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Is the United States a Democracy or a Republic? - An Essay

"The United States is not a democracy, it's a republic" - this talking point has in recent years gained traction among far right circles. "America Is a Republic, Not a Democracy", wrote on its website the Heritage Foundation , a conservative organization that since its founding in 1973 has followed the American right's trajectory of radicalization to the point of embracing Trumpism. " US Capitol Building " by  Hey Paul  is licensed under  CC BY 2.0 .

It's The Culture War, Stupid! - How The Far Right Uses Religious and Ethnic Identity to Mobilize Voters

" Impeach Trump Rally " by  Geoff Livingston  is licensed under  CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 .

The GOP "Anglo-Saxon" Caucus And The 1898 White Supremacist Coup In North Carolina

United States Capitol (image by kmccoy  via Wikimedia Commons) On April 16 media reported that a group of far-right House Republicans, including Qanon conspiracy theorist Marjorie Taylor Greene , were organizing the launch of an " America First Caucus ". A seven-page manifesto, first made public by Punchbowl News, contains nationalist, white supremacist and nativist themes. The document states: "America is a nation with a border, and a culture, strengthened by a common respect for uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions . History has shown that societal trust and political unity are threatened when foreign citizens are imported en-masse into a country, particularly without institutional support for assimilation and an expansive welfare state to bail them out should they fail to contribute positively to the country ... [T]he reality of large segments of our society as well as the long-term existential future of America as a unique country with a unique culture and a u

Why the Biden Administration Should Boycott the 2022 Beijing Olympics

Beijing National Stadium (by Peter23 via Wikimedia Commons ) On April 6 the US State Department denied that it was considering a boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing  over the Chinese government's human rights abuses, including in Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet. "Our position on the 2022 Olympics has not changed. We have not discussed and are not discussing any joint boycott with allies and partners," a senior State Department official wrote in a statement to CNBC. After years of tough anti-Beijing rhetoric from the Trump administration, voices of appeasement are already reemerging. The Financial Times argued that boycotting the Olympics would be ineffectual and would be the wrong solution.  Former Ambassador Christopher Robert Hill stated in a recent interview that the United States needs to be proactive in finding ways to communicate and collaborate more closely with China rather than pursuing a policy of decoupling.  "I do believe that we need to find

How Dictatorial Regimes Use Money To Infiltrate The Media in Democratic Countries

United States Capitol (Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC BY-SA 3.0) During the Cold War, the Soviet Union sought to undermine the United States and its allies through a variety of active measures aimed at influencing and manipulating public opinion. Although the Cold War - understood in the narrow sense of the confrontation between a capitalist and a communist economic system - has ended, the struggle between different political ideologies and ways of life has not. As the Soviet-style centrally planned economic system was abandoned by nearly every country, the ideological confrontation shifted. States like Russia and China have embraced a mixed market economy, yet they have retained an authoritarian political system.  While capitalism conquered the authoritarian states of the former communist bloc, authoritarianism appears to be creeping into the polity of the US-led "free world". The Republican Party in the United States, for instance, has turned to authoritarianism . Accord

It's time for the West to restrict trade with China and sanction the Chinese Communist leadership

National People's Congress, 2013 (photo by Dong Fang via Wikimedia Commons) On March 9, 2000, US President Bill Clinton gave a speech on US-China trade relations in which he advocated for the expansion of trade between the two countries and defended his administration's decision to push for China's entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO). President Clinton's argument in favour of closer trade relations with the People's Republic of China (PRC) was based on two assumptions. First, that increased trade with China would benefit the US economically, and that if the US failed to promote trade, then other countries would benefit from the opportunities that the Chinese market offered. Second, that closer economic ties between the US and the PRC would allow Washington to "pull China in the right direction."  " Last fall, as all of you know, the United States signed the agreement to bring China into the W.T.O. on terms that will ope

China releases anti-Uighur propaganda film "Black Hand"

Mosque in Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang, as photographed in 2008 (photo by jun jin luo via Wikimedia Commons) The People's Republic of China (PRC) has released a propaganda video titled "The black hand — ETIM and terrorism in Xinjiang", in an attempt to shape the narrative surrounding its crackdown on the Uighur Muslim ethnic minority. The propaganda film links the Uighur population to Islamic terrorism, thus trying to justify the indiscriminate persecution of the entire Muslim population. "For decades, the [East Turkistan Islamic Movement] which has close links with international terrorist organizations perpetrated countless terrorist attacks aiming to separate the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region from China," writes China's state-run television network CGTN. The East Turkistan Islamic Movement, or ETIM, was reportedly founded by Hasan Mahsum, an Uighur from Xinjiang's Kashgar region. He was shot dead by Pakistani troops in 2003. In 2002 the Unite