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Truthout Daily Digest | Sunday, 28 December 2014

Green Neocolonialism, Afro-Brazilian Rebellion in Brazil

Santiago Navarro F., Renata Bessi and Translated by Miriam Taylor, Truthout: The Afro-Brazilian Quilombola people were forced from their land in Brazil in order to make way for eucalyptus plantations, which produce toilet paper destined for Western markets. But they are resisting by replanting native trees and food crops, and working for a post-eucalyptus reality.

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Killer Drones Are a Lethal Extension of American Exceptionalism

Marjorie Cohn, Olive Branch Press: “Like his predecessor, Obama defines virtually the entire world as a battlefield, ostensibly obviating the necessity to provide due process before execution,” the author writes in this introduction toDrones and Targeted Killing.

Read the Excerpt

In Black Lives Matter Protest, Corporate Rights Trump Free Speech

Brendan Fischer, PR Watch: Minnesotans protesting police violence and institutional racism could face “staggering” fees and criminal charges for a protest at Mall of America, with the city of Bloomington announcing plans to force organizers to pay for the mall’s lost revenue during the exercise of their free speech rights.

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Truthout Interviews Joe Macaré on Keeping the Independence in Independent Journalism and Truthout

Ted Asregadoo, Truthout: What does it take to make sure that Truthout remains independent from corporate sponsorship and advertisements? Truthout publisher Joe Macaré talks about how Truthout is able to maintain its journalistic independence.

Watch the Video

Tiny House Living: How Two Families Made It Work

Liz Pleasant, YES! Magazine: How do you fit a full-sized family into a tiny house? The Morrisons and Kasls found that the benefits of life in 200 square feet outweigh the difficulties – teenagers, sleepovers, alone time and all.

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Despite Enduring a Lifetime of Violence, Kelly Savage Emerges as an In-Prison Activist

Victoria Law, Waging Nonviolence: After enduring a lifetime of violence and abuse and then facing the rest of her life behind prison walls, it would be easy for a person to become bitter, disillusioned and self-destructive. But rather than sinking into despair, Kelly Savage has instead become an in-prison activist.

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Feds Bar Companies’ Long-Distance Lawsuits Against Soldiers

Paul Kiel, ProPublica: In the latest move against companies targeting military customers, federal regulators prohibit two Virginia-based lenders from suing out-of-state debtors in Virginia courts.

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“Employee Engagement” Is No Substitute for a Union at Volkswagen

Alexandra Bradbury, Labor Notes: There’s no bargaining in Volkswagen’s new policy. On closer inspection, it looks more like something anti-union forces have been angling to try. In fact, it’s suspiciously similar to what Tennessee legislators imposed on teachers.

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Selma Portrays the True Martin Luther King Jr: A Radical Despised by the Political Establishment

Zaid Jilani, AlterNet: Selma has won nearly unanimous praise from film critics – partly for its unflinching look at King as a true radical who upset not just a fringe of racists in the South, but the entire political establishment. The film is particularly relevant right now, in light of recent protests against police brutality.

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Top 10 Progressive Policies We’d Love to See Enacted in 2015 (but Probably Won’t Be)

Robin Marty, Care2: The new year would be an amazing time to pass some real legislation that could decrease the gap between the rich and poor and the haves and the have-nots. Sadly, with a new, even more conservative Congress to be sworn in this January, the odds of that happening are pretty slim.

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This week in Speakout:

The National Committee to Free the Cuban Five is overjoyed that the Cuban Five are home, forever free from the unjust imprisonment and cruel punishment that denied them their freedom for 16 long years, while Jack A. Smith applauds the overdue policy changes that led there; El Grito de Sunset Park and Bronxites for NYPD Accountability reflect on how the fight against police brutality is just and must continue; George Ygarza reports how hundreds of delegates from all corners of the globe descended upon Lima to be heard in regard to their struggles in confronting climate change in their respective regions; Ken Peeples reveals how the United States government actually really hates press freedom;Mike Miller describes the six pillars of effective anti-poverty policy; Jason Flores-Williamsargues that a culture of torture is the very soundtrack of our lives; Walter Shapiro explains the crash course Americans got on the mischief that can transpire when Congress actually fulfills its duties; the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation notes that more than 5 million signatures have been garnered for a Nuclear Zero Campaign; Arnold Oliver says the break in hostilities in the trenches of Belgium and France on Christmas a century ago was actually a mutiny, not a truce; and more.

Read the Articles


The BuzzFlash commentary for Truthout will return soon.

After 13 Years, US-Led Afghanistan War Is Officially Over, but Nightmare Goes On

Read the Article at Common Dreams

AirAsia Indonesia Flight to Singapore Goes Missing With 162 on Board; Search for Jet Suspended

Read the Article at The Washington Post

At Least 24 Killed in Malaysia, Thailand Floods as 200,000 Evacuated

Read the Article at Al Jazeera America

Malaria Is Killing Thousands More Than Ebola in West Africa

Read the Article at the Associated Press

The Mysterious Case of Prisoner 212

Read the Article at The Intercept

“I Can’t Breathe” T-Shirts See High School Basketball Team Disinvited From Event

Read the Article at the Associated Press

How Canadian Oilmen Pinkwash the Keystone Pipeline

Read the Article at The Daily Beast

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Truthout Daily Digest Friday, 28 November, 2014

A Year After Congressional Testimony, Drone Strike Victims Still Searching for Justice

Candice Bernd, Truthout: Despite a recent finding that fewer than 4 percent of drone strike casualties in Pakistan have been confirmed as members of al-Qaeda, critics fear the program will continue with impunity and even be boosted to combat the Islamic state.

Read the Article

Marjorie Cohn | Prosecutor Manipulates Grand Jury Process to Shield Officer

Marjorie Cohn, Truthout: Robert McCulloch has a history of bias in favor of police involved in altercations with black men. But, ignoring the pleas of 7,000 residents in and near Ferguson who signed a petition, McCulloch refused to recuse himself in the Darren Wilson case.

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Deciphering 10(j) Injunctions at the National Labor Relations Board’s Website

Ellen Dannin, Truthout: The NLRB has launched a new website as part of an effort to beef up employee rights. But how many workers who need to know their rights can read and understand it?

Read the Article

Native-American Youth Are in Crisis and Need Protection

Jessica Ramos, Care2: Centuries after the first pilgrims and Native Americans came together in peace to give thanks (so the story goes), Native-American youth have nothing close to peace. A new 120-page report from the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee screams that they are in crisis.

Read the Article

Government Data Sharpens Focus on Crude-Oil Train Routes

Isaiah Thompson, ProPublica: An analysis of federal government data adds new details to what’s known about the routes taken by trains carrying crude oil. Local governments are often unaware of the potential dangers they face.

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Obama’s Immigration Action Doesn’t Go Far Enough

Diana Anahi Torres, OtherWords: Farmworkers don’t qualify for reprieve under President Obama’s recent executive action on deportation unless they’ve lived in the United States for five years and have kids who are US citizens or permanent residents with green cards.

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Asia Smiles for the Cameras

John Feffer, Foreign Policy in Focus: Washington needs to recognize that its Pacific pivot is adding insecurity to the region, not stability. With its arms sales and encouragement of ally assertiveness, the United States is bringing peace to the region just like the Colt .45 “Peacemaker” brought peace to the Wild West.

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GOP on Wrong Side of History on Immigration

Leo Gerard, Campaign for America’s Future: Suffering amnesia about their personal histories, nativist Republicans want to expel the 11.7 million unauthorized immigrants, the people who harvest the United States’ Thanksgiving vegetables and care for US toddlers and grannies.

Read the Article

New Pope Can End Church Cover-Up of Child Abuse

Robert Weiner and Florian Prommer, Mass Live: Pope Francis has just announced he will be coming to the US next year for a conference on families. The new Pope is widely popular, but he and the Church must take stronger actions than ones to date on the victims and perpetrators of clerical child abuse.

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The Real Cost of Fracking: How the US Shale Gas Boom Is Threatening Our Families, Pets and Food

Allison Wilson, Independent Science News: Michelle Bamberger and Robert Oswald’s new book, The Real Cost of Fracking: How America’s Shale Gas Boom Is Threatening Our Families, Pets, and Food describes the results of their research on fracking’s health impacts.

Read the Book Review


The BuzzFlash commentary for Truthout will return soon.

Protesters Target Black Friday Sales in Ferguson

Read the Article at Reuters

Police Arrest 338 in LA: No Warnings, “Penned in,” Arrested, Protesters Say

Read the Article at the Los Angeles Times

Working for Walmart Is Even Worse Than You Think

Read the Article at AlterNet

Gunman Dead After Shooting Up Austin Police Headquarters

Read the Article at KXAN

Selma and Fruitvale Station Directors Lead Black Friday Protest Over Ferguson

Read the Article at The Guardian

Mexico’s President Aims to Strengthen Police After Students’ Abduction

Read the Article at The Wall Street Journal

At Home Legally – for Now

Read the Article at The Washington Post

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YES! Magazine Highlights 28 November, 2014

The best stories of the week from YES! Magazine: Powerful Ideas, Practical Actions

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Police Violence Is Not Inevitable: Four Ways a California Police Chief Connected Cops With Communities

“A critical look at any institution with as much power and authority invested in it as the police is probably a good thing.” READ MORE »

Chris Magnus in Richmond.
Mentally Ill People Often Face Violence From Police—But These Cities Are Trying to Fix That

Crisis Intervention Teams train police officers to understand mental illness without resorting to violence. READ MORE »

Seattle protesters with hands raised yelling "Hands up! Don't shoot!" “I’m Scared to Be a Black Male Walking Down the Street”: Seattle Teens on Why They Skipped School for a #Ferguson March

“We all just left class. As soon as 11:00 came, we stood up and walked out of class. Together as one.” READ MORE »

Photo by Sarah-Ji #Ferguson Thanksgiving: A Former Slave Proposed the Holiday 55 Years Before Lincoln. Why His Version Matters Today

“For some, racial inequality and fear are raw realities every day, and anything inspiring in American history rings false and remote. For others, the call to reflect on injustice feels like a personal accusation. But we are caught in this history together.” READ MORE »

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Angry cook by Shutterstock. Why It’s OK to Be Angry on Thanksgiving

Quite often it is our darker side that illuminates the best part of us, that brings us to where we need to be. READ MORE »

Half-mile meal by Andy King Photo Essay: At a Half-Mile-Long Table, Chefs, Farmers, and Volunteers Feed a Neighborhood for Free

In St. Paul, Minnesota, artist Seitu Jones wanted to start a community-wide conversation about food access and food justice—and where better to talk than over a good meal? READ MORE »

Palestinian prison library. Undercover University: Palestinians Study Up in Israeli Prisons

More than 40 percent of Palestinian males have spent time in Israeli prisons. The schools that operate within are increasingly important. READ MORE »

Activists, union members, and Detroit residents protest the water shutoffs in Detroit. When the City Turned Off Their Water, Detroit Residents and Groups Delivered Help

Grassroots action has backed down the city’s aggressive water shutoffs. READ MORE »




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Common Dreams Highlights Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Common Dreams | Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community

Our survival has always been dependent on our readers. And right now we need a big push from the Common Dreams community to make it through the next couple of months. It is absolutely critical that we meet our Fall fundraising goal and we still need to raise $39,000. Can we count on your help today?

Click here to make a safe online contribution now. Or send a check: Common Dreams, PO Box 443, Portland, Maine 04112.

News & Views | 10.29.14


Election 2014: Ballot Issues to Watch


British Spy Agency: We Don’t Need Warrant for Americans’ Data. We Have ‘Arrangements’

Tar Sands Resistance Blowing Huge Hole in Oil Industry’s Bottom Line: Report

“Chickenshit”: Public Feud Erupts Between Named (and Unnamed) US-Israeli Officials

Local GMO Fights Smash Records as Monsanto’s Millions Bankroll Opposition

A Dozen Wisconsin Communities Challenge Corporate Personhood With Vote to Overturn Citizens United

Media Outlets ‘Outraged’ After FBI Caught Falsifying AP Story to Target Suspect

and more…



Karl Nerenberg: Do Canada’s Police and Spies Need More Power?

Jay Stanley: Ebola: Travel Bans, Quarantines, and Political Courage

Evan Walker-Wells: Blocking the Youth Vote in the South

Katrina vanden Heuvel: Justice for Edward Snowden

Mark Morford: Don’t Believe Women Are Endlessly Harassed? Watch This

and more…



Public Citizen: Report: U.S. Chamber of Commerce Dominates Undisclosed Spending in Congressional Races

Center for Reproductive Rights: Oklahoma Women At Risk of Losing Access to Non-Surgical Abortion on November 1

Environmental Defence: TransCanada Vastly Exaggerating Energy East’s Ability to Reduce Overseas Oil Imports

and more…

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Truthout Daily Digest Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Henry A. Giroux | Higher Education and the New Brutalism

Henry A. Giroux, Truthout: The crisis of higher education is about much more than a lack of funding, an assault on dissent, the emergence of a deep-seated anti-intellectualism or its service to the financial elite; it is also about a crisis of memory, agency and politics.

Read the Article

William Rivers Pitt | This Nation of Cowards

William Rivers Pitt, Truthout: Kaci Hickox’s quarantine is but one example of a nation that has entirely surrendered to its fears, both real and imagined, because those fears are a facile way for TV networks to get ratings, and for politicians to get coverage by stoking those fears.

Read the Article

Victoria Law | What Do Private Prisons Have to Do With the Upcoming Election?

Victoria Law, Truthout: As Election Day draws near, what are some of the ways that private prison corporations support their candidates? What do they receive in return? Why should voters care?

Read the Article

Judith Butler: On Israel, Palestine and Unacceptable Dimensions of the Status Quo

Dan Falcone, Truthout: Critical theorist and activist Judith Butler talks about Israel, Palestine, Gaza, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement, US education, anti-Semitism, radical democracy, activism, inequality, solidarity and more.

Read the Interview

Does Crying Terrorism Trump Free Speech?

Chip Gibbons, Truthout: The Supreme Court’s refusal to hear the appeal of Tarek Mehanna marks another step in the US government’s long history of attempts to curtail the free speech rights of dissidents.

Read the Article

What Has Greed Cost the United States?

The Daily Take Team, The Thom Hartmann Program: Virtually every societal problem in the US today can trace its roots back to the overwhelming levels of greed that have taken over our economy and society. While greed is destroying the US, other countries are saying, “Not so fast,” and are putting people ahead of profits.

Read the Article

Concerned About ISIS, but Also About Endless War? Back Limits on the Use of Force

Robert Naiman, Truthout: Members of Congress can show that they back the public’s desire for a Congressional debate by supporting a new resolution setting limits on use of force. You can urge your representative to back the resolution.

Read the Article

Monsanto, Big Agriculture Spend Millions Fighting Ballot Measures to Label GMO Foods

Amy Goodman and Aaron Maté, Democracy Now!: Colorado and Oregon could soon become the first states in the nation to pass ballot initiatives mandating the labeling of food products containing genetically modified organisms.

Watch the Video and Read the Transcript

E-Votes Flip D to R in Texas, R to D in Illinois: More Trouble With Touch Screens

Brad Friedman, The Brad Blog: “As early voting is now under way in much of the country, we are, predictably, beginning to receive our first reports from voters seeing their votes flipped before their eyes on touch-screen voting systems.”

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Black Freedom Fighters in Ferguson: Some of Us Are Queer

Darnell L. Moore, The Feminist Wire: “Not all of the freedom fighters are black men with masculine swag and pedigree. Not all of them are cisgender and straight and able-bodied. Some of us are women. Some of us are queer. Some of us are trans. Some of us are poor. Some of us are disabled.”

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“You Got Into My Heart Violently, but You’re There”

Studs Terkel, TomDispatch: “I can see myself dying. I think the process would be messy, the actual dying, death. But I don’t think I would be particularly bothered by the fact that death is inevitable. I’m not embracing death, but I’m not afraid of it.”

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On the News With Thom Hartmann: NPR’s Climate Coverage Has Declined Over the Years, and More

In today‘s On the News segment: NPR is supposed to be our national public radio, but it’s barely covering climate issues that are in the public’s interest; the World Trade Organization says you don’t need to know where your meat comes from; more than 24,000 Texans want climate denial removed from their children’s textbooks; and more.

Watch the Video and Read the Transcript

Paying for Cheap Chocolate

Emily Schwartz Greco, OtherWords: What if US consumers kept spending $20 billion a year on chocolate and bought a smaller quantity of higher quality? We might hand out smaller morsels too good to throw away. Here’s the best reason for higher prices: child labor.

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The Surveillance Security State Is a Cancer Spreading Through the Body of the United States

Mark Karlin, BuzzFlash at Truthout: This cancer will continue to grow upon the US body politic until it is disinfected by sunlight.

Read the BuzzFlash Commentary

BP Gulf Oil Spill Left Rhode Island-Sized Oily “Bathtub Ring” on Sea Floor, Study Finds

Read the Article at The Associated Press

In Legalization Battles, Alcohol Defines the Politics of Marijuana

Read the Article at BuzzFlash

Report Reveals Wider Government Tracking of Mail in US

Read the Article at The New York Times

How Dark Money Is Taking Over Judicial Elections

Read the Article at Mother Jones

The Blundering Rise and Epic Fall of the Christie-Cuomo Ebola Quarantine

Read the Article at Talking Points Memo

Texas Election Judge Forced to Bar 93-Year-Old Veteran From Voting

Read the Article at Crooks & Liars

A Catastrophe of Disenfranchisement

Read the Article at The New Yorker