FDL Book Salon Welcomes Paul Street, They Rule: The 1% vs. Democracy

By: Sunday November 2, 2014 1:59 pm

Since Barack Obama announced his intention to run for president in 2007, Paul Street has distinguished himself as one of candidate Obama and President Obama’s most consistent critics from the left. At a time when many liberals were starry-eyed about the possibilities for an Obama presidency, Street was documenting Obama’s commitment to a pro-business, neoliberal agenda.

Street’s writings on the Obama era are even more important now.

 

Marc Andreessen Calls Snowden Traitor, Doesn’t Want Democracy

By: Friday October 24, 2014 3:50 pm

Though Silicon Valley and the tech industry is generally known as being more liberal than other economic sectors it is worth noting that it too has its share of plutocrat reactionaries. Though venture capitalist Tom Perkins became the face of the faction with his comparison of Occupy Wall Street to Nazis, a more relevant example would be Mark Andreessen who not only stands out as opposing measures to rein in wealth equality but has trumpeted his support for domestic surveillance programs.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Says Poor Will Get Too Much Power If Protesters Win

By: Wednesday October 22, 2014 6:59 am

Points for honesty? Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying gave a rather blunt explanation for why the Occupy Central pro-democracy protesters could not succeed – it would give poor people in Hong Kong too much power. Chief Executive Leung disclosed his views in a press conference that included Western media.

Steve Fraser: The Return of the Titans

By: Thursday September 11, 2014 6:40 pm

George Baer was a railroad and coal mining magnate at the turn of the twentieth century. Amid a violent and protracted strike that shut down much of the country’s anthracite coal industry, Baer defied President Teddy Roosevelt’s appeal to arbitrate the issues at stake, saying, “The rights and interests of the laboring man will be protected and cared for… not by the labor agitators, but by the Christian men of property to whom God has given control of the property rights of the country.” To the Anthracite Coal Commission investigating the uproar, Baer insisted, “These men don’t suffer. Why hell, half of them don’t even speak English.”den

We might call that adopting the imperial position. Titans of industry and finance back then often assumed that they had the right to supersede the law and tutor the rest of America on how best to order its affairs. They liked to play God. It’s a habit that’s returned with a vengeance in our own time.

The Torture Report

By: Sunday August 24, 2014 8:45 am

The recent revelations came as no surprise. However, now there can be no doubt that the United States tortured people. What are the repercussions? The Senate Team spent five years researching and putting the CIA torture report together. Apparently, it is quite thorough. What now?

When Is a Rose Not a Rose?

By: Tuesday June 10, 2014 5:50 pm

You may be noticing the slightly confused expression on Obama’s face when he talks about the foreign affairs these days: he almost seems to be apologizing for contradictions that are obvious to even the most casual observers.

Democracy

By: Sunday December 29, 2013 1:00 pm

We have a lot more to overcome here then than just political stubbornness and corruption.

Here’s to a Less Prettied Up, Less Distracted, Less Disguised 2014

By: Thursday December 26, 2013 6:49 pm

I wonder if in the new year we could be less distracted by the manufactured b.s. — produced by the Democratic and Republican Parties — designed to make us hate the Reds or the Blues? Just a little less? Or if we can keep our eyes on the prize more steadily, the prize being changing the economy into one that makes full employment at good wages our number one ‘left wing radical’ priority.

Capitalism Takes on Democracy

By: Saturday November 16, 2013 10:30 am

Lambert’s post on Sunday about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) looks at the deal from an important perspective: Its effect on popular sovereignty. He links to Dean Baker’s short post and highlights this: “The main thrust of the negotiations is to impose a regulator[y] structure in a wide range of areas — health, safety, environmental — which will override national and sub-national rules.” International agreements have always had that character, of course. Treaties, conventions like the Geneva Conventions and Convention Against Torture and so on also (theoretically) supersede national and sub-national rules. They would be worthless otherwise.

The idea that trade agreements weaken national laws is also not new.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Jed Morey, The Great American Disconnect: Seven Fundamental Threats To Our Democracy

By: Sunday November 10, 2013 1:59 pm

The story of America, as told to us by the political establishment, is not unlike scripture that attempts to explain our circumstances in a manner that must be accepted as gospel. The truth is that America has been hijacked by powerful special corporate interests whose paths toward profit are lubricated by political accomplices complicit in a scheme that suppresses opportunity and freedom among the masses. Our state of denial has caused us to drift far from the nation we believe ourselves to be while holding tightly to an image of the nation we wish to be.

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