Sanity Scores a Modest Victory on Military Budget Vote

August 4, 2012
Sanity Scores a Modest Victory on Military Budget Vote

REBECCA GRIFFIN - Last week, the House of Representatives took a small but important step toward reining in Pentagon spending. Thank you to all of you who responded to our call to tell your representative to support amendments to cut the military budget and end the war in Afghanistan.

Unlike Mitt Romney, Most Americans Want to Cut U.S. Military Spending

August 2, 2012
Unlike Mitt Romney, Most Americans Want to Cut U.S. Military Spending

LAWRENCE WITTNER - On some issues, there is a serious disconnect between candidates for public office and the public they are hoping to represent. Take the case of Mitt Romney and military spending.

The Shredding of Our Fundamental Rights and the Common Good

July 31, 2012
The Shredding of Our Fundamental Rights and the Common Good

NOAM CHOMSKY - Recent events trace a threatening trajectory, sufficiently so that it may be worthwhile to look ahead a few generations to the millennium anniversary of one of the great events in the establishment of civil and human rights: the issuance of Magna Carta, the charter of English liberties imposed on King John...

On Facts, Lies and Sarah Palin

July 29, 2012
On Facts, Lies and Sarah Palin

LEONARD PITTS, JR. - The death panels are back. Sarah Palin's vision of a dystopian society in which the elderly and infirm would be required to justify their continued existence before a jury of federal functionaries has been widely ridiculed since she first posted it on Facebook three years ago. It was designated "Lie...

‘Black Hole’ Hides Trillions in Ill-Gotten Gains

July 27, 2012
‘Black Hole’ Hides Trillions in Ill-Gotten Gains

F. BRINLEY BRUTON - Thanks to lax international tax rules the world’s super rich have siphoned at least $21 trillion -- more than 50 percent larger than the entire U.S. economy -- into secretive tax-free havens, according to a study by UK campaign group Tax Justice Network. According to the study, the world’s top...

U.S. Government Receives “Warmonger of the Year” Award

July 25, 2012
U.S. Government Receives “Warmonger of the Year” Award

PORTLAND PEACE AND JUSTICE WORKS - On Saturday, July 22, in a hotly contested race, the United States Government was named "Warmonger of the Year" by a group of Portlanders, winning 30% of the 311 votes cast. The contest was held at the 20th anniversary event of local group Peace and Justice Works (PJW),...

The Lessons Washington Can’t Draw from the Failure of the Military Option

July 23, 2012
The Lessons Washington Can’t Draw from the Failure of the Military Option

TOM ENGELHARDT - Americans may feel more distant from war than at any time since World War II began. Certainly, a smaller percentage of us — less than 1% — serves in the military in this all-volunteer era of ours and, on the face of it, Washington’s constant warring in distant lands seems...

U.S. Ranked 88th or 16th in Peace Indices

July 21, 2012
U.S. Ranked 88th or 16th in Peace Indices

SATO MATSUI and PAMMIE SHAPIRO - Recently, the Institute of Economics and Peace (IEP) released the annual 2012 Global Peace Index (GPI), and also the inaugural report on the Positive Peace Index (PPI), which aims to incite optimism in the analysis of global peace measurements.

Digging for China: Coal is Northwest’s Next Big Climate Struggle

July 19, 2012
Digging for China: Coal is Northwest’s Next Big Climate Struggle

JASON MARK - It’s no surprise that many Bellingham residents are against plans to make the area home to one of the country’s largest coal-export terminals. Peabody Energy, the world’s biggest non-state-owned coal-mining company, is working with developers to convert the Cherry Point piers — located just north of town on the U.S.-Canada border...

Want to Eliminate Terrorism? Offer Nonviolent Leadership

July 17, 2012
Want to Eliminate Terrorism? Offer Nonviolent Leadership

TOM H. HASTINGS - When I teach about the possibilities of a nonviolent response to terrorism, I try to cover many aspects of this complex topic. One of the main strands is the idea that the objectives of al Qa'ida, as stated by Osama bin Laden on several occasions in the 1990s, were not...

Lockheed’s You-May-Be-Fired Notices Called Scare Tactic

July 15, 2012
Lockheed’s You-May-Be-Fired Notices Called Scare Tactic

LAURA LITVAN - Companies led by Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT), the world’s largest defense contractor, say federal and state laws may require them to send out blanket notifications of potential job cuts before the election unless President Barack Obama and Congress act by October to avert automatic defense reductions of $500 billion over a...

Should the Military Use Our Money to Sponsor NASCAR Teams?

July 13, 2012
Should the Military Use Our Money to Sponsor NASCAR Teams?

DAVID SWANSON - Most people are going to agree that the ideal recruit is not a drooling idiot who announces, "I want to join up because the military sponsors NASCAR drivers."

Forecast is Hot: We’re Already Topping Dust Bowl Temperatures

July 11, 2012
Forecast is Hot: We’re Already Topping Dust Bowl Temperatures

JOE ROMM - This heat wave has broken thousands of temperature records. Climate Central reported Satuday, “In many cases, records that had stood since the Dust Bowl era of the 1930s have been equaled or exceeded, and this event is likely to go down in history as one of America’s worst.”

Shaky Assumptions About Military Spending

July 9, 2012
Shaky Assumptions About Military Spending

BETSY CRITES - Fear can be a great motivator – and a great manipulator. Those who oppose cuts to military funding play on our fears to convince us that any reduction in the defense budget would be a dangerous threat to our national security and to our economy. But is this level of panic...

Syria: Only Diplomacy Can Stop the War

July 7, 2012
Syria: Only Diplomacy Can Stop the War

PHYLLIS BENNIS - Syria is close to full-scale civil war. If the conflict escalates further, as former UN Secretary-General and current envoy of both the UN and the Arab League Kofi Annan noted: "Syria is not Libya, it will not implode, it will explode beyond its borders."

Groups Propose Clean Energy Agenda for U.S.

July 5, 2012
Groups Propose Clean Energy Agenda for U.S.

MICHAEL MARIOTTE - Fed up with the undue influence of the energy companies, utilities, lobbyists and other interests that are making it impossible for Washington to move forward decisively in achieving America’s clean energy future, Nuclear Information and Resource Service and 35 other citizen organizations with more than 1.1 million combined members are joining...

Activist Film: “American Autumn: An Occudoc”

July 3, 2012
Activist Film: “American Autumn: An Occudoc”

DAVID SWANSON - Dennis Trainor, Jr., has produced a full-length movie of the Occupy movement, and he's done a hell of a great job. The Occupy movement was created, as are all movements in the United States, in large part by the corporate media...

Philadelphia City Council Adopts Resolution to Redirect Military Spending

July 1, 2012
Philadelphia City Council Adopts Resolution to Redirect Military Spending

JANE DUGDALE - Philadelphia City Council, by a vote of 15-2, passed - on June 21 - a resolution "calling on the U.S. Congress to bring all U.S. troops home from Afghanistan, to take the funds saved by that action and by significantly cutting the Pentagon budget, and to use that money to fund...

Drones Over America – Are They Spying on You?

June 29, 2012
Drones Over America – Are They Spying on You?

BRAD KNICKERBOCKER - Thousands of drones could be routinely flying over the United States within the next 10 years. They can help with law enforcement and border control, but they also raise questions about invasion of privacy.

Book Review: Hail Holy Light

June 27, 2012
Book Review: Hail Holy Light

CRAIG CLINE - The title of the book is true to the author’s intent: to explore both the historical and the psychological-social-spiritual events that took place in the 1960s. He makes this exploration personal; a memoir of his own journey and “healing” -- from his old self to his new one.

U.S. Sets Another Record on Defense Sales

June 25, 2012
U.S. Sets Another Record on Defense Sales

CAREY L. BIIRON - The United States is set to far surpass previous records for defense sales this year, according to U.S. officials. "Despite the global economic strain, demand for U.S. defense products and services is stronger than ever," Andrew J. Shapiro, an assistant secretary in the U.S. State Department, said last week.

U.S. Conference of Mayors Adopts Strong New Mayors for Peace Resolution

June 23, 2012
U.S. Conference of Mayors Adopts Strong New Mayors for Peace Resolution

JACKIE CABASSO - At the close of its 80th annual meeting in Orlando Florida, on June 16, 2012, the U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) unanimously adopted a strong, comprehensive, new Mayors for Peace resolution: "Calling for U.S. Leadership in Global Elimination of Nuclear Weapons and Redirection of Nuclear Weapons Spending to Meet the Urgent...

Syrian Ceasefire Faces Many Obstacles

June 21, 2012
Syrian Ceasefire Faces Many Obstacles

BILL RHATICAN - Just over two weeks ago the town of Houla was the scene of a horrible massacre claiming more than 100 innocent lives, many of them women and children. The violence is yet another tragic event in an increasingly violent conflict driven by the Assad government, its supporters and a wide...

Diplomats Agree on ‘Weak’ Text for Rio+20 Summit

June 20, 2012
Diplomats Agree on ‘Weak’ Text for Rio+20 Summit

NINA CHESTNEY AND VALERIE VOLCOVICI - Diplomats from over 190 countries agreed on a draft text on green global development on Tuesday to be approved this week at a summit in Rio de Janeiro, but environmentalists complained the agreement was too weak.

Radiation is Carcinogenic: Any Exposure Can Cause Cancer

June 19, 2012
Radiation is Carcinogenic: Any Exposure Can Cause Cancer

JOHN LAFORGE - There is no safe level of exposure to ionizing radiation, only legally “allowable” doses. Types of ionizing radiation include gamma rays, beta and alpha particles, and X-rays emitted by radioactive elements — like the iodine-131, cesium-137, strontium-90 and even plutonium-239 — that have been spewed into the air and the sea...

The State of the Anti-War Movement

June 17, 2012
The State of the Anti-War Movement

DAVID SWANSON - A magazine asked me this morning for my thoughts on Iraq and the peace movement. What did this war produce?

Albania’s Nightmare: Human Trafficking

June 15, 2012
Albania’s Nightmare: Human Trafficking

ALLISON INSCORE - Young women and children face the greatest risk of abduction in Albania, and are used for organ harvesting, forced labor or prostitution. In most cases, as in this case, the victims are killed.

Do Nuclear Weapons Really Deter Aggression?

June 13, 2012
Do Nuclear Weapons Really Deter Aggression?

LAWRENCE WITTNER - It’s often said that nuclear weapons have protected nations from military attack. But is there any solid evidence to bolster this contention? Without such evidence, the argument that nuclear weapons prevented something that never occurred is simply a counter-factual abstraction that cannot be proved.

Take Action to Scuttle Latest Trade Scam

June 11, 2012
Take Action to Scuttle Latest Trade Scam

MELINDA ST. LOUIS - Together, we have cracked open the crypt hiding Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) “free trade” negotiations, but TPP talks continue in extreme secrecy. While some members of Congress have begun to take notice, we need to sound a much louder alarm.

Justice Stevens: Citizens United Ruling Will Fall Apart

June 9, 2012
Justice Stevens: Citizens United Ruling Will Fall Apart

SAHIL KAPUR - Two and a half years after the landmark Supreme Court ruling that invited a flood of corporate money in U.S. elections, the justice who led the barnstorming dissent says he’s increasingly convinced the decision won’t stand the test of time.

War? No Thanks, I’m Trying to Quit

June 7, 2012
War? No Thanks, I’m Trying to Quit

WINSLOW MYERS - The vision and possible shape of a world beyond war has modified since the lessening of superpower tensions between the United States and the now long-departed U.S.S.R.

News from Wisconsin Not All Bad

June 6, 2012
News from Wisconsin Not All Bad

MICHAEL KEEGAN - Despite the national headlines, last night’s results from Wisconsin were a mixed bag. It appears that by just a few hundred votes, our efforts in the Racine State Senate district were successful, meaning we flipped the Senate to Democratic control and the new majority will be able to block [Gov....

Why Even Failed Activism Succeeds

June 5, 2012
Why Even Failed Activism Succeeds

DAVID SWANSON - Almost every account includes belated discoveries of the extent to which a government was been spying on and infiltrating activist groups. And almost every such account includes belated discoveries of the extent to which government officials were influenced by activist groups even while pretending to ignore popular pressure.

House Republicans Add Gay Marriage Measure to Defense Bill

June 3, 2012
House Republicans Add Gay Marriage Measure to Defense Bill

IAN DUNCAN & LISA MASCARO - Wading into the gay marriage debate, the Republican-led House tacked a provision banning same-sex marriages at military chapels onto a sweeping defense bill that is now headed to the Senate.

How to Divest from Armageddon

June 1, 2012
How to Divest from Armageddon

PATRICK HILLER - In 1951 the U.S. gs partovernment’s Civil Defense Branch produced the film Duck and Cover. ... Even at that time the usefulness of the proposed duck-and-cover maneuver in the face of the utter annihilation arising from a nuclear blast was questioned.

Comparing the Social Security Shortfall and the Cost of the Bush Tax Cuts

May 30, 2012
Comparing the Social Security Shortfall and the Cost of the Bush Tax Cuts

KATHY RUFFING - Social Security’s trustees recently reported that — over the next 75 years — Social Security will have a shortfall of 2.67 percent of taxable payroll, or 1 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). That is, raising taxes by an average of 1 percent of GDP could put Social Security on...

Majority of Americans Willing to Make Defense Cuts

May 25, 2012
Majority of Americans Willing to Make Defense Cuts

STIMSOM CENTER - In a unique study, three quarters of respondents favored cutting defense as a way to reduce the deficit, including two thirds of Republicans as well as nine in 10 Democrats.

Judge Blocks Controversial NDAA

May 23, 2012
Judge Blocks Controversial NDAA

ADAM KLASFELD - A federal judge granted a preliminary injunction to block provisions of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act that would allow the military to indefinitely detain anyone it accuses of knowingly or unknowingly supporting terrorism.

Survey: Americans Overwhelmingly Support Defense Cuts

May 21, 2012
Survey: Americans Overwhelmingly Support Defense Cuts

EYDER PERALTA - A U.S. Navy variant of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the F-35C, conducts a test flight over the Chesapeake Bay in 2011. As Congress struggles to rein in the federal deficit, a new survey finds Americans preferred to cut defense spending more than any other program.

Don’t Believe the NATO Hype: Alternatives Exist to War, Economic Crises

May 19, 2012
Don’t Believe the NATO Hype: Alternatives Exist to War, Economic Crises

DR. JOSEPH GERSON -Beyond this hysteria, peace, labor and immigrant rights activists and scholars are gathering in Chicago for the May 18-19 Counter-Summit for Peace and Economic Justice, to present the case against NATO-driven militarism.

Symbolic Court Finds Bush Guilty of War Crimes

May 17, 2012
Symbolic Court Finds Bush Guilty of War Crimes

BIG NEWS NETWORK.COM - George W. Bush and several other members of his administration have been found guilty of war crimes by the Kuala Lumpur Foundation to Criminalise War.

Top 10 Electric Car Makers – United States 2012 EV Market Leaders

May 15, 2012
Top 10 Electric Car Makers – United States 2012 EV Market Leaders

JOHN ADDISON - Electric car sales triple in the U.S. each year – 20,000 in 2011, 60,000 or more in 2012, 180,000 or more in 2013. Accenture forecasts 1.5 million electric vehicles in the United States by 2015. Over 10 million electric vehicles are possible by 2020, especially if oil prices rise as battery...

Carbon Tax Needed to Protect Us from Coal

May 13, 2012
Carbon Tax Needed to Protect Us from Coal

TAMATA STATON, LAURA CARVER & PHILIP CARVER -An economically efficient policy would place a price-adder (tax) on fossil fuels based on their carbon-content. Rep. Pete Stark (D-CA) has introduced legislation to price carbon emissions -- the Save Our Climate Act of 2011, H.R. 3242. Revenue is collected at the point of first...

99% Spring Disrupts Verizon Shareholder Meeting Six Times

May 11, 2012
99% Spring Disrupts Verizon Shareholder Meeting Six Times

DAVE JOHNSON- The highly-profitable company Verizon -- the 16th largest corporation in America -- is asking its workers for givebacks amounting to as much as $20,000 each, while tripling the compensation of CEO Lowell McAdam from $7.2 million to $23.1 million. The company made $22.5 billion in profits over the past four years while...

U.S.-Afghan Strategic Partnership: Where Are the Voices of Afghan Citizens?

May 9, 2012
U.S.-Afghan Strategic Partnership: Where Are the Voices of Afghan Citizens?

ERIN E NIEMELA - As the NATO summit approaches in May, throngs of peace protestors are expected to descend on Chicago to pressure the U.S.-led, 28-nation military alliance for an end to the war in Afghanistan. But for some activists, it will be too late to protest the greatest threat to a peaceful Afghanistan:...

Stop the Nuclear-Industry Welfare Program

May 7, 2012
Stop the Nuclear-Industry Welfare Program

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS AND RYAN ALEXANDER - Since 1948 the federal government has spent more than $95 billion (in 2011 dollars) on nuclear energy R&D. That is more than four times the amount spent on solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, biofuels, and hydropower combined.

Who Are Those 1% Who Own America?

May 3, 2012
Who Are Those 1% Who Own America?

Jim Cook - After all the talk about "the 1%", who are these people really? Where do they work and how much do they really make? At the top of the list is Tim Cook, who replaced Steve Jobs at Apple.

2012 U.S. Peace Index Highlights America’s Most and Least Peaceful States and Cities

May 2, 2012
2012 U.S. Peace Index Highlights America’s Most and Least Peaceful States and Cities

MICHAEL SHANK AND CRAIG BROWNSTEIN - The Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) announces the second annual release of the United States Peace Index (USPI). The 2012 USPI provides a comprehensive assessment of U.S. peacefulness at the state and city levels and analysis of the costs associated with violence and the socio-economic measures associated...

Tea Party and Occupy Share Some Similarities

May 1, 2012
Tea Party and Occupy Share Some Similarities

JOHN DARLING - Tea Party and Occupy supporters found that they have many similarities at a forum in Southern Oregon. In their first public outing together, Tea Party and Occupy backers — and an audience of 200 — found a lot of common ground. They agreed that corporations, lobbyists, the military and the federal...

The Shame of Nations: New Record Set for Spending on War

April 29, 2012
The Shame of Nations: New Record Set for Spending on War

LAWRENCE S. WITTNER -"World military spending reached a record $1,738 billion in 2011 -- an increase of $138 billion over the previous year. The United States accounted for 41 percent of that, or $711 billion."