The United States of Militarism

W.J. Astore A century ago, the USA was a dynamic, forward-looking, freedom-espousing country that was focused on science and technology and its practical applications, as represented by Thomas Edison and Henry Ford.  We were about to reelect a president, Woodrow Wilson, precisely because he had kept the country out of World War I.  With the exception of…

Nixon’s Genesis of the Paranoid National Security State

Tom Engelhardt.  Introduction by William Astore. And Nixon said, “Let there be tapes.”  And there was surveillance — and knowledge of good and evil — and a multitude of dirty tricks.  And Nixon thought it was good.  And American democracy was fallen, forevermore. And after Nixon slew democracy, the Founders asked him where it was. …

A Little Honesty on the Confederate Flag

W.J. Astore Many people associate the Confederate flag (the “stars and bars”) with the South and the U.S. Civil War (Whoops — I mean “The War of Northern Aggression”).  For some people, it’s been a more or less vague expression of Southern heritage, or a symbol of rebellion, a sort of redneck “good ol’ boy”…

America Has Lost Its Way

By Graciela Huth.  Introduction by Michael Murry. Graciela (Grace) Huth calls herself “an old woman.” She says that she writes as a form of therapy, “to unload my anger and avoid having a stroke due to what is going on today in the USA.” Yet her long life of good citizenship and community activism testify…

Divided, Distracted, Downtrodden: The Social and Political Reality in America Today

W.J. Astore The American people are being kept divided, distracted, and downtrodden.  Divisions are usually based on race and class. Racial tensions and discrimination exist, of course, but they are also exploited to divide people.  Just look at the current debate on the Confederate flag flying in Charleston, South Carolina, with Republican presidential candidates refusing…

America’s Mutant Military

W.J. Astore I’ve been writing for TomDispatch.com and the amazing Tom Engelhardt since 2007.  When I wrote my first article, “Saving the Military from Itself: Why Medals and Metrics Mislead,” I never imagined I would come to write 37 more for Tom and his site over the next eight years.  TomDispatch has given me an…