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

24 September 2009

Clippings for 24 September 2009

Top 25 Censored Stories for 2010.
From Project Censored:

The Politics of Lying and the Culture of Deceit in Obama's America: The Rule of Damaged Politics
Henry A. Giroux comments for Truthout: "In the current American political landscape, truth is not merely misrepresented or falsified; it is overtly mocked. As is well known, the Bush administration repeatedly lied to the American public, furthering a legacy of government mistrust while carrying the practice of distortion to new and almost unimaginable heights. Even now, almost a year after Bush left office, it is difficult to forgot the lies and government-sponsored deceits in which it was claimed that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, Iraq was making deals with al-Qaeda and, perhaps the most infamous of all, the United States did not engage in torture."

Saving the Obama Revolution
Robert Scheer writes for Truthdig.com: "The Obama revolution, and there was the hope of one, might still succeed. But only if Barack Obama follows the model of the incredibly successful Reagan revolution and heeds the political base that made his presidency possible. Love him or not, Ronald Reagan had at least one outstanding political virtue—his respect for the concerns of those who placed their trust in him. And whenever the political vultures that feast on power tried to lead him astray, they were fired at the insistence of Reagan or his remarkably savvy wife, Nancy. Hopefully Obama and his no-less-impressive mate, Michelle, will do the same."

I'm Not a Racist -- I'm a Democrat
Melissa Harris-Lacewell writes for The Nation: "For weeks the media have been covering "racism in health care reform opposition." For the most part I've found this political moment to be an interesting opportunity to discuss the meanings of race, the history of racial exclusion and violence, and the ongoing realities of racial inequality in America."

Will McChrystal Quit?
Robert Dreyfuss writes for The Nation: "Yesterday morning, at a meeting of the neoconservative Foreign Policy Initiative, a former top US military officer suggested that General Stanley McChrystal might resign from his post if President Obama doesn't go along with his pending request for more troops for Afghanistan."

Meet the Afghan Army: Is It a Figment of Washington's Imagination?
Ann Jones writes for TomDispatch.com: "In Washington, calls are increasing, especially among anxious Democrats, for the president to commit to training ever more Afghan troops and police rather than sending in more American troops. Huge numbers for imagined future Afghan army and police forces are now bandied about in Congress and the media - though no one stops to wonder what Afghanistan, the fourth poorest country on the planet, might actually be like with a combined security force of 400,000. Not a 'democracy,' you can put your top dollar on that." 

Authors of Iraq War Push Obama on Afghanistan
Sam Stein writes for the Huffington Post: "The neoconservatives who provided the intellectual foundation for the war in Iraq convened on Monday to make a renewed push for the current administration to pursue greater military engagement in Afghanistan.  Hours after it was reported that military officials are advising President Obama to send up to 40,000 more American troops to the eight-year-long war, former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney joined the intellectuals at the Foreign Policy Initiative forum to declare any future policy debate moot."

Why Not Look Backwards, with Clarity
Dennis Loo writes for Consortium News: "In the Sept. 19 Washington Post, we learn that the Justice Department’s investigation of torture by U.S. personnel will be even narrower than originally proposed by Attorney General Eric Holder.
The Justice Department's review of detainee abuse by the CIA will focus on a very small number of cases, including at least one in which an Afghan prisoner died at a secret facility [in Kabul at a CIA black site called the Salt Pit in November 2002], according to two sources briefed on the matter.

Neocon Judge's History of Cover-ups
Robert Parry writes for Consortium News: "Laurence Silberman, a U.S. Appeals Court judge and a longtime neoconservative operative – part of what the Iran-Contra special prosecutor called “the strategic reserves” for convicted Reagan administration operatives in the 1980s – is back playing a similar role for the Bush administration.  On Sept. 11, the eighth anniversary of the terror attacks on New York and Washington, Silberman issued a 2-to-1 opinion dismissing a lawsuit against the private security firm, CACI International, brought by Iraqi victims of torture and other abuse at Abu Ghraib prison."

A United Nations fact-finding mission has found Israel “punished and terrorized” civilians in its three-week assault on Gaza earlier this year and cited strong evidence that Israeli forces committed “grave breaches” of the Geneva Conventions. More than 1,400 Palestinians—about a third of them women and children—were killed in the assault. We get analysis from author and Israel-Palestine scholar Norman Finkelstein.

Values Voters Summit Promotes "New Masculinity" of Ignorance and Fury
Wendy Norris writes for RH Reality Check: "The Family Research Council wants you to be manly. So the Values Voter Summit, the annual confab of ultra-conservative political and religious leaders that took place this weekend in Washington tried to be hip with a fundamentalist-inspired reenactment of 'Mad Men,' the popular American television drama that harkens back to the good ol' days when men were in charge and women knew their place."

Roots of Right-Wing Populist Rage -- Christian Right
Chip Berlet writes for Talk to Action: "Listening to the rhetoric and reading the placards at recent right-wing events has led many progressive observers to conclude that "these folks are nuts!" Well, they are no more crazy or ignorant than most Americans (stifle that giggle), but they do live inside a bubble."

10 Way the US Military has Shoved Christianity Down Muslim's Throats
Chris Rodda writes for Talk to Action: "The Military Religious Freedom Foundation was founded in 2005 by Mikey Weinstein, a U.S. Air Force Academy graduate and Reagan administration White House counsel, after the harassment his own sons faced as Jewish cadets at the academy led him to discover that the fundamentalist Christian takeover of the Air Force Academy was far from an isolated problem."

A long-awaited healthcare bill from Senate Finance Committee Chair Max Baucus includes no public option and would require almost all Americans to buy insurance or pay a penalty. This comes as a new study finds that nearly 45,000 Americans die every year due to lack of health insurance. We speak with the study’s co-author, Dr. Steffie Woolhandler, a professor of medicine at Harvard University, primary care physician, and co-founder of Physicians for a National Health Program.

Death Pays
Christopher Brauchli writes for Counter Punch: "The fun has not gone out of banking after all. Following the disastrous fall of 2008, conventional wisdom had it that many of the things that made banking fun, like amazing bonuses and fascinating (if not understood) financial instruments were going to follow the dinosaur into extinction. That, of course, did not happen. Bonuses are as big as ever and a recent announcement discloses that a new financial instrument that is far more interesting than a bundle of mortgages is about to hit the market. It involves life insurance."

The Numbers and Health Care Reform
The New York Times editoralizes: "Two authoritative surveys in recent days have underscored why all Americans have a stake in successful health care reform. Too many people are being hit with relentlessly rising premiums or are at serious risk of losing their coverage to allow the status quo to continue. A survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that, once again, health insurance premiums rose faster last year than either wages or general inflation. A study by the Treasury Department found that almost half of all Americans below Medicare age have gone without insurance at some point over the last decade."

We Made Them Millions, and They Complain About Insurance
This week's Community Bridge guest, David Bacon, writes about Lupe Chavez, a housekeeper at the San Francisco Hilton, and tells her story to Turthout.com: "My hands tingle and ache, and my fingers go numb. Sometimes, my arms start to hurt during the night and I can't sleep. The pain starts about 3 AM and I can't stand it. The doctor said I have carpal tunnel syndrome and gave me two braces, one for each hand. My hands now feel better, but I still use them during the day. I take a Motrin pill before leaving for work in the morning and another one in the afternoon and before going to bed. I don't want to be dependent on them, but it's hard. My doctor told me many housekeepers have the same problem. It's very difficult to work in pain. It's something I cannot get used to. I have to continue working because I need the insurance."

Senator Roberts: We Need to Give Health Insurance Lobbyists 'At Least 72 Hours' to Read the Bill
Faiz Shakir writes for Think Progress: "During the Senate Finance Committee’s mark-up session of the health care reform bill today, Sen. Jim Bunning (R-KY) — who has had a hard time staying awake during these meetings — offered an amendment that would have delayed 'a committee vote for two weeks.' Bunning requested that the Committee put-off a vote on the health care bill until the final legislative language of the bill is made available on the Committee’s website for at least 72 hours. The amendment failed, with all of the Democrats except Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) voting against it. But had the amendment passed, it could potentially have halted the health care debate for weeks. Before the vote took place, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) offered a defense of Bunning’s amendment by arguing that the 72-hour provision was critical because it provides time for senators to consult with health insurance lobbyists..."

Act Now or Lose Forever, Climate Summit Told
Thalif Deen reports for Inter Press Service: "The world's small island developing nations, most of which are threatened with environmental devastation, put the international community on dire notice: either accept ambitious and binding emission reduction targets, or humanity is doomed. The one-day UN summit meeting of world leaders Tuesday came out with a clear message demanding urgent action against the growing threats from climate change. Maldives, one of the world's smallest nation states facing extinction, exposed the political hypocrisy of world leaders pontificating on the dangers of global warming but doing little or nothing towards a resolution of the ecological crisis at hand."

The Era of Xtreme Energy
Michael T. Klare writes for Tomdispatch.com: "The debate rages over whether we have already reached the point of peak world oil output or will not do so until at least the next decade. There can, however, be little doubt of one thing: we are moving from an era in which oil was the world's principal energy source to one in which petroleum alternatives -- especially renewable supplies derived from the sun, wind, and waves -- will provide an ever larger share of our total supply. But buckle your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy ride under Xtreme conditions."

Gay Boys in Oil City
Gary Barlow writes for In These Times about the struggle for LGBT rights in rural America: "Forty years ago, the Stonewall Riots sparked a revolution in Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) rights in the United States. Since then, gays and lesbians have seen laws passed across the country protecting their right to work, to associate freely and live where they want, and even, in some places, to marry. Coinciding with those transformations, gays created huge urban communities to openly celebrate their lives, with New York’s Greenwich Village, Chicago’s Boystown, San Francisco’s Castro and similar neighborhoods around the country becoming meccas of queer culture."
Uncle Sam Should Respect All Marriages
Deb Price comments for Turthout: "Listen to the voices crying out for Congress to end the federal government's mistreatment of legally married gay couples. Listen to McKinley BarbouRoske of Iowa. She displayed a confidence well beyond her 11 years when she spoke up for her moms at a recent news conference in front of the US Capitol. McKinley's parents were finally able to wed in their home state two months ago - after nearly two decades as a couple. Now they quite rightly want Uncle Sam to recognize their marriage."

Recommended Audio: Bob Beckel Exposes Hannity Panel's Hyprocrisy on ACORN
Ellen writes for News Hounds: "On last night’s (Sept. 21) Hannity, Bob Beckel repeatedly threw the imbalanced panel, stacked against him with two conservatives plus Sean Hannity, off their anti-ACORN talking points. First, nobody could explain what the supposedly billions of dollars going to ACORN was for. Then nobody, including the former Bush administration official, could explain why they had not made an issue of the greater waste and abuse from Halliburton. Beckel polished it off by throwing Hannity on the defensive by asking whether he had ever hired anyone who turned out to be a “fruitcake.” Go Bob! Video after the jump."

In a speech given at the Brookings Institution, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski proposed two additional Net Neutrality rules that will ensure the Internet's continued openness. Read the complete speech at the above link.

Cecilia Kang reports for the Washington Post: "The government would play a far more aggressive role in policing the public's unfettered access to Internet services and content under a proposal offered Monday by Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski. The agency would be the "smart cop on the beat," Genachowski said in a speech, outlining a plan to prohibit Internet service providers from blocking or slowing certain technologies and content on their networks. The chairman proposed that firms be required to make public the steps they are taking to control Web traffic."

Daniel Weinberger writes for NPR: "The "net neutrality" rules proposed Monday by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski will go a long way toward keeping the Internet the greatest site of innovation in human history. The rules forbid access providers from making some Internet services and content work better than others. "Thou shalt not discriminate among bits based on who made them or what they're doing" is a wise and necessary commandment."

Daniel Tencer writes for The Raw Story: "Six Republican senators have introduced an amendment that would block the Federal Communications Commission from implementing its recently announced Net neutrality policy. Texas Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison introduced the amendment to an appropriations bill. It would prevent the FCC from getting funding for any initiative to uphold Net neutrality. According to The Hill, the co-sponsors are Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) Sen. John Ensign (R-NV), Sen. John Thune (R-SD) and Sen. David Vitter (R-LA)."

Amber Sands writes for the Prometheus Radio Project: "For once, media activists are not the only ones paying attention to the FCC! Led by conservative talk show host Glenn Beck, right-wing media personalities have been drumming up controversy about new FCC Chief Diversity Officer Mark Lloyd. Their fabricated claims about Lloyd’s policy positions—spurred by a genuine fear that a diverse and locally accountable media system would cut into their profits—demonstrate why media reform is such a critical fight."

Candace Clement writes for New Public Media: "It is worth celebrating that the Corporation for Public Broadcasting recently elected a new chairman – Ernest Wilson III, dean of the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California – who is ready to move public media into the digital age.  Wilson’s election is an indication of change underway at the CPB. In an interview last week, he showed some encouraging signs that the corporation may in fact be ready to commit to a vision for new public media."

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