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Last Updated: Jun 23rd, 2018 - 15:27:27 

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Consider This....
'He's a Political Prisoner': Standing Rock Activists Face Years in Jail
Sam Levin: Under Trump, who has had financial ties with the pipeline company, the US Department of Justice has pressed forward with six cases against Native Americans. North Dakota prosecutors meanwhile have pursued more than 800 state cases against people at Standing Rock, including 165 still pending, according to the Water Protector Legal Collective, a legal support team. ... Red Fawn Fallis was originally accused of shooting at law enforcement, facing a potential life sentence. The case moved forward even after it was reported that a paid informant for the FBI had developed a romantic relationship with her during the protests and was the owner of the gun she allegedly fired. Prosecutors eventually dropped the charge in exchange for her pleading to lesser offenses, and on Monday, she is expected to receive a seven-year prison sentence... Visit Website ]
Jun 23, 2018, 3:28pm

Commentary
Guatemala: Human Rights Ombudsman Says Government 'Indifferent' to Indigenous, Campesino Murders
Guatemala’s Human Rights Ombudsman, Jordan Rodas, highlighted President Jimmy Morales’ “indifference” to the wave of murders against Indigenous and Campesino social leaders in the country Thursday. ... According to Rodas in less than a month eight social leaders have been murdered, and neither the president nor the Interior Minister, Enrique Degenhart, have taken action to ensure their security or to listen to their concerns. ... In May, when at least three social leaders were murdered, the United Nations urged the Guatemalan government to “investigate the murders and other attacks and threats against human rights defenders, and to guarantee that those responsible are taken to justice.”... Visit Website ]
Jun 23, 2018, 3:18pm

Blogosphere
The American March to Inequality: Why the UN Alston Report Alarms the Trump Plutocrats
Juan Cole: It is no surprise that flacks for the plutocrats in charge of the US like Nikki Haley are squawking about the report on American poverty just issued by UN Special Rapporteur Philip Alston. It throws loads of light on how unequal a society America is, how it is marching rapidly toward even greater, Third World levels of inequality, and how peculiar the US is, as a land of rapacious robber barons and 40 million completely marginalized poor. ... The Trump tax massacre was intended to take even more from African-Americans and Latinos and other minorities and transfer it to the largely English, Scottish, German and other Northern European business elite (the wealth of some of whom began accumulating in the nineteenth century through slavery or criminal activities)... Visit Website ]
Jun 23, 2018, 2:52pm

Commentary
Government Eyes Are Watching You - We are all prisoners of the surveillance state
John W. Whitehead: "We’re run by the Pentagon, we’re run by Madison Avenue, we’re run by television, and as long as we accept those things and don’t revolt we’ll have to go along with the stream to the eventual avalanche... As long as we go out and buy stuff, we’re at their mercy" - Patrick McGoohan, The Prisoner, Television Series. ... Every move you make is being monitored, mined for data, crunched, and tabulated in order to form a picture of who you are, what makes you tick, and how best to control you when and if it becomes necessary to bring you in line. ... So how do we break out? ... For starters, wake up. Resist the urge to comply... Visit Website ]
Jun 22, 2018, 11:51am

Health
When Cuban Polyclinics Were Born
Don Fitz: As discontent increases with overly expensive and totally inadequate US health care, it is time to look closely at the beginnings of the modern Cuban medical system. Like the US, Cuba had unintegrated, overlapping medical institutions that failed the poor, especially black, population of the island. Though several European countries have developed health care systems about 40% cheaper than the US, Cuba was able to craft health care which became more than 80% less costly than the US with a roughly equivalent life expectancy. ... During the second half of the decade (1964-1969) Cuba began redesigning medicine as a holistic system. It’s created a model for poor countries that forever changed medicine. Cuba did so largely by putting the polyclinic at the center of care delivery... Visit Website ]
Jun 22, 2018, 11:32am

Books
‘Stranger than Fiction:’ Spy Chiefs From Feuding India & Pakistan Co-Author a Book for Peace
Amitabh Pal: The Spy Chronicles: RAW, ISI and the Illusion of Peace is co-authored by A.S. Dulat, former head of the Research & Analysis Wing (RAW) in India, and retired General Asad Durrani, who led Pakistan’s spy outfit, Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI). ... The authors wrote the book in the hope of ending the interminable discord between India and Pakistan. “The general and I put our heads together in a hope for peace,” says Dulat. He quotes a question posed to Durrani by Hamid Ansari, formerly India’s vice president: “Yeh deewangi kab khatam hogi?” When will this obsessiveness end? ... The book has a number of concrete recommendations for the two countries, ranging from parleys on the disputed region of Kashmir and relaxed visa rules, to the resumption of cricket matches... Visit Website ]
Jun 21, 2018, 3:25pm

Commentary
US Criminal Justice: Why the Two-Tiered Justice System is Really THREE-Tiered
Ken Peeples: TIER ONE- Impunity, immunity, zero accountability and ‘Let’s make a deal.’ ... the Justice Department rushes to the negotiating table to play “let’s make a deal” with the political, corporate and financial elite ... TIER TWO- Marked leniency and merciful prosecutions ... it is reserved for ordinary people, mostly white, who have some degree of wealth and privilege. The law tends to treat this tier with compassion and mercy. ... TIER THREE- Predatory prosecution and mass incarceration ... The individuals in this tier are poor and working class and experience heavy policing, draconian drug laws, and mandatory minimum sentences. Black and Brown people (and sometimes poor whites) are usually targeted. Individuals in Tier Three do not receive the leniency that the folks in Tier Two enjoy... Visit Website ]
Jun 21, 2018, 3:08pm

Blogosphere
Not only Is Trump’s Refugee Policy Morally Wrong, it is Illegal in US and Int’l Law
Juan Cole: In essence, the Trump administration is attempting gradually to abolish the acceptance by the US of asylees, in stark contravention to US treaty obligations (and hence to domestic US law). ... Relief Web - “It is cruel and unnecessary to prosecute asylum seekers for crossing borders without authorization. Moreover, under Article 31 of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, to which the United States is bound by its accession to the 1967 Refugee Protocol, parties ‘shall not impose penalties, on account of their illegal entry or presence, on refugees who, coming directly from a territory where their life or freedom was threatened ... enter or are present in their territory without authorization, provided they present themselves without delay to the authorities and show good cause for their illegal entry or presence.’” ... Visit Website ]
Jun 21, 2018, 2:46pm

Commentary
End the Wars to Halt the Refugee Crisis
Ramzy Baroud: Europe is facing the most significant refugee crisis since World War II. All attempts at resolving the issue have failed, mostly because they have ignored the root causes of the problem. ... The disturbing truth is this: Europe is accountable for much of the mayhem under way in the Middle East. Right-wing pundits may wish to omit that part of the debate altogether, but facts will not simply disappear when ignored. ... European politicians should honestly confront the question: what are the reasons that lead millions of people to leave their homes? And fashion equally honest and humane solutions... Visit Website ]
Jun 20, 2018, 4:12pm

Blogosphere
Freedom Rider: Democrats Unhinged by Korea
Margaret Kimberley: The Democrats like war, interventions and United States hegemony. They always have. If anyone wants proof they need only look at their collective hissy fit regarding the Trump and Kim summit. Part of the reaction is caused by fear of Trump getting credit for a foreign policy achievement. But Democrats are also true believers in imperialism. The last thing they want to see is any reduction in the American military presence in Korea or anywhere else. ... There are many parties to thank for bringing about a possibility of peace in the region. The two Koreas themselves, the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea in the north and the Republic of Korea in the south have made great strides towards peacefully co-existing. Their neighbors China and Russia have also played a role in minimizing tensions... Visit Website ]
Jun 20, 2018, 3:58pm

Meditations
Americans Elected Trump, Not the Russians!
Martin LeFevre: Trump is not a fluke; America elected him because the body politic as a whole had become so corrupted and dysfunctional that after Obama's "hope and change" con that many people wanted to blow up the system, and most quit caring altogether. ... Until that truth is faced, and Democrats stop looking beyond our borders, or entirely blaming Republicans for why the American people elected this lying authoritarian, Trump is going to continue to run roughshod over our institutions and continue to defile the body politic. ... As I've said many times in this column, the American people perished as a people over 25 years ago. The first Gulf war was the straw that broke the American spirit's back. That gave rise to the Bush-Cheney malignancy (with the invasion of Iraq, torture and rendition, and a permanent, self-fulfilling 'global war on terror'), which President Obama whitewashed...
Jun 19, 2018, 3:26pm

Articles
Solar Is the Future. Donald Trump Tied a Bow on It and Gave It to China.
Jeffrey Ball: And now the Chinese are gaining on the West in the most important arena of all:innovation. ... The notion that the United States has a lock on clean-energy innovation will seem as antiquated in 10 years as the once-­prevalent belief that Detroit designed the best cars. China, with its noxious smog and voracious energy appetite, has compelling reasons to innovate. And the Trump administration seems more interested in protecting coal producers than in furthering renewable-­energy research. “If the US doesn’t do the R&D, then China will,” says Chase, the Bloomberg solar analyst. “In fact, China is doing it. It just means that the US will become less and less relevant to the solar industry.”... Visit Website ]
Jun 19, 2018, 12:30pm

Commentary
As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 70, it’s time to resurrect its vision of global sharing and justice
Adam Parsons: What are the political implications of meeting the established human right for everyone to enjoy an adequate standard of living? In short, it necessitates a redistribution of wealth and resources on an unprecedented scale across the world ... the significance of its 25th Article, which proclaims the right of everyone to an adequate standard of living—including food, housing, healthcare, social services and basic financial security ... the United States has persistently rejected the idea that economic and social rights are full-fledged human rights ... In short, implementing Article 25 would call for a redistribution of wealth, power and income on an unprecedented scale within every society, in contradistinction to the prevailing economic ideology of our time—an ideology that falsely views economic and social rights as inimical to “wealth creation”, “economic growth” and “international competitiveness”... Visit Website ]
Jun 19, 2018, 12:03pm

News
Supreme Court Punts on Gerrymandering, Keeps Partisan Maps in Place
Nina Sparling: How a Minority Party Stays in Power ... Partisan gerrymandering is alive and well after the United States Supreme Court opted not to issue a decision in pivotal cases from Wisconsin and Maryland ... The decision leaves states free to continue to draw election districts to gain partisan advantage. ... With the support of Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Stephen Breyer, Justice Elena Kagan issued a concurring opinion that outlined something of a roadmap for how to build tighter cases around partisan gerrymandering going forward.... Visit Website ]
Jun 19, 2018, 11:51am

Commentary
'This is huge': black liberationist speaks out after her 40 years in prison
Debbie Sims Africa, the first freed member of a radical Philadelphia group many say were unjustly imprisoned, talks about reuniting with her son and defends the Move members still locked up: ‘We are peaceful people’ ... The first member of a group of black radicals known as the Move Nine who have been incarcerated, they insist unjustly, for almost 40 years for killing a Philadelphia police officer has been released from prison. ... She was 22 when with her co-defendants she was arrested and sentenced to 30 to 100 years for the shooting death of officer James Ramp during a police siege of the group’s communal home on 8 August 1978. ... the shot may have come from the opposite direction to the basement, raising the possibility that Ramp was accidentally felled, by police fire... Visit Website ]
Jun 18, 2018, 11:53am


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