Search Results for: Barack Obama

The Obama Presidential Center will displace Black people

The Obama Presidential Center will inevitably displace a working class Black community in Chicago. The center is in keeping with Obama's history of doing the bidding of the powerful, including accelerating gentrification.

The soon to be constructed Barack Obama Presidential Center poses a great danger to the surrounding Black neighborhoods on the South Shore of Chicago. In fact, thanks to this $500 million, 19-acre homage to the 44th president, there may not be any Black people living there much longer. Continue reading

The China cold war will unstick America’s glue

Can an America that off-shored much of its manufacturing capacity to China, for short-term profit, afford the de-coupling?

Washington isn’t quite sure what to do after the chaotic end to America’s ‘forever’ war. Some in Washington bitterly regret exiting from Afghanistan at all, and advocate for an immediate return; some just want to move on—to the China ‘Cold War’, that is. The cries from the initial Establishment ‘melt down’ and its articulation of pain over the Kabul withdrawal débacle, however, indicates the extent to which the almost obsessive focus on ‘Hobbling China’ nevertheless seems like an humiliating retreat to U.S. hawks, habituated to more global, and unlimited interventions. Continue reading

The Texas abortion ban ensures only the privileged get access to reproductive care

For too long, politicians relied on the Supreme Court to uphold the right to an abortion. Now that the Texas law has been allowed to take effect, its prime targets are low-income people of color.

Texas, with the help of conservative justices on the U.S. Supreme Court, has made abortion all but illegal for most pregnant people living within state borders. Republican state legislators passed a draconian and diabolically innovative bill that Gov. Greg Abbott signed into law in May ensuring that all abortions after six weeks of gestation can be subject to lawsuits brought by any individual anywhere against anyone involved in the procedure. That includes the patient, their medical provider, or even their Lyft driver. Those seeking abortions will likely need to leave Texas, effectively making the procedure out of reach of the poorest residents of the state. Continue reading

Democrats, abortion and phony politics

Democratic party leadership are as uninterested in fighting for abortion rights as they are in addressing anything else their members need and want.

Most leftists in this country still remain loyal to the Democratic Party despite decades of deception, overt collusion with ruling class interests, and support of U.S. imperialism. The Democrats use a variety of means to keep the support of millions of people who yearn for something other than the excuses and double dealing they are constantly offered. Continue reading

Bring all the troops home: Stop policing the globe and put an end to endless wars

It’s time to bring all our troops home. Continue reading

Afghanistan still the graveyard of empires

Some “opposed ideas” about a twenty-year war.

Sunday, October 7, 2001: Less than a month after 9/11, President George W. Bush announces to the world, “On my orders the United States military has begun strikes against al Qaeda terrorist training camps and military installations of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. Continue reading

Afghanistan

Afghanistan has been at the mercy of U.S. interventions for more than 40 years.

The scenes of people desperately trying to board planes in Kabul, Afghanistan, hanging from and even falling from landing gear, are reminiscent of past United States exits, most notably from Vietnam. Yet these images should not be surprising nor should they change anyone’s views about the terror that the U.S. brought to that country. The turmoil in present day Afghanistan is the end result of more than 40 years of U.S. involvement and it should not be discussed without an analysis of that history. Continue reading

Further blow to press freedoms as US wins appeal in effort to extradite Julian Assange

"This disingenuous appeal should be dismissed by the court and President Biden should take the opportunity to drop these politically motivated charges."

As Britain’s High Court on Wednesday handed the United States a win in its bid to extradite Julian Assange, press freedom and other human rights defenders renewed calls for the Biden administration to drop all charges against the WikiLeaks founder. Continue reading

Neoliberalism: America has arrived at one of history’s great crossroads

The Democratic Party is having an internal battle over the “small” and the “large” infrastructure bills, but what’s really at stake is the future of neoliberalism within the party. The smaller “bipartisan” bill represents the neoliberal worldview, including public-private partnerships and huge subsidies to for-profit companies, whereas the larger “reconciliation” Democratic Party-only bill hearkens back to the FDR/LBJ classic progressive way of doing things. Continue reading

The untimely tragic death of labor’s best friend

The first time I met Rich Trumka, the president of the AFL-CIO who suddenly died this past Thursday, was in early 2008. I had only been president of the Writers Guild of America, East, an AFL-CIO union, for a short time, and he was then the labor federation’s secretary-treasurer. Continue reading

Washington’s terrorist friends: Prominent Americans continue to support a murderous cult

MEK is a curious hybrid creature that pretends to be an alternative government option for Iran even though it is despised by nearly all Iranians.

One might ask if Washington’s obsession with terrorism includes supporting radical armed groups as long as they are politically useful in attacking countries that the US regards as enemies? It is widely known that the American CIA worked with Saudi Arabia to create al-Qaeda to attack the Russians in Afghanistan and the same my-enemy’s-enemy thinking appears to drive the current relationships with radical groups in Syria. Continue reading

Glen Ford’s journalism fought for Black liberation and against imperialism

I had the honor of working with the late Glen Ford for nearly 20 years. His passing has created a huge void not just for Black Agenda Report (BAR), the site we co-founded with the late Bruce Dixon, but for all of Black politics and left media. Ford identified his political and journalistic stance with both, having created the tagline: “News, commentary and analysis from the black left” for BAR. He was the consummate journalist, a man who demanded rigorous analysis of himself and others, and he lived by the dictum of afflicting the comfortable and comforting the afflicted. Ford co-founded a publication in line with his core values: He did not suffer fools gladly, succumb to corporate media and government narratives, or feel obligated to change his politics in order to elevate the Black face in a high place. Continue reading

Was Pegasus used by Trump and Kushner to blackmail U.S. politicians?

Revelations by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz that Israeli sales of NSO Group’s Pegasus smart phone surveillance program closely matched the foreign trips of former Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu have raised the possibility that Jared Kushner, who participated in Netanyahu’s diplomatic trips to countries using Pegasus, also used Pegasus to eavesdrop on the communications of Republicans who, virtually overnight, became loyalists of Donald Trump. Continue reading

Who will hold the U.S. accountable over Cuba?

An intentionally misinformative outreach is what the U.S. government is relying on to justify its punitive measures on Cuba

Anyone who believed the departure of former U.S. President Donald Trump would constitute a return to more effective diplomacy has been grievously mistaken. The Biden Administration is not even close to replicating the slightest approach towards Cuba which former U.S. President Barack Obama moved towards, following the release of the Cuban Five. On the contrary, not only has U.S. President Joe Biden not reversed Trump’s policies, but extended them to include further punitive measures. It is becoming clear that the U.S. was only biding its time to declare openly aggressive policies against Cuba. Continue reading

The state of our nation: Still divided, enslaved & locked down

History has a funny way of circling back on itself. Continue reading

‘Try calling them’: Challenge government’s autocratic incommunicados

'Today the silence is deafening. Just try calling your members of Congress, not as one of their donors or golf companions, but as a serious informed citizen.'

The First Amendment to our Constitution declares that Congress cannot abridge the right of the people “…to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Unfortunately, this vital tool of our democracy is easily circumvented by Congress simply not responding whatsoever to “petitions” by the citizenry. This government undermining of our constitutional right is producing invincibly incommunicado government officials. Continue reading

‘Disgusting’: Pipeline company files $15 billion claim against US for canceled Keystone XL

TC Energy Corporation filed for compensation under a free trade provision that allows investors to sue governments if they impede profits.

In a move that progressives described as unsurprising yet outrageous, TC Energy Corporation, the Canadian company behind the now-defunct Keystone XL pipeline, is seeking more than $15 billion in compensation from the United States government, which it has accused of violating free trade obligations by blocking further development of the tar sands oil project. Continue reading

How a U.S. congressman took on the U.S. blockade against Venezuela

On a cold winter day in February 2019, activists gathered in downtown Northampton, Massachusetts, to denounce the attempted U.S.-backed coup in Venezuela. More than two years later, in the wake of ongoing rallies and discussions with Democratic Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts, activists gained some ground as the congressman tweeted an open letter to President Joe Biden on June 14 in which he called on the president to end “all secondary and sectoral sanctions” against Venezuela. Continue reading

‘Putting lipstick on a pig’: Why Washington is fawning over Israel’s new government

When former US President Barack Obama used an old cliché to denigrate his political opponent, the late US Senator John McCain, he triggered a political controversy lasting several days. Continue reading

‘We’re not going away!’ Nonviolent protest over voting rights ends with arrests in DC

"We're saying across this country, it's time for people... to march on these Senate offices," declared Rev. William Barber.

Activists with the national Poor People’s Campaign were arrested Wednesday after blocking a street in front of the Hart Senate building in Washington, D.C. to demand passage of the For the People Act, a popular voting rights expansion bill that Republicans successfully filibustered just 24 hours earlier. Continue reading

Making Juneteenth a holiday was the easy part—will real justice follow?

The horrors of slavery and the harms from subsequent racial injustices cannot be met with symbolic gestures like holidays. Real restitution must come in the form of reparations—which neither party seems interested in.

After the United States Senate and House in quick succession passed a federal bill to make “Juneteenth” a federal holiday to commemorate the end of slavery, President Joe Biden wasted no time in signing the bill into law. “Making Juneteenth a federal holiday is a major step forward to recognize the wrongs of the past,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, expressing what has come to be his party’s standard performative gesturing toward historic racial injustices by a party that likes to set itself apart from Republicans via lip service to liberal ideals. Continue reading

With Bezos at the helm, democracy dies at the Washington Post editorial board

In the Soviet Union, everybody was aware that the media was controlled by the state. But in a corporate state like the U.S., a veneer of independence is still maintained, although trust in the media has been plummeting for years.

WASHINGTON—The Washington Post’s glaring conflicts of interest have of late once again been the subject of scrutiny online, thanks to a new article denouncing a supposed attempt to “soak” billionaires in taxes. Written by star columnist Megan McArdle—who previously argued that Walmart’s wages are too high, that there is nothing wrong with Google’s monopoly, and that the Grenfell Fire was a price worth paying for cheaper buildings—the article claimed that Americans have such class envy that the government would “destroy [billionaires’] fortunes so that the rest of us don’t have to look at them.” Notably, the Post chose to illustrate it with a picture of its owner, Jeff Bezos, making it seem as if it was directly defending his power and wealth, something they have been accused of on more than one occasion. Continue reading

Peru heading for showdown with war hawk Samantha Power

As Peru’s Marxist presumptive president-elect, Pedro Castillo, stands on the verge of being named certified as the official victor of the president election, he is heading for a showdown with the interventionist Samantha Power, the former US ambassador to the United Nations under Barack Obama. While at the UN, Power was a major proponent of U.S. military intervention in the Syrian, Yemeni, and Libyan civil wars. Continue reading

Calls to ‘expand the Supreme Court’ grow as McConnell warns he’s prepared to steal another seat

"Mitch McConnell is already foreshadowing that he'll steal a 3rd Supreme Court seat if he gets the chance. He's done it before, and he'll do it again."

Progressive calls to add seats to the U.S. Supreme Court gained fresh urgency Monday after Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell suggested he would block President Joe Biden from filling a potential high court vacancy if Republicans wrest back control of the upper chamber in next year’s midterms. Continue reading

Keystone XL is dead!’: After 10-year battle, climate movement victory is complete

"Keystone XL is now the most famous fossil fuel project killed by the climate movement,' said one veteran campaigner, "but it won't be the last."

After more than a decade of grassroots organizing, agitation, and tireless opposition by the international climate movement, the final nail was slammed into the Keystone XL’s coffin Wednesday afternoon when the company behind the transnational tar sands pipeline officially pulled the plug on its plans. Continue reading

Mainstream politics offer pretend revolutions to a discontented public

In 2008, the American public was fed up with the disastrous status quo politics of George W Bush, so they came together and elected a progressive candidate who campaigned on hope and change to replace him. Continue reading

Free market illusions: What is the US’ endgame in China?

Why does the US advocate a free market while doing its utmost to stifle it? The current US-China economic war is a perfect example of this perplexing question. Continue reading

Democracy: On the precipice?

If we extrapolate from the current trend lines, democracy will be gone in a couple decades, melted away like the polar ice. But although down, democracy is not out.

Alexander Lukashenko, the Belarussian dictator, snatches a dissident from midair. Military strongman Assimi Goita launches another coup in Mali. Benjamin Netanyahu escalates a military conflict to save his own political skin in Israel. In the United States, the Republican Party launches a full-court press to suppress the vote. Continue reading

Make way for the Snitch State: The all-seeing fourth branch of government

We’re being spied on by a domestic army of government snitches, spies and techno-warriors. Continue reading

Does the U.S. really need another oil pipeline?

Native American communities living alongside the route of the Line 3 pipeline project in northern Minnesota are asking all activists to join them in solidarity this June.

A decades-old pipeline called Line 3, run by the Canadian company Enbridge, is in the midst of a controversial upgrade sparking fierce resistance from Indigenous communities living along the route. Line 3 is being replaced in order to enable the transport of nearly 800,000 barrels of dirty tar sands crude oil per day from Calgary, Canada, to Wisconsin. The majority of the pipeline cuts across northern Minnesota through the heart of lands where the Anishinaabe people have treaty rights to hunt, fish and harvest wild rice and maple syrup. Continue reading

The failed bloody fascist coup of 2021

Had the coup plotters of January 6, 2021, been successful, today the United States would have been under the rule of dictator Donald Trump. The traitorous retired General Michael Flynn would be vice president and be granted by Trump with unlimited powers to order arrests, seize private property, and rule states and cities by decree. Political purges of the armed forces, state and local governments, the courts, and corporations would be de rigueur. Continue reading

Is DarkSide ransomware attack a pro-Trump political hit?

Is the ransomware takedown of Colonial Pipeline’s “largest refined products pipeline” in the United States by a cyber-criminal gang called “DarkSide” a political hit by Donald Trump’s allies in the transnational criminal underworld? Considering that things were going pretty well for President Biden on the Covid-19 front, the steady restoration of the U.S. economy, and job favorability (63 percent) and taking into account that Trump is stewing in his own misery over Biden’s success, the steep rise in the price of fuel and reports of motorist gas station lines in certain parts of the country has thrown a spanner into Biden’s “Build Back Better” program. Continue reading