Congress finally banned its members and other federal officials from stock trading based on insider government information, but not before the law was watered down in two key respects, as Michael Winship reports.
Exclusive: The “Obamacare” debate will test whether the U.S. Supreme Court’s five Republican justices are political hacks. After all, a right-wing think tank devised the individual mandate, which was embraced by GOP front-runner Mitt Romney, but it’s now anathema because it was passed by a Democratic president, Robert Parry writes.
The slaying of unarmed teen-ager Trayvon Martin has shed light on the shadowy American Legislative Exchange Council, which dreams up pro-corporate legislation to peddle to the states and – as with the gun-toting “Stand Your Ground” law – can inflict suffering and death on innocent people, Bill Berkowitz reports.
In recent years, PBS has grown more and more timid as financial and political pressures have mounted, explaining why two of its more controversial series presenting independent documentaries have gotten stuck in a time slot guaranteeing fewer viewers. PBS veterans Bill Moyers and Michael Winship object.
An aide’s remark comparing the consistency of Mitt Romney’s positions to lines on an Etch a Sketch toy suggests his presidency would follow a course designed to win him a second term, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar. In that, Romney’s neocon foreign policy advisers may see hope for a muscular “new American century.”
Exclusive: “Game Change,” the HBO movie on John McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin, faults his Republican campaign for its slipshod vetting of the little-known Alaska governor, but leaves out the back story of big-time neocons from D.C. helping position Palin for her surprise rise and Palin manipulating everyone, writes Morgan Strong.
Exclusive: Orwell’s insight – that who controls the present controls the past, and who controls the past controls the future – could apply to the American political debate in which the Right has built a false narrative that enlists the Framers of the Constitution as enemies of a strong central government, writes Robert Parry.
Exclusive: Many on the American Right insist federal actions from the Civil War to recent banking regulations were encroachments on states’ rights and personal liberties, but underlying these claims – in the 1860s and today – is the greed of the richest 1 percent treating the 99 percent as chattel, writes Mark Ames.
The Occupy Wall Street movement has resisted making specific proposals for reform, focusing instead on its trademark occupation of parks and its protests on behalf of the 99 percent. Some longtime activists now urge OWS to “go left,” but Danny Schechter says it also much broaden its reach to that 99 percent.
Ex-Attorney General Michael Mukasey and other big-name politicians are demanding that an anti-government Iranian group, MEK, be removed from the U.S. terrorism list despite links to recent murders of Iranian civilian scientists. Former FBI official Coleen Rowley offers evidence of Mukasey aiding this terrorist organization.