Leaked: The Internet must go!

Hey! Are you on the internet right now? Of course you are! Then you should definitely check out this amazing video about what the internet companies are planning. This move could hurt both consumers and content creators--but of course would be a huge windfall for internet providers.

How weathly are Americans?

The disparity in wealth between the richest one percent of Americans and the bottom 80 percent has grown exponentially over the last thirty years — but the video, posted by user politizane and relying on data from a popular Mother Jones post, focuses on the difference between the ideal disparity that Americans would like to see and the reality.

Tax the Rich

So long! It's been fun.

Dear listeners,

In July 2011 I started a new job teaching Italian at Kansas State University. In some ways this was a return to my roots, as I taught English as a Foreign Language for 17 years in Italy. Now I am teaching English speakers Italian. I've come full circle.

This coming full circle also means the end of an attempt on my part to start a new career in my 50s. Sadly, as much as I tried to bring community radio to Manhattan, I was not successful. So I have decided to dedicate my energy and time to my first love, being an educator.

The archive of my shows will remain active - there's a lot of great content in the shows. So I hope you continue to listen and enjoy them.

Once again thank you for your support and encouragement over the five years the show was on the air. I know many feel that my program needs to be on the air and I agree with you that a diversity of voices is sorely lacking in the local media. But alas, it is not I who will bring that diversity. It will have to be someone else.

Christopher E. Renner

18 March 2007

Four Years and Counting.

Christopher E. Renner
Originally Read on 15 March 2007

This week we learnt for the mainstream news something those of us who have questioned the Bush administration’s policies concerning civil rights had been award of for some time. The Justice Department reported rampant FBI abuses of the Patriot Act’s National Security Letter (NSL) provision that gives agents sweeping powers to demand sensitive personal records without court approval - that means you bank records, who you talk to on the phone, what e-mails you received, etc.

The Justice Department report reveals that from 2003 to 2005, the government issued a staggering 143,000 National Security Letters, in some cases barring recipients from even reporting they’ve received a letter. How much more proof does Congress need that this dangerous provision defies democratic values? How many more of us will be investigated and gagged before the FBI is reined in?

There’s only one course of action. It is time for Congress to repeal the expanded Patriot Act powers that opened the door to these abuses. This un-American, anti-democratic piece of legislation was designed to gut the constitution of our most fundamental rights and allow those who control the political process to control your personal choices. It is time it stopped!

I hope you will let Rep. Boyda and those two cow-toeing Senators we have, Pat Roberts and Sam Brownback, that you want the Patriotic Act repealed. Rep. Boyda might actually listen to you, I doubt of the other two will. All I ever get from Sentors Roberts and Brownback are the computer-generated replies to my almost weekly letters or faxes concerning the direction the Republicans have take our country that never address a single issue I raise, but simply parrot their mindless rhetoric.

Monday marks the anniversary of the Bush’s effort to bankrupt our nation or the so-called War in Iraq. To date 3,194 US men and women serving in the armed services have died in a war that is immoral, that was begun by lies, and has done nothing but demonstrate how the values we claim we hold dear have no real value. At the same time 23,417 have been wounded. I think it is interesting to point out that many of those aren’t actually labeled “wounded” but rather are listed as suffering from some “disease,” which is another way the corrupt Bush administration lies to the American public about the truth of the War in Iraq. I hope people take advantage of this anniversary to express your disapproval of Bush’s war by joining with other like-minded people on Saturday and march in opposition to this policy of destruction.

Moreover, Stacy Bannerman in Foreign Policy in Focus reports that “at least 30 percent of Iraq or Afghanistan [veterans] are diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), up from 16 percent to 18 percent in 2004,” (data reported Stratton VA Medical Center). “The number of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans getting treatment for PTSD at VA hospitals and counseling centers increased 87 percent from September 2005 to June 2006, and they have a backlog of 400,000 cases, including veterans from previous wars. The most conservative estimates project that roughly 250,000 Iraq war veterans will struggle with PTSD.”

“These figures are particularly significant for citizen soldiers when considering that: A 2004 analysis of Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans who received VA health care revealed that 58 percent of the veterans seeking treatment were members of the Army Reserve/National Guard and 71 percent of Operation Enduring Freedom vets who utilized VA services were citizen soldiers. A 2006 report detailing VA healthcare utilization by Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans revealed that, of those who sought care for PTSD, 18 percent were formerly active duty personnel, and 30 percent were National Guard soldiers and Army reservists. Even at their highest rates of deployment, National Guard soldiers and Army reservists represented no more than 44 percent of deployed forces; and, many studies conducted at Walter Reed Military Hospital don't include National Guard and Army Reserve soldiers.”

“National Guard and Army Reserve soldiers have less training and preparation for deployment, less cohesive units, and most never expected to see combat, factors that put them at significantly higher risk for stress-related disorders than active-duty military.” For the complete article visit: http://www.alternet.org/story/49226/

We have to ask what are the long-term effects of this “War on Terror” going to be on our society and nation? How many people will be adversely affected psychologically and how will those people be cared for? What will their PSTD do to our communities? To their families? Who will bear the financial burned? How many will end up homeless?

And why aren’t more people asking why the hell are we are still stuck in a quagmire of a civil war we have no hope of ending or resolving?

We - the American citizenry - are responsible for allowing ourselves to be lead as a nation by irrational fear instead of our core values of democracy and civil rights. We are responsible for allow corrupt politicians to destroy our most sacred values as a nation and replace them with theocratic falsehoods the founders of this nation made sure to marginalize.

It is time we got our priorities right for a change. As long as we disrespect the human and civil rights of others, we put every man, woman and child in our country at risk of being another victim of mindless hate -- hate cause by our own very actions.

Only by respecting the rule of law, respecting national and international conventions on torture and imprisonment, controlling our irrational fears with knowledge and understanding, and, above all making sure that we obey the golden rule, will we be able to overcome to damage done to our nation and our history by those who are driven by arrogance, greed and pessimism.

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