North America

California’s San Onofre nuclear plant to shut down permanently

By Richard Vargas, 11 June 2013

The plant has been inoperative for more than a year due to radioactive steam leakage.

Nashville Symphony threatened by foreclosure

By Fred Mazelis, 11 June 2013

The Nashville Symphony Orchestra is the latest prominent US musical institution to face the threat of dissolution, as its biggest creditor, the Bank of America, has begun foreclosure proceedings.

Obama reshuffles national security staff

By Alex Lantier, 6 June 2013

Obama announced Wednesday that his national security advisor, Thomas Donilon, will be replaced by the current US ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice.

Bradley Manning’s supervisors testify in third day of court martial

By Naomi Spencer, 6 June 2013

The government is determined to connect Manning to Al Qaeda, arguing that because the WikiLeaks web site is publicly available to anyone, Manning must have intended to “aid the enemy.”

Worker dies from extreme heat at Georgia auto parts plant

By Kristina Betinis and Jerry White, 6 June 2013

Teresa Pickard, a 42-year-old Sewon auto parts worker, died May 29 after working on a weld line in the LaGrange plant.

Hamtramck latest Michigan city declared in “financial emergency”

By Bryan Dyne, 6 June 2013

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder took the first step in installing an emergency manager for Hamtramck, the small enclave surrounded by Detroit.

Canada: Growing evidence Conservatives illegally suppressed vote in 2011 federal election

By Carl Bronski, 6 June 2013

A Federal Court judge has found that a nationwide voter suppression campaign was initiated from the Conservative Party’s central database during the 2011 federal election.

Unemployment, lack of education lead to higher US mortality rate

By Jake Dean, 6 June 2013

A new report finds that unemployment is one of the leading factors behind the growing gap in mortality rates between educated and non-educated white women in America.

US: Kansas legislature passes budget slashing education

By Matt Sloan, 6 June 2013

Among other measures, the budget will gouge the state’s universities, colleges, and community colleges of tens of millions of dollars.

US Supreme Court allows police to take DNA samples of arrestees

By Joseph Kishore, 4 June 2013

The US Supreme Court decision is a major attack on the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.

Bradley Manning’s court martial begins

By Naomi Spencer, 4 June 2013

After 1,100 days in prison, Army private Bradley Manning faced a military court martial Monday. Day one of the trial was characterized by government secrecy, vindictiveness, and lies.

School district of Philadelphia passes “doomsday” austerity budget

By Nick Barrickman, 4 June 2013

Under a plan approved May 30, Philadelphia schools will be deprived of many needed essentials, including learning programs, supplies and staff.

Connecticut legislature nears passage of austerity budget

By Dorian Griscom, 4 June 2013

Connecticut’s Democratic governor and state legislature are in the final stages of drafting a state budget that will cut nearly $2 billion in social spending over the next two years.

Patriot Coal bankruptcy approved, thousands of retirees to lose health care

By Clement Daly, 4 June 2013

Patriot Coal has been granted permission to tear up its collective bargaining agreements with the United Mine Workers and escape its obligations to provide health care to its retirees.

Detroit emergency manager threatens sale of all cultural treasures

By Bryan Dyne, 4 June 2013

In line with his earlier appraisal of the value of the works at the Detroit Institute of Arts, Kevyn Orr is now determining whether the city should sell off every other public asset.

US banks post record profits in first quarter

By Nick Barrickman, 30 May 2013

US banks posted a record $40.3 billion in the first quarter of 2013, according to a report by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Nine of Louisiana’s ten public hospitals to be privatized

By E.P. Bannon, 30 May 2013

In a state with one of the highest poverty rates in the country, the privatizations of public hospitals will have disastrous consequences for the poor and uninsured.

US officials cover up evidence of radioactive leak in Washington

By J. E. Noeli and Hector Cordon, 30 May 2013

The US Department of Energy and a private contractor managing waste at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation suppressed evidence of radioactive leakage for a year.

Victimized Illinois teacher denounces attack on education in YouTube video

By Jake Dean, 28 May 2013

Ellie Rubenstein, a teacher from Highland Park, Illinois, submitted her resignation in a speech on YouTube last week.

California: Police confiscate cellphones of witnesses after beating man to death

By Tom Carter, 28 May 2013

Nine police officers beat an unarmed man to death in Bakersfield, California, and then demanded that eyewitnesses turn over cellphones they had used to record the beating.

Toronto elite seeking to jettison right-wing populist mayor

By Dylan Lubao, 28 May 2013

Toronto’s big business elite has turned on Rob Ford—the city’s right-wing populist mayor and their designated hatchet man in imposing social spending cuts and concessionary contracts on city workers.

More revelations of Justice Department crackdown on the press

By Ed Hightower, 24 May 2013

The Obama administration’s investigation into a leak to James Rosen, the chief Washington correspondent of Fox News, extends well beyond what was originally thought.

“I tell my people…we can never make enough profit”

Caterpillar CEO defends wage-cutting

By Niles Williamson, 24 May 2013

Explaining why he is seeking to impose wage cuts of up to 50 percent, Caterpillar CEO Doug Oberhelman explained that his corporation could never make enough profits.

US housing distress deepens for renters

By Debra Watson, 24 May 2013

Today more than half of all renter households pay more than 30 percent of their income for housing, double the rate in 1960 when one in four renters were considered cost-burdened.

Los Angeles: Newly-elected mayor promises more cuts and privatization

By Dan Conway, 24 May 2013

The election was most notable for its extremely low turnout, with only 19 percent of registered voters taking part.

SEP campaigners oppose Detroit home evictions

By a campaign team, 24 May 2013

Supporters of Socialist Equality Party Detroit mayoral candidate D’Artagnan Collier spoke this week to residents facing eviction at the Henry Street apartments.

Devastating tornado kills dozens in Oklahoma City

By Niles Williamson, 21 May 2013

On Monday afternoon, a massive tornado struck Moore, Oklahoma, leaving a mile-wide swath of devastation.

Washington’s hacking charges escalate pressure on China

By Alex Lantier, 21 May 2013

The New York Times on Monday published a front-page article reiterating unsubstantiated allegations that the Chinese military is carrying out cyberwarfare against US corporations.

New revelations of US government spying on the press

By Ed Hightower, 21 May 2013

The FBI followed and obtained emails from Fox News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen as part of an investigation of a 2009 leak of information from the State Department.

Employers to offer bare-bones coverage under health care law

By Kate Randall, 21 May 2013

US employers will be able to avoid penalties under the Obama-backed health care legislation, while offering token plans to their workforces.

Hedge funds eye Detroit for “hostile takeover”

By Zac Corrigan, 21 May 2013

Detroit’s $8.6 billion in junk bond debt is being eyed by hedge funds eager to play their part in the looting of the city.

Obama to college graduates: “No room for excuses”

By Andre Damon, 21 May 2013

US President Barack Obama used his commencement speech at Morehouse College on Sunday to insist that if young people are poor or unemployed, it’s their own fault.

House hearing whitewashes US government seizure of AP phone records

By Barry Grey, 16 May 2013

A House committee that heard testimony from Attorney General Eric Holder on Wednesday initiated a bipartisan whitewash of the virtually unprecedented assault on press freedom carried out by the Obama administration.

US Defense Department to furlough 650,000 civilian workers

By Naomi Spencer, 16 May 2013

US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Tuesday announced plans to impose 11 days of unpaid leave for most of the Pentagon’s 800,000 civilian employees beginning in July.

Union seeks sellout deal at South Milwaukee Caterpillar plant

By Niles Williamson, 16 May 2013

A week after the collapse of negotiations between Caterpillar and the United Steelworkers in South Milwaukee, the union is determined to push through a concessions contract.

Schools in Buena Vista, Michigan may reopen after board approves cuts

By Shannon Jones, 16 May 2013

The state of Michigan restored funding to the district after the school board agreed to a drastic deficit reduction plan.

Detroit’s emergency manager outlines slash and burn “restructuring” plan

By Jerry White, 14 May 2013

Kevyn Orr released a report on Monday, outlining a “comprehensive restructuring plan” for the city involving savage cuts to city workers’ jobs, wages and pensions and the elimination of services to a large section of the population.

Mother’s Day shooting in New Orleans injures 19 people

By Fred Mazelis, 14 May 2013

Eight years after Hurricane Katrina, poor and working class sections of the city remain devastated by unemployment and poverty.

Pontiac, Michigan school crisis provokes outcry from parents, teachers

By a WSWS reporting team, 14 May 2013

The district has agreed to massive budget cuts as a condition for receiving state aid.

Philadelphia mayor threatens elimination of school programs, staff

By Nick Barrickman, 14 May 2013

City officials have seized upon the school system’s $300 million budget deficit to demand further cutbacks in education.

Twenty-four dead in Mexican truck explosion

By Rafael Azul, 14 May 2013

A tanker truck carrying pressurized LP gas careened off a highway near Mexico City killing 24 people.

Congressional hearing confirms

FBI, Homeland Security withheld information on Boston bombing suspects from local, state police

By Barry Grey, 11 May 2013

The Boston police commissioner and a top Massachusetts Homeland Security official told Congress Thursday that the local and state police were never informed by the FBI or the Department of Homeland Security of multiple warnings about Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

Ontario: NDP preparing to support another Liberal austerity budget

By Keith Jones, 11 May 2013

With strong backing from the trade unions, the New Democratic Party is again preparing to enable Ontario’s minority Liberal government to impose a big business austerity budget.

Video: Detroit tenants denounce mass evictions

By Jerome White and James Brewer, 11 May 2013

Hundreds of low-income Detroit residents are being forced from their homes as part of a plan by Detroit officials to gentrify the downtown area.

Unions, ministers organize protest in Detroit over fast-food worker pay

By Shannon Jones, 11 May 2013

The Detroit protests held Friday at locations across the city shut down several fast-food restaurants.

Massachusetts high school student charged as terrorist for Facebook post

By Tom Carter, 11 May 2013

In a prosecution that has all the hallmarks of a calculated test case, teenager Cameron D’Ambrosio faces up to 20 years in prison on “terror” charges for making reference to the Boston Marathon bombings in a Facebook post.

Seattle transit agency proposes deep cuts in service

By Angelo Bosworth, 11 May 2013

Seattle’s Metro Transit plans to slash service by one third to address a $75 million funding shortfall.

Obama warns against “cynicism” at Ohio State commencement address

By Andre Damon, 7 May 2013

The US president, whose tenure in office has underscored the corporate control of both political parties, counseled students not to be “cynical” about government.

US preexisting conditions health plan closed for enrollment

By Kate Randall, 7 May 2013

An estimated 40,000 people with serious medical conditions will be turned away from a federal insurance plan that is running out of funds.

Obama education secretary, Michigan governor promote school “reform”

By Jerry White, 7 May 2013

Obama administration Education Secretary Arne Duncan joined Michigan’s Republican Governor Rick Snyder on Monday to promote the attack on teachers and public education.

US moves to expand Internet wiretaps

By Andre Damon, 30 April 2013

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is seeking to force companies such as Google, Dropbox and Facebook to create backdoors for wiretapping users’ communications.

Explosion at Detroit oil refinery raises danger of wider disaster

By Bryan Dyne, 30 April 2013

The explosion of a diesel fuel tank at the Marathon Detroit Refinery raises the specter of a larger industrial disaster in the Detroit area.

Study finds nearly half of New Yorkers living in or near poverty

By Philip Guelpa, 30 April 2013

A new report by the New York City Commission on Economic Opportunity finds that over 20 percent of the residents in America’s most populous city live in poverty.

US student loan interest rates expected to double

By Trent Novak, 30 April 2013

Beginning on July 1, interest rates on subsidized Stafford loans for college undergraduates are expected to double from 3.4 to 6.8 percent.

Teachers’ struggles escalate across Mexico

By Rafael Azul, 30 April 2013

Tens of thousands of Mexican teachers are mobilizing against education reforms that attack job security and subordinate public education to corporate interests.

University of California’s medical workers to hold strike vote

By Thomas Gaist, 30 April 2013

Thirteen-thousand patient care workers in the University of California’s medical system will vote on a possible strike starting April 30.

The Boston bombings and the roots of terror

By Bill Van Auken, 24 April 2013

Of all the possible explanations for the bombings in Boston, the least plausible is the official claim that the main suspect in the case had fallen beneath the FBI’s radar.

Canadian government unveils “terror plot” as it adopts draconian new law

By Keith Jones, 24 April 2013

Canadian authorities announced Monday afternoon they had broken up a terrorist conspiracy, just as the country’s parliament was to debate new anti-terrorism legislation that would give the state draconian new powers.

Snyder administration plot to privatize Michigan schools exposed

By Jerry White, 24 April 2013

Officials in Governor Rick Snyder’s administration have been holding secret meetings to map out a strategy to finance corporate-run schools with public funds.

350 working without a contract at Master Lock in Milwaukee

By Niles Williamson, 23 April 2013

Workers represented by the United Auto Workers (UAW) at the Master Lock facility in Milwaukee, Wisconsin have been working without a contract since April 3.

US sequester furloughs delay flights, threaten airport safety

By Kate Randall, 23 April 2013

Unpaid furloughs imposed on air traffic controllers will result in flight delays and cancellations at airports across the US.

A tale of two cities

By Barry Grey, 23 April 2013

The Boston bombings continue to dominate the American media, while the Texas fertilizer plant explosion has virtually dropped out of the news.

Boston bombing suspect gets death penalty charge

By Bill Van Auken, 23 April 2013

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19-year-old surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings, was formally charged Monday before a federal judge, who was brought to his hospital bed.

Detroit emergency manager proclaims power to end collective bargaining

By James Brewer, 23 April 2013

Emergency manager Kevyn Orr claims he is under no legal obligation to participate in bargaining with public safety employees, including police, firefighters and emergency medical responders.

Ontario Liberals to keep raising post-secondary tuition fees

By Dylan Lubao, 19 April 2013

Ontario’s NDP-backed minority Liberal government has announced plans to raise university tuition fees to $8,000 by 2016.

Child poverty in US among the highest in developed world

By Nick Barrickman, 18 April 2013

A new report by the United Nations details the growing levels of poverty facing children in the major capitalist countries, with the US ranking near the bottom on all metrics.

Media hysteria grows over Boston bombing

By Barry Grey, 18 April 2013

While the nation, including the people of Boston, have remained calm, deeply saddened and shocked by the bombings as they are, the media and their leading personnel present a picture of disorientation and panic.

Sequestration cuts hit Michigan

By Lawrence Porter, 18 April 2013

As a result of the sequester cuts signed by President Obama, $150 million will be cut from programs that particularly affect the poor in Michigan.

New York stop-and-frisk trial bares massive police abuse

By Sandy English, 18 April 2013

Plaintiffs in an ongoing federal trial have alleged that New York’s Police Department has violated the constitutional rights of millions of people in its decade-long stop-and-frisk program.

Homeless in San Diego, California

Life on the street in “America’s Finest City”

By Jake Dean and Toby Reese, 18 April 2013

San Diego, California ranks third in the nation for the number of homeless, with estimates of 10,000.

Mass layoffs in Illinois

By Shane Feratu and Jeff Lusanne, 18 April 2013

A large number of companies in Illinois have announced closures and job cuts.

The US Justice Department brief for the assassination of US citizens

Part one

By Tom Carter and Eric London, 18 April 2013

Since the publication of the white paper, leading figures in the US political establishment have declared that the asserted power to assassinate includes the power to kill US citizens on US soil.

Media rush to judgment in Boston Marathon bombing

By Barry Grey, 16 April 2013

At least three people were killed and 144 wounded, including 15 with critical injuries, by two bomb explosions in downtown Boston.

Emergency manager to impose contract on Detroit firefighters

By WSWS reporting team, 16 April 2013

Detroit firefighters will have a new contract imposed on them by emergency manager Kevyn Orr starting July 1.

US Head Start preschool program hit with sequester cuts

By Danielle DeSaxe, 16 April 2013

The Obama administration has announced that Head Start, a federally funded program that provides preschool for low-income families, will face cuts.

US Postal Service announces new attacks on workers

By James Brewer, 16 April 2013

The USPS Board of Governors announced its intention to reopen the contracts of postal workers in order to impose new wage and benefit concessions.

Obama budget slashes Social Security, Medicare

By Andre Damon, 11 April 2013

US President Barack Obama unveiled his budget proposal Wednesday, calling for a historic attack on Medicare and Social Security.

Newark, New Jersey students protest education cuts

By Dan Brennan, 11 April 2013

Hundreds of high school students in Newark, New Jersey walked out of class Tuesday to protest millions of dollars in education cuts.

What is the Common Core US education initiative?

By Allison Smith and Phyllis Scherrer, 11 April 2013

Common Core standards are being implemented in K-12 classrooms across the US this year. They have been promoted by the Obama administration, corporations and teachers’ unions.

Common Core: A California kindergarten teacher’s experience

By our reporter, 11 April 2013

A kindergarten teacher in the Long Beach Unified School District in Southern California spoke with the WSWS about the impact of the Common Core curriculum.

US states de-fund public education through expanded voucher schemes

By Zac Corrigan, 11 April 2013

Various state programs divert an ever-increasing amount of funding from the public education system to private schools.

Detroit area gas explosion reveals deadly state of pipeline infrastructure

By James Brewer, 11 April 2013

Utility company Consumers Energy released an interim report that covers up its responsibility in a recent lethal explosion.

General Motors in drive to cut skilled trades jobs in US plants

By Shannon Jones, 11 April 2013

GM is seeking to eliminate skilled and high seniority workers in order to slash costs.

Obama defends plan to cut Medicare and Social Security

By Andre Damon, 9 April 2013

After media reports that the Obama administration plans to slash Medicare and Social Security in its latest budget proposal due to be released Wednesday, government officials have been seeking to diffuse popular opposition to the cuts.

Communities across US feel impact of sequestration cuts

By Kate Randall, 9 April 2013

The effects of the sequestration order signed by President Obama on March 1 began to be felt in earnest beginning April 1.

Thousands of scientists protest US cuts to medical research

By Nick Barrickman, 9 April 2013

Up to 15,000 scientists from around the country attended Monday’s rally, which was called by the American Association for Cancer Research.

AT&T workers reject contract, face déjà vu betrayal by union

By Juan Verala Luz and Marc Wells, 9 April 2013

AT&T West workers resoundingly rejected a proposed contract that would have capped wages at $22 an hour and offered paltry health care plans.

California union supports Democratic-sponsored attack on teachers

By Juan Verala Luz and Marc Wells, 9 April 2013

Proposed California Assembly Bill 375, sponsored by Democrats and supported by the union, expedites the firing of teachers.

California governor seeks end to federal prison oversight

By Norisa Diaz, 4 April 2013

California is seeking to regain oversight of its vast prison system, arguing that it has made adequate improvements in mental health care and overcrowding.

Canada’s government suppresses scientific reporting

By Carl Bronski, 4 April 2013

Canada’s Conservative government has muzzled government scientists as part of a systematic campaign to manipulate and suppress scientific information.

Atlanta testing scandal exposes fraud of anti-public school “reform”

By Andre Damon and Barry Grey, 3 April 2013

The types of practices exposed in Atlanta are the inevitable outcome of the reactionary drive to dismantle public education in the name of “reform.”

Approval of Stockton, California bankruptcy paves way for new assault on workers’ pensions

By Gabriel Black, 2 April 2013

A federal bankruptcy judge ruled on Monday that the city of Stockton, California could proceed with the largest municipal bankruptcy in US history.

Tenants angry over New York Housing Authority’s plans to sell to developers

By Alan Whyte, 2 April 2013

Tenants in New York City public housing voiced opposition to plans to lease public land to private developers.

Obama, Republicans plot sweeping attack on Medicare

By Fred Mazelis, 30 March 2013

The plan that is being discussed would restructure Medicare to impose major increases in deductible payments on millions of beneficiaries.

Stock markets and food stamps at record highs

The two sides of the US economic “recovery”

By Kate Randall, 30 March 2013

The growth of social inequality since the 2008 financial crash is the product of definite policies pursued first under Bush and then under the Obama administration.

US Supreme Court hears arguments on gay marriage

By Barry Grey, 30 March 2013

There is a clear issue of democratic rights in the same-sex marriage question. Having said that, claims that recognition of same-sex marriage signifies a new flowering of democratic rights lack any credibility.

Convicted Ponzi schemer Madoff accuses US government of stonewalling on bank prosecutions

By Andre Damon, 30 March 2013

Bernard Madoff, who admitted in 2009 to running a multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme, has charged that the government-appointed trustee for his firm’s investors is ignoring evidence of major banks’ complicity in his activities.

Detroit’s emergency manager keeps mayor, city council on payroll

By Bryan Dyne and Shannon Jones, 30 March 2013

Kevyn Orr’s first act as Detroit’s emergency financial manager was to restore the wages of the mayor and the city council.

Quebec’s Option Nationale: An aspiring party of big business

By Richard Dufour, 30 March 2013

At its first full convention, Option Nationale—a party courted by the ostensibly leftwing Québec Solidaire— paraded its support for capitalism and indifference to poverty.

Illinois House approves pension cuts

By Alexander Fangmann, 30 March 2013

The Illinois House of Representatives has approved a bill all but eliminating cost-of-living increases and raising the retirement age for state workers.