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Revealing News For a Better World

Media Articles
Excerpts of Key Media Articles in Major Media


Below are key excerpts of highly revealing media articles from the major media. Links are provided to the full articles on their media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These media articles are listed in reverse date order. You can also explore the articles listed by order of importance or by date posted. By choosing to educate ourselves and to spread the word, we can build a brighter future.

Note: Explore our full index to key excerpts of revealing major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


The reason Qassem Soleimani was in Baghdad shows how complex the Iran crisis is
2020-01-06, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/qassem-soleimani-death-iran-baghdad-midd...

As part of the incendiary and escalating crisis surrounding the assassination of Qassem Soleimani, there has come an explanation of why the Iranian commander was actually in Baghdad. The commander is said to have been in Iraq to discuss moves to ease tensions between Tehran and Saudi Arabia. Iraq’s prime minister revealed that he was due to be meeting the Iranian commander to discuss moves being made to ease the confrontation between Shia Iran and Sunni Saudi Arabia. Adil Abdul-Mahdi was quite clear: “I was supposed to meet him in the morning the day he was killed.” The prime minister also disclosed that Donald Trump had called him to ask him to mediate following the attack on the US embassy in Baghdad. According to Iraqi officials ... the siege of the embassy was lifted and the US president personally thanked Abdul-Mahdi for his help. There was nothing to suggest to the Iraqis that it was unsafe for Soleimani to travel to Baghdad. This suggests that Trump helped lure the Iranian commander to a place where he could be killed. It is possible that the president was unaware of the crucial role that Soleimani was playing in the attempted rapprochement with the Saudis. Or that he knew but did not care. One may even say that it is not in the interest of a president ... whose first official trip after coming to office was a weapons-selling trip to Saudi Arabia ... to have peace break out between the Iranians and the kingdom. The Trump administration continues to insist that Soleimani was killed because he was about to launch an imminent terror campaign, without providing any evidence for the assertion.

Note: Read an excellent analysis of the deeper reasons behind this brazen provocation. Learn more in this New York Times article. A Washington Post article titled "The White House has formally notified Congress of the Soleimani strike" shows steps are being taken for declaring. war. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our War Information Center.


60 Minutes investigates the death of Jeffrey Epstein
2020-01-05, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/did-jeffrey-epstein-kill-himself-60-minutes-inve...

In July 2019, Jeffrey Epstein, already a convicted sex offender, was arrested and charged with sex trafficking by federal prosecutors. On August 10, Epstein was found dead in his federal jail cell at Manhattan's Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC). The New York City Medical Examiner's Office ruled Epstein's death a suicide by hanging, but a forensic pathologist who observed the four-hour autopsy ... tells 60 Minutes the evidence released so far points more to murder than suicide in his view. Dr. Michael Baden's key reason: the unusual fractures he saw in Epstein's neck."There were fractures of the left, the right thyroid cartilage and the left hyoid bone," Baden said. "I have never seen three fractures like this in a suicidal hanging." The night before his death, Epstein's cellmate was released. According to court documents, "no new cellmate was assigned" before he died, even though he was required to have one. That night, federal prosecutors say, "Epstein was escorted into his cell by Tova Noel at approximately 7:49 p.m." Noel and Michael Thomas, the two guards who were working the overnight shift in Epstein's unit, allegedly didn't check on him again until "shortly after 6:30 a.m." the next morning. "So Epstein's taken off suicide watch, the day before he kills himself, his roommate is removed from the cell. The cameras on his tier are not working. The guards fell asleep. It seems almost impossible to think all of those things could happen in that way," [60 Minutes correspondent Sharyn] Alfonsi said.

Note: Not mentioned is that surveillance video from Epstein's first suicide attempt was "accidentally" erased, as reported on NBC News. A revealing five-minute 60 minutes video is available here or at the link above. More photos and information are available on this CBS News webpage. An even deeper analysis can be found on this webpage. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Suleimani killing the latest in a long, grim line of US assassination efforts
2020-01-04, MSN/The Guardian
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/suleimani-killing-the-latest-in-a-long-g...

The US government is no stranger to the dark arts of political assassinations. Over the decades it has deployed elaborate techniques against its foes, from dispatching a chemist armed with lethal poison to try to take out Congo’s Patrice Lumumba in the 1960s to planting poison pills ... in the Cuban leader Fidel Castro’s food. But the killing of General Qassem Suleimani, the leader of Iran’s elite military Quds Force, was in in a class all its own. Its uniqueness lay ... in the brazenness of its execution and the apparently total disregard for either legal niceties or human consequences. “The US simply isn’t in the practice of assassinating senior state officials out in the open,” said Charles Lister, senior fellow at the Middle East Institute in Washington. Donald Trump’s gloating tweets over the killing combined with a sparse effort to justify the action in either domestic or international law has led to the US being accused of the very crimes it normally pins on its enemies. Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, denounced the assassination as an “act of international terrorism”. Mary Ellen O’Connell, a professor of international law at the University of Notre Dame, draws a direct line between earlier US administrations and the convention-shredding unpredictability of Trump. “Since Obama there has been a steady dilution of international law,” O’Connell said. “Suleimani’s death marks the next dilution – we are moving down a slope towards a completely lawless situation.” O’Connell added that there was only one step left for the US now to take. “To completely ignore the law. Frankly, I think President Trump is there already – his only argument has been that Suleimani was a bad guy and so he had to be killed.”

Note: Learn more about this brazen provocation in this New York Times article. A Washington Post article titled "The White House has formally notified Congress of the Soleimani strike" shows steps are being taken for declaring. war. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our War Information Center.


Cyber attacks and electronic voting errors threaten 2020 outcome, experts warn
2020-01-02, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/jan/02/elections-2020-cyber-attacks-...

Seven top agency officials, including the heads of the FBI and CIA, issued a joint statement predicting Russia, and other countries intend to meddle in the 2020 elections via cyber attacks or social media. “Russia, China, Iran, and other foreign malicious actors all will seek to interfere in the voting process or influence voter perceptions,” the joint statement said. The threat of more cyber attacks, plus disinformation and social media operations to sway public opinion, has prompted the federal government to work closely with officials in all 50 states, the statement said. A Senate intelligence committee report in mid-2019 concluded that Kremlin hackers manipulated election systems in all 50 states, and succeeded in breaching systems in two Florida counties and another state. New questions are being raised about the safety of some electronic voting equipment given problems in 2019 and 2018, respectively, in Pennsylvania and Georgia. A lawsuit was filed last month to block Pennsylvania from certifying electronic voting equipment that Philadelphia has purchased, after the same machines encountered significant problems in November in undercounting votes. The equipment was made by ... ES&S, which boasts about 50% of the national voting machine market and has been cited before for malfunctions. In Georgia in the 2018 elections, for instance, old voting machines made by ES&S were involved in counting votes in a race where reportedly about 80,000 votes were strangely not cast.

Note: There have been serious problems with electronic voting in the US for decades. There is little doubt powerful factions within the US have taken advantage of this. Only now that the Russians are being accused is anyone talking about this. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources.


More Drugmakers Hike U.S. Prices as New Year Begins
2020-01-01, US News & World Report/Reuters
https://www.usnews.com/news/top-news/articles/2020-01-01/more-drugmakers-hike...

Drugmakers including Bristol-Myers Squibb Co, Gilead Sciences Inc, and Biogen Inc hiked U.S. list prices on more than 50 drugs on Wednesday, bringing total New Year's Day drug price increases to more than 250, according to data analyzed by healthcare research firm 3 Axis Advisors. Reuters reported on Tuesday that drugmakers including Pfizer Inc, GlaxoSmithKline PLC and Sanofi SA were planning to increase prices on more than 200 drugs in the United States on Jan. 1. More early year price increases could still be announced. Many branded drugmakers have pledged to keep their U.S. list price increases below 10% a year, under pressure from politicians and patients. The United States, which leaves drug pricing to market competition, has higher prices than in other countries where governments directly or indirectly control the costs, making it the world's most lucrative market for manufacturers. Soaring U.S. prescription drug prices are expected to again be a central issue in the presidential election.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma from reliable major media sources.


Many families struggle to pay for phone calls with loved ones in U.S. prisons
2019-12-31, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/many-families-struggle-pay-phone-calls-l...

“You have 60 more seconds." "You have 30 more seconds.” The female voice interrupted each time Maria Marshall talked on the phone with her son in prison. But the chance to make contact for three or four minutes a day, a few days a week, came with a cost. Marshall spent $120 in just two weeks in July for her son to call her and other relatives and friends. Many states make millions each year in commission off phone calls that families like Marshall’s struggle to pay for. Inmate calling services are controlled by two main telecommunications companies, but the Federal Communications Commission says it does not have authority to set price caps on intrastate calls, which account for a majority of prisoner phone calls. Some are now pushing for change. U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., and five other senators have introduced a bill calling for “just and reasonable charges” for intrastate and interstate calling that would give the FCC authority to address inmate calling rates. “This allows the FCC to regulate and say you can’t have predatory pricing,” Duckworth said. “Cause that’s what’s happening — predatory pricing.” A typical 15-minute prison phone call within Washington costs around $1.65. On the other end of the spectrum, such a call in Kentucky costs around $5.70. Paul Wright, director of the Human Rights Defense Center ... said the system gives prisoners no options. “The alternative is they don’t talk to their family,” Wright, who was incarcerated in Washington from 1987 to 2003, said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Trump’s lawyer and the Venezuelan president: How Giuliani got involved in back-channel talks with Maduro
2019-12-30, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trumps-lawyer-and-the-venezuelan-pres...

The international call came in September 2018. On one end of the line was Venezuela’s socialist president, the pariah leader of a disintegrating economy whom President Trump’s administration was seeking to isolate. On the other end: the U.S. president’s personal attorney Rudolph W. Giuliani and then-Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Tex.). Both were part of a shadow diplomatic effort, backed in part by private interests, aimed at engineering a negotiated exit to ease President Nicolás Maduro from power and reopen resource-rich Venezuela to business. Sessions had served as emissary in the back-channel effort, visiting Maduro in Caracas that spring. The phone call, which Giuliani joined, was a follow-up to that visit. The phone conversation ... provides another example of how Giuliani used his private role to insert himself into foreign diplomacy, alarming administration officials confused about whose interests he was representing. Giuliani operated a similar campaign this year in Ukraine, where he pressured officials to announce investigations to benefit Trump — an endeavor that led to the president’s impeachment this month. The impeachment inquiry pushed into the spotlight consulting work Giuliani has undertaken around the globe even as he has been representing Trump at no charge. Giuliani’s willingness to talk with Maduro in late 2018 flew in the face of the official policy of the White House, which, under national security adviser John Bolton, was then ... taking a harder line against the Venezuelan government.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Psilocybin Sessions: Psychedelics could help people with addiction and anxiety
2019-12-29, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/psychedelic-drugs-lsd-active-agent-in-magic-mush...

For most, psychedelic drugs conjure up images of the 1960's, hippies tripping out on LSD or magic mushrooms. But ... these powerful, mind-altering substances are now being studied seriously by scientists inside some of the country's foremost medical research centers. They're being used to treat depression, anxiety and addiction. The early results are impressive, as are the experiences of the studies' volunteers who go on a six-hour, sometimes terrifying, but often life-changing psychedelic journey. For nearly two decades now, [scientist Roland Griffiths] and his colleague Matthew Johnson have been giving what they call "heroic doses" of psilocybin to more than 350 volunteers, many struggling with addiction, depression and anxiety. Carine McLaughlin was a smoker for 46 years and said she tried everything to quit before being given psilocybin at Johns Hopkins last year. That was more than a year ago; she says she hasn't smoked since. The study she took part in is still ongoing, but in an earlier, small study of just 15 long-term smokers, 80% had quit six months after taking psilocybin. That's double the rate of any over-the-counter smoking cessation product. Jon Kostakopoulos was drinking a staggering 20 cocktails a night ... when he decided to enroll in another psilocybin trial at New York University. During one psilocybin session, he was flooded with powerful feelings and images from his past. He took psilocybin in 2016. He says he hasn't had a drink since.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


Hundreds of Accused Priests, Clergy Members Left Off Catholic Church's Sex Abuse Lists
2019-12-29, Time/Associated Press
https://time.com/5756420/priests-left-off-catholic-sex-abuse-lists/

Richard J. Poster served time for possessing child pornography, violated his probation by having contact with children, admitted masturbating in the bushes near a church school and in 2005 was put on a sex offender registry. And yet the former Catholic priest was only just this month added to a list of clergy members credibly accused of child sexual abuse — after The Associated Press asked why he was not included. Victims advocates had long criticized the Roman Catholic Church for not making public the names of credibly accused priests. Now, despite the dioceses’ release of nearly 5,300 names, most in the last two years, critics say the lists are far from complete. An AP analysis found more than 900 clergy members accused of child sexual abuse who were missing from lists released by the dioceses and religious orders where they served. Of the 900 unlisted accused clergy members, more than a tenth had been charged with a sex-related crime — a higher percentage than those named publicly by dioceses and orders, the AP found.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


This Has Been the Best Year Ever
2019-12-28, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/28/opinion/sunday/2019-best-year-poverty.html

If you’re depressed by the state of the world, let me toss out an idea: In the long arc of human history, 2019 has been the best year ever. The bad things that you fret about are true. But it’s also true that since modern humans emerged about 200,000 years ago, 2019 was probably the year in which children were least likely to die, adults were least likely to be illiterate and people were least likely to suffer excruciating and disfiguring diseases. Perhaps the greatest calamity for anyone is to lose a child. That used to be common: Historically, almost half of all humans died in childhood. As recently as 1950, 27 percent of all children still died by age 15. Now that figure has dropped to about 4 percent. The news media and the humanitarian world focus so relentlessly on the bad news that we leave the public believing that every trend is going in the wrong direction. A majority of Americans say in polls that the share of the world population living in poverty is increasing — yet one of the trends of the last 50 years has been a huge reduction in global poverty. The proportion of the world’s population subsisting on about $2 a day or less has dropped by more than 75 percent in less than four decades. Every day for a decade, newspapers could have carried the headline “Another 170,000 Moved Out of Extreme Poverty Yesterday.” Or if one uses a higher threshold, the headline could have been: “The Number of People Living on More Than $10 a Day Increased by 245,000 Yesterday.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


In the U.S., an Angioplasty Costs $32,000. Elsewhere? Maybe $6,400.
2019-12-27, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/27/upshot/expensive-health-care-world-compari...

The International Federation of Health Plans, a group representing the C.E.O.s of health insurers worldwide, publishes a guide every few years on the international cost for common medical services. Its newest report, on 2017 prices, came out this month. Every time, the upshot is vivid and similar: For almost everything on the list, there is a large divergence between the United States and everyone else. Patients and insurance companies in the United States pay higher prices for medications, imaging tests, basic health visits and common operations. Those high prices make health care in the U.S. extremely expensive, and they also finance a robust and politically powerful health care industry, which means lowering prices will always be hard. For a typical angioplasty, a procedure that opens a blocked blood vessel to the heart, the average U.S. price is $32,200, compared with $6,400 in the Netherlands, or $7,400 in Switzerland, the survey finds. A typical M.R.I. scan costs $1,420 in the United States, but around $450 in Britain. An injection of Herceptin, an important breast cancer treatment, costs $211 in the United States, compared with $44 in South Africa. These examples aren’t outliers. Researchers at Harvard conducted an exhaustive study last year of things that make health systems in developed countries different from one another. The clear finding of those researchers was that it’s this huge gap in prices ... that helps explain why the United States is such an expensive place to be sick.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


2019 wasn't ALL bad. Here are all the good things that happened
2019-12-25, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/12/25/world/good-news-stories-of-2019-trnd/index.html

Here's a list of some of the good things that happened this year. The Indian Navy welcomed its first-ever woman pilot. People around the world united to save a 2-year-old's life. Austria named its first female chancellor. The European Commission elected its first female President. Women now lead five of the major parties in Finland's parliament. For the first time, all major pageants were won by women of color. Macedonia was renamed, bringing an end to a decades-long dispute with Greece. President Donald Trump made history as the first sitting US leader to set foot in North Korea. Pope Francis became the first pontiff to visit an Arab Gulf state. The 116th Congress became the most diverse in US history. Chicago elected its first African-American female mayor. Animal cruelty is officially a federal felony. California is now the first state to offer health insurance to some undocumented immigrants. Montgomery, Alabama, elected its first black mayor in 200 years. New York banned the so-called gay and trans "panic" defense. The largest mass commutation in US history took place. The Little Shell Tribe became the newest Native American tribe to receive federal recognition. Indonesia raised [the] minimum age for brides to end child marriage. Saudi Arabian women are finally allowed to travel independently. Taiwan became the first place in Asia to pass a same-sex marriage legislation. Botswana ruled to decriminalize consensual same-sex relations. Northern Ireland legalized same-sex marriage.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


These former gang rivals are helping Dallas youth escape gang violence
2019-12-24, Optimist Daily
https://www.optimistdaily.com/2019/12/these-former-gang-rivals-are-helping-da...

Antong Lucky and Def D had nearly identical childhoods: both were raised in underprivileged neighborhoods in Dallas, both experienced gang violence at an early age, and both had family members who were in gangs. There was, however, one notable difference: they were raised one mile apart, in different neighborhoods. This mile meant the difference between friend and foe: Antong was in the Bloods’ territory, and Def D was in the Crips’. In prison, both came to recognize the devastation that gang violence was wreaking on young people and their families. After both men were released from prison, the former enemies met together to create OGU (Original Gangsters United), an organization that tries to help young people in Dallas from falling into the same cycle of gang violence that Antong and Def D experienced growing up. OGU, which now has more mentors than the original duo, spend their days hanging out with Dallas youth, looking for kids at risk of gang violence — or, rather, those most in need of a positive relationship in their lives. Just this year, OGU mentors have reached 470 youth. There are many organizations that try to help at-risk teenagers escape gang violence, but what makes OGU so unique is the relationship that Antong and Def D share. They’re a real-life example of how two people from different neighborhoods can forge a meaningful relationship and use their common experiences to do good for others.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Japan Wants to Dump Nuclear Plant’s Tainted Water. Fishermen Fear the Worst.
2019-12-23, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/23/world/asia/japan-fukushima-nuclear-water.html

The overpowering earthquake and tsunami that ripped through northern Japan in March 2011 took so much from Tatsuo Niitsuma, a commercial fisherman in this coastal city in Fukushima Prefecture. Now, nearly nine years after the disaster, Mr. Niitsuma, 77, is at risk of losing his entire livelihood, too, as the government considers releasing tainted water from a nuclear power plant destroyed by the tsunami’s waves. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s cabinet and the Tokyo Electric Power Company — the operator of the Fukushima Daiichi plant, where a triple meltdown led to the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl — must decide what to do with more than one million tons of contaminated water stored in about 1,000 giant tanks on the plant site. On Monday, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry proposed gradually releasing the water into the ocean or allowing it to evaporate. For years, the power company, known as Tepco, said that treatment of the water ... was making it safe to release. But it is actually more radioactive than the authorities have previously publicized. Officials say that it will be treated again, and that it will then be safe for release. Regardless of government assurances, if the water is discharged into the sea, it will most likely destroy the livelihoods of hundreds of fishermen like Mr. Niitsuma. Consumers are already worried about the safety of Fukushima seafood, and dumping the water would compound the fears.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the Fukushima nuclear disaster from reliable major media sources.


Deaths in custody. Sexual violence. Hunger strikes. What we uncovered inside ICE facilities across the US
2019-12-22, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/nation/2019/12/19/ice-asylum-under-tru...

On Oct. 15, a guard at the Richwood Correctional Center noticed an odd smell coming from one of the isolation cells. He opened the door, stepped inside and found the lifeless body of Roylan Hernandez-Diaz. The 43-year-old Cuban man had spent five months in immigration detention waiting for a judge to hear his asylum claim. The day after his death, 20 other detainees carried out what they say was a peaceful protest. Guards swooped in and attacked, beating one of them so severely he was taken to a hospital. The USA TODAY Network uncovered the Richwood episode during an investigation of the rapidly growing network of detention centers used by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The investigation revealed more than 400 allegations of sexual assault or abuse, inadequate medical care, regular hunger strikes, frequent use of solitary confinement, more than 800 instances of physical force against detainees, nearly 20,000 grievances filed by detainees and at least 29 fatalities, including seven suicides, since President Donald Trump took office in January 2017 and launched an overhaul of U.S. immigration policies. Combined with an analysis by a government watchdog, the USA TODAY Network analyzed inspection reports since 2015 and identified 15,821 violations of detention standards. Yet more than 90% of those facilities received passing grades by government inspectors. Every detainee interviewed by the USA TODAY Network alleged mistreatment by guards.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the prison system from reliable major media sources.


‘It is beyond cruel’: Ice refuses to reunite girl with the only family she has left
2019-12-21, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/dec/21/it-is-beyond-cruel-ice-refuse...

For more than nine months, María, 23, has been waiting in an immigration detention center in Arizona hoping to reunite with the six-year-old niece she raised as a daughter. When the two asked for asylum at the border last March because they feared for their lives in Guatemala, border officials detained María in the Eloy detention center and sent the girl to foster care in New York, 2,400 miles away. Lawmakers and more than 200 clergy asked US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) to grant María parole so she can leave detention and reunite with the girl. A woman in New York volunteered to house them both while María awaits a decision on her appeal for asylum. But despite that public support, Ice denied María’s application for parole in mid-December. Parole was once the norm for arriving asylum seekers, but in recent years approvals have become increasingly rare. On a standardized form, Ice officers indicated María failed to prove she was “not a flight risk” or that her “continued detention was not in the public interest”. After a federal judge in 2018 ordered most family separations to end, attorneys have been scrambling to reunite families. There are currently about 5,500 known cases of children separated from parents during the Trump administration. But no one has tracked how many children have been split from non-parent relatives. The logistics of how and when María will see her niece again if she is not paroled are unclear. María’s asylum appeal could take up to two years.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Trump top adviser: 'Traditionally, it's always been Republicans suppressing votes'
2019-12-20, NBC/Associated Press
https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/trump-top-adviser-traditionall...

One of President Donald Trump’s top re-election advisers told influential Republicans in swing state Wisconsin that the party has “traditionally” relied on voter suppression to compete in battleground states but will be able to “start playing offense” in 2020 due to relaxed Election Day rules, according to an audio recording of a private event obtained by The Associated Press. “Traditionally it’s always been Republicans suppressing votes in places,” Justin Clark, a senior political adviser and senior counsel to Trump’s re-election campaign, said at the event. Republican officials publicly signaled plans to step up their Election Day monitoring after a judge in 2018 lifted a consent degree in place since 1982 that barred the Republican National Committee from voter verification and other “ballot security” efforts. Critics have argued the tactics amount to voter intimidation. The consent decree was put in place after the Democratic National Committee sued its Republican counterpart, alleging the RNC helped intimidate black voters in New Jersey's election for governor. The federal lawsuit claimed the RNC and the state GOP had off-duty police stand at polling places in urban areas wearing armbands that read "National Ballot Security Task Force," with guns visible on some. Mike Browne, deputy director of One Wisconsin Now, said Clark's comments suggest the Trump campaign plans to engage in “underhanded tactics” to win the election.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Elections Information Center.


Man pays utility bills for 36 families about to lose heat over the holidays
2019-12-19, Today.com
https://www.today.com/news/florida-man-pays-utility-bills-36-families-about-l...

Decades ago when Mike Esmond was raising his young family, they struggled to pay their heating bill. Decades later, he was reminded of that very cold Christmas as he opened his gas and water bill earlier this month. He noticed the due date was Dec. 26. “That made something pop into my mind, that people have to pay these bills by Dec. 26,” he said. “If they don’t pay them, they’re going to be disconnected, and they’re not going have gas or water for the holidays.” As that realization dawned on him, Esmond decided to take action. Now a 73-year-old successful business owner, he was in a comfortable position to help. He went to the city of Gulf Breeze, Florida — where he lives — and asked them to put together a list of all the people that were slated to have their gas and water shut off by that Dec. 26 date. Esmond said they told him a total of 36 families needed his help, so he decided to pay off their bills for around $4,600. “When I did this, I didn’t even know that the city was going to do what they did!” he laughed. “The ladies in the billing department actually used their computers to make up a Christmas card and they sent it out to all the people that were expecting their gas to be disconnected.” The card wished folks a “happy holidays” on the front in cheerful red and green, but it was the note on the inside that has struck a chord: “It is our honor and privilege to inform you that your past due utility bill has been paid by Gulf Breeze Pools & Spas. You can rest easier this holiday season knowing you have one less bill to pay.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Immigration is Part of Mass Incarceration
2019-12-18, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/12/28/book-review-immigration-detention-history...

Immigration-related crimes now make up the majority of all federal criminal prosecutions. While laws criminalizing entry have existed since 1929, they “were largely ignored for a century,” the lawyer and scholar César Cuauhtémoc García Hernández reminds us in a new book, “Migrating to Prison: America’s Obsession with Locking Up Immigrants.” In 1975, he noted “a mere 575 people” were charged with an immigration crime; in 1993, only 2,487. Contrast that with fiscal year 2018, when prosecutors brought 105,692 federal immigration charges. The criminalization of immigration, especially the scale at which it happens now, is a relatively recent trend, Hernández argues. And it ought to be reversed. In the 1980s and ’90s, legislation introduced new levels of criminality for immigrants, which in turn expanded the population of imprisoned people. As Hernández writes, “Congress denied immigration judges the discretion to release anyone convicted of an aggravated felony,” which includes serious offenses like murder but also shoplifting and tax fraud. Detention and deportation, once decided with considerable discretion, became mandatory for all sorts of offenses. The link between mass incarceration and immigrant incarceration is clear in the legislative history: The same 1986 law that created mandatory minimum sentences for crack cocaine created “detainers,” requests to local police to hold someone in jail until they can be picked up by immigration.

Note: Detaining immigrants has become a huge industry bringing major profits to those involved. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the court system from reliable major media sources.


Missing stars could point to alien civilizations, scientists say
2019-12-18, CNET.com
https://www.cnet.com/news/missing-stars-could-point-to-alien-civilizations-sc...

On March 16, 1950, astronomers at the US Naval Observatory pointed a telescope roughly in the direction of the constellation Lupus the wolf and took a picture. When scientists look at that same patch of sky today, something is missing. Back in 2016, researchers in Sweden reported that a star had been lost. One of the roiling distant suns visible in that USNO image from the previous century could no longer be seen. The team published a paper on the discovery, but called it "very uncertain" at the time, resolving to do more follow-up work and to continue scouring old USNO observations for other celestial objects that seem to have gone missing. Three years later, it's still unclear what happened to that star spotted in 1950, but the team behind the "Vanishing & Appearing Sources during a Century of Observations" (Vasco) project now says they've found a hundred more missing stars like it by comparing old and new observations. While they've seen no signs of aliens just yet, they say parts of space where multiple stars seem to disappear could be the best places to look for extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI). "Unless a star directly collapses into a black hole, there is no known physical process by which it could physically vanish," explains a new study published in the Astronomical Journal. "The implications of finding such objects extend from traditional astrophysics fields to the more exotic searches for evidence of technologically advanced civilizations."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on UFOs from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our UFO Information Center.


Corporations paid 11.3 percent tax rate last year, in steep drop under Trump’s law
2019-12-16, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/12/16/corporations-paid-percent-...

400 of America’s largest corporations paid an average federal tax rate of about 11 percent on their profits last year, roughly half the official rate established under President Trump’s 2017 tax law. The 2017 tax law lowered the U.S. corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, but in practice large companies often pay far less than that because of deductions, tax breaks and other loopholes. In the first year of the law, the amount corporations paid in federal taxes on their incomes — their “effective rate” — was 11.3 percent on average ... according to a report by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy. From 2008 to 2015, under the previous tax code, the corporations’ effective rate was about 21 percent. The report also found that 91 corporations in the Fortune 500, many worth billions of dollars, paid no federal taxes last year. The findings come amid an explosion in the federal deficit, which this year rose to almost $1 trillion. Corporate tax revenue fell markedly during the first year of the tax law, from about $300 billion in 2017 to $204 billion in 2018. “When drafting the tax law, lawmakers could have eliminated special breaks and loopholes in the corporate tax to offset the cost of reducing the statutory rate,” the report says. “Instead, the new law introduced many new breaks and loopholes, though it eliminated some old ones.” The 91 profitable Fortune 500 corporations that paid no federal tax in 2018 earned a combined $101 billion last year. As a group, their effective federal tax rate was -5.9 percent.

Note: How is it that 91 of the biggest corporations in the U.S. get away with paying no taxes? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Deficit hawks once again show their hypocrisy on military spending
2019-12-16, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/12/16/bernie-sanders-deficit-haw...

The Senate will be voting this week on the Trump military budget, which calls for a massive increase in defense spending. I strongly oppose this legislation. At a time when we have massive levels of income and wealth inequality; when half of our people are living paycheck to paycheck; when more than 500,000 Americans are homeless; and when public schools throughout the country are struggling to pay their teachers a livable salary, it is time to change our national priorities. I find it ironic that when I and other progressive members of Congress propose legislation to address the many unmet needs of workers, the elderly, the children, the sick and the poor, we are invariably asked, “How will we pay for it?” Yet we rarely hear that question with regard to huge increases in military spending, tax breaks for billionaires or massive subsidies for the fossil fuel industry. When it comes to giving the Pentagon $738 billion — even more money than it requested — there is a deafening silence within Congress and the ruling elites about what our nation can and cannot afford. When I talk about changing national priorities, I’m talking about the fact that the $120 billion increase in Pentagon spending — compared with the final year of the Obama administration — could have made every public college, university, trade school and apprenticeship program in the United States tuition free, eliminated homelessness and provided universal school meals to every kid in our nation’s public schools.

Note: The above article was written by Bernie Sanders. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and income inequality from reliable major media sources.


I helped write the official lies to sell the Afghanistan war
2019-12-13, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/i-helped-write-the-official-lies-to-se...

This past week, Washington Post reporting showed that the conflict in Afghanistan has been an operation of deception. But The Afghanistan Papers were not a revelation to me. I was one of the deceivers. From July 2009 to March 2010, I served as one of the U.S. Air Force’s designees for a nation-building mission, and I witnessed the disconnect between what happened on the ground and the messages the public heard about it. As my team’s information operations officer, I played a direct role in crafting those messages. But my job wasn’t only to mislead the American public: Our information campaign extended to the Afghan people and to higher-ups within the American military itself. I arrived in Paktia province in July 2009, as part of a provincial reconstruction team (PRT). I wrote broadcast news copy for the team’s interpreters to translate and thought of it as a persuasive tool. Local listeners were, in military lingo, the subjects of “non-lethal targeting.” As accusations of fraud, ballot tampering and voter intimidation circulated around the presidential election, I followed my supervisors’ directives to “aggressively pursue” interviews ... “highlighting the transparency and legitimacy of the election process.” Corruption littered our daily interactions, and a few months into our deployment, my PRT launched an investigation that ultimately uncovered a scheme that wound its way through upper-level government officials, including Paktia’s then-governor and chief of police.

Note: Listen to a 30-minute NY Times newscast showing the blatant lies behind the Afghanistan war. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


‘A Cesspool of a Dungeon’: The Surging Population in Rural Jails
2019-12-13, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/13/us/rural-jails.html

The Hamblen County Jail has been described as a dangerously overcrowded “cesspool of a dungeon,” with inmates sleeping on mats in the hallways, lawyers forced to meet their clients in a supply closet and the people inside subjected to “horrible conditions” every day. Since 2013, the number of people locked up in rural, conservative counties such as Hamblen has skyrocketed. Like a lot of Appalachia, Morristown, Tenn. ... has been devastated by methamphetamine and opioid use. Residents who commit crimes to support their addiction pack the 255-bed jail, which had 439 inmates at the end of October. While jail populations have dropped 18 percent in urban areas since 2013, they have climbed 27 percent in rural areas during that same period. Almost everyone in the county jail is there because of charges related to addiction, said the sheriff, Esco Jarnagin. Defense lawyers have proposed other options to address the crisis, including a pilot program [that] would have allowed some low-risk defendants to avoid having to post bail. But judges rejected the proposal because of fears that defendants would flee, said Willie Santana ... who is now one of four lawyers in the Hamblen County public defender’s office. “The whole system is geared toward generating pleas and putting people in jail,” he said. For many inmates, that means the jail has been a revolving door. More than three-quarters of the 850 new cases that Mr. Santana handled in the past year involved a client who had previously been incarcerated.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in the courts and in the prison system.


Why are there so few prisoners in the Netherlands?
2019-12-12, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/12/why-are-there-so-few-prisoners-...

When Stefan Koning, who has a history of psychosis, was found guilty of threatening a stranger with a knife, a long custodial sentence might have felt like the only answer. In fact, after a short spell in jail, he is back at his home in Amsterdam. Koning is a beneficiary of a growing tendency in the Netherlands to avoid jailing people unless it is necessary. One key aspect of this is a prodigious programme of care in the community for people with psychiatric problems. “We work on two aims: number one, preventing another crime, and then on psychiatric suffering and the social problems that come with it,” says Hommo Folkerts, [an] outreach worker who helps Koning. Today plummeting prison sentences have left the Netherlands with an unusual problem: it doesn’t have enough inmates to fill its prisons. Since 2014, 23 prisons have been shut, turning into temporary asylum centres, housing and hotels. The country has Europe’s third-lowest incarceration rate, at 54.4 per 100,000 inhabitants. According to the justice ministry’s WODC Research and Documentation Centre, the number of prison sentences imposed fell from 42,000 in 2008 to 31,000 in 2018 – along with a two-thirds drop in jail terms for young offenders. Registered crimes plummeted by 40% in the same period, to 785,000 in 2018. There is also a ... rehabilitation programme known as TBS. There were 1,300 people detained with a TBS ruling in 2018: people stay in a treatment centre, sometimes after a jail term, and are treated for ... psychological conditions.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


At War With the Truth
2019-12-09, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2019/investigations/afghanistan-paper...

A confidential trove of government documents obtained by The Washington Post reveals that senior U.S. officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable. The documents ... include more than 2,000 pages of previously unpublished notes of interviews with people who played a direct role in the war. Since 2001, more than 775,000 U.S. troops have deployed to Afghanistan, many repeatedly. Of those, 2,300 died there and 20,589 were wounded. The interviews ... underscore how three presidents — George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump — and their military commanders have been unable to deliver on their promises to prevail in Afghanistan. The interviews also highlight the U.S. government’s botched attempts to curtail runaway corruption, build a competent Afghan army and police force, and put a dent in Afghanistan’s thriving opium trade. With judges and police chiefs and bureaucrats extorting bribes, many Afghans soured on democracy. Meanwhile, as U.S. hopes for the Afghan security forces failed to materialize, Afghanistan became the world’s leading source of a growing scourge: opium. The United States has spent about $9 billion to fight the problem ... but Afghan farmers are cultivating more opium poppies than ever. Last year, Afghanistan was responsible for 82 percent of global opium production.

Note: How is it that Afghanistan became the leading opium producer in the world under the watch of the US, when the Taliban had all but eradicated opium in 2001? Read how Afghan officials and US contractors profited handsomely from the opium boom. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


Kansas City Makes All Public Transit Free to Ride
2019-12-06, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/kansas-city-makes-all-public-transit-free-ride-while...

Kansas City, Missouri city council members voted unanimously to abolish bus fares Thursday. Residents will soon be able to ride buses in the city for free, in a move that will cost around $8 million per year. Lawmakers expect the change will improve the lives of residents and believe it is well worth the cost. The vote makes Kansas City the first major U.S. to offer free public transportation. Fare-free travel was already available on the city's light rail. The change to buses will require the city manager to allocate funds to the project, which is expected to be implemented in 2020. While arguments against free public transportation often cite the potentially large costs involved, advocates insist the practice has a multitude of benefits for society at large. One advantage is claimed to be a positive impact on the environment. Encouraging people to travel in buses or trains instead of cars could result in cities substantially reducing their carbon footprint. Proponents also say that quality of life for individuals could be improved by eliminating fares on public transportation. A 2018 report in the journal Metropolitics studied the free system in Dunkirk, France and noted the benefits of increased mobility for young and elderly people, who may feel an improved sense of freedom and autonomy as a result. In addition to Kansas City, a number of other U.S. cities are said to be considering making the move to free public transportation.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


'Cannot be trusted ... causing harm': Top medical journal takes on big pharma
2019-12-04, Sydney Morning Herald
https://www.smh.com.au/national/cannot-be-trusted-causing-harm-top-medical-jo...

A leading medical journal is launching a global campaign to separate medicine from big pharma. The BMJ [British Medical Journal] says doctors are being unduly influenced by industry-sponsored education events and industry-funded trials for major drugs. Those trials cannot be trusted, the journal's editor and a team of global healthcare leaders write in a scathing editorial. The "endemic financial entanglement with industry is distorting the production and use of healthcare evidence, causing harm to individuals and waste for health systems", they write. They are calling for governments to start funding independent trials of new drugs and medical devices, rather than relying on industry-funded studies. Sponsored research is more likely to find a favourable result compared to independent research. And they want medical associations to discourage doctors from going to industry-funded education events. Assistant Professor Ray Moynihan, a ... researcher studying the link between money and medicine, and is one of the leaders of The BMJ's campaign. “When we want to decide on a medicine or a surgery, a lot of the evidence we used to inform that decision is biased," he says. "It cannot be trusted. Because so much of that has been produced and funded by the manufacturers of those healthcare products." Dr Moynihan points to ... Johnson & Johnson, which sold pelvic mesh to thousands of Australian women. It knew the mesh could cause serious harm, but never properly warned women of the risks.

Note: Read the highly revealing comments of Marcia Angell, former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, on the massive corruption she found in the medical industry. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


What the C.I.A.’s Torture Program Looked Like to the Tortured
2019-12-04, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/04/us/politics/cia-torture-drawings.html

One shows the prisoner nude and strapped to a crude gurney, his entire body clenched as he is waterboarded by an unseen interrogator. Another shows him with his wrists cuffed to bars so high above his head he is forced on to his tiptoes. They are sketches drawn in captivity by the Guantánamo Bay prisoner known as Abu Zubaydah, self-portraits of the torture he was subjected to during the four years he was held in secret prisons by the C.I.A.. In each illustration, Mr. Zubaydah ... portrays the particular techniques as he says they were used on him at a C.I.A. black site in Thailand in August 2002. They demonstrate how, more than a decade after the Obama administration outlawed the program — and then went on to partly declassify a Senate study that found the C.I.A. lied about both its effectiveness and its brutality — the final chapter of the black sites has yet to be written. Mr. Zubaydah, 48, drew them this year at Guantánamo for inclusion in a 61-page report, “How America Tortures,” by his lawyer, Mark P. Denbeaux, a professor at the Seton Hall University School of Law in Newark, and some of Mr. Denbeaux’s students. The report uses firsthand accounts, internal Bush administration memos, prisoners’ memories and the 2014 Senate Intelligence Committee report to analyze the interrogation program. The program was initially set up for Mr. Zubaydah, who was mistakenly believed to be a top Qaeda lieutenant. He has never been charged with a crime.

Note: For more along these lines, see the "10 Craziest Things in the Senate Report on Torture". For more, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Prince Andrew email surfaces as American woman alleges "disgusting" sexual assault
2019-12-03, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/prince-andrew-interview-epstein-sexual-allegatio...

Britain's royal family was reeling from yet another damning interview. This time it was an American woman who accuses the queen's son, Prince Andrew, of having sex with her when she was just 17 years old. Virginia Roberts Giuffre spoke out in the interview with the BBC about what she says the prince did to her, and what he may know about Jeffrey Epstein. The American woman described being forced to have sex with Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, three times while she was still a teenager. "It didn't last very long. It was disgusting. He wasn't mean or anything, but he got up and he said, 'thanks,' and walked out," she told the BBC. Roberts Giuffre said she met Prince Andrew at properties owned by Epstein, the American financier and convicted sex offender who was found dead in his New York jail cell earlier this year. She said she was made to dance with the duke at a London nightclub. "It was horrible, and this guy was sweating all over me, his sweat was like it was raining," she said. Last month Prince Andrew denied ever meeting Roberts Giuffre — despite being photographed with her — and claimed that due to a "peculiar medical condition" he was physically unable to sweat "at the time." He did admit to spending time at Epstein's homes. Now, five more American women have said Prince Andrew witnessed abuse at Epstein's home. Meanwhile, an email has emerged this week ... that was sent by the prince in January 2015 to his long-time friend Ghislaine Maxwell... "Let me know when we can talk. Got some specific questions to ask you about Virginia Roberts."

Note: Watch powerful evidence in a suppressed Discovery Channel documentary showing that child sexual abuse rings reach to the highest levels of government. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which also leads directly to the highest levels of government. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Giving Machines Expand 2019 Footprint, Raise Millions For Global Charities
2019-12-03, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/chrisstrub/2019/12/03/givingmachines/

Pedestrians in 10 cities worldwide this holiday season have a chance to give in a whole new way, thanks to a set of innovative “Giving Machines” placed by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The rollout of the machines has been staggered since mid-November, with the final two machines set to be revealed today in New York City (Manhattan New York Temple) and London (Hyde Park Visitors’ Center). ‘Items’ in the machine range from $2 to $320, and include food, clothing, medicine, hygiene supplies, sporting equipment and livestock. According to a press release from the church, items will be supplied through partner charities such as UNICEF, Church World Service, WaterAid, Water For People, and International Medical Corps. This is the third year for the giving machines; in 2018, they raised more than $2.3 million for local and global charities. The church’s website includes a live running total of donations, which have already exceeded $650,000 at press time. The machines are the focus of the church’s #LightTheWorld social media campaign, “encouraging people to perform instant acts of service that make a difference in others’ lives.” The machines do not take any fees—all donations go directly to partner charities for the purchased item, or for items or services of greater need based on their discretion. “These Giving Machines are an example of the big things that can happen when many people give just a little,” [said] Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, Young Women general president.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The world is doing much better than the bad news makes us think
2019-12-02, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-world-is-doing-much-better-than-t...

There is a natural human bias toward bad news. The title of a 1998 article in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology sums it up: “Negative Information Weighs More Heavily on the Brain.” Negative stimuli get our attention much more than positive stimuli — which makes evolutionary sense for survival. Nice things are enjoyable; bad things can be deadly, so focus on them. And given that, in the news media, attention equals money, we can see the commercial reason for a lack of headlines such as “Millions not going to bed hungry tonight.” Frequently, however, the bad-news bias gives us a highly inaccurate picture of the world. For example, according to a 2013 survey, 67% of Americans think global poverty is on the rise, and 68% believe it is impossible to solve extreme poverty in the foreseeable future. Meanwhile, starvation-level poverty has decreased by 80% since 1970, according to economists at Columbia University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The truth is that while there is plenty to worry about on any given day, the world is generally getting better. Fresh, comprehensive evidence of progress comes in the new Legatum Prosperity Index, based on data from 167 countries ... on 300 social and economic indicators of well-being. Across those dimensions, from 2009 to 2019, 148 of the 167 countries have seen net progress — much of it dramatic, and especially so among the poorest countries in the world.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


New technique uses ultrasound to kill prostate cancer with no surgery and 80% success rate
2019-12-02, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/prostate-cancer-surgery-ultrasound-...

Doctors have used ultrasound to successfully treat prostate cancer in a new study promising a new alternative to surgery. Prostate is the second most deadly type of cancer in men, with lung cancer the only variant to claim more lives. Treatment is challenging because surgery and radiation can leave men incontinent or impotent. However, a pioneering new technique avoids the risks by using a rod-shaped device inserted into the urethra while guided by magnetic resonance to administer precise bursts of ultrasound. The sound waves heat and destroy the tumour, leaving surrounding areas unharmed. The new study was presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America and involved 115 men with localised prostate cancer. After treatment with ultrasound, clinically significant cancer was eliminated in 80 per cent of the group, with 65 per cent having no signs of cancer after one year. Most of the men also saw reduced blood-antigen markers for prostate cancer, and overall no bowel complications were reported. Study co-author Steven Raman, professor of radiology and urology at the University of California at Los Angeles, said: “It’s an outpatient procedure with minimal recovery time. “We saw very good results in the patients, with a dramatic reduction of over 90 per cent in prostate volume and low rates of impotence with almost no incontinence.” The process, called Tulsa-Pro, has been approved for clinical use in Europe.

Note: Why isn't this exciting new development approved or even reported in the US? And learn about a man who developed a similar treatment almost a century ago only to have it quashed by the medical establishment.


Our dangerous fear of pain
2019-11-27, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/11/27/our-dangerous-fear-pain/?ar...

One of the first things I learned about pain was its value. I was a third-year medical student in 1976. We were ... encouraged to listen carefully to the patient’s experience of pain, the timing, the duration and any factors that made it better or worse. Forty years later, our concept of pain couldn’t be more different. Instead of learning from pain, we now regard it as an illness in and of itself. Insurance companies, health-care providers and drugmakers have all worked to increase the public’s fear of pain, leading us to see it as something to be treated, eliminated, banished — never lived with or accommodated or managed — lest it destroy us. They turned our natural fear into big business; our fee-for-service system has multiplied treatments based primarily on the financial rewards for pharmaceutical companies, doctors and hospitals. That attitude shift is perhaps the most overlooked explanation for an opioid crisis that kills tens of thousands of Americans every year. A healthy fear of pain ... protects us from injury and reminds us to allow time for healing. But otherwise, the fear of pain, and the belief that a pain-free existence is optimal or even possible, has been a catastrophe for patients. Before the opioid revolution, doctors understood that pain was important to keeping us safe, to be lived with and managed. Even if this meant we bore frequent episodes of discomfort, that was better than the nationwide crisis America faces today. Life isn’t “pain free.” If we want to end the epidemic of addiction, we need to relearn that lesson.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


Judge in Jeffrey Epstein case says jail death was ‘unthinkable’
2019-11-26, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/11/26/judge-in-jeffrey-epstein-case-calls-for-priso...

The federal judge who oversaw Jeffrey Epstein’s child sex trafficking case says “it is unthinkable” that any jail inmate — let alone one with such a high profile as Epstein — would die in custody, as the wealthy investor did this summer. Judge Richard Berman also is calling for reforms to be carried out in the U.S. prison system in light of Epstein’s death in a Manhattan federal jail. Berman, in a letter to The New York Times, said the indictment last week of two guards there for allegedly covering up their failure to check on Epstein in his cell in the hours before he died Aug. 10 “is not the full accounting to which Mr. Epstein’s family, his alleged victims and the public are entitled.” “We all agree that it is unthinkable that any detainee, let alone a high-profile detainee like Mr. Epstein, would die unnoticed at the Metropolitan Correctional Center,” Berman wrote in his letter to the Times. Berman added, “There is at the very least anecdotal evidence that chronic understaffing, subpar living conditions, violence, gang activity, racial tension and the prevalence of drugs and contraband are the norms in many of our prisons.” Federal prosecutors last week said that two M.C.C. guards, Michael Thomas and Tova Noel, failed to conduct scheduled head counts on all inmates in that special housing unit or do other required rounds for up to eight hours before Epstein was found dead. Instead, prosecutors charged, Thomas and Noel browsed the Internet, strolled around a common area in the unit and appeared to sleep for about two hours.

Note: How is it that the lawyer defending some of Jeffrey Epstein's victims, David Boies, was also the lawyer defending convicted sexual offender Harvey Weinstein, as mentioned in this NY Times article? Does it make sense for the lawyer of a major sex offender to be defending Epstein's victims? Is this a way for power elite to control the situation? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein and prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein’s Charity: An Image Boost Built on Deception
2019-11-26, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/26/business/jeffrey-epstein-charity.html

Jeffrey Epstein’s foundation looked for all the world like a charitable powerhouse: On its websites and in its press releases, the foundation was described as a patron of hospitals, universities and film festivals, run by a global philanthropist. The organization — known by various names, but usually called the J. Epstein Virgin Islands Foundation — wasn’t officially a charity for much of its existence, having lost its tax-exempt status in 2008 ... the same year Mr. Epstein pleaded guilty to soliciting prostitution from a minor. In the years between that case and his suicide in August as he faced federal sex-trafficking charges, Mr. Epstein was unshackled from the rigorous financial disclosures that charities are supposed to file every year with the government — allowing him to exaggerate his philanthropy as he sought to rebuild his reputation. The most glaring exaggeration appeared on Wikipedia. A user name apparently connected to Mr. Epstein edited the page for the foundation and put its annual outlay at $200 million a year. In reality, the foundation was worth a small fraction of that amount, according to documents obtained by The New York Times through a public records lawsuit in the Virgin Islands. Eighteen years of financial statements show that just under $20 million flowed into the foundation since it was founded in 2000. Roughly $16.6 million was spent on donations and grants; most of the rest paid unspecified “general and administrative” expenses and $1.5 million in interest for what appears to be an undisclosed debt.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein's 'madam' Ghislaine Maxwell is pictured just days after secretly meeting Prince Andrew at Buckingham Palace in June
2019-11-25, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-nz/news/world/jeffrey-epsteins-madam-ghislaine-maxwell...

Pictures have emerged of Ghislaine Maxwell, the woman who introduced Prince Andrew and Jeffrey Epstein, just days after her most recent meeting with the beleaguered royal. Ms Maxwell, the woman accused of procuring underage girls for Epstein, was pictured hobnobbing at a high-class social event in Geneva on June 8. Just two days earlier, she had visited Prince Andrew at Buckingham Palace in what sources have claimed was a meeting to discuss the case against Epstein. Ms Maxwell, the daughter of disgraced newspaper tycoon Robert Maxwell, has gone off the radar since the scandal emerged. She denies being Epstein's 'madam'. Prince Andrew, 59, met up with Maxwell, 57, who is an old friend of his, on June 6 inside the Prince's private Palace quarters. She then set off on the Cash & Rocket charity motoring rally from London to Monaco. She was conspicuously absent from publicity photographs taken during the high-profile event, and all reference to her was later deleted from the rally's website. Maxwell's involvement in the rally is thought to be the last time she visited the UK, before her disappearance from public view amid the FBI inquiry into her links with Epstein. During his disastrous BBC interview last week, Andrew was asked when he last saw Ms Maxwell. 'It was earlier this year funnily enough, in the summer, in the spring, summer… She was here doing some rally,' he replied. It was later reported she was one of five people who visited the Prince.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


US taxpayers spent almost $1 billion incarcerating innocent black people
2019-11-20, Yahoo! News
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/us-taxpayers-spent-over-4-billion-incarceratin...

Over the last few weeks, the Rodney Reed case has ignited a firestorm of interest, as celebrities, activists, and politicians worked to delay his Nov. 20 execution on the basis that he might be innocent. According to the National Registry of Exonerations (NRE), since 1989, 2,515 men and women have been exonerated after proving their innocence. In total, among all known exonerees, Americans have shelled out a staggering $4.12 billion to incarcerate innocent men and women since 1989. That’s largely money spent on trials, and the cost of housing inmates in prison. According to the Bureau of Prisons, in the fiscal year 2017, the average cost to house a prisoner was over $36,000 a year in federal facilities. But black men make up the majority of those wrongfully convicted — approximately 49%. And since 1989, taxpayers have wasted $944 million to incarcerate black men and women that were later found to be innocent. That number climbs to $1.2 billion when including Hispanic men and women. On average, from the time a person enters the criminal justice system until they are exonerated, $1.26 million is spent per inmate who is facing the death penalty. The total sum — $4.12 billion spent on all known exonerees — also includes $2.2 billion that taxpayers have paid the innocent in compensation since 1989 for the time they were imprisoned, according to a 2018 NRE study. But while a large sum, only 44% of exonerees have ever received compensation.

Note: Read also how thousands have been sentenced to life in prison for non-violent crimes. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


America has spent $6.4 trillion on wars in the Middle East and Asia since 2001, a new study says
2019-11-20, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/11/20/us-spent-6point4-trillion-on-middle-east-wars...

American taxpayers have spent $6.4 trillion on post-9/11 wars and military action in the Middle East and Asia, according to a new study. The report, from the Watson Institute of International and Public Affairs at Brown University, also finds that more than 801,000 people have died as a direct result of fighting. Of those, more than 335,000 have been civilians. Another 21 million people have been displaced due to violence. The $6.4 trillion figure reflects the cost across the U.S. federal government since the price of America’s wars is not borne by the Defense Department alone, according to Neta Crawford, who authored the study. Crawford explains that the post-9/11 wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria have expanded to more than 80 countries — “becoming a truly global war on terror.” The longer wars drag on, more and more service members will ultimately claim veterans benefits and disability payments. “Even if the United States withdraws completely from the major war zones by the end of FY2020 and halts its other Global War on Terror operations, in the Philippines and Africa for example, the total budgetary burden of the post-9/11 wars will continue to rise as the U.S. pays the on-going costs of veterans’ care and for interest on borrowing to pay for the wars,” Crawford writes. In March, the Pentagon estimated that the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria have cost each taxpayer $7,623 through fiscal 2018.

Note: Note that $6.4 trillion divided by the 320 million in the U.S. equals $20,000 spent for every man, woman, and child over the past two decades. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


After Disastrous Epstein Interview, Prince Andrew Steps Down From Public Duties
2019-11-20, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/20/world/europe/prince-andrew-quits-epstein.html

Prince Andrew announced on Wednesday that he would step back from public life, seeking to contain a firestorm over his ties to the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein. “It has become clear to me over the past few days that my association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family’s work and the valuable work going on in the many organizations and charities that I am proud to support,” Prince Andrew said in a statement. “Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I can step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission,” said the prince, who is also known as the Duke of York. The duke, 59, had hoped that the interview, broadcast Saturday by the BBC, would put to rest lingering questions about his ties to Mr. Epstein, as well as accusations that he had sex with a teenage girl who had been supplied to him by his friend. Instead, after the duke submitted to 50 minutes of polite but relentless grilling by the BBC journalist Emily Maitlis, his unsavory association with Mr. Epstein ... mutated into a full-blown scandal. Viewers expressed shock and anger at Prince Andrew’s lack of sympathy for Mr. Epstein’s victims, as well as his unpersuasive denials of sexual misconduct, which included peculiar assertions, such as that he has been medically unable to perspire since his combat tour in the Falklands War. In August ... Virginia Roberts Giuffre, accused the prince of having sex with her three times when she was 17 years old and had been offered to him by Mr. Epstein.

Note: Prince Andrew is finding himself increasingly isolated because of comments he's made about Epstein. Explore an article in the UK's Telegraph titled "Prince Andrew named in secret new evidence against Jeffrey Epstein." For more, see summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein. Watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this topic in the US.


Jeffrey Epstein accuser Maria Farmer says Ghislaine Maxwell threatened her life, FBI "failed" her
2019-11-19, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/jeffrey-epstein-accuser-maria-farmer-says-ghisla...

Maria Farmer, who has accused Jeffrey Epstein and his friend Ghislaine Maxwell of assaulting her in 1996, said Maxwell threatened her life after the assault. Farmer ... was a young artist when she met Epstein and Maxwell at an art show in New York City in 1995. Epstein had bought one of Farmer's paintings ... and eventually offered her a job. The 26-year old soon found herself working the front desk in his palatial New York City townhouse. "All day long. I saw Ghislaine going to get the women. She went to places like Central Park. I was with her a couple of times in the car ... She would say ,'Stop the car.' And she would dash out and get a child." Epstein ultimately led her to his bathroom. "And there was a marble, like, altar thing over here, and he said that's where he gets his massages," Farmer said. Epstein told her the whole house was wired with pinhole cameras and took her into the media room where they were monitored. In the summer of 1996, Farmer said Epstein sent her to ... the vast estate of Les Wexner, the CEO of L Brands, which owns "Victoria's Secret." Farmer alleges in her complaint that Maxwell and Epstein sexually assaulted her there. When she tried to flee the following day, she wasn't allowed to leave. She claims a member of Wexner's staff warned her. "His exact words were: 'You're not going anywhere. You are never leaving,'" she said. Farmer reported the assault to the FBI, but it wasn't for another decade, just before Epstein's first arrest in 2006, that an agent finally appeared at her door, she said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


FBI probing if Jeffrey Epstein’s death was the result of a ‘criminal enterprise,’ prisons chief says
2019-11-19, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/11/19/jeffrey-epstein-death-in-jail-under-fbi-inves...

The FBI is investigating whether a “criminal enterprise” played a role in the controversial jailhouse death of well-connected sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein, the head of the federal prison system told a Senate committee Tuesday. But Bureau of Prisons Director Kathleen Hawk Sawyer also testified that there is “no indication, from anything I know,” that the wealthy investor’s demise on Aug. 10 “was anything other than a suicide.” At the time Epstein died, the former friend of Presidents Donald Trump and Bill Clinton was awaiting trial on child sex trafficking charges. Sawyer’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee came on the same day that two guards from a Manhattan jail operated by the BOP were criminally charged with falsifying official records to cover up the fact that they never conducted mandated safety checks on Epstein and other inmates in the hours before he was found unresponsive with a noose around his neck. The New York City medical examiner’s office has ruled Epstein’s death was a suicide by hanging. But Dr. Michael Baden, a forensic pathologist hired by Epstein’s brother, has said that the injuries found on Epstein’s neck were more consistent with those found in homicides. During Tuesday’s hearing, one senator underscored to the prisons boss how skeptical many people are about the official ruling that Epstein killed himself. “Christmas ornaments, drywall and [Jeffrey] Epstein. Name three things that don’t hang themselves,” said Sen. John Kennedy, R-La.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this topic in the US.


Julian Assange: Sweden drops rape investigation
2019-11-19, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-50473792

Prosecutors in Sweden have dropped an investigation into a rape allegation made against Wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange in 2010. Assange, who denies the accusation, has avoided extradition to Sweden for seven years after seeking refuge at the Ecuadorean embassy in London in 2012. The 48-year-old Australian was evicted in April and sentenced to 50 weeks in jail for breaching his bail conditions. He is currently being held at Belmarsh prison in London. The Swedish investigation had been shelved in 2017 but was re-opened earlier this year. With the end of Julian Assange's legal troubles in Sweden, one long chapter in the saga is over. But another one, in the United States, has barely begun. The Wikileaks founder always argued that his fear of being extradited from Sweden to the US was why he had taken refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in London. That political refuge ended unceremoniously in April, when he was dragged out by British police. Now Assange faces 18 criminal charges in the US, including conspiring to hack government computers and violating espionage laws. If convicted, he could face decades in jail. From behind bars in Belmarsh jail, Assange is trying to prepare for the case. The decision by Swedish prosecutors today means there'll now be no competing extradition request to the one from the US. In June, the then UK Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, formally approved an extradition request from the US.

Note: Read a 2012 article from the UK's Guardian titled "Don't lose sight of why the US is out to get Julian Assange." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein accuser says his house had cameras "monitoring private moments"
2019-11-18, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/jeffrey-epstein-accuser-maria-farmer-says-his-ho...

One of Jeffrey Epstein's accusers is providing chilling new insight into his alleged sex trafficking operation. Maria Farmer told "CBS This Morning" that Epstein sexually assaulted her more than 20 years ago. She is now suing the Epstein estate. In her first TV interview, Farmer alleges that Epstein had extensive surveillance inside his home, including tiny pinhole cameras. Farmer [said] that Epstein showed her cameras throughout his house. "The main thing he did when I walked in, and I thought was interesting, he showed me where the cameras, the men monitoring everything, were. So, if you're facing the house, there's a window on the right that's barred. That's the media room, is what he called it. And so, there was a door that looked like an invisible door with all this limestone and everything. And you push it, and you go in. And I saw, all the cameras, it was, like, old televisions basically, like, stacked." "They were monitors inside this cabinet. And there were men sitting here. And I looked on the cameras, and I saw toilet, toilet, bed, bed, toilet, bed. I'm like, 'I am never gonna use the restroom here and I'm never gonna sleep here,' you know what I mean? It was very obvious that they were, like, monitoring private moments." She believes there are tapes - the question is, who has them?

Note: Watch powerful evidence in a suppressed Discovery Channel documentary showing that child sexual abuse rings reach to the highest levels of government. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which also leads directly to the highest levels of government. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


3 books focus on America’s income inequality, and why it’s getting worse
2019-11-18, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://datebook.sfchronicle.com/books/review-3-books-focus-on-americas-incom...

Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman say we’re coddling “a tiny minority of ultra-rich” Americans, and they’d like to put a stop to it. “The Triumph of Injustice” demonstrates how small sets of wealthy, white, well-connected citizens command inordinate financial and political clout. This, it seems, is the season for such books. Investigative reporter Aaron Glantz’s “Homewreckers” focuses on billionaires who cash in when the middle class struggles. Anne Nelson’s “Shadow Network” is about a coterie of influential far-right operatives. Taken together, these smart, engrossing titles paint a stark picture of the power wielded by a handful of plutocrats and religious hard-liners. There’s always been economic inequality, but it’s worse today than just decades ago. According to Saez and Zucman, America’s richest 1% own 37% of the nation’s wealth (“housing, pension funds, and all financial assets”), up from 22% at the end of the 1970s. “Conversely, the wealth share of the bottom 90% of adults has declined from 40% to 27%.” Counting all forms of taxation, Saez and Zucman say that the great majority of Americans pay 25% to 30% of their income in taxes into the public coffers. By contrast, America’s 400 richest people “barely pay 20%.” This disparity is the result of many factors. These include ... access to “offshore bank accounts, exotic trusts (and) hidden shell corporations,” Saez and Zucman write. Corporations use similar tactics. Facebook, for one, “has dodged billions in corporate taxes” by establishing a presence in the Cayman Islands.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Lady Colin Campbell says Jeffrey Epstein is NOT a paedophile during GMB row on Prince Andrew
2019-11-18, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/newslondon/lady-colin-campbell-says-jeffrey-ep...

Lady Colin Campbell today said Jeffrey Epstein should not be called a paedophile during a panel discussion about Prince Andrew's BBC Newsnight interview. The royal biographer made the comments while discussing the Duke of York's interview, which aired on Saturday and in which he discussed his links to the disgraced financier. Host Piers Morgan was addressing the prince's visit to Epstein's home when Lady Colin Campbell interrupted to claim that the financier's convictions did not make him a paedophile. "You all seem to have forgotten that Jeffrey Epstein, the offence with which he was charged and for which he was imprisoned, was 'soliciting prostitution from minors'. "That is not the same thing as paedophilia," she said. The conversation turned heated as Morgan replied: "Well, what would you call it? If you solicit a 14-year-old for prostitution then you're a paedophile." But Lady Campbell ... responded by claiming that the term 'minor' did not refer to a child. She was then corrected by the host. Morgan was referring to allegations that Epstein abused dozens of girls some as young as 14-years-old. Epstein, 66, died in jail on August 10 while facing sex trafficking charges of under-age girls, some as young as 14. He faced sex trafficking accusations in Florida in 2007 but signed a deal that year with prosecutors. The controversial arrangement allowed him to avoid federal charges and plead guilty to lesser state prostitution charges, for which he spent 13 months behind bars.

Note: If the above link fails, this article is also available here. Prince Andrew is finding himself increasingly isolated because of comments he's made about Epstein. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this topic in the US.


How The Oral Polio Vaccine Can Cause Polio
2019-11-16, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2019/11/16/780068006/how-the-oral-polio-vaccine-can-cause...

Just last month, the World Health Organization announced that two of three strains of polio had been eradicated. It's been one of the great success stories of modern medicine. The disease, which, of course, can lead to paralysis, has been reduced to just a handful of cases around the world. But now scientists say there's been a troubling setback. One of the vaccines used to prevent polio has actually been causing some people to get polio. The problem begins with what's called a live vaccine, which has little bits of weakened polio virus in it, given to children around the world. What seems to have gone wrong? The oral polio vaccine that's used primarily in low- and middle-income countries - it's been the workhorse of this global effort to eradicate polio. But it is a live vaccine. It's cheap. It's easy to administer. However, this live vaccine is continued to be used worldwide. And while you're doing that, some of that vaccine has gotten out into the world. And it's mutated. It starts circulating again, just like regular polio. But early on, it's just - it's still a vaccine. It's not dangerous. And then slowly, it sort of regains strength. And they're finding they can actually genetically see this - that scientists can actually trace it back directly to the vaccine. And now these vaccine-linked cases are actually causing more cases of paralysis each year than actual traditional - what scientists call wild polio. In the United States and in Europe ... we're using an injectable vaccine, which is a dead vaccine. It is not a live virus, and it cannot cause polio.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on vaccines from reliable major media sources.


Alabama Power fees on solar challenged
2019-11-16, Miami Herald/Associated Press
https://www.miamiherald.com/news/business/article237436404.html

When Jim Bankston installed solar panels on his Tuscaloosa home, he estimated it would trim his electricity bill, and the savings would eventually offset the cost of the hefty investment. After it was running, he noticed fees on his Alabama Power bill that he didn’t understand and learned there was a $5-per-kilowatt capacity charge on customers who use solar panels to produce a portion of their own electricity. “I am having to pay them just to use the photons that are hitting my own roof,” Bankston said. He had estimated the system would eventually pay for itself in 20 years. With the fees included, he said it could be twice that. “It’s discouraging the use of solar,” said Keith Johnston, managing attorney for the Southern Environmental Law Center’s Birmingham office. “We call it a solar tax.” The fee is based on the size of the solar system, so a five kilowatt system would have a monthly fee of $25. The average solar panel setup for a home costs about $10,000, according to the environmental law center. The fees add another $9,000 over the 30-year-lifespan of a system, dramatically increasing a homeowner’s cost and reducing any financial benefit they see from solar, the law group said. The issue of fees has arisen in New Mexico, Arizona and other states, causing clashes between renewable energy proponents and utilities. A power company in Iowa unsuccessfully pushed lawmakers to approve a fee that would require a homeowner with an average solar array to pay about $27 a month.

Note: Unlike many countries which are subsidizing solar power as a clean energy source, some places in the US are discouraging solar by taxes like this. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


CIA risks sliding back into illegal torture methods, warns real-life star of The Report
2019-11-15, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/nov/15/cia-risks-sliding-back-into-i...

As chief investigator for the Senate intelligence committee, Daniel Jones spent five years poring over internal CIA accounts of the agency’s “enhanced interrogation techniques” programme adopted in the “war on terror”, which Congress demanded to see after it emerged that agency officials had destroyed videotapes of the brutal questioning of terrorist suspects. The Amazon movie, The Report, tells the story of what Jones ... and his colleagues found out about the torture programme: the systematic use of waterboarding, sleep deprivation and “stress positions”, and the extraordinary fact that the CIA itself had conducted a review that showed none of it was working. The programme did not provide useful intelligence – and yet the CIA hid that conclusion. None of the officials responsible for the torture or the cover-up had been held accountable. Gina Haspel, who ran one of the CIA’s black sites and who wrote a cable calling for the destruction of the torture videotapes, is now director of the CIA. When Obama was elected, he called an end to the torture, but stopped short of confronting the intelligence community. In a famously oddly worded admission in 2014, Obama said: “We tortured some folks.” The 44th president went on to say: “It’s important for us not to feel too sanctimonious in retrospect about the tough job that those folks had. A lot of those folks were working hard under enormous pressure and are real patriots.” The line still infuriates Jones, who says the real patriots were the CIA whistleblowers.

Note: A former CIA counterterrorism officer who was imprisoned for blowing the whistle on the CIA torture referred to CIA director Gina Haspel's actions as "war crimes, crimes against humanity". For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


‘The Report’ and the Untold Story of a Senate-C.I.A. Conflict
2019-11-15, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/15/movies/the-report-adam-driver.html

A voluminous Senate report documenting the C.I.A.’s use of torture in secret prisons — set for release days later — could lead to riots, attacks on American embassies and the killing of American hostages overseas, James R. Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, told members of the Senate Intelligence Committee during a conference call in December 2014, citing a classified assessment. This episode is omitted from a new film treatment of the labyrinthine saga involving the Senate report — making a rare case of real life sometimes being more dramatic than the Hollywood portrayal. But the film, “The Report” ... is the first effort at a popular recounting of the tumultuous events surrounding the congressional investigation into the C.I.A. program and the inquiry’s conclusions, which found that the agency’s brutal interrogation methods — sometimes including torture — produced little or no intelligence of value. The senators believed that the intelligence assessment Clapper was quoting flagrantly distorted what the Senate report had said, predicting dire consequences from the release of information that wasn’t even in the report. In their anger, they decided to push ahead and release the report. Only the 528-page executive summary of the 6,000-page volume has been made public. Yet it is the closest thing to date to a public accounting for the C.I.A. interrogation program, the first time in history the government authorized the use of methods the United States had long considered to be illegal torture.

Note: Read an article titled, "10 Craziest Things in the Senate Report on Torture". For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Afghanistan paedophile ring may be responsible for abuse of over 500 boys
2019-11-13, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2019/nov/13/afghanistan-paedop...

A paedophile ring involved in the abuse of at least 546 boys from six schools has been discovered in Afghanistan’s Logar province. Some of the victims of the abuse have since been murdered according to the campaigners who first discovered videos of abuse posted to a Facebook page. Civil society organisation, The Logar Youth, Social and Civil Institution, which has been working in the region for 16 years, revealed the extent of the abuse after discovering more than 100 videos on the social media site. The institution is investigating other high schools in the region, believing thousands more children may have been abused. Mohammed Mussa, a lead social worker at the institution, alleges that teachers, headteachers and local authority officials are implicated in the abuse ring. According to Mussa, some of the teachers were reported to the police but were released shortly after and have not been charged. “The rapists are teachers, older students, authority figures and even extended family members,” he said. He and his team have received death threats since exposing the abuse. He added that many of the abused boys have also been threatened. “Many of the victims are blackmailed. They are forced to sell drugs or engage in illegal activities in exchange for their rape videos to not be released,” Mussa said. Patricia Gossman ... at Human Rights Watch, added: “There is impunity for child rape because very often the perpetrators are powerful men in the military, police, or other official institutions.”

Note: The Afghani secret service detained the whistleblowers who revealed this abuse. What's up with that? The Afghani president has even rebuked his own intelligence service around this. The truth is coming out. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


Report: Election Vendors Are 'Prime Targets,' Need Oversight
2019-11-12, New York Times/Associated Press
https://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2019/11/12/business/bc-us-election-security-...

The private companies that make voting equipment and build and maintain voter registration databases lack any meaningful federal oversight despite the crucial role they play in U.S. elections, leaving the nation's electoral process vulnerable to attack, according to a new report. The Brennan Center for Justice on Tuesday issued the report, which calls on Congress to establish a framework for federal certification of election vendors. The authors say this could be established as a voluntary program similar to how voting machines are certified, with incentives for state and local election officials to use vendors that have completed the process. It would include the establishment of federal standards and the ability for federal officials to monitor compliance and address any violations. The report's co-author Lawrence Norden acknowledged it was too late for any of this to happen in time for the 2020 presidential election. Although Congress sent $380 million to states last year for election security, Norden said it was a "drop in the bucket" of what is needed as state and local election officials look to fund the replacement of outdated and insecure voting systems, increase cybersecurity personnel and add security upgrades. Just three companies provide more than 80% of voting systems in the U.S.. Other systems like voter registration databases and electronic pollbooks are also supplied and, in some case, maintained by vendors.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources.


Google's secret cache of medical data includes names and full details of millions – whistleblower
2019-11-12, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/nov/12/google-medical-data-projec...

A whistleblower who works in Project Nightingale, the secret transfer of the personal medical data of up to 50 million Americans from one of the largest healthcare providers in the US to Google, has expressed anger to the Guardian that patients are being kept in the dark about the massive deal. The anonymous whistleblower has posted a video on the social media platform Daily Motion that contains a document dump of hundreds of images of confidential files relating to Project Nightingale. The secret scheme ... involves the transfer to Google of healthcare data held by Ascension, the second-largest healthcare provider in the US. The data is being transferred with full personal details including name and medical history and can be accessed by Google staff. Unlike other similar efforts it has not been made anonymous through a process of ... de-identification. The disclosed documents include highly confidential outlines of Project Nightingale, laying out the four stages or “pillars” of the secret project. By the time the transfer is completed next March, it will have passed the personal data of 50 million or more patients in 21 states to Google, with 10 million or so files already having moved across – with no warning having been given to patients or doctors. Google has entered into similar partnerships on a much smaller scale with clients such as the Colorado Center for Personalized Medicine. But in that case all the data handed over to the search giant was encrypted, with keys being held only on the medical side.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


'Jeffrey Epstein didn’t kill himself' meme pops up on MSNBC
2019-11-12, Fox News
https://www.foxnews.com/media/jeffrey-epstein-did-not-kill-himself

The sentence “Jeffrey Epstein did not kill himself” has emerged as a pop culture catchphrase popping up on TV and on memes across social media, sometimes creating awkward moments when people question the narrative surrounding the now-deceased sex offender’s mysterious death. The statement was uttered by an attendee of last weekend’s University of Alabama-Louisiana State University football game when an MSNBC reporter inquired what students thought about President Trump’s decision to attend the event. MSNBC’s Monica Alba asked a student what he liked about the president but didn’t receive the answer she expected. “I would say mainly just the no-nonsense policies and especially since Jeffrey Epstein didn’t kill himself,” a student identified as Parker said on live television. New York City Medical Examiner officially listed Jeffrey Epstein’s death as a suicide by hanging. However, everyone from forensic experts and social media sleuths to ABC News anchor Amy Robach have suggested there is more to the story. Robach said on an infamous hot mic video – that was leaked to the media from within ABC News – that she “100 percent” thinks Epstein was actually murdered. “He made his whole living blackmailing people. There [were] a lot of men in those planes, a lot of men who visited that island, lot of powerful men who came into that apartment,” Robach said. "I knew immediately."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Richest 1% of Americans Close to Surpassing Wealth of Middle Class
2019-11-10, MSN News/Bloomberg
https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/richest-1percent-of-americans-close-t...

The U.S.’s historic economic expansion has so enriched one-percenters they now hold almost as much wealth as the middle- and upper-middle classes combined. The top 1% of American households have enjoyed huge returns in the stock market in the past decade, to the point that they now control more than half of the equity in U.S. public and private companies, according to data from the Federal Reserve. The very richest had assets of about $35.4 trillion in the second quarter, or just shy of the $36.9 trillion held by the tens of millions of people who make up ... much of the middle and upper-middle classes. It may not be long before one-percenters actually surpass the middle and upper-middle classes. Household wealth in the upper-most bracket grew by $650 billion in the second quarter of 2019, while Americans in the 50th to 90th percentiles saw a $210 billion gain. By another measurement the top 1% of taxpayers had incomes starting at $515,371 in 2017, according to the latest Internal Revenue Service data. For now, those Americans in 90th to 99th percentiles - well-to-do, but not the super rich - still control the biggest share of wealth, with $42.6 trillion in assets. The lone group left out of the fun: the bottom 50% of Americans. Those households have 35.7% of liabilities in the U.S. and just 6.1% of assets.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


America’s billionaires take center stage in national politics, colliding with populist Democrats
2019-11-09, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2019/11/09/americas-billionaires-tak...

The political and economic power wielded by the approximately 750 wealthiest people in America has become a sudden flash point in the 2020 presidential election, as the nation’s billionaires push back with increasing ferocity against calls by liberal politicians to vastly reduce their fortunes and clout. On Thursday, Michael Bloomberg, a billionaire and former mayor of New York City, took steps to enter the presidential race, a move that would make him one of four billionaires who either plan to seek or have expressed interest in seeking the nation’s highest office in 2020. His decision came one week after Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) proposed vastly expanding her “wealth tax” on the nation’s biggest wealth holders and one month after Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said America should not have any billionaires at all. The leaders of the anti-billionaire populist surge, Warren and Sanders, have cast their plans to vastly increase taxes on the wealthy as necessary to fix several decades of widening inequality. Financial disparities between the rich and everyone else have widened over the past several decades in America, with inequality returning to levels not seen since the 1920s, as the richest 400 Americans now control more wealth than the bottom 60 percent of the wealth distribution. At least 16 billionaires have in recent months spoken out against what they regard as the danger posed by the populist Democrats, particularly over their proposals to enact a “wealth tax” on vast fortunes.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


CBS staffer fired over ABC’s Epstein scandal speaks out: ‘I’m not the whistleblower… the leaker is still inside’
2019-11-08, Fox News
https://www.foxnews.com/media/fired-cbs-news-staffer-jeffrey-epstein

A CBS News employee, fired after ABC executives informed CBS she'd had access to a leaked hot mic video that revealed the Disney-owned network killed a Jeffrey Epstein scoop, says she did not leak the tape and was unfairly axed without being able to defend herself. Ashley Bianco was a producer on ABC’s “Good Morning America” before joining “CBS This Morning” last month. Earlier this week, the controversial group Project Veritas published the damning video in which ... anchor Amy Robach complained that her bosses killed a story that would have exposed the now-deceased child sex offender Epstein three years ago. Bianco said she was fired by CBS after the network received a call from ABC informing her new boss that she once had access to the leaked video. “I did not" leak the tape, Bianco told journalist Megyn Kelly in an interview posted Friday on YouTube. “I’m not the whistleblower. I’m sorry to ABC, but the leaker is still inside.” CBS News declined to comment on Bianco's claim. Bianco denied ever communicating with anyone from Project Veritas and said she simply made a clip of the video and saved it in ABC's internal system. “I never heard of Project Veritas until this,” she said. Bianco, who deleted various social media accounts before speaking out, said she did not inform her manager that she clipped it, but “everyone in the office was freaked out” by Robach’s comments. “Everyone was watching it,” Bianco said, noting that the purpose for “clipping” it was to watch it back later for “office gossip.” Bianco told Kelly that she doesn’t know who leaked the tape because “everyone” at ABC was aware it existed.

Note: The silence of other most major media around this huge story is deafening. Watch an interview with the fired woman. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Former Twitter Employees Charged With Spying for Saudi Arabia
2019-11-06, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/06/technology/twitter-saudi-arabia-spies.html

Ali Alzabarah was an engineer who rose through the ranks at Twitter to a job that gave him access to personal information and account data of the social media service’s millions of users. Ahmad Abouammo was a media partnerships manager at the company who could see the email addresses and phone numbers of Twitter accounts. On Wednesday, the Justice Department accused the two men of using their positions and their access to Twitter’s internal systems to aid Saudi Arabia by obtaining information on American citizens and Saudi dissidents who opposed the policies of the kingdom and its leaders. Mr. Alzabarah and Mr. Abouammo were charged with acting as agents of a foreign power inside the United States, in the first complaint of its kind involving Saudis in the country. The case raised questions about the security of American technology companies already under scrutiny for spreading disinformation and influencing public opinion, showing that these firms can be penetrated from the inside as well. It also underscored the broad effort that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia and his close advisers have conducted to silence critics both inside the kingdom and abroad. Jamal Khashoggi, a columnist for The Washington Post who was critical of the way Saudi Arabia is run, was murdered last year by Saudi agents in Istanbul.

Note: Read more on Saudi Arabia's extreme efforts to silence its critics. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


Mainstream media largely ignores ABC's Epstein scandal; CNN’s scant coverage is lampooned
2019-11-06, Fox News
https://www.foxnews.com/media/abc-epstein-cnn-mainstream-media

Mainstream media outlets have largely ignored the Project Veritas bombshell that ABC News killed a story that would have exposed the now-deceased sex offender Jeffrey Epstein three years ago. Fox News found no coverage on CNN, MSNBC, CBS News, or NBC News from noon through midnight ET on Tuesday while the story was lighting up social media. During that same time frame, Fox News covered the scandal on five different programs. Mainstream media essentially has an unspoken rule not to cover anything Project Veritas does, as the group’s controversial founder, James O'Keefe, describes himself as a “guerrilla journalist”. But the ABC video has been verified by ... ABC itself as authentic, and has therefore created quite a conundrum for mainstream media. Project Veritas’ most recent project, before releasing ABC News anchor Amy Robach's explosive hot mic tape, was publishing undercover recordings made by a now-former CNN employee who secretly documented staffers criticizing the network. The recordings also captured CNN president Jeff Zucker telling top news executives to focus solely on the impeachment of President Trump, even at the expense of other important news. “The traditional media surely do not like Project Veritas snooping around into their behind-the-scenes operations, but the Project Veritas videos of Amy Robach's and Jeff Zucker's comments do lend insight to the workings of these news organizations," [DePauw University professor and media critic Jeffrey] McCall said.

Note: Don't miss this most telling leaked video. Listen also to a one-hour interview by Project Veritas of WantToKnow.info founder Fred Burks. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein and media manipulation. from reliable major media sources.


‘I’ve had this story for three years’: ABC News anchor slams her network’s handling of Epstein scoop
2019-11-05, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/11/05/ive-had-this-story-three-y...

Amy Robach of ABC News: “I tried for three years to get it on, to no avail, and now it’s all coming out. And it’s like these new revelations and I freaking had all of it. I am so pissed right now. ... What we had was unreal.” Those remarks come courtesy of James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas. The “unreal” story [was] related to Jeffrey Epstein, the shadowy financier who died in prison in August of an apparent suicide as he awaited trial for sex trafficking conspiracy and sex trafficking. In August, NPR’s David Folkenflik documented how three news outlets - Vanity Fair, the New York Times and ABC News - “fell short” in tugging on various strands of the Epstein story. ABC News managed to conduct an interview with Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who at the age of 17 had “become part of Epstein’s household.” She has alleged that Epstein “trafficked” her to his friends, including Prince Andrew. “I viewed the ABC interview as a potential game-changer,” Giuffre wrote in an email to NPR. As it turns out, Robach also viewed the interview with Giuffre as a game-changer. “Then the Palace found out that we had her whole allegations about Prince Andrew and threatened us in a million different ways,” says Robach. “We were so afraid we ... quashed the story. She told me everything. She had pictures, she had everything. She was in hiding for 12 years, we convinced her to come out.” Robach also mentions ... Alan Dershowitz, who represented Epstein in 2008 and also stepped in as ABC News was working on the Giuffre-Epstein story.

Note: Don't miss this most telling leaked video. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


ABC Killed Jeffrey Epstein Sex Trafficking Story Three Years Ago, News Anchor Amy Robach Caught on Camera Saying
2019-11-05, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/abc-jeffrey-epstein-story-amy-robach-prince-andrew-1...

ABC News' Amy Robach, best known as co-anchor of 20/20, claimed that ABC killed her story about convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein's sex trafficking of minors three years ago in sensational hot microphone footage leaked Tuesday. In the footage, reportedly taken in August and published online Tuesday by the right-wing activist group Project Veritas, Robach, 46, says: "I've had this story for three years. I've had this interview with [Epstein accuser] Virginia Roberts. We would not put it on the air. First of all I was told, 'Who is Jeffrey Epstein? No one knows who that is. This is a stupid story.'" "Then the palace found out we had her whole allegations about Prince Andrew and threatened us in a million different ways," Robach continues, referring to the British royal that Roberts alleged in a 2015 court filing Epstein trafficked her to when she was 17. "[Roberts] told me everything," Robach says in the clip. "She had pictures. She had everything. She was in hiding for 12 years. We convinced her to come out. We convinced her to talk to us. It was unbelievable what we had. Clinton. Everything." Epstein was arrested on federal charges of sex trafficking of minors and conspiracy to sex traffic minors in July. He was found dead in his New York prison cell in August. Epstein's death has been ruled suicide by hanging, however, Epstein's family believe he was murdered. A private pathologist hired by the Epstein estate said last week that Epstein's autopsy showed injuries more consistent with "homicidal strangulation" than suicide.

Note: Watch the incredible interview of this revelation. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


ABC News Defends Its Epstein Coverage After Leaked Video Of Anchor
2019-11-05, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2019/11/05/776482189/abc-news-defends-its-epstein-coverag...

A newly surfaced video of an ABC News anchor's unguarded remarks about the network's coverage of the late Jeffrey Epstein has thrown ABC on the defensive. In a leaked video posted Tuesday by the right-wing activist group Project Veritas, news anchor Amy Robach expresses her frustration to a colleague over ABC's failure to broadcast her interview with a key accuser of Epstein. Robach complains that the network "quashed" her interview, suggesting that ABC had yielded to threats from powerful forces, including Buckingham Palace. Prince Andrew is among those men whom the accuser alleges Epstein trafficked her to for sex. Robach's comments in late August 2019 came just two days after an NPR story disclosed the existence of Giuffre's interview and ABC's failure to broadcast it. In the video, Robach is ... speaking remotely through her microphone with an unseen colleague. "I've had the story for three years," Robach says in the video. "We would not put it on the air. Um, first of all, I was told, 'Who was Jeffrey Epstein? No one knows who that is. This is a stupid story.' Then the palace found out that we had her whole allegations about Prince Andrew and threatened us a million different ways." Robach goes on to say that Giuffre alluded to others in the interview, including former President Bill Clinton, Harvard University law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz and Epstein's former girlfriend, Ghislaine Maxwell. Giuffre has made similar accusations against all of them also in court documents.

Note: Don't miss this most telling leaked video. Read also an article showing how a variety of independent news websites have condemned ABC and CBS over this matter. Meanwhile Newsweek has posted an article titled,"'Epstein Didn't Kill Himself,' Former Navy Seal Blurts Out on Fox News." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Trump says he could send US military into Mexico to ‘wage war’ on drug cartels
2019-11-05, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-mexico-wa...

Donald Trump has suggested sending the US Army over the border into Mexico to “wage war” on drug cartels in a typically bombastic tweet. The US president said his country stood “ready, willing & able to get involved and do the job quickly and effectively” if his Mexican counterpart, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, asked him for help. Mr Lopez Obrador declined the offer during a press conference on Tuesday. Mr Trump’s suggestion came after an American family was slaughtered by gunmen during an ambush in Mexico’s Sonora state. The family had been traveling in a convoy of SUVs. Mr Trump has long used the threat of violent crime within Mexico for political ends, blaming the US neighbour for “sending” rapists and murderers north over their shared frontier. The rhetoric has underpinned his stringent migration policies and border strategy.​ In a press conference on Tuesday, Mr Lopez Obrador said: “I haven’t seen the message from President Trump, but I am sure that it comes from a desire to help, to cooperate, that it has not been disrespectful nor interfering. Every time we speak, it is with that desire to help, and the government respects that greatly. We are very grateful to President Trump – to any foreign government which wants to help – but in these cases we have to act independently and according to our constitution, and in line with our tradition of independence and sovereignty.” He did not want to see a war break out, he said. “War is synonymous with irrationality. We are for peace.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


In Detroit, A New Type of Agricultural Neighborhood Has Emerged
2019-11-04, Yes! Magazine
https://www.yesmagazine.org/peace-justice/food-community-detroit-garden-agric...

Another trend has entered the urban agricultural scene: agrihoods, short for agricultural neighborhoods. The Urban Land Institute defines agrihoods as master-planned housing communities with working farms as their focus. Overwhelmingly, they have large swaths of green space, orchards, hoop houses and greenhouses, and some with barns, outdoor community kitchens, and environmentally sustainable homes decked with solar panels and composting. Agrihoods, which number about 90 nationwide, are typically in rural and suburban areas. Within the city of Detroit, home to nearly 1,400 community gardens and farms, there is one officially designated agrihood, Michigan Urban Farming Initiative. The Michigan initiative is a 3-acre farm focusing on food insecurity in one of Detroit’s historic communities that was once home to a thriving Black middle class. Now the median home value is under $25,000, and about 35% of the residents are homeowners. The Detroit agrihood model plans to provide a Community Resource Center with educational programs and meeting space across from the garden, a café, and two commercial kitchens. “For us, food insecurity is the biggest issue,” says, Quan Blunt, the Michigan initiative’s farm manager. “The closest [fresh] produce store to this neighborhood is Whole Foods [4 miles away in Midtown], and you know how expensive they can be.” At MUFI, produce is free to all. The farm is open for harvesting on Saturday mornings.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Dog Learning to Talk By Using a Custom Soundboard to Speak
2019-11-04, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/lifestyle-buzz/dog-learning-to-talk-by-us...

Many dog parents already know their pets communicate with them, but what EXACTLY are they trying to say? A speech-language pathologist with an 18-month-old dog is working to find out, and she’s already discovered that her dog Stella can literally tell her things — like she’s tired after playing and now would like a nap, or that instead of playing at this moment she would prefer to eat, and that she would like to go outside, specifically to the park. It’s all possible through the use of an adaptive device Christina Hunger, 26, devised to help Stella communicate not only words but her thoughts and feelings too. When the Catahoula/Blue Heeler mix wants to “talk,” she steps on buttons corresponding with words Hunger recorded and programmed into the device. And Stella is already putting her language skills to work. One day, the pup was whining at the front door and started pacing back and forth. Hunger assumed that she needed to go outside. Instead, Stella walked to her device and tapped out, “Want,” “Jake” “Come” then stood in front of the door until Hunger’s fiancé, Jake, came home a few minutes later and then Stella immediately pressed “Happy” and rolled over for a belly rub. Hunger, who works in San Diego with 1- and 2-year-old children, many of whom also use adaptive devices that help them communicate, began teaching Stella words when the canine was about 8 weeks old. The 50-pound dog now knows at least 29 words and can combine up to five words to make a phrase or sentence.

Note: Watch a video of this amazing feat at the link above and an CNN interview with the owner.


Microsoft tried a 4-day workweek in Japan. Productivity jumped 40%
2019-11-04, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/11/04/tech/microsoft-japan-workweek-productivity/ind...

A growing number of smaller companies are adopting a four-day workweek. Now the results of a recent trial at Microsoft (MSFT) suggest it could work even for the biggest businesses. The company introduced a program this summer in Japan called the "Work Life Choice Challenge," which shut down its offices every Friday in August and gave all employees an extra day off each week. The results were promising: While the amount of time spent at work was cut dramatically, productivity — measured by sales per employee — went up by almost 40% compared to the same period the previous year, the company said in a statement. In addition to reducing working hours, managers urged staff to cut down on the time they spent in meetings and responding to emails. They suggested that meetings should last no longer than 30 minutes. Employees were also encouraged to cut down on meetings altogether by using an online messaging app. The effects were widespread. More than 90% of Microsoft's 2,280 employees in Japan later said they were impacted by the new measures, according to the company. By shutting down earlier each week, the company was also able to save on other resources, such as electricity. Microsoft ... says it will conduct another experiment in Japan later this year. It plans to ask employees to come up with new measures to improve work-life balance and efficiency, and will also ask other companies to join the initiative.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


How to Get Trump Voters and Liberals to Talk: Don’t Make Anyone Sit in a Circle
2019-11-03, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/03/us/trump-voters-liberals.html

When four Republicans and five Democrats got together at a high-end condominium complex to talk for seven hours in San Francisco this fall it was such a curiosity that a crowd of more than a dozen gathered just to watch. The host was a nonprofit called Better Angels, which is putting on half a dozen events around the country every week through the election. The polarized were at a square table supervised by two moderators, a therapist and a retired psychiatrist. They were mostly in their 50s and 60s, and wore red and blue name tags to correspond with their political leanings. The moderators referred to them as the reds and the blues. The conservatives were surprised the liberals thought at all about religion. The liberals were surprised the conservatives were so anxious about being seen as racist. Over a lunch break ... the two groups stayed largely separate. Many of the blue side said they came just for the opportunity to meet and question someone who disagreed with them politically. “Outside of this group, I’ve got no Republican friends,” said Monty Worth. People on the red side said they came to the workshop to be in a safe space where they could be open about their politics and argue their case. After the 2016 election, [David Blankenhorn] and two friends got together and led the first Better Angels workshop in Ohio. Now more than 15,000 people have gone through one of their programs (8,000 have joined as dues-paying members), and the group has trained more than 620 volunteer workshop moderators.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


NBC News Is Facing Internal Rebellion Over Mishandling Sexual Misconduct
2019-11-02, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/nbc-news-weinstein-ronan-farrow-oppenheim-me-t...

NBC News President Noah Oppenheim and his boss NBC News Chairman Andy Lack are still running the show. They remain at the helm despite the explosive reporting in Ronan Farrow’s new book “Catch and Kill,” which reveals how Oppenheim and Lack not only shut down the investigation into Harvey Weinstein’s predatory and abusive treatment of women, but how NBC News silenced or ignored multiple allegations of sexual misconduct inside the company ― including overlooking the behavior of “Today” show host Matt Lauer for years before finally firing him in 2017. In an article for Vanity Fair in October, Rich McHugh, the NBC producer who worked with Farrow on the Weinstein investigation, called out Oppenheim and Lack’s handling of the story. “They not only personally intervened to shut down our investigation of Weinstein, they even refused to allow me to follow up on our work after Weinstein’s history of sexual assault became front-page news,” he writes. MSNBC hosts Rachel Maddow and Chris Hayes have criticized NBC management on-air. Current and former employees say they want a true independent investigation of what happened at NBC News regarding Lauer, the Weinstein story, and any other incidents of internal sexual misconduct. The Weinstein story wasn’t the only time Oppenheim’s news organization declined to air a story about a powerful man preying on women. NBC famously sat on the “Access Hollywood” tape in which now-President Donald Trump bragged about assaulting women.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


Suicide Has Been Deadlier Than Combat for the Military
2019-11-01, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/01/opinion/military-suicides.html

Suicide rates for active-duty service members and veterans are rising, in part, experts say, because a culture of toughness and self-sufficiency may discourage service members in distress from getting the assistance they need. In some cases, the military services discharge those who seek help, an even worse outcome. More than 45,000 veterans and active-duty service members have killed themselves in the past six years. That is more than 20 deaths a day — in other words, more suicides each year than the total American military deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq. The latest Pentagon figures show the suicide rate for active-duty troops across all service branches rose by over a third in five years, to 24.8 per 100,000 active-duty members in 2018. Those most at risk have been enlisted men under 30. The data for veterans is also alarming. In 2016, veterans were one and a half times more likely to kill themselves than people who hadn’t served in the military, according to the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. Among those ages 18 to 34, the rate went up nearly 80 percent from 2005 to 2016. The risk nearly doubles in the first year after a veteran leaves active duty, experts say. The Pentagon this year also reported on military families, estimating that in 2017 there were 186 suicide deaths among military spouses and dependents. Military officials note that the suicide rates for service members and veterans are comparable to the general population after adjusting for the military’s demographics — predominantly young and male.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption and health from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged madam Ghislaine Maxwell was a guest at a Jeff Bezos-hosted retreat in 2018
2019-11-01, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/11/01/jeffrey-epstein-friend-ghislaine-maxwell-was-...

The woman alleged to have been a procurer for accused child sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein was reportedly a guest in 2018 at an exclusive literary retreat hosted by Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon. Vice.com, citing two sources, reported Friday that the woman, Ghislaine Maxwell, attended the “Campfire” retreat last year. One of those sources said that Maxwell had attended three such Campfire retreats hosted by Bezos and Amazon. Maxwell, 57, went to the 2018 iteration of the highly secretive retreat with Scott Borgerson, a tech-firm CEO. That visit would have occurred before Epstein’s most recent arrest, in July of this year, on federal child sex trafficking charges. Maxwell, daughter of the late media tycoon and fraudster Robert Maxwell, has been accused by multiple women of acting as one of the procurers of girls and women for Epstein. One employee of Epstein’s called Maxwell the “lady of the house,” referring to his mansion in Palm Beach, Florida. Some accusers have also said Maxwell at times participated with Epstein in abusing them sexually. In court documents released in August, a woman named Virginia Giuffre said Maxwell directed her as a teenager to have sex with Prince Andrew of Britain, former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell, former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, hedge funder Glenn Dubin, late MIT scientist Marvin Minsky, modeling company founder Jean-Luc Brunel, the owner of a large hotel chain, and another prince.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this topic in the US.


The Kindness Quotient
2019-11-01, Foreign Policy
https://foreignpolicy.com/gt-essay/the-kindness-quotient-jacinda-ardern-new-z...

Jacinda Ardern’s sudden, spectacular rise to the position of New Zealand’s prime minister in 2017 propelled her into headlines around the world. Deservedly so. In an era defined by the emergence of populist leaders who are often authoritarian, reactionary, and male, Ardern stands out as progressive, collaborative, and female. In New Zealand, Ardern’s commitment to fighting child poverty and homelessness has come as a relief after years of relentless increases in both. Whereas the world’s right-wing populists stigmatize and stereotype marginalized people, Ardern has established kindness as a key principle for government policy and has worked to promote inclusion and social cohesion. A family tax package that took effect last July is forecast to reduce the number of children living in poverty by 41 percent by 2021. She has extended her values-based approach to foreign policy as well—most dramatically by offering New Zealand as a home for 150 of the refugees currently stranded in camps run by Australia in Papua New Guinea and Nauru. Ardern has also identified climate change as the defining issue for her generation. On April 12, a little more than five months into her term, her government declared an end to new permits for oil and gas exploration in New Zealand’s waters, making it clear that the country was prepared to lead the way in this critical struggle.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Two Histories of Financiers Profiting From Real Estate While Homeowners Go Belly Up
2019-10-31, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/31/books/review-homewreckers-aaron-glantz-rac...

In “Homewreckers,” his new book about the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, [Aaron] Glantz skillfully tells a bigger story about American housing that’s tortuous, confounding and ultimately enraging. Along with “Race for Profit: How Banks and the Real Estate Industry Undermined Black Homeownership,” by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, “Homewreckers” shows what happens when private speculators get buoyed by government largess while non-tycoons are largely left to fend for themselves. After the housing bubble burst, the government was desperate to get lending banks off its books, and so it offered a sweet deal to prospective buyers of the banks: Those private investors could keep the gains on any loans held by the bank, but if the loans lost money, the government would bear most of the cost. It was like a mutant version of the subprime bubble that led to the financial crisis: Rather than renegotiate the loans, the new owners of these lending banks found there was more money to be made in foreclosing on the properties and becoming “a class of landlord that had never been seen before,” charging rent and fees to tenants — not infrequently the previous owners who were foreclosed on — while hoarding the equity for themselves. Corporate landlords ... are also more likely to buy properties in neighborhoods with large concentrations of African-American and Latino residents, who end up paying “higher and higher rents that ultimately transfer wealth from their communities to investors far away.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on financial industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


CIA-trained Afghan forces behind war atrocities
2019-10-31, NBC/Associated Press
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/cia-trained-afghan-forces-behind-war-atroc...

Heavily armed men burst into the home in the middle of night, hustling four brothers into separate rooms. Afghan special forces then shot them in the head and heart. The operation, the CIA-trained Afghan unit said, targeted the Islamic State group's militants in a remote region of eastern Nangarhar Province. In reality, the raid took place in the province's capital of Jalalabad. The truth of their deaths was eventually revealed by local and international media and the country's intelligence chief, Masoom Stanikzai, was forced to resign. But that's not enough, says Human Rights Watch in a new report released Thursday documenting what it says are mounting atrocities by U.S.-backed Afghan special forces and rising civilian deaths by both American and Afghan forces. It calls for an investigation into whether the U.S. has committed war crimes in Afghanistan. The report says U.S.-led peace talks to end the 18-year-old war have omitted addressing the future of the Afghan special forces that work "as part of the covert operations of the Central Intelligence Agency." The report suggests either disbanding them or bringing them under the control of the Defense Ministry. "These troops include Afghan strike forces who have been responsible for extrajudicial executions and enforced disappearances, indiscriminate airstrikes, attacks on medical facilities, and other violations of international humanitarian law, or the laws of war," it says.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war and intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Epstein’s Autopsy ‘Points to Homicide,’ Pathologist Hired by Brother Claims
2019-10-30, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/30/nyregion/jeffrey-epstein-homicide-autopsy-...

A forensic pathologist hired by Jeffrey Epstein’s brother disputed the official finding in the autopsy of his death, claiming on Wednesday that the evidence suggested that he did not take his own life but may have been strangled. The New York City medical examiner’s office concluded in August that Mr. Epstein had hanged himself in his jail cell while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges. But the private pathologist, Dr. Michael Baden, said on the morning TV show “Fox & Friends” that Mr. Epstein, 66, experienced a number of injuries - among them a broken bone in his neck - that “are extremely unusual in suicidal hangings and could occur much more commonly in homicidal strangulation.” Dr. Baden, a former New York City medical examiner and a Fox News contributor, added, “I’ve not seen in 50 years where that occurred in a suicidal hanging case.” The findings by Dr. Baden were strongly disputed by the city’s chief medical examiner, Dr. Barbara Sampson. Dr. Baden said Mr. Epstein had “three fractures in the hyoid bone, the thyroid cartilage.” The autopsy also showed Mr. Epstein had several bones broken in his neck. The city medical examiner said Mr. Epstein’s death was “hanging” and the manner was “suicide.” Before that determination was made public, an article in The Washington Post noted Mr. Epstein’s injuries included a broken hyoid bone. Mr. Epstein’s death led to several investigations into how a high-profile inmate apparently killed himself just weeks after he was placed on suicide watch.

Note: Newsweek has also posted an article titled, "'Epstein Didn't Kill Himself,' Former Navy Seal Blurts Out on Fox News." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


The FBI Spends a Lot of Time Spying on Black Americans
2019-10-29, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/10/29/fbi-surveillance-black-activists/

The FBI has come under intense criticism after a 2017 leak exposed that its counterterrorism division had invented a new, unfounded domestic terrorism category it called “black identity extremism.” A number of civil rights groups have filed public records requests to try to better understand who exactly the FBI is investigating under that designation. The latest batch of FBI documents ... reveals that between 2015 and 2018, the FBI dedicated considerable time and resources to opening a series of “assessments” into the activities of individuals and groups it mostly labeled “black separatist extremists.” This designation was eventually folded into the category of “black identity extremism.” Assessments differ from full-blown investigations - or “predicated investigations,” in the bureau’s lingo - because they do not need to be predicated on a factual basis. As a new report by the civil liberties group Defending Rights & Dissent notes, when choosing targets for an assessment, agents are allowed to use ethnicity, religion, or speech protected by the First Amendment as a factor, “as long as it is not the only one.” As the report notes, “Even though the standards for opening an assessment are extraordinarily low, the FBI is allowed to use extremely intrusive investigative techniques in performing them, including physical surveillance, use of informants, and pretextual interviews.” The bureau has in recent years shifted its target from those espousing “separatist” views to the much larger group of those protesting police violence.

Note: Read more about the FBI's use of "Black Identity Extremism" as a label in its terrorism investigations. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


The fight to stop Nestlé from taking America's water to sell in plastic bottles
2019-10-29, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/oct/29/the-fight-over-water-how-...

The network of clear streams comprising California’s Strawberry Creek run down the side of a steep, rocky mountain in a national forest two hours east of Los Angeles. Last year Nestlé siphoned 45m gallons of pristine spring water from the creek and bottled it under the Arrowhead Water label. Though it’s on federal land, the Swiss bottled water giant paid the US Forest Service and state practically nothing, and it profited handsomely: Nestlé Waters’ 2018 worldwide sales exceeded $7.8bn. Conservationists say some creek beds in the area are now bone dry and once-gushing springs have been reduced to mere trickles. The Forest Service recently determined Nestlé’s activities left Strawberry Creek “impaired” while “the current water extraction is drying up surface water resources”. Still, a year later, the Forest Service approved a new five-year permit that allows Nestlé to continue using federal land to extract water, a decision critics say defies common sense. At the national level, former agriculture secretary Ann Veneman serves on Nestlé’s board. Former Forest Service special uses leader Gary Earney administered Nestlé’s water permit between 1984 and 2007 and is now one of its most vocal critics. During that time, he witnessed “devastating” Forest Service budget cuts that made it impossible to monitor Nestle’s activities or properly manage the forest. Former San Bernardino national forest supervisor Gene Zimmerman ... left the agency in 2006 to work as a contractor for Nestlé.

Note: Nestlé is one of the companies pushing to transform fresh water into a Wall Street commodity. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


General Motors Sides With Trump in Emissions Fight, Splitting the Industry
2019-10-28, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/28/climate/general-motors-california-emission...

General Motors, Fiat Chrysler and Toyota said Monday they were intervening on the side of the Trump administration in an escalating battle with California over fuel economy standards for automobiles. Their decision pits them against leading competitors, including Honda and Ford, who this year reached a deal to follow California’s stricter rules. The Trump administration has proposed a major weakening of federal auto emissions standards set during the Obama administration, prompting California to declare that it will go its own course and keep enforcing the earlier, stricter standards. The automakers siding with the administration, led by the industry group the Association of Global Automakers, say that the federal government, not California, has the ultimate authority to set fuel economy standards. The legal fight between the Trump administration and California over auto pollution rules has swelled into a battle over states’ rights and climate change that is likely to only be resolved once it reaches the Supreme Court. The Obama-era national fuel economy standard requires automakers to build vehicles that achieve an average fuel economy of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025, which would eliminate about six billion tons of carbon dioxide pollution over the lifetime of those vehicles. The Trump administration is planning to roll back the fuel-economy standard to about 37 miles per gallon. Nearly two dozen other states have filed suit against the Trump administration, alongside California, over the emissions rules.

Note: This is proof that the mileage our cars get is not determined by market forces, but rather by government regulation. Average mileage has risen consistently with regulation, not with innovation. For lots more on this, see this webpage. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


NBC News can’t seem to shake Ronan Farrow and the scandal he uncovered
2019-10-27, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/the-scandal-that-keeps-on-givi...

NBC News just can’t seem to escape the talk of scandal. For weeks, the network has been rebutting allegations by a former correspondent, Ronan Farrow, that it suppressed his reporting on sexual assault allegations against movie producer Harvey Weinstein and covered up harassment and assault accusations against its former star, Matt Lauer. The story has been propelled by Farrow’s best-selling book, “Catch and Kill,” which asserts ... that NBC stopped Farrow’s reporting on Weinstein in mid-2017 after Weinstein threatened to reveal Lauer’s misconduct. Farrow published a blockbuster story about Weinstein in the New Yorker seven weeks later. In an extraordinary segment on her MSNBC show, Rachel Maddow urged NBC News to undertake an independent investigation of the network’s conduct. “The allegations about the behavior of Harvey Weinstein and Matt Lauer are gut-wrenching,” said Maddow, MSNBC’s biggest star and the second, after MSNBC host Chris Hayes, to call out her bosses on an NBC-owned platform. Brooke Nevils [is] a “Today” show producer who in Farrow’s book accuses Lauer of raping her. Network officials deny any pattern of harassment complaints or “hush-money” settlements, and say Lauer was fired just hours after Nevils came forward with her accusation in late 2017. But NBC has resisted calls for the kind of independent investigation that other news organizations have undertaken in the wake of harassment scandals.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


Government Loophole Gave Oil Companies $18 Billion Windfall
2019-10-24, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/24/climate/oil-lost-revenue-gao.html

The United States government has lost billions of dollars of oil and gas revenue to fossil-fuel companies because of a loophole in a decades-old law. The loophole dates from an effort in 1995 to encourage drilling in the Gulf of Mexico by offering oil companies a temporary break from paying royalties on the oil produced. However, the rule was poorly written, the very politicians who originally championed it have acknowledged, and the temporary reprieve was accidentally made permanent on some wells. As a result, some of the biggest oil companies in the world, including Chevron, Shell, BP, Exxon Mobil and others, have avoided paying at least $18 billion in royalties on oil and gas drilled since 1996, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office. The companies, which hold government leases to drill in the Gulf, continue to extract oil and gas from those wells while not being required to pay royalties, a right the industry has gone to court to defend. Roughly 22 percent of oil production from federal leases in the Gulf of Mexico was royalty-free in 2018 because of the loophole, the Interior Department said. The report of the windfall to oil companies comes as the Trump administration has moved to further reduce the cost of offshore drilling for the industry, proposing to significantly weaken safety rules put in place after the deadly 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf of Mexico.

Note: A 2013 Washington Post article suggests practices like this are common across major industries. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


UN says 1st local polio case found in Zambia since 1995
2019-10-23, Washington Post/Associated Press
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/un-says-1st-local-polio-case-foun...

The World Health Organization says Zambia has reported its first local case of polio since 1995, in a 2-year-old boy paralyzed by a virus derived from the vaccine. In a report this week, WHO said the case was detected on the border with Congo, which has reported 37 cases of polio traced to the vaccine this year. The U.N. health agency said there is no established link between the Zambia case and the ongoing Congo outbreak but said increased surveillance and vaccination efforts are needed, warning that “there is a potential for international spread.” In rare cases, the live virus in oral polio vaccine can mutate into a form capable of sparking new outbreaks. Nine African countries are currently battling polio epidemics linked to the vaccine as WHO and partners struggle to keep their efforts to eradicate polio on track. Elsewhere, cases have been reported in China, Myanmar and the Philippines. On Thursday, WHO and partners are expected to announce they have rid the world of type 3 polio virus. There are three types of polio viruses. Type 2 was eliminated years ago. That now leaves only type 1. But that refers only to polio viruses in the wild. Type 2 viruses continue to cause problems since they are still contained in the oral polio vaccine and occasionally evolve into new strains responsible for some vaccine-derived outbreaks. The global effort to eradicate polio was launched in 1988 and originally aimed to wipe out the potentially fatal disease by 2000.

Note: See an NPR article titled "Mutant Strains Of Polio Vaccine Now Cause More Paralysis Than Wild Polio." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on vaccines from reliable major media sources.


Masters of war: architects of modern conflicts
2019-10-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/global/commentisfree/2019/oct/23/architects-major...

If the horsemen of the apocalypse ever hung up their riding boots, this could be a photo of the retirement party. Five men and a woman of very different backgrounds and different continents, brought together by an investment bank and shared history of mayhem. The smiles and hand-holding in the group photo at the JP Morgan International Council in New Delhi are redolent of fond memories. The dean of the bunch is ... Henry Kissinger, the 96-year-old living embodiment of cold war realpolitik with a wealth of foreign policy knowledge and major wars to his name, including the undeclared, illegal mass bombing of Cambodia. Standing in the rear are three of the leading minds behind the 2003 Iraq invasion. Tony Blair is at the left, next to Condoleezza Rice, who was George Bush’s national security adviser at the time. Over to their right is John Howard who, as Australian leader at the time, sent his country’s troops into the fray. The latter-day crusade in pursuit of Saddam Hussein’s non-existent weapons of mass destruction was one of the most disastrous mistakes in history. In among the trio is Robert Gates, former CIA director and defence secretary, who sat the Iraq war out but as deputy director of the CIA did advocate a bombing campaign against Nicaragua. At the centre and focal point of the little group is its newest member, Narendra Modi. The Indian prime minister ... may be being inducted early for moving troops into Kashmir, revoking its autonomous status and rounding up Muslims, even at the risk of nuclear war with Pakistan.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


The Antarctic ozone hole is the smallest since it was discovered
2019-10-21, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/21/world/antarctic-ozone-hole-shrinks-scn-trnd/in...

While the ozone hole over Antarctica typically grows in September and October, scientists observed the smallest ozone hole since they first began observing it in 1982, according to a joint release by NASA and NOAA. Unusual weather patterns in the upper atmosphere limited depletion of ozone, the layer in our atmosphere that acts like sunscreen and protects us from ultraviolet radiation. On September 8, the ozone hole reached a peak of 6.3 million square miles and then shrank to less than 3.9 million square miles, according to the report. Usually, the hole would grow to reach 8 million square miles. The annual ozone hole forms when rays from the sun interact with the ozone and man-made compounds such as chlorine and bromine to deplete the ozone. This occurs during late winter in the Southern Hemisphere. Cloud particles in the cold stratosphere lead to reactions that destroy ozone molecules, which are made of three oxygen atoms. But when temperatures are warmer, these clouds don't form, which limits ozone destruction. This is only the third time in 40 years when warm temperatures caused by weather systems have actually helped limit the ozone hole. This also occurred in 1988 and 2002. But the scientists say there is no connection they've identified to link the patterns with climate change. The ozone layer over the Antarctic is expected to recover by 2070 as compounds used as coolants, called chlorofluorocarbons, decline. They were regulated 32 years ago by the Montreal Protocol.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Women At Ernst & Young Instructed On How To Dress, Act Nicely Around Men
2019-10-21, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/women-ernst-young-how-to-dress-act-around-men_...

When women speak, they shouldn’t be shrill. Clothing must flatter, but short skirts are a no-no. After all, “sexuality scrambles the mind.” Women should look healthy and fit, with a “good haircut” and “manicured nails.” These were just a few pieces of advice that around 30 female executives at Ernst & Young received at a training held in the accounting giant’s gleaming new office in Hoboken, New Jersey, in June 2018. The 55-page presentation, used during the day-and-a-half seminar on leadership and empowerment, was given to HuffPost by an attendee who was appalled by its contents. Full of out-of-touch advice, the presentation focused on how women need to fix themselves to fit into a male-dominated workplace. The training, called Power-Presence-Purpose or PPP ... was billed to participants as advice on how to be successful at EY, according to Jane, a training attendee and former executive director at the firm. Attendees were even told that women’s brains are 6% to 11% smaller than men’s, Jane said. She wasn’t sure why they were told this, nor is it clear from the presentation. Women’s brains absorb information like pancakes soak up syrup so it’s hard for them to focus, the attendees were told. Men’s brains are more like waffles. They’re better able to focus because the information collects in each little waffle square. The only reason to talk to women about their size of their brains is to make them feel inferior to men, said Bruce McEwen, a neuroscientist at Rockefeller University.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


Mark Zuckerberg's plea for the billionaire class is deeply anti-democratic
2019-10-21, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/oct/21/mark-zuckerberg-plea-bi...

Hitting back against presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’s assertion that billionaires should not exist – and his calls to tax their wealth at much higher rates – Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, worth $70bn, took to Fox News to defend his beleaguered class. Billionaires, he argued, should not exist in a “cosmic sense,” but in reality most of them are simply “people who do really good things and kind of help a lot of other people. And you get well compensated for that.” He warned too about the dangers of ceding too much control over their wealth to the government, allegedly bound to stifle innovation and competition. Zuckerberg’s reasoning isn’t unique among the 1%. As common as this argument is, it also happens not to be true. Take the basis of Mark Zuckerberg’s fortune. The internet was developed out of a small Pentagon network intended to allow the military to exchange information during the Cold War. And of the top 88 innovations rated by R & D Magazine as the most important between 1971 and 2006, economists Fred Block and Matthew Keller have found that 77 were the beneficiaries of substantial federal research funding, particularly in early stage development. This isn’t all to say that the private sector hasn’t played a significant role in driving innovation. But the the fortunes built off of each couldn’t exist were it not for the government more often than not taking the first step, funding innovation far riskier than venture capitalists and angel investors can usually stomach.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Renewable capacity set for 50% growth over next few years, IEA says
2019-10-21, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/10/21/renewable-capacity-set-for-50percent-growth-o...

Renewable power capacity is forecast to increase by 50% between 2019 and 2024, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said. According to its “Renewables 2019” market report, the increase will amount to 1,200 gigawatts (GW) and be driven by drops in cost and what the IEA described as “concerted government policy efforts.” Capacity refers to the maximum amount that installations can produce, not what they are currently generating. In 2018, renewable capacity hit just over 2,500 GW. If the IEA’s forecast plays out, it would bring total renewable capacity to approximately 3,700 GW by 2024. Solar photovoltaics (PV) are due to make up nearly 60% of the expected rise, with the onshore wind sector accounting for 25% and offshore wind responsible for 4%. Photovoltaic refers to a way of directly converting light from the sun into electricity. The IEA said that distributed solar PV – systems installed on commercial buildings, homes and in industry – would make up nearly half of the increase in the solar PV market. Overall, renewables’ share in worldwide power generation is seen growing from 26% now to 30% in 2024. For 2019, renewable power capacity additions are seen increasing by 12% following a stall last year. Growth this year is being driven by solar PV, which has benefited from “rapid expansion in the European Union”, a stronger Indian market and an “installation boom” in Vietnam. Growth in the onshore wind sector is also cited as a contributing factor.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


We Have No Reason to Believe 5G Is Safe
2019-10-17, Scientific American
https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/we-have-no-reason-to-believ...

The telecommunications industry and their experts have accused many scientists who have researched the effects of cell phone radiation of "fear mongering" over the advent of wireless technology's 5G. The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently announced ... that the commission will soon reaffirm the radio frequency radiation (RFR) exposure limits that the FCC adopted in the late 1990s. These limits are based upon a behavioral change in rats exposed to microwave radiation and were designed to protect us from short-term heating risks due to RFR exposure. Yet, since the FCC adopted these limits based largely on research from the 1980s, the preponderance of peer-reviewed research, more than 500 studies, have found harmful biologic or health effects from exposure to RFR at intensities too low to cause significant heating. The World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified RFR as "possibly carcinogenic to humans" in 2011. Last year, a $30 million study conducted by the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) found “clear evidence” that two years of exposure to cell phone RFR increased cancer in male rats and damaged DNA in rats and mice of both sexes. The Ramazzini Institute in Italy replicated the key finding of the NTP using a different carrier frequency and much weaker exposure to cell phone radiation over the life of the rats.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of wireless technologies from reliable major media sources.


Taking Ayahuasca When You’re a Senior Citizen
2019-10-17, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/17/style/ayahuasca-senior-citizen.html

At 74, the venture capitalist George Sarlo might not have seemed an obvious candidate for an ayahuasca experience. Mr. Sarlo’s close friend, a doctor, told him about ayahuasca, a psychedelic brew made from the Banisteriopsis caapi vine, native to the Amazon. Used for centuries in sacred healing traditions throughout Central and South America, ayahuasca is now gaining popularity around the world. [It] is mostly illegal in the United States. Notably, ayahuasca’s increasing popularity knows no age limits: many of those now showing interest are squarely in Mr. Sarlo’s own demographic. Mr. Sarlo himself was initially skeptical. Taking ayahuasca would entail a potentially distressing night of hallucinations, and excretions of all kind, especially vomiting. But he still decided to head to Yelapa, a small village in Mexico, and swallow down the bitter brew. Mr. Sarlo said that afterward, something shifted. “It changed my life completely.” He realized that his life had been “absolutely full of miracles,” he said. As Michael Pollan put it, “psychedelics might be wasted on the young.” Mr. Pollan, the author of the recent best seller “How To Change Your Mind,” a history of psychedelics and a chronicle of his own experiences trying them, said ... he was surprised by the number of people he encountered when writing his book in their 70s and 80s expressing interest in trying psychedelics. Though perhaps he shouldn’t have been: as he himself has written, one of the reasons to come to psychedelics later in life is to tangle with one’s own mortality.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


A humpback whale population has come back from the brink
2019-10-16, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2019/10/16/good-news-humpback-whal...

After being almost wiped out by whaling in the 20th century, a humpback whale population off the coast of South America has come back from the brink of extinction. In the late 1950s there were only 440 western South Atlantic humpbacks left. Protections were put in place in the 1960s. At first they didn't seem to be rebounding, but a study published Wednesday finds that to the surprise of scientists the population is now up to an estimated 25,000 whales. That's almost as many as researchers estimate there were before whaling began in the 1700s. Scientists were thrilled to realize how fast and how well the population has recovered after whaling finally stopped for good in the 1970s. “This is a clear example that if we do the right thing then the population will recover,” said Alexandre Zerbini, a whale expert with the Seattle Marine Mammal Laboratory of the National Marine Fisheries Service. The scientists estimate the humpbacks are at about 93% of their pre-whaling population. The research was published Wednesday in the journal Royal Society Open Science, a peer-reviewed scientific journal. There are 16 populations of humpbacks around the world. Four of them are considered endangered and one is threatened. The global population has been rebounding since whaling was banned in the 1970s. It's estimated there are currently between 120,000 and 150,000 humpbacks.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Another Housing Crisis Ahead? New Book, 'Homewreckers,' Says It Could Happen
2019-10-15, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfgate.com/realestate/article/Another-Housing-Crisis-Ahead-New-Bo...

More than 10 years after the housing crash that devastated the economy, people are still debating just what happened. Although the economy and the housing market have made a comeback, homeownership remains low. Aaron Glantz, a prize-winning investigative journalist ... set out to explain why, in "Homewreckers: How a Gang of Wall Street Kingpins, Hedge Fund Magnates, Crooked Banks, and Vulture Capitalists Suckered Millions Out of Their Homes and Demolished the American Dream." Eight million Americans lost their homes in the bust. Where did those homes go? Those houses didn’t just disappear. Who won, when everyone else lost? The people who won - a small group of businessmen who pounced to seize thousands of homes and made billions of dollars - they’re the “homewreckers.” But even though the housing bust is over, the nation’s homeownership rate is at its lowest in 50 years, and continues to go down. It helps explain why people feel so uneasy. As long as the unemployment rate is low and people have jobs and they can afford rents, the financial market is secure. If people lose their jobs, what’s going to happen? We could be back in another housing bust. Right now there’s a real crisis of affordability. People think we don’t have enough inventory because we haven’t built enough houses. Only 10 years ago, our country was awash in real estate. We have to ask ourselves if we really have a housing shortage, or if we have rigged the market so it only benefits a few of the players.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Here are the indigenous people Christopher Columbus and his men could not annihilate
2019-10-14, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2019/10/14/here-are-indigenous-people-...

This year the District of Columbia joins at least five states and dozens of cities and counties in replacing Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples’ Day. It’s part of a decades-long reckoning with the sanitized version of the European colonization of the Americas. In Hispaniola — what is now Haiti and the Dominican Republic — Columbus ... and his crew searched and searched for gold to no avail, so they filled their ships with something else they could sell: people. Of the 500 Taíno they took — selected because they were the strongest and healthiest specimens — 200 died on the voyage to Spain. Many more died once they had been sold into slavery. Columbus’s men also continued to sexually abuse Taíno women and girls. In 1500, Columbus wrote to an acquaintance that “there are many dealers who go about looking for girls; those from nine to 10 are now in demand.” As the population plummeted, they abducted indigenous people from other islands, like the Lucayan, to work the fields and mines of Hispaniola. Across the Caribbean ... the Spanish were responsible for the deaths of 12 to 15 million indigenous people. Historians usually attribute most of the deaths to the spread of diseases for which native people had no immunity, but recently historian Andrés Reséndez has pushed back against this, arguing that populations were lower than previous estimated, and “a nexus of slavery, overwork and famine killed more Indians in the Caribbean than smallpox, influenza and malaria.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on history from reliable major media sources.


Once he was a refugee. Now he’s a CEO making video games for peace.
2019-10-14, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/video-games/2019/10/14/once-he-was-refugee-now...

Lual Mayen sits in a modern office space, set in a trendy Washington, D.C., neighborhood. As a newborn in his parents’ arms, Mayen endured a 225-mile trek from his war-torn home in South Sudan to a refugee camp in Northern Uganda. Mayen was born into war, but his mission is peace. Now 24 years old, he is a video game developer residing in the United States, leading his own company and using the experiences from his past to inform his products: games aimed at peace-building and conflict resolution. He created the first version of Salaam, which means “peace” in Arabic, while still living as a refugee. In the game’s new version, players adopt the role of a refugee who must flee falling bombs, find water and gain energy points to ensure the character’s survival as the player’s country journeys from a war-torn present into a peaceful existence. If the player’s character runs out of energy, the player is prompted to purchase more food, water, and medicine for their character with real-world money. The funds go beyond the game to benefit a living refugee through Junub’s partnerships with various NGOs. Mayen is aiming to have Salaam ready to launch in December, determined to grow the category of social impact gaming to give back to his community. “Peace is something that is built over time,” Mayen said. “It’s not about people coming together and signing cease-fires and so on. It’s a generation of change. It’s a change of mindset. It’s a change of attitude toward each other."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Bill Gates Met With Jeffrey Epstein Many Times, Despite His Past
2019-10-12, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/12/business/jeffrey-epstein-bill-gates.html

Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted sex offender who committed suicide in prison, managed to lure an astonishing array of rich, powerful and famous men into his orbit. Bill Gates ... started the relationship after Mr. Epstein was convicted of sex crimes. Beginning in 2011, Mr. Gates met with Mr. Epstein on numerous occasions — including at least three times at Mr. Epstein’s palatial Manhattan townhouse, and at least once staying late into the night. And Mr. Epstein spoke with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and JPMorgan Chase about a proposed multibillion-dollar charitable fund — an arrangement that had the potential to generate enormous fees for Mr. Epstein. “His lifestyle is very different and kind of intriguing although it would not work for me,” Mr. Gates emailed colleagues in 2011, after his first get-together with Mr. Epstein. Mr. Gates and the $51 billion Gates Foundation have championed the well-being of young girls. By the time Mr. Gates and Mr. Epstein first met, Mr. Epstein had served jail time for soliciting prostitution from a minor and was required to register as a sex offender. In late 2011, at Mr. Gates’s instruction, the foundation sent a team to Mr. Epstein’s townhouse to have a preliminary talk about philanthropic fund-raising. Mr. Epstein told his guests that if they searched his name on the internet they might conclude he was a bad person but that what he had done — soliciting prostitution from an underage girl — was no worse than “stealing a bagel,” two of the people said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Arizona official accused of human smuggling via a Marshall Islands adoption scheme
2019-10-09, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/09/us/arizona-county-assessor-charged-human-smugg...

An Arizona county assessor is accused of human smuggling as part of a scheme that involved more than 40 pregnant women from the Marshall Islands brought to the United States to give up their babies for adoption, federal prosecutors said Wednesday. Paul D. Petersen, an adoption lawyer licensed in Utah and Arizona and elected Maricopa County assessor, was arrested Tuesday night in Arizona. He faces 11 felony counts in Utah, including human smuggling, sale of a child and communications fraud. He also faces fraud, conspiracy, theft and forgery charges in Arizona. Petersen's illegal adoption scheme allegedly involved the recruitment, transportation and payments to dozens of pregnant women from the islands in the central Pacific. Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in a statement that Petersen allegedly falsified information to place the Marshallese women on state-funded health care to cover delivery costs. The Arizona scheme bilked the state out of more than $814,000, the statement said. After the adoptions, the women either moved to Arkansas or returned to the Marshall Islands. In Utah, according to court documents, Petersen is accused of running an enterprise to transport pregnant Marshallese women to the state for adoptions. Each woman was allegedly offered $10,000 "to induce them to place their children up for adoption in Utah," the documents said. A memorandum of understanding sent to one adoptive family by Petersen listed a fee of $35,000.

Note: Could it be that these children are being used for nefarious purposes? This excellent video report suggests that two politicians may have been killed for trying to reveal illegal child trafficking in government.


For the first time in history, U.S. billionaires paid a lower tax rate than the working class last year
2019-10-08, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/10/08/first-time-history-us-bill...

A new book-length study on the tax burden of the ultrarich begins with a startling finding: In 2018, for the first time in history, America’s richest billionaires paid a lower effective tax rate than the working class. “The Triumph of Injustice,” by economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman of the University of California at Berkeley, presents a first-of-its kind analysis of Americans’ effective tax rates since the 1960s. It finds that in 2018, the average effective tax rate paid by the richest 400 families in the country was 23 percent, a full percentage point lower than the 24.2 percent rate paid by the bottom half of American households. In 1980, by contrast, the 400 richest had an effective tax rate of 47 percent. In 1960, that rate was as high as 56 percent. The effective tax rate paid by the bottom 50 percent, by contrast, has changed little over time. The tipping point came in 2017, with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The legislation, championed by President Trump and then-House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), was a windfall for the wealthy: It lowered the top income tax bracket and slashed the corporate tax rate. By 2018, according to Saez and Zucman, the rich were already enjoying the fruits of that legislation: The average effective tax rate paid by the top 0.1 percent of households dropped by 2.5 percentage points. The benefits promised by the bill’s supporters — higher rates of growth and business investment and a shrinking deficit — have largely failed to materialize.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Whistleblowers say aloud what many of us think in silence. It’s a relief.
2019-10-07, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/were-living-in-the-golden-age-of-whis...

Principled insiders have been busy in recent years blowing the whistle on wrongdoing from Big Pharma to Wall Street to Washington. Without whistleblowers, we’d probably never have heard about the lead-laced water in Flint, Mich., Jeffrey Epstein’s under-the-table funding of MIT, fraud at Guantanamo, corner-cutting at Boeing and the FAA, or the dubious dealings by President Trump in Ukraine that the House has put at the center of an impeachment inquiry. But ... it has become harder than ever to speak truth to power. What has led us here? A rise in institutional corruption and normalized fraud. Healthy organizations tend to self-correct, fixing problems long before they explode in public. Where they don’t, healthy governments intervene via independent regulators. Whistleblowing only becomes necessary when organizations become more interested in silence and loyalty than in ethics or public welfare, or when government watchdogs have been muzzled or euthanized. Anti-whistleblower pressure intensified with the Obama administration’s implementation of Insider Threat programs throughout government. These programs, a response to the WikiLeaks disclosures, frequently portray lawful disclosures by public employees as criminal acts and lump legitimate whistleblowers together with spies and criminals. Despite these barriers, whistleblowers keep coming forward, because the voice of the individual conscience grows stronger as fraud becomes normalized.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


The Rich Really Do Pay Lower Taxes Than You
2019-10-06, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/10/06/opinion/income-tax-rate-wealth...

For the first time on record, the 400 wealthiest Americans last year paid a lower total tax rate — spanning federal, state and local taxes — than any other income group, according to newly released data. That’s a sharp change from the 1950s and 1960s, when the wealthy paid vastly higher tax rates than the middle class or poor. Since then, taxes that hit the wealthiest the hardest — like the estate tax and corporate tax — have plummeted, while tax avoidance has become more common. President Trump’s 2017 tax cut, which was largely a handout to the rich, plays a role, too. It helped push the tax rate on the 400 wealthiest households below the rates for almost everyone else. The overall tax rate on the richest 400 households last year was only 23 percent, meaning that their combined tax payments equaled less than one quarter of their total income. This overall rate was 70 percent in 1950 and 47 percent in 1980. For middle-class and poor families, the picture is different. Federal income taxes have also declined modestly for these families, but they haven’t benefited much if at all from the decline in the corporate tax or estate tax. And they now pay more in payroll taxes (which finance Medicare and Social Security) than in the past. Over all, their taxes have remained fairly flat. The combined result is that over the last 75 years the United States tax system has become radically less progressive.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Record debt and inequality gap? It's almost like 40 years of Republican tax cuts failed.
2019-10-03, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2019/10/03/republican-tax-cuts-fail-re...

Since the Reagan administration, Republicans have fervently claimed lower taxes will unleash the "makers" — incentivizing them to work harder and invest more, thereby trickling down to benefit ordinary Americans. Moreover, they have consistently claimed that their tax cuts would create such dramatic economic growth that they’d literally pay for themselves. Instead, the national debt is at a record high, and the gap between the richest and the poorest U.S. households is now the largest it has been in the 52 years the Census Bureau has been tracking it. And that inequality gap started to expand dramatically about the same time the Republican Party started cutting taxes. The American economy since 1950 offers a chance to consider the impact of these tax cuts. From 1950 to 1980, the top federal marginal tax rates ... were as high as 92% and never below 70%. Republicans have been slashing the top tax bracket for annual earned income since the early 1980s, and it is now 37%. Further, in 2003 the GOP shrank the tax rate on unearned income (such as dividends) to 15%, resulting (for example) in the billionaire Warren Buffett having a lower tax rate than his secretary. With such dramatic tax cuts, GOP dogma predicted a booming U.S. economy. But it turns out U.S. economic growth was substantially higher during the period of high taxes. From 1950 to 1980, average annual growth in real (inflation-adjusted gross domestic product) was 3.9%, while from 1981 to 2018 the comparable number was 2.7%.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Vanishing Violence: Youth crime continues historic drop across US
2019-10-03, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfchronicle.com/crime/article/Vanishing-Violence-Youth-crime-cont...

Youth crime continues to plummet across the country, with arrests of people under age 18 falling for the 13th straight year and reaching lows not seen in at least six decades, new FBI figures show. The number of juveniles arrested nationwide declined 11% from 2017 to 2018 alone, compared to a 2% drop for adults. Arrests of young people for violent crimes — rape, robbery, assault and murder — fell 5%, while they actually increased slightly for those 18 and older. The 2018 arrest rate among juveniles — 21.3 per 1,000 youths — is half of what it was in the 1960s and less than one-quarter of what it was in the mid-1990s, at the peak of a youth crime spike, according to an analysis of the FBI data provided to The Chronicle by the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice in San Francisco. “It’s not just historic lows, it’s a historic chasm,” said Mike Males, a senior research fellow with the center. “It’s not even leveling out.” The data show that the trend of juveniles committing less crime has crept up into young adults, with arrests among those 18 to 24 also declining significantly in recent years. The changes could have profound implications on communities and the criminal justice system in years ahead. “That may be the result of the low-crime juvenile generation aging into their 20s,” Males said. “Hopefully this generation is beginning to impact older generations.” The plunge in teen crime extended to urban, suburban and rural counties, according to the FBI statistics.

Note: Sadly, this inspiring news has gotten very little media coverage other than in San Francisco. Why won't the media report this incredibly encouraging trend? Read more on this very hopeful trend on this webpage filled with hopeful and inspiring news.


California Just Legalized Public Banks. Will the Rest of the Nation Follow Suit?
2019-10-03, Yes! Magazine
https://www.yesmagazine.org/new-economy/california-public-banking-law-20191003

The Standing Rock movement in 2016 brought together Indigenous activists from across the nation to fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline. One of the demands of this movement included divestment from Wells Fargo, a bank that was funding development of the pipeline. This brought into the spotlight ... big for-profit banks that the government uses to invest public money into Wall Street, rather than local communities. Some of those investments include the fossil fuel industry, private prisons, immigrant detention centers, and more. The divestment movement is mostly about getting those government investments ... out of the big banks. The question then becomes where to put them. Some ... say the answer is public banking. In September, the California State Legislature passed Assembly Bill 857, a law that would allow a regulatory framework for public banking in the state. This would allow the establishment of banks that hold the government’s money and include socially responsible charters. Debbie Notkin, who works with the California Public Banking Alliance, says that by law, all corporations, which includes private banks, are legally obligated to maximize profit. Public banks are not held to this expectation, however, and are instead mandated to serve their communities. Community investments have unlimited possibilities, including affordable housing, saving people from foreclosure, making student loans more affordable, and creating more infrastructure to defend against the effects of climate change.

Note: Ellen Brown is a dedicated researcher who has promoted public banks for years. Check out her excellent work on her website at https://ellenbrown.com. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Washington State is First in the Nation to License Outdoor Preschools
2019-10-02, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/washington-state-first-nation-license-outdoor-presch...

As nationwide interest in outdoor preschool programs increases, Washington is now the first state in the nation to officially license them. Washington's Department of Children, Youth and Families began to establish the pilot licensing standards in 2017 for outdoor preschools, nature-based early learning and child care programs. Outdoor preschools have been around for decades in places like Germany, Norway and Denmark. These programs were designed as a response to the trend of children spending very little time outdoors. "There's a beauty in being able to see kids run outdoors and look at slugs and take care of plants and animals," Hannah Kinney, outdoor preschool educator, told The Seattle Times. "You do see students that need that space to move their bodies and feel like they have that choice and ownership of their learning." Most outdoor preschool children spend the majority of their time outside, though many of the schools have an indoor option for a place to convene or emergencies. The children are outfitted at the beginning of the year with appropriate gear for every kind of weather. Activities can include daily hikes, identifying plants and animals, exploration and community-building. "They are learning all kinds of valuable principles about gravity, and texture, and shapes and colors and all the things you might expect to see in a preschool curriculum," the late Erin Kenny, founder of Cedarsong Nature School, [said]. "They are just doing it outdoors and at their own pace."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Saudi Arabia being sued for 9/11 attacks by victims' families
2019-10-01, Fox News
https://www.foxnews.com/transcript/saudi-arabia-being-sued-for-9-11-attacks-b...

In Washington, the Saudis are overwhelmingly considered by both parties to be one of our closest allies. The strange thing is that Saudi Arabia has far closer links to the 9/11 attacks than Saddam Hussein ever did. Saudi Arabia ... was so connected to 9/11 that the families of many 9/11 victims are seeking justice - payment - as recompense for the Saudi's role. Chris Ganci, a New York City fireman, lost his father on 9/11. Ganci is one of thousands of family members of 9/11 victims suing Saudi Arabia. Their lawsuit states that Saudi Arabia quote "knowingly provided al Qaeda with support, financing and resources that were material, substantial and critical to the success of the September 11th attacks." JIM KREINDLER, ATTORNEY FOR 9/11 FAMILIES: "For years, Saudi Arabia through its charities had been funneling money to al Qaeda." A heavily redacted 2012 report describes the support Saudi government officials gave to two hijackers after they arrived in Los Angeles. The officials gave the two al Qaeda members quote, "assistance in daily activities," including providing money and helping the hijackers get flying lessons. The U.S. government has not been keen to hold the Saudis to account in the wake of 9/11. Shortly after the attacks, the Bush administration allowed more than a hundred Saudis, including members of the bin Laden family to leave the country on chartered airplanes. And two years ago, the Trump administration cautioned a retired F.B.I. agent from working for the 9/11 families.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on 9/11 from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our 9/11 Information Center.


GEO Group Runs Out of Banks as 100% of Banking Partners Say ‘No’ to the Private Prison Sector
2019-09-30, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/morgansimon/2019/09/30/geo-group-runs-out-of-ban...

All of the existing banking partners to private prison leader GEO Group have now officially committed to ending ties with the private prison and immigrant detention industry. These banks are JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, SunTrust, BNP Paribas, Fifth Third Bancorp, Barclays, and PNC. This exodus comes in the wake of demands by grassroots activists — many under the banner of the #FamiliesBelongTogether coalition — shareholders, policymakers, and investors. Major banks supporting the private prisons behind mass incarceration and immigrant detention have now committed to not renew $2.4B in credit lines and term loans to industry giants GEO Group and CoreCivic. This shift represents an estimated shortfall of 87.4% of all future funding to the industry. As a brief historical recap: the American private prison industry is a relatively new phenomenon, with the first private prison opening in 1984. Given their business model depends on keeping a consistent and increasing number of people incarcerated, it's been speculated and critiqued that this is why GEO Group and CoreCivic have spent $25M on lobbying over the past three decades to push for harsher criminal justice and immigration laws. A cycle emerges when one follows the money: everyday people put their money in banks, banks lend that money out to the private prison industry, the private prison industry uses that financing for ... lobbying, which successfully funnels more detainees into their facilities, and banks reap a payoff.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


As prosecutors go after Epstein's alleged co-conspirators, the line between accomplice and victim may be blurred
2019-09-27, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/27/us/jeffrey-epstein-alleged-co-conspirators/ind...

After Jeffrey Epstein's death, federal prosecutors in Manhattan pledged to continue investigating his alleged sex-trafficking ring, suggesting they would pursue his co-conspirators. But ... prosecutors have struggled with the question of whether some of those alleged co-conspirators were themselves victims of Epstein. Atop the alleged pyramid of Epstein associates was his ex-girlfriend turned social companion, Ghislaine Maxwell, a contemporary of Epstein's. Allegedly reporting to her and to Epstein was a coterie of assistants in their early 20s, and prosecutors are examining whether their experience with the accused predator should categorize them as an accomplice or as one of the abused. According to police reports, civil lawsuits and other court filings, these women approached girls in various places including near their schools, offering them the opportunity to make money by giving what they described as massages to an older man. The starkest example appears to be Nadia Marcinkova, an Epstein assistant who is accused in civil lawsuits of having perpetrated abuse alongside Epstein, aiding him to "satisfy his criminal sexual desires by, on occasion, directly participating in sexual abuse and prostitution of the minor girls," according to one of the lawsuits. One victim who alleged she was forced to have sex with Marcinkova told police Epstein bragged that he had "purchased" Marcinkova and brought her to the US to be his "Yugoslavian sex slave."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Hackers find voting machines used throughout the US are vulnerable to attack
2019-09-26, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/26/politics/hackers-voting-machines/index.html

For the third straight year, elite hackers from around the world who spent a long weekend hacking into voting equipment have released a report detailing vulnerabilities in machines still in use across the country. Each of the more than 100 machines the researchers looked at were vulnerable to at least some kind of attack, said Georgetown professor Matt Blaze, one of the Def Con Voting Village's organizers. As in previous years, the Voting Village collected versions of voting equipment used around the country, much of it ordered from eBay, and invited all of the more than 35,000 attendees of the Def Con hacker conference, which took place in Las Vegas in August, to see what kind of holes they could find. Some of machines were found to be vulnerable to remote attack and one electronic pollbook had a hidden ethernet cable to connect it to the internet. The issue is less that skilled hackers can break into election equipment, Blaze told CNN, and more that elections systems as a whole need to both minimize risk and double-check election results with paper ballots ... and risk-limiting audits. Following accusations that he'd been blocking election security legislation, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell last week backed an amendment to give states an additional $250 million to distribute for election security. But experts have questioned whether that's enough money to get the US to an acceptable level of election security.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Elections Information Center.


At Least 70 Countries Have Had Disinformation Campaigns, Study Finds
2019-09-26, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/26/technology/government-disinformation-cyber...

In Vietnam, citizens were enlisted to post pro-government messages on their personal Facebook pages. The Guatemalan government used hacked and stolen social media accounts to silence dissenting opinions. Ethiopia’s ruling party hired people to influence social media conversations in its favor. Despite increased efforts by internet platforms like Facebook to combat internet disinformation, the use of the techniques by governments around the world is growing, according to a report released Thursday by researchers at Oxford University. Governments are spreading disinformation to discredit political opponents, bury opposing views and interfere in foreign affairs. The researchers compiled ... one of the most comprehensive inventories of disinformation practices by governments around the world. They found that the number of countries with political disinformation campaigns more than doubled to 70 in the last two years, with evidence of at least one political party or government entity in each of those countries engaging in social media manipulation. Facebook remains the No. 1 social network for disinformation, the report said. Organized propaganda campaigns were found on the platform in 56 countries. Governments have used “cyber troops” to shape public opinion, including networks of bots to amplify a message, groups of “trolls” to harass political dissidents or journalists, and scores of fake social media accounts to misrepresent how many people engaged with an issue.

Note: This article completely fails to mention the U.S., which has one of the most sophisticated disinformation programs in the world, yet because the "black budget" for this is so well hidden, few know the extent to which citizens are manipulated both in the U.S. and worldwide. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


U.S. income inequality at highest level in 50 years
2019-09-26, NBC News/Associated Press
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-income-inequality-highest-level-50-y...

The gap between the haves and have-nots in the United States grew last year to its highest level in more than 50 years. Income inequality in the United States expanded from 2017 to 2018, with several heartland states among the leaders of the increase, even though several wealthy coastal states still had the most inequality overall, according to figures released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau. The nation's Gini Index, which measures income inequality, has been rising steadily over the past five decades. The Gini Index grew from 0.482 in 2017 to 0.485 last year, according to the bureau's 1-year American Community Survey data. The Gini Index is on a scale of 0 to 1; a score of "0" indicates perfect equality, while a score of "1" indicates perfect inequality, where one household has all the income. The inequality expansion last year took place at the same time median household income nationwide increased to almost $62,000 last year, the highest ever measured by the American Community Survey. But the 0.8% income increase from 2017 to 2018 was much smaller compared to increases in the previous three years, according to the bureau. Even though household income increased, it was distributed unevenly, with the wealthiest helped out possibly by a tax cut passed by Congress in 2017, said Hector Sandoval, an economist at the University of Florida.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Why Chile’s Route of Parks will be a ‘game changer for tourism’
2019-09-26, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2019/sep/26/patagonia-chile-routes-parks-n...

The pioneering conservationist behind the world’s most ambitious rewilding project has revealed “game-changing” plans that could transform tourism in Chilean Patagonia. After 25 years of strategic land acquisition by Kristine Tompkins and her late husband Douglas – which led to the creation last year of five new national parks in southern Chile – Tompkins said the next challenge was to encourage 60 communities across the region to develop tourism ventures that will help protect the biodiversity on their doorstep. Speaking in London at the European launch of the 1,700-mile Route of Parks, a marketing initiative encompassing 17 national parks throughout Patagonia, Tompkins said: “We want local people to have a sense of ownership and pride. They will become the first line of defence in conservation.” The launch of the route ... follows the creation of five new national parks and the expansion of three others, all in Chilean Patagonia after the Tompkins Foundation handed over a million acres to the Chilean state – the largest private donation of land ever. The handover was ... aimed at returning farmed land to its natural state and creating wildlife corridors. The Foundation also owns land in Argentina, where its flagship rewilding project is seeing species being reintroduced to the newly created Iberá national park in the north-west. In total the Tompkins’ philanthropic work amounts to $345m. To date the Foundation has helped protect 5.75 million hectares across Chile and Argentina.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


First gas station in America to ditch oil for 100% electric vehicle charging opens in Maryland
2019-09-26, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/26/first-gas-station-to-ditch-oil-for-electric-v...

The first gas station in the U.S. that has been completely transitioned from a petroleum station to exclusively charging EVs opened Thursday in Takoma Park, Maryland. RS Automotives, the local gas station, has been around since 1958. Depeswar Doley, owner of the station since 1997, said he was already unhappy with the way oil and gasoline companies structure contracts — such as limiting the use of multiple suppliers, including clauses that extend contracts when a certain volume of sales is not met and limiting maintenance support. These business factors already were pushing him to consider other options. A nudge from his daughter was the final step in convincing Doley to make the switch to EV charging. “My daughter, who is 17, she is the one who convinced me after I told her that I was going to talk to the [Electric Vehicle Institute] guys,” Doley said. There are more than 20,700 registered EVs in Maryland, and the area also has an electric taxi service in need of more chargers for their business. The gas station conversion was jointly funded by the Electric Vehicle Institute and the Maryland Energy Administration, which provided a grant of $786,000. The station will feature four dispensers that connect to a high-powered, 200kW system. The system will allow four vehicles to charge simultaneously and reach 80% battery charge in 20 to 30 minutes. Drivers can go inside and sit in an automated convenience store with screens that allow drivers to track their vehicle’s charging progress.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


This charity is feeding the hungry and helping the planet by rescuing millions of pounds of leftover food
2019-09-25, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/25/health/iyw-forgotten-harvest-food-waste-trnd/i...

According to FDA estimates, the United States wastes 30 to 40% of its food. That's hard to swallow when you consider that one in 10 US households faced food insecurity in 2018. That means roughly 14 million families are struggling to put meals on the table while approximately 30 million tons of food are trashed. For 29 years Forgotten Harvest, a nonprofit in Detroit, has been rescuing food destined for landfills and redirecting it to the hungry. Forgotten Harvest CEO Kirk Mayes says it's taken that long to develop the logistics for his program, which now rescues and delivers 130,000 pounds of food a day. "This operation is set up so that our fleet of about 27 trucks and our drivers can leave our warehouse in the morning and go to about 12 to 14 different stops ... for our donations." Mayes says. Drivers collect food from local bakers and butchers and national chains, he says. "And then these drivers redistribute the food to three to four community partners on a daily basis." A rotating army of 16,000 volunteers makes this daily event happen. "At our warehouse, our volunteers are working with commodities that are coming off of our farm and from other commodity partners like the food manufacturers and other farms and donations," Mayes says. "All this (food) is inspected, sorted and set to go out." The result? Last year Forgotten Harvest redistributed 41 million pounds of food, Mayes says. That's 41 million pounds that filled stomachs instead of landfills.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A new name for a new agenda: One of the food industry’s biggest trade groups rebrands itself
2019-09-25, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/25/grocery-manufacturers-association-rebrands-it...

One of the most powerful Big Food lobbyists wants to change its image. The Grocery Manufacturers Association ... is planning to change its name to the Consumer Brands Association in 2020, a sign the group is trying to distance itself from past troubles. In the past two years, food companies like Campbell, Kraft Heinz, Nestle, Hershey and Unilever have left the GMA, amid disputes. Among the issues that were fiercely debated were how and when to disclose the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The organization says each of the former members left for individual reasons, but the common thread was a failure by the organization to adapt as consumer sentiments and trends were evolving. “Gone are the days when we could have one face to policymakers and a different one to consumers,” said GMA President and CEO Geoff Freeman. ″Policymakers have little to no influence on the decisions consumers make,” he said. The organization’s agenda is based on the industry’s realization that it must react to consumers’ demands, rather than fight them, Freeman said. The new name more clearly identifies the companies in its membership: branded names in food, beverage, personal care and household products. GMA wants to fix what it believes is a broken system to help address the country’s recycling crisis. The U.S. does not have uniform recycling laws, which has led to contamination of shipments meant for recycling. Exacerbating this issue, China ... has begun to refuse America’s garbage.

Note: In 2016, the Grocery Manufacturers Association was forced to pay $18 million in damages for violating Washington State law in its opposition to a GMO labeling initiative. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


New UCLA institute will study — and spread — kindness
2019-09-24, Los Angeles Times
https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2019-09-24/ucla-bedari-kindness-inst...

A friendly smile. A food pantry donation. Such acts of kindness have a self-serving upside ... as science has conclusively shown they also make you healthier. UCLA is poised to advance that science with the ... launch of the world’s first interdisciplinary research institute on kindness, which will explore, for instance, how and why being nice to others reduces depression and the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Research by UCLA scientists already has shown that mindfulness and kindness actually alter the behavior of genes, turning down those that promote inflammation, which can lead to heart disease or certain cancers, and turning up the activity of genes that protect against infections. But the ultimate goal of the UCLA Bedari Kindness Institute is to spread kindness and promote a more humane world. It will develop training tools to help practice kindness and spread them through online programs, public lectures, media outreach and a free app called UCLA Mindful. When it comes to kindness, the intention, rather than the outcome, is key. In other words, it’s the thought that counts, as the adage goes. “Cultivating kind thoughts increases the frequency of kind actions, and both the thoughts and the experience of engaging in the actions have positive effects on the well-being of the individual,” said Daniel Fessler ... the institute’s inaugural director. The institute’s work ... will focus on three themes: the roots of kindness, how to promote it, and how to use it as a therapeutic intervention to improve mental and physical health.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Revealed: how the FBI targeted environmental activists in domestic terror investigations
2019-09-24, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/sep/23/revealed-how-the-fbi-targeted...

Helen Yost, a 62-year-old environmental educator, has been a committed activist for nearly a decade. Yost may not fit the profile of a domestic terrorist, but in 2014 the FBI classified her as a potential threat to national security. According to hundreds of pages of FBI files obtained by the Guardian through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, and interviews with activists, Yost and more than a dozen other people campaigning against fossil fuel extraction in North America have been identified in domestic terrorism-related investigations. The investigations, which targeted individual activists and some environmental organizations, were opened in 2013-2014, at the height of opposition to the Keystone XL Pipeline. In 2010, the DoJ’s inspector general criticized the FBI for using non-violent civil disobedience as grounds to open domestic terrorism investigations. US citizens swept up in such investigations can be placed on terrorism watchlists and subjected to surveillance and restrictions on international travel. In recent years, Donald Trump has approved construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, and his administration has also advocated for stiffer penalties against activists who engage in non-violent direct action targeting fossil fuel infrastructure. Meanwhile, in the wake of the Standing Rock protests, seven states have passed legislation making it a crime to trespass on property containing critical infrastructure.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


'Medication or housing': why soaring insulin prices are killing Americans
2019-09-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/sep/23/diabetes-americans-soaring-in...

Jada Renee Louis of Newport News, Virginia, died on 22 June 2019 about a week after requiring emergency hospital care for diabetic ketoacidosis, a serious complication caused by a lack of insulin, and a foot ulcer. She was 24. A type 1 diabetic, Louis, who did not have health insurance coverage, couldn’t afford the cost of her insulin doses and pay her rent. She chose to skip doses in order to pay her rent. Today a vial of insulin – which will last 28 days once opened – costs about $300 in the US. “People are literally dying over $300 like my sister did. People shouldn’t have to choose between medications or shelter. That’s the most outrageous decision for somebody to have to make, yet people are doing it daily,” Jazmine Baldwin, Louis’s sister, [said]. Price gouging of insulin and other barriers to accessing it are symptomatic of America’s broken healthcare system, diabetes advocates argue, and the resulting deaths and struggles of those with diabetes demonstrate the need for systemic reforms. Between 2012 to 2016, the average cost of insulin in the United States nearly doubled to $5,705 per year for individuals with type 1 diabetes. Production costs for a vial of insulin are estimated to cost around $5 while pharmaceutical companies charge as high as $540 per vial and Americans are dying as a result of being unable to afford it in addition to the expensive costs of medical care, and supplies such as syringes and glucose monitors. Some 1.25 million Americans are currently diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


'Rampant Consumerism Is Not Attractive.' Patagonia Is Climbing to the Top — and Reimagining Capitalism Along the Way
2019-09-23, Time
https://time.com/5684011/patagonia/

Patagonia has long been at the forefront of what is now emerging as an increasingly popular new flavor of capitalism. Today’s customers want their dollars to go to companies that will use their money to make the world a better place. Patagonia donates 1 percent of sales to environmental nonprofits, and in 2016 gave 100 percent of Black Friday sales—about $10 million—to environmental groups. Late last year, it changed its mission statement to “We’re in business to save our home planet.” And on Sept. 20, Patagonia shut down its stores and offices so that employees ... could strike alongside youth climate activists. Environmental activism has been part of Patagonia’s DNA since it was founded. It has donated $100 million since 1985 to environmental groups, including the Conservation Alliance, which it helped found in 1989 and which works to protect nature in America. It has been repairing customer’s clothes since the 1970s, and it operates one of the largest apparel repair centers in North America. In 2013, it launched a venture capital fund that invests in start-ups that work on environmental issues, such as Wild Idea Buffalo, which raises buffalo while restoring grasslands to the Great Plains, and Bureo, which converts discarded fishing nets into consumer products like sunglasses. Patagonia “really walks the walk and talks the talk,” said Richard Jaffe, an independent retail consultant. “They invest a lot of time and energy into being a catalyst for change.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Banks worth $47 trillion adopt new UN-backed climate principle
2019-09-23, CNBC/Reuters
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/09/23/banks-worth-47-trillion-adopt-new-un-backed-c...

Banks with more than $47 trillion in assets, or a third of the global industry, adopted new U.N.-backed “responsible banking” principles to fight climate change on Sunday that would shift their loan books away from fossil fuels. Deutsche Bank, Citigroup, and Barclays were among 130 banks to join the new framework on the eve of a United Nations summit in New York aimed at pushing companies and governments to act quickly to avert catastrophic global warming. “These principles mean banks have to consider the impact of their loans on society not just on their portfolio,” Simone Dettling, banking team lead for the Geneva-based United Nations Environment Finance Initiative, told Reuters. Financing for oil, gas and coal projects has come under particular scrutiny as climate scientists step up calls to change the global economy’s deep reliance on fossil-fuels. The principles, drawn up jointly by U.N. officials and banks, require lenders to: Align their strategies with the 2015 Paris Agreement to curb global warming and U.N.-backed targets to fight poverty called the Sustainable Development Goals, set targets to increase “positive impacts” and reduce “negative impacts” on people and the environment, work with clients and customers to encourage sustainable practices, [and] be transparent and accountable about their progress. The principles’ main backers say the norms will encourage banks to pivot their loan portfolios away from carbon-intensive assets and redirect capital to greener industries.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


New details reveal acrimonious split between Epstein and Duke of York
2019-09-22, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/21/politics/epstein-prince-andrew-lawsuit-defamat...

On August 19, Buckingham Palace put out a statement signed by Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, that was emphatic in distancing the British Royal from the late disgraced financier, Jeffrey Epstein. The statement came days after The Mail On Sunday published grainy video footage that the British paper said showed the prince at the door of Epstein's Manhattan townhouse in 2010. By then Epstein was a registered sex offender who had avoided a federal trial at the time and served only 13 months in jail for state prostitution charges over his involvement with underage girls. In 2015, one of Epstein's accusers, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, said in a federal court filing that she was forced to have sex with the prince while underage. The more than decade-long friendship between Prince Andrew and Epstein, who died by suicide in his jail cell on August 10, ended in the Spring of 2011, when Epstein threatened legal action against Prince Andrew's ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York. On March 7, 2011, Sarah Ferguson admitted publicly that she had accepted GBP 15,000 ($24,000) from Epstein to help pay an employee to whom she owed money. The Duchess gave an interview ... in which she expressed extreme contrition for her lack of judgment by accepting the funds from Epstein. With the interview, she put a clear divide between herself and Epstein. "I abhor pedophilia," she said, adding that she'd had no knowledge of Epstein's alleged relationships with under-age girls when she took the money.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


The civil rights leader ‘almost nobody knows about’ gets a statue in the U.S. Capitol
2019-09-20, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2019/09/20/civil-rights-leader-almost-...

Standing Bear was born sometime between 1829 and 1834 in the Ponca tribe’s native lands in northern Nebraska. In 1876 ... Congress declared that the Poncas would be moved to Indian Territory in Oklahoma. More than a third of the Poncas died of starvation and disease — including Standing Bear’s sister and his beloved son. Standing Bear and his burial party evaded capture while they traveled home but were caught and detained after visiting relatives at the Omaha reservation. The man who caught them, Brig. Gen. George Crook ... was moved by Standing Bear’s reasons for leaving the Indian Territory and promised to help him. The civil rights case that resulted was called Standing Bear v. Crook. The U.S. attorney argued that Standing Bear was neither a citizen nor a person. On the second day, Chief Standing Bear was called to testify, becoming the first Native American to do so. He raised his right hand and, through an interpreter, said: “My hand is not the color of yours, but if I pierce it, I shall feel pain. If you pierce your hand, you also feel pain. The blood that will flow from mine will be the same color as yours. The same god made us both. I am a man.” The judge agreed, ruling for the first time in U.S. history that “the Indian is a ‘person’ ” and has all the rights and freedoms promised in the Constitution. The judge also ordered Crook to free Standing Bear and his people immediately. Standing Bear ... buried his son alongside his ancestors. When he died there in 1908, he was buried alongside them, too.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Billionaire Robert Smith is erasing student loan debt from Morehouse grads – and their parents
2019-09-20, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/robert-smith-morehouse-college-billionaire-vista...

Billionaire Robert Smith is extending his goodwill months after he pledged to erase college loan debt for Morehouse College's 2019 graduating class. The technology investor and philanthropist is also paying off loan debt amassed by parents to send their children to the college, the school said on Friday. Morehouse College announced ... that Smith and his family donated $34 million to a fund that wipes away student debt for parents whose children attend the university. "This liberation gift from Robert Smith — the first of its kind to be announced at a graduation in higher education — will be life-changing for our new Morehouse Men and their families," said Morehouse College president David A. Thomas. Known as the Morehouse Student Success Program, the initiative was established as a national investment strategy to curb student loan debt and help graduates prosper faster, according to the release. Under the new plan, Morehouse will solicit and accept donations made specifically to reduce or eliminate the loan debt of students and their parents or guardians. More than 400 students, parents and guardians of the Class of 2019 will receive the inaugural gift under the initiative. The fund will cover education loan balances as of August 28. According to the release, six types of loans will be repaid: federal subsidized loans, federal unsubsidized loans, Georgia Student Access Loans, Perkins Loans, Parent Plus Loans and certain private student loans processed through Morehouse College.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Main IKEA retailer expects to exceed renewable energy goal by year's end
2019-09-19, Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ikea-renewable-energy/main-ikea-retailer-e...

Ingka Group, which owns most IKEA stores, will by year’s end exceed its 2020 target to produce as much renewable energy as the energy it consumes, Ingka Chief Executive Jesper Brodin said. Ingka Group has spent 2.5 billion euros ($2.8 bln) over the past decade on wind farms, rooftop solar panels on its stores and warehouses and, most recently, on its first-ever off-site solar parks. It announced this week the acquisition of a 49% stake in two U.S. solar parks due to come into operation in coming months. Ikea is the world’s biggest furniture group; Ingka Group owns most of its retail operations. Brodin told Reuters that Ingka plans to go on investing in wind farms and solar parks. “Being climate smart is not an added cost. It’s actually smart business and what the business model of the future will look like ... Everything around fossil fuels and daft use of resources will be expensive,” he said. Brodin urged companies and government leaders at Monday’s United Nations-hosted Climate Action Summit in New York to commit to limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 Fahrenheit), as called for by scientists. More than 400 firms including IKEA, H & M, Coca-Cola and Sony have committed to a U.N.-backed initiative to help limit global warming to below 2 degrees Celsius. Ingka said its renewable energy power now equals more than 1.7 gigawatts (GW)of power - spread over 920,000 solar modules on its sites, 534 wind turbines in 14 countries and the 700,000 solar panels under construction in the United States.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Revealed: how US senators invest in firms they are supposed to regulate
2019-09-19, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/sep/19/us-senators-investments-confl...

As they set national policy on important issues such as climate change, tech monopolies, medical debt and income inequality, US senators have glaring conflicts of interest, an investigation by news website Sludge and the Guardian can reveal. An analysis of personal financial disclosure data as of 16 August has found that 51 senators and their spouses have as much as $96m personally invested in corporate stocks in five key sectors: communications/electronics; defense; energy and natural resources; finance, insurance and real estate; and health. Overall, the senators are invested in 338 companies. The median stock investment range in the five sectors for the 51 senators is between $100,000 and $365,000, while the average range of the investments is between $551,000 and nearly $1,874,000. Not only are the senators far wealthier than most of their constituents, but they’re in a prime position to increase their wealth via policymaking. It’s not illegal for members of Congress to have personal financial stakes in the industries on which they legislate. But such investments raise questions about lawmakers’ motivations. Some senators want to do away with these perceived conflicts of interest. Senator Elizabeth Warren introduced anti-corruption legislation in August 2018 that included a ban on members of Congress, senior congressional staff, cabinet secretaries, White House staff, federal judges and other officials from owning ... securities while in office.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Trump axes California's right to set own auto emissions standards
2019-09-18, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/business/autos/trump-about-strip-california-its-right...

President Donald Trump on Wednesday barred California from setting its own vehicle emissions standards. "The Trump Administration is revoking California’s Federal Waiver on emissions in order to produce far less expensive cars for the consumer, while at the same time making the cars substantially SAFER," Trump tweeted. The widely anticipated move comes as the White House also prepares to roll back the strict Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, standards set under President Barack Obama. Using its authority to set emissions targets, California had set even tougher standards that effectively required the auto industry to begin rolling out fleets of zero-emissions vehicles, including plug-in hybrids, pure battery-electric vehicles and hydrogen-powered cars. California has already filed legal efforts to forestall such a move and has been joined by other states that have adopted the stricter California mandates. California originally was granted authority to set tougher standards as an acknowledgment of the poor air quality in cities such as Los Angeles. Responding to reports that the White House was preparing to follow through on plans to eliminate that waiver, California Governor Gavin Newsom issued a statement warning the move “could have devastating consequences for our kids’ health and the air we breathe.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


The University of California Is Dumping Fossil Fuel Investments
2019-09-17, Time/Associated Press
https://time.com/5679965/university-of-california-fossil-fuel-investments/

The University of California is dumping fossil fuel investments from its nearly $84 billion pension and endowment funds because they are a financial risk, its top financial officers announced. “Our job is to make money for the University of California, and we’re betting we can do that without fossil fuels investments,” said an opinion article in the Los Angeles Times written by Jagdeep Singh Bachher, UC’s chief investment officer and treasurer, and Richard Sherman, chair of the Board of Regents Investments Committee. UC’s $13.4 billion endowment fund will be “fossil free” by the end of the month and its $70 billion pension fund “will soon be that way,” the article said. The article appeared the same day that UC announced its president and chancellors had signed a letter declaring a “climate emergency,” joining more than 7,000 colleges and universities around the world. The UC leaders agreed to increase climate research and environmental education and to achieve climate neutrality by 2025. “We have a moral responsibility to take swift action on climate change,” UC President Janet Napolitano said. The 10-campus system has been shedding fossil fuel investments for several years. It previously dumped several hundred million dollars’ worth of investments in coal, tar sands and companies building a Dakota-to-Illinois oil pipeline.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Intelligence chief won't turn over whistleblower complaint to House committee
2019-09-17, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/all/intelligence-chief-won-t-turn-over-whistlebl...

The acting director of national intelligence is withholding a secret whistleblower complaint from the House intelligence committee because it involves conduct by someone outside the spy agencies and doesn’t meet the legal requirement for disclosure to Congress, according to letters obtained by NBC News. But in doing so, acting DNI Joseph Maguire acknowledges he is overruling the intelligence community’s independent watchdog, which thinks the complaint should be turned over. The letters, written by Jason Klitenic, the DNI’s general counsel, provide Maguire’s side of the story in what has quickly become an acrimonious dispute with Rep. Adam Schiff, chairman of the House intelligence committee. On Friday night, Schiff went public about the matter in dramatic fashion, announcing that he had issued a subpoena for a classified whistleblower complaint that he charged was being illegally withheld to shield President Donald Trump. On Tuesday, Schiff said Maguire has refused to comply with the subpoena. Current and former intelligence officials told NBC News they were taken aback by Schiff’s public escalation and his suggestion that they acting in bad faith at Trump’s behest. Schiff has declined to say whether he is aware of the nature of the complaint. A committee staffer who declined to be named said that Schiff went public because he wanted to send a message that “under no circumstances can there be any reprisals against this whistleblower.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


MIT Computer Scientist Richard Stallman Resigns After Claiming Epstein Victim Was ‘Entirely Willing’
2019-09-17, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/isabeltogoh/2019/09/17/mit-computer-scientist-ri...

Computer scientist Richard Stallman has severed his connections with MIT after he claimed that Virginia Giuffre, one of sex offender Jeffrey Epstein’s trafficking victims, presented as "entirely willing." A leading voice in the free software movement, Stallman on Monday resigned as a visiting scientist at the Institute’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) and as president of Free Software Foundation. In a message circulated to an MIT CSAIL mailing list and revealed last week by MIT grad Selam Jie Gano, Stallman wrote that Giuffre, who has testified that she was forced to have sex with MIT professor Marvin Minsky on Epstein's private island aged 17, most likely “presented herself to him as entirely willing.” The email was in a response to a Facebook event calling for MIT students to protest over Epstein’s secret donations to the institution, which were revealed by the New Yorker this month. In the emails Stallman claimed that the term “sexual assault” in relation to Minsky, as used in the Facebook post for the event, was “absolutely wrong.” He added that the term “presumes that [Minsky] applied force or violence.” Stallman also implied that being 17 and therefore underage, was a “minor detail.” The MIT Media Lab has been racked by the revelations that it solicited cash from the disgraced financier and had sought to present his donations as coming from anonymous donors to duck the university’s ban on receiving money from Epstein.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Epstein accusers denied compensation in victims' rights case
2019-09-17, MSN News/Associated Press
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/epstein-accusers-denied-damages-in-fla-v...

A group of women who say they were sexually abused by Jeffrey Epstein suffered a setback Monday in their decade-long legal fight over a plea deal that allowed the financier to avoid a lengthy prison term. A federal judge in West Palm Beach, Florida, ruled that the women were not entitled to compensation from the U.S. Justice Department, even though prosecutors violated their rights by failing to consult them about the 2008 deal to end a federal probe that could have landed Epstein in prison for life. "In the end they are not receiving much, if any, of the relief they sought," U.S. District Judge Kenneth Marra wrote. Several of Epstein's victims sued the Justice Department in 2008 over their handling of his plea negotiations, in which his victims were purposely kept in the dark by state and federal prosecutors in South Florida. They kept the legal case alive for years ... arguing that prosecutors had violated the federal Crime Victims' Rights Act. The drawn-out litigation ultimately fueled a Miami Herald investigation into the plea negotiations, which in turn led to a new wave of public outrage over perceived favorable treatment for Epstein. Federal prosecutors in New York revived the case, arguing they weren't bound by the original deal, and charged Epstein with sex trafficking. Former Miami U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta, who oversaw the plea deal, stepped down as U.S. labor secretary amid the renewed scrutiny. And Marra ruled in February that prosecutors had violated the rights of dozens of Epstein accusers.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


The Cost of Running Guantánamo Bay: $13 Million Per Prisoner
2019-09-16, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/16/us/politics/guantanamo-bay-cost-prison.html

Holding the Nazi war criminal Rudolf Hess as the lone prisoner in Germany’s Spandau Prison in 1985 cost an estimated $1.5 million in today’s dollars. Then there is Guantánamo Bay, where the expense now works out to about $13 million for each of the 40 prisoners being held there. According to a tally by The New York Times, the total cost last year of holding the prisoners ... paying for the troops who guard them, running the war court and doing related construction, exceeded $540 million. The $13 million per prisoner cost almost certainly makes Guantánamo the world’s most expensive detention program. The military assigns around 1,800 troops to the detention center, or 45 for each prisoner. Judges, lawyers, journalists and support workers are flown in and out on weekly shuttles. The estimated annual cost of $540 million ... does not include expenses that have remained classified, presumably including a continued C.I.A. presence. But the figures show that running the range of facilities built up over the years has grown increasingly expensive even as the number of prisoners has declined. A Defense Department report in 2013 calculated the annual cost of operating Guantánamo Bay’s prison and court system at $454.1 million, or nearly $90 million less than last year. At the time, there were 166 prisoners at Guantánamo, making the per-prisoner cost $2.7 million. The 2013 report put the total cost of building and operating the prison since 2002 at $5.2 billion through 2014, a figure that now appears to have risen to past $7 billion.

Note: Read an article by a Yemeni citizen detained at Guantanamo Bay, titled, "Will I Die At Guantanamo Bay? After 15 Years, I Deserve Justice." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Monsanto’s Spies
2019-09-16, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/monsantos-spies_n_5d7ba20de4b03b5fc88233c4?

About a half a dozen journalists were in a northern California courtroom to cover a third lawsuit alleging that Monsanto’s pesticide glyphosate causes cancer. [Sylvie] Barak told others that she was a freelancer for the BBC. When journalists searched the internet for Barak, they noticed that her LinkedIn account said she worked for FTI Consulting, a global business advisory firm that Monsanto and Bayer, Monsanto’s parent company, had engaged for consulting. Monsanto has also previously employed shadowy networks of consultants, PR firms, and front groups to spy on and influence reporters. And all of it appears to be part of a pattern at the company of using a variety of tactics to intimidate, mislead and discredit journalists and critics. In the latest example of Monsanto’s efforts to track journalists, The Guardian reported in August on internal documents from the company’s “fusion center,” which worked to discredit reporters and nonprofits via third-party actors. In the California trial, the reporter who first identified Barak as an FTI plant said she ... saw an uptick in Monsanto’s industry partners contacting her as she covered the trial. A guy named Jay Byrne ... contacted her on social media to discuss how GMO criticism was part of a Russian influence campaign; when she Googled Byrne, she learned he is Monsanto’s former director of communications. In a January deposition, a Monsanto representative said that in 2016 the company spent “around $16 or 17 million” on activities to defend glyphosate.

Note: Major lawsuits are now unfolding over Monsanto's lies to regulators and the public on the dangers of glyphosate. Yet the EPA continues to use industry studies to declare Roundup safe while ignoring independent scientists. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


A Shadowy Industry Group Shapes Food Policy Around the World
2019-09-16, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/16/health/ilsi-food-policy-india-brazil-china...

When the Indian government bowed to powerful food companies last year and postponed its decision to put red warning labels on unhealthy packaged food, officials also sought to placate critics of the delay by creating an expert panel to review the proposed labeling system, which would have gone far beyond what other countries have done in the battle to combat soaring obesity rates. But the man chosen to head the three-person committee, Dr. Boindala Sesikeran, a veteran nutritionist and former adviser to Nestle, only further enraged health advocates. That’s because Dr. Sesikeran is a trustee of the International Life Sciences Institute, an American nonprofit with an innocuous sounding name that has been quietly infiltrating government health and nutrition bodies around the world. Created four decades ago by a top Coca-Cola executive, the institute now has branches in 17 countries. It is almost entirely funded by Goliaths of the agribusiness, food and pharmaceutical industries. The organization, which championed tobacco interests during the 1980s and 1990s in Europe and the United States, has more recently expanded its activities in Asia and Latin America, regions that provide a growing share of food company profits. It has been especially active in China, India and Brazil, the world’s first, second and sixth most populous nations. In addition to its far-flung offices, ILSI runs a research foundation and an institute focused on health and environmental issues that is largely funded by the chemical industry.

Note: Check out a great article on how lobby groups like this cause the media to become industry lapdogs. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


She started helping Detroit's impoverished community in her house. Now, her nonprofit has reached 250,000 people
2019-09-12, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/12/us/cnnheroes-najah-bazzy-zaman-international/i...

Najah Bazzy can pinpoint the moment her life changed. In 1996, she was working as a nurse when she visited an Iraqi refugee family to help care for their dying infant. She knew the situation would be difficult, but she wasn't prepared for what she encountered. "There, at the house, I got my first glimpse of poverty," she said. That day, Bazzy and her family gathered all the furniture and household items that they could - including a crib - and delivered everything to the family. She hasn't stopped since. For years, Bazzy ran her goodwill effort from her home, transporting donated goods in her family's minivan. Eventually, her efforts grew into Zaman International, a nonprofit that now supports impoverished women and children of all backgrounds in the Detroit area. The group has helped more than 250,000 people. Today, Zaman operates from a 40,000-square-foot facility in the suburb of Inkster. The group's warehouse offers aisles of food, rows of clothes and vast arrays of furniture free to those in need. The group's case managers help clients access housing and other services. "We work to stabilize them as quickly as we can," Bazzy said. "Women walk in and they are in desperate need, and they walk out with their basic needs met." The group's donated clothing and furniture are also available to the public through its Good Deeds Resale Shop. "Our mothers are able to come. They get a voucher and have the same dignified shopping experience as somebody else, but (do) not have to pay for it," she said.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


California bans private prisons – including Ice detention centers
2019-09-12, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/sep/12/california-private-prison-ban...

The private prison industry is set to be upended after California lawmakers passed a bill on Wednesday banning the facilities from operating in the state. The move will probably also close down four large immigration detention facilities that can hold up to 4,500 people at a time. The legislation is being hailed as a major victory for criminal justice reform because it removes the profit motive from incarceration. It also marks a dramatic departure from California’s past, when private prisons were relied on to reduce crowding in state-run facilities. Private prison companies used to view California as one of their fastest-growing markets. As recently as 2016, private prisons locked up approximately 7,000 Californians, about 5% of the state’s total prison population, according to the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. But in recent years, thousands of inmates have been transferred from private prisons back into state-run facilities. As of June, private prisons held 2,222 of California’s total inmate population. The state’s governor, Gavin Newsom, must still sign AB32, but last year he signaled support for the ban and said during his inaugural speech in January that the state should “end the outrage of private prisons once and for all”. The bill’s author, the assemblymember Rob Bonta, originally wrote it only to apply to contracts between the state’s prison authority and private, for-profit prison companies. But in June, Bonta amended the bill to apply to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency’s four major California detention centers.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Breakthrough as scientists create a new cowpox-style virus that can kill EVERY type of cancer
2019-09-11, MSN/Daily Mail
https://www.msn.com/en-nz/news/techandscience/breakthrough-as-scientists-crea...

Scientists have created a new cowpox-style virus in a bid to cure cancer. The treatment, called CF33, can kill every type of cancer in a petrie dish and has shrunk tumours in mice, The Daily Telegraph reported. US cancer expert Professor Yuman Fong is engineering the treatment, which is being developed by Australia biotech company Imugene. They are hoping the treatment will be tested on breast cancer patients, among other cancer sufferers, next year. Professor Fong is currently in Australia to organise the clinical trials, which will also be run overseas. Patients with triple negative breast cancer, melanoma, lung cancer, bladder, gastric and bowel cancer would be tested in the 'basket study'. The virus, which causes the common cold, was turned into a treatment for brain cancer by scientists in the US. The cancer in some patients disappeared for years before it came back, while others saw tumours shrink considerably. Similarly, a form of the cold sore virus called Imlygic or T-Vec was found to be able to treat melanoma, as it helped the body's immune system recognise and destroy tumours and melanoma cells in the body. Cancer patients would have the engineered virus injected directly into their tumours for the breakthrough treatment. It's hoped the virus would infect the cancer calls and make them explode. The immune system is then expected to be alerted about other cancer cells in the body, prompting the diseased cells to be killed.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on promising cancer research from reliable major media sources.


More than 1,000 US polling sites closed since supreme court ruling
2019-09-11, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/sep/11/us-polling-sites-closed-repor...

Jurisdictions once monitored by the justice department for racially discriminatory voting practices have collectively closed more than 1,000 polling places since a watershed 2013 US supreme court ruling released the jurisdictions from oversight, according to a new watchdog report. In 757 counties and county equivalents that formerly had to pre-clear voting practice changes with Washington, 1,173 polling places disappeared between 2014 and 2018, a study by the Leadership Conference Education Fund, part of the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights coalition, found. The closures could disproportionately disenfranchise voters of color, especially when combined with restrictive voter ID laws, gerrymandering and aggressive voter roll purges, the report warned. Last month, a separate study found that US election jurisdictions with histories of egregious voter discrimination have been purging voter rolls at a rate 40% beyond the national average. “Closing polling places has a cascading effect, leading to long lines at other polling places, transportation hurdles, denial of language assistance and other forms of in-person help, and mass confusion about where eligible voters may cast their ballot,” the report said. “For many people, and particularly for voters of color, older voters, rural voters and voters with disabilities, these burdens make it harder – and sometimes impossible – to vote.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources.


This 15-year-old biker took on a men's world of Motocross and left them in the dust
2019-09-09, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/09/africa/zimbabwes-15-year-old-motocross-star-in...

Tanyaradzwa 'Tanya' Muzinda is not your average teenager. At 15, she is already one of Zimbabwe's Motocross champions. Held on off-road circuits, Motocross is a form of motorbike racing that is dangerous, expensive and requires a lot of training. But these challenges have not stopped Tanya from competing. She came in third place at the 2017 HL Racing British Master Kids Championships at the Motoland track in England, which she says is still her most memorable race. In 2018, Muzinda was named Junior Sportswoman of the year in South Africa by the Africa Union Sports Council Region Five Annual Sports Awards. Her father, Tawanda Muzinda, says his daughter faces substantial challenges in her chosen field because it is an expensive sport. Muzinda often misses championships because of a lack of funds. The financial difficulties she faces [have] not stopped Muzinda from giving back to people in her community. In August, she paid tuition for 45 students to attend school in Harare, Zimbabwe's capital, and hopes to pay for at least 500 more students by the end of 2020. "There have been many times I didn't race for months because of financial difficulties. I thought of the children who also don't have a chance to go to school because of money and decided to do something about it," she said. Muzinda uses donations and her Motocross prize money to support children from poorer families, especially girls who are often kept home from school. Muzinda also helps fundraise for an orphanage.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Top MIT official resigns in wake of explosive report on donations facilitated by Jeffrey Epstein
2019-09-08, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/08/us/jeffrey-epstein-mit-official-resigns/?iid=o...

Joi Ito, the director of the Media Lab at MIT, resigned Saturday and the university is calling for an independent investigation following explosive allegations that he and at least one other person at the lab made efforts to make sure Jeffrey Epstein's name was not associated with donations he made or helped solicit. Internal communications and documents obtained by CNN - first reported by the New Yorker - show Epstein was integral to incoming donations from major donors, including $2 million from Bill Gates and at least $5 million from Leon Black, the founder of private equity firm Apollo Global Management. Internal email exchanges show Ito was in direct contact with Epstein about the late financier's donations, which documents show at one point were earmarked for a research scientist. As discussions continued about the funding for the researcher, the Director of Development and Strategy, Peter Cohen, sent an email to an undisclosed recipient, saying "Jeffrey money, needs to be anonymous." Internal communications dating back to 2014 include several references to Epstein being allowed to make small donations anonymously. The communications show that Epstein helped as an intermediary on high-dollar proposals. In October of 2014 Ito sent an email stating, "This is a $2M gift from Bill Gates directed by Jeffrey Epstein." His director of Development and Strategy - Cohen - responds "Great! For gift recording purposes, we will not be mentioning Jeffreys name as the impetus for this gift."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Why industry is going green on the quiet
2019-09-08, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/sep/08/producers-keep-sustainable-pr...

There’s a factory in Asia that uses only a single litre of water to make a pair of jeans. That’s 346 litres less than Levi-Strauss estimated it took to make a pair of its jeans in 2015. The manufacturer in question does not want to tell anyone about its groundbreaking water-conserving techniques – not even the companies it supplies. It is one of many practicing “secret sustainability”, whereby innovations are silently enacted and kept from the rest of the industry. This phenomenon is not limited to the clothing industry. Why would firms spearheading sustainable practices not publicise their good work? It’s a question that puzzles Professor Steve Evans ... at Cambridge University’s Institute for Manufacturing, who suggests that such examples are widespread. He believes this stems from a common perception that there must be some kind of downside to the introduction of sustainable practices: either a reduction in product quality, or an increase in the price of manufacturing, or both. Companies and consumers seem unable to accept that sustainability does not have to cost more to create an equally good product. This is despite an increase in evidence that actively investing in sustainable practices helps business thrive. An example is provided by the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices, a series of benchmarks assessing the sustainability of companies around the world. Research has repeatedly shown that those at the top end of the benchmark outperform those at the bottom.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The World Wastes Tons of Food. A Grocery ‘Happy Hour’ Is One Answer.
2019-09-08, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/08/business/food-waste-climate-change.html

“Happy hour” at the S-market store in the working-class neighborhood of Vallila happens far from the liquor aisles and isn’t exactly convivial. Nobody is here for drinks or a good time. They’re looking for a steep discount on a slab of pork. Or a chicken, or a salmon fillet, or any of a few hundred items that are hours from their midnight expiration date. Food that is nearly unsellable goes on sale at every one of S-market’s 900 stores in Finland, with prices that are already reduced by 30 percent slashed to 60 percent off at exactly 9 p.m. It’s part of a two-year campaign to reduce food waste that company executives in this famously bibulous country decided to call “happy hour” in the hopes of drawing in regulars, like any decent bar. About one-third of the food produced and packaged for human consumption is lost or wasted, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. That equals 1.3 billion tons a year, worth nearly $680 billion. The figures represent more than just a disastrous misallocation of need and want, given that 10 percent of people in the world are chronically undernourished. All that excess food, scientists say, contributes to climate change. Mika Lyytikainen, an S-market vice president, explained that the program simply reduces its losses. “When we sell at 60 percent off, we don’t earn any money, but we earn more than if the food was given to charity,” he said. “On the other hand, it’s now possible for every Finn to buy very cheap food in our stores.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Fire did not cause World Trade Center Building 7 collapse, UAF study suggests
2019-09-06, KTVA (CBS Affiliate, Anchorage, Alaska)
https://www.ktva.com/story/41015153/fire-did-not-cause-world-trade-center-bui...

World Trade Center Building 7 was not struck by a plane, but collapsed hours after the twin towers on Sept. 11, 2001. A draft report released this week by researchers at UAF [University of Alaska Fairbanks] suggests that the fall was not a result of fires, despite the findings of the National Institute for Standards and Technology ... in 2008. The study was paid for by a group called Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth [representing] over 3,000 architects and engineers who have signed a petition calling on Congress to launch a new investigation into the destruction of the towers. Dr. Leroy Hulsey, a civil engineering professor at UAF, led the four-year study. According to the Institute of Northern Engineering's website, the objective was to examine the structural response of WTC 7 to fire loads that may have occurred that day, rule out scenarios that couldn't have caused its collapse and identify types of failures that may have caused the fall. The UAF team's findings contradict those of the 2008 NIST report, which concluded that WTC 7 was the first tall building ever to collapse primarily due to fire. According to the NIST report, debris from the north WTC tower (WTC 1) ignited fires on at least 10 floors in WTC 7. NIST said the automatic sprinkler system on those floors failed, causing the fires to spread. Despite NIST's findings, critics of the government's account have long argued the building fell in a controlled demolition. "We virtually simulated the building and we looked at that analysis and we also virtually simulated what they did, we couldn't get it to do what they did," Hulsey said.

Note: A New York Times article states that some of the I-beams at WTC 7, "once five-eighths of an inch thick, had vaporized." Powerful evidence presented by experts suggests that World Trade Center 7 was brought down by explosives. And don't miss the PBS special, "9/11 Explosive Evidence: Experts Speak Out", in which 40 whistle-blowing architects and engineers present astounding evidence of controlled demolition at World Trade Center 7. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing 9/11 news articles from reliable major media sources.


From mind control to murder? How a deadly fall revealed the CIA’s darkest secrets
2019-09-06, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/sep/06/from-mind-control-to-murder-h...

On 12 June 1975, the Washington Post ran a story about an army scientist who had been drugged with LSD by the CIA, reacted badly and jumped out of the window of a New York hotel. This story, with its lurid mix of drugs, death and the CIA, proved irresistible. For the next several days, reporters barraged the CIA with demands to know more. The Olson family called a press conference in the family’s back yard. Alice read a statement saying that the family had decided to “file a lawsuit against the CIA, perhaps within two weeks, asking several million dollars in damages”. “Since 1953, we have struggled to understand Frank Olson’s death as an inexplicable ‘suicide,’” she said. “The true nature of his death was concealed for 22 years.” White House lawyers offered the Olson family $750,000 in exchange for dropping its legal claims. After some hesitation, the family accepted. On 8 August 2002, [Eric Olson] announced that he had reached a new conclusion about what had happened to his father. “The death of Frank Olson on 28 November 1953 was a murder, not a suicide,” he declared. “This is not an LSD drug-experiment story, as it was represented in 1975. This is a biological warfare story. Frank Olson did not die because he was an experimental guinea pig who experienced a ‘bad trip’. He died because of concern that he would divulge information concerning a highly classified CIA interrogation program in the early 1950s, and concerning the use of biological weapons by the United States in the Korean War.”

Note: Read more about the CIA's MK-ULTRA program which Frank Olson was a part of. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind control from reliable major media sources.


Examples Of Self-Interested Pursuits That Benefited All Of Humanity
2019-09-06, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/semyondukach/2019/09/06/3-examples-of-self-inter...

The following achievements stand as examples for what humanity is capable of when the end result benefits both the self and the other. In other words, they are examples of when nations decided to cooperate with each other for self-interested reasons, yet still produced results that benefited the rest of humanity. In 1985, a group of British scientists warned the world that the use of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) was wreaking havoc on the ozone layer. A treaty known as the Montreal Protocol was drawn up, and for the first time in history, it was universally ratified (197 countries have signed on to date). As a result, the world successfully phased out 99% of ozone-depleting chemicals. If this hadn’t been created, the Earth’s ozone layer would have collapsed by 2050. The Human Genome Project was an international effort to map out the DNA sequence of the entire human genome. The knowledge gained from the project has led to better treatment, detection and prevention of human disease. It has opened doors to a greater understanding of the code that determines so much of our lives, and has provided key clues for further unraveling the human mystery. The International Space Station is, of course, a classic example of global collaboration in pursuit of knowledge and discovery. Research at the ISS has resulted in everything from the creation of advanced water filtration systems, to developing drugs for muscular dystrophy, to robotics used in surgery, to the development of better vaccines.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The Pentagon Wants More Control Over the News. What Could Go Wrong?
2019-09-05, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/political-commentary/darpa-fake-news-in...

From Bloomberg: Fake news and social media posts are such a threat to U.S. security that the Defense Department is launching a project to repel “large-scale, automated disinformation attacks.” One of the Pentagon’s most secretive agencies, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is developing “custom software that can unearth fakes hidden among more than 500,000 stories, photos, video and audio clips.” It’s the latest in a string of stories about new methods of control over information flow that should, but for some reason do not, horrify every working journalist. “Fake news” is a poorly-defined, amorphous concept that the public has been trained to fear without really understanding. Fake news has a long history in America. The worst “fake news” almost always involves broad-scale deceptions foisted on the public by official (and often unnamed) sources, in conjunction with oligopolistic media companies, usually in service of rallying the public behind a dubious policy objective like a war or authoritarian crackdown. From the ... Gulf of Tonkin lie that launched the Vietnam War, to the more recent WMD fiasco, true “fake news” is a concerted, organized, institutional phenomenon that involves deceptions cooked up at the highest levels. If there’s a fake news story out there, it’s the fake news panic itself. Of course, the final, omnipresent ingredient in most major propaganda campaigns is the authoritarian solution. Here, it’s unelected, unsupervised algorithmic control over media.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


‘Official Secrets’ sheds light on the story of U.K. whistleblower Katharine Gun
2019-09-05, Washington Post
https://beta.washingtonpost.com/express/2019/09/05/official-secrets-sheds-lig...

Katharine Gun and Martin Bright could be forgiven for fielding Hollywood’s overtures with a degree of skepticism. Ever since their story was documented in Marcia and Thomas Mitchell’s 2008 book “The Spy Who Tried to Stop a War,” Gun, the British whistleblower who attempted to prevent the Iraq War, and Bright, an investigative journalist who broke the leak, had sat down with many a filmmaker interested in translating their tale. So when veteran South African director Gavin Hood expressed interest, Gun and Bright took the development with a grain of salt. When Gun met with Hood, however, she was struck by his engagement. The end result, “Official Secrets,” opens locally Friday with Keira Knightley playing Gun and Matt Smith as Bright. The movie depicts the decision Gun made in 2003, while working for British intelligence agency GCHQ, to leak a secret memo exposing plans by the American government to potentially blackmail members of the U.N. Security Council into supporting the Iraq War. “Official Secrets” probes myriad issues that remain resonant a decade and a half later, including government overreach and accountability, the toxicity of anti-Muslim sentiment, and the merits of an intrepid free press. By positioning Gun as an everywoman, “Official Secrets” asks its audience to ponder the moral dilemma at its core. “I didn’t set out to be a whistleblower,” Gun says. “Hopefully people will see it and come away with the thought, ‘What would I do if I was in a similar situation?’”

Note: Explore more on this courageous whistleblower in this revealing article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Sealed Jeffrey Epstein Court Documents Name at Least 1,000 People
2019-09-05, Time
https://time.com/5668489/jeffrey-epstein-sealed-names/

The names of at least 1,000 people appear in sealed court documents associated with Jeffrey Epstein, a court heard on Wednesday. The revelation came after attorneys for a “John Doe” asked a federal judge in New York not to release the names of people who were not directly involved with the 2015 defamation lawsuit filed by Epstein accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre against Epstein’s longtime confidante Ghislaine Maxwell. The case was settled in 2017, but the details are only just now emerging. A day before Epstein’s death in August, a massive cache of documents from the suit was unsealed - revealing accusations against prominent figures, including former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and former Sen. George Mitchell. Within the files, Giuffre alleged Maxwell acted as Epstein’s “madame” and was “one of the main women” whom Epstein used “to procure under-aged girls for sexual activities.” Maxwell’s attorney, Jeffrey S. Pagliuca, said that ... there are “literally hundreds of pages of investigative reports that mention hundreds of people.” Pagliuca also pointed to a piece of evidence he called “an address book,” and said it probably includes 1,000 names. What could be the legal implications for anyone who is named? It depends, says Mimi Rocah, a MSNBC legal analyst and former federal prosecutor. Individuals could be implicated in the sex trafficking conspiracy “if they were even minimally aware of the age of the girls being exploited and participated or furthered that exploitation in some way,” she explains.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Conversion therapy center founder who sought to turn LGBTQ Christians straight says he’s gay, rejects ‘cycle of self shame’
2019-09-05, Washington Post
https://beta.washingtonpost.com/religion/2019/09/03/conversion-therapy-center...

McKrae Game wants people to know that he was wrong about all of it. He was wrong to found Hope for Wholeness Network, a faith-based conversion therapy program that seeks to rid people of their LGBTQ identities. He was wrong to create a slogan promoting the idea of “freedom from homosexuality through Jesus Christ.” He was wrong to tell people they were doomed for all eternity if they didn’t change their ways. After 20 years working in that field, Game said he realizes the harm he has caused and that he, himself, is gay. Conversion therapy encompasses a widely discredited range of methods that purport to change someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity. The practice is illegal in 18 states and the District. “It’s all in my past, but many, way TOO MANY continue believing that there is something wrong with themselves and wrong with people that choose to live their lives honestly and open as gay, lesbian, trans, etc.,” Game, 51, wrote on Facebook last week. “The very harmful cycle of self shame and condemnation has to stop.” Game is among many founders and leaders of conversion therapy programs to disavow the practice later. In 2014, nine former “ex-gay” leaders signed an open letter denouncing conversion therapy as “ineffective and harmful” and calling for an end to it. Leaders of conversion therapy programs rarely renounce the practice publicly because doing so involves turning their backs not just on the ex-gay community, but also on conservative faith as a whole.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


Epstein’s donations to universities reveal a painful truth about philanthropy
2019-09-05, Washington Post
https://beta.washingtonpost.com/local/education/epsteins-donations-to-univers...

Jeffrey Epstein forged deep ties with some of the nation’s elite universities and their scholars, showering them with millions of dollars in donations. The financier’s donations supported important research and helped scientists work toward discoveries, but they also provided a veneer of credibility to a convicted sex offender. The ensuing fallout ... illuminates enduring questions for academia about the money that fuels research, and how institutions nurture relationships with donors in the race to excel. Epstein gave repeatedly to MIT and Harvard University. At MIT, the president, L. Rafael Reif, apologized to Epstein’s victims in a message to campus. The school accepted about $800,000 of Epstein’s money over 20 years, Reif wrote, with gifts to the MIT Media Lab and to a mechanical engineering professor. “With hindsight,” Reif wrote, “we recognize with shame and distress that we allowed MIT to contribute to the elevation of his reputation, which in turn served to distract from his horrifying acts. No apology can undo that.” The largest gift to Harvard University from Epstein was $6.5 million in 2003, for the Program for Evolutionary Dynamics. Martin Nowak, director of that program, said there was only one gift from Epstein in support of his research, and that money was spent by 2007. In 2006, when Epstein was facing sex-crime charges, the Harvard Crimson reported that the school would not return the gift, although some prominent recipients of Epstein’s donations had done so.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


A decade of renewable energy investment, led by solar, tops USD 2.5 trillion
2019-09-05, United Nations Environment Programme
https://www.unenvironment.org/news-and-stories/press-release/decade-renewable...

Global investment in new renewable energy capacity over this decade — 2010 to 2019 inclusive — is on course to hit USD 2.6 trillion, with more gigawatts of solar power capacity installed than any other generation technology. This investment is set to have roughly quadrupled renewable energy capacity (excluding large hydro) from 414 GW at the end of 2009 to just over 1,650 GW when the decade closes at the end of this year. Solar power will have drawn half — USD 1.3 trillion — of the USD 2.6 trillion in renewable energy capacity investments made over the decade. Solar alone will have grown from 25 GW at the beginning of 2010 to an expected 663 GW by the close of 2019 — enough to produce all the electricity needed each year by about 100 million average homes in the USA. The global share of electricity generation accounted for by renewables reached 12.9 per cent, in 2018, up from 11.6 per cent in 2017. This avoided an estimated 2 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions last year alone — a substantial saving given global power sector emissions of 13.7 billion tonnes in 2018. Including all major generating technologies (fossil and zero-carbon), the decade is set to see a net 2,366 GW of power capacity installed, with solar accounting for the largest single share (638 GW), coal second (529 GW), and wind and gas in third and fourth places (487 GW and 438 GW respectively).

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Johns Hopkins Opens New Center for Psychedelic Research
2019-09-04, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/04/science/psychedelic-drugs-hopkins-depressi...

Johns Hopkins Medicine announced the launch of the Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research, to study compounds like LSD and psilocybin for a range of mental health problems, including anorexia, addiction and depression. The center is the first of its kind in the country, established with $17 million in commitments from wealthy private donors and a foundation. The centers at Johns Hopkins and Imperial College give “psychedelic medicine,” as some call it, a long-sought foothold in the scientific establishment. Since the early 2000s, several scientists have been exploring the potential of psychedelics and other recreational drugs for psychiatric problems, and their early reports have been tantalizing. The emergence of depression treatment with the anesthetic and club drug ketamine and related compounds, which cause out-of-body sensations, also has piqued interest in mind-altering agents as aids to therapy. The ... funding will help clarify which drugs help which patients. Roland Griffiths, a neuroscientist at Johns Hopkins who will direct the new center ... said the new funds will cover six full-time faculty, five postdoctoral scientists and the costs of running trials. Among the first of those trials are a test of psilocybin for anorexia nervosa and of psilocybin for psychological distress and cognitive impairment in early Alzheimer’s disease. “The one that’s crying out to be done is for opiate-use disorder, and we also plan to look at that,” Dr. Griffiths said.

Note: Learn about the fascinating man who is bankrolling a significant portion of this new center in this New York Times article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


US judge: Terror watchlist violates constitutional rights
2019-09-04, ABC/Associated Press
https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/us-judge-terror-watchlist-violates-consti...

The government's watchlist of more than 1 million people identified as "known or suspected terrorists" violates the constitutional rights of those placed on it, a federal judge ruled Wednesday. The ruling from U.S. District Judge Anthony Trenga grants summary judgment to nearly two dozen Muslim U.S. citizens who had challenged the watchlist with the help of a Muslim civil-rights group, the Council on American-Islamic Relations. But the judge is seeking additional legal briefs before deciding what remedy to impose. The watchlist is disseminated to a variety of governmental departments, foreign governments and police agencies. "There is no evidence, or contention, that any of these plaintiffs satisfy the definition of a 'known terrorist'," Trenga wrote. And the alternate standard for placement — that of a "suspected terrorist" — can easily be triggered by innocent conduct that is misconstrued, he said. The watchlist, also known as the Terrorist Screening Database, is maintained by the FBI and shared with a variety of federal agencies. Customs officers have access to the list to check people coming into the country at border crossings, and aviation officials use the database to help form the no-fly list, which is a much smaller subset of the broader watchlist. The watchlist has grown significantly over the years. As of June 2017, approximately 1.16 million people were included on the watchlist, according to government documents filed in the lawsuit. In 2013, the number was only 680,000.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


U.N. report says U.S., Britain, France may be complicit in potential war crimes in Yemen
2019-09-03, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/un-report-says-us-britain-france-complic...

By arming and backing a Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen, the United States, Britain and France may be complicit in potential war crimes, the United Nations said in a scathing report. The wide-ranging report from a team of investigators commissioned by the U.N. Human Rights Council found that all parties to the conflict had perpetrated possible war crimes through airstrikes, shelling, snipers and land mines, as well as arbitrary killings, torture and other abuses. The Saudi-led coalition, which is aligned with Yemen’s internationally recognized government, is accused of intentionally starving Yemenis as a tactic of war and killing thousands of civilians in airstrikes. The coalition’s foes, northern rebels known as Houthis, are accused of planting land mines, shelling cities and deploying child soldiers. The investigators highlighted what many of the war’s critics describe as the destructive role played by the United States, Britain and France - all permanent U.N. Security Council members. The United States, in particular, provides logistical support and intelligence to the coalition, in addition to selling billions of dollars in weaponry to the group. By some estimates, the conflict has killed as many as 95,000 people, including tens of thousands of civilians, violating international humanitarian laws. Time and again, the Saudi-led coalition has promised to investigate such alleged violations. But coalition airstrikes on civilian targets - hospitals, clinics, markets, even school buses carrying children - have been unrelenting.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


Brain trauma suffered by U.S. diplomats abroad could be work of hostile foreign government
2019-09-01, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/brain-trauma-suffered-by-u-s-diplomats-abroad-co...

In 2016 and 2017, 25 Americans, including CIA agents, who worked in the U.S. Embassy in Cuba suffered serious brain injuries causing impaired vision and memory loss among other persistent problems. At least 15 American officials in China suffered unexplained brain trauma soon after. As we first reported in March, the FBI is now investigating whether these Americans were attacked by a mysterious weapon that leaves no trace. Mark Lenzi is a State Department security officer who worked in the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou, China. He says that he and his wife began to suffer after hearing strange sounds in their apartment. Mark Lenzi believes he was targeted because of his work. He uses top secret equipment to analyze electronic threats to diplomatic missions. "It was a weapon," [said Lenzi]. "I believe it's RF, radio frequency energy, in the microwave range." A clue that supports that theory was revealed by the National Security Agency in 2014. This NSA statement describes such a weapon as a "high-powered microwave system weapon that may have the ability to weaken, intimidate, or kill an enemy over time without leaving evidence." The statement goes on to say "... this weapon is designed to bathe a target's living quarters in microwaves." The NSA disclosed this in a worker's compensation case filed by former NSA employee Mike Beck. In the 1990's Beck and an NSA co-worker were on assignment overseas. Years later, he says they developed Parkinson's Disease at the same time.

Note: Read more on the mysterious "sonic attacks" in Cuba. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on non-lethal weapons from reliable major media sources.


Is an invisible weapon targeting U.S. diplomats?
2019-09-01, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/is-an-invisible-weapon-targeting-u-s-diplomats-6...

Commerce Department trade officer Catherine Werner used to promote American business from the U.S. consulate in Guangzhou, China. Today she says she suffers from bouts of nausea, dizziness, and headaches. Robyn Garfield, also a trade officer with the Commerce Department, was posted in Shanghai. Along with nausea, dizziness, and headaches, he says he has trouble remembering words. State Department security officer Mark Lenzi used to work in the consulate in Guangzhou. When he did, he said the splitting pain in his head was debilitating. The three are among at least 15 American officials in China who say they suffered unexplained brain trauma after being attacked by a mysterious weapon. Previously, 25 Americans who worked in the U.S. embassy in Cuba said they also experienced an attack and have similar symptoms. The government employees weren't the only ones targeted. Their spouses, children, and family pets also exhibited neurological symptoms after hearing strange sounds in their homes. In July, a University of Pennsylvania medical team published a study on the brains of U.S. government personnel who developed neurological symptoms in Cuba. The study used advanced brain imaging and found "significant differences in brain tissue and connectivity" in the diplomats' brains. It is the first scientific evidence showing the diplomats had physical damage to the structure of their brains.

Note: Read more on the mysterious "sonic attacks" in Cuba. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on non-lethal weapons from reliable major media sources.


How a Ring of Women Allegedly Recruited Girls for Jeffrey Epstein
2019-08-29, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/29/nyregion/jeffrey-epstein-ghislaine-maxwell...

Haley Robson was a 16-year-old South Florida high school student. When Jeffrey Epstein tried to grope her ... she brushed his hand away, Ms. Robson said in a 2009 deposition for a civil case. But she continued to visit Mr. Epstein’s mansion dozens more times, in a lucrative new role: a recruiter of other teenage girls from her school. After Mr. Epstein’s suicide in a Manhattan jail cell in early August, federal authorities have refocused their investigation on the more than half-dozen employees, girlfriends and associates whom prosecutors say he relied on to feed his insatiable appetite for girls. Ms. Robson, now 33, is among them. This small cadre of women helped Mr. Epstein lure girls into his orbit and managed the logistics of his encounters with them. None of Mr. Epstein’s associates have been charged or named as co-conspirators in Manhattan. But federal authorities are eyeing possible charges that include sex trafficking and sex trafficking conspiracy. Four women were apparently so instrumental to Mr. Epstein’s operation that they were named as possible “co-conspirators” and were granted immunity from prosecution in a widely criticized plea bargain Mr. Epstein struck with federal prosecutors in Florida more than a decade ago. The four women — Sarah Kellen, Lesley Groff, Adriana Ross and Nadia Marcinkova — could still be subject to criminal charges in Manhattan. The United States attorney’s office has said it is not bound by the Florida agreement.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


DHS Bars Congressional Staffers from Migrant Detention Centers After Reports of Rotten Food, Kid Told To Eat Off Floor
2019-08-29, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/dhs-block-congressional-staffers-troubling-discoveri...

The Department of Homeland Security has prevented congressional staffers from the House Oversight Committee from visiting additional migrant detention facilities along the southern border after allegedly making troubling discoveries in recent weeks at other detention centers. The chairman of the panel, Democrat Elijah Cummings, wrote that in the past two weeks, a bipartisan group of committee staffers made visits to several facilities ... and heard concerning allegations. After those visits, they were barred from conducting a second trip to see 11 additional facilities. Migrant detainees told the committee staffers that toddlers, including an infant, held at U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) facilities were being fed burritos - as opposed to age-appropriate food - and a child was told by a CBP agent to drink spilled soup off the floor before receiving more food. Detainees said children were held in cold rooms without the appropriate clothing, parents weren't given enough diapers for young children and they were pressured into signing documents in English without translation. Detainees at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facilities ... told staffers there was rotten food and inadequate access to medical care. Reports by the DHS inspector general's office ... painted similar troubling pictures of "dangerous overcrowding" and prolonged stays at migrant detention centers, including a lack of access to proper bedding, clothing, showers, food and hygiene products.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein’s lawyers highly ‘skeptical’ of suicide ruling, say he wasn’t ‘despairing, despondent’ before death
2019-08-27, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/08/27/jeffrey-epsteins-lawyers-skeptical-of-suicide...

A defense lawyer for Jeffrey Epstein on Tuesday expressed deep skepticism that the wealthy financier died by hanging himself in a Manhattan federal jail while awaiting trial on child sex trafficking charges, as a medical examiner has ruled. The injuries suffered by Epstein are “far more consistent with assault” than suicide, the lawyer, Reid Weingarten, told Judge Richard Berman in U.S. District Court in Manhattan during a hearing. Weingarten cited the defense’s own medical sources. Broken bones were found in Epstein’s neck during an autopsy after he died Aug. 10. Such fractures are somewhat more common in cases of strangulation than in hanging. Weingarten told the judge that when he and other defense attorneys spoke to Epstein shortly before his death “we did not see a despairing, despondent, suicidal person.” Weingarten’s comments came during a proceeding where prosecutors were seeking the dismissal of child sex trafficking charges against the Epstein as a result of his death. More than 20 alleged victims of Epstein spoke or had statements read during the hearing. Weeks before his death, Epstein was found semiconscious in his cell in the Manhattan Correctional Center with marks on his neck. That incident led to him being placed on suicide watch, but he was taken off of that status about a week later. Weingarten also pointed out that “we’ve heard that” the surveillance video at the jail around Epstein’s cell “were either corrupted or not functioning.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


People with higher optimism more likely to live 'exceptionally long lives'
2019-08-27, Medical News Today
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/326163.php

New research finds that individuals with higher optimism tend to live longer and also have greater odds of living 85 years and more. A recent PNAS paper describes how the researchers assessed the link between higher optimism and longer lifespan, with a particular focus on the chances of reaching "exceptional longevity." The team carried out the study because most research on exceptional longevity has tended to focus on the effect of "biomedical factors." More recently, however, scientists have become interested in the role of nonbiological factors. "While research has identified many risk factors for diseases and premature death," says first and corresponding author Lewina O. Lee, Ph.D., "we know relatively less about positive psychosocial factors that can promote healthy aging." She and her colleagues defined optimism as the "general expectation that good things will happen or the belief that the future will be favorable because one can control important outcomes." For the analysis, the team brought together data on 69,744 females ... and 1,429 males. The questionnaires that they completed ... included items on optimism. When the researchers analyzed the data, they found that the females and males with the highest levels of optimism ... lived on average 11–15% longer than those with the lowest levels of optimism. In addition, [those] with the highest levels of optimism had a 50–70% greater likelihood of living until their 85th birthday and beyond.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Investigators scrutinizing video outside Epstein’s cell find some footage unusable, according to people familiar with the inquiry
2019-08-26, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/investigators-scrutinizing-video-outs...

At least one camera in the hallway outside the cell where authorities say registered sex offender Jeffrey Epstein hanged himself earlier this month had footage that is unusable, although other, clearer footage was captured in the area. The incident is being investigated by the FBI and the Justice Department’s inspector general’s office, which are attempting to determine what happened and how to assess whether any policies were violated or crimes committed. The revelation of an unusable recording is yet another of the apparent failures inside the Metropolitan Correctional Center, the short-staffed Bureau of Prisons facility in downtown Manhattan that held Epstein. Meanwhile, there has been intense scrutiny of the federal facility where he was held, which did not follow its protocol in the handling of Epstein in several ways, officials have said. Epstein should have been checked on every 30 minutes. Investigators are exploring whether logs were falsified to indicate checks had occurred when they had not. Epstein also was supposed to have a roommate, following a July 23 incident in which he was found on the floor of his cell with marks on his neck. Authorities suspected he had attempted suicide; Epstein said he believed he had been attacked. He was placed on suicide watch for about a week after that. For a time, [he] had a new roommate. But that person was transferred ... and a new roommate was not assigned — despite the fact that at least eight jail officials knew Epstein was not to be left alone in cell.

Note: Watch powerful evidence in a suppressed Discovery Channel documentary showing that child sexual abuse rings reach to the highest levels of government. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which also leads directly to the highest levels of government. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein and prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Johnson & Johnson ordered to pay $572 million for its role in Oklahoma’s opioid crisis
2019-08-26, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/johnson-and-johnson-is-responsible-for-...

A judge Monday found Johnson & Johnson responsible for fueling Oklahoma’s opioid crisis, ordering the health-care company to pay $572 million to remedy the devastation wrought by the epidemic on the state and its residents. Cleveland County District Judge Thad Balkman’s landmark decision is the first to hold a drugmaker culpable for the fallout of years of liberal opioid dispensing that began in the late 1990s. More than 400,000 people have died of overdoses from painkillers, heroin and illegal fentanyl since 1999. With more than 40 states lined up to pursue similar claims against the pharmaceutical industry, the ruling ... could influence both sides’ strategies in the months and years to come. Plaintiffs’ attorneys around the country cheered the decision, saying they hoped it would be a model for an enormous federal lawsuit brought by nearly 2,000 cities, counties, Native American tribes and others scheduled to begin in Cleveland, Ohio, in October. Johnson & Johnson’s products ... were a small part of the painkillers consumed in Oklahoma. But Hunter painted the company as an industry “kingpin” because two other companies it owned had grown, processed and supplied 60 percent of the ingredients in painkillers sold by most drug companies. “At the root of this crisis was Johnson & Johnson, a company that literally created the poppy that became the source of the opioid crisis,” the state charged. The state also said the health-care giant actively took part in ... an aggressive misinformation campaign.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


Do Plants Have Something to Say?
2019-08-26, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/26/style/can-plants-talk.html

Monica Gagliano says that she has received Yoda-like advice from trees and shrubbery. She recalls being rocked like a baby by the spirit of a fern. She has ridden on the back of an invisible bear conjured by an osha root. These interactions have taken place in dreams, visions, songs and telekinetic interactions, sometimes with the help of shamans or ayahuasca. Dr. Gagliano’s scientific research ... has broken boundaries in the field of plant behavior and signaling. Currently at the University of Sydney in Australia, she has published a number of studies that support the view that plants are, to some extent, intelligent. Her experiments suggest that they can learn behaviors and remember them. Her work also suggests that plants can “hear” running water and even produce clicking noises, perhaps to communicate. She believes, like many scientists and environmentalists do, that in order to save the planet we have to understand ourselves as part of the natural world. It’s just that she also believes the plants themselves can speak to this point. “I want people to realize that the world is full of magic, but not as something only some people can do, or something that is outside of this world,” she said. “No, it’s all here.” At the [world science] festival, a young woman asked Dr. Gagliano how her scientific work had changed her understanding of the world. “The main difference is that I used to live in a world of objects, and now I live in a world of subjects,” she said. There were murmurs of approval. “And so, I am never alone.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Landmark US case to expose rampant racial bias behind the death penalty
2019-08-25, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/aug/24/landmark-us-case-to-expose-ramp...

The dark secret of America’s death penalty – the blatant and intentional racial bias that infects the system, distorting juries and throwing inordinate numbers of African Americans on to death row – will be laid bare next week in North Carolina. Some of the country’s top capital lawyers will gather on Monday at the state supreme court in Raleigh. The court’s seven judges will be asked to address a simple question. Will they allow men and women to be condemned to die despite powerful evidence that prosecutors deployed racially discriminatory tactics to put them on death row? At the heart of the case are four inmates facing execution: three African American men and a Native American woman. Over the past seven years Marcus Robinson, Quintel Augustine, Tilmon Golphin and Christina Walters have been on an extraordinary judicial roller coaster that has seen them taken off death row on grounds that their sentences were racially compromised, only to be slapped back on to it following a partisan backlash by the Republican-controlled state legislature. In all four cases, a review of their trials found racial bias had been an “overwhelming” feature of how death sentences were secured. In particular, the juries had been “bleached”. Black potential jurors were systematically struck off – consciously and intentionally – at a rate far higher than their white equivalents. As a result, juries were produced that were almost exclusively, or in Augustine’s case entirely, white.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on judicial system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Cities Are Saying No to 5G, Citing Health, Aesthetics—and FCC Bullying
2019-08-24, Wall Street Journal
https://www.wsj.com/articles/cities-are-saying-no-to-5g-citing-health-aesthet...

Jack Tibbetts, a member of the Santa Rosa, Calif., city council, knew he had a problem. It was early 2018, and he’d started getting calls from constituents at opposite ends of the political spectrum. The common thread: cellular antennas going up next to their homes, causing concerns over property values and health. Cities and towns throughout Northern California are issuing ordinances that would exclude new 5G cell sites from residential areas, citing ... health concerns. Residents of Portland, Ore., and Whitefish, Mont., have also cited these beliefs while lobbying for restrictions. Legislators in four states including New Hampshire have proposed bills that would mandate further study of health effects or else urge Congress to do so, and Congressman Thomas Suozzi (D., N.Y.) wrote to the FCC echoing these concerns. For Mr. Tibbetts, it didn’t matter whether or not these new “small cell” antennas ... going up in Santa Rosa were actually dangerous. What mattered was that his constituents didn’t want these ungainly chunks of public infrastructure anywhere near them. Whatever the basis for residents’ objections to new cell towers, Mr. Tibbetts - as well as countless mayors, governors and council members across the country - have little or no power under current rules to act on their constituents’ wishes. Those who do take action are creating ordinances that put their cities at risk of being sued by the telecoms, as happened this month in Rochester, N.Y..

Note: You can find the full article on this webpage. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of wireless technologies from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein's body reportedly sealed in unmarked crypt alongside his family
2019-08-23, New Zealand Herald
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=12261112

Jeffrey Epstein's body has reportedly been laid to rest in an exclusive, leafy memorial chapel in Florida, after his remains were snuck in via mini-van on the Sabbath. According to reports from The Daily Mail, Epstein, the high-risk, registered sex offender, who took his own life after being jailed on international child sex trafficking charges, has had his remains placed in a crypt next to his deceased parents. Next to Epstein's unmarked remains are the names of numerous other deceased Jewish people, who have now been laid to rest next to one of contemporary history's most notorious and hated figures. Epstein, a mysterious financier, whose wealth was believed to be in the billions, cavorted with royalty and powerful politicians, including Bill Clinton and Donald Trump. According to ... The Daily Mail, a memorial plate, formerly in place at the IJ Morris Star of David Cemetery of the Palm Beaches, in Palm Beach, Florida, was removed and replaced with a blank slab. When Epstein's brother, Mark Epstein, was contacted to confirm whether his paedophile brother had been entombed at the Jewish crypt, he said ... "It's a private family matter, you got that? I'm not going to answer your question." The IJ Morris at Star of David Cemetery is a large site for burials, cremations and tributes, housing dozens of crypts and community vaults, according to their website. The Palm Beach Cemetery is a half-hour drive from one of Epstein's many properties, where he is believed to have abused numerous underage victims, according to unsealed court documents.

Note: This news supports the belief of many that Epstein may have been killed or even that he was taken and the body of a double put in. With his body being hidden, an independent autopsy may never be possible to determine if the body was indeed Epstein and if the injuries to the body suggest suicide or murder. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


A Dead Cat, A Lawyer's Call And A 5-Figure Donation: How Media Fell Short On Epstein
2019-08-22, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2019/08/22/753390385/a-dead-cat-a-lawyers-call-and-a-5-fi...

A coterie of intimidating lawyers. A five-figure donation. Even, it is alleged, a cat's severed head in the front yard of the editor-in-chief of Vanity Fair. Such were the tools the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein is said to have used to try to soften news coverage and at times stave off journalistic scrutiny altogether. Epstein killed himself, authorities say, in federal prison as he faced criminal charges alleging sex trafficking of underage girls, some as young as 14. And yet with a few notable exceptions, the national media infrequently covered Epstein's behavior and rarely looked at the associates who helped him evade accountability for his actions — at least, not until the Miami Herald's Julie K. Brown's investigative series late last year. "We count on the press to uncover problems, not merely to report on when problems have been prosecuted," says David Boies, an attorney for several of Epstein's accusers. "And here you had a terrible problem. A horrific series of abuses." Boies' firm helped file lawsuits in 2015 and 2017 for clients alleging that Epstein and his associates had sexually trafficked underage girls, at his various homes. The suits were publicly available documents but received little attention in the press. In some cases, Epstein successfully scared off some accusers and struck confidential settlements with others, making it harder for reporters to get them to recount their experiences on the record.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein and media manipulation. from reliable major media sources. Then watch an excellent segment by Australia's "60-Minutes" team "Spies, Lords and Predators" on a pedophile ring in the UK which leads directly to the highest levels of government. A second suppressed documentary, "Conspiracy of Silence," goes even deeper into this topic in the US.


Jeffrey Epstein signed new will to shield $577m fortune days before death
2019-08-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/aug/22/jeffrey-epstein-trust-fund-wi...

The will that disgraced financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein signed just two days before his jailhouse suicide puts more than $577m in assets into a trust fund that could make it more difficult for his dozens of accusers to collect damages. “This is the last act of Epstein’s manipulation of the system, even in death,” said attorney Jennifer Freeman, who represents child sex abuse victims. By putting his fortune in a trust, he shrouded from public view the identities of the beneficiaries, whether they be individuals, organizations or other entities. For the women trying to collect from his estate, the first order of business will be persuading a judge to pierce that veil and release the details. From there, the women will have to follow the course they would have had to pursue even if Epstein had not created a trust: convince the judge that they are entitled to compensation as victims of sex crimes. The judge would have to decide how much they should get and whether to reduce the amounts given to Epstein’s named beneficiaries, who would also be given their say in court. Attorney Lisa Bloom, who represents several Epstein accusers ... said attorneys for the women will go after Epstein’s estate in the US Virgin Islands, where the will was filed and where he owned two islands. Bloom said it was “gross negligence” on the part of Epstein’s lawyers and jail personnel to allow him to sign a new will, given that he had apparently attempted suicide a short time before.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


We tested popular cellphones for radiofrequency radiation. Now the FCC is investigating.
2019-08-21, Chicago Tribune
https://www.chicagotribune.com/investigations/ct-cell-phone-radiation-testing...

The Apple iPhone 7 was set to operate at full power and secured below a tub of clear liquid, specially formulated to simulate human tissue. For 18 minutes, [a probe] repeatedly measured the amount of radiofrequency radiation the liquid was absorbing from the cellphone. This test, which was paid for by the Tribune and conducted according to federal guidelines at an accredited lab, produced a surprising result: Radiofrequency radiation exposure from the iPhone 7 — one of the most popular smartphones ever sold — measured over the legal safety limit and more than double what Apple reported to federal regulators from its own testing. The Federal Communications Commission, which is responsible for regulating phones, states on its website that if a cellphone has been approved for sale, the device “will never exceed” the maximum allowable exposure limit. But this phone, in an independent lab inspection, had done exactly that. In all, 11 models from four companies were tested, with varying results. The Tribune asked its lab to conduct a second phase of testing, placing the phones 2 millimeters away from the simulated body. The 2-millimeter distance was chosen to estimate the potential exposure for an owner carrying the phone in a pants or shirt pocket. Under those conditions, most of the models tested yielded results that were over the exposure limit, sometimes far exceeding it. At 2 millimeters, the results from a Samsung Galaxy S8 were more than five times the standard.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of wireless technologies from reliable major media sources.


The World's Largest Electric Vehicle Is a Dump Truck
2019-08-21, Popular Mechanics
https://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/infrastructure/a28748306/worlds-l...

While electric vehicles are quickly proliferating throughout the world, most electric engines are still relegated to smaller vehicles. But then there's the Elekto Dumper - the world's largest EV - which flouts the rule that EVs can't handle serious work. The truck is used to haul lime and marlstone, which contains clay and silt, from the sides of mountains in Switzerland. Then, the material is transported directly to a cement factory. But here's the really impressive piece of engineering—this heavy dump truck never needs to be charged. Here's how it works: The dump truck, itself, weighs 45 tons and ascends a hill at a 13 percent grade, in one scenario. On the way back down, it's more than twice as heavy, carrying 65 tons of ore. To rectify that scenario, the truck's "regenerative braking system" actually recaptures the energy created by going downhill, refilling the battery's charge for the next time the truck travels uphill. The dump truck is officially called the Elektro Dumper, but the German manufacturer, Kuhn Schweitz, made life a lot easier by naming it eDumper for short. The eDumper was modeled on a Komatsu HB 605-7, a massive dump truck: It's 30 feet long, 14 feet wide, and 14 feet tall. Kuhn Schweitz said that making the trip from quarry to cement factory 20 times in one day produces a surplus of 200 kilowatt-hours of energy (or 77 megawatt-hours per year). Your average dump truck, by contrast, uses between 11,000 and 22,000 gallons of diesel fuel each year.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Is Fluoride in Drinking Water Safe? A New Study Reignites a Long-Standing Debate
2019-08-20, Time
https://time.com/5656476/is-fluoride-in-water-safe/

A study published in JAMA Pediatrics has given new life to a long-running debate: whether adding fluoride to drinking water is a prudent way to prevent tooth decay, or a potentially toxic mistake. The research, which focused on mother-child pairs from six Canadian cities, found that high fluoride exposure during pregnancy was correlated with lower IQ scores among young children, especially boys. “Based on the current evidence, it is a reasonable recommendation to tell women to reduce their fluoride intake during pregnancy,” says study co-author Christine Till. The U.S. began adding fluoride to some public water supplies in the 1940s, in an effort to strengthen teeth and prevent decay, and research on it has been accumulating in the subsequent decades. At high doses, fluoride can actually damage people’s teeth, according to the World Health Organization - and some research, much of it in animals, suggests it’s also tied to more serious side effects, including bone cancer and cognitive impairments. In part due to that controversy, more than 300 communities in North America have voted to end fluoridation programs over the past 20 years, according to the anti-fluoride activist group Fluoride Action Network. Today, about 66% of Americans and 39% of Canadians had access to fluoridated water. Drinking an extra milligram of fluoride per day - about a liter of properly fluoridated water, plus a mug of tea (which is itself a source of fluoride) - during pregnancy translated to an average 3.66-point IQ drop for boys, the [new] study shows.

Note: Did you know that the US lowered it's recommendation for fluoride in drinking water in 2015 to "reduce the risk of Americans getting too much exposure"? Another Time magazine article states that researchers found that "exposure to high levels of fluoride from drinking water can contribute to a seven-point drop in IQ on average." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


President Trump: Any Jewish Person Voting Democratic Shows 'Lack of Knowledge or Great Disloyalty'
2019-08-20, Time
https://time.com/5657042/trump-jewish-democrat-uninformed-disloyal/

President Donald Trump said Tuesday that American Jewish people who vote for Democrats show “either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty.” Trump’s claim triggered a quick uproar from critics who said the president was trading in anti-Semitic stereotypes. It came amid his ongoing feud with Democratic congresswomen Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, both Muslim. Trump has closely aligned himself with Israel, including its conservative prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, while the Muslim lawmakers have been outspoken critics of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. Tlaib is a U.S.-born Palestinian American, while Omar was born in Somalia. At Trump’s urging, Israel last week blocked Omar and Tlaib from entering the country. Trump called Omar a “disaster” for Jews and said he didn’t “buy” the tears that Tlaib shed Monday as she discussed the situation. Both congresswomen support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, a global protest of Israel. Trump’s comments were denounced swiftly by Jewish American organizations. “This is yet another example of Donald Trump continuing to weaponize and politicize anti-Semitism,” said Halie Soifer, executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of America. “At a time when anti-Semitic incidents have increased ... Trump is repeating an anti-Semitic trope.” According to AP VoteCast, a survey of the 2018 electorate, 72% of Jewish voters supported Democratic House candidates in 2018.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


I lost my job for keeping Charlottesville police accountable. I'd do it again
2019-08-19, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/aug/19/charlottesville-police-...

When the editor of a weekly paper approached me about writing a regular column about local politics, the first thing I asked her was: “Are you sure you know what you’d be getting yourself into?” I wrote just six pieces before the column was canceled. Two centered on the need for police accountability in a city traumatized by the memory of officers standing by as neo-Nazis beat residents in the streets. In a column published in May, I mentioned a photograph taken in August 2017 of an officer with his arms around James Napier, of the neo-Confederate group the Highwaymen, and Tammy Lee of the American Freedom Keepers militia. Lee’s caption read: “You should know the police escorted us and worked days with us 2b there.” The image of a Charlottesville officer with his arm around a member of a white supremacist militia was to me a perfect illustration of a department choosing to ignore the community it serves. I shouldn’t have been as surprised as I was when I received a letter from the attorney for the local Southern States Police Benevolent Association, sent on behalf of the officer in the picture. One of the remarks the letter quoted and claimed to be “odious” and defamatory was taken directly from the after action report, commissioned by the city. Despite the editor’s best efforts on my behalf and the absence of any follow through on the threat of a defamation suit, the paper’s owners did not want to continue to run my column.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


Designer babies are on the way. We're not ready
2019-08-16, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/16/opinions/gene-edit-dangers-opinion-klitzman/in...

In November, Dr. He Jiankui announced that twin girls had been born in China from embryos whose genes he had altered using CRISPR gene-editing technology. According to the magazine Science, he hoped to build a baby-designing business. In March, a World Health Organization committee argued for a moratorium on clinical human genome editing "until its implications have been properly considered." But no system of global guidance exists to implement or enforce such a ban on the practice. In June, a Russian scientist declared that he plans to proceed anyway. You can imagine what bad actors with eugenic fantasies could do with this technology. But today, many parents, with the best interest of their future children in mind, choose embryos based on the genes inside. Since 1978, when the first child, Louise Brown, was born using in-vitro fertilization, this and other assisted reproductive technologies have expanded immensely, creating over a million babies. Because preimplantation genetic diagnosis allows parents to avoid transmitting mutations to children, CRISPR will unfortunately probably be used to enhance progeny with socially desired traits such as height, certain athletic abilities or intelligence. Such uses will be very profitable. Due to high costs, assisted reproductive technologies, including preimplantation genetic diagnosis, are not available to everyone and are thus altering how thousands of affluent people -- but not poorer individuals -- thrive and live.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


The Family: inside the sinister sect that has infected western democracy
2019-08-15, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2019/aug/15/the-family-netflix-power...

A clandestine religious sect secretly controls the US government! It is an unbeatable premise for a non-fiction Netflix five-parter. The series profiles an American evangelical Christian organisation, sometimes dubbed “the Family” but more often known as the Fellowship. For decades, the Fellowship was overseen by the mysterious Doug Coe: a series of amusingly Zelig-esque photographs of him lurking smoothly behind US presidents and foreign leaders confirms Coe ... as the most powerful guy you never heard of. The Fellowship has two signature moves. Its main gig is the National Prayer Breakfast (NPB), an annual invitation-only festival of speeches and meetings that has been addressed by every president since Dwight D Eisenhower. The Family’s star witness is Jeff Sharlet, the author of two books about his brief period as a resident of the pillared mansion in Virginia where the Fellowship hosts ... young men. Sharlet undergoes a slightly violent initiation rite. Then an elder visits and holds a disturbing seminar that sets out what is really at play. It is made clear to Sharlet that the gang he has joined is all about power, based on a Bible reading that sees Jesus – and, in the Fellowship’s reading of its favorite scripture story, murderous home-wrecker David – as a sort of original alpha male, lending legitimacy to men who believe they have been chosen to be in charge. The faith and devotion are perfunctory, a means to an end, an excuse.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on secret societies from reliable major media sources.


Dena Churchill lost her licence for sharing anti-vaccination posts on social media
2019-08-15, CBC (Canada's public broadcasting system)
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/vaccines-chiropractic-1.5247335

Dena Churchill says that if the price for sharing her health "truths" is a $100,000 fine and losing her career, it's a price she's willing to accept. The former Halifax-based chiropractor surrendered her licence and admitted to charges of professional incompetence following a lengthy investigation by the Nova Scotia College of Chiropractors, all prompted by Churchill's persistent sharing of views on vaccines. CBC News began reporting on the complaints against Churchill in 2018, but she has declined to speak publicly until now. In a recent interview, Churchill said she believes there is a distinction between what she was posting on personal social media pages and what she was doing in her professional capacity. She said she felt "assaulted" that her professional governing body could mandate and govern her personal views. "I didn't want to take [the posts] down," she said. "This whole issue is not about what I was doing in my practice or what I was promoting in my practice ... I was reprimanded on my own personal views and wanting to share it with the people I love." Churchill said the information she was sharing was intended for just a few family members, although she also compared what she was doing to living in a building she discovered had arsenic in the water system. "I'd go knock on every door in that building to let them know because I would feel a human desire to help and to share information," she said.

Note: NBC also reports email service provider Mailchimp has removed several anti-vaccination activists from its platform and will no longer provide services to newsletters that push anti-vaccination content. Is this an assault on free speech? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on vaccines from reliable major media sources.


Danish bank launches world’s first negative interest rate mortgage
2019-08-13, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/money/2019/aug/13/danish-bank-launches-worlds-fir...

A Danish bank has launched the world’s first negative interest rate mortgage – handing out loans to homeowners where the charge is minus 0.5% a year. Negative interest rates effectively mean that a bank pays a borrower to take money off their hands, so they pay back less than they have been loaned. Jyske Bank, Denmark’s third largest, has begun offering borrowers a 10-year deal at -0.5%, while another Danish bank, Nordea, says it will begin offering 20-year fixed-rate deals at 0% and a 30-year mortgage at 0.5%. Under its negative mortgage, Jyske said borrowers will make a monthly repayment as usual – but the amount still outstanding will be reduced each month by more than the borrower has paid. The mortgage is possible because Denmark, as well as Sweden and Switzerland, has seen rates in money markets drop to levels that turn banking upside-down. Hřegh said Jyske Bank is able to go into money markets and borrow from institutional investors at a negative rate, and is simply passing this on to its customers. In Denmark, interest rates on savings deposited in Jyske ... have already fallen to zero. In reality, the Jyske mortgage borrower in Denmark is likely to end up paying back a little more than they borrowed, as there are still fees and charges to pay to compensate the bank for arranging the deal, even when the nominal rate is negative.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Hackers were told to break into U.S. voting machines. They didn’t have much trouble.
2019-08-12, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/08/12/def-con-hackers-lawmakers-...

As Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) toured the Voting Village on Friday at Def Con, the world’s hacker conference extraordinaire, a roomful of hackers applied their skills to voting equipment. By laying siege to electronic poll books and ballot printers, the friendly hackers aimed to expose weaknesses that could be exploited by less friendly hands looking to interfere in elections. Almost all of the machines in the room were still used in elections across the United States, despite having well-known vulnerabilities that have been more or less ignored by the companies that sell them. In the three years since its inception, Def Con’s Voting Village ... has become a destination not only for hackers but also for lawmakers and members of the intelligence community trying to understand the flaws in the election system that allowed Russian hackers to intervene in the 2016 election and that could be exploited again in 2020. Congregants spoke often of the need for thorough auditing of election results, increased funding and improved transparency from vendors. The call for paper ballots was a common refrain. At the time of the 2018 midterm elections, Delaware, Georgia, Louisiana, New Jersey and South Carolina had no auditable paper trails. “Election officials across the country as we speak are buying election systems that will be out of date the moment they open the box,” Wyden said. “It’s the election security equivalent of putting our military out there to go up against superpowers with a peashooter.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Elections Information Center.


Huge cache of newly unsealed records detail how Jeffrey Epstein and his madam allegedly lured girls into sexual servitude
2019-08-10, Chicago Tribune
https://www.chicagotribune.com/nation-world/ct-nw-epstein-court-documents-uns...

A chilling picture of how hundreds of girls and young women from around the world were trafficked for sex by Jeffrey Epstein, his madam, Ghislaine Maxwell, and — allegedly — a number of powerful business and world leaders emerged Friday in court documents unsealed in New York. [They] offer brutal details about Epstein’s trafficking of teenage girls ... as well as Maxwell’s obsessive and often abusive quest to provide him with new girls. Virginia Roberts Giuffre ... provided testimony and evidence ... through photographs, plane logs and even a medical record from Presbyterian Hospital in New York where Giuffre was taken by Epstein after a particularly abusive sex episode. Johanna Sjoberg ... who was a college student at Palm Beach Atlantic University when she was recruited by Maxwell, said that Maxwell’s primary role in Epstein’s life was to provide him with young girls at least three times a day. “He explained to me that ... he needed to have three orgasms a day,” Sjoberg said in a sworn deposition. The names of some prominent, wealthy men Giuffre says she was directed to have sex with ... include: former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, 71, former Sen. George Mitchell, 85, Hyatt hotels magnate Tom Pritzker, 69, and prominent hedge fund manager Glenn Dubin, 62. Epstein's ... butler, in a sworn statement, said [one] girl, visibly traumatized, told him that Epstein and Maxwell had physically threatened to harm her and seized her passport. Giuffre’s lawyer, David Boies, said ... “What the lawsuit was about is this massive sex trafficking operation which went on for years. Every institution in our society failed these girls. Many people knew about this and did nothing. ”

Note: Watch an intriguing video linking Jeffrey Epstein to a global sex trafficking ring reaching to the highest levels of government. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Mind Control Information Center.


Jeffrey Epstein’s apparent suicide is unfathomable
2019-08-10, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/08/10/jeffrey-epsteins-apparent-...

For anyone familiar with Bureau of Prisons [BOP] standard operating procedures, Jeffrey Epstein’s apparent suicide is more than mysterious; it is unfathomable. The 66-year-old accused sex trafficker was found dead in his prison cell at the Metropolitan Correction Center (MCC) Saturday morning, apparently after having hanged himself. The Bureau of Prisons, the federal agency that runs the MCC, has said the FBI will investigate. It had better. Epstein’s death almost certainly means that astounding blunders occurred, perhaps by multiple personnel. If any prisoner in the federal system should have been a candidate for suspicion of suicide, it was the high-profile and disgraced Epstein. All administrative and structural measures should have been in place to ensure it could not happen. And yet it apparently did. Epstein was found last month unconscious in his MCC cell with marks on his neck. If he was not on suicide watch, it would be astonishing. Yet if he were on suicide watch, his death would be virtually inconceivable. BOP personnel, especially at MCC, are the best professionals in the corrections industry, and they receive special training in administrating suicide prevention. How exactly did Epstein manage to kill himself, and why exactly was it that he had access to the tools? Is there a video of Epstein’s cell at the crucial time? There should be, and it will reveal exactly how and when Epstein killed himself. And none of this begins to address the royal mess it leaves in the efforts to take stock of Epstein’s crimes and their prior slap-on-the-wrist treatment, nor the shambles in which it leaves Epstein’s victims.

Note: See also this New York Times article on this highly suspicious death. There are many reasons why those in power who have close ties to Epstein would want him dead. It looks like he was "suicided" as so many others have been who threatened the power structure of our world. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Mind Control Information Center.


Jeffrey Epstein’s wealth and power gave him protection that his victims never got
2019-08-10, Miami Herald
https://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/carl-hiaasen/article233...

The more we learn about the late Jeffrey Epstein’s 13 months in so-called custody at the Palm Beach County Stockade, the clearer is the lesson: It definitely helped to be rich. Last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis ordered the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to investigate Epstein’s coddled life while serving 13 months of an 18-month sentence after pleading guilty in 2008 to two felony counts of prostitution. One of those crimes involved soliciting sex from a minor, serial behavior of Epstein’s that had caught the attention of the FBI. A 53-page federal indictment resulting from that probe was spiked by then-U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta, paving the way for the multimillionaire’s mysteriously lenient plea deal. For Epstein, jail wasn’t an incarceration so much as an inconvenience. Deputies were given permission to leave his cell unlocked. During his daily road trips, he was followed by off-duty deputies who were paid $126,000 for their respectful supervision. Attorney Bradley Edwards, who represents some of Epstein’s female accusers, said he knows of women who were brought to Epstein for sex while he was away from the stockade during the day. Toward the end of his term, Epstein was even allowed to hang out at his mansion. Another aspect of the 2008 case begging to be examined is ex-State Attorney Barry Krischer’s decision not to prosecute the well-connected businessman on more serious child-sex charges, despite the urging of Palm Beach detectives.

Note: Read a revealing article written by a close relative of media mogul Conrad Black on how Jeffrey Epstein easily manipulated top publishers and politicians because of his relationship to intelligence agencies. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


A Common Trait Among Mass Killers: Hatred Toward Women
2019-08-10, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/10/us/mass-shootings-misogyny-dayton.html

The motivations of men who commit mass shootings are often muddled, complex or unknown. But one common thread that connects many of them - other than access to powerful firearms - is a history of hating women, assaulting wives, girlfriends and female family members, or sharing misogynistic views online, researchers say. Shannon Watts, the founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, cited a statistic that belies the sense that mass shootings are usually random: In more than half of all mass shootings in the United States from 2009 to 2017, an intimate partner or family member of the perpetrator was among the victims. “Most mass shootings are rooted in domestic violence,” Ms. Watts said. “Most mass shooters have a history of domestic or family violence in their background. It’s an important red flag.” The plagues of domestic violence and mass shootings in the United States are closely intertwined. Psychiatrists [say that] the common argument that mental illness is the explanation for these massacres cannot explain the link between misogyny and mass shootings. Misogyny - or other types of hatred - is not necessarily a diagnosable mental illness. Instead, said Amy Barnhorst ... at the University of California, Davis, who has studied mass shootings, what ties together many of the perpetrators is “this entitlement, this envy of others, this feeling that they deserve something that the world is not giving them. And they are angry at others that they see are getting it.”

Note: Domestic violence dropped sharply following the 1994 passage of the Violence Against Women Act. This drop coincided with a drop in other forms of violent crime.


Secretive Christian group at heart of D.C. politics ready for its close-up in Netflix docuseries
2019-08-09, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/pop-culture/tv/secretive-christian-group-heart-d-c-po...

A secretive organization that has courted political leaders and built international influence while undermining the constitutional division of the church and the state in the process is at the center of a new five-episode documentary series called “The Family.” Since 1953, the National Prayer Breakfast has remained a fixture in American politics. While the annual event is purportedly hosted by members of Congress, it is actually organized and run by an evangelical Christian organization called The Fellowship Foundation, or "The Family," as it is referred to internally. The series ... takes a look at the group that operates with its own higher purpose — quietly building its influence on global politics "in the name of Jesus." "The Fellowship isn't about faith. It's about power," said Jeff Sharlet, whose books, "The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power," and "C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy," inspired the Netflix series. "Internally, it is spoken of primarily as a 'recruiting device' with which to draw 'key men' into smaller prayer cells” according to Sharlet. "Practically, the Prayer Breakfast has functioned from the very beginning as an unregistered lobbying festival." The reach of the Fellowship has extended well beyond the confines of Washington. Politicians and businessmen affiliated with the group have met to pray and parlay with the likes of the late Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi, Indonesian despot Suharto and Haitian dictator Papa Doc Duvalier, Sharlet said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on secret societies from reliable major media sources.


EPA defies California rules, says glyphosate in Monsanto’s Roundup is OK
2019-08-09, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Trump-s-EPA-defies-California-rul...

In a direct challenge to California regulators and Bay Area environmentalists, the Trump administration Thursday ordered companies to ignore state requirements that businesses warn customers if their products contain glyphosate, a weed killer that has been linked to cancer. The decision flies in the face of three California court rulings against Monsanto, which markets the chemical as Roundup. The agricultural giant faces more than 13,000 suits nationwide by users of Roundup, the world’s best-selling herbicide. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced it would no longer approve labels saying glyphosate is known to cause cancer. The state requires companies to warn customers about chemicals known to cause cancer under the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act. Glyphosate was classified as a probable human carcinogen in 2015 by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, which is part of the World Health Organization. Lawyers for sick clients who were awarded tens of millions of dollars after suing Monsanto introduced evidence that glyphosate can cause genetic damage that leads to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. They claimed Monsanto ignored that information and published information “ghost written” by staffers denying the toxicity of the chemical. Superior Court Judge Winifred Smith said there was clear evidence that Monsanto, after learning of the dangers, “made efforts to impede, discourage or distort scientific inquiry” by regulators.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


How Monsanto's 'intelligence center' targeted journalists and activists
2019-08-08, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/aug/07/monsanto-fusion-center-journ...

Monsanto operated a “fusion center” to monitor and discredit journalists and activists, and targeted a reporter who wrote a critical book on the company, documents reveal. The records reviewed by the Guardian show Monsanto adopted a multi-pronged strategy to target Carey Gillam, a Reuters journalist who investigated the company’s weedkiller and its links to cancer. Monsanto, now owned by the German pharmaceutical corporation Bayer, also monitored a not-for-profit food research organization through its “intelligence fusion center”, a term that the FBI and other law enforcement agencies use for operations focused on surveillance and terrorism. The documents, mostly from 2015 to 2017, were disclosed as part of an ongoing court battle on the health hazards of the company’s Roundup weedkiller. Monsanto planned a series of “actions” to attack a book authored by Gillam prior to its release, including ... directing “industry and farmer customers” on how to post negative reviews. Monsanto paid Google to promote search results for “Monsanto Glyphosate Carey Gillam” that criticized her work. Monsanto “fusion center” officials wrote a lengthy report about singer Neil Young’s anti-Monsanto advocacy. The internal records don’t offer significant detail on the activities or scope of the fusion center, but ... government fusion centers have increasingly raised privacy concerns surrounding the way law enforcement agencies collect data, surveil citizens and share information.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


FBI and police monitoring Oregon anti-pipeline activists
2019-08-08, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/aug/08/fbi-oregon-anti-pipeline-jord...

Law enforcement groups, including the FBI, have been monitoring opponents of a natural gas infrastructure project in Oregon and circulated intelligence to an email list that included a Republican-aligned anti-environmental PR operative, emails obtained by the Guardian show. The South Western Oregon Joint Task Force (SWOJTF) and its members were monitoring opponents of the Jordan Cove energy project, a proposal ... to build the first-ever liquefied natural gas export terminal on the US west coast, as well as a new 232-mile pipeline that would carry fracked natural gas to the port of Coos Bay. Jordan Cove opponents have raised concerns about the project’s significant environmental impacts. An email distribution list associated with the taskforce included addressees in the FBI, the Bureau of Land Management, the Department of Justice (DoJ), the National Forest Service (NFS), Oregon state police (OSP), and various Oregon municipal police and sheriffs departments. But some of its recipients are outside any government agency, most notably Mark Pfeifle, the CEO of the political consultancy Off The Record Strategies. Pfeifle was previously a Bush administration PR adviser. Pfeifle previously described his work with law enforcement at Standing Rock during a 2017 presentation to oil, gas and banking executives. “A lot of things that we were doing were being done to put a marker down for the protesters. And, ‘OK, if you’re going to go protest somewhere? There’s going to be consequences from it.’”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


Insect 'apocalypse' in U.S. driven by 50x increase in toxic pesticides
2019-08-06, National Geographic
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/08/insect-apocalypse-unde...

America’s agricultural landscape is now 48 times more toxic to honeybees, and likely other insects, than it was 25 years ago, almost entirely due to widespread use of so-called neonicotinoid pesticides, according to a new study published today in the journal PLOS One. This enormous rise in toxicity matches the sharp declines in bees, butterflies, and other pollinators as well as birds, says co-author Kendra Klein. “This is the second Silent Spring. Neonics are like a new DDT, except they are a thousand times more toxic to bees than DDT was,” Klein says. Using a new tool that measures toxicity to honey bees, the length of time a pesticide remains toxic, and the amount used in a year, Klein and researchers from three other institutions determined that the new generation of pesticides has made agriculture far more toxic to insects. Honey bees are used as a proxy for all insects. The study found that neonics accounted for 92 percent of this increased toxicity. Neonics are not only incredibly toxic to honeybees, they can remain toxic for more than 1,000 days in the environment, said Klein. Some scientists have been warning that there is an “insect apocalypse” underway. A global analysis of 452 species in 2014 estimated that insect abundance had declined 45 percent over 40 years. Not only do bees, butterflies, and other insects pollinate one-third of all food crops, declining insect numbers can also have catastrophic ecological repercussions.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


MDMA, Or Ecstasy, Shows Promise As A PTSD Treatment
2019-08-04, NPR
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/08/14/746614170/mdma-aka-ecsta...

MDMA is the main ingredient in club drugs ecstasy or molly. But [Lori] Tipton wasn't taking pills sold on the street to get high at a party. She was trying to treat her post-traumatic stress disorder, with the help of licensed therapists. Two specially-trained psychotherapists ... sat next to Tipton as she recalled some of her deepest traumas, like discovering her mother's body after a murder-suicide. "I was able to find such empathy for myself. I realized how much I was thinking this was my fault," she says. The synthetic psychoactive chemical MDMA is emerging as a promising — if unconventional — treatment for PTSD. Scientists are testing how pharmaceutical-grade MDMA can be used in combination with psychotherapy to help patients who have a severe form of PTSD that has not responded to other treatments. It's not yet available as a treatment for PTSD outside of clinical trials, but the success of early trials has proponents hopeful that the therapy could be available to more people in coming years. They're aiming for approval by the The Food and Drug Administration, which granted breakthrough therapy status to MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in 2017. After the Phase 2 trials of MDMA-assisted treatments concluded in 2017, researchers found 54% of the patients who took MDMA had improved to the point that they no longer fit the diagnosis for PTSD (compared to 23% in the control group). A year later, the number who no longer had PTSD had risen to 68% percent.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


The Trump Administration Is Using the Full Power of the U.S. Surveillance State Against Whistleblowers
2019-08-04, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/08/04/whistleblowers-surveillance-fbi-trump/

While we all live under extensive surveillance, for government employees and contractors - especially those with a security clearance - privacy is virtually nonexistent. Everything they do on their work computers is monitored. Even when they try to outsmart their work computer by taking photos directly of their screen, video cameras in their workplace might be recording their every move. Government workers with security clearance promise “never [to] divulge classified information to anyone” who is not authorized to receive it. But for many whistleblowers, the decision to go public results from troubling insights into government activity, coupled with the belief that as long as that activity remains secret, the system will not change. The growing use of the Espionage Act, a 1917 law that criminalizes the release of “national defense” information by anyone “with intent or reason to believe that it is to be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of a foreign nation,” shows how the system is rigged against whistleblowers. Government insiders charged under the law are not allowed to defend themselves by arguing that their decision to share what they know was prompted by an impulse to help Americans confront and end government abuses. “The act is blind to the possibility that the public’s interest ... might outweigh the government’s interest,” Jameel Jaffer, head of the Knight First Amendment Institute, wrote recently. “It is blind to the difference between whistle-blowers and spies.”

Note: The above article includes the stories of four whistleblowers charged under the Espionage act. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


San Diego Police Department ramps up use of streetlamp video cameras, ACLU raises surveillance concerns
2019-08-04, San Diego Tribune
https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/public-safety/story/2019-08-04/san-...

San Diego has installed thousands of microphones and cameras in so-called smart streetlamps in recent years as part of a program to assess traffic and parking patterns throughout the city. However, the technology over the last year caught the attention of law enforcement. Today, such video has been viewed in connection with more than 140 police investigations. Officers have increasingly turned to the footage to help crack cases, as frequently as 20 times a month. Police department officials have said that the video footage has been crucial in roughly 40 percent of these cases. Privacy groups have voiced concerns about a lack of oversight, as law enforcement has embraced the new technology. Groups, such as the American Civil Liberties Union, have pushed city councils across the country to adopt surveillance oversight ordinances that create strict rules around using everything from license plate readers to gunshot-detection systems to streetlamp cameras. San Diego’s smart streetlamp program started around 2016. Three years later, it’s still unclear what the data will ultimately be used for. Right now, only the police department has the authority to view the actual video footage. This arrangement has disturbed Matt Cagle, technology and civil liberties attorney with the ACLU. “This sounds like the quote, ‘just trust us’ approach to surveillance technology, which is a recipe for invasive uses and abuse of these systems,” he said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


The FBI Declared QAnon a Domestic Terrorism Threat — and Conspiracy Theorists Are Psyched
2019-08-02, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-features/qanon-domestic-terroris...

Yahoo News has published a 15-page internal memo from the FBI declaring conspiracy theories a domestic terrorism threat. Distributed on May 30th, the memo from the bureau’s Phoenix office notes that it is the first report of its kind to take aim at “conspiracy-driven domestic terrorism,” citing a number of violent incidents the bureau believes were linked to conspiracy theories. Although the memo lists a number of such theories, including Pizzagate and the conspiracy surrounding the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, it pays particular notice to QAnon, the wide-ranging ... theory suggesting that Hillary Clinton and other high-ranking Democratic officials are engaged in a child sex trafficking ring, and that President Trump will one day arrest them and send them to Guantanamo Bay. QAnon followers also believe that the Mueller report was a smokescreen for Mueller and Trump’s secret investigation into the Democratic officials and other “global elites.” While some appeared to have been genuinely wounded by the FBI memo, expressing deep feelings of outrage and betrayal toward Q ... others appeared to double down. One theory that gained some traction was that deep state agents had infiltrated the FBI to write the memo; others, that the document wasn’t real. Many felt validated by the memo, taking it as yet another sign that everything was going according to plan. Some interpreted it as a way to force the mainstream media’s hand and get them to ask Trump directly about QAnon.

Note: The 2011 National Defense Authorization Bill broadened the definition of "supporter of terrorism" to include peaceful activists, authors, academics and even journalists. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


A Controversial Human-Monkey Chimera has Been Created in China, According to a New Report
2019-08-02, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/human-monkey-chimera-created-china-1452252

Scientists in China have reportedly created part human, part monkey chimera embryos for the first time. The team hope the technique will bring animals used to grow human organs for transplantation a step closer. An international team of scientists working in China genetically modified the embryos of monkeys by turning off the genes which create organs, and then inserted human stem cells. The approach involves the embryo of a species which is a few days old, and human embryonic stem cells, brought together in a way which would enable them to grow harmoniously, according to MIT Technology Review. If successful, scientists could create chimeras which contain organs made of human cells. A chimera is an organism which contains two different sets of DNA. However, the would-be chimera is not alive as researchers stopped the process. The work, led by scientist Juan Carlos Izpisúa of the Salk Institute, California and researchers at Murcia Catholic University (UCAM), was carried out in China to side-step the potential legal issues. Biologist Estrella Núńez of Spain's Murcia Catholic University who worked on the project told El Pais: "The results are very promising." Núńez said the researchers plan to experiment with human cells and rodent and pig cells, as well as with non-human primates. Such experiments are not condoned in the U.S., where the National Institutes of Health has stopped short of a ban by blocking funding for chimera experiments.

Note: Read a Washington Post article on the creation of human-animal hybrids without clear ethical guidelines. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in science from reliable major media sources.


Who’s the boss? In worker-owned cooperatives, everyone is.
2019-08-02, Christian Science Monitor
https://www.csmonitor.com/Business/2019/0802/Who-s-the-boss-In-worker-owned-c...

The chain of command at PV Squared, a solar panel installation company in Massachusetts’s Pioneer Valley, is admittedly convoluted. “Technically, I’m Kim’s boss,” says general manager Jonathan Gregory of bookkeeper Kim Pinkham. But “Kim’s on the board, and the board oversees my position, so technically she’s my boss.” As members of a worker-owned cooperative, the 40-plus employees elect their own board of directors and make decisions based not on majority rule, but by consensus. When they’re not holding the microphone, members at meetings express themselves with hand signals: a flat palm for a question or statement, a raised index finger for direct response, and a hand cupped in a “C” for a clarification. Currently, worker-owned entities employ about 17 million people, or 12% of the U.S. workforce. Such business can take a variety of forms, from equity-sharing plans like those found at Publix super markets, Land O’Lakes, and King Arthur Flour, to more radical models, like at PV Squared. By far the most common are employee stock ownership plans, or ESOPs. On the other end of the spectrum are workers collectives ... where there is no hierarchy. Collective Copies, a copy shop with 11 workers and locations in Amherst and Florence, Massachusetts, operates according to this model. After a trial period of six months, new hires are invited to become owners. “Everyone’s on the board of directors,” says Matt Grillo, a worker-owner who has been with Collective Copies for 20 years.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Just how big a problem is voter suppression?
2019-08-01, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/08/01/just-how-big-problem-is-vo...

The progressive Brennan Center for Justice is out with an alarming new report documenting the widespread use of voting roll purges. The center found: “Using data released by the federal Election Assistance Commission (EAC) in June, a new Brennan Center analysis has found that between 2016 and 2018, counties with a history of voter discrimination have continued purging people from the rolls at much higher rates than other counties.” The numbers are startling. “At least 17 million voters were purged nationwide between 2016 and 2018, similar to the number we saw between 2014 and 2016, but considerably higher than we saw between 2006 and 2008.” Moreover, the purged voters come disproportionately from jurisdictions that, because of their history of voter discrimination, were previously required to preclear electoral law changes with the Justice Department. That requirement has been on hold since the Supreme Court struck down part of the Voting Rights Act in 2013. This isn’t merely about partisan advantage. The artificial reduction in the electorate with an eye toward boosting the percentage of white, Republican voters strikes at the heart of our democracy. The Voting Rights Act, before it was hobbled by the court, allowed millions of African Americans to vote for the first time, changing the composition of federal and state offices and changing legislative outcomes. Unless and until we expand the electorate (e.g., with voting by mail, automatic or same-day registration), we are undercutting our democracy.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources.


Amazon to Sellers: Use Eco-Friendly Packaging or Pay a Fine
2019-08-01, Fortune
https://fortune.com/2019/08/01/amazon-eco-friendly-packaging-fine/

Amazon is threatening third-party sellers with fines for using excessive packaging for large items, in an effort to reduce waste, minimize shipping costs and ensure that customers can open boxes more easily. Third-party sellers who violate the rules can be fined $1.99 per order. The new fines, announced in a letter to sellers in September, were supposed to take effect on Aug. 1, giving sellers nearly one year to become compliant. However, Amazon is delaying implementing the rules until Sept. 3 because some sellers want Amazon to first certify their packaging as being acceptable. In the ramp up to the new rules, Amazon has been giving sellers a $1 per order credit to get them on board with the new shipping guidelines. The new rules in September only apply to items that are larger than 18 x 14 x 8 inches, or over 20 pounds. It's all part of Amazon's broader environmental push. Amazon revamped its own packaging in 2010 with its so-called Frustration-Free Packaging initiative, which aims to cut down on waste and ensure that customers can open packages without box cutters and scissors. It has also cleared some products to be shipped without extra packaging. Also as part of its environmental efforts, Amazon says it has avoided using 244,000 tons of packing materials over the past decade, or as many as 500 million boxes.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Violence has Spiked in Africa Since the Military Founded AFRICOM, Pentagon Study Finds
2019-07-29, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/07/29/pentagon-study-africom-africa-violence/

Since U.S. Africa Command began operations in 2008, the number of U.S. military personnel on the African continent has jumped 170 percent, from 2,600 to 7,000. The number of military missions, activities, programs, and exercises there has risen 1,900 percent, from 172 to 3,500. Drone strikes have soared and the number of commandos deployed has increased exponentially along with the size and scope of AFRICOM’s constellation of bases. AFRICOM “disrupts and neutralizes transnational threats” in order to “promote regional security, stability and prosperity,” according to its mission statement. But since AFRICOM began, key indicators of security and stability in Africa have plummeted according to the Defense Department’s Africa Center for Strategic Studies, a Pentagon research institution. “Overall, militant Islamist group activity in Africa has doubled since 2012,” according to a recent analysis by the Africa Center. The number of “violent events” across the continent has jumped 960 percent, from 288 in 2009 to 3,050 in 2018, according to the Africa Center’s analysis. While a variety of factors have likely contributed to the rise in violence, some experts say that the overlap between the command’s existence and growing unrest is not a coincidence. “The sharp increase in terrorist incidents in Africa underscores the fact that the Pentagon’s overly militarized approach to the problem has been a dismal failure,” said William Hartung ... at the Center for International Policy.

Note: Drone strikes almost always miss their intended targets. And according to retired Army Gen. Mike Flynn, drone strikes create more terrorists than they kill. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


3 companies pay California $70 million for delaying drugs
2019-07-29, San Francisco Chronicle/Associated Press
https://www.sfgate.com/news/medical/article/4-companies-pay-California-70-mil...

Three pharmaceutical companies collectively are agreeing to pay California nearly $70 million to settle allegations that they delayed drugs to keep prices high, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said. The bulk of the money will come from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. and its affiliates for paying to delay a generic narcolepsy drug, Provigil, from entering the market for nearly six years. Teva is paying $69 million, which Becerra says is the largest pay-for-delay settlement received by any state. Such agreements let the developer of brand name drugs keep their monopolies over the drugs after their patents expire, thereby letting them continue to charge consumers higher prices. The drug developer pays the generic manufacturer to keep the cheaper version of the drug from entering the marketplace for an agreed period of time. Such agreements can force consumers and the health care market to pay as much as 90% more than if there were generic alternatives. More than $25 million of the settlement will go to a consumer fund for California residents who purchased Provigil, Nuvigil or Modafinil between 2006 and 2012. The second, $760,000 settlement is with Teva, Endo Pharmaceuticals and Teikoku Pharma USA over keeping a genetic alternative to the pain patch Lidoderm from entering the market for nearly two years. Both settlements bar the companies from pay-for-delay agreements for several years.

Note: They are only barred from pay-for-delay agreements for several years? Shouldn't this practice be illegal? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


No One is Safe: How Saudi Arabia Makes Dissidents Disappear
2019-07-29, Vanity Fair
https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/07/how-saudi-arabia-makes-dissidents-dis...

Prince Khaled bin Farhan al-Saud sat in one of the few safe locations he frequents in Düsseldorf. He looked surprisingly relaxed for a hunted man. He described his constant fear of being abducted, the precautions he takes when venturing outside, and how German law enforcement officials routinely check on him to make sure he is all right. Recently, bin Farhan ... had incensed the kingdom’s leaders with his calls for human rights reforms. In June 2018 ... the Saudi Embassy in Cairo had contacted [his mother], and had a proposal: The kingdom wanted to mend relations with the prince and was willing to offer him $5.5 million as a goodwill gesture. When he followed up with Saudi officials, he realized the deal had a dangerous catch. They had told him he could collect his payment only if he personally came to a Saudi embassy or consulate. That immediately set off alarm bells. He declined the offer. Two weeks later ... bin Farhan saw a startling news report. Jamal Khashoggi - the Saudi Arabian journalist and Washington Post columnist who had been writing articles critical of his homeland and working clandestinely to undermine some of the government’s social media initiatives - had gone to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to pick up paperwork. Minutes after his arrival ... Khashoggi was tortured and strangled by a Saudi hit squad. Bin Farhan ... realized all too clearly: By refusing to go to a Saudi consulate to pick up his payment, he might have narrowly avoided a similar fate.

Note: Read a highly revealing MSNBC report on this disturbing news. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Ohio Republicans Balked at a Nuclear Bailout, so the Industry Elected New Republicans — and Walked Away With $1.1 Billion
2019-07-26, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/07/26/ohio-billion-dollar-nuclear-bailout-first...

On Tuesday, a dark-money effort linked primarily to the Ohio nuclear industry delivered an audacious payoff, as a newly elected state legislature overcame years of opposition to shower a $1.1 billion bailout on two state nuclear plants. Several dark-money groups spent millions to replace key Republican state legislators in the spring of 2018, followed by a furious lobbying campaign to make sure those new lawmakers elected a new House speaker. In April 2018, two nuclear plants, both owned by the electric utility FirstEnergy, filed for bankruptcy and have been threatening to cease operations if not bailed out. The bankruptcy filings give a glimpse into the company’s political spending: more than $30 million from 2018-2019 on lobbying and campaigns in Ohio and Pennsylvania. The payoff is extraordinary in degree — something like $30 million for campaigns in Ohio and Pennsylvania to win $1.1 billion in government subsidy. But it is similar in kind to other nuclear projects across the country. On July 23 ... the bailout [was] signed by the state’s new governor, Republican Mike DeWine. (FirstEnergy also contributed to the campaign of DeWine, who then tapped a FirstEnergy lobbyist to be his liaison to the legislature.) The Ohio legislation reads as if it was designed specifically to undermine the planet’s continued capacity to support a steady human population. Along with propping up the state’s two nuclear plants, it also provides subsidies for failing coal plants.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption and nuclear power from reliable major media sources.


Apple contractors 'regularly hear confidential details' on Siri recordings
2019-07-26, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/jul/26/apple-contractors-regularl...

Apple contractors regularly hear confidential medical information, drug deals, and recordings of couples having sex, as part of their job providing quality control, or “grading”, the company’s Siri voice assistant. Although Apple does not explicitly disclose it in its consumer-facing privacy documentation, a small proportion of Siri recordings are passed on to contractors working for the company around the world. Apple says the data “is used to help Siri and dictation ... understand you better and recognise what you say”. But the company does not explicitly state that that work is undertaken by humans who listen to the pseudonymised recordings. A whistleblower working for the firm, who asked to remain anonymous due to fears over their job, expressed concerns about this lack of disclosure, particularly given the frequency with which accidental activations pick up extremely sensitive personal information. The whistleblower said: “There have been countless instances of recordings featuring private discussions. These recordings are accompanied by user data showing location, contact details, and app data.” Although Siri is included on most Apple devices, the contractor highlighted the Apple Watch and the company’s HomePod smart speaker as the most frequent sources of mistaken recordings. As well as the discomfort they felt listening to such private information, the contractor said they were motivated to go public about their job because of their fears that such information could be misused.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Banks Sued for LIBOR Collusion — Again!
2019-07-26, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/banks-libor-lawsuit-8...

Two summers ago, the head of Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority, Andrew Bailey, made news when he announced that LIBOR – the leading benchmark for setting global interest rates – had a “sustainability” issue. The rate is supposed to measure the rate at which banks borrow from each other, but Bailey said it wasn’t based on real borrowing. LIBOR, the London Interbank Offered Rate, helps set rates for hundreds of trillions of dollars worth of financial instruments. If Bailey was right, it meant a sizable portion of global economic activity rested on magical thinking. A secondary concern involved manipulation. If banks were inventing numbers to submit to the LIBOR committee, could they not also be manipulating rates to line pockets? The possibility ... seemed to exist that the world’s major investors – including localities and pension funds – were being systematically ripped off. A class of investors and retirement funds including Putnam Bank and the Hawaii Sheet Metal Workers Pension Fund did recently bring an antitrust suit alleging just such a scheme. The July 1 complaint is an amended version of a class action suit originally filed earlier this year. The action against JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Barclays, and numerous other banks uses both documentary evidence and data to argue that banks have been purposefully depressing interest rates. The idea would be to lower payouts to investors who are contractually due to receive LIBOR, while lessening costs for LIBOR borrowers.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on financial industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


Senate report: all 50 states were targeted by Russian interference ahead of 2016 elections
2019-07-25, PBS/Associated Press
https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/senate-report-all-50-states-were-target...

Robert Mueller warned that Russian interference is still happening “as we sit here.” A report from the Senate Intelligence committee concluded all 50 states were targeted in 2016 and ahead of the 2018 election “top election vulnerabilities remained.” But there’s no help coming from Congress. It’s a risky calculation heading into 2020. Primary voting is six months away. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday blocked a House-passed bill that would authorize $775 million to beef up state election systems. The challenge was underscored Thursday as the Senate Intelligence Committee released the full results of an investigation that found the Russian government directed “extensive activity” against U.S. election systems ahead of the 2016 election. Two years later ... little had changed, as an intelligence assessment reported, “We are aware of a growing volume of malicious activity targeting election infrastructure in 2018.” The report encourages states to “take urgent steps to replace outdated and vulnerable voting systems.” The most pressing issue is replacing electronic voting machines that do not produce a paper record of each ballot cast that is verified by the voter and can later be audited. In 2018, 10 states had more than half of their jurisdictions using machines without a paper trail. An AP analysis in July found that many of the 10,000 election jurisdictions nationwide use old and soon-to-be outdated operating systems to create their ballots, program voting machines, tally votes and report counts.

Note: US elections have been vulnerable to hacking for a long time, and not just by the Russians. See concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on elections corruption from reliable major media sources.


How Jeffrey Epstein Used the Billionaire Behind Victoria’s Secret for Wealth and Women
2019-07-25, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/25/business/jeffrey-epstein-wexner-victorias-...

In May 1997, Alicia Arden, a model in California, was introduced to a man who identified himself as a talent scout for Victoria’s Secret. He invited her to his Santa Monica hotel room to audition for the brand’s catalog. When she arrived, Ms. Arden said, the man grabbed her, tried to undress her and said he wanted to “manhandle” her. Ms. Arden, then 27, fled in tears. In the mid-1990s, two senior executives had discovered that the same man, a close adviser to the company’s chief executive, Leslie H. Wexner, was trying to pitch himself as a recruiter for Victoria’s Secret models. Mr. Wexner was alerted. It is unclear what if any action Mr. Wexner took in response. But the man - Jeffrey E. Epstein, a New York financier - had developed an unusually strong hold on Mr. Wexner, one of the country’s most influential corporate titans. Within years of meeting Mr. Epstein, Mr. Wexner handed him sweeping powers over his finances, philanthropy and private life, according to interviews with people who knew the men as well as court documents and financial records. [Ms. Arden] said she went to the police the day after Mr. Epstein attacked her, worried that he could be using his connection to Victoria’s Secret to hurt other women. A week later, when she could not stop thinking about what had happened, she returned to the police station to put her report on the record. That police report ... is one of the earliest known police records of an allegation of sexual misconduct against Mr. Epstein.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Cuba 'sonic attacks' changed people's brains, study suggests
2019-07-25, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/23/health/cuba-sonic-attacks-brain-mri-study/inde...

Whatever was behind the "sonic attacks" experienced by US government personnel in Havana, Cuba, starting in late 2016 remains a mystery - but a new study published Tuesday looks inside the workers' brains for clues. MRI brain scans from 40 patients - 23 men and 17 women - showed variations in brain structure and functional connectivity ... when compared with 48 other adults. "There were group differences all over the brain," said study author Ragini Verma. "Especially in an area called the cerebellum, which is also implicated in the kind of clinical symptoms that most of these patients were demonstrating, which is balance, eye movement, dizziness, etcetera." Differences in connectivity were also observed in the brain's auditory and visuospatial areas. These patterns don't fit a clear picture of a specific disorder. "It certainly does not resemble the imaging presentation of traumatic brain injury or concussion, although they present with clinical symptoms which are concussion-like," Verma said. "The sounds were often associated with pressurelike or vibratory sensory stimuli," according to the study. One patient reported hearing two 10-second pulses, while others said they could hear the sound for more than 30 minutes. State Department and federal investigators have testified that they were unable to determine the source or cause of the ailments in Havana, stating only that they "were most likely related to trauma from a non-natural source."

Note: Read more on these mysterious "sonic attacks." Sound weapons developed for war and increasingly used against civilian populations are well-documented. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on non lethal-weapons from reliable major media sources.


Trump vetoes 3 bills prohibiting arms sales to Saudi Arabia
2019-07-24, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/24/politics/saudi-arms-sale-resolutions-trump-vet...

President Donald Trump has vetoed three joint resolutions prohibiting arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the White House announced Wednesday, rejecting an attempt by congressional lawmakers to halt the controversial weapons transfers. The package of resolutions of disapproval stood as a symbolic showing of congressional opposition ... to the administration's relationship to Saudi Arabia, following the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year. The Trump administration declared in May an emergency to bypass Congress and expedite billions of dollars in arms sales to various countries - including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - citing the need to deter what it called "the malign influence" of Iran throughout the Middle East. Rep. Eliot Engel, a Democrat from New York who is the chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, said there is no emergency that calls for Trump to go around Congress with these arms deals. "The President's veto sends a grim message that America's foreign policy is no longer rooted in our core values - namely a respect for human rights - and that he views Congress not as a coequal branch of government, but an irritant to be avoided or ignored," Engel said in a news release. "Worse still, this veto is going to cost innocent lives. These weapons are going to continue fueling a reckless and brutal campaign of violence and exacerbating the world's worst humanitarian catastrophe."

Note: Like almost every president before him, Trump continually supports the military-industrial complex which pads the pockets of the 1%, even with a thoroughly corrupt country like Saudi Arabia which terribly oppresses women, tortures and assassinates dissidents and so much more. For more on this corruption, read an essay by one of the most highly decorated U.S. generals titled "War is a Racket." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


'Red Summer' of 1919: Hundreds of Black Americans Were Killed by White Mobs
2019-07-23, NBC News
https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/national-international/Red-Summer-Black-Death...

America in the summer of 1919 ran red with blood from racial violence, and yet today, 100 years later, not many people know it even happened. Hundreds of African American men, women and children were burned alive, shot, hanged or beaten to death by white mobs. Thousands saw their homes and businesses burned to the ground and were driven out, many never to return. It was branded "Red Summer" because of the bloodshed and amounted to some of the worst white-on-black violence in U.S. history." There are no national observances marking Red Summer. History textbooks ignore it, and most museums don't acknowledge it. The reason: Red Summer contradicts the post-World War I-era notion that America was making the world safe for democracy, historians say. "Ethnic cleansing was the goal of the white rioters," said William Tuttle, a retired professor of American studies at the University of Kansas. "They wanted to kill as many black people as possible and to terrorize the rest until they were willing to leave and live someplace else." The violence didn't start or end in 1919. Some count the era of Red Summer as beginning with the deaths of more than two dozen African Americans in East St. Louis, Illinois, in 1917 and extending through the Rosewood Massacre of 1923, when a black town in Florida was destroyed. All told, at least 1,122 Americans were killed in racial violence over those six years.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


We Found Red Flags All Over Jeffrey Epstein’s Jail Records
2019-07-23, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/crime/we-found-red-flags-all-over-jeffrey-epst...

Jeffrey Epstein’s lenient 2008 conviction for his sexual assaults on adolescent girls may be described as one of the greatest travesties of justice in recent history. Brad Edwards, an attorney for many of Epstein’s victims, announced last week that Epstein continued to prey on young women while serving his sentence in Palm Beach. Unlike other sex offenders in Florida, Epstein had his own wing of the Palm Beach County jail and liberal work release policies. Due to this new information, the Miami Herald reported, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office (PBSO) has suddenly opened an internal affairs investigation of Epstein’s incarceration. The sheriff’s office personnel who provided security for him had to create logs for when they watched him at the Florida Science Foundation (a foundation he apparently set up for his work-release). This appears to have involved two shifts (from 7am to 3pm and 3pm to 11pm). On July 11, 2009 the officer noted that Epstein had one female visitor who signed in. The officer reported that he followed Epstein to his Palm Beach estate at 12pm where Epstein stayed for two and a half hours. The officer did not enter Epstein’s residence and sat outside in his car. At 2:31pm he brought Epstein back to his office. The starting and ending mileage implies that the officer drove 75 miles that day. The distance from the county jail to the Florida Science Foundation, to Epstein’s house is 4 to 5 miles. It is unclear how 75 miles were logged that day.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


E.P.A. Plans to Curtail the Ability of Communities to Oppose Pollution Permits
2019-07-21, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/12/climate/epa-community-pollution-appeal.html

The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to weaken rules that for the past quarter-century have given communities a voice in deciding how much pollution may legally be released by nearby power plants and factories. The changes would eliminate the ability of individuals or community advocates to appeal against E.P.A.-issued pollution permits before a panel of agency judges. However, the industrial permit-holders could still appeal to the panel, known as the Environmental Appeals Board, to allow them to increase their pollution. The proposed change is the latest in the Trump administration’s long-running effort to roll back environmental regulations and reduce regulatory burdens on industry, including the June announcement of a new E.P.A. rule that would weaken regulations on planet-warming greenhouse pollution from power plant smokestacks, the expected late-summer announcement of a similar plan to weaken rules on vehicle tailpipe pollution, and a 2018 proposal to open much of the United States coastline to oil drilling. Environmental law experts said the proposed rule change would not only grant industry a broader role in influencing the E.P.A. to issue more lenient pollution permits, but could disproportionately harm poor and minority communities, which are statistically more likely to be located near polluting sites. The proposed change to the Environmental Appeals Board process could be made public as soon as the coming week.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


An onslaught of pills, hundreds of thousands of deaths: Who is accountable?
2019-07-20, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/an-onslaught-of-pills-hundreds-...

The origin, evolution and astonishing scale of America’s catastrophic opioid epidemic just got a lot clearer. The drug industry - the pill manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers - found it profitable to flood some of the most vulnerable communities in America with billions of painkillers. They continued to move their product, and the medical community and government agencies failed to take effective action, even when it became apparent that these pills were fueling addiction and overdoses and were getting diverted to the streets. This has been broadly known for years, but this past week, the more precise details became public for the first time. The revelatory data comes from the Drug Enforcement Administration and its Automation of Reports and Consolidated Orders System (ARCOS). “This really shows a relationship between the manufacturers and the distributors: They were all in it together,” said Jim Geldhof, a retired DEA employee. “We’re seeing a lot of internal stuff that basically confirms ... that it was all about greed, and all about money.” The data shows a trend in pill distribution that, according to the lawsuit plaintiffs, can’t be passed off as reasonable therapeutic medical treatment. The industry shipped 76 billion oxycodone and hydrocodone pills across the country from 2006 through 2012, the period covered by the ARCOS data released this past week. These pills didn’t flow in a steady stream but were more like a flash flood, spiking from 8.4 billion in 2006 to 12.6 billion in 2012.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


Private investigator has spent a decade on Jeffrey Epstein's trail
2019-07-20, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/19/us/private-investigator-fisten-epstein-sex-cas...

Detective Michael Fisten hung up his badge after 30 years in law enforcement and started a new career as a private investigator. The subject of his [first] investigation was Jeffrey Epstein, the jet-setting multimillionaire with a criminal sexual interest in young girls. At the time Fisten started investigating the case in 2009, Epstein and prosecutors had already signed a controversial "non-prosecution agreement" that allowed the financier to plead guilty to less serious sex offenses and escape punishment for alleged trafficking crimes that could have landed him in prison for the rest of his life. Epstein spent 13 months in jail for two counts of prostitution. Even then, Epstein was given work-release privileges. Fisten was hired to investigate the case by attorney Brad Edwards, who was suing Epstein in civil court on behalf of many of his accusers. Edwards wanted Fisten to dig deeper. "I started going out and interviewing witnesses that became victims," Fisten said. "One after another, three girls turned into four girls, turned into five, six, seven and so on...I couldn't help but think that this could've been my daughter." He said he found it inconceivable that people who traveled in Epstein's social circles weren't aware of his misconduct, particularly with so many underage girls in his company. "Once these girls lost their braces and their pubescent look and started becoming 16-years old or 17-years old, they were too old for him, so then he started using them as recruiters to bring the younger girls," Fisten said.

Note: Watch a video compilation of excellent information on the Epstein case. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Internal drug company emails show indifference to opioid epidemic
2019-07-19, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/internal-drug-company-emails-sh...

In May 2008, as the opioid epidemic was raging in America, a representative of the nation’s largest manufacturer of opioid pain pills sent an email to a client at a wholesale drug distributor in Ohio. Victor Borelli, a national account manager for Mallinckrodt, told Steve Cochrane, the vice president of sales for KeySource Medical, to check his inventories and “[i]f you are low, order more. If you are okay, order a little more, Capesce?” Then Borelli joked, “destroy this email ... Is that really possible? Oh Well...” Those email excerpts are quoted in a 144-page plaintiffs’ filing along with thousands of pages of documents unsealed by a judge’s order Friday in a landmark case in Cleveland against many of the largest companies in the drug industry. A Drug Enforcement Administration database released earlier in the week revealed that the companies had inundated the nation with 76 billion oxycodone and hydrocodone pills from 2006 through 2012. Nearly 2,000 cities, counties and towns are alleging that the companies knowingly flooded their communities with opioids, fueling an epidemic that has killed more than 200,000. The filing by plaintiffs depict some drug company employees as driven by profits and undeterred by the knowledge that their products were wreaking havoc across the country. Plaintiffs in the case argue that the actions of some of America’s biggest and best-known companies - including Mallinckrodt, Cardinal Health, McKesson, Walgreens, CVS, Walmart and Purdue Pharma - amounted to a civil racketeering enterprise.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on pharmaceutical industry corruption from reliable major media sources.


Former IT contractor for Jeffrey Epstein says he quit over concerns about revealing pictures and topless young women
2019-07-18, ABC News
https://abcnews.go.com/US/contractor-jeffrey-epstein-quit-concerns-revealing-...

A former IT contractor for Jeffrey Epstein who said that he ended their business relationship over personal concerns about gaggles of apparently unsupervised young women on the embattled financier's private island told ABC News that his reluctance to continue working there was underscored by what he said was an extensive collection of photos of topless women displayed throughout the island's compounds. “There were photos of topless women everywhere," said contractor Steve Scully, who said he worked for Epstein for six years beginning in 1999. "On his desk, in his office, in his bedroom,” Scully ... said of the private island dubbed "Little St. James." Scully ... was contracted by Epstein to set up a communications network on Little St. James. But it’s what Scully said he saw on the island itself more than six years ago that led him to agree to an interview with ABC News: revolving groups of young girls that appeared to him to be minors who were guests on the island. “They couldn’t have been more than 15 or 16 years old," he said. Scully said that he would see them on the island whenever he visited for work, riding ATVs, or at times bathing topless on the island's pools and beaches. Scully said he became increasingly alarmed by the presence of these groups of young girls that appeared to him to be without any visible parental supervision.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein’s lust for young girls appears ‘uncontrollable,’ judge says in denying bail to accused sex trafficker
2019-07-18, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/18/jeffrey-epstein-bail-hearing-in-child-sex-tra...

A federal judge on Thursday denied bail to wealthy investor Jeffrey Epstein, citing the potential danger to “new victims” from his apparently “uncontrollable” sexual fixation on young girls, and the risk that Epstein would flee to avoid prosecution for child sex trafficking charges. The decision by Judge Richard Berman means that the 66-year-old Epstein will remain in jail pending trial in the case, where he faces up to 45 years in prison if convicted. Berman, in a damning written order ... said that lewd photos of young women found in Epstein’s mansion are troubling, as is evidence that he tried to influence the potential testimony of accusers and people who allegedly abetted his conduct. “This newly discovered evidence also suggests that Mr. Epstein poses ‘ongoing and forward-looking danger,’” the judge wrote. “Mr. Epstein’s dangerousness is considerable and includes sex crimes with minor girls and tampering with potential witnesses.” In the order, Berman said, “Mr. Epstein’s alleged excessive attraction to sexual conduct with or in the presence of minor girls - which is said to include his soliciting and receiving massages from young girls and young women perhaps as many as four times a day - appears likely to be uncontrollable.” “I doubt any bail package could overcome dangerousness ... to community,” Berman said during the hearing, agreeing with the recommendation by prosecutors to keep Epstein locked up.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Pentagon May Have Released Weaponized Ticks That Helped Spread of Lyme Disease: Investigation Ordered
2019-07-17, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/pentagon-weaponized-ticks-lyme-disease-investigation...

Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives quietly passed a bill requiring the Inspector General of the Department of Defense (DoD) to conduct a review into whether the Pentagon experimented with ticks and other blood-sucking insects for use as biological weapons between 1950 and 1975. If the Inspector General finds that such experiments occurred, then, according to the bill, they must provide the House and Senate Armed Services committees with a report on the scope of the research and "whether any ticks or insects used in such experiments were released outside of any laboratory by accident or experiment design," potentially leading to the spread of diseases such as Lyme. The amendment was put forward by Rep. Chris Smith, a Republican from New Jersey, who was "inspired" by several books and articles claiming that the U.S. government had conducted research at facilities such as Fort Detrick, Maryland, and Plum Island, New York, for this purpose. One of the books that Smith refers to - called Bitten: The Secret History of Lyme Disease and Biological Weapons ... features interviews with late Swiss-born scientist Willy Burgdorfer - the man credited with discovering the bacterial pathogen that causes Lyme disease - who once worked for the DoD as a bioweapons specialist. "Those interviews ... suggest that he and other bioweapons specialists stuffed ticks with pathogens to cause severe disability, disease - even death - to potential enemies," Smith said.

Note: See a good video on this. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


“It's Going to be Staggering, the Amount of Names”: As the Jeffrey Epstein Case Grows More Grotesque, Manhattan and DC Brace for Impact
2019-07-17, Vanity Fair
https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/07/jeffrey-epstein-case-grows-more-grote...

The Jeffrey Epstein case is an asteroid poised to strike the elite world in which he moved. No one can yet say precisely how large it is. But as the number of women who’ve accused the financier (at least, that’s what he claimed to be) of sexual assault grows to grotesque levels - there are said to be more than 50 women who are potential victims - a wave of panic is rippling through Manhattan, DC, and Palm Beach, as Epstein’s former friends and associates rush to distance themselves. Donald Trump’s labor secretary, Alexander Acosta, architect of the original 2007 non-prosecution agreement that let Epstein off with a wrist slap, has already been forced to resign. Why did Acosta grant Epstein an outrageously lenient non-prosecution agreement? (And what does it mean that Acosta was reportedly told Epstein “belonged to intelligence”?) “There were other business associates of Mr. Epstein’s who engaged in improper sexual misconduct at one or more of his homes. We do know that,” said Brad Edwards, a lawyer for Courtney Wild, one of the Epstein accusers. “In due time the names are going to start coming out.” Of course, the two Epstein friends that people are most curious about are Donald Trump and Bill Clinton, both of whom have denied anything untoward. During the 2016 presidential race, Hillary Clinton’s campaign consulted Bill’s post–White House Secret Service logs because they were worried Trump would bring up Bill’s close association with Epstein and wanted to get ahead of the story.

Note: New York Magazine has a detailed article listing the many high-level contacts found in Epstein's little black book. And in this article on salon.com, a former friend of Epstein gives some salacious details of his life. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Ed Dwight Was Set to Be the First Black Astronaut. Here’s Why That Never Happened.
2019-07-16, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/16/us/ed-dwight-was-set-to-be-the-first-black...

The bone-rattling trip to the upper reaches of Earth’s atmosphere used to require a steady hand, a powerful jet and the precision of an airman ready to dodge enemy fire. It was just the sort of challenge that a chiseled 29-year-old aspiring astronaut named Ed Dwight was after. In 1962, he piloted an F-104 Starfighter, essentially a chrome javelin ... designed to go very fast and very high. A massive engine took up one end; the other was occupied by the pilot. Dwight only made a handful of flights like this, but all told he spent 9,000 hours in the air. A former altar boy turned airman, he was among the pilots training to become astronauts at the Aerospace Research Pilot School, helmed by Chuck Yeager at Edwards Air Force Base in California. Unlike every other pilot in the program, he was black. From Day 1, Dwight said, Yeager wanted him gone. Dwight said he immediately felt he was not welcome, that he was not of the group. “Every week, right on the dot,” Dwight recalled, “he’d call me into his office and say, ‘Are you ready to quit? This is too much for you and you’re going to kill yourself, boy.’ Calling me a boy and I’m an officer in the Air Force.” Dwight ... felt his treatment was so unfair that he later took bias charges to higher-ups. Yeager ultimately graduated him. In October 1963, the agency held a news conference in Houston to announce the astronauts selected for the next class. The 14 chosen men, including the future moonwalker Buzz Aldrin, filed onstage. Dwight was not there. He was not among the chosen.

Note: Don't miss the excellent 13-minute NY Times documentary on this great man. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


This $20 ice cream is made with dairy grown in lab—and it sold out immediately
2019-07-16, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/16/perfect-day-foods-made-ice-cream-from-real-da...

Agri-tech start-up, Perfect Day, released a line of real ice cream made with lab-grown dairy that costs $20 a pint on Thursday — and it sold out in hours. Perfect Day’s cultured dairy is created by taking cow’s milk DNA and adding it to a micro-organism like yeast to create dairy proteins, whey and casein, via fermentation. Those dairy proteins are then combined with water and plant-based ingredients to create a dairy substitute that can be used to make ice cream, cheese, yogurt and a slew of other dairy products. [Co-founder Perumal] Gandhi ... says the dairy substitute is nutritionally identical to cow’s milk and tastes just like it. In fact, while Perfect Day Foods at least considers its product “vegan” and lactose-free (since lactose is a sugar found only in mammals’ milk), federal law actually requires them to put “contains milk” on any labeling because its protein is identical to cow’s milk on a molecular level and could cause allergies. Co-founder Rayan Pandya, 27, says the process to make the dairy is similar to what plant-based “meat” start-up Impossible Foods is doing using heme, a molecule in soy plants that’s identical to the heme molecule found in meat. Using heme, Impossible Foods is able to make its vegetarian meat substitute taste and feel like beef without using animals. The limited edition run of 1,000 three-packs of Perfect Day ice cream ... was the first and only product released by Perfect Day Foods (which has been working with the Food and Drug Administration since 2014) to drum up buzz.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Scotland just produced enough wind energy to power all its homes twice over
2019-07-15, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/15/scotland-has-produced-enough-wind-energy-to-p...

Wind turbines in Scotland generated 9,831,320 megawatt hours between January and June 2019, WWF Scotland said Monday. The numbers, which were supplied by WeatherEnergy, mean that Scottish wind generated enough electricity to power the equivalent of 4.47 million homes for six months. That is almost double the number of homes in Scotland. “Up and down the country, we are all benefiting from cleaner energy and so is the climate,” Robin Parker, climate and energy policy manager at WWF Scotland, said in a statement Monday. “These figures show harnessing Scotland’s plentiful onshore wind potential can provide clean, green electricity for millions of homes across not only Scotland, but England as well,” Parker added. By 2030, the Scottish government says it wants to produce half of the country’s energy consumption from renewables. It is also targeting an “almost completely” decarbonized energy system by 2050. As a whole, Europe is home to some of the world’s most ambitious wind energy projects. September 2018 saw the official opening of the Walney Extension Offshore Wind Farm in the Irish Sea. With a total capacity of 659 MW, it’s currently the world’s largest operational offshore wind farm and capable of powering nearly 600,000 homes in the U.K..

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Half a million people signed up to storm Area 51. What happens if they actually show?
2019-07-12, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2019/07/13/half-million-peop...

More than a half-million strangers will gather in a remote Nevada town in mid-September, united by a common goal: to raid Area 51 in the wee hours of the morning — using a strength-in-numbers approach to reveal any extraterrestrial treasures stashed within the notoriously clandestine government base. By Friday evening, more than 540,000 people from around the world had signed up to attend the joke Facebook event: “Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us” — and just as many had indicated they were “interested.” The facility has long been a source of public intrigue, yet for decades, Americans were told Area 51 didn’t exist at all. That notion was officially debunked in 2013 when the CIA confirmed its existence through documents obtained in a public records request by George Washington University. In 2017, the Pentagon confirmed the existence of a $22 million government program to analyze “anomalous aerospace threats” — also known as UFOs. Though the facility is not publicly accessible, the area around Area 51 is a popular tourist destination, sprinkled with alien-themed motels, museums and restaurants. But those who venture too far into the land surrounding the base are greeted with warning signs indicating they could be fined or jailed for trespassing and taking photos. Some signs suggest those who enter could be subject to “deadly force.”

Note: The number signed up has now reached two million. How many will actually go? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on UFOs from reliable major media sources.


Who is Jeffrey Epstein, and why has he been arrested again?
2019-07-11, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/crime-courts/who-jeffrey-epstein-why-has-he-been...

Jeffrey Epstein, the millionaire financier, registered sex offender and acquaintance of presidents of both parties, was expected to appear in federal court in New York on Monday in connection with federal sex trafficking allegations, multiple law enforcement officials said. Epstein, 66, of Palm Beach, Florida, was being held in the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan after he was arrested Saturday in Teterboro, New Jersey, in a joint investigation by the FBI and New York police. The arrest stems from incidents spanning from 2002 to 2005. Epstein has been in the news for more than a decade since he pleaded guilty in 2008 to procuring a person under 18 for prostitution and felony solicitation of prostitution, according to his plea agreement on charges brought in Florida. Epstein is registered as a sex offender in Florida under a non-prosecution agreement he signed with the office of the U.S. attorney for Miami. Epstein's non-prosecution agreement ... limits the scope of the agreement to only the Miami area. If Epstein is alleged to have committed illegal acts in other parts of the country, the agreement would no longer protect him. Federal prosecutors in New York allege that from at least 2002 through 2005, Epstein paid girls as young as 14 hundreds of dollars in cash for sex at either his Manhattan townhouse or his estate in Palm Beach. Epstein is being charged with one count of sex trafficking conspiracy and one count of sex trafficking, and faces up to 45 years in prison if found guilty.

Note: For lots more, see this Miami Herald article and this one. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Trump labor secretary who cut Epstein deal plans to slash funds for sex trafficking victims
2019-07-10, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jul/09/labor-secretary-alexander-aco...

Alexander Acosta, the US labor secretary under fire for having granted Jeffrey Epstein immunity from federal prosecution in 2008, after the billionaire was investigated for having run a child sex trafficking ring, is proposing 80% funding cuts for the government agency that combats child sex trafficking. Acosta’s plan to slash funding of a critical federal agency in the fight against the sexual exploitation of children is contained in his financial plans for the Department of Labor for fiscal year 2020. In it, he proposes decimating the resources of a section of his own department known as the International Labor Affairs Bureau (ILAB). The bureau’s budget would fall from $68m last year to just $18.5m. The proposed reduction is so drastic that experts say it would effectively kill off many federal efforts to curb sex trafficking and put the lives of large numbers of children at risk. ILAB has the task of countering human trafficking, child labor and forced labor across the US and around the world. It is seen as a crucial leader in efforts to crack down on the sex trafficking of minors. Acosta is facing mounting pressure from Democrats to resign, over the lenient deal he gave Epstein and in the wake of the billionaire’s new prosecution. Epstein was arrested on Saturday and indicted on two sex trafficking counts by federal prosecutors in the southern district of New York. Under the 2008 deal negotiated by Acosta, an FBI investigation that had produced a 53-page draft indictment involving more than 30 potential underage victims was shut down.

Note: Alexander Acosta announced his resignation shortly after this article was published. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


Undocumented, vulnerable, scared: the women who pick your food for $3 an hour
2019-07-10, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jul/10/undocumented-women-farm-worke...

In the fields of south Texas Mexican women work long hours in dangerous conditions under the ever-present threat of deportation. Many of them are paid on a contract basis, by the box. A box of cilantro will earn a worker $3; experienced farmworkers say they can fill one within an hour, which means a typical 5am to 6pm work day would earn them $39 total. The work can vary from physically uncomfortable and mundane (cilantro, lettuce, beets) to outright painful and dangerous (watermelon, parsley, grapefruit). The few women who work in the fields face even more hardships. Instances of workplace sexual harassment and rape are rampant and are both underreported and under-prosecuted. It is common for women to relent to a supervisor’s advances because she can’t risk losing her job or deportation. Most of these women are supporting children as well. [They] represent a diverse cross-section of lives upturned by drug-related and domestic violence in Mexico. Under new US immigration protocols, these are extraordinarily tense times for immigrants. A report by Human Rights Watch notes that although US law entitles undocumented workers to workplace protections, “the US government’s interest in protecting unauthorized workers from abuse conflicts with its interest in deporting them.” That report was written in 2015, but President Trump’s heightened drive for deportation and border closure has only made things more impossible for undocumented farmworkers attempting to protect their labor rights.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


Wave-Powered Desalination Promises To Deliver Clean Water To Developing Countries And Island Nations
2019-07-10, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/natalieparletta/2019/07/10/wave-powered-desalina...

Using the power of ocean waves, innovators from Boston, U.S., have developed a technology that can produce fresh water off-grid and without the costly infrastructure of desalination plants. This invention could help many of the 2.1 billion people around the world who struggle to access safe drinking water, most of those in low-income countries. The technology, Wave2O, was developed by start-up company Resolute Marine Energy. Chief Operating Officer Olivier Ceberio says it “targets ‘off-grid’ coastal communities in developing nations where a solution to persistent water shortages is urgently needed”. Importantly, it fills a gaping hole between industrial-scale utilities that are costly and time-consuming to build, and micro-scale solutions for individual households. The only technology currently offered in between involves diesel-powered desalination systems. And Wave2O can be delivered competitively because it uses “free energy from a consistent and inexhaustible renewable energy resource: ocean waves,” says Ceberio. By eliminating the need for diesel generators, the invention not only saves money but reduces carbon dioxide emissions. “Each 4,000 [cubic meter per] day plant that displaces an equivalently sized diesel-powered plant will cut CO2 emissions by 4,300 tons per year,” explains Ceberio, “the equivalent of taking 936 cars off the road or of the carbon sequestered by 2,070 hectares of forest.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Who Protected Jeffrey Epstein?
2019-07-08, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/08/opinion/epstein-indictment.html

On Monday, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York unsealed a 14-page indictment against Jeffrey Epstein, charging the wealthy financier with operating and conspiring to operate a sex trafficking ring of girls out of his luxe homes on Manhattan’s Upper East Side and in Palm Beach, Fla., “among other locations.” Even in the relatively sterile language of the legal system, the accusations against Mr. Epstein are nauseating. From “at least in or about” 2002 through 2005, the defendant “sexually exploited and abused dozens of minor girls,” some as young as 14 and many “particularly vulnerable to exploitation.” The girls were “enticed and recruited” to visit Mr. Epstein’s various homes “to engage in sex acts with him.” To “maintain and increase his supply of victims,” he paid some of the girls “to recruit additional girls to be similarly abused,” thus creating “a vast network of underage victims.” But Mr. Epstein is not the only one for whom a reckoning is long overdue. The allegations in the New York indictment are a depressing echo of those that Mr. Epstein faced in Florida more than a decade ago. In 2008, federal prosecutors for the Southern District of Florida, at the time led by Alexander Acosta, who is now the nation’s secretary of labor, helped arrange a plea deal for Mr. Epstein that bent justice beyond its breaking point. In addition to short-circuiting federal charges, the plea agreement killed an F.B.I. investigation and granted immunity to any “co-conspirators.”

Note: Explore an in-depth article from New York Magazine giving a thorough and balanced view of the Epstein case. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Trump called Epstein a ‘terrific guy’ who enjoyed ‘younger’ girls before denying relationship with him
2019-07-08, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-called-epstein-a-terrific-guy-b...

Back in 2002, when Jeffrey Epstein was known only as a mysterious financial whiz with a private island and a roster of A-list friends, being friendly with him was something to boast about. And Donald Trump did. “I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,” Trump told New York Magazine that year for a story headlined “Jeffrey Epstein: International Moneyman of Mystery.” “He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it — Jeffrey enjoys his social life.” Now, Epstein is in jail, charged with sex trafficking by federal prosecutors who allege he abused dozens of female minors in New York and Palm Beach, Fla. He is no longer a friend anyone would want to claim. And now, Trump doesn’t. Alan Garten, an attorney for the Trump Organization, has said Trump had “no relationship” with Epstein. Outside of Trump’s own words, there is clear evidence that the two men — both members of the same highflying societies in Manhattan and Palm Beach — socialized together in the past. One of Epstein’s alleged victims, Virginia Giuffre, was a towel girl in the Mar-a-Lago locker room when she was “recruited” at the club by Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell, according to Giuffre’s attorney. Maxwell asked Giuffre whether she would like to earn money and learn how to give massages, which led to Epstein sexually abusing her at his homes in Palm Beach and New York, according to Giuffre’s lawsuit against Maxwell.

Note: For clear evidence that Trump distanced himself from Epstein years ago, see this video. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Magic mushrooms could replace antidepressants within five years, says new psychedelic research centre
2019-07-08, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/magic-mushroom-depression-psychedel...

Hallucination-inducing drugs like magic mushrooms could be about to break big pharma’s stranglehold on the hugely lucrative market for antidepressants, according to the head of the world’s first centre for psychedelic research. Antidepressant prescriptions have doubled in England in a decade with around seven million adults taking the drugs, and the global market is predicted to be worth $15.9bn (Ł12.5bn) by 2023. At Imperial College London, Dr Robin Carhart-Harris is leading one of the first trials to test how therapy using psilocybin mushrooms, which are currently banned in the UK, compares to leading antidepressants. While he won’t prejudge the results of the study, he says participants describe a cathartic emotional “release” with psilocybin therapy – the polar opposite of antidepressants, which patients complain leave their emotions, whether positive or negative, “blunted”. It is the first of many studies planned under the banner of the new Centre for Psychedelic Research at London’s Imperial College. Dr James Rucker is another of those researching the potential benefits of psychedelics ... at King’s College London. The King’s team are launching two trials, one looking at whether psilocybin therapy can help people whose depression is resistant to treatment with conventional antidepressants. He says it was “possible” the drug could be licensed in five years.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


Jeffrey Epstein's arrest shows the power of one newspaper's investigation
2019-07-08, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/08/media/jeffrey-epstein-julie-brown-miami-herald...

In the past year the Jeffrey Epstein case was catapulted onto the national news radar by one newspaper, the Miami Herald, and by one reporter in particular, Julie K. Brown. The paper's "Perversion of Justice" series came out last November, and Brown has stayed on the story ever since. As soon as The Daily Beast broke the news that Epstein had been arrested on Saturday evening, fellow journalists and other observers credited Brown and thanked her for the tenacious investigation. Law enforcement officials are also giving credit to the reporting. "We were assisted" by "some excellent investigative journalism," Manhattan US Attorney Geoffrey Berman said at a Monday morning press conference. William Sweeney, the assistant director-in-charge of the FBI's New York office, added, "We work with facts. When the facts presented themselves, as Mr. Berman hinted at, through investigative journalists' work, we moved on it." While they didn't cite Brown or the newspaper by name, Berman said in response to a question about the Herald, "we are certainly aware of that reporting." Brown was ... actually scheduled to interview another one of Epstein's accusers on Monday. But after he was arrested, she cancelled that flight and booked a ticket to New York. True to form, she sought to shift the spotlight, away from her own work and toward her subjects. "The REAL HEROES HERE were the courageous victims that faced their fears and told their stories," she tweeted Sunday.

Note: Explore an in-depth article from New York Magazine giving a thorough and balanced view of the Epstein case. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Jeffrey Epstein from reliable major media sources.


Instead of arresting a woman accused of shoplifting, these NYPD cops paid for her groceries
2019-07-05, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/nypd-officers-shoplifting-instead-of-arresting-a...

Three New York City police officers were working on the Fourth of July when they decided to stop by a Manhattan Whole Foods supermarket. The cops — now identified as Lt. Louis Sojo and Officers Esnaidy Cuevas and Michael Rivera — were on the way to grab a snack and cold drink in the store when security guards told them a woman was stealing food. The cops approached her to assess the situation. "I asked her, 'What's going on?' She told me she was hungry," said Sojo."So, I looked in her bag. I decided — we decided — to say 'We'll pay for her food.'" Sojo said the security guard was shocked by the kind response, but brought the officers over to the cashier to pay for the woman's food. "At that moment, she was extremely emotional," said Sojo. "She did thank us, but she was pretty much speechless at what happened." Sojo said the officers did not expect the good deed to receive so much positive attention and that they were "extremely humbled" by the response. He added that it isn't uncommon for officers to pay for someone's food. "You know, I've been doing this for 22 years. This is not the first time I've paid for food. This is not the first time they've paid for someone's food," he said referring to the two other cops."We don't go out and do it all the time, but, you know, when you look at someone's face and you notice that they need you, and they're actually hungry. It's pretty difficult as a human being to walk away from something like that. We weren't raised like that. So, it's the right thing to do."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Afghan and U.S. Forces Blamed for Killing More Civilians This Year Than Taliban Have
2019-07-03, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/30/world/asia/afghanistan-civilian-casualties...

Afghan security forces and their American-led international allies have killed more civilians so far this year than the Taliban have, the United Nations said in a report on Tuesday, once again raising alarm that ordinary Afghans are bearing the brunt of an increasingly deadly 18-year war. In the first six months of the year, the conflict killed nearly 1,400 civilians and wounded about 2,400 more. Afghan forces and their allies caused 52 percent of the civilian deaths compared with 39 percent attributable to militants — mostly the Taliban, but also the Islamic State. The figures do not total 100 percent because responsibility for some deaths could not be definitively established. The higher civilian death toll caused by Afghan and American forces comes from their greater reliance on airstrikes, which are particularly deadly for civilians. The United Nations said airstrikes resulted in 363 civilian deaths and 156 civilian injuries. The United Nations report comes as both sides try to increase their battlefield leverage amid continuing peace negotiations in Doha, Qatar, between the United States and the Taliban. The United Nations report said 83 percent of casualties from airstrikes were attributed to “international military forces,” essentially pointing the finger at the United States military, which is the only member of the international coalition in Afghanistan that carries out airstrikes. The Afghan Air Force was responsible for about 10 percent. Fourteen American soldiers have died in Afghanistan so far this year.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


Why are Norwegians so happy? In a word: 'koselig'
2019-07-01, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/30/health/norway-koselig-hygge-cozy-nature-chasin...

Go to your happy place. Take a deep breath and hold it in your mind's eye for a long, joyful moment. My happy place looks and feels ... like a cabin in the woods. Family and friends are there. I have everything I need to be fully connected. The kind of experience I'm describing is something of a national pastime in Norway. They even have a word that snugly wraps all these ideas up: "koselig." You could roughly translate koselig (pronounced "koosh-lee"), as "coziness," but that leaves out crucial components of it, like enjoying the company of others and a connection with nature. There's no direct English translation, but there are regional equivalents such as the Swedish "mys," the Dutch "gezelligheid" and the most well-known of these, the Danish "hygge." Hygge (pronounced "hoo-gah") [is] defined as "a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being." It's that well-being part that gives us reason to replicate koselig ... even as the research slowly confirms what those cold, northern happiest countries have known for a long time: Darkness and isolation can be celebrated because they provide the need for their relief. The act of creating our own light and warmth produces peace and contentment. The case for koselig as a health practice seems obvious. You already know how it feels to be cozy, or in nature, or with friends. Social connections give our life purpose, and ... anything that decrease stress ... has numerous mental and physical health benefits.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


In an astonishing turn, George Soros and Charles Koch team up to end US ‘forever war’ policy
2019-06-30, Boston Globe
https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2019/06/30/soros-and-koch-brothers-team-e...

The leftist financier George Soros and the right-wing Koch brothers have little in common. Now they have found something to agree on: the United States must end its “forever war” and adopt an entirely new foreign policy. In one of the most remarkable partnerships in modern American political history, Soros and Charles Koch ... are joining to finance a new foreign-policy think tank in Washington. It will promote an approach to the world based on diplomacy and restraint rather than threats, sanctions, and bombing. This think tank ... will be called the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, an homage to John Quincy Adams, who in a seminal speech on Independence Day in 1821 declared that the United States “goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all.” The Quincy Institute will promote a foreign policy based on that live-and-let-live principle. The Quincy Institute will likely advocate a withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan and Syria; a return to the nuclear deal with Iran; less confrontational approaches to Russia and China; an end to regime-change campaigns against Venezuela and Cuba; and sharp reductions in the defense budget. It aims to issue four reports before the end of 2019: two offering alternative approaches to the Middle East and East Asia, one on “ending endless war,” and one called “democratizing foreign policy.”

Note: This seems too good to be true. We'll see how it unfolds. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Vaccine no match against flu bug that popped up near end
2019-06-27, ABC News/Associated Press
https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/vaccine-match-flu-bug-popped-end-6398...

The flu vaccine turned out to be a big disappointment again. The vaccine didn’t work against a flu bug that popped up halfway through the past flu season, dragging down overall effectiveness to 29%, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. The flu shot was working well early in the season with effectiveness put at 47% in February. But it was virtually worthless during a second wave driven by a tougher strain, at just 9%. There was “no significant protection” against that strain, said the CDC’s Brendan Flannery. Flu vaccines are made each year to protect against three or four different kinds of flu virus. The ingredients are based on predictions of what strains will make people sick the following winter. This season’s shot turned out to be a mismatch against the bug that showed up late. That pushed down the overall effectiveness to one of the lowest in recent years. Since 2011, the only season with a lower estimate was the winter of 2014-2015, when effectiveness was 19%. A mismatch was also blamed then. Vaccines against some other infectious diseases are not considered successful unless they are at least 90% effective. But flu is particularly challenging, partly because the virus can so quickly change. Overall, flu vaccine has averaged around 40%. Flu shots are recommended for virtually all Americans age 6 months or older.

Note: This article was strangely removed from the website of ABC News. It is still available here. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on vaccines from reliable major media sources.


Commonly prescribed drugs are tied to nearly 50% higher dementia risk in older adults, study says
2019-06-25, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/24/health/dementia-risk-drug-study

Scientists have long found a possible link between anticholinergic drugs and an increased risk of dementia. A study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine on Monday suggests that the link is strongest for certain classes of anticholinergic drugs - particularly antidepressants such as paroxetine or amitriptyline, bladder antimuscarinics such as oxybutynin or tolterodine, antipsychotics such as chlorpromazine or olanzapine and antiepileptic drugs such as oxcarbazepine or carbamazepine. Researchers wrote in the study that "there was nearly a 50% increased odds of dementia" associated with a total anticholinergic exposure of more than 1,095 daily doses within a 10-year period, which is equivalent to an older adult taking a strong anticholinergic medication daily for at least three years, compared with no exposure. The researchers found only an association between anticholinergic drugs and dementia risk, not a causal relationship. "However, if this association is causal, the population-attributable fractions indicate that around 10% of dementia diagnoses are attributable to anticholinergic drug exposure, which would equate, for example, to around 20,000 of the 209,600 new cases of dementia per year in the United Kingdom," the researchers wrote in the study. It has been well known that anticholinergic agents and confusion or memory issues are linked, but the new study investigated this association over a long period of time, said Dr. Douglas Scharre ... at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


Investigation Shows Hundreds Of Patients Dying At California Rehab Centers
2019-06-25, CBS (Bay Area affiliate)
https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2019/06/25/hundreds-of-patients-dying-in-ca...

The average 30-day stay at a California rehab costs families $40,000. It’s expensive and often highly risky. The Russells [checked] their 19-year-old son, Teddy Russell, into Mountain Vista last summer. “During intake, they had trouble with the blood pressure cuff and she said, ‘No, I have no medical training at all,’” said Anne Russell, talking about the counselor at the rehab. Mountain Vista Farm is a state licensed residential detox facility, which in California is not required to have a doctor on site. Anne Russell believes the lack of medical support drastically changed the course of her family’s life. “We trusted them to help him and our son trusted us and it was just a nightmare,” she said. Detox centers must check on patients every 30 minutes for the critical first 72 hours but that didn’t happen. Seven hours after being dropped off at Mountain Vista Farm, Teddy Russell was dead. The state has the power to suspend a rehab facility’s license after a Class A deficiency. Teddy’s death resulted in two of those. But the state didn’t shut this place down. In fact, we’ve learned it rarely shuts any rehab down. Instead the penalty in Teddy’s case was a $700 fine. Public records show Teddy’s story is not unique. 190 people have died at other rehab facilities in California since 2010. We found dozens of deficiencies, from falsifying records, failing to report deaths, and employing unqualified staff to not monitoring patient vitals, like what happened to Teddy.

Note: John Oliver has a hard-hitting video on the serious problems found at many rehab centers. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


The unlikely, eccentric inventor turning inedible plant life into fuel
2019-06-23, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/marshall-medoff-the-unlikely-eccentric-inventor-...

A breakthrough can come from the least expected - perhaps like an 81-year-old eccentric from Massachusetts who toiled in isolation with no financial support for more than a decade. His focus? A challenge that has stumped scientists for many years: how to transform inedible plant life into environmentally friendly transportation fuels in a clean and cost-effective way. 25 years ago, [Marshall Medoff] became obsessed with the environment and decided to abandon his business career and become an amateur scientist. "What I thought was, the reason people were failing is they were trying to overcome nature instead of working with it," [said Medoff]. He knew that there's a lot of energy in plant life. It's in the form of sugar molecules that once accessed can be converted into transportation fuel. The key word is "access." This sugar is nearly impossible to extract cheaply and cleanly since it is locked tightly inside the plant's cellulose. What's so tantalizing is that sugar-rich cellulose is the most abundant biological material on earth. Medoff's novel idea [was to use] machines called electron accelerators to break apart nature's chokehold on the valuable sugars inside plant life - or biomass. Machines like these are typically used to strengthen materials. Medoff's invention was to use the accelerator the opposite way - to break biomass apart. This process, Medoff's remarkable invention, releases plant sugars that he's now using to make products he claims will solve some of the world's most intractable problems.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


How a trip on magic mushrooms helped decriminalize psychedelic plants in a California city
2019-06-22, Los Angeles Times
https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-oakland-decriminalize-mushrooms-...

Carlos Plazola locked himself in a bedroom while his cousin stood guard. For five hours, he tripped on magic mushrooms. He ingested 5 grams - a heady amount that connoisseurs call the “heroic dose.” It was Plazola’s first time using the mushrooms, which contain the naturally occurring hallucinogen psilocybin. He started having epiphanies, one right after the other, like lightning bolts. “I was making connections that I had never made in terms of my understanding of what we are, what the cosmos are, why we’re here, where we’re going,” Plazola said. That mushroom trip last October by Plazola, the well-connected onetime chief of staff of a former Oakland City Council president, helped make Oakland the first city in California and the second in the nation to effectively decriminalize magic mushrooms. In May, Denver became the first city in the nation to decriminalize psilocybin mushrooms. In Oakland ... the City Council on June 4 approved its ordinance unanimously, with little pushback. Oakland even went a step further by decriminalizing not just mushrooms but also a range of other psychoactive plants and compounds including peyote, iboga and ayahuasca. The measure ... does not actually legalize natural psychedelics, which remain illegal under state and federal law. Instead, it declares the arrest and investigation of adults for using, possessing, growing or distributing plant-based hallucinogens to be among the lowest priorities for local police and restricts the use of city funds to go after users.

Note: Forbes recently published an excellent article clearing up the hype about some aspects of this sensitive subject. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


Do Prisons Make Us Safer?
2019-06-21, Scientific American
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/do-prisons-make-us-safer/

One person is sentenced to state or federal prison every 90 seconds in the United States, amounting to almost 420,000 per year. The U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the world. But how much safety does all this imprisonment actually buy us? A study I recently published with colleagues shows the answer is very little, especially in the long-term. The study found that sentencing someone to prison had no effect on their chances of being convicted of a violent crime within five years of being released from prison. This means that prison has no preventative effect on violence in the long term among people who might have been sentenced to probation. It also found a preventative ... effect in the short term, during the time when prisoners were still in prison, but this effect is smaller than we typically assume. Preventing one person who was previously convicted of a violent crime from committing a new violent crime within five years of their sentence requires imprisoning 16 such individuals. The short-term and small preventative effect of prison means those dollars could be better spent on other violence prevention or public safety strategies. The high costs of prison combined with concerns about the negative collateral consequences for prisoners, their families, and communities have prompted renewed efforts ... to reduce imprisonment. Yet despite the fact that over half of prison inmates were convicted of a violent crime, most criminal justice reforms exclude those with violent pasts.

Note: The above was written by David J. Harding, author of On the Outside: Prisoner Reentry and Reintegration. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison corruption from reliable major media sources.


Judges differ with Trump administration on conditions for immigrant minors
2019-06-18, San Francisco Chronicle/ (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfchronicle.com/nation/article/Judges-differ-with-Trump-administr...

The Trump administration ... argues it is not legally required to provide [immigrant minors] with such items as soap, toothbrushes and sleeping accommodations. [This] drew an incredulous response from federal appeals court judges Tuesday at a hearing in San Francisco. The administration is appealing a federal judge’s June 2017 ruling that immigration officials were violating a 1997 court settlement requiring unaccompanied minors in federal custody to be kept in safe and sanitary conditions before being released. U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee of Los Angeles found that youths held in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas were being denied basic necessities and appointed a monitor to oversee compliance. Gee found evidence that minors were kept overnight in crowded, chilly rooms, sleeping on concrete floors with aluminum-foil blankets with the lights kept on all night. The administration denied violating the settlement and argued in court papers that nothing in the 1997 agreement required officials “to provide minors, in all situations, with sleeping accommodations, toothbrushes, toothpaste, showers, soap, towels and dry clothes,” as long as the facilities were safe and sanitary. A panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was clearly unconvinced. “It’s within everybody’s common understanding that if you don’t have a toothbrush, you don’t have soap, you don’t have a blanket, those are not safe and sanitary,” Judge A. Wallace Tashima told Justice Department lawyer Sarah Fabian.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


New York Could Become First State To Be Completely Done With Private Prisons
2019-06-18, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/morgansimon/2019/06/18/new-york-to-become-first-...

With many corporations having capitalizations that make them larger than countries, it can sometimes feel hard to imagine governments effectively being able to set limits on companies — let alone entire industries. One interesting exception to this rule is the private prison industry; where the government (given they are the largest client) is uniquely positioned to effectively regulate the sector — or, as many would argue, to eliminate private prisons entirely, given their problematic incentive to encourage the criminalization of vulnerable communities. New York State has been leading the way in flexing its muscles with respect to the private prison industry, having taken three concrete actions against private prisons: 1. prohibiting private prisons from operating within the state, 2. divesting state pension funds from the largest private prison companies, GEO Group and CoreCivic, and then just last week, 3. passing Bill S5433 in the State Senate, which would prohibit NY State-chartered banks from “investing in and providing financing to private prisons.” As Senator Benjamin noted in introducing the bill, in front of a Bank of America branch, “The goal is to starve private prisons of capital. My constituents do not put their hard-earned savings in a bank like the one we are standing in front of today expecting that those funds will be used to finance mass incarceration. Whether through organizing and community pressure, or tools like the bill I am announcing here today, we can and we must bring an end to private prisons.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison corruption from reliable major media sources.


In Los Angeles, only people of color are sentenced to death
2019-06-18, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jun/18/los-angeles-death-penalty-sen...

Los Angeles has sentenced more people to death than any other county in the US, and only people of color have received the death penalty under the region’s current prosecutor, a new report shows. LA county’s district attorney, Jackie Lacey, has won death sentences for a total of 22 defendants, all people of color, and eight of them were represented by lawyers with serious misconduct charges prior or after their cases, according to a new analysis by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Lacey has also faced intense scrutiny for her refusal to prosecute police officers who kill civilians, even in the most egregious circumstances. Some key findings: In California, 222 people currently sentenced to death are from LA county. LA is one of only three counties in the country to have more than 10 death sentences from 2014 to 2018. Under Lacey’s tenure, which began in 2012, zero white defendants have been sentenced to death, and her capital punishment sentences disproportionately targeted cases involving white victims. Although 12% of homicide victims in LA county are white, 36% of Lacey’s death penalty wins involved white victims. 737 inmates [are] currently awaiting execution in California. Defense lawyers in five of the 22 cases under Lacey were suspended or disbarred, which is the most serious discipline for ethics violations, the ACLU said. The ACLU, which reviewed lawyer misconduct records, cited one particularly egregious case in which an attorney declined to make an opening statement – offering no defense at all – and then repeatedly fell asleep during the trial.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in the courts from reliable major media sources.


The One Percent Have Gotten $21 Trillion Richer Since 1989. The Bottom 50% Have Gotten Poorer.
2019-06-16, New York Magazine
http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/06/the-fed-just-released-a-damning-indict...

Some Democratic presidential candidates say that America’s economic system is badly broken and in need of sweeping, structural change. In its new Distributive Financial Accounts data series, the central bank offers a granular picture of how American capitalism has been distributing the gains of economic growth over the past three decades. Matt Bruenig of the People’s Policy Project took the Fed’s data and calculated how much the respective net worth of America’s top one percent and its bottom 50 percent has changed since 1989. He found that America’s superrich have grown about $21 trillion richer ... while those in the bottom half of the wealth distribution have grown $900 billion poorer. Notably, this measure of wealth includes liabilities. And it does not include consumer goods. But if one did include the Fed’s data on the distribution of consumer goods, the wealth gap between the top one percent and bottom 50 would actually be even larger. In 2011, Michael Norton of Harvard Business School and Dan Ariely of Duke University published a study on Americans’ views of how wealth was distributed in their society, and how they felt it should be distributed. They found that, in the average American’s ideal world, the richest 20 percent would own 32 percent of national wealth. In reality, the top quintile owned 84 percent as of 2011. And that share has grown in the intervening years. Today, the one percent alone commands roughly 40 percent of all America’s wealth.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


U.S. Escalates Online Attacks on Russia’s Power Grid
2019-06-15, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/15/us/politics/trump-cyber-russia-grid.html

The United States is stepping up digital incursions into Russia’s electric power grid in a warning to President Vladimir V. Putin and a demonstration of how the Trump administration is using new authorities to deploy cybertools more aggressively, current and former government officials said. In interviews over the past three months, the officials described the previously unreported deployment of American computer code inside Russia’s grid and other targets as a classified companion to more publicly discussed action directed at Moscow’s disinformation and hacking units around the 2018 midterm elections. In August of 2018, President Trump signed [an] executive order ... called National Security Presidential Memorandum 13. Its contents are still classified, but essentially it allows the Cyber Command to go ahead and conduct all kinds of operations inside foreign networks without going back to the president for prior approval. The first thing it did was go after those units in Russia that were responsible for a lot of the election-hacking. They went after the G.R.U., the Russian military intelligence unit that had been responsible for breaking into the D.N.C.. A lot of that ... was made public. What wasn’t made public was a parallel effort to go inside the Russian power grid, to put some code in places where the Russians ... wouldn’t see it, in case the U.S. ever needed to act against Russia’s utilities as the Russians were putting malware in our systems.

Note: A 2007 New York Times article describes the formation of the Air Force Cyberspace Command to arm the US military in anticipation of widespread computer-based warfare. A more recent Guardian article says, "we might already be living through the first world cyberwar." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Renewable Energy Is Now The Cheapest Option - Even Without Subsidies
2019-06-15, Forbes Magazine
https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesellsmoor/2019/06/15/renewable-energy-is-now...

According to a new report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), unsubsidized renewable energy is now most frequently the cheapest source of energy generation. The report finds that the cost of installation and maintenance of renewables, which was an important stumbling block to mass adoption, continues on a downward trajectory. These new statistics demonstrate that using renewable energy is increasingly cost-effective compared to other sources, even when renewables must compete with the heavily-subsidized fossil fuel industry. These lower costs are expected to propel the mass adoption of renewables even further. Among other findings the IRENA report highlights that: Onshore wind and solar PV [photovoltaic] power are now, frequently, less expensive than any fossil-fuel option, without financial assistance. New solar and wind installations will increasingly undercut even the operating-only costs of existing coal-fired plants. Cost forecasts for solar PV and onshore wind continue to be revised as new data emerges, with renewables consistently beating earlier expectations. Further data from REN21's Renewable Global Status Report show that over one fifth of global electrical power production is now generated from renewables. Promising signs in the IRENA report show that ... an increasing number of corporates are entering the renewable energy industry ... meanwhile more than 10 million people are now employed in the global renewable energy industry.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Her Evangelical Megachurch Was Her World. Then Her Daughter Said She Was Molested by a Minister.
2019-06-10, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/10/us/southern-baptist-convention-sex-abuse.html

Christi Bragg listened in disbelief. It was a Sunday in February, and her popular evangelical pastor, Matt Chandler, was preaching on the evil of leaders who sexually abuse those they are called to protect. But at the Village Church, he assured his listeners, victims of assault would be heard, and healed. Ms. Bragg nearly vomited. She stood up and walked out. Exactly one year before that day, on Feb. 17, 2018, Ms. Bragg and her husband, Matt, reported to the Village that their daughter, at about age 11, had been sexually abused at the church’s summer camp for children. Since then, Matthew Tonne, who was the church’s associate children’s minister, had been investigated by the police, indicted and arrested on charges of sexually molesting Ms. Bragg’s daughter. Ms. Bragg waited for church leaders to explain what had happened and to thoroughly inform other families in the congregation. But none of that ever came. Nearly 400 Southern Baptist leaders, from youth pastors to top ministers, have pleaded guilty or been convicted of sex crimes against more than 700 victims since 1998, according to a recent investigation by The Houston Chronicle and The San Antonio Express-News. At the Village, one of the most prominent Southern Baptist churches in the country ... Ms. Bragg said leaders had offered prayer. But as months passed, she came to believe their instinct to protect the institution outweighed their care for her daughter or their interest in investigating the truth.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


U.S. Renewable Power Capacity Surpasses Coal For The First Time
2019-06-10, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/rrapier/2019/06/10/u-s-renewable-power-capacity-...

The revolution in renewable power hit a new milestone in April. Last week the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) released it's latest Energy Infrastructure Update (EIU), with data through April 2019. According to ... the non-profit SUN DAY Campaign, which analyzed the data, "that was enough to push renewable energy's share of total available installed U.S. generating capacity up to 21.56%. By comparison, coal's share dropped to 21.55% (down from 23.04% a year ago)." Of course it's important to note that capacity doesn't equal generation. Coal still generates more electricity than renewables. But, the trends indicate it's just a matter of time before that picture changes as well. But it is natural gas that is still the king of generation. Although renewable capacity additions are forecast to be well ahead of natural gas additions through 2022, it is likely that natural gas will continue to be the top source of U.S. power for quite some time. The EIU indicates that natural gas now represents 44.44% of total installed capacity. Because of the higher capacity factors for natural gas-fired generation, Energy Information Administration data show that natural gas provided 36% of U.S. power over the past 12 months, well ahead of coal's 27%. Further, the share for natural gas has grown in recent years, while that of coal continues to decline. But given the current trends, it won't be long before renewables supply the largest share of U.S. power.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Ali Stroker Makes History as First Wheelchair User to Win a Tony
2019-06-09, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/09/theater/ali-stroker-oklahoma-tony-awards.html

On Sunday night, Ali Stroker became the first person who uses a wheelchair to win a Tony Award. “This award is for every kid who is watching tonight who has a disability, who has a limitation or a challenge, who has been waiting to see themselves represented in this arena — you are,” Ms. Stroker said while accepting her statuette for her role as Ado Annie in the Broadway revival of the musical “Oklahoma!.” Ms. Stroker, a 31-year-old New Jersey native who lost the use of her legs in a car accident when she was 2 years old, also thanked her parents “for teaching me to use my gifts to help people.” Ms. Stroker accepted the award, for best featured actress, shortly after dazzling the audience with her saucy performance of the “Oklahoma!” song “I Cain’t Say No.” “I find it to be fascinating that often people don’t think I can dance,” she said. “Who says that dance isn’t turning on wheels? Who says dancing isn’t throwing your arms up in the air and grabbing someone else’s arms to be propelled across the stage?” She also spoke about what it is like to aspire to succeed in an industry where people with disabilities are not represented. “I’m very aware that when I was a little girl I wasn’t seeing anybody like me, and on days when I’m exhausted or discouraged about something, that lights a fire,” she said. “I hope that for young people in chairs who feel that this is too hard, that they see that being in a chair is like getting a secret key to an unknown door — that they ... are reassured that anything is possible.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring disabled persons news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Secretive government agency linked to AFP raid on ABC, documents show
2019-06-08, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-au/kids/other/secretive-government-agency-linked-to-af...

Newly released documents show that another government agency, as well as the Australian Federal Police, was involved in the investigation that led to the raid on the ABC in June. The documents, obtained under Freedom of Information, reveal that the AFP refused to release certain documents relating to the June 6 raid because it said they related to an agency of the Federal Government which is exempt from FOI. Under the section cited by the AFP to justify not releasing the material - subsection 7(1) of the FOI Act - agencies which have complete exemption include the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO), the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) and the Australian Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS). The raid on the ABC's Ultimo headquarters was related to the Afghan Files, a series of stories, published in 2017, which detailed incidents where Australian soldiers in Afghanistan killed unarmed men and children. [South Australian senator Rex] Patrick said ... he believed that the other agency was either ASIO or the Australian Signals Directorate. The primary role of the Australian Signals Directorate is to eavesdrop on conversations and monitor the communications of people of interest outside Australia. The story which prompted one of the raids - on News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst - was about the push by some within the Federal Government to give ASD power to monitor the communications of Australians in Australia, which is currently prohibited by law.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and media manipulation from reliable major media sources.


Disturbing Undercover Video Shows Animal Abuse at Fair Oaks Farms in Indiana
2019-06-05, NBC News (Chicago Affiliate)
https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/national-international/fair-oaks-farms-indian...

A northwest Indiana dairy farm has fired four employees seen in a graphic undercover video released Tuesday by an animal welfare organization showing animals being abused. Following an investigation into the abuse, at least three retailers announced Wednesday that they would remove all Fairlife products from their shelves. The Coca Cola Corporation, which distributes the brand, said it was in talks to have sourcing from the farm in question discontinued. The Animal Recovery Mission called it the “largest undercover dairy investigation in history” and said the video documents “systemic and illegal abuse” at Fair Oaks Farms in Indiana. ARM said an investigator spent three months undercover at the Prairies Edge North Barn after being hired as a calf care employee. The group noted that Fair Oaks Farms North Barn was not targeted, but rather the barn was the first farm to hire the investigator, who had applied to multiple dairy farms in Jasper and Newton Counties in Indiana. “Employees were observed slapping, kicking, punching, pushing, throwing and slamming calves,” ARM said in a statement. “Calves were stabbed and beaten with steel rebars, hit in the mouth and face with hard plastic milking bottles, kneed in the spine, burned in the face with hot branding irons, subjected to extreme temperatures, provided with improper nutrition, and denied medical attention.” The footage was released on social media (warning: footage is graphic) Tuesday, where it has since garnered more than 100,000 views on Facebook and more than 1 million views on Vimeo.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in the food industry from reliable major media sources.


'No way to stop it': millions of pigs culled across Asia as swine fever spreads
2019-06-05, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)

South-east Asia is battling to contain the spread of highly contagious African swine fever, known as “pig Ebola”, which has already led to the culling of millions of pigs in China and Vietnam. African swine fever, which is harmless to humans but fatal to pigs, was discovered in China in August, where it has caused havoc, leading to more than 1.2m pigs being culled. China is home to almost half of the world’s pigs. There is no vaccination for African swine fever, which causes pigs to internally haemorrhage until they die, so the only option to contain the disease is to kill any contaminated animals. Some estimates say that in China up to 200m animals may eventually be slaughtered. The virus can last for several weeks on anything from clothes to vehicles, allowing for it to easily travel long distances. “This is the biggest animal disease outbreak we’ve ever had on the planet,” said Dirk Pfeiffer, a veterinary epidemiologist. Currently the battle to contain the disease is being lost. “There are concerns that the disease will continue to spread across the countries in south-east Asia,” said Dr Wantanee Kalpravidh, regional manager for UNFAO, who said they believed the swine fever cases being reported by governments in the region were “underestimates”. Wantanee said problems included the lack of compensation for pig farmers in south-east Asia whose herds were culled, giving them little reason to report a disease outbreak, and fears that banning movement of pigs and pork across borders would only create a “black market”.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Pfizer had clues its blockbuster drug could prevent Alzheimer’s. Why didn’t it tell the world?
2019-06-04, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/pfizer-had-clues-its-blockbus...

A team of researchers inside Pfizer made a startling find in 2015: The company’s blockbuster rheumatoid arthritis therapy Enbrel, a powerful anti-inflammatory drug, appeared to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by 64 percent. The results were from an analysis of hundreds of thousands of insurance claims. Verifying that the drug would actually have that effect in people would require a costly clinical trial - and after several years of internal discussion, Pfizer opted against further investigation and chose not to make the data public, the company confirmed. Researchers in the company’s division of inflammation and immunology urged Pfizer to conduct a clinical trial on thousands of patients, which they estimated would cost $80 million ... according to an internal company document obtained by The Washington Post. Pfizer’s deliberations, which previously have not been disclosed, offer a rare window into the frustrating search for Alzheimer’s treatments inside one of the world’s largest drug companies. Pfizer did share the data privately with at least one prominent scientist, but outside researchers contacted by The Post believe Pfizer also should at least have published its data, making the findings broadly available to researchers. “Of course they should. Why not?” said Rudolph E. Tanzi, a leading Alzheimer’s researcher and professor at Harvard Medical School. “It would benefit the scientific community to have that data out there,” said Keenan Walker, an assistant professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


19th Amendment guaranteeing women the right to vote was passed 100 years ago today
2019-06-04, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-19th-amendment-passed-100-years-ago-today-gr...

The 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, guaranteeing American women the right to vote, celebrates a big birthday on Tuesday, as it was passed by both chambers of Congress 100 years ago on June 4, 1919. According to the National Archives, the House of Representatives first passed the amendment on May 21, 1919, and two weeks later, on June 4, the Senate followed with a vote of 56 to 25. The next year, following approval by three-fourths of state legislatures, the amendment was ratified into the Constitution. The opening of the Amendment's text reads, "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex." Since the 19th Amendment's passage, women have helped inaugurate a new era of American politics. In fact, many historians can point a clear line from the passage of the 19th amendment to the passage of Civil Rights legislation in the 1960s and the current movements seeking to offer greater federal protections for gay and transgender Americans. The 19th Amendment emerged out of the Progressive Era in American politics, a period of increased social activism and economic reform during the first two decades of the 20th century. Suffragists like Jeannette Rankin, the first female member of the House of Representatives, brought greater attention to the rights of women. Certain states like California, Washington and Arizona passed their own legislation granting women either full or partial suffrage in the early 1910s. Wyoming was the first to do so in 1869, when it was still a territory.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The Women Who Brought Us the Moon
2019-06-03, PBS
https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/chasing-moon-women-who-b...

In 1965, Poppy Northcutt was the only female engineer at NASA’s Houston Mission Control. As she gazed at the men around her she thought to herself, I’m as smart as they are. Although she belonged among them, it was undeniably difficult to be the only woman in what sometimes felt like the domain of men. As isolated as Northcutt felt in the historic control center, she was one of thousands of women who began their careers at NASA as computers. It was a job created before the advent of electronic machines, when human aptitude was required to perform all the mathematical calculations needed for experiments. Women have historically filled these positions, as exemplified by the groups of female computers who worked at the Harvard Observatory and the Royal Observatory Greenwich in the late 1800s. At NASA, these women came from all over the world, working at centers across the United States, and comprising a diverse and potent force in space exploration. Their calculations would ultimately be responsible for sending astronauts to the moon. Unlike Northcutt, Sue Finley noticed the ubiquitous presence of female employees when she started work at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA. Not only was her supervisor a woman, but all of her coworkers in the computing section were as well. Finley, who started in 1958, before NASA’s formation, is still working for the space agency today. At age 83 and with a career spanning six decades, she is NASA’s longest serving female employee.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Science institute that advised EU and UN 'actually industry lobby group'
2019-06-02, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jun/03/science-institute-that-advise...

An institute whose experts have occupied key positions on EU and UN regulatory panels is, in reality, an industry lobby group that masquerades as a scientific health charity, according to a peer-reviewed study. The Washington-based International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) describes its mission as “pursuing objectivity, clarity and reproducibility” to “benefit the public good”. But researchers from the University of Cambridge, Bocconi University in Milan, and the US Right to Know campaign assessed over 17,000 pages of documents under US freedom of information laws to present evidence of influence-peddling. The paper’s lead author, Dr Sarah Steele, a Cambridge university senior research associate, said: “Our findings add to the evidence that this nonprofit organisation has been used by its corporate backers for years to counter public health policies. ILSI should be regarded as an industry group – a private body – and regulated as such, not as a body acting for the greater good.” Around this time, ILSI was caught up in a separate controversy, when the Guardian revealed that ILSI Europe’s vice-president Prof Alan Boobis chaired a UN panel that found glyphosate was probably not carcinogenic to humans. The final panel report included no conflict of interest statements, even though ILSI Europe had received donations of $500,000 (Ł344,234) from Monsanto, which uses glyphosate in its RoundUp weedkiller, and $528,500 from its industry representative, Croplife International.

Note: Check out a great article on how lobby groups like this cause the media to become industry lapdogs. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption from reliable major media sources.


U.S. Sees Largest Reduction of Protected Lands in History Under Trump
2019-06-02, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/largest-reduction-of-prot...

The Trump Administration is responsible for causing the largest reduction of protected public lands in U.S. history, according to a comprehensive study published this week in the journal Science. In 2017, the study noted, President Trump enacted two of the largest reductions of federally protected lands, shrinking Bears Ears by 85 percent and Grand-Staircase Escalante National Monument in southern Utah by 51 percent. Also in 2017, Congress voted to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and natural gas development. By removing federal protections, the study said, Trump is opening up these lands to oil and natural gas companies. And while the 2017 reductions are now being argued in federal court, the study said, the government already has plans to downgrade or downsize nine more land and marine national monuments. The study was conducted by 21 international scientists analyzing 200 years of data about protected areas. The scientists found that vast reduction of federal lands is a relatively recent phenomenon; 90 percent of reductions in U.S. federal lands have occurred since the year 2000. This is part of a disturbing global trend, where 78 percent of global land reductions have taken place since 2000. “As human pressures on the biosphere accelerate, it is critical to strengthen—not roll back—conservation efforts,” the study authors concluded.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Pope asks forgiveness for historical mistreatment of Roma people
2019-06-02, Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pope-romania/pope-asks-forgiveness-for-his...

Pope Francis on Sunday asked forgiveness in the name of the Catholic Church for the mistreatment of the Roma people. Francis made the comment during a meeting with Roma people at the last event of his three day trip to Romania, saying his heart was made “heavy” by the meeting. “It is weighed down by the many experiences of discrimination, segregation and mistreatment experienced by your communities. History tells us that Christians too, including Catholics, are not strangers to such evil,” he said. With an estimated population of 10-12 million, approximately six million of whom live in the European Union, Roma people are the biggest ethnic minority in Europe and rights groups say they are often the victims of prejudice and social exclusion. A Roma youth, Razaila Vasile Dorin, told reporters: “It’s an honor that a person like the pope comes to our community. We are proud. It’s important that the pope is asking forgiveness. There is racism in every country. When we go out everyone looks at us and we don’t like that. I am proud to be a gypsy.” Earlier on Sunday, the pope said a Mass for some 100,000 people during which he beatified seven Communist-era bishops of the Eastern Rite Catholic Church who died in prison or as a result of their harsh treatment during Romania’s communist era. “(The bishops) endured suffering and gave their lives to oppose an illiberal ideological system that oppressed the fundamental rights of the human person,” Francis said.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


These Men Say the Boy Scouts’ Sex Abuse Problem Is Worse Than Anyone Knew
2019-06-01, Time
https://time.com/longform/boy-scouts-sex-abuse/

Fifty-eight years ago, Edward Pittson says, the Scoutmaster who had taught him skills like how to use a compass and light a campfire said he was going to teach Pittson about sex. The Scoutmaster invited Pittson, who was 12, to his house and asked him to lie on the bed. “This is the normal way to learn about sex,” Pittson recalls the Scoutmaster telling him. “He said, ‘But don’t tell your parents what I’m doing.’” Now, Pittson is one of hundreds of men and boys hoping for a last chance at restitution if the Boy Scouts of America, in the face of a new wave of abuse allegations, files for bankruptcy. On Thursday, a group of attorneys said they’d collected information from at least 428 men and boys whose accounts of rape, molestation and abuse indicate the Boy Scouts’ pedophile problem is far more widespread than the organization has previously acknowledged. If the Boy Scouts file for bankruptcy, the accusers will have a limited window to file claims against the organization. Hundreds of individual sex abuse cases have been brought against the Scouts ... and in 2010, a judge ordered the organization to make public an internal list of men accused of preying on boys. Within Scout headquarters, the list was known as the “P Files” or “Perversion Files.” In January, a child abuse expert hired by the Boy Scouts to analyze the files testified that she found 12,254 boys had reported experiencing sexual abuse at the hands of at least 7,800 suspected assailants between 1944 and 2016.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


Deaths of indigenous women 'a Canadian genocide', leaked report says
2019-06-01, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-48481958

A national public inquiry into possibly thousands of missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada has called the deaths a "Canadian genocide". The report was leaked to Canada's national broadcaster CBC which published details. The 1,200-page document reportedly blames the disproportionate violence faced by indigenous women on deep-rooted colonialism and state inaction. The findings of the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls are long-awaited in Canada, where there are about 1.6m indigenous people. "It took 40 years to get to this present moment and only because indigenous women have been on the ground making noise about this," Robyn Bourgeois, a campaigner on the issue, told the BBC. The inquiry concluded that about 1,200 aboriginal women had been murdered or gone missing in Canada since 1980, but some activists say the number is likely to have been far higher. The report acknowledged disagreements over what constituted genocide, but concluded: "The national inquiry's findings support characterizing these acts, including violence against Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA [two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual] people, as genocide." The inquiry, which cost C$92m ($67m; Ł53m), focused on the systemic causes of violence against indigenous women as well as on prevention. It has heard from more than 2,000 witnesses since 2017.

Note: Kevin Annett is a great Canadian hero who has worked tirelessly and courageously in the face of death threats to expose the systematic abuse and murders of native children in Canada. He was recently kidnapped while crossing the border. Don't miss his amazing story of all the happened.


Psychedelics, long ignored by scientists, seeing resurgence in medical research
2019-06-01, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/article/Psychedelics-long-ignored-by-scie...

UCSF psychiatrist Brian Anderson is studying an experimental therapy to help long-term AIDS survivors ... who are feeling sad and demoralized. In a clinic outfitted with a comfortable couch, soft lighting, throw pillows and blankets, the participants of his study are given psilocybin, the hallucinogenic compound found in magic mushrooms. The results were compelling enough that he’s planning a second study. Anderson’s work is part of a resurgence in psychedelic study that has been ... fueling grassroots efforts around the country to decriminalize use of certain psychedelic drugs. Statewide measures are being discussed in California and Oregon. The decriminalization efforts are focused on natural psychedelics — mushrooms, along with herbs, cacti and other plants from which hallucinogenic compounds can be extracted. Though several studies in the first half of the 20th century had shown promise in using psychedelics for treatment of mental health and neurological disorders, the drugs were broadly maligned in the 1960s and ’70s. More recently, microdosing — the practice taking small, carefully controlled amounts of a psychedelic — has taken off among Silicon Valley techies and university students who believe it boosts productivity and creativity. Almost all studies at the moment rely on private donations for funding. Studies are still limited, but they’re happening at universities around the country. At Johns Hopkins, Johnson and his colleagues reported about an 80% success rate in using psilocybin to help people quit smoking in one small study. Research out of UCLA has found that psilocybin may help cancer patients with depression and anxiety.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on studies of psychedelics from reliable major media sources.


Ultraprocessed foods are easy, cheap and could be killing you
2019-05-30, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/29/health/ultraprocessed-foods-heart-disease-earl...

"Ultraprocessed" describes many foods, including pre-prepared dishes found in grocery store freezers, packaged baked goods, dehydrated soups, ice cream, sugary cereals and fizzy beverages. Two separate studies published Wednesday in The BMJ link eating the popular factory-made fare with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and an increased risk of early death. Previous studies have associated highly processed food consumption with higher risks of obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and even some cancers. "Ultraprocessed foods already make up more than half of the total dietary energy consumed in high-income countries such as USA, Canada and the UK," [said] Maira Bes-Rastrollo, senior author of one study. "Products in this category are rich in poor quality fat, added sugar and salt, along with low vitamin density and fiber content, and they "are economically profitable (low cost ingredients), very palatable and convenient," said Bes-Rastrollo. Worst of all, she explained, they are replacing unprocessed or minimally processed foods and freshly prepared meals in our diets. Bes-Rastrollo and her colleagues also collected information on lifestyle, demographic factors, physical activity, weight and health. Analyzing the data, the team found that a higher consumption of heavily processed foods - more than four servings each day - was associated with a 62% increased risk for early death due to any cause relative to those who ate these foods less frequently.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health and food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Crispr gene-editing will change the way Americans eat – here's what's coming
2019-05-30, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/may/30/crispr-gene-edited-food-techn...

Soon, soybeans will be bred to yield stable oil without the addition of dangerous trans fats. Lettuce will be grown to handle warmer, drier fields. Wheat to contain less gluten. And pigs bred to resist deadly viruses. Ten years ago, such genetic changes would have been considered science fiction – or so far off into the future of breeding as to be almost unimaginable. But gene editing, particularly with a tool called Crispr-Cas9, has made it much easier and more efficient to tinker with the genomes of plants and animals. The first Crispr-edited products will begin reaching the market this year, and researchers believe it’s only a matter of time before US grocery shelves could be filled with gene-edited produce, grains and meat. The technology will be subject to stringent health and environment review, as well as labeling requirements in the EU, but not in the US. The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a statement last March saying it would not regulate crops whose genetic changes could have been produced with conventional breeding. The European court of justice, by contrast, ruled last summer that gene-edited crops should be regulated as GMOs. The scientific challenges have been largely settled. But political and social ones remain. Jennifer Kuzma, co-director of the Genetic Engineering and Society Center at North Carolina State University, said US consumers are willing to pay 20% more to avoid GMO foods, and nearly half of the public reports actively avoiding genetically modified ingredients and food.

Note: Read an excellent addendum to this important article by GMO expert Jeffrey Smith recommending caution in these little-tested new products. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on GMOs and food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


This Russia whistle-blower is serving 5 years in prison for leaking one document. Her mother says she's being silenced
2019-05-29, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/29/politics/reality-winner-media-blackout-prison/...

The mother of the first whistle-blower arrested in the Trump era says her daughter is being held under an unjust media blackout to stop the American public learning who she really is. Billie Winner-Davis' daughter Reality Winner, a US Air Force veteran, was sentenced to prison for more than five years in August 2018 as part of a deal in which she pleaded guilty to leaking a classified NSA document providing details of a 2016 Russian cyberattack on a supplier of US voting software. Winner, 27, who worked in the US Air Force's drone program, is serving the longest sentence ever given to a journalistic source by a federal court, according to the Department of Justice. CNN has repeatedly sought permission to interview Winner in federal prison, and recently accompanied Winner-Davis on the seven-hour road trip from her home to visit her daughter at FMC Carswell in Fort Worth, where she is incarcerated, but our team was not permitted to go inside. FMC Carswell's warden has denied CNN's requests. Our attempts to speak with the warden over the phone ... were unsuccessful. CNN also sought to interview Winner by telephone but was told by her mother that the former drone operator has been told by prison staff not to add media outlets to her phone list. "She has been warned and she has been frightened as far as the restrictions on her communications," Winner-Davis said. "They're telling her she cannot even have any contact with any kind of journalists or media, in any way, shape, or form."

Note: Read more about Winner's unjust prosecution for blowing the whistle on election interference. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


UFOs exist and everyone needs to adjust to that fact
2019-05-28, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/05/28/ufos-exist-everyone-needs-a...

UFOs have historically been associated with crackpot ideas. The obvious reason for this is that the term “UFO” is usually assumed to be a synonym for “extraterrestrial life.” Alexander Wendt and Raymond Duvall ... argued that the real reason UFOs have been dismissed is because of the existential challenge that they pose for a worldview in which human beings are the most technologically advanced life-forms: "UFOs have never been systematically investigated by science or the state, because it is assumed to be known that none are extraterrestrial. Yet in fact this is not known, which makes the UFO taboo puzzling." In recent years ... discussion of actual UFOs has been the topic of some serious mainstream media coverage. There was the December 2017 New York Times story by Helene Cooper, Ralph Blumenthal and Leslie Kean about the Defense Department’s Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, which was tasked with cataloguing UFOs recorded by military pilots. DoD officials confirmed its existence. This story ... represented the first time the U.S. government acknowledged the existence of such a program. Then, there were the reports last November about Oumuamua, “a mysterious, cigar-shaped interstellar object [that] fell through our solar system at an extraordinary speed,” according to New York’s Eric Levits. What appears to be happening is that official organs of the state are now acknowledging that UFOs exist. They are doing so because enough pilots are reporting UFOs and near-air collisions so as to warrant better record-keeping.

Note: The fact that the media is no longer debunking UFOs suggests that a gradual acculturation process is being used. Those in the know have been aware of many intense UFO encounters reported by military officers and more for many decades. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on UFOs from reliable major media sources.


From chicken to tomatoes, here's why American food is hurting you
2019-05-28, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/may/28/from-chicken-to-tomatoes-here...

Our food and our health are deeply connected. American healthcare spending has ballooned to $3.5tn a year, and yet we are sicker than most other developed countries. Meanwhile, our food system contains thousands of chemicals that have not been proven safe and many that are banned in other countries. Instead of potentially hazardous substances being banned from our food, as they are in, say, Europe, chemicals of concern are typically considered innocent until proven guilty. As a result, we are the guinea pigs in our own experiment. For decades we’ve operated on the principle that if we can selectively kill off the unwanted parts of the natural world, we can control our futures. Farmers operate that way, but also homeowners, highway crews and landscapers. We spread herbicides, fungicides, pesticides, insecticides, fertilizers, antibiotics, hormones and various other toxins which kill everything around. Even good things. We’re becoming aware of the loss of what we can see: bees, butterflies, the diverse plant life of our ecosystems. We also need to worry about the invisible microbiome and fungi in the soil that nurture life above, store carbon and absorb water. By trying to control crops with herbicides, antibiotics and pesticides, we’ve actually bred bugs, weeds and diseases that are resistant to our control. And our chemical onslaught will have long-term effects. Our fertilizers and pesticides leach into groundwater and streams, head out to sea and create dead zones. They also leach into our drinking water.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Banned bread: why does the US allow additives that Europe says are unsafe?
2019-05-28, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/may/28/bread-additives-chemicals-us-...

It may sound odd, but in America, your loaf of bread can contain ingredients with industrial applications – additives that also appear in things like yoga mats, pesticides, hair straighteners, explosives and petroleum products. Some of these chemicals, used as optional whiteners, dough conditioners and rising agents, may be harmful to human health. Potassium bromate, a potent oxidizer that helps bread rise, has been linked to kidney and thyroid cancers in rodents. Azodicarbonamide (ACA), a chemical that forms bubbles in foams and plastics like vinyl, is used to bleach and leaven dough – but when baked, it, too, has been linked to cancer in lab animals. Other countries, including China, Brazil and members of the European Union, have weighed the potential risks and decided to outlaw potassium bromate in food. India banned it in 2016, and the UK has forbidden it since 1990. Azodicarbonamide has been banned for consumption by the European Union for over a decade. But despite petitions from several advocacy groups – some dating back decades – the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) still considers these to be Gras or “generally recognized as safe” to eat, though plenty of experts disagree. The FDA does not review every additive that makes its way into food. Instead, companies can rely on their own experts to determine what’s safe and what isn’t. And once something was determined as Gras, [medical toxicologist Ryan] Marino said, “there is not often any financial incentive for additional testing”.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


Johnson & Johnson opioids helped create 'worst man-made public health crisis in history,' Oklahoma says in court
2019-05-28, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/johnson-johnson-opioids-helped-create-wo...

The first trial against a pharmaceutical opioid manufacturer started Tuesday in Oklahoma in what could be a precedent-setting case for hundreds of other claims around the country. The state's attorney general, Mike Hunter, began the day by accusing Johnson & Johnson of putting profits over responsibility and argued that the company was responsible for the "worst man-made public health crisis in the history of our state and country." In the multibillion-dollar lawsuit against the drugmaker, lawyers for the state argued that Johnson & Johnson knew about the addictive nature of opioids, but misled doctors by downplaying the risks of the drugs while touting its benefits. Brad Beckworth, a lawyer for Oklahoma, argued that Johnson & Johnson was motivated to increase sales on multiple fronts as both the manufacturer of the drugs Duragesic and Nucynta and as a supplier of the raw materials for other opioid manufacturers. He argued that a marketing push by Johnson & Johnson lead doctors to overprescribe opioids in Oklahoma. “If you oversupply, people will die,” Beckworth repeatedly said in his opening statement while showing email communications from Johnson & Johnson sales representatives. Oklahoma settled with two other drug manufacturers before Tuesday’s opening statements. In March, Purdue Pharma settled for $270 million, and on Sunday, Teva Pharmaceuticals settled for $85 million, leaving Johnson & Johnson as the sole defendants in what could a monthslong bench trial.

Note: Many doctors also profited from excessive prescribing of dangerous opioids. And according to a former DEA agent, Congress helped drug companies fuel the opioid epidemic. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


Arms Manufacturers Tell Investors that Iran Tension Fuels Business
2019-05-28, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/05/28/arms-manufacturers-investors-iran-business/

Defense executives from around the country crowded into Goldman Sachs’ glimmering tower in downtown Manhattan in mid-May, eager to present before a conference of bankers and financial analysts. While much of the world was on edge over simmering tension in the Middle East, as the U.S. and its allies have stoked tensions with Iran, the businessmen at the conference talked of opportunity. Eric DeMarco, the president of Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, addressed the conference, arguing that his company is “very well-aligned” for the shift in the military budget away from asymmetrical fighting toward nation-state warfare. The rising threat of war with Iran, Russia, and China, DeMarco continued, could threaten U.S. naval power, which could require ballistic missile threat upgrades, the type of systems Kratos Defense specializes in. Large arms manufacturers from across the industry have similarly told investors that escalating conflict with Iran could be good for business. The statements to investors come as the U.S. has openly threatened to launch a new war. In recent weeks, the Trump administration discussed sending 120,000 soldiers to the Middle East in preparation for war with Iran, a move that comes after two years of increasing sanctions and militant rhetoric about the threat posed by the government in Tehran. The escalating tensions, while raising the potential for catastrophic conflict and loss of human life, could also be good for companies in the business of war.

Note: Read an essay by one of the most highly decorated U.S. generals titled "War is a Racket." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Atomic Veterans Were Silenced for 50 Years. Now, They’re Talking.
2019-05-27, The Atlantic
https://www.theatlantic.com/video/index/590299/atomic-soldiers/

Nearly everyone who’s seen it and lived to tell the tale describes it the same way: a horrifying, otherworldly thing of ghastly beauty that has haunted their life ever since. “The colors were beautiful,” remembers a man in Morgan Knibbe’s short documentary The Atomic Soldiers. “I hate to say that.” Many tales of the atomic bomb, however, weren’t told at all. In addition to the hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians who died in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, an estimated 400,000 American soldiers and sailors also observed nuclear explosions - many just a mile or two from ground zero. From 1946 to 1992, the U.S. government conducted more than 1,000 nuclear tests, during which unwitting troops were exposed to vast amounts of ionizing radiation. After the tests, the soldiers, many of whom were traumatized, were sworn to an oath of secrecy. Breaking it even to talk among themselves was considered treason, punishable by a $10,000 fine and 10 or more years in prison. In Knibbe’s film, some of these atomic veterans break the forced silence to tell their story for the very first time. They describe how the blast knocked them to the ground; how they could see the bones and blood vessels in their hands, like viewing an X-ray. What appalled Knibbe the most was how the U.S. government failed the veterans. “Until this day, a lot of what has happened - and the radiation-related diseases the veterans have contracted and passed on to the generations after them - is still being covered up,” Knibbe said.

Note: Don't miss the most profound, 22-minute video at the link above. And for lots more on the huge cover-up of the terrifying effects of the bomb, see this most informative webpage. Explore lots more astonishing, verifiable information on humans used as guinea pigs in the last 100 years.


‘Wow, What Is That?’ Navy Pilots Report Unexplained Flying Objects
2019-05-26, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/26/us/politics/ufo-sightings-navy-pilots.html

The strange objects, one of them like a spinning top moving against the wind, appeared almost daily from the summer of 2014 to March 2015, high in the skies over the East Coast. Navy pilots reported to their superiors that the objects had no visible engine or infrared exhaust plumes, but that they could reach 30,000 feet and hypersonic speeds. “These things would be out there all day,” said Lt. Ryan Graves, an F/A-18 Super Hornet pilot who has been with the Navy for 10 years, and who reported his sightings to the Pentagon and Congress. “With the speeds we observed, 12 hours in the air is 11 hours longer than we’d expect.” No one in the Defense Department is saying that the objects were extraterrestrial. Lieutenant Graves and four other Navy pilots, who said ... that they saw the objects in 2014 and 2015 in training maneuvers from Virginia to Florida off the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt, make no assertions of their provenance. But the objects have gotten the attention of the Navy, which earlier this year sent out new classified guidance for how to report what the military calls unexplained aerial phenomena, or unidentified flying objects. The sightings were reported to the Pentagon’s ... Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, which analyzed the radar data, video footage and accounts provided by senior officers from the Roosevelt. Luis Elizondo, a military intelligence official who ran the program until he resigned in 2017, called the sightings “a striking series of incidents.”

Note: The fact that the media is no longer debunking UFOs suggests that a gradual acculturation process is being used. Those in the know have been aware of many intense UFO encounters reported by military officers and more for many decades. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on UFOs from reliable major media sources.


Why are so many people dying in US prisons and jails?
2019-05-26, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/may/26/us-prisons-jails-inmate-deaths

On 10 July 2015, 28-year-old Sandra Bland was pulled over in Prairie View, Texas, for what she was told by Texas state trooper Brian Encinia was failing to use her turn signal. Three days after Bland’s arrest, she was found dead in her jail cell. The death was ruled a suicide but remains shrouded in mystery over how a wrongful arrest stemming from a minor traffic violation resulted in death. Surges in the number of Americans dying while incarcerated have occurred against a backdrop of an increase in the US prison population by 500% over the last 40 years. Based on the latest national figures available from the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 4,980 prisoners in US correctional facilities died in 2014, a nearly 3% increase from 2013. In state prisons, the mortality rate was 275 for every 100,000 people, the highest since data collection began in 2001. Since 2014, a Guardian investigation has found several states, including Texas and Florida, with the first and third highest prison populations in the US, respectively, have reported either record mortality rates in prisons or jails or significant surges. A 2017 report published by the Rand Corporation on identifying the needs to reduce prison mortality rates suggested several high-priority needs. “A national medical examiner system should be implemented because of the additional rigor these professionals have and more consistency with how they do investigations and classify cause of death,” said Joe Russo, the lead author of the report.

Note: Read an excellent article titled "How The For-Profit Prison Industry Keeps 460,000 Innocent People in Jail Every Day." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on prison system corruption from reliable major media sources.


A sense of purpose could prolong your life
2019-05-25, Quartz
https://qz.com/1628452/a-sense-of-purpose-could-prolong-your-life/

Increasingly, scientists are finding that having a sense of purpose, whatever yours may be, is key to well-being. Now, a study published on May 24 in JAMA Current Open adds to the growing body of knowledge on the link between health and a driving force, finding that purposefulness is tied to longer lives. Researchers ... analyzed data from nearly 7,000 individuals over 50 years old and concluded that “stronger purpose in life was associated with decreased mortality.” They believe that “purposeful living may have health benefits.” The new analysis found that those whose psychological questionnaires reflected a lack of purpose were more likely to die than those who had “a self-organizing life aim that stimulates goals.” In fact, people without a purpose were more than twice as likely to die than those with an aim and goals. Purpose proved to be more indicative of longevity than gender, race, or education levels, and more important for decreasing risk of death than drinking, smoking, or exercising regularly. Notably, the research indicates that any purpose is better than none, as the reason people felt purposeful didn’t figure into the analysis. So it doesn’t seem to matter what it is that drives an individual, whether it’s a passion for growing peonies, say, or wanting to see their children develop, or loving the work they do. The important thing is simply having something that makes them excited about life and drives them. But those who feel no sense of purpose now shouldn’t despair because that drive can be cultivated.

Note: Read an excellent, short essay on how to find and develop your life purpose. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Whistleblowers go undercover to expose criminal drug operation within the Chicago PD
2019-05-24, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/whistleblowers-go-undercover-to-expose-criminal-...

As a Chicago police officer, Shannon Spalding worked undercover in some of the toughest parts of the city -- only to discover some of the most dangerous criminals were fellow police officers. She risked her life to stop them. Soon after joining the Chicago Police Department in 1996, Spalding drew an assignment in one of the most violent neighborhoods in the city. To survive, Spalding leaned on veteran cops like Ronald Watts. In 2006, a decade after Spalding was trained by Watts, she had a new assignment in the narcotics division. "I was the undercover. I would go out, I would make the controlled narcotics purchases," Spalding explained. Her partner, Danny Echeverria, would swoop in and make arrests. But during police interviews, something strange started happening. "People would say … 'I can't believe you're going to arrest me when one of your own is actually running the narcotics trade,'" said Spalding. [She] learned Watts and his crew would plant drugs on residents of the Ida B. Wells projects and extort cash. Spalding and her partner would eventually learn Watts' bad deeds had been going on for years. [They] would spend years undercover investigating Ronald Watts and his team. In February 2012, Sgt. Ronald Watts and one of his officers, Kallat Mohammed, were arrested after being caught robbing a drug courier of $5,200. That courier was Spalding's informant and was wearing an FBI wire. Both Watts and Mohammed were convicted. Watts was sentenced to 22 months and Mohammed received an 18-month sentence. Aided by that investigation, more than 60 people wrongfully arrested by Watts and his team have now been exonerated.

Note: The article fails to mention how the police went after Spalding. Watch a riveting CBS video showing this and more on the depths of corruption in the Chicago police department. And if you think it's only Chicago, think again. As Spalding stated when asked about the police code of silence, "You never, ever go after a fellow officer." Though 60 innocent victims were freed from jail, many of the officers who committed these crimes are still on the police force. For more, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.


This southern city is fighting food deserts with a forest of free produce
2019-05-24, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/24/us/atlanta-food-forest-fighting-food-desert/in...

Among the heavily trafficked streets of Atlanta, a massive urban food forest is growing to provide fresh produce for the public. But what exactly is a food forest? In the fight against food deserts - low income areas that lack access to fresh, whole foods - a food forest is a public space in the city where fresh produce will grow in trees, bushes, plants, and community garden beds for the community to enjoy. And at 7.1 acres, the site in Atlanta will become the city's first and the nation's largest. In the Lakewood-Browns Mill community, which will house the Urban Food Forest, more than a third of the population lives below the poverty line, according to the USDA, who has assisted in the project. "Residents still talk about the land's former owners, who left excess produce from their farm on fence posts for neighbors to claim and enjoy," the USDA said. "Now this land will celebrate that history and make new memories for the community." A city ordinance passed in the beginning of the month grants money for the city to purchase the plot from the Conservation Fund, which currently owns and has helped develop the land. In addition to community outreach and education, the forest is meant to make strides in the city's goal of putting 85% of residents within a half mile of fresh food by 2021.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Trump bypasses Congress to push through arms sales to Saudis, UAE
2019-05-24, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/national-security/trump-bypasses-congress-pu...

The Trump administration on Friday cited a national security "emergency" allegedly caused by Iran to bypass Congress and rush through arms sales worth billions of dollars to Saudi Arabia and other Middle East allies, in a move that drew condemnation from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle. Citing a rarely used provision of arms control law, the administration informed lawmakers it was declaring a national security emergency, allowing it to go ahead with the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan without congressional approval, according to administration letters sent to senators. The decision affected various arms packages worth roughly $8 billion. The move came despite growing bipartisan opposition to any arms sales to Saudi Arabia amid outrage over the killing of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last year, as well as over Riyadh's air war in Yemen that has caused high numbers of civilian casualties. A bipartisan majority in Congress has voted to halt U.S. support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen but President Donald Trump vetoed the legislation. Democrats in Congress said the Trump administration expedited the arms packages because it could not secure a majority of lawmakers to support any proposed sales to the Saudis.

Note: The military-industrial complex clearly has Donald Trump on their side. Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen is a humanitarian disaster. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Thousands of cancer diagnoses tied to a poor diet, study finds
2019-05-23, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/22/health/diet-cancer-risk-study/index.html

Your diet may have more impact on your cancer risk than you might think, a new study has found. An estimated 80,110 new cancer cases among adults 20 and older in the United States in 2015 were attributable simply to eating a poor diet, according to the study, published in the JNCI Cancer Spectrum. "This is equivalent to about 5.2% of all invasive cancer cases newly diagnosed among US adults in 2015," said Dr. Fang Zhang ... who was first author of the study. "This proportion is comparable to the proportion of cancer burden attributable to alcohol," she said. The researchers evaluated seven dietary factors: a low intake of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and dairy products and a high intake of processed meats, red meats and sugary beverages, such as soda. "Low whole-grain consumption was associated with the largest cancer burden in the US, followed by low dairy intake, high processed-meat intake, low vegetable and fruit intake, high red-meat intake and high intake of sugar-sweetened beverages," Zhang said. You may protect yourself from cancer by avoiding ultraprocessed foods and instead choosing organic foods, research has shown. People who frequently eat organic foods lowered their overall risk of developing cancer, according to a study published last year in the medical journal JAMA Internal Medicine. Specifically, those who primarily ate organic foods were more likely to ward off non-Hodgkin lymphoma and postmenopausal breast cancer than those who rarely or never ate organic foods.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on food system corruption from reliable major media sources.


The Wealth Detective Who Finds the Hidden Money of the Super Rich
2019-05-23, Bloomberg
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2019-05-23/the-wealth-detective-who-f...

Gabriel Zucman started his first real job the Monday after the collapse of Lehman Brothers. A decade later, Zucman, 32, is an assistant professor at the University of California at Berkeley and the world’s foremost expert on where the wealthy hide their money. His doctoral thesis ... exposed trillions of dollars’ worth of tax evasion by the global rich. For his most influential work, he teamed up with his Berkeley colleague Emmanuel Saez. Their 2016 paper, “Wealth Inequality in the United States Since 1913,” distilled a century of data to answer one of modern capitalism’s murkiest mysteries: How rich are the rich in the world’s wealthiest nation? The answer - far richer than previously imagined - thrust the pair deep into the American debate over inequality. Zucman and Saez’s latest estimates show that the top 0.1% of taxpayers - about 170,000 families in a country of 330 million people - control 20% of American wealth, the highest share since 1929. The top 1% control 39% of U.S. wealth, and the bottom 90% have only 26%. The bottom half of Americans combined have a negative net worth. The shift in wealth concentration over time charts as a U, dropping rapidly through the Great Depression and World War II, staying low through the 1960s and ’70s, and surging after the ’80s as middle-class wealth rolled in the opposite direction. Zucman has also found that multinational corporations move 40% of their foreign profits, about $600 billion a year, out of the countries where their money was made and into lower-tax jurisdictions.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on income inequality from reliable major media sources.


A trail of toxicity: the US military bases making people sick
2019-05-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/may/23/chemical-colorado-springs-mil...

Over the last 80 years, much of the land surrounding Venetucci Farm was sold to the US army to establish the base now known as Fort Carson. Farming activities have stopped. In 2016, irrigation water was found to be contaminated with elevated levels of perfluorinated compounds (PFCs). The foundation that runs the farm has joined forces with a local water district to sue the US Air Force, alleging that toxic chemicals used in firefighting foam at a nearby base have tainted the water. Similar concerns have been raised about dozens of other bases across the country. But the problem is not limited to areas close to military installations. PFCs and related human-made chemicals, more generally known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), have been virtually unregulated since at least the 1950s. As well as at industrial sites, airports and bases, PFAS have long been used in household products. They are everywhere. A 2007 study estimated that PFAS are in the blood of 98% of Americans, while last year an analysis by the not-for-profit Environmental Working Group found that more than 1,500 drinking water systems nationwide could be contaminated by PFAS. Studies suggest that certain PFAS may affect the growth, learning and behaviour of infants and older children; lower a woman’s chance of getting pregnant; interfere with the body’s natural hormones; increase cholesterol levels; affect the immune system; and increase the risk of kidney and testicular cancer and thyroid problems.

Note: Read more about these chemicals contaminating the drinking water of 110 million Americans. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources.


New Zealand’s Next Liberal Milestone: A Budget Guided by ‘Well-Being’
2019-05-22, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/22/world/asia/new-zealand-wellbeing-budget.html

It’s being called the next big move by a New Zealand government seen by progressives around the world as a beacon in increasingly populist times: a national budget whose spending is dictated by what best encourages the “well-being” of citizens. That means that as the center-left government of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern sets its priorities in the budget that will be unveiled on May 30, it is moving away from more traditional bottom-line measures like productivity and economic growth and instead focusing on goals like community and cultural connection and equity in well-being across generations. “This budget is a game-changing event,” said Richard Layard, a professor at the London School of Economics. As a major example of what that new framework will produce, Ms. Ardern unveiled on Sunday the biggest spending proposal to date in her coming budget: more than $200 million to bolster services for victims of domestic and sexual violence. It is “the biggest single investment ever” by a New Zealand government on the issue, Ms. Ardern said at an event showcasing the initiative, and will tackle one of the nation’s “most disturbing, most shameful” problems. Under New Zealand’s revised policy, all new spending must advance one of five government priorities: improving mental health, reducing child poverty, addressing the inequalities faced by indigenous Maori and Pacific islands people, thriving in a digital age, and transitioning to a low-emission, sustainable economy.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Purdue Pharma accused of 'corrupting' WHO to boost global opioid sales
2019-05-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/may/22/purdue-pharma-opioid-world-he...

Purdue Pharma, the drug manufacturer that kickstarted the US opioid epidemic, corruptly influenced the World Health Organization in order to boost painkiller sales across the globe, according to a report by members of Congress. An investigation by Katherine Clark and Hal Rogers, who represent districts in Massachusetts and Kentucky hard hit by the US opioid epidemic, accuses Purdue of replicating its false marketing claims about the safety and effectiveness of opioids to change WHO prescribing guidelines in an attempt to expand foreign markets for its drugs. “The web of influence we uncovered paints a picture of a public health organization that has been corrupted by the opioid industry,” said Clark. “The WHO appears to be lending the opioid industry its voice and credibility, and as a result, a trusted public health organization is trafficking dangerous misinformation that could lead to a global opioid epidemic.” The report ... accuses Purdue of using pharma-funded organizations and specialists to influence the writing of WHO policy to encourage much wider prescribing of addictive high-strength opioids across the globe. It said that, as a result, “WHO guidelines are serving as marketing materials for Purdue”. [The] report alleges two WHO guidelines ... “contain dangerously misleading and, in some instances, outright false claims about the safety and efficacy of prescription opioids”. “Alarmingly, these guidelines mirror Purdue’s marketing strategies to increase prescriptions and expand sales,” the report found.

Note: Many doctors also profited from excessive prescribing of dangerous opioids. And according to a former DEA agent, Congress helped drug companies fuel the opioid epidemic. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


News got you down? Fear not, Harvard professor tells U.N., the world really is getting better
2019-05-22, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/harvard-steven-pinker-says-world-getting-better-...

Diplomats at the United Nations got a dose of data-driven positivity this week from Harvard psychology professor Steven Pinker, who delivered a history lesson to prove the human condition is actually more peaceful and more prosperous than ever before. The world, Pinker told the gathering of officials ... is a better place than ever, but our perspective - and the way the news media convey events - needs to change. Pinker's most recent book, "Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism and Progress," presents facts that demonstrate how life around the globe, statistically, is improving. The psychologist measures a range of qualities to define progress; life, health, sustenance, prosperity, peace, freedom, safety, knowledge, leisure, happiness. As those have increased over time on aggregate, Pinker argues, humanity is making progress. His data paint a clear picture, over the course of centuries, of life expectancy increasing, deaths by famine falling, the world's gross earnings rising and extreme poverty falling. Pinker said the world has become freer, too, with dictatorships and autocracies decreasing in number. Pinker concluded in his remarks that we are collectively depressing ourselves for lack of a complete, fact-based view with full appreciation for what came before. He said the media and intelligentsia have been complicit in the depiction of modern Western nations as unjust and dysfunctional.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


EPA blocks a dozen products containing pesticides thought harmful to bees
2019-05-22, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/paloma/the-energy-202/2019/05/2...

The Environmental Protection Agency is pulling from the market a dozen products containing pesticides known to be toxic to a linchpin of the U.S. food system — the honeybee. The agency announced Monday it has canceled the registrations of 12 pest-killing products with compounds belonging to a class of chemicals known as neonicotinoids, as part of a legal settlement. For years, beekeepers and wildlife conversationalists alike have voiced concern that the widespread use of neonics, as the chemicals are commonly called, is imperiling wild and domesticated bees crucial to pollinating commercial fruit, nut and vegetable crops. The decision follows five years of litigation in which the beekeepers and environmentalists pressed the agency to mount a response to the use of neonics as regulators in Europe and Canada have taken steps toward banning the chemicals. Finally, at the end of 2018, three agribusinesses - Bayer, Syngenta and Valent - agreed to let the EPA pull from shelves the 12 pesticide products used by growers ranging from large-scale agricultural businesses to home gardeners. The legal settlement also compels the EPA to analyze the impacts of the entire neonic class on endangered species. Rebecca Riley, legal director of the nature program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said that the agency has failed often in the past to adequately consider the potential impact of its pesticide approvals on endangered animals — something every federal agency is supposed to do.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Why Are The Superrich Getting Audited Less?
2019-05-21, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/rachelsandler/2019/05/21/why-are-the-super-rich-...

Why the audit rate for the rich is falling: Congressional Republicans cut IRS spending after the party took control of the House in 2011 in an effort to reduce wasteful spending. The agency also drew criticism from Republicans after the IRS said it targeted some conservative nonprofit groups in 2013. Adjusted for inflation, the 2019 IRS budget is 19% below its funding in 2010, according to the Government Accountability Office, which means fewer auditors. While most audits are done via computer, the process is far more complex for big earners, which involves more people with specialized knowledge, said Julie Roin ... at the University of Chicago. “Most people with $10 million or more are running businesses or have business interests on the side, so their income is coming from sources that are harder to audit and their deductions are coming from sources that are harder to audit,” Roin said. Why isn’t the audit rate for poorer Americans falling at the same rate? Concerned with fraud, Congress has made it a priority to audit filers claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit, an anti-poverty program that gives low-to-moderate working Americans money back on their taxes. In 2018, 25% of taxpayers who received EITC money didn’t actually qualify. Although, ProPublica reported, the law is so complex that many erroneous EITC claims are mistakes rather than outright fraud. More than a third of all audits are of EITC recipients, according to ProPublica. And now, the counties with the highest audit rates are predominantly poor.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Stop the reckless saber rattling on Iran
2019-05-21, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/Editorial-Stop-the-rec...

As a candidate, Donald Trump vowed to avoid getting the U.S. entangled in more wars. As president, Trump has been playing with fire, first with North Korea and now with Iran. For a leader supposedly averse to military confrontation, Trump’s initial mistake with Iran was pulling out of a 2015 deal in which the nation agreed to significantly scale back its nuclear program and submit to inspections in return for a lifting of sanctions. Then Trump last year brought on the the hawkish interventionist John Bolton as his national security adviser. The Bolton influence seems apparent in the administration’s provocative response to still-classified intelligence that the Iranians were positioning to attack U.S. interests in the region. The U.S. show of force included the assignment of the Navy’s Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Persian Gulf, escalating ... tensions. Americans have seen all too tragically how easily brinkmanship can devolve into war. Alleged attacks on two Navy destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin led to the ... congressional resolutions in 1964 that led this nation into full-scale involvement in the Vietnam War. The 2003 invasion of Iraq was justified, in part, by what proved to be false claims that Saddam Hussein’s regime had weapons of mass destruction. Those miscalculations echo loudly when Americans hear the president or Iran hawks such as Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., suggest that war with Iran would be justified by an attack on the U.S. or its allies.

Note: Obama also promised to get the US out of wars in his campaign only to radically change his tune after being elected. The military-industrial complex is incredibly powerful and somehow manages to get every president to support their agenda. To understand how this happens, read what a top US general had to say in this eye-opening essay. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


The U.S. put nuclear waste under a dome on a Pacific island. Now it’s cracking open.
2019-05-20, Washington Post
https://beta.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/05/20/us-put-nuclear-waste-under-...

At 6:45 a.m. on March 1, 1954, the blue sky stretching over the central Pacific Ocean was split open by an enormous red flash. Within seconds, a mushroom cloud towered 4˝ miles high over Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands. Scientists had underestimated the size of what became known as the “Castle Bravo” test, resulting in an explosion that was 2˝ times larger than expected. Radioactive ash dropped more than 7,000 square miles from the bomb site, caking the nearby inhabited islands. The 1954 explosion was part of nuclear tests conducted [by] the American military. From 1946 to 1958, 67 U.S. nuclear tests pulverized the tranquil reefs and islands of the central Pacific. In 1980, a massive concrete dome - 18 inches thick and shaped like a flying saucer - was placed over the fallout debris, sealing off the material on Runit [Island]. But the $218 million project was only supposed to be temporary. Cracks have reportedly started to appear in the dome. Part of the threat is that the crater was never properly lined, meaning that rising seawater could breach the structural integrity. “The bottom of the dome is just what was left behind by the nuclear weapons explosion,” Michael Gerrard, the chair of Columbia University’s Earth Institute, told the ABC. “It’s permeable soil. There was no effort to line it. And therefore, the seawater is inside the dome.” Radioactive material may have already begun to leak from the dome. The Marshallese government, however, does not have the money to shore up the structure.

Note: Reports of the effects of the nuclear bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were systematically suppressed while this nuclear testing occurred. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


I oversaw the U.S. nuclear power industry. Now I think it should be banned.
2019-05-17, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/i-oversaw-the-us-nuclear-power-industr...

Working on nuclear issues on Capitol Hill in 1999 as an aide to Democratic lawmakers, the risks from human-caused global warming seemed to outweigh the dangers of nuclear power. By 2005 ... I was serving on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, where I saw that nuclear power ... was a powerful business as well as an impressive feat of science. In 2009, President Barack Obama named me the agency’s chairman. Two years into my term, an earthquake and tsunami destroyed four nuclear reactors in Japan. I spent months reassuring the American public that nuclear energy, and the U.S. nuclear industry in particular, was safe. But by then, I was starting to doubt those claims myself. I now believe that nuclear power’s benefits are no longer enough to risk the welfare of people living near these plants. The current and potential costs - in lives and dollars - are just too high. For years, my concerns about nuclear energy’s cost and safety were always tempered by a growing fear of climate catastrophe. But Fukushima provided a good test of just how important nuclear power was to slowing climate change: After the accident, all nuclear reactors in Japan were shuttered indefinitely, eliminating production of almost all of the country’s carbon-free electricity and about 30 percent of its total electricity production. Fewer than 10 of Japan’s 50 reactors have resumed operations, yet the country’s carbon emissions have dropped below their levels before the accident. How? Energy efficiency and solar power.

Note: The above was written by Gregory Jazcko, former head of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of nuclear power.


Banks have been ripping off Americans for too long.
2019-05-17, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/17/perspectives/bernie-sanders-loan-shark-prevent...

The Federal Reserve recently reported that about half of Americans have virtually no wealth at all, with four in 10 unable to afford a $400 emergency expense. That means that if their car breaks down or their child gets sick, they have to charge those expenses to a credit card. And when they do that, they get ripped off — big time. Despite the fact that banks can borrow money from the Fed at less than 2.5%, the median credit card interest rate ... is now over 21%. Last year, Wall Street banks made $113 billion in credit card interest alone, up by nearly 50% in just five years. In other words, while working class Americans pay outrageously high interest rates, Wall Street banks get rich. And if you live in a low-income community without a bank or cannot get a credit card, what do you do when you need to borrow money? You may have to turn to a predatory payday lender where the average interest rate on an annual basis is a jaw-dropping 391%. When banks and payday lenders charge these unconscionably high interest rates, they are not engaged in the business of making credit available. They are involved in extortion. We need a national usury law that caps interest rates ... at 15%. And that's exactly what the legislation I introduced with Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would do. Under our Loan Shark Prevention Act, we would make sure that no bank or store in America could charge an interest rate higher than 15%. 88% of Americans support a cap on credit card interest rates.

Note: The above was written by Senator Bernie Sanders. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on financial industry corruption and income inequality.


Activists arrested in Venezuelan embassy in Washington after a monthlong occupation
2019-05-16, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/05/16/codepink-activists-ar...

Tensions have been mounting at the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, D.C., where liberal activists from the group CODEPINK have occupied the building for the past month. On Thursday morning, things finally came to a head when law enforcement personnel entered the embassy to arrest and remove the activists. In a press release, CODEPINK said that their activists were charged with "interference with certain protective functions." Activists have been occupying the embassy since April 10. The four-story building has been vacant since the beginning of this year, when President Donald Trump recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela, instead of the current Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro. CODEPINK denounced the arrests and slammed the Guaido government. “This struggle is far from over. We will continue to fight to stop this embassy from being handed over by the Guaidó supporters,” said CODEPINK Codirector Medea Benjamin. The activists believe that giving the Guaido government control over the embassy could endanger the American Embassy in Venezuela. The State Department withdrew all of its remaining personnel from Venezuela in March. On April 30, Guaido led an effort to oust Maduro, but the uprising failed after the country’s military sided with Maduro instead of the opposition.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Reef restored: How Belize saved its beloved coral
2019-05-15, Christian Science Monitor
https://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2019/0515/Reef-restored-How-Belize-save...

As the clock ticks for the world’s coral reefs, Belize offers a compelling example both of how a grassroots environmental movement can spur governments to enact tougher environmental laws and regulations and how, when properly applied, restorative processes can help coral recover from even the most severe damage. In Belize, reefs were being rapidly degraded by both changing environmental factors and human development. The devastation that Ms. Carne witnessed sparked an idea. What if she could help the reef recover by reseeding and replanting coral beds the same way landscapers replenish flower beds? She eventually founded Fragments of Hope to ... develop and maintain coral nurseries. These nurseries are in situ marine laboratories containing submerged grids of rebar (called tables) as well as rope lines that foster young coral until they are big and healthy enough to be transplanted onto coral reefs in need of restoration or replenishment. By 2012 environmental organizations had helped mount a public referendum in which 96% of voters supported the restoration and protection of reef systems. The government [developed] a plan to tighten regulations, preserve mangrove habitats, and enact more oversight of reef systems. In 2015 Belize’s government began to implement a long-term conservation plan, and in 2017 the government took the step, virtually unprecedented around the world, of putting a moratorium on all oil exploration.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The '3.5% rule': How a small minority can change the world
2019-05-13, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20190513-it-only-takes-35-of-people-to-cha...

In 1986, millions of Filipinos took to the streets of Manila in peaceful protest and prayer in the People Power movement. The Marcos regime folded on the fourth day. In 2003, the people of Georgia ousted Eduard Shevardnadze through the bloodless Rose Revolution, in which protestors stormed the parliament building holding the flowers in their hands. Earlier this year, the presidents of Sudan and Algeria both announced they would step aside after decades in office, thanks to peaceful campaigns of resistance. In each case, civil resistance by ordinary members of the public trumped the political elite to achieve radical change. There are, of course, many ethical reasons to use nonviolent strategies. But compelling research by Erica Chenoweth, a political scientist at Harvard University, confirms that civil disobedience is not only the moral choice; it is also the most powerful way of shaping world politics. Looking at hundreds of campaigns over the last century, Chenoweth found that ... it takes around 3.5% of the population actively participating in the protests to ensure serious political change. Overall, nonviolent campaigns were twice as likely to succeed as violent campaigns: they led to political change 53% of the time compared to 26% for the violent protests. Of the 25 largest campaigns that they studied, 20 were nonviolent, and 14 of these were outright successes. Overall, the nonviolent campaigns attracted around four times as many participants (200,000) as the average violent campaign (50,000).

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Cutting-edge experiments show an electrical zap improves memory in older adults
2019-05-10, CBC (Canada's public broadcasting system)
https://www.cbc.ca/radio/quirks/may-11-2019-zapping-the-brain-to-improve-memo...

Two complementary studies recently found that noninvasive and extremely mild brain stimulation could be used to improve episodic and working memory in older adults. "We can make these 60 and 70-year-olds look strikingly like our 20-year-old participants," researcher Robert Reinhart [said]. The first study used a technique called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to induce mild neural firing in the brain. The research team stimulated the participants' brains for half an hour a day for five days. They then measured the adults' memory ability 24 hours after the final day of stimulation and found their recall ability on a memory test had improved 31 per cent. The second study, led by Robert Reinhart from ... Boston University, used a different technology, and stimulated different regions of the brain. Using electroencephalography, or EEG, which records the electrical activity of the brain, Reinhart found evidence that older adults' brain waves were out-of-sync in critical brain regions used by working memory or short-term memory. Reinhart then tried to ameliorate the problem by using a precise and customizable electrical stimulation technology called "high definition transcranial alternating current stimulation," or HD-tACS for short. The team applied current for 25 minutes to 42 older participants' brains, and saw improvements during this time on a memory test that they did before they received stimulation. As in Voss' study, the subjects' performance increased to the point that it was equal to that of 20-year-olds.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


‘The Redemption Project With Van Jones’ will make you cry — and that’s the point
2019-05-10, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://datebook.sfchronicle.com/movies-tv/the-redemption-project-with-van-jo...

Jason Cohen has had a lot of practice trying to be as unobtrusive and emotionally impervious as possible during sensitive conversations and events in strangers’ lives. “I’d be lying if I told you that we weren’t huddled behind the monitors with tears in our eyes during this project,” Cohen, 47, said on a recent morning at his office in Berkeley’s Saul Zaentz Media Center. Cohen was discussing his gripping new CNN limited series, “The Redemption Project with Van Jones.” Filmed over the last 18 months in towns and prisons in California and four other states, the [show takes] viewers inside the powerful, yet little understood, restorative justice process. Each week, victims of a life-altering crime (or their surviving family members) are connected in person with their offender for a bracingly honest conversation, in the hope of taking steps toward healing on both sides. “There was a box of Kleenex at our video village where we watch, and Van had one as well,” Cohen said. He’s been friends with Jones - the superstar CNN commentator, former Obama adviser and criminal-justice-reform advocate - for almost 20 years. Jones has spent 25 years working in criminal justice and is well versed in the ways restorative justice techniques promote real accountability. Jones says what’s surprised him most working on “Redemption Project” is “how simple the questions asked by survivors are. We spend $80 billion a year on the incarceration industry and sometimes ... our system still hasn’t given people basic answers. There’s still so much healing to do.

Note: Don't miss this most profound series, which shows what true rehabilitation can look like. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A gift from a stranger tucked into a book sets off a chain of random acts of kindness
2019-05-09, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/09/us/iyw-money-falls-from-self-help-book-and-a-k...

Ashley Jost and her friends had just made a pledge to read more books. The 27-year-old bought the book, "Girl, Stop Apologizing," and began reading it when she got home. There was a surprise waiting for her inside. Five dollars fell out on the floor. She knew the cash wasn't hers because she doesn't carry any, she said. When the college administrator started thumbing through the pages, she found a neon pink Post-it note stuck inside with a handwritten message. The note read: "I was having a tough day. I thought maybe I could brighten someone else's with this little surprise. Go buy a coffee, a donut or a face mask. Practice some self-care today. Remember that you are loved. You are amazing. You are strong. Love, Lisa." Jost was deeply moved. She felt obligated to share the note. So she took a picture and posted it on her Twitter account. "It sort of caught fire," she said. A few of her friends shared it - and the local paper picked it up. Even the book's author, Rachel Hollis, encouraged her followers to pay it forward in their own ways. Jost's tweet has been liked more than 3,000 times and shared around the world after the BBC got wind of the story. People are pledging their own random acts of kindness -- including her. Once a day for a week, Jost hid surprise love notes and "lots of Starbucks gift cards" totaling five dollars a day in coffee shops, restaurants and libraries. Jost says she plans to do at least one kind thing every week from now on.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Internal documents show 3M hid PFAS dangers for decades
2019-05-09, Detroit Free Press (Part of the USA Today network)
https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2019/05/09/3-m-lawsuit-pfas-w...

A 3M environmental specialist, in a scathing resignation letter, accused company officials of being "unethical" and more "concerned with markets, legal defensibility and image over environmental safety" when it came to PFAS, the emerging contaminant causing a potential crisis throughout Michigan and the country. [The] explosive resignation letter is just one of a large cache of internal 3M memos and documents obtained by the Free Press through public records law from the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office. Then-Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson obtained the internal documents from the Minnesota-based company after suing 3M in 2010 over its environmental contamination in the state. The company settled the suit last year for $850 million. The nonstick compounds were used for decades ... in aqueous firefighting foam, industrial processes and a host of popular consumer products: Teflon nonstick pots and pans, ScotchGard stain protectants ... Gore-Tex water-resistant shoes and clothing, and more. But the same qualities that made PFAS compounds so useful also makes them almost indestructible in the environment, giving them the ominous nickname "the forever chemicals." PFAS can now be found in the blood of nearly 99% of Americans. It has even been found in polar bears in the Arctic Circle. Some 46 sites in Michigan are known to have groundwater with PFAS levels above the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's lifetime health advisory guideline

Note: Much more is available in this revealing article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health.


The ‘holy grail’ of plastic? Scientists create material that can be recycled over and over again
2019-05-09, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/scientists-berkeley-holy-grail-of-...

The “holy grail” of plastic – a material that can be repeatedly recycled without any loss of quality – has been created by scientists. Placed in an acid bath, it can be fully broken down into its component parts. Like lego, these monomers can then be reassembled into different shapes, colours and textures, according to the scientists at California’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory who created it. Currently, less than a third of recyclable plastic is re-purposed to create new materials, leaving the majority of it to end up in landfill or the ocean. The new material called poly (diketoenamine) or PDK can, unlike normal plastics, have its monomers separated by dunking the material in a highly acidic solution. The acid breaks the bonds between monomers and separates them from additives that give the plastic its distinctive look and feel. These monomers can be recovered for reuse for as long as possible, or “upcycled” to make another product. “We’re interested in the chemistry that redirects plastic lifecycles from linear to circular. We see an opportunity to make a difference for where there are no recycling options,” said Brett Helms, a staff scientist in Berkeley Lab’s Molecular Foundry. Dr Helms added: “With PDKs, the immutable bonds of conventional plastics are replaced with reversible bonds that allow the plastic to be recycled more effectively.” The research team believe their recyclable plastic could be an alternative to non-recyclable plastics in use today.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


U.S. Special Forces School Publishes New Guide for Overthrowing Foreign Governments
2019-05-08, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/us-guide-overthrow-government-special-forces-school-...

The official school of the United States' Special Operations Command has published a new paper detailing a decades-long history of Pentagon-backed interference around the world, hoping to provide insight on how best to approach such efforts in the present and future. The 250-page study, "Support to Resistance: Strategic Purpose and Effectiveness," was compiled by Army Special Forces veteran Will Irwin. Its findings present a comprehensive look at how the U.S. has supported efforts to pressure, undermine and overthrow foreign governments. The report includes some 47 case studies spanning from 1941 to 2003, detailing a legacy of mixed results that included assisting partisans against the Axis Power satellites during World War II, bolstering anti-communist forces throughout the Cold War and taking on post-9/11 adversaries in Afghanistan and Iraq. The numerous Washington-orchestrated coups of the past 70 years were "not included in this study as they did not involve legitimate resistance movements." Of the 47 cases analyzed, 23 were deemed "successful," 20 were designated "failures," two were classified as "partially successful" and two more - both during World War II - were called "inconclusive" as the broader conflict led to an Allied victory anyway. Coercion was the most successful method at a three-quarters rate of success or partial success, while disruption worked just over half the time and regime change only yielded the desired result in 29 percent of the cases reviewed.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


The White House revoked my press pass. It’s not just me — it’s curtailing access for all journalists.
2019-05-08, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-white-house-has-revoked-my-press-...

For the past 21 years, I have had the high privilege of holding a White House press pass. But no more. The White House eliminated most briefings and severely restricted access to official events. And this week came the coup de grace: After covering four presidents, I received an email informing me that Trump’s press office had revoked my White House credential. I’m not the only one. I was part of a mass purge of “hard pass” holders after the White House implemented a new standard that designated as unqualified almost the entire White House press corps, including all seven of The Post’s White House correspondents. The Post requested exceptions for its seven White House reporters and for me. The White House press office granted exceptions to the other seven, but not to me. I strongly suspect it’s because I’m a Trump critic. The White House is drastically curtailing access for all journalists. Briefings have been abolished in favor of unscheduled “gaggles” ... in the White House driveway. The Pentagon and State Department have done similarly. The White House has also restricted access by allowing only one journalist from a news organization at most events, and by admitting journalists to events only if they register days in advance. This has sharply reduced journalists’ attendance at the White House. White House officials offered me and others it disqualified a lesser credential called a six-month pass. They say it will grant equivalent access, but for various technical reasons, that isn’t true.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the manipulation of public perception.


We Might Finally Be Able to Safely Drink Salt Water
2019-05-08, Popular Mechanics
https://www.popularmechanics.com/science/green-tech/a27406103/desalination-wa...

Being able to drink the waters of the ocean could solve countless problems across the globe. The only problem? Desalination has a dark side known as brine, an environmentally harmful byproduct. A new approach from Columbia University, however, could radically change the limits of desalination. They call it Temperature Swing Solvent Extraction (TSSE). TSSE can desalinate extremely salty brine up to seven times as salty as the ocean. For comparison, the current methods can only handle brine twice as salty. The TSSE solvent isn't dependent on the evaporation of water, meaning it doesn't need high temperatures to work. It can be activated by low-grade heat (less than 70 degrees celsius) that is easy to attain, sometimes to the point of it being natural. In a study, TSSE removed up to 98.4 percent of the salt in brine. “We think TSSE will be transformational for the water industry. It can displace the prevailing practice of costly distillation for desalination of high-salinity brines and tackle higher salinities that RO cannot handle,” [said Ngai Yin Yip, assistant professor of earth and environmental engineering at Columbia]. “This will radically improve the sustainability in the treatment of produced water, inland desalination concentrate, landfill leachate, and other hypersaline streams of emerging importance. We can eliminate the pollution problems from these brines and create cleaner, more useable water for our planet.”

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The EPA is meant to protect us. The Monsanto trials suggest it isn't doing that
2019-05-07, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/may/07/epa-monsanto-round-up-t...

Ever since Monsanto introduced its line of Roundup weedkillers to the world in 1974, the products have been touted by the company and regulators as extremely safe. But the emergence of long-held corporate secrets in three public trials has revealed a covert campaign to cover-up the pesticide’s risks and raised troubling questions about lax oversight of all pesticides by the Environmental Protection Agency and other regulatory agencies. Two recently concluded Roundup product liability trials in California have resulted in large damage awards against Monsanto, after juries found the company’s herbicides contributed to cancer and that it failed to warn of the risks. Monsanto never conducted epidemiology studies for Roundup and its other formulations made with the active ingredient glyphosate, to see if the products could lead to cancer in people who used them. At the same time ... the company was spending millions of dollars on secretive PR campaigns – including $17m budgeted in a single year – to finance ghostwritten studies and op-eds aimed at discrediting independent scientists whose work found dangers with Monsanto’s herbicides. When the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry sought to evaluate glyphosate toxicity in 2015, Monsanto ... engaged the assistance of EPA officials to delay that review. The efforts delayed the release of the public draft of the review ... until earlier this month. As Monsanto had feared, the agency’s review found links between cancer and glyphosate.

Note: Internal FDA emails suggest that the food supply contains far more glyphosate than government reports indicate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health.


The transformational power of how you talk about your life
2019-05-07, BBC News
http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20190523-the-way-you-tell-your-life-story-sha...

Imagine that, when you were 12 years old, your family moved to the other side of the country. In your new school, you were bullied for the first time. When you reflect upon this period of your life today, do you see this as just one of many episodes in which things were going great, and then turned sour? Or do you see it as another example of a tough experience that had a happy ending? It may not seem as if the way you tell this story, even just to yourself, would shape who you are. But it turns out that how you interpret your life, and tell its story, has profound effects on what kind of person you become. If you’re the kind of person who would remember the positives that came out of that (hypothetical) bullying episode at your new school, it’s also more likely that you enjoy a greater sense of wellbeing and satisfaction in life. Moreover, this raises the tantalising possibility that changing your self-authoring style and focus could be beneficial – indeed, helping people to re-interpret their personal stories in a more constructive light is the basis of what’s known as “narrative therapy”. Modify your story as you tell it, and perhaps you can change the kind of person you are. As philosophers have long argued, there is a sense in which we construct our own realities. Usually this liberating perspective is applied by psychotherapists to help people deal with specific fears and anxieties. Life story research suggests a similar principle may be applicable at a grander level, in the very way that we author our own lives, therefore shaping who we are.

Note: Check out a highly inspiring online lesson which beautifully shows that what happens to you is not nearly as important as how you interpret what happens.


America’s Defense Budget Is Bigger Than You Think
2019-05-07, The Nation
https://www.thenation.com/article/tom-dispatch-america-defense-budget-bigger-...

In its latest budget request, the Trump administration is asking for a near-record $750 billion for the Pentagon and related defense activities. If passed by Congress, it will be one of the largest military budgets in American history, topping peak levels reached during the Korean and Vietnam wars. That $750 billion represents only part of the actual annual cost of our national-security state. There are at least 10 separate pots of money dedicated to fighting wars, preparing for yet more wars, and dealing with the consequences of wars already fought. The Pentagon’s regular, or base, budget is slated to be $544.5 billion in fiscal year 2020. The Pentagon’s own Defense Business Board found that cutting unnecessary overhead, including a bloated bureaucracy and a startlingly large shadow workforce of private contractors, would save $125 billion over five years. The Pentagon also maintains its very own slush fund, formally known as the Overseas Contingency Operations account, or OCO. In theory, the fund is meant to pay for the War on Terror. Of the nearly $174 billion proposed for the war budget and “emergency” funding, only a little more than $25 billion is meant to directly pay for the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. The rest will be set aside for what’s termed enduring activities that would continue even if those wars ended or for routine Pentagon activities. Our final annual tally for war, preparations for war, and the impact of war comes to more than $1.25 trillion, more than double the Pentagon’s base budget.

Note: Read summaries of several major media articles showing the Pentagon's blatant lies and disregard for accounting. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the military.


Facebook bans Alex Jones and other controversial figures for hate speech
2019-05-02, Los Angeles Times
https://www.latimes.com/business/technology/la-fi-tn-facebook-ban-alex-jones-...

Facebook on Thursday banned conspiracy theorist and InfoWars founder Alex Jones and the accounts of other controversial figures. The company, citing violations of its policies on hate speech and promoting violence, is also blocking religious leader Louis Farrakhan, who is known for sharing anti-Semitic views; Paul Nehlen, a white nationalist who ran for Congress in 2018; far-right figures Milo Yiannopoulos and Laura Loomer; and conspiracy theorist Paul Joseph Watson. Those individuals and accounts that represent them are also banned from photo-sharing app Instagram, which Facebook owns. “They have rules, but enforcement is completely random,” said Roger McNamee, a high-profile Silicon Valley investor who has become a sharp critic of Facebook. “They don’t do anything about it until massive harm has been done and they can no longer find a dodge. Facebook is clearly feeling pressure.” McNamee said Facebook’s business model depends on amplifying content that stimulates fear and outrage, and banning a few influential figures doesn't change that. "It is sacrificing a handful of the most visible extreme voices in order to protect a much larger number of users it needs to maximize profits," he said. The Menlo Park, Calif., company didn’t say what specific posts or actions led to the bans, though a spokesperson said that Jones, Yiannopoulos and Loomer have all recently promoted Gavin McInnes, founder of the violence-prone far-right group the Proud Boys, whom Facebook banned in October.

Note: What happened to freedom of speech guaranteed in the US Constitution? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the manipulation of public perception.


High Levels of Toxic PFAS Chemicals Pollute Breast Milk Around the World
2019-04-30, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/04/30/breast-milk-pfas-chemicals/

Decades after DuPont and 3M first discovered that the perfluorinated chemicals making them fortunes could be transmitted from mothers to babies, millions of women around the world are passing dangerous amounts of these toxic compounds to their children, according to a report published on Monday. Women’s breast milk in many countries now contains chemicals belonging to a class of compounds known as PFAS at levels well above the safety thresholds set by governments, says the report from international environmental group IPEN. In Jordan, for instance, researchers found breast milk contained, on average, 144 parts per trillion of PFOA, according to a 2015 study. That’s more than double the 70 ppt health advisory level the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency set for that chemical in drinking water; more than seven times the 20 ppt drinking water safety level recently set by the state of Vermont; and more than 10 times the 14 ppt drinking water threshold the state of New Jersey proposed for PFOA earlier this month. One woman’s milk contained 1,120 ppt of PFOA, according to the Jordanian study, which also found that 96 percent of cow’s milk samples also contained PFOS and PFOA. PFAS chemicals — used in nonstick pans, firefighting foam, and hundreds of other products — have also been found in breast milk in at least 19 countries in Europe, Asia, and North America, according to a study published in November in Environmental Science and Pollution Research.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health.


How tech is bringing Israelis and Palestinians together
2019-04-30, BBC
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-48053200

Israel may be known as the Start-up Nation, famed for its tech start-ups that are supported by one of the largest venture-capital industries per capita in the world. But Israeli-Palestinian relations have been relentlessly grim. Initiatives like Tech2Peace are trying to bridge divides between the two communities. The student and volunteer-led programme brings Israeli and Palestinian youths together to learn tech skills - 3D and graphic design, website creation, app development - and to engage in conflict resolution dialogue. [Participant Zada] Haj says she had "zero knowledge" of animation or 3D modelling before, but by the end of the session she was able to turn her ideas into creation and develop skills that would help her get a job. Palestinian entrepreneur Adnan Awni Jaber also says Tech2Peace was the gateway for him to make Jewish friends in Israel. "I believe that technology can break walls between any two sides of the conflict because it's borderless," he tells the BBC. When [Tomer Cohen] and his Israeli and Palestinian co-founders were thinking of ways they could foster long-term partnerships between youngsters, they came up with the idea of giving them life skills that could enable them to continue working together. "We thought, OK, let's do this with technology and programming," says Mr Cohen. "When young people come to our seminar, they're not thinking, 'OK, you're Palestinian and I'm Israeli,' they're thinking, 'I want to improve my life and you want to, as well. We have something in common'."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Infertility fears: WiFi killing men's sperm, study reveals
2019-04-29, New Zealand Herald (New Zealand's leading newspaper)
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/health/news/article.cfm?c_id=204&objectid=12226105

WiFi is having a harmful and detrimental effect on men's sperm, a new study has revealed. According to a Japanese study, further evidence has shown electromagnetic (EM) waves from WiFi devices are contributing to the declining fertility rates in developed countries. The study is believed to be the first to trial a WiFi shield to help protect sperm from the effects of electromagnetic waves. Fifty-one male patients took part in the study. Sperm samples were taken from the men and were divided into three groups, one where samples were not exposed to electromagnetic waves from the WiFi router, one group who were protected by a small WiFi shield, and the last group who were exposed to the waves. [Researcher] Kumiko Nakata ... said sperm samples from participants were placed near a pocket WiFi router similar to how a mobile phone would be carried in a man's trousers. After two hours of being exposed to electromagnetic waves, the motility rate of the shield group was 44.9 per cent and the exposed group sat at just 26.4 per cent, compared to 53.3 per cent from the group not exposed to the waves. After 24 hours, the dead sperm rate of the group not exposed was 8.4 per cent, the shield group was 18.2 per cent, and the exposed group was 23.3 per cent. Nakata says the study strongly shows electromagnetic waves are killing human sperm and that WiFi devices are a contributing factor to declining fertility.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the risks and dangers of wireless technologies .


Who Got Rich This Week: Zuckerberg, Bezos And Three Other Billionaires Gain $13 Billion Combined
2019-04-27, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/hayleycuccinello/2019/04/27/who-got-rich-this-we...

Mark Zuckerberg has had plenty of difficult days in the past year, but this past week was a good one for him. The Facebook CEO’s net worth jumped $5.5 billion in the week through Thursday April 25. The 34-year-old is worth $71.3 billion, $20 billion more than at the beginning of 2019. He is now the 5th richest person in the world, up from No. 8 in March. The positive quarterly earnings report overshadowed news that Facebook is setting aside as much as $5 billion to pay a fine to the Federal Trade Commission over privacy issues. Zuckerberg’s gain was by far the biggest of the week, but he is in good company. The fortunes of Zuckerberg and four other tech billionaires, including Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, rose by a collective $13 billion in seven days. A day after Facebook released its first-quarter earnings report, Amazon announced a quarterly profit of $3.6 billion, an all-time record for the e-commerce giant. Amazon’s share price rose 2.2% in the week through Thursday, causing Bezos’ net worth to surge by $3.2 billion. The net worth of Steve Ballmer, Microsoft’s former CEO, rose $1.7 billion in the week through Thursday as the software giant’s share price increased by 4.7%. Michael Dell, chairman and CEO of Dell Technologies, is now worth $40 billion after gaining $1.4 billion in a week due to a 6.6% stock uptick. Larry Page, the cofounder of Google and CEO of its parent company Alphabet, got $1.1 billion richer, with an estimated fortune of $57.6 billion.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing income inequality news articles from reliable major media sources.


In Case Brought by School Speech Pathologist, Texas Federal Court Becomes the Third to Strike Down Pro-Israel Oath as Unconstitutional
2019-04-26, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/04/26/in-case-brought-by-school-speech-patholog...

A federal court in Texas issued a ruling on Thursday afternoon preliminarily enjoining enforcement of Texas’ law banning contractors from boycotting Israel. The court ruled that the law plainly violates the free speech guarantee of the First Amendment. Following similar decisions by federal courts in Kansas and Arizona, the ruling becomes the third judicial finding – out of three who have evaluated the constitutionality of such laws – to conclude that they are unconstitutional attacks on the free speech rights of Americans. The case was brought by Bahia Amawi, a longtime elementary school speech pathologist in Austin, Texas, whose contract renewal was denied due to her refusal to sign an oath certifying that she does not participate in any boycotts of Israel. Amawi, a U.S. citizen and mother of four U.S.-born children, was required to sign the pro-Israel oath due to a new law enacted with almost no dissent by the Texas State Legislature in May 2017, and signed into law two days later by GOP Gov. Greg Abbott. When signing the bill, Gov. Abbott proclaimed: “Any anti-Israel policy is an anti-Texas policy.” But this was precisely the mentality, along with the virtually unanimous pro-Israel sentiment in the Texas State Legislature, that the Texas federal judge identified when explaining why the pro-Israel oath so blatantly violates the free speech guarantees of the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment.

Note: Watch a video documenting Amawi's story. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


He teaches incarcerated kids to honor his mom who was denied education. Now, he's National Teacher of the Year.
2019-04-26, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/24/us/rodney-robinson-2019-teacher-of-the-year-tr...

[Rodney] Robinson, who teaches at Virgie Binford Education Center, a school inside the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center in Virginia, was just named the National Teacher of the Year by the Council of Chief State School Officers. "He creates a positive school culture by empowering his students - many of whom have experienced trauma - to become civically minded social advocates who use their skills and voices to affect physical and policy changes at their school and in their communities," the council said in a statement. After seeing his mom "transform" while pursuing her GED, Robinson decided to become a history and social studies teacher. He has been teaching for 19 years. In 2015, Robinson moved to teaching at the juvenile detention center because he wanted to understand the school-to-prison pipeline, which refers to strict school policies that can push students from disadvantaged backgrounds to leave school and become incarcerated. Many of the students at Virgie Binford come from impoverished backgrounds, live in high-crime areas and have had negative contact with schools and the judicial system, Principal Ta'Neisha Ford said. The educators' goal is to help these students fall back in love with school. "(Robinson) allows students to really shine and he gives them the tools to succeed," Ford said. Robinson said he's honored to have won the teacher of the year title. He is working on programs to lower high school dropout rates.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Boy Scouts Of America Estimates More Than 12,000 Victims Of Sexual Abuse
2019-04-25, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2019/04/25/717246012/boy-scouts-of-america-estimates-more...

Newly exposed court testimony suggests the Boy Scouts of America had considerably more leaders involved in the sexual abuse of minors than previously thought. The Boy Scouts of America's own records show that more than 12,000 children have been sexually assaulted while participating in Scouting programs. The documents came to light through court testimony given by a researcher the Scouts had hired to do an internal review. The records reveal allegations against thousands of Scout leaders, allegations that date from the 1940s. With such a huge number of victims, the organization could be facing bankruptcy. As disturbing as the figures are, the reality that only the Boy Scouts of America knows who these alleged perpetrators are is just as distressing. The Boy Scouts of America have never actually released these names in any form that can be known to the public. And they may have removed them from Scouting. They may have kept them in their perversion files. But they never alerted the community. The Boy Scouts have more than 2 million Scouts, and hundreds of victims are expected to file suit. One prominent sexual abuse attorney has already signed more than 180 clients. The Scouts have extensive landholdings across the country where members hike, camp and play. The prospect that the Boy Scouts may declare bankruptcy has victims and their lawyers crying foul. A bankruptcy filing could allow the 109-year-old organization to continue operating by shielding its assets and information.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Crime Is Down, Yet U.S. Incarceration Rates Are Still Among the Highest in the World
2019-04-25, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/25/us/us-mass-incarceration-rate.html

For all the talk of curbing America’s appetite for mass incarceration and bipartisan support for reducing prison sentences, the number of people incarcerated in the United States declined only slightly in 2017, according to data released on Thursday by the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. The United States still has the largest known incarcerated population in the world. A drop in the federal prison population, due in large part to a 2014 decision by the U.S. Sentencing Commission to reduce sentences for drug crimes, accounts for a third of the year-over-year decline. And while some states have significantly reduced their prison populations in recent years, others continue to set records for the number of people they are keeping locked up. The size of the United States prison population has resulted from not only locking more people up, but also keeping them locked up longer. A record number of people are serving life sentences. In fact, while the United States accounts for about 4 percent of the world’s population, it has more than a third of the estimated number of people serving life sentences. As measures like parole and compassionate release have been curtailed, or even eliminated in some places, prisoners have become older and more costly. According to the report, more than one in 10 prison inmates in 2017 were 55 years or older. The racial disparity among men remains stark, with black men serving prison sentences at almost six times the rate of white men.

Note: The privatized prison-industrial complex brings huge profits to key individuals. And the media hardly mentions FBI statistics showing violent crime has dropped to 1/3 or less of what it was 25 years ago. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the incarceration industry.


US Navy introducing guidelines for pilots to report UFO sightings
2019-04-24, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/24/politics/us-navy-ufo-guidelines/index.html

Navy pilots who think they may have seen unidentified flying objects will now have a detailed means of reporting unexplainable events so the military can keep track of what may, or may not, be happening. "The Navy is updating and formalizing the process by which reports of any such suspected incursions can be made to the cognizant authorities," they said in a statement. The Navy does not think that aliens have been flying in US airspace, one Navy official told CNN. But there have been "a number of reports of unauthorized and/or unidentified aircraft entering various military-controlled ranges and designated air space in recent years," according to the statement. "The Navy and the USAF ... investigates each and every report." The new policy will standardize how incidents are reported, and what radar or other data may be gathered that the military can store long term for further analysis. Separately a senior military official told CNN that some of the recent sightings are highly classified military aviation programs undergoing testing. Because the sightings have garnered public attention, senior Navy intelligence officials have briefed Congress, as well as aviators on the safety hazards. The Pentagon has intermittently over the decades funded various efforts to evaluate unexplained incursions and phenomena, but the last official effort was shuttered in 2012. A former Pentagon official, who led that program and resigned in protest when it was ended, told CNN's Erin Burnett in 2017 "that there is very compelling evidence that we may not be alone."

Note: Another article suggests Navy pilots pushed for this. Yet it may be that this is part of a controlled acculturation to UFOs by the deep state. For strong evidence of this, see our two-page summary on UFOs. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing UFO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Saudi Arabia executes 37 people, crucifying one, for terror-related crimes
2019-04-24, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/23/middleeast/saudi-executions-terror-intl/index....

Saudi Arabia has executed 37 men convicted of terror-related crimes, the kingdom's official news agency said Tuesday. One of the convicts was crucified. In Saudi Arabia, crucifixion means the body of someone executed is strung up and put on display as a deterrent to others. The majority of those executed were Shia men, according to Amnesty International, which dismissed the legal proceedings that led to the convictions as "sham trials that violated international fair trial standards which relied on confessions extracted through torture." The kingdom has repeatedly denied allegations of torture. Those executed include 11 men convicted of spying for Iran, and at least 14 others who were convicted of violent offenses related to participation in anti-government demonstration. One of the men listed in Tuesday's government statement was Abdulkareem al-Hawaj, who, according to Amnesty, was arrested at the age of 16 and convicted of offenses related to his involvement in anti-government protests. Since Prince Mohammed bin Salman first emerged onto the kingdom's political scene in 2015, he has overseen an intensified crackdown on dissent. He began his political career as defense minister and was elevated to Crown Prince in 2017. In recent years, the Crown Prince has ordered the rounding up of scores of activists, high-profile clerics, analysts, businessmen and princes, as well as women's rights defenders who were allegedly tortured.

Note: How is it that this monarchy which brands famous feminists as "traitors", beheads its enemies and strings up their bodies in public display is one of the closest allies of the US? According to this ABC news article a 2010 massive arms sale to the kingdom was "the single largest sale of weapons to a foreign nation in the history of the U.S." For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Why the U.N. chief’s silence on human rights is deeply troubling
2019-04-24, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/04/24/why-un-chiefs-silence-huma...

Halfway through his first five-year term, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres is becoming defined by his silence on human rights - even as serious rights abuses proliferate. Numerous governments have voiced concerns about China’s detention of 1 million Turkic, mainly Uighur, Muslims for forced indoctrination. Yet Guterres has not said a word about it in public. Instead, he praises China’s development prowess. Guterres has also repeatedly declined to exercise his authority to establish fact-finding missions into egregious rights violations, such as Saudi Arabia’s murder of Post contributing columnist Jamal Khashoggi, the use of chemical weapons in Syria, and the murder of two U.N. sanctions monitors in Congo. Apart from his spokesman’s feeble appeal to the United States to fulfill its legal obligations as host for the United Nations, Guterres has stayed silent on the Trump administration’s revocation of a visa for the International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor over possible investigations of U.S. torture in Afghanistan. There is no doubt that Guterres is a skilled and conscientious diplomat, but his decision to suppress his voice on human rights, especially as civilians are targeted in armed conflicts, is misguided. For more than two years, Guterres offered excuses for not publicly defending human rights. He wanted to focus on internal reforms. He needed to stabilize relations with Trump. But today’s crises are too acute, the civilian victims too numerous, for Guterres to reduce his job to mediator in chief.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


'They think they are above the law': the firms that own America's voting system
2019-04-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/22/us-voting-machine-private-com...

In 2015, Maryland’s main election system vendor was bought by a parent company with ties to a Russian oligarch. The state’s election officials did not know about the purchase until July 2018, when the FBI notified them of the potential conflict. The FBI investigated and did not find any evidence of tampering or sharing of voter data. But the incident was a giant red flag ... especially as many states have outsourced vote-counting to the private sector. Democracy in the United States is now largely a secretive and privately-run affair conducted out of the public eye with little oversight. The corporations that run every aspect of American elections, from voter registration to casting and counting votes by machine, are subject to limited state and federal regulation. The companies are privately-owned and closely held, making information about ownership and financial stability difficult to obtain. The software source code and hardware design of their systems are kept as trade secrets. A small network of companies ... have near-monopolies on election services, such as building voting machines. Across the spectrum, private vendors have long histories of errors that affected elections, of obstructing politicians and the public from seeking information, of corruption, suspect foreign influence, false statements of security and business dishonesty. The computer security world has been sounding the alarm since voting machines were adopted. Now lawmakers, election officials and national security experts are joining in.

Note: Computer scientists have shown nearly every make and model of electronic voting machine to be vulnerable to hacking. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing elections corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


First major drug distribution company, former executives, criminally charged in opioid crisis
2019-04-23, NBC News
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/former-ceo-major-drug-distribution-compa...

In a national first in the fight against the opioid crisis, a major drug distribution company, its former chief executive and another top executive have been criminally charged in New York. Rochester Drug Co-Operative, one of the top 10 largest drug distributors in the United States, was charged Tuesday with conspiracy to violate narcotics laws, conspiracy to defraud the U.S., and willfully failing to file suspicious order reports. Laurence Doud III, the company's former chief executive, and William Pietruszewski, the company’s former chief compliance officer, are individually charged with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and conspiracy to defraud the U.S.. Pietruszewski is also charged with willfully failing to file suspicious order reports with the Drug Enforcement Administration, or DEA. The U.S. attorney's office also filed a lawsuit against Rochester Drug Co-Operative on Tuesday seeking "penalties and injunctive relief." Between 2012 and 2016, Rochester Drug Co-Operative is accused of distributing tens of millions of doses of oxycodone, fentanyl and other opioids to pharmacies that its own compliance department found had no legitimate need for them. Prosecutors said Rochester Drug Co-Operative went against the DEA and its own policies and distributed drugs to pharmacies that were "filling controlled substances prescriptions issued by practitioners acting outside the scope of their medical practice, under investigation by law enforcement, or on RDC’s 'watch list.'"

Note: Many doctors also profited from excessive prescribing of dangerous opioids. And according to a former DEA agent, Congress helped drug companies fuel the opioid epidemic. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing Big Pharma corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


America's new voting machines bring new fears of election tampering
2019-04-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/22/us-voting-machines-paper-ball...

For almost 17 years, states and counties around the country have conducted elections on machines that have been repeatedly shown to be vulnerable to hacking, errors and breakdowns, and that leave behind no proof that the votes counted actually match the votes that were cast. Now ... states and counties across the country are working to replace these outdated machines with new ones. The purchases replace machines from the turn of the century that raise serious security concerns. But the same companies that made and sold those machines are behind the new generation of technology, and a history of distrust between election security advocates and voting machine vendors has led to a bitter debate over the viability of the new voting equipment. The draw of the new machines, called ballot-marking devices (BMD), is the promise of a paper ballot. But there are concerns with the integrity of the paper trail a BMD would create at every stage. Many BMD models on the market print a sort of two-in-one ballot with one section to be read by machines and another to be read by humans. Barcodes – or QR codes – that represent a voter’s choices are printed on the ballot along with plain text showing, presumably, the same information in a way people can understand. When the ballot is scanned, it is the barcode that is scanned and counted, not the text that voters can read. If a barcode is printed that represents a different choice, or the scanners were hacked, voters would not know the difference.

Note: Computer scientists have shown nearly every make and model of electronic voting machine to be vulnerable to hacking. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing elections corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Florida reform school yields evidence of more graves
2019-04-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/22/a-type-of-justice-florida-ref...

For Jerry Cooper and the friends he knows as the White House boys, the memories never fade. The brutal beatings, rapes and other physical and psychological abuse they endured at a notorious Florida reform school were more than half a century ago, but there is always something to trigger the flashbacks. This time, it was the discovery of 27 “possible” graves at the site of the Arthur G Dozier School for Boys in Marianna, Florida. It is no surprise that more victims of systemic, decades-long sexual abuse and violence could still be in the ground. A study that ended in 2016 saw University of South Florida (USF) anthropologists uncover human remains in 55 graves, several with gunshot wounds or blunt force trauma. Yet to the White House survivors, named for a whitewashed cottage in the grounds of the state-run school where the worst of the abuse took place, it was confirmation that the final chapters of a dark episode have yet to be written. “I was sure I wasn’t going to survive,” said Cooper, 74, who spent two years at Dozier as a teenager in the early 1960s. “But there were those of us who didn’t ... there’s a lot more boys dead than the 55 they located. We’ve always known this.” Official records, poorly maintained and incomplete, indicated 31 burials from 1914 to 1973. But USF researchers partnered with local and state law enforcement and the University of North Texas science centre set the figure at a minimum of 98.

Note: Read more about the notorious Dozier School for Boys. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and sexual abuse scandals.


How art and golf freed innocent man from life sentence
2019-04-19, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/19/sport/valentino-dixon-art-golf-drawing-masters...

Caged for a murder he didn't commit, Valentino Dixon sought solace in art. He loved to draw as a child, and took up sketching again to escape the harsh realities of prison after being handed 39 years to life for the fatal shooting of a man in downtown Buffalo in 1991. Art became Dixon's salvation, and he drew for up to 10 hours a day. His reputation as an artist led the warden at the tough Attica Correctional Facility ... to ask him to draw Augusta National's famous 12th hole from a picture in Golf Digest. In 2012, he sent some of his art work to Golf Digest's editorial director Max Adler. Along with the pictures, he included details of his case. Adler was intrigued and dug deeper. Golf Channel got involved, too. Meanwhile, several appeals against his conviction had failed. But then in January 2018 three undergraduate students and their professors from Georgetown University thoroughly researched Dixon's case as part of their studies. The students re-interviewed witnesses and officials and unearthed new evidence. Another man, LaMarr Scott - already serving a life sentence for his part in an armed robbery in 1993 - confessed again to shooting Jackson, just as he had on the night it happened. Through the work of Adler, the students, his daughter Valentina ... and attorney Donald Thompson, paid for by Dixon's wife Louise - whom he married while in prison - the fresh evidence was presented to the new district attorney of Erie County, John Flynn. Dixon was exonerated on September 19, 2018.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The Healing Power of Gardens
2019-04-18, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/18/opinion/sunday/oliver-sacks-gardens.html

All of us have had the experience of wandering through a lush garden or a timeless desert, walking by a river or an ocean, or climbing a mountain and finding ourselves simultaneously calmed and reinvigorated. The importance of these physiological states on individual and community health is fundamental and wide-ranging. In 40 years of medical practice, I have found only two types of non-pharmaceutical “therapy” to be vitally important for patients with chronic neurological diseases: music and gardens. I cannot say exactly how nature exerts its calming and organizing effects on our brains, but I have seen in my patients the restorative and healing powers of nature and gardens, even for those who are deeply disabled neurologically. In many cases, gardens and nature are more powerful than any medication. My friend Lowell has moderately severe Tourette’s syndrome. In his usual busy, city environment, he has hundreds of tics and verbal ejaculations each day - grunting, jumping, touching things compulsively. I was therefore amazed one day when we were hiking in a desert to realize that his tics had completely disappeared. The remoteness and uncrowdedness of the scene, combined with some ineffable calming effect of nature, served to defuse his ticcing, to “normalize” his neurological state. The effects of nature’s qualities on health are not only spiritual and emotional but physical and neurological. I have no doubt that they reflect deep changes in the brain’s physiology, and perhaps even its structure.

Note: The above is excerpted from “Everything in Its Place,” a posthumous collection of writings by Dr. Oliver Sacks. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


U.S. military spending set to increase for fifth consecutive year, nearing levels during height of Iraq war
2019-04-18, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2019/04/18/us-military-spending-set-...

America’s military budget is set to grow for a fifth consecutive year to near-historic highs in 2020. The Trump administration has proposed $750 billion in defense spending as part of its budget request to Congress for next year, as well as steep cuts to domestic programs in health care and education. House Democrats in their budget proposed increasing defense spending to $733 billion a year ... in exchange for Republican support for an increase in domestic spending that would be twice as large. Under either budget plan, the United States is expected to spend more on its military in 2020 than at any point since World War II, except for a handful of years at the height of the Iraq War, said Todd Harrison, a defense budget expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Overall, military spending has already increased from $586 billion in 2015 to $716 billion in 2019. Earlier this year, the Congressional Budget Office projected the United States would spend more than $7 trillion on defense over the next decade, which is in line with both the White House’s and House Democrats’ budget plans. Some prominent Democrats ... have called for cutting military spending as a way to free up funding for their other projects. At European levels of U.S. military spending, America could fund a universal child-care policy, extend health insurance to the approximately 30 million Americans who lack it or provide substantial investments in repairing the nation’s infrastructure. But cuts to military spending are unlikely.

Note: Read summaries of several major media articles showing the Pentagon's blatant lies and disregard for accounting. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the military.


Do Microdoses of LSD Change Your Mind?
2019-04-16, Scientific American
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/do-microdoses-of-lsd-change-your-m...

You’ve probably heard about microdosing, the “productivity hack” popular among Silicon Valley engineers and business leaders. Microdosers take regular small doses of LSD or magic mushrooms. At these doses, they don’t experience mind-bending, hallucinatory trips, but they say they get a jolt in creativity and focus that can elevate work performance, help relationships, and generally improve a stressful and demanding daily life. Late last year, the first placebo-controlled microdose trial was published. The study concluded that microdoses of LSD appreciably altered subjects’ sense of time, allowing them to more accurately reproduce lapsed spans of time. Does a microdose change brain function? There’s a myriad of ways to test this, but [Devin] Terhune looked specifically at the way the subjects perceive time. When shown a blue dot on a screen for a specific length of time, the subjects were asked to recreate that length of time by pressing a key. Typically, with longer time intervals, people underrepresent time (i.e. hold the key down for a shorter period of time than reality). In the study, those who received microdoses held the key longer, better representing the actual time interval. Does this mean microdosing makes you smarter? Terhune and his co-authors were cautious in overinterpreting their finding. For one, it’s not clear that perceiving time more accurately is preferable. The brain seems to favor underrepresenting time for reasons that are unclear. The finding does show that microdoses changed brain function.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


Judge's running club helps Skid Row's homeless rebuild their lives
2019-04-12, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/04/us/cnnheroes-judge-craig-mitchell-skid-row-run...

Twice a week, before the sun comes up, Judge Craig Mitchell runs the mile from his office at the county courthouse to The Midnight Mission, a social services organization centered in Downtown's Skid Row - the notorious area where the city's largest homeless population resides. At the mission, he meets a group of 30 to 40 people, and together they run through East L.A. The group includes runners from all walks of life and all levels of athleticism. Some members are homeless or in recovery, and others are lawyers, social workers, students or off-duty LAPD officers. Mitchell developed the program in 2012 after a man he'd once sentenced to prison returned to thank him. "He was paroled to The Midnight Mission and decided to come back and say, 'Thank you, Judge Mitchell, for treating me like a human being.' "The president of the mission at the time asked me if there was something that I could do to contribute to the mission's program, and I thought of starting a running club. That was the inception," Mitchell said. Between 300 and 500 people have since run with the group, now an official nonprofit. Every year, Mitchell takes his most dedicated Skid Row runners on a free trip to participate in an international marathon. In recent years, Mitchell and club members have participated in marathons in Ghana, Rome, Vietnam and Jerusalem. Mitchell says he's seen participants turn their lives around, attending college, securing full-time employment and maintaining sobriety.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The timeless intrigue of redactions
2019-04-11, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/style/wp/2019/04/11/mad-libs-but-for-demo...

Redactions ... symbolize the ongoing tug-of-war between discretion and truth, between a government that knows what we don’t need to know and a citizenry that desires the whole story. That desire is inflamed after two years of theorizing about the Mueller report. “I think it’s going to be more disappointing than not, and frustrating to many,” says D.C. attorney Mark S. Zaid, who handles cases involving national security and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Zaid once sued the government for records related to the death of Princess Diana and the FBI surrendered reams of material. Zaid was thrilled, until he opened the boxes. Two thousand pages of redactions. Every page, blacked out. In 2003 the Department of Justice released a 186-page report on its hiring practices, and half of it was blacked out. American leaders brag about transparency but their agencies historically have cultivated a “culture of caution.” By the turn of last century at least 1.5 billion documents over 25 years old were kept from the public because of national security concerns. Classification cost the federal government $18.49 billion in fiscal year 2017 alone. Redactions can be cosmetic, or historic [like] the 14 blank pages of a 2002 Pentagon assessment of Iraq’s nuclear-weapons program. [Yet] when 19,045 documents related to the John F. Kennedy assassination were released last year, Nate Jones of the National Security Archive was struck by the banality of the information the government had insisted on keeping secret for years.

Note: Why was so much material around the death of Princess Diana redacted? Explore some of the strangeness around the killing of Princess Diana in this news article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on secrecy from reliable major media sources.


Amazon reportedly employs thousands of people to listen to your Alexa conversations
2019-04-11, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/11/tech/amazon-alexa-listening/index.html

Not only is Alexa listening when you speak to an Echo smart speaker, an Amazon employee is potentially listening, too. Amazon (AMZN) employs a global team that transcribes the voice commands captured after the wake word is detected and feeds them back into the software ... Bloomberg reports. Amazon reportedly employs thousands of full-time workers and contractors in several countries, including the United States, Costa Rica and Romania, to listen to as many as 1,000 audio clips in shifts that last up to nine hours. The audio clips they listen to were described as "mundane" and even sometimes "possibly criminal," including listening to a potential sexual assault. In a response to the story, Amazon confirmed to CNN Business that it hires people to listen to what customers say to Alexa. Amazon doesn't "explicitly" tell Alexa users that it employs people to listen to the recordings. Amazon said in its frequently asked question section that it uses "requests to Alexa to train our speech recognition and natural language understanding systems." People can opt out of Amazon using their voice recordings to improve the software in the privacy settings section of the Alexa app. Alexa auditors don't have access to the customers' full name or address, but do have the device's serial number and the Amazon account number associated with the device. Amazon previously has been embroiled in controversy for privacy concerns regarding Alexa.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy.


Runaway teens don't qualify for foster care. So she created a solution.
2019-04-11, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/11/us/cnnheroes-vicki-sokolik-starting-right-now/...

Jahiem Morgan knew he was too young to be living on his own at 15 years old, but he didn't have much of a choice. Morgan found himself among the nearly 1.3 million young people across the United States who are classified as "unaccompanied youths" and can't get foster care because they chose to leave a situation rather than be removed by social services. Some of these young people are runaways; others leave abusive homes; and many identify as LGBTQ. They're out on their own, and many end up in dangerous situations -- living on the streets or in abandoned buildings. "Most people don't even know these kids exist," said Vicki Sokolik, who helps these teens in Tampa, Florida. Sokolik was first introduced to this population in 2006, when her then-teenage son told her about a classmate who was in danger of becoming homeless. Sokolik helped the girl, securing her a place to live and providing the resources she needed. The experience inspired Sokolik to do more. In 2007, she founded "Starting Right, Now," a nonprofit that helps unaccompanied youth ages 15 to 19 get permanent housing, graduate from high school and move on to their next goal. At-risk students in two Florida counties are referred to the program by their school guidance counselors. The program provides two homes where the students can live until they go to college or start their career. They also have access to tutoring, therapy and life skills classes. The organization has helped more than 200 young people, and 97% have graduated high school.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Inventor Makes ‘Music Memory Box’ So Dementia Patients Can Reconnect With Their Loved Ones
2019-04-11, Good News Network
https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/dementia-patients-reconnect-with-family-thank...

The Music Memory Box was created as a means of using photographs, objects, and music to help people with dementia to remember their past. The box is programmed to play certain songs that are associated with the various possessions and photos. When one of the objects is placed in the center of the box, a sensor triggers box’s speakers so that it plays the song that corresponds with the object. 28-year-old designer Chloe Meineck says that her great-grandmother’s experience with dementia served as the inspiration for the box. Whenever Meineck when to visit the senior at her nursing home, the woman always failed to recognize her. Upon hearing certain songs, however, Meineck’s great-grandmother would suddenly begin to recall heartfelt stories from her past. 74-year-old Monica Garrity [said] she and her husband Steve, who has dementia, began using the box in 2017 as a means of helping him to remember events from their marriage – and they’ve been regularly using the box ever since. “We have been able to connect again, it is wonderful,” says Monica. “He doesn’t usually communicate with me but when the music plays, he hums along and even holds out his hand to grab mine. It takes us back to when we got married.” In addition to receiving dozens of awards for her design, Meineck recently held a Kickstarter campaign in order to fund the manufacturing of the first batch of Music Memory Boxes. Within two weeks, she was able to raise the necessary funds.

Note: Don't miss a video of the Music Memory Box in action at the link above. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Hormel Lawsuit Reveals What ‘Natural’ Meat Really Means
2019-04-10, Bloomberg
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-04-10/hormel-advertising-suit-re...

American shoppers are reaching for healthier, more environmentally and animal-friendly meat products, with 39 percent saying “all-natural” is the most important claim when purchasing red meat. But there’s one problem: The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that when it comes to meat and poultry, the term “natural” means only that the product has no artificial ingredients and has been minimally processed. It doesn’t mean anything when it comes to antibiotics, hormones or preservatives. Companies such as Tyson Foods Inc., Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. and Hormel Foods Corp. have been snapping up smaller, outwardly progressive competitors. At the same time, however, some of the major meat companies have been offering their own products as “natural,” replete with labels featuring blue skies and green fields. On April 8, the Superior Court of the District of Columbia - a jurisdiction with stringent consumer protection laws - dismissed a lawsuit by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) alleging Hormel was misleading consumers. The court held that as long as manufacturer labels are approved by the USDA, the advertising can use the “natural” claims. In statements disclosed in the filing, a company executive said the same pigs it uses to make its famous Spam brand meat product are also used in Natural Choice pork products. Those pigs are often given antibiotics and are rarely allowed outdoors. “It’s a massive attempt to manipulate and dupe the consumer,” said David Muraskin, a food project attorney.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing food system corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Better-Angels.org bridging the political divide
2019-04-10, CBS (Charlottesville affiliate)
https://www.cbs19news.com/content/news/Better-Angelsorg-bridging-the-politica...

Better Angels is a citizens' organization that aims to unite red and blue Americans in a working alliance to depolarize America. We try to understand the other side's point of view, even if we don't agree with it. We engage those we disagree with, looking for common ground and ways to work together. We support principles that bring us together rather than divide us. Meetings frequently include five to eight Republican-leaning citizens ("Reds") and five to eight Democratic-leaning citizens ("Blues") who gather together for a half-day or full-day of structured conversations. Independents are also welcome to attend. We only ask that for the purposes of the workshop they identify as leaning either Red or Blue or attend as observers. There are two types of Red/Blue workshops: three-hour workshops that cover two exercises, and six-hour plus lunch workshops that cover all four exercises. Two moderators, trained by Better Angels, lead the workshop, ensuring that ground rules are followed and that everyone is treated respectfully. The stereotypes exercise has red and blue groups generate, discuss, and report back on the most common false stereotypes or misconceptions of their side, why these stereotypes are wrong, what is true instead, and whether there is a kernel of truth in the stereotype. Red/Blue workshops [are held] so that citizens of different political beliefs and different backgrounds can get to know each other as individuals and begin to heal the divisions that are endangering our country.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Wall Street loves socialism for bankers – but not for ordinary people
2019-04-08, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/apr/08/wall-street-socialism-j...

In his annual letter to shareholders, distributed last week, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon took aim at socialism, warning it would be “a disaster for our country,” because it produces “stagnation, corruption and often worse.” Dimon should know. He was at the helm when JPMorgan received a $25bn socialist-like bailout in 2008, after it and other Wall Street banks almost tanked because of their reckless loans. Dimon subsequently agreed to pay the government $13bn to settle charges that the bank overstated the quality of mortgages it was selling. According to the Justice Department, JPMorgan acknowledged it had regularly and knowingly sold mortgages that should have never been sold. To state it another way, Dimon and other Wall Street CEOs helped trigger the 2008 financial crisis when the dangerous and irresponsible loans their banks were peddling – on which they made big money – finally went bust. But instead of letting the market punish the banks (which is what capitalism is supposed to do) the government bailed them out and eventually levied paltry fines which the banks treated as the cost of doing business. Call it socialism for rich bankers. America’s five biggest banks, including Dimon’s, now control 46% of all deposits, up from 12% in the early 1990s. But, of course, Dimon isn’t really ... concerned about socialism. Dimon’s real concern is that America may end the kind of socialism he and other denizens of the Street depend on – bailouts, regulatory loopholes, and tax breaks.

Note: The above was written by former US secretary of labor Robert Reich. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing financial industry corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


The Country Winning The Battle On Food Waste
2019-04-08, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/food-waste-south-korea-seoul_n_5ca48bf7e4b0ed0...

Chung Sun-hee finely crushes eggshells, dries and saves her coffee grounds, and separates large vegetable offcuts into smaller pieces. Later, the 55-year-old professional translator will bury them in her backyard, in rotating plots. Chung is one of a growing number of city dwellers who are getting into urban farming, not just to grow their own vegetables, but also as an exercise in waste reduction. Her new habits reflect a larger change underway in South Korea’s densely populated capital. Once a city where unsightly and foul-smelling landfills loomed over entire neighborhoods, Seoul now operates one of the most rigorous food waste recycling programs in the world. The South Korean government banned sending food to landfills in 2005 and, in 2013, also prohibited the dumping of garbage juice (leftover water squeezed from food waste) into the sea. Today, a staggering 95 percent of food waste is recycled ― a remarkable leap from less than 2 percent in 1995. On Chung’s street, residents emerge at dusk to deposit small yellow bags into designated waste collection buckets. Since 2013, South Koreans have been required by law to discard food waste in these biodegradable bags, priced according to volume and costing the average four-person family about $6 a month. This tax pays for roughly 60 percent of the cost of collecting and processing the city’s food waste, according to government data.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


American billionaires call for upgrades to capitalism, starting with higher taxes on themselves
2019-04-08, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/08/american-billionaires-call-for-upgrades-to-ca...

American billionaires are calling for changes to the system that enabled them to get rich. Warren Buffett, Jamie Dimon, Ray Dalio, Bill Gates and a list of others say that capitalism in its current form simply doesn’t work for the rest of the United States. Some of their remedies involve higher taxes. Hedge fund titan Ray Dalio is the most recent to criticize the current economic system. On Monday, the Bridgewater founder told CNBC that while it doesn’t need to be destroyed, capitalism does need to present an equal opportunity, which Dalio said he received through public education. The issue chafing billionaires and politicians alike is a growing income gap. The inequality between rich and poor Americans is as high as it was in late 1930s, Dalio pointed out in a paper posted online. The wealth of the top 1 percent of the population is now more than that of the bottom 90 percent of the population combined. Dalio called growing inequality and lack of investment in public education “an existential risk for the U.S.” Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett - third on Forbe’s 2019 billionaires list - has repeatedly said the wealthy should be taxed more. In 2006, the CEO committed to give all of his Berkshire Hathaway stock to philanthropic foundations. He and Bill and Melinda Gates have asked hundreds of wealthy Americans to pledge at least 50 percent of their wealth to charity in the so-called “the Giving Pledge.” There are now 190 people signed on, including Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing financial industry corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Why Finland comes out on top on happiness and more
2019-04-07, Los Angeles Times
https://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-ollila-finland-happiness-20190407...

When the U.N.’s 2019 World Happiness Report came out last month, Finland ranked on top for the second year in a row. Small Finland — about 75% the size of California with just 5.5 million people — consistently trounces the United States and other developed nations on ratings of life satisfaction, health, safety, governance, community and social progress. The underlying reason Finns are faring so well is because we have a different mindset about success — one that’s based on equity and community. In the United States, happiness and success are perceived as individual pursuits, indeed, even competitive ones. In Finland, success is a team sport. While Finland is by no means struggling financially, its GDP per capita is lower than those of its neighboring Nordic countries, and much lower than that of the U.S. The difference is, in the words of Meik Wiking of the Happiness Research Institute in Denmark, “the Finns are good at converting wealth into well-being.” The more equal a society is, the happier its citizens are. Finland is ranked among the most equal of all the 36 OECD countries. This ... helps support overall high levels of trust. Finns trust one another and, perhaps more impressively, they trust their government. And although Finns pay some of the highest taxes worldwide, there is a transparency to the Finnish system that many other countries lack. Every year the government makes public the tax data of all its citizens and corporations on what has come to be called National Envy Day.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A Mysterious Infection, Spanning the Globe in a Climate of Secrecy
2019-04-06, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/06/health/drug-resistant-candida-auris.html

Last May, an elderly man was admitted to the Brooklyn branch of Mount Sinai Hospital for abdominal surgery. A blood test revealed that he was infected with a newly discovered germ as deadly as it was mysterious. Doctors swiftly isolated him in the intensive care unit. The germ, a fungus called Candida auris, preys on people with weakened immune systems, and it is quietly spreading across the globe. Recently C. auris reached New York, New Jersey and Illinois, leading the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to add it to a list of germs deemed “urgent threats.” C. auris is so tenacious, in part, because it is impervious to major antifungal medications, making it a new example of one of the world’s most intractable health threats: the rise of drug-resistant infections. For decades, public health experts have warned that the overuse of antibiotics was reducing the effectiveness of drugs that have lengthened life spans by curing bacterial infections once commonly fatal. But lately, there has been an explosion of resistant fungi as well. Yet as the problem grows, it is little understood by the public — in part because the very existence of resistant infections is often cloaked in secrecy. With bacteria and fungi alike, hospitals and local governments are reluctant to disclose outbreaks for fear of being seen as infection hubs. Even the C.D.C., under its agreement with states, is not allowed to make public the location or name of hospitals involved in outbreaks.

Note: For more on this new disease, see this article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health news articles from reliable major media sources.


U.S. Revokes Visa of I.C.C. Prosecutor Pursuing Afghan War Crimes
2019-04-05, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/05/world/europe/us-icc-prosecutor-afghanistan...

The United States has revoked the visa of the International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor because of her attempts to investigate allegations of war crimes in Afghanistan, including any that may have been committed by American forces. Ms. Bensouda, a Gambian lawyer for the court, which is based in The Hague, formally requested an investigation more than a year ago into war crimes in Afghanistan. The inquiry would mostly focus on large-scale crimes against civilians attributed to the Taliban and Afghan government forces. But it would also examine alleged C.I.A. and American military abuse in detention centers in Afghanistan in 2003 and 2004, and at sites in Poland, Lithuania and Romania, putting the court directly at odds with the United States. The United States is not a member state of the I.C.C. and does not recognize the court’s authority to prosecute Americans. In the past, though, the United States has cooperated with the court on other investigations, and Washington played a central role in establishing international criminal law at the Nuremberg trials. [Secretary of State Mike] Pompeo, in a March news briefing in Washington, said investigators “should not assume that you will still have or will get a visa, or that you will be permitted to enter the United States” if they are part of a I.C.C. investigation. “These visa restrictions will not be the end of our efforts,” Mr. Pompeo said at the time. “We are prepared to take additional steps, including economic sanctions if the I.C.C. does not change its course.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the intelligence community.


Five myths about whistleblowers
2019-04-05, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/five-myths/five-myths-about-whistleblo...

Despite the essential role whistleblowers play in illuminating the truth and protecting the public interest, several myths persist about them. The overwhelming majority of employees who see problems want to blow the whistle internally first. Understanding this can - and should - encourage employers to respond appropriately when workers report problems. Similarly, employees who understand that they are in fact whistleblowers when they raise concerns inside the workplace will be better prepared to navigate their rights, risks and options. While many employees who witness wrongdoing in the workplace stay silent, fearing reprisal or futility, those who do raise concerns ... demonstrate faith that their employers are committed to compliance and that they can make a difference. Whistleblowers who report externally typically do so because the problem is significant and their employers have failed to address it or engaged in reprisal (or both). Snowden’s revelations about the NSA’s unconstitutional mass collection of telephone metadata, and Reality Winner’s disclosures about Russian efforts to hack state elections as the Trump campaign was denying Russian involvement, clearly meet this standard of significance. While reporters may use the term “leak” to describe information received from anonymous insiders, the failure to distinguish between leaking and anonymous whistleblowing risks undermining the legitimacy and importance of disclosures that clearly advance the public’s interest.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the intelligence community.


Chernobyl’s disastrous cover-up is a warning for the next nuclear age
2019-04-04, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/apr/04/chernobyl-nuclear-power...

In 1986, the Soviet minister of hydrometeorology, Yuri Izrael, had a regrettable decision to make. It was his job to track radioactivity blowing from the smoking Chernobyl reactor in the hours after the 26 April explosion and deal with it. If the slow-moving mass of radioactive clouds reached Moscow, where a spring storm front was piling up, millions could be harmed. Soviet air force pilots ... made the easy one-hour flight to Chernobyl, where the reactor burned. When they caught up with a cloud, they shot jets of silver iodide into it. Wherever pilots shot silver iodide, rain fell, along with a toxic brew of a dozen radioactive elements. No one told the Belarusians that the southern half of the republic had been sacrificed to protect Russian cities. The Chernobyl explosions issued 45m curies of radioactive iodine into the atmosphere. Emissions from Soviet and US bomb tests amounted to 20bn curies of radioactive iodine, 500 times more. When the Chernobyl accident occurred, experts in radiation medicine called for a long-term epidemiological study on Chernobyl-exposed people. That study never occurred. Fortunately, Chernobyl health records are now available to the public. They show that people living in the radioactive traces fell ill from cancers, respiratory illness, anaemia, auto-immune disorders, birth defects, and fertility problems two to three times more frequently in the years after the accident than before.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing nuclear power news articles from reliable major media sources.


FBI director says white supremacy is a 'persistent, pervasive threat' to the US
2019-04-04, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/04/politics/fbi-director-wray-white-supremacy/ind...

FBI Director Christopher Wray said Thursday that white supremacy presents a "persistent" and "pervasive" threat to the United States. Wray also spoke out against hate crimes and was asked by Democrats what the FBI was doing to crack down on hate crimes, which they say have ticked up during Trump's presidency. "We are determined not to tolerate hate-filled violence in our communities, so we're going to aggressively investigate those cases," Wray said, adding that there has been an increase in "the reporting of hate crimes," but that this doesn't automatically mean more hate crimes were happening. FBI efforts to encourage the public to report hate crimes could be yielding benefits, he said. These comments aren't exactly in line with what Trump has said about the topic of white nationalism. Trump, who appointed Wray in 2017, has downplayed the danger of white nationalism and even praised some of the Nazi sympathizers who marched in Charlottesville, Virginia. After the New Zealand mosque massacre last month, where a right-wing extremist killed 50 Muslim worshippers, Trump said he didn't consider white nationalism to be a rising global threat. "I think it's a small group of people that have very, very serious problems, I guess," Trump said. An FBI assessment released last year found that there was a 17% spike in reports of hate crime incidents in 2017, compared to 2016.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on civil liberties from reliable major media sources.


The Pentagon Wins Again
2019-04-04, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/defense-budget-818035/

The Democrat-controlled House Budget Committee voted 19-17 Wednesday to move a bill sponsored by Chairman John Yarmuth (D-KY) out of committee. Called the “Investing for the People Act of 2019,” it’s essentially the Democrats’ answer to Donald Trump’s radical budget proposal from early March. The Trump budget ... seeks a whopping 9% cut overall in non-defense or NDD spending ... while seeking a 5% increase in defense spending. Trump wants to reward the Pentagon for flunking its first-ever audit last year by giving it a fat bump - from a record $716 billion to new record of $750 billion. Meanwhile, Trump hopes to slash non-defense spending from last year’s $597 billion figure to $543 billion this year. Now, in the Yarmuth budget bill, $733 billion is the Democrats’ opening offer to the Pentagon. Trump’s 2020 budget proposal made a joke of the 2011 Budget Control Act, which essentially forced Congress to raise and lower defense and non-defense spending together through a series of caps. Roughly speaking, defense is supposed to be capped at around 53-54% of discretionary spending. The Pentagon has always been able to get around even those generous caps ... with Overseas Contingency Operations or “OCO” spending. Often called “war funding,” OCO budgets technically don’t count as defense spending, even though they are. To make his defense-hike/non-defense cut strategy work under the Budget Control Act, Trump this year had to propose a massive hike in OCO funding, going from $69 billion last year to $165 billion this year.

Note: Read summaries of several major media articles showing the Pentagon's blatant lies and disregard for accounting. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the military.


Congress just told Trump to get US troops out of Yemen. Next, Afghanistan?
2019-04-04, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2019/04/04/congress-yemen-war-powers-b...

Congress made history this week by passing a resolution that cuts off U.S. support for Saudi-led forces in the civil war in Yemen. This is the first time since Congress originally passed the War Powers Resolution in 1973 that we have used it to call on the president to withdraw from an undeclared war. The passage of this resolution has implications far beyond Yemen and opens a much broader and extremely important debate about how and when the United States uses our military, and who must authorize that use. According to a recent study by the Costs of War Project at Brown University, the War on Terror will have cost American taxpayers almost $5 trillion through Fiscal Year 2019. When taking in to account future health care obligations for veterans injured in post-9/11 wars, the bill comes closer to $6 trillion. Even after this enormous expense, the world has more militants, not fewer. A November 2018 report from the Center for Strategic and International Studies found that the number of militants has continued to grow. “Despite nearly two decades of U.S.-led counterterrorism operations,” the report said, “there are nearly four times as many Sunni Islamic militants today as there were on September 11, 2001.” The time is long overdue for Congress to reassert its constitutional responsibility over war making. We need a serious national debate over when and where we put our military in harm’s way. Congress’s historic vote on Yemen this week is an important beginning in that process, now we must continue forward.

Note: The above was written by senators Bernie Sanders and Mike Lee. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the military.


You elected them to write new laws. They’re letting corporations do it instead.
2019-04-03, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/investigations/2019/04/03/abortion-gun...

Each year, state lawmakers across the U.S. introduce thousands of bills dreamed up and written by corporations, industry groups and think tanks. Disguised as the work of lawmakers, these so-called “model” bills get copied in one state Capitol after another, quietly advancing the agenda of the people who write them. A two-year investigation by USA TODAY, The Arizona Republic and the Center for Public Integrity reveals for the first time the extent to which special interests have infiltrated state legislatures using model legislation. USA TODAY and the Republic found at least 10,000 bills almost entirely copied from model legislation were introduced nationwide in the past eight years, and more than 2,100 of those bills were signed into law. In a separate analysis, the Center for Public Integrity identified tens of thousands of bills with identical phrases, then traced the origins of that language. Model bills passed into law have ... limited access to abortion and restricted the rights of protesters. In all, these copycat bills amount to the nation’s largest, unreported special-interest campaign, driving agendas in every statehouse and touching nearly every area of public policy. USA TODAY found more than 4,000 bills benefiting industry were introduced nationwide during the eight years it reviewed. More than 80 of those bills limit the public's ability to sue corporations, including limiting class-action lawsuits, a plaintiff's ability to offer expert testimony, and cap punitive damages for corporate wrongdoing.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Toyota to give royalty-free access to hybrid-vehicle patents
2019-04-03, CNBC/Reuters
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/03/reuters-america-update-1-toyota-to-give-royal...

Toyota Motor Corp plans to offer royalty-free access to its hybrid-vehicle technology patents as early as this year, the Nikkei Asian Review reported. Toyota, which holds roughly 20,000 active patents in the field, is expected to make accessible most of the latest ones covering motors, power converters and batteries. Since pioneering the Prius, the world’s first mass-produced hybrid car, in 1997, Toyota has sold more than 12 million cars featuring the technology, which twins a conventional gasoline engine and electric motor, saving fuel by capturing energy during coasting and breaking and using it to power the motor. Hybrid vehicles account for around 3 percent of all vehicles sold globally, eclipsing the roughly 1 percent share of all-battery EVs. Toyota vehicles account for more than 80 percent of the hybrid vehicle market. Global automakers have pledged to electrify their vehicle offerings in the coming years amid tightening global emissions regulations, but many acknowledge that shifting to all-battery EVs will take time due to the high cost of the required batteries. Toyota has long held to its belief that its hybrids, whose fuel efficiency is roughly double that of gasoline cars, are a cost-effective alternative to all-battery EVs, due to their lower cost, lack of need for charging infrastructure, and because they operate more or less like gasoline cars.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


A.I. Experts Question Amazon’s Facial-Recognition Technology
2019-04-03, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/03/technology/amazon-facial-recognition-techn...

At least 25 prominent artificial-intelligence researchers, including experts at Google, Facebook, Microsoft and a recent winner of the prestigious Turing Award, have signed a letter calling on Amazon to stop selling its facial-recognition technology to law enforcement agencies because it is biased against women and people of color. The letter, which was publicly released Wednesday, reflects growing concern in academia and the tech industry that bias in facial-recognition technology is a systemic problem. Amazon sells a product called Rekognition through its cloud-computing division, Amazon Web Services. The company said last year that early customers included the Orlando Police Department in Florida and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in Oregon. In January, two researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology published a peer-reviewed study showing that Amazon Rekognition had more trouble identifying the gender of female and darker-skinned faces in photos than similar services from IBM and Microsoft. It mistook women for men 19 percent of the time, the study showed, and misidentified darker-skinned women for men 31 percent of the time. “There are no laws or required standards to ensure that Rekognition is used in a manner that does not infringe on civil liberties,” the A.I. researchers wrote. “We call on Amazon to stop selling Rekognition to law enforcement.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the erosion of civil liberties.


One-Third Of World's Power Plant Capacity Is Now Renewable
2019-04-03, Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnparnell/2019/04/03/one-third-of-worlds-power...

One-third of the world's installed electricity generation capacity is from renewable sources, according to the latest industry statistics. The data compiled by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) shows that two-thirds of the power capacity added around the world in 2018 was from renewables. Wind and solar accounted for 84% of that total. 2018 was characterized by a spate of solar and wind pricing breakthroughs. Falling interest rates for investors, ongoing technology improvements and regulatory frameworks that encourage competition among would-be developers have all played a part. The geographical distribution of the new plants includes developing and developed economies but it is the former leading the way. The three fastest growing regions were Oceania, Asia and Africa. Asia also became the first terrawatt region, just, with IRENA’s figures putting installed renewable capacity at 1,024GW. More than two-thirds of that is in China. Offshore wind capacity has doubled since 2015 but only represented around 4.4GW of the 171GW of renewable power plant deployed in 2018. The concentration of offshore wind remains firmly in Europe (~80%). Solar was the runaway leader of the pack adding 94GW in 2018 to 49GW of wind, on- and offshore. Half of the world’s total installed capacity is currently hydropower but China was the only nation to make substantial hydro additions last year. Bioenergy [added] 6GW.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Here are the counties where taxpayers are most likely to be audited
2019-04-02, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/where-does-the-irs-audit-the-most-poor-rural-cou...

Taxpayers in rural, poor parts of the U.S. are more likely be audited by the Internal Revenue Service than those living in wealthier counties, according to a new analysis. The county where residents are most likely to face an audit: tiny Humphreys County, Mississippi, where the median household income is less than $24,000 a year, or less than half the income of a typical U.S. family. The higher audit rates in poor regions comes down to an IRS policy of scrutinizing taxpayers who claim the Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC, a refundable tax credit aimed at low- and moderate-income Americans. Counties with higher-than-average audit rates tend to be located in the South, the northern Plains, Mountain and Western states. The upper Midwest, Mid-Atlantic and New England states have lower audit rates. Many of the counties with the highest IRS audit rates have larger minority populations. That includes Humphreys, where 3 of every 4 residents is black. By comparison ... Denali, Alaska, with the lowest audit rate of all U.S. counties, is 84 percent white and has a median household income of more than $83,000. Audit rates for millionaires have declined by half since 2010. Corporate audits are also on the wane. But the audit rates for people who claim the EITC hasn't fallen as sharply as for the rich and corporations, ProPublica reported in December. That means a typical EITC claimant, who earns less than $20,000 per year, is more likely to face an audit than a millionaire.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and income inequality from reliable major media sources.


Elizabeth Warren: Corporate executives must face jail time for overseeing massive scams
2019-04-02, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/elizabeth-warren-its-time-to-scare-co...

Opening unauthorized bank accounts. Cheating customers on mortgages and car loans. If you can dream up a financial scam, there’s a good chance that Wells Fargo ran it on its customers in recent years. After years of pressure, the company finally parted ways with its second chief executive in three years. But this isn’t real accountability. When a criminal on the street steals money from your wallet, they go to jail. When small-business owners cheat their customers, they go to jail. But when corporate executives at big companies oversee huge frauds that hurt tens of thousands of people, they often get to walk away with multimillion-dollar payouts. Too often, prosecutors don’t even try to hold top executives criminally accountable. They claim it’s too hard to prove that the people at the top knew about the corporate misconduct. This culture of complicity warps the incentives for corporate leaders. The executives know that, at worst, the company will get hit with a fine — and the money will come out of their shareholders’ pockets, not their own. It doesn’t have to be this way. With sustained resources and a commitment to enforcing the law, we can bring more cases under existing rules. Beyond that, we should enact the Ending Too Big To Jail Act, which I introduced last year. That bill would make it easier to hold executives at big banks accountable for scams by requiring them to certify that they conducted a “due diligence” inquiry and found that no illegal conduct was occurring on their watch.

Note: The above was written by US Senator Elizabeth Warren. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing financial industry corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


U.S. hackers helped UAE spy on Al Jazeera chairman, BBC host
2019-04-01, Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-raven-media-specialreport/special-repo...

A group of American hackers who once worked for U.S. intelligence agencies helped the United Arab Emirates spy on a BBC host, the chairman of Al Jazeera and other prominent Arab media figures during a tense 2017 confrontation pitting the UAE and its allies against the Gulf state of Qatar. The American operatives worked for Project Raven, a secret Emirati intelligence program that spied on dissidents, militants and political opponents of the UAE monarchy. A Reuters investigation in January revealed Project Raven’s existence and inner workings, including the fact that it surveilled a British activist and several unnamed U.S. journalists. At first, the goal was to crack down on terrorism by helping the UAE monitor militants around the region. But Raven’s mission quickly expanded to include monitoring and suppressing a range of UAE political opponents. Among its targets was Qatar, which the UAE and Saudi Arabia had long accused of fueling political opposition across the region, in part through the Qatari government’s funding of Al Jazeera. The Emiratis also tapped Raven in the effort to contain dissent at home. After the Arab Spring, the operatives were increasingly tasked with targeting human rights activists and journalists who questioned the government. The Raven effort went beyond the Middle East. Operatives [targeted] the mobile phones of other media figures the UAE believed were being supported by Qatar, including journalists for London-based Arabic media outlets.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and the manipulation of public perception.


Tesla boom lifts Norway's electric car sales to record market share
2019-04-01, Reuters
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-norway-autos/tesla-boom-lifts-norways-elec...

Exempting battery engines from taxes imposed on diesel and petrol cars has upended Norway’s auto market, elevating brands like Tesla and Nissan, with its Leaf model, while hurting sales of Toyota, Daimler and others. In 2018, Norway’s fully electric car sales rose to a record 31.2 percent market share from 20.8 percent in 2017, far ahead of any other nation, and buyers had to wait as producers struggled to keep up with demand. The sales figures consolidate Norway’s global lead in electric car sales per capita, part of an attempt by Western Europe’s biggest producer of oil and gas to transform to a greener economy. The International Energy Agency (IEA), which includes plug-in hybrids when calculating electric car sales, measured Norway’s share of such cars at 39 percent in 2017, far ahead of second-placed Iceland on 12 percent and Sweden on 6 percent. In China, the market share was 2.2 percent in 2017, and in the United States just 1.2 percent, IEA data show. While the numbers will vary from month to month, half of all cars sold in 2019 in Norway will probably be fully electric, the head of the Norwegian Electric Vehicle Association (NEV) said. “We are pretty sure we are going to reach 50 percent market share in total this year. Maybe even pass it, which is pretty amazing,” NEV Secretary General Christina Bu told Reuters. Cars that rely solely on internal combustion engines with no hybrid electric unit had a market share of only 22.7 percent in March, the lowest on record.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Leaked reports reveal severe abuse of Saudi political prisoners
2019-03-31, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/mar/31/leaked-reports-reveal-abuse-sau...

Political prisoners in Saudi Arabia are said to be suffering from malnutrition, cuts, bruises and burns, according to leaked medical reports that are understood to have been prepared for the country’s ruler, King Salman. The reports seem to provide the first documented evidence from within the heart of the royal court that political prisoners are facing severe physical abuse, despite the government’s denials that men and women in custody are being tortured. The Guardian has been told the medical reports will be given to King Salman along with recommendations that are said to include a potential pardon for all the prisoners, or at least early release for those with serious health problems. Pressure on Saudi Arabia over the detention and treatment of political prisoners has been growing in recent months amid claims that some female activists have been subjected to electric shocks and lashings in custody. With the kingdom also reeling from the aftermath of the murder of the dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi, King Salman is said to have ordered a review of the decision to arrest and detain about 200 men and women in a crackdown ordered by his heir, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. According to the medical reports seen by the Guardian, the comments about the detainees suggest many have been severely ill-treated and have a range of health problems. In almost all cases, the reports demanded the prisoners be urgently transferred from solitary confinement to a medical centre.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


A suburbia for the homeless exists and they can live there forever
2019-03-28, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/26/us/iyw-town-for-the-homeless-trnd/index.html

The world looks a little brighter from the front porch of your own home. It's a sight more than 200 formerly homeless people are waking up to each morning at the Community First! Village in Austin, Texas. And they can take their time getting used to it; residents are invited to stay for the rest of their lives. Community First! Village is built and run by the nonprofit Mobile Loaves & Fishes to lift the most chronically homeless off the streets and into a place they can call home. They live in about 100 RVs and 125 micro homes arranged on streets with names like "Peaceful Path" and "Goodness Way." Heavy machinery has broken ground on the neighboring 24 acres to add another 310 housing units. When complete, Mobile Loaves and Fishes believes it will be able to provide permanent homes for approximately 40% of the chronically homeless in Austin. The 51-acre planned village was designed to create a sense of community. The homes are "micro" on purpose, providing just enough comfort and privacy but small enough to encourage the owners to step outside. There they find front porches dotted along stone-paved paths that lead to community kitchens, laundry and wash rooms, meeting halls, playgrounds, a dog park, a barber shop, an outdoor movie theater, a medical facility and a community market. New residents might initially keep to themselves, but it is hard to resist the smell of Texas barbecue on the grill, or the sight of fresh vegetables grown on site and being sliced for the community potluck dinner.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Liquor fortune heiress collapses after judge in sex-slave case asks her about Michael Avenatti and Mark Geragos
2019-03-28, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/clare-bronfman-nxivm-liquor-fortune-heiress-coll...

An already bizarre case accusing a secretive self-help group in upstate New York of engaging in sex-trafficking took another strange turn Wednesday thanks to firebrand attorney Michael Avenatti and a courtroom scene caused by a wealthy defendant he's tried to represent. At a hearing in federal court in Brooklyn, prosecutors confirmed that Avenatti appeared on behalf of liquor fortune heiress Clare Bronfman at a closed-door meeting last week that also included Mark Geragos, another high-profile lawyer representing Bronfman. Bronfman ... has pleaded not guilty to charges accusing her of bank-rolling NXIVM, an alleged cult-like organization accused of brainwashing and branding women who served as sex slaves for its spiritual leader. When U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis asked Geragos whether he and Avenatti, the lawyer best known for representing porn actress Stormy Daniels, had told prosecutors Avenatti was being brought into the case, he responded, "That's exactly what happened." Under stern questioning by the judge about which lawyers are actually representing Clare Bronfman and whether she knew if Geragos was involved in a criminal case revealed this week against Avenatti, she turned pale, staggered away from the bench and collapsed into a chair. An ambulance was called, but she later left the courthouse on the arm of Geragos. The development came only two days after Avenatti was arrested on charges accusing him of trying to extort millions of dollars from Nike.

Note: For more, see this informative article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Trump wants to give 62 cents of every dollar to the military. That's immoral
2019-03-27, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/mar/27/trump-budget-military-i...

Donald Trump recently unleashed his dark vision for our nation and our world, in the form of his budget request to Congress. With this budget, Trump takes more than $1tn in taxpayer money and disperses fully $750bn to the military. Out of every taxpayer dollar, in other words, 62 cents go to the military and our militarized Department of Homeland Security. (Veterans’ benefits take another seven cents.) The budget also cuts billions from non-discretionary anti-poverty programs outside of this $1tn. Medicaid and food stamps would be cut and disfigured beyond recognition. At every turn, the Trump budget finds vast billions for militarization, while it cuts much smaller poverty and other programs, claiming the goal is to save money. It includes $164bn in war funding, but it cuts $4.7bn in economic development and food assistance to other nations. It finds $14bn for a vanity project military branch called the space force, while it cuts $1.2bn for a program that’s built and preserved more than 1m affordable homes. It includes $11bn for contractor Lockheed Martin to build more F-35 jet fighters, but it cuts $3.7bn in heating and cooling assistance for 6m poor households. And it includes more than $12bn for a wall at our border, while it cuts $1bn for Job Corps. Unjust budgets and misplaced priorities aren’t just a Trump problem. The United States has been addicted to excessive military spending at the expense of true security at home for decades.

Note: Read summaries of several major media articles showing the Pentagon's blatant lies and disregard for accounting. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the military.


Purdue Pharma to pay $270 million to settle historic Oklahoma opioid lawsuit
2019-03-26, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/26/health/purdue-pharma-oklahoma-opioid-lawsuit-s...

Purdue Pharma has agreed to pay $270 million to settle a historic lawsuit brought by the Oklahoma attorney general, who accused the OxyContin maker of aggressively marketing the opioid painkiller and fueling a drug epidemic that left thousands dead in the state. The settlement comes after Purdue [sought] to delay the start of the trial, which is scheduled for May 28. Attorney General Mike Hunter said ... that $102.5 million of the settlement would be used to help establish a national addiction treatment and research center at Oklahoma State University. The company will also provide $20 million of addiction treatment and opioid rescue medications to the center. A remaining $12.5 million from the settlement will be used directly to help cities and counties with the opioid crisis. The Sackler family, who founded and own Purdue Pharma, will also contribute $75 million over the next five years to the treatment and research center. The lawsuit was brought by Hunter against some of the nation's leading makers of opioid pain medications, alleging that deceptive marketing over the past decade fueled the epidemic in the state. Hunter has said the defendants - Purdue Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, Teva Pharmaceuticals, Allergan and others - deceived the public into believing that opioids were safe for extended use. The settlement was only with Purdue Pharma, and the other defendants are still scheduled to go to trial. Thirty-six states have brought cases against Purdue and other opioid drugmakers.

Note: Many doctors also profited from excessive prescribing of dangerous opioids. And according to a former DEA agent, Congress helped drug companies fuel the opioid epidemic. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing Big Pharma corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Battery Power’s Latest Plunge in Costs Threatens Coal, Gas
2019-03-26, Bloomberg
https://about.bnef.com/blog/battery-powers-latest-plunge-costs-threatens-coal...

Two technologies that were immature and expensive only a few years ago but are now at the center of the unfolding low-carbon energy transition have seen spectacular gains in cost-competitiveness in the last year. The latest analysis by research company BloombergNEF (BNEF) shows that the benchmark levelized cost of electricity, or LCOE, for lithium-ion batteries has fallen 35% to $187 per megawatt-hour since the first half of 2018. Meanwhile, the benchmark LCOE for offshore wind has tumbled by 24%. Onshore wind and photovoltaic solar have also gotten cheaper, their respective benchmark LCOE reaching $50 and $57 per megawatt-hour for projects starting construction in early 2019, down 10% and 18% on the equivalent figures of a year ago. Elena Giannakopoulou, head of energy economics at BNEF, commented: “Looking back over this decade, there have been staggering improvements in the cost-competitiveness of these low-carbon options, thanks to technology innovation, economies of scale, stiff price competition and manufacturing experience. The most striking finding in this LCOE Update, for the first-half of 2019, is on the cost improvements in lithium-ion batteries. These are opening up new opportunities for them to balance a renewables-heavy generation mix. Batteries co-located with solar or wind projects are starting to compete, in many markets and without subsidy, with coal- and gas-fired generation for the provision of ‘dispatchable power’ that can be delivered whenever the grid needs it.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing energy news articles from reliable major media sources.


Pentagon Says Google’s Work on Drones is Exempt from the Freedom of Information Act
2019-03-25, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/03/25/google-project-maven-pentagon-foia/

In September 2017, Aileen Black wrote an email to her colleagues at Google. Black, who led sales to the U.S. government, worried that details of the company’s work to help the military guide lethal drones would become public through the Freedom of Information Act. “We will call tomorrow to reinforce the need to keep Google under the radar," Black wrote. According to a Pentagon memo signed last year, however, no one at Google needed worry: All 5,000 pages of documents about Google’s work on the drone effort, known as Project Maven, are barred from public disclosure, because they constitute “critical infrastructure security information." The memo is part of a recent wave of federal decisions that keep sensitive documents secret on that same basis - thus allowing agencies to quickly deny document requests. In response to a Freedom of Information Act request I filed more than a year ago, seeking documents related to Project Maven’s use of Google technology, the Defense Department said that it had discovered 5,000 pages of relevant material - and that every single page was exempt from disclosure. Some of the pages included trade secrets, sensitive internal deliberations, and private personal information about some individuals, the department said. Such information can be withheld under the act. But it said all of the material could be kept private under “Exemption 3" of the act, which allows the government to withhold records under a grab bag of other federal statutes.

Note: Read more about Project Maven. Google employees strongly opposed working on war technology, and circulated a petition to stop the project. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the corporate world.


Kenyan science teacher Peter Tabichi wins $1m global award
2019-03-24, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/education/2019/mar/24/kenyan-science-teacher-pete...

A science teacher from rural Kenya who donates most of his salary to help poorer students has been crowned the world’s best teacher and awarded a $1m prize, beating 10,000 nominations from 179 countries. Peter Tabichi, 36, a maths and physics teacher at Keriko secondary school in Pwani Village, in a remote part of Kenya’s Rift Valley, has won the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2019. Tabichi, a member of the Franciscan religious order, received his prize at a ceremony in Dubai. Tabichi gives away 80% of his income to help the poorest students at the poorly-equipped and overcrowded school who could not otherwise not afford uniforms and books. More than 90% of his pupils are from poor families and almost a third are orphans or have only one parent. Despite only having one computer, a poor internet connection and a student-teacher ratio of 58:1, Tabichi started a “talent nurturing club” and expanded the school’s science club, helping pupils design research projects of such quality that many now qualify for national competitions. His students have taken part in international science competitions and won an award from the Royal Society of Chemistry after harnessing local plant life to generate electricity. Tabichi and four colleagues also give struggling pupils one-to-one tuition in maths and science, visiting students’ homes and meeting their families to identify the challenges they face. Enrollment at the school has doubled to 400 over three years. Girls’ achievement in particular has been boosted.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Investors are starting to bet big on psychedelic medicine
2019-03-23, CNBC News
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/03/27/psychedelic-medicine-start-ups-vet-ketamine-p...

Psychedelic medicine is having a moment. Just weeks after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Johnson & Johnson’s ketamine-like nasal spray for depression, a group of European technology investors ... got together for the largest-ever private financing round for a psychedelic medicine biotech company, ATAI. Psychedelic medicine involves research and investigations into mind-altering substances to treat mental illnesses including addiction, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. After recreational use of psychedelics became popular in the 1960s, the U.S. government classified most of them “drugs of abuse” with no real medical value. However, recent clinical studies show mounting evidence that some psychedelics can help patients with certain mental illnesses, either in combination with traditional therapies or in cases where nothing else has worked. Now health and technology investors are paying attention. German company ATAI Life Sciences announced on Tuesday that it has raised more than $40 million in new financing. The round valued the company at $240 million, according to a person familiar, making it both the biggest round and the most valuable company in the young space. ATAI is currently funding clinical trials for what it refers to as “formerly stigmatized compounds,” including psilocybin, the active compound in psychedelic mushrooms, and arketamine, a different variant of ketamine from the one Johnson & Johnson researched, as potential treatments for depression.

Note: Articles like this suggest that the healing potentials of mind-altering drugs are gaining mainstream scientific credibility.


The Strange Tale of the FBI’s Fictional “Black Identity Extremism” Movement
2019-03-23, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/03/23/black-identity-extremist-fbi-domestic-ter...

Hours after police Officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown on a quiet suburban street in Ferguson, Missouri, Olajuwon Ali Davis stood with a few dozen people on that same street. Davis, who was 22 at the time, kept showing up as the protests grew larger. Three months later, Davis and another young man named Brandon Orlando Baldwin were arrested in an FBI sting and accused of planning to ... blow up St. Louis’s iconic Gateway Arch. Three years later, the FBI listed Davis’s case in a secret memo warning of the rise of a “black identity extremist” movement whose members’ “perceptions of police brutality against African Americans” spurred what the FBI claimed was “an increase in premeditated, retaliatory lethal violence against law enforcement.” The “black identity extremism” report was prepared by the FBI’s Domestic Terrorism Analysis Unit ... and was distributed to scores of local and federal law enforcement partners. Davis and Baldwin ... appear to be the first individuals retroactively labeled by the FBI as “black identity extremists.” According to The Intercept’s analysis, Davis and Olajuwon’s case was the only federal prosecution of individuals the FBI considers to be “black identity extremists” that resulted in a conviction. By comparison, the analysis found that 268 right-wing extremists were prosecuted in federal courts since 9/11 for crimes that appear to meet the legal definition of domestic terrorism.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties.


Pressing for vaccine law changes in Arizona
2019-03-22, azcentral.com/USA Today (website of Arizona's largest newspaper)
https://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/2019/03/22/vaccine-law-changes-...

The number of recommended vaccines was only 23 doses of seven vaccines in 1983. By 2017, the CDC’s recommended number skyrocketed to 69 doses of 16 vaccines – 50 doses given before age 6. Vaccination is not appropriate for every individual due to one’s genetic disposition, autoimmune deficiency, allergy or other circumstance. Medical professionals would never claim that because a certain drug or therapy was approved for most people, everyone should be subject to it – but with vaccine injury, the clinical evidence does not seem to apply. Despite ... specific warnings on each vaccine insert, there is an unwillingness to acknowledge the risk for some individuals. While some claim vaccine injuries are rare, the CDC-funded Harvard Pilgrim Project’s [found] that less than 1 percent are ever reported to VAERS, the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System. Taxpayers – not liability-free pharmaceutical companies – have paid patients $4 billion for their injuries or death through the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program since 1988. Most families that have experiences with vaccine reactions were never notified beforehand of [this] program. Certain ingredients in vaccinations, including chemicals, human, animal, and insect DNA and RNA, are abhorrent to some for religious or ethical reasons. Mandated vaccination should not force someone to compromise their beliefs. The American Medical Association’s code of ethics affirms the right to both religious and philosophical exceptions for physicians themselves to not be vaccinated. The same standard should apply to their patients.

Note: See the highly revealing 6-page report on the US government's "Health Information Technology" website that states, "Adverse events from drugs and vaccines are common, but underreported. ... Fewer than 1% of vaccine adverse events are reported." A concise summary of this report can be found here. More valuable information is available here. For even more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on vaccines from reliable major media sources. Explore also the best website calling for responsibility in vaccination.


16 Years Later, How the Press That Sold the Iraq War Got Away With It
2019-03-22, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/iraq-war-media-fail-m...

Sixteen years ago this week, the United States invaded Iraq. We went in on an unconvincing excuse, articulated by George W. Bush: “Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised. This regime has already used weapons of mass destruction against Iraq’s neighbors and against Iraq’s people.” To the lie about the possession of WMDs, Bush added a few more: that Hussein “trained and harbored terrorists, including operatives of al-Qaeda.” WMD became the archetype of a modern propaganda campaign. In the popular imagination, the case for war was driven by a bunch of Republicans and one ... New York Times reporter named Judith Miller. It’s been forgotten this was actually a business-wide consensus, which included the enthusiastic participation of a blue-state intelligentsia. The Washington Post and New York Times were key editorial-page drivers of the conflict; MSNBC unhired Phil Donahue and Jesse Ventura over their war skepticism; CNN flooded the airwaves with generals and ex-Pentagon stoolies, and broadcast outlets ABC, CBS, NBC and PBS stacked the deck even worse: In a two-week period before the invasion, the networks had just one American guest out of 267 who questioned the war. The WMD episode is remembered as a grotesque journalistic failure, one that led to disastrous war that spawned ISIS.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war and the manipulation of public perception.


Victims can't make a federal case out of police who stole their money
2019-03-20, San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco's leading newspaper)
https://www.sfchronicle.com/news/article/Court-Victims-can-t-make-a-federal-c...

Police are violating no “clearly established rights” when they steal someone’s property after seizing it with a legal search warrant and, therefore, can’t be sued in federal court, an appeals court ruled Wednesday. The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco refused to reinstate a suit against Fresno police by two people whose homes and business were searched in 2013 during a gambling investigation. After the search, three officers signed an inventory sheet saying they had seized about $50,000. But the two owners, Micah Jessop and Brittan Ashjian, who operated automatic teller machines ... said the officers had actually taken $276,000 - $151,000 in cash and $125,000 in rare coins - and pocketed the difference. Darrell York, Jessop’s and Ashjian’s attorney, said police and a city attorney denied that a theft occurred. Even if Kumagai and his fellow officers stole money and coins from Jessop and Ashjian, the appeals court said, the owners could not sue in federal court to get their money back. Such a suit would require proof that their constitutional rights were violated, the court said, and suits against police must clear the additional hurdle of showing that those rights were “clearly established.” “The allegation of any theft by police officers - most certainly the theft of over $225,000 - is undoubtedly deeply disturbing,” Judge Milan Smith said in the 3-0 ruling. “Whether that conduct violates the Fourth Amendment’s prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures, however, is not obvious.”

Note: Read about "civil asset forfeiture" used by police to steal money and other private property for their departments. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing police corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


How to Blow $700 Billion
2019-03-20, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/how-to-blow-700-billion-8...

According to a study led by Michigan State University professor Mark Skidmore, some $21 trillion in Pentagon accounting transactions, made over a 17-year period, lack supporting data. This doesn’t mean the money is gone - the Pentagon only received roughly $9.2 trillion in budget money during that time - but it does mean the system is so choked with bad numbers, we have little idea of what mischief might be taking place at the Department of Defense. Double-billing [is] an alarmingly simple scheme. As Andy the Air Force accountant puts it: “A contractor accidentally invoices the military twice. It gets paid twice.” For example, one company got paid in full for delivering just 28 percent of a lug-nut contract; or the Swiss contractor that supposedly over-billed by $757 million to supply the troops in Afghanistan. In one of the worst military scandals in recent history, a contractor called “Fat Leonard” reportedly bribed Navy officials with prostitutes and more than $500,000 in order to steer Navy boats to his portside service centers, where he systematically overbilled taxpayers. The ... grifter got more than $200 million in Navy contracts. On paper, the military can lose track of even big things — like 39 Black Hawk helicopters. But Andy thinks if independent analysts get to actually count the stuff that’s supposed to be sitting in depots, this will [reveal] the true extent of the corruption and/or disorganization in the military.

Note: Read more about the Pentagon's massive accounting frauds in this article. Read a 2017 article documenting the investigation which found $21 Trillion unaccounted for in government coffers. Then read summaries of several major media articles showing the Pentagon's blatant lies and disregard for accounting. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Jurors say Roundup contributed to a 2nd man's cancer. Now thousands more cases against Monsanto await
2019-03-20, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/20/health/monsanto-verdict-federal/index.html

A federal jury dealt a huge blow to Monsanto, saying its popular weedkiller Roundup was a substantial factor in causing a California man's cancer. It's the second time in eight months that a jury has reached such a decision. But Edwin Hardeman's case against Monsanto is the first to be tried in federal court. And thousands of similar cases are still pending at the federal or state level. But this trial isn't over yet. While the first phase focused on whether Roundup caused Hardeman's cancer, the second phase ... focuses on whether Monsanto is liable. It's unclear how much the jury might award Hardeman in damages, if anything at all. But last August, in the first state trial over whether Roundup can cause cancer, California jurors awarded former school groundskeeper Dewayne Johnson $289 million in punitive and compensatory damages. A judge later reduced the total award to $78 million. Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients who used Roundup started suing Monsanto by the hundreds after a World Health Organization report ... said glyphosate is "probably carcinogenic to humans." While debate continues over whether glyphosate is safe, parts of the country are limiting or banning it, said the US Public Interest Research Group Education Fund. "Following the state court decision last year, we saw a huge uptick in local ordinances that would regulate the use of Roundup on playgrounds, schoolyards and public parks," said PIRG's Kara Cook-Schultz, who leads a campaign to ban Roundup.

Note: Internal FDA emails suggest that the food supply contains far more glyphosate than government reports indicate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and health.


U.S.’s Biggest Christian Charity Reportedly Channeled $56.1 Million to Purported Hate Groups
2019-03-20, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/biggest-christian-charity-funding-hate-groups-1370055

The nation's eighth-largest nonprofit donated $56.1 million to a series of organizations identified as hate groups from 2015 to 2017, according to a report from Sludge. National Christian Foundation, which identifies itself as the largest Christian grant maker and one of the largest donor-advised funds in the nation, has served as a vehicle for individuals trying to anonymously send money. Donor-advised funds allow individuals sending the tax deductible contributions to remain anonymous from the IRS and instruct where they want the payments to be sent. For those donating via NCF, this meant sending money to 23 organizations that the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled hate groups. Most of the hate organizations that received money from the NCF opposed LGBT rights. The report also found that the NCF donated to anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant organizations. Organizations receiving the most funds from NCF included the Alliance Defending Freedom, which has advocated for sterilizing transgender individuals, and the Family Research Council, which has advocated conversion therapy. Members of the Family Research Council including Tony Perkins, the organization's president, have sought to link pedophilia and homosexuality. The NCF's website says it has "accepted over $12 billion in contributions and made over $10 billion in giver-recommended grants to more than 55,000 charities."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing civil liberties news articles from reliable major media sources.


8-year-old living in homeless shelter wins New York chess championship
2019-03-18, USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2019/03/18/homeless-boy-nigerian-r...

An 8-year-old living in a homeless shelter has won the New York State chess championship for his age bracket. “I want to be the youngest grandmaster,” Tanitoluwa Adewumi, a Nigerian refugee who goes by Tani, [said]. Tanitoluwa placed first in the New York State Scholastic Championships tournament for kindergarten through third grade — a remarkable win for anyone. “It’s unheard of for any kid, let alone one in a homeless shelter,” [said] Russell Makofsky, who oversees Manhattan's P.S. 116 chess program. Tanitoluwa hasn't had an easy life. His family left northern Nigeria in 2017 fearing attacks on Christians, The New York Times reports, and moved to New York City over a year ago where the boy learned how to play chess at school. He and his family live in a homeless shelter. School chess coach Shawn Martinez saw Tanitoluwa's potential after observing him excel in the game a few weeks after first learning it early last year. He reached out to Tanitoluwa's family about joining the school's chess program, and learned they were unable to pay costs associated with membership. Makofsky decided to waive Tanitoluwa's fees, which can easily exceed thousands with travel and chess camp admissions. Seven trophies later, the elementary school boy is one of the top players in the country for his age group. Makofsky, who set up a GoFundMe for Tanitoluwa, said the family has received offers for a car, legal services, jobs and even housing.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


The Pentagon’s Bottomless Money Pit
2019-03-17, Rolling Stone
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/pentagon-budget-myste...

Despite being the taxpayers’ greatest investment - more than $700 billion a year - the Department of Defense has remained an organizational black box throughout its history. It’s repelled generations of official inquiries, the latest being an audit three decades in the making, mainly by scrambling its accounting into such a mess that it may never be untangled. Ahead of misappropriation, fraud, theft, overruns, contracting corruption and other abuses that are almost certainly still going on, the Pentagon’s first problem is its books. It’s the world’s largest producer of wrong numbers. At the tail end of last year, the Department of Defense finally completed an audit. At a cost of $400 million, some 1,200 auditors charged into the jungle of military finance, but returned in defeat. They were unable to pass the Pentagon or flunk it. They could only offer no opinion, explaining the military’s empire of hundreds of acronymic accounting silos was too illogical to penetrate. Twenty-nine years ago, in 1990, Congress ordered all government agencies to begin producing audited financial statements. In 2011, [the Pentagon] finally agreed to be ready by 2017, which turned into 2018. If and when the defense review is ever completed, we’re likely to find ... the military’s losses and liabilities hidden in Enron-like special-purpose vehicles, assets systematically overvalued, monies Congress approved for X feloniously diverted to Program Y, contractors paid twice, parts bought twice, repairs done unnecessarily and at great expense, and so on.

Note: Read more about the Pentagon's massive accounting fraud in this article. Read a 2017 article documenting an investigation which found $21 Trillion unaccounted for in government coffers. Then read summaries of several major media articles showing the Pentagon's blatant lies and disregard for accounting. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Leaked Documents Show the Government Tracking Journalists
2019-03-16, NBC (Los Angeles affiliate)
https://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/national-international/Source-Leaked-Docum...

The U.S. government created a secret database of activists, journalists, and social media influencers tied to the migrant caravan and in some cases, placed alerts on their passports. At the end of 2018, roughly 5,000 immigrants from Central America made their way north through Mexico to the United States southern border. As the migrant caravan reached the San Ysidro Port of Entry in south San Diego County, so did journalists, attorneys, and advocates who were there to work and witness the events unfolding. But in the months that followed, journalists who covered the caravan, as well as those who offered assistance to caravan members, said they felt they had become targets of intense inspections and scrutiny by border officials. Documents leaked to NBC 7 Investigates show [that the] government had listed their names in a secret database of targets, where agents collected information on them. Some had alerts placed on their passports, keeping at least two photojournalists and an attorney from entering Mexico to work. The documents were provided to NBC 7 by a Homeland Security source on the condition of anonymity. The individuals listed include ten journalists, seven of whom are U.S. citizens, a U.S. attorney, and 48 people from the U.S. and other countries, labeled as organizers, instigators or their roles “unknown.” In addition to flagging the individuals for secondary screenings, the Homeland Security source told NBC 7 that the agents also created dossiers on each person listed.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the erosion of civil liberties.


Since 1990s, heart attacks have become less deadly, frequent for Americans
2019-03-15, Yale News
https://news.yale.edu/2019/03/15/1990s-heart-attacks-have-become-less-deadly-...

Heart attack prevention and outcomes have dramatically improved for American adults in the past two decades, according to a Yale study in JAMA Network Open. Compared to the mid-1990s, Americans today are less likely to have heart attacks and also less likely to die from them, said the researchers. Tracking more than four million Medicare patients between 1995 and 2014, this is the largest and most comprehensive study of heart attacks in the United States to date. Its two key findings are that hospitalizations for heart attacks have declined by 38%, and the 30-day mortality rate for heart attacks is at an all-time low of 12%, down by more than a third since 1995. In the words of Dr. Harlan Krumholz, lead author and Yale cardiologist, these gains are “remarkable.” The Yale cardiologist also believes these gains are no accident. Krumholz explained that the last 20 years have been marked by national efforts to prevent heart attacks and improve care for those who suffer them. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the American College of Cardiology, and the American Heart Association — along with other organizations and “legions of researchers and clinicians and public health experts” — have focused on reducing risk by promoting healthy lifestyles, addressing risk factors, and improving the quality of care, the researchers noted.

Note: It's interesting how little reporting this wonderful news has received in the press. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Facebook, Axios And NBC Paid This Guy To Whitewash Wikipedia Pages
2019-03-14, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/wikipedia-paid-editing-pr-facebook-nbc-axios_n...

The vast majority of the people who propose and make changes to Wikipedia are volunteers. A few people, however, have figured out how to manipulate Wikipedia’s supposedly neutral system to turn a profit. That’s [paid Wikipedia editor Ed] Sussman’s business. And in just the past few years, companies including Axios, NBC, Nextdoor and Facebook’s PR firm have all paid him to manipulate public perception using a tool most people would never think to check. One of Wikipedia’s more well-known rules is its prohibition on editing pages that you have any sort of direct connection to. But ... anyone, even someone financially tied to the subject in question, is allowed to merely suggest edits in the hopes that a less conflicted editor might come by, agree, and implement the changes for them. This is where a paid editor like Sussman comes in. On his website, Sussman identifies himself as “a journalist, lawyer, academic and technology entrepreneur” who “is often called upon in ‘crisis management’ situations where inaccurate or misleading information has been placed in a Wikipedia article.” Sussman’s main strategy for convincing editors to make the changes his clients want is to cite as many tangentially related rules as possible (he is, after all, a lawyer). He often replies to nearly every single bit of pushback with walls of text arguing his case. Trying to get through even a fraction of it is exhausting, and because Wikipedia editors are unpaid, there’s little motivation to continue dealing with Sussman’s arguments. So he usually gets his way.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the manipulation of public perception.


How Inuit Parents Teach Kids To Control Their Anger
2019-03-13, NPR
https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2019/03/13/685533353/a-playful-way-...

Traditional Inuit parenting is incredibly nurturing and tender. The culture views scolding - or even speaking to children in an angry voice - as inappropriate, says Lisa Ipeelie, a radio producer and mom who grew up with 12 siblings. "When they're little, it doesn't help to raise your voice," she says. Even if the child hits you or bites you, there's no raising your voice? "No," Ipeelie says with a giggle that seems to emphasize how silly my question is. "With little kids, you often think they're pushing your buttons, but that's not what's going on. They're upset about something, and you have to figure out what it is." Traditionally, the Inuit saw yelling at a small child as demeaning. It's as if the adult is having a tantrum; it's basically stooping to the level of the child. But if you don't scold or talk in an angry tone, how do you discipline? For thousands of years, the Inuit have relied on an ancient tool with an ingenious twist: "We use storytelling to discipline," [parenting teacher Goota] Jaw says. For example, how do you teach kids to stay away from the ocean, where they could easily drown? Instead of yelling, "Don't go near the water!" Jaw says Inuit parents take a pre-emptive approach and tell kids a special story about what's inside the water. "It's the sea monster," Jaw says, with a giant pouch on its back just for little kids. "If a child walks too close to the water, the monster will ... drag you down to the ocean and adopt you out to another family," Jaw says. "Then we don't need to yell at a child," Jaw says, "because she is already getting the message."

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Tiny Costa Rica Has a Green New Deal, Too. It Matters for the Whole Planet.
2019-03-12, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/12/climate/costa-rica-climate-change.html

Costa Rica, population 5 million, wants to wean itself from fossil fuels by 2050, and the chief evangelist of the idea is a 38-year-old urban planner named Claudia Dobles who also happens to be the first lady. Every country will have to aspire to something similar, scientists say, if the world is to avert the most dire consequences of global warming. And while Costa Rica’s carbon footprint is tiny compared to other countries, Ms. Dobles has a higher goal in mind: Getting rid of fossil fuels would show the world that a small country can be a leader on an awesome problem and improve the health and well-being of its citizens in the bargain. Costa Rica’s green bid, though fraught with challenges, has a head start. Electricity comes largely from renewable sources already — chiefly hydropower, but also wind, solar and geothermal energy. The country has doubled its forest cover in the last 30 years, after decades of deforestation. Now, if its decarbonization strategy succeeds, it could provide a road map to others, especially developing countries. For Ms. Dobles, the top priority is fixing transportation. It is the largest single source of Costa Rica’s greenhouse gas emissions. The National Decarbonization Plan, as it’s called, envisions electric passenger and freight trains in service by 2022. Under the plan, nearly a third of all buses would be electric by 2035, dozens of charging stations would be built, and nearly all cars and buses on the roads would be electric by 2050.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Federal court moves to unseal documents in Jeffrey Epstein scandal
2019-03-11, Miami Herald
https://www.miamiherald.com/latest-news/article227411649.html

A federal court of appeals in New York on Monday took the first step in unsealing documents that could reveal evidence of an international sex trafficking operation allegedly run by multimillionaire Jeffrey Epstein and his former partner, British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell. The three-judge panel ... gave the parties until March 19 to establish good cause as to why they should remain sealed and, failing to do so, the summary judgment and supporting documents will be made public. The court reserved a ruling on the balance of the documents in the civil case. “We’re grateful that the court ruled the summary judgment papers are open,” said Sanford Bohrer, the attorney representing the Miami Herald, which filed the motion last year to have the entire case file opened. The Herald’s appeal is supported by 32 other media companies, including the New York Times and Washington Post. Epstein, 66, was not a party to the lawsuit, which was filed against Maxwell in 2015 by Virginia Roberts Giuffre. Giuffre claimed in the lawsuit that she was recruited by Maxwell at Mar-a-Lago, President Donald Trump’s resort in Palm Beach, when she was 16 years old. Giuffre had been working at the resort’s spa when Maxwell approached her and asked her whether she wanted to become a masseuse for Epstein. Giuffre claimed that the massages were a ruse for Epstein and Maxwell to sexually abuse her and other underage girls, some of whom were trafficked to other influential people.

Note: Read a collection of major media reports on billionaire Jeffrey Epstein's child sex ring which also implicate Donald Trump, Bill Clinton, and other world leaders. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


Norway's $1tn wealth fund to divest from oil and gas exploration
2019-03-08, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/mar/08/norways-1tn-wealth-fund-to-dive...

The world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, which manages $1tn (Ł770bn) of Norway’s assets, is to dump investments in firms that explore for oil and gas, but will still hold stakes in firms such as BP and Shell that have renewable energy divisions. The Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), whose assets exceed those of rival sovereign wealth funds ... said it would phase out oil exploration from its “investment universe”. “The objective is to reduce the vulnerability of our common wealth to a permanent oil price decline,” said Norway’s finance minister, Siv Jensen. “Hence, it is more accurate to sell companies which explore and produce oil and gas, rather than selling a broadly diversified energy sector.” Greenpeace UK’s oil campaigner, Charlie Kronick, said: “This partial divestment from oil and gas [sends] a clear signal that companies betting on the expansion of their oil and gas businesses present an unacceptable risk, not only to the climate but also to investors. “While BP and Shell are excluded from the current divestment proposal, they must now recognise that if they continue to spend billions chasing new fossil fuels, they are doomed.” Tom Sanzillo, director of finance for the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, said: “These are very important statements from a big fund. They’re doing it because fossil fuel stocks are not producing the value that they have historically. He said GPFG’s investment strategy also “underscores that the fracking business model is unsustainable”.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Trump revokes Obama rule on reporting drone strike deaths
2019-03-07, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-47480207

President Donald Trump has revoked a policy set by his predecessor requiring US intelligence officials to publish the number of civilians killed in drone strikes outside of war zones. The 2016 executive order was brought in by then-President Barack Obama, who was under pressure to be more transparent. Since the 9/11 terror attack, drone strikes have been increasingly used against terror and military targets. The rule ... required the head of the CIA to release annual summaries of US drone strikes and assess how many died as a result. Mr Trump's executive order does not overturn reporting requirements on civilian deaths set for the military by Congress. During Mr Obama's eight years in office, 1,878 drone strikes were carried out. Since Mr Trump was elected in 2016, there have been 2,243 drone strikes. The Republican president has also made some of the operations, the ones outside of war zones, more secretive. As a result, things have different today: under Mr Trump, there are more drone strikes - and less transparency. Lawmakers and rights groups have criticised Mr Trump's decision, saying it could allow the CIA to conduct drone strikes without accountability. Representative Adam Schiff, a Democrat who chairs Congress's intelligence committee, called the requirement issued by Obama "an important measure of transparency," and said "there is simply no justification" for cancelling it.

Note: This 2014 article describes how attempts to kill 41 men with drone strikes resulted in 1,147 deaths. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing military corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Jared Kushner goes rogue in Saudi Arabia, prompting national security concerns
2019-03-07, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/jared-kushner-s...

Jared Kushner has gone rogue. Donald Trump’s senior White House adviser once again abandoned government normalities during an official state trip to Saudi Arabia, reportedly discussing US-Saudi cooperation with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in a meeting that lacked representation from the US Embassy in Riyadh. The 38-year-old adviser also discussed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the US’ economic investment in the Middle East with Saudi royalty, including King Salman, according to a White House readout from the trip. Naveed Jamali - a former US Defence Department intelligence officer and double agent - [said] the Trump administration has frequently “blurred the lines of communication” between government agencies by sending Mr Kushner to meet with top international officials. “We know there is a flawed system by the fact that Jared Kushner has a security clearance,” Mr Jamali ... said on Thursday, noting the 38-year-old adviser’s omission of Russian contacts from his initial clearance application and foreign business assets that would typically bar an official from receiving a clearance. Multiple sources from the US embassy in Riyadh have reportedly said they were not read into the details of Mr Kushner’s Saudi Arabia visit, and have yet to receive any sort of briefing on the White House official’s meetings with Saudi leadership. During his meetings with the Saudi crown prince, Mr Kushner seemingly failed to mention the high-profile killing of Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post journalist.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


FDA approves ketamine-like nasal spray for depression
2019-03-06, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/05/health/esketamine-depression-nasal-spray-fda-b...

The US Food and Drug Administration approved Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s esketamine on Tuesday for treatment-resistant depression; the drug is the chemical cousin of ketamine, the powerful anesthetic that has been used illegally as the club drug Special K. It will be sold as Spravato. It's for patients who have tried at least two other medications without success, and it should be taken with an oral antidepressant. "There has been a longstanding need for additional effective treatments for treatment-resistant depression, a serious and life-threatening condition," Dr. Tiffany Farchione, acting director of the Division of Psychiatry Products at the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said. Spravato is a nasal spray administered by an approved health care provider in a doctor's office or a medical clinic. It may also be self-administered but only under the supervision of a care provider and cannot be taken home. Depending on the severity of the patient's depression, it is given either once a week or once every other week. The drug is rapidly acting, so it starts working faster than other antidepressants, according to Janssen. It works by restoring brain cells in patients with treatment-resistant depression. Currently available treatments for major depression are ineffective in 30% to 40% of patients. The drug was designated as a breakthrough therapy in 2013, a status intended to "expedite the development and review of drugs for serious or life-threatening conditions," the FDA said at the time.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind-altering drugs from reliable major media sources.


Sanders, Harris and Warren defend Ilhan Omar amid controversy over Israel comments
2019-03-06, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/06/politics/bernie-sanders-defends-ilhan-omar/ind...

Democratic presidential candidates Sens. Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren on Wednesday defended Rep. Ilhan Omar against the backlash to her comments slamming pro-Israel groups and politicians, which have been called anti-Semitic. Sanders, who is Jewish, said criticism of Omar and efforts to get her taken off the House Foreign Affairs Committee ... are aimed at stopping a discussion about American's foreign policy toward Israel. [He] differentiated between promoting anti-Semitism and criticizing Israel as a state. Harris called out all instances of bigotry and expressed concern that the focus on Omar "may put her at risk." Warren [stated], "Branding criticism of Israel as automatically anti-Semitic has a chilling effect on our public discourse and makes it harder to achieve a peaceful solution between Israelis and Palestinians. Threats of violence -- like those made against Rep. Omar -- are never acceptable." Last month, Omar faced criticism for tweets insinuating that the pro-Israel lobbying group American Israel Public Affairs Committee was effectively buying off US politicians. The Minnesota Democrat subsequently apologized after demands from Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California. Omar [also] implied that pro-Israel lawmakers are under a "political influence in this country that says it is OK for people to push for allegiance to a foreign country." House Foreign Affairs Chairman Eliot Engel said Tuesday that he does not want Omar removed from her seat on the committee because of her recent comments, despite previously calling for her to apologize in a fiery statement.


Sanders, Warren, Ocasio-Cortez, and Other Lawmakers Sign Pledge to End America’s “Forever Wars”
2019-03-04, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2019/03/04/common-defense-congress-forever-wars-pledge/

Eight members of Congress have taken a pledge to work to bring ongoing U.S. global military conflicts to a “responsible and expedient” end, the result of a first-of-its kind lobbying effort by military veterans on Capitol Hill. The pledge was written and organized by a group called Common Defense ... which advocates for scaling back U.S. military commitments overseas. The effort ... is unique in that it is driven almost exclusively by veterans and focuses on global conflicts broadly, rather than one specific war. In 2001, Congress authorized military operations against the groups responsible for those attacks. In the years since, that congressional authorization has been interpreted broadly and has led to combat against groups, like the Islamic State, that did not exist on 9/11. “The United States has been in a state of continuous, global, open-ended military conflict since 2001. Over 2.5 million troops have fought in this ‘Forever War’ in over a dozen countries – including Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Jordan, Niger, Somalia, and Thailand,” the pledge reads. It continues: “I pledge to the people of the United States of America, and to our military community in particular, that I will (1) fight to reclaim Congress’s constitutional authority to conduct oversight of U.S. foreign policy and independently debate whether to authorize each new use of military force, and (2) act to bring the Forever War to a responsible and expedient conclusion.”

Note: To understand how the military-industrial complex continually undermines democracy and creates pretexts for war to pad the pockets of those who support the war machine, see this most excellent collection of major media news articles. Read a great article on how polarization is negatively impacting our world. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


3 of U.S.’s biggest religious denominations in turmoil over sex abuse, LGBT policy
2019-03-03, PBS
https://www.pbs.org/newshour/nation/3-big-us-churches-in-turmoil-over-sex-abu...

It has been a wrenching season for three of America’s largest religious denominations, as sex-abuse scandals and a schism over LGBT inclusion fuel anguish and anger within the Roman Catholic, Southern Baptist and United Methodist churches. There’s rising concern that the crises will boost the ranks of young people disillusioned by organized religion. For the U.S. Catholic church, the clergy sex-abuse scandal that has unfolded over two decades expanded dramatically in recent months. Many dioceses have become targets of investigations since a Pennsylvania grand jury report in August detailed hundreds of cases of alleged abuse. In mid-February, former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick was expelled from the priesthood for sexually abusing minors and seminarians. The Southern Baptist Convention, America’s largest Protestant denomination, confronted its own sex-abuse crisis three weeks ago in the form of an investigation by the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News. The newspapers reported that hundreds of Southern Baptist clergy and staff had been accused of sexual misconduct ... including dozens who returned to church duties, while leaving more than 700 victims with little in the way of justice. The United Methodist Church, the largest mainline Protestant denomination, ended a pivotal conference Tuesday in a seemingly irreconcilable split over same-sex marriage and the ordination of LGBT clergy. About 53 percent of the delegates voted to maintain bans on those practices.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing sexual abuse scandal news articles from reliable major media sources.


What decades of traffic stop data reveals about police bias
2019-03-02, CBS News
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/what-decades-of-traffic-stop-data-reveals-about-...

Philando Castile, Walter Scott and Sandra Bland were all pulled over by police in routine traffic stops. All are dead. In an effort to curb racial profiling, North Carolina became the first state to demand the collection and release of traffic stop data. University of North Carolina professor Frank Baumgartner took a look at that data and wrote a book on the subject titled, "Suspect Citizens." Baumgartner analyzed 22 million traffic stops over 20 years ... and found that a driver's race, gender, location and age all factor in to a police officer's decision to pull over a vehicle. The data showed that African Americans had been stopped twice as often as white drivers, and while they were four times more likely to be searched, they were actually less likely to be issued a ticket. The study also highlighted that whites were more likely to be found with contraband than blacks or Hispanics. "There's a way that police interact with middle-class white Americans and there's a way that people in the police forces interact with members of minority communities, especially in poorer neighborhoods," Baumgartner said. Police discretion is a power that's been backed by the U.S. Supreme Court for decades. Baumgartner believes that's largely because the court looks like him, a white man. Philando Castile was stopped 46 times according to police records, racking up a total of $6,000 in fines. "When we look at some of these infractions, they're trivial. It's not keeping us any safer," Baumgartner said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption and the erosion of civil liberties.


Only six countries have equal rights for men and women, World Bank finds
2019-03-02, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/02/europe/world-bank-gender-equality-report-intl/...

The world is moving towards legal gender equality - but it's moving very, very slowly. Only six countries currently give women and men equal rights, a major report from the World Bank has found. That's an increase - from zero - compared to a decade ago, when the organization started measuring countries by how effectively they guarantee legal and economic equality between the genders. But the rate of progress means that, by CNN calculations, women won't achieve full equality in the areas studied by the World Bank until 2073. Belgium, Denmark, France, Latvia, Luxembourg and Sweden scored full marks of 100 in the bank's "Women, Business and the Law 2019" report. Of those nations, France saw the biggest improvement over the past decade for implementing a domestic violence law, providing criminal penalties for workplace sexual harassment and introducing paid parental leave. But countries in the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa averaged a score of 47.37, meaning the typical nation in those regions gives women under half the legal rights of men in the areas measured by the group. The study ... did not measure social and cultural factors, or how effectively laws were enforced. The criteria analyzed were: going places, starting a job, getting paid, getting married, having children, running a business, managing assets and getting a pension. Overall, the global average came in at 74.71. The score indicates that in the average nation, women receive just three-quarters of the legal rights that men do.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing civil liberties news articles from reliable major media sources.


Anti-vaccine movies disappear from Amazon after CNN Business report
2019-03-01, CNN News
https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/01/tech/amazon-anti-vaccine-movies-schiff/index.html

Amazon has apparently started removing anti-vaccine documentaries from its Amazon Prime Video streaming service. The move came days after a CNN Business report highlighted the anti-vaccine comment available on the site, and hours after Rep. Adam Schiff wrote an open letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, saying he is concerned "that Amazon is surfacing and recommending" anti-vaccination books and movies. Anti-vaccine movies that were previously available free for Prime subscribers, like "We Don't Vaccinate!," "Shoot 'Em Up: The Truth About Vaccines," and "Vaxxed: From Cover-Up to Catastrophe," are now "currently unavailable." While some anti-vaccine videos are gone from the Prime streaming service, a number of anti-vaccine books were still available for purchase on Amazon.com ... and some were still being offered for free to Kindle Unlimited subscribers. A sponsored post for the book "Vaccines On Trial: Truth and Consequences of Mandatory Shots" also remained live. Amongst the titles taken down are "VAXXED: From Cover-Up to Catastrophe," the notorious anti-vaccine documentary that was banned from the Tribeca Film Festival in 2016, and whose director, Andrew Wakefield, is one of the central figures in the anti-vaccine movements. Schiff had previously written letters to the heads of Facebook and Google, which owns YouTube, about anti-vaccine content on their platforms. Both companies publicly vowed to make changes to how anti-vaccine content is made available.

Note: This New York Times article reports that facebook is also removing key vaccine content. Our freedom to access information on all sides of various debates is gradually being eroded by giants like amazon and facebook. The documentary "Vaxxed" presents solid, verifiable evidence of a major cover-up around vaccine safety. You can find it on this webpage. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on vaccine risks from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


U.S. in UFO Race with China, Russia, Former Senate Majority Leader Suggests
2019-03-01, Newsweek
https://www.newsweek.com/ufo-2019-harry-reid-china-russia-senate-unexplained-...

Former Democratic Senate Majority Leader and Nevada Senator Harry Reid argued for continued study into UFO phenomena in an interview with CBS affiliate KLAS 8 in Las Vegas, citing competition from Russia and China. “I’ll bet you anything that China is spending some money checking this out. I’ll bet you anything KGB Putin is spending some money checking this out,” Reid told George Knapp. “Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid dropped major hints that he knows potential adversaries, Russia and China, have carried out their own military studies to figure out how UFOs work and how to build their own,” Knapp said during the broadcast, citing anonymous Pentagon sources to claim dozens of UFOs have been encountered off the coast of Florida and Virginia in the last three years. Reid said he understands why officials ... might be skeptical about dedicating resources to studying Unexplained Aerial Phenomena (UAP), but he also [alluded] to a rash of recent UFO sightings prompted by scheduled SpaceX launches. “This has been going on for a long time. These sightings are said to have been set off by a rocket in California. People in responsibility, whether it’s the Pentagon or whatever it might be - they don’t want to have to try to explain something that’s, many times, not explainable,” Reid said. The interview with Reid also delved into classified UFO studies conducted by the Pentagon and revealed by The New York Times.

Note: See a revealing letter written from Senator Harry Reid to the deputy secretary of defense support further explorations into a UFO program. An intriguing online video interview with Reid and further discussion is available in this informative media article. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing UFO news articles from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our UFO Information Center.


Trader Joe's is removing more than 1 million pounds in plastic packaging annually
2019-03-01, NBC (Vermont affiliate)
https://www.mynbc5.com/article/trader-joes-is-removing-more-than-1-million-po...

As people become more conscious about reducing their plastic consumption, Trader Joe's was facing mounting criticism for an "overuse of packaging." The retailer said it's been listening to customers' feedback on the issue, and in response, has stopped offering single-use plastic carryout bags in stores nationwide (already banned in all large stores in California). In addition to that, Trader Joe's officials said it has replaced plastic produce bags with biodegradable and compostable options, which we've noticed recently at San Francisco and Oakland stores. Officials added the retailer has also replaced Styrofoam trays that used to be used in produce packaging with compostable trays. Other changes Trader Joe's is phasing in include: Selling more produce as loose items, instead of bagged in plastic; Eliminating plastic sleeves on greeting cards and replacing them with a compostable material; Eliminating plastic wrappers for flower bouquets and replacing them with a renewable material. Since China drastically cut the amount of American recycling waste it was purchasing, there has been an added emphasis on the "reduce" part of "reduce, reuse, recycle" when it comes to plastic. Much of the world's plastic waste never ends up getting recycled, instead finding its way to landfills or the ocean. San Francisco's "Zero Waste" initiative leads the