terrible Year

President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, attends a meeting in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Dec. 12, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Exclusive: Official Washington is giving a big thumb down to President Obama’s performance in 2013. But his diplomatic breakthroughs in the Middle East and even some of his troubles with Obamacare and the NSA could ultimately make the year a historic turning point, says Robert Parry.

The Right’s Misconstrued Constitution

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Exclusive: The U.S. Supreme Court will rule on the right of a corporation owned by abortion opponents to assert its freedom of religion on health insurance, trumping a woman’s choice of birth control, another chance for the Right to expand corporate rights, says Robert Parry.

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.

Tea Party and ’12 Years a Slave’

Exclusive: Some on the Right like to compare the Affordable Care Act to slavery, apparently to get under the skin of Barack Obama, the first African-American president. But the glib talking point also reveals a callous disregard for slavery’s evils, which popular culture is finally addressing, writes Robert Parry.

The Lies Killing America

While many reformers have focused on money in politics, a parallel danger comes from the billions of dollars that right-wing ideologues have poured into media. The likes of Rupert Murdoch have made an art form out of peddling “populism” that serves the financial elites, as Bill Moyers and Michael Winship note.