The American Staff

Recent Articles

Dossier: You Pay, They Play

The top 1 percent of U.S. households received an average income-tax cut of approximately $40,990 in 2004, boosting their after-tax income by 5.3 percent … The middle 20 percent of households received an average tax cut of $980, boosting their after-tax income by 2 percent … Including corporate tax cuts, the top 1 percent of households in 2004 received one-third of all tax cuts enacted under George W. Bush, garnering an average cut 70 times greater than that of the middle 20 percent of households … One year earlier, the average tax cut for the middle 20 percent of tax filers was $827 … George W.

Devil in the Details

Man of the People

Readers of the congressional newspaper The Hill may have stumbled across a confusing headline on March 3: “Santorum shifts left for '06 run.” Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum? He of the “man-on-dog” theory of marital law? The Senate's most fearless advocate for destroying Social Security?

Yup. Santorum is facing a sure-to-be-tough re-election fight in 2006 against the popular Democratic state treasurer, Bob Casey Jr. So some image recalibration is in order.

Did you know that fighting poverty was the senator's true passion? You didn't? Well, say hello to the new Rick Santorum, servant of the poor.

Dossier: Air, Land, and Sea

Chlorine plants release an estimated 100 tons of mercury a year in the United States … The Centers for Disease Control has found that 8 percent of women of childbearing age have levels of mercury in their blood that could endanger their offspring … In 2003, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) eliminated a 28-year requirement that set a cap on mercury emissions from chlorine plants … Swimmers experience 3,500 to 5,500 cases of “highly credible gastrointestinal illness” each year because of improper sewage treatment … According to a 2003 University of Michigan study, swimmers in waterways containing blended sewage are 100 times more likely to develop cysts or diarrhea … As of press time, the EPA is poised to allow the routine release of ina

Devil in the Details

Law and Border

Let's say you're Michael Chertoff, and you want to build a fence. What would you need?

According to the House of Representatives, anything you want.

As the Real ID Act, passed by a 261-to-161 margin on February 10, says, “[T]he Secretary of Homeland Security shall have the authority to waive, and shall waive, all laws such Secretary, in such Secretary's sole discretion, determines necessary to ensure expeditious construction” of barriers and roads anywhere in the vicinity of the border.

Howard the Chair

If the anecdotal evidence I've been collecting from Democratic National Committee (DNC) delegates over the last couple of weeks proves to be any sort of indicator, Howard Dean is poised to become the next party chairman. Lest the guy who represents (as the conservative Club for Growth put it in a memorable advertisement) the “latte-drinking, sushi-eating, Volvo-driving, New York Times-reading, Hollywood-loving, left-wing freak show” class of the Democratic Party put the panic of permanent Republican majority in you, I say: Don't fear the doctor.