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The Roundup for November 29th, 2013

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Hey everyone, hope you have a great weekend

Black Friday Protests and Consumerism 

– Activists risk arrests in cities, though their work has important implications for the future

– More information can be found here

Nine activists arrested in Virginia

– Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL): Wal-Mart protests could bring “a new political movement of the disenfranchised

– U.S. Senators respond and call for a better living for Wal-Mart workers

– Wal-Mart smears protests by saying unions paid $50 to all who protested

– “The dark side of Black Friday

International Developments


– “Revealing the 9/11 Conspiracy Would Undo the Entire US-Saudi Alliance” Part 2

– The world of drones and American hegemony

– “European firms size up Iran’s post-deal potential

– The U.S. has extended Iranian sanction waivers to a few countries

Middle East

– “A suspected U.S. drone strike killed an alleged militant in Pakistan’s northwest tribal region, intelligence officials said Friday, the latest indication Washington has no intention of throttling back its unmanned aircraft attacks despite increasing tension with Pakistan over the attacks.

– General Joseph Dunford, the top US and Nato commander in Afghanistan: We’re sorry for Helmond drone strike 

– Iran agrees to freeze their nuclear program by January

– “More than 50 public figures in Britain, including high-profile artists, musicians and writers, have put their names to a letter opposing an Israeli plan to forcibly remove up to 70,000 Palestinian Bedouins from their historic desert land – an act condemned by critics as ethnic cleansing.

– U.N.: Syrian children face “catastrophic” life in exile

– Juan Cole: “Karzai, Pakistan Protests against US Drone Strikes may force US out

– “The chief Palestinian negotiator in peace talks with Israel says the world needs to get tough with Israel over its continued settlement building to ensure the remaining five months of talks won’t be wasted.

– Despite years of loyalty, Afghan interpreters have visa problems

– “Yemeni President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi warned Friday against any attempt to undermine his country’s unity, after southern secessionists pulled out of a national dialogue with the central government.”

Asia & Oceania

– “Consumer prices in Japan rose at the fastest pace in five years in October, suggesting policymakers’ attempts to end years of deflation are working.

– “How the Iran nuclear deal matters for North Korea

– China gets jets to watch U.S. and Japanese planes 

– “India’s economic growth rate picked up strongly in the second quarter, according to official figures.

– “Repeat of 2010 Bangkok clashes feared as anti-Thaksin protesters march on

– Thai protesters break into the Army HQ

– ‘A US research institute said on Friday that it has detected a new construction at a North Korean missile launch site which the institute says is being upgraded to handle larger rockets.


On the mentality ill in Nigeria

– In Egypt, Islamists are repressed by police after demonstrating against anti-protest law


– “Is the Pope Getting the Catholics Ready for an Economic Revolution? (Maybe He Read Marx)

– “The EU will not accept a “veto” by Russia on the bloc’s ties with former Soviet republics, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has said.

– Because journalism hurts feelings. “A court on the Aegean island of Mytilini has handed down a six month suspended sentence – subject to an appeal – to a journalist for referring to a self-proclaimed “national socialist” school director as a “neonazi”.”

– “Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich vetoed last-minute attempts by the European Union to rescue a trade deal that could have been signed at a summit on Friday and would have signaled a historic shift away from Russia, EU diplomats said.

– Youth unemployment in Europe increases, Netherlands loses AAA rating and more 

– “Protesters both for and against an anti-prostitution bill that would decriminalize prostitutes but fine their customers have demonstrated outside France’s National Assembly as lawmakers began debating.

– Postal workers in Portugal are protesting against privatization efforts

– “Going Broke and Bonkers in Barcelona

– “The Spanish government Friday approved draft legislation that sets fines of up to 30,000 euros ($40,800) for offenses such as burning the national flag, insulting the state or causing serious disturbances outside parliament.”

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– ” Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro said a stricter wave of inspections for suspected price-gouging would begin on Saturday in an aggressive pre-election “economic offensive” aimed at taming the highest inflation in the Americas.

– “Thousands of young Haitians demonstrated Friday in several cities demanding that President Michel Martelly step down.

– “The new US ambassador to the Dominican Republic has taken up his post and introduced the country to his husband, despite an outcry from religious groups over the fact that he is gay.

– In El Salvador, there exists memory and repression

– “Police to talk to crane operator at Brazil stadium

– There were workers warnings the crane was unstable

– “Honduran leftist presidential candidate Xiomara Castro vowed Friday to deliver proof of the fraud she claims cheated her out of the presidency.”

Surveillance Planet

– “The parliamentary committee which monitors the security services should be given greater powers to obtain evidence and summon officials, the former Director of Public Prosecutions, Lord Macdonald, has urged.

Anger from Canadian politicians over spying at G20 summit in 2010

– “Techies vs. NSA: Encryption arms race escalates

– Greenwald to BBC: We must investigate the powerful since they lie to the people

– World fighting back against largest “Big Brother” in history

– “DHS agent cites private medical history to deny disabled Canadian woman entry to U.S.

– Emptywheel: “Ron Wyden: Obama Killed Anwar al-Awlaki with Authority Granted to Him

Financial Matters

– “Secretive Corporate Deal in the Works Could Establish Special Closed Door Courts for Big Business

– Part 2 of an interview on Iceland, regulations and banking

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

– The more money we hold, the less we care on our consumption’s externalities

– “Struggles of Younger US Workers Ripple Through Economy

– The Cayman Islands will share their tax data with “Five Eyes” countries

A map of which states are booming, stagnating or falling behind

Labor’s a-Brewing

– “Illinois union leaders on Friday criticized the details of a controversial deal to reform the state’s woefully under-funded public pensions, as legislative leaders revealed more specifics of the deal they reached on Wednesday.

– Labor as seen down below

Politics USA

Washington USA

– Obama: There’s “no way to go but up” after healthcare crisis

– “Is Obama’s Policy of “Tough Diplomacy” Withering Away?

– The Pentagon can’t find $8.5 trillion given by the government since 1996. Wait, wait, wait. Trillion?

– “Military Commissions Stuck on Torture

– “‘High’ Hypocrisy on Capitol Hill

– Just pathetic. “Parties recruit veterans to run for House in 2014

Everything Else USA 

– The American family is changing

– “The Unbelievable Story of the Man Saving the Children of Incarcerated Parents—Featured on PBS

– Study: “Cyberdeviance Among Teenagers Is Usually a Good Thing

– Brilliant piece on a socialist working in a local Democratic campaign

We Don’t Need No Education

– Noam Chomsky: Modern universities deprive you of your freedom

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– “U.S. Student Homelessness Up 10% Since Last Year

– Gallup: “Americans’ Desire to Shed Pounds Outweighs Effort

– “Delicious Food Is Not An Indulgence—It’s a Way to Solve Our Ecological Crises

– Greg Mitchell: “‘Poor’ Reporting at ‘The New York Times’—But That’s a Good Thing!

The Second Sex

– “Lay off Michelle Obama: Why white feminists need to lean back

– “Women, War, and the Working Class”

– “Boulder[, Colorado] prosecutors and homeless advocates are concerned that homeless women in the county are becoming increasingly vulnerable to violent sexual assaults, and are hoping to reach out to victims to make sure the crimes are reported and prosecuted.

– Women in Pakistan affected by climate change

Planet Earth

– After Haiyan, the challenge of rebuilding

– U.N. will seek more aid for rebuilding efforts in Philippines

– Climate change is making natural disaster more dangerous

– “The rate at which China’s largest desert freshwater lake is shrinking has accelerated dramatically in the past four years, figures show.

– Fossil fuel companies are helping their own demise

– “Argentine union members on Thursday clashed with environmentalists protesting the construction of a plant by U.S.-based seed giant Monsanto.

– Both warming seas and superstorms are destroying our aquatic life

– “Video Games Normalize Animal Cruelty

Mixed Bag

– Pew: Seven things to know about offline Americans

An interview with cartoonist Joe Sacco

Three stories by JD Salinger have been leaked online

– “Comet Ison appears to survive close encounter with the sun

– NASA: We’re growing turnips on the Moon by 2015

Break Time

London Calling

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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.