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Tag: Government

From Tuskegee to Guatemala Via Nuremberg

News broke last week that the U.S. government purposefully exposed hundreds of men in Guatemala to syphilis in ghoulish medical experiments conducted during the late 1940s.

Posted on Oct 5, 2010 READ MORE

Nuclear Armament Still Our Central Issue

Of all of the sources of strategic delusion and political illusion today, nuclear weapons undoubtedly make the most prodigious contribution to hypocrisy and useless expense.

Posted on Oct 5, 2010 READ MORE

AP / J. Scott Applewhite

March to Nowhere

We can hold One Nation marches every week. It will not make any difference until we revolt against the formal structures of power.

Posted on Oct 5, 2010 READ MORE

Brazil Elects a Clown—Literally—to Congress

Brazilian clown Tiririca didn’t even pretend to run a serious campaign, and he was rewarded with more than 1.3 million votes and a job in government. Tiririca, who started his professional life at age 8 in a circus, will serve as the federal deputy for Sao Paulo, although he may be asked to take a literacy test. (Video after the jump)

Posted on Oct 4, 2010 READ MORE

Who Really Thinks We’ll Win in Afghanistan?

Could somebody please remind me just what it is that we’re achieving in Afghanistan? Don’t all speak at once. No, I mean what good things we’re accomplishing. Anybody? Hello?

Posted on Sep 30, 2010 READ MORE

Lies of the Tea Party

The disaffection and demoralization of Democrats have created a dangerous political vacuum that is being filled with misleading data, urban legends and outright lies.

Posted on Sep 29, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Franklin Reyes

Cuba by the Numbers

Fidel Castro recently told The Atlantic that the Cuban model does not work anymore, not even for Cuba. But according to statistics collected by none other than the CIA, the Cuban model has actually worked very well.

Posted on Sep 29, 2010 READ MORE

Are Obama’s Hands Tied?

A splendid and courageous new book describes with lucidity the degree to which the power of the American presidency over war and peace has been weakened in our day, and, in important respects, superseded.

Posted on Sep 28, 2010 READ MORE

Hillary Clinton Celebrates Kissinger While White House Repeats His Mistakes

Future historians will marvel at how U.S. leaders failed to learn from their horrific crimes in Indochina, and are instead repeating many of them today.

Posted on Sep 28, 2010 READ MORE

Return of the ‘Contract With America’

Why do John Boehner and his colleagues want to remind voters of their political descent from the likes of Newt Gingrich and Tom DeLay, and the legacy of misconduct, fakery and error that they represent?

Posted on Sep 26, 2010 READ MORE

A Brief History of Michelle Bachman’s Lies

Today on the list: The virtual world where Muslims, Christians and Jews all get along, Bob Woodward defends his journalistic integrity, and is Michelle Bachman a compulsive liar?

Posted on Sep 24, 2010 READ MORE

The Party of Nonsense

The Republicans were doing pretty well for themselves as the Party of No. So why did they decide to rebrand themselves as the Party of Nonsense?

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE

What the Pot Legalization Campaign Really Threatens

By their actions, alcohol companies are admitting that more sensible drug policies could cut into their government-created monopoly on mind-altering substances.

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE

National Security Archive

Declassified: Bush’s Iraq Scheming Began in 2001

The National Security Archive has obtained documents confirming and expanding on what we already knew: The Bush administration was determined to invade and occupy Iraq whether there was justification or not. (continued)

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE

FBI composite for wanted poster / Wikimedia Commons

Neuroscientist Gets 86 Years for a ‘Freak Out’

MIT-educated neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui has been sentenced to 86 years in prison for what her lawyers called a “freak out.” Siddiqui says she was abducted and secretly held for five years before she snapped, grabbed a gun and opened fire on her captors. (continued)

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE

Flickr / Tambako the Jaguar (CC-BY-ND)

‘A Pledge to America’

Republicans may not have any ideas, as the Democrats are fond of saying, but they do have plenty of momentum and, now, a pledge. Instead of a “Contract With America” it’s “A Pledge to America,” and, because we’re still taking baby steps here, the Republican leadership is not urging any Republicans to actually make the pledge. (continued)

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Oded Balilty

The China Superpower Hoax

How is a country with a lower per capita income than Kazakhstan, one of the worst environmental records of any major nation and a dictatorship, besides, hailed by so many as the next global superpower?

Posted on Sep 23, 2010 READ MORE

Twisting Obama’s Words

The right’s atwitter—literally, in some cases—about President Obama’s comment to Bob Woodward that America “can absorb a terrorist attack.”

Posted on Sep 22, 2010 READ MORE

U.S. Could Be Alone as Europe Turns Inward

The relationship between Western Europe and the colonies that became the United States was complicated from the beginning. The situation reversed, it is now Europe that tires of America’s imperial wars.

Posted on Sep 21, 2010 READ MORE

Torture in Iraq Continues, Unabated

Combat operations in Iraq are over, if you believe President Barack Obama’s rhetoric. But torture in Iraq’s prisons, first exposed during the Abu Ghraib scandal, is thriving, increasingly distant from any scrutiny or accountability.

Posted on Sep 21, 2010 READ MORE

Gonna Party Like It’s 1994

A new Gallup poll shows that American attitudes about the Republicans and Democrats are similar to attitudes in 1994, when the Democrats lost Congress. More Americans, Gallup claims, say they share Republican values and a Republican view of government. Americans feel that neither party, however, really understands their problems.

Posted on Sep 21, 2010 READ MORE

Waiter, There’s Porn in My Slideshow

Why you should always do a test run before a presentation, what America’s war dead say about the class divide, and how air travel in coach could get a whole lot worse.

Posted on Sep 21, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Charles Dharapak

Obama and Iraq: ‘Through a Glass, Darkly’

The president and the American people will all too soon come to recognize that the quagmire in Iraq is far from over. In fact, one might say it has only just begun.

Posted on Sep 20, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Eyal Warshavsky

Wisdom of the Terrorist’s Son

Whether Gen. David Petraeus or the bearded villains wearing suicide belts, killers perpetuate new cycles of revenge and murder like bad karma. One son of a terrorist is breaking the cycle.

Posted on Sep 19, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Javier Galeano

The Forever Fidel Obsession

After three hours of conversation, it is clear that Fidel Castro has definitely retired and now spends his time underlining President Obama’s books and reflecting on decades of revolution. Anyone who thinks Cuba is going capitalist, however, should check more carefully with the facts.

Posted on Sep 19, 2010 READ MORE

Flickr / tina negus

Food Safety Bill Stalls

If you need yet another example of how Washington just doesn’t quite work, a bill that aims to curb food contamination has stalled despite having broad bipartisan support, plus backing from President Obama and industry and consumer groups, and the fact that the House passed its version of the legislation more than a year ago.

Posted on Sep 18, 2010 READ MORE

Synthetic Novelty Is Not Reality

Historian Daniel J. Boorstin famously predicted that real news and serious discourse would eventually be replaced by a “new kind of synthetic novelty” called “pseudo-events”—synthetic for their media-manufactured artificiality, pseudo for their lack of authenticity.

Posted on Sep 16, 2010 READ MORE

Flickr / Keith Allison (CC-BY-SA)

Will Big Tobacco’s Former Bagman Really Be the Next Speaker?

There is nothing fresh or surprising about Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, the would-be speaker, a figure so closely associated with corporate special interests that he looks, sounds and behaves exactly like a lobbyist.

Posted on Sep 16, 2010 READ MORE

Scary Primary Results

Partisan Democrats are delighted about Christine O’Donnell’s Republican primary victory over Rep. Mike Castle in the race for the open Delaware Senate seat. I’m despondent.

Posted on Sep 15, 2010 READ MORE

A Myth About Job Creation

It is taken as gospel among politicians of both parties that small business is the engine of job creation. Obama, McCain, Bush, Kerry, Clinton and Reagan have made that claim. Only one problem: The assertions are overblown and simplistic.

Posted on Sep 14, 2010 READ MORE

‘A’ Is for Afghanistan

Today on the list: Afghanistan on life support, obsessing over punctuation, and how the Supreme Court (kind of) legalized bribery.

Posted on Sep 14, 2010 READ MORE

© 2010 Reese Erlich

The Carbon Racket

Proponents say cap and trade will save the world, but an innovative green project in Nepal exposes the carbon market’s flaws.

Posted on Sep 14, 2010 READ MORE

Flickr / Les Haines (CC-BY)

Cuba to Fire 500,000 Workers

Most Cubans rely on their government for just about everything, including a job, but President Raul Castro intends to change that. Cuban officials announced Monday that roughly 10 percent of the state-employed work force is getting a pink slip.

Posted on Sep 13, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Elise Amendola

Do Not Pity the Democrats

Do not fear Glenn Beck or Sarah Palin. Fear the underlying corporate power structure, which no one, from Barack Obama to the right-wing nut cases who pollute the airwaves, can alter.

Posted on Sep 12, 2010 READ MORE

AP / Pat Sullivan

One Day, You’ll Have a Chip in Your Rear

Should your car help authorities track you? Should it be a traveling billboard? … Amid emerging technology, the role of the license plate is in flux and causing controversy.

Posted on Sep 12, 2010 READ MORE

A Chance for Supreme Court Damage Control

With Congress coming back this week, there’s a chance to limit the damage the Supreme Court has caused our democracy.

Posted on Sep 12, 2010 READ MORE

Flickr / Jim Champion (CC-BY-SA)

Democrats Afraid of the D-Word

Judging by their television commercials, the Democrats aren’t too thrilled with their legislative accomplishments. A New York Times analysis of ads finds that Republican candidates bring up health care, for instance, more often than the opposition and some Democrats don’t even identify themselves by party.

Posted on Sep 12, 2010 READ MORE

A ‘Framework’ Seriously Bent

Just how corrupt is the U.S.-backed government in Afghanistan? It should be clear by now that President Hamid Karzai doesn’t want us to know.

Posted on Sep 9, 2010 READ MORE


Court Dismisses Torture Flights Case

Five men who say they were kidnapped and tortured would like to sue a Boeing subsidiary for flying them to their agony, but the Obama administration successfully convinced an appeals court Wednesday to throw out the case. One judge said the court “reluctantly” bought the national security argument.

Posted on Sep 8, 2010 READ MORE

American Science & Engineering

Airport X-Ray Scanners Hit the Road

While debate continues in the United States over whole-body imagers, manufacturers of the technology are opening deeper opportunities for themselves elsewhere that could make the controversial machines an even bigger part of everyday life.

Posted on Sep 8, 2010 READ MORE

A French Leftist Ritual Takes On Sarkozy

This week has seen the annual ritual by which the left in France marks summer’s end and the resumption of politics as usual. This ritual is a general strike called by the left, whenever a rightist government is in power.

Posted on Sep 8, 2010 READ MORE

White House / Pete Souza

It’s Not Over Till It’s Over

President Obama decided this week to raise the stakes in this fall’s election by making the choice about something instead of nothing but anger.

Posted on Sep 8, 2010 READ MORE

Sept. 11: A Day Without War

The ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States should serve as a moment to reflect on tolerance. It should be a day of peace.

Posted on Sep 7, 2010 READ MORE

Florida Church Determined to Burn Qurans Despite Warnings

An extremist Florida church says it will go ahead with plans to mark the ninth anniversary of 9/11 by setting copies of the Quran on fire, even though authorities have warned that such actions would endanger Americans fighting, serving and traveling abroad. (continued)

Posted on Sep 7, 2010 READ MORE

Bollywood Jesus

Today on the list: How human beings could have made the universe, the movement to move Tony Blair’s memoirs to the crime section, the Social Security con and the Bollywood movie ... about Jesus.

Posted on Sep 7, 2010 READ MORE

Haley Barbour’s Ridiculous Story

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who may seek the Republican nomination for president, is trying to sell the biggest load of revisionist nonsense about race, politics and the South that I’ve ever heard. Ever.

Posted on Sep 6, 2010 READ MORE

Courtesy of the Arredondo family.

‘They Kill Alex’

Crazed and distraught with grief, the father went into his garage and took out five gallons of gasoline and a propane torch. He walked past the three Marines in their dress blues and began to smash the windows of the government van with a hammer.

Posted on Sep 5, 2010 READ MORE


The Earth Loses a Force of Nature

T.L. Caswell, a Truthdig journalist who worked at the L.A. Times with cartoonist Paul Conrad (above), the three-time Pulitzer winner who died Saturday, remembers a man who always arrived in a blast of smoke and sound.

Posted on Sep 5, 2010 READ MORE

Missing ‘Big Labor’

Remembering the labor movement’s heroic battles is bittersweet on a Labor Day when so many Americans are unemployed, when wages are stagnant or dropping, and when the labor movement itself is in stark decline.

Posted on Sep 5, 2010 READ MORE

Abe Lincoln’s Bromance

Today on the list: the sound and fury of Sarah Palin, Abraham Lincoln’s gay tendencies and Jan Brewer’s WTF debate.

Posted on Sep 3, 2010 READ MORE

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