Author Filter: Sean

Never Mind the Torture Report (Or Rectal Re-hydration for the Masses!)

Today the Senate Intelligence Committee is set to release a report on the CIA’s use of torture in the years after 9-11, but the contents of the report are practically irrelevant since the decision not to punish those responsible makes it an exercise in historical archiving at best, nothing more.
After his inauguration in 2009, President Obama [...]

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What is the Meaning of Life?

How is that for an ambitious question? So what is the meaning of life? Well, if you ask most people from a complex, industrial society, you will get a lot of unsure answers. Occasionally, you will get an answer rooted in religion such as, “The purpose of life is to serve God,” but what that [...]

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Five Stunning Facts About America’s Prison System You Haven’t Heard

We’ve done several exposés on the prison system in America, including The Prison System Runs Amok, Expands at Frightening Pace (Sept 6, 2012) and Selling the American Dream is the Biggest Market of All (Sept. 30, 2013), but there’s still much more to be said about this topic. America’s massive prison system is creating a long list [...]

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Updated Healthcare Spending Graphs Are as Bleak as Ever

In 2012, I created this chart, which mapped out US federal government spending on healthcare from 1960 to the Congressional Budget Office’s projections up to 2022, which was the most recent data they had available at the time.  For a while now, I’ve wanted to update that chart to address some criticisms people had.
First, I [...]

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US Government is Partially Responsible for Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Death

Yesterday, on the eve of the nation’s most celebrated spectacle, the Super Bowl, it was announced that actor Philip Seymour Hoffman had died from a heroine overdose, reportedly with the needle still in his arm. Of course, Hoffman is responsible for his own actions, especially given that he had numerous opportunities to benefit from rehab [...]

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Super-Tech Makes Democracy Impossible

Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Director of Google Ideas Jared Cohen recently wrote in their book The New Digital Age that “What Lockheed Martin was to the 20th century, technology and cybersecurity companies will be to the 21st.” Indeed, the transition is already taking place. Google now spends more money lobbying congress than the military industrial giant they seek [...]

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We’re Not in Kansas Anymore, This is Dark-America

In 20th century science fiction, there is one particular story format that is often employed and is usually a fan favorite — the alternate or parallel universe, where the characters are the same but the roles are switched. In the alternate universe, the good guys are bad and the bad guys are worse. This idea [...]

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A Return to Capitalism is Impossible, Even if it Were Desirable

Definitions are important. Without correctly defining what the problems are, we can’t offer a workable solution. This is so obvious and yet despite enormous effort, there is no consensus on what kind of economic system we have right now.
Do we have a capitalist system, the bane of the left for as long as there [...]

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Selling the American Dream is the Biggest Market of All

In America, people believe that a house is who you are, while a car is who you want other people to think you are. If you have no house and you have no car, by extension you are nothing, and you want to be nothing. Many have modeled their lives around this belief, taking on [...]

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Seven Reasons Bernanke’s Failure to Taper Portends Doom

Yesterday, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke announced that the government would not slow its bond purchasing (money printing) because the economy had not yet improved sufficiently. The magnitude of this decision is still being absorbed, but may have negative effects on the entire world in the coming years.
How exactly? This might be a bit wonky, [...]

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