Bernd Debusmann

Time to end America’s two-party system?

By Bernd Debusmann
August 5, 2011

Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Confidence in the U.S. Congress is at a historic low, more than half of Americans think that the Republican and Democratic parties are doing such a bad job that a third party is needed, and the word “dysfunction” has been common currency in the drawn-out debate over the national debt.

Debt, dogma, and dents in US image

By Bernd Debusmann
July 29, 2011

Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

No matter how the wrangling over America’s national debt is resolved, it will leave lasting dents in the international image of a country that prides itself on its can-do spirit and its competence. “The entire whole world is watching,” as President Barack Obama put it, and parts of it are dismayed by a monumental display of dysfunction.

Desmond Tutu, Israel and U.S. pensions

By Bernd Debusmann
July 22, 2011

Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

What’s the connection between a South African Nobel Peace Prize winner, Israel, and one of America’s biggest pension funds? An international campaign for economic, cultural and academic boycotts of Israel and Jewish settlements on the West Bank.

In U.S., time to end the death penalty?

By Bernd Debusmann
July 15, 2011

Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

America’s system of meting out death sentences is unfair and arbitrary. Race, money and politics play major roles. Since society’s ultimate punishment cannot be applied fairly, it should not be applied at all.

America’s problematic remote control wars

By Bernd Debusmann
July 8, 2011

Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The United States is deploying missile-laden remotely piloted aircraft to kill enemies in six countries, scientists are working on ever more sophisticated military robots, and there are a host of unanswered questions on the future of warfare. Some of the more intriguing ones are asked abroad.

The U.S. drug war and racial disparities

By Bernd Debusmann
July 1, 2011

Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The numbers tell the story of a criminal justice system blighted by racial disparities in drug law enforcement: African-Americans make up around 12 percent of the U.S. population, account for 33.6 percent of drug arrests and 37 percent of state prison inmates serving time for drug offenses.

America’s nuclear energy future

By Bernd Debusmann
June 17, 2011

In his inaugural address on January 21, 2009, President Barack Obama promised that “we’ll restore science to its rightful place.” Mark that down as a broken promise, as far as a key element of America’s nuclear energy future is concerned.

U.S. nation-building in the wrong place?

By Bernd Debusmann
June 10, 2011

America’s costly efforts at nation-building in Afghanistan and Iraq came under intense scrutiny this month in critical reports and a gloomy Senate hearing that prompted a memorable assertion. “If there is any nation in the world that really needs nation-building right now, it is the United States.”

The war on drugs and a milestone critique

By Bernd Debusmann
June 3, 2011

The war on drugs is a waste of time, money and lives. It cannot be won. The world’s drug warriors are out of ideas.

Power, sex and conventional wisdom

By Bernd Debusmann
May 20, 2011

Would there be fewer sex scandals if the world were run by women?

The question comes to mind in the wake of scandals that involve two powerful men, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Arnold Schwarzenegger, and came to light almost simultaneously. Strauss-Kahn resigned as head of the International Monetary Fund four days after being arrested in New York for allegedly trying to rape a hotel maid. Schwarzenegger, the former governor of California, admitted having fathered a child with a woman on his household staff.