13 Jul 2013

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Robert W. McChesney, John Nichols, Dollarocracy: How the Money and Media Election Complex Is Destroying America

Corruption: Impairment of integrity, virtue, or moral principle: depravity … a departure from the original or from what is pure or correct. Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

The word “corruption” does not appear in the title or subtitle of the latest book by John Nichols and Robert W. McChesney, which is called Dollarocracy: How the Money and Media Election Complex is Destroying America. But the word resonates on every page. American democracy has been profoundly corrupted by the – usually legal – infusion of billions of dollars into the political process, and this jeremiad against corruption comes at a critical historical moment.

Nichols and McChesney wisely interweave the degeneration of independent American media with the growing dominance of big-money interests in political campaign, noting that “The moneyed interests are confident, even in the face of temporary setbacks, that they will be able to continue in their initiative because they are well served by the rapid decline in the news media as a checking and balancing force on our politics.”

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25 Feb 2010

Will Financial Reform Become Healthcare II: The Sequel?

Financial reform may be turning into Healthcare II: The Sequel. The Administration seems to be signalling its willingness to cave on the two critical elements: Volcker Rules and the CFPA.

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13 Jan 2010

Jonathan Chait’s Endless Love

The New Republic’s Jonathan Chait has penned an ode to the excise tax on health benefits. He says his “faith in the Cadillac tax remains ardent,” even after being led astray by a faulty graph.  We hate to dim his ardor, but it’s a love gone wrong.  You should know in advance that it’s not a typical love story, though: there will be some math.

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02 Nov 2007

Late Nite: That “Global Brain” Just Has One Thing On Its Mind!

“The Facts of Life,” by Black Box Recorder

It’s Friday night and we’re among friends here. Anybody up for a nice game of Gender Cards?

I’ve been reading a lot of dense material lately for a piece I want to write on the social, technical, and historical origins of the Internet (if I ever have the time to write it).

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11 Oct 2007

Mahmoud Love

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad faced appropriate scorn when he told that audience at Columbia that “we don’t have homosexuals in this country … we don’t have this phenomenon.” Now he’s saying that he was the victim of bad translating, and that he meant to say that “compared to American society, we don’t have many homosexuals.” Like so many other politicians, he sent his press person out to make the excuses.

It’s far

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11 Oct 2007

Memory-Haunted News: Armenia, Iraq, and Genocide

Trailer for “Screamers,” a history of genocide and the Armenian tragedy*

Sometimes the news of the day seems random. At other times it seems to display a pattern, an outline of something that can be seen only dimly. Something … haunting. The star-crossed past of the Armenian people, driven from their home by an act of genocide, surfaces in two news stories today.

A House Commitee voted yesterday to affirm

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15 Sep 2007

Stay. Sit. Die.

While soldiers and civilians die, the National Review says “Stay.” In retrospect, it was inevitable: Conservatives have finally articulated a policy position so simple-minded it can be understood by a dog. First these “intellectuals” told us that there were WMDs. Then they said Iraq was linked to 9/11.

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09 Sep 2007

FDL Book Salon: Class Counts, by Allan Ornstein

(We’re pleased today to welcome Allan Ornstein for a discussion of his book Class Counts: Education, Inequality, and the Shrinking Middle Class. Please welcome him in the comments — JH)

Allan Ornstein, a Professor of Education at St. John’s University, has written fifty books and more than four hundred articles.

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09 Sep 2007

FDL Book Salon: Class Counts, by Allan Ornstein

(We’re pleased today to welcome Allan Ornstein for a discussion of his book Class Counts: Education, Inequality, and the Shrinking Middle Class. Please welcome him in the comments — JH)

Allan Ornstein, a Professor of Education at St. John’s University, has written fifty books and more than four hundred articles.

185
06 Sep 2007

GOP National Security Incompetence Determined to Strike in the U.S.

Anointing the GOP as the “National Security Party” makes about as much sense as choosing Ulysses S. Grant to lead the “Temperance Party.” Their record at protecting the nation from terror and military threats is one of ignominious failure, and the next attack – if and when it happens – may well be a preventable horror.

Dear Mr.

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