In These Times

Magazine focusing on movements for social, economic, and environmental justice.

Articles from Vol. 33, No. 6, June

Antidote to Drug War Madness
So I was making dinner, and on NPR I hear, to my amazement, a report by Robert Siegel and Michele Norris marking April 20 as Marijuana Observance Day. "We're hearing more talk about legalizing mari- juana," noted Norris, "and not just from those who...
Appall-O-Meter
4.1 'The Golden Girls' Meets 'The Wire'Sisters Elizabeth Marie Grube, 70, and, Elaine Volkert, 65, of Stroudburg, Pa., would fit in at a church bingo night, but according to the Monroe County District Attorney, the ladies have dealt about $10,000 of...
A Specter Is Haunting Dems
SEN. ARLEN SPECTER (D-Pa.) had every reason to free himself from the wing nuts that bind the rusty Republican Party. His job was imperiled by a far-right primary challenger. It's likely other Republican elected officials, perhaps Maine's Sens. Olympia...
At the End of the Day, It's the End of the World
ONE NIGHT IN LONDON last spring I tuned in to a television story about "dropping out." A British family had moved to rural Spain to live a nutsand-berries existence off the grid - far from television, newspapers and the bustle of city life. The father,...
Battling over Employee Free Choice
The fate of labor's top legislative priority is in the Senate's handsWHEN CONGRESS VOTES ON the Employee Free Choice Act, it will decide not only whether workers will be able to organize unions more easily and whether America will build a stronger economy...
Coal Mountain Elementary
Coal Mountain ElementaryAN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL currriculum designed by the American Coal Foundation suggests that students learn about the costs and benefits of coal mining by using toothpicks and paper clips to "mine" chocolate chips out of cookies. They...
Defense Budget Shell Game
Behind the hoopla, military spending continues to riseOn April 15, large, angry and somewhat wacky crowds of Republicanbacked and Fox Newssupported "tea party" protesters joined the usual groups of more sedate and earnest peace activists to demonstrate...
Drama Queens
Drama QueensON DECEMBER 16, 2002, George Ryan, then governor of Illinois, attended a production of Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen's "The Exonerated" in Chicago. The play, an unsettling drama composed of material culled from interviews, transcripts, case...
Home Again?
With the economy in a rut and anxieties about national security festering in the nether regions of America's social conscience, it's minorities - immigrants, outsiders, heathens, you name it - who now, as in the past, bear the brunt of the backlash....
Israel's Center Does Not Hold
WITH ISRAEL'S LEFT splintered and shattered, Tzipi Livni's centrist Kadima is now the main opposition to the hard right.In Israel's national election in February 2009, Livni garnered more votes and parliamentary seats than Benjamin Netanyahu, her main...
Jacob Zuma: Sub-Saharan Populist
THE ANXIETY OVER the selection of Jacob Zuma as president of South Africa obscures a significant milestone: For the first time in decades a sub-Saharan nation has at its helm a champion of the ordinary person.African politics has long been the preserve...
Letter from a Small Fry Terrorist
Dear Sen. Patrick Leahy,I write from my sleeper cell outside Hardwick, Vt, through a constituent !persuaded to give you this letter.I cannot speak my happiness on reading that you propose immunity for torturers and war criminah who confess, saying they...
Letters
PigocratsI was disappointed that in "Let's Expose the Poster Boys of Greed" (May 2009) Susan Douglas backed away from a class critique of plutocrats and adopted a partisan political critique. Surely Phil Gramm is no different from Tom Daschle. They play...
Reinventing Demons
At an April 7 press conference, President Barack Obama's special advisor for the Summit of Americas Jeffrey Davidow announced the administration's new plan to provide U.S.-funded "public safety" programs to other governments throughout the Western Hemisphere....
Shilling on the Corporate Dollar
Business-sponsored 'scholars' deliver anti-union talking pointsTESTIFYING BEFORE THE SENATE labor and health committee hearing in March, economist Anne Layne-Farrar of the corporate consulting firm LECG warned about the horrendous impact of the Employee...
Skewed Debate
Strange bedfellows oppose single-payer healthcare reformPRESIDENT OBAMA COMMITTED TO making a major legislative push for healthcare reform in his first year in office. But there is reason to worry that any potential reform may look more like the recent...
Spine of the Times
In an April 25 New York Times article titled 'Telling the Brutal Truth," Public Editor Clark Hoyt defended the Time's use of the ameliorative phrase "brutal interrogation techniques," rather than the more reality-based "torture."A linguistic shift took...
Teabags vs. Douchebags
Why this may not be the second coming of the New Deal after allWHEN TIME EDITORS fused Barack Obama's head on the famous parade photo of Franklin Delano Roosevelt for a November 2008 cover, comparisons between 1932 and the present day were already a...
The Aspiration of Global Zero
ON APRIL 5, 2009, before a crowd gathered at Hradcany Square in Prague, President Barack Obama declared "America's commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons." With these words, Obama implicitly endorsed Global Zeroa...
The Only Road out of Crisis
Yes, it is socialism, but nationalize the banks alreadySINCE TAKING OFFICE, PRESIDENT Barack Obama and his economic team have confronted a daunting financial crisis with a string of solutions that have been hard to sell to a wary public.Obama's first...
Unraveling Afghanistan
The United States has two abiding national security interests in South Asia: preventing a nuclear war between Pakistan and India, and averting the proliferation of atomic weapons. The United States should work towards South Asian nuclear arms reductions,...
Xe Is the Problem
Keeping the corporation formerly known as Blackwater out of Skunk HollowAT FIRST GLANCE, it appears that 2009 didn't start so well for the military contractor Xe, until February known as Blackwater Worldwide. In January, with multiple other lawsuits...