Commentary

Mar 29, 2012

Reading the arguments against the health insurance mandate that are being entertained by the Supreme Court this week leaves me feeling as if we are truly a morally-bankrupt nation. The fact that healthcare for over 40 million people is at stake is being treated as an unfortunate side-effect in the contest over who has responsibility for our nation’s health care system. And one of the leading arguments seems to be that we have no collective responsibility toward each other whatsover.

Mar 22, 2012

I’ll have to admit, following stories about the war on women has occupied much of my time of late; so much so that I’ve paid less attention to the accelerating war on the poor. Not being given to conspiracy theories, I’ll refrain from suggesting that this might be part of the point of the big “WoW,” to distract us from what they’re doing to the bottom portion of the 99 percent so that they can give even more tax breaks to the top 1 percent. Of course, women are justifiably alarmed by the recent upsurge in misogynistic rhetoric and action.

Feb 17, 2012

Masters of Diversion: Your game is slipping. I cannot speak for the Bishops, or pretend to fully grasp what motivates them. But I think I know what's driving the Republican leadership. It isn't necessarily birth control. And it isn't really about religious freedom. No. What motivates them is any and every chance to take a dig at health care reform. To dismantle it, and, in the process, foreclose any possible political advantages that it might bestow upon the President once people start to notice that they are actually benefiting from these reforms.

Nov 16, 2011

In the wake of Mayor Bloomberg’s decision to evict the OWS protesters from Zuccotti Park yesterday, pundits are asking: what will the protesters do now? Given the way in which OWS has catalyzed debate and action about reclaiming our institutions and reimagining our economy, and given that larger numbers of people are now naming the corruption of our political economy by monied interests as our nation’s greatest challenge, the question should be what will we, the people who make up the rest of the 99 percent, do now?

Nov 04, 2011

Since the colossal crash of our nation’s financial system three years ago, progressive and left social movement groups have been trying to legitimize a set of ideas around bottom-up democracy and a new, morally-grounded, equitable and sustainable economy. Related proposals have aimed to rein in corporate power and make government more responsive to the needs of workers and communities. The resulting showdowns, accountability sessions, negotiations to provide foreclosure relief and legislative battles for financial reform have yielded some impressive results.

Oct 31, 2011

Venture, if you dare, into our little shop of horrors, with plenty of frights and scares to turn your American dream into a nightmare.

Exhibit A: Last year's Halloween Party at a major mortgage-related firm featured costumes and props designed to mock the victims of foreclosures. The firm, Steven J. Baum, represents banks and mortgage servicers when they foreclose on homeowners and evict them from their homes. This kind of callous behavior speaks volumes about the mindset that prevails in many financial institutions.

Oct 05, 2011

The year started with creeping realization of just how much worse things might become, politically and economically, given the results of November 2010 elections (with the right wing takeover of the House of Representatives and many statehouses). Soon we started to hear about massive demonstrations in Tunisia. By mid-February we were completely mesmerized by the protesters in Tahrir Square, as we watched what would come to be called the Arab Spring.

Sep 11, 2011

As I surveyed today's countless op-eds and commentary about commemorating the 10th Anniversary of the attacks that took place on September 11, 2011, I was pleased to find these thoughtful words in a New York Times editorial:

Jul 27, 2011

The following blog was written by Steve Max. It contains a clear analysis of deficit falacies and the 'consensus trap.'

Jun 14, 2011

A series of tornadoes has left thousands of people homeless across Alabama. One town’s mayor is refusing to allow homeless residents to obtain FEMA trailers for temporary housing. He says the trailers will make the town look “trashy.” And besides, people may be tempted to keep the trailers instead of finding ways to rebuild their homes. Like most mayors, he has few, if any, local resources to bring to bear. He rejects FEMA’s help, but he’s not offering any viable alternatives.