The Right’s Made-Up ‘Constitution’

From the Archive: Behind the U.S. government shutdown is the Right’s erroneous belief that the U.S. Constitution tightly limits the federal government and carves out broad powers for the states, a bogus history that suggests the Tea Partiers don’t understand the Founding document, as historian Jada Thacker wrote in July.

The Founders’ ‘Musket Mandate’

From the Archive: At the center of the Republican shutdown of the U.S. government is the claim that a “mandate” requiring Americans to get health insurance violates Founding principles, but the Framers of the Constitution were comfortable with a similar mandate for an armed militia, as Robert Parry noted in 2012.

What the IRS ‘Scandal’ Wrought

The anger of Tea Partiers, as they precipitate a federal government shutdown, still burns from the IRS “scandal” of earlier this year, even though the supposed singling out of conservative groups proved to be a myth. But the furor disrupted IRS policing of political money abuses, writes Michael Winship.

Poisoning the US-Iran Detente

Israel, Saudi Arabia and other enemies of Iran hope to poison improved U.S.-Iranian relations by blocking sanctions relief for Iran, even at the cost of losing new restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program, an emerging dilemma assessed by ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

The Four Eras of the American Right

Exclusive: In the coming weeks, the Republican Party and its Tea Party extremists vow to create budgetary and fiscal crises if the Democrats don’t gut health-care reform and submit to a host of other right-wing demands. But a driving force in this craziness is an anti-historical view of the Constitution, writes Robert Parry.

Dangerous Addiction to Secrecy

Exclusive: After decades of mutual suspicions, the U.S. and Iranian governments appear headed toward face-to-face contacts. But mutual trust still awaits truth-telling about important facts that defined the relationship — and that may require breaking a dangerous addiction to secrecy, says Robert Parry.

The Better-Than-Worst Syria Option

The neocons still dominate Official Washington’s policy debates so it shouldn’t be a surprise that President Obama’s move toward diplomacy over intervention in Syria would draw criticism and denunciation. But sometimes the best course is the simply the one that’s not the worst, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar explains.

How Fake 2nd Amendment History Kills

Exclusive: Another mass shooting has stunned America, although the sentiment is now more numbness and hopelessness than outrage and resolve. The gun carnage will probably never end unless the Right’s bogus history of the Second Amendment is exploded and the real intent of the Framers is explained, writes Robert Parry.

Risks from Big-Power Bullying

Across Official Washington – from liberal to neocon, from pol to pundit – the conventional wisdom on Syria’s crisis is that threats of military force work. But that simplistic notion misses the disasters that can follow if the threat is ignored or how bullying might strengthen hardliners, ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar says.

Putin Touches an ‘Exceptional’ Nerve

Official Washington is in full outrage mode over a New York Times opinion article by Russian President Vladimir Putin who dared question the idea that the U.S. has a special – indeed “exceptional” – right to intervene militarily anywhere it wishes around the world, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar notes.