Return to Home Page Informed Cynic Home Page             
Augustin Plains Water Gila Forest Cibola Forest Wolf Release Useful Links Socorro Electric Co-op Augustin Plains Water Socorro Electric Co-op Useful links Gila River Issues Cibola Forest Issues Wolf Reistroduction Augustin Plains Water Gila Forest Cibola Forest Wolf Release Useful Links Socorro Electric Co-op FEBRUARY 2018 POLITICAL ARTICLES
February 8, 2018

Head of Nobel Peace Prize-Winning Group: Trump’s Nuclear Policy “Puts Us on Path Toward Nuclear War”. DemocracyNow

New Evidence of Africa’s Systematic Looting, From an Increasingly Schizophrenic World Bank.  CounterPunch

In 1974 Call to Abolish CIA.   Sanders Followed in Footsteps of JFK, Truman. Intercept

With New D.C. Policy Group, Dems Continue to Rehabilitate and Unify With Bush-Era Neocons. Intercept

Almost four environmental defenders a week killed in 2017. .. Exclusive: 197 people killed last year for defending land, wildlife or natural resources, new Global Witness data reveals. In recording every defender’s death, the Guardian hopes to raise awareness of the deadly struggle on the environmental frontline. Guardian

“I Refused to Secretly Spy” — An Iranian-American Turned Down the FBI and Wound Up With a Prison Sentence. Guardian  

Noam Chomsky: We're on the Brink of Global Catastrophe. ... Donald Trump poses a threat to human civilization unseen in decades. AlterNet

How the Republicans rigged Congress — new documents reveal an untold story. Exclusive: Insider documents unveil Republicans’ years-long scheme to gerrymander America and undermine democracy.  Salon  

“They were Both Cops & Robbers”: Baltimore Police Scandal Exposes Theft, Cover-Ups & Drug Peddling.

February 7, 2018
As Paul Ryan Touts a Secretary’s $1.50 Weekly Pay Hike, Koch Bros. Reap $1.4B from GOP Tax Plan.

Why We Should Fear the ‘Washington Establishment’ Figures Who are Pulling the Strings in the Trump Administration.  CounterPunch  

Police and Prosecutors Routinely Steal Cash from Poor People Accused of Crimes. .. It's called civil asset forfeiture. In 2015, $5 billion was taken "without basis." AlterNet Related:   6 Classic Ways Cops Spin the Media to Hide Their Abuses of Power. ... How to spot copspeak in the media. AlterNet

Bail Bond Industry Buying Politicians To Keep People In Jail. TROFire

Jailing the Poor for Fines and Bail Is a Government-Operated Loan Shark Operation.  TruthOut

Idaho lawmakers kill bill requiring personal financial disclosures. ... Idaho and Michigan are the only two states left nationwide that don’t require yearly financial reports from lawmakers.  Center for Public Integrity

Bernie Supporters Aren't Exactly Getting What They Were Hoping for Out of the DNC. ... The reforms would address most of 2016's anti-democratic features. But there's more vetting before they come before full DNC. AlterNet

Joe Kennedy III, Just Another False Progressive Idol Like JFK.   TruthDig

The Limits of #MeToo: Sectionalism, Economism, and “Identity Politics” on the Left. CounterPunch

Not Even Orwell or Huxley Could Have Imagined 'Totalitarian' Threat Posed by Facebook and Google, Warns Soros. ... Billionaire investor says there is serious threat of tech giants and authoritarian states teaming up to "bring together nascent systems of corporate surveillance with an already developed system of state-sponsored surveillance.".

February 6, 2018
The Bankruptcy of the American Left. ... There will be no economic or political justice for the poor, people of color, women or workers within the framework of global, corporate capitalism. TruthDig/Hedges

More Than Half Of American Babies Are At Risk For Malnourishment. ... The first 1,000 days of nutrition can set a child’s course for life or perpetuate a cycle of poverty. HuffPost

The Dunning-Kruger Effect In The Trump Era. David Dunning, a social psychologist whose research focuses on accuracy and illusion in self-judgment, joins David to discuss the Dunning-Kruger effect and people’s assessment of their own moral character. TROFire

EPA uses posters to troll its own employees
Scott Pruitt promotes his regulatory rollback agenda. ThinkProgress

Trump Adviser Says Infrastructure Push Won’t Have New Revenue. ... Amtrak, transit programs will be cut instead, he says. Roll Call

Trump’s $1.5 Trillion Infrastructure Plan Is Light on Federal Funds, and Details. NY Times

In a Major Free Speech Victory, a Federal Court Strikes Down a Law that Punishes Supporters of Israel Boycott.  Intercept

Tales From the Crypt. ... With his customary bravado Donald Trump boasted that the TV audience for his first State of the Union address was the largest in history. This extravagant assertion was soon swatted down by none other than Fox News, which cited at least five other SOTUs speeches with bigger ratings since 1992, including Obama’s final bland monologue in 2016. CounterPunch

The Ugly Truth in the Nunes Memo.  TrughDig

February 5, 2018

The Nunes memo, explained with diagrams
The memo is out. Here’s why Republicans think it’ll discredit Robert Mueller’s investigation. Vox

Internal Analysis Revealed Trump Plan Would Cost Workers Billions, So Labor Dept Buried Study. ... Worker advocates say it "shows the lengths to which the Trump administration and Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta will go to hide the fact that they are taking steps to actively make workers' lives worse." CommonDreams

The Pentagon’s Useful Idiots. ... Democrats and Republicans in Washington agree on one thing at least: the need to fight Russia. In their view, Vladimir Putin believes the US lacks the resolve to defend its allies; he is also trying to protect his authoritarian regime against democratic and liberal contagion. He has therefore chosen aggression against the West. But US politicians on both political sides, and the military, have decided to counter-attack. CounterPunch

16 Years of War: Trump Joins Obama & Bush in Using SOTU to Hail “Progress” in Afghan War. DemocracyNow

The War That Never Ends (for the U.S. Military High Command). ConsotriumNews

Meet the CIA: Guns, Drugs and Money. CounterPunch

A Former Trump Adviser Met With A Russian Spy, ,,, Carter Page told BuzzFeed News that he had been in contact with at least one Russian spy working undercover out of Moscow’s UN office in 2013. BuzzFeed

The Case of the Missing "Fraudulent" Voters: An Interview With Greg Palast. TruthOut

Johann Hari on How the “Junk Values” of Neoliberalism Drive Depression and Anxiety in the U.S.  DemocracyNow

UK mass digital surveillance regime ruled unlawful. ... Judges say snooper’s charter lacks adequate safeguards around accessing personal data. Guardian

More than 63 million women 'missing' in India, statistics show. ...Sex-selective abortions and boys’ better nutrition and medical care blamed for gender disparity.

Weekend of February 2-4, 2018

Weekend Read: Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment. ... "Loaded recognizes the central truth about our 'gun culture': that the privileged place of guns in American law and society is the by-product of the racial and class violence that has marked our history from its beginnings."—Richard Slotkin, author of The Gunfighter Nation: Myth of the Frontier in Twentieth-Century America. Amazon


San Jose to undocumented immigrants: ‘We are prepared. You are not alone’. Mercury News

State rep slams feds after new data says twice as many people netted in ICE raids. Statesman

Trump Officials Are Exploring Mass Arrests of US Mayors. TruthOut

Letter: Immigration sweeps would not be productive. Mercury News (Letter)

Democrats perilously divided as Trump takes momentum on immigration. Kansas City Star

Ravi Ragbir Speaks Out After Being Freed from “Unnecessarily Cruel” ICE Detention.

‘The Constitution commands better’: Judge halts deportation of prominent immigrant rights activist. ... Ravi Ragbir was detained earlier this month, triggering clashes between police and demonstrators. ThinkProgress

None of This Is Normal, State of the Union Edition.

Unleashed and Unaccountable: The FBI's Unchecked Abuse of Authority. Greenwald: "I realize pointing out the serial abuses, lies & lawbreaking of Comey, Mueller & FBI shows that one loves Putin and is probably a traitor, but I still feel this comprehensive ACLU report is noteworthy given the current attempt to sanctify this authoritarian agency & its leaders." 2013 report ACLU

Why Does the FBI Have to Manufacture its Own Plots if Terrorism and ISIS Are Such Grave Threats?. Intercept

Trump’s secret assassinations programme. ... One year on from a disastrous operation in Yemen that left 10 children dead, we take a look at President Trump’s secret assassinations programme, its origins in the Bush and Obama administrations, and its horrifying escalation in the last year. Reprieve

Meet the CIA: Guns, Drugs and Money.

A Former Trump Adviser Met With A Russian Spy, ,,, Carter Page told BuzzFeed News that he had been in contact with at least one Russian spy working undercover out of Moscow’s UN office in 2013. BuzzFeed

The Uncomfortable Truth About Whole Foods and Amazon's Grocery Monopoly. ... Late capitalism resembles Soviet logic, especially when it comes to consumer options.

February 1, 2018
Tuesday Night Circus Review - when the doors to the asylum swung wide open.
Ball of Shit
  •  Fact check: Donald Trump's State of the Union address analyzed- Alan Yuhas examines key claims in Donald Trump’s State of the Union address and separates fact from fiction. Not sure this is a tad softball, but only hits the obvious I guess, in a simply way. Guardian

  • Made in the USA: The Real History of the MS-13 Gang Trump Talked About in State of the Union.

  • The kind of night Donald Trump loves best – when he can applaud himself - ... At the State of the Union, Trump could pretend to be the president he never is, and accept support from a Congress that ridicules him. Guardian

  • Trump SOTU Didn't Mention Climate Crisis Once. Sadly, Neither Did Democratic Response. ... By contrast, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) explicitly highlighted the climate crisis in his reply to the president's speech, slamming Trump for calling climate change "a hoax". CommonDreans

  • Five things we learned from Trump's first State of the Union ... US president boasted of strong economy and tax cuts, and called for infrastructure spending and a bipartisan deal on immigration Guardian

  • Full of Lies and Scapegoating, Divisive Trump SOTU Decried as 'White Nationalist Wish List' ... "We certainly won't be fooled by any attempt to pit workers, whether immigrant or native born, against each other." CommonDreams






February 28, 2018

The Greatest Cover-Up in History ? How Imperial Britain's Racist India, Africa & China Narrative ?Still Persists HuffPost  

Wyoming Now Third State to Propose ALEC Bill Cracking Down on Pipeline Protests. ... On the heels of Iowa and Ohio, Wyoming has become the third state to introduce a bill criminalizing the type of activities undertaken by past oil and gas pipeline protesters.  CounterPunch  

Israel Extracts “Confession” From Badly Wounded Cousin of Ahed Tamimi, Jailed Protest Icon.

Their Meddlers and Ours. ... By the end of World War II, the United States had become a serial meddler in the affairs of the nations of the world, friend and foe alike.  CounterPunch  

Blowback: How the Bombing of Libya in 2011 Led to Terror in Britain. Intercept  

f Democracy Makes a Comeback, White Suburban Women Will Be a Big Factor. ... Grassroots activism among suburban women may be the key to the anti-Trump resistance.  AlterNet  

'Corruption, Plain and Simple': Public Comments Show Outrage at CFPB's Corporate Turn Under Mulvaney. ... "Mick Mulvaney is putting the interests of predatory lending companies and fraudulent banks ahead of the interests of consumers."
 Common Dreams  


US and Allies Look to Military Intervention in Venezuela. ... The Bolivarian social and political movement first led by former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and holding state power since1999 has long faced U.S. assaults. CounterPunch  

GOP Senator Says Trump Is Ready to Start War With North Korea, Which Would Be “One of the Worst Catastrophic Events in History”

'act of war' North Korea regards Donald Trump’s ‘new plan’ to send the US Coast Guard to patrol waters off its shores as an ‘act of war’ ... The US President has vowed to cripple the rogue regime with increased naval blockades and stop-and-search vessels in Asia-Pacific waters. The Sun (UK)

Trump Announces Harsh New Sanctions Against North Korea. NY Times

Trump’s strategy for dealing with North Korea is in shambles ... Signs abound that his economic isolation campaign is failing.  Vox (Dec 2017)

Why Trump’s new North Korea sanctions matter. ... Hint: It’s another sign of the White House’s emerging strategy for trying to resolve its nuclear standoff.  Vox  

President Trump doesn't rule out nuclear strike on North Korea that would be 'very unfortunate for the world'  NY Dail News  

The Coming Wars to End All Wars.

February 27, 2018
Guns and Liberty. . ... The proliferation of guns in American society is not only profitable for gun manufacturers, it fools the disempowered into fetishizing weapons as a guarantor of political agency. TruthDig  

The Supreme Court may have just kept DACA on life support for several more months. ... The Court refused to bend the rules for Trump by hearing a DACA case early.  Vox  

Masha Gessen: Did a Russian Troll Farm’s Inflammatory Posts Really Sway the 2016 Election for Trump?  DemocracyNow  

Lee Fang: Billionaire Koch Brothers Have Extracted “Laundry List” of Victories from Trump Admin. DemocracyNow and Koch Document Reveals Laundry List of Policy Victories Extracted from the Trump Administration. Intercept

In Pre-Dawn Raid, Israel Arrests Badly Wounded Cousin of Ahed Tamimi, Jailed Protest Icon. ...  Early Monday morning, Israeli forces detained a teenage Palestinian boy who has been missing part of his skull since December, when he was shot in the head by an Israeli soldier during a protest against the occupation of his West Bank village.  Intercept  

The Florida High School Shooting Survivors Are Being Inundated with Death Threats. ... Conspiracy theorists have smeared at least one teen as a "crisis actor."  AlterNet  

Blowback: How the Bombing of Libya in 2011 Led to Terror in Britain. Intercept  

February 26, 2018
Iona Craig Won a Polk Award for Her Investigation of a SEAL Team Raid That Killed Women and Children in Yemen. Here’s How She Did It. Intercept  

Top 10 Signs the U.S. Is the Most Corrupt Nation in the World. ... Those ratings that castigate Afghanistan and some other poor countries as hopelessly “corrupt” always imply that the United States is not corrupt. TruthDig/Juan Cole  

Masha Gessen: Did a Russian Troll Farm’s Inflammatory Posts Really Sway the 2016 Election for Trump? DemocracyNow

“This Is the New War”: Jared Kushner, Amid a Showdown with Kelly, Prepares for Battle with a Weekend in the Caribbean. ... As Trump melted down at Mar-a-Lago, and the administration reeled from one of its most dismal weeks in 13 months, Kushner and his wife left the country. Vanity Fair

JARED KUSHNER - Several articles in HuffPost 

5 types of gun laws the Founding Fathers loved
Framers of the Second Amendment wanted an armed, but regulated, population.  HCN  


Trump at CPAC: the invasion of the body snatchers is complete. ... Old-school Republicans were thin on the ground in Maryland, where the conservatives gathered proved they’re all Trumpians now.

VP Pence at CPAC: "The United States of America doesn't stand with murderous dictatorships, we stand up to murderous dictatorships" ... He lies as usual: The US Supported violet dictators and war criminals (very short list): Suharto - Saddam Hussein - Ceausescu - Reza Shah Pahlavi - Pinochet - Trujillo - Mobutu - Rhee - Habré - Zia-ul-Haq - Ríos Montt - Marcos - Duvalier (1 and 2) - Castelo Branco - Somoza -Batista -Videla, etc.

Trump cpac speech Guardian 

Trump went off-script at CPAC. We fact checked it. NBC News  

Weekend of February 23-25, 2018

Weekend Read: Fighting Fascism
How to Struggle and How to Win

by Clara Zetkin Edited by John Riddell and Mike Taber.  Clara Zetkin, an organizer of the First International Women’s Day, presented this Report and Resolution on fascism at the June 1923 enlarged plenum of the Communist International’s executive committee. At a time when fascism was a new and little-understood phenomenon, Zetkin’s work proposed a sweeping plan for the unity of all victims of capitalism in an ideological and political campaign against the fascist danger.
Available at Haymarket Books

Congress and the AR-15: One NRA Stooge Too Many. CounterPunch  

Death in al Ghayil - Women and Children in Yemeni Village Recall Horror of Trump’s “Highly Successful” SEAL Raid. Intercept  

Roads to nowhere: how infrastructure built on American inequality. ... From highways carved through thriving ‘ghettoes’ to walls segregating black and white areas, US city development has a long and divisive history. Guardian  

UK Mass Digital Surveillance Regime Ruled Illegal. CounterPunch  

Citigroup Drove Puerto Rico Into Debt. Now It Will Profit From Privatization on the Island..

'Dirty meat': Shocking hygiene failings discovered in US pig and chicken plants. ... Previously unseen government records detail ‘deeply worrying’ incidents in pork and poultry plants, raising fears of ‘dirty meat’ entering the UK under a post-Brexit trade deal. Guardian

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Russiagate. ... “An epidemic terror seized upon the nations,” wrote Charles Mackay in his 1841 masterpiece, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds. “It was a crime imputed with so much ease, and repelled with so much difficulty, that the powerful, whenever they wanted to ruin the weak, and could fix no other imputation upon them, had only to accuse them of witchcraft to ensure their destruction.”. CounterPunch  

It's time for America to embrace guaranteed income
Chris Hughes. ... We should provide a guaranteed income of $500 a month for every working adult who makes less than $50,000, argues Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes. Guardian  

Continuing Sabotage of Americans' Healthcare, Trump Proposes Allowing Insurers to Offer 'Junk Plans'. ... "Welcome back to: underwriting, denials, higher premiums for being sick, and possibly...insurers leaving markets. All of this is by design."  CommonDreams  

Inside the U.S. Military Recruitment Program That Trained Nikolas Cruz to Be “A Very Good Shot”, DemocracyNow  

6 Sickening Details You Won't Read in Billy Graham's Fawning Obituaries. ... The pastor urged Nixon to commit war crimes and called AIDS a judgment from God.  AlterNet  

February 22, 2018
Robert Reich: Morality & the Common Good Must Be at Center of Fighting Trump’s Economic Agenda. DemocracyNow

Plumpes Denken: Crude thinking.

Trump Blames Mental Illness for Parkland Shooting, Ignores Easy Gun Access & Loose Background Checks. DemocracyNow

The Gun Violence the Media Shows Us and the State Violence They Don’t. CounterPunch 

NRA’s Hold On Florida So Powerful Not Even This Tiny Bird Is Safe. ... Lawmakers killed efforts to make the native scrub jay the state bird – simply because the state’s top NRA lobbyist hated the creature. HuffPost  

$1.74 Trillion for H-bomb Profiteers and “Fake” Cleanups. CounterPunch

Five Months After Maria, San Juan Mayor Decries “Disaster Capitalism” & Privatization in Puerto Rico. DemocracyNow

The "Alt-Right" Is Building a White Nationalist Mass Movement With "Operation Homeland"

The World Will Not Mourn the Decline of U.S. Hegemony. TruthDig  

February 21, 2018
With New D.C. Policy Group, Dems Continue to Rehabilitate and Unify With Bush-Era Neocons. ... One of the most under-discussed yet consequential changes in the American political landscape is the reunion between the Democratic Party and the country’s most extreme and discredited neocons.  Intercept  

"Pro-Immigrant" Liberalism and Capitalist Exploitation: Why Corporate Democrats Do Not Support Immigrant Justice. TruthOut

American History for Truthdiggers: Roots in Religious Zealotry. TruthDig  

Why the Right Wing Is So Interested in Narrowing Down Education into 'Skills' ... The politics behind the push to expand vocational education.

Jill Stein Downplays Russian Meddling: Media and DNC Interfered in 2016 Election Too.
 Media ITE

Sanders silent on claim that Russians backed him in 2016. ... Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders declined to directly address Friday's revelation that Russian actors sought to boost his presidential primary campaign and sink Hillary Clinton's in 2016, instead insisting that the special counsel’s investigation proceed unimpeded. Politico  

People Care More About the OXFAM Scandal Than the Cholera Epidemic. CounterPunch

A Consensus Emerges: Russia Committed an “Act of War” on Par With Pearl Harbor and 9/11. Should the U.S. Response be Similar?  Intercept  

Making Mugs of Voters: Mueller’s Russia Indictments. CounterPunch

What Do Trump and Followers Mean When They Say 'America'? TruthDig  

The NY Times’s Newest Op-Ed Hire, Bari Weiss, Embodies its Worst Failings — and its Lack of Viewpoint Diversity. Intercept  

February 20, 2018
How We Fight Fascism. ... In 1923 the radical socialist and feminist Clara Zetkin gave a report at the Communist International about the emergence of a political movement called fascism. Fascism, then in its infancy, was written off by many liberals, socialists and communists as little more than mob rule, terror and street violence.

In Conversation: Quincy Jones. ... The music legend on the secret Michael Jackson, his relationship with the Trumps, and the problem with modern pop. Vulture  

Why Do the Democrats Take Trump’s Trolling Lying Down?  CounterPunch 

Americans have forgotten what 'treason' actually means — and how it can be abused. ... We are willfully turning a blind eye to the sordid history of treason that led to its unique treatment in the U.S. Constitution. NBC News  

Mexico’s Zapatista rebels, 24 years on and defiant in mountain strongholds
The peasant rebels took up arms in 1994, and now number 300,000 in centres with their own doctors, teachers and currency, but rarely answer questions - until now. Guardian

Israel to Deny Tax Breaks, Government Bids From Local Groups Calling for Boycott. ... Implementation would require compiling a 'blacklist' of Israeli boycott supporters, sources say, on top of an existing list of foreign activists and groups. Haaretz  

The NRA donated $10,000 to help train the Parkland shooting suspect to use a rifle. .. He practiced on indoor ranges shooting at targets the size of coin. ThinkProgress

In Leaked Chats, WikiLeaks Discusses Preference for GOP Over Clinton, Russia, Trolling, and Feminists They Don’t Like.  Intercept  
Julian Assange saga: judge to rule on arrest warrant. ... After six years holed up in Ecuadorian embassy, WikiLeaks founder faces a pivotal moment.  Guardian  
Assange Judge’s Husband Runs Security Firm With Ex Head of MI6. Craig Murray  
All Pretence is Over in Persecution of Assange. Craig Murray  
The UK’s Hidden Hand in Julian Assange’s Detention. CounterPunch  
The Scourging of Julian Assange. CounterPunch 
Sweden tried to drop Assange extradition in 2013, CPS emails show. ... UK prosecutors tried to dissuade Swedish counterparts from doing so, exchange shows.  Guardian  
The Biggest Secret
My Life as a New York Times Reporter in the Shadow of the War on Terror. Intercept  

February 19, 2018
Let’s Remember the Schoolchildren U.S. and Russian Bombs Are Killing, Too. TruthDig  

The Security Clearance Situation in the White House Is Bonkers. ... NBC News reported on Wednesday that as of November, 130 political appointees working on President Donald Trump’s staff had not yet been permanently cleared—among them White House counsel Don McGahn. Slate  

Trump’s White House has a major security clearance problem. ... “We might be facing a situation we’ve never faced before.”  Vox

Admiral warns US must prepare for possibility of war with China. ...Harry Harris, the next US ambassador to Australia, says Beijing intends to control South China Sea.  Guardian  

In the Post-Truth Classroom. CounterPunch

How Trump Is Undermining the Fight Against Mass Shootings. ... Look at the budget numbers, not the press-conference rhetoric. The Nation

Trump puts public school safety and trauma counseling funding on the chopping block. ... Education Secretary Betsy DeVos says school safety is a priority, but budget proposals tell a different story. ThinkProgress


Juan González Talks Roots of Fascism, Rise of Authoritarian Movements on the Intercepted Podcast. DemocracyNow

Henry A. Giroux | The Ghost of Fascism in the Age of Trump. TruthOut/Giroux

While the Media Panicked About Campus Leftists, the Far Right Surged, ,,, If a reader were to judge from popular media accounts, the biggest threat to university life and public discourse would be obvious: the left-wing students on campus fighting various forms of bigotry and other injustices. From liberal broadsheets to, commentators have taken up a strawman debate — largely shaped by the far right — about campus free speech. Intercept  

Partner With Hard Right to Convict Trump Protesters. ... A lawsuit filed Tuesday in Washington highlights a dangerous national trend. ... D.C., police and federal prosecutors have been collaborating with notorious right-wing groups known for fascist statements and using doctored videos to ambush their targets in an attempt to convict and jail protesters from President Trump’s inauguration.  AlterNet

'A Big Scare Tactic': ExxonMobil Files 'Conspiracy' Counter Suits Against Climate Defenders. ... Critics charge that by "positioning itself as a victim rather than a perpetrator," the company is aiming to "reframe the debate, use it as a diversionary tactic, and scare the heck out of everybody."  CommonDreams

Weekend of February 16-18, 2018

Weekend Read:
Politics of Persuasion, The: Economic Policy and Media Bias in the Modern Era. ... Examines how the US media covers high-profile public policy issues in the context of competing claims about media bias.  Amazon  

How ICE Works to Strip Citizenship from Naturalized Americans.  ... For 10 years, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s investigative office has worked to keep its internal handbook out of American courts. The handbook could have been used in court to show how ICE’s push to lead on denaturalization cases stands in contrast to the language of federal law governing the process, an immigration lawyer said.  Inercept  

Trump Privatizes America.  CounterPunch

The Next Recession Is Really Gonna Suck. ... The extra help unemployed people got during the Great Recession has emboldened states to mistreat them. HuffPost

After Destroying Iraq, U.S. Won’t Give a Dime to Reconstruction. TruthDig

What Are We Still Doing in Syria?  ...  With our ongoing war efforts there, the Trump administration is courting disaster.  National Review  

Scared of my Own Thoughts. Craig Murray  

Consumer Protection Agency's New Mission Under Trump?  Not Protecting Consumers. ... New CFPB budget proposal, said one watchdog, further reveals president's "unwavering loyalty to the big banks, predatory lenders, and Wall Street special interests."  CommonDreams  

As Deadly Flu Sweeps Country, Koch-Backed Group Fights Paid Sick Leave Policies Nationwide.  DemocracyNow  


The EPA debunked Administrator Pruitt’s latest climate misinformation. ... Until Pruitt deleted the EPA climate webpages.  Guardian

Five things Pruitt can do to cripple the EPA. ... The new administrator and President Donald Trump are expected to move quickly to begin unraveling the agency's rules on water and climate change.  Politico  

EPA's Pruitt moves to roll back over 30 environmental regulations in record time.
CBS News

Trump's infrastructure plan aims to sweep away 'inefficient' environmental reviews. ... Trump’s plan would threaten endangered species or fragile habitats with limits for environmental reviews. Guardian

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt Fails Another Senate Test.  Intercept  

Banned from the banking industry for life, a Scott Pruitt friend finds a new home at the EPA.
Tulsa World  

Trump Pick For EPA’s No. 2 Accused Of Abusing Power To ‘Bully’ And ‘Intimidate’ Opponents. ... As a Senate aide in 2005, Andrew Wheeler went after state air pollution regulators for opposing his boss’s bill.


Trump Infrastructure Plan Decried as 'Scam' Designed to Keep US Stuck in 'Dirty and Destructive Past'. ... "This is a plan to shore up the infrastructure of the past, rather than invest in what we need for the future." 
enviromental protection agency

February 15, 2018

“It’s Hard to Believe, But Syria’s War Is Getting Worse”: World Powers Clash as Civilian Deaths Soar. DemocracyNow

'Morally Bankrupt' Budget: After $1.5 Trillion Gift to Rich, Trump Demands $1.7 Trillion in Safety Net Cuts.  CommonDreams  

Do You Like Paying Tolls? You’re Gonna Love Trump’s Infrastructure Plan. ... The proposal would allow more states to toll interstate highways. HuffPost  

Congress introduces record number of bills to prevent people from taking industry to court. ... Congress races to protect industry from lawsuits. ThinkProgress  

While 'Not the Worst' of His Crimes, Israeli Police Call for Indicting Netanyahu on Corruption Charges. ... Observers note Israel "won't put him on for war crimes and crimes against humanity, but hey, guess it's something." CommonDreams  

Netanyahu Is Now Weak and Vulnerable and His Political Partners in Israel Know It.  ...  The police sewed up Netanyahu from head to toe – a hermetic seal, at least in the eyes of a layman - which won't suffice with a public reprimand.  Haaretz  

Harvard’s Laurence Tribe Has Become a Deranged Russia Conspiracist: Today Was His Most Humiliating Debacle. Intercept  


Ahed Tamimi: Palestinian viral slap video teen goes on trial. BBC News  

Israeli Judge Denies Bail to Palestinian Teen Who Slapped Soldier. DemocracyNow

Ahead of trial, Amnesty says Israel must release Ahed Tamimi JPost  

IDF Court: Ahed Tamimi to be jailed until end of trial. JPost

Military Trial Opens For 17-Year-Old Palestinian Activist. NPR  

URGENT: Release Palestinian teen activist Ahed Tamimi. ... 17-year-old Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi has been called the ‘Rosa Parks of Palestine’. For years, she and her family have bravely stood up against the Israeli occupation. But she now faces up to 10 years in prison over an altercation with Israeli soldiers.
Amnesty International  

Israel Will No Longer Allow Palestinian Teen Ahed Tamimi to Make the Occupation Look Bad. Haaretz

The military judge at the teen's hearing seeks to do everything possible to prevent the courtroom from becoming a media circus.   Haaretz

No Way To Treat A Child. CommonDreams  

February 14, 2018
Hostis humani generis

"At Its Core, Anti-Fascism Is Self-Defense": An Interview With Mark Bray. ... this ultra-nationalist Donald Trump came to the fore because he rightly believed that this brand of bombastic, far-right politics would sell. Under different circumstances, he might have chosen to present himself as more of a laissez-faire "globalist," but the wind wasn't blowing in that direction. TruthOut  

John Kelly’s true self and ICE’s mission creep: Tyranny is spreading. ... Darkest side of the Trump agenda: Kelly reveals his true colors and ICE seeks to join the intelligence community.  Salon

Exclusive: Resistance Grift – How Scott Dworkin Turned the Resistance into a Personal Payday. Progressive Army  

A crisis for human rights': new index reveals global fall in basic justice. ... More than 70 of 113 countries surveyed for latest Rule of Law Index report their fundamental human rights are being eroded.  Guardian  
Racist Bullying? Religious School In Texas Argues Courts Can’t Intervene. ... A religious school is being sued after it punished alleged racist harassers with one-day suspensions. HuffPost

Food Researcher Reveals Why She Turned Vegan After Investigating The History of Pork. rchaeologist Dr Pía Spry-Marqués tells of how researching the relationship between humans and pork turned her off animal products for life.  Independent

John Kelly's True Self and ICE's Mission Creep: Tyranny Is Spreading. TruthOut

Directorate S: Steve Coll on the CIA & America’s Secret Wars in Afghanistan & Pakistan. DemocracyNow  

Vietnam’s Lessons and the U.S. Culture of Violence. CounterPunch

Jim Risen Goes Inside the NSA’s Secret Channel to Russia.  Intercept  

Sweden tried to drop Assange extradition in 2013, CPS emails show. ... UK prosecutors tried to dissuade Swedish counterparts from doing so, exchange shows.  Guardian  

February 13, 2018

The Deadly Rule of the Oligarchs. ... Oligarchic rule, as Aristotle pointed out, is a deviant form of government. Oligarchs care nothing for competency, intelligence, honesty, rationality, self-sacrifice or the common good. They pervert, deform and dismantle systems of power to serve their immediate interests, squandering the future for short-term personal gain. ... The late stage of every civilization is characterized by the sophistry of oligarchs, who ravage the decaying carcass of the state.  CounterPunch   

A Southwest water dispute reaches the Supreme Court. ... Why a fight over groundwater has left farmers in New Mexico feeling stranded. High Country News  

The GOP Infrastructure Plan: Worse Than Nothing?   CounterPunch   

Scores of Democratic Lawmakers Join GOP to Back Budget Bill with No Protection for DREAMers. DemocracyNow  

Lawrence Wilkerson: I Helped Sell the False Choice of War with Iraq; It’s Happening Again with Iran.  DemocracyNow  

Senate Republicans Kept Provision to Fight High Drug Prices Out of Spending Bill, Democrats Say.  Intercept  

Rand Paul and the Sleepover Shutdown: A Three-Act Farce. ... (Friday aorund 12.30am...) The federal government shut down, the Senate passed the budget bill, the House passed the Senate's bill, the Dreamers got screwed and the Tea Party movement evaporated like a wholly unnoticed fart. TruthOut

California police worked with neo-Nazis to pursue 'anti-racist' activists, documents show. ... Officers expressed sympathy with white supremacists and sought their help to target counter-protesters after a violent 2016 rally, according to court documents. Guardian

February 12, 2018

U.S. Secretly Negotiated With Russians to Buy Stolen NSA Documents — and the Russians Offered Trump-Related Material, Too. 

The Next Recession Is Really Gonna Suck
The extra help unemployed people got during the Great Recession has emboldened states to mistreat them.  HuffPost  

Here are 5 important reasons you should never agree to a police search — even if you’re innocent  RawStory  

We the People, Trumped by Constitution and Capitalism. CounterPunch/Street

Democrats and Republicans: United on Glorifying Authoritarian Systems. CounterPunch

Why ‘Russian Meddling’ is a Trojan Horse.  CounterPunch  

Sorry, Russia Is Not the Biggest Threat to Our Elections—Facebook and YouTube Are. ... Silicon Valley algorithms help spread conspiracy theories peddled by sloppy American journalists.


Republicans Have a Sinister New Way of Cutting Social Security. ... It’s a classic Trojan horse scenario—one they've been using a lot lately. AlterNet  

Top Republicans are already talking about cutting Medicare and Social Security next. ... The idea of cutting popular programs in an election year has vulnerable Republicans asking, why not infrastructure?  Vox  

Ivanka, Rubio find a new project: Paid family leave. ... Can the duo pining for a softer side of Republicanism win over the GOP? Politico

Ivanka Trump's Paid Family Leave Plan Steals the Money from Social Security and Delays Retirement. ... Nothing from the first family comes without a major catch.  AlterNet  

Weekend of February 9-11, 2018
Weekend read:  The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner. by . Daniel Ellsberg. Here, for the first time, former high-level defense analyst Daniel Ellsberg reveals his shocking firsthand account of America's nuclear program in the 1960s. From the remotest air bases in the Pacific Command, where he discovered that the authority to initiate use of nuclear weapons was widely delegated, to the secret plans for general nuclear war under Eisenhower, which, if executed, would cause the near-extinction of humanity. Amazon

Dark Money Then, Trumpocalypse Now. ... it wasn’t the Russians that brought us Trump, but the usual suspects: private equity and hedge funds bandits. TruthDig/Hedges

Citing U.S. Prison Conditions, British Appeals Court Refuses to Extradite Accused Hacker Lauri Love to the U.S. Intercept

U.S. Military Launches Broad Investigation of SEAL Team 6 After Green Beret Killing in Mali.

In 1974 Call to Abolish CIA, Sanders Followed in Footsteps of JFK, Truman.  Intercept  

Trump's interest in Afghanistan tied to heroin production. Respect  

Archiving the alternative press threatened by wealthy buyers.
Freedom of the Press Foundation

Drug War and a Phantom $500 Million: Pentagon Watchdog Calls Out Two Commands for Financial Malfeasance. TruthOut

Fake news sharing in US is a rightwing thing, says study. ... University of Oxford project finds Trump supporters consume largest volume of ‘junk news’ on Facebook and Twitter. Guardian  Related: Why the hysteria around the 'fake news epidemic' is a distraction. ... The biggest obstacle to having an informed electorate isn’t fake news, but the profit-hungry media seeking clicks and eyeballs.

Is the Pentagon Endorsing Trump’s War on Democratic Institutions? ... The president’s plans for a military parade have sinister implications.