News

Saturday, October 25, 2014
Lawsuit Aims to Break Arizona's Secrecy Over Experimental Lethal Injections
Major media organizations have levied a federal lawsuit to force Arizona to break its secrecy around lethal injections by revealing the drugs and processes used to kill people, because the public has the "right" to know. "By withholding information about the source, composition, and quality of the...
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Friday, October 24, 2014
Two Reportedly Dead in Washington State School Shooting
Developing... A student on Friday afternoon reportedly opened fire in Washington state's Marysville Pilchuck High School, approximately 30 miles north of Seattle. Two students were killed, one of them the shooter—who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the the Seattle Times reports , citing law...
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US to Pay Philippines $1.9 Million for Navy Ship Ramming Into Pristine Reef
The Philippines said Friday that the United States has agreed to pay $1.9 million in compensation for damage a U.S. Navy minesweeper caused to a pristine coral reef last year. "I received correspondence just yesterday that the U.S. has agreed to pay the compensation," Foreign Affairs Secretary...
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Climate Change Linked to Rising Violence: Report
Along with rising sea levels and global insecurity, climate change is producing yet another unforeseen consequence—rising violence, from road rage to civil war, a new report finds. A working paper released Thursday by the National Bureau of Economic Research, which conducted a meta-analysis of 55...
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Bill Moyers: Grassroots Pro-Democracy Movement Must Rise to Challenge Corporate Control
In late September, veteran journalist and public television host Bill Moyers, now eighty-years old, announced he was finally retiring (and yes, this time he means it) after more than forty years as one of the nation's most trusted voices in news, politics, and culture. Though he briefly left...
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Activists Form Human Blockade to Stop Community from Becoming 'Gas Station for Fracking'
Anti-fracking activists gathered in an act of non-violent civil disobedience on Friday morning near where energy company Crestwood Midstream was scheduled to begin construction on a massive underground gas storage depot on the banks of one of the Finger Lakes in central New York. Wearing the color...
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TIME Magazine Criticized for 'Malicious' Anti-Teacher Cover
Educators and parents are slamming TIME magazine editors for their November 3rd issue cover , which they say levies "malicious" and "false" attacks against the nation's public school teachers. “ROTTEN APPLES," reads the cover, which includes an image of an apple about to be pounded by a gavel. "It’...
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Amnesty: US Human Rights Abuses on Display in Ferguson
In a report released on Friday, Amnesty International roundly condemns the excessive force used by local law enforcement agencies in Ferguson, Missouri earlier this year and called for 'accountability and systemic change' in order to curb the kinds of human rights abuses increasingly seen in U.S...
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Climate Needs 'Radical Shock Treatment'; EU Pledges Only 'Smelling Salts'
If the non-binding pledges announced by European governments in Brussels on Friday morning are an indication of the global response to climate change, say green campaigners, the world and its inhabitants are in big, big trouble. Members of the European Commission and European Council championed the...
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Thursday, October 23, 2014
Open Access Week: Celebrating Knowledge in the Commons
This week marks the eighth annual Open Access Week, which champions scholarly work being made part of the " knowledge commons " for the benefit of all. Many scholarly articles, though they may be publicly funded, remain restricted as a result of paywalls or copyright restrictions. These barriers,...
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Is Obama Stalling Until Republicans Can Bury the CIA Torture Report?
Continued White House foot-dragging on the declassification of a much-anticipated Senate torture report is raising concerns that the administration is holding out until Republicans take over the chamber and kill the report themselves. Senator Dianne Feinstein’s intelligence committee sent a 480-...
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'Stop the Toxic Treadmill': EPA Sued for Approving Controversial Herbicide
Green groups on Wednesday sued the Environmental Protection Agency over its recent approval of Dow AgroSciences' herbicide Enlist Duo, which farmers and scientists warn threatens human and environmental health. "The toxic treadmill has to stop," said Jay Feldman, executive director of Beyond...
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Police Use of Drones May Threaten Human Rights: UN Expert
The increasing use of drones by police forces and private security may pose a threat to human rights, a United Nations independent expert has said. "An armed drone, controlled by a human from a distance, can hardly do what police officers are supposed to do—use the minimum force required by the...
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'Not Political… Survival': Faced With Rising Climate Risks, South Florida City Votes for Secession
Fed up with the lack of action by Florida lawmakers to protect the state's communities from rising seas and other climate change-related risks, officials in the city of South Miami have passed an ambitious resolution calling for the state to be split in two—allowing for the southern half of the...
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US Official: Bombing Oil Pipelines in Syria a 'Viable Option'
A top State Department official on Thursday said that bombing oil pipelines controlled by Islamic State (or ISIS) in Syria is now a "viable option" under consideration by the U.S. military. Julieta Valls Noyes, the US deputy assistant secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs, was in London and...
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Protesters Torch City Hall, Demand Justice for Missing Mexican Students
Tens of thousands marched in Mexico City and Iguala, Mexico on Wednesday to protest the disappearance of 43 student-teachers who went missing on September 26. Reflecting growing outrage over the failure of Mexican authorities to resolve the case, a group of masked protesters separated from the...
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Whistleblowers Expose USAID's Pervasive Hidden Failures
Internal documents and whistleblowers reveal that the U.S. Office of the Inspector General, which is tasked with overseeing the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)'s billions in civilian foreign aid, is abrogating its watchdog duties by censoring audits and reports to hide findings...
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Dozens of Civilians Killed by US-Led Bombing of Syria: Report
A new assessment released Thursday by a human rights monitor on the ground in Syria reveals that in addition to the confirmed death of hundreds of soldiers aligned with either the Islamic State (ISIS) or the al Nusra Front that have been killed by U.S.-led airstrikes over the last month, dozens of...
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Ebola Outbreak Threatens Food Crisis in West Africa
UNITED NATIONS - The widespread outbreak of Ebola in West Africa, which has resulted in over 4,500 deaths so far, is also threatening to trigger a food crisis in the three countries already plagued by poverty and hunger. Dr. Shenggen Fen, director-general of the Washington-based International Food...
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US Destroys Its Own Weapons in Enemy Hands
UNITED NATIONS - When the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) captured a treasure trove of U.S. weapons from fleeing Iraqi soldiers last month, one of the rebel leaders with a morbid sense of humour was quoted as saying rather sarcastically: “We hope the Americans would honour their...
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Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Noam Chomsky at United Nations: It Would Be Nice if the United States Lived up to International Law
After world-renowned scholar Noam Chomsky gave a major address on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in the hall of the United Nations General Assembly last week, Amy Goodman interviewed the world-renowned linguist and dissident before an audience of 800 people. Chomsky spoke at an event sponsored by...
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#O22: Nationwide Day of Action Builds Momentum Against Institutional Racism
Organizers and rights groups throughout the U.S. are staging demonstrations on Wednesday against police brutality, racial profiling, and mass incarceration, practices they say disproportionately affect communities of color. The protests mark the 19th annual National Day of Protest to Stop Police...
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Big Oil Spending Millions to Kill Local Anti-Fracking Measure
Fossil fuel energy companies have spent over $7.6 million to defeat a measure that would ban fracking in California's Santa Barbara County. Measure P , which was brought forth by the Santa Barbara County Water Guardians, would ban "high-intensity petroleum operations," including fracking, acidizing...
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Suit Demands EPA Show Documents Related to Big Oil Influence over Fuel Standards
A leading Washington, D.C. ethics organization filed suit against the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday for failing to provide documents regarding oil industry efforts to influence the 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Each year, the EPA sets the RFS for how much renewable fuel...
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Seven Years Later, Blackwater Guards Found Guilty of Massacre in Iraq
More than seven years after guards with the private mercenary company Blackwater opened fire on Iraqi civilians in downtown Baghdad, killing 17 people and wounding 20, a federal jury on Wednesday found four of the men involved with the massacre guilty in the case. Former guard Nicholas Slatten was...
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US Reportedly Airdropped Weapons Into ISIS Hands
Fighters with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (or ISIS) are claiming to have obtained a cache of weapons from the U.S. military after it airdropped bundles of small-arms ammunition and weaponry destined for Kurdish fighters in Kobani. A video reportedly released by ISIS and posted to YouTube on...
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Two Confirmed Dead In Shooting Near Canadian Parliament
Update 2:40 EST: Two people are confirmed dead from Wednesday's shooting. The Canadian soldier shot while guarding Canada's War Memorial has reportedly died from his injuries. Furthermore, a "male suspect" is confirmed dead. Police are reportedly searching cars leaving attempting to travel from...
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Despite Media, Rightwing Ebola Hype, US Public Resists Total Panic
WASHINGTON - Despite media hype, missteps by federal health agencies, and apparent efforts by right-wing and some neo-conservatives to foment fear about the possible spread of the Ebola virus in the U.S., most of the public remain at least “fairly” confident in the authorities’ ability to deal with...
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US Given New Deadline for Torture Photos 'More Disturbing' Than Abu Ghraib
A federal judge has given the Obama administration less than two additional months to make its case why photos of abuse and torture by U.S. military forces against detainees captured following the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan should not be released to the public. As The Guardian 's Spencer...
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Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Voices Renew Call for Inquiry into Missing, Murdered Aboriginal Women
While close to 200 delegates gathered this week at the f ourth National Aboriginal Women’s Summit in Nova Scotia, the Canadian Public Health Association on Monday joined a growing chorus of calls for a national inquiry into missing and murdered Aboriginal women. In addition, the Association, which...
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Dark Money Spending in Key Senate Races 'Shattering' Records: Report
Unknown donors and big-monied, outside groups are pouring record amounts of cash into key Senate races set to determine which political party will take control over the upper house come November's election, according to a new report published Tuesday by the Brennan Center for Justice. The report,...
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Hong Kong Chief Executive: Democracy Would Empower the Poor
As talks between Hong Kong protesters and the Chinese government began on Tuesday, the region’s current chief executive C.Y. Leung spoke out against free elections on the grounds that it would empower the poor. In his first interview with foreign media since the pro-democracy movement began, Leung...
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Chris Christie Says He's 'Tired of Hearing About the Minimum Wage'
Chris Christie, governor of New Jersey and potential Republican candidate for the 2016 presidential election, is facing criticism after he declared on Tuesday that he is "tired of hearing about the minimum wage." "You know what regular folks are tired of?" asked Maria Myotte, communications...
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US Cities Criminalizing Sharing Food with Homeless: Report
As the number of U.S. cities criminalizing sharing food with the homeless continues to rise as a result of burdensome requirements on food pantries and individuals, rights groups are condemning the cities for their focus on punishment over solutions. A report released Monday by the National...
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$7 Billion US Eradication Effort Delivers Record High Poppy Crop in Afghanistan
Opium poppy cultivation levels in Afghanistan are at a record high, though the U.S. government has spent over $7 billion to stop it, a federal watchdog states in a new report . In a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Attorney General Eric Holder and US AID...
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2014 Set to be Hottest Year in Recorded Human History: NOAA
2014 is set to be the warmest calendar year in recorded human history, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Climatic Data Center revealed in its latest monthly report . This is already an era of climate firsts. The "combined average temperature" of land and ocean surfaces...
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Prisoner Gag Law an Attack on Fundamental Free Speech Rights, say Critics
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett on Tuesday signed into law a prisoner gag order that rights groups say is an affront to the First Amendment and a denial of all citizens' right to understand "an area of U.S. life physically removed from public scrutiny." Passed by the Pennsylvania House of...
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'The Arctic is the Lynchpin': Vying for Control of the Icy North
The U.S. will assume leadership of the international Arctic Council this week, as Russia and Canada flex their military muscles in the fossil fuel-rich polar region. For environmentalists, by opening U.S. Arctic waters to oil drilling leases, the Obama Administration hasn't instilled confidence in...
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Water Shutoffs Robbing Detroit Residents of 'Dignified' Life: UN Investigators
Detroit's "unprecedented" shutoff of water utilities to city homes condemns residents to "lives without dignity," violates human rights on a large scale, and disproportionately impacts African-Americans, United Nations investigators declared Monday following a two-day inquiry. "Denial of access to...
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'The Blood That's to Come': Pacific Islanders Take on Australian Coal
SYDNEY - The recent blockade of ships entering the world’s largest coal port in Newcastle, Australia, has brought much-needed attention to the negative impacts of the fossil fuel industry on global climate patterns. But it will take more than a single action to bring the change required to prevent...
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Violence Against Children Is Global Epidemic: UNICEF
Violence against children is a global epidemic in which a young person is killed by violent conflict every five minutes, according to a new study released Tuesday by U.K. branch of UNICEF. The global assessment—titled “ Children in Danger: Act to End Violence Against Children” —reveals that an...
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US-Backed Ukraine Army Used Cluster Bombs Against Its Own People: Reports
The Ukraine Army, backed by both the U.S. and NATO throughout its military campaign against rebel factions in eastern regions of the country over recent months, appears to have fired cluster munitions on the city of Donetsk earlier this month, according to a Human Rights Watch investigation and...
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Monday, October 20, 2014
WTO Meat-Labeling Ruling Jeopardizes Consumer Safeguards
The World Trade Organization ruled Monday that U.S. rules requiring labels on packaged steaks, ribs and other cuts of meat identifying where the animals were born, raised, and slaughtered are in violation of trade rules that require imports to be treated no less favorably than domestic products. In...
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Clearing Russia from Blame, German Intelligence Says Rebels Downed Flight MH17
Clearing Russia from presumed involvement in the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17, German intelligence officials say they have "unambiguous" evidence that the crash was caused by pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine, Der Spiegel reported Sunday. The information was presented earlier this...
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'Eroding Legitimacy' of Fossil Fuels Industry, Divestment Movement Gains Ground
"What is happening?" asked author and activist Naomi Klein in a recent piece penned for the Guardian . "Are fossil fuel companies – long toxic to our natural environment – becoming toxic in the public relations environment as well? It seems so." As fossil fuel divestment victories pile up this fall...
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'White on Pumpkin Crime': Mainstream Riot Coverage from Ferguson, Missouri to Keene, New Hampshire
"These are no angels," Twitter user Isaiah A. Taylor said of the photograph that showed six young white men on top of an overturned car, beer cans aloft, as the crowd on the ground seemed to cheer them on. Over the weekend, crowds who attended the annual pumpkin festival in Keene, New Hampshire...
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Global Health Groups Call for 'Common Mission' to Fight Ebola
While news of Ebola quarantines being lifted in Dallas on Monday brought a measure of relief in the United States' effort to combat the spread of Ebola, healthcare workers and officials across the globe are saying that the only way to contain what could become the "definitive humanitarian disaster...
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Reality of National Security State Trumps 'Delusions' of U.S. Democracy
"I think the American people are deluded." So says Tufts University political scientist Michael J. Glennon, whose new book, National Security and Double Government (Oxford University Press), describes a powerful bureaucratic network that's really pulling the strings on key aspects of U.S. foreign...
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Philippine President Says Alleged Murder by US Marine Won't End Military Agreement
Philippine President Benigno Aquino sparked outrage on Monday when he declared he will not meet growing calls across the country to scrap the U.S.-Philippines Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) following the alleged murder of a transgender Filipina woman, Jennifer Laude, by a U.S. service member in...
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Bombs Fall in Syria as Weapons-Makers Profits Soar in the West
According to The Independent 's Middle East correspondent Robert Fisk, there is only one clear winner in the new war that has now engulfed Syria and Iraq: the world's top weapons manufacturers. As latest U.S. airstrikes hit targets inside Syria on Sunday, Fisk wrote, "Share prices are soaring in...
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Sunday, October 19, 2014
Pro-Democracy Protesters in Hong Kong Undeterred Amid Police Crackdown
Twenty Hong Kong protesters were reportedly injured early Sunday as a result of what they say is continued police brutality. The violence comes ahead of meetings between protest leaders and Hong Kong government officials on Tuesday. Demands for free elections in 2017 have sparked thousands of...
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Journalist Risen: 'Mercenary Class' Now Permanent Fixture in National Security State
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times journalist James Risen said Sunday that the secretive and multi-billion dollar war on terror has sparked an entire "mercenary class that feeds off unending war." Risen, who could face prison time for refusing to reveal a source, made the remarks on MSNBC's Up...
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'Major' Oil Spill Strikes Louisiana, Threatens Waterways
Officials on Sunday are continuing work to contain what an EPA representative called a major oil spill in northwestern Louisiana that could take months to clean up. The rupture of Sunoco Logistics' Mid-Valley pipeline near Mooringsport in Caddo Parish on Monday released an estimated 4,000 barrels...
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Saturday, October 18, 2014
UN Experts: Upholding Human Rights Means Taking Urgent Climate Action
Climate change poses a global threat to human rights, underscoring the need for worldwide action to rein in runaway greenhouse gas emissions, a group of United Nations independent experts has stressed. The Special Rapporteurs, independent experts and working group members issued their warning in an...
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Across UK, Marchers Demand an Economy That Works for All
"An economy that finds money for tax cuts for the rich and boardroom greed, while the rest face a pay squeeze and big cuts to the welfare system –that any of us might need – is no longer working for the many," said TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady.
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'Loss for Democracy': Supreme Court Allows Texas's Voter ID Law
The U.S. Supreme Court on Saturday said that Texas's controversial voter ID law can remain in place for this year's election, potentially threatening voting rights of hundreds of thousands of Texans. U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos had struck down the law on Oct. 9, finding that it "has an...
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Friday, October 17, 2014
'Unusual' NSA Work Deal Raises Questions About Conflict of Interest
A senior official at the U.S. National Security Agency has been cleared to work part-time for a private firm started by former NSA director Keith Alexander, according to exclusive Reuters reporting , raising questions about the blurring of lines between government and business. The news agency...
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As Workers Protest, Walmart Changes Tune in Minimum Wage Fight
As the Fight for 15 continues to grow, Walmart preempted a planned protest on Thursday by workers in several cities by promising to pay its employees more than the minimum wage—eventually. Walmart CEO Douglas McMillon told reporters on Wednesday that the company plans to upgrade its hourly pay for...
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UN Health Agency Admits Mistakes, While US Ramps Up Ebola Response
As President Barack Obama appointed an 'Ebola czar' and contemplated imposing restrictions on travelers coming to the U.S. from West African countries, the World Health Organization (WHO) admitted that it dropped the ball in stemming the still-spiraling Ebola outbreak in West Africa, blaming...
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Purchase of Election by Chevron Shows We Have 'Oligarchy, Not Democracy': Sanders
The Independent U.S. Senator from Vermont Bernie Sanders was in the city of Richmond, California on Thursday and said local elections in the city have become prime examples of how U.S. politics, at all levels, have become corrupted by the unlimited amount of money wealthy corporations and...
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EPA Analysis Evidence Notorious Neonics Should be Suspended, Watchdog Groups Say
A new U.S Environmental Protection Agency analysis of neonicotinoid pesticides on soybean production offers further proof that they should be suspended, environmental watchdog groups say. This class of pesticides, often referred to as neonics, has been linked to the decline of bees and other...
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FBI Director: Government Surveillance 'Enhances Liberty'
In a speech on Thursday, FBI director James Comey invoked "national security and public safety" to push for more permissive government surveillance policies, claiming new encryption technologies are poised to leave law enforcement agencies "in the dark" as they try to hunt down terrorists and child...
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'Justice for Jennifer': Protests Sweep Philippines Following US Marine's Alleged Murder of Transgender Woman
Protests continue across the Philippines following news of the murder of Jennifer Laude, a transgender Filipina woman, allegedly at the hands of a U.S. marine in Olongapo City. Coming just months after the U.S. signed a controversial pact to boost its military presence in the Philippines,...
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Proving Power of Renewables, Wind Making Dirty Fuels Obsolete in Northern Europe
The wind power boom in Nordic countries is making fossil fuel-fired power plants obsolete and is pushing electricity prices down, according to reporting by Reuters published Friday. Power prices in Finland, Denmark, Norway, and Sweden have dropped sharply as renewable energy floods the market,...
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Monsanto Spends Millions in Bid to Defeat Local GMO Labeling Initiative
Monsanto, the largest genetically-modified seed corporation in the world, has so far spent over $4 million in a bid to crush an Oregon initiative , up for vote in November, to mandate the labeling of genetically engineered food. Records from the Oregon Secretary of State's office show that the...
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Investigation: Only 4% of Drone Victims in Pakistan Named as al Qaeda Members
As the number of US drone strikes in Pakistan hits 400, research by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism finds that fewer than 4% of the people killed have been identified by available records as named members of al Qaeda. This calls in to question US Secretary of State John Kerry’s claim last...
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Hong Kong Police Raid Protest Site as Activists Vow More Actions
Pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong slammed the government for a "lack of sincerity" on Friday after police dismantled one of the region’s main protest sites, tearing down barricades in an early-morning raid. Activists said the move would only create obstacles in upcoming talks with government...
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Report: Senate Report on CIA Will Sidestep Look at Bush 'Torture Team'
According to new reporting by McClatchy , the five-year investigation led by the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee into the torture program conducted by the CIA in the aftermath of September 11, 2001 will largely ignore the role played by high-level Bush administration officials, including those...
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'Not Drowning, Fighting': Pacific Climate Warriors Blockade Australian Coal Port
Declaring themselves " Pacific Climate Warriors ," representatives from a dozen Pacific Island nations—sitting atop traditional outrigger canoes, kayaks, and other small boats—staged a full-day blockade of the Newcastle Coal Port in Australia on Friday as they sent a message to the government of...
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Thursday, October 16, 2014
Palestinian Resolution to End Occupation Nears UN Submission
The UN Security Council could receive a Palestinian draft resolution calling for an end to the Israeli occupation by the end of the month, Agence France-Presse reported Thursday. The news agency quotes Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) secretary general Yasser Abed Rabbo as saying that the...
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New Zealand Cops Raided Home of Reporter Working on Snowden Documents
Agents from New Zealand’s national police force ransacked the home of a prominent independent journalist earlier this month who was collaborating with The Intercept on stories from the NSA archive furnished by Edward Snowden. The stated purpose of the 10-hour police raid was to identify the source...
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Fracking = Wrong Way Forward for Climate
A global energy approach that adopts the kind of natural gas boom currently underway in the U.S. is "misguided" and a path towards further climate change, new research shows. The finding, based on projections from five research groups from Germany, the U.S., Austria, Italy and Australia, was...
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Naomi Klein: 'Grassroots Movement From Below' vs. 'Business-as-Usual'
Author and activist Naomi Klein was awarded Canada's top annual prize for non-fiction writing this week, the Hilary Weston Prize presented by the Writers' Trust of Canada, for her recently published book, ' This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate . ' According to the citation offered by...
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Leaked TPP Chapter Exposes Sweet Deals for Big Pharma and US Bully Tactics
WikiLeaks on Thursday released a second updated version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Intellectual Property Rights chapter, charging that it will hinder affordable access to medicines globally, increase online surveillance, and impinge on civil liberties while benefiting Big Pharma and...
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'Trailblazing' ACLU Lawyer to Lead DOJ’s Civil Rights Division
Human rights champion and deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Vanita Gupta has been named as the new acting head of the Justice Department’s civil rights division, which has been without a set leader for over a year, and will be nominated for the permanent position by...
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'Assassination' of Public Health Systems Driving Ebola Crisis, Experts Warn
Neoliberal economic policies that defund health infrastructure responsible for current crisis in West Africa and across the globe, say analysts.
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#SolidarityWithTeachers: Philly Educators, Students, Parents Take to the Streets
Hundreds of teachers, students, parents, and union leaders are expected to attend a massive rally in Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon, protesting the recent cancellation of the teachers' union contract and imposition of health care costs on educators. The demonstration will take place at 4 p.m...
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British Firebrand Russell Brand Reminds Americans: Revolution Was a Good Idea
British-born comedian and actor Russell Brand spoke to and marched with veteran Occupy Wall Street supporters in lower Manhattan on Wednesday as he championed the spirit of the U.S.-based movement that injected corporate malfeasance and economic inequality into the national conversation back in...
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Obama's Claimed War-Making Authority for Syria and Iraq Called 'Preposterous'
The White House is facing criticism for its declaration on Wednesday that it can continue to escalate war in both Iraq and Syria without approval from Congress because it is granted authority from two pieces of legislation passed 12 and 13 years ago. "These are illegal underpinnings for what is a...
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Arkansas Voter ID Law Struck Down
The highest court in Arkansas has struck down a restrictive voter ID law passed by the state's Republican-controlled legislature, calling the measure 'unconstitutional.' The Associated Press reports : The high court noted the Arkansas Constitution lists specific requirements to vote: that a person...
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Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Colombian Farmers Take BP to Court in Landmark Case
A group of Colombian farmers has taken BP to court charging that the oil giant was negligent in managing construction of a pipeline, resulting in permanent environmental damage. The 73 campesinos are seeking $29 million in compensation for damages. The Guardian and Financial Times describe the suit...
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CIA's Own Study Finds US Arming of Foreign Rebels a Failed Operation
While the CIA continues to arm and train "moderate" Syrian rebels, a new, still-classified internal study obtained by the New York Times finds that the agency’s gun-running tactics in conflict areas have almost never succeeded, the Times reported on Wednesday. Many of the agency’s past attempts to...
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Failing Humans and Planet, EPA Greenlights 'Agent Orange' Herbicide
Ignoring the concerns of scientists, doctors, food safety advocates, environmentalists, and more than half a million U.S. citizens, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday issued their final approval for what has been dubbed Dow AgroSciences' 'Agent Orange' herbicide. In a press...
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Outsourcing Public Services: Governors Push Privatization, With Disastrous Results
Governors across the country have outsourced important public services to private firms with high-powered lobbyists, mostly with disastrous results, according to a report released Wednesday by the Center for Media and Democracy's " Outsourcing America Exposed " project. "While large corporations...
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Noam Chomsky: Growing Number of Nations Distancing Themselves From Israel's 'Explicitly Criminal Actions'
Noam Chomsky said Tuesday that recent votes in Europe to recognize Palestinian statehood show growing actions by populations to distance themselves from Israel's "criminal actions." The noted noted linguist, author, and critic of U.S. empire added that continued fossil fuel extraction is destroying...
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Yemeni Man Sues Germany for Role in US Drone Killings of Civilians
A Yemeni man who lost two family members to a U.S. drone strike is suing the German government for its role in the attacks through its hosting of a U.S. military installation—Ramstein Air Base— which is critical to the covert drone war. "Were it not for the help of Germany and Ramstein, men like my...
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Mass Surveillance Programs Threaten Privacy Rights, International Law: UN Report
Mass electronic surveillance by intelligence agencies violates "the very essence of the right to privacy" and threatens international law, according to the official report released Wednesday by the United Nations counter-terrorism investigator. "The hard truth is that the use of mass surveillance...
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GOP Candidates Relying on Dark Money Infusions for Midterm Ad Blitz: Analysis
Just a few weeks out from the November midterm elections, a new report revealed on Tuesday that over a quarter of the nearly $1 billion spent so far has been paid for by outside groups, the majority of which do not disclose their donors. According to the Wesleyan Media Project analysis (pdf) of...
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Ohio Earthquakes Directly Connected to Fracking, Research Shows
Fracking triggered hundreds of small earthquakes along a previously unmapped fault in eastern Ohio late last year, according to a new study to be published in the journal Seismological Research Letters . Looking at data from National Science Foundation seismographs located near fracking sites,...
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Biodiversity, Climate Change Solutions Inextricably Linked
PYEONGCHANG, Republic of Korea - The remarkable biodiversity of the countries of the Caribbean, already under stress from human impacts like land use, pollution, invasive species, and over-harvesting of commercially valuable species, now faces an additional threat from climate change. On the...
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Just Weeks Before Elections, Fed Judges Reinstate Texas's Harsh Voter ID Law
Just a few weeks before the November elections, a federal appeals court on Tuesday temporarily reinstated Texas's harsh voter ID law, despite warnings— including from the Department of Justice—that it suppresses people of color, the poor, the young, and the elderly from casting their ballots. “...
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For-Profit Healthcare Under Fire As Ebola Spreads to Second US Healthcare Worker
Update: The Centers for Disease and Control announced Wednesday that the second Dallas healthcare worker infected with Ebola flew from Cleveland to Dallas on Monday, the day before Amber Vinson, 29, a nurse at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital was confirmed to have Ebola. Vinson had a temperature...
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In Response to Violence and Raids, Protesters Blockade Hong Kong Police Headquarters
After an hour-long stand-off in front of police headquarters in Hong Kong, officers allowed more than 100 protesters to enter the station in groups to file reports on the alleged police beating of political activist Ken Tsang Kin-chiu. In the most violent police raid on Hong Kong protest zones yet...
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Supreme Court Gives Women's Right to Choose a Reprieve in Texas
More than a dozen clinics that provide abortions in the state of Texas should be able to reopen their doors on Wednesday, following an unsigned order by the U.S. Supreme Court late Tuesday that puts on hold a lower court ruling that shuttered them. The order from the high court, approved by a 6-3...
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Legacy of Chemical Weapons in Iraq Compounds Lies and Failures of US Invasion
These aren't the chemical weapons you're looking for. New reporting from the New York Times , published online late Tuesday, reveals that although the administration of George W. Bush employed false claims of an active chemical weapons program to justify its 2003 invasion of Saddam Hussein's Iraq (...
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Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Doctor Accused of Torture, 'Medical Experimentation' over Botched Execution
The family of Clayton Lockett, an Oklahoma death row inmate who in April was killed in a botched execution, is suing those who participated in his death, including a board-certified physician, saying they violated numerous treaties including those established at the post-World War II Nuremberg...
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Cries for 'US Troops Out Now' Follow Soldier's Alleged Killing of Woman in Philippines
Dozens of people protested outside the U.S. Embassy in Manila on Tuesday demanding the expulsion of U.S. troops and calling for justice for the death of a transgender woman allegedly at the hands of a Marine. Twenty-six-year-old Jennifer Laude, identified in some media reports as Jeffrey Laude, was...
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Victims of Iraqi Shi'a militias pictured in Amnesty International Report. (Photo: Amnesty International) Shi'a Militias Committing War Crimes Against Iraqi Civilians: Report
As the U.S. expands its war on the Islamic State (ISIS), rising Shi'a militias within Iraq—many of them armed and backed by the U.S.-allied Iraqi government—are "taking advantage" of a climate of violence and impunity to abduct, execute, and disappear scores of Sunni civilian men, according to a...
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Diagnosed with Cancer, Union President Lewis No Longer Contender in Chicago Mayoral Bid
Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis , a champion for public education and a vocal critic of corporate education reform, has been diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor and will not be able to run for office against Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a source close to Lewis said on Monday. On...
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Relatives, Classmates Seize Government Buildings in Mexico Demanding Students’ Safe Return
Frustrated by the slow pace of the investigation into the disappearance and possible deaths of 43 students, a group of relatives, teachers, and classmates from the leftist teacher college where they were training seized two government buildings in Mexico's Guerrero state on Monday. Roughly 600...
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