CommunityThe Bullpen

The Roundup for November 18th, 2013

{!hitembed ID=”hitembed_1″ width=”350″ height=”197″ align=”right” !}

Hello everyone, I baked a chocolate cake yesterday and it came out incredibly delicious. Hope you’re well.

International Developments


– “The Afghan government has rejected a key proposal of a security agreement with the US, putting the entire deal in doubt days before Afghan tribal leaders gather in Kabul to consider the matter.

– “Don’t buy the spin on Guantanamo: ‘Closing’ it doesn’t mean what you think

– Shaker Aamer: We are treated like animals

– “President Barack Obama is pushing to overcome obstacles to closing the Guantanamo Bay prison, setting the White House on a collision course with Congress in its bid to loosen restrictions for moving out detainees.

– John Kerry: Netanyahu “has every right” to oppose Iranian deal

– “The Obama administration faces a decision whether to press Iran to go along with the changes or to go back to the original compromise when political directors of the six powers and Iran reconvene Nov. 20. That choice will provide the key indicator of how strongly committed Obama is to reaching an agreement with Iran.

– Palestine casts first UN vote

– “Not a single European Union nation came forward on Monday offering to host the destruction of Syria’s poison gas stockpile, with many instead calling for the arsenal to be eradicated close to Syria itself.

Middle East

– “Syria is not a revolution any more – this is civil war

– “Turkey’s top diplomat pushed back on Monday against allegations that his nation has not cracked down hard enough on extremists crossing its border to fight in Syria’s civil war.

– ” The U.N. envoy to Yemen said Monday the country’s president is likely to stay in office beyond the envisioned two-year transition period because he is facing obstruction from political opponents that is delaying progress.

– Nine months? “The Palestinians will stay in peace talks with Israel for the planned nine months despite their fierce opposition to Israel’s settlement building, the Palestinian president said Monday.

Asia & Oceania

– Southeast Asia’s main flashpoint: Kashmir


– “Nelson Mandela remains in critical condition

– “A reformist Islamist leader said Monday that Egypt’s army chief should not run for president in next year’s expected election, telling The Associated Press such a move would block transition to democracy.


– Europe is progressing forward with its Financial Transaction Tax

– “A Dutch safety watchdog issued a warning Monday about a potential risk when planes using autopilot and an airport’s automated landing system approach a runway at too steep an angle.

– Just playing the piano in Spain could land a musician in jail

” Greece’s finance minister met Monday with representatives of the country’s international creditors, part of tough negotiations to resolve a disagreement over 2014 budget cuts and allow the release of further rescue loans.

– “A Russian court on Monday ordered two Greenpeace crew members released on bail but kept another one in jail following a protest against oil drilling in the Arctic.

Latin America, Carribean & Canada

– “Michelle Bachelet nearly doubled her conservative rival’s votes in the first round of Chile’s presidential election, but her center-left coalition fell short of the gains in Congress needed to keep many of her promises.”

A discussion over the Chile election

– “Princeton University Confronts Meningitis Epidemic Preventable in Cuba

– “Four Chilean Student Leaders Make the Jump to Parliament

– “Citywide Manhunt in Paris Continues for Gunman Who Opened Fire in French Capital

– “President Cristina Fernandez finally returned to work Monday, meeting with Cabinet ministers and recording a seven-minute video that showed her in good spirits six weeks after surgery to drain blood from inside her skull.

– That’s how you do it! “Cuban authorities have summoned a Mexican businessman in connection with a corruption probe, echoing previous cases in which foreigners were ultimately charged in absentia and had their local businesses seized.

– “Secretary of State John Kerry says that while the U.S. welcomes changes taking place in Cuba that allow Cubans to travel more freely and work for themselves, Havana needs to do more.

Financial Matters

– Pew: Only 52 percent of Americans will gain because of increasing Dow

– Part 1 of “How Powerful Interests Walked Households into a Debt Trap

– “The value of virtual currency Bitcoin surged to over $600 (£372), ahead of a US Senate committee hearing.

– ” Hopes that the U.S. Federal Reserve will continue to support the world’s largest economy and a new reform effort in China shored up markets Monday, particularly in the U.S. where the main stock indexes broke new ground.

– “The Coronation of Janet Yellin

– Robert Reich: Sales for Wal-Mart are dropping due to low Wal-Mart wages

– “US futures firm MF Global Holding has been ordered to pay $1.2bn (£740m) in restitution to its customers over its collapse.

– Dean Baker: “Agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership distribute wealth upward. Real ‘free trade’ can lower medical costs for everyone.”

– “A person close to the talks says the Justice Department and JPMorgan Chase & Co. have reached agreement on all issues in a $13 billion settlement of a civil inquiry into the company’s sales of low-quality mortgage-backed securities that collapsed in value in the financial crisis.

– Activists have staged protests in front of the White House over the Chained CPI proposal

– “N.Y. Fed Asks Court to Dismiss Fired Goldman Examiner’s Lawsuit

– “Crossroads’ Tax Return Shows Big Donors, But Doesn’t Name Them

– “A small New Hampshire coffee producer that operates out of a barn has prevailed in a trademark infringement case brought by Starbucks over a blend called “Charbucks.”

– Then just go and jail them! “Admonishing the nation’s bankers, the Justice Department’s No. 2 official says too many financial institutions have failed in their duty to ensure that their businesses are run cleanly.

Surveillance Planet

– “Private firms selling mass surveillance systems around world

– Iran has unveiled its new “biggest” drone

– “Yahoo to add encryption to all services in wake of NSA spying revelations

– “Jeremy Hammond: Stung or entrapped?

– After the spying revelations, can both the E.U. and U.S. trust again?

– “German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday the relationship between Germany and the United States as well as the future of a trans-Atlantic free trade agreement have been “put to the test” by allegations of massive spying by the U.S. National Security Agency — including tapping her own phone.

– Emptywheel: “Truth Claims, Malaprops, Cows, and the NSA Debate

– On the drone strike transparency bill and Wikileaks

– “The Snowden Leaks and the Public

– “Google is paying $17 million to 37 states and the District of Columbia to make amends for the Internet search leader’s snooping on millions of people using Safari Web browsers in 2011 and 2012.

Labor’s a-Brewing

– Wal-Mart requests workers donate food to needy employees, instead of paying them more

– “Wal-Mart faces warehouse horror allegations and federal Labor Board complaint

– Reality TV shows have been accused of stealing millions in wages 

– Pardon the pun. “Big Retailers Make Low-Paid Workers Into Exploited Turkeys on Thanksgiving

– “Volkswagen Isn’t Fighting Unionization – But Leaked Docs Show Right-Wing Groups Are

Politics USA

Washington USA

– “President Barack Obama says he’s deeply disappointed that Senate Republicans have blocked his nomination to fill a vacancy on a powerful appeals court.

– Gallup: 56 percent of Americans believe health care is not a government responsibility

– “President Barack Obama is preparing to meet with key senators on Iran as the White House pushes Congress to hold off on new sanctions.

– There are different historical assessment of both Bush and Obama

– Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA): Let’s have an expansion of Social Security

– ” The White House says 20 percent of Americans won’t make it through the website to buy health insurance through new exchanges.

– Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL): God is everywhere and doesn’t need our permission when discussing separation of church and state

– “House Inaction Escalates Community’s Demands for Immigration Reform

On Obama’s credibility shaken due to healthcare woes

– “The Senate Banking Committee is expected to vote Thursday to approve President Barack Obama’s choice of Janet Yellen for chairman of the Federal Reserve and to send the nomination on to the full Senate.

One doctor may have saved Medicare millions in 2011

– Medicare is wasting billions to big-name drugs when cheaper alternatives are neglected

– “The biggest Republican-leaning money machines are spending dramatically less this year to help the party ahead of the 2014 Senate elections, two years after millions of dollars in early advertising by outside groups against Democrats backfired in embarrassing losses in otherwise winnable races.

– The Lyme Disease community have “blown the whistle” on the CDC

– “Former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is spending time right now making movies, but he’s not ruling out another presidential run in 2016.

– Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is considering a 2016 run if there are no other candidates with “left-wing values”

– “With all the problems facing the rollout of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, nowhere is the situation worse or more surprising than in Oregon, a progressive state that has enthusiastically embraced the federal law but has so far failed to enroll a single person in coverage through the state’s insurance exchange.”

Everything Else USA 

– James Early speaks about history of blacks in the South and American identity

A report from the drone summit

– “Why I Represent the New Orleans Immigrant Workers Who Committed Civil Disobedience

– How are young adults faring in the top 25 metro areas? Not good.

– The horrible future Libertarians have in mind. I seriously despise Ayn Rand/faux free market Libertarians.

– A disabled man has sued Colorado police for tasering and shooting his helper dog

Salon interview with recently elected Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative City Council elect

– “I could have been Renisha McBride

– The Young Conservative of Texas, a student-run group at the University of Texas, have decided to make a new event: “Catch an Illegal Immigrant” or have an undocumented immigrant sting

– “Polarizing Brooklyn Prosecutor Retires Amid Scrutiny

– George Zimmerman back to face court after charge of assault

– “Residents of a flood-prone area battered by Superstorm Sandy are getting a financial lifeline, with state officials announcing a plan to buy all 129 homes in a neighborhood sandwiched between a tidal marsh and the Atlantic Ocean.

We Don’t Need No Education

– Privatizers are killing the American education system

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

The nine products inside your Thanksgiving meal

– With food stamps cut, children may as well skip meals

– Medicinal cannabis would assist PTSD-afflicted vets

– Joseph Stiglitz: The insanity of our food policy

– Study: “Teenagers whose parents see military combat at higher suicide risk”

– “The lack of access to a decent toilet is no joke for a third of the world’s people, but a matter of life and death.”

The Second Sex

– “Why Americans are still scared of female bosses

– “Today, an anchor at Fox Business wondered aloud during a broadcast if the “female brain” is to blame for the glass ceiling.” That’s all you need to know where this will lead to

– It’s been a decent year for women in the technology sector

– “Women Lead the Way in Sustainable and Organic Agriculture

– The act of trading women for profit

– “Three women convicted of child sexual assault were granted bail on Monday after spending more than a decade in prison following a trial their supporters believe was tainted by prejudice, faulty science and untruthful testimony.

Planet Earth

Typhoon Haiyan

– “Typhoon Haiyan: fears not all survivors have been reached”

– “The president of the Philippines has vowed to remain in the area ravaged by typhoon Haiyan until conditions have improved.

– Corruption in Philippine government magnifies the situation

– Here is the latest on death and damage in Philippines

The Rest

– “Time for a Mass Upheaval Against the Perpetrators of Global Destruction“\

– Now would be preferable. Like right this second. “The top U.N. climate diplomat on Monday told the coal industry it should leave most of the world’s remaining coal reserves in the ground and start investing in renewable energy sources.

– “Flooding in Vietnam has killed at least 28 people since Friday, with nine others missing and nearly 80,000 displaced, state media and government reports said, after a tropical depression brought heavy rains across central areas of the country.

Seven individuals were killed due to tornadoes in the Midwest

– Developing countries have pushed for climate change “reparations” 

– Colorado will be the first state to limit methane from fracking

– War criminal George W. Bush: Build the “damn” Keystone XL pipeline

– What did they find beneath Antarctica’s ice sheet? Active volcanoes of course!

– “Toxic waste dump mess spills into Washington

– “Fracking Unfocus: How the EPA’s Long-Awaited Hydraulic Fracturing Study Could Miss the Mark

– “Fukushima workers start removing spent fuel rods

– “An Alaska official said Monday the state is looking at taking a multibillion-dollar equity stake in a major natural gas pipeline project as a way to protect its interests and help make the long-hoped-for project a reality.

– More on the Chevron case in NY court on exploitation of land in Ecuador 

Mixed Bag

– Cancer researchers: “Don’t get cancer

– How Facebook is attempting to retain its users

The Cookie Monster in the “Hunger Games”

– “A media guide for Physics

– Why mustard is good for your health

– Oxford University says “selfie” is word of the year. WE’RE NOT EVEN DONE. CHOOSE ANOTHER WORD.

Break Time

Eternal Life

Previous post

Global Tech Firm, ThoughtWorks, Supports Push to Roll Back Surveillance State Further Exposed by Snowden

Next post

FDL Movie Night: Bettie Page Reveals All

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.