US Politics

US Senator McCain calls police on anti-Kissinger protesters

By Patrick Martin, 31 January 2015

Official Washington can defend the crimes of US imperialism only with repression.

Obama administration moves to open US coastlines to offshore drilling

By Nick Barrickman, 31 January 2015

In a major giveaway to US energy corporations, the Department of the Interior announced that it would open a large section of the Atlantic coast to oil and gas drilling for the first time.

Koch brothers pledge to spend nearly $900 million on 2016 US elections

By Patrick Martin, 29 January 2015

Charles and David Koch plan to spend more money to elect right-wing candidates in 2016 than either the Democratic or Republican parties.

Politically driven hysteria over the New York City snowstorm that wasn’t

By Jerry White, 29 January 2015

The residents of New York City were subjected to warnings of a “historic snowstorm,” declarations of states of emergency and a virtual lockdown for what turned out to be a few inches of snow.

Obama’s State of the Union and the fraud of Kshama Sawant

By Eric London, 29 January 2015

The Seattle City Council member's response to Obama’s State of the Union address is a defense of US imperialism and the Democratic Party.

US announces plan to ration health care under Medicare

By Kate Randall, 28 January 2015

The realignment of Medicare more directly with the profit dictates of the market will become the model for the American health care system as a whole.

Concerns over Fed tightening as deflation fears grow

By Nick Beams, 28 January 2015

William White, former chief economist at the Bank for International Settlements, declared, “We’re seeing true currency wars and everybody is doing it, and I have no idea where this is going to end.”

Whistleblower who exposed CIA nuclear sabotage operation convicted under Espionage Act

By Thomas Gaist, 28 January 2015

Jeffrey Sterling faces a possible maximum sentence of nearly 100 years for allegedly speaking to investigative reporter James Risen about covert operations targeting Iran.

New figures show continued decline in US union membership

By Shannon Jones, 28 January 2015

The unionization rate in America is at its lowest point in 100 years.

Republican presidential campaign begins: A mixture of corporate cash and far-right politics

By Patrick Martin, 27 January 2015

The first significant events in the campaign for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination took place this weekend in California and Iowa.

Top New York state Democrat indicted for corruption

By Philip Guelpa, 26 January 2015

Sheldon Silver, Speaker of the New York State Assembly, was indicted for accepting bribes and influence peddling.

New Senate Intelligence Committee chair moves to suppress CIA torture report

By Patrick Martin, 24 January 2015

The new Republican chairman of the committee has demanded the Obama administration return all copies of the report on CIA torture.

Mounting hunger in western Wisconsin

By Gary Joad, 24 January 2015

Hunger among working poor families continues to grow in western Wisconsin, where lumber and manufacturing remain deeply depressed.

Obama’s State of Delusion

By Patrick Martin and Joseph Kishore, 22 January 2015

The delusional character of Obama’s State of the Union address on Tuesday is perhaps matched only by its presentation by the media and supporters of the Democratic Party.

Delusion and deception in Obama’s State of Union

By Patrick Martin, 21 January 2015

The State of the Union speech delivered by President Obama Tuesday night painted a picture of America and the world that is the diametric opposite of the real conditions of social crisis, economic breakdown and imperialist war.

US education secretary promises no let-up in standardized testing

By Michelle Ryan, 20 January 2015

In an address to educators at a Washington, D.C. elementary school, US education secretary Arne Duncan defended the Obama administration’s policy of scapegoating teachers.

The coming fight over wages in the US

By Jerry White, 19 January 2015

Several leading newspapers and think tanks have pointed to the long-term stagnation of wages as the catalyst for a potentially explosive movement over wages by the working class.

Behind whitewash of CIA spying: The trail leads to the White House

By Thomas Gaist and Patrick Martin, 17 January 2015

CIA Director John Brennan discussed plans to investigate the Senate Intelligence Committee staff with White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough.

Spending by outside groups in US Senate elections has doubled since 2010

By E.P. Bannon, 17 January 2015

Campaign spending by outside groups like super PACs has doubled since the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court ruling.

Federal judge cuts BP oil spill fine by billions of dollars

By Tom Hall, 17 January 2015

BP’s maximum fine for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill will be $13.7 billion, far lower than the $18 billion fine called for by prosecutors.

White House to draft Iraq-Syria war resolution

By Patrick Martin, 16 January 2015

The Authorization for the Use of Military Force would be the basis for a further escalation of US military operations in the Middle East.

Pennsylvania’s new Democratic Party governor prepares austerity measures

By Douglas Lyons, 14 January 2015

Governor-elect Tom Wolf is preparing reductions in spending on public education and other social programs along with deep cuts to the pensions and health benefits.

Justice Department considering felony charges against Petraeus

By Patrick Martin, 13 January 2015

The leaked report is another sign of a subterranean struggle within the US military-intelligence apparatus.

Elizabeth Warren speaks at AFL-CIO meeting

By Tom Hall, 13 January 2015

Warren’s speech Wednesday at the National Summit to Raise Wages was aimed at bolstering the Democrats’ flagging electoral support in the face of its right-wing record.

White House rejects petitions to fire prosecutors who drove Internet activist Aaron Swartz to suicide

By Nick Barrickman, 12 January 2015

The Obama administration had earlier defended the judicial hounding of the Internet pioneer as “a good use of prosecutorial discretion.”

Union shuts down strike, pushes sellout of Maryland sanitation workers

By Todd Mason and Nick Barrickman, 12 January 2015

Nearly 100 Maryland sanitation workers returned to work last Thursday after their union agreed to a federal mediator’s request to end the strike without securing any of the workers’ basic demands.

At Michigan auto factory, Obama says more “sacrifice” needed for economic turnaround

By Jerry White, 8 January 2015

President Obama pointed to the auto industry—where labor costs have been slashed by nearly a third over the last decade—as the model for building America’s “middle class.”

New Congress targets Social Security disability benefits

By Andre Damon, 8 January 2015

The 114th US Congress completed its first two days by preparing the passage of regressive, anti-social policies.

Obama backs beleaguered Mexican president

By Bill Van Auken, 7 January 2015

Facing mounting calls for his resignation over the massacre of Mexican students, Peña Nieto discussed security, economic integration and immigration in a trip to Washington yesterday.

House Republicans re-elect Congressional whip with ties to neo-Nazi group

By Andre Damon, 7 January 2015

The appointment of Steve Scalse is a clear statement that a past relationship with a white supremacist organization does not disqualify someone from holding a top post in Congress.

As 114th Congress convenes

Washington resumes work on right-wing agenda

By Patrick Martin, 5 January 2015

The Obama administration and the new Republican majority in Congress have begun discussions on an agenda of militarism abroad and further attacks on working people at home.

Mario Cuomo and the decay of American liberalism

By Fred Mazelis, 5 January 2015

The former Democratic governor of New York established a record while in office that had nothing in common with his high-flown speeches about compassion and reform.

US imposes new sanctions on North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 3 January 2015

The entire Sony hacking affair has the character of a US concoction deliberately designed to heighten tensions on the Korean peninsula.

US House majority whip spoke at white supremacist conference

By Gabriel Black, 31 December 2014

Representative Steven Scalise, the third most powerful GOP member in Congress, spoke at an international conference of neo-Nazis and white supremacists in 2002.

Christmas for Wall Street: Dow hits record 18,000 points

By Jerry White, 24 December 2014

While tens of millions of Americans face a holiday season of economic insecurity and rising household debt, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stock index hit a record high on Tuesday.

US escalates campaign against North Korea

By Patrick Martin, 20 December 2014

An FBI declaration and a White House press conference ratcheted up the pressure on the isolated Stalinist dictatorship, which now faces unspecified US retaliation for an alleged hacking attack on Sony Pictures.

After announcing "normalization" with Cuba, Obama slaps sanctions on Venezuela

By Bill Van Auken, 20 December 2014

The new sanctions shed considerable light on the real nature of Washington’s move to “normalize” ties with Cuba.

Obama “task force” on policing: A cover for militarization

By Andre Damon, 20 December 2014

Far from preventing police murders and holding the culprits accountable, Obama’s panel will seek to acclimate the population to an increasingly violent and militarized police force.

US-Cuban rapprochement: The lessons of history

By Bill Van Auken and David North, 19 December 2014

Hailed by governments and corporations as a historic turning point, the move to “normalize” US-Cuban ties raises profound historical questions for the working class and the socialist movement.

US unions back historic assault on workers’ pensions

By Jerry White, 17 December 2014

Coming on the heels of the Detroit bankruptcy, the pension “reform” passed as part of last week’s bipartisan budget resolution will open the floodgates to the gutting of retirement benefits for millions of workers.

Obama CIA director defends “enhanced interrogation” torture program

By Niles Williamson and Joseph Kishore, 12 December 2014

CIA Director John Brennan gave an extraordinary press conference at CIA headquarters on Thursday, outlining the Obama administration’s response to the Senate Intelligence Committee report on torture.

Obama embraces Republican budget bill

By Patrick Martin, 12 December 2014

The White House said Obama would sign the bill funding the federal government, despite a provision that removes even the most limited restraints on Wall Street speculation.

US forces on global alert ahead of CIA torture report

By Patrick Martin, 9 December 2014

The CIA is backing a media campaign against the Senate report, warning that even a limited exposure of its crimes at secret prisons will produce a worldwide backlash against the US government.

US Supreme Court considers limits to online speech

By Ed Hightower, 6 December 2014

In oral arguments on a case involving Facebook “threats,” the Roberts Court indicated it is seriously considering a major attack on freedom of speech and expression.

Former Washington mayor Marion Barry mourned in US ruling class circles

By Fred Mazelis, 29 November 2014

Barry typified the layer that came to prominence in the ebb and decline of the mass civil rights movement.

Meryl Streep, Stevie Wonder receive Presidential Medal of Freedom from Obama

By David Walsh, 26 November 2014

The president bestowed America’s highest civilian honor on 18 politicians, artists, scientists and others in a ceremony Monday afternoon.

In Ukraine, US Vice President Biden issues new threats against Russia

By Niles Williamson, 24 November 2014

Biden traveled to Ukraine to shore up the right-wing regime in Kiev and threaten further economic sanctions against Russia.

Senate hearings on Wall Street crimes: The bankers rule

By Barry Grey, 24 November 2014

The two hearings were exercises in political theater, with politicians posturing as critics of Wall Street and bank executives and Fed officials making little effort to conceal their contempt.

Wall Street banks and commodities fraud

By Joseph Kishore, 21 November 2014

A new US Senate report documents yet another aspect of the criminality that pervades the American and global financial system.

James Risen on war and the US financial aristocracy

Pay Any Price: Greed, Power, and Endless War
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014

By Eric London, 19 November 2014

James Risen’s latest book details crimes committed by the Bush and Obama administrations under the auspices of the “war on terror” and the profits made by corporate interests.

Obama at APEC: US steps up economic offensive against China

By Nick Beams, 14 November 2014

US trade policy is based on a drive to secure domination of the world economy, using both military and economic means.

Obama-Xi talks underscore US war threat in Asia

By Patrick Kelly, 13 November 2014

New military “confidence-building mechanisms” resolve none of the issues underlying Washington’s confrontation of China.

ASEAN summit opens in Myanmar

By Joseph Santolan, 13 November 2014

The summit’s first day was marked by an avoidance of the question of the South China Sea.

US federal appeals court upholds state bans on same-sex marriages

By John Andrews, 11 November 2014

In a reactionary ruling, a federal court of appeals has struck down lower court decisions upholding same-sex marriages, setting the stage for a US Supreme Court ruling.

New York Governor Cuomo wins reelection in record low turnout

By Fred Mazelis, 7 November 2014

The election reflected workers’ growing disgust with the Democrats, as well as the increasingly depraved character of big business politics.

Republicans, Obama prepare post-election escalation of war, social attacks

By Patrick Martin, 6 November 2014

The measures being discussed in Washington will fuel corporate profits and the wealth of the billionaires at the expense of working people.

The Democratic Party implosion

By Joseph Kishore, 6 November 2014

The 2014 US midterm election results are a reflection of widespread disaffection and hostility toward the Obama administration and the entire political system.

Minimum wage increase passes in five states

By our reporter, 6 November 2014

The votes counter the claim that the defeat of the Democrats is the product of a swing to the right in the American population.

Republicans win control of Senate in US congressional elections

By Patrick Martin, 5 November 2014

The result is a debacle for the Democratic Party and the Obama administration and presages a further shift to the right in official Washington.

Another shakeup hits US nuclear missile command

By Bill Van Auken, 5 November 2014

The firing of two commanders and the administrative punishment of a third follow a long string of crises and scandals in a command whose job is nuclear annihilation.

The political issues posed by the US midterm elections

By Patrick Martin, 4 November 2014

By agreement between the Democrats and Republicans, there has been no discussion in the election campaign of the stepped-up program of war, austerity and attacks on democratic rights that will unfold after November 4.

Obama in Detroit

By Andre Damon, 3 November 2014

The empty and cynical character of the election was epitomized by President Barack Obama’s campaign appearance Saturday in Detroit.

Report to UN condemns US government’s “international criminal program of torture”

By Thomas Gaist, 1 November 2014

The report to the UN Committee Against Torture calls for criminal prosecutions of all top US military and civilian officials implicated in the post-9/11 torture regime.

US election campaign staggers to the finish line

By Patrick Martin, 1 November 2014

Only one thing about the election is certain: whatever the division of power in the US Senate, House of Representatives, state governorships and state legislatures, the official two-party system will continue its inexorable shift to the right.

Republican-led purge of voter rolls targets seven million people

By our reporter, 1 November 2014

An investigative report by Al Jazeera America reveals that 27 state governments, most of them Republican-led, have joined in an effort to disqualify seven million registered voters.

Obama uses Ebola doctors as campaign prop

By Patrick Martin, 30 October 2014

The media event at the White House, five days before the congressional election, was aimed at giving US imperialism a “humanitarian” face.

New book sheds further light on US government protection of ex-Nazis

By Thomas Gaist, 29 October 2014

US imperialism recruited thousands of Nazis after World War II, as detailed in a new book by New York Times journalist Eric Lichtblau.

The $2 billion Congress

By Andre Damon, 28 October 2014

The US government is not only controlled by, but increasingly composed of, the extremely rich.

The US elections and the American plutocracy

By Patrick Martin and Barry Grey, 27 October 2014

Popular alienation from the political system coincides with the ever more naked domination of both parties and manipulation of elections by a handful of multi-millionaires and billionaires.

Blackwater mercenaries convicted for role in 2007 Iraq massacre

By Thomas Gaist, 23 October 2014

The crimes of the Blackwater mercenaries were a product of the illegal invasion of Iraq by the US government, for which the entire political and military establishment is guilty.

The US midterm elections and the bankruptcy of the capitalist system

By Joseph Kishore, 17 October 2014

The US midterm elections are taking place six years after the election of Obama, hailed as a “transformative” candidate who would alter the course of American politics.

CIA warned arming Syrian “rebels” unlikely to succeed

By Bill Van Auken, 17 October 2014

The intelligence agency concluded on the basis of decades of experience that its arming of US-backed insurgents seldom proved successful.

White House publicity stunt offers no relief to long-term jobless workers

By Jerry White, 16 October 2014

With the mid-term elections approaching, the meeting was designed to counter the public perception that the administration is indifferent to the plight of the long-term unemployed.

Illinois governor race shows bipartisan lineup against workers

By Kristina Betinis, 13 October 2014

The unions are backing Democratic Governor Quinn, who has attacked pensions and teachers.

Court decisions stop voter ID requirements in Wisconsin, Texas

By Patrick Martin, 11 October 2014

The judicial actions block laws that would have prevented as many as 1.1 million people from voting on November 4.

US Supreme Court opens new term

By John Andrews, 11 October 2014

The Court declined to hear cases overturning bans on same-sex marriage, then held arguments on police stops and withholding pay for time spent clearing security.

“Chicago Socialist Campaign” seeks to head off opposition to Democrats

By Marcus Day and Jerry White, 11 October 2014

Jorge Mújica, a longtime Democratic Party activist, is running as an “independent socialist” candidate in next February’s election for Chicago City Council.

The Ben Affleck-Bill Maher-Sam Harris dispute: Anti-Muslim bigotry and American imperialist policy

By David Walsh, 9 October 2014

The argument that erupted on the October 3 edition of HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” was revealing.

Biden’s admission: US allies armed ISIS

By Patrick Martin, 6 October 2014

Responding to a question at a Harvard forum, the US vice president said Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates supplied arms to the Islamic fundamentalist group the US is now bombing.

Australia, US back sham election staged by Fiji military regime

By Frank Gaglioti, 4 October 2014

The major powers are seeking to forge stronger ties with Fiji as a means of undercutting China’s influence in the South Pacific.

India tilts still closer to Washington

By Deepal Jayasekera and Keith Jones, 3 October 2014

During his summit meeting with Obama, Prime Minister Modi signaled his readiness to align India still more closely with the US’s predatory global agenda.

Protests and sick-outs continue in Colorado against “patriotic” curriculum

By D. Lencho, 1 October 2014

Teachers outside Denver, Colorado called in sick September 29, closing two high schools amidst continuing protests against the school board’s drive to rewrite the US history curriculum.

Recordings show Federal Reserve covered up Wall Street crimes

By Gabriel Black, 1 October 2014

The tapes were made public by a former Federal Reserve regulator who said she was fired because she would not “falsify” her findings.

Obama’s “best of all possible worlds”

By Andre Damon, 27 September 2014

Obama’s claim that “this is the best time in human history to be born,” is a self-deluded absurdity.

US generals challenge Obama on ground troops in Iraq, Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 20 September 2014

In a series of statements contradicting the president’s vow of no new “ground war” in Iraq, the Pentagon’s top brass has come close to insubordination.

Virginia officials announce massive state budget cuts

By Nick Barrickman, 20 September 2014

The deal would allow for the cutting of over $500 million in the next two years.

Ukrainian president delivers bellicose speech to the US Congress

By Niles Williamson, 19 September 2014

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko delivered an address to a joint session of Congress in which he called for increased economic and military assistance to aid in a “war for the Free World.”

The NFL’s Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson—and the moral high ground of American corporations

By David Walsh, 19 September 2014

In response to recent incidents involving US professional football players Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson, a number of large corporations have expressed “concern” or even withdrawn sponsorships.

US House approves Obama plan for military intervention in Syria

By Patrick Martin, 18 September 2014

The bipartisan vote, with majorities of both Republicans and Democrats supporting the White House, is a major step towards a wider war in the Middle East.

US appeals court approves Wisconsin voter ID law for November election

By Barry Grey, 18 September 2014

The raft of laws in Wisconsin and other states imposing photo ID requirements and other restrictions on access to the ballot represents an attack on the fundamental democratic right to vote.

US Congress to vote to fund Syrian “rebels”

By Patrick Martin, 15 September 2014

The House will act on Monday, followed shortly by the Senate, with both parties expected to provide top-heavy majorities for stepped-up US intervention in the Syrian civil war.

Rhode Island pension-cutter wins Democratic primary

By John Marion, 15 September 2014

State Treasurer Gina Raimondo, a former hedge fund manger with ties to the ultra-right Manhattan Institute, has made a national reputation as an enemy of public employees.

Senate hearing whitewashes militarization of American police

By Tom Hall and E. P. Bannon, 12 September 2014

Tuesday’s hearing was aimed at reinforcing and intensifying the federal government’s arming of police forces under the guise of a “review.”

Regional authority a prelude for privatization of Detroit water system

By Jerry White, 12 September 2014

The Detroit bankruptcy and moves toward the privatization of the water department are fully backed by the Obama administration, which has encouraged cities to enter “public-private partnerships” to fill the gap from reduced federal and state funding.

US election campaign: Two right-wing parties offer no solution to social crisis

By Patrick Martin, 3 September 2014

There is growing popular disillusionment with both the Democrats and the Republicans and the political institutions they control.

Florida Democrats nominate former Republican governor

By Patrick Martin, 28 August 2014

Once reveling in the title “chain-gang Charlie” for his savage law-and-order policies, Crist has been nominated by the Democratic Party for the upcoming gubernatorial election.

Obama administration “review” aimed at systematizing transfer of military arms to police

By Andre Damon, 25 August 2014

The White House’s “review” of its programs to arm local law enforcement will serve to intensify, regularize and professionalize the militarization of domestic police.

Top US general suggests lifting ban on arms sales to Vietnam

By John Roberts, 25 August 2014

Ending or easing the US ban on arms sales would be a significant further step in closer US ties with the Vietnamese regime—directed against China.