Political Articles from 2018
Guess Who’s Making Sure Many Huge Corporations Stay Profitable?
By Jim Hightower
Posted February 25, 2018
The hustlers claim that job incentives are a sound investment of our tax dollars, because those new jobs create new taxpayers, meaning investments soon pay for themselves. Hmmm … not quite. In fact, not even close.
Last year, Good Jobs First tracked the 386 incentive deals since 1976 that gave at least $50 million to a corporation, and then it tallied the number of jobs created. The average cost per job was $658,427. Each! That’s likely far more than cities and states can recover through sales, property, income and all other taxes those jobholders would pay in their lifetimes. Worse, the rise of megadeals in the past 10 years has made the job-incentive argument mega-ridiculous: New York gave a $258-million subsidy to Yahoo and got 125 jobs — costing taxpayers $2 million per job. More…
Gerrymandering: Two Bullies vs. The Voters
by Harry Kresky
Posted February 22, 2018
It’s all about which party comes out on top. What about what’s best for the voters, what’s best for our democracy? What about an approach to redistricting that takes it from the parties and gives it to a nonpartisan commission?
California has such a system, and an effort is underway in Michigan to achieve such a reform through a ballot initiative.
Forty percent of Americans self-identify as independents. Aren’t we entitled to be treated fairly as well? At present, the system (including the drawing of districts) is so rigged that hardly any independents are elected to state legislatures or to the U.S. House of Representatives. Indeed, in many states, independents are barred from participating in primary elections altogether. More…
Ohio Gov. Candidate Dennis Kucinich Calls Out The Deep State, MSM Can’t Handle It
by Brandon Turbeville
Posted February 20, 2018
Dennis Kucinich, who recently launched his campaign for Governor of Ohio, has never been afraid to go against the grain and speak out with an unpopular opinion and an unpopular time. This was the case when he was mayor of Cleveland and throughout his tenure as a Congressman. It was also the case when, after the election of Donald Trump, Kucinich spoke out against an obvious attempt by the Deep State to control and steer the new Trump administration in a direction of their own using internal leaks, scandals, and other forms of pressure against the President.
Unfortunately for Kucinich, in Democratic party circles as well as in the mainstream media, it’s become a law that, before you can speak a word, you must first condemn Donald Trump. Anything short of disagreement on every aspect of Trump’s administration and raving attacks on his every move is considered treason. More…
Extending Domestic Surveillance: Tricks, Lies and Spies
By Diane Roark
Posted February 20, 2018
Using Section 702 authority and operating without warrants, the National Security Agency (NSA) has since at least 2008 scanned fiber optic lines entering the United States, copying, storing and searching them using a list of targets and other key words. Stored “hits” from these electronic transmissions may contain mere passing mention of such items. No warrants are obtained to scan and collect these electronic communications to or from US persons. Nor do analysts from NSA, FBI and elsewhere get a warrant to pull US persons’ messages from the databases and search them for any reason, even criminal investigations, not just counterterrorism. During House debate, supporters of Section 702 advocated excepting 702 operations from Fourth Amendment requirements.
Declassified opinions from the FISA Court (FISC) document longstanding and serious NSA violation of FISC’s guidelines, plus the Court’s inability to trust the Agency’s word. The Court found no way to enforce even the very lenient conditions it imposed. In 2008, then-Speaker Pelosi had ridiculed any suggestion that Section 702 would enable warrantless surveillance. But if any law should be rejected because of widespread abuses, this is it. More…
The Persecution of Julian Assange
by Paul Craig Roberts
Posted February 16, 2018
Assange got into trouble with Washington, because his news organization, Wikileaks, published files released by Bradley Manning. The files were a tremendous embarrassment to Washington, because they showed how Washington conspires against governments and betrays its allies, and the files contained an audio/video film of US military forces murdering innocent people walking down a street and then murdering a father and his two young children who stopped to give aid to the civilians the American soldiers had shot. The film revealed the heartlessness and criminal cruelty of the US troops, who were enjoying playing a real live video game with real people as their victims.
The British are so desperate to serve their Washington master that once they even declared that they were going to violate diplomatic immunity and invade the Ecuadorian Embassy and seize Assange.
The British excuse for a once proud government’s continuing servitude to Washington as Assange’s jailer is that by taking asylum in the embassy Assange jumped bail and therefore the British have to arrest him for not surrendering a second time to the police for an investigation that has been closed. More…
I’m Ahed Tamimi’s cousin. Israel needs to stop imprisoning kids like her.
By Nour Tamimi
Posted February 15, 2018
I had barely fallen asleep when I woke to find an armed Israeli soldier hovering over my bed. He told me to get up quickly and put on a jacket. Half asleep, I was handcuffed, thrown into an army jeep, and taken to be interrogated. They had already taken my 16-year-old cousin, Ahed, the night before, and now it was my turn.
A few days earlier, the Israeli army raided our town of Nabi Saleh in the occupied West Bank to suppress our weekly demonstration against the illegal Jewish settlement built on our land and the theft of our fresh-water spring by settlers. During the demonstration, a soldier shot our 15-year-old cousin Mohammad in the face from close range, shattering his skull. He was rushed to the hospital and had to be medically induced into a coma. About half an hour later, still traumatized by what happened to our cousin, we found soldiers in the front yard of Ahed’s home where we were sitting and tried to get them to leave. For demanding they leave, my unarmed cousin is now facing charges for confronting an armed soldier.
When a video of the encounter was shown in Israel, it went viral. More…
Global Networks Are Necessary to Overcome Abusive Governments and Oligarchy
by Michael Krieger
Posted February 14, 2018
The world around us is changing at an incredible pace, and with such change come many pitfalls as well as immeasurable opportunities. At the same time, the more things change the more some things stay the same. For example, the most important issue humans will have to confront in the years ahead is the age old issue of concentrated power.
One of the most destructive side effects of the financial crisis and the corrupt official response to it, has been an even greater concentration of wealth and power in the hands of some of the most unsavory characters planet earth has to offer. If we are to evolve and create a better paradigm, we’ll need to address this forcefully and thoughtfully. More…
Congress Keeps Funding a War Machine That the Public Should Divest From
By Medea Benjamin and Elliot Swain
Posted February 12, 2018
In recent budget negotiations, Senate Democrats agreed to a boost in military spending that exceeded the cap for fiscal 2018 by $70 billion, bringing the total request to an enormous $716 billion. Inevitably, this means more Pentagon contracts will be awarded to private corporations that use endless war to line their pockets. Democrats capitulated to this massive increase without so much as a scuffle. But the move hardly comes as a surprise, given how much money flows from weapons makers to the coffers of congressional campaigns for both parties.
While the majority of the weapons money goes to Republicans, Democratic Senators Tim Kaine and Bill Nelson appear in the top ten recipients of campaign contributions — in both chambers and parties — from military contractors in 2017 and 2018. Northrop Grumman gave $785,000 to Democratic candidates since 2017. Hillary Clinton took over $1 million from the industry in 2016. Even progressive darlings like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders take money from weapons manufacturers, and Sanders supported Boeing’s disastrous F-35 because his home state had a financial stake in the program. More…
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