Saturday, September 20, 2014 / PROGRESSIVE JOURNALISM FOR POSITIVE ACTION
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VOICES FOR CHANGE

Too Big to Punish
David Sirota
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A few months ago, in a press conference about the felony conviction of Credit Suisse, Attorney General Eric Holder said, "This case shows that no financial institution, no matter its size or global reach, is above the law."

Yet, earlier this month, the Obama administration announced its proposal to waive some of the possible sanctions against Credit Suisse. The little-noticed waiver, which was outlined in the Federal Register, comes amid criticism that the Obama ...

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Obamacare and Family Values: Parents Get to Stay Home With Children
Dean Baker
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The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was pushed primarily as a way to extend health insurance coverage. This was and is an important goal.

However another important aspect of the ACA is its impact on the labor market. The vast majority of people who are below Medicare age get their insurance through their job. This meant that tens of millions of people felt tied to a job because this was the only way they could get insurance for themselves and their families.

A key feature of ...

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A Rough Month in America for Women
Froma Harrop
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Mark Sanford's heralded engagement to Maria Belen Chapur is apparently over. The rep from South Carolina released the news to America through a Facebook post. That's how Chapur found out, too.

Gallantry has been in especially short supply this month. Prominent American men have been roughing up their women in spectacularly public ways — ranging from coldly calculated mind games to a knockout punch.

September opened with former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's ...

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From Voting on Scottish Independence to Taming Speculation
Nomi Prins
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In a dead heat and with three days to go before the Scottish referendum on independence, most media and economist arguments - beyond those regarding emotional debates of identity, heritage and autonomy – are increasingly fear-driven. 

For those advocating Scotland embrace its status quo, the panic-inducing exchange goes like this:  if Scotland votes for independence, it will become a debt-saddled wannabe ...

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Power Drain
Tom Engelhardt
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It’s possible I’ve lived most of my life on the wrong planet -- and if that sounds like the first sentence of a sci-fi novel maybe, in its own way, it is. I thought I knew where I was, of course, but looking back from our helter-skelter world of 2014, I ...

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America’s Natural Politics
Jim Hightower
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My father, W.F. "High" Hightower, was a populist. Only, he didn't know it. Didn't know the word, much less the history or anything about populism's democratic ethos. My father was not philosophical, but he had a phrase that he used to express the gist of his political beliefs: "Everybody does ...

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How Not to Get Your Country Back
Froma Harrop
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The tea party mantra, "I want my country back," resonates with many. The racial undertones can be ugly (as well as pointless). But the longing for an economically secure America centered on a strong middle class is on point and widely shared.

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$27 Million Spent to Defeat GMO Labeling Thus Far in 2014 by the GMA
Christina Sarich
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We must be posing a real threat – biotech has tripled their spending in the first six months of 2014, to defeat GMO labeling measures. That’s a lot of wasted cash spent to try to continue dumping glyphosate and Bt toxins on a planet who hardly desires to eat GMO food.

Last year, the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), comprised of Monsanto Co, DuPont, and other biotech giants, along with big junk food makers like Kraft, Coca-Cola Co and PepsiCo Inc., all tried to ...

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Casinos Just Aren’t the Answer
Froma Harrop
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The video for the Bruce Springsteen song "Atlantic City" opens with a scene of the grand Marlborough-Blenheim Hotel imploding into a pile of dust. That was almost 40 years ago. The Traymore Hotel and other grand hotels were leveled in much the same spectacular fashion.

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Russia Denounces Obama’s Plan for Syria Airstrikes as Violation of International Law
Juan Cole
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This post originally ran on Juan Cole’s Web page.

Russia on Thursday pushed back against President Obama’s state plans for taking on the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) in Syria.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich remarked on television: “The U.S. president has spoken directly about the possibility of strikes by the U.S. armed forces against ISIL positions in Syria without ...

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Harvard Business School’s Role in Widening Inequality
Robert Reich
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No institution is more responsible for educating the CEOs of American corporations than Harvard Business School – inculcating in them a set of ideas and principles that have resulted in a pay gap between CEOs and ordinary workers that’s gone from 20-to-1 fifty years ago to almost 300-to-1 today.

A survey, released on September 6, of 1,947 Harvard Business School alumni showed them far more hopeful about the future competitiveness of American firms than about the ...

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Annie’s Sells Out to General Mills: Watch Out for GMOs in this Popular ‘Natural’ Brand
Christina Sarich
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Annie’s brand is selling out to the food manufacturing giant, General Mills, who has been known to use GMO rice, corn, soy as well as high fructose corn syrup in most of their products. Annie’s boxes of kid-friendly pasta even says ‘made with organic pasta’ on the top, but that likely ...

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Shareholders’ Quest for More Transparency
David Sirota
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If you own a share of a company, how much information about the company are you entitled to? That is the question embedded in the debate over a proposed Securities and Exchange Commission rule that would force publicly traded companies to disclose their political spending to their shareholders.

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That Gosh Darn Minimum Wage
Jim Hightower
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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell feels put upon just for having to talk about increasing the pay of the country's working poor.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell wanted to share his long-repressed feelings about a traumatic event. “It was,” the Kentucky Republican confided, grim-faced, “the worst day of my political life.”

Was he talking about the 9/11 terrorist attacks on America? No.

McConnell was reflecting on the day 12 years ...

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Big Business Billionaires to Continue Buying Elections in the US
Christina Sarich
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Although there has been little bipartisan support of bills that would limit the corporate fire-sale which has become the election process in America, just a few days ago, not a single Senate Republican voted in favor of putting a check on unlimited money in politics by supporting a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.

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Help Wash Formaldehyde Out of Baby's Hair
Jim Hightower
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In the U.S. alone, the cosmetics industry pulls in some $70 billion a year in sales of what's commonly called "makeup." But lipstick, blush, mascara, etc. are not the only kind of makeup the cosmetic giants are peddling.

For years, their lobbyists, lawyers and PR agents have been making up facts, stories, half-truths and whole lies to keep lawmakers and regulators from banning various cancer-causing, hormone-disrupting and otherwise destructive ingredients that their ...

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The Inflation Fighters Want to Increase the Debt Burden on Our Children
Dean Baker
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Are you worried about the government running deficits in the hundreds of billions of dollars and a debt in the TRILLIONS? If so, then you should be really angry at people calling for the Federal Reserve Board to raise interest rates. If the rate hikers get their way, they will add trillions of dollars to the debt burden borne by our children and grandchildren.

Okay, I’ll stop with the deficit hawk garbage, but there is a simple point here. If the Fed slows the economy and ...

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Ceasefires in Which Violations Never Cease
Noam Chomsky
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On August 26th, Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) both accepted a ceasefire agreement after a 50-day Israeli assault on Gaza that left 2,100 Palestinians dead and vast landscapes of destruction behind. The agreement calls for an end to military action by both Israel and Hamas, as well as an easing of the Israeli siege that has strangled Gaza for many years.

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Berkeley vs. Big Soda
Robert Reich
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I was phoned the other night in middle of dinner by an earnest young man named Spencer, who said he was doing a survey.

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You Can’t Make This Stuff Up
Jim Hightower
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Just in the United States, the cosmetics industry pulls in some $70 billion a year in sales of what’s commonly called “makeup.” But lipstick, mascara, eye shadow, and the like aren’t the only kind of makeup the cosmetic giants are peddling.

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VIDEO
The Economics of Revolution
Dennis Trainor, Jr.
Video Interview
The Economics of Violence
Bjørn Lomborg
Op-Ed
Occupy Offshoot Cancels $4 Million in Predatory Student Loans—and Starts a Debtors Union
Christa Hillstrom, James Trimarco and Liz Pleasant
News Report
Markets’ Rose-Tinted World
Mohamed A. El-Erian
Op-Ed
How the Rich Rule
Dani Rodrik
Op-Ed
Republicans Unanimously Block Equal Pay Bill
Bryce Covert
News Investigation
Fracking vs. Water
Paul Brown
News Report
Parallels to 1937
Robert J. Shiller
Op-Ed
Reading Hamilton From the Left
Christian Parenti
Op-Ed
Kingdom of Slaves
Giorgio Cafiero
Op-Ed
Playing God
Steve Fraser
Op-Ed

NOC BULLHORN

Bee Protection

Not only do bees, birds, butterflies, bats, beetles and many other such pollinators support the ecosystem, they provide healthy watershed and maintain terrestrial productivity.

Climate Change

Just days away from what's been billed as the “the largest climate mobilization in world history,” organizers behind the People‘s Climate March & Mobilization are putting the final details in place.

Animals

Japan announced Thursday that it plans to continue its “scientific” whaling program despite widespread criticism it faced at an international forum.

Dolphins

Already classified as critically endangered and on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources’ Red List, Irrawaddy dolphins now face further extinction.

Climate Change

It's on! The biggest march and mobilization against climate crisis is about to make history.

Student Loans

As Occupy Wall Street marked its third anniversary on Wednesday, one offshoot group, Rolling Jubilee, made a historic achievement as the collective bought and abolished nearly $4 million in debt owed by thousands of students.

Education

A teacher in Florida is taking a stand against state-mandated standardized test and refusing to give them to her young students.

Environment

A way to move away from pollution and waste dependency is planting trees to increase sustainability and one company is offering a biodegradable urn be planted when a person dies to combat environmental pollution at cemeteries.

Fracking

E&B Natural Resources Management, an independent-based oil and gas company, has their sights set on the small, popular coastal city, Hermosa Beach in California as its newest oil drilling location.

China

A silent march through Hong Kong brought thousands of protesters together in a pro-democracy movement that’s quickly gaining ground.

Workers’ Rights

After a week-long strike, workers at Juno Lighting Group in Chicago, Illinois went back to work with an offer that workers helped ratify.

Animals

Rhino poaching is on the rise and if the trend continues, the species could face extinction, but organizations are conducting life-saving missions.

Genetically Modified Foods

Stand up to Monsanto and tell the Obama administration to support mandatory GMO labeling.

Food Health

Grassroots groups are continuing the right for a more just food system from Palestine to the rural areas of Washington D.C.

Fracking

Environmental organizations filed a motion to uphold a ban on fracking, which was enacted in Longmont, Colorado back in 2012.

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