Top Stories


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Is That New Car Smell Killing You?

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Your new ride may be exposing you to a cocktail of toxic gases.

10 Right-Wing Psychopaths' Vitriol this Week—That Somehow Made Pat Robertson Look Reasonable

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

700 Club host begs creationist Ken Ham to shut up already.

Women Watched, Strip-Searched, Raped by Male Prison Guards: How Can We Have Real Reform?

By Charlotte Silver, AlterNet

Those imprisoned at Tutwiler live in fear of the men who guard them.

Man Fired After Employer Learns of Trespassing Misdemeanor 40 Years Ago

By Alyssa Figueroa, AlterNet

Donel Fuller is just one out of potentially millions discriminated against because of a criminal history. But the Ban the Box campaign is changing that—with a huge success this week.

20 Atheist Quotes About Joy and Meaning That Crush ‘Angry, Empty’ Stereotype

By Valerie Tarico, AlterNet

When asked about their moral values or what motivates them in life, atheists use words that sound downright spiritual.

Crybabies of the 1 Percent: The Rich Complain While Getting Away With Everything

By Paul Campos,

Forget affluenza. The rich's real "disease" is failing to get that their privileges come at a price: our contempt.

The 10 Worst Couples in Literature

By Hannah Jane Parkinson, The Guardian

JK Rowling has said she regrets her decision to matchmake Ron and Hermione — we look at other fictional couples better off apart.

What You Should Know About Marijuana Brownies, Cookies, and Other Delicious Pot Treats

By Tony Newman, AlterNet

Even those with experience should be careful—the effects can be stronger than you think.

People-Powered Media Mobilizes Masses While Mass Media Remains Silent

By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers, AlterNet

If we continue to build the independent, people-powered media, greater numbers of people will build up immunity to the destructive misinformation of corporate media.

Scarlett Johansson and SodaStream: Much Ado About the Wrong Things

By William Boardman, Reader Supported News

Here's the much fuller story concerning the SodaStream controversy.

Hello! Fraud-Ridden Banks are Not Our Only Option

By Ellen Brown, Web of Debt blog

North Dakota has a public bank. Why not your state or city?

Saturday, February 8, 2014

6 Nasty Drugs Your Meat Is On

By Martha Rosenberg, AlterNet

American livestock is pumped full of harmful drugs, making our food dangerous and cruel at the same time.

A Guide to the NSA's Perversion of Privacy: What Are the Most Outrageous Breaches into Your Life?

By Zaid Jilani, AlterNet

A look at the most egregious incursions into your privacy, courtesy of the NSA.

8 Former Republicans Who Ditched the Extremist GOP

By Evan McMurry, AlterNet

Several politicians have decided the GOP is too extreme, too intolerant and too cringe-inducing to bother with.

What White People Need to Learn

By Mary-Alice Daniel, Salon

Let's take a look at what "white" actually means -- it might surprise you.

12 Insanely Bad Pieces of Sex and Relationship Advice

By Anna Pulley, AlterNet

We explore the dubious claims of frequent and familiar relationship maxims.

It's Getting Harder For the Feds To Lie About Marijuana and Get Away With It

By Paul Armentano, AlterNet

The drug czar is getting a quick lesson about accountability.

What Is a Refugee If There Is No Nation-State?

By MTL, Creative Time Reports

The poignant parallels of the Palestinian and Syrian refugee experiences.

Why Do We Have Unsafe Abortion in the United States?

By Michelle Goldberg, The Nation

One result of anti-abortion activism is that local hospitals refuse to admit abortion patients, even when women's lives are at risk.

Why Widening Inequality is Hobbling Equal Opportunity

By Robert Reich,

America's savage inequality is the main reason equal opportunity is fading and poverty is growing.

10 Sports Stories To Watch At The Sochi Olympics

By Billy Flanagan, ThinkProgress

Women's ski jumping, speed records falling, and the return of the Jamaican bobsled team.

Friday, February 7, 2014

5 Obnoxious Libertarian Oligarchs Who Earned Fortunes from the Government They'd Like to Destroy

By Richard Eskow, AlterNet

These highly privileged and highly unaware individuals have been inappropriately lionized by society.

The Christian Right's Bizarre Delusions of Persecution

By Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

Being a Christian is a privileged position in American society; that makes it really hard to claim you’re being oppressed. But they keep trying.

Colbert: If XL Pipeline and Climate Change are Inevitable, Let's Just Drown the Polar Bears at the Zoo

By Aaron Cantú, AlterNet

Colbert takes on the new report saying that the pipeline would have "minimal environmental impact."

Dean Starkman: How Lapdog Journalism Led to the Financial Crisis

By Aaron Cantú, AlterNet

A new book reveals how the business press failed to warn the public of impending disaster.

6 States Where Republicans Want Poor People to Pee in Cups to Prove They're Not on Drugs

By Tana Ganeva, AlterNet

A Florida law requiring drug-testing of the poor was panned by the courts. That hasn't stopped other GOP lawmakers.

I'm a Smart, Liberated Woman -- So Why Do I Pay a Stranger to Pour Wax on My Genitals and Rip Out the Hair?

By Caroline Rothstein,

Behind the hedonistic and masochistic ritual of the bikini wax.

American PEPs (Progressives except for Palestine) Facilitate Israeli War Crimes

By Michael Ratner, AlterNet

It appears the Mayor De Blasio is establishing himself as a PEP: progressive except for Palestine.

3-Day Suspension for a Cop's Sexual Assault? Terrifying Impunity in TX Police

By Ryan Kocian, Courthouse News

An Austin police officer sexually assaulted a woman in the back seat of his cruiser, and she's not the first one he molested, she claims in court.

You Got Sick! AOL Slashes 401K Benefits And Blames Two Women Who Gave Birth To Sick Babies

By Igor Volsky, ThinkProgress

CEO Tim Armstrong blamed the babies of two workers for increasing the company’s benefit costs.

How Russia Is Scapegoating Gays to Distract from Most Corrupt Olympics in History

By Dave Zirin, The Nation

But LGBT groups are fighting back.

Where I Live Everything Looks Like "The Wire" and Everyone's Too Poor for Pop Culture

By D. Watkins, Salon

My friends are too poor to participate in pop culture -- to care about a selfie or what Kanye said or Beyoncé’s new album.

Roots of the NSA: How the White Panthers Saved the Movement and the FISA Court was Created

By Hugh "Buck" Davis, AlterNet

A slice of history reveals the ugliness of the FBI's COINTELPRO campaign to disrupt the important social justice movements that exploded in the 1960s.

25 Horrifying Images of the "Free" Market at Work

By akadjian, Daily Kos

We simply need to recognize that markets have no implicit moral authority.

Selling Your Secrets: The Invisible World of Software Backdoors and Bounty Hunters

By Pratap Chatterjee,

The brave new dystopian world that the U.S. government is building.

America's Top Military Brass Is Filled With Mediocre Idiots

By Chris Hedges, Truthdig

Aggressiveness is rewarded. Compassion is demeaned. Violence is the favorite form of communication. These qualities are an asset in war; they are a disaster in civil society.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Chomsky: No Wonder the World Is Terrified of America -- We're the Biggest Threat

By Noam Chomsky, AlterNet

Keeping the world safe from America.

The Simple Truth About Biblical Literalism and the Fundamentalists Who Promote It

By Sean McElwee, Salon

The debate between Bill Nye and Creationist Ken Ham reveals the absurdity of Christians who ascribe to a literal interpretation of the Bible.

40 Koch Brothers Donors Exposed After Document Left at Hotel by Mistake Is Leaked

By Jodie Gummow, AlterNet

The confidential spreadsheet contains a who's who of far-right, mega-rich donors.

Woman Makes Shocking Claims She Was Vaginally Probed Against Her Will at NY Prison

By Hannah K. Gold, AlterNet

The non-consensual gynecological exam involved a vaginal speculum, a Pap smear and a pregnancy test.

Cops Chemical Spray and Tackle Young Man Asking for a Spare Nickel to Board Train

By Jodie Gummow, AlterNet

Since when did simply asking a question justify police brutality?

The Insane, Racist Crack Myths Fueling America's Worst Drug Laws

By Carl L. Hart, The Nation

A racist fiction helped sell one of the nation’s first drug laws; 100 years later, it’s still with us.

Robert Reich to Obama: Don't Play Semantics, Savage Inequality Is Our Most Urgent Problem

By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog

Inequality is sinking the middle class, destroying the economy and ruining democracy.

9 Unbelievably Weird and Sadistic Weight-Loss Schemes

By April De Costa, AlterNet

People are willing to take drastic measures to drop extra pounds.

Obamacare Allows People To Stop Working And Boosts Wages, Congress's Top Budget Expert Says

By CAP Action War Room, ThinkProgress

The GOP and mainstream media misreported a Congressional Budget Office analysis.

100 Things You Honestly DON'T Have to Do Before You Die

By Richard Osman, The Guardian

The 'must do before you die' list is getting too long.

The Problem with School 'Choice'

By Jessie B. Ramey, Yinzercation

Public schools are neither cars nor boxes of cereal. Let's stop treating them like they are.

9 Sex Tricks Everyone Should Know

By Kate Bailey, Thought Catalog

Helpful tips in the bedroom.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

5 of the Christian Right's Favorite and Most Dangerous New Recruits Running for Congress

By CJ Werleman, AlterNet

One candidate calls evolution and the Big Bang Theory "lies straight from the pit of Hell."

One American City Enjoys a Hyperfast Internet -- Any Surprise Corporations Don't Control It?

By The Thom Hartmann Show, AlterNet

It’s time for high-speed internet access for all.

Inside the Shocking 'Kids For Cash' Juvenile Justice Scandal

By Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!

How two corrupt judges received $2.6 million in kickbacks from the private prison facility industry.

Do Some Men's Fragile Egos Quiver in the Face of Female Funniness?

By Lynn Stuart Parramore, AlterNet

Women can be funny. Why is this obvious fact still controversial?

Sick! Border Patrol Activity Teaches Children to Shoot Immigrant-Like Effigies

By Rebecca Leber, Think Progress

Controversial photos emerge.

The Simple Secret to Successful Online Dating: Make Sure Your Profile Pic Looks Hot

By Daisy Buchanan, The Guardian

The fact remains that a picture paints a thousand words.

WATCH: Stewart Takes Down Fox's 'Spite Driven Anger Machine'

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

Daily Show host also helpfully points out that President Obama does not work for Fox.

Angry Right’s Secret Revulsion: Why They Really Dodge Minimum Wage Questions

By Brian Beutler, Salon

Obama's decision to increase the minimum wage for a small number of federal contractors has drawn out the crazies.

Can Marijuana Kill Your Dog?

By Russ Belville, AlterNet

It depends...but just in case, keep weed out of reach of pets.

Conservatives Don't Want to Admit That Economic Inequality Is Ruining Marriage

By June Carbone, Naomi Cahn, AlterNet

Many poor and working-class women find that marriage is too much of a burden.

Drought in the West Is Bringing Hard Times to Minority Farmers

By Ngoc Nguyen, New America Media

More outreach is needed to educate small farmers about federal aid.

Matt Taibbi's Greatest Hits: How 'Gangster Bankers' at HSBC Turned Out to Be 'Too Big to Jail'

By Aaron Cantú, AlterNet

Remembering how HSBC helped launder hundreds of millions of dollars for drug cartels and terrorists and the DOJ let them get away with it.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Google Has Launched a For-Profit Privacy Invasion Into Our Electronic Lives

By Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet

A bottomless appetite for knowing everything about our online lives is breaking new boundaries.

National Abortion Rate Sees Huge Drop As More Women Are Using Birth Control

By Tara Culp-Ressler, ThinkProgress

Fewer women are getting pregnant because of expanded access to contraception.

Another Dirty Trick: GOP Creates Websites To Fool Democrats Into Giving Them Cash

By Alex Kane, AlterNet

A Florida man who wanted to donate money to a Democrat ended up donating to the GOP because of a misleading website.

As Inequality Worsens, Millionaires Are Pulling Up the Drawbridge Behind Them

By Josh Bornstein, The Guardian

The 1% evading taxation while choosing to share their anger rather than their wealth.

The Internet You Know and Love Is in Real Danger

By Sandra Fulton, ACLU Blog of Rights

Because the companies have to monitor your online activity in order to manipulate the data, the lack of neutrality rules raises profound privacy issues.

Frackers Are Setting off Swarms of Earthquakes Across the Planet

By Andrew Nikiforuk, The Tyee

The industry is setting off quakes from Texas to the Netherlands

Kids Living With No Heat at Homeless Shelter in Freezing Weather, As DC Homelessness Spirals Out of Control

By Tana Ganeva, AlterNet

Families are being kicked out of hotels during a shocking rise in family homelessness.

Why Power Elites Are So Afraid of Telling the Truth

By Kevin Zeese, Margaret Flowers, AlterNet

It would be a concession to the deep structural changes we all know that our society needs.

Why GM Foods Are a Multi-Front Attack on Human Life

By Vandana Shiva, Asian Age

Pushing for genetically modified organisms is polluting our seed and food, our science and democracy.

Are You, or the People You Know and Love, Mensches or Jerks?

By Mark Goulston, AlterNet

Ask yourself the questions.

NYC Mayor Strikes a Major Blow to Charter Schools, Cuts $210 Million from Their Budgets

By Owen Davis, AlterNet

The NYC mayor is drawing a line in the sand when it comes to funding charter schools.

How Canada Became Subservient to Washington's Imperial Agenda

By Conn Hallinan, Foreign Policy in Focus

A new book explains that Canada's support for the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan is linked to aspirations of empire.

Porn Company Fined for Allowing Performers to Work Without Condoms

By , The Guardian ordered to pay $78,000 over 'unsafe' conditions.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Conservative Bullies: 7 Ways the Christian Right Picks on People

By Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

As with many things, bullying is becoming a partisan issue.

The 7 Most Offensive TV Shows Ever

By Daniel D'Addario, Salon

Forget "Dads" — remember UPN's slavery sitcom? What about the British Hitler-at-home laughfest?

4 Shocking Examples of American Inequality

By Paul Buchheit, AlterNet

America's middle class is further from the top than in all other developed countries.

Coke's Multilingual "America the Beautiful" Ad Sparks Conservative Outrage

By Alex Kane, AlterNet

A Super Bowl commercial featuring a polyglot America outraged right-wingers—some of whom thought "America the Beautiful" was the national anthem.

The Tragedy of Philip Seymour Hoffman: How We Can Prevent Overdose Deaths

By Meghan Ralston, The Huffington Post

His death will be called a "teachable moment," but we need to ensure that what we're teaching includes basic drug user safety information — information that can save lives.

7 Huge Misconceptions About Communism (and Capitalism)

By Jesse Myerson,

Most of what Americans think they know about capitalism and communism is total nonsense. Here's a clearer picture.

5 Big Education Stories to Watch in 2014

By Owen Davis, AlterNet

What will the future of education look like? These five stories will give us a clue.

NY’s Restaurant Letter Grading System: Keeping The City Safe, Or Unfair and Arbitrary?

By Jodie Gummow, AlterNet

City health inspections have restaurateurs up in arms over alleged enforcement inconsistencies and excessive fines.

The Grim Truth Behind the 'Scandinavian Miracle'

By Michael Booth, The Guardian

Why does everybody think the Nordic region is a utopia?

Obama’s Retirement Security Proposals Slammed By Advocates As Far Too Little

By Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet

In the SOTU speech last week, Obama avoided the real issues.

Humans Could Really Bring About the End of the World via Climate and Nuclear Disasters

By Tom Engelhardt, Tom Dispatch

But the idea of a futureless humanity is difficult to take in—so the media just doesn't cover it.

How Social Connections and Networks Perpetuate Today's Racism

By Chauncey DeVega, AlterNet

The old racism of KKK members, skinheads, and overt bigotry is an anachronism.

Department of Justice Zeroes In On Zero-Tolerance Policies In Schools

By s.e. smith, AlterNet

The Obama administration takes aim at the school-to-prison pipeline.

Sordid Tale of Bob McDonnell Totally Explains Income Inequality

By Leo Gerard, AlterNet

After the Wall Street crash, America’s wealthiest 1 percent captured 95 percent of economic growth, while the bottom 90 percent got poorer.

U.S. Farm Bill Allows Hemp Farming... in 10 States

By Phillip Smith, Drug War Chronicle

The bill lets universities to do hemp research and state agriculture departments to do pilot studies.