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Thursday, April 17, 2014

The 10 Most Obese States in America (And the Right-Wing Policies That Promote Poor Health)

By Alex Henderson, AlterNet

Republicans promote policies that entrench poverty, and obesity and poverty often go together.

Why Do Christian Right-Wingers Pretend America's Laws Don't Apply to Them?

By Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

Conservatives are demanding special rights to disobey universally applicable federal laws.

Koch Brothers Wealth Surges Past $100 Billion as They Try to Buy the Senate With Expensive Lies

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

The multibillionaires are currently using their vast wealth to influence the 2014 mid-term elections.

GOP’s New Class of Jokers: Meet the Rising Stars of the Dumbest Rebrand Ever

By Katie McDonough, Salon

Welcome to the lamest reinvention in modern history. Why these "young guns" are just as scary as the old male ones.

How '420' Became the Big Day for Weed Smokers Across America

By Ryan Grim, Huffington Post

The little known origins of the 4-20 holiday

8 Most Absurd Things We're Teaching America's Kids About Sex

By Anna Pulley, AlterNet

According to America's moral scolds, sex is like used chocolate, backwash and duct tape.

Walmart Worker: Why Did the Waltons Get $8 Billion in Subsidies While I Had to Pay Taxes?

By Alyssa Figueroa, AlterNet

Walmart workers deliver a message about spreading the wealth.

The 10 Most Horrifying Fast Food Gimmicks of All Time

By Lindsay Abrams, Salon

KFC's Double Down is back, and it's in disgusting company.

Nevada Ranch Stand-Off Was One Big Promo for Rustic Right-Wing Millionaires

By The Thom Hartmann Show, AlterNet

The right-wing media machine jumped at the chance to support Cliven Bundy's fight to graze his cattle on public land for free.

Killing Nature's Defenders: Study Finds Global Surge in Murders of Environmental Activists

By Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!

Since 2004, the killing of environmental and land rights activists worldwide has tripled.

What We Lose When We Rip the Heart Out of Arts Education

By Paul L. Thomas, Ed.D., AlterNet

It's National Poetry Month, but if the Common Core has its way, our children will hardly know what poetry is.

In Parts of the South, Glorifying Slavery No Longer Pays the Bills

By Suzi Parker, Al Jazeera America

Southern towns have long-unresolved racial problems that aren't easy to change.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Matt Taibbi: The SuperRich in America Have Become 'Untouchables' Who Don't Go to Prison

By Amy Goodman, Matt Taibbi, Democracy Now!

Taibbi discusses his new book, "The Divide: American Injustice in the Age of the Wealth Gap."

Why Is ABC Paying Laura Ingraham Lots of Money to Be a Racist?

By Heather Digby Parton, Salon

In apparent effort to counter non-existent "liberal media bias," here's what ABC News will get from Laura Ingraham.

Paul Ryan and the GOP's Anti-Robin Hood Spending Plan—Less Money for Poor Kids, More for the Rich

By Leo Gerard, AlterNet

Could it be more obvious that Washington is owned by the wealthy?

5 Explosive Revelations Leaked from Senate Report Exposing CIA Torture

By Alex Kane, AlterNet

What's already public is a clear and systematic abuse of power and human rights.

Fort Hood Massacres Show How Vulnerable We Are to Soldiers Who Have Suffered from the Traumas of War

By CJ Werleman, AlterNet

And the government is cutting services to the very vets who need help.

Unarmed Black Man Shot in the Back by San Antonio Police, Parents Say

By David Lee, Courthouse News

The officer has a history of racial profiling and a short temper.

The Secret Anti-Abortion Law That's Sweeping America

By Erika L. Sánchez, The Guardian

Pro-lifers can't reverse Roe v Wade. So they're shutting down clinics with red tape and a smile. Don't believe the lie.

Kathie Lee Gifford Is a Trojan Horse for Conservative Causes

By Daniel D'Addario, Salon

The less-than-candid 'Today' show host lets her real right-wing flag fly on her podcast.

The 1% Wants to Ban Sleeping in Cars Because It Hurts Their 'Quality of Life'

By Gary Blasi, The Guardian

Depriving homeless people of their last shelter in life is Silicon Valley at its worst.

Drug Company Dominance Makes Some Shrinks Very Rich, and Many Patients Over Drugged

By Bruce E. Levine, AlterNet

Psychiatry has a real credibility problem on its hands.

Why the Christian Right Is Freaking Out Over a Honey Maid Graham Crackers' Ad

By Bill Berkowitz, AlterNet

Family-positive marketing from Chips Ahoy, Oreos and Honey Maid has conservatives going crackers.

What Made the Chicago Teachers' Strike a Success? Their Commitment to the Community

By Emily Wilson, AlterNet

The dramatically victorious strike showed it's possible for unions to fight back and to win.

Meet the Drug Rehab Celebrity Dispensing a Dangerous Brand of Intolerance

By Maia Szalavitz,

Bob Forrest gives the finger to opioid maintenance—and to the consensus of international scientific opinion.

The Rise of Corporate Democrats in California

By Gary Cohn, Capital and Main

California, the most progressive state in the U.S., still boasts a sizeable — and growing — corporate Democrat contingent.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Unlike the US, Here Are 6 Countries That Are Experimenting How to Make Workers' Lives Better

By Alex Kane, AlterNet

France curbs after-work emails, while a Swedish city experiments with six-hour work days.

How a Comcast-Time Warner Merger Will Make Your Cable and Internet Worse and More Expensive

By Zaid Jilani, AlterNet

A closer look at TWC-Comcast reveals their claim of "substantial public interest benefits" is anything but.

The New Economic Events Giving Lie to the Fiction That We Are All Selfish, Rational Materialists

By David Bollier, AlterNet

The commons lies at the heart of a major cultural and social shift now underway.

Police Charge High School Student with Disorderly Conduct for Using an iPad to Prove He's Being Bullied

By Elias Isquith, Salon

The teen sought proof that school administrators were ignoring his plight. So they had him arrested.

Robert Reich: Happy Tax Day VIDEO—Why the 1% Pay a Much Lower Rate than You

By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog

The former labor secretary explains why the rich pay less, and how we can change it.

5 Amazing Things Scientists Have Discovered About Psychedelics

By April M. Short, AlterNet

Psychedelics have the potential to treat cancers, addiction and psychological traumas.

Why I Am Totally Hooked on the Oscar Pistorius Murder Trial

By Hadley Freeman, The Guardian

Televised celebrity trials are nothing new, but watching this male star sob and squirm is extraordinary.

Google Joins the Kochs in Pumping Funds into the Conservative George Mason University

By Andrew Leonard, Salon

A new article reveals the notorious university is deep in the pockets of the Internet search giant.

How Organic Food Is Breaking Down All Class Boundaries

By Tracie McMillan, Comment Is Free

One of the most harmful myths about poor people is that they could care less about what they eat.

Society Is Starting to Wake Up to Rampant Street Harassment of Women

By Hannah K. Gold, AlterNet

A growing and vocal movement is fighting to empower the women who have to deal with public harrassment on a daily basis.

Washington in Libya: A Case Study in How Not to End Violence in a War-Torn Land

By Nick Turse, Tom Dispatch

Sending more armed men is not the solution.

One of the Top Republican NSA Cheerleaders in Congress Is Retiring to Become a Right-Wing Radio Host

By JP Sottile, NewsVandal

Rep Mike Rogers, former FBI Special Agent and Michigan congressman is slated to become the next scripted DJ on conservative talk radio.

How Obama's Brother's Keeper Initiative Could Improve the Lives of Millions of Minority Males

By Pedro Noguera, The Nation

The initiative includes structural changes, not lectures, to help young black and Latino men thrive.

Why Are We Doing So Little to Expand Opportunity for America's Children?

By Alan Jenkins, Campaign for America's Future

The disparate race- and ethnicity-based opportunities we’re affording our nation’s children has the potential to cripple our society.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Inside the Private Prison Industry's Alarming Spread Across America

By Aaron Cantú, AlterNet

For-profit companies like Geo-Group are buying up any politician they can find to expand their share of the "market."

How Forcing Children to Read Before They're Ready Can Badly Backfire

By Laurie Levy, AlterNet

Pushing kids to learn fast may rob them of the joy that was once a part of the learning process.

How the World's Only Superpower Is Vulnerable to Catastrophe

By Emanuel Pastreich, John Feffer, Foreign Policy in Focus, The Nation

The U.S. is poised to collapse with self-inflicted wounds.

If You Can ‘Speak’ with Your Money, Then Why Is It Illegal to Ask For It?

By Andrew Small, Economic Hardship Reporting Project

McCutcheon bolsters the conservative ideal of money-as-speech, so why don't our laws protect the poor for asking for pocket change?

How Buying Organic Fertilizer Can Lead to Armed DEA Agents Bursting Through Your Door

By April M. Short, AlterNet

Agents followed Angela Kirking home and snooped through her garbage because of where she shopped.

Meet the Twisted 'Pioneer' of the Right-Wing War on Women

By Whitney Strub,

Charles Keating was best known for his shady financial dealings, but his politics were even more destructive.

How Financial Giant Blackstone Got the Cops to Kick Us Out of Our Home

By Michael Donley, Carmilla Manzanet, In These Times

Financial companies shouldn't be allowed to wield this kind of power over citizens.

TurboTax Maker Linked to 'Grassroots' Campaign Against Free, Simple Tax Filing

By Liz Day, ProPublica

Intuit and its allies are continuing to work against proposals for what’s known as return-free filing.

Why Is This Blog Post Different From All Other Blog Posts?

By Marty Kaplan, AlterNet

Ma Nishtana -- Let's not fool ourselves again about the true situation humanity is in.

Paying for America's War Machine Is a Terrible Waste of Tax Money

By Lisa Savage, AlterNet

It’s time to redirect our resources to meet human needs. It’s time to bring the war dollars home.

Behind Closed Doors, the Pentagon Is Talking About America's 'War' in Africa

By Nick Turse, Tom Dispatch

The U.S. is making a terrible mess. Is anyone paying attention?

SEC Prosecutor Says SEC Top Brass Are Corrupt

By Eric Zuesse, AlterNet

Prosecutor calls out institutional corruption.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

7 Right-Wing Absurdities This Week: Colbert Causes Conservative Meltdown Edition

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

Apoplexy after Stephen Colbert takes CBS late-night reins from Letterman.

Violent Crime Drops Where People Have Access to Marijuana, Study Suggests

By Paul Armentano, AlterNet

Two scientific papers suggest the dire warnings we've heard about marijuana for decades don't hold water.

Belle Knox, Duke University Porn Performer, Becomes Media Star and Target

By Ayesha Adamo, AlterNet

Knox shows herself to be a teenager with more nuanced social concerns and a greater depth of human understanding than many of the more mature adults around her.

King Coal Is Dying a Slow Death in America

By Tara Lohan, AlterNet

The fossil fuel's share of U.S. electricity production is dropping quickly, but it still might be decades before the industry closes up shop.

America's Coup Machine: Destroying Democracy Since 1953

By Nicolas J.S. Davies, AlterNet

U.S. efforts to overthrow foreign governments leave the world less peaceful, less just and less hopeful.

Meet the Lakota Tribe Grandmother Teaching Thousands How to Get Arrested to Stop the Keystone XL Pipeline

By Evelyn Nieves, AlterNet

Debra White Plume has galvanized an international coalition of grassroots activists.

This Week’s 5 Most Ridiculous Innovations — the Selfie-Photo Enhancer You Don't Want or Need

By Sarah Gray, Salon

There are some world-changing tech innovations being developed. These five are not among them.

The Democratic Party's Phony Populists Are Hijacking U.S. Moves toward Equality

By Zoë Carpenter, The Nation

Obama's 'passive-voice populism' elides culpability for increased privatization and concentrated power for U.S. oligarchs.

I'm Fat and I Deny Myself Everything I Want

By Roxane Gay, xojane

The messages we give women about weight are insane.

Why Do We Ignore the Emotional Lives of Children?

By Jeanne Rotunda,

With the constant focus on testing and data, we rarely discuss the fundamentals of children's lives.

Corporate Cash Hoarding Is Killing the Middle Class

By Rep. Alan Grayson, In These Times

Warren Buffett's secretary pays within a higher tax bracket than Buffett himself. Something's wrong with this picture.

Errol Morris's New Doc Doesn't Ask the Truly Uncomfortable Questions

By David Swanson,

'The Unknown Knowns' only reinforces the widespread lie that 'irrational foreigners are out to get us.'

Zero Tolerance and Broken Windows Policing Criminalizes Homeless and Poor People ... and Can Kill Them

By Josmar Trujillo, AlterNet

Incarcerating people for being poor and homeless is a tragedy that requires our attention.

Global Corporations Are Scheming to Take Control of Our Economy — We Can Put a Stop to It

By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers, AlterNet

Round 2 in the battle to stop the horrific TPP trade agreement begins. Time to correct the failures of globalized trade.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

How Hatred of Islam Creates Strange Bedfellows of Christians and Atheists

By CJ Werleman, AlterNet

Atheists shouldn't be singing from the same song sheet as the Christian Right.

How Lending A Friend Your Car, Then Going to Bed Can Land You a Life Prison Sentence

By Charles Grodin, The Nation

Florida man Ryan Holle is currently serving his 11th year of a life sentence, even with no prior criminal record.

AA and Rehab Culture Have Shockingly Low Success Rates

By Dr. Lance Dodes, Zachary Dodes, Beacon Press

There's a better way to treat addiction than Alcoholics Anonymous, new book argues.

Police Overreach Haunts Southern City: Racial Profiling, Quotas and Secret “Conviction Bonuses”

By Spencer Woodman, Salon

How a federal grant incentivized a police department to terrorize its community.

30 Self-Portraits Drawn While the Artist Was Under the Influence of 30 Drugs

By April M. Short, AlterNet

Bryan Lewis Saunders went in search of experiences that would affect his perception of self.

Barack Obama Pulls A George W. Bush: Lies, Misinformation and Chemical Weapons

By Patrick L. Smith,

Remember the almost-war in Syria last year? An amazing new report -- which our media won't touch -- is a must read.

CIA and White House Under Pressure After Senate Torture Report Leaks

By Spencer Ackerman, The Guardian

Senate committee found CIA interrogations and detentions to be 'brutal' and urges administration to release report as quickly as possible.

Did CBS Even Consider Hiring a Woman Before It Pounced on Stephen Colbert?

By Ophira Eisenberg, The Guardian

Why, exactly, is all of late night still geared only to satisfy the tastes of my Uncle Jack?

The Rot of Wall Street Stinks All the Way to the Bank

By Jim Hightower, AlterNet

The U.S. is in a historical wage slump, while bank CEOs like Citigroup's Michael Corbat receives $16 million in bonus pay.

President Obama Will Decide Whether to Accept Iraq's Legalizing Rape of Children

By Eric Zuesse, AlterNet

Iraqi girls as young as nine can be married off under new Jaafari Law.

Sexual Advances That Aren't Welcome Are Harassment, Not 'Sexual Liberation'

By Alyssa Figueroa, AlterNet

What David Foster got wrong in his commentary in The Guardian about sexual freedom.

Why Watching Christian Blockbuster 'Noah' Is Like Sitting in a Giant Bathtub

By Dorothy Woodend, The Tyee

You'll need to take a pee break in Darren Aronofsky's Biblical epic.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Is Religion Inherently Oppressive?

By Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

Add Jimmy Carter to the list of people who don't really understand the destructive power of religion.

4 Surprising Foods Packed With Estrogen — The Chemical Linked to Obesity and Sexual Dysfunction

By Martha Rosenberg, AlterNet

Many otherwise healthy foods contain high levels of estrogen.

VIDEO: Stephen Colbert Highlights Utter Absurdity of Bill O'Reilly . . . on Just About Everything

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

"I agree with every word Bill is saying, even if the words don't agree with each other."

The Most Unbelievably Absurd Argument Against Legal Pot, Yet

By Thom Hartmann, AlterNet

Legal marijuana opponents are getting increasingly desperate in their efforts to thwart legalization.

U.N. Report: At-risk Cities Hold Solutions to Climate Change

By Suzanne Goldenberg, The Guardian

Smart planning in cities like Miami and Salt Lake City could help save the day.

The Coming Nightmare of Wall Street-Controlled Rental Markets

By Rebecca Burns, Michael Donley, Carmilla Manzanet, In These Times

As more Americans rent instead of own, private equity groups move in for the kill.

What Kind of Porn Turns Women On?

By Jodie Gummow, AlterNet

You might be surprised.

Rush Limbaugh and Ben Shapiro Completely Freak Out About Stephen Colbert Getting Late Show

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

Right-wing pundits can't believe that someone who openly mocks them got the job.

The Violence of Gentrification in American Cities

By Daniel Jose Older, Salon

Too many claim white people are at risk in communities of color. Really, it's those communities that are threatened.

Why US Fracking Companies Are Licking Their Lips over Ukraine

By Naomi Klein, The Guardian

From climate change to Crimea, the natural gas industry is supreme at exploiting crisis for private gain – the shock doctrine.

Meet the Occupy Protester Who Might Spend Years in the Clink for Protecting Her Breasts from Being Squeezed

By Kevin Zeese, AlterNet

In a key ruling, defense can ask about Officer Bovell's past violent conduct.

The Horrifying Merger Between Comcast, Time Warner and Our Congress

By Michael Winship, Moyers & Company

You might not be able to get decent cable service or a good Wi-Fi signal but when it comes to Congress, Comcast is quite the attentive suitor.