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AP photo / John Moore

Robert Fisk: ‘The Middle East Is Not a Complex Place’

The acclaimed journalist stopped by our offices this week, where he told Truthdig Editor Robert Scheer that the Middle East is a lot less puzzling than it’s made out to be: “It’s we who are there, not the other way round. ... It’s not our land. It’s not our religion. Our soldiers are in the Muslim world and they should not be there.” Updated with parts 3 and 4

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE


Sarah Palin Talks Foreign Policy With Katie Couric

With a performance like this one now on tape and on YouTube, it is understandable (though inexcusable) that the McCain campaign has been so determined to keep Sarah Palin away from the media.

Posted on Sep 26, 2008 READ MORE


Fundamentals

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Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE


How McCain’s Grandstanding Sidelined the Bailout Deal

John McCain’s sudden intervention in Washington’s deliberations over the Wall Street bailout could not have been more out of sync with what was actually happening.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE


McCain Has a Meltdown of His Own

John McCain is rapidly making his temperament an inescapable issue in the presidential campaign. Does the nation really want so much drama in the White House?

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE


Back in the USSR

In the late 1990s, Washington was in the throes of a deregulatory orgy. Many lampooned Rep. Bernie Sanders’ opposition to the grotesquerie, and his notoriety as the only self-described socialist in Congress. Nobody guessed that in a few years our country would become the United States’ Socialist Republic.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE



Collage: commons.wikimedia.org / senate.gov

Bailout Plan Misses Out on Photo Op

“This meeting is an attempt to move the process forward,” President Bush declared Thursday, but it seems the White House gathering of congressional leaders and presidential candidates might have achieved the opposite effect. Lawmakers had agreed to a bailout outline earlier in the day, but the afternoon’s “political theater,” as Christopher Dodd put it, has raised doubts about the deal.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE


Campbell Brown

Campbell Brown: Free Sarah Palin

The CNN anchor has had enough of the McCain campaign “treating Sarah Palin like she is a delicate flower that will wilt at any moment.”

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Manuel Balce Ceneta

They Claim the Bailout Is Necessary, but Is It Constitutional?

Wall Street will not trouble its collective consciousness with worry over the Constitution. But this bailout bill is virtually unprecedented in its assumptions and its reach for unchecked power.

Posted on Sep 25, 2008 READ MORE


Whatever Happened to Personal Responsibility?

Why is a welfare mother to blame for her poverty while Wall Street fat cats can count on the federal government for $700 billion?

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


The Debate Camera’s Deep Vision

The candidates heading into Friday’s scheduled debate should heed the politician who first conquered the format, John F. Kennedy, who believed that the images portrayed via TV were “likely to be uncannily correct.”

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


Now McCain Wants to Cancel the VP Debate

Was this the plan all along? CNN reports that Team McCain wants the first presidential debate to “take the place of the VP debate, currently scheduled for next Thursday” if there’s no bailout deal by Friday.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


Easy

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Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


Bill Clinton on Obamamania and the Economy

The former president gets a little hot under the collar in giving Jon Stewart his take on the financial collapse (without any mention of the deregulatory zeal of his own administration). He also explains why he thinks Obama will win, and why it’s not about whether people love Barack Obama but whether people think Barack Obama loves them.

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE



cbsnews.com

Couric Grills Palin on McCain’s Economic Record

The “CBS Evening News” host brought a little heat to her sit-down with the Alaska governor: “I’m just going to ask you one more time, not to belabor the point. Specific examples in his 26 years of pushing for more regulation?” Update: Full video

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / soggydan

McCain Wants to Cancel First Debate

Citing the financial crisis, John McCain announced Wednesday that he’d like to skip Friday’s debate so he can put on his senator hat and get back to work in Washington. Unimpressed, Rep. Barney Frank called the idea “the longest Hail Mary pass in the history of either football or Marys.” Update

Posted on Sep 24, 2008 READ MORE


In Defense of Elitism

When it comes to politics, there is a mad love of mediocrity in this country. “They think they’re better than you!” is the refrain that (highly competent and cynical) Republican strategists have set loose among the crowd, and the crowd has grown drunk on it once again. “Sarah Palin is an ordinary person!” Yes, all too ordinary.

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE



Scan of the "Obsession" mailer obtained by Truthdig

Who Is Behind the ‘Radical Islam’ DVD?

The blogosphere is alive with the sound of buzz—all about an inflammatory DVD on radical Islam being distributed to millions of households at the peak of election season. Critics are calling the DVD, “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West,” anti-Muslim hate, or politicking, or both. The obvious question: Who is behind it?

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE


Ralph Nader

Nader Revives 8-Year-Old Talking Points

In his third consecutive presidential campaign, Ralph Nader still believes the similarities between the major-party candidates outweigh the differences, a sentiment captured in this Nader campaign Web ad.

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE



White House / Joyce N. Boghosian

Fed Chief: Pass a Bailout or Else

How’s this for not mincing words? “I believe if the credit markets are not functioning, that jobs will be lost, that our credit rate will rise, more houses will be foreclosed upon, GDP will contract, that the economy will just not be able to recover in a normal, healthy way.” So sayeth Ben Bernanke on Tuesday, in a dire warning to Congress.

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE



Collage: Flickr / transplanted mountaineer / buddhakiwi

Poll: Palin Helps Obama Pull Ahead in Colorado

Barack Obama is depending more and more on a Rocky Mountain victory and, according to a new poll, Sarah Palin may have just given him a boost there. It seems the Alaska governor’s growing unpopularity among independent voters has helped Obama to a seven-point lead in the Centennial State.

Posted on Sep 23, 2008 READ MORE



composite: latimes.com and Flickr / Robert Scoble

McCain Campaign Guru: N.Y. Times Isn’t ‘a Journalistic Organization’

Steve Schmidt is widely credited with re-energizing the McCain campaign with his tough and often deceptive style, but his latest is a bit much, even for a Karl Rove protégé. During a conference call with reporters, Schmidt accused The New York Times of being “a pro-Obama advocacy organization that every day impugns the McCain campaign.”

Posted on Sep 22, 2008 READ MORE


Getting the Bailout Right

Unless something very strange happens, Congress will pass a massive bailout of the financial system by the end of this week simply because every other option is worse. But the content of the bailout package matters enormously.

Posted on Sep 22, 2008 READ MORE


Socialism for Dummies

So this is how the “ownership society” works. We own all the bad stuff.

Posted on Sep 22, 2008 READ MORE


Follow the Money: New Group Runs Ads Promoting Drilling

A new advocacy organization with strong ties to the oil industry is funding pro-drilling radio ads, including one criticizing the energy votes of Rep. Mark Udall, a Colorado Democrat running for the U.S. Senate.

Posted on Sep 22, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / buddhakiwi

Waiting for Sarah

Andrew Sullivan is miffed that John McCain’s No. 2 is still snubbing the media (and, by extension, the public): “It is now 24 days since she was announced as a potential president of the United States next January and she still hasn’t given a news conference or has any plans to hold one. This black-out of all serious press access has never happened in modern American political history before.”

Posted on Sep 22, 2008 READ MORE



AP photo / Susan Walsh

Fleecing What’s Left of the Treasury

The lobbyists and corporate lawyers, the heads of financial firms and the crooks who control Wall Street, all those who spent the last three decades assuring us that government was part of the problem and should get out of the way, are now busy looting the U.S. treasury.

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE


Gratuitous Hegemony

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Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE    



Flickr / jurvetson

Pelosi Balks at Bailout Scheme

Nancy Pelosi isn’t buying into the idea of a $700 billion gift basket for Wall Street without any strings attached. The House speaker is all for a bailout, so long as it’s clear that “the party is over for the Bush administration’s anything goes, failed economic policies.” Update 2

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / scriptingnews

Sam Harris on Sarah Palin and ‘Mediocrity’

The trailblazing atheist and Truthdig contributor takes on Sarah Barracuda in the new Newsweek: “When it comes to politics, there is a mad love of mediocrity in this country. ‘They think they’re better than you!’ is the refrain that (highly competent and cynical) Republican strategists have set loose among the crowd, and the crowd has grown drunk on it once again.”

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE


A Moment for Sarah, Then Back to John

I’m sorry to be the one to have to say this, Gov. Palin, but you are so earlier-this-month. It’s your partner, John McCain, who’s back in the news. And not in what you call your good way.

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE


Palin’s Secret to Instant Knowledge

GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin said today that she was “delighted” with her performance in a much-publicized ABC News interview with Charlie Gibson and gave credit to her “trusty Magic 8-Ball” for helping her come up with answers to “some darn tricky questions,” according to this satirical report.

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE


Cadillac
Flickr / gmeurope

The McCains Have 12 More Cars Than the Obamas

Forget houses, John and Cindy McCain have 13 cars to Barack and Michelle Obama’s one. McCain would point out that most of the vehicles are in his wife’s name, but still, you can’t call the other guy an elitist when you sleep with one.

Posted on Sep 21, 2008 READ MORE


He Put It On eBay

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Posted on Sep 19, 2008 READ MORE


De-Elitification

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Posted on Sep 19, 2008 READ MORE



thepage.time.com

Palin Backs Off War With Russia

Some flip-flops are more welcome than others. During Sarah Palin’s interview with Sean Hannity, which “The Daily Show” likened to an infomercial, the VP candidate said war with Russia would be “off the table.” That’s a different tune than the one she hummed for ABC’s Charlie Gibson.

Posted on Sep 19, 2008 READ MORE


This Is the Man Who’s Going to Fix the Economy?

John McCain was telling the truth when he said that economics wasn’t his strong suit. In response to what many economists have called the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, the Republican nominee has sounded—and let’s be honest here—totally, embarrassingly and dangerously clueless.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE


The Battle for Michigan

If he carries Michigan, many routes to victory are open for Barack Obama. Without Michigan, he’s got a big problem.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE



commons.wikimedia.org / Ramy Majouji

Robert Scheer on the Economic Meltdown

Truthdig’s editor in chief warns against thinking about the economic crisis as an “act of God,” saying “this is man-made” and that the individuals responsible are well known and entirely too influential in the current election.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / buddhakiwi

Palin’s Crowd Doesn’t Have Time for McCain

Radio Iowa has a great play-by-play of a McCain-Palin rally in Cedar Rapids. With the “Top Gun” soundtrack heralding the arrival of the ticket (seriously), the crowd was pumped—for Sarah Palin. A casual poll before the rally suggested that Palin was the event’s star, and that sentiment was backed up when the audience started filing out five minutes into McCain’s speech.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE



commons.wikimedia.org / Manfred Brückels

Reality Catches Up to the Free Market

Karl Marx, were he still about, would surely be interested in the report that unregulated free-market capitalism has died in a flash, by its own hand; whereas it took 70 years and a Cold War to bring down the Marxist economy established in the Soviet Union following the Bolshevik Revolution.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE


Bush
White House photo / Paul Morse

Software Scans for Spin in Speeches

Humans may be susceptible to methods of persuasion that play on the emotions and circumvent logic, but computers are another story. Enter a software program that purports to detect “spin” in politicians’ speeches by using a complex (albeit man-made) algorithm to hunt for truth-stretching words and phrases.

Posted on Sep 18, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / World Economic Forum

Israel (Almost) Has a Woman Prime Minister

Though it wasn’t immediately official, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni won control of the country’s ruling Kadima party and, if she is successful in forming a governing coalition, will be the first woman prime minister in more than three decades. Livni is currently Israel’s lead negotiator with the Palestinians and, according to the newspaper Haaretz, was seen as likelier to reach a deal than her party rivals. Update

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


Mugabe, Tsvangirai

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Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


The ‘Reform’ McCain Wants to Forget

With the markets in frightening turmoil and the public outraged by financial irresponsibility and excessive greed, John McCain has suddenly rediscovered the importance of strong, watchful government.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


Sisterhood of the Flummoxed Female Voters

Three weeks after the nomination of the Candidate From Nowhere, one week after the robo-interview with Charlie Gibson and days after the “Saturday Night Live” skit, there is still a flood tide of women choking on the possibility that Hillary Clinton paved the way for Sarah Palin.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE



gawker.com

Palin’s Hacked E-Mail Gets a ‘G’ Rating

Anonymous, an Internet-based group best known for pranking and protesting the Church of Scientology, apparently hacked Sarah Palin’s Yahoo Mail account and posted images of her inbox and correspondence on the Web. The McCain campaign condemned the “shocking invasion,” which turned up nothing of substantial juiciness.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE



Flickr / World Economic Forum

Clinton Narrowly Dodges Joint Appearance With Palin

Hillary Clinton apparently would rather not deal with Sarah Palin, but she was nearly ambushed by the Alaska governor at a New York rally. Organizers didn’t tell Clinton they’d invited another special guest, and the New York senator backed out when she heard the news. True to form, Palin and friends responded with ready-made indignation.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE


Dick Cheney
White House / David Bohrer

Book: Cheney Deceived GOP Leader on Iraq

How far was Dick Cheney (above) willing to go to get his war in Iraq? Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, quoted in Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman’s new book, says the vice president hoodwinked him during a one-on-one meeting in the Capitol.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008 READ MORE



commons.wikimedia.org

Chin Up, John McCain—There’s Always Tomorrow

John McCain’s Tuesday was so filled with gaffes and bad news that no one seemed to notice when one of his top advisers held a BlackBerry aloft and declared “you’re looking at the miracle that John McCain helped create.” That spectacle simply couldn’t compete with former HP CEO Carly Fiorina and, more significantly, the very public failure of deregulation.

Posted on Sep 16, 2008 READ MORE


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