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The Roundup for October 24th, 2013

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Took an evening nap and am feeling well — not jaded at all. Hope you’re day is going great since Friday is almost here.

International Developments


– “The membership of the Association for Humanist Sociology, an organization dedicated to scholarship and action in the service of justice and peace, has voted to support the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.

– Pew: 3/4 of US Catholics think it is important for Pope Francis to tackle Vatican reforms

– “Iran on Thursday angrily rejected as ‘unfair’ and politically-motivated a UN report which said the Islamic republic’s human rights record showed no sign of improvement.”

– “Does the World have a Marxist future?

– “This week United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS) is holding demonstrations at more than thirty colleges and universities across the country as part of an International Week of Action to End Deathtraps commemorating the six-month anniversary of the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh.

Middle East

– Pew: Saudi Arabia viewed negatively in globe for treatment of civilians

– Women in Saudi Arabia gearing up for protest on October 26th against restrictions of driving

– White House to Congress: Delay Iranian sanctions

– “Syrian troops captured a key town southeast of Damascus on Thursday, a military source said, as they sought to close in on suburbs struck by chemical weapons in August.


– “Seven Tunisian policemen were killed in clashes with militants on Wednesday as the government cracked down on Islamist fighters using the chaos in neighboring Libya to get weapons and training.”


German exporters are benefiting from austerity

Greece’s “most prominent health clinic serving citizens, shut out from the public healthcare system because they have no insurance, have condemned a raid by police on their premises.”

– “The helmet camera of a British Royal Marine captured the execution of an injured enemy combatant in Afghanistan, according to reports from the court martial of three soldiers being called Marine A, B and C.

– “Unemployment drops as Spain’s economy begins to beat recession

Financial Matters

– Looking at the disgusting, horrid and anti-humanity private prison industry and the “startling record” of juvenile abuse.

A chart looking at the $13 billion JPMorgan payment

– Samsung has been fined for paying people to slander other companies in online rooms

Jon Stewart and “A Nightmare on Wall Street

– Authors accuse Apple of destroying Japan’s tech industry

Twitter sets IPO price at $17 to 20

– Emmaneul Saez: Why the 1% should be taxed at 80% 

Detroit couldn’t send out bills on time, consultant says

– “The trade deficit in the U.S. was little changed in August as imports and exports stalled, indicating a loss of momentum in global economic growth.”

The man who won a Nobel Prize for helping create the global financial mess. And masaccio’s take from Tuesday.

– “Academics get paid by financial firms to testify against Dodd-Frank regulations. What’s wrong with this picture?

Surveillance Planet

– The NSA has recorded calls of 35 world leaders

– Merkel: US spying has shattered allies’ trust

– “Politicians keep repeating the talking point that the NSA has prevented 54 attacks. But the evidence isn’t there.” —> How the claim has spread

– Gallup: US users on internet less concerned about spying than in 2000

– Ex-NSA director Michael Hayden’s remarks have gone over Twitter

Three books analyze the War on Terror by Dissent Magazine

– “A spate of revelations in recent years and months — including the fact that the NYPD had designated entire mosques as “terrorist enterprises” to enable greater surveillance — has exercised over 120 organizations to demand a federal investigation into NYPD Muslim spying programs.

UK spy chiefs to testify soon in public 

– Emptywheel: “Did Obama lie to Merkel?”

– What a shock! National Surveillance State companies donated to the Obama campaign in 2012 

Labor’s a-Brewing

– “Four months after protests against the planned redevelopment of an Istanbul park devolved into a violent national uproar against the government, Turkish students are taking to the streets once again to fight an all-too-familiar scheme.”

– “Boston area part-time faculty are taking steps to organize. Service Employees International Union successfully unionized adjunct faculty at Tufts University last month

Airport town to decide on $15 an hour, despite right-wing opposition from Koch brothers

Politics USA

Government USA

– “Contractors who built the web portal for the Obama administration’s health insurance marketplace said Thursday the site’s crippling problems trace back to insufficient testing and changes that government officials made just prior to going live.

– Some Democrats are considering to move deadlines in ACA

– Pew: Tea Party Republicans love some government agencies, hate others

– “US President Barack Obama Thursday sought to capitalize on a moment of sharp Republican unpopularity by pressing his foes in Congress to pass a stalled immigration bill this year.

– Richard Wolff: Where the two parties agree

“Chided by rights groups for the UAV bombings’ civilian casualties, the US is losing its moral high ground”

– “Shaker Aamer, the last British resident held in Guantánamo Bay, has been refused permission to watch an animated film detailing his plight and that of other prisoners.”

– users: “Clean this mess up now

– “Is turning a corner? Not so fast

What if Obamacare was a fighter jet?

Everything Else USA

– The Zero Dark Thirty character really was injured by the CIA, so much so he suffered brain damage.

Great Russell Brand interview on analysis of living in society

– “Despite stories like the McDonald’s hot coffee suit, Americans don’t sue much. Companies just fear the worst.

– Cops in California shoot and kill a 13 year old that is carrying a toy rifle

– The cop in the UC Davis video who pepper sprayed students has been awarded $38k in “workman’s compensation.” Maybe he should get compensation in the form of jail time on an island far away from our shores.

– “Glen Ford, Exec. Editor of Black Agenda Report, talks about helping create black radio news. He says that news media creates leaders by deciding what events are important and who is authorized to speak on the importance of those events 

News finding itself more and more on Facebook for Americans

– Aasif Mandvi had a hilarious report yesterday on Voter ID laws. Great to hear the GOP official in it has been fired

– Pew: Mexicans and Salvadorans view the US favorably at 66% and 79% respectively 

– Judge in Texas resigns after found out texting instructions to assistant DA during trial

– “A federal appeals court ruled on Thursday that a conservative group supporting the mayoral candidacy of Joseph J. Lhota may accept contributions of any size, saying New York State’s limit on donations to independent political groups was probably unconstitutional.

– Max Blumenthal’s response to Eric Alterman’s “review”; Alterman has his response, but he is an entitled ass so it doesn’t matter

Will de Blasio disappoint the left?

Top Gun! (Stories)

NRA has called for teachers to keep a gun loaded at class the entire time

“Two people were shot and injured at a US naval base on Thursday, navy officials said. Officials said a suspect had been taken into custody following the incident in Millington, Tennessee.”

We Don’t Need No Education 

– In 17 states, the majority of public school students are poor

– School in NYC has ended standardized testing for Kindergarten students, hope to spark a nationwide movement

– “More than 100 children’s book authors and illustrators have sent a letter to the White House to ask President Obama to ease the country’s mandates for “excessive” standardized testing in our nation’s schools. Such an emphasis has a negative impact on kids’ love of reading and literature, they say. The letter is being promoted by advocacy group FairTest (The National Center for Fair & Open Testing).”

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– “A nutritional rating system using gold stars affixed to price labels on grocery store shelves appears to have shifted buying habits, potentially providing another tool to educate consumers on how to eat healthier, according to a new study.

– Gallup: Uninsured rate among youth has increased before ACA opened

Watch Colbert attempt to sign up for Obamacare 

– South Carolina soup kitchen refuses to allow atheists to volunteer

“Obamacare could reduce the cost of corrections”

For transgender patients, a growing fight over health concerns

The War on Women

– “Lovers of Etsy, the online retailer that allows its user base to sell vintage pieces or their own hand-made creations to potetnially jumpstart their own entrepreneurial endeavors, learned that the sky is not the limit when it comes to the kinds of messages that are acceptable on Etsy-sold T-shirts. 

The five ways sexually assault is really about entitlement

Nearly 80% of women aren’t asked by their doctors about domestic violence

– “A pregnant Wisconsin woman is challenging the state’s fetal protection law after she was confined in a drug treatment center, despite what she says is no evidence that she was still using drugs.

Planet Earth

– “A former Ecuadorean judge told a New York courtroom on Wednesday that he ghost-wrote rulings for another judge ordering Chevron to pay $19 billion in compensation to villagers whose land was polluted by oil exploration.

– “Scientists in China said Thursday they had designed a “smart” window that can both save and generate energy, and may ultimately reduce heating and cooling costs for buildings.

– Nebraska approves a climate-denying study, but scientists refuse to conduct it

– Al Gore: Keystone XL is an “atrocity

8 states are pledging 3.3 million clean cars by 2025

– “Key developments as Sandy’s anniversary approaches

Mixed Bag

CEO talks about his history of working up from son of previous CEO

– MIT report: Wikipedia has entered a “decline phase

How people have died in the 21st century so far

Break Time

Sleep Now in the Fire

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Brandon Jordan

Brandon Jordan

Brandon Jordan is a freelance journalist in Queens, NY and written for publications such as The Nation, In These Times, Truthout and more.