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Alex Keyssar

Entries by Alex Keyssar

What Citizens United Has Wrought: Money, Elections, and History

(2) Comments | Posted January 23, 2010 | 2:08 PM

It's a nice ironic touch that the case is -- and always will be - known as "Citizens United." A more apt label, without the doublespeak, would be "Citizens Over-ruled."

The Supreme Court's decision to allow corporate money to be spent in electoral campaigns is surely not a victory for...

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Language, Greenberg, and the International Financial Collapse

(41) Comments | Posted April 7, 2009 | 12:45 PM

For many, many months now, officials in Washington have been telling us that the government must use taxpayer dollars to rescue huge financial institutions - like banks and AIG - because, otherwise, the world's financial system and the global economy will collapse. As a civilian with no expertise in...

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Humor from AIG?

(7) Comments | Posted March 19, 2009 | 12:38 AM

Earlier this evening, I was standing at my kitchen counter, sifting through the mail and half listening to someone on television ranting about the AIG bonus scandal.

Then I noticed that I had received a postcard from AIG. One of those big, 5 by 8, slightly thick postcards....

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Michigan, Florida, and the L-word

(1296) Comments | Posted March 23, 2008 | 3:18 PM

Barring some bizarre new twist in the endless campaign, there will not be "do-over" primaries in Florida and Michigan.

According to news reports, the Obama campaign had a lot to do with that outcome. With the clock ticking, the campaign stalled, quibbled, and objected to different possible election formats...

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Unions, the Secret Ballot, and American Values

(107) Comments | Posted June 26, 2007 | 11:42 AM

The Senate will probably vote tomorrow on the Employee Free Choice Act, legislation that would amend American labor law to make it easier for workers to join unions. The opposition to the bill has been fierce -- with op-eds and full page newspaper ads (from an outfit called UnionFacts) denouncing...

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"Disenfranchised"? When Words Lose Meaning

(29) Comments | Posted October 22, 2006 | 2:57 PM

On Friday, the Supreme Court ruled that Arizona's new voter ID laws -- requiring photo IDs and proof of citizenshiop -- will remain in place for the November 7 elections. Although the Supremes took no position on the legal issues that will ultimately determine whether Arizona's law is constitutional,...

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Maoists and the Press

(13) Comments | Posted April 30, 2006 | 1:31 PM

Nepal has been much in the news in recent weeks -- and not surprisingly, since a multi-pronged popular uprising seems to be dismantling a monarchy while pressing for the erection of democratic institutions. The unfolding of events has an eerily familiar cast: an unpopular ruler who lacks legitimacy; crowds of...

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Leaks, Lies, and War

(12) Comments | Posted October 28, 2005 | 12:39 PM

As the suspense around Plamegate builds and we wait to find out precisely who will be indicted, when, and for what crimes, we ought to step back from the details and remind ourselves about why this is important. Exactly who said what to whom and on what date actually...

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And Just Why Does Robertson Want to Off Chavez?

(12) Comments | Posted August 29, 2005 | 12:11 AM

Pat Robertson's recent call for the assassination of Hugo Chavez was not simply bizarre or unbecoming for a man of the cloth. It also made clear that the ideology of at least a part of the Christian right has little to do with Christianity -- or religion, for that...

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Cindy Sheehan, American Patriot

(3) Comments | Posted August 12, 2005 | 2:46 PM

Camped outside in Crawford, Texas, Cindy Sheehan (as well as the other mothers who have joined her), has become part of a venerable American tradition of quixotic protestors who may well make a difference. That's so, in part, because the symbolism of her action is so resonant. Sheehan's protest points...

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My Offer to Morgan Stanley

(0) Comments | Posted July 17, 2005 | 1:55 PM

Like many others, I read with interest last week's report that Morgan Stanley had offered severance pay of roughly $113 million to its now-deposed head Philip Purcell. Purcell, as was widely reported, was finally forced out of his job after driving down the firm's stock price, badly harming morale,...

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Mainstream News Media and the Right to Vote

(9) Comments | Posted June 22, 2005 | 12:25 PM

Ten days ago, I was in Chicago, participating in a panel discussion about the need to add a Right to Vote amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The event was part of the annual convention of Reverend Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition/Push; among the other speakers on the panel were...

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Guantanamo: Continuing the Conversation

(1) Comments | Posted June 11, 2005 | 5:04 PM

The comments I posted yesterday -- suggesting that we not only close our prison on Guantanamo but that we return the entire base to the Cubans -- provoked some heated reactions and debate, indicating (among other things) just how much Cuba remains a flashpoint in our political discourse. The thread...

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Guantanamo: A Modest Proposal

(9) Comments | Posted June 10, 2005 | 1:37 PM

There have been several stories in the press in recent days about the desirability of closing the American detention center (prison) in Guantanamo. Jimmy Carter thinks we should; Donald Rumsfeld thinks we shouldn't; W is apparently undecided.

It would, of course, be intrinsically desirable to shut the prison down;...

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