Alfred McCoy: It’s About Blackmail, Not National Security

By: Monday January 20, 2014 6:30 pm

Spying has a history almost as ancient as humanity itself, but every now and then the rules of the game change. This post-9/11 moment of surveillance is one of those game-changers and the National Security Agency (NSA) has been the deal-breaker and rule-maker. The new rules it brought into existence are simple enough: you — whoever you are and wherever you live on Planet Earth — are a potential target. Get used to it. The most basic ground rule of the new system: no one is exempt from surveillance.

 

A Ripley’s Believe It or Not National Security State

By: Monday January 6, 2014 4:19 pm

In a 1950s civics textbook of mine, I can remember a Martian landing on Main Street, U.S.A., to be instructed in the glories of our political system. You know, our tripartite government, checks and balances, miraculous set of rights, and vibrant democracy. There was, Americans then thought, much to be proud of, and so for that generation of children, many Martians were instructed in the American way of life. These days, I suspect, not so many.

Ann Jones: War Wounds

By: Sunday November 17, 2013 7:05 pm

In 2010, I began to follow U.S. soldiers down a long trail of waste and sorrow that led from the battle spaces of Afghanistan to the emergency room of the trauma hospital at Bagram Air Base, where their catastrophic wounds were surgically treated and their condition stabilized. Then I accompanied some of them by cargo plane to Ramstein Air Base in Germany for more surgeries at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, or LRMC (pronounced Larm-See), the largest American hospital outside the United States.

I Didn’t Mean To Write About Trayvon Martin

By: Friday July 12, 2013 9:15 am

America, it hurts my feelings
Each time it’s implied
That we can look the other way
Each time a black boy dies

A Little Speechwriting Help for the State of the Union

By: Saturday January 22, 2011 9:00 am

Next week is the State of the Union address, and I thought I’d offer a little last minute, unsolicited advice to the president and the White House speechwriters. Some may think it presumptuous, but as one of “we, the people,” I think it’s allowable. It’s not like they have to take the advice, after all . . . but it sure would be nice to see and hear something like this.

Today in failed Metaphors

By: Friday August 6, 2010 1:30 am

Hooray, another pointless thing to fear and spend trillions on!

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