The end of the year brings reflection on what happened in the past 12 months and what lies ahead. But these retrospectives usually offer no more context – and often less – than the thin gruel of news as the events played out, News Dissector Danny Schechter notes.
After years of tip-toeing around the too-big-to-fail banks – despite their key role in devastating the world’s economy – the U.S. government has finally signaled a couple of fraud prosecutions. However, the effort is not only way too late, but way too little, argues Danny Schechter.
For several decades, the American Right has heaped contempt on government employees as part of a strategy to delegitimize federal regulation of the private sector, contributing to such disasters as the Wall Street meltdown of 2008. But the beat-down of “public servants” goes on, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Americans are grieving over the 20 schoolchildren and six teachers mowed down in Newtown, Connecticut, by a deranged gunman with a semi-automatic assault rifle. But national grief may not be enough to overcome the cold calculations of profit and politics, says Danny Schechter.
Outgoing members of Congress – even as they consider legislation in the lame-duck session – are preparing their exits through the revolving door to lucrative lobbying jobs, often with industries they assisted while doing the “people’s business,” as Bill Moyers and Michael Winship explain.
Exclusive: Libertarians and Tea Partiers pretend they are the only Americans who believe in “limited government” as envisioned by the Framers, but that is a false conceit. The real history is that Madison and Washington devised a Constitution with broad powers to promote the “general Welfare,” says Robert Parry.
It may appear that Japanese voters have opted for a “back-to-the-future” election, reinstalling Shinzo Abe and his once-dominant Liberal Democratic Party to power. But the move reflects a desire to move forward out of Japan’s economic rut, says ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.
Since the 1980s, Rupert Murdoch has built his U.S. media empire in close collaboration with the Republican Party, trading the his public influence for favorable regulatory treatment from GOP politicians. But now he is hoping for some help from President Obama’s regulators, say Bill Moyers and Michael Winship.
The prevailing view on Fox News is that everyone in America, regardless of his or her religious beliefs, must join in the lavish and lengthy celebration of the birth of Jesus – or be accused of warring on Christmas. But the real assault on Jesus’s teaching comes from gross materialism, says Lawrence S. Wittner.
Exclusive: President Obama’s reelection – perhaps even more than his first victory – marks a potential shift in the political and economic structure of the United States, as the old white ruling elite loses its grip. There is even a chance for revolutionary change, says Morgan Strong.