William A. Collins: Cannon Fodder, 21st Century-Style
Published May 24, 2013 - 9:03:58 AM
This Memorial Day, I'd like to salute the young people who continue to enlist in our armed forces.
Their initial training reinforces their sense that America is beset with many ill-motivated enemies who hate our freedom, our wealth, and our religions. And so soldiers are taught to hate and fear in return. These emotions are sometimes needed to beef up sagging morale before performing duties like shooting, bombing, repairing, loading, driving, flying, scrubbing, and all the other dangerous or routine duties that our troops are expected to carry out.
Paul R. Ehrlich: Stop the decay of our planet's life-support systems
Published May 24, 2013 - 8:51:57 AM
The evidence is overwhelming: Humanity is pushing humanity's life-support systems rapidly toward a tipping point that will likely imperil society's well-being.
David Hemenway: An Open Letter to Gun Owners
Published May 23, 2013 - 8:03:49 AM
I'm struggling to understand your perspective. I'm convinced most of you are good, reasonable people. I suspect that you and I have more in common than the gun lobby would have us believe.
Leslie Kantor: Victory for American Parents and Teens: Key States Expand Sex Education
Published May 23, 2013 - 7:55:26 AM
Planned Parenthood Federation of America celebrated passage today of state legislation to improve sex education in key states. With a vote of 37 to 21, Illinois state senators sent Governor Pat Quinn a bill that creates uniform standards for sex education. In addition, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper is poised to sign a similar measure that will ensure sex education programs that are taught in public schools are comprehensive and medically accurate, and a similar bill is advancing in Nevada, one of the three states in the country where parents are required to opt a student "in" to sex education curricula.
Sam Pizzigati: Money Still Can't Buy Happiness
Published May 23, 2013 - 7:47:35 AM
What makes us happy? In America, we've been asking this question ever since 1776, the year we declared for "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness."
Martha Burk: Our Women in Uniform Deserve Better
Published May 23, 2013 - 6:37:52 AM
Americans have honored our soldiers and those killed in U.S. wars in late May for nearly 150 years. Memorial Day, which became an official holiday in 1868, was originally called Decoration Day and got started when civilian women decided to decorate military graves from both sides of the Civil War.
Bill Moyers and Michael Winship: Enabling Greed Makes U.S. Sick
Published May 22, 2013 - 1:56:08 PM
At the end of a week that reminds us to be ever vigilant about the dangers of government overreaching its authority, whether by the long arm of the IRS or the Justice Department, we should pause to think about another threat — from too much private power obnoxiously intruding into public life.
Drew Courtney: With Americans Moving Forward on Gay Rights, Why Won't the GOP?
Published May 22, 2013 - 1:34:06 PM
By the end of June, the Supreme Court will decide two related cases involving the right of gay couples to get married. We don't know what the decisions will be, although it seems likely that gay-rights activists will have something to celebrate that day, even if it's less than what we're hoping for.
Chad Griffin: HRC Statement on Lack of Lesbian and Gay Family Inclusion in Senate Committee Immigration Bill
Published May 22, 2013 - 8:51:04 AM
As we come together as a nation to tackle our broken immigration system, it is deplorable that a small number of Senators have been able to stand in the way of progress for lesbian and gay couples torn apart by discriminatory laws. Instead of working to achieve common-sense solutions, Senators Graham, Flake, McCain and Rubio threatened to derail the entire immigration bill to appease a small but vocal group of anti-gay social conservatives that will do anything to stop progress for lesbian and gay couples.
Dream Action Coalition: Dreamers laud Senate Judiciary effort and will continue to remind opponents to not stand in the way of immigration reform
Published May 22, 2013 - 8:49:43 AM
The Dream Action Coalition lauds the effort of senate judiciary committee chairman Patrick Leahy to provide a space for republicans and democrats to improve the "gang of 8"'s immigration bill.
GLADD et al: Senators threaten entire immigration reform bill simply because it affords 28,500 same-sex binational couples equal immigration rights
Published May 22, 2013 - 8:48:24 AM
Statement by the National Center for Lesbian Rights, GLAAD, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, United We Dream and Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project, Lambda Legal, Equality Federation and the National Center for Transgender Equality.
Alex Pareene: How policy nihilists in the Senate doomed LGBT immigrants
Full story: Salon.com
Andy Rowell: Tar Sands Makes Climate Change "Unsolvable"
Published May 21, 2013 - 12:22:07 PM
One of the world's leading climate scientists Dr James Hansen has warned British MPs that exploiting the tar sands and oil shale would make the problem of climate change "unsolvable".
Robert Reich: Global Capital and the Nation State
Published May 20, 2013 - 7:10:31 AM
As global capital becomes ever more powerful, giant corporations are holding governments and citizens up for ransom — eliciting subsidies and tax breaks from countries concerned about their nation's "competitiveness" — while sheltering their profits in the lowest-tax jurisdictions they can find. Major advanced countries — and their citizens — need a comprehensive tax agreement that won't allow global corporations to get away with this.
E.J. Dionne Jr: Political dysfunction spells trouble for democracies
Full story: Washington Post
Andrew Lam: The Tragedy of Self Immolation - No One Cares
Published May 17, 2013 - 9:06:51 AM
Self-immolation isn't what it used to be.
This ultimate form of protest became global news in 1963 when the venerable monk Thich Quang Duc set himself ablaze in the middle of Saigon, Vietnam, protesting religious oppression. Doused in gasoline, the monk sat serenely in lotus position and lit a match. A bird of paradise thus blossomed and bloomed, and quickly charred his body.
Jim Hightower: The Parched Truth About American Jobs
Published May 17, 2013 - 7:36:36 AM
At last, some excellent economic news for folks long-mired in the stagnant labor market.
"Jobs Spring Back," exclaimed a typical headline on recent reports that 165,000 private-sector jobs were added in April. Wow — the thunderous, three-year boom of prosperity that has rained riches on Wall Street is finally beginning to shower on our streets, right?
Robert Reich | Pyromaniacs on the Potomac: The Problem With Obama's Second Term
Published May 17, 2013 - 7:31:39 AM
Six months into a second term and the Obama White House is on the defensive and floundering: Benghazi, the IRS's investigations of right-wing groups, the Justice Department's snooping into journalists' phone records, Obamacare behind schedule, the Administration's push for gun control ending in failure.
Melanie Fitzpatrick: Scientists Agree Human-Caused Climate Change is Real: But Wait, We've Known That for Decades!
Published May 16, 2013 - 7:16:49 AM
An important peer-reviewed study was published today by John Cook et al. in the journal Environmental Research Letters. John Cook runs the well-known Skeptical Science website that rebuts global warming misinformation. His new research once again confirms there is overwhelming agreement amongst climate scientists – over 97 percent agree – and in the scientific literature – over 97 percent of papers confirm – that global warming is real and largely caused by humans. However, current surveys of the U.S. public, such as those done by the Pew Center and Yale, show that less than half the population believe scientists are in agreement on the issue of human-caused climate change.
Frances Beinecke: As Arctic Council Gathers, Kerry Has Opportunity to Push for Ocean Conservation
Published May 15, 2013 - 8:03:14 AM
Just two decades ago, most of the Arctic Ocean was covered in ice all year long. But climate change has caused the Arctic to heat up twice as fast as the rest of the planet, and the region is rapidly losing its natural protective layer of ice. Oil, gas, fishing and shipping interests are targeting these newly exposed waters. The Arctic's polar bears, beluga whales, narwhals and other rare creatures are caught in the crosshairs.
Robert Reich: The Triumph of Progressivism: Graduation 2013 and 1968
Published May 15, 2013 - 7:29:31 AM
Many of you soon-to-be college graduates are determined to make the world a better place. Some of you are choosing careers in public service or joining nonprofits or volunteering in your communities.
Families USA Statement on House Vote to Repeal Affordable Care Act
Published May 15, 2013 - 7:02:58 AM
The House Republicans' plan to repeat the same-old-same-old, been-there-done-that, déjà-vu-all-over-again, redundant vote to repeal Obamacare deserves a gold medal for persistent futility.
Ari Berman: IRS Fallout: The Real Scandal Is Secret Money Influencing US Elections
Full story: The Nation
Ruth Marcus: IRS has been too lax on tax-exempt status
Full story: Washington Post
Ana Marie Cox: Jason Richwine is a bigot who shows the pitfalls of partisan 'analysis'
Full story: The Guardian UK
Martha Rosenberg | US Chicken Industry Defends Arsenic Levels in Food
Published May 14, 2013 - 7:01:47 AM
A study in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives found detectable levels of arsenic in chicken from grocery stores in 10 American cities, including in organic chickens. If the drug were fed to all chickens, over 100 US deaths would result from arsenic-related lung and bladder cancers, report the authors.
Paul Krugman: How the Case for Austerity Has Crumbled
Full story: NY Books
Danielle Brian: DOJ's Seizure of AP Phone Records Doesn't Just Cross Line It Tramples It
Published May 13, 2013 - 5:35:10 PM
The Justice Department's seizure of the Associated Press' phone records is Nixonian. In his zeal to find the source of a media leak, Attorney General Eric has trampled a line meant to protect our free and independent press, and has ignored long standing practice in working with the media within the bounds of the First Amendment. The American public deserves a full accounting of why and how this could happen.
Physicians for Reproductive Health's Statement on the Conviction of Kermit Gosnell
Published May 13, 2013 - 1:04:09 PM
As doctors who have women's health at the forefront of our mission and our practices, we are relieved that Kermit Gosnell will no longer be able to take advantage of vulnerable women. In Pennsylvania and many other states with restrictive laws, women face incredible barriers that affect their ability to obtain quality care. Gosnell preyed on low-income women who had few options to obtain the care they needed. His practice was illegal, unethical, and unsafe.
David Swanson: Why We Allow the Destruction of Our Planet
Published May 13, 2013 - 7:36:53 AM
It's not enough to point out that our political system is completely corrupted by money, including money from coal and oil and nukes and gas. Of course it is. And if we had direct democracy, polls suggest we would be investing in green energy. But saying the right thing to a pollster on a phone or in a focus group is hardly the extent of what one ought sensibly to do when the fate of the world is at stake.