CommunityThe Bullpen

The Roundup for November 20th, 2014

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Hey there folks, it’s Transgender Day of Remembrance today.

International Politics


A short, yet stellar piece by journalist Nathan Fuller on the failure of The New York Times in reporting on U.S.-Iranian relations in a fair manner as the NYT takes the U.S. narrative on Iran.

– After the U.S. sent non-lethal equipment to the Kiev government, Russia warned the U.S. not to send arms

– A Swedish court declined to lift the arrest warrant on Julian Assange, which means this will only persist with more appeals

Middle East

– Iraq announced a partnership with Turkey to fight against the Islamic State, as well as coordinate attacks


– Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi is considering a presidential pardon for the three Al-Jazeera journalists


– In reaction to austerity in Italy, more citizens are rising up against their government for committing to retrenchment

– William Blum: “Russia Invades Ukraine: Again. And Again. And Yet Again

– In September, there was a ceasefire in Ukraine; however, nearly 1,000 people died during it, according to the U.N.

– London Mayor Boris Johnson said he will avoid paying the U.S. capital gains tax despite holding a U.S. passport; I mean, this is someone who defends the top one percent, of course he’ll go against taxes.

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– The resistance in Mexico is not only against the exploitation of the elites in the country, but also confronting the U.S. policies contributing to violence in the country; As the famous saying goes, poor Mexico, “so far from God, so close to the United States”

– In Brazil, blacks are killed, discriminated against, and assaulted by cops at higher rates compared to whites. It certainly is a crisis in society and communities are fighting back.

Surveillance Planet

According to documents from NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, GCHQ continued to get information from a British communications firm after Vodafone purchased the firm

– Speaking of firms and governments, some U.S. firms sold surveillance technology to regimes in Central Asia

– Amnesty International announced, after collaborating with different organizations, a tool called Detekt for users to check for government spyware

– Officials at the CIA read Glenn Greenwald’s latest book on NSA surveillance and they were not happy with it; I’m surprised they didn’t release a statement neither confirming nor denying they enjoyed the book.

– Natasha Lennard: “Who’s Afraid of the Surveillance State?

– Admiral Mike Rogers, director of the NSA, said China, along with another country, can shut down the power grids in the U.S.; Ah yes, the power of fear

Financial Matters

– With banking institutions now holding the power over money, mind you the same ones who caused the housing bubble, it must be asked why they are being entrusted with this huge responsibility.

– A Senate investigation found when banks get involved in the commodity markets they can change the prices to what they want

– Dean Baker: “A New Economic Slowdown?“; For those curious, Baker explains how awful the Trans-Pacific Partnership will be

– When the Bank of North Dakota is performing so well, we should definitely make the case for state-owned banking everywhere

Labor’s a-Brewing

– In a vote of 43-28, San ancisco bus drivers for Facebook decided to join with the Teamsters union; Interesting

Politics US

Washington USA

– Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said the world is becoming more dangerous and the U.S. is not prepared if it continues defense cuts; All of this intimidation is so darn hilarious.

– Gallup: Fifty-two percent of Americans do not believe the government is responsible for health care coverage

– Rania Khalek: “US media erase Israeli state and settler violence

– Despite my fierce criticism of President Barack Obama, I agree it is shameful for media conglomerates not to show the president’s address on immigration today

Anytown USA

– Journalist Raven Rakia writes an important piece on the New York Police Department’s rampant presence on the trains and how a new form of discrimination is being made by the NYPD; It’s not like Mayor Bill de Blasio isn’t aware of this

– Speaking of de Blasio, he said, despite the awful conditions in jails across the city, his administration is making progress on reforming such institutions

– Even officer Darren Wilson does not expect an indictment against him to occur; Ugh, I just can’t

We Don’t Need No Education

– Gallup: Seventy-one percent of college graduates who hold a full-time job say an internship in the same field helped give them that job

– After tuition hikes were announced for the University of California system, students are fighting back against such increases; Solidarity!

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– Gallup: Fifty percent of Americans approve of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

– With BART officers in San Francisco, Calif., arresting homeless people, activists are challenging the authority of officers considering how inhumane it is to do that

– Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers: “Dramatic Correlation Shown Between GMOs and 22 Diseases

A new report found obesity across the world costs $2 trillion per year; That’s right, trillion

– U.S. officials believe, albeit some hiccups, their response to Ebola was strong and still is

The Second Sex

– Business Insider has a list of all the women who accused Bill Cosby of sexually assaulting them; What a gross and vile person

– Jessica Valenti: “It’s OK to tell your abortion story. Some women just don’t want to be pregnant

– While some may see pick-up artist Julien Blanc being banned from the U.K. as a good sign, it is troubling to rely on the state to accomplish the goals of feminism

– A student at the University of Virginia was gang-raped and was told not to talk about it even by her friends. With the university deciding to do nothing, she told her story to Rolling Stone.

– New research found women, when in positions of power, are more depressed compared to men

Planet Earth

– Animal agricultural contributes significantly to carbon emissions, yet so-called environmental organizations refuse to address this

– Israel announced it could construct an alternative pipeline to Europe in order to counter-act Russia; Call me crazy, but I have the strangest feeling Israel is hoping to get on Europe’s good side

– Amy Goodman: “Keystone, Climate Change and the Cold

– After President Obama announced investments for developing countries to help the environment, other countries joined with investments of their own

– Fracking is causing health problems in poor communities which should make us question why profits are being held above people

Mixed Bag

– Pew: Fifteen percent of online harassment victims reported it occurred on a social networking site

– In Tuszyn, Poland, the city council decided to ban the image of Winnie the Pooh because of how inappropriately Pooh dresses; I’m sure it’s un-bear-able for them to look at the image, but it’s just a cartoon bear.

– Firefox announced it would replace Google, the default search engine, with Yahoo!

Break Time

The Heart Asks Pleasure First [Myleene Klass]

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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.