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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 and will 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 Sacklers, Who Made Billions From OxyContin, Win Immunity From Opioid Lawsuits
2021-09-01, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2021/09/01/1031053251/sackler-family-immunity-purdue-phar...

Members of the Sackler family who are at the center of the nation's deadly opioid crisis have won sweeping immunity from opioid lawsuits linked to their privately owned company Purdue Pharma and its OxyContin medication. Federal Judge Robert Drain approved a bankruptcy settlement on Wednesday that grants the Sacklers "global peace" from any liability for the opioid epidemic. "This is a bitter result," Drain said. "I believe that at least some of the Sackler parties have liability for those [opioid OxyContin] claims. ... I would have expected a higher settlement." The complex bankruptcy plan ... grants "releases" from liability for harm caused by OxyContin and other opioids to the Sacklers, hundreds of their associates, as well as their remaining empire of companies and trusts. In return, they have agreed to pay roughly $4.3 billion, while also forfeiting ownership of Purdue Pharma. The Sacklers, who admit no wrongdoing and who by their own reckoning earned more than $10 billion from opioid sales, will remain one of the wealthiest families in the world. Critics of this bankruptcy settlement, meanwhile, said they would challenge Drain's confirmation because of the liability releases for the Sacklers. "This order is insulting to victims of the opioid epidemic who had no voice in these proceedings," said Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson. The Department of Justice urged Drain to reject the settlement. Attorneys general for nine states and the District of Columbia also opposed the plan.

Note: Purdue Pharma spent $1.2 million on lobbying just before making this deal. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


Tiny Home Village offers path out of homelessness
2021-09-01, Christian Science Monitor
https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Society/2021/0901/Tiny-Home-Village-offers-path...

Having learned from other cities' attempts to address homelessness, Albuquerque, New Mexico, has opened a village of tiny homes (THV). It hopes fostering a sense of community will prepare residents for permanent housing. But villagers aren't supposed to spend too much time in their new homes. The center of the community is the "Village House," where residents can cook, do laundry, hold meetings, go to the library, and watch television. They also do chores and help run the village. When people experiencing homelessness move off the street, "they lose [their] community," says Ilse Biel, resource manager for the THV. "It takes forever to forge a new community." "With this model we're almost trying to force the issue," she adds. The THV provides access to an occupational therapist and psychiatric nurse, as well as volunteers who help residents with computer skills, rĂ©sumĂ© building, and mock interviews. What Henry Esquivel likes most about his new house is the blast of cold air it delivers when he walks in. It's a big change from the Ford F-150 he used to sleep in. It's more spacious too, despite his new house being just one room. And it comes with neighbors – all of whom, like him, recently experienced homelessness. A few doors down is Mark Larusch. The father of three has potted plants and an Adirondack chair on his patio. A few doors further away is the woman whose large, black Labrador, Dottie, greets Mr. Esquivel excitedly every day.

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


The US supreme court is deciding more and more cases in a secretive 'shadow docket'
2021-08-31, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/aug/31/supreme-court-us-cases-...

On Tuesday, the supreme court issued an order requiring the Biden administration to reinstate the Trump-era policy that required asylum seekers from Central America to stay across the border in Mexico while their claims are adjudicated. On Thursday, the court blocked an extension of the federal emergency ban on evictions, gutting a 1944 law that gave the CDC the authority to implement such measures to curb disease, and endangering the 8m American households that are behind on rent – who now, without federal eviction protection, may face homelessness. Both of these orders last week were issued in the dead of night. Their opinions were truncated, light on the details of their legal reasoning, and unsigned. Vote counts were not issued showing how each justice decided. And despite the enormous legal and human impact that the decisions inflicted, they were the product of rushed, abbreviated proceedings. The court did not receive full briefs on these matters, heard no oral arguments and overrode the normal sequence of appellate proceedings to issue their orders. Welcome to the "shadow docket", the so-called emergency proceedings that now constitute the majority of the supreme court's business. Minimally argued, rarely justified and decided without transparency, shadow docket orders were once a tool the court used to dispense with unremarkable and legally unambiguous matters. The shadow docket's expanded use raises troubling questions – both for transparency, and for the separation of powers.

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


The people who believe plants can talk
2021-08-31, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20210831-the-people-who-believe-plants-can...

Laura Beloff's plant seemed to be clicking. She had rigged its roots up to a contact microphone in order to detect faint, high-pitched clicks in the soil. With the help of software she had written for her computer, the frequency of the clicks had been lowered, making them audible to humans. Beloff first had the idea of listening to her plants' roots after reading about experiments by Monica Gagliano. Over the last decade or so, Gagliano, at the University of Western Australia, has published a series of papers that suggest plants have an ability to communicate, learn and remember. She has long argued that scientists should pay greater attention to the fact that plants can transmit and retrieve information acoustically. In a 2017 study, Gagliano and colleagues showed that plants appear to be able to sense the sound of water vibrating via their roots, which may help them to locate it underground. And Gagliano has also raised eyebrows with claims that, in non-experimental settings, she has heard plants speak to her using words. She says that this experience is "outside the strictly scientific realm" and that a third-party observer would not be able to measure the sounds she heard with laboratory instruments. But she is quite certain that she has perceived plants speaking to her on multiple occasions. "I have been in situations where not just me but several others in the same space heard the same thing," she says. But the precise mechanisms through which plants might perceive or sense sound remain mysterious.

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


Colrerd Nkosi, the Malawian self-taught electrician who powered up his village
2021-08-31, Africa News
https://www.africanews.com/2021/08/31/colrerd-nkosi-the-malawian-self-taught-...

Fifteen years ago, when darkness used to fall in Yobe Nkosi, a remote village in northern Malawi, children did their school homework by candlelight: there was no electricity. But that started to change in 2006, when villager Colrerd Nkosi finished secondary school in Mzimba, some 40 kilometres (25 miles) away, and returned home -- and found he could no longer live without power. Aged 23 at the time, Nkosi soon figured out that a stream gushing past the house where he grew up had just enough force to push the pedals on his bicycle. He created a makeshift dynamo that brought power into his home. Word spread quickly among the cluster of brick houses and neighbours began paying regular visits to charge their mobile phones. "I started getting requests for electricity (and) decided to upgrade," said Nkosi, now 38, sawing through machinery on his veranda in blue overalls. With no prior training, he turned an old fridge compressor into a water-powered turbine and put it in a nearby river, generating electricity for six households. Today, the village is supplied by a bigger turbine, built from the motor of a disused maize sheller - a machine that skims kernels of corn off the cob. The gadget has been set up on the village outskirts. The power is carried along metal cables strung from a two-kilometre (one-mile) line of tree trunks topped with wooden planks. The users pay no fee for the power but give Nkosi some money for maintenance - slightly more than $1.00 (0.85 euros) per household per month.

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


Post-9/11 Stings Targeted People Who Posed No Threat. They Remain in Prison.
2021-08-29, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2021/08/29/duka-fort-dix-five-post-911-terror-stings/

Right up until his death in 2018, Ferik Duka dreamed of seeing his three eldest sons, Shain, Dritan, and Eljvir, freed from prison. In 2009, the three brothers were sentenced to life for their role in an alleged plot to attack the Fort Dix military base in New Jersey. The convictions followed a terrorism sting ... that ran for over a year and involved multiple government informants. The investigation into the "Fort Dix Five," as the case became known, was marred by outrageous law enforcement and legal abuses, documented in a 2015 investigation and documentary by The Intercept. Their case was just one of many in which zealous FBI officials and prosecutors, operating in the heated atmosphere of post-9/11 America, branded individuals who posed no appreciable threat to the country as enemies of the state. Many of them, like the Duka brothers, were given long prison sentences or otherwise had their lives ruined after being convicted on material support for terrorism charges. "There hasn't been any reckoning with the legacy of this era," said Ramzi Kassem, a ... Law professor. Kassem said, "It is alarming when you look across these cases and see an overrepresentation of suspects who were mentally deficient, marginalized, or otherwise vulnerable. Informants proposed so-called terrorism plots, funded them, provided means of execution, coaching, and even coaxed the targets of stings over prolonged periods of time in order to enable prosecutors to paint their conduct as criminally punishable."

Note: Read more about terrorism plots hatched by the FBI. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and terrorism from reliable major media sources.


Indian Boarding Schools' Traumatic Legacy, And The Fight To Get Native Ancestors Back
2021-08-28, NPR
https://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2021/08/28/1031398120/native-boarding...

After the remains of more than 1,300 First Nations students were discovered at the former sites of Canada's residential schools earlier this year, the U.S. is now facing its own moment of reckoning with its history of Native American boarding schools. In response to these findings, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland (a member of the Pueblo of Laguna) announced a Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative to review "the troubled legacy of federal boarding school policies." In Carlisle, Pennsylvania, efforts have been underway since 2016 to return the remains of Native children to their proper resting places. Carlisle was home to the first off-reservation Indian boarding school in the U.S. – Carlisle Indian Industrial School. Today, it's an army barracks, home to the US Army War college for senior officers. But from 1879 to 1918, it housed Native students from tribes across America, with the express purpose of assimilating them into American culture. upon entering the barracks, the first thing one will notice is the cemetery: rows of white headstones where students are buried. Over four decades, roughly 8,000 students attended the school, and nearly 200 were buried here. The cause was often attributed to disease, although abuse was often rampant at these schools. The entire system of Indian boarding schools has long been condemned by Native Americans as a form of cultural genocide. One researcher, Preston McBride, believes the number of graves discovered could be as many as 40,000 here in the US.

Note: Read about Canada's unmarked graves at residential schools for indigenous kids. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Lawmaker wants pardon for Daniel Hale, who leaked drone secrets
2021-08-26, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/daniel-hale-pardon-letter/2...

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) is asking President Biden to pardon a former Air Force intelligence analyst who exposed secrets about drone warfare in Afghanistan. In July, Daniel Hale pleaded guilty in federal court in Alexandria to violating the Espionage Act and was sentenced in July to 45 months in prison for leaking classified documents to the Intercept. In court, Hale said he felt compelled to speak out about the immorality of the drone program after realizing he had helped kill Afghan civilians, including a small child. "Not a day goes by that I don't question the justification for my actions," he wrote to the judge. "I am grief-stricken and ashamed of myself." One document he leaked showed that during a five-month operation in Afghanistan, nearly 90 percent of the people killed were not the intended targets. "I take extremely seriously the prohibition on leaking classified information, but I believe there are several aspects of Mr. Hale's case that merit a full pardon," Omar wrote in the letter sent to Biden. "The information, while politically embarrassing to some, has shone a vital light on the legal and moral problems of the drone program and informed the public debate on an issue that has for too many years remained in the shadows." This week, Hale was awarded the Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence, given by a group of whistleblowers from the national security community. Edward Snowden received the same award in 2013.

Note: Hale's leak was the basis for an article series called The Drone Papers. A 2014 analysis found that attempts to kill 41 people with drones resulted in 1,147 deaths. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Taliban now has access to $85 billion of American military equipment
2021-08-26, The Telegraph (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2021/08/26/taliban-now-has-access-85-b...

The Taliban now has access to $85 billion worth of American military equipment and the biometric data of the Afghans who have assisted soldiers over the past 20 years, a Republican congressman has warned. Jim Banks, a former US Navy reservist, said that the vast amount of hardware left behind includes 75,000 vehicles, 200 airplanes and helicopters and 600,000 small arms and light weapons. "The Taliban now has more Black Hawk helicopters than 85 per cent of the countries in the world," he said. Other equipment seized by the Taliban includes night-vision goggles, body armour and medical supplies, he said. Mr Banks says he is sure of the numbers because he worked as a foreign military sales officer, acquiring the equipment that America provided, then turning it over to Afghan forces. "Unfathomable to me and so many others, the Taliban now has biometric devices which have the fingerprints, eye scans and biographical information of all the Afghans who helped us and were on our side in the last 20 years," Mr Banks said. "There is no plan by this administration to get those weapons back. Already, the Taliban say they have deployed an elite unit boasting high-tech equipment to guard sites in the Afghan capital. The militants' propaganda channels released a slick film of a unit called the "Badri 313 Brigade", saying they would be on the streets of Kabul. Slow motion footage showed them wearing modern helmets, sun glasses, body armour and carrying similar rifles to the Afghan forces.

Note: Why didn't the military prioritize removing this huge amount of equipment that they knew would be taken over by the Taliban? Do you think this equipment might have been left behind on purpose by those who profit from war? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


For Two Decades, Americans Told One Lie After Another About What They Were Doing in Afghanistan
2021-08-26, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2021/08/26/afghanistan-america-failures/

For two decades, Americans have told each other one lie after another about the war in Afghanistan. The lies have come from the White House, Congress, the State Department, the Pentagon, and the CIA, as well as from Hollywood, cable news pundits, journalists, and the broader culture. But at the very edge of the American empire, the war was nasty and brutish. This month, as the Taliban swiftly took control of Kabul and the American-backed government collapsed, the U.S. Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, the government's watchdog over the Afghan experience, issued his final report. The assessment includes remarkably candid interviews with former American officials involved in shaping U.S. policy in Afghanistan that, collectively, offer perhaps the most biting critique of the 20-year American enterprise ever published in an official U.S. government report. One of the first things the U.S. did after gaining effective control over Afghanistan following the Taliban's ouster in 2001 was to set up secret torture chambers. Beginning in 2002, the CIA tortured both Afghans and foreign prisoners flown to these torture rooms from all over Central Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. American drone strikes also started early in Afghanistan. Afghanistan soon became the beta test site for high-tech drone warfare ... yet the U.S. refused to keep track of civilian casualties from drone strikes.

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


Student Develops Supercharged Extinguisher in Response to California Wildfires
2021-08-25, Yahoo! News
https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/f-c-e-student-develops-210018209.html

Wildfires have plagued California to an unusual extent in recent years. Imagine a device that could suppress these fires before they blossomed out of control, actively fighting them and preventing them from spreading. Such a device could act as an important stopgap measure for homes and businesses and proactively address fires at their source. Enter high school student Arul Mathur, a New Jersey transplant who moved to California and witnessed firsthand the devastation of the fires, with his family nearly having to evacuate their own home in 2019. As Mathur says, that made it "personal." Inspired to come up with some sort of solution, Mather designed "F.A.C.E.," or the Fire Activated Canister Extinguisher. A new type of firefighting equipment, F.A.C.E. is a completely self-contained device; i.e. no human is necessary to operate it. It's also heat-activated, akin to a fire alarm, albeit activated with a rise in temperature instead of the presence of smoke. Think of it as a fire alarm version 2.0: easily portable, easily installable, and containing its own fire suppression materials like a super-charged sprinkler. However, it's not water that comes from F.A.C.E. when it's activated, its an eco-friendly fire retardant called Cold Fire that sprays the surrounding area (in a 5-6 foot radius) with the help of a built-in a sprinkler. The only human element involved in F.A.C.E. is its simple installation along a home or business' outdoor wall or fence, and the easy refilling of the fire retardant (if necessary).

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


How Myanmar's military terrorized its people with weapons of war
2021-08-25, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/interactive/2021/myanmar-crackdown-milit...

When Myanmar's military seized power in a Feb. 1 coup, millions across the country took to the streets in protest. The Myanmar military responded with weapons of war and brutal, premeditated counterinsurgency tactics against demonstrators. U.N. officials and human rights groups say these acts must be investigated as crimes against humanity. Noise from the nearby pagoda roused Aung and his family before dawn on April 9. He saw dozens of soldiers shouting and cursing as they streamed onto trucks, rifles slung across their chests. By the end of that day, the Myanmar military, known as the Tatmadaw, and police officers had killed at least 82 people, according to groups tracking protest deaths – making it the deadliest single crackdown since the military seized power. A Washington Post investigation of that day's events reveals the use of counterinsurgency tactics, specialized military units and military-grade weaponry against civilian protesters – resulting in a high number of casualties. "It is very systematic [and] the pattern of violence is very, very clear," said Tom Andrews, the United Nations' special rapporteur for Myanmar. "These are crimes against humanity," he said, noting especially the premeditation before the attacks in Bago. Zaya, a front-line protester ... said he and others there heard the sounds of heavy weaponry. [A] wall, which withstood gunfire for hours, began to shake and collapse. Soldiers then rushed forward ... shooting indiscriminately. "They were killed like goats in a slaughterhouse," he said.

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


Does the FDA think these data justify the first full approval of a covid-19 vaccine?
2021-08-23, The BMJ (New name of the British Medical Journal)
https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2021/08/23/does-the-fda-think-these-data-justify-th...

On 28 July 2021, Pfizer and BioNTech posted updated results for their ongoing phase 3 covid-19 vaccine trial. The preprint came almost a year to the day after the historical trial commenced, and nearly four months since the companies announced vaccine efficacy estimates "up to six months.". But you won't find 10 month follow-up data here. While the preprint is new, the results it contains aren't particularly up to date. Since late last year, we've heard that Pfizer and Moderna's vaccines are "95% effective." Measuring vaccine efficacy two months after dosing says little about just how long vaccine-induced immunity will last. "Waning immunity" is a known problem for influenza vaccines, with some studies showing near zero effectiveness after just three months. And so the recent reports from Israel's Ministry of Health caught my eye. In early July, they reported that efficacy against infection and symptomatic disease "fell to 64%." By late July it had fallen to 39% where Delta is the dominant strain. This is very low. For context, the FDA's expectation is of "at least 50%" efficacy for any approvable vaccine. Now Israel, which almost exclusively used Pfizer vaccine, has begun administering a third "booster" dose to all adults over 40. The US plans to follow suit. Until new clinical trials demonstrate that boosters increase efficacy above 50%, without increasing serious adverse events, it is unclear whether the 2-dose series would even meet the FDA's approval standard at six or nine months.

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


England's crop circle controversy
2021-08-23, BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/travel/article/20210822-englands-crop-circle-controversy

South-west England is the world capital of crop circles. They are particularly concentrated in the county of Wiltshire, where a treasure trove of ancient history includes the Neolithic sites of Stonehenge and Avebury – both crop circle hotspots. Reports of mysterious patterns appearing in wheat, barley and corn fields in the area began to circulate in the 1970s, but it was in the late '80s that the phenomenon exploded. Circles began to appear more frequently and became far more ornate: some resembled trippy fractals; others rune-like hieroglyphs; others stylised animals recalling those of the Nazca Lines in Peru. The intricacy and size of the formations, coupled with the fact that they would appear overnight, seemingly out of nowhere, baffled locals and farmers alike. In 1996, a crop circle appeared opposite Stonehenge depicting a mathematical fractal called a Julia set; a similar formation that emerged on Milk Hill in 2001 was one of the largest ever, stretching 900ft. A 2008 formation near the Iron Age hill fort of Barbury Castle required decoding by an astrophysicist, who concluded that it was a geometric representation of the first 10 digits of pi. The phenomenon peaked in the 1990s and early 2000s, but continues today; an average of 30 crop circles appear each year in the UK, around 80% of them in Wiltshire. Formations reported in 2021 have included a hexagonal pattern overlaid with spirals in Avebury, and a pattern of concentric "bubbles" in Tidworth Down.

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


New Laws Have Basically Ended Voter Registration Drives In Some Parts Of The U.S.
2021-08-23, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2021/08/23/1030430564/new-laws-have-basically-ended-voter...

New state laws tightening voting restrictions come in two basic varieties: those that make it harder to cast a vote and those making it more difficult to get registered to vote in the first place. In Kansas, one law effectively shuts down voter registration drives. It's now a felony offense to impersonate an election official, and the law creates a vague standard for breaking it, a standard that depends on impressions. It criminalizes engaging in conduct that might seem like something an election official would do. Davis Hammet, president of the Kansas civic engagement group Loud Light, says that subjective standard would probably include work his volunteers do, which includes approaching people with clipboards and registering them to vote. "So, if someone accuses you of being an election official or saying they were just confused and thought you were one, and you were arrested, you would be charged with a felony," Hammet says. "And so, a felony means you lose your right to vote. So, you could lose your right to vote for trying to help people vote." This knocks a big hole in efforts to register new voters because county elections officials rely on volunteer groups to do outreach. Tammy Patrick has been tracking an avalanche of election-related legislation. "There have been a little more than 3,000 bills introduced ... this legislative session, which is the most bills we've seen around election administration," Patrick says. "Many of them actually have included things very similar to the Kansas law."

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


Portland's Bizarre Experiment With Not Policing Proud Boys Rampage Ends in Gunfire
2021-08-23, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2021/08/23/portland-police-proud-boys-protest/

Portland narrowly avoided tragedy on Sunday as the city's police force abandoned its duty to secure the streets and officers made no effort to stop assaults on residents by members of the far-right Proud Boys gang, many of whom had traveled from around the country to live out their fantasies of attacking anti-fascist protesters. The absence of the police, in line with a policy on nonintervention announced beforehand by Portland Police Bureau Chief Chuck Lovell, reinforced a sense among anti-fascists that they were on their own. So when a right-wing gunman fired in the direction of black-clad protesters who had chased him away from their protest at gunpoint, it was shocking but perhaps not surprising that one of the anti-fascists fired back, according to witnesses. The fact that the right-wing gunman – 65-year-old Dennis Anderson from the neighboring city of Gresham – was arrested within minutes by an undercover officer and two uniformed colleagues underscored for many protesters that the police could have intervened earlier but had chosen not to do so. The gunfire came after a Proud Boys rally, devoted to the "political prisoners" of the January 6 Capitol attacks ... had devolved into violence, with attacks on left-wing protesters who fought back with paintballs, fireworks, and pepper spray. Although multiple assaults were captured on video by journalists on the scene, the police failed to intervene.

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


The Sweden experiment: how no lockdowns led to better mental health, a healthier economy and happier schoolchildren
2021-08-22, The Telegraph (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2021/08/22/sweden-experiment-no-lockdo...

Sweden's decision to eschew lockdown and leave pubs, restaurants, shopping centres and primary schools open throughout the pandemic generated furious discussion internationally. Millions of people across the world have been confined to their homes, watched businesses go under, and struggled to stay on top of their studies amid wave after wave of restrictions to prevent the spread of coronavirus. But for some 10 million Swedes, the eighteen months since the first local Covid-19 case was registered last February have been largely unremarkable. That is not to say the virus has not taken its toll - nearly 15,000 people have died in total, around 1,450 per million. But that death rate is lower than the average for the European Union as a whole (1,684), and well below those of France, Spain, Italy and the UK. Some now concede Sweden has not become the cautionary tale many predicted. "Many times I would have thought that the situation would have gone a different way, but it worked for Sweden," said Samir Bhatt, professor of Public Health at the University of Copenhagen, and one of the team at Imperial College who pushed the UK's lockdown strategy. "They achieved infection control; they managed to keep infections relatively low and they didn't have any health care collapse." The real benefits of Sweden's radical policy, however, can be seen in the economy, the psychological impact, and in schools. In the end, GDP shrank by just 2.8 per cent, significantly lower than the EU average of 6 per cent.

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


Solar power in Australia outstrips coal-fired electricity for first time
2021-08-22, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/aug/23/solar-power-in-austral...

The national electricity market reached a new milestone on Sunday, with solar power outstripping energy generation from coal for the first time since the market was set up two decades ago. The crossover point lasted for only a few minutes, as low demand and sunny skies on Sunday meant the contribution from coal dropped to a record low of 9,315MW just after noon, while solar provided the dominant share with 9,427MW. Dylan McConnell, a research fellow at the University of Melbourne's climate and energy college, said that for a brief moment renewable energy represented 57% of national electricity generation. "This is what I unofficially call 'record season'," McConnell said. "It's actually still pretty early in the season [to get these numbers] but in spring or the shoulder seasons you have the combination of low demand, because there's no heating or cooling, and then nice weather on the weekend. "Those factors combine, and you get these giant shares of renewable energy that generally push out coal." While McConnell said it was only "fleeting" and that "Australia was a long way from peak renewable energy", energy prices also went negative on Sunday from 8.30am through to 5pm. It means ... energy producers were paying to keep running. Unlike more nimble solar and wind producers, coal generators are particularly hurt when prices turn negative. The costs associated with shutting down and restarting coal generators are prohibitive.

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


Congressman Seeking to Relaunch Afghan War Made Millions in Defense Contracting
2021-08-20, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2021/08/20/mike-waltz-afghanistan/

Few lawmakers are as outspoken about the end of the war in Afghanistan as Michael Waltz, a Republican from Florida's 6th Congressional District. In recent weeks, Waltz has called on President Joe Biden to "reverse course," relaunch military operations in the region. The Florida congressman has warned darkly of an "Al-Qaeda 3.0" and stated that no negotiations should take place with the Taliban "until the situation is stabilized militarily." There's one crucial part of Waltz's experience he tends to leave out: Before his successful run for Congress in 2018, he managed a lucrative defense contracting firm with offices in Afghanistan. The company was recently sold to Pacific Architects and Engineers, or PAE, one of the largest war contractors the U.S. has hired to train and mentor Afghan security forces. The deal personally enriched Waltz by up to $26 million, a figure made public by a filing disclosed this month. In 2010, after stints in the military and as an adviser to the Bush administration, Waltz helped found Metis Solutions, a defense contractor that "provides strategic analysis, intelligence support, and training," with offices in Arlington, Virgina; Tampa, Florida; Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; and Kabul, Afghanistan. Congressional ethics disclosures show that in 2019, Waltz held up to $1 million in equity from Metis Solutions and up to $250,000 in options of Metis Solutions stock. The lawmaker's subsequent ethics disclosure ... shows that he earned between $5 and $25 million in capital gains from his stock sales.

Note: Watch a rare video revealing the manipulations behind the call to send troops to Afghanistan. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and war from reliable major media sources.


Feds Deliberately Targeted BLM Protesters To Disrupt The Movement, A Report Says
2021-08-20, NPR
https://www.npr.org/2021/08/20/1029625793/black-lives-matter-protesters-targeted

The federal government deliberately targeted Black Lives Matter protesters via heavy-handed criminal prosecutions in an attempt to disrupt and discourage the global movement that swept the nation last summer in the wake of the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd, according to a new report released Wednesday by The Movement for Black Lives. The prosecution of protesters over the past year continues a century-long practice by the federal government, rooted in structural racism, to suppress Black social movements via the use of surveillance tactics and other mechanisms. "The empirical data and findings in this report largely corroborate what Black organizers have long known ... about the federal government's disparate policing and prosecution of racial justice protests," the report stated. Titled "Struggle For Power: The Ongoing Persecution of Black Movement By The U.S. Government," the report details how policing has been used historically as a major tool to deter Black people from engaging in their right to protest. It also drew a comparison to how the government used Counterintelligence Program techniques to "disrupt the work of the Black Panther Party and other organizations fighting for Black liberation." A key finding of the report was that the push to use federal charges against protesters came from top-down directives. In 92.6% of the cases, there were equivalent state level charges that could have been brought against defendants.

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