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News Articles
Excerpts of Key News Articles in Major Media


Below are highly revealing excerpts of key news articles from the media suggesting major cover-ups and corruption. Links are provided to the full news articles for verification. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These news articles are listed by order of importance. You can also explore the articles listed by order of the date of the news article or by the date posted. By choosing to educate ourselves and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on dozens of engaging topics. And read excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


Andrew Huszar: Confessions of a Quantitative Easer
2013-11-11, Wall Street Journal
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303763804579183680751473884

I can only say: I'm sorry, America. As a former Federal Reserve official, I was responsible for executing the centerpiece program of the Fed's first plunge into the bond-buying experiment known as quantitative easing. The central bank continues to spin QE as a tool for helping Main Street. But I've come to recognize the program for what it really is: the greatest backdoor Wall Street bailout of all time. Where are we today? The Fed keeps buying roughly $85 billion in bonds a month, chronically delaying so much as a minor QE taper. Over five years, its bond purchases have come to more than $4 trillion. Amazingly, in a supposedly free-market nation, QE has become the largest financial-markets intervention by any government in world history. And the impact? Even by the Fed's sunniest calculations, aggressive QE over five years has generated only a few percentage points of U.S. growth. By contrast, experts outside the Fed, such as Mohammed El Erian at the Pimco investment firm, suggest that the Fed may have created and spent over $4 trillion for a total return of as little as 0.25% of GDP (i.e., a mere $40 billion bump in U.S. economic output). Both of those estimates indicate that QE isn't really working. Unless you're Wall Street. Having racked up hundreds of billions of dollars in opaque Fed subsidies, U.S. banks have seen their collective stock price triple since March 2009. The biggest ones have only become more of a cartel: 0.2% of them now control more than 70% of the U.S. bank assets. As for the rest of America, good luck.

Note: For more on government corruption, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


CIA made doctors torture suspected terrorists after 9/11, taskforce finds
2013-11-04, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/04/cia-doctors-torture-suspected-te...

Doctors and psychologists working for the US military violated the ethical codes of their profession under instruction from the defence department and the CIA to become involved in the torture and degrading treatment of suspected terrorists, an investigation has concluded. The report of the Taskforce on Preserving Medical Professionalism in National Security Detention Centres concludes that after 9/11, health professionals working with the military and intelligence services "designed and participated in cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment and torture of detainees". The report lays blame primarily on the defence department (DoD) and the CIA, which required their healthcare staff to put aside any scruples in the interests of intelligence gathering and security practices that caused severe harm to detainees, from waterboarding to sleep deprivation and force-feeding. The two-year review by the 19-member taskforce, Ethics Abandoned: Medical Professionalism and Detainee Abuse in the War on Terror, supported by the Institute on Medicine as a Profession (IMAP) and the Open Society Foundations, says that the DoD termed those involved in interrogation "safety officers" rather than doctors. Doctors and nurses were required to participate in the force-feeding of prisoners on hunger strike, against the rules of the World Medical Association and the American Medical Association. Doctors and psychologists working for the DoD were required to breach patient confidentiality and share what they knew of the prisoner's physical and psychological condition with interrogators, and were used as interrogators themselves.

Note: For more on the realities of intelligence agency operations, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


The Case for Labeling GMOs
2013-11-04, US News & World Report
http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articles/2013/11/04/dear-washington-voters-gene...

The public has the right to know what’s in our food. Over 70 percent of processed foods have genetically modified ingredients. GM crops are modified to contain novel patented bacterial and viral DNA never before seen in foods. Not surprisingly, most polls show around 90 percent of the public wants to know which foods are genetically modified. They want the same right to choose as consumers in the 64 countries around the world that mandate some form of labeling of GM foods. Washington state is currently ground zero, with a GM labeling initiative on the Nov. 5 ballot. Chemical and food corporations have raised over $20 million to defeat the measure. They are willing to spend whatever it takes. Last year, the opposition spent over $45 million to narrowly defeat a similar initiative in California. Why are agrichemical companies willing to spend such huge sums to defeat labeling? These companies’ GM foods would not be able to compete in an informed marketplace against non-GM foods. The fact is that, after spending 30 years genetically modifying crops, these companies have failed to come up with a single trait that would attract consumers. GM foods do not have improved nutrition, fewer calories, better taste or lower costs. In other words, they have no market advantage at all. A rational consumer, when faced with a non-genetically engineered bag of corn chips versus a labeled genetically engineered bag would have no incentive to buy the engineered brand. Labeling would expose these companies’ complete failure to provide a single benefit to America’s consumers. The only thing these foods offer is potential risk.

Note: For more on the risks from GMO foods, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


California's addiction to Indian casinos
2013-11-04, San Francisco Chronicle (SF's leading newspaper)
http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/editorials/article/California-s-addiction-to-In...

In just over a decade, Indian casinos have shot from backcountry slot machine emporiums to enormous gambling meccas, an escalation completely at odds with original promises. The latest proof of this failed pledge is an $800 million operation in Rohnert Park due to open [on November 5]. The Graton Resort & Casino will be a major economic force in Sonoma County, employing some 2,000 employees and promising $20 million in annual local payments. Instead of smoke-filled gambling halls, it will offer high-end restaurants, ornate chandeliers and skylights in a main building surrounded by nearly 6,000 parking slots. But the huge operation is a reminder of how far things have strayed from the promises made to California voters in 2000. A state ballot measure argued that impoverished tribes living in remote corners of California had few if any alternatives for economic development. Now gambling is Vegas-scale, and casino tribes are vying against each other for prime spots. The Rohnert Park casino will jump in front of another operation 30 miles to the north in Geyserville, and that worried tribe has bought land in Petaluma for a possible operation that will be closer to Bay Area gamblers. One tribe's win is another's loss. California taxpayers have a stake too. Sold on an ever-increasing slice of revenues, a string of state governors have approved more than 60 casinos. Gov. Jerry Brown, who approved the Graton operation, signed two other casino deals in the Central Valley sought by tribes who wanted more lucrative spots.

Note: For more on corporate corruption, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Gene genie
2013-11-01, The Intelligent Optimist Magazine
http://theoptimist.com/gene-genie/#!t6R4o

Angelina Jolie won plaudits around the world when she announced in May that she’d had a pre-emptive double mastectomy once doctors told her she had a whopping 87 percent risk of developing breast cancer and a 50 percent chance of developing ovarian cancer. Jolie, who regularly leverages her fame for public good, said she chose to share her story in the hope that other women who may be living under the shadow of cancer “will be able to get gene-tested” and know about their “strong options” in the event they’ve been dealt some unlucky genetic cards. While Jolie’s decision to tell the truth about her situation was brave and extraordinarily well intentioned, how much of the truth was she told about her condition? Is her genetic history indeed an automatic death sentence? Here’s what doctors may not have told her. Most breast cancer develops in women without a family history of the disease. The vast majority of women who get cancer (eight out of every nine) don’t have a family history of the disease—and even with a family history, most women will never develop cancer. Four out of five women who have a mother and a sister with breast cancer will never develop the disease, and 12 out of 13 will not die from it. The danger increases with the number of close relatives who have the disease, but the risk may prove to be far less than that described to Jolie. For women who have one close relative with breast cancer, the lifetime risk is 8 percent, which increases to just 13.3 percent for those like Angelina Jolie, with two close relatives who had the disease. There is no solid evidence that just-in-case double mastectomies increase survival.

Note: For more on important health issues, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


On leaving the Guardian - By Glenn Greenwald
2013-10-31, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/31/glenn-greenwald-leaving-...

Reporting the NSA story hasn't been easy, but it's always been fulfilling. It's what journalism at its crux is about, and we must protect that. I'm leaving the Guardian in order to work with Pierre Omidyar, Laura Poitras, Jeremy Scahill and soon-to-be-identified others on building a new media organization. Leaving the Guardian was not an easy choice, but this was a dream opportunity that was impossible to decline. The new site will be up and running reasonably soon. I'll also periodically post on my personal blog – here – with an active comment section, as well as on our pre-launch temporary blog. Reporting the NSA story has never been easy, but it's always been invigorating and fulfilling. It's exactly why one goes into journalism and, in my view, is what journalism at its crux is about. I really urge everyone to take note of, and stand against, [the] sustained and unprecedented attack on press freedoms and the news gathering process in the US. That same menacing climate is now manifest in the UK as well. There are extremist though influential factions in both countries which want to criminalize not only whistleblowing but the act of journalism itself. I'm not leaving because of those threats – if anything, they make me want to stay and continue to publish here – but I do believe it's urgent that everyone who believes in basic press freedoms unite against this. Allowing journalism to be criminalized is in nobody's interest other than the states which are trying to achieve that.

Note: For confirmation of Glenn Greenwald's warnings of immediate government threats to press freedom in the UK, click here.


Rabobank Fined $1.1 Billion Over Libor, Euribor Manipulation
2013-10-29, Bloomberg Businessweek
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-10-29/rabobank-fined-1-dot-1-billion-ov...

Rabobank Groep, the co-operative formed in 1898 to lend to Dutch farmers, was fined 774 million euros ($1.1 billion) and the chairman resigned as the scandal over the rigging of benchmark interest rates ensnared a fifth firm. The Utrecht, Netherlands-based lender entered into an agreement with the Justice Department to accept responsibility for manipulation of Libor and Euribor to avoid prosecution. The fines are the largest-ever against the bank and second-largest over manipulation of the London interbank offered rate. Global investigations into banks’ attempts to manipulate the benchmarks for profit have led to fines and settlements for Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland, UBS and ICAP. Rabobank derivatives and money-market traders influenced the lender’s submissions to benefit their positions linked to Libor and conspired with employees of other banks to rig rates from May 2005 to January 2011. More than 500 attempts were made by Rabobank to manipulate Libor, according to the regulator. Thirty current and former employees of the Dutch lender were involved, Rabobank executive board member Sipko Schat said today. Five of them were fired, he said, while 14 are still working for the bank. The lender is also clawing back 4.2 million euros in bonuses, Rabobank said in a statement. The manipulation “directly affected the rates referenced by financial products held by and on behalf of companies and investors around the world,” Valerie Parlave, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington field office, said in a statement.

Note: For more on financial corruption, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Website shows foster kids their wishes are worthwhile
2013-10-28, CNN
http://edition.cnn.com/2013/03/07/us/cnnheroes-gletow-foster-wishes/index.html

Many 16-year-olds might covet a smartphone. Ronald Hennig just wanted a suit so he could attend a relative's funeral. The teenager ... was living in a group home at the time. His caseworker was unable to justify the nonessential expense. But an anonymous benefactor stepped in to help Hennig through a website called One Simple Wish. "I was able to go to the funeral," said Hennig, now 18. "I could pay the same respect as everyone else." One Simple Wish was started by Danielle Gletow to help grant the wishes of children in foster care. Each child's wish is posted online, and anyone can pay to make that wish come true - from tangible items such as a bicycle, a varsity jacket or school supplies to an experience like music lessons or a trip to the theater. Since 2008, the nonprofit has granted more than 6,500 wishes for children living in 42 states. More than 400,000 children were living in the U.S. foster-care system in 2011. "The wishes that don't seem like the basic necessity are (often) the ones that are the most important," Gletow said. "Because those are the wishes that are really just a kid being a kid. We don't want to constantly remind them of how sad or tragic or challenging their circumstances are. Anybody can go on our website, and they can look at hundreds of wishes that are posted on behalf of children in foster care and children in vulnerable family environments," Gletow said. "These small things make an enormous difference in the life of a child who has spent their entire life wondering if anybody cares about them."

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


Gang Rape in India, Routine and Invisible
2013-10-27, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/27/world/asia/gang-rape-in-india-routine-and-i...

The trial in [a] Mumbai gang-rape case has opened ... without the crush of reporters who documented every twist in a similar case in New Delhi in which a woman died after being gang-raped on a private bus. The Mumbai case provides an unusual glimpse into a group of bored young men who had committed the same crime often enough to develop a routine. The police say the men had committed at least five rapes in the same spot. Their casual confidence reinforces the notion that rape has been a largely invisible crime here, where convictions are infrequent and victims silently go away. Not until their arrest, at a moment when sexual violence has grabbed headlines and risen to the top of the state’s agenda, did the seriousness of the crime sink in. “It was exactly like watching a kid in school who has been caught doing something,” said [the victim's coworker], who spoke on the condition of anonymity to protect the identity of the victim, who cannot be identified according to Indian law. “It’s like a bunch of kids who found a dog and tied a bunch of firecrackers to its tail, just to see what would happen. Only in this case it was far more egregious. It was malevolent, what happened.” None of the men worked regularly. There were jobs chicken-plucking at a neighborhood stand — a hot, stinking eight-hour shift that paid 250 rupees, or $4. The men told their families they wanted something better, something indoors, but that thing never seemed to come. They passed time playing cards and drinking.

Note: For more on sex crimes, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident and the Illusion of Safety by Eric Schlosser – review
2013-10-25, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/oct/25/command-control-eric-schlosser-r...

On 11 March 1958, in Mars Bluff, South Carolina, a man called Walter Gregg was building shelves in his shed with his son, when a Mark 6 atom bomb landed in his yard. Mrs Gregg was inside [the house], sewing. The little Gregg girls were playing outside. The fissile core of the bomb had been removed for safer transit, but the explosives that powered it nonetheless blew the Gregg house to bits, killing half a dozen of the Gregg chickens. In military talk this sort of thing is known as a "broken arrow", an accident involving nuclear weapons that falls short of causing risk of war, and Schlosser's book is about the several dozens of these that have happened – counting only those of US origin – since the atomic bomb was invented in 1945. The next-up sort of accident is called a Nucflash. So far, it hasn't happened, but Schlosser considers this due as much to luck as anything else. [The book] aims to "pierce a false sense of comfort", ... the popular assumption that ... the threat of nuclear escalation has gone away for good. It hasn't, is Schlosser's miserable message. "They are out there, soulless and mechanical, sustained by our denial – and they work." In this book, he's interested in how "the effort to control nuclear weapons – to ensure that one doesn't go off by accident" is undermined, over and over again, by demands from the military for bombs they can trust to explode.

Note: Watch a 16-minute interview with Erik Schlosser showing how close we have come to accidental nuclear explosions. For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing nuclear risk news articles from reliable major media sources.


Grand jury prepared child abuse indictment against JonBenet Ramsey's parents, newly released documents show
2013-10-25, NBC News
http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/10/25/21146207-grand-jury-prepared-child...

A Colorado court [has] released a long-sealed 1999 grand jury indictment of JonBenet Ramsey's parents for child abuse resulting in death, but it gave no specifics and did not accuse them of killing her. Prosecutors declined to act on the indictment and charge John or Patsy Ramsey at the time, and years later they publicly exonerated the couple and suggested an unknown intruder was the culprit. Yet the Boulder Police Department — which put the Ramseys under an "umbrella of suspicion" soon after the 6-year-old beauty queen's slaying in 1996 — portrayed the belated document release as a vindication of their investigation. "The grand jury of 12 objective jurors ultimately agreed with investigators that probable cause existed for the filing of charges," the department said in a statement. The Ramseys' lawyer, L. Lin Wood, however, called the unsealing of just four pages of the grand jury record a "miscarriage of justice" and noted that the panel did not have the benefit of DNA evidence that cleared the couple years later. JonBenet was found strangled in the basement of her home on Dec. 26, 1996 — the start of a murder mystery that would fascinate the nation for months and spawn books, TV movies and countless theories about who killed her. A grand jury spent more than a year combing through a mountain of evidence before preparing charges. But they were never made public after the Boulder district attorney announced there wasn't enough evidence to charge anyone.

Note: Why were these documents kept secret for so many years? Could there be more to this case than meets the eye? For more on abuse of children, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Finally, a Guilty Verdict for Wall Street
2013-10-24, US News & World Report
http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/pat-garofalo/2013/10/24/bank-of-america-t...

"The Hustle." That's the name of a program run by Countrywide, the slimy subprime lender purchased by Bank of America in 2008. Under the program, Countrywide brokers were paid bonuses to originate loans, firing them off to borrowers with less than stellar credit in an attempt to gin up quick profits. The loans were then sold to government-backed mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, where they often went sour. This sounds like a fairly typical tale from the financial crisis: Most of the nation's largest banks have, in one way or another, been accused of formulating sloppy loans and dumping them off on the taxpayer or of selling toxic mortgage securities to unwitting customers. But there's a new twist to the old story: Yesterday, a jury found Bank of America guilty of fraud, the first time that a major U.S. bank has been held responsible by a U.S. court for actions tied to the financial crisis. The jury also held a former Countrywide manager liable for fraud. That we're still wondering whether the banks will face any consequences for their actions more than five years after the financial crisis began in earnest is a pretty damning indictment of the Obama administration's approach to the matter. Can lawmakers summon the will to actually take on Wall Street or are a few good headlines from DOJ all we can hope for? The Dodd-Frank financial reform law was a good opening effort and, despite its imperfections, will make some difference in reining Wall Street. But there is still a lot that the law either left unaddressed or up to the interpretation of regulators who are bombarded by missives from Wall Street lobbyists.

Note: For more on the collusion of big banks and banking regulators, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Human rights groups accuse US of war crimes
2013-10-22, MSNBC
http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/human-rights-groups-accuse-us-war-crimes

The United States is facing increasingly harsh criticism over its use of lethal drone strikes to target suspected terrorists. American drone strikes in Pakistan and Yemen may amount to war crimes, according to a pair of reports released by international human rights groups. Examining nine drone strikes in Pakistan, the Amnesty International report concludes that the attacks killed large numbers of innocent civilians, and accuses the U.S. of targeting rescuers who arrive in the aftermath of the strikes to aid the wounded. A report from Human Rights Watch states that the majority of people killed by six drone strikes in Yemen were civilians (57 out of the 82 killed). The groups’ findings that the United States has killed more civilians than it has admitted are bolstered by a UN report ... that stated U.S. drone strikes had killed as many as 400 civilians in Pakistan and almost 60 in Yemen. These reports clash with the U.S. government’s own assessment of the strikes. Officials have maintained that civilian casualties from drone strikes are minimal, even in the face of multiple third-party evaluations that state otherwise. Both groups are demanding that the Obama administration investigate allegations of civilian deaths, release more information about the legal basis for drone strikes on suspected terrorists, provide restitution to those unjustly harmed and reveal the identities of those who lost their lives in the attacks.

Note: If a single civilian in the US were killed by a foreign drone, the entire nation would be up in arms. Do we have a double standard here? For more on this, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war atrocities news articles from reliable major media sources.


US drone strikes could be classed as war crimes, says Amnesty International
2013-10-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/22/amnesty-us-officials-war-crimes-...

US officials responsible for the secret CIA drone campaign [in] Pakistan may have committed war crimes and should stand trial, a report by a leading human rights group warns. Amnesty International has highlighted the case of a grandmother who was killed while she was picking vegetables and other incidents which could have broken international laws designed to protect civilians. The report is issued in conjunction with an investigation by Human Rights Watch detailing missile attacks in Yemen which the group believes could contravene the laws of armed conflict, international human rights law and Barack Obama's own guidelines on drones. Getting to the bottom of individual strikes is exceptionally difficult in the restive areas bordering Afghanistan, where thousands of militants have settled. People are often terrified of speaking out, fearing retribution from both militants and the state, which is widely suspected of colluding with the CIA-led campaign. But Amnesty mounted a major effort to investigate nine of the many attacks to have struck the region over the last 18 months, including one that killed 18 labourers in North Waziristan as they waited to eat dinner in an area of heavy Taliban influence in July 2012. All those interviewed by Amnesty strongly denied any of the men had been involved in militancy. "Amnesty International has serious concerns that this attack violated the prohibition of the arbitrary deprivation of life and may constitute war crimes or extrajudicial executions," the report said. It called for those responsible to stand trial.

Note: If just one citizen were killed in the U.S. or Europe by a foreign drone, there would be an absolute uproar. Why the double standard? For more on the use of drones to kill abroad and spy at home, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Snowden Says He Took No Secret Files to Russia
2013-10-17, New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/18/world/snowden-says-he-took-no-secret-files-...

Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor, said in an extensive interview this month that he did not take any secret N.S.A. documents with him to Russia when he fled there in June, assuring that Russian intelligence officials could not get access to them. He also asserted that he was able to protect the documents from China’s spies because he was familiar with that nation’s intelligence abilities, saying that as an N.S.A. contractor he had targeted Chinese operations and had taught a course on Chinese cybercounterintelligence. “There’s a zero percent chance the Russians or Chinese have received any documents,” he said. Mr. Snowden added that inside the spy agency “there’s a lot of dissent.” But he said that people were kept in line through “fear and a false image of patriotism,” which he described as “obedience to authority.” He said he believed that if he tried to question the N.S.A.’s surveillance operations as an insider, his efforts “would have been buried forever,” and he would “have been discredited and ruined.” Mr. Snowden said he finally decided to act when he discovered a copy of a classified 2009 inspector general’s report on the N.S.A.’s warrantless wiretapping program during the Bush administration. After reading about the program, which skirted the existing surveillance laws, he concluded that it had been illegal, he said. “If the highest officials in government can break the law without fearing punishment or even any repercussions at all,” he said, “secret powers become tremendously dangerous.”

Note: For more on the hidden realities of intelligence agency operations, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Hackers Target Town After Dropped Sexual-Assault Case
2013-10-14, Time Magazine
http://nation.time.com/2013/10/14/hackers-target-town-after-dropped-sexual-as...

The international band of Internet activists known as Anonymous has chosen the rural Missouri town of Maryville as the target of its latest campaign, after the Kansas City Star published a powerful examination of a possible rape case that went unprosecuted by local authorities. Known for successful hacks of organizations ranging from the Church of Scientology to PayPal to the government of Brazil, Anonymous released a statement: “If Maryville won’t defend these young girls, if the police are too cowardly or corrupt to do their jobs, if justice system has abandoned them, then we will have to stand for them." [Matthew] Barnett was a 17-year-old senior on the Maryville High School football team. Daisy, a freshman cheerleader, was delighted by the senior boy’s attentions, and ignored her older brother’s advice to steer clear of him, [the Star] reported. Barnett, the grandson of former state representative Rex Barnett, later admitted to police that he knew the girl was drinking at his house and that he had sex with her while she was drunk. He loaded the girl, in tears, into his car and left her unconscious on her front porch in subfreezing cold. Much of the town turned on the Coleman family, Daisy’s mother Melinda was fired from her job, and — after the Colemans left town — their house burned down under suspicious circumstances. Melinda Coleman is not the only one wondering whether the prominence of Barnett’s family had something to do with the decision not to prosecute.

Note: For more on sexual abuse scandals, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Report: Obama Brings Chilling Effect on Journalism
2013-10-10, ABC News/Associated Press
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/report-obama-brings-chilling-effect-journa...

The U.S. government's aggressive prosecution of leaks and efforts to control information are having a chilling effect on journalists and government whistle-blowers, according to a report released [on] U.S. press freedoms under the Obama administration. The Committee to Protect Journalists conducted its first examination of U.S. press freedoms amid the Obama administration's unprecedented number of prosecutions of government sources and seizures of journalists' records. Usually the group focuses on advocating for press freedoms abroad. Leonard Downie Jr., a former executive editor of The Washington Post, wrote the 30-page analysis entitled "The Obama Administration and the Press." The report notes President Barack Obama came into office pledging an open, transparent government after criticizing the Bush administration's secrecy, "but he has fallen short of his promise." "In the Obama administration's Washington, government officials are increasingly afraid to talk to the press," wrote Downie, now a journalism professor at Arizona State University. Downie interviewed numerous reporters and editors, including a top editor at The Associated Press, following revelations this year that the government secretly seized records for telephone lines and switchboards used by more than 100 AP journalists. Downie also interviewed journalists whose sources have been prosecuted on felony charges. Those suspected of discussing classified information are increasingly subject to investigation, lie-detector tests, scrutiny of telephone and email records and now surveillance by co-workers under a new "Insider Threat Program" that has been implemented in every agency.

Note: For more on government secrecy, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


Malala Yousafzai wows 'The Daily Show'
2013-10-10, USA Today
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/10/10/malala-jon-stewart-daily-...

Sixteen-year-old Malala Yousafzai ... is a nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize for her courage in the face of death threats in her home country of Pakistan over her advocacy of education for girls. On Thursday, she won the European Parliament's Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought. Malala was shot in the head and neck one year ago on her school bus by a gunman who was sent by the Taliban, the Muslim clerical group that believes in adherence to a strict version of Islamic law. Where it can, the Taliban has imposed rules forbidding girls from going to school, listening to music or taking most jobs. Malala, who lives in England now, told Stewart that she was stunned when she was told as a 14-year-old girl that the Taliban had issued a death threat against her for her activism and for her blog on the BBC, in which she wrote about how hard it was to live under strict Muslim rule as a girl. "I just could not believe it, I said no, it's not true," she said, saying she thought the Taliban would instead come after her father, who operates a school and opened up his classes to girls. "We thought the Taliban were not that much cruel that they would kill a child." After she was shot, she was allowed to go to Britain for brain surgery. She now lives outside London with her family. Though the Taliban has threatened her life again, she says striking back at them would not help. "If you hit a Talib, then there would be no difference between you and the Talib," she said. "You must not treat others with cruelty. … You must fight others through peace and through dialogue and through education."

Note: You can watch portions of this inspiring show at the link above and at this link. For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.


Turning Education Upside Down
2013-10-09, New York Times Blog
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com//2013/10/09/turning-education-upside-down/

Three years ago, Clintondale High School, just north of Detroit, became a “flipped school” — one where students watch teachers’ lectures at home and do what we’d otherwise call “homework” in class. Teachers record video lessons, which students watch on their smartphones, home computers or at lunch in the school’s tech lab. In class, they do projects, exercises or lab experiments in small groups while the teacher circulates. In the fall of 2011, Clintondale flipped completely — every grade, every class. “On average we approximated a 30 percent failure rate,” said Green. “With flipping, it dropped to under 10 percent.” Graduation rates rose dramatically, and are now over 90 percent. College attendance went from 63 percent in 2010 to 80 percent in 2012. Flipping also changes the distribution of teacher time. In a traditional class, the teacher engages with the students who ask questions — but it’s those who don’t ask who tend to need the most attention. The biggest effect of flipping classrooms is on the students at the bottom. “It’s tough to fail a flipped class, because you’re doing the stuff in here,” said Rob Dameron, the head of the English department. “I used to have about a 30 percent failure rate in English. Now, out of 130 kids, I have three who are failing — mostly due to attendance problems.” Flipped classrooms require more creativity and energy from the teacher. “Lots of teachers who aren’t really good teachers are resistant to this — they like to build time into the day when kids are working to do their taxes or catch up on email.”.

Note: Watch a great five-minute video on this phenomenon. Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


Oops: Azerbaijan released election results before voting had even started
2013-10-09, Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2013/10/09/oops-azerbaijan-...

Azerbaijan's big presidential election ... was anticipated to be neither free nor fair. President Ilham Aliyev, who took over from his father 10 years ago, has stepped up intimidation of activists and journalists. Rights groups are complaining about free speech restrictions and one-sided state media coverage. The BBC's headline for its story on the election reads "The Pre-Determined President." So expectations were pretty low. [But] it was a bit awkward when Azerbaijan's election authorities released vote results – a full day before voting had even started. The vote counts ... were pushed out on an official smartphone app run by the Central Election Commission. It showed Aliyev as "winning" with 72.76 percent of the vote. That's on track with his official vote counts in previous elections: 76.84 percent of the vote in 2003 and 87 percent in 2008. In second place was opposition candidate Jamil Hasanli with 7.4 percent of the vote. The data were quickly recalled. The official story is that the app's developer had mistakenly sent out the 2008 election results as part of a test. But that's a bit flimsy, given that the released totals show the candidates from this week, not from 2008. As of this writing, Azerbaijan's election authorities say they've counted 80 percent of the ballots, with Aliyev winning just under 85 percent of the vote so far. He's been officially reelected.

Note: And for any who think elections manipulation only happens in smaller, corrupt countries, see undeniable evidence of major manipulation of elections in the U.S. and elsewhere at this link. For more on electoral corruption, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.


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