NOW on Bush's State of the Union Speech: Careful Words Obscure Old Agenda

[Last night's] State of the Union address began on a high note, with George W. Bush acknowledging that he was the first United States president to begin his speech with the words 'Madam Speaker.' As I watched Speaker Nancy Pelosi call the proceedings to order and sit to the president's left, it was a particular pleasure to point out to my 6th grade daughter that this was the first State of the Union in the country's history with a woman in the picture.


Michael Brecker (1949-2007): An Appreciation

Michael Brecker, a Grammy award-winning saxaphonist whose music spanned both jazz and rock genres, died January 13th in New York city following a two year battle with cancer. He was 57 years old.


Federal Minimum Wage Bill Faces More Trouble

The bill to increase the federal minimum wage today faces a colliding of obstacles as the US Senate appears poised to pass a version with one or even two amendments undesired by the Democratic leadership in the US House. The Senate began taking up the bill today.


The Vice-Grip Of Finance

On December 19 a bunch of foreign investors dumped their holdings in the Thai stock market, triggering a collapse of the stock exchange of Thailand (SET) index. The SET index fell 15 per cent in a single day, losing much of the gains it had registered over the previous year.


Neturei Karta and the Limits of Tolerance

There was an interesting article in the Metro Section of last Monday’s New York Times (1-15-07) named 'Friends in Iran Make for Discord at Home' written by Fernanda Santos. The article is about Neturei Karta an anti-Zionist group of Orthodox Jews and the response of the pro-Zionist community to this organization.


Yes, Virginia, there is a movement against racism!

Almost a century after the end of the civil war, a new civil rights movement emerged which culminated in the passage of the US Civil Rights Act of 1964. This was not achieved through the largesse of then President Lyndon B. Johnson. It was achieved as a result of a broad and engaged struggle, one that united people across racial, ethnic, religious and class lines.

Recently, however, I have been reminded that although gains have certainly been made in curbing racism and other forms of hate and intolerance, these diseases are still with us. And if you've read the news over the past several months, quite a bit of it is coming from Virginia.


How We Can End the Occupation of Iraq

President George Bush deflects criticism of his war plans by claiming that his critics have no plans of their own. Vice President Dick Cheney, meanwhile, asserts that matters of war must be left in the hands of the President (presumably no matter how brilliant your alternative plan).

Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D., Ohio) has had an exit plan on his website for over three years. Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey (D., Calif.) has held several hearings discussing exit plans over the past year and a half. Peace activists, including Tom Hayden, have published and promoted a variety of exit plans over the past couple of years, and have even gone so far as to meet and discuss them with members of the Iraqi Parliament.


U.S.-tailored Iraqi Oil Alarm for Producers, Consumers 

While the Iraqis were busy counting their death toll of more than 650,000 since March 2003, the United Nations busy counting their dead of more than 34,000 in 2006 only, the Pentagon counting more than 3,070 American deaths and the U.S. treasury counting more than $600 billion of taxpayer money spent so far in Iraq, stealthily and suddenly the U.S. occupation’s oil prize rang louder than the war drums.


Some Belated and Embarrassed Qualifications on Bush, Iraq, and the Peace Movement

A comrade wrote me with some strong and intelligent criticisms of my article. Bush, Iraq, and the Peace Movement, which I should both address and acknowledge.


Paying for Protection

In 1999 the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) proposed a rule requiring employers to pay for protective clothing, face shields, gloves and other equipment used by workers. But before the proposal became a standard Mr. Bush was elected to office.

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