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 Progressive for 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

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Friday, June 07, 2013
Cyprus and the Quest for Safe Havens
As the European financial crisis waxes and wanes, one hears a familiar refrain in the business press and on such business-boosting media as CNBC. When the risk of default in Greece or Spain appears imminent, US Treasury bonds increase in value and thereby decline in yield.
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Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Combating US Capitalism's Moral Blinders
Is US capitalism now mired in a moral cesspool? Consider the following:
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Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Democracy and the Ecology of Transportation
There is no question as to whether New York City and the surrounding coastal communities of the tri-state area will be rebuilt. But will these communities be reconstructed to serve the vast majority of working people or the interests of the economic and cultural elites that have dominated city life?
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Wednesday, November 07, 2012
The US Austerity Fight Cometh
President Obama may soon face a three-headed monster. Though a tepid recovery is underway in the United States, unemployment remains high and some of the tools used to promote recovery carry significant risks of their own. Worse still, the specter of a Eurozone bankruptcy haunts the world economy. Finally a Eurozone collapse itself may trigger the worst political crises since the height of the Cold War.
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Friday, October 05, 2012
Republicans, Democrats, and Jobs
"Speculators may do no harm as bubbles on a steady stream of enterprise. But the position is serious when enterprise becomes the bubble on a whirlpool of speculation. When the capital development of a country becomes a by-product of the activities of a casino, the job is likely to be ill-done.
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Friday, July 20, 2012
Penn State, Democracy, and Modern Workplace Culture
Pundits will draw many lessons from the Penn State scandal, but the role and predicament of the janitor strikes me as in need of more attention. According to Louis Freeh’s detailed report on the university’s handling of the sexual abuse allegations: “A janitor spots Sandusky in the shower with a boy but is afraid to say anything because crossing Paterno ‘would have been like going against the president of the United States.’”
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Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Too Big To Trust: Banking Reform and Financial Instability
Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase’s high profile CEO has performed a public service. His firm’s well publicized Three billion --and counting-- loss puts to rest, at least for the time being, the notion that we can count on deregulated financial markets and self-interested bankers to reach socially optimal outcomes. That Dimon’s loss matters to more than his stockholders has been clear from the attention given to this story. Even our limp corporate media recognize that should this bank fail, it will become a further burden for taxpayers.
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Thursday, March 01, 2012
The Science and Ethics of Austerity: Lessons from the US and Europe
Around the world, corporate media and even substantial segments of the working class have embraced an old religious creed, the celebration of austerity. Its cold bath is supposed to rid us of our sins. Its tenets stand in contrast to the academic wisdom of post World War II generation and to many of the metrics commonly accepted across the political spectrum. We cannot understand the power of this reborn orthodoxy without addressing its complex roots. Several historical narratives converge. They reflect and sustain compelling social and personal identities.
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Thursday, February 02, 2012
Mitt’s Faulty History
An essential talking point of the Mitt Romney campaign is the candidate’s tortured invocation of the 's' word. Barack Obama is a socialist. His favorite models are socialist Europe. Romney then goes on to add with his characteristic sneer that Europe does not work even in Europe. How strange a world this is. A Democratic President who discourages prosecution of the crudest fraud by investment bankers and sanctions cuts in Social Security is deemed a socialist.
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Thursday, September 08, 2011
The Folly of Pocket Book Politics
A conservative friend of mine likes to say that he votes his pocket book. The push to cut taxes, roll back environmental regulations, eradicate unions, and reduce the size and scope of the safety net is good for him. He will have more money to spend and be able to live in more comfort and security.
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