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The Roundup for October 25th, 2013

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Apologies for the lateness, trains aren’t so reliable.

Hope your day went well.

International Developments


– Ecuador threatening to sue Britain over Assange

– The Daily Show: Everyone Hates U.S.

– US defends drone strikes as “necessary and just.” I think the arrest of war criminals in the US is “necessary and just.” Will the US go through with their arrests?

– “Defense lawyers for five men charged in the Sept. 11 attack appealed to President Barack Obama to declassify details of the CIA’s secret interrogation program of terrorist suspects as the latest installment in the long-running proceedings came to an end Friday.

– Is Obama’s aversion to Middle East issues adding to outrage over surveillance?

An ex-drone operator describes his experiences

– The five challenges to estimate global migration

Middle East

“Syrian state media reported the death of the leader of Jabhat al-Nusra, an al-Qaida linked group fighting the regime of president Bashar al-Assad. Unverified reports said Abu Mohammad al-Golani had been killed in the Latakia area.”

16 killed in bombing in Iraq intended for Shi’ites

– “U.N. aid chief Valerie Amos demanded stronger action by the U.N. Security Council on Friday to get desperately needed aid intoSyria, where 2.5 million people in need have not received help for almost a year.

– “U.S. prosecutors brought criminal charges on Friday against a man they said had tried to acquire surface-to-air missiles that he planned to smuggle into Iran in a threat to U.S. national security.

– Guess how many garment factories have been inspected since the death of over a thousand garment workers in Bangladesh? The answer: Zero

– “Five demonstrators were killed across Bangladesh and more than 100,000 opposition activists rallied in the capital Dhaka on Friday to demand that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina quit and order polls under a caretaker government.


– White House: Increase of West Africa piracy and it is a “disturbing increase

– “Tunisia’s ruling Islamist party and the opposition began talks on Friday to form a caretaker government and prepare for elections under an agreement to end months of unrest in the country that inspired the “Arab Spring” revolts.


– Kim Jong Un gets a degree on economics from University

– Indian Prime Minister not worried over spying since he has no email or phone

Financial Matters

The long history of privatization failures

– JPMorgan accepts $5.1 billion in fine

– “The United States Attorney in New York says about $28 million worth of bitcoins have been seized from a man charged with operating a notorious online drug marketplace known as Silk Road.

– UK economy grows by .8%, fastest in 3 years

– An all-encompassing view of the recovery

– Gallup: Only 52% Americans believe there are “plenty of opportunities” for advancement, down from 1997’s 81%

Surveillance Planet

– the US spies on its Allies for business interests, not national security

– Michael Ratner: US drone strikes are war crimes, yet human rights groups do not call them as that

– “You do it too! A pathetic response of NSA spying

– “Angela Merkel and François Hollande lead push at EU summit to reshape transatlantic spying and agree new code of conduct

– New Snowden leaks: UK spy agencies worried about legal challenges if info got out

– “The White House edged closer on Friday towards an apology for eavesdropping on friendly foreign leaders with a newspaper column acknowledging the damage caused by excessive collection of data.

– NSA: No denial of service attack, just a maintenance problem

– ACLU: Government “fundamentally destroyed” Lavabit

Labor’s a-Brewing

McDonald’s wants another corporate jet, not pay raises for its workers

– “Despite the massive attention it’s gained, this movement is still in its infancy. It must be built with strong workplace and community networks. This summer, we went on strike for very concrete demands. But we also went on strike for dignity, respect, and power. Because militancy works. My bosses don’t taunt me about going on strike anymore. After striking, I got a raise – and more than a dozen co-workers asking me how they could join the union.”

– Finally! “The nation’s largest labor unions are ready and willing to help fight global warming, but are cautioning environmentalists that workers need new clean-energy jobs before existing industries are shut down.

– “ILWU members have maintained strong, round-the-clock picket lines for months since UGC locked out members of ILWU Local 4 in Vancouver in February and CGI locked out ILWU Local 8 members in Portland in May.

Politics USA

Government USA

– I like how the Guardian wrote the “scheme.” “The troubled website will be fixed by late November, the Obama administration said Friday as the US government appointed a new contractor to head the scheme.

– White House: issues to be solved by end of November

– White House relaxes penalty deadline of Obamacare

Nine Democrats already caving to cut Social Security

Ted Cruz will be President if Elizabeth Warren is listened by Democrats says one idiot Republican. Even though Ted Cruz was born in Canada…Do these people read their Constitutions?

– Rand Paul threatens to hold Janet Yellen’s nomination unless his bill of auditing the Fed goes through

– Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius brushes calls for resignations

– Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL): If Congress won’t stop deportations, Obama should

– GOP Voter Suppression Laws Could Lead to GOP women voters not voting. Poetic justice!

Everything Else USA

– “America’s Best Cities are being Lobotomized

– Bill Moyers: The Lies that Will Kill America

– “Monday morning I woke at dawn and drove an hour from Phoenix to the small town of Eloy, Arizona. It was pretty warm already and I knew the Arizona sun would only grow hotter. I grabbed my bandana and prepared to chain myself to the entrance of one of the largest detention centers with the worst reputation in the United States.

– Colbert’s hilarious segment on Dallas Safari Club proposal to save black rhinos by killing one

– “Rallies are held nationwide against police brutality, meanwhile the family of Kyam Livingston, who died in a Brooklyn jail after allegedly being denied medical care, filed a wrongful death suit against New York City Monday

– Glen Ford on Black Nationalism and the People’s Movement

– Pew: About half of Americans think it’s time for immigration reform this year

Top Gun! (Stories)

“As of this week, estimates are that 28,177 Americans have died of gun violence since the Newtown, Conn. school shootings. That’s 90 people every single day.”

– Gallup: Americans divided over what to do about gun controll

We Don’t Need No Education 

– “Education ‘Reform’ Is Wrecking our Schools

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– FDA proposes new safety rules in pet food after pet deaths.

– Mental health funds for Newtown fall short, lawyers say

Youth homelessness at an all-time high says report

Less than quarter of New Yorkers approve of Bloomberg’s handling of homelessness

The War on Women

– “Can You Guess the 10 Best Countries for Women?

– “Beauty products are largely unregulated. The same companies that festoon themselves in pink ribbons use many toxic ingredients.

– “I don’t stand with Russell Brand — and neither should you

Robin Thicke is really that gross

– “‘Rape culture’ just a lie states US World & News Report

– Texas just doesn’t like women

Planet Earth

7.3 earthquake hits near Fukushima, tsunami warnings issued

You could live hundred of miles away from a wildfire and still be at risk

Why cleaning Fukushima is the worst job ever

– Japan’s biggest hope: Windmills instead of nuclear power

Barnacles join list of creatures that eat plastic in the sea

Mixed Bag

– NASA: We will have a mass shooting on the moon by 2055

– McDonald’s to drop Heinz ketchup after 40 years

– Always hungry? Eating 30 almonds a day might help

Break Time

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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.