The Smirking Chimp

Time for a Trump Carnage Index

In his book Violence: Reflections on a National Epidemic, psychiatrist James Gilligan describes structural violence as “the increased rates of death and disability suffered by those who occupy the bottom rungs of society, as contrasted with the relatively lower death rates experienced by those who are above them.” By that definition, the Republican repeal and replace of Obamacare in the House of Representatives on Thursday was an act of violence. The victors’ gloating made the spectacle all the more hideous.

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What a Real Passenger Bill of Rights Should Look Like

The violent ejection of a United Airlines passenger from a flight bound from Chicago to Louisville appears to have marked a long-awaited turning point. Dr. David Dao, 69, suffered a broken nose, lost two teeth and faces reconstructive sinus surgery. At last, America’s long-suffering flying public is crying as one, have you commercial airlines no shame?

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The Hypocrisy of Right-Wing Media: Attacks Trump for Conspiracy-Mongering, But Then Does It Too

Caught up in this increasingly chaotic campaign season, sometimes it seems confused conservative media members can’t keep track of what both hands are doing. Confronted with a nominee who’s been rejected by key editorial outlets such as The Weekly Standard and National Review, conservative commentators often find themselves simultaneously condemning Trump’s behavior while trafficking in those same traits.

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A Huge Labor Fight Just Shifted: How Scalia’s Death Affects Key Supreme Court Case

With the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s death Saturday, the court’s ideologically conservative 5-4 majority is no more. One big case this affects is Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, which the conservative ideological majority on the court was prepared to use to bankrupt public-employee unions. Now they can’t do that.

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Why the Bernie Sanders Revolution Is Not Televised

As a writer, I never expected to fall in love with the 2016 election. As recently as 6 or 7 months ago, I fully expected that America was on a collision course with dueling oligarchic dynasties -- Bush 3 vs. Clinton 2 -- in a race where the (not unimportant) differences would be overshadowed by their similarities, including the fact that Wall Street would be happy with either one in the Oval Office.

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What ISIS Really Has In Mind

Recent attacks by ISIS sympathizers in Paris, London and San Bernardino, California, are not random acts of mindless violence and gory atrocities.

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Hillary Bashing by the Right: Crafty, Cruel, And Commoditized

The Supreme Court’s game-changing Citizens United decision grew out of the Hillary-bashing industry.

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Robert Reich: Worker Pay Is Rising at the Slowest Rate Ever Recorded

Worker pay is rising at the slowest pace ever recorded. But it's worse than that because the new data include everyone who's paid -- including top CEOs and Wall Street moguls. The fact is, most people's pay is stagnant or dropping when adjusted for the costs of living, including rents that are going through the stratosphere.

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Leave It to Republican Carly Fiorina to Make a Woman Running for President Look Like a Craven Stunt

Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina announced this week she’s running for president. She’s not the first woman ever to dive into the GOP’s Also-Ran Industrial Complex and (wink) attempt to become the (wink, wink) next president of the United States. Congresswoman Michele Bachmann won the Iowa Straw Poll last time around. So far, Carly’s the only woman this cycle vying for the Republican nomination.

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America's Class War Explained in 1 Chart

Is America in the throes of a class war?

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Indiana Cop Creates “Breathe Easy, Don’t Break the Law” T-Shirts

Following a nationwide wave of demonstrations demanding justice in the murders of several unarmed black youth and black men, and following the assassination of two New York City police officers, police across the country are displaying the kind of behavior and attitudes that substantiates concerns about police actions.

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Inside the Right-Wing Mania over Including 'Under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance

Did you hear atheists are suing god? According to Fox News’ for-profit preacher Mike Huckabee they do it all the time! “Dear Lord!” he tweeted this week, “Atheists are suing God AGAIN!”

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Bill de Blasio Is a Progressive Leader on Education and Poverty

Progressives who are elected to executive office have a unique opportunity to highlight neglected issues and stimulate much-needed debate, by taking actions which challenge the "conventional wisdom." They can change the political landscape by employing a principle that might be called "leadership by example."

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10 Facts About Police Violence in Ferguson Sunday Night

While the Governor of Missouri is sending in the National Guard to Ferguson, it is worth considering where the real violence is coming from.

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How Probation Privateers Prey on the Poor

Last April, in a column titled Debtors Prisons, Once a 19th-Century Relic, Again Wreaking Havoc in US, I wrote: "The jailing of people unable to pay fines and court costs is no longer a relic of the 19th century American judicial system. Debtors' prisons are alive and well in one-third of the states in this country." Last week, I received a Press Release from the Ohio American Civil Liberties Union that appeared to strike a blow against this appalling phenomenon.

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The Moral Power of Free Universal Higher Education

Social progress is never a straightforward, linear process. Sometimes society struggles to recognize moral questions that in retrospect should have seemed obvious. Then, in a historical moment, something crystallizes. Slavery, civil rights, women's rights, marriage equality: each of these moral challenges arose in the national conscience before becoming the subject of a fight for justice (some of which have yet to be won).

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Is Putin the Perfect Candidate for the U.S. GOP?

This article originally appeared at The Smirking Chimp, and is reprinted here with their permission.

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Millions of Jobs, Trillions of Dollars: We Can't Afford the Republican Right

Journalists are understandably captivated by the government shutdown and the looming confrontation over the debt ceiling. Those are certainly dramatic stories. But another, quieter drama has been playing out for years in homes and communities across the country, as millions of jobs and trillions in wealth have been lost to Republican economic folly.

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The Trash-Talking Blood Sport of Economics

Thomas Carlyle called economics "the dismal science." Journalist A. J. Liebling called boxing "the sweet science." To read the Internet lately you'd think they got the two professions mixed up.

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Obama Weaves Web of Deceit on Gaza War

When Barack Obama finally spoke out publicly about the Israeli assault on Gaza, at a press conference, he wove an astonishingly thick web of deception and distortion.

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5 Basics for Defending Obamacare

The June 28th Supreme Court decision that let Obamacare stand gives the president, and all Democrats, an opportunity to remake the case that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is a good thing. That's a blessing because many American voters do not understand Obamacare.

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Celebrating an Unfinished Revolution on the Fourth of July

Here comes the Fourth of July, number 236 since the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence and riders on horseback rushed it to the far corners of the thirteen new United States -- where it was read aloud to cheering crowds. These days our celebration of the Fourth brings a welcome round of barbecue, camaraderie with friends and family, fireworks, flags, and unbeatable prices at the mall.

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Why Are Pundits and Elites Trying to Drive a Wedge Between Generations?

Millions of people have read the Hunger Games stories about a depraved future society where young people are forcing to fight each other for scarce resources while elites in the Capital plunder the nation's wealth.

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The Rise of the Pro-Ignorance Right Wing Puts us All In Danger

As the old saying goes, "Every dog has his day." And so it has come to pass.

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Nurses Union Calls for Nationwide Action September 1 to Rebuild Main Street

Main Street, USA – Nurses call their neighbors and their elected officials to come to Main Street on September 1, even as many of the elected officials continue chiding one another about returning to DC.

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5 Reasons Capitalism Has Failed

We live in interesting times. The global economy is splintering. U.S. voters hate all politicians and there's political unrest throughout the world. The root cause of this turmoil is the failure of the dominant economic paradigm -- global corporate capitalism.

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The Video That Will Put Geithner Behind Bars

You gotta see this! If this doesn't convince you that Timothy Geithner knew about the securities shenanigans that were going on at Lehman, than I don't know what will.

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15 Awful Things Republicans Would Do If They Had the Chance

Always the political instrument of moneyed elites, and a retrograde societal force, the GOP today is more negatively impactful than ever. Its agenda, if fully implemented, would prove catastrophic. Here's what an unfettered Republican Party would do "for" America:

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