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Showing posts from April, 2018

Global Warming's Impact on Ocean Currents to Amplify Sea Level Rise (VIDEO)

There Was Nothing Humanitarian About Our Strikes on Syria

Just after midnight on April 14, the U.S. and its allies bombed three Syrian regime targets. The reason, they said, was to punish Syria’s alleged use of chemical weapons in the town of Douma.
Now, the Syrian regime’s brutality has been well documented. Maybe the allegations are true. But there’s a lot about this that’s simply fishy.  Read more.

House Republicans call for prosecutions of Clinton, Comey, Lynch, and others

Eleven House Republicans — Ron DeSantis, Andy Biggs, Dave Brat, Jeff Duncan, Matt Gaetz, Paul Gosar, Andy Harris, Jody Hice, Todd Rokita, Claudia Tenney, and Ted Yoho — have signed a joint letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions calling for the criminal prosecution of Hillary Clinton and a variety of other Obama administration appointees, career FBI officials, and even Trump appointee Dana Boente, who is currently the FBI’s general counsel.  Read more.

Saudi Dictator Dines with French President as Yemenis Starve

Wall Street Banks Have Already Pocketed $2.5 Billion From Trump Tax Scam

As most Americans report that they have seen little to no paycheck boost thanks to the Trump-GOP tax cuts, the very biggest Wall Street banks are reporting quite the opposite: record profits.
Thanks to the Republican law's drastic reduction of the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, the combined earnings of...read more.

Suspiciously Black in Starbucks

Over the weekend, a video circulated on the Internet of police handcuffing and removing two black men from a Starbucks in Philadelphia last Thursday, April 12. The incident is illustrative of what pains many African Americans about the threats of gentrification: The men were reportedly charged with trespassing, and for a neighborhood like Philly’s Rittenhouse Square, where the trespassed Starbucks is located, that may have been true in the eyes of a cafe manager trying to interpret the motives of...read more.

Trump’s Impotent Rage

Something very fishy happened last week. On Friday, we were treated to almost hourly rumors that President Donald Trump’s firing of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was imminent. This was to be followed by a scheme to either fire or drastically limit the authority of Special Counsel Robert Mueller.  Read more.

Starbucks and the Criminalization of Blackness

Martin Luther King Jr.: The Prophet as Healer

In August 1967, in a sermon at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia, Martin Luther King Jr. observed that he and the congregation were living in “evil times.” His remark was brutally punctuated on April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee, when King was assassinated. What should we focus upon in marking the 50th anniversary of this somber landmark? I suggest three things: the particulars of King’s achievements as a liberal dissident; the trying circumstances he faced at the...read more.

The right's insane sliming of David Hogg

If Republicans are trying to alienate themselves from a generation of voters, they're doing a bang-up job. Polls shows that young people, and especially young women, are fleeing to the Democratic Party in large numbers. And who can blame them? Too many politicians in the GOP, and their media mouthpieces, have insulted them, smeared them and pawned their futures in exchange for short-term gain.  Read more.

Robert F. Kennedy: Teachings for Today

An emblem of Robert Kennedy’s capacity to reach across racial lines was the way he campaigned in the steel town of Gary, Indiana, when he ran for president in 1968. He made a point to appear together with Mayor Richard Hatcher, the first post-Reconstruction African American mayor of a large city, and Tony Zale, a white local hero who was the middleweight boxing champion of the world. That reach has often been noted over the years, with the added note that many of the city’s white residents who voted for RFK went on to vote for Governor George Wallace in the general election after Kennedy died.  Read more.

Laura Flanders Show: After Hurricane Maria

Trump Moves to Gut the Post Office

Some may be inclined to think that Donald Trump’s executive order Thursday night establishing a task force to recommend reforms for the U.S. Postal Service reflects another salvo in the president’s war against Amazon. Trump’s attack on Amazon, a clear byproduct of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’s ownership of...read more.

Seven Brilliant Insights From Noam Chomsky on the American Empire

Noam Chomsky is an expert on many matters -- linguistics, how our economy functions and propaganda, among others. One area where his wisdom especially shines through is in articulating the structure and functioning of the American empire. Chomsky has been speaking and publishing on the topic since the '60s. Below are seven powerful quotes on the evils, atrocities and ironies of the American empire taken from his personal site and from a fan-curated Web site dedicated to collecting Chomsky's observations.  Read more.

Israel's mass murder of Unarmed Gaza Protesters enters 3rd Week

Petition by Former DOJ Officials Denounce Trump

Nearly 250 former Justice Department officials have signed a letter posted on Medium, denouncing President Donald Trump's months of attacks on the department and the investigation it is carrying out to determine whether Russia meddled in the 2016 presidential election—and whether Trump's campaign was involved in the interference—and called on Congress to protect the rule of law.  Read more.

Trump's Attack on Syria Violates International Law

Palestinians gather for mass protests along Gaza-Israel border

On Friday, a 28-year-old Palestinian man died due to Israeli military gunfire in the third consecutive mass protest along the border fence east of Jabalia just north of Gaza City, Gaza's Health Ministry said.
Over 950 Palestinians were wounded on Friday — including 223 who were hurt by live ammunition — while the rest were wounded by...read more.

TV host's show canceled for tweeting murderous sexual threat at teen David Hogg

A conservative commentator who sent a violent and vulgar tweet saying he would use "a hot poker" to sexually assault a 17-year-old survivor of a Florida high school shooting has resigned from a St. Louis TV station after several advertisers withdrew from his show. KDNL-TV has canceled "The Allman Report" and accepted Jamie Allman's resignation, according to a brief statement from Ronn Torossian, a spokesman for the Sinclair Broadcast Group, which operates the TV station.  Read more.

Education Advisory Board Member Compares Anti-Violence Teen Activist David Hogg to Nazis

Ever since Marjory Stoneman Douglas senior David Hogg began pushing for gun control in the wake of the massacre at his high school, he's been a target for conservatives. An aide to Republican state Rep. Shawn Harrison called Hogg a crisis actor. Laura Ingraham blasted him for "whining" after being rejected from several California colleges. Talk-show host Jamie Allman said he had been...read more.

Miscarriage of Justice: Ex-President Lula's Imprisonment in Brazil

A president in prison won't solve the crisis in Brazil

The Portuguese word "golpe" has a polysemy that is lost in English: It means at once coup d'etat, swindle and physical blow. One needs all three meanings to make sense of what has been happening in Brazil since Dilma Rousseff's impeachment in 2016.
Unlike the military takeover of 1964, this is not a clean break with a pre-existing institutional order, but the...read more.

US Attack on Syria Would Be Illegal Under International Law

Teacher Strikes Are About a Lot More Than Paychecks

Teachers across the United States are having a moment.
Educators are building on the momentum from West Virginia, where striking teachers won a 5 percent pay raise for state employees. Now the protests have spread to Arizona, Kentucky, Oklahoma, and the nation’s capital.
The educators are winning broad public support, but some politicians aren’t pleased.  Read more.

As Fascists Infiltrate Colleges, Students Want Cops and Racists Out

College campuses around the United States have lately been inundated with local and state police forces, in addition to the schools' own cops. From Berkeley to the University of Florida to Michigan State University, hordes of police have been deployed during and in some cases, leading up to talks by Richard Spencer, president of the white nationalist think tank, the National Policy Institute. Wherever Spencer (who recently announced a hiatus from his campus tour) and his posse of...read more.

Trump Pardons Cheney Sidekick Scooter Libby

Donald Trump pardoned Lewis "Scooter" Libby on Friday.
Libby was chief of staff to former Vice President Dick Cheney and was convicted in 2007 of lying under oath and obstruction of justice during the investigation into the leaking of the identity of covert CIA operative Valerie Plame, whose husband , an ambassador, challenged the Bush-Cheney narrative for invading Iraq. Bush later commuted Libby's sentence.  Read more.

#ShellKnew: Green Group Sues Oil Giant Over Climate Impact

Kentucky Teachers to Hold Sick-Out Friday Despite Threats from Governor

Israel Massacres Unarmed Gaza Protesters Again as International Community Shrugs

When Your Lawyer Needs a Lawyer: Trump, Cohen and the FBI Raid

Donald Trump's personal lawyer needs a lawyer. That lawyer will also need a lawyer, who in turn will also need a lawyer. If this keeps up, a friend noted, we'll have to change "MAGA" to "My Attorney Got Arrested."
Michael D. Cohen, Trump's long-time consigliere and Man Who Knows All Secrets had his world turned inside out like a laundered sock on Monday morning when the FBI basically raided every place he's ever spent more than five minutes.  Read more.

Video shows fatal police shooting of black woman

Elgin, Illinois, police officers tried for more than an hour to get a woman they believed was suicidal and possibly armed with a steak knife out of her car on the side of Interstate 90, including threatening her with arrest.
Authorities say she refused, and at one point she set something on fire and threw it into the back seat.  Read more.

Major Banks Ramp Up Fossil Fuel Financing Despite Climate Crisis

Poor People's Campaign Unveils Agenda to Combat Poverty, Racism, and Militarism

In the spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s original campaign against poverty that kicked off 50 years ago next month, leaders of the Poor People's Campaign (PPC) on Tuesday announced plans to revive Dr. King's radical moral vision with mass action nationwide and unveiled a series of ambitious demands aimed at combating the economic, racial, and environmental injustices that afflict tens of millions of people in the world's wealthiest nation.  Read more.

From Stephon Clark to Voter Suppression, the Attack on Black America Intensifies

It's hard to watch. Guns aimed at the dark. Loud yells. Loud salvo. Night drizzle in the tactical lights. Cops mistook his cell phone for a gun. I know already, he's dead. I finished watching the video of Stephon Clark's murder. Days later, White House Press Secretary, Sarah Sanders labeled it a "local matter."  Read more.

Trump lawyer Michael Cohen: The loyal ‘fixer’ now under federal scrutiny

Michael D. Cohen sums up his extraordinary closeness with President Trump in one word: “Loyalty.”
After setting up a committee in 2011 designed to boost the possibility of a Trump presidential bid, he described his role as “fixer” in this way: “It means that if somebody does something Mr. Trump doesn’t like, I do everything in my power to resolve it to Mr. Trump’s benefit. If you do something wrong, I’m going to come at you, grab you by the neck and I’m not going to let you go until I’m finished.”  Read more.

Israel's State-Sponsored Mass Shooting

Israeli army sharpshooters and snipers have shot over 1,000 unarmed Palestinian protesters inside the Gaza Strip in the past week, killing more than 30 people. This past Friday, at least six Palestinian journalists were reportedly among those shot at the Great Return March. One of them, Yasser Murtaja, a photographer for “Ain Media” who was reportedly wearing a helmet and vest clearly marked “PRESS” when he was shot, later died of his wounds.  Read more.

The Media Never, Ever Gives Peace a Chance

At this writing, President Trump is considering "the possibility of retaliation in Syria in response to a suspected chemical attack on young children and families in the Syrian city of Douma," reported CBS News. "If it's the Russians, if it's Syria, if it's Iran, if it's all of them together, we'll figure it out," Trump said. "Nothing's off the table," including a military attack by the United States.  Read more.

Under Threat of Military Coup, Brazil's Supreme Court Sends Lula to Prison

Winnie and MLK: Their Fight was Right — and It’s Not Over

Fifty years ago this week, the civil rights struggle of Martin Luther King Jr. ended tragically with his assassination on a motel balcony in Memphis, Tenn. As this was happening in 1968, the struggles of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in apartheid South Africa were only beginning.
The dramatic stories of their lives were being remembered this week in the world’s media, but often in selective, self-serving ways.  Read more.

US Occupying Oil-Rich Areas in North Syria to Choke Damascus

Three Countries Nearing a 100% Green Grid

The aspiration for a 100% green electricity grid is no longer a dream. It is regularly being achieved in the real world for weeks or months on end. This development is absolutely crucial, since burning fossil fuels at the rate we are burning them is rapidly changing the climate in ways that seriously harm our quality of life.  Read more.

The NFL’s plan to protect America from witches

Witches, man. Just when you thought we were safe from their malignant influence on America’s virtue, the NFL has proven we are still in real danger from their dark powers. It is fortunate for our country’s moral fiber that the NFL has kept current in their reading, channeling Heinrich Kramer’s 1487 tome, Malleus Maleficarum (“The Hammer of Witches”), which was the go-to DIY text in many countries for conducting witch trials and public executions. As a result, an estimated 40,000 to 50,000 witches were put to death, about 80% of which were females. Why so many women? Kramer explains that it’s because a woman “is more carnal than man, as is clear in connection with many filthy carnal acts”. He believed that the sexual desire men felt when looking at a woman who was...read more.

Puerto Rico to close nearly one-third of its public schools as it pushes charters and vouchers

Puerto Rico is planning to close 283 schools — or nearly a third of its public schools — to save money and address declining enrollment that resulted from devastation that the U.S. territory sustained during 2017’s Hurricane Maria. The closings come as island leaders are starting an initiative to open charter schools and voucher programs.  Read more.

In Wake of Gaza Massacre, Israeli Leaders Should Be Prosecuted for War Crimes

On March 30, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers shot 773 unarmed Palestinian protesters in Gaza, killing 17 and wounding 1,400. Twenty remain in critical condition. The protesters were marching to demand the internationally mandated right of return of refugees to their cities and villages in what now constitutes Israel.  Read more.

If You Want to Kill Drug Dealers, Start with Big Pharma

At a recent rally in New Hampshire, Donald Trump called for the death penalty for drug traffickers as part of a plan to combat the opioid epidemic in the United States. At a Pennsylvania rally a few weeks earlier, he called for the same.
Now his administration is taking steps toward making this proposal a reality. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo on...read more.

Facebook Admits Data From 'Most' of Its 2 Billion Users Compromised

Buried in Facebook's announcement that Cambridge Analytica had improperly gathered data from up to 87 million users—rather than the previously reported 50 million—was the stunning admission that "malicious actors" exploited the social networking site's search features to collection information from "most" of its 2 billion users.  Read more.

Martin Luther King Jr was a radical. We must not sterilize his legacy

The major threat of Martin Luther King Jr to us is a spiritual and moral one. King’s courageous and compassionate example shatters the dominant neoliberal soul-craft of smartness, money and bombs. His grand fight against poverty, militarism, materialism and racism undercuts the superficial lip service and pretentious posturing of so-called progressives as well as the candid contempt and proud prejudices of genuine reactionaries. King was neither perfect nor pure in his prophetic witness – but he was the real thing in sharp contrast to the market-driven semblances and simulacra of our day.  Read more.

US, Saudi CEOs Sign $20B Deals in NYC as Protesters Condemn Catastrophic War on Yemen

We Have Bill Clinton to Thank in Part for Trump's Propaganda Machine

If you spent any time on social media over the weekend, you've probably seen it by now. On Saturday, Deadspin's Timothy Burke published a supercut of news anchors for the Sinclair Broadcasting Group reciting a distinctly Trumpian promo. "We're concerned about the troubling trend of irresponsible, one-sided news stories plaguing our country," each of them intoned. "The sharing of biased and false news has become all too common on social media. More alarming, some media outlets publish these same...read more.

TV Producer Resigns Over Forced Scripts

As Sinclair continues to face criticism after a viral video showing local news anchors reciting scripts pre-packaged by the right-wing broadcasting behemoth, one TV producer announced Wednesday that the forced propaganda drove him to resign in protest.

"I didn't go into news to give people biased information," said Justin Simmons of Sinclair-owned KHGI-TV in Nebrasksa.  Read more.

3,000+ Google Employees Demand Company End Work on Pentagon Drone Project

More than 3,000 Google employees have signed a letter that's circulating in the company demanding that the tech giant end its involvement in Project Maven, a Pentagon program that could be used to develop drone technology.

The project, the workers argue, runs counter to the company's stated mission and motto.  Read more.

50 Years After Assassination, Nation Urged to Acknowledge and Embrace MLK's Radical Vision

As hundreds rallied in Memphis, Tenn. on Wednesday to mark the 50th anniversary of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination, progressive civil rights and anti-poverty advocates urged Americans to honor the full breadth of the leader's efforts—which went far beyond his ubiquitous "I Have a Dream" speech and pushed for the eradication of poverty and an end to the U.S. war in Vietnam.  Read more.

Wildcat Teacher Strikes Spread to Kentucky and Oklahoma

The Pentagon's Scary Plan to Militarize Ocean Life

The US military has plans to create genetically modified marine organisms that can be used as underwater spies for the military. Fantastic as this idea may seem, the Pentagon's research arm, DARPA (or Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), has actually launched a new program that aims to tap into the "natural sensing capabilities" of marine organisms, who are highly attuned to their surroundings, to track enemy traffic undersea. Read more.

The American pursuit of domination: From Barbary wars to Iraq

In April of 1776, just prior to declaring independence, Congress opened all American ports for trade with any part of the world not under British rule. Americans were eager to spread their influence and engage in international trade. Only two decades later, American trade had prospered internationally. However, in the very strategic intersection of the Mediterranean shores of North Africa, the Barbary pirates, who had caused...read more.

New CFPB Director Makes Changes to Help Companies, Not Consumers

Further building on his tireless efforts to "defang" the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) from the inside, White House Budget chief and acting CFPB head Mick Mulvaney asked Congress on Monday to pass several legislative changes that would dramatically diminish the agency's independence and roll back its ability to protect consumers from predatory financial firms.  Read more.

The Murder of Marielle Franco and the Birth of a Movement

US Blocks UN Investigation into Israeli Military Killings in Gaza

Roger Lowenstein, F**k Your Stock Portfolio

I realize it would be too much to ask that people who write on economics for major news outlets have any clue about how the economy works. I say that seriously; I have been commenting on economic reporting for more than two decades. Being a writer on economics is not like being a custodian or bus driver where you have to meet certain standards. The right family or friends can get you the job and there is virtually no risk of losing it as a result of inadequate performance.  Read more.

Watching Black Panther in Harlem

Magic Johnson Theaters in Harlem, or AMC Magic Johnson Harlem 9 on Frederick Douglas Blvd to be precise, is where my children and I spend many of our weekend outings. It is the closest theatre to where we live on Columbia University campus, and closest to my heart as an urban setting that resonates deeply with a history that defines me in every major city I have lived in and loved from Tehran to Mexico City.   Read more.

EPA Rolls Back Fuel Efficiency Standards at the Request of Automakers

In what comes as a surprise to absolutely no one following the current administration, today EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt issued a redetermination of the appropriateness of the EPA’s vehicle regulations through 2025 and found that they should be made less stringent.  In doing so, he is overturning thousands of pages of hard evidence, and the consequences will be limiting consumer choice, increasing emissions, and undercutting the economy.  Read more.

Israel Massacres Unarmed Gaza Protesters, Shooting 773 with Live Ammunition

Pope, after Gaza violence, says 'defenseless' being killed in Holy Land

Pope Francis, in his Easter address on Sunday, called for peace in the Holy Land two days after 15 Palestinians were killed on the Israeli-Gaza border, saying the conflict there “does not spare the defenseless”.

The pope made his appeal in his “Urbi et Orbi” (to the city and the world) message from the central balcony of...read more.