Why America Lacks Credibility in the Middle East

To hear politicians and beltway pundits tell it, credibility in international relations boils down to this: Do others believe that the United States is willing and able to follow through on its word? Actually, this is a sloppy and often pernicious way to think, leading policymakers to senselessly commit themselves to failing policies (like enforcing a “red line,” for instance) …

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Unjust Public Policies Drive the Massive Racial Wealth Gap in America: Study

The yawning racial wealth gap in the United States is no accident, but rather, driven by unjust public policy decisions—from the re-segregation of education to the redlining of home ownership to poverty wages, according to a new analysis by Brandeis University and the public policy organization Demos. Inequalities are vast, note the researchers. For example, Census data shows that, in 2011, median …

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Big Sugar’s deceitful past: How industry spin impaired the government’s anti-cavity program

Where did Big Oil, Big Pharma and other industries learn to manipulate public policy to best serve their bottom line? The engaging new documentary “Merchants of Doubt” argues that they’re all following a battle plan borrowed from the tobacco industry. As for the tobacco industry, they learned it from Big Sugar. Researchers at UCSF analyzed 319 internal sugar industry documents …

Riot police clear demonstrators from a street in Ferguson

Ten reasons to vote against the use of military force

Dear Colleague, I was honored to serve in Congress for 16 years. During that time I provided information and helped to create debates over U.S. policies in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and other nations, defending the Article I, Section 8 responsibilities of Congress on matters of war and peace. Those of you who know me are aware that I avoid partisanship. …

Food Fascists: GMO and Pesticide Manufacturers Down and Dirty

By, Richard Gale and Gary Null PhD August 12, 2014 After decades of rearing hogs, Danish farmer IbBorup Pedersen was alarmed at the growing incidence of malformations and biological defects among his newborn piglets. Deformities included gaps in piglets’ skulls, deformed bones, missing limbs and even a female piglet with testicles. Never having witnessed such large numbers of deformed pigs …

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Partners in Stupidity and the War on Terror

Casus belli anyone? So Obama wants Congress to authorize a war on ISIS. They’ll do it, of course, but not before the usual partisan sniping. So far the “debate” has been a festival of irrelevance. Should it be sun-setted? Is three years right? What about the open-ended authorization for Al-Qaeda from 1991? Does it limit a future President’s options? Oh, the …

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Russia’s Remarkable Renaissance

Something remarkable is taking place in Russia, and it’s quite different from what we might expect. Rather than feel humiliated and depressed Russia is undergoing what I would call a kind of renaissance, a rebirth as a nation. This despite or in fact because the West, led by the so-called neo-conservatives in Washington, is trying everything including war on her …

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Applauding Themselves to Death: Why the UN climate talks have wasted 23 years

If you visit the website of the UN body that oversees the world’s climate negotiations(1), you will find dozens of pictures, taken across 20 years, of people clapping. These photos should be of interest to anthropologists and psychologists. For they show hundreds of intelligent, educated, well-paid and elegantly-dressed people wasting their lives. The celebratory nature of the images testifies to …

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Cruel and Inhuman: UN Slams US as Only Nation that Sentences Children to Die In Prison

A United Nations human rights expert strongly condemned the U.S. on Tuesday for being the “only State in the world that still sentences children to life imprisonment without the opportunity for parole,” thereby imposing cruel, inhuman, and degrading punishment. Juan Méndez, the Special Rapporteur on torture, made the comments in a report to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva—building from his …

Federal Study: US Government Killing Apprximately 1,000 Of Its Own People Per Year

The federal Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that, on average, US police piled up the bodies of 928 US citizens per year between 2003-2009 and 2011. And Tom Hall notes: “A list compiled on the website Killed by Police of every police killing mentioned in the American media includes more than 2,000 deaths since May 2013.” Killings by police in the US “reached a record high last year [461 …