The American Prospect

A monthly political journal of liberal though. Contains articles that generate debate, further ideas, and set agendas; and provides a forum for working through the controversies and hard choices facing all Americans. Includes regular topics and features.

Articles from Vol. 13, No. 17, September 23

9-11, One Year Later. (Comment)
SEPTEMBER 11 WILL BE COMmemorated this year as a day of national and private grief, but it is also a political anniversary. One year ago, the post-Cold War era came to an end and a new phase in our country's history began. What this new phase will...
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A Different Kind of Atomic Test: Questions and Answers from the Pages of the Bulletin. (from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists)
Which of the following has the Pentagon researched as a weapon? a) road slick b) sticky foam c) stink bomb d) people zapper All of the above. The Pentagon is always interested in new and unusual ways to get people to do what it wants. Among...
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America Alone in the World: More Than Ever, America Needs Allies, but the Bush Administration Is Driving Them Away
THE HORRORS OF SEPTEMBER 11 CONFRONTED THE United States with an extraordinary challenge and an extraordinary opportunity. The challenge was to increase our "homeland security" by measures that might have averted disaster, had they been implemented...
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A Party of One: It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Madchester World. (the Critics Film)
TONY WILSON, NARRATOR AND protagonist of the fictionalized documentary 24 Hour Party People, is a hard man to pin down. Club owner, record label boss, self-proclaimed "serious journalist," daring entrepreneur, terrible businessman, style guru, buffoon,...
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Dangerous Medicine: So What If the Speedup at the FDA Is Putting Poisons on Pharmacy Shelves? Congress Doesn't Want to Know
THIRTEEN DANGEROUS PRESCRIPTION DRUGS HAVE been withdrawn from the market in the last decade--but not before hundreds of patients died and thousands were injured. Yet no congressional committee has investigated why the U.S. Food and Drug Administration...
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Democracy and Dread. (Comment)
MARKING THE FIRST anniversary of the September 11 attacks, America finds itself in an interwar funk. We go about our business as in peacetime, even as we seem to be drifting, inexorably, toward a new and more perilous Mideast conflict. While a few...
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Dems' Fightin' Words. (Correspondence)
I AGREE WITH MICHAEL Tomasky that while the GOP's long-term strategy has been in place since the New Deal, Ronald Reagan's election put it at the forefront of American consciousness ["Dems' Fightin' Words," August 26]. In 1980, I was a single...
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Emily's List Hissed: Fellow Democrats Criticize the Women Candidates' PAC. (Gazette)
IN EARLY AUGUST, A MONTHS-long whispering campaign against Emily's List hit the pages of Roll Call. In an article headlined "Making Enemies," four anonymous Democratic consultants and operatives took turns criticizing the 17-year-old political action...
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Eternal War Declared. (Devil in the Details)
DESPITE THE RISING TIDE of Republican opposition to the administration's obsessive desire for a Lone Ranger war on Iraq, the Bush White House doesn't seem all that concerned. George W. and his hawks have convinced themselves that they already have...
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Forget Retirement. Get to Work. (Special Section: Retirement Insecurity)
A POPULAR MYTH IS THAT because we live longer, we should work longer. But while Americans indeed enjoy longer life spans, a great many are not happy to be in the paid workforce. They are working not for the social or intellectual stimulation but...
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It's Seven Minutes to Midnight. (from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists)
Chicago, February 27, 2002: Today, the Board of Directors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moves the minute hand of the "Doomsday Clock," the symbol of nuclear danger, from nine to seven minutes to midnight, the same setting at which the...
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Jailbreaking Homelessness. (Networks)
NEW YORK CITY MAYOR Michael Bloomberg's recent decision to use a vacated Bronx jail to shelter homeless families quickly turned into a front-page PR gaffe. Not only did it seem too grim to have poor people put in the slammer, but the facilities...
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Losing Our Religion. (the Contrary)
IT'S A SUMMER OF STUPID LAWSUITS. FOOD "ADDICTS" are suing McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King and KFC, claiming that the fast-food industry creates cravings for unhealthy food and fails to provide consumers with nutritional information. (They might...
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Money Where His Mouth Is: Bush Talks a Good Game on Women's Rights. but Talk Is Cheap. (Gazette)
AFGHAN WOMEN ACQUIRED an unlikely ally last November, when first lady and "Comforter in Chief" Laura Bush became feminism's newest convert. In a radio address, Mrs. Bush bemoaned the plight of Afghan women and declared a U.S. commitment to restoring...
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Neo-Cons vs. New York Times: Kissinger's Dissent and Demurral (below the Beltway)
CRITICS OF THE BUSH ADMINistration's Iraq policy finally stepped forward--and they are Republicans rather than Democrats. Former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft, Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel and former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger...
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Perils of Preemptive War: Why America's Place in the World Will Shift-For the Worse-If We Attack Iraq
ON JUNE 1 AT WEST POINT, PRESIDENT GEORGE W. Bush set forth a new doctrine for U.S. security policy. The successful strategies of the Cold War era, he declared, are ill suited to national defense in the 21st century. Deterrence means nothing against...
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Politics with People, Reinvented: Paul Wellstone Wants to Win It Clean-With Zeal, Volunteers and a New-Model, Old-Fashioned Campaign
I. THE BACK OF THE BUS When Paul Wellstone decided last year that he would seek re-election to the U.S. Senate after all, much of his old operation was in mothballs. The volunteers had long since stood down. The legendary big green bus that had...
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Retirement at Risk. (Special Section: Retirement Insecurity)
AMERICANS ARE FACING A retirement crisis, and it comes in three parts. First, there is the Enron-style vulnerability of 401(k) plans. Unlike traditional retirement plans, the worker puts up most of the money and the worker takes most of the risk....
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Social Security: The Right Fix. (Special Section: Retirement Insecurity)
LAST YEAR, PRESIDENT BUSH appointed a commission to design a Social Security reform that included voluntary individual accounts. Appointees chosen for the commission were all sympathetic to this partial-privatization approach. Before signing on,...
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Stray Crats: Will Labor Learn to Punish the Democratic Defectors on Trade? (Gazette)
ON DEC. 6, 2001, UNDER rhetorical pressure from Speaker Dennis Hastert ("Support our president, who is fighting a courageous war on terrorism.") and real pressure from the administration and corporate America, members of the House of Representatives...
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The Crossover Candidate: Did the GOP Take Down Cynthia McKinney? (Gazette)
MINUTES BEFORE THE candidates' forum began on a sweltering day at the South DeKalb Mall, incumbent U.S. Rep. Cynthia McKinney (DGa.) was just "Cynthia" to her beloved DeKalb County voters, kissing elderly ladies and hamming it up for the cameras....
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The "Doomsday Clock". (from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists)
THE DOOMSDAY CLOCK, LIKE THE MUSHROOM CLOUD, is such a well-known icon of the nuclear age that it was not entirely surprising to see a version of it on the July 1 issue of the American Prospect, in conjunction with an article on the danger posed...
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The Origin of Specious: And Why Reductionists Are Winning the Darwin Wars. (Technology and Culture)
BY HARVEY BLUME STEPHEN JAY GOULD, WHO DIED of cancer at the age of 60 this past May, defined a place in American culture likely to remain vacant now that he is gone. He was, of course, the country's foremost opponent of creationism and champion...
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The Scandal beyond Enron: Pension Coverage Is Shaky and Dwindling. Will Congress Act? (Special Section: Retirement Insecurity)
THE ENRON IMPLOSION BRIEFLY FOCUSED PUBLIC attention on the vulnerability of ordinary Americans' pension coverage. But the remedial legislation passed by the Republican House actually makes workers even more vulnerable. The bigger scandal is not...
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The War of the Bushes. (Devil in the Details)
With the Democrats maintaining a strategically savvy silence on Iraq--geopolitically moronic, morally bankrupt, but strategically savvy--the debate over the wisdom of Bush's Iraq policy has become an all-Republican affair. But even that overstates...
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What If We'd Already Privatized Social Security? Even Some Republicans Are Pretending They Never Had This Bad Idea. (Taxonomist)
LATE IN THE FALL OF 1999, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE George W. Bush began talking up the idea of investing the Social Security Trust Fund in the stock market. What would have happened if his wish had immediately come true? Bush's idea was--and apparently...
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