Brian Stelter, of The New York Times, reports: "Getting a story on the evening news isn't easy for any correspondent. And for reporters in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is especially hard, according to Lara Logan, the chief foreign correspondent for CBS News. So she has devised a solution when she is talking to the network. 'Generally what I say is, "I'm holding the armor-piercing R.P.G.,"' she said last week in an appearance on 'The Daily Show,' referring to the initials for rocket-propelled grenade. '"It's aimed at the bureau chief, and if you don't put my story on the air, I'm going to pull the trigger."' Ms. Logan let a sly just-kidding smile sneak through as she spoke, but her point was serious. Five years into the war in Iraq and nearly seven years into the war in Afghanistan, getting news of the conflicts onto television is harder than ever."
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The Price of Hunger
The Los Angeles Times editorial board poses the question, "What would it really cost to end global hunger? The United Nations estimates that it would take at least $30 billion per year to solve the food crisis, mainly by boosting agricultural productivity in the developing world. Over the decade that it would take to make sustainable improvements in the lives of the 862 million undernourished people, that amounts to $300 billion. Three hundred billion dollars is a lot of money, and the U.S. government won't foot the bill alone. But it's less than half of 1% of the world's combined gross domestic products, not an unreasonable sum to invest in ending the misery and degradation of hunger. After all, Congress shelled out $21 billion last year for foreign aid and this week it approved $162 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for fiscal 2009. The U.S. spent $340 billion in 2006 alone on public and private research and development. Directing just one-tenth of that seed money to sustainable, high-yield agriculture in the developing world could trigger a second Green Revolution."
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Corporate Espionage Detailed in Documents
Defunct Md. Agency Targeted Activists
Reporting for The Washington Post, Jenna Johnson writes: "The agency, Beckett Brown International, had an operative at meetings of a group in Rockville that accused a nursing home of substandard care. In Louisiana, it kept tabs on environmental activists after a chemical spill. In Washington, it spied on food safety activists who had found taco shells made with genetically modified corn not approved for human consumption."
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Religious Right Groups Want Pastors to Cross the Partisan Line and Spark Court Showdown
Rob Boston whose original editorial appeared in Church & State Magazine, writes for Alternet: "For years, Religious Right groups have complained about the federal tax law that forbids houses of worship and other tax-exempt groups to intervene in political campaigns by endorsing or opposing candidates. Several organizations pushed Congress to change the statute, without success. The Religious Right suffered another setback in 2000, when a federal appeals court unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the tax law."
Put Oil Firm Chefs on Trial, Says Leading Climate Change Scientist
Ed Pilkington, The Guardian UK, says: "James Hansen, one of the world's leading climate scientists, will today call for the chief executives of large fossil fuel companies to be put on trial for high crimes against humanity and nature, accusing them of actively spreading doubt about global warming in the same way that tobacco companies blurred the links between smoking and cancer."
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In Media, Too Few Control Too Much