An 85-year-old American war veteran detained for more than a month in North Korea arrived in the United States on Saturday, a day after he was unexpectedly released by Pyongyang for “humanitarian” reasons.
You know the NFL as the National Football League. But the IRS knows them better as the Nonprofit Football League – that’s because the NFL has not paid any taxes since 1966 and average Americans are left paying higher taxes to make up for that lost revenue. Senator Coburn is trying to change that, and we support his endeavor.
The NFL has spent $3.6 million lobbying in recent years, and contributed more than $1.6 million to members of Congress. It leads all professional sports leagues in lobbying expenditures.
Lobbyists demonstrated their prowess by adding, “or professional football leagues” to the language regulating 501(c)(6) nonprofit organizations back in 1966, and it has remained there ever since.
No wonder Senator Coburn has yet to gain the support of his colleagues – we know how powerfully corrupting money in politics and the role of lobbyists has become. The only way Congress will act in the people’s interest is if the people begin demanding it and show them where we stand!
Walmart and fast food chains, with their low prices, convenience and addictive high-fat, high-sugar content, are really just a part of a much bigger picture - one that includes the looming “trade agreement” called the Trans-Pacific Partnership, something that makes job-exporting NAFTA look benign.
Walmart is one of the huge corporations pushing the TPP hard, because it would then be able to move more of its factories into countries like Vietnam, where the minimum hourly wage is 36 cents. (The TPP is another whole ball of wax, to which we should be paying close attention because it will affect our lives directly and unremittingly.)
Ravitch is the queen. If only the government would listen…
We would also address poverty directly. We would increase the minimum wage and make post-secondary education cheap or free, and we’d improve improve unemployment benefits and offer free job-training to the unemployed.
These are not radical, liberal ideas. In fact, in Europe most of them are associated with the more conservative parties, and many of them were associated with the American Republican party in the 80s. But the United States’s political climate is so different from anywhere else in the industrialized world that I fear we will just continue to get farther behind in education (and in % of people living in poverty) until we decide to make some big domestic investments.
As Vijay Prashad points out, many of the world’s leaders that are apparently mourning the death of Nelson Mandela were the “same people opposed [to] freedom in South Africa to the very end.”
Although Ronald Reagan has passed away himself, one can imagine he might salute Mandela today. But as president, Reagan worked against Mandela, so much so that he vetoed the Comprehensive Anti-Apartheid Act in 1986. Believing that he knew what was best for black people living under apartheid in South Africa, Reagan opposed sanctions and wanted to maintain friendly relations with the white supremacist government.
South Africa’s Desmond Tutu disagreed. Watch this 1986 news report about Tutu’s visit to the White House, in which Tutu explains the way that Reagan failed black South Africans.