Sunday, 21 December 2014 / TRUTH-OUT.ORG

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.

LA, SF, NYC, Houston, Sacramento - Citizen activists from across the country are entering the final days of their water-only fast after weeks of deprivation in a bid to elevate the issue of money-in-politics corruption during this year's midterm election. Those fasting have urged voters to exclusively support candidates who support pro-democracy reforms that would overturn the Supreme Court's recent Citizen United and McCutcheon decisions by signing their Democracy Voter Pledge.

"We're fasting to call to action all those who believe, as we do, in a 'one person, one vote' democracy, where the voices of everyday Americans count for more than the dollars of billionaires and corporations." said 99Rise co-founder Kai Newkirk, who will have gone 18 days without food on election day. "We have a sacred duty to exercise our right to vote, and a strategic imperative to do so in a way that will advance our struggle to end the domination of big money over American politics."

Nov 03

Climbing Beyond Cartels

By Staff, Escalando Fronteras | Press Release

Monterrey, Mexico –Escalando Fronteras | Climbing Borders, an international development cooperative that uses rock-climbing to prevent at-risk youth from getting involved in gangs and organized crime as child soldiers in Mexico, is set to scale up its project and solidify the place of extreme adventure sports as a youth development tool in violent and conflict prone areas around the world. Encouraged by the positive results of its pilot project, which worked with 50 kids (both boys and girls between the ages of 6-18) from one of the poorest and most marginalized neighborhoods of Monterrey, Lomas Modelo, the cooperative is set to launch an Indiegogo campaign on the 17th of November which aims will allow the organization to reach 1000 at-risk youth in Monterrey by the end of 2015.

Dr. Nadia Vazquéz (from Mexico) (specialist in child soldiers at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education), Rory Smith (from the U.S.) (MA in International Development and Management), and Nicklas Karlsson (from Sweden) (MA in Social Anthropology), all avid climbers, with experience working in youth development in Monterrey, and armed with substantial evidence supporting the positive effects of climbing and the outdoors on both the mind and body saw the potential for climbing in development. They set out in the beginning of 2014 to test the effectiveness of climbing as a development tool in areas characterized by violence and conflict.

Nov 03

Peace Leadership

By David Krieger, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation | Press Release

We live in a time of war and in a world that sacrifices its children at the altar of violence.

President Eisenhower warned against the “military-industrial complex.”  He might well have added, “military-industrial-academic-congressional complex.”  All are implicated in the obscene sums spent on war and its preparation.

An elderly Briton was framed for a murder for which he has spent 28 years in a Miami prison, according to new evidence detailed last night in an investigative BBC report.

Krishna ‘Kris’ Maharaj, now 75 years old, was handed a death sentence in 1987 in Miami after a seriously flawed trial for the murders of Derrick and Duane Moo Young. Since then, evidence collected by Mr Maharaj’s lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith of the international human rights organisation Reprieve, has shown that Mr. Maharaj was far from the crime scene, and that the Moo Youngs were killed by members of Pablo Escobar’s drug cartel. Mr. Maharaj could finally be proven innocent after a full ‘evidentiary hearing’ takes place at the Miami District court on November 10th.

Weakening radiation standards, a cap on accident liability, reactor propaganda vs improvements, old units running past expiration dates, revving the engines beyond design specs …. You’d think we were itching for a meltdown.

The Environmental Protection Agency has recommended increased radiation exposure limits following major releases. It would save the industry a bundle to permit large human exposures, rather than shut down rickety reactors.

Tribal leaders and river and groundwater protection advocates on Monday, October 27, announced their strong opposition to Proposition 1, Governor Jerry Brown's controversial State Water Bond. 

Caleen Sisk, Chief and Spiritual Leader of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, said the water bond, peripheral tunnels, Shasta Dam raise and other water projects now being planned by the state and federal governments are in in reality "one Big Project" that will destroy salmon, rivers and groundwater supplies. 

The debate over the pros and cons of Proposition 1, Jerry Brown's $7.5 billion water bond, is very important, but an even bigger issue in any environmental battle or process is the money behind the campaign. 

The big corporate money behind the water bond largely determines who the bond will benefit - billionaires, corporate agribusiness, oil companies and the 1 percent, not the people, fish or wildlife of California. 

Contributions to Governor Jerry Brown's Yes on Props 1 and 2 Committee have jumped to $13,880,528.43, according to the latest data posted on the California Secretary of State's website. 

2014.11.2.TorresNiurca Torres.This week you have an opportunity to help save the life of a wonderful woman. Niurca Torres has been in prison for 19 years. She has always asserted her innocence, and a recent investigation by well-respected attorney Margaret Byrne shows that she is, in fact, innocent. She is scheduled to be released in November 2015, but she will not survive that long without medical care that she cannot get in prison.

Niurca has cirrhosis as a result of medication she received while in prison. She needs a liver transplant immediately. She will not survive in prison, and she is not receiving the care she requires. Niurca was rushed to an outside hospital a month ago because she was unable to breathe. A blood vessel from her liver to her esophagus was blocked. She is getting weaker by the day. Her family can care for her and a friend has offered a part of her liver as donor. Niurca cannot get on a transplant list while she is in prison.

As a child in Puerto Rico, Niurca did well in school and sang in the church choir. When she was fourteen, her family moved to Miami. She graduated from high school in three years. She became a licensed real estate agent in 1993. She also worked in the evenings selling insurance and had a catering business with a friend. She sang and played guitar and piano with her church choir in Miami, and had many friends and a loving family. Niurca was 26 when she was arrested in this case and she had never been arrested before.

November 15, 2014 is the first annual national observance of the "Night of Terror" by the Turning Point Suffragist Memorial Association, an organization raising money to build a national memorial honoring women who were arrested and imprisoned during the 72-year campaign to win voting rights for women. Lorton, Virginia is the planned site for the suffragist memorial, not far from Occoquan Workhouse where the "Night of Terror" on arrested suffrage picketers was carried out in 1917. Suffrage Wagon News Channel is partnering on this first annual event.

November 14-15, 1917 is recognized in history as the night when a total of 31 suffrage activists were targeted with attacks and violence in what was believed to be a federal administrative effort to break the spirit of the activists. The "Night of Terror" occurred at the Occoquan Workhouse (within the then D.C. prison complex) in Lorton, Virginia, not far from Washington, DC.

Seventy-six Members of Congress have called on President Obama to let them view video footage of abusive force-feeding at Guantanamo Bay.

In a letter sent to the White House today, the legislators argue that the secrecy surrounding the abuse is “untenable”. They demand to see videos showing the force-feeding and ‘forcible cell extractions’ of cleared detainees Abu Wa’el Dhiab and Emad Hassan, in order to “take any action necessary to correct these practices.”

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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.

LA, SF, NYC, Houston, Sacramento - Citizen activists from across the country are entering the final days of their water-only fast after weeks of deprivation in a bid to elevate the issue of money-in-politics corruption during this year's midterm election. Those fasting have urged voters to exclusively support candidates who support pro-democracy reforms that would overturn the Supreme Court's recent Citizen United and McCutcheon decisions by signing their Democracy Voter Pledge.

"We're fasting to call to action all those who believe, as we do, in a 'one person, one vote' democracy, where the voices of everyday Americans count for more than the dollars of billionaires and corporations." said 99Rise co-founder Kai Newkirk, who will have gone 18 days without food on election day. "We have a sacred duty to exercise our right to vote, and a strategic imperative to do so in a way that will advance our struggle to end the domination of big money over American politics."

Nov 03

Climbing Beyond Cartels

By Staff, Escalando Fronteras | Press Release

Monterrey, Mexico –Escalando Fronteras | Climbing Borders, an international development cooperative that uses rock-climbing to prevent at-risk youth from getting involved in gangs and organized crime as child soldiers in Mexico, is set to scale up its project and solidify the place of extreme adventure sports as a youth development tool in violent and conflict prone areas around the world. Encouraged by the positive results of its pilot project, which worked with 50 kids (both boys and girls between the ages of 6-18) from one of the poorest and most marginalized neighborhoods of Monterrey, Lomas Modelo, the cooperative is set to launch an Indiegogo campaign on the 17th of November which aims will allow the organization to reach 1000 at-risk youth in Monterrey by the end of 2015.

Dr. Nadia Vazquéz (from Mexico) (specialist in child soldiers at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education), Rory Smith (from the U.S.) (MA in International Development and Management), and Nicklas Karlsson (from Sweden) (MA in Social Anthropology), all avid climbers, with experience working in youth development in Monterrey, and armed with substantial evidence supporting the positive effects of climbing and the outdoors on both the mind and body saw the potential for climbing in development. They set out in the beginning of 2014 to test the effectiveness of climbing as a development tool in areas characterized by violence and conflict.

Nov 03

Peace Leadership

By David Krieger, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation | Press Release

We live in a time of war and in a world that sacrifices its children at the altar of violence.

President Eisenhower warned against the “military-industrial complex.”  He might well have added, “military-industrial-academic-congressional complex.”  All are implicated in the obscene sums spent on war and its preparation.

An elderly Briton was framed for a murder for which he has spent 28 years in a Miami prison, according to new evidence detailed last night in an investigative BBC report.

Krishna ‘Kris’ Maharaj, now 75 years old, was handed a death sentence in 1987 in Miami after a seriously flawed trial for the murders of Derrick and Duane Moo Young. Since then, evidence collected by Mr Maharaj’s lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith of the international human rights organisation Reprieve, has shown that Mr. Maharaj was far from the crime scene, and that the Moo Youngs were killed by members of Pablo Escobar’s drug cartel. Mr. Maharaj could finally be proven innocent after a full ‘evidentiary hearing’ takes place at the Miami District court on November 10th.

Weakening radiation standards, a cap on accident liability, reactor propaganda vs improvements, old units running past expiration dates, revving the engines beyond design specs …. You’d think we were itching for a meltdown.

The Environmental Protection Agency has recommended increased radiation exposure limits following major releases. It would save the industry a bundle to permit large human exposures, rather than shut down rickety reactors.

Tribal leaders and river and groundwater protection advocates on Monday, October 27, announced their strong opposition to Proposition 1, Governor Jerry Brown's controversial State Water Bond. 

Caleen Sisk, Chief and Spiritual Leader of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, said the water bond, peripheral tunnels, Shasta Dam raise and other water projects now being planned by the state and federal governments are in in reality "one Big Project" that will destroy salmon, rivers and groundwater supplies. 

The debate over the pros and cons of Proposition 1, Jerry Brown's $7.5 billion water bond, is very important, but an even bigger issue in any environmental battle or process is the money behind the campaign. 

The big corporate money behind the water bond largely determines who the bond will benefit - billionaires, corporate agribusiness, oil companies and the 1 percent, not the people, fish or wildlife of California. 

Contributions to Governor Jerry Brown's Yes on Props 1 and 2 Committee have jumped to $13,880,528.43, according to the latest data posted on the California Secretary of State's website. 

2014.11.2.TorresNiurca Torres.This week you have an opportunity to help save the life of a wonderful woman. Niurca Torres has been in prison for 19 years. She has always asserted her innocence, and a recent investigation by well-respected attorney Margaret Byrne shows that she is, in fact, innocent. She is scheduled to be released in November 2015, but she will not survive that long without medical care that she cannot get in prison.

Niurca has cirrhosis as a result of medication she received while in prison. She needs a liver transplant immediately. She will not survive in prison, and she is not receiving the care she requires. Niurca was rushed to an outside hospital a month ago because she was unable to breathe. A blood vessel from her liver to her esophagus was blocked. She is getting weaker by the day. Her family can care for her and a friend has offered a part of her liver as donor. Niurca cannot get on a transplant list while she is in prison.

As a child in Puerto Rico, Niurca did well in school and sang in the church choir. When she was fourteen, her family moved to Miami. She graduated from high school in three years. She became a licensed real estate agent in 1993. She also worked in the evenings selling insurance and had a catering business with a friend. She sang and played guitar and piano with her church choir in Miami, and had many friends and a loving family. Niurca was 26 when she was arrested in this case and she had never been arrested before.

November 15, 2014 is the first annual national observance of the "Night of Terror" by the Turning Point Suffragist Memorial Association, an organization raising money to build a national memorial honoring women who were arrested and imprisoned during the 72-year campaign to win voting rights for women. Lorton, Virginia is the planned site for the suffragist memorial, not far from Occoquan Workhouse where the "Night of Terror" on arrested suffrage picketers was carried out in 1917. Suffrage Wagon News Channel is partnering on this first annual event.

November 14-15, 1917 is recognized in history as the night when a total of 31 suffrage activists were targeted with attacks and violence in what was believed to be a federal administrative effort to break the spirit of the activists. The "Night of Terror" occurred at the Occoquan Workhouse (within the then D.C. prison complex) in Lorton, Virginia, not far from Washington, DC.

Seventy-six Members of Congress have called on President Obama to let them view video footage of abusive force-feeding at Guantanamo Bay.

In a letter sent to the White House today, the legislators argue that the secrecy surrounding the abuse is “untenable”. They demand to see videos showing the force-feeding and ‘forcible cell extractions’ of cleared detainees Abu Wa’el Dhiab and Emad Hassan, in order to “take any action necessary to correct these practices.”