Thursday, 30 October 2014 / TRUTH-OUT.ORG
  • 'Tis the Season to Be Frightened

    Ebola, Dengue fever, West Nile virus ... Republican ideology created some of these threats in the first place, or managed to make others worse. The climate crisis, which Republicans dismiss en masse, is a key ingredient in all of them.

  • The 0.01 Percent's "I Reap All" Accounts

    At least 9,000 wealthy Americans have amassed $5 million-plus sized IRAs. Multimillionaires and billionaires are shielding vast fortunes from taxation with monstrously huge IRAs.

Speakout

SpeakOut is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. SpeakOut articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

One thing has become disturbingly clear during the country's anemic economic recovery. Middle-income jobs are disappearing, and they're not coming back.

The corresponding decline of America's middle class is something that should concern the entire nation, but as a military veteran, this development directly impinges on essential American freedoms, freedoms that I helped to safeguard during my eight years with the U.S. Marine Corps, 2nd Battalion.

Most of the growth in the recent economic recovery has been due to the growth in low-wage jobs.

Dear MoveOn,

It is with great sadness that I watch you making last-gasp desperate attempts to save Obamacare and Obama’s reputation. You look foolish when you say that “Of course, it’s a good law” at the same time as your constituents see through the Obamacare illusion.  The law is becoming less popular because people are beginning to see through the false partisan claims of Democrats.  And worse, you are actually playing right into the Republican’s trap, really the trap of Wall Street and big business interests.

Social media and even mainstream media appear poised to leap on Secretary Arne Duncan with both feet due to his swipe at white suburban moms.

The nearly universal sweeping outrage—some with a level of glee that must not be ignored—calls for close consideration itself.

First, rejecting Duncan’s comments about white suburban moms and Common Core critics is completely valid. I join hands with the education community in rejecting Duncan’s claims, his discourse, and his efforts to discredit a significant, credible, and growing resistance to CC that should not be trivialized and marginalized as Duncan does.

Nov 19

Fanaticism vs. Reality

By Dr James J Zogby, Arab American Institute | Op-Ed

During the Bush Administration I would often criticize the neo-conservative ideology suggesting that it was, in many ways, a secularized version of fanatic and fundamentalist Millenarian Christianity. Both shared a Manichean world view characterized by the belief in the inevitable clash between good and evil. Both were absolutist, seeing compromise as a sign of weakness and surrender to evil. As a consequence both saw violence as necessary and desirable. And both believed in an apocalyptic end in which, despite the damage done, good would be victorious and evil would be vanquished.

On November 15th (2013) in Melbourne, Australia, Arena publications and the Australian Centre/University of Melbourne conducted a symposium titled;

FROM COLD WAR TO HOT PLANET: 50 YEARS OF ARENA’S CONTRIBUTION TO AUSTRALIAN CULTURAL AND POLITICAL LIFE.

The following account is a summary of that event including some reflections of the significance of the symposium for socially critical politics and activism globally.

Nov 19

NLRB prosecutes Walmart

By Staff, UFCW | Press Release
WASHINGTON — The National Labor Relations Board General Counsel is issuing a decision today to prosecute Walmart for its widespread violations of its workers’ rights. The decision will provide additional protection for Walmart’s 1.3 million employees when they are speaking out for better jobs at the country’s largest employer.
 
The Board will prosecute Walmart’s illegal firings and disciplinary actions involving more than 117 workers, including those who went on strike last June, according to the decision.
The modern paradigm may still seem insurmountable “because it possesses an outward front, the work of a long past, but is in reality an edifice crumbling to ruin and destined to fall in at the first storm.”
– Gustave Le Bon, The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind


The decentralized movement toward freedom is raging across the world. It cannot be stopped. The tipping point is near. Despite the lack of coverage in the mainstream media, actions are springing up on an increasing basis. A wave of transformation is rising. The zeitgeist is shifting in our direction.

A new era in Canadian Politics has opened as two of the country's most-controversial politicians suddenly face unparalleled challenges after years of persuasive, steadfast authority. Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Toronto mayor Rob Ford together signal a trend, and not an anomaly. The trend is one less indicated by parallels in leadership style and including in a common unflinching, self-assured and self-declared, paramount right to exercise power.

Nov 18

All Drone Politics Is Local

By David Swanson, David Swanson's Blog | Op-Ed

Charlottesville, Va., passed a resolution that urged the state of Virginia to adopt a two-year moratorium on drones (which it did), urged both Virginia and the U.S. Congress to prohibit information obtained from the domestic use of drones from being introduced into court, and to preclude the domestic use of drones equipped with "anti-personnel devices, meaning any projectile, chemical, electrical, directed-energy (visible or invisible), or other device designed to harm, incapacitate, or otherwise negatively impact a human being," and pledged that Charlottesville would "abstain from similar uses with city-owned, leased, or borrowed drones."

Germany had planned to buy a fleet of "Euro Hawk" killer drones -- perhaps in an effort to bring the European Union up to speed with certain other Nobel Peace laureates.

But something happened on the way to the celestial colosseum.

Of course, Captain Drone Man himself undoubtedly learned the news first, unless the NSA misplaced some of Frau Merkel's emails under a pile of exchanges among nonviolent activists planning the upcoming drone summit in DC.

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Speakout

SpeakOut is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. SpeakOut articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

One thing has become disturbingly clear during the country's anemic economic recovery. Middle-income jobs are disappearing, and they're not coming back.

The corresponding decline of America's middle class is something that should concern the entire nation, but as a military veteran, this development directly impinges on essential American freedoms, freedoms that I helped to safeguard during my eight years with the U.S. Marine Corps, 2nd Battalion.

Most of the growth in the recent economic recovery has been due to the growth in low-wage jobs.

Dear MoveOn,

It is with great sadness that I watch you making last-gasp desperate attempts to save Obamacare and Obama’s reputation. You look foolish when you say that “Of course, it’s a good law” at the same time as your constituents see through the Obamacare illusion.  The law is becoming less popular because people are beginning to see through the false partisan claims of Democrats.  And worse, you are actually playing right into the Republican’s trap, really the trap of Wall Street and big business interests.

Social media and even mainstream media appear poised to leap on Secretary Arne Duncan with both feet due to his swipe at white suburban moms.

The nearly universal sweeping outrage—some with a level of glee that must not be ignored—calls for close consideration itself.

First, rejecting Duncan’s comments about white suburban moms and Common Core critics is completely valid. I join hands with the education community in rejecting Duncan’s claims, his discourse, and his efforts to discredit a significant, credible, and growing resistance to CC that should not be trivialized and marginalized as Duncan does.

Nov 19

Fanaticism vs. Reality

By Dr James J Zogby, Arab American Institute | Op-Ed

During the Bush Administration I would often criticize the neo-conservative ideology suggesting that it was, in many ways, a secularized version of fanatic and fundamentalist Millenarian Christianity. Both shared a Manichean world view characterized by the belief in the inevitable clash between good and evil. Both were absolutist, seeing compromise as a sign of weakness and surrender to evil. As a consequence both saw violence as necessary and desirable. And both believed in an apocalyptic end in which, despite the damage done, good would be victorious and evil would be vanquished.

On November 15th (2013) in Melbourne, Australia, Arena publications and the Australian Centre/University of Melbourne conducted a symposium titled;

FROM COLD WAR TO HOT PLANET: 50 YEARS OF ARENA’S CONTRIBUTION TO AUSTRALIAN CULTURAL AND POLITICAL LIFE.

The following account is a summary of that event including some reflections of the significance of the symposium for socially critical politics and activism globally.

Nov 19

NLRB prosecutes Walmart

By Staff, UFCW | Press Release
WASHINGTON — The National Labor Relations Board General Counsel is issuing a decision today to prosecute Walmart for its widespread violations of its workers’ rights. The decision will provide additional protection for Walmart’s 1.3 million employees when they are speaking out for better jobs at the country’s largest employer.
 
The Board will prosecute Walmart’s illegal firings and disciplinary actions involving more than 117 workers, including those who went on strike last June, according to the decision.
The modern paradigm may still seem insurmountable “because it possesses an outward front, the work of a long past, but is in reality an edifice crumbling to ruin and destined to fall in at the first storm.”
– Gustave Le Bon, The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind


The decentralized movement toward freedom is raging across the world. It cannot be stopped. The tipping point is near. Despite the lack of coverage in the mainstream media, actions are springing up on an increasing basis. A wave of transformation is rising. The zeitgeist is shifting in our direction.

A new era in Canadian Politics has opened as two of the country's most-controversial politicians suddenly face unparalleled challenges after years of persuasive, steadfast authority. Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Toronto mayor Rob Ford together signal a trend, and not an anomaly. The trend is one less indicated by parallels in leadership style and including in a common unflinching, self-assured and self-declared, paramount right to exercise power.

Nov 18

All Drone Politics Is Local

By David Swanson, David Swanson's Blog | Op-Ed

Charlottesville, Va., passed a resolution that urged the state of Virginia to adopt a two-year moratorium on drones (which it did), urged both Virginia and the U.S. Congress to prohibit information obtained from the domestic use of drones from being introduced into court, and to preclude the domestic use of drones equipped with "anti-personnel devices, meaning any projectile, chemical, electrical, directed-energy (visible or invisible), or other device designed to harm, incapacitate, or otherwise negatively impact a human being," and pledged that Charlottesville would "abstain from similar uses with city-owned, leased, or borrowed drones."

Germany had planned to buy a fleet of "Euro Hawk" killer drones -- perhaps in an effort to bring the European Union up to speed with certain other Nobel Peace laureates.

But something happened on the way to the celestial colosseum.

Of course, Captain Drone Man himself undoubtedly learned the news first, unless the NSA misplaced some of Frau Merkel's emails under a pile of exchanges among nonviolent activists planning the upcoming drone summit in DC.