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

07 April 2010

Clippings for 8 April 2010

Recommended Audio: 43rd Anniversary of Martin Luther King's 'Beyond Vietnam' Speech
On the evening of April 4, 1967, civil rights leader Martin Luther King lent his full-throated oratory to a growing chorus of opposition to the rapidly expanding American role in the Vietnam War. King's sharp rebuke of U.S. policy and call to protest brought him into direct conflict with President Lyndon Johnson, who was an ally of King's in the struggle for equal rights for African Americans.

Silence Is Betrayal
Stephen Rohde, Los Angeles Daily Journal (via Truthout): "On April 4, 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., delivered a historic speech at Riverside Church in New York City, which has become known as Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence. In a powerful and inspiring speech, Dr. King declared that his deep religious faith would no longer allow him to confine himself to the domestic struggle for civil rights."

Amidst National Political Transformation, The UNITED STATES SOCIAL FORUM Brings New Hope for Change
US Social Forum writes: "Thousands will gather in Detroit from June 22-26, 2010, to help transform one of the cities hardest hit by the global economic and environmental crisis. And by doing so, they also hope to strengthen a growing global movement for change. The second United States Social Forum (USSF) will attract organizers, activists, artists and others to build housing and mobile computer labs, create urban gardens, and take actions to generate dramatic change by and for local residents. The USSF will also be a national stage on which Americans and global citizens will strategize to produce sustainable social reforms in education, transportation, employment, immigration and environmental issues."

Greenspan, Summers, and Why the Economy Is So Out of Whack
Robert Reich, RobertReich.org: "I'm in the 'green room' at ABC News, waiting to join a roundtable panel discussion on ABC's weekly Sunday news program, This Week. Alan Greenspan is now being interviewed. He says he bore no responsibility for the housing bubble that catapulted the nation into a financial crisis in 2008 because no one could have known about the bubble when he chaired the Fed in the years before it burst. Larry Summers was interviewed just before Greenspan."

Recommended Audio: Graydon Carter and Michael Lewis - The Unabridged Conversation About the Financial Collapse
Recently Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter and V.F. contributing editor Michael Lewis sat together onstage in front of an intimate crowd at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and discussed Lewis’s new book, The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, which tackles the question of what caused the U.S. economy to tank. (It was excerpted in the April issue.) Among those who attended the event were writers Tom Wolfe and Gay Talese, New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly, and Time Inc.’s John Huey. Now you too can hear the entire conversation between Carter and Lewis—just click here. But be careful visiting that link. You will probably get sucked into Lewis’s hour-long talk, just as the House Republican book group became engrossed in a lecture Lewis gave about the financial collapse. “I was supposed to be there for an hour,” says Lewis in the clip above, referring to his visit with the Hill staffers. “I was there for almost three. And nobody left. And their questions were increasingly: ‘Oh my God, Goldman Sachs did what? A.I.G. did what?’ They didn’t understand it ... The minute they started to understand, they were outraged. And I think the more things are explained, the more outraged people will get.”

To see other videos in this series, click here.

Who Killed the Miners? Profits over Safety?
Jeff Biggers writes for Common Dreams: "My grandfather, who barely survived an explosion in a coal mine in southern Illinois, taught me this phrase. He also taught me about the 150-year-old battle in the coalfields over reckless production at the cost of responsible safety measures.  As our prayers and condolences go out to the many coal mining families in Raleigh County, West Virginia, I think about the needless safety violations and subsequent disasters that have taken place over the past century."

Reaching Zero
Jonathan Schell writes for The Nation: "What is the purpose, if any, of the nuclear bomb, that brooding presence that has shadowed all human life for sixty-five years? The question has haunted the nuclear age. It may be that no satisfactory answer has ever been given. Nuclear strategic thinking, in particular, has disappointed. Many of its pioneers have wound up in a state of something like despair regarding their art. For example, Bernard Brodie, one of the originators of nuclear strategy in the 1940s, was forced near the end of his life to realize that "nuclear strategy itself--the body of thoughts that he himself had helped formulate--was something of an illusion," according to historian Fred Kaplan. In the introduction to The Evolution of Nuclear Strategy, Lawrence Freedman airs the suspicion that the phrase "nuclear strategy" may be a "contradiction in terms." Henry Kissinger, a leading figure in nuclear strategizing for a half-century, has expressed a similar feeling of futility. In a remarkable reconsideration, amounting to an oblique recantation of his past thinking, he has written recently in Newsweek..."

Recommended Audio: America's Nuclear Trajectory
In his article in this week's Nation, "Reaching Zero," Schell argues that the disarmament movement needs a clear strategic architecture if we are to move toward the abolition of nuclear weapons. Listen to Tom Engelhardt and Jonathan Schell discuss American involvement in Vietnam and Afghanistan, US nuclear policy from the 1960s to the present and the dilemma of nuclear weaponry in the Obama era.

McChrystal’s Employment of Military Deception
Jim White writes for Firedoglake: "By now, since the New York Times is grudgingly going along with Jerome Starkey’s blockbuster reporting on US Special Operations Forces murdering pregnant Afghan women and manipulating the evidence in an attempt to hide their crimes, it should be painfully obvious to even the most disinterested observer that US forces, and especially US Special Forces, engaged in deception on this case. What I want to point out in this post is that the deception employed here is not a rare, unexpected development, but is instead a designed feature of how our Joint Special Operations Command forces operate under the command of General Stanley McChrystal. Although McChrystal is no longer head of JSOC after assuming command of all forces in Afghanistan, I consider JSOC still to be under his control since his hand-picked aide, William McRaven, is now in command."

Wikileaks Releases Video Depicting US Forces Killing of Two Reuters Journalists in Iraq
Dan Murphy reports for The Christian Science Monitor: "A video released on the Internet Monday by WikiLeaks, a small nonprofit dedicated to publishing classified information from the US and other governments, appears to show the killing of two Iraqi journalists with Reuters and about nine other Iraqis in a Baghdad suburb in 2007 that is sharply at odds of the official US account of the incident." 

Inside WikiLeaks’ Leak Factory
David Kushner writes for Mother Jones: "The clock struck 3 a.m. Julian Assange slept soundly inside a guarded private compound in Nairobi, Kenya. Suddenly, six men with guns emerged from the darkness. A day earlier, they had disabled the alarm system on the electric fence and buried weapons by the pool. Catching a guard by surprise, they commanded him to hit the ground. He obliged, momentarily, then jumped up and began shouting. As the rest of the compound's security team rushed outside, the intruders fled into the night." Photo: — WikiLeaks, Wikimedia Commons

How the CIA Avoided Negligent Homicide Charges in the Salt Pit Killing
Emptywheel writes on the Firedoglake blog: "Since the AP story on the Salt Pit death, reporters have focused a lot of attention to a particular footnote in Jay Bybee’s second response to the OPR Report and what it claims about intent (and, to a lesser degree, what it says about Jay Bybee’s fitness to remain on the 9th Circuit). In it, Jay Bybee references a memo CIA’s Counterterrorism Center wrote in response to Gul Rahman’s death at the Salt Pit; the memo argued that the CIA officer in charge should not be prosecuted under the torture statute because he did not have the specific intent to make Rahman suffer severe pain when he doused him with water and left him exposed in freezing temperatures."

Hushed Money: Could Karl Rove's new 527 avoid campaign-finance disclosure requirements?
Richard L. Hasen writes for Slate: "If you thought things have gotten bad with campaign financing since the Supreme Court turned on the corporate money spigot in the Citizens United case, you ain't seen nothing yet. Opponents of reasonable regulation have a new target: trying to keep the flow of campaign money secret. We may soon be going retro, back to the pre-Watergate era of secret campaign cash."

Post-Hutaree: How Glenn Beck and Fox News Spread the Militia Message
Eric Boehlert writes for Media Matters for AMerica: "Reading last week's disturbing news accounts about the Midwestern arrest of nine alleged members of a Christian militia known as the Hutaree, a group whose members were reportedly planning to kill cops in order to spark a wider, armed revolt against the U.S. government, I noticed this nugget[emphasis added]:
FBI agents moved quickly against Hutaree because its members were planning an attack sometime in April, prosecutors said."

Not in Our Town: Communities Use Media to Combat Hate
Roy O'Connor writes for the MediaChannel.org: "Are you tired of the relentlessly battering beat of bad news delivered daily by our media? Did you ever wonder if that same media could be used instead for good? If so, here’s a story that will lift your spirit and might also encourage you to get involved and help make change… because when it comes to combating hate speech and acts of intolerance, it’s bad-news-good-news-time for a change!"

The Market Colonization of Intellectuals
Lewis R. Gordon comments for Truthout: "In many forums over the past decade, public intellectuals seem unable to talk about pressing social issues without performing the equivalent of an academic literature review. Although reasons range from trying to inform their audiences of relevant debates to efforts to demonstrate erudition, that many public intellectuals present their work as the basis for rewards in academe and the entertainment industry suggests influences tantamount to the colonization of intellectuals by the ever-expanding market."

A Society Consumed by Locusts: Youth in the Age of Moral and Political Plagues
Henry A. Giroux comments for Truthout: "As the recent health care debate has made clear, the decades-long conservative campaign against the alleged abuses of 'big government' is far from over. In the 1980s, when Ronald Reagan insisted that government was the problem not the solution, he unleashed what was to become a neoliberal juggernaut against both the welfare state and the concept of the public good."

The Death of Public Education
Derrick Z. Jackson writes for the Boston Globe: "THE NEWS says we are watching the death of public education before our eyes. Detroit is closing more than 40 schools, Kansas City wants to close more than 40 percent of its school buildings. Other cities have been closing schools over the last decade. Boston avoided closings in its most recent budget deliberations, but still must slash custodial staff and postpone building repairs."

"Broadcast Blues" to Screen in Manhattan
Christopher E. Renner writes for the Kansas Free Press: "The Monthly Film Series takes on the issue of media consolidation next Tuesday, 13 April, when it screens Sue Wilson's Broadcast Blues - The Movie the Media Does Not Want You to See beginning at 6:30 pm in the Manhattan Public Library Auditorium. The public is welcomed to attend. Broadcast Blues laments the erosion of the contrasting-views concept in the wake of deregulation following the 1996 Telecommunications Act but also chronicles the consolidation of US media in the hands of five conglomerates over the last three decades."

Recommended Audio: Media Matters Minute
After being called out by the president by name for the vitriol on talk radio, Limbaugh goes on the defensive.

The Top Ten Works of Journalism for the Decade, 2000 - 2009
The faculty of New York University's Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, together with a group of distinguished outside judges, has selected "The Top Ten Works of Journalism of the Decade in the United States." We began with a list of eighty nominees. Our purpose was to call attention to and honor work of exceptional importance and quality - journalism that brilliantly met the challenges of this difficult decade.

Ten Things You Can Do to Help Progressive Journalism
ZP Heller writes for The Nation: "What's wrong with this picture? Air America vanishes into the ether, while Glenn Beck indoctrinates 2.7 million daily viewers with his histrionic brand of right-wing lunacy. Independent news agencies must continuously solicit donations from readers to stay afloat, while hate-filled shock jock Rush Limbaugh makes $50 million a year."

Court Decision Endangers FCC's Ability to Protect Net Neutrality and Implement National Broadband Plan
S. Derek Turner, research director for Free Press, made the following statement in response to the DC Circuit's opinion in Comcast v. FCC:
"The decision has forced the FCC into an existential crisis, leaving the agency unable to protect consumers in the broadband marketplace, and unable to implement the National Broadband Plan. As a result of this decision, the FCC has virtually no power to stop Comcast from blocking Web sites. The FCC has virtually no power to make policies to bring broadband to rural America, to promote competition, to protect consumer privacy or truth in billing. This cannot be an acceptable outcome for the American public and requires immediate FCC action to re-establish legal authority."

Right-Wing Delusion: Net Neutrality Is Government Plot to Control Internet Content
Media Matters for America writes: "Right-wing media have falsely claimed that the net neutrality principle supported by the Obama administration is an attempt by the government to control Internet content. In fact, net neutrality does not mean government control of content on the Internet; rather, net neutrality ensures equal and open access for consumers and producers of content and applications, and is supported by a wide array of groups including the American Civil Liberties Union and the Christian Coalition of America."

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