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Author: Robert Reich

Telling the unvarnished truth: “Balanced journalism” does not exist halfway between facts and lies

Joe Biden’s message on August 1 evening was clear. American democracy is under attack. This was a rare primetime address on the most important challenge facing the nation. But the media treated the speech as if it were just another in an endless series of partisan vollies instead of what it was – a declaration by the president of the United States that America must choose between democracy and authoritarianism. The major networks did not broadcast the speech. The media coverage of the speech on the following day was just more he-said/she-said reaction. The New York Times quoted the...

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Corporate Socialism: How Federal policy went from regulating big business to heavily subsidizing it

The Clean Air Act of 1970 authorized the government to regulate air pollution. The Inflation Reduction Act, which Joe Biden signed into law this past week, allocates more than $300bn to energy and climate reform, including $30bn in subsidies for manufacturers of solar panels and wind turbines. Notice the difference? The Inflation Reduction Act is an important step toward slowing or reversing climate the crisis. It also illustrates the nation’s shift away from regulating businesses to subsidizing businesses. From 1932 through the late 1970s, the government mainly regulated businesses. This was the era of the alphabet soup of regulatory...

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Distracting from stolen wealth: Why the rightwing’s “Culture War” sounds so similar to Putin’s propaganda

Why do Putin and the Republican Party sound so much alike? Simple: Their culture wars have similar agendas. Both are trying to distract attention from the economic looting by their respective oligarchies. Vladimir Putin has been blasting so-called “cancel culture.” This was his third “cancel culture” rant in recent months. It’s the same imaginary crisis that Trump and the GOP have been ranting about for several years. Tucker Carlson, one of Fox News’s most infamous personalities, accuses liberals of trying to cancel all sorts of things. Last fall, Putin argued that teaching children about different gender identities was, quote,...

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Failed state referendum shows overwhelming public support for constitutional right to an abortion

I want to talk about Kаnsаs. Not about its corn as high as an elephant’s eye, nor about Dorothy and Toto trying to find their way home, but about Kаnsаs as the geographic and Republican center of America, Kаnsаs as the vintage Norman Rockwell core of America, Kаnsаs as what the Republican Party was before being hijacked by Newt Gingrich and then mugged by a New York real estate con artist. I m moved to do so because on August 2 the good people of Kаnsаs voted against a ballot measure that would have stripped from their state constitution...

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Supporting Trump’s treachery continues even with detailed accounts of his seditious pursuit of power

The committee has produced history’s most detailed account of an American president’s cruel and seditious pursuit of power. Even now, Trump continues to push states to alter the outcomes of the 2020 election. The House of Representatives’ select committee investigating the January 6 attack has finished its hearings, at least for now. But Trump’s attempted coup continues. He has not stopped giving speeches to stir up angry mobs with his big lie that the 2020 election was stolen. He gave another fiery address on July 22 in Arizona, the day after the latest hearings on July 21. He is...

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Symptoms of a rigged system: Why Democrats cannot defeat Trumpism without an agenda of radical reform

Much of today’s Republican party is treacherous and treasonous. So why are Democrats facing midterm elections that, according to most political observers, they are likely to lose? Having been a loyal Democrat for some 70 years, including a stint as a cabinet secretary, it pains me to say this: the Democratic party has lost its way. Some commentators think Democrats have moved too far to the left – too far from the so-called “center.” This is utter rubbish. Where has the center between democracy and authoritarianism, and why would Democrats want to be there? Others think Biden has not...

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