Author Archive

Obamacare’s “secret trick” could cure CEO pay excesses

August 28, 2014
posted by

Our Future
by Richard Eskow  

"Our economy is broken. There’s one economy for the wealthy, and another for the rest of us. This division has been worsened by the behavior of corporate executives who manage their corporations for short-term personal gain rather than for long-term fiscal soundness. Could a 'secret trick' help change that? ... We can blame corporate CEOs for selfish, shortsighted, and greedy behavior, and we should. But that misses an important point: Government policy actually encourages them to behave that way." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/q4jzfvp  

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Marriage advocates push SCOTUS to strike down apartheid

August 28, 2014
posted by

Raw Story    

"In a bold legal move that few litigants try, gay marriage advocates plan to urge the U.S. Supreme Court in three pending cases across the country to decide once and for all whether states can ban same-sex unions. Gay and lesbian plaintiffs won before appeals courts in cases involving bans in Virginia, Utah and Oklahoma, and lawyers for those states have already asked the justices to take up their appeals. Lawyers defending the bans contend that the U.S. Constitution gives the states the role of defining marriage. In what is a relatively unusual strategy, all three sets of challengers have said they want the justices to review the lower court rulings, even though those decisions favored their side by striking down individual state bans." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/omnebln  

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Campaign ads: The difference between accuracy & fairness

August 28, 2014
posted by

The American Prospect
by Paul Waldman  

"Before we get to today's campaign nastiness, a word about that creature known as 'opposition research.' Most people who are familiar with the term probably think it means something like 'digging up dirt' on your opponent, which must involve things like going through the transcripts of his divorce to read about that time his wife came home early to find him doing unspeakable things with a roll of cling wrap, or rooting through his garbage to read his credit card bills. Every once in a while it can, but oppo researchers' biggest job is usually going through every vote the client's opponent ever took to see what sort of hay can be made out of them." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/qj934yc  

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NY: Times snubs Cuomo, remains neutral for Dem endorsement

August 28, 2014
posted by

Fox News    

"In a stinging snub, the liberal New York Times editorial board on Tuesday refused to endorse Gov. Cuomo’s re-election in next month’s Democratic primary -- citing his failure to aggressively crack down on Albany corruption. The Times also declined to endorse Cuomo’s little-known Democratic rival, Zephyr Teachout. But the Gray Lady egged on Democrats who want to 'send a powerful message' to Cuomo by voting for his foe, a Fordham University law professor making her first run for public office." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pqelko8  

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AZ: Treasurer claims victory in GOP primary for governor

August 28, 2014
posted by

Reuters    

"Arizona state treasurer and businessman Doug Ducey claimed victory on Tuesday in the race to be the Republican nominee to replace outgoing Governor Jan Brewer, who has clashed repeatedly with the White House over illegal immigration. With border security issues high on the political agenda, Ducey held a convincing lead of 37 percent in the six-way race after most of the ballots had been counted. His closest rival, ex-mayor Scott Smith, took some 22 percent of the vote. 'We set out on this primary battle promising to give this race the best effort we could,' Ducey told an enthusiastic crowd gathered at a downtown Phoenix hotel." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pqelko8  

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#BlackTwitter & the power of horizontal networks

August 27, 2014
posted by

In These Times
by Susan J. Douglas  

"By now the shocking photos that first ricocheted around social media, then hit mainstream media the following day, are emblazoned in our minds: robocops astride armored vehicles in camouflage uniforms, black helmets and gas masks, brandishing assault rifles. The killing of unarmed Michael Brown by a white cop who drilled him with six bullets has blown open debates old and new, from the persistence of police brutality to the recent and outrageous militarization of the country’s police forces. But this would not have been a story if the black community in Ferguson and elsewhere had not instantly risen up and, importantly, gone to social media." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/ovb7f6c  

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Civil War soldier to get Medal of Honor for overlooked role at Gettysburg

August 27, 2014
posted by

Christian Science Monitor    

"More than 150 years after the Battle of Gettysburg, a Civil War hero is finally getting his due. The White House announced Tuesday that 1st Lt. Alonzo Cushing will be awarded the Medal of Honor in a special ceremony on Sept. 15 for his 'gallantry above and beyond the call of duty' during that battle. At 22 years old, Cushing, a West Point graduate, commanded 110 men and six cannons, and his men stood their ground under severe artillery bombardment for three days. On the final, fateful day of the battle, 13,000 Confederate infantrymen involved in Pickett’s Charge threatened to overtake the Union soldier's position." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/peufxf7  

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The police violence we aren’t talking about

August 27, 2014
posted by

The Nation
by Zoe Carpenter  

"Police officer Daniel Holtzclaw worked the evening shift, from four in the afternoon until two in the morning, patrolling the northeastern part of Oklahoma City. Between February and June he allegedly sexually assaulted at least seven women while on duty, including a 57-year-old grandmother who says she was forced to give Holtzclaw oral sex after he pulled her over. According to police chief Bill Citty, Holtzclaw coerced the women, all of whom were black, into sexual acts by threatening to arrest them. 'They’ve pretty much got power in the palm of their hand. And it’s your word against theirs,' one resident of the neighborhood Holtzclaw patrolled told a reporter. Another said that rumors of the assaults had been circulating for weeks." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/qa842j5  

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Lockheed Martin in space junk deal with Australian firm

August 27, 2014
posted by

BBC News [UK state media]    

"US defence giant Lockheed Martin has struck a deal with an Australian technology firm to track space debris that can damage satellites. It has signed a 'strategic co-operation agreement' with Canberra-based Electro Optic Systems (EOS) to build a new tracking station in Western Australia. The site will employ advanced optical and laser technology to detect, track and identify specific space objects. Debris threatens orbiting satellites daily and can cause millions in damage." (08/27/14)

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-28948367  

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LA: Jindal sues feds over Common Core

August 27, 2014
posted by

San Francisco Chronicle    

"Gov. Bobby Jindal filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the Obama administration, accusing it of illegally manipulating federal grant money and regulations to force states to adopt the Common Core education standards. The U.S. Department of Education has used a $4.3 billion grant program and federal policy waivers to encourage states to adopt uniform education standards and testing. The Republican governor says that 'effectively forces states down a path toward a national curriculum' in violation of the state sovereignty clause in the Constitution and federal laws that prohibit national control of education content. The lawsuit, obtained first by The Associated Press, was filed in the federal court based in Baton Rouge." (08/27/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pltbb63  

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Burning Man: Everything you know is wrong

August 27, 2014
posted by

San Francisco Chronicle
by Mark Morford  

"Here’s what you need to know about Burning Man in this fine year of our unchecked chaos, 2014: Nothing. I mean, just forget everything, all right? Whatever you’re heard, read, seen, rumored, teased, whispered, Facebooked, Instagrammed, linked to, thought about or had muttered in your general direction in an Uber fever dream anytime in the past month. Year. Decade. Because it’s almost certainly wrong. Delightfully, hatefully, stupidly, shamelessly, deliberately, resentfully, innocently or even inadvertently, it doesn’t matter -- there’s almost nothing the slightest bit accurate in what the modern media has said recently about the famed art/camping/dance/survival festival (now in its 28th year) happening right now out in the Nevada desert. I’d say this is shocking, if it weren’t so common. And predictable. And boring." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/ntns8k7  

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This month’s ultimate enemy: The Islamic State

August 27, 2014
posted by

Reuters
by Jack Shafer  

"At an Aug. 21 Pentagon press conference, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel claimed that the Islamic State 'is as sophisticated and well-funded as any group that we have seen. They’re beyond just a terrorist group. They marry ideology, a sophistication of strategic and tactical military prowess. They are tremendously well-funded.' Perhaps sensing that his comparison hadn’t reached sufficiently hyperbolic velocity to escape earth orbit, Hagel immediately amended himself. 'Oh, this is beyond anything that we’ve seen. So we must prepare for everything,' he said. ... Hagel wasn’t so much fear-mongering as he was fear-tending. War is the health of the state, as Randolph Bourne observed a century ago." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/nzzmhfp  

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Inspector: CA nuke power plant vulnerable to earthquakes

August 27, 2014
posted by

Raw Story    

"A federal nuclear inspector urged U.S. regulators to shut down a California nuclear power plant until tests showed its reactors could withstand shocks from nearby earthquake faults, according to the Associated Press and an environmental group. Michael Peck’s call to close the Diablo Canyon Power Plant in San Luis Obispo County was in a report he made to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 2013, the AP reported on Monday, a day after a strong earthquake shook California’s Napa Valley region. Peck was the lead on-site inspector for five years at Diablo Canyon, which has two reactors designed to produce about 18,000 gigawatts an hour (GWh) of electricity annually, or 7 percent of California’s electricity use. It is owned by Pacific Gas & Electric Co (PG&E) ." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/lndhbz3  

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Till ICE do us part

August 27, 2014
posted by

In These Times
by Yana Kunichoff  

"On November 17, 2013, Brigido Acosta Luis was walked across the U.S.-Mexico border by immigration authorities from Brownsville, Texas, to the northern Mexican city of Matamoros. He was dressed in the pajamas he had been wearing the evening that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested him at his home in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg, Illlinois, four weeks earlier. Deportation was an abrupt end to the life 33-year-old Acosta had built in the six years since he illegally crossed the border to the United States in 2007. In Schaumburg, he had a wife, Maria Paz Perez, a 3-year-old son, Xavier, and a teenage stepdaughter, Isabel, all of them American citizens. He had also started a small insurance business with Perez. After Acosta’s deportation, the daily lives of Perez and her two children swiftly began to unravel." (08/25/14)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/17072/till_i.c.e._do_us_part  

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Harry Reid, immune to foot-in-mouth disease?

August 27, 2014
posted by

Debra J. Saunders San Francisco Chronicle
by Debra J. Saunders  

"Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told the Asian Chamber of Commerce last week, 'The Asian population is so productive. I don't think you're smarter than anybody else, but you've convinced a lot of us you are.' In remarks videotaped by the GOP group America Rising, Reid also joked that he had trouble 'keeping my Wongs straight.' Then followed this apology: 'My comments were in extremely poor taste and I apologize. Sometimes I say the wrong thing.' Sometimes? Reid is being far too humble." [editor's note: Stuff that gets a GOPer (or anyone not dressed in a blue t-shirt?) suspended/fired/censured/pilloried in the media, etc. ... Just SOP for Happy Harry - SAT] (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/k5vjs2y  

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Judicial Watch: DOJ attorneys suggest “lost” Lerner emails still exist

August 27, 2014
posted by

Fox News    

"In a stunning revelation, the president of the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch told Fox News that Justice Department attorneys have intimated that Lois Lerner's 'lost' emails likely exist in back-up computers. Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said the news came during a Friday phone call with Department of Justice attorneys representing the IRS in Judicial Watch's FOIA lawsuit against the IRS. Fitton said DOJ attorneys told him the federal government backs up all computer records to ensure the continuity of government in event of a catastrophe. They told him that retrieving the emails from Lerner, a former IRS official, would be 'too onerous' -- a legal burden that can exempt an agency from complying with FOIA requests." (08/25/14)

http://tinyurl.com/q4yvtkr  

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UK Report: Rotherham child abuse scandal; 1,400 children exploited

August 27, 2014
posted by

BBC News [UK state media]    

"At least 1,400 children were subjected to appalling sexual exploitation in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013, a report has found. Children as young as 11 were raped by multiple perpetrators, abducted, trafficked to other cities in England, beaten and intimidated, it said. The report, commissioned by Rotherham Borough Council, revealed there had been three previous inquiries. Council leader Roger Stone said he would step down with immediate effect." (08/26/14)

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-28939089  

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WHO pushes major crackdown on e-cigarettes

August 27, 2014
posted by

Reuters [UK]    

"The World Health Organization (WHO) called on Tuesday for stiff regulation of electronic cigarettes as well as bans on indoor use, advertising and sales to minors, in the latest bid to control the booming new market. In a long-awaited report that will be debated by member states at a meeting in October in Moscow, the United Nations health agency also voiced concern at the concentration of the $3 billion market in the hands of transnational tobacco companies. 'In a nutshell, the WHO report shows that e-cigarettes and similar devices pose threats to public health,' Douglas Bettcher, director of the agency's department on non-communicable diseases, told a news briefing in Geneva." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/pfg6ffe  

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“Approved responses to the civil unrest in Ferguson”

August 26, 2014
posted by

The Nation
by Tom Tomorrow  

Cartoon. "From your friends at the Ferguson Police Dept." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/ohwz3ue  

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Court to hear marriage apartheid cases from Wisconsin, Indiana

August 26, 2014
posted by

Christian Science Monitor    

"For the fourth time in recent months, a federal appeals court is set to examine whether states retain the authority to restrict marriage to a union of one man and one woman or, instead, are constitutionally required to embrace same-sex marriages. On Tuesday, a federal appeals court in Chicago will take up challenges to same-sex marriage bans in Wisconsin and Indiana. Elsewhere in the country, two federal appeals courts have struck down similar bans in Utah, Oklahoma, and Virginia. A third US appeals court in Cincinnati is expected to rule soon on challenges to bans in Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/nj7bdyx  

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Rise of corporate right the greater menace

August 26, 2014
posted by

The American Prospect
by Robert Kuttner  

"The latest reports from Europe indicate that the continent is slipping back into recession. The U.S. is doing only slightly better, with positive economic growth but scant progress on the jobs front, and no growth in the earnings of the vast majority of Americans. Meanwhile, global climate change continues to worsen, producing unprecedented policy conundrums of how to reconcile the very survival of the planet with improved living standards for the world's impoverished billions, and for most Americans, whose real incomes have declined since the year 2000. Amid all of these serious challenges, what common strategies are top U.S. and European leaders pursuing? Why, a new trade and investment deal modeled on NAFTA, to make it harder for governments to regulate capitalism." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/ns3evlz  

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Burning Man gates open after Monday rain-out

August 26, 2014
posted by

San Francisco Chronicle    

"The gates of Burning Man were reopened Tuesday morning after a rain storm hit Nevada’s Black Rock Desert, closing the annual festival Monday on its opening day. The event, which draws tens of thousands of 'burners' to a dry lake bed 110 miles north of Reno called the playa, was supposed to open at 10 a.m. Monday, but the event was so saturated, organizers put the opening on hiatus until it dried out." (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/nwf4djw  

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Burger King renouncing US citizenship? Let’s eat somewhere else

August 26, 2014
posted by

Our Future Blog
by Dave Johnson  

"Burger King is the latest company announcing plans to renounce its U.S. citizenship in order to dodge taxes. It plans to buy Tim Hortons and then pretend Tim Hortons bought them so they can claim to be Canadian. (Tim Hortons renounced its own U.S. citizenship in 2009, and moved their headquarters from Ohio to Canada.) The announcement is prompting calls like this petition you can sign by the Campaign for America’s Future that calls on Burger King’s CEO to keep the restaurant chain American or 'I will dine elsewhere.'” [editor's note: Not my favorite chain, but I may just go buy a Whopper for dinner tonight - TLK] (08/26/14)

http://tinyurl.com/kbwwhec  

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Survey: Police across US get low marks on fairness

August 26, 2014
posted by

Christian Science Monitor    

"The concern about alleged racial bias in policing has come to the forefront of national attention in the wake of the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., at the hands of a white police officer. It’s a longstanding concern of black Americans, now quantified in a new nationwide poll that comes in the wake of street protests in Ferguson since the death of Michael Brown. Some 7 in 10 African American respondents to the poll rate police forces across America as 'poor' when it comes to treating different racial and ethnic groups equally." (08/25/14)

http://tinyurl.com/oup4tfb  

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“Carbon” introduces short film series on climate crisis

August 26, 2014
posted by

Our Future Blog
by Terrance Heath  

"If you want to know how bad the climate crisis is, and what you can do about it, check out 'Carbon,' the first in a series of short films aimed at exploring crucial issues related to the climate crisis. Produced by Tree Media, with help from Thom Hartmann and the Leo DiCaprio Foundation, and narrated by DiCaprio himself, 'Carbon' is part of Green World Rising -- a four-part series of films released of the 2014 UN Climate Summit on September 23. 'This film is meant to be an asset for the climate movement and to generate momentum for the global reduction of carbon emissions,' said Leila Conners, director of the film." (08/25/14)

http://ourfuture.org/20140825/148576  

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