Articles by: Jon Kofas

 The Abraham Accord: Realignment, Containment, and Militarism

 The Abraham Accord: Realignment, Containment, and Militarism

On 19 August 2020, an article in Foreign Affairs argued that a “botched peace plan” in the Middle East accidentally produced the Abraham Accord between the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Israel and the US. On the surface, the Abraham Accord appears to be a ‘botched peace plan’. However, it is consistent with the goals of the Trump administration to forge[Read More…]

by September 16, 2020 World
 Light vs. Darkness’: What to Expect from the US Presidential Election

 Light vs. Darkness’: What to Expect from the US Presidential Election

Ideology: Mobilizing the Popular Base under Neoliberalism In his acceptance speech for president, Joe Biden framed the election in moral terms, stating: “I will be an ally of the light, not the darkness.” He then went on to ask voters to judge him and Trump not by rhetorical promises, but their deeds. Both Trump and Biden have a public record[Read More…]

by August 26, 2020 World
Pandemics, Neoliberalism And Inequality

Pandemics, Neoliberalism And Inequality

Introduction: Socopolitical Polarization and Capital Concentration amid Pandemics Shortly after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic erupted on 11 March 2020, there were optimistic scenarios that there would be global solidarity, and society could become more human-centered instead of capital-centered. Whereas some feared greater tendency toward authoritarianism and a public reaction against it, the mainstream politicians, media and[Read More…]

by June 30, 2020 World
War on Children at Home and Abroad: From US Labor Policy to Illegal Detention and Opposition to Breastfeeding

War on Children at Home and Abroad: From US Labor Policy to Illegal Detention and Opposition to Breastfeeding

  Introduction: Child Exploitation under Neoliberalism Most people would agree that the manner a society treats children is a reflection of its values and moral standards. This was as true of the Golden Age of 5th century Athens as it is of 21st century America. In ancient Athens, boys of citizens received preferential treatment over girls, and boys of affluent[Read More…]

by July 12, 2018 Human Rights
War Against Civilians:  The US in Libya and Yemen

War Against Civilians:  The US in Libya and Yemen

  During the Vietnam War, American historian Howard Zin wrote: all wars are wars against civilians, and are therefore inherently immoral” and “political leaders all over the world should not be trusted when they urge their people to war claiming superior knowledge and expertise.” This holds true just as true today as in the Vietnam War era. While the Western[Read More…]

by June 28, 2018 Imperialism
Ill-Fated US Foreign Policy: Beyond Iran and North Korea

Ill-Fated US Foreign Policy: Beyond Iran and North Korea

 a) The fallacy of Early Cold War Transformation Policy Assumptions in the early 21st Century In May 2018, the Trump administration’s violation of the Iran nuclear deal (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, July 2014) has reawakened the debate about possible end-game scenarios and the degree to which Washington is prepared to unilateral policies in a highly integrated capitalist world and[Read More…]

by May 18, 2018 Imperialism
 May Day in a Neoliberal Society

 May Day in a Neoliberal Society

A Forbes article entitled, “On May Day, Communism Is A Much-Closeted Joke” proclaimed the triumph of neoliberalism and the end of celebrating workers as follows: “Once its biggest self-celebration, May Day now signals Mayday for global communism. Just a half century ago, it seemed irrepressible, now communism is just reprehensible, with the relevance of a renaissance festival. Ironically, it is[Read More…]

by April 30, 2018 World
Trump, Syria And Russia

Trump, Syria And Russia

  1.   Trump Syrian Foreign Policy and its Consequences The off-the-cuff remarks that Trump usually makes are based partly on his own instincts, partly on intelligence briefings, and partly on the advice and input he receives from multiple sources, in and outside of government. For several years, he has been on record in opposing “regime change” and embracing a rather[Read More…]

by April 13, 2018 Imperialism
America’s Caligula Culture

America’s Caligula Culture

The election of Donald Trump prompted a number of people, including historians to make comparisons of Trump’s cult of personality with various historical figures from Benito Mussolini to Roman Emperor Caligula (37-41 A.D.) While such comparison’s make for entertaining reading, they place all emphasis on the individual rather than the system that permitted the individual to rise to power. Hardly[Read More…]

by March 30, 2018 World
The “New Normal” In Cyclical Recessions

The “New Normal” In Cyclical Recessions

There is a ‘new normal’ in cyclical recessions, namely, that the recovery cycle is itself recessionary for the vast majority of the population, not just in periphery countries that invariably suffer much more during contracting economic cycles, but in core countries as well. One of the biggest myths about the contracting cycles is the underlying assumption that they have an[Read More…]

by January 22, 2018 World
Neoliberal Totalitarianism And The Social Contract

Neoliberal Totalitarianism And The Social Contract

 Neoliberal Totalitarianism and the Social Contract Abstract Analyzing aspects of the rightwing populist tide arising largely in reaction to the pluralistic-diversity model of neoliberalism, this essay examines the evolving social contract that normalizes systemic exploitation and repression in the name of capitalist growth. Amid incessant indoctrination by the media representing big capital, people try to make sense of whether their[Read More…]

by January 11, 2018 World
Public Policy: Integration or Catalyst to Institutional Oppression?

Public Policy: Integration or Catalyst to Institutional Oppression?

Abstract In this brief essay, I examine how public policy as a commodity under a business model, in which the state operating in accordance with neoliberal policies has evolved toward a more authoritarian orientation in the early 21st century. Whether in developing countries with high levels of public and private sector corruption, or in the US, the manner by which[Read More…]

by July 21, 2017 Life/Philosophy
A worker walks past a "Hillary" sign on the floor after the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., on Thursday, July 28, 2016. Division among Democrats has been overcome through speeches from two presidents, another first lady and a vice-president, who raised the stakes for their candidate by warning that her opponent posed an unprecedented threat to American diplomacy. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

On The Wrong Side Of History: The US Democratic Party’s Decline

Introduction: Democrats on the Wrong Side of History History is not on the side of the US Democratic Party and not just because Republicans control all branches of government and dominate in legislatures in 32 states and governorships in 33 states.  Just as there is not much of a centrist or leftist challenge to bourgeois political parties around the world,[Read More…]

by June 29, 2017 World
Congressman Steve Scalise And The Politics Of Gun Violence

Congressman Steve Scalise And The Politics Of Gun Violence

On 14 June 2017, Steve Scalise, House Majority Whip and Louisiana Congressman, was wounded by a gunman – small businessman James Hodgkinson, 66 – who opened fire at a baseball park in Alexandria, VA where several legislators and their aides were practicing. Gun violence in America is more prevalent than in any other country in the world. However, instead of[Read More…]

by June 15, 2017 World
Twilight Of The American Century And Chinese Ascendancy

Twilight Of The American Century And Chinese Ascendancy

Abstract The more evidence we have that the American century of international hegemony is waning because of an increasingly weaker economy, the more scholars and analysts of international political economy insist that the 21st century will not witness China’s global ascendancy. From prominent academics to journalists there is a refusal to acknowledge structural shifts in the global economy from West[Read More…]

by June 8, 2017 World
Trumpist-Populism, Neo-Liberalism And Anti-Semitism

Trumpist-Populism, Neo-Liberalism And Anti-Semitism

Introduction Nearly three decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the reintegration of the former Communist countries into the capitalist world economy, rightwing populism with authoritarian if not Fascist aspects, is thriving not just in Eastern and Western Europe but most notably in the US that presents itself to the world as a democratic society. An eclectic ideology[Read More…]

by May 17, 2017 World
Artificial Intelligence: Socioeconomic, Political And Ethical Dimensions

Artificial Intelligence: Socioeconomic, Political And Ethical Dimensions

Introduction: Humanity’s Future in AI-Biosynthetic World In a few centuries or perhaps a few decades, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and biosynthetic engineering will be perfected to the degree that androids will closely resemble humans and biosynthetically engineered humans will resemble androids. Despite the nightmares of such a prospect for some scientists, humanist scholars and theologians, AI will be a dream becoming[Read More…]

by April 22, 2017 Life/Philosophy
American Militarism As A Way Of Life: Beyond Syria And The Middle East

American Militarism As A Way Of Life: Beyond Syria And The Middle East

Introduction Nothing unifies America at home and rallies support among its allies quicker than a bombing of a Muslim nation, no matter the ideological, political, and moral justifications about the military option as a first resort before or after the bombing. Governments divided and lacking popular support, governments questioned by a segment of the military, political and business elites, and[Read More…]

by April 8, 2017 Imperialism
North Korea, The US And The Status Quo

North Korea, The US And The Status Quo

In the age of “fake news” and President Donald Trump claiming that Sweden was riddled with terror attacks which of course never took place, and of perpetual corporate and state-media propaganda passed on as real news, it is very difficult to separate fact from fiction. Making matters worse, hyperbolic rhetoric goes a long way to confuse the public about what[Read More…]

by February 21, 2017 World
American Police-State Militarism And Gun Violence

American Police-State Militarism And Gun Violence

Introduction Contrary to the Hegelian assumption that civilization progresses in a linear mode, the contradictions of capitalism between the promise of prosperity for all, on the one hand, and the reality of perpetual capital concentration, on the other, undermines bourgeois democracy and leads toward a more militaristic-police state. The nexus of structural and behavioral violence has not been lost even[Read More…]

by February 8, 2017 World
Divided America: Root Causes And The Road Ahead

Divided America: Root Causes And The Road Ahead

US Culture Clashes and the Return to “Clash of Civilizations” Theory Based on the bourgeois ideals and value system of the Enlightenment, Western open societies are culturally pluralistic but have limits in social cohesion owing to the hierarchical structure created by the political economy of capitalism. Symptomatic of the market economy, social differentiation and exclusion are a permanent fixture regardless[Read More…]

by January 17, 2017 World
Russia:Enemy Of Western Democracy?

Russia:Enemy Of Western Democracy?

There is a great deal of continuity in Russian history from the reign of Peter the Great until the present. There was clear discontinuity during the Bolshevik Revolution and the brief period when V. I. Lenin was in power, but then the USSR reverted to some very traditional practices in domestic and especially foreign affairs. Just as Tsars Peter the[Read More…]

by January 9, 2017 World
The European Union’s Future: Beyond Italy’s Referendum

The European Union’s Future: Beyond Italy’s Referendum

Introduction: Is the EU Integration Model Viable? Alessandro di Battista, deputy of Italy’s Five Star Movement that helped to defeat the government’s Constitutional reform proposal in December 2016, has hinted that voters decide a possible exit from the euro-zone during the next election for prime minister. This may or may not take place, but Italy remains a possible candidate for[Read More…]

by December 10, 2016 World
America’s Future After The Presidential Election Of 2016

America’s Future After The Presidential Election Of 2016

Right wing political groups throughout the world are celebrating Trump’s victory but rather prematurely. The traditional conservatives and liberals are sufficiently delusional to believe that they are somehow far removed from Trump-style authoritarian politics when in fact they laid the groundwork for Trump to succeed. Meanwhile, some traditional conservative political leaders around the world are wondering if right wing populism[Read More…]

by November 10, 2016 World
Corporate Media, ‘Robo-Citizens’ And Bourgeois Democracy

Corporate Media, ‘Robo-Citizens’ And Bourgeois Democracy

INTRODUCTION: Journalism and the Open Society In contemporary US, and in most countries, the media presents itself as a sentinel of the ‘public interest’. This implies that ‘public interest’ is universally encompassing and equally distributed in its benefits for all classes. The implication is that there is no difference for a pauper than a billionaire when it comes to the[Read More…]

by October 18, 2016 Life/Philosophy
Obama And Clinton Co-Founders Of ISIS?

Obama And Clinton Co-Founders Of ISIS?

On 10 August 2016, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused president Barak Hussein Obama and Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton of co-founding the jihadist rebel organization ISIS (Islamic State) operating mainly in Syria and Iraq but with operative in many Middle Eastern countries and around the world. Trump used Obama’s full name to provoke a racist-xenophobic response from the public[Read More…]

by August 12, 2016 Imperialism