CommunityThe Bullpen

The Roundup for January 21st, 2015

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Hey there folks! We head to Australia for today.

International Politics


– Speaker of the House John Boehner invited Israeli Benjamin Netanyahu to speak in front of Congress on Iran, which is viewed as a snub to the Obama administration

– The White House does not seem happy Netanyahu is coming as he did not notify them beforehand

Middle East

– How fitting is it for the death of an Iranian commander by Israeli authorities to happen near Israeli elections where the cost of living is a major issue

– An independent review found Israel did a poor job in avoiding civilians deaths during the bombings of Gaza last summer

– Very interesting read on the initial sympathy by people living in Gaza on the Charlie Hebdo killings

– In Homs, Syria, a car bomb exploded in a government-controlled neighborhood and seven people died as a result

Asia and Oceania

– Gallup: Sixty-seven percent of Afghans say the economy is getting worse in their country


– The prison system in Turkey for LGBT folks is harsh and brutal because authorities do not respect them at all

– Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko claimed Russia had troops and military vehicles in the country

Surveillance Planet

– A district court dismissed a court case where Viacom and Google were accused of tracking children on the Nickelodeon website for advertising

– After the terror attacks earlier this month in Paris, European Union officials are thinking about more surveillance tools

– So-called community efforts led by the government to engage with Muslims may be more of an intelligence gathering program based on the last time this happen

Financial Matters

– Gallup: Americans cite both health care and low wages as important financial issues in their life

– Economics professor Bill Black and economist James Henry join The Real News to discuss the State of the Union and how President Barack Obama covers up the negatives with the few positives

– The International Monetary Fund reports oil exports in the Gulf will lose $300 billion as a result of low oil prices

– The head of BP believes low oil prices are here to stay for the next three years

Labor’s a-Brewing

– Quite a read on labor in Gaza, especially with tensions rising between the Palestinian Authority and workers

Politics US

Washington USA

– The State of the Union was yesterday and it was the same old same old. The only response you should watch is from Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant.

– During his sixth year in office, President Obama averaged an approval rating of 42.6 percent

– The House Foreign Relations Committee, full of GOP lawmakers, wants to designate North Korea as a sponsor of state terrorism and are willing to play the terrorism card to do so

– Mike Huckabee used a political action committee to pay thousands of dollars to his own family members

– Sam Sacks: “Republicans’ own witnesses attack GOP net neutrality proposal at hearing

A new survey found a majority of Americans, regardless of their political affiliation, support equal pay and affordable child care

– The Justice Department will not be charging officer Darren Wilson with anything

– The Supreme Court ruled in a 7-2 decision Congress is the only entity to determine what can and cannot be exempted from disclosure

Anytown USA

– In Bridgeton, N.J., a cop killed an unarmed black man after the person placed their hands in the air at the officer’s request.

– New Jersey Governor Chris Christie refuses to disclose information pertaining to his travel costs

We Don’t Need No Education

– Should Obama’s community college plan pass, Hispanics would benefit the most from it

– A main worry with the free community college proposal is the prospects of strings attached to the deal

Very disturbing comments from the head of Hillel at Rutgers University on Islam and Israel

The Second Sex

Good news as the next Physician-General of Pennsylvania will be Rachel Levine, a doctor and the first ever trans woman appointed to the post.

– Feminists should not focus on promoting more women into positions of wealth and power, rather they should focus on helping working women; Reminds me of neoliberal feminism Sarah Jaffe wrote a few months ago

Planet Earth

– In spite of TransCanada continuing to push for Keystone XL to be completed, residents in Nebraska still will resist its construction

– Despite President Obama claiming the country is doing a good job on the environment, his record and goals say the opposite

Mixed Bag

– Missed or avoided the State of the Union? The Onion summarizes it all here.

– Multi-tasking does not really exist and technologies is forcing us to do so despite its negative effects

– Dave Zirin: “Deflated Balls for Some, Miniature American Flags for Others!

Break Time

Who Can It Be Now? [Men At Work]

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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.