Exclusive: The U.S. political climate might change if Americans understood how much the federal government did to create the infrastructure behind many business fortunes, including the Internet and computer technology. That narrative would justify higher taxes on the rich to repay the nation and allow for future R&D, writes Robert Parry.
Anticipating a return to power after Republicans win in 2012, the neocons are now in a delaying game to stop any serious cuts in the U.S. military budget, including in the global network of bases, even in countries like Japan where – as Robert Higgs notes – the national security rationale has long since disappeared.
A dispute in Kansas City over a new plant for modernizing U.S. nuclear weapons has drawn local opposition and international attention as political and religious leaders question the Obama administration’s commitment to a nuke-free world, Lawrence S. Wittner writes.
The CIA is now “one hell of a killing machine,” said one CIA insider, as lethal drones hunt down “bad guys” selected for death by a ramped-up force of CIA target analysts. This shift in emphasis has transformed the spy agency that new director, retired Gen. David Petraeus, inherits, writes Gareth Porter.
Unlike Hurricane Katrina on George W. Bush’s watch, FEMA stayed on top of Hurricane Irene rushing help to flood-stricken Americans, from North Carolina to Vermont. But House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and right-wing Republicans are demanding spending “offsets” from other federal programs, as Michael Winship notes.
As the rich get richer, the poor poorer and the middle class smaller, America’s most prominent “populist” movement, the Tea Party, demands more tax breaks for the rich and less help for the rest. Kevin Zeese says only a true populist movement demanding a democratized economy can save the Republic.
At the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, there will be much commentary about lessons learned. To former FBI agent Coleen Rowley, who tried to ring the alarm before the attacks, one enduring realization is the incompetence, hubris and dishonesty that pervades all levels of government.
For several decades, America’s political/media elites have song the siren song of a post-industrial economy based on “free trade” and “financial innovations” – while silencing dissent that questioned this new-age group think. Now, the results are in, as Phil Rockstroh encountered in the cities of Pittsburgh, Birmingham and New Orleans.
Often in the application of international law, it’s not what a country did but who its friends – and who its enemies – are that count. In that light, Israel, a close U.S. friend, got the blessings of a UN report for its attacks against Gaza-bound civilian ships on the high seas, a stamp of…
Exclusive: With the 2009 stimulus money running dry and with businesses unnerved by Washington’s political gridlock and brinksmanship, America’s weak “recovery” has stalled, prompting more criticism of President Barack Obama. Robert Parry explores whether these complaints are fair.