John Buell

John Buell

John Buell has a PhD in political science, taught for 10 years at College of the Atlantic, and was an Associate Editor of The Progressivefor ten years. He lives in Southwest Harbor, Maine and writes on labor and environmental issues. His most recent book, published by Palgrave in August 2011, is "Politics, Religion, and Culture in an Anxious Age." He may be reached at jbuell@acadia.net

Articles by this author

Mitch McConnell thinks states have been on a spending spree. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images) Views
Monday, December 21, 2020
This Last-Minute Congress Stimulus Package Is Terrorism by Austerity
900 billion dollars is a big amount, Apparently one trillion is a whole order of magnitude greater. Or at least the number is so terrifying that politicians bend heaven and earth to avoid being connected with trillion dollar expenditures. And this allergic reaction is bipartisan. In the early...
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It is well past due to build on the success of the first CARES package. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images) Views
Wednesday, December 09, 2020
Where’s the Second Relief Act? The US Safety Net Is Working, but There Are Capitalists Who Don’t Want It To
Why can’t our political leaders learn to live with success? In an era marked by cynicism about politics, both parties managed to enact an initial COVID-19 relief package that if anything exceeded expectations. Last June Jason DeParle , summarized academic research on this act by quoting Columbia...
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Grove further explicates his thesis by presenting the role that genocide has played in state formation and the centrality of war to the industrial revolution. (Photo: U.S. Army/flickr/cc) Views
Wednesday, December 02, 2020
Why Do We Wage Decades-Long Futile Wars in the Middle East but Refuse to Declare War on the Looming Climate Crisis?
The United States is engaged in forever hot wars. The war in Afghanistan now nears the end of its second decade. Why US history is so saturated—some would say polluted—by war has recently become an object of both academic and activist interest. University of Hawaii at Manoa International Relations...
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If homeowners and government workers are not able to create sufficient demand to restore economic growth the federal government must step in. (Photo: Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images) Views
Monday, November 02, 2020
Whoever Wins the Election Will Face Severe Eviction Crisis, as 30 Million Brace for Homelessness
Whoever wins Tuesday’s election is virtually certain to be confronted by a severe foreclosure and eviction crisis as state and local governments face acute budget shortfalls. These crises interact with each other and in ways that intensify the economic damage they inflict. The harm is also...
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Amy Coney Barrett. (Photo: Nicholas Kamm/POOL/AFP via Getty Images) Views
Monday, October 12, 2020
Ask Amy Coney Barrett If Bosses Should Be Free to Fire Workers at Will
What is at stake in the battle over the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett? For most commentators the immediate answer is women’s control over their reproductive health and maintenance of the affordable care act. That is surely true, but excessive focus on those issues can obscure consideration of...
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US President Donald Trump and Democratic Presidential candidate and former US Vice President Joe Biden exchange arguments during the first presidential debate at Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio, on September 29, 2020. (Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images) Views
Monday, October 05, 2020
End the Corporate-Sponsored Presidential Debates
The organization most responsible for the debacle of the first Presidential debate offered an implicit apology and a promise. “Last night’s debate made clear that additional structure should be added to the format of the remaining debates to ensure a more orderly discussion of the issues. The CPD [...
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 "Fox News, the Republican Party, and the right edge of evangelicalism take the lead, often inspiring each other to new levels of extremism." (Photo: Screenshot) Views
Monday, September 21, 2020
The Many Ugly Faces of Climate Science Denial
In the midst of a global pandemic, forest fires now take unprecedented area of West Coast real estate, and several hurricanes have battered the East and Gulf Coasts. The continuing and intensifying episodes of climate crisis may provide the sort of shock Naomi Klein has identified as tools to...
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Tax policy can and should address anti-democratic extremes of wealth distribution, but governments must not wait for success in that endeavor to address the climate crisis Views
Tuesday, September 15, 2020
In Praise of Public Debt
Even as California burns, the states of the Gulf of Mexico brace for another hurricane, a global pandemic rages, an influential segment of DC political opinion wants the populace to focus on the national debt. Employing arguments that go back at least as far as Andrew Mellon, Herbert Hoover’s...
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"Monopoly power and concentrated wealth do immense harm to the bottom third of the wealth spectrum," writes Buell. (Cartoon: Khalil Bendib/OtherWords) Views
Monday, August 24, 2020
The Triumph of Monopoly Capitalism is Hurting American Workers’ Life Expectancy
As summer comes to an end the economic news is strangely bipolar. Business Insider reported that From March to June 2020, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos saw his wealth rise by an estimated $48 billion. The journal might also have added that 40 million workers had filed for unemployment compensation and...
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Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) arrives at the Senate chamber as the Senate impeachment trial of U.S. President Donald Trump continues at the U.S. Capitol on January 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images) Views
Monday, August 03, 2020
Republican Senators Commit Political Suicide by Holding Up Stimulus in Election Year
Be thankful for small favors. When the Covid-19 depression hit like a brick, almost no one advocated austerity as a cure. For the first time since Richard Nixon proclaimed that we are all Keynesians, budget deficits and a burgeoning national debt were accepted as crucial to mitigate the extent and...
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