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Articles

Articles
Sky Bears, Earth Bears: Finding and Losing True North
Louisa Willcox: Stars and the heavens have long captured the human imagination. ... ancient peoples invented fascinating stories about constellations that reflected their aspirations and relationships with the natural world and each other. The dramas that played out in the heavens unified their world and gave their lives meaning. ... No group of stars has been more durably famous than the Big Dipper, which is part of the constellation Ursa Major, the Great Bear. ... Ursa Major and its neighbor Ursa Minor, the Lesser or Little Bear, are the first two constellations listed in the earliest star catalogues dating from nearly 3000 years ago. ... Playing center stage in the night sky, bears were often depicted as guides and teachers, and literally provided direction... Visit Website ]
Jan 19, 2019, 11:55am

Articles
The documentary Israel doesn’t want you to see
Mukund Rathi reviews The Lobby, a documentary about Israel’s efforts to undermine the movement for Palestinian rights with its vast array of dirty tricks. ... A FOREIGN government is spying on Americans who are exercising their First Amendment rights to free expression. It is secretly giving money, intelligence and strategic advice to political groups that create fake social media pages, ghostwrite op-eds in major newspapers and push for legislation to support its aims. ... These groups spend tens of thousands of dollars on “astroturf” protests against college student activists and have created anonymous websites to smear them. They are trying to redirect social justice movements like Black Lives Matter to support their own ends. ... And when journalists uncover these questionable practices and attempt to inform the public, this foreign government and its allied groups made sure they were censored. ... I’m talking about Israel... Visit Website ]
Jan 15, 2019, 12:24pm

Articles
6 Ways the Border Wall Could Disrupt the Environment
Laura Parker, National Geographic: Trump's plan to build a wall from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific could come with unintended consequences for wildlife and people. ... 1. Threatening diverse landscapes ... Construction of a border wall will bisect the geographic range of 1,506 native animals and plants, including 62 species that are listed as critically endangered. ... 2. Exacerbating flooding ... Flooding disasters occurred in Arizona after 700 miles of fencing was constructed during the George W. Bush administration. The barriers acted as dams during rainy season flash floods. ... 3. Perils to wildlife and plants ... The border wall could disconnect a third of 346 native wildlife species from 50 percent or more of their range that lies south of the border ... Limits on migration, in turn, affects plants... Visit Website ]
Jan 11, 2019, 12:00pm

Articles
As Washington Fights Over a Wall, a Humanitarian Crisis Is Unfolding on America’s Doorstep
Noah Lanard: The Trump administration is forcing asylum-seekers to wait in dangerous conditions in Tijuana for weeks. ... Asylum-seekers used to be able to simply walk across the border and make their claim for protection—a right enshrined in US and international law. That is no longer the case. Under a policy that began in 2016 and grew far stricter last year, asylum-seekers in Tijuana and all along the border must now wait for weeks to be allowed into the United States to request protection. ... Migrants are also prevented from registering if they don’t have identification, even though there is no such requirement under US law. ... There is currently a backlog of more than 800,000 cases in US immigration courts, and immigrants often wait two to three years for their cases to be decided. The new plan, known as Remain in Mexico, could force migrants to spend years in dangerous border towns or other parts of Mexico.... Visit Website ]
Jan 7, 2019, 12:47pm

Articles
Yellow Vests Rise Against Neo-Liberal ‘King’ Macron
Diana Johnstone: Every automobile in France is supposed to be equipped with a yellow vest. This is so that in case of accident or breakdown on a highway, the driver can put it on to ensure visibility and avoid getting run over. ... So the idea of wearing your yellow vest to demonstrate against unpopular government measures caught on quickly. ... Briefly, the message was this: we can’t make ends meet. The cost of living keeps going up, and our incomes keep going down. We just can’t take it any more. The government must stop, think and change course. ... Macron was the rabbit magically pulled out of a top hat, sponsored by what must be called the French oligarchy. ... The mission assigned to him by his sponsors was clear. He must carry through more vigorously the “reforms” (austerity measures) already undertaken by previous governments... Visit Website ]
Dec 5, 2018, 3:12pm

Articles
LA Joins Other Big Cities in Legalizing Street Vending
JOHN ROGERS: “we won, we won,” as the council voted 13-0 to legalize street vending in the nation’s second-largest city. ... “For us, it’s very important,” Garcia said of the LA street vendors whose numbers have been estimated as high as 50,000. “If someone complains, the police, they could come in and take everything from us. Make us throw all our stuff away and we lose all our money for that day.” ... Los Angeles will join New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia and other metropolises in regulating street vendors who sell everything from toys to tacos, T-shirts to cellphones and just about anything else you can think of... Visit Website ]
Nov 29, 2018, 2:41pm

Articles
This is what Trump’s caravan 'invasion' really looks like
The Guardian, UK: Those walking to the US to seek asylum have been demonized by Trump, who sent more than 5,000 soldiers to await them at the border. Bryan Mealer traveled with the most vulnerable among them ... By the time I reach the migrant caravan in late October, they had been traveling for two weeks since leaving Honduras, having covered over 600 miles. ... Most days, they tell me, afternoon rains had soaked their belongings. Ants had bitten them where they slept. Crossing into Mexico, riot police had attacked them with clubs and teargas. ... But for the most part, they say, people had displayed extraordinary kindness. Farmers had greeted them on the roads with sliced oranges and bags of water and strangers had given them rides. Every day brought these tiny, unexpected miracles: a plate of beans when their children were crying, a pickup when their legs could go no further... Visit Website ]
Nov 26, 2018, 12:35pm

Articles
A Good-for-Nothing Tree Makes Good
Gary Paul Nabhan: Once upon a time, mesquites got no respect. Now these desert survivors are celebrated as a sustainable food source and a symbol of the borderlands. ... Of course, much of the time, the mesquite still goes unnoticed and unloved as it goes about its duties of serving our community. Its humility is such that it seldom even claims to be a tree, for it is just as happy being called a shrub, a bush, a switch, a simple member of the monte or desert scrublands that carpet much of this Land of Little Rain. ... Mesquite offers us a politics of hope. It offers us the opportunity to finally come to peace with the landscapes we have inherited, to live productively with them, rather than constantly trying to give those landscapes a makeover so that they will look and behave like someone else’s place... Visit Website ]
Nov 24, 2018, 2:23pm

Articles
The Zombification of Intellectual Property and the Tool That Could Finally Reform It
Scott Santens: Purely by accident, George Romero’s groundbreaking film (Night of the Living Dead) instantly became a horror classic that could be licensed at no cost. The result was a movie that every theater could show, every TV station could broadcast, every artist could adapt and build off of... it was essentially a gift to the entire world. ... I think the success of zombies as a worldwide phenomenon provides an excellent case for looking at the entire idea of intellectual property (IP) differently. ... The idea of intellectual property has been twisted and malformed. What was always clearly mandated as being temporary as a means of giving innovators a head start, has become measured in terms of lifetimes instead of decades. ... Ideas are infinite and they all originate from a global commons. Ideas don’t just appear from the nothingness like particles and anti-particles in the quantum foam of the universe. Everything is a remix... Visit Website ]
Nov 12, 2018, 3:57pm

Articles
This Isn’t the First Time White Supremacists Have Tried to Cancel Birthright Citizenship
Nina Wallace: In a little-known episode from World War II, nativist agitators who had led earlier efforts to exclude Asian immigrant communities—and paved the way for Japanese American incarceration—attempted to strip U.S.-born Nisei of citizenship, claiming their “racial characteristics” made them “unfit for American citizenship.” The legal fight that ensued is both a reminder that we’ve been here before and an example of our long history of resisting attacks on our right to call this place home. ... Wong decided to fight back. He took his case all the way to the Supreme Court, where a 6-2 majority held that under the 14th amendment, children born in the United States are citizens of the United States—regardless of whether their parents were U.S. citizens.... Visit Website ]
Nov 2, 2018, 3:53pm

Articles
To Unlock Brexit Talks, Britain Must Atone for a Sin of Empire: the Partition of Ireland
Robert Mackey: What few Brexit supporters on the British mainland seemed to realize at the time, though, is that their country, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, has just one land border with the EU, and it is a highly contested one — the line of partition that the British Empire imposed on Ireland a century ago. ... For the past 20 years, it has been easy to forget about the mayhem and death caused by the imposition of that border, since joint membership in the EU facilitated a peace agreement that stopped the bloodshed in Northern Ireland and removed the need for security and customs checks along what one Irish writer has called the “line of malice” dividing Ireland ... “It’s not the Irish border — it’s the British border in Ireland. The Irish border is the beach.”... Visit Website ]
Oct 24, 2018, 11:36am

Articles
Chicago 1969: When Black Panthers aligned with Confederate-flag-wielding, working-class whites
Colette Gaiter: Chicago in the 1960s was a brutal place for poor people. Black, brown and white people all dealt with poverty, unemployment, police violence, substandard housing, inadequate schools and a lack of social services. Ethnic and racial groups each created their own social service and activist networks to combat every kind of oppression. ... One was the Young Patriot Organization (YPO) ... members were racist, and they flaunted controversial symbols associated with southern pride, such as the Confederate flag. But like blacks and Latinos, the white Young Patriots and their families experienced discrimination in Chicago. ... In his short time as a Black Panther leader, Fred Hampton wanted to advance the group’s goals by forming a “Rainbow Coalition” of working class and poor people of all races. ... Over time, the Black Panthers learned to tolerate Confederate flags as intransigent signs for rebellion. Their only stipulation was that the white Young Patriots denounce racism... Visit Website ]
Oct 21, 2018, 12:04pm

Articles
The American Economy Is Rigged
Joseph Stiglitz: The notion of the American Dream—that, unlike old Europe, we are a land of opportunity—is part of our essence. Yet the numbers say otherwise. The life prospects of a young American depend more on the income and education of his or her parents than in almost any other advanced country. ... Things appear to be getting worse, partly as a result of forces, such as technology and globalization, that seem beyond our control, but most disturbingly because of those within our command. It is not the laws of nature that have led to this dire situation: it is the laws of humankind. Markets do not exist in a vacuum: they are shaped by rules and regulations, which can be designed to favor one group over another. ... one of the main causes of rising morbidity—the increase in alcoholism, drug overdoses and suicides—as “deaths of despair” by those who have given up hope... Visit Website ]
Oct 18, 2018, 11:59am

Articles
How We Roasted Donald Duck, Disney’s Agent of Imperialism
Ariel Dorfman: I should not have been entirely surprised when I saw How to Read Donald Duck, a book I had written with the Belgian sociologist Armand Mattelart, being burned on TV by Chilean soldiers. It was mid-September 1973 and a military coup had just toppled Salvador Allende, the country’s president, terminating his remarkable experiment of building socialism through peaceful means. ... We wanted Chilean readers to realise they were being fed values that were inimical to a revolution that sought to unshackle them from centuries-old exploitation: competition rather than solidarity, prejudice rather than critical thinking, obedience rather than rebellion, paternalism rather than resistance, money rather than compassion as the standard of worth... Visit Website ]
Oct 14, 2018, 12:04pm

Articles
Energy Conservation Jobs Come to Coal Country
Mason Adams: A Kentucky program trains former coal miners in energy efficiency—and rallies distressed communities. ... The six-month internship with Mountain Association for Community Economic Development offered training in new energy efficiency professions, placement with a local employer, and the potential for longer-term employment after the job ended. Morris applied for the internship and was accepted, along with another ex-miner named Randall Howard. The two received hands-on training in conducting energy audits—learning how to use equipment such as infrared cameras, duct blasters, blower doors, and much more—and went to work at their respective jobs ... MACED’s energy efficiency internship program is just one of many initiatives designed to retrain workers laid off during the cratering of the coal industry over the last decade ... Woolery hopes to push some of those interns toward the solar power, where there’s potentially even more opportunity... Visit Website ]
Oct 6, 2018, 10:31am


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