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

29 May 2011

An Interview with Robert McChensey

This week's edition of Community Bridge opens with Robert McChensey in a discussion of the state of the US media and his new book: Will the Last Reporter Please Turn Out the Lights: The Collapse of Journalism and What Can Be Done to Fix It.

McChesney is a professor of communication at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, host of the weekly talk show, Media Matters, on WILL-AM radio, and cofounder of the media reform organization Free Press.

McChesney has written or edited seventeen books on media and politics. He has also written more than 150 journal articles and book chapters and another 200 newspaper pieces, magazine articles and book reviews. His work has been translated into twenty-one languages. He has been the subject of more than 70 published profiles and interviews. In 2001 Adbusters Magazine named him one of the “Nine Pioneers of Mental Environmentalism.” Utne Reader in 2008 listed him as one of their "50 visionaries who are changing the world."

Related Articles:

The Money & Media Election Complex, John Nichols and Robert McChesney, 2010

How to Save Journalism, Robert McChesney and John Nichols, The Nation, 2010

Bush's War on the Press, Robert McChesney and John Nichols, The Nation, 2005

Rich Media, Poor Democracy, Robert McChesney, Salon, 1999

Video: The Problem of Media

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Arts in the Park and Flint Hills Pride 2011

In our second hour this week we first hear about the line up for this year’s Arts in the Park Series with Ashley Penner from the City of Manhattan's Park and Recreation Department. Then Kevin Stilley joins us to discuss the activities planned for this year’s Flint Hills Pride event that will be held at Milford Lake on June 11th. Finally we close out with a clip from Truthdig radio featuring Bill Moyers about the state of US media.

Related Links:

Stonewall Uprising on PBS.

Rule of the Rich, Bill Moyers, The Progressive, February 2011.

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22 May 2011

GOP's War on Women

It’s almost an unbelievable figure — 916. That’s the amount of legislation that has been introduced primarily by the GOP so far this year, in an attempt to regulate a woman’s reproductive system.  And Kansas is no different that the national trend.  With tens of millions of Americans unemployed, states facing dire fiscal situations, and more and more people loosing their homes, one has to ask why abortion has become the GOP's number one priority?

A report by The Guttmacher Institute, finds that in addition to these laws, more than 120 other bills have been approved by at least one chamber of the legislature, and some interesting trends are emerging. As a whole, the proposals introduced this year are more hostile to abortion rights than in the past: 56% of the bills introduced so far this year seek to restrict abortion access, compared with 38% last year. Three topics—insurance coverage of abortion, restriction of abortion after a specific point in gestation and ultra sound requirements—are topping the agenda in several states and all three have been approved by the Kansas legislature.

For the complete Guttmacher report, click here.

Joining us to talk about what has happened in the Kansas legislature is Kari Ann Rinker, State Coordinator of Kansas NOW, and Shanna Kay Crowe. Then, Amanda Marcotte, a blogger RH Reality Check, best known for her writing on feminism and politics, joins Community bridge to discuss what is happening at a national level. In 2008, Marcotte published her first book, entitled It's a Jungle Out There: The Feminist Survival Guide to Politically Inhospitable Environments.  Listeners can find her blog at RH Reality Check here.

Related Articles:

Top 10 Shocking Attacks from the GOP's War on Women, MoveOn.org

Men's Health Cover Flashing GOP Congressman's Tight Abs Reveals How Conservatives Worship a Cartoonish Hyper-Masculinity by Amanda Marcotte

Anti-Abortion Strategy in the Age of Obama, by Frederick Clarkson, Political Research Assoicates

The Return of Back Alley Abortions, Michelle Goldberg, The Daily Beast 

Behind the Right's Fetal Pain Push, Mother Jones

Horrific Bill Takes the GOP's War on Women to a Whole New Extreme by Vicki Saporta, The Hill

To Take Action, visit http://stopthewaronwomen.com/

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20 May 2011

May 19 - American Empire

For our second hour we take up the theme of American empire in a tribute to GRIT TV which ceased operations on May 13th. First we hear GRITtv host, Laura Flanders, interviews Chris Hedges about the death of Bin Laden and the continuing concern over terrorism, the end of empathy in the U.S., and what avenues are left for progressives to fight back.  Then we hear Flanders interviewing retired Colonel Andrew Bacevich about the changes in the administration and the ongoing situation in Libya and Syria, and notes that at a time when the Arab world is undergoing deep changes, it should be a time for modesty in the US and a reconsideration of military power and the use of violence to achieve goals. We close out this hour with a clip form Law and Disorder Radio featuring the award-winning independent journalist Will Potter. Potter is the leading authority on “eco-terrorism.” He’s the author of the new book, "Green Is the New Red: An Insider’s Account of a Social Movement Under Siege."

Related Links:

Chris Hedges' new book: The World As It Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress

Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War (American Empire Project)

The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism (American Empire Project)

Petraeus and Panetta said to be up for new posts as part of national security shakeup

Green Is The New Red: An Insiders Account of A Social Movement Under Siege

Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act.

What Is Big Ag Trying To Hide.

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15 May 2011

State of Kansas Media Part 3

Community Bridge opens this week with our third round table discussion on the state of the media in Kansas.  Joining the discussion are Mike Shields, Managing Editor of the Kansas Health Institute's News Service;  Justin Kendall, weekly writer for the KC Pitch, the largest of alternative weeklies in Kansas; Michael Caddell, newspaper publisher, blogger and radio talk show host; and R. J. Dickens, news director at KCTU TV in Wichita.

Related Articles:
Brownback’s agenda: Government efficiency? Or power grab? By Steve Kraske, Kansas City Star

The Peoples Representative? by John Divine, Former Chair of the Kansas Arts Commission, Emporia Gazette

Brownback’s attack on the arts hurts rural Kansas, Kansas City Star editorial

Save Sam from himself, Winfield Daily Courier editorial

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14 May 2011

New Breitbart "investigation" reveals his dishonesty

Andrew Breitbart has no problem lying to his readers, especially if he can score points against progressives. Breitbart's website BigGovernment.com is famous for promoting heavily edited videos that turn truth on its head that are produced by anti-abortion rights activist Lila Rose and falsely claiming that the video proves that Planned Parenthood engages in systemic criminal activities. In 2009, Breitbart promoted heavily edited tapes that he falsely claimed showed systematic corruption at the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) related to child prostitution and sex trafficking. In 2010, Breitbart posted heavily edited video of Shirley Sherrod speaking at an NAACP function and falsely suggested that Sherrod discriminated against a white farmer in her capacity as the Agriculture Department's Georgia Director of Rural Development. This video caused her to lose her job, but Sherrod is now suing Breitbart.

Then in April, just a week after he promised to "go after the teachers and the union organizers," his website started running a series of choppy, heavily edited videos taken from labor studies courses taught at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and the University of Missouri-Kansas City by this week’s guest, Judy Ancel and a colleague, Don Giljim. Ancel is the Director of UMKC's Institute for Labor Studies.

Breitbart's posts promoting these videos claim, among other things, that the professors "instruct students on how fear, intimidation, and, even, industrial sabotage are important and, often, necessary tools," and that they teach their students that the US flag is "racist."  But as listeners will hear, this is just another lie by a right-wing fanatic as Ancel exposes Breitbart's tactics and his dishonesty on this week’s show.

To read Ancel's statement on the Breitbart sting visit: http://stlactivisthub.blogspot.com/2011/04/judy-ancels-statements-on.html.

Read Media Matters for America's statement on Breitbart's attack on Ancel and Don Giljum at http://mediamatters.org/blog/201104290020.

Kansas City Star article: Judy Ancel and colleague were framed by Breitbart

Yahoo News: KC university supports lecturer in video flap

Here's the link to the Institute's report on the mining operations in Cananea, Mexico -  Crossing Borders to Cananea: High Stakes and Teachable Moments

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09 May 2011

El Salvador's Sister City Program

Women jewelry makers in El Papaturro
Since the 1980´s, Sister Cities has built people-to-people solidarity relationships between the United States and El Salvador.  These relationships are the core of their work and the foundation upon which the Sister City project works for human rights, social justice, and cultural exchange.  This important work only happens through hundreds of dedicated volunteers in cities around the United States who maintain “sister city” relationships with Salvadoran communities. 

On this week’s show, we hear from Sara Bishop, national coordinator of the US - El Salvador Sister City Project, about the Sister City program. Then we hear from Sofia Pablo-Hoshino, Shahna Campbell and Ivone Damian, three of the fourteen K-State student who when to El Papaturro, the Salvadorian community coupled with the Manhattan Alliance for Peace and Justice since 1995 through the Sister City program. The students talk about their experiences with in El Salvador and the plans to return in 2012.

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08 May 2011

More Voices Against Plutocracy

In our second hour we first hear from Dr. Vandana Shiva is a clip from GRITtv. Shiva says: "The American people should see that corporations have abandoned them long ago." Shiva is a scientist, environmentalist, and food justice activist Dr. Vandana Shiva. Shiva was named one of the seven most influential women in the world by Forbes magazine.  Shiva spoke at K-State in October 2009 and the podcast of her speech is available on the Community Bridge website. Click on the link to the 2009 podcasts and scroll down to October.

Then we hear a clip from Truthdig Radio featuring Tim Canova, the Betty Hutton Williams Professor of International Economic Law and co-director of the Center for Global Law & Development at the Chapman University School of Law in Orange, California. Canova takes on the Standards and Poors treat to downgrade the US credit rating in a discussion of the economic meltdown in our casino economy.

The show closes out addressing the Manhattan City Commission’s vote to repeal the new anti-discrimination ordinance.

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01 May 2011

April 28 - Living in a Fact-Free Political World

Community Bridge opens this week with a look at lying as normative political discourse. Political lying has always been with us, but what the GOP and some Democrats have done is akin to carpet-bombing the truth. Mother Jones Magazine turns its investigative eyes on this reality in its May/June edition entitled: You Lie! Inside the GOP’s Fact Free Nation. We hear from Rick Perlstien whose article “Fact-Free Nation from Nixon’s Dirty Tricksters to James O’Keefe’s Video Smears: How political lying became the new normal," opens the topic.

Perlstien is the author of two noteworthy books: Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America, and  Before The Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus, which won the 2001 Los Angeles Times Book Award for history.  From the summer of 2003 until 2005 he covered the presidential campaigns as chief national political correspondent for the Village Voice. He has also published The Stock Ticker and the Superjumbo: How the Democrats Can Once Again Become America's Dominant Political Party, an essay with responses from commentators including Robert Reich, Elaine Kamarck, and Ruy Teixeira. In 2006 and 2007 he wrote a biweekly column for The New Republic Online. Perlstein was a senior fellow at the Campaign for America's Future, for whom he wrote the blog The Big Con.

The hour closes out with Josh McGinn, Flint Hills Human Rights Project, discussing the what’s happening with the Manhattan City Commission and the efforts by the right-wing extremists Matta and Butler to repeal the city’s recently passed Anti-discrimination Ordinance.

Related Articles:
Bullied Pulpit: Why the White House couldn't fight the Obamacare lie, David Corn, Mother Jones.

The Hackers and the Hockey Stick - How climate science became the target of "the best-funded, best-organized smear campaign by the wealthiest industry that the Earth has ever known, Kate Sheppard, Mother Jones.

We Can't Handle the Truth - A journey into the science of self-delusion, Chris Mooney, Mother Jones

Policy in an age of post-truth politics, David Roberts, GRIST

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