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.
Between a Congress dominated by Tea Party extremists and a Supreme Court controlled by corporate partisans, hopes for addressing America’s worsening income inequality are dim. But union leader Richard Trumka says the fight is more crucial than ever, writes Michael Winship.
Reflections on Martin Luther King Jr.’s “dream” – a half century after he delivered his famous speech at the Lincoln Memorial – have been clouded by the prospect of a U.S. military strike against Syria, as President Obama seems to have forgotten that King’s message went beyond race, as Laura Finley notes.
Besides battering down the walls of racial segregation, Martin Luther King Jr. demanded that America address its economic barriers to fairness and justice, a challenge that may have earned him even more contempt from the power structure, as Bill Moyers and Michael Winship note.
From the Archive: The urgent question facing the advanced capitalistic societies of Europe and the United States is: can “free markets” still meet the people’s needs or will those needs be sacrificed to the market’s demand for “austerity” — and if so, what does that mean for democracy — as Robert Parry asked in 2009.
Since the rise of Ronald Reagan in the 1980s, America’s rich have been on a roll, with their tax rates slashed by more than half and a concentration of both wealth and power at the top, a restoration of an earlier time of inequality and exploitation, as Lawrence S. Wittner recalls.
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.
Across the United States, the 99 Percent Movement is occupying more and more parks to protest America’s growing economic inequality. In Washington DC, activist Kevin Zeese reports on the protest at Freedom Plaza near the Treasury building.
Like much of the U.S. news media, the Washington press corps likes a good diversion from the real problems facing the country, such as having to deal with new research confirming that the United States is dividing into a land of a few haves and many have-nots, a crisis that Michael Winship addresses in this guest essay.