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Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Medea Benjamin
Don’t Ask the Pentagon Where Its Money Goes
President Barack Obama proudly signed the law that repealed the Pentagon’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy, freeing lesbian, gay, and bisexual Americans (although not trans people ) to openly serve in...
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Jeremy Scahill
Blackwater Founder Remains Free and Rich While His Former Employees Go Down on Murder Charges
A federal jury in Washington, D.C., returned guilty verdicts against four Blackwater operatives charged with killing more than a dozen Iraqi civilians and wounding scores of others in Baghdad in 2007...
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Miriam Pemberton
Combat vs. The Climate: The Military and Climate Security Budgets Compared
As the U.S. debates the President’s plan for new military engagement, hundreds of thousands converged on New York to urge the world’s nations to take stronger action against the threat of climate...
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Glenn Greenwald
Canada, At War For 13 Years, Shocked That ‘A Terrorist’ Attacked Its Soldiers
UPDATE : Multiple conservative commentators have claimed that this article and my subsequent discussion of it are about this morning’s shooting of a solider in Ottawa . Aside from the fact that what...
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Michael Winship
Chevron Greases Local Election With Gusher of Cash
When the Citizens United decision came down in 2010, many feared the Supreme Court had unleashed vast and unfettered campaign contributions from corporations bent on tightening their hammerlock on...
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Peter Hart
A 'Worthless and Whiny' Attack on a Genuine Journalistic Hero
In 1996, in the wake of his explosive "Dark Alliance" series for the San Jose Mercury News ( 8/18-20/96 ), the Washington Post was one of the major newspapers to attack Gary Webb ( FAIR Blog , 10/21/...
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Robert Reich
Getting a Grip on Ebola
We have to get a grip. Ebola is not a crisis in the United States. One person has died and two people are infected with his body fluids. The real crisis is the hysteria over Ebola that’s being fed by...
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Jim Hightower
Going From One Bad War to a Worse One
In 2004, Stuart Bowen of Texas was asked by a friend to take on a difficult and important job, which he did. Bowen's friend was George W. Bush, and the job was to investigate corruption and waste in...
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Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Jamil Dakwar
Will Obama Follow Bush Down the Made-Up Torture Loophole?
Twenty years ago, the United States ratified an international treaty banning the use of torture and cruelty worldwide. Three successive American presidents, with bipartisan support, threw their...
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Ramon Mejia
I, Too, Cry Justice for Jennifer
As a former US Marine, I am disgusted to learn about the killing of Filipina transgender woman Jennifer Laude in Olongapo City, with USMC Private Joseph Scott Pemberton as the prime suspect. I am...
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Dr. Hakim
My Father Was Killed by a Computer, Says 7-Year-Old Afghan Child
Imal, a 7 year old Afghan student in the 2nd grade, came to visit us in Kabul. As Imal grew up, he kept asking his mother where his father was. His mother finally told Imal that his father had been...
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Sarah Byrnes, Orion Kriegman
New England Can Feed Itself: A Vision for Regional Food Resilience
Earlier this month, one hundred people gathered at a church in Jamaica Plain, MA, to consider this question: Can New England Feed Itself? The answer is yes, New England can feed itself – at least...
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Michael Halpern
800+ Scientists Urge Greater Freedoms for Canadian Government Experts
New restrictions have made it difficult for scientists around the globe to collaborate with Canadian government scientists. In response, more than 800 scientists from 32 countries have signed a...
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Karen Greenberg
Will the US Go to "War" Against Ebola?
These days, two “wars” are in the headlines: one against the marauding Islamic State and its new caliphate of terror carved out of parts of Iraq and Syria, the other against a marauding disease and...
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Sha Grogan-Brown
One Month After Historic People’s Climate March, 'Climate Action' from Global Leaders Still Disappointing
It’s been one month since the largest climate march in history, and recent “Climate Action” pledges from global leaders like the Department of Defense, President Obama and the United Nations do not...
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Eugene Robinson
Where Too Many Democrats Refuse, Elizabeth Warren Makes a Powerful Case
Sen. Elizabeth Warren says she isn’t running for president. At this rate, however, she may have to. The Massachusetts Democrat has become the brightest ideological and rhetorical light in a party...
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Dean Baker
Ebola Hysteria Fever: A Real Epidemic
Thus far, the Ebola virus has infected three people in the United States that we know of, however Ebola hysteria seems to have infected somewhere close to 300 million. There are reports of kids being...
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Matthew Dominguez
More Self-Inflicted Wounds for the Meat and Dairy Industries
As we look ahead to the future of meat, dairy and egg production, it is important to reflect on why these industries are so desperate to close the factory doors on transparency. Sunshine is the best...
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Monday, October 20, 2014
Murray Dobbin
From Israel to ISIS: Harper's 'Orwellian' Foreign Policy
It's getting difficult to remember a time when the Canadian Parliament actually tried to make principled decisions regarding foreign policy and our place in the community of nations. But we should...
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Maude Barlow
Everyone in Detroit Should Have Access To Clean Water
Today, two UN experts, Catarina de Albuquerque, the special rapporteur on the human right to drinking water and sanitation and Leilani Farha, the special rapporteur on housing, will visit Detroit...
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Michael Waldman
How the Supreme Court Made a Mess of Our Voting System
Alexis de Tocqueville famously observed in 1835, “Scarcely any political question arises in the United States that is not resolved, sooner or later, into a judicial question.” That certainly...
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Marcellene Hearn
The Torture Secrets Are Coming
Once you've seen the Abu Ghraib photos , they're not easily forgotten. The hooded man, the electrodes, the naked bodies piled upon each other, and the grinning soldier with a thumbs up. The images...
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Sam Pizzigati
On a Top-Heavy Planet, Nordic Nations Show Path to Healthier Wealth Equity
The latest annual Global Wealth Report from the Credit Suisse Research Institute has everything you would expect from a report on global wealth. And one thing you wouldn’t: a mystery. The media...
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Kwei Quartey
What West Africa Can Teach the US About Ebola
When the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital missed a crucial diagnosis of the Ebola virus and released Liberian Thomas Eric Duncan to go home, it unleashed a sequence of events that is still...
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Harvey Wasserman
When Solartopia Transcends King C.O.N.G.
A green-powered future is our only hope. A planet run by King CONG —Coal, Oil, Nukes & Gas—cannot be sustained. But to get beyond it, our Solartopian vision must embrace more than just a...
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Robert Freeman
ISIS: A Monster Created by the West
It is a laughable routine of the mass media to demonize all of the leaders of U.S. enemies as latter-day Hitlers. Saddam Hussein was a Hitler. Hugo Chavez in Venezuela was a Hitler. Gaddafi in Libya...
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Chris Hedges
The Imperative of Revolt
TORONTO—I met with Sheldon S. Wolin in Salem, Ore., and John Ralston Saul in Toronto and asked the two political philosophers the same question. If, as Saul has written, we have undergone a corporate...
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Laura Poitras, Tom Engelhardt
Edward Snowden and the Golden Age of Spying
Here’s a Ripley’s Believe It or Not! stat from our new age of national security. How many Americans have security clearances? The answer : 5.1 million, a figure that reflects the explosive growth of...
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Rose Ann DeMoro
Help Stop Ebola by Telling Congress and the White House to Order Hospitals to Put Safety Standards First
Now that nurses, who have been sounding the alarm about Ebola for more than two months, finally have the attention of policy makers and many others, let’s have no more excuses and take the steps...
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Sunday, October 19, 2014
Gareth Porter
History of Key Document in IAEA Probe Suggests Israeli Forgery
Western diplomats have reportedly faulted Iran in recent weeks for failing to provide the International Atomic Energy Agency with information on experiments on high explosives intended to produce a...
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Philip Caper
Think About Your Health When You Vote in November
Elections matter. And when it comes to health care, the upcoming election on Nov. 4 will matter a lot. This seems an appropriate time to take stock of where we stand. I strongly believe in health...
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Diane Ravitch
Prepare Your Children for “a Lifetime of Surveillance”
The data mining company inBloom died, killed off by parent opposition, but the data mining industry is not dead. Far from it. It is growing and metastasizing as investors see new opportunities to...
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Anthony Giancatarino
Investing in Renewables Can Relieve Our Planet—While Reviving Our Economy
This article is presented as part of New Economy Week , five days of conversation around building an economy that works for everyone. Today’s theme is Combating Climate Change Without Leaving Anyone...
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Ted Genoways
This Little Piggy Bred a Superbug
Earlier this year OnEarth ’s editor-at-large reported on the explosion of hog farming in Iowa and the resulting damage to the state’s waterways. His new book The Chain: Farm, Factory, and the Fate of...
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Kathy Kelly
Stop the Killing
On August 9, 1983, three people dressed as U.S. soldiers saluted their way onto a U.S. military base and climbed a pine tree. The base contained a school training elite Salvadoran and other foreign...
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Saturday, October 18, 2014
Elizabeth Nussbaumer
The New Face of Green Energy: Profiting From Pollution in the Alberta Oil Sands
On September 29, Genalta Power of Alberta, Canada announced that it generated 8,208 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO 2 e) carbon offsets from its Cadotte Peace River Power Generating Facility in...
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Janine Jackson
Michael Brown Had a Father
Any effort to improve the lives of black men that meets with the hearty approval of Bill O’Reilly ought to set off a few alarm bells. But My Brother’s Keeper, an initiative announced by Barack Obama...
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Jim Hightower
Walk Softly and Carry a Big Beer
OK, that’s it. No more Mr. Nice Guy. The avarice of corporate power is getting personal. I’m talking about beer, the nourishing nectar of a civilized society. Since my teen years, I’ve done extensive...
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Christopher Brauchli
Democracy in Action
As long as I count the votes, what are you going to do about it? — William Marcy Tweed, November 1871. Recent events cause some to wonder whether the literacy tests that voters in some states were...
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Stephen Zunes
Gaza and the Bipartisan War on Human Rights
Israel’s seven weeks of attacks this summer on heavily populated civilian neighborhoods in Gaza has led to unprecedented concern among Americans who, while still broadly supportive of Israel, found...
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Jeremy Brecher
Climate Activist Argues Resistance Is Necessary to Protect the Public Trust
On October 23, Alec Johnson, a.k.a. “Climate Hawk,” is scheduled to go on trial for having locked himself to a construction excavator in Tushka, Okla., on Earth Day 2013, as part of the Tar Sands...
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Friday, October 17, 2014
Sarah Byrnes
Regional Resilience is Community Resilience
An underlying insight in the community resilience movement is that individuals can have the greatest impact locally; i.e., closest to home. But what is local, and what is home? Here in New England,...
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J. Mijin Cha
Fighting Inequality and Climate Change through Localizing Economies
We currently face two equally urgent and significant crises: rising inequality and climate change. Rising inequality is not only morally unacceptable; it hinders economic growth. Climate change is...
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Chuck Collins
Can We Earn a Living on a Living Planet?
“I think the American people right now have been so focused, and will continue to be focused, on our economy and jobs and growth, that if the message is somehow we ’re going to ignore jobs and growth...
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Gary Younge
With So Many Issues Off the Agenda, No Wonder the Midterms Are a Turn-Off
Midterm elections, or as Stephen Colbert calls them “the most tedious fall chore of all”, are a strange affair. Nationwide votes without national candidates (much like parliamentary elections) where...
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Sonali Kolhatkar
Hysteria Over Ebola Fuels Racism, While the Real Disease Is Capitalism
The Ebola crisis has gripped the American media, and by extension the imagination of the public, punctuated by breathless pronouncements from TV news reporters of the medical status of actual and...
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Tom Engelhardt
On Being An Indispensable Nation... In Flames
It was May 23, 2012, and President Obama was giving a graduation speech at the Air Force Academy when he told the assembled cadets that they should "never bet against the United States of America...
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Gareth Porter
When the Ayatollah Said No to Nukes
The nuclear negotiations between six world powers and Iran, which are now nearing their November deadline, remain deadlocked over U.S. demands that Iran dismantle the bulk of its capacity to enrich...
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Thursday, October 16, 2014
Emma Lui
Testing the Human Right to Water in Detroit
In March, the beleaguered—some would say besieged—city of Detroit, Michigan announced it would begin shutting off water services to between 1,500 and 3,000 households every week. It seemed impossible...
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Jay Stanley
On the Creation of Giant Voiceprint Databases
The Associated Press ran a story (along with two sidebars ) this week on the use of voiceprints by big banks and other institutions. Those companies say they are using the technology to fight fraud,...
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Peter Van Buren
What Could Possibly Go Wrong? Seven Worst-Case Scenarios in the Battle with the Islamic State
You know the joke? You describe something obviously heading for disaster -- a friend crossing Death Valley with next to no gas in his car -- and then add, “What could possibly go wrong?” Such is the...
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David Morris
Scotland and Catalonia: Fraternal But Not Twins
Scotland and Catalonia are brothers in arms. Independence movement leaders communicate regularly. On September 18, when Scotland voted on uncoupling from the United Kingdom Catalans were there. When...
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Maureen Ryan
The Threats Against Anita Sarkeesian Expose the Darkest Aspects of Online Misogyny
I don't know how Anita Sarkeesian gets through the day. I really don't. The violent threats sent to the Utah organizers of one of Sarkeesian's recent speaking engagements are just the latest...
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Jacob Swenson
Embracing A Long Term Agenda For A New Economy
On a crisp autumn day in 2012, I joined a group of pastors and community leaders from the Illinois-Indiana Regional Organizing Network (IIRON) at a church on the south side of Chicago. We talked...
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Amy Goodman
We Need Medical Boots on the Ground Now
The headlines shift hourly between Ebola and ISIS. The question is often asked, “Should we put boots on the ground?” The answer is yes—but not in the Middle East. We need tens of thousands of boots...
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Steffie Woolhandler, David Himmelstein
US Hospitals Lead Global Pack on Costly Paperwork
In some countries, bereaved families get condolence cards and flowers. In ours, the survivors are also deluged with hospital bills and insurance paperwork. That paperwork isn’t merely an insult. It...
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Kirtana Chandrasekaran, Martin Drago
Small Scale Food Producers are the Solution to the Global Food Crisis
ROME, Italy – Today, World Food Day, we are confronted with the failure of our global food system: 805 million people are going hungry while obesity affects over 2 billion of us. The hungry are...
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Robert C. Koehler
Our Souls Turned into Weapons
“During basic training, we are weaponized:our souls turned into weapons.” Jacob George’s suicide last month — a few days after President Obama announced that the US was launching its war against ISIS...
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Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Peter Certo
Obama’s Dumb War
If Barack Obama owes his presidency to one thing, it was the good sense he had back in 2002 to call the Iraq War what it was: “ dumb .” Now, with scarcely a whisper of debate, Obama has become the...
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Alli McCracken
Bashing Obama to Make Way for Hillary
Three years ago, during the height of the Occupy movement, I was ejected from a Congressional hearing for allegedly “assaulting” Leon Panetta, then Secretary of Defense and former Director of the CIA...
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Glenn Greenwald
UN Report Finds Mass Surveillance Violates International Treaties and Privacy Rights
The United Nations’ top official for counter-terrorism and human rights (known as the “ Special Rapporteur”) issued a formal report to the U.N. General Assembly today that condemns mass electronic...
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Dave Johnson
Budget Cuts Don’t Save Money
Cutting federal spending doesn’t “save money” – certainly not the way conservatives in Congress and in the states have been doing it. If you cut the Internal Revenue Service budget, that obviously...
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Gabe Rottman
On Leak Prosecutions, Obama Takes it to 11. (Or Should We Say 526?)
James Risen is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist. He's also currently under subpoena, possibly facing jail time, because of his reporting. Specifically, he's being investigated because of an...
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Valerie Strauss
How a National Moratorium on Standardized Testing Could Work
In early 2012, Robert Scott, then the commissioner of education in Texas, rocked the world of education reform when he declared that school accountability systems based on high-stakes standardized...
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Kurt Cobb
World War III: It's Here and Energy Is Largely Behind It
I've been advancing a thesis for several months with friends that World War III is now underway. It's just that it's not the war we thought it would be, that is, a confrontation between major powers...
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Peter Hart
Missing Malala's Message of Peace: Drones Fuel Terrorism
On October 10, Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai–who received worldwide attention after being attacked by the Taliban for her advocacy for girls' education–was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, along...
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Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Ben Terrall
In Haiti, Baby Doc Is Gone But Political Repression Is Alive and Well
The death of former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier in Port-au-Prince on October 4 garnered world-wide attention. However, despite the justly deserved focus on the legacy of Duvalier (aka Baby...
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Coach Mark Smallwood
Can Organic Agriculture Reverse Climate Change?
Over the last 14 days, I have been on a walk . A walk that, I hope, will change the way that we look a climate change and think about how we can reverse this disastrous phenomenon. Each day I walk...
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Maureen Clare Murphy
Who Benefits from Billions Pledged for Gaza Reconstruction?
A donor conference hosted in Cairo on Sunday to raise funds for the reconstruction of war-devastated Gaza has boasted $5.4 billion in pledges from various Western and Arab governments. Yet Israel is...
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William Astore
Investing in Junk Armies: Why American Efforts to Create Foreign Armies Fail
In June, tens of thousands of Iraqi Security Forces in Nineveh province north of Baghdad collapsed in the face of attacks from the militants of the Islamic State (IS or ISIS), abandoning four major...
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Mairead Maguire
The Disturbing Expansion of the Military-Industrial Complex
BELFAST - How can we explain that in the 2lst century we are still training millions of men and women in our armed forces and sending them to war? There are more choices than war or peace, there are...
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Norman Solomon
Risen’s New Book Exposes Corrupt Zealotry of 'US War on Terror'
No single review or interview can do justice to " Pay Any Price: Greed, Power, and Endless War "—the new book by James Risen that is the antithesis of what routinely passes for journalism about the “...
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Sandra Steingraber, Helen Slottje
Like New Yorkers, Californians Can Say No to Fracking
Great movements -- from women's suffrage to civil rights -- begin with a small group of people standing up and saying no to injustice. Such a movement is currently emerging around our most basic...
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Bill Quigley
Ten Facts about Being Homeless in USA
Three True Stories Renee Delisle was one of over 3500 homeless people in Santa Cruz when she found out she was pregnant. The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported she was turned away from a shelter because...
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Monday, October 13, 2014
Diane Ravitch
Parent Alert! NSF Awards Grant for Data Mining Children
The National Science Foundation has awarded grants of $4.8 million to several prominent research universities to advance the use of Big Data in the schools. Benjamin Herold writes in Education Week...
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Rebecca Vallas
How We Punish People for Being Poor
This past weekend, I was part of a panel discussion on MSNBC’s Melissa Harris Perry with New York Times reporter Michael Corkery, whose reporting on the rise in subprime auto loans is as horrifying...
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Ronnie Cummins, Katherine Paul
Organic and Local: Still the Gold Standard
In 2011, we wrote an article exposing the then-popular trend in food marketing—promoting "local" foods as "sustainable," "healthy" or "natural," even when they weren’t. As we wrote at the time, “...
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Krista Walton Potter
How Women Are Bearing the Brunt of the Ebola Epidemic
The deadliest Ebola outbreak on record is sweeping West Africa, with over 3,400 lives claimed already. The World Health Organization estimates that 20,000 additional cases will be reported by...
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Jay Walljasper
Bring Home Best-in-the-World Ideas to Make Sure Your City Thrives
Imagine a major city where 35 percent of all traffic is people on bikes. Or think even bigger--an entire nation where 27 percent of all trips are pedal-powered. This is not some Utopia dreamed up by...
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Laura Gottesdiener
A Trip to Kuwait (on the Prairie): Life Inside the Boom
At 9 p.m. on that August night, when I arrived for my first shift as a cocktail waitress at Whispers, one of the two strip clubs in downtown Williston, I didn’t expect a 25-year-old man to get beaten...
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Chris Hedges
Ordained to Write
For Leigha Cohen’s video of the ordination service, click here . Thirty years ago I stood in a church in Albany, N.Y., with my father, a Presbyterian minister. I had graduated from Harvard Divinity...
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Alejandro Reuss
The Meaning of Market Basket
What was so unusual about the recent battle at the New England supermarket chain Market Basket? Well, to begin with, workers staged a mass, sustained walkout. Also, they were neither union members...
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Lawrence Wittner
The United States is No. 1 – But in What?
American politicians are fond of telling their audiences that the United States is the greatest country in the world. Is there any evidence for this claim? Well, yes. When it comes to violence and...
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Paul Buchheit
Why We Should Be Seething with Anger over Inequality
It was recently reported that Americans greatly underestimate the degree of inequality in our country. If we were given proper media coverage of the endless takeaway of our country's wealth by the...
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Sunday, October 12, 2014
Claudia Rankine
Our Sons Know They Could Be the Next Michael Brown. But They Should Never Surrender
The drive to Ferguson prepares me for Ferguson. Once out of downtown St Louis, county after county radiates a pervasive poverty: abandoned malls, boarded-up stores, homes in disrepair, the occasional...
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Joshua Holland
News From the Frontlines of the GOP’s War on Voting
Less than four weeks away from a crucial election that may see control of the Senate shift to the GOP, there’s a bitter fight underway. Activists are battling a wave of restrictive new voting laws...
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Paul Pillar
The Futility of the Long US War in the Middle East
Andrew Bacevich has done a tally of the number of countries in the Islamic world that, since 1980, the United States has invaded, bombed, or occupied, and in which members of the American military...
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Patrick Cockburn
War Against Isis: US Strategy in Tatters as Militants March On
America's plans to fight Islamic State are in ruins as the militant group's fighters come close to capturing Kobani and have inflicted a heavy defeat on the Iraqi army west of Baghdad. The US-led air...
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James Abro
Poverty and Homelessness are Human and Civil Rights Issues
In 1962, Thomas Kuhn wrote The Structure of Scientific Revolution. In it he defined and popularized the concept of “paradigm shift”. Kuhn argues that scientific advancement is not evolutionary, but a...
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John Nichols
This Year’s Nobel Peace Prize Winners Are Radicals—and That’s a Good Thing
It has been suggested that the recipients of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize are “ safe choices ” because they advocate for the rights of children and for the fair and respectful treatment of girls and...
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Peter Hart
Why 'The Economy' Isn't Good News for Democrats
The Washington Post is having some trouble figuring out why more Americans aren't enthusiastic about the state of the economy, and why they're not giving Barack Obama and Democratic politicians more...
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Kate Aronoff
Philadelphia Students Go on Strike for Teachers’ Benefits
Typically when you hear about people striking in schools, it’s the teachers on the picket line. This week in Philadelphia — and potentially for many more — it’s the students who are on strike. At a...
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Jeremy Brecher, Joe Uehlein
If Not Now, When? A Labor Movement Plan to Address Climate Change
We are on a climate change path that, unless radically altered, will lead to an unsustainable global warming of seven degrees Fahrenheit or greater. We also face the most serious employment crisis...
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Robert Parry
Can MSM Handle the Contra-Cocaine Truth?
The mainstream news media’s reaction to the new movie, “Kill the Messenger,” has been tepid, perhaps not surprising given that the MSM comes across as the film’s most unsympathetic villain as it...
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Saturday, October 11, 2014
Karen Hansen-Kuhn
Time to End Corporate Trade Regime's Global Attack on Democracy
Thousands of farmers, environmentalists and fair trade activists will gather on October 11 in over 300 events across Europe to protest the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and...
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Wenonah Hauter
Susan G. Komen, Fracking and “Pink Sh*t”
This week Susan G. Komen announced a partnership with Baker Hughes, a massive oilfield service company that operates in 90 countries. Throughout the month of October, Baker Hughes will “do their bit...
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Noa Yachot
A Great Day for Seven Americans Formerly on the No Fly List
An extraordinarily secret government blacklist just got a little bit less secret. Seven American citizens who were banned by the government from air travel received word yesterday evening that they...
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Michael Winship
Warsaw Has Lots of Apples – and Candles
WARSAW — People in Poland are eating apples these days. Lots of apples. Here in Warsaw, they’re pressed into your hands at a street festival, or baked into piles of pies and cakes. You see them...
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Frida Berrigan
Operation Kid Freedom: Making Our Communities Safe for Children to Take Risks
When I was little, I loved going to the library with my brother. It was in an old mansion across a street and up a steep hill about 200 yards from our house. We would set out on our own with our due-...
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Ray McGovern
A Murder Mystery at Guantanamo Bay
There’s more of a mystery to how three Guantanamo detainees died on June 10, 2006, than I realized when I described their deaths as suicides in a recent article about force-feeding methods at the...
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