News StoriesExcerpts of Key News Stories in Major Media
Note: This comprehensive list of news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.
The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam, the world’s rich are getting richer, leaving hundreds of millions of people facing a life “trapped in poverty” as global “inequality spirals out of control”. The report found that the number of billionaires in the world has more than doubled to 1,646 since the financial crisis of 2009, and Oxfam says is evidence that the benefits of a return to economic growth are “not being shared with the vast majority”. The influential report is supported by Bank of England chief economist Andrew Haldane and Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz. Mark Goldring, Oxfam’s chief executive, said: “Inequality is one of the defining problems of our age. In a world where hundreds of millions of people are living without access to clean drinking water and without enough food to feed their families, a small elite have more money than they could spend in several lifetimes. Earlier this month the OECD said global inequality was at its worst levels since 1820. Mr Haldane agreed, saying: “In highlighting the problem of inequality Oxfam not only speaks to the interests of the poorest people but also the wider collective interest: there is rising evidence that extreme inequality harms, durably and significantly, the stability of the financial system and growth in the economy. It slows development of the human, social and physical capital necessary for raising living standards and improving well-being.”
Note: For more along these lines, see these concise summaries of deeply revealing income inequality news articles.
Who runs the world’s most lucrative shakedown operation? If you are a big business ... America’s regulatory system. The formula is simple: find a large company that may (or may not) have done something wrong; threaten its managers; force them to use their shareholders’ money to pay an enormous fine to drop the charges in a secret settlement. Repeat with another large company. In many cases, the companies deserved some form of punishment: BNP Paribas ... abetted genocide, American banks fleeced customers. BP despoiled the Gulf of Mexico. But justice should not be based on extortion. Regulators and prosecutors are in effect conducting closed-door trials. The agencies that pocket the fines have become profit centres: Rhode Island’s bureaucrats have been on a spending spree courtesy of a $500m payout by Google, while New York’s governor and attorney-general have squabbled over a $613m settlement from JPMorgan. Not only are regulators in effect judge and jury as well as plaintiff in the cases they bring; they can also use the threat of the criminal law. The public never finds out the full facts of the case, nor discovers which specific people — with souls and bodies — were to blame. Since the cases never go to court ... it is unclear what exactly is illegal. That enables future shakedowns. Nor is it clear how the regulatory booty is being carved up. This ... risks the prospect of a selective — and potentially corrupt — system of justice in which everybody is guilty of something and punishment is determined by political deals.
Here's the beginning of a little post-9/11 list: six incontestable areas where America is #1. Investment in our military and our national security state! No other country comes within a light year of us! In 2011, the defense budgets of the next 13 countries combined didn't quite equal ours and we've been dumping up to a trillion dollars yearly into the national security budget since 9/11. We're #1 in "renditions" ("kidnappings")! Post-9/11, at least 136 "terror suspects" (some certifiably innocent) were taken by the CIA and other American outfits off the streets of global cities. We're #1 in knocking off wedding parties from the air! At least eight of them in three countries! Bridal parties, brides and grooms, hundreds of wedding goers obliterated by American air power! We're #1 in military bases on foreign soil! We have hundreds of them across the planet, some the size of small American towns. We're number #1 in invading, occupying, and/or bombing Muslim countries, 14 of them since 1980! I challenge you, find me another country with such an accomplishment. We're number #1 in investing in militaries that won't "stand up"! At least $25 billion for the Iraqi military alone (and you know how successful we were there, since it recently collapsed, allowing us to rearm it and stand it up again). And that's nothing compared to the Afghan military into which our country had poured $51 billion by 2011 and billions more thereafter.
Note: For more along these lines, see these concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable sources.
Did you know that when you buy an airline ticket and make other travel reservations, the federal government keeps a record of the details in a file called Passenger Name Record or PNR? If airlines don’t comply, they can’t fly in the U.S., explains Ed Hasbrouck, a privacy expert with the Identity Project who has studied the records for years and is considered the nation’s top expert. Before each trip, the system creates a travel score for you, generated by your PNR. Before an airline can issue you a boarding pass, the system must approve your passage, Hasbrouck explains. That’s one way people on the No Fly List are targeted. The idea behind extensive use of PNRs, he says, is not necessarily to watch known suspects but to find new ones. Want to appeal the process? “It’s a secret administrative process based on the score you don’t know, based on files you haven’t seen,” Hasbrouck says. The program collects seemingly trivial details. If you have an argument with an airline gate agent and that agent enters a notation ... that record stays in your PNR. “The U.S. government is getting the data and sharing it in ways we don’t fully know about with other governments,” Hasbrouck says. The information collected by the airlines is shared with third-party data companies who store it. Where? In the cloud. Make you feel safer? In Canada and the European Union, the collection of this information spurred public debate. But not here.
Note: Read this excellent article for lots more details on how the government spies on your travels. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing civil liberties news articles from reliable sources.
There is a certain genius in how we snug Election Day up against Halloween on the calendar. We scare each other for fun and profit on the last day of October every year. In even-numbered years ... we scare each other on the first Tuesday thereafter, too. This year, the closing argument from the Republican side is a whole bunch of ghastly fantasies: Ebola, the Islamic State, vague but nefarious aspersions about stolen elections and a whole bunch of terrifying fantasies about our border with Mexico. On the other side, Democrats want to keep control of the Senate, so their best fear pitch is that if Republicans take over, things in Washington will suddenly get worse. That’s a little hard to take as we coast into the closing days of what is literally the least productive Congress in the modern history of Congress. For all the politicking on the threat posed by the Islamic State, Congress decided to neither debate nor vote on the U.S. military fight against the group in Iraq or Syria. As the president announced expanded military deployments in the region, Congress cancelled its remaining workdays in October and November, until after the election. Congress thinks it’s more advantageous to run ads about how scary the Islamic State is than to face the real threat of actually taking a vote on what to do about that threat. Halloween is over, but the most deeply craven, vacuous political season in years has followed down its ghostly trail.
Note: For more along these lines, see these summaries of deeply revealing election news articles from reliable sources.
Within hours of Superstorm Sandy slamming the East Coast two years ago, Americans opened their wallets to help — donating millions to the first charity that came to mind: the American Red Cross. In the months after the disaster, the Red Cross touted its success in delivering food, clothes and shelter to tens of thousands of people left homeless by the storm. The venerable charity's track record in dealing with the megastorm is now being challenged. Multiple internal documents obtained by NPR and ProPublica along with interviews with top Red Cross officials ... depict an organization so consumed with public relations that it hindered the charity's ability to provide disaster services. Among NPR and ProPublica's findings: The Red Cross national headquarters in Washington "diverted assets for public relations purposes." A former Red Cross official managing the Sandy effort says 40 percent of available trucks were assigned to serve as backdrops for news conferences. Distribution of relief was "politically driven instead of [Red Cross] planned." Relief organizers were ordered to produce 200,000 additional meals one day — to drive up numbers. They did it at extraordinary cost, even though there was no one to deliver them to and most went to waste. It wasn't just Sandy. When Isaac hit Mississippi and Louisiana earlier in 2012 ... one Red Cross official had 80 trucks drive around empty or largely empty "just to be seen," as one of the drivers recalls.
Note: The above story follows up on this Salon/ProPublica article, where the Red Cross called its spending habits a "trade secret". For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing stories about corporate corruption from reliable sources.
The CDC pledges “To base all public health decisions on the highest quality scientific data.” In the case of influenza vaccinations and their marketing, this is not so. Promotion of influenza vaccines is one of the most visible and aggressive public health policies today. Although proponents employ the rhetoric of science, the studies underlying the policy are often of low quality, and do not substantiate officials’ claims. The vaccine might be less beneficial and less safe than has been claimed, and the threat of influenza appears overstated. Twenty years ago, in 1990, 32 million doses of influenza vaccine were available in the United States. Today [the number is] around 135 million doses. This enormous growth has not been fueled by popular demand but instead by a public health campaign. Drug companies have long known that to sell some products, you would have to first sell people on the disease. In the 1950s and 1960s, Merck launched an extensive campaign to lower the diagnostic threshold for hypertension, and in doing so enlarging the market for its diuretic drug, Diuril. Could influenza ... be yet one more case of disease mongering? Marketing influenza vaccines ... involves marketing influenza as a threat of great proportions. The CDC’s website explains that “Flu seasons ... can be severe,” citing a death toll of “3000 to a high of about 49000 people.” However, a far less volatile and more reassuring picture of influenza seems likely if one considers that recorded deaths from influenza declined sharply over the middle of the 20th century ... all before the great expansion of vaccination campaigns in the 2000s. Yet across the country, mandatory influenza vaccination policies have cropped up ... precisely because not everyone wants the vaccination, and compulsion appears the only way to achieve high vaccination rates.
Note: Read the entire revealing article at this link. The author clearly shows how fear and profit are the driving force behind flu vaccines and not good science and health. And this US government webpage states, "Since the first National Vaccine Injury Compensation (VICP) claims were filed in 1989, 3,981 compensation awards have been made. More than $2.8 billion in compensation awards has been paid to petitioners." For other verifiable information on health corruption, see the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.
In August 2009, CBS News made a simple request of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for public documents, e-mails and other materials CDC used to communicate to states the decision to stop testing individual cases of Novel H1N1, or "swine flu." When the public affairs folks at CDC refused to produce the documents and quit responding to my queries altogether, I filed a formal Freedom of Information (FOI) request for the materials. Two months after my FOI request, the CDC has yet to produce any of these easily retrievable materials. This has become standard operating procedure in Washington. Today, I received a letter from the CDC Freedom of Information office ... to inform me that my request for "expedited" treatment of my FOI request has been denied because CDC has determined the request is "not a matter of widespread and exceptional media and public interest." The CDC may be the only agency on the planet to argue that testing and counting of swine flu cases is "not of widespread and exceptional media and public interest." CBS News reporting on the topic has been quoted and reproduced internationally by news organizations such as California NPR, radio talk shows and others. The Freedom of Information Act ... was supposed to stop federal agencies from using their power and control to withhold public information from the people who own it. Many federal agencies use it to obstruct the delay or release of obviously public information.
Note: See powerful media reports suggesting that both the Avian Flu and Swine Flu were manipulated to promote fear and boost pharmaceutical sales. For other verifiable information on health corruption, see the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.
More than 30 years ago, a teenager named Jadav "Molai" Payeng began planting seeds along a barren sandbar near his birthplace in India's Assam region. It was 1979 and floods had washed a great number of snakes onto the sandbar. When Payeng -- then only 16 -- found them, they had all died. "The snakes died in the heat, without any tree cover. I sat down and wept over their lifeless forms," Payeng told the Times Of India. "It was carnage. I alerted the forest department and asked them if they could grow trees there. They said nothing would grow there. There was nobody to help me," he told the newspaper. Now that once-barren sandbar is a sprawling 1,360 acre forest, home to several thousands of varieties of trees and an astounding diversity of wildlife -- including birds, deer, apes, rhino, elephants and even tigers. The forest, aptly called the "Molai woods" after its creator's nickname, was single-handedly planted and cultivated by one man -- Payeng, who is now 47. Today, Payeng still lives in the forest. He shares a small hut with his wife and three children. According to the Assistant Conservator of Forests, Gunin Saikia, it is perhaps the world’s biggest forest in the middle of a river. "We were surprised to find such a dense forest on the sandbar," Saikia told the Times Of India. "[Locals] wanted to cut down the forest, but Payeng ... treats the trees and animals like his own children. Seeing this, we, too, decided to pitch in," Saikia said.
Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
In 1959, Alva Earley ... attended a picnic at Lake Storey Park. Earley, who is black, went to the picnic with a group of friends. The group, which included other black and Hispanic people, decided to eat at a whites-only area of the park, despite having been told by a school counselor that doing so would result in serious repercussions. "We were just trying to send a message that we are people, too," Earley told NPR. "We just had lunch." After the gathering, Earley was notified by his school that he would not be allowed to graduate, nor would he receive his diploma. Last Friday, Earley, now 73, finally received that diploma. Though more than 50 years late, the graduation was made possible by a few of Earley's former high school classmates. Though the ceremony was a happy one, Earley says that he had been harboring pain over the incident. "The fact that I could not get a cap and gown on and march down the aisle with my classmates -- it meant the world to me. It hurt so bad," he told NPR. Because he was unable to receive a diploma, two colleges that had already accepted him withdrew their offers. He went to Knox College after a classmate persuaded his father and then-president of Knox College to allow Earley to enroll. Now, his other classmates are happy. "When people have been mistreated, we owe it to them to address the injustice," [said] former classmate Lowell Peterson. "This is just a little chance to make something right."
Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.
If you've ever volunteered in a soup kitchen, you know the feeling of having served others. But what about those on the other side of the food line? Are they getting what they need most? Robert Egger, the founder of DC Central Kitchen, didn't think so. He set out to train homeless people on the streets of Washington, D.C. — many of whom were drug addicts cycling in and out of a life of crime — how to cook and earn a food handler's license. The goal was to help them trade addiction and crime for stable employment in restaurants and other food enterprises. Egger's kitchen got its start turning surplus and donated food into meals that are provided to homeless shelters and other nonprofits. Later, DC Central Kitchen opened an arm that operates much like a private company, selling high-quality meals to schools and 60 corner stores in low-income neighborhoods of the city. Today ... it delivers 5,000 meals each day to local nonprofit organizations and another 5,000 meals to schools. It operates a culinary job-training program that trains 80 people each year, and gets many of its supplies from small, local farms. Sixty percent of its funding is revenue that it earns from sales. "This idea of everyone side by side — it's a powerful image," says Egger. "The president of the United States, someone from the shelter, a kid from Wilson High School — we're Washingtonians, side by side. This is the power of community!"
Note: The DC Kitchen model has been adopted by organizations around the country, and inspired The Campus Kitchens Project, where students help recover food that might be wasted and prepare meals for people in need in their communities.
The FBI confirmed Tuesday it faked an Associated Press story to catch a bomb threat suspect in 2007. Police in Lacey, near Olympia, sought the FBI's help as repeated bomb threats prompted a week of evacuations at Timberline High School in June 2007. The agency obtained a warrant from a federal magistrate judge to send a "communication" to a social media account ... which contained a software tool that could verify Internet addresses, (and) turned out to be a link to a phony AP story about the bomb threats posted on a Web page created by the FBI. The 15-year-old suspect clicked on the link, revealing his computer's location. The FBI did not initially respond to AP's request earlier Tuesday for further detail about the fake story, beyond saying the ruse was necessary. AP spokesman Paul Colford said Tuesday the FBI's "ploy violated AP's name and undermined AP's credibility." "We are extremely concerned and find it unacceptable that the FBI misappropriated the name of The Associated Press and published a false story attributed to AP." Kathy Best, editor of The Seattle Times, said in a statement that, "The FBI, in placing the name of The Associated Press on a phony story sent to a criminal suspect, crossed a line and undermined the credibility of journalists everywhere — including at The Times." The documents revealing the deception were publicized Monday on Twitter by Christopher Soghoian, the principal technologist for the American Civil Liberties Union.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing stories about questionable intelligence agency practices from reliable sources.
In June 2011, (WikiLeaks’ founder) Julian Assange received an unusual visitor: the chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt. The stated reason for the visit was a book. Schmidt was penning a treatise with Jared Cohen, the director of Google Ideas. Cohen had moved to Google from the U.S. State Department. Schmidt arrived first, accompanied by his then partner, Lisa Shields ... a vice president of the Council on Foreign Relations. Two months later, WikiLeaks’ release of State Department cables was coming to an abrupt end. Two years later, in the wake of his early 2013 visits to China, North Korea and Burma, it would come to be appreciated that the chairman of Google might be conducting, in one way or another, “back-channel diplomacy” for Washington. In 1999 ... Schmidt joined the New America Foundation. The foundation and its 100 staff serve as an influence mill, using its network of approved national security, foreign policy and technology pundits to place hundreds of articles and op-eds per year. In 2003, the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) had already started systematically violating the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). During the same period, Google ... was accepting NSA money to the tune of $2 million to provide the agency with search tools. In 2012, Google arrived on the list of top-spending Washington, D.C., lobbyists. Whether it is being just a company or “more than just a company,” Google’s geopolitical aspirations are firmly enmeshed within the foreign-policy agenda of the world’s largest superpower.
Note: Read the complete Newsweek article summarized above for Julian Assange's detailed accounting of the connections between Washington D.C. insiders, Google and related technology companies, intelligence agencies, and civil society organizations. For more about Wikileaks, read this news article summary. For more on the geopolitical big picture, see these concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles from reliable major media sources.
Attorneys general are now the object of aggressive pursuit by lobbyists and lawyers who use ... lavish corporate-sponsored conferences and other means to push them to drop investigations, change policies, negotiate favorable settlements or pressure federal regulators, an investigation by The New York Times has found. A robust industry of lobbyists and lawyers has blossomed as attorneys general have joined to conduct multistate investigations. But unlike the lobbying rules covering other elected officials, there are few revolving-door restrictions or disclosure requirements governing state attorneys general. The routine lobbying and deal-making occur largely out of view. “The current and increasing level of the lobbying of attorneys general creates, at the minimum, the appearance of undue influence,” said James E. Tierney, a former attorney general of Maine. “It is undermining the credibility of the office of attorney general.” Giant energy producers and service companies ... have retained their own teams of attorney general specialists, including Andrew P. Miller, a former attorney general of Virginia. “An attorney general is entrusted with the power to decide which lawsuits to file and how to settle them, and they have great discretion in their work,” said Anthony Johnstone, a former assistant attorney general in Montana. “It’s vitally important that people can trust that those judgements are not subject to undue influence because of outside forces. And from what I have seen ... those forces have intensified.”
Note: For more along these lines, see these concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable sources.
For almost 40 years, Carole Hinders has dished out Mexican specialties at her modest cash-only restaurant. She deposited the earnings at a small bank branch a block away — until last year, when two tax agents knocked on her door and informed her that they had seized her checking account. She has not been charged with any crime. The money was seized solely because she had deposited less than $10,000 at a time. Using a law designed to catch drug traffickers ... the government has gone after run-of-the-mill business owners and wage earners without so much as an allegation that they have committed serious crimes. The government can take the money without ever filing a criminal complaint. Richard Weber, the chief of Criminal Investigation at the I.R.S., said in a written statement ... that making deposits under $10,000 to evade reporting requirements, called structuring, is ... a crime. The Institute for Justice, a Washington-based public interest law firm ... analyzed structuring data from the I.R.S., which made 639 seizures in 2012, up from 114 in 2005. Only one in five was prosecuted as a criminal structuring case. Law enforcement agencies get to keep a share of whatever is forfeited. This incentive has led to the creation of a law enforcement dragnet, with more than 100 multiagency task forces combing through bank reports, looking for accounts to seize. There are often legitimate business reasons for keeping deposits below $10,000, said Larry Salzman, a lawyer with the Institute for Justice. For example, he said, a grocery store owner in Fraser, Mich., had an insurance policy that covered only up to $10,000 cash.
Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing civil liberties news articles.
The European Commission on Tuesday fined four major financial institutions 93.9 million euros, or about $120 million, over two types of activity that it deemed as cartel behavior. In one case, the European Commission fined JPMorgan Chase €61.7 million euros for manipulating the Swiss franc Libor benchmark interest rate in an “illegal bilateral cartel” with the Royal Bank of Scotland. Interest-rate derivatives – such as forward rate agreements, swaps, futures and options – are financial products intended to help manage interest-rate fluctuations. In December 2013, the European Union fined several global financial institutions a combined €1.7 billion to settle charges that they colluded to fix benchmark interest rates. Regulators accused R.B.S. and JPMorgan of trying to distort the process used to price interest rate derivatives. In a separate settlement also announced on Tuesday, the European Commission said R.B.S., UBS, JPMorgan and Credit Suisse, operated a cartel on bid-ask spreads of Swiss franc interest-rate derivatives, imposing fines worth a total of €32.4 million. from May to September 2007, R.B.S., UBS, JPMorgan and Credit Suisse agreed to quote to clients wider, fixed bid-ask spreads on certain categories of franc interest-rate derivatives. The banks maintained narrower spreads for trades among themselves. The aim was to lower the banks’ transaction costs and continue the flow of trades between themselves while preventing others from participating on the same terms in the franc derivatives market. Global financial institutions have paid more than $6 billion in fines over manipulating benchmark rates.
Note: For more along these lines, see the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Banking Corruption Information Center.
Declassified US records reveal the nation's intelligence chiefs used hundreds of Nazis as spies and informants after World War Two. Academics studying the documents say America used at least 1,000 ex-Nazis. Some had served at the highest levels of the Nazi Party, and were recruited to work as spies for the US in Europe. Former SS officer Otto von Bolschwing reportedly wrote policy papers on how to terrorise Jews, but was hired by the CIA to spy in Europe after World War Two. The agency is said to have relocated him and his family to New York in the 1950s as a reward for loyal service. Nazi collaborator Aleksandras Lileikis - linked to the massacres of tens of thousands of Jews in Lithuania - was recruited by the US as a spy in East Germany and later brought over to Boston. There is evidence the CIA even tried to intervene when Mr Lileikis became the subject of a war crimes investigation. Records indicate long-time FBI director J Edgar Hoover not only approved of the use of ex-Nazis as spies, he also dismissed the horrific acts they had been involved in during the war as Soviet propaganda. The revelations come one week after an Associated Press investigation found the US government had paid dozens of suspected Nazi war criminals millions of dollars in Social Security benefits.
Note: Explore powerful evidence that the CIA secretly smuggled Nazi war criminals into the US to teach them mind control techniques.
In Quebec on Monday, two Canadian soldiers were hit by a car driven by Martin Couture-Rouleau, a 25-year-old Canadian who, as The Globe and Mail reported, “converted to Islam recently.” One of the soldiers died, as did Couture-Rouleau when he was shot by police. Canada’s Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney pronounced the incident “clearly linked to terrorist ideology." Every time one of these attacks occurs — from 9/11 on down — Western governments pretend that it was just some sort of unprovoked ... act of violence caused by primitive, irrational, savage religious extremism inexplicably aimed at a country innocently minding its own business. In this case in Canada, it wasn’t civilians who were targeted. The driver waited two hours until he saw a soldier in uniform. He seems to have deliberately avoided attacking civilians, and targeted a soldier instead – a member of a military that is currently fighting a war. Targeting soldiers who are part of a military fighting an active war is completely inconsistent with the common usage of the word “terrorism,” and yet it is reflexively applied by government officials and media outlets to this incident in Canada (and others like it in the UK and the US). The term “terrorism” has become nothing more than a rhetorical weapon for legitimizing all violence by Western countries, and delegitimizing all violence against them. This ... is central to how the west propagandizes its citizenries; the manipulative use of the “terrorism” term lies at heart of that.
Monkeys taught how to gamble and play video games. People paid to watch grass grow. Swedish massages given to rabbits. These are just a few examples from the 100 entry-long list in a book detailing government waste, compiled by retiring GOP Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma. In the 2014 edition of the "Wastebook," Coburn notes that getting rid of the practice of pork barrel spending is next to impossible. "What I have learned from these experiences is Washington will never change itself," he said." Some of the worst offenses listed in the book: The $1 billion price tag the Pentagon paid to destroy $16 billion worth of ammunition, enough to pay a full years' salary for over 54,000 Army privates. The book cites Pentagon officials who said the surplus ammunition has become "obsolete, unusable, or their use is banned by international treaty." The Army spent nearly half a million dollars -- $414,000 -- to develop a video game called "America's Army," a version of which terrorists have used to train for missions, according to National Security Agency e-mails sent in 2007 and leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. Coburn notes ... the national debt, which is "quickly approaching $18 trillion."
Note: For more, see the Chicago Tribune's article on "Wastebook".
Would you cram a dog into a crate for her entire life, never letting her out, until you took her to the pound to kill her? Of course you wouldn’t, and yet that’s effectively what happens to most mother pigs in this country. They spend their lives in what are called gestation crates ... immobilized in these crates until they are taken to the slaughterhouse. Pigs are smart. They learn rudimentary video games as quickly as chimpanzees. When abnormally enclosed, their muscles and bones waste away, and they go insane from boredom. Fortunately, we’re seeing changes. We’re seeing policies to get rid of these crates from the likes of McDonald’s, Burger King and Smithfield Foods. We’ve also seen bills or initiatives passed in nine states that require that all pigs be given at least enough space to turn around. It’s a modest improvement, but the pork producers are fighting it. These laws are bipartisan. A poll conducted last month by Mason-Dixon Polling and Research found that 93 percent of New Jersey voters wanted to see these crates banned. A year ago, Gov. Chris Christie vetoed a ... bill (to ban gestation crates) that had passed the Assembly and Senate by huge bipartisan majorities.
Note: For more along these lines, see this excerpt of a deeply revealing ABC News article about standardized animal cruelty in chicken farming.
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.