Archive for February 17th, 2011
In the wake of the horrible attack on veteran war reporter and CBS News correspondent Lara Logan, a disturbing round of ‘blame the victim’ chatter has buzzed around the media, from Twitter to blogs to cable news. Some have asked directly why in the world was Logan there? Do women have any place amid such chaos? And, the next question seems to be, didn’t she know this could happen?
I do not speak for Ms. Logan or any other reporter who has worked in conflict zones or amid scenes of great upheaval. But I will take the liberty of answering the basic question of why Logan was there in the first place.
Because it is her job (continue reading…)
Ronel Thelusmond is the director of the technical division of the National Institute for the Application of Agrarian Reform (INARA), part of the Haitian Ministry of Agriculture. An element of INARA’s mission is to manage land conflicts, particularly as they relate to national development. We asked Ronel how the government could address the complications of land tenure and land concentration to get housing for the estimated 1.5 million people who lost their homes during the earthquake and who are now living under sheets of plastic or nylon in the streets and other public spaces.
The Emergency of People Living in Tents
Collective Participation in Reconstruction
In the Dominican Republic they have housing co-ops. Why can’t we create something similar here? Why can’t the government make use of the funds it has and let people take part in building their own houses? It’s possible (continue reading…)
It is freezing cold on the winter river in New York! As long as we have wood for our fireplace we are okay. We have been fairly conservative with the size of the fires we burn, often with only one log smoldering away on top of a bed of coals. That is just enough heat to keep us warm if we stay near the fire and wear an appropriate assortment of winter gear, like long johns and mitten caps. This morning all of the windows inside had a thick layer of ice that formed beautiful designs (continue reading…)
Mary Landrieu said a few days back that dealing with the deficit is the “issue of the decade.” And this is from a Democrat.
The inside-the-Beltway mentality creates its own Bizarro World, brain-dead obsessions that are so distorted compared to the real world, that it completely takes one’s breath away. The fact that both parties are focused on the same obsessions is a tribute to the power of the framing machine the Wall Street-backed conservative media has created.
I write this even though I do actually think getting a handle on the long-term structural deficit is very important both economically and politically. Being the Midwestern Methodist I am, the kind of debt we are running up makes me very unsettled, and paying hundreds of billions of dollars in interest does the economy no good. I also think that, politically, Democrats and progressives always will have trouble making the case for doing the kinds of things we want government to do unless we make progress on bring the federal deficit under control (continue reading…)
The one thing that still stays in my mind from Christmas 2010 is the media coverage of the “fat sugarplum fairy.” Following The New York Times article calling the ballerina allegedly chubby (claiming she had “eaten one sugar plum too many”), I went to go see the New York City Ballet’s rendition of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, not only to get into the mood for Christmas, but also because I found it highly improbable that a ballerina would be anything close to “fat.”
Unfortunately, ballerina Jenifer Ringer wasn’t performing the night I went to Lincoln Center, but nonetheless, the ballet did the job of making me feel like going on a sleigh ride… with a bag full of candy. Halfway through the gumdrops and cookies and sugarplums and whatever else, I was sincerely curious how anyone can make it through the Nutcracker without a trip to the concession stand.
My date and I decided on Po, the small West Villager that is best known as one of the first eateries where Mario Batali got his start (continue reading…)
The Obama administration is taking action to hold accountable for-profit colleges that prey on low-income students. But some Democrats in Congress — including several members of the Congressional Black Caucus — are siding with Republicans to block the administration’s efforts.
Hundreds of thousands of people go into debt every year enrolling in for-profit higher education programs like DeVry and Argosy — sold on the idea that they’ll graduate with skills that will lead to opportunity and a better life. In reality, many come out with a mountain of debt they can’t pay back and no better prospects at employment.
Thankfully, the Department of Education is preparing to stop federal financial aid from going to higher ed programs that don’t actually help students get jobs and pay off their debt. Not surprisingly, the industry is fighting back hard, despite its atrocious record: their students make up 10% of those in higher ed but 40% of students who stop making payments on their loans.
Now, the for-profit college industry has help from a handful of Democrats, including CBC members Reps (continue reading…)
When you live in tinseltown, the line between reality and fiction gets a little blurry. So for most of us denizens of Culver City, we’ve gotten used to seeing Courtney Cox’s ABC show Cougar Town filming in the middle of downtown. More than a few of us even considered listing our houses with Jules Cobbs’ Real Estate Office when it set up an office across from the Culver Hotel last year. So it came as quite a surprise to me when I noticed that poor Jules had shuttered her office and it was being turned into a Menchie’s frozen yogurt franchise (continue reading…)
The day of the surgery arrived. I was told that the double mastectomy and reconstruction would likely take between five and seven hours. Yes, it’s a doozie. For some reason people keep telling me that as a result of this surgery, my chest will be “as perky as my personality” (continue reading…)
Al Gore’s film, An Inconvenient Truth, catapulted global warming into the spotlight and helped bring business and environmental leaders together to reduce fossil fuel dependence.
Now a new documentary film, Gasland, aims to build opposition to natural gas production in the U.S. Recently nominated for an Academy Award, the documentary focuses on the problems of “hydraulic fracturing,” commonly called “fracking,” a form of natural gas drilling.
That’s understandable. When residents of small Colorado towns turn on their faucets, and find that their tap water has caught fire, it can be a little disconcerting, even if — as the state later concluded — the problem was naturally occurring methane unrelated to fracking.
Yes, natural gas fracking needs to be much better regulated (continue reading…)
A War on Women Planned Parenthood Responds to House Republican Bills Targeting Reproductive Rights and Womens Health Services VIDEO
Since taking control of the U.S. House of Representatives last month, Republicans have introduced several major anti-abortion bills that women’s rights activists say could place severe limitations on access not only to abortion, but complete reproductive health and family planning services.
On the front lines of the battle to stop the legislation is Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, which provides family planning, contraception and abortion services at more than 800 clinics and health centers across the U.S. serving more than three million patients a year (continue reading…)
President Barack Obama has had a comeback in national polling, but when the 2012 campaign gets going, the real indicator will be those swing states that decide Presidential elections. Obama won most of those swing states in 2008, but Republicans reversed that in last year’s midterms.
An interactive poll of more than 10,000 likely voters we conducted earlier this month for the O’Leary Report found that even after Obama’s approval bounce, he still has a lot of work to do in those swing states.
The poll segmented the sample into those who live in Blue, Red and what we called Green states. The latter group includes those states carried by Obama in 2008 and where Republicans on the whole did better than Democrats in the mid-term election.
The list of Green States is familiar: Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin. The O’Leary Report poll had a number of questions, but I’ll just focus on three that may be most pertinent to Obama’s re-election.
1 (continue reading…)
The ‘GNR’ is also now available on your cell phone via Stitcher Radio’s mobile app!.
IN TODAY’S RADIO REPORT: Heavier storms now definitely linked to climate change… But one MT legislator says “Bring it on”; Score one for the whales; PLUS: Oil subsidies, shmoil-shmubsidies — Republicans vs. Obama’s budget and Big Bird vs. Big Oil .. (continue reading…)
The Roadmap is a weekly show by foundersZev Mo Green andRamon B. Nuez Jr., where they interview NYC-based companies andbusinessleaders. They also investigate web culturetrends and how they are affecting companies in the space.
I have known Ruben Quinones for over two years.
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Often times in The Mo’Kelly Report, we discuss the media failings of celebrities, through either bad press releases by publicists, poor crisis management or a disastrous combination of both. There are those times (though infrequent) in which a celebrity (or his/her management) makes the right move and best protects the celebrity and/or the associated brand.
Take Michael Vick for example…
His recent cancellation of a scheduled interview with media mogul Oprah Winfrey was clearly the right move. The only better one would have been not agreeing to the on-air conversation in the first place. Nevertheless, it was by far the best decision Vick has made on or off the field in quite some time.
You will often hear the argument that there is “no such thing as bad publicity,” and that would absolutely be untrue (continue reading…)
“Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.” — Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Egyptians lock arms, a dictator tumbles. Let’s think about this, shall we? How could such a thing have happened? I ask this knowing the hard part is just beginning. The hard part is always just beginning.
Egypt — brutal dictatorship now under military rule, key caretaker of Western interests in the Middle East — has yet to transform itself institutionally into the type of society its people have indicated over an extraordinary 18 days that they want and deserve; and much could happen in the coming weeks and months, from pressures both internal and international, to thwart, co-opt and derail the January 25 Revolution.
But a force has nevertheless been summoned on a corner of this planet that too many people still refuse, or are unable, to recognize. Gandhi called it satyagraha: “seizing the truth.” I think it’s time to take it seriously; indeed, to take it far more seriously than we do the forces of violence and coercion around which we heedlessly assume that human society is organized.
What if — and here I simply grab hold of one of the principles of satyagraha, as imparted in the APT Nonviolence Trainer’s Manual — “each person’s opinions and beliefs represent part of the truth”? Each person’s! This includes those we mock, those we shut up, those we kill (continue reading…)
The major federal agencies regulating banking and Wall Street have a giant “Help Wanted” sign in the window, representing a crucial opportunity that may not come again for a long time.
First on the list of agencies that will be looking for help is the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the agency that insures bank deposits and watches over bank solvency. FDIC Chair Sheila Bair steps down this summer at the end of her five-year term.
Appointed by George W. Bush and described by Portfolio as “a longtime Republican who made her Capitol Hill debut in 1981 as an aide to then-Senate Majority Leader Robert Dole,” Bair emerged as a hero to consumer advocates during the financial crisis (continue reading…)
Congress is working on the federal budget for the rest of the fiscal year 2011. It is now clear that some of the proposed budget cuts would slash programs that save the lives of some of the poorest people on the planet. These programs have been championed by Republicans and Democrats in the past, but now some of the best programs our government funds to help combat pandemic diseases and eliminate poverty are on the chopping block. Here is a snapshot of what that looks like.
If just one of the proposed cuts is passed — $450 million in contributions to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis — approximately 10.4 million bed nets that help prevent malaria will not reach people who need them; 6 million treatments for malaria will not be given; 3.7 million people will not be tested for HIV; and 372,000 tests and treatments for tuberculosis will not be administered.
While the White House has done much better than Congress in protecting critical international aid, President Obama’s proposed budget for the fiscal year 2012,which he just released this week, shows deep cuts to domestic anti-poverty programs (continue reading…)
By Emma Castleberry
Bill Nye, the one-and-only “Science Guy,” is helping hundreds of nostalgic fans to — dare he say it? — change the world after visiting CU’s Macky Auditorium.
The eager students who scored tickets to the much-anticipated event were camped out in front of Macky Auditorium by 6:15 p.m. Tuesday night, 45 minutes before the doors opened. Some gathered in circles playing cards while others studied, but most were discussing Nye.
“I mean, the cornerstone of our education was Bill Nye,” said Clementine Stowe, a 19-year-old sophomore integrative physiology and neuroscience major who was among the students waiting outside for the event. “No wonder there’s a ton of us here.”
Students compared the Science Guy to other worldwide famous faces.
“Yeah, if they brought the Pope, there’d probably be about the same attendance,” said William Grandbois, a 20-year-old junior anthropology major who was also waiting outside the theater.
Shortly before 7 p.m., the crowd poured into the auditorium, cheering and chanting, “Bill! Bill! Bill!” Punam Chatterjee, chair of the Distinguished Speakers Board that brought Nye to CU, marveled at the crowd’s enthusiasm when she came on stage to introduce the Science Guy.
“Man, you guys are really excited, aren’t you?” Chatterjee said over the cheers.
Daniel Griffitts, a 22-year-old senior geology major, said he thought Nye was a great choice for the DSB to bring to campus.
“It’s hard to go wrong with Bill Nye,” Griffitts said (continue reading…)
Last year, the U.S. set ambitious goals in the National Education Technology Plan 2010 for our education system. In a recent weekly address, Obama reiterated his desire to push limits in technology and innovation: we must “out-educate, out-innovate, and out-build the rest of the world.”
On one hand, bold assertions and long-term plans to integrate technology into our national awareness is a step forward. The national plan discusses learning, assessment, teaching, infrastructure, productivity, and research and development, and pinpoints fairly specific ways of achieving the outlined goals (continue reading…)
In a show of solidarity ABC’s Ann Compton along with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie gathered messages from fellow women reporters at the major networks for their colleague Lara Logan and sent them to CBS to be delivered to her home as she continues to recuperate from an attack last week in Egypt’s Tahrir Square.
Other reporters I contacted had this to say:
ABC’s Senior Foreign Affairs Correspondent Martha Raddatz:
NBC’s Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent Andrea Mitchell:
“Like all of us, I’m horrified and agonize for her. She is fearless, intrepid, smart and what those who haven’t worked alongside her may not know, a lovely, kind person. Women are always more at risk than men in conflict zones, but so are the women we cover. They, and children, are the most vulnerable in society (continue reading…)
Meet Marcin Jakubowski. In 2003, Marcin founded Open Source Ecology (OSE) — a movement dedicated to the collaborative development of tools for creating off-grid communities using open source tools, permaculture methods, and digital fabrication. The idea is to decentralize technology so that all people can build their own high-quality, sustainable lifestyle. Marcin has begun development on the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS) — an open source tool set of 40 industrial machines necessary to create everything a community needs (continue reading…)
Madison, Wisconsin — arguably the center of labor movements and unions — is under attack. In one of the largest and troubling setbacks to workers’ rights, Republican Gov. Scott Walker has proposed regressive legislation that not only dismantles the ability of civil employees to oppose unjust practices, but it essentially demonizes each individual’s self-worth. As thousands continue to gather in Wisconsin to protest laws that would require them to pay more for their pensions and health insurance, similar action is taking place in New Mexico and around the country as unions face continued assault (continue reading…)