Robert Kuttner

Robert Kuttner is co-founder and co-editor of The American Prospect, a professor at Brandeis University's Heller School, and a distinguished senior fellow of the think tank Demos. He was a longtime columnist for Business Week and continues to write columns in The Boston Globe. He is the author of Obama's Challenge and other books.

Recent Articles

Poking holes in the Constitution

The biggest menace to the personal security of Americans may not be terrorism but government's response to it. The administration has already rammed through an antiterrorism bill that allows normal due process and privacy protections to be waived if a prosecutor thinks some potential suspect has some remote connection to terrorism. Now the president has decided that terrorism suspects can be tried before special military tribunals, which do away with the inconvenience of constitutional niceties. The CIA, which is not supposed to use third-degree tactics itself, has been collaborating with foreign governments all too willing to use torture, such as Egypt and Albania. The CIA has knowingly turned terrorism suspects over to the agents of such governments to keep its own hands nominally clean. Here at home, at least a thousand legal foreign residents have been rounded up and detained, often without formal charges being lodged against them. This would be illegal for US citizens. But...

Only Connect

The New York Times Book (sic) Review for March 6, 1994 ran a feature piece reviewing a CD-ROM. "Microsoft Art Gallery," an interactive digitized catalog of Britain's National Gallery collection, won a rave. Just point and click, and you can pull up paintings by artist, period, or genre; you can also get spoken critical commentaries and painter biographies; you can zoom in or print out, all for $79.95. The Times' s treatment of a CD-ROM as a virtual book has to be a kind of cultural watershed. The information revolution, decades after predictions of its imminence, has finally reached a popular critical mass. Or, perhaps, a critical elite? Tens of millions of people now use electronic mail, computer bulletin boards, libraries and databases, or "telecommute" from home. Tens of millions more, many in such relatively humble jobs as checkout clerk and bank teller, routinely use computers at work. And after decades of rather pedestrian use of Macs and PCs in the classroom as adjuncts of rote...

Storylines: Get Me Rewrite

A very long time ago, when I was the manager of a listener-supported radio station, we were planning our annual on-air fundraising drive. "The only thing we have to sell," one staffer said earnestly, "is our integrity." A wise guy replied, "What do you think we can get for it?" Thanks to the poisonous blend of talk shows, lecture fees, and an absence of conflict-of-interest standards, too many of today's celebrity journalists seem to have taken this ironic advice literally. Last Christmas week I made my debut on CNN's Crossfire , debating the budget. My conservative opposite number was Grover Norquist of the Americans for Tax Reform. I am generally dubious about food-fight TV, but I thought this a worthwhile debate. I also, I am ashamed to admit, thought it good publicity for The American Prospect (1-800-872-0162, only 25 dollars a year). The producer was eager to fly me to Washington to be live in the studio. I decided that was more trouble than it was worth, so I bargained hard: If...

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