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Articles

Articles
Solar Is the Future. Donald Trump Tied a Bow on It and Gave It to China.
Jeffrey Ball: And now the Chinese are gaining on the West in the most important arena of all:innovation. ... The notion that the United States has a lock on clean-energy innovation will seem as antiquated in 10 years as the once-­prevalent belief that Detroit designed the best cars. China, with its noxious smog and voracious energy appetite, has compelling reasons to innovate. And the Trump administration seems more interested in protecting coal producers than in furthering renewable-­energy research. “If the US doesn’t do the R&D, then China will,” says Chase, the Bloomberg solar analyst. “In fact, China is doing it. It just means that the US will become less and less relevant to the solar industry.”... Visit Website ]
Jun 19, 2018, 12:30pm

Articles
What's Really Happening When Asylum-Seeking Families Are Separated?
Katy Vine: An expert on helping parents navigate the asylum process describes what she’s seeing on the ground. ... the ones that I’ve been working with are the ones that are actually being prosecuted for criminal entry, which is a pretty new thing for our country—to take first-time asylum seekers who are here seeking safe refuge, to turn around and charge them with a criminal offense. Those parents are finding themselves in adult detention centers and in a process known as expedited removal, where many are being deported. And their children, on the other hand, are put in a completely different legal structure. They are categorized as unaccompanied children and thus are being put in place in a federal agency not with the Department of Homeland Security but with Health and Human Services. And Health and Human Services has this complicated structure in place where they’re not viewed as a long-term foster care system—that’s for very limited numbers—but their general mandate is to safeguard these children in temporary shelters and then find family members with whom they can be placed. ... For all asylum seekers, you are going to be put in jail, in a detention center, and you’re going to have your children taken away from you. That’s the policy. They’re not 100 percent able to implement that because of a lot of reasons including just having enough judges on the border. And bed space. There’s a big logistical problem... Visit Website ]
Jun 17, 2018, 3:05pm

Articles
Desperate Asylum Seekers Are Being Turned Away by U.S. Border Agents Claiming There’s “No Room”
Debbie Nathan: U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents are systematically violating U.S. and international law by blocking immigrants at international ports of entry on the southern border from entering the country so they can claim asylum. Immigration civil rights advocates have been documenting this illegal behavior since late 2016, from Texas to California. ... Even so, the practice of turning immigrants away has suddenly become routine, creating chilling scenes of immigrants and children camped out near the bridges, exposed to sun, wind, and rain, amid make-do bedding, scattered clothing, and trash. A few times a day, the immigrants walk to the middle of the bridges and ask to be admitted to the port of entry building on the U.S. side so that they can request asylum. They are almost always turned back... Visit Website ]
Jun 16, 2018, 1:00pm

Articles
The speech that made Debs Convict No. 9653
Marlene Martin: "I am suspicious of leaders, and especially of the intellectual variety. Give me the rank and file every day in the week. ... If you go to the city of Washington, and you examine the pages of the Congressional Directory, you will find that almost all of those corporation lawyers and cowardly politicians, members of Congress, and misrepresentatives of the masses — you will find that almost all of them claim, in glowing terms, that they have risen from the ranks to places of eminence and distinction. ... I am very glad I cannot make that claim for myself. I would be ashamed to admit that I had risen from the ranks. When I rise, it will be with the ranks, and not from the ranks" .... Debs also emphasized that it was these very ranks that were called upon to fight the wars, and not the “master class” that “always declared the wars,” but never had to fight them... Visit Website ]
Jun 15, 2018, 12:07pm

Articles
A Dakota Access Pipeline Water Protector Is Sentenced to Prison in North Dakota
Joseph Bullington: On May 30, Michael “Little Feather” Giron was sentenced to thirty-six months in federal prison, becoming the first person to face serious prison time for his role in the struggle against the Dakota Access Pipeline. ... All the federal charges against the seven defendants stem from October 27, 2016, a decisive turning point in the battle over the pipeline. ... pipeline opponents had constructed barricades from logs, tires, pallets, and disabled vehicles. As police advanced, the barricades were set on fire. ... Mr. Giron was one of those identified setting fires that obstructed law enforcement ... “Little Feather and his legal team were facing monumental challenges including the prospect of a trial with a hostile jury pool, limited discovery, and the risk of a long prison sentence.”... Visit Website ]
Jun 6, 2018, 3:50pm

Articles
A speech that resonates 100 years later
Tom Twiss: This month marks the 100th anniversary of Eugene V. Debs’s famous speech against the First World War, delivered on June 16, 1918, in Canton, Ohio. As a result of the speech excoriating imperial conquest and urging resistance to the war, the Socialist Party leader would be arrested and sentenced to 10 years in prison for sedition. ... it contained an especially skillful and powerful interweaving of concerns closest to Debs’ heart: a vigorous defense of democracy and civil liberties, a passionate condemnation of war, and an ardent denunciation of class rule and appeal for socialism — themes that continue to resonate today ... Although the Sedition Act was repealed in 1921, major portions of the Espionage Act remain in effect. It has been used quite recently against dissidents and whistleblowers... Visit Website ]
Jun 4, 2018, 10:11am

Articles
Homes and Gardens: The Best Thing to Ever Happen to a Prison Site
Lewis Wallace: Zeke and Derek are part of a group working on a multi-year vision to “flip” this prison. Their youth organization, Growing Change, officially acquired the Scotland Correctional Center site from the North Carolina Department of Public Safety in 2017. The plan is to turn it into a permaculture aquaponics farm where they teach community members these methods of growing food while conserving water and energy. They’re also planning a climbing wall to raise revenue, a paintball field, a recording studio, and housing for homeless veterans... Visit Website ]
May 22, 2018, 5:34pm

Articles
Imprisoned for a Day: a Personal Reflection
Chris Wright: A few months ago I had the opportunity to experience a bit of life from a perspective I’m not accustomed to: the inside of a jail cell. I was left with a kind of insight that an academic like me doesn’t always achieve, an experiential or empathic insight. ... But now I saw more clearly that, in effect, what the police are is just bureaucrats with guns ... we live in an overwhelmingly bureaucratized society, a world increasingly shorn of human connections—sacrificed on the altar of marketization and privatization—which is precisely why it’s hurtling towards doom. Humanity is simply a non-factor in the political-economic equation.... The prison bureaucracy takes the alienating tendencies of capitalist institutions to their logical and literal conclusion, in the separation of people... Visit Website ]
May 16, 2018, 12:42pm

Articles
The toxic legacy of Canada's CIA brainwashing experiments: 'They strip you of your soul'
Ashifa Kassam, The Guardian, UK: In 1977 it emerged that the CIA had been funding experiments in mind-control brainwashing at the institute as part of a North America-wide project known as MK Ultra. ... At the time, the US agency was scrambling to deepen its understanding of brainwashing, after a handful of Americans captured during the Korean war had publicly praised communism and denounced the US. ... In 1957, this interest brought the agency north of the border, where a Scottish-born psychiatrist, Ewen Cameron, was trying to discover whether doctors could erase a person’s mind and instill new patterns of behaviour. ... Patients were subjected to high-voltage electroshock therapy several times a day, forced into drug-induced sleeps that could last months and injected with megadoses of LSD... Visit Website ]
May 4, 2018, 12:24pm

Articles
Haymarket and the First May Day
Elizabeth Schulte tells the story of the fight for the eight-hour day in 1886--and of the Haymarket Martyrs who gave their lives for it ... ON MAY 1, 1886, hundreds of thousands of workers were taking the streets of cities around the U.S. to demand an eight-hour day. ... The epicenter of this great labor struggle was Chicago, where the eight-hour movement inspired defiant protests and strikes--and inspired fear and repression from bosses and their loyal servants in law enforcement. ... Two days after the massive May 1 actions, Chicago police fired on a protest of workers at a South Side factory, killing four people. A protest demonstration was called the next day for Haymarket, just west of downtown. ... The rally was peaceful, but as it was nearing a close, police waded into the crowd. At this point, a bomb was thrown into the ranks of police--and this became the excuse for a deadly rampage by the authorities... Visit Website ]
May 1, 2018, 10:12am

Articles
Illinois bill would reward schools for hiring social workers, not armed security officers
Elham Khatami: While states across the country advance policies to arm teachers or to put more police officers in schools, the Illinois House passed legislation Friday that would create a grant program for schools that employ social workers or psychologists instead of armed security officers to keep students safe. ... evidence has shown that more guns in schools — whether in the hands of police officers or armed teachers — actually make students less safe. ... School counselors and social workers can prevent school violence and suicide by providing students with the opportunity to communicate their thoughts, by intervening early when students act out, and by facilitating workshops and other settings that promote positive behaviors... Visit Website ]
Apr 30, 2018, 2:13pm

Articles
Golden State Green Rush: A Trimmigrant’s Tale
Donnell Alexander: Trimmers make from $100 to $300 for a day that can run 15 hours. The bad gigs are the grows where weapons are numerous and the bosses are stressed out and high. ... The adult-use and medical marijuana markets may collectively think pot magically goes from a plant in the soil to that jarred nugget in your local dispensary display case. But that eye-catching product was prepared by a worker who’s been at the mercy of their employers. ... United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 770 consultant Robert Chlala said that by organizing trimmers, “My hope —and what we are seeing in our work already—is that we can avoid trimmers being treated as contingent workers or falsely labeled as independent contractors, that they can get the same protections as other workers.”... Visit Website ]
Apr 28, 2018, 2:45pm

Articles
There's No App for Justice
Noam Cohen: In a 1977 law review article, Northwestern law professor Anthony D’Amato described the idea of computer judges as a laudable, if lofty, goal—a chance to live up to the idea of the United States as a country governed by “the rule of law, not the rule of men.” ... There are now at least 600 legal tech startups operating in the United States, many of them using AI to organize bankruptcy filings, search for new patent filings, and more generally help lawyers make the strongest possible case for their clients by showing connections between past court decisions, the law, and legal arguments. ... The question is whether these new legal startups will lessen inequality or magnify it... Visit Website ]
Apr 26, 2018, 12:58pm

Articles
“They Eat Money”: How Mandela’s Political Heirs Grow Rich Off Corruption
Norimitsu Onishi and Selam Gebrekidan: In the generation since apartheid ended in 1994, tens of billions of dollars in public funds — intended to develop the economy and improve the lives of black South Africans — have been siphoned off by leaders of the A.N.C., the very organization that had promised them a new, equal and just nation ... Many trace the deep corruption in the nation to a fundamental flaw in South Africa’s transition from white rule to democracy a generation ago. ... The black majority was allowed to control politics, but much of the country’s economic resources, including land, has remained in the hands of white South Africans and a small group of other elites. ... In the early years of A.N.C. rule, Mr. Mandela and other top leaders, who had helped defeat apartheid but had no personal savings, received houses, vehicles and money from white business leaders — essentially bribes, critics say... Visit Website ]
Apr 19, 2018, 3:23pm

Articles
Supreme Court case tests weight of old Native American treaties in 21st century
On April 18, the United States Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Washington v. United States, which pits the state of Washington against the United States and 21 Indian tribes. The main question in the case is narrow – whether the state must quickly replace hundreds of culverts that allow the flow of water under roads but also block salmon migration. Yet the underlying issue is far broader. ... In the mid-1800s, the United States’ zeal for expansion and growth resulted in the removal of Indian people and the acquisition of their territory, often through the use of treaties. ... Isaac Stevens, the first governor of the territory of Washington, negotiated treaties on behalf of the United States with tribes ... emphasized language in the treaties that would preserve the tribal “right of taking fish, at all usual and accustomed grounds and stations... Visit Website ]
Apr 17, 2018, 4:48pm


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