CommunityThe Bullpen

The Roundup for January 7th, 2015

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Good day folks!

International Politics


– For those following the brutal killings in Paris, France, against cartoonists, The Intercept is providing an up-to-date blog on what is happening.

– Countries such as the U.S., Qatar and Egypt denounced the attacks in Paris

– Still, some of the responses are outright chilling in blaming all Muslims and promoting Islamophobia

– Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu: There must be an international response against “radical Islam

– The United Nations approved Palestine as a member of the International Criminal Court and will be officially named a member on April 1.

Middle East

– Sam Sacks: “As War in Afghanistan ‘Ends,’ Quagmire Of Reconstruction Continues

– Attorney Michael Ratner joins The Real News to explain what the effects may be after the Palestinian Authority joined the ICC, but also says the future is uncertain.

At least eight people were killed in Iraq were killed as a result of bombings and shootings

– The Islamic State is the tip of the iceberg when discussing problems occurring in Iraq

– The U.N. said at least 700,000 Syrian refugees were reported in the first six months of 2014; Whoa

Asia and Oceania

At least 37 people were killed by a suicide bomber outside a police academy in Yemen


– The U.K. is now so worried about extremist that it wants to prevent small children from becoming one.

Very interesting to see a Marxist soldier’s thought on fighting as a volunteer soldier for the Kiev government against the rebels in the east

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– As a result of a labor dispute in the U.S., McDonald’s ran out of french fries in Venezuela

Surveillance Planet

– Despite calls for evidence to be released tying North Korea to the Sony hacks, the White House declined for national security reasons

– Activist Norman Solomon talks to The Real News about the war on whistleblowers happening in the U.S.

– The FBI said the Sony hackers revealed their IP addresses and said they were definitely from North Korea

Financial Matters

– Gallup: The percent of uninsured Americans declined from 13.4 percent to 12.9 percent.

– With the drop in oil prices, the companies engaged in hydrofracking are crashing hard and fast

– President Barack Obama: Be cautious about the drop of low oil prices since they will not last forever

– Speaking of low oil prices, many Arab banks will be negatively affected as a result of it

– With all of this talk of a recovery, the reality is the U.S. economy still needs to create more than 10 million jobs. Judging by the boom and bust cycle of the economy where there is at least one recession every decade, it better come quick.

An interview with French economist Thomas Piketty about criticisms from the left and his writings

– For those following SYRIZA, The Guardian provides a fascinating look into the party’s chief economist

Labor’s a-Brewing

Part two of two with journalist Chris Hedges who explains how prisons use the labor of inmates for their benefit and pay them very little in return

– Good news out of a St. Louis, Mo., where adjunct professors at Washington University joined a local union of the SEIU.

– Journalist Michelle Chen discusses how pregnant women face tough times at some jobs and how states are slowly becoming more receptive

Politics US

Washington USA

– Gallup: Forty-three percent of Americans identify as “Independent,” which is more than folks identifying as either Democrats or Republicans

– Sam Knight: “Bernie Sanders vows trade transparency bill over TPP secrecy

– In general, the drone program used by the Border Patrol is useless, terrible and a waste of money.

– Abby Martin: “Troop Worship

– For those who may have missed it, I previously linked to interviews with Naomi Murakawa, who talked about the contributions of liberals to the prison system. Here is a summary on her work linking the two.

– Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL): I am unsure about running for president, but I am sure I can win it; He later added, “Ya know, let me run for president of the world! Futurama did it with Richard Nixon.”

– Ali Abunimah: “Islamophobia bankroller behind organizer of Israel junket for US ‘Muslim leaders’

Anytown USA

– Part two of four with journalist Stephen Janis and former police lieutenant Stephen Tabeling about the failure to train police to work with communities

– In Savannah, Ga., a mentally ill black man was restrained by officers and killed as a result.

– Meanwhile, in Billings, Mont., a jury found an officer innocent after fatally shooting an unarmed individual high on meth

– Rania Khalek: “Defend ‘Israel’s advocate’ Alan Dershowitz against rape claims, says prominent rabbi

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– Often times, the top drugs are typically ones where pharmaceutical companies give loads of money to doctors who promote such drugs. Here’s a list of it too.

The Second Sex

– In Kansas, a group in opposition to abortion wants a law to ban the decapitation of fetuses. That’s right, decapitation.

– Jessica Valenti: “Women shouldn’t need special train cars to avoid harassers. Men need to leave women in peace

– Alright, it’s a new Congress and a new year so what’s next? Finally ending economic stagnation? Major infrastructure plans? Force an end to war? Actually, the House wants to start off with a ban on abortions after 20 weeks.

– The U.S. asked Poland to extradite director Roman Polanski over charges of rape

Planet Earth

Part two of nine with scholar Robert Pollin about the right amount of investment in alternative energy and why fossil fuels interests strive to prevent such investments

A new study found, once again, most of the fossil fuels used for consumption on Earth would need to stay in the ground

– Think the U.S. is the only country to give climate deniers responsibility on the environment? Guess again as Brazil joins the fun!

– Residents in Portland, Ore., are challenging the EPA and companies tied to the agency over a water reservoir.

Mixed Bag

– Mario Cuomo, despite what was said in the past week, did not really push anything liberal. He was another person of the establishment.

– After the deaths of 12 cartoonists at a satire magazine in France, the response from those in the media is varying from support to self-censorship

Break Time

Do I Wanna Know? [Arctic Monkeys]

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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.