USA: domestic politics
To the outside world, the United States pretends to be a model of democracy. But that is not the case. Fiercely opposed to the notion of "popular sovereignty", the Founding Fathers contrived an ingenious system whereby the people are regularly consulted only to legitimize institutions that deposit power with the oligarchy. Domestically, this system thrives thanks to a series of legal barriers that preclude the emergence of other alternatives and, if need be, through fraud including the use of unverifiable electronic voting machines. Externally, propaganda has served to obscure the incongruity of the institutions. The latter, for instance, prescribe that the president should be elected by a college appointed by State Governors (and not by national popular count, as illustrated by the Supreme Court in 2000 when it overruled the Florida people vote). Nor are we dealing with a republican system of government since it discards the concept of "general interest" as being totalitarian, favouring instead the preponderance of the lobby coalition. A philosophy that has led to the institutionalization of pressure groups, going so far as to legalize and systematize corruption practices in Congress.
Outside the limits of the twin Democratic and Republican parties, a protest movement has been brewing for some time. It picked up considerable momentum during the two presidencies of George W. Bush, whose swaggering style brought to the fore the police control over the population and the rising social injustices. While such opposition had formerly been labeled as "un-american", it acquired legitimacy by highlighting the violations of U.S. ideals at the hands of the U.S. Government itself, ranging from its colonial adventures to its torture policies. As a result of President Obama’s charm offensive, internal opposition was again relegated to the sidelines, despite not having obtained a response to any of their major challenges. In the midst of the economic crisis, deep social fissures dating back to the Secession War have started to reappear. They take the form of a tax revolt, a populist anti-Wall Street movement, or emerge under the guise of separatist tendencies and, last but not least, ethnic hostility. The potential of the United States to either reform or dislocate hinges on these contradictory movements and the balance of power they will generate.
This is probably the most well-rounded and complete article by James Petras on the configuration of Zionist power - at all levels of the US political system and society - that far outweighs its numerical strength. More than a lobby, the ZPC has acted over the past fifty years as an agent in the interest of a foreign military power. Its influence is deeply entrenched in many parts of the world, denoting a trend that Petras describes as the globalization of Zionist power.
Liz Cheney, former Vice-President Dick Cheney’s eldest daughter, has launched the Keep America Safe campaign. A first video has been broadcast articulating a scathing critique of the gap between Barack Obama’s declarations on security issues and his acts, lambasting him for spending more time on television shows and on the golf course than on his job.
In addition to Liz Cheney, also heading Keep America Safe are neo-conservative journalist William Kristol (editor-in-chief of the Weekly (...)
The general assumption is that Anthony "Van" Jones came under fire for signing a "9/11 Truth" petition. However, Glen Ford, Executive Editor of the Black Agenda Report, thinks there is more to the story and offers an alternative interpretation. According to him, progressive elements like Jones who were appointed by Obama essentially as window dressing are becoming increasingly cumbersome in an atmosphere heavily conditioned by the neo-McCarthyites of the Republican Party whom Obama wishes to appease.
An institutional inquiry into militia growth in the United States points to mounting activities on the part of armed groups amidst economic and state problems.
A new report published by the non-profit US legal firm, Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), identifies the ailing economy and a ’moderate’ Democrat president of African descent as the root causes for the increasing dissent which has led to the mushrooming sprout of armed bands and hate crimes across the country.
Researchers within (...)
The National Guard
A bipartisan pair of governors is opposing a new Defense Department proposal to handle natural and terrorism-related disasters, contending that a murky chain of command could lead to more problems than solutions.
Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas (R), chairman of the National Governors Association, and Vice Chairman Gov. Joe Manchin (D) of West Virginia penned a letter opposing the Pentagon proposal, which they said would hinder a state’s effort to respond to a disaster. (...)
Following July’s record death tolls, a new CNN/Opinion Research Corp poll shows that US popular support for the war is also at an all-time low, with 54 percent of respondents opposed to the ongoing war and 41 percent in favor.
This was a monumental change from the May version of the same poll. which showed 50 percent in favor of the war and only 48 percent against. President Obama has made escalating the war the centerpiece of his foreign policy campaign.
The finding was largely in keeping (...)
By Mark Mazzetti and David Johnston
Top Bush administration officials in 2002 debated testing the Constitution by sending American troops into the suburbs of Buffalo to arrest a group of men suspected of plotting with Al Qaeda, according to former administration officials.
Some of the advisers to President George W. Bush, including Vice President Dick Cheney, argued that a president had the power to use the military on domestic soil to sweep up the terrorism suspects, who came to be known (...)
Paul David Wellstone; July 21, 1944 - October 25, 2002
This week, Senator Al Franken takes office after a vicious and wasteful court battle with former Senator Norm Coleman. Coleman’s election, over 6 years ago, was the result of the mysterious death of Senator Paul Wellstone, his wife, daughter and 4 others. Wellstone was Karl Rove’s number one political enemy.
This isn’t a "stand alone" death. In Ohio, recently, Mike Connell, slated to testify on rigging election machines at the bidding (...)
Speech delivered by BAR Executive Editor Glen Ford at African Liberation Day 2009 in Washington, DC on May 24, 2009, which highlights the paralysis of black and progressive leadership and the dead end in which progressive forces in the U.S. find themselves as a consequence of Barack Obama’s election.
Bush should not have been president in 2000 and he should not have been president in 2004.
The evidence of organized vote-counting fraud in both elections was overwhelming, but the news media [Editor’s comment: which today are up in arms over the alleged electoral fraud in Iran] and the Democratic party did nothing.
This is the story that the US news media weren’t interested in telling:
Clip from UNCOUNTED: The New Math of American Elections, a documentary by Emmy (...)
by David G. Savage
Reporting from Washington — The Supreme Court said Thursday that DNA possesses a unique ability to free the innocent and convict the guilty, but the justices nonetheless ruled that prisoners do not have a constitutional right to demand DNA testing of evidence that remains in police files.
In a 5-4 ruling, the court’s conservative bloc agreed to stand back and allow states to work out the rules for new testing of old crime samples.
Already, 47 states and the federal (...)
Dozens of US cities may have entire neighbourhoods bulldozed as part of drastic "shrink to survive" proposals being considered by the Obama administration to tackle economic decline
By Tom Leonard
The government looking at expanding a pioneering scheme in Flint, one of the poorest US cities, which involves razing entire districts and returning the land to nature.
Local politicians believe the city must contract by as much as 40 per cent, concentrating the dwindling population and local (...)
Adam Turl examines the lives of the 10 richest people in the U.S.—and uncovers a rogue’s gallery of serial polluters, budget-slashers, CIA contractors, union-busters and right-wing nuts, concluding that we live in a society of obscene inequality! Could this account for the alleged swing to the left by the majority of American people - according to a recent report?
The media still calls America a “center-right” nation, but “center-left” is closer to the truth. On issues ranging from health care to energy, the public is more progressive than people think. Demographic groups from youth to Hispanics are voting farther left and in larger numbers than ever before. The new report the Campaign for America’s Future is publishing with Media Matters for America— "America: A Center-Left Nation" —documents the trends and challenges the mainstream media to recognize reality. It remains to be seen to what extent they can rely on Barack Obama to fulfill their aspirations.
Steven Rattner, Barack Obama’s ’Car Czar’ - the man who pushed General Motors into bankruptcy - has a different plan for GM: grab the pension funds to pay off Morgan and Citibank. Cash in the insurance fund would be replaced by GM stock. There is only one problem: seizing workers’ pension fund money in a bankruptcy is illegal, as President Barack Obama should know.
As everybody was being distracted by the swine flu hysteria, the U.S. House of Representatives voted in favor of the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009. As soon as it is approved by the Senate, it will serve as a mechanism to undermine free speech making it a crime, inter alia, for any American to criticize Israel’s colonialist policies and brutal treatment of Palestinians.
By Stephen Millies
While immigrants and their supporters celebrated May Day elsewhere in the U.S., an all-white jury in Pottsville, Pa., approved the lynching of Luis Ramirez.
A gang of drunken white thugs shouting racist slurs attacked Ramirez in nearby Shenandoah last July 12. Foam ran from his mouth when Ramirez was found convulsing in the street.
The 25-year-old immigrant worker and father of three children was taken off life support two days later. His body was flown back to his (...)
Upside-down flag is normally used as a distress signal.
Oath Keepers - Men and Women in uniform who will NOT obey ILLEGAL ORDERS
SUMMARY LIST OF ORDERS WE WILL NOT OBEY: 1. We will NOT obey orders to disarm the American people.
2. We will NOT obey orders to conduct warrantless searches of the American people
3. We will NOT obey orders to detain American citizens as unlawful enemy combatants or to subject them to military tribunal.
4. We will NOT obey orders to impose martial law or a (...)
Last week’s decision by the Obama administration to drive Chrysler into bankruptcy was a deliberate political action aimed at ratcheting up the pressure on General Motors workers to accept even deeper job cuts and wage and benefit concessions. This fact has been acknowledged by administration officials, news commentators and the United Auto Workers president himself, in the days following the bankruptcy announcement by the third largest US automaker last Thursday.
By Brenda Ryan
Survivors of Hurricane Katrina are finally getting their day in court. In a trial currently under way in New Orleans, a group of residents is holding the Army Corps of Engineers responsible for the flooding that occurred in the wake of Katrina.
They say the Corps failed to properly build and maintain the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet, a channel opened in 1963 to provide a shorter route for ships between New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. As a result of these MR-GO (...)
Stormtroopers, Chemical Weapons and Military Police Patrolling US Streets
The main way that corporate media channels communicate with you is through the use of banners.
You need not pay as much attention to what the talking heads say, their words are secondary as they babble on to reinforce the central point splashed across the banner. If you ever wanted to know what a channel like FOX (or CNN or MSNBC - they’re all corrupt) wants you to think about a certain issue, well, its hidden in (...)
Karl Rove on the eve of 2004 presidential elections
Web guru was potential witness in Ohio 2004 voting fraud case
Shannon Connell of Madison says her brother Michael rarely talked about work. She knew he ran an Ohio company called New Media Communications that set up websites for Republicans including former President George H.W. Bush and Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. But it wasn’t until after he died last December, when the small plane he was piloting crashed, that she learned via the Internet (...)
Humboldt County, California voters passed measures F and J last November prohibiting military recruiters from initiating contact with minors. Now the Obama administration is demanding that the law be overturned. A court hearing is scheduled for June 9 in Oakland, California. The measures which passed by a large margin allow recruitment to occur if the minor initiates contact. Federal government lawyers claim "irreparable harm" if the laws stand.
The cities of Eureka and Arcata cite (...)
From Iraq to the streets of American cities, the deployment of private security forces - including Israeli commandos - to take the place of police officers has spiked significantly and is raising grave concerns. Few areas have seen as dramatic a transformation to privatized services as the world of intelligence and domestic law enforcement. This is an ominous, accelerating trend which thrives on US tax-payer money and prospers in a legal limbo devoid of clear regulatory criteria or accountability mechanisms, leaving the door open for serious abuses. In the words of former CIA division chief and senior analyst Melvin Goodman: "the entire industry is essentially out of control; it’s dangerous!".
By Anna M. Tinsley
Most days are like Christmas for Glen Furtardo.
When he opens boxes sent to the Winchester Gallery gun store in east Fort Worth, he finds out what ammunition he’ll have to stock his shelves with that day as demand for weapons and ammo soars.
Reports of heavy sales at gun stores began around the time of Barack Obama’s election as president, and months later, dealers are facing ammo shortages nationwide.
"People are panicking and buying," said Furtardo, assistant manager. (...)
Department of Veterans Affairs blamed for failing to help Iraq, Afghan veterans
On June 11, 2006, at 8:30 p.m., Randen Harvey, a 24-year-old Marine Corps veteran, walked into the emergency room of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Ann Arbor in such a state of despair he warned he "might jump off the roof or put a hose in his car exhaust."
Four hours later, around 1 a.m., he was found on the roof of the nine-story building. Hospital security had to be called to bring him down.
By Adrian Ramirez New America Media
As I marched down the streets of downtown San Jose with about 40 other pro-immigrant protesters, anxiety was building inside of me. About 1,000 protesters were gathered at Plaza de Cesar Chavez. The demonstration was one of more than 300 Tax Day “tea party” protests held across the country to demand an end to tax increases and bailouts.
I might have been a perfect candidate to demonstrate at the San Jose “tea party.” Like colonists more than 200 years ago, (...)
By David Walsh
A national telephone survey conducted in early April by Rasmussen Reports, the US polling company, discovered that only 53 percent of Americans believe capitalism to be superior to socialism. Twenty percent favor socialism and 27 percent are undecided.
Adults under 30, according to Rasmussen, were “essentially evenly divided: 37 percent prefer capitalism, 33 percent socialism, and 30 percent are undecided.”
These results lift the veil on a reality the US establishment (...)
Family and Children’s Services flooded with new Medicaid applications.
By Erik Eckholm
The New York Times
Battered by the recession and the deepest and most widespread budget deficits in several decades, a large majority of states are slicing into their social safety nets — often crippling preventive efforts that officials say would save money over time.
President Obama’s $787 billion stimulus package is helping to alleviate some of the pain, providing large amounts of money to pay for (...)
United States: The Hidden Power
The Chomsky/Blankfort Polemic
Death of General Alexander Haig, 59th US Secretary of State
The Testimony of a US ex-marine, who went to fight in Iraq
Privatization of brutality (Video)