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The Roundup for November 27th, 2013

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Hey everyone, I baked a cake yesterday, came out great again. Hope everything is well on this Thanksgiving Eve.

International Developments


– “It’s Important to Know How the Stories We Tell Ourselves — True, or Not — Shape our World… for Better or Worse

– “Pakistani Drone Strike Opponents Block NATO Shipments to Afghanistan

– “Member states of the International Criminal Court amended its rules Wednesday to allow defendants to appear via video link and allow suspects who hold high office to miss parts of their trials, decisions likely to affect Kenya’s president who is due to go on trial in February.

Middle East

– Everyday I post this, I can’t fathom it at all. “Police found the bodies of 13 people around Baghdad on Wednesday, the apparent victims of execution-style shootings that recalled the height of Iraq’s sectarian slaughter.

– “The chief of the global chemical weapons watchdog says member states of the organization “can and must” help in the high-stakes mission to rid Syria of its toxic agents stockpile.

– Syrian rebels will attend Geneva talks

– “Iran will pursue construction at the Arak heavy-water reactor, Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif was quoted as saying on Wednesday, despite a deal with world powers to shelve a project they fear could yield plutonium for atomic bombs.

– “Rising anger over deadly drone attacks spurred a Pakistani political party Wednesday to reveal the secret identity of what it said was the top U.S. spy in the country. It demanded he be tried for murder, another blow to already jagged relations between the two nations.

– “Block the US-Afghan Security Agreement!

Asia & Oceania

– “U.S. affirms support for Japan in islands dispute with China

– “China acknowledged Wednesday it let two American B-52 bombers fly unhindered through its newly declared air defense zone in the East China Sea despite its earlier threat to take defensive measures against unidentified foreign aircraft.

– U.S. to airlines: Be careful when over East China Sea

“The US announced on Wednesday that Joe Biden, the vice-president, will use a visit to Beijing to discuss in person China’s unilateral declaration of an expanded air defense zone over the East China sea.

– The leader of the Thai protests states he is “prepared to die in the battlefield


– “Libya’s Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said on Wednesday his government will be unable to pay public salaries and may have to seek loans if armed militias blockading oilfields and ports continue to choke off crude shipments.

– In Egypt, girls were jailed for a pro-Morsi demonstration


– “Belgium came a step closer on Wednesday to introducing the right to grant euthanasia for terminally ill children, breaking what is an almost universal taboo, when a parliamentary committee voted it through by a large majority.

– “Merkel clinches “grand coalition” deal with SPD

– “Latvia’s prime minister has resigned after accepting political responsibility for the collapse of a supermarket roof in the capital that killed 54 people.

– Greek MPs have lowered the price of drugs

– “Hot Doc publisher Kostas Vaxevanis acquitted for a second time of charges relating to the publication of the Lagarde list of 2,000 Greeks with accounts in a Swiss bank

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– “Violence Against Demonstrators Follows Contested Result in Honduras Elections

– Accident at a World Cup stadium kills two construction workers

– “Washington said Wednesday it is working with Cuba to find a new bank for its diplomatic accounts in the United States, after a banking cutoff forced the Caribbean nation to halt nearly all U.S. consular services just ahead of the busy holiday travel season.

Surveillance Planet

– “The White House is nearing a decision on splitting up the eavesdropping National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command, which conducts cyber warfare, a proposed reform prompted in part by revelations of NSA’s widespread snooping, individuals briefed on the matter said on Wednesday.”

– Are we certain the NSA didn’t just want an excuse to view pornography?”NSA monitored visits of “Radicalizers” to Chat Rooms, Skin Sites to Discredit Them

– “The NSA is crippling America’s economy

– U.N. talks about “human right to privacy” as they advance a resolution over spying

– Emptywheel: “In 2009, NSA Said It Had a “Present Example” of Abuse Similar to Project Minaret

Financial Matters

– Great question. Juan Cole: “Pope Francis: Why are Deaths of the Homeless not a Headline but a 2-point Dow Jones rise is?

Six selfish companies for your viewing pleasure

– “For U.S. stores it is ugly out there: in more ways than one

– Bitcoin price surpasses $1,000

– “Buried somewhere under four feet of mud and rubbish, in the Docksway landfill site near Newport, Wales, in a space about the size of a football pitch is a computer hard drive worth more than £4m.

– “Starbucks and McDonald’s targeted by global protests over shady partner

– “How Wall Street’s New Empire of Rental Homes Could Blow Up the Economy

– Gallup: “Online Holiday Shopping Rises, Still Trails Other Venues

– While the jobs picture seems to be improving, manufacturing is still lagging

“U.S. expands China hiring probe to Morgan Stanley

– Pew: 50 percent of Americans dread online shopping

– “Sriracha: judge orders partial shutdown of California factory

– “America’s next big rip-off: Cars are the next subprime crisis!

Labor’s a-Brewing

– SeaTac, in Washington, officially wins $15/hour wage, but recount may be expected

– Good for him. “‘Walmart Illegally Fired Me, But I’m Still Fighting for Change This Black Friday’

– Labor is definitely brewing and this is a good example. “Whole Foods Workers Strike for Right to Thanksgiving Holiday; As Pizza Hut GM Fired for Shutting Doors

Regarding the workers on Black Friday

– ““They Call Us Illegal”: Fast-Food Workers Face Silent Raids”

Politics USA

Washington USA

– “Compounding pharmacies that custom-mix medications in bulk are expected to come under more federal oversight under a bill signed into law Wednesday by President Barack Obama.

– Even though IRS will work over “dark money,” enforcement is still a question

The five individuals Obama can pardon along with the turkey

– “Can President Obama Do More To Stop Deportations?

– “White House delays small business healthcare market by one year

Six questions over the future of

– “The Department of Health and Human Services is switching contractors for the government’s troubled health care website, a decision it says came months before the online marketplace opened and multiple problems were identified.

– Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT): Why I might run in 2016

– “Rate Hikes Hidden in California’s Glowing Obamacare Reviews

– “The number of insurance applications received by America’s largest state healthcare exchange has jumped by 60% this month, according to new data suggesting national website problems are gradually being eclipsed by success at a regional level.

Everything Else USA 

An infographic on working on Thanksgiving

– “Why reporters in the U.S. now need protection

– “High School Student Tasered in School by Cop Is in a Coma, Mother Says

– “Why Health Care Isn’t Just About Insurance

– “I’m the Guy Who People Think Hates Thanksgiving

– Part 1 of “Investigating the Saudi Government’s 9/11 Connection and the Path to Disillusionment

– “Gay couple to be first to marry in Illinois after judge grants request

– “The Political Life of Michael Bloomberg

– “Common Cause Unites Women, LGBT and Immigrant Rights Leaders

We Don’t Need No Education

– “Bill Gates Imposes Microsoft Model on School Reform: Only to Have the Company Junk It After It Failed

– Pew: The links between education, marriage and parenting

– “Profiting off your student debt misery?: America’s little-discussed conflict-of-interest

Top Gun! (Stories)

– “Colorado lawmaker resigns in face of recall over gun control vote

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– “This Thanksgiving, Let’s Celebrate Agri-Culture, Not Agri-Business

HIV infections in Europe rise

– The reality of our society is if our food is killed in a cruel way, it is only fair to say our lives will be dictated the same. “Undercover Video Exposes Cruelty & Brutality at Turkey Breeding Factory Farm

– Pew: Five facts over turkeys

– “School lunches exposed: The good, the bad and the inedible

– Gallup: The eating habits of Americans are worsening 

– Death toll of swine flu was higher than expected.

The Second Sex

– “The Other Steubenville Rape Case That Nobody’s Talking About

– CDC: Abortions dropped in 2010

– “Sorry, Pope Francis: Reproductive justice and LGBTQ rights are economic issues, too

– “Microsoft Knows Women Play Video Games Too, Right?

– “Shocker: Women in the Film Industry Are Good for the Film Industry

Planet Earth

– Farmers in the Philippines face “double tragedy

– Thom Hartmann: “The ‘Ticking Time Bomb’ That Could Cause Such Rapid Global Warming We’d Be Unable to Prevent Extinction

– “To nurture his acres of pistachio trees, Tom Coleman has long relied on water from California’s mountain-ringed reservoirs, fed by Sierra streams and water pumped from the massive Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

– “National Park Service makes anti-fracking comments, then takes it all back

– “Blatant overfishing in the Persian Gulf caught using Google Earth

– “Peru’s environmental protection agency has levied a $7 million fine on the Argentine oil company Pluspetrol for damage in the Amazon jungle to a pond in the country’s biggest oil concession.

– “Biomass Thermal: The Logs That Break the Forest’s Back

Mixed Bag

– “The Onion’s Tips For Traveling Over The Holidays

– Awesome. “Tongue controller for the paralyzed offers greater independence

A chart on a minute on the Internet

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.