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

15 March 2009

Clippings for 15 March 2009

President Barak Obama: Tougher Food Safety Measures

Is the Next Defense Budget a Stimulus Package? Why the Pentagon Can't Put America Back to Work
Froda Berrigan writes for Tomdispatch: "It's the magic incantation to fix our economic woes. Many states and federal agencies have already gone from scouring their budgets for things to cut to green-lighting construction projects. The Obama administration's $787 billion stimulus package is sure to muster many shovels in an effort to rouse a despondent economy and put Americans back to work. "

What We Don't Know About Iraq
Philip Bennett writes for The Washington Post: "What do Iraqis call the war that is now entering its seventh year? If you can't answer that question, it's not because you haven't been paying attention. In this country, the Iraq war has been an American story. It was born inside the Beltway. Its costs in suffering have been most visible to us at gravesides across the United States, or in the wards of Walter Reed. A growing library of histories of the war chronicles battle after bitter battle between factions of official Washington, skirmishing over ideas, strategy, about how we got in and how to get out. As the war has gone on, Iraqis' stories have been overshadowed by the towering drama of our own experience. The imbalance struck me as I recently read and revisited some of the best books to grow out of American journalism on Iraq since the invasion began on March 19, 2003. They are rich in raw, unblinking dispatches from alongside US troops and investigative digging into the thinking of US leaders - overall, a remarkable record of a continuing conflict. But they also reflect how frustration and isolation, including the isolation of journalists, have reduced Iraqis to a narrow cast of supporting roles: ungrateful partners, untrustworthy supplicants, invisible enemies and unreadable victims."

U.S. Drops "Enemy Combatant" as Basis for Detention
Randall Mikkelsen reports for Reuters: "The Obama administration dropped the term 'enemy combatant' and incorporated international law on Friday as its basis for holding terrorism suspects at Guantanamo prison while it works to close the facility. The US Justice Department said it had filed court papers outlining its break from Bush administration detention standards, and said only those who provided 'substantial' support to al-Qaeda or the Taliban would be considered detainable."

The Brave, Living and Dead
Michael Winship writes for Truthout: "Alarmed by the increasing rate of suicide, the Army has begun releasing monthly numbers, in addition to the annual reports produced in the past. 2008 was a record high - 128 confirmed suicides and 15 under investigation. The rate has been increasing steadily since 2004. Last month there were 18 suspected suicides, up from 11 the previous year. In January there were 24, up from five in January 2008. According to The Associated Press, 'Usually the vast majority of suspected suicides are eventually confirmed, and if that holds true it would mean that self-inflicted deaths surpassed the 16 combat deaths [in January] reported in all branches of the armed forces in Iraq, Afghanistan and other nations considered part of the global war on terror.'"

House Conservatives Seek Patriot Act Extension
Jared Allen writes for The Hill: "More than a dozen of the GOP's most conservative members on Thursday introduced a bill to reauthorize controversial Patriot Act provisions set to expire later this year."

Why Do People Listen to Rush Limbaugh?
Tana Ganeva writes for AlterNet: "Despite the fact that he is batshit crazy, Rush Limbaugh continues to reign supreme over the GOP. The conservative talk show host has styled himself as the voice of the Republican Party, even as he spews hate-filled rhetoric and brazenly reiterates his hope that the president fails in his attempt to rescue the country from one of the worst financial crises in history."

Mary Quite Contrary: Piltcher-Cook Won't Comment on he own Sovereignty Resolution
Our friends at KansasJackass writes: "You know, really, the United States has kind of a strange political system- we've got this really powerful federal government that serves as our face to the rest of the world and then we have all these individual little states that, in many regards, are totally autonomous, save on pesky issues like foreign affairs of the minting/printing of money."

Fighting Back in America's 30-Year Class War
Jim Hightower writes for Creators Syndicate: "Leaving aside the fact that such things as health-care coverage for every American and a booming green energy economy will benefit the rich as well as the rest of us, Brooks' column was echoing a prevalent theme in all of the right's attacks on Obama's economic proposals: Class War! Indeed, the Times' columnist even suggested (sadly) that Obama's budget was fundamentally un-American: 'The US has never been a society riven by class resentment,' he sniffed. Whoa, professor, get a grip! Better yet, get a good history book (Howard Zinn's 'A People's History of the United States' would be an eye-opening place to start). While our schools, media and politicians rarely mention it, America's history is replete with class rebellions against various moneyed elites who act as though they're the top dogs and ordinary folks are just a bunch of fire hydrants."

Why are the Republicans Scared of Competition?
David Sirota writes for Salon.com: "Despite the shock and awe of Democrats' melodramatic press releases, nobody was genuinely surprised by the recent McClatchy newspaper headline screaming that "GOP Lawmakers Tout Projects in the Stimulus Bill They Opposed." We all know that politicians love to brag about bringing home the bacon -- even the bacon they vote against."

The Parable of the Shopping Mall
Alexandar Cockburn writes for CounterPunch: "In town after town across America these days one can physically see the economic mantras of an entire generation turning to boarded-up wasteland before one’s eyes. Shopping malls, which changed the American landscape within the course of a generation, are dying week by week."

Time to End Business as Usual for Toxic Coal Industry
Richard Fireman writes for the Citizen-Times: "The most absurd oxymoron of 2008 was "Clean Coal." Coal is dirty - its mining, washing, burning and storage as ash. Some call it the original sin of industrial society. Coal mining, as surface mining on native lands, and now as mountaintop removal in Appalachia in Kentucky, Virginia, Tennessee and West Virginia, has destroyed more than 470 mountains, more than 1,200 miles of streams and rivers, and communities, both human and other than human."

Power Politics
Jessie Worth writes for the New Internationalist: "In the course of researching this magazine I’ve been charged at by riot police, had a meeting with a Minister and been interviewed on Newsnight, Britain’s most prestigious TV current affairs programme. Why? Because ‘climate justice’ isn’t just another magazine topic to me. It’s the greatest and most urgent challenge of our time – so I’ve thrown myself into the thick of trying to make it happen."

Four Principles for Climate Justice
The New Internationalist writes: "Climate change, caused by human activities, is threatening the lives and livelihoods of billions of people and the existence of millions of species. We need to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions dramatically, while at the same time raising the quality of life for the majority of the world's people.

Newspaper Transition: Preserve Local Newsgathering
Ryan Blethen of the Seattle Times writes that the Internet will not kill off newspapers. The word "newspaper" is a catchall for whatever way news content is delivered, including a newspaper's Web site. The content might be digital, but it is still newspaper-created content. The goal is to preserve a local newsgathering operation."

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