CommunityThe Bullpen

The Roundup for May 4th, 2015

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Back to an experimental mood for Break Time, but, if you have a song suggestion, feel free to pitch it! I’ll put it for this week.

Surprisingly, I’ve added only one song from Mr. Bungle and the last one was in late 2013. I’ll be sure to incorporate more songs from them in the next few months.

Baltimore Uprising, Day 7

– A former marine participating in the demonstrations felt there was a double standard when it came to him protesting. I think it’s fair to say this shows the mood of the folks in Baltimore, although it’s just a hunch

– Arun Gupta: “Growing up between black and white in Baltimore

– Pew: Sixty-one percent of Americans say people seeking to engage in criminal behavior explains “a great deal” on the unrest in Baltimore, while 56 percent say tension between police and the community was the reason

– The Real News hosts a panel discussion with community organizers in Baltimore to explain the causes of the unrest

– Baltimore activist and artist Comrade speaks with The Real News about life for black youths in the U.S. along with the power of activism through music

– George Ciccariello-Maher: “Riots work: Wolf Blitzer and the Washington Post completely missed the real lesson from Baltimore

International Politics


Part eight of 10 with John Kiriakou on his time with Abu Zubaydah and in Pakistan for the CIA

– The most disgusting part of drone strikes is how the death toll is not really accurate, which means those not counted do not matter at all

A personal story from an American trying to leave Yemen amid the Saudi-led invasion

Middle East

– Black Lives Matter even in Israel where Ethiopians are demonstrating against racism in the country as Israeli forces attempt to silence them. Indeed, police beat up an Ethiopian solider

– Kit O’Connell: “The Staggering Size Of The Syrian Refugee Crisis Threatens Aid Efforts

– The best way to defeat the Islamic State’s influence in Iraq is to create a united Iraqi state. A united Sunni army would be nice too

– Turns out both Saudi Arabia and Iran ended up as losers after the Saudi-led invasion of Yemen

– Ali Abunimah: “Lauryn Hill cancels Israel show after Palestinian boycott call

– According to testimonies, Israeli soldiers were told everyone in Gaza was a threat and, thus, civilians would need to be killed

– Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman will no longer be a part of the new coalition government

Asia and Oceania

– The new constitution drafted by the military junta in Thailand is not only undemocratic, but pathetic

– Nepal asked for more economic aid for reconstruction after the earthquake


– Russell Brand, the comedian and activist, said it was important to vote and said the Labour party should be supported

– Were Jews in Paris really attacked by BDS activists? Nah, not really

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

A new study found inequality dramatically fell in Venezuela and Uruguay relative to other Latin American countries as a result of wealth redistribution policies

– The Canadian government does not want a Canadian held at Guantanamo Bay to be released

– After the Jalisco New Generation, a new drug cartel, shot down a military helicopter, the Mexican government pledged to fight back

– A two part investigation on Mexico and the case of the 43 missing students

Financial Matters

– Dean Baker: “Celebrating the Flash Crash With a Wall Street Sales Tax

– What did the Obama administration do to bring Japan around to the Trans-Pacific Partnership? Appease Japan’s military

– For General Motors, it is a case of how the mighty have fallen oh so hard

Labor’s a-Brewing

– It certainly is a good question to ask as to why black women are not usually found as heads of union

– On May Day, activists shut down the Guggenheim to protest the museum’s ties to the United Arab Emirates, who are not a friend of labor

– An official in charge of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar said there were no worker deaths at the construction of stadiums

Politics US

Washington USA

– Chris Hedges: “Make the Rich Panic

– The State Department is fully aware Hillary Clinton violated ethics while Secretary of State as her foundation accepted foreign money. Will they do anything? Nah

– Bill Clinton: We didn’t do anything wrong in terms of donations, at least I don’t think we did

– Meanwhile, the State Department ordered a watchdog group reviewing policies implemented in Afghanistan to cut its staff

– The Navy is unsure whether to use its drones to kill people or to spy on them; How about neither?

Carly Fiorina, former head of Hewlett-Packer, and Ben Carson, a Tea Party darling, both officially announced they will enter the 2016 presidential race

– President Barack Obama announced a new initiative at CUNY Lehman College to help black youths

– Obama: “There are consequences to indifference” if we don’t make any effort to change things

Anytown USA

– Two gunmen were killed outside an anti-Islam event in Garland, Texas, a city, it must be noted, with a history of Islamophobia

– One of the two gunmen is identified already, although authorities are not sure why he decided to take up arms and may take a while to figure out

– Turns out, by the way, the FBI monitored one of the Garland shootings for years

– New York state police arrested an “out-of-control” individual—a five-year-old child with special needs

– Major government officials paid tribute to NYPD officer Brian Moore, killed on-the-job

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– In Chicago, trauma centers are usually far away from communities, mostly black, in need of them

– Chipotle banning genetically modified foods seems more of a move to get customers than caring about the health of their customers considering there really isn’t anything bad about GM foods

The Second Sex

– Sen. Kirsten Gilibrand (D-N.Y.): The Pentagon is actively under-reporting sexual assaults

– Smith College announced it would admit transgender female students starting this fall; Wouldn’t have this been better to do a few months ago when students are looking for colleges?

– Jessica Valenti: “There’s no need for women to hide their nipples behind padded bras

– As a result of strict anti-abortion laws, seven out of 16 abortion clinics in Ohio have closed down

– Melissa Gira Grant: “This Tech Startup Is Helping the Cops Track Sex Workers Online

Planet Earth

A new study found rules implemented by the Environmental Protection Agency in reducing air pollution will save at least 3,500 lives per year

– At least 12 million trees died in the past year as a result of the drought in California; Thanks global warming!

– Let’s hope climate change becomes a major issue in the 2016 presidential election

– A new report found, as lenders provide less funds to coal companies, the coal industry will soon lose its full grip

Mixed Bag

– Ayaan Hirsi Ali is not only a very hateful person, but also very short-sighted and dangerous

– Dave Zirin: “‘The Game Done Changed’: Reconsidering ‘The Wire’ Amidst the Baltimore Uprising

Break Time

Sweet Charity [Mr. Bungle]

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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.