United States

Former State Department employee reveals spying on Americans by executive order

By Ed Hightower, 25 July 2014

An editorial by the former official in the Washington Post underscores both the immense scope of illegal spying and the sham character of official “reform.”

Washington, DC workers speak out against social inequality and rising costs of living

By Todd Mason, 25 July 2014

A new report documents the steep rise in social inequality that has developed in Washington, DC since the economic crisis of 2008

SEP rallies workers and youth against Detroit water shutoffs

By David Brown, 25 July 2014

The Socialist Equality Party and the Detroit Workers Committee held a rally at the water department’s central facility even as city officials continued shutoffs despite the so-called 15-day “pause.”

Arizona man dies in horrific two-hour execution

By Gabriel Black, 24 July 2014

Joseph Wood was executed by lethal injection Wednesday in a botched process that took nearly two hours during which Wood was constantly gasping.

Report documents government orchestration of US “terror” plots

By Fred Mazelis, 23 July 2014

Human Rights Watch found evidence of unlawful entrapment and many other violations of basic democratic rights.

New York City settles suit by family of inmate beaten to death at Rikers Island

By Isaac Finn, 23 July 2014

New York City will pay $2.75 million to settle a lawsuit against Rikers Island Correctional Facility for beating an inmate who suffered kidney disease to death in 2012.

Texas governor to mobilize National Guard along Mexican border

By Jake Dean, 22 July 2014

The military moves take place as thousands of young people flee violence and poverty in Central America.

Pharmaceutical company Allergan to lay off 1,500 workers

By David Brown, 22 July 2014

The announcement comes only days after Microsoft, also headquartered in California, announced plans to lay off 18,000 workers.

General Motors CEO says company will use bankruptcy to shield itself from lawsuits

By Gabriel Black, 22 July 2014

By denying victims and their families access to the courts, the company stands to avoid billions of dollars in damages.

Detroit officials announce 15-day “pause” of mass water shutoffs

By Jerry White, 22 July 2014

The temporary suspension of shutoffs is a public relations move as the city prepares to escalate a brutal policy that has left thousands without water.

Video: Detroit residents speak out against water shutoffs

By James Brewer, 22 July 2014

In this video, Detroit residents speak out against water shutoffs at a bill payment center and rally against water shutoffs.

“The NYPD is a gang”

Outrage grows over use of police “chokehold” in death of New York man

By a reporting team, 21 July 2014

The city’s Civilian Complaint Review Board reported more than 1,000 complaints about chokeholds in the past five years.

Obama administration added 1.5 million names to US terrorist watch list

By Niles Williamson, 21 July 2014

The numbers were divulged by administration lawyers in a suit filed by a northern Virginia man challenging the constitutionality of the government’s no-fly list.

United Transportation Union demands historic concessions from train conductors

By Jeff Lusanne, 21 July 2014

The United Transportation Union has agreed to “transformative” changes that would allow one-man operation of many trains, threatening both workers’ jobs and public safety.

New Orleans firefighters’ pension fund lost 41 percent of value in 2013

By Tom Hall, 21 July 2014

Years of corruption within the pension board and underfunding by the city government have led to a catastrophe for the city’s firefighters.

“We are not living in a democratic society”

Opposition grows to Detroit water shutoffs

By our reporters, 21 July 2014

The shut off of water to tens of thousands of Detroit residents has provoked widespread anger and opposition throughout the city and beyond.

Illinois lawsuits allege fraud by student debt settlement companies

By Khara Sikhan, 19 July 2014

Student debt settlement companies used fraudulent means to convince young people to pay them large fees to obtain fictitious debt relief, according to a lawsuit filed Monday by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

Federal Judge rules California death penalty law is unconstitutional

By Alan Gilman, 18 July 2014

The judge found that lengthy and unpredictable delays have resulted in an arbitrary and unfair capital punishment system.

Netroots meeting in Detroit: “Progressive” cover for right-wing Democrats

By Patrick Martin, 17 July 2014

The four-day conference is an attempt to revive illusions in the Democratic Party and the Obama administration.

Missouri carries out its sixth execution of the year

By Kate Randall, 17 July 2014

The US Supreme Court refused to halt the execution of Missouri death row inmate John Middleton, the 25th person executed in the US in 2014.

GM withheld information about crashes tied to defective ignition switch

By Gabriel Black, 17 July 2014

Documents obtained by the New York Times show that GM withheld information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about a fatal crash tied to a faulty ignition switch.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin: The social crisis in America’s Rust Belt

By Niles Williamson, 17 July 2014

The destruction of manufacturing jobs in America’s “Rust Belt” has left Milwaukee’s workers fighting high unemployment, poverty and food insecurity.

Who ordered the water shutoffs in Detroit?

By Jake Dean, 17 July 2014

A profile of the corporate executives who sit on the seven-member Board of Water Commissioners in Detroit.

Judge says water shutoffs are bad publicity for Detroit bankruptcy plan

By Jerry White, 16 July 2014

In a degrading farce, US Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes granted a mere five minutes each for Detroit residents to beg him not to slash city workers’ retirement benefits or shut off water to tens of thousands.

Detroit retirees denounce bankruptcy plan

By our reporters, 16 July 2014

Retired city workers spoke with the WSWS outside the federal courthouse in Detroit Tuesday.

Torture and death in America’s prisons

By Andre Damon, 15 July 2014

A series of press reports document the fact that torture is widespread in America’s sprawling prison system.

Detroit protesters oppose Israeli assault on Gaza

By Tom Hall, 15 July 2014

Hundreds marched through downtown Detroit demanding an end to the Israeli bombing of Gaza.

Cybersecurity bill will expand surveillance powers of US military and intelligence agencies

By Thomas Gaist, 15 July 2014

The Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2014, bound for the Senate floor, authorizes new forms of large-scale data transfer between US corporations and the state.

Metro Washington, DC among the most unequal areas in US

By Nick Barrickman, 15 July 2014

Child poverty in the DC area has increased by nearly 25 percent since the recession began, from 8.2 to 10.7 percent today.

California drought hits state economy, pushes US food prices higher

By Evan Blake, 15 July 2014

The third year of California’s record-breaking drought has devastated the agriculturally rich Central Valley.

Mine and car job cuts drive up Australia’s unemployment

By Mike Head, 15 July 2014

Falling commodity prices and restructuring by mining and auto companies are expected to send the jobless rate even higher.

SEP campaigns against water shutoffs in Detroit

By Jake Dean, 15 July 2014

A Detroit-area teacher said, “To shut off water and give no alternative to these people, the whole world should be appalled.”

The Detroit water shutoffs: A social crime

By Lawrence Porter—Chairman of the Detroit Workers Committee, 15 July 2014

Up to 150,000 households—behind on their bills by as little as two months, or $150—have been targeted for water shutoffs.

The CIA spying scandal and the disintegration of American democracy

By Tom Carter, 14 July 2014

The Obama administration’s refusal to bring charges underscores the reality, behind the trappings of democracy, of de facto rule by an unelected and authoritarian military-intelligence apparatus.

Obama aides, Republicans push US border crackdown

By Patrick Martin, 14 July 2014

Both the Obama administration and leading Republicans are demanding more police and detention centers and faster deportation of immigrant children coming across the border.

Six family members murdered in suburban Houston, Texas

By David Walsh, 14 July 2014

Six members of the Stay family, including four children, were shot in the back of the head while they lay on the floor of their house in Spring, Texas.

Florida carries out its sixth execution of 2014

By Kate Randall, 14 July 2014

Eddie Wayne Davis’s execution was the sixth in the state of Florida this year and the 24th carried out nationwide.

After string of shootings, Albuquerque Police Department purchases hundreds more assault rifles

By D. Lencho, 14 July 2014

The Albuquerque Police Department has agreed to purchase at least 350 additional AR-15 assault rifles, the type of weapon used in the killing of a homeless man that sparked nationwide outrage.

Woman jailed under new Tennessee law criminalizing the use of narcotics while pregnant

By Matthew MacEgan, 14 July 2014

Mallory Loyola became the first victim of the law last week and is being held in a county jail just days after giving birth.

Teamsters shut down truckers strike at southern California ports

By Gabriel Black, 14 July 2014

A largely ceremonial strike by port truck drivers was ended in Los Angeles and Long Beach over the weekend with a deal brokered by local Democratic Party politicians with the Teamsters union.

Atlantic City, New Jersey casino to close, sign of worsening US jobs crisis

By Philip Guelpa, 14 July 2014

The owners of the Trump Plaza resort casino in Atlantic City announced on Saturday that it would close in September, laying off approximately 1,000 workers.

SEP campaign against Detroit water shutoffs evokes warm response from Chrysler workers

By our reporters, 14 July 2014

“They treat people like animals in Detroit,” a worker said. “In here it’s the same; you’re like a robot.”

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin sentenced to 10 years in prison

By Tom Hall, 12 July 2014

Nagin, infamous for his callous conduct during and after Hurricane Katrina, was sentenced to ten years in prison on 20 corruption counts.

New York transit agency demands concessions from Long Island Railroad workers

By Alan Whyte, 12 July 2014

The LIRR, the largest US commuter rail line, faces a July 20 strike deadline.

Lowell, Mass: Seven die in apartment building destroyed by fire

By John Marion and Kate Randall, 12 July 2014

Witnesses to the early morning blaze described a terrifying scene, with people dropping young children to the street and adults jumping from windows to avoid the flames.

California’s whooping cough epidemic

By Henry Allen, 12 July 2014

A growing number of whooping cough infections could be the start of the worst pertussis outbreak in 70 years.

“Not one child should go without water”

Detroit residents denounce water shutoffs

By our reporters, 12 July 2014

Detroit's Water and Sewerage Department announced it would press ahead with plans to shut off water for commercial properties and residents.

Obama plans deployment of troops, drones along US-Mexico border

By Patrick Martin, 11 July 2014

Responding to Texas Governor Rick Perry, President Obama said he was open to suggestions to send National Guard troops and drones to the US border with Mexico.

German government demands departure of US spy chief

By Peter Schwarz, 11 July 2014

The exposure of a second US spy in Germany in five days has unleashed a major scandal.

Snowden documents show NSA spied on prominent Muslim-Americans

By Thomas Gaist, 10 July 2014

The leaks show that the surveillance apparatus collects information on anyone even remotely associated with opposition to the government’s repressive agenda.

Airport security agency bans powerless electronic devices on flights to US

By Thomas Gaist, 10 July 2014

Passengers with phones that do not power on will be prevented from boarding or have their devices confiscated.

Virginia man coerced into undergoing vasectomy as part of plea agreement

By Ed Hightower, 10 July 2014

The plea deal is a reactionary development that echoes the eugenics movement of the 1920s.

“It is inhumane”

Detroit water shutoffs hit families, ill and elderly residents

By a WSWS reporting team, 10 July 2014

Thousands more Detroit families had their water shut off this week as part of the city administration’s plan to cut service to 150,000 households who are overdue on their water bills.

The US Supreme Court and religion

By Tom Carter, 9 July 2014

The US Supreme Court’s recent decisions upholding the “religious liberty” of corporations and other institutions signal a more aggressive repudiation of the country’s democratic and secular traditions.

Obama calls for $3.7 billion border security “surge”

By Andre Damon, 9 July 2014

The funds will go toward building detention facilities, stepping up border checkpoints, and expanding the domestic use of military surveillance drones.

Violence in Chicago: A symptom of social breakdown

By Kristina Betinis, 9 July 2014

While the local and national media has reported on years-long epidemic of youth violence, there has been no effort to examine the deeper causes of this human tragedy in America’s third most populous city.

Truck drivers on strike at two California ports

By Marc Wells, 9 July 2014

Truck drivers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach went on an indefinite strike Monday morning protesting against unfair practices, including lower than minimum wage pay, intimidation and retaliatory firing.

United Airlines to outsource 630 jobs

By Shannon Jones, 9 July 2014

The move by United takes place amidst a wave of cost-cutting by major airlines.

Video: Detroit residents speak out on water shutoffs

By Tim Rivers, 9 July 2014

World Socialist Web Site reporters spoke to Detroit residents as they waited in line at water payment centers, doing their best to get running water turned back on to their homes.

The 17,000 Dow: Surging towards a disaster

By Nick Beams, 7 July 2014

Explosive contradictions in global finance are building up as stock markets continue to rise.

Amid anti-immigrant protests in California

Obama announces increased border security and stepped-up deportations

By Norisa Diaz, 7 July 2014

Obama vowed last week to bypass Congress to increase spending on border policing and deportations.

Philadelphia house fire kills four children

By Sandy English, 7 July 2014

The fire was so fast-moving that neither neighbors nor firefighters, who arrived on the scene within three minutes, were able to rescue the four victims.

California police officer savagely beats great-grandmother

By Gabriel Black, 7 July 2014

Last week, a California Highway Patrol officer was caught on tape repeatedly punching an unarmed woman in the face.

”I take my elderly aunt four buckets of water a day”

Detroit residents and water workers speak out against water shutoffs

By Muhammad Khan and Shannon Jones, 7 July 2014

The city of Detroit is racing ahead with its plans to shut off water to some 150,000 families who cannot afford to pay their water bills.

US Supreme Court backs Christian college against contraception mandate

By Tom Carter, 5 July 2014

On Thursday, in the wake of its decision in the Hobby Lobby case, the US Supreme Court issued an order that further undermines workers’ rights and the separation of church and state.

Syracuse, New York’s Fowler High School to be “reformed”

The militarization of American public schools

By Steve Filips and Don Barrett, 5 July 2014

The high school will be closed and transformed into an academy focusing on training students for the military.

US general suggests re-invasion of Iraq if “national interests drive us there”

By James Cogan, 4 July 2014

Planning is being made for a full-scale intervention into what is a cauldron of conflicts and intrigues.

A revealing speech by US Fed chief Yellen

By Nick Beams, 4 July 2014

The US Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen has committed to continuing the policies that are preparing the conditions for another financial crash.

Al Gore’s strange meeting in Canberra: More at stake than the carbon tax

By Peter Symonds, 4 July 2014

Given Clive Palmer’s pivotal role in the new Australian parliament, the White House requires a line of communication and leverage—something that Gore has conveniently provided.

Obama-appointed civil liberties board upholds mass internet data collection by NSA

By Thomas Gaist, 3 July 2014

The administration's “reform” panel found that NSA electronic data mining does not violate the Fourth Amendment.

Documents indicate GM tops knew of ignition defect

By Gabriel Black, 2 July 2014

New documents released by Congress indicate high-ranking GM executives knew as early as 2005 about an ignition defect tied to fatal crashes.

“We are talking about kids who are going to be affected, and the elderly”

Detroit residents call water shutoffs a “crime”

By Khara Sikhan and Zac Corrigan, 2 July 2014

The city’s drive to shut off water service to three thousand households every week is in full swing, spelling catastrophe for the approximately 150,000 Detroit households with overdue water bills.

How the charter school racket operates in Michigan

By Walter Gilberti, 2 July 2014

Over the past two decades, Michigan has become “ground zero” for the spread of for-profit charter schools.

US Supreme Court rules against SEIU in union dues case

By Tom Carter, 1 July 2014

The US Supreme Court on Monday struck down an Illinois “fair share” statute that compelled home health care workers to pay union dues even if they were not members of the union.

AFSCME union pushes through deal against Detroit city workers

By Thomas Gaist, 1 July 2014

The move confirmed the full support of the union for the Plan of Adjustment, which includes large cuts to pensions and retiree health care benefits.

The Internet’s Own Boy: Documentary about “hacktivist” Aaron Swartz

By Nick Barrickman, 1 July 2014

The film documents the life of Aaron Swartz, the open Internet activist and web technology prodigy who committed suicide after being hounded by the US government.

Obama seeks $2 billion to speed up deportation of child immigrants

By Patrick Martin, 30 June 2014

The White House will ask Congress Monday for $2 billion to detain and deport Central American child migrants in south Texas.

Workers on Detroit water shutoffs: “They are making it so you can’t live”

By Shannon Jones, 30 June 2014

Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr is backing a brutal shutoff policy aimed at residents who are behind in their water bills.

How Bill Clinton cashed in after leaving White House

By Gabriel Black, 30 June 2014

Bill Clinton has made millions of dollars speaking before Wall Street bankers.

Pennsylvania budget: Layoffs, cuts to education and pensions

By Samuel Davidson, 30 June 2014

Governor Tom Corbett is demanding pensions be cut and liquor stores privatized as part of any budget deal.

Maryland governor blocks strike by Johns Hopkins Hospital workers

By Nick Barrickman, 30 June 2014

Union officials welcomed the government intervention.

US Supreme Court strikes down abortion clinic “buffer zone”

By Ed Hightower and Tom Carter, 30 June 2014

The US Supreme Court last Thursday unanimously struck down a Massachusetts law that barred anyone other than patients, medical staff, police and passers-by from coming within a 35-foot radius of entrances to abortion clinics.

Blackwater mercenaries on trial in US court for 2007 Iraq massacre

By Kate Randall, 28 June 2014

The September 16, 2007 shootings by Blackwater mercenaries left 14 Iraqis dead and wounded 18 others in Baghdad’s Nisour Square.

Union-sponsored bill to fast track the firing of teachers signed by California governor

By Alan Gilman, 28 June 2014

The legislation signed by Democratic Governor Jerry Brown will be used to remove better-paid, more experienced teachers.

Education “reform” group to file lawsuit against teacher tenure in New York State

By Jason Melanovski, 28 June 2014

Following the California court ruling striking down teacher tenure in the state, a corporate-backed education “reform” organization is preparing to file a lawsuit challenging New York state tenure and seniority laws for teachers.

Inequality doubles in the US between 2003-2013

By Gabriel Black, 27 June 2014

A report by a group of University of Michigan researchers documents that inequality has nearly doubled in the US since 2003, with the median American household losing 36 percent of its wealth.

Pennsylvania school district contract to cut 15 percent of teachers

By Phyllis Scherrer, 27 June 2014

The Wilkinsburg Education Association has accepted a contract that will lay off 15 percent of district teachers.

Sister of man fatally shot by Albuquerque Police: “They treated him like a terrorist”

By a WSWS reporter, 26 June 2014

The WSWS talked to Tammy Redwine, whose brother was fatally shot by Albuquerque Police on March 25.

US Supreme Court rejects unlimited warrantless cell phone searches

By Ed Hightower, 26 June 2014

The decision may appear to be a triumph for democratic rights and electronic privacy, but this interpretation is erroneous.

Multi-millionaire Hillary Clinton denies she is part of the “truly well-off”

By Andre Damon, 25 June 2014

Bill and Hillary Clinton have earned more than $100 million in speaking fees from corporations and business foundations.

Albuquerque, New Mexico rally to protest police brutality

By WSWS reporters, 25 June 2014

The Albuquerque police department has carried out a series of fatal shootings over the past several years.

New revelations of neglect and coverup at US veterans health care facilities

By Kate Randall, 25 June 2014

Psychiatric patients languished for years without treatment at one VA facility, while “deceased” records were removed from files at another so veterans would not be counted as having died waiting for care.

Energy Department report calls New Mexico radiation leak “preventable”

By Stuart Winter and Lencho Moro, 25 June 2014

The report concluded that key equipment was poorly maintained and that workers were intimidated to prevent them from raising safety issues.

Washington’s persecution of immigrant children

By Bill Van Auken, 24 June 2014

The Obama White House has responded to a humanitarian crisis of its own making with the methods of police repression.

Journalist Glenn Greenwald speaks in California

By Tom Carter, 24 June 2014

Greenwald’s speeches on the West Coast exhibit many of the same strengths—and some of the same limitations—as his recent book No Place to Hide, which the journalist is touring to promote.

Detroit workers oppose return of US forces to Iraq

By a WSWS reporting team, 23 June 2014

Obama’s announcement that the US will send military “advisors” to Iraq has prompted broad popular opposition.

Mass graves of undocumented migrants found in Texas

By Gabriel Black, 23 June 2014

Anthropologists found dozens of bodies, some of which were stacked on top of one another or wrapped in trash bags, at a south Texas cemetery.

Fifty years since the murder of the Mississippi civil rights workers

By Fred Mazelis, 23 June 2014

James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner sacrificed their lives in the struggle for democratic rights and social equality.

The Metropolitan Opera’s censorship of The Death of Klinghoffer

By David Walsh, 21 June 2014

The opera company’s decision to cancel its global video and radio transmission of John Adams’ work is a scandalous and cowardly capitulation to right-wing forces.