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A Municipal Vote in Providence for Police Reform Carries National Implications

Sun, 04/23/2017 - 08:40
Shahid Buttar

After three years of sustained community mobilization and advocacy, the Providence City Council in Rhode Island voted this Thursday to unanimously approve among the most visionary set of policing reforms proposed around the country to protect civil rights and civil liberties, including

Palestinian Prisoners’ Hunger Strike

Sun, 04/23/2017 - 07:23
James Zogby

One thousand five hundred Palestinian prisoners have been on a hunger strike for almost a week now. They are refusing sustenance in an effort to improve the deplorable conditions faced by the nearly 6,500 Palestinians who are currently imprisoned in Israel.

“Fear City” Explores How Donald Trump Exploited the New York Debt Crisis To Boost His Own Fortune

Sun, 04/23/2017 - 07:05
Naomi Klein

When I published “The Shock Doctrine” a decade ago, a few people told me that it was missing a key chapter in the evolution of the tactic I was reporting on. That tactic involved using periods of crisis to impose a radical pro-corporate agenda. They said that in the United States that story doesn’t start with Reagan in the 1980s, as I had told it, but rather in New York City in the mid-1970s. That’s when the city’s very near brush with all-out bankruptcy was used to dramatically remake the metropolis. Massive and brutal austerity, sweetheart deals for the rich, privatizations.

In Time for the Reform Debate, New Documents Shed Light on the Government’s Surveillance of Americans

Sun, 04/23/2017 - 06:41
Ashley Gorski

The ACLU on Friday released more than a dozen new documents concerning the government’s warrantless surveillance of millions of Americans.

Why Support for Syria’s Nonviolent Fighters is Key to Ending the War

Sun, 04/23/2017 - 06:08
Maria J. Stephan

Debates over the morality, legality and strategic efficacy of U.S. missile strikes in Syria will dominate the news for the foreseeable future. It is understandable why so many people, notably many Syrians, would want to see a regime that has repeatedly targeted its population with sarin and chlorine gas, barrel bombs and starvation tactics be punished for its actions. The Syrians I know feel alone and abandoned by the world.

The “100 by ’50 Act” Cannot Become Our “North Star”

Sun, 04/23/2017 - 06:00
Ezra Silk

On Tuesday, Senators Jeff Merkley and Bernie Sanders are scheduled to introduce the “100 by ’50 Act,” billed as “the most ambitious piece of climate legislation Congress has ever seen.” 350.org’s Jason Kowalski has expressed hopes that the symbolic bill, which aims to build a 100% renewable energy economy by 2050, will become the “North Star” of the climate movement.[1] Yet the April 17th draft of the bill is incremental, non-comprehensive, and fails to meet the challe

US 'Deep State' Sold Out Counter-Terrorism to Keep Itself in Business

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 07:52
Gareth Porter

New York Times columnist Tom Friedman outraged many readers when he wrote an opinion piece on 12 April calling on President Trump to "back off fighting territorial ISIS in Syria". The reason he gave for that recommendation was not that US wars in the Middle East are inevitably self-defeating and endless, but that it would reduce the "pressure on Assad, Iran, Russia and Hezbollah".

9 Reasons to March for Science This Earth Day

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 07:48
Tim Donaghy

This Earth Day, April 22, Marches for Science will take place in DC and countless cities across the country. Here are some reasons to grab a sharpie, make a sign, and show up at your local march.

Earth Day Should Be Called "People of Earth" Day

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 07:22
Shelley Poticha

You might think of the rainforest or the endangered polar bear on this day, but Earth Day is a commemoration with decidedly American roots, born in 1970 with marches and rallies by 20 million people nationwide.

It was a time of activism on behalf of civil rights and the environment and it came just two years after the passage of the Fair Housing Act to ban discrimination in housing, and five years after the creation of the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

EPA Budget Cuts Will Severely Affect Environmental Justice Communities

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 07:08
Heather Moyer

Port Arthur, Texas, is home to a tremendous number of hazardous waste incinerators, petrochemical refineries, and a myriad other toxic facilities. The city is also home to many low-income families and people of color, all stuck in this extremely polluted region and trying to cope with dirty air and water.

Marching for Science and Climate Protects Our Communities

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 05:55
Josué J. López

Until three years ago, you could have called me a scientist, educator, or mentor—but not an activist or marcher. Over time, however, I have recognized that I have the knowledge, privilege, and responsibility to act and march to protect the communities I love.

Standing Up for Science: 5 Facts About Our Food and Water on Earth Day

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 05:31
Christian Detisch

This Saturday, Earth Day, The March for Science convenes on Washington, DC. Hundreds of satellite marches have also been organized around the world to take to the streets in the name of science.

At Sea With Capt. ‘Wrong Way’ Trump

Sat, 04/22/2017 - 05:19
Michael Winship

Baby boomers like me fondly remember the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons of childhood (and adulthood, for that matter — in their grown-up jokes and cultural references they presaged The Simpsons by a good 25 years and are still pretty hilarious).

You may particularly recall one Rocky and Bullwinkle character, Capt. Peter “Wrong Way” Peachfuzz, an addled mariner so spectacular in his incompetence that even his toy boats sank in the bathtub.

Trump’s Bombings May Elicit the 'Mother of All Blowback'

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 10:23
Faisal Kutty

Years ago, a young man was interviewed by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) at my office. He was flagged for his “anti-Canadian” views for opposing Ottawa’s involvement in Afghanistan. He had left Canada as an ardent supporter of Western intervention, but returned a security “threat” for his opposition.

Extended family and friends killed or injured as “collateral damage” was the game changer. Intended or unintended, the dead are no less dead because we meant well, he observed. His story of radicalization is not unique.

Donald Trump’s Modern-Day Gestapo

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 10:05
Sonali Kolhatkar

The Republican Party likes to tout “family values.” Its website says, “The family is the bedrock of our nation. When American families flourish, so too does our country.”

Grassroots Candidates Will “Rise Up” To Electorialize The Resistance

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 10:01
Isaiah Poole

Here’s something that can’t be dismissed with a dismissive Donald Trump tweet: An electoral wave is building that seriously threatens the stranglehold that Republicans have on electoral power around the country.

It showed itself this week when an unknown, young documentary filmmaker and former congressional staffer nearly won a Georgia congressional special election as a Democrat in a district that had been deeply Republican for decades.

Reaching Out to Trump Voters

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 09:55
Bob Burnett

On April 17th, my Berkeley Indivisible group  hosted a two-hour discussion on "Reaching out to Trump voters," featuring UC professors Arlie Hochschild and George Lakoff.  Participants learned how to approach a group that some consider a lost cause.

After November 8, many progressives were dismayed to learn that one or more members of their family had voted for Donald Trump. It wasn't some random Republican in a remote red state, it was someone they had shared holidays and vacations with.  It was a beloved member of their family.

Trump’s Wars: More to Come

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 07:51
Paul Rogers

A series of accelerating and interlocking security crises, from the Middle East and southwest Asia to North Korea, makes the first months of 2017 an especially perilous time. Increasing the dangers is the way that domestic politics in the United States are coming to shape the Trump’s administration's global military adventurism.

The Hunger President: Trump Doctrine Takes from Poor, Gives to the Rich

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 07:21
John Feffer

One death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic.

The quote comes from Stalin. The policy comes from Donald Trump.

Trump famously changed his policy on Syria after seeing photographs of a couple Syrian children killed by a chemical attack. It didn’t matter that the Syrian government had already killed thousands of children. In targeting the Assad regime, Trump was moved by the tragedy, not the statistic.

The GOP’s Latest Health-care Plan Is Comically Bad

Fri, 04/21/2017 - 07:02
Eugene Robinson

House Republicans are apparently ready for yet another attempt to snatch health insurance away from constituents who need it. Someone should remind Speaker Paul Ryan of a saying often attributed to his legendary predecessor Sam Rayburn: “There’s no education in the second kick of the mule.”