10 May

Truth Out Today

Wednesday 9 May 2012

Obama Affirms Personal Support for Marriage Equality
Igor Volsky, ThinkProgress: “His endorsement comes less than a week after Vice President Joe Biden embraced the issue during an appearance on Meet The Press and a day after North Carolina banned marriage equality and civil unions in its state constitution. During the interview, Obama stressed that he personally affirms same-sex marriage, but says the matter should be left to the individual states.”
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William Rivers Pitt | It Is Enough: An Open Letter to the Sick at Heart
William Rivers Pitt, Truthout: “I have lost count of the states in this union that are holding votes on who can get married, who can get birth control, who can get basic medical care and who can vote – or not – in this ongoing American experiment. It all boils down to some very simple questions: who is it legal to hate? Who can be banished from their basic American rights? Who is, and who is not? They call it being ‘conservative,’ which sounds nice and safe.”
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Why Are Student Loan Interest Rates Set to Double? Thank These Lobbyists Who Helped Kill the Bill Yesterday
Lee Fang, Republic Report: “On Tuesday afternoon, Senate Republicans blocked a measure that would have prevented a big hike for student loan interest rates. The legislation would have kept ‘subsidized Stafford loans at 3.4 percent for an additional year, rather than doubling automatically for new loans starting July 1.’ While the vote yesterday was certainly a partisan battle, a closer look at the interest groups driving the roll call vote explains the greater powers at play.”
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North Carolina Adds Ban on Gay Unions to Its Constitution
Lynn Bonner and Jay Price, McClatchy Newspapers: “North Carolina has become the 31st state to add an amendment on marriage to its constitution, with voters banning same-sex marriage and barring legal recognition of unmarried couples by state and local governments…. The National Organization for Marriage contributed $425,000 to the Vote for Marriage campaign, according to the latest reports, and the Human Rights Campaign and its affiliates contributed nearly $500,000 to the opposition Coalition to Protect All N.C. Families.”
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On the News With Thom Hartmann: Oil Prices Are the Lowest They Have Been This Year So Far, and More
In today’s On the News segment: A new poll shows that only 27 percent of Americans support the war in Afghanistan, oil prices continue to fall, Michele Bachmann becomes a Swiss citizen, and more.
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Long-Time Senator Lugar Loses Primary Challenge in Indiana
Monica Davey, The New York Times News Service: “Richard G. Lugar … a six-term senator from Indiana who had won most of his recent elections with more than 60 percent of the vote, lost a hard-fought Republican primary to Richard E. Mourdock, the state treasurer. Mr. Mourdock’s campaign was fueled by Tea Party groups and national conservative organizations that deemed Mr. Lugar too willing to compromise and poured millions of dollars into the campaign to defeat him.”
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Against War and Austerity, Hollande Is Right and Obama Should Agree
Robert Naiman, Truthout: “Newly elected French President François Hollande is coming to the White House next week to meet with President Obama … Press reports suggest that Obama’s agenda for the meeting will include trying to induce Hollande to renege on his pledge to withdraw French troops from Afghanistan. That would be a terrible mistake, a terrible waste of a unique opportunity for Obama to agree with Hollande on a common position for speeding up the withdrawal of all foreign forces that they can announce at the NATO summit in Chicago.”
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Jim Hightower | Monsanto, Dow and Genetically Modified Trouble
Jim Hightower, Truthout: “Dow is hardly alone in pursuing its happiness at the expense of others. Indeed, rather than finding ways to cooperate with the natural world, America’s agribusiness giants generally reach for the quick, high-tech fix in a futile effort to overpower nature. Their attitude is that if brute force isn’t working, they’re probably not using enough of it. But Mother Nature, damn her, has rebelled….We need non-chemical, non-GMO, sustainable systems that work with nature.”
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Inside the Mind of a Microcredit Icon: Truthout Interviews Director of “Bonsai People,” a Film on Mohammad Yunus
Mark Karlin, Truthout: “Director Holly Mosher spent years making this documentary detailing how innovative economic initiatives, such as microcredit to the poor, can provide an alternative to traditional capitalistic financial products that ignore those without wealth. In the film, Mosher not only provides a close-up portrait of microlending at work in rural Bangladesh, but also talks with Nobel Prize winner Muhammad Yunus about his growing alternative economy and the provision of services for those without means.”
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The Drone Summit, the Lunchbox and the Invisibility of Charred Children
Hugh Gusterson, Truthout: “I was at the all-day Drone Summit in Washington, DC, organized by Codepink … And I kept thinking about the lunchbox. The lunchbox belonged to a schoolgirl in Hiroshima. Her body was never found, but the rice and peas in her lunchbox were carbonized by the atomic bomb. Everyone knows, in the abstract at least, that the atom bomb killed thousands of children in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But any visual representation of this fact was deemed out of bounds by defenders of the bombing.”
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Joseph E. Stiglitz | After Austerity
Joseph E. Stiglitz, Project Syndicate: “Financial leaders, from finance ministers to leaders of private financial institutions, reiterated the current mantra: the crisis countries have to get their houses in order, reduce their deficits, bring down their national debts, undertake structural reforms, and promote growth. Confidence, it was repeatedly said, needs to be restored. It is a little precious to hear such pontifications from those who, at the helm of central banks, finance ministries, and private banks, steered the global financial system to the brink of ruin – and created the ongoing mess.”
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The Currency of Words or the Coin of the Realm
Michael L. Weinstein, Truthout: “On Tuesday, April 24, 2012, the nation’s top soldier, Chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) Gen. Martin Dempsey finally generated the long-overdue, mandatory edict that all training and educational materials throughout the US military must be immediately reviewed within one month’s time to ensure that no anti-Muslim or anti-Islam references or content remain. Henceforth, officers and enlisted members will no longer be taught and institutionally indoctrinated that ‘the United States is at war with Islam and we ought to just recognize that.'”
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Wisconsin Democrats Choose Challenger to Run Against Governor in Recall Race
Steven Yaccino, The New York Times News Service: “Wisconsin Democrats will get a do-over election between Gov. Scott Walker and Tom Barrett when the two face off in a rare recall vote next month. Mr. Barrett, the mayor of Milwaukee, got the nod from his party after a statewide primary on Tuesday … The vote on Tuesday underscored one of the steepest challenges for the governor’s opposition: namely that Democrats have failed to coalesce around an alternative.”
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Austerity, the Euro Crisis and the US
Paul Jay, The Real News Network: “In Greece and France, the majority of voters have clearly rejected the policies of austerity. Now joining us to talk about the significance of this for Europe, but also for America, is Dean Baker. Dean is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington. He’s the author of several books, the latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive.”
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Americans So Concerned About “Preserving Marriage” Ought to Ban Divorce
Mark Karlin, BuzzFlash at Truthout: “With the passage of a constitutional amendment in North Carolina yesterday that bans gay marriage and civil unions, the question must be asked again: which is more of a threat to heterosexual marriage, gays or divorce and fooling around with people of the opposite sex?”
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Matt Taibbi: Austerity Can’t Be Just for Regular People
Read the Article at Rolling Stone

After North Carolina Passes Marriage Amendment, Opponents Consider Next Steps
Read the Article at Talking Points Memo

Scott Brown Goes Birther on Elizabeth Warren
Read the Article at Mother Jones

Vermont Poised to Be First State to Outlaw Fracking
Read the Article at Reuters

Twitter Stands Up for One of Its Users
Read the Article at The ACLU

Charlotte City Manager Declares Bank of America Shareholder Meeting “Extraordinary Event”
Read the Article at The Nation

Melinda Gates’ New Crusade: Investing Billions in Women’s Health
Read the Article at Newsweek

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