Stories by Elizabeth Pepin

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Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

Wading through election-year rhetoric in order to vote intelligently can be confusing, if not overwhelming. It's difficult to know who or what to believe. Fortunately, Project Vote Smart has created a toll-free voter's research hotline and Web site that enables concerned citizens to obtain instant information on both state and national candidates. The group also has produced two free books to help citizens make wise decisions in the November elections.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

A series of internal tobacco industry documents leaked to the public shows that RJ Reynolds, U.S. Tobacco and other tobacco companies have been seriously trying to come up with ways to market smoking to children. Additionally, tobacco companies' highly touted anti-smoking campaigns for children are not working. The tobacco companies are denying any wrong-doing, but according to the Center for Disease Control, the rate of smoking among youth has reached its highest level in 16 years. The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids in Washington D.C. wants the Food and Drug Administration and the government to step in and protect children from tobacco products and tobacco marketing by strengthening existing laws and creating new ones.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

The same Congress that is using welfare mothers and poor children as scapegoats for governmental overspending is now trying to pass a $245 billion defense bill , which includes an add-on of more than $10 billion at the Clinton administration's request. According to the Women's Action For New Direction (WAND), health and social services continue to erode, while the military budget has remained at near cold war levels and is projected to increase over the next seven years. The $10 billion add-on by the Clinton administration has little to do with national security and everything to do with political pork.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

Children's "educational television" in the United States has always been somewhat of a joke. Parents concerned with what their kids are watching are faced with a very limited viewing choice. Although the Children's Television Act of 1990 was supposed to force broadcasters to give a certain amount of time over to "educational" shows, the definition of what was educational was somewhat loose. All this changed in mid-July, when child advocacy groups and the broadcasting industry reached a historic agreement at a White House Summit which will break the impasse at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) over the Children's Television Act and hopefully "smarten up" children's programming.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

Most alcohol drinkers in the U.S. regularly are downing much more than the occasional glass of wine with dinner. According to the Alcohol Research Group, more than 80 percent of alcohol consumption in America exceeds the maximum limits recommended in the "Dietary Guidelines for Americans," the cornerstone of federal nutrition policy. The research also reveals that the alcohol industry has grown dependent on hazardous drinking -- more than five drinks per person a day! -- for their large profits, thus refuting the industry's claims that most of its sales are generated from moderate drinking.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

By upholding the traditions of alternative journalism and getting down to the "nitty-gritty truths of how politics affects people," The Graduate Student Advocate at the City University of New York (CUNY) was named the 1996 Campus Alternative Journalism Awards "Best Campus Alternative Publication of the Year." The awards, given by the Campus Alternative Journalism Project, were created to encourage alternative journalism on campus and recognize the contribution of student journalists to free thought on their campuses and communities. The Campus Alternative Journalism Project is part of the Center for Campus Organizing, a national organization based in Cambridge, MA, that promotes progressive journalism and political activism within campus publications. They also provide an e-mail network and article exchange, much like AlterNet.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

Supporters of the recently passed federal welfare reform measure claim they are saving taxpayers billions and setting free the millions of Americans chronically dependent on public assistance. However, if the state-level welfare initiatives passed over the last few years in Michigan, New Jersey and Wisconsin are anything to judge by, federal welfare reform is grossly misguided. The benefit reductions, eligibility restrictions, time limits and family caps that all three states imposed have neither reduced poverty or government spending.

Posted on: Apr 25, 2000, Source: deleted

Government leaders in nearly every country are allowing land that could produce grain to go to waste, either by being paved over or degraded by erosion. The total area of grainland now supporting each person in the world has fallen to less than one-sixth the size of a soccer field -- yet most officials are making little effort to combat the problem.