Wired.com details that not-very-surprising fact that those congressional representatives who received the largest political donations from defense contractors voted last week, 217 to 205, to oppose cuts to NSA’s phone-spying dragnet budget. Those who opposed the cuts, and thus the “Amash amendment” received 122% more defense contractor funds than those who voted against it, with one Democratic exception of Representative Dennis Moran of Virginia.
|By: Anti-Capitalist Meetup Sunday July 28, 2013 5:10 pm|
|By: cocktailhag Thursday July 18, 2013 8:00 pm|
Each week when I sit down to write a post, I wrack my brain to think of something positive, or at least relatively so, to write about, and each week events prevent this from happening. It’s hard not to feel typecast when even the most complimentary commenters nonetheless refer to one’s work as a “rant” or admit that I’ve made them more depressed, angry, hopeless, or whatever.
For that reason, I am happy to announce that for the first time in recent memory the week’s news, taken together, makes me feel uncharacteristically optimistic.
|By: RJ Eskow Saturday July 13, 2013 1:59 pm|
The word “corruption” does not appear in the title or subtitle of the latest book by John Nichols and Robert W. McChesney, which is called Dollarocracy: How the Money and Media Election Complex is Destroying America. But the word resonates on every page. American democracy has been profoundly corrupted by the – usually legal – infusion of billions of dollars into the political process, and this jeremiad against corruption comes at a critical historical moment.
|By: Tom Engelhardt Saturday July 13, 2013 12:50 pm|
I mean, come on. You knew it had to happen, didn’t you? In a 2010 Department of Homeland Security report, wrested from the bowels of the secrecy/surveillance state (thanks to a Freedom of Information Act request by the Electronic Frontier Foundation), the Customs and Border Protection agency suggests arming their small fleet of surveillance drones. The purpose: to “immobilize TOIs,” or targets of interest, along the U.S.-Mexican border.
|By: cocktailhag Thursday July 11, 2013 8:00 pm|
Hard to believe, but yet another corporate malefactor turns out to be a hollow shell, devoid of assets and accountability, and this time half of a town got obliterated because of it. With every emerging detail, the derailment and explosion of an unmanned (!) train in Lac Megantic, Quebec turns out to be the same old plot with new characters. A larger concern with assets to protect “spins off” its shoddiest and riskiest parts, and any attendant liabilities, and leaves it alone to flame out, usually not so literally, but still leaving everyone but the con artists at the top holding the conveniently empty bag just the same.
|By: Mike Stark Saturday July 6, 2013 1:59 pm|
A nonfiction legal thriller that traces the fourteen-year struggle of two lawyers to bring the most powerful coal baron in American history, Don Blankenship, to justice.
|By: cocktailhag Thursday June 27, 2013 8:00 pm|
Probably the most infuriating, if entirely predictable, outcome of the Supreme Court’s fusillade of 5-4′s this week was the MSM’s dewy-eyed credulity that accompanied it. Now, I’m not implying that say, Adam Liptak of the NYT is a clueless ninth grader, but his reporting would have been considerably more respectable if he were. Pretending to parse the hastily concocted legal reasoning du jour behind decisions that were already made twenty years ago by the Court’s right wing not only makes boring reading, but it insults the intelligence of anyone capable of tying one’s own shoes.
|By: DSWright Friday June 21, 2013 9:15 am|
Karl Marx may have been too optimistic about capitalism. Economist Michel Hudson has long claimed that Marx’s contention that ultimately industrial capitalism would triumph over finance capitalism was wrong. That, in fact, bankers have prevailed subjugating the productive forces of industry to the power of debt slavery and rentier capitalism. The real economy has been subsumed by the FIRE economy.
|By: cocktailhag Thursday June 13, 2013 8:00 pm|
Lying has certainly come a long way in the new century. Those of us us born in the 1900′s can still remember a time when being caught publicly lying could bring down a President (Nixon), or at the very least, get one impeached (Clinton). In those sepia-toned days, lying was a content-neutral affront; Barry Goldwater was just as justifiably incensed at being lied to by Nixon as Al Gore was at being lied to by Clinton, despite the rather gigantic difference between the significance of their respective lies.
But something odd happened when George W. Bush entered office.
|By: DSWright Thursday June 13, 2013 2:44 pm|
A U.S. State Department Inspector General’s memorandum details a slew of inappropriate behaviors by officials in the State Department, as well as efforts to cover up that wrongdoing. The memo was obtained by CBS News and lists claims of prostitution, sexual assault, and illegal drug use by State Department officials.