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David Sirota

Entries by David Sirota

Budget Showdown Aims To Quietly Exempt Pentagon and Focus All Cuts on Social Programs

(119) Comments | Posted April 6, 2011 | 11:00 PM

The unwritten and unspoken story of the budget showdown in Washington is the tale of both parties deliberately working to once again exempt the ever-growing Pentagon from America's larger budget/deficit discussion.

This is the thrust of the new Republican plan to pass a one-week continuing resolution for non-defense spending...

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How Your Taxpayer Dollars Subsidize Pro-War Movies and Block Anti-War Movies

(114) Comments | Posted March 16, 2011 | 1:39 PM

All the buzz in the entertainment/tech world about the blockbuster new video game Homefront brings back memories of the 1984 film Red Dawn -- and rightly so. The creator of Homefront is none other than John Milius, the writer/director of the 1984 film that later became the deliberate namesake...

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From Charlie Sheen to Reagan Nostalgia, the 80s Just Won't Go Away

(62) Comments | Posted March 14, 2011 | 10:54 AM

Charlie Sheen is hogging the spotlight. Tron and Wall Street have just left theaters. Muammar Gaddafi is the planet's top bad guy. Millionaires are enjoying budget-busting tax cuts. Conservatives are saber-rattling against Iran. Bon Jovi is on tour. And Ronald Reagan tributes are everywhere.

If you didn't know better, you'd...

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Today's Anti-Muslim Bigotry Rooted in '80s Pop Culture

(55) Comments | Posted March 11, 2011 | 12:18 PM

NOTE: David Sirota's new book Back to Our Future: How the 1980s Explain the World We Live In Now is out on 3/15. Read USA Today's new cover story about the book here and pre-order the book here.

The least intriguing aspect of Republican Rep. Peter King's...

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Five '80s Flicks That Explain How the '80s Still Define Our World

(60) Comments | Posted February 28, 2011 | 2:15 PM

My upcoming book Back To Our Future (due out on 3/15) posits that the 1980s--and specifically 1980s pop culture--frames the way we think about major issues today. The decade is the lens through which we see our world. To understand what that means, here are five classic flicks that...

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Hickenlooper's Class Solidarity

(22) Comments | Posted February 15, 2011 | 4:13 PM

The Grand Junction Sentinel headline today says it all: "Hickenlooper Proposes Huge Budget Cuts." Yes, while Colorado's new governor campaigned on promises of being an education governor, he has just proposed historically massive cuts to Colorado's already comparatively underfunded public schools. If that wasn't enough, he had the...

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Idiocracy By the Numbers: New Data Show Many Americans Have No Idea They Receive Government Benefits

(92) Comments | Posted February 10, 2011 | 12:31 PM

How aggressively stupid is America when it comes to our debates over taxes, budgets and the size of government? That's been difficult to answer with any precision, beyond simply citing the Tea Partier who famously told his congressman to "keep your government hands off my Medicare." But now we...

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America's Dictator Addiction

(13) Comments | Posted February 3, 2011 | 12:39 PM

As the Obama administration continues to treat the U.S.-taxpayer-financed dictator Hosni Mubarak with kid gloves, media outlets like Salon have rightly pointed out that our support of undemocratic tyrants is not limited to Egypt. It has become more the norm than the exception. The question is: why? Why are...

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How Money Has Framed the Egypt Debate

(22) Comments | Posted February 2, 2011 | 2:04 PM

The question of why the American government has been so hesitant to push dictator Hosni Mubarak from power is typically answered in our media through the construct of "pragmatism." If Mubarak leaves, the talking point goes, there could be a new government in Egypt that could threaten "regional stability" with...

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Key Investors Tout Immelt as Vehicle for Corporations to Sculpt Obama's Economic Policy

(33) Comments | Posted February 1, 2011 | 12:33 PM

As I've long maintained, the business press is often the best place to get the real story about what's going on in American politics. That's because it's focused almost exclusively on telling its investor-readers how to make money, rather than on the political media's manufactured red-versus-blue story lines -- story...

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'A Sharp, Dizzying History Lesson That Packs a Punch'

(3) Comments | Posted January 31, 2011 | 12:33 PM

I'm about seven weeks away from the launch of my third book, which is entitled BACK TO OUR FUTURE: How the 1980s Explain the World We Live In Now.. This is usually the time I start freaking out and fearing for the worst. But...

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Rahm Emanuel and the Triumph of Feudalism

(25) Comments | Posted January 26, 2011 | 5:03 PM

In the saga of longtime D.C. resident Rahm Emanuel trying to use a truckload of financial industry money to buy the mayoralty of Chicago, columnist John Kass of the Chicago Tribune really nails what the debate over Emanuel's residency is really all about: The rule of law. Here's an...

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GOP Mantra: For Me, but Not for Thee

(35) Comments | Posted January 24, 2011 | 3:05 PM

"For me, but not for thee" -- this could be the motto of 21st-century elitists, or Republican politicians (which are more or less the same thing) and two stories this week show how that mantra works in practice.

The first comes from ThinkProgress about how 97 percent of Republican...

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Maddow Shows How the 'National' Media Isn't National at All

(161) Comments | Posted January 20, 2011 | 1:24 PM

Last night, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow rightly asked a taboo question of our "national" media: Why has it largely ignored what the FBI says is a major terrorist bombing attempt on Spokane, Washington? In the segment, you can see she cites examples of the "national" media hyperventilating about bomb scares...

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What the U.S.-China Summit Is Really All About (Hint: It's Not About Preserving American Jobs)

(6) Comments | Posted January 19, 2011 | 12:17 PM

No, it isn't about getting tough on trade and currency manipulation. And no, it isn't about anything to do with human rights or the environment. As Bloomberg News suggests, it's all about serving the multinational corporate class that underwrite America's politicians:

Chief executive officers from Microsoft Corp. and Goldman...
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What "Santa Clausifying" Dr. King Looks Like in Practice

(85) Comments | Posted January 17, 2011 | 12:35 PM

The esteemed Cornel West has previously noted that America has "Santa Clausified" Martin Luther King, Jr., effectively removing what the man clearly stood for from our psychological memory of him. We have, in other words, turned him into a cartoon -- one that teaches us to ignore much of...

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In Wake of Arizona Shooting, Media Needs to Find the Forgotten Majority

(1) Comments | Posted January 14, 2011 | 12:57 PM

"There is a need for some reflection here: What is too far now? What was too far when Oklahoma City happened is accepted now. There's been a desensitizing. These town halls and cable TV and talk radio, everybody's trying to outdo each other."

Those were the words of an unnamed...

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The Democratic Party Elite's General Attitude About Organized Labor

(16) Comments | Posted January 12, 2011 | 1:19 PM

Over the last few years, we've learned a great deal about the Democratic Party's attitude toward the labor movement. Through the Employee Free Choice Act debate (or lack thereof), we've learned that Democrats are happy to rely on union workers hard-earned money to get elected, and then happy to block...

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The Tucson Shooting's Most Important Questions

(19) Comments | Posted January 11, 2011 | 9:59 AM

Since the shooting in Tucson on Saturday, lots of important questions have been raised - questions that go to issues than transcend even the monumentally horrific shooting itself. In the interest of summation, here are the best questions I've seen on Twitter, Facebook, in the blogosphere, on radio and elsewhere.

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Silence Is Complicity and Defensiveness Is Endorsement

(9) Comments | Posted January 10, 2011 | 1:06 PM

I've just finished up three hours of the most difficult radio I've ever had to do. The topic, of course, was the horrific shooting in Tucson, which has deeply affected me, as it has many others. As someone who had to flee the Capitol on 9/11, was warned of anthrax...

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