Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A new report is out on how the US economy is rigged against the poor

A new report is out on how the US economy is rigged against the poor. Via TomDispatch

"The 2018 Prosperity Now Scorecard and its report, Whose Bad Choices? How Policy Precludes Prosperity and What We Can Do About It, also make the argument that the U.S. economic system and policies of the Trump administration and Congress are stacked against people of color.

Criminalize poverty and start a revolution

“'We’ve heard more rhetoric lately about [low-income] people making ‘bad choices’ or being ‘irresponsible with money’ and that’s been the direction policy has been going,’ said Kasey Wiedrich, director of applied research at Prosperity Now. 'We wanted to attack that.' One example of the rhetoric: Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) recently said lower-income Americans 'are just spending every darn penny they have whether it’s on booze or women or movies.'

"In reality, however, the Prosperity Now report said, 'the dominant narrative about low-wealth people is nothing but a series of myths.' Poor choices, the analysts there say, aren’t why people are poor." https://goo.gl/WkU7AJ

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Shades of the Third Reich

The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies | Israel News | Al Jazeera

The first consequence is likely to be mounting pressure on the government to open the state's adoption files so that the true extent of the disappearances can be gauged and families reunited.

But Hanegbi's otherwise evasive comments will do little to end suspicions that officials are still actively trying to avoid confronting the most contentious questions: Why were the infants taken from their families? Did hospitals and welfare organisations traffic children in Israel's early years? And were state bodies complicit in the mass abductions?

When asked by Israeli TV programme Meet the Press whether government officials were involved, Hanegbi would say only: "We may never know." Read More

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Brexit: 89% of Britons want dual citizenship after leaving EU, finds survey

89 per cent of UK citizens would like to have a second citizenship and many of them are prepared to spend a considerable amount for the privilege, according to a new survey.

Some 58 per cent admitted Brexit has been the motivating factor in their decision. According to the "Citizenship Survey", conducted by CS Global Partners, three in four participants believed a second passport would give them the ability to travel and explore the world with greater ease.

The second most popular reason was the belief that a second non-UK citizenship would mean "increased freedom and human rights" - with nearly three in five citing this as their concern. One in six people wanted a second passport for business and career opportunities.

CS Global Partners - a law firm specialising in citizenship and residence solutions - spoke to 500 people between the ages of 18 and 50 years old within the last month. Read More

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Pope Francis Shares a Devastating Photo for His New Year Message

As part of his New Year’s address, Pope Francis shared the most important image you’ll see all day.

Pope Francis has printed a card calling for peace and empathy in this New Year as a bleak warning of what the face of global conflict looks like. Featuring one of the most devastating photos to come out of World War II, the card simply reads in Italian “il frutto della guerra,” which translates into English to “the fruit of war.” Read More

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

The Voices of justice need to be heard

Ahed Tamimi: The voice of justice needs to be heard.

A slap is a physical act not meant to wound, maim nor kill. It is rather, an act born of frustration, of indignation and a stinging rebuke for unwanted action.

Ahed Tamimi is a 16-year-old Palestinian girl who lives in the Palestinian village of Nabi Saleh where villagers have resisted the Israeli occupation.

The Israeli occupying army functions as the military defenders of Jewish settlers in the nearby Jewish settlements of Halamish. This is a settler village whose residents steal the Nabi Saleh villagers’ water, and illegally confiscate their farm land to expand the settlement. httjps://goo.gl/wsu3QT

Sunday, December 10, 2017

How will US Jerusalem move affect Israel's far right? By Jonathan Cook

'Tipping point'

"We may remember this date as the tipping point, as the moment when a new consensus emerged in Israel behind the idea of total Jewish supremacy," journalist David Sheen, an expert on Israel's far-right movements, told Al Jazeera.

Similar concerns were expressed by Yousef Jabareen, a Palestinian member of Israel's parliament.

"We can expect to see a move rightwards across Israeli society," he told Al Jazeera. "The centre-left parties were already tacking much closer to the right. They will now want to align themselves with Trump's position. Meanwhile, the right will be encouraged to move to the extreme right."

Both noted that Avi Gabbay - the recently elected leader of the Zionist Union, the official opposition and the party that was once the backbone of the Israeli peace camp - had begun espousing positions little different from those of right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. More

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Why does Canada spy on its own indigenous communities?

6 December 2017 - Indigenous nations have emerged as vocal defenders of land and water, but state surveillance of these groups is disproportionate, and speaks of the broad criminalisation of Indigenous peoples.

“Researchers and journalists have begun to reveal the extent to which Indigenous activists and organisations in Canada are subject to surveillance by police, military, national security intelligence agencies and other government bodies. While security agencies have long looked beyond ‘traditional’ national security threats and set their sights on activists – even in the absence of evidence linking these individuals or organisations to any violent criminal activity – this reality is increasingly the subject of media and public scrutiny. As Jeffrey Monaghan and Kevin Walby have written, the language of “aboriginal and multi-issue extremists” in security discourse blurs the line between threats to national security, matters of ordinary law enforcement, and lawful, democratic advocacy.

In this piece, we summarise some of what is known about the surveillance practices employed to keep tabs on Indigenous leaders and activists, and describe their impact on Charter-protected and internationally recognised human rights and freedoms.

Indigenous nations and peoples have emerged, worldwide, as vocal defenders of land and water, organising to protect ancestral territories and ways of life. In Canada, while aboriginal and treaty rights are constitutionally recognised and affirmed, the interpretation of those rights is highly contested and a matter frequently before the country’s highest court. Indigenous activists and organisations in Canada have led popular resistance to the development of new oil and gas pipelines, hydroelectric dams, mining operations, and other extractive industries that have significant environmental impact and which frequently encroach on Indigenous territories.

This resistance – with tactics ranging from peaceful protest and strategic litigation to the establishment of creative action camps and blockades – has frequently been met with a forceful police response. Through diligent research and investigative reporting, a pattern of extensive surveillance of these activities has also emerged – implicating law enforcement, intelligence agencies and numerous other government bodies.” https://goo.gl/2mnBGi