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The Roundup for July 16th, 2014

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Howdy folks, enjoy your Wednesday today with the warm sounds of Dido’s “White Flag.”

International Politics


– Pew: Throughout the world, there is strong opposition to U.S. mass surveillance programs and its use of drones

– The United States is losing its image abroad and this could change world politics

– Very depressing to read, in a secret prison in Afghanistan under U.S. control, prisoners are on hunger strike due to poor conditions; When did barbarianism become the norm?

– The U.S. escalated its sanctions against certain Russians and warned the country over its support of Ukrainian separatists

Middle East

– Israel agreed to a six-hour truce with Gaza at the same time Secretary of State John Kerry said the U.S. was seeking a ceasefire

– Israel apologized for killing four children in Gaza by stating it was a “tragic outcome

– The Kurds have a good chance to be independent, but regional politics may play a significant role in either blocking it or supporting it

– It is being reported Shiites in Iraq are facing “genocide” as a result of Islamic State forces

– Meanwhile, Iraqi troops left Tikrit after a heavy assault by ISIS forces

– A Gaza-based journalist talks to The Real News on the ceasefire rejected by Hamas and wehat she is feeling as the bombings continue. Moreover, The Real News covers more in coverage from the border of Israel and Gaza

– Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is re-elected to a third term and states his opponents must see the mandate given to him


– Lengthy jail terms will given for men who sexual assaulted women at a celebration for President al-Sisi

– Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan seeks $1 billion to invest in the military against internal threats


– Ecija, Spain provides an example how not depending on a volatile capitalist economy as the workers there depend on each other and their success attracted others to the town

– Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi is more of a tactical politician than a committed leftist, although it will pose a problem in the EU

– In fear of violence, the city of Paris banned pro-Palestinian demonstrations

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– Despite the Canadian Supreme Court ruling the government’s laws against sex workers were unconstitutional, the Harper administration is still pushing to criminalize sex work

– The Pentagon notified Congress it is planning to transfer six Guantanamo Bay detainees to Uruguay

Surveillance Planet

– Navi Pillay, the UN’s human rights commissioner, stated Edward Snowden should not be prosecuted by the U.S. as his efforts were for the public interest

Financial Matters

Part one and two of three with Lawrence Lessig and Chris Hedges on removing big money from politics, and its influence in contemporary American politics

– Richard Wolff: “Capitalism’s Deeper Problem

– Financial investors have sued major banking institutions for $250 billion for their hand in the housing crisis

– Emptywheel: “CISA: The Banks Want Immunity and a Public-Private War Council

– In what amounts to bad news, a new report from the European Commission found the wealthiest 1 percent are richer than originally thought

– Robert Reich: “The Rise of the Non-Working Rich

– What do Americans spend the most on? Child care.

Labor’s a-Brewing

– Teachers union are turning against the Democrats as a result of their market reforms and lack of a genuine effort to help out students and teachers.

Politics US

Washington USA

– Gallup: 17 percent of Americans state immigration is the most important problem the U.S. government should focus on, up from five percent in June.

– In essential Senate races for the midterm elections, Democrats are outspending the Republicans

– What the Supreme Court requires is someone like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) as its recent rulings call into question its effectiveness

– The Obama administration wants Congress to act on stopping corporations from going overseas to avoid taxes

– Pew: Moreover, 53 percent of Americans state deportation should be sped up even if those seeking asylum are deported

Anytown USA

Good news as journalist Jose Antonio Vargas was released from Border Patrol custody, who said the border crisis was “tragic on many levels

– Journalist Sarah Jaffe reports on efforts by parents to get back their children taken away due to their low-income status

– The FBI is worried about driveless cars in the future since they can be used for crimes

– A judge has ruled California’s death penalty is unconstitutional as a result of the delays of prisoner executions

We Don’t Need No Education

– There are efforts to reshape the economic curriculum in order to provide help for developing countries

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– A new UN report stated it was possible to control AIDS by the year 2030 as the rates of those with HIV and AIDS are declining

The Second Sex

– Economist Robert Johnson argues the value of economic policy revolving around women, which would provide benefits toward the economy

– Former New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson spoke with Cosmopolitan on what female journalists should do and how she felt when she was fired

– As Scott Brown continues to run as a hopeful Republican nominee for New Hampshire’s Senate seat, he continues to avoid women’s issues despite Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), his opponent, stating his record shows him as anti-woman.

Planet Earth

– Even El Niño will not provide help to drought-stricken California as it implements strict measures to conserve water

– Google Maps and EDF are developing a mapping system to identify natural gas leaks in your vicinity

– Tragedy in the Philippines as Typhoon Rammasun killed at least 10 people; Let us hope the death toll does not rise

– Nestlé controls a reservoir full of water in California and is barely regulated by those in charge of doing so; It is strange that the drought in California continues while companies in the region export bottled water

Mixed Bag

– Pew: President Barack Obama is viewed, compared to former President George W. Bush, as more caring and trustworthy. Yet, he is viewed as ineffective as Bush

– An Arizona lawmaker assumed a bus of YMCA children was a bus full of undocumented children

– While it is difficult to pinpoint why people hate each other, it can be easy to avoid through the use of community and love

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.