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Excerpts of Key News Stories in Major Media

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Jesse Watters Claims FBI and CIA Can Blackmail the President with Hunter Biden’s Laptop: ‘He Has to Do Whatever They Say’
2023-06-21, MSN News
Posted: 2024-05-05 15:02:45
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/jesse-watters-claims-fbi-and-cia-can-...

Fox News host Jesse Watters claimed during a Wednesday airing of The Five that the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Central Intelligence Agency can use information found on the Hunter Biden laptop to blackmail President Joe Biden. Watters’ monologue was preceded by talks of the recent plea deal that the president’s son reached with federal prosecutors earlier this week to avoid jail time on three federal charges. He failed to pay $1 million in taxes and faced a gun felony count. Conservative politicians and pundits in the media have used this to claim the Department of Justice is creating a two-tiered justice system. Earlier this month, former President Donald Trump was formally indicted by the DOJ for 37 charges related to his handling of classified material. “The feds are never going to crack open the laptop as long as Joe Biden’s president. His administration is not going to investigate corruption in the Biden family. It’s just not going to happen,” Watters told the Fox panel. “Plus, the FBI in the CIA has this is blackmail. They can just dangle it in front of Joe and he has to do whatever they say or else ‘boop!'” Watters then called the former president an “outsider” in Washington. “But the bottom line is that insiders protect insiders. You said it the other day, Trump’s an outsider. He goes to prison, his people go to prison. But if you’re a Washington insider, you get to Hunter Biden treatment,” Watters concluded.

Note: If the article fails to load, here's an alternate source. Read about how the intelligence agencies infiltrated the media to censor the Hunter Biden laptop story and other important topics. While Hunter Biden was indicted for three felony gun charges and nine counts of tax-related crimes, his laptop also revealed suspicious business dealings with corrupt overseas firms.


Compassion is making a comeback in America
2024-04-23, Vox
Posted: 2024-05-05 14:59:39
https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/24137520/americans-empathy-new-compassion-...

Since the late 1970s, psychologists have measured empathy by asking millions of people how much they agreed with statements such as “I feel tender, concerned feelings for people less fortunate than me.” In 2011, a landmark study led by researcher Sara Konrath examined the trends in those surveys. The analysis revealed that American empathy had plummeted: The average US college student in 2009 reported feeling less empathic than 75 percent of students three decades earlier. A few months ago, [Konrath] and her colleagues published an update to their work: They found that empathy among young Americans is rebounding, reaching levels indistinguishable from the highs of the 1970s. Our biased minds tempt us to see the worst in people. The empathy decline reported 13 years ago fit that narrative and went viral. This decline is almost certainly an illusion. In other surveys, people reported on kindness and morality as they actually experience it — for instance, how they were treated by strangers, coworkers, and friends. Answers to these questions remained steady over the years. As with the decline, we might grasp for explanations for this rise. One possibility is collective suffering. Hard times can bring people together. In her beautiful book, A Paradise Built in Hell, Rebecca Solnit chronicles disasters including San Francisco’s 1906 and 1989 earthquakes, Hurricane Katrina, and 9/11. In the wake of these catastrophes, kindness ticked up, strangers stepping over lines of race and class to help one another.

Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.


Loretta Ross doesn’t believe in cancel culture
2023-11-04, Boston Globe
Posted: 2024-05-05 14:54:19
https://www.bostonglobe.com/2023/11/02/magazine/loretta-ross-has-a-radical-idea/

[Loretta] Ross has worked at the forefront of the movement for reproductive justice. But recently she has become better known for championing “call-in culture,” a philosophy that approaches someone’s wrongdoing with accountability and, most importantly, love. In the summer of 2020 ... I felt myself crumbling. I called out snide comments by alumni of my college about Black Lives Matter protests, demanded people boycott the college newspaper ... and used Twitter to call out the behavior of fellow students. Each tactic left no room for discussion. Calling in, by contrast, asks us to always be the bigger person, even in the most hateful and painful situations. I ask Ross: Whose well-being are we prioritizing here? And why isn’t it our own? Ross tells me about another Black woman who asked the same question. “I’m confused,” Ross recalls the woman saying. “I don’t want to fall into the stereotype of the angry Black woman. But I feel like if I embrace the calling-in strategies you’re talking about, then I’m ... giving a pass to all this injustice. What should I do?” Ross responds with a question of her own: “Well, who are you inside? Go deep inside and find out who you are. What’s the emotion that you feel is true to you?” “Inside, I feel like I’m filled with love,” the woman replies. “Then, why aren’t you leading with your authentic self?” Ross asks her. Accountability and love are not mutually exclusive, Ross explains.

Note: Smith College Professor and civil rights activist Loretta Ross worked with Ku Klux Klan members and practiced restorative justice with incarcerated men convicted or raping and murdering women. Watch Loretta Ross's powerful Ted Talk on simple tools to help shift our culture from fighting each other to working together in the face of polarizing social issues. Explore more positive stories about healing social division and polarization.


‘Healing spaces’ in post-conflict societies
2024-03-01, Christian Science Monitor
Posted: 2024-05-05 14:51:50
https://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/the-monitors-view/2024/0301/Healing-spac...

The Afghanistan Memory Home is a growing online archive of testimonies of endurance by ordinary Afghans during years of conflict and repressive rule under the Taliban. The virtual museum is an example of the kind of community-led initiatives that Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has described as “healing spaces” – local sites of nation-building where the traumas and resentments of war are salved through traditional forms of civic engagement based on cultural values, spirituality, and listening. These projects in reconciliation quietly persist almost everywhere people seek freedom from conflict or repression, from Afghanistan to Yemen. They often supplant the work of national transitional justice initiatives stalled by political disagreements or lack of cooperation. They also underscore that “justice isn’t just punishment or prosecution and presenting evidence against perpetrators,” said Ruben Carranza, an expert on post-conflict community healing. In South Sudan, for instance, a local peace and reconciliation process called Wunlit gave grassroots strength to a 2018 national peace agreement. Led by tribal chiefs and spiritual leaders, the “peace to peace” dialogue defused cattle raids and abductions between the Nuer and Dinka communities. In Iraq, the Ministry of Human Rights has relied on tribal, religious, and civil society leaders to help forge local support for a national dialogue on reconciliation. History has “taught us that relying solely on military force will not bring about lasting peace and stability,” Hodan Ali, a Somali presidential policy adviser, wrote. The more durable work of peace involves empowering individuals and communities to tell their own stories – and listen to each other.

Note: Explore more positive stories about healing the war machine.


Democracy Dies Behind Paywalls
2024-04-14, The Atlantic
Posted: 2024-04-29 13:09:31
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2024/04/paywall-problems-media-trus...

According to the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, more than 75 percent of America’s leading newspapers, magazines, and journals are behind online paywalls. And how do American news consumers react to that? Almost 80 percent of Americans steer around those paywalls and seek out a free option. Paywalls create a two-tiered system: credible, fact-based information for people who are willing to pay for it, and murkier, less-reliable information for everyone else. Simply put, paywalls get in the way of informing the public, which is the mission of journalism. And they get in the way of the public being informed, which is the foundation of democracy. It is a terrible time for the press to be failing at reaching people, during an election in which democracy is on the line. There’s a simple, temporary solution: Publications should suspend their paywalls for all 2024 election coverage and all information that is beneficial to voters. Democracy does not die in darkness—it dies behind paywalls. Less than a third of Americans in a recent Gallup poll say they have “a fair amount” or a “a great deal” of trust that the news is fair and accurate. Part of the problem ... is that the platform companies, which are the largest distributors of free news, have deprioritized news. Meta has long had an uncomfortable relationship with news on Facebook. In the past year ... Meta has changed its algorithm in a way that has cost some news outlets 30 to 40 percent of their traffic.

Note: It's ironic that this story is behind a paywall. Read the complete article here using Textise, an excellent tool that converts most webpages into text-only versions. For a powerful reflection on the rise of paywalls and online ads in news outlets, read this Substack piece written by our news editor Mark Bailey. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on media corruption from reliable sources.


House Votes to Extend—and Expand—a Major US Spy Program
2024-04-12, Wired
Posted: 2024-04-29 13:07:04
https://www.wired.com/story/house-section-702-vote/

The House of Representatives voted on Friday to extend Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) for two years. Section 702 permits the US government to wiretap communications between Americans and foreigners overseas. Hundreds of millions of calls, texts, and emails are intercepted by government spies each with the “compelled assistance” of US communications providers. The government argues that Americans are not themselves being targeted and thus the wiretaps are legal. Nevertheless, their calls, texts, and emails may be stored by the government for years, and can later be accessed by law enforcement without a judge’s permission. The House bill also dramatically expands the statutory definition for communication service providers. “They’re pushing for a major expansion of warrantless spying on Americans,” US senator Ron Wyden tells WIRED. “Their amendment would force your cable guy to be a government spy and assist in monitoring Americans’ communications without a warrant.” “Section 702 has been abused under presidents from both political parties, and it has been used to unlawfully surveil the communications of Americans across the political spectrum,” says Kia Hamadanchy, senior policy counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union. “The Senate must add a warrant requirement and rein in this out-of-control government spying.”

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


Americans Are Paying Billions to Take Drugs That Don’t Work
2024-04-15, Bloomberg
Posted: 2024-04-29 13:05:09
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2024-04-15/cancer-als-drugs-that-don-...

One ALS drug made $400 million in sales for its maker. It doesn’t work. A cancer treatment brought in $500 million. That one turned out to have no effect on survival. A blood cancer medication made nearly $850 million before being withdrawn for two of its uses. That drug had been linked to patient deaths years prior. All of them were allowed to be sold to Americans because of the US Food and Drug Administration’s drive to get new drugs to patients quickly — sometimes even before they’re done testing. Drug companies are profiting, though. Since 2014, they’ve made at least $3.6 billion in global sales of medications that have either later been shown to be ineffective or had most or all of their uses withdrawn in the US. There are a number of ways a drug company can get its treatment to patients faster: There’s the “priority review” pathway, then “fast track,” “accelerated approval” and “breakthrough therapy.” The majority of new drugs in the US are approved through one or more of these sped-up pathways. Last year two thirds of all new drugs reached the market this way. One of the problems is that sometimes drugmakers resist pulling a drug off the market, even after it’s obvious it doesn’t work. Makena, a drug to reduce the risk of premature birth, received a sped-up approval in 2011. Eight years later, a large trial found it didn’t work. Yet it took another four years for the FDA to force it off the market. Makena ... generated over $1.6 billion in sales.

Note: The US spends the most on health care but has the worst health outcomes among high-income countries. More than half of children now have chronic health conditions. What is behind this? For more along these lines, see concise summaries of important news articles on Big Pharma corruption and health from reliable media sources.


Thanks to Cass, evidence not ideology will be used to guide children seeking gender advice
2024-04-14, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-04-29 13:02:05
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2024/apr/14/hilary-cass-review-gend...

The publication of Hilary Cass’s final report on healthcare for gender-questioning children laid bare the devastating scale of NHS failures of a vulnerable group of children and young people, buoyed by adult activists bullying anyone who dared question a treatment model so clearly based on ideology rather than evidence. Cass is a renowned paediatrician and her painstakingly thorough review was four years in the making. She sets out how the now-closed NHS specialist gender clinic for children abandoned evidence-based medicine. Significant numbers of gender-questioning children ... were put on an unevidenced medical pathway of puberty-blocking drugs and/or cross-sex hormones, despite risks of harm in relation to brain development, fertility, bone density, mental health and adult sexual functioning. Cass finds a childhood diagnosis of gender dysphoria is not predictive of a lasting trans identity and clinicians told the review they are unable to determine in which children gender dysphoria will last into adulthood. If this is indeed impossible, is it ever ethical to put a young person on a life-altering medical pathway? If there are no objective diagnostic criteria, on what basis would a clinician be taking this decision other than a professional hunch? Cass’s vision is what gender-questioning children deserve: to be treated with the same level of care as everyone else, not as little projects for activists seeking validation for their own adult identities and belief systems.

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


'Extreme caution': U.K. review of trans health care could have lessons for Canada
2024-04-11, MSN News
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:59:57
https://www.msn.com/en-ca/health/other/extreme-caution-u-k-review-of-trans-he...

A robust British review found guidelines for the treatment of children with gender dysphoria ignored standards and are based on flimsy foundations. Pediatrician Hilary Cass’ much-anticipated report found no reliable evidence on which to base gender-affirming care for youth; the rationale for blocking puberty in young children remains unclear and muddled and that the use of cross-sex hormones in the under-18s presents numerous unknowns. Cass said published studies suffer from “remarkably weak evidence,” that results are “exaggerated or mispresented” by people on both sides of the debate over transgender health care to bolster their own viewpoint. Cass found that there is no solid evidence on the long-term outcomes of any of the interventions. Cass said the toxicity of the debate has been exceptional. “There are few other areas of healthcare where professionals are so afraid to openly discuss their views, where people are vilified on social media and where name-calling echoes the worst bullying behaviour. This must stop,” Cass wrote. The systematic review on puberty blockers found no evidence the drugs improve body image or dysphoria. The drugs might temporarily or permanently disrupt adolescent brain maturation, “which could have a significant impact on the young person’s ability to make complex risk-laden decisions, as well as having possible longer-term neuropsychological consequences,” according to the Cass report.

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


The US needs a bipartisan, open-minded gender medicine commission
2024-04-15, Boston Globe
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:58:09
https://www.bostonglobe.com/2024/04/15/opinion/cass-review-gender-affirming-c...

The toxicity of the culture war over youth gender medicine is well known to most of us. What’s less well understood is how that poisonous climate affects the very cohort being argued about — and those who care for them. The Cass Review, led by Dr. Hilary Cass, examines the events and evidence (or lack thereof) that led to the closing of the UK’s only public youth gender clinic, the Gender Identity Development Services. Social justice/civil rights framing has made it harder to reckon with what Cass calls the “exponential rise” in adolescent patients starting around 2014. Once it was mostly natal males who transitioned, but now it is mostly natal females, many of whom had no history of gender distress but did suffer from other mental health issues. As for the evidence about how to treat these patients and others who have sought care, Cass concludes: “The reality is that we have no good evidence on the long-term outcomes of interventions to manage gender-related distress.” Individual studies may make claims about the efficacy of social transition, puberty blockers, or hormones, but they are too biased and low quality to draw conclusions from. As for the claim that these interventions prevent suicide, Cass reports that “the evidence found did not support this conclusion.” Perhaps most important, Cass notes that “clinicians have told us they are unable to determine with any certainty which children and young people will go on to have an enduring trans identity.”

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


‘This isn’t how good scientific debate happens’: academics on culture of fear in gender medicine research
2024-04-12, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:55:58
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2024/apr/12/this-isnt-how-good-scientific...

Experienced professionals are increasingly scared to openly discuss their views on the treatment of children questioning their gender identity. This was the conclusion drawn by Hilary Cass in her review of gender identity services for children this week, which warned that a toxic debate had resulted in a culture of fear. Her conclusion was echoed by doctors, academic researchers and scientists. Some said they had been deterred from pursuing what they believed to be crucial studies, saying that merely entering the arena would put their reputation at risk. Others spoke of abuse on social media, academic conferences being shut down, biases in publishing and the personal cost of speaking out. Sallie Baxendale, a professor of clinical neuropsychology ... received abuse after publishing a systematic review of studies that investigated the impact of puberty blockers on brain development. Her review found that “critical questions” remained around the nature, extent and permanence of any arrested development of cognitive function linked to the treatment. The paper, which summarised the state of relevant research, was met with an immediate backlash. “I’ve been accused of being an anti-trans activist, and that now comes up on Google and is never going to go away,” Baxendale said. “Imagine what it’s like if that is the first thing that comes up when people Google you? Anyone who publishes in this field has got to be prepared for that.”

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


Not Enough War on the Ground, the US Is Taking It To Space
2024-04-13, ScheerPost
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:52:18
https://scheerpost.com/2024/04/13/not-enough-war-on-the-ground-the-us-is-taki...

SpaceX recently secured a classified contract to build an extensive network of “spy satellites” for an undisclosed U.S. intelligence agency, with one source telling Reuters that “no one can hide” under the prospective network’s reach. The U.S. is funding or otherwise supporting a range of defense contractors and startups working to create a new generation of space-bound weapons, surveillance systems, and adjacent technologies. In other words, America is hell-bent on a new arms race — in space. The Space Force, an entirely new branch of the military “focused solely on pursuing superiority in the space domain,” was launched in 2019, signaling renewed emphasis on space militarization as U.S. policy. Space Force’s Space Development Agency recently granted defense contractors L3Harris and Lockheed Martin and space company Sierra Space contracts worth $2.5 billion to build satellites for the U.S. military’s Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture (PWSA), a constellation of hundreds of satellites, built out on tranches, that provide various warfighting capabilities, including the collection and transmission of critical wartime communications, into low-Earth orbit. The PWSA will serve as the backbone of the Pentagon’s Joint All-Domain Command and Control project, an effort to bolster warfighting capacities and decision-making processes by facilitating “information advantage at the speed of relevance.” Other efforts are just as sci-fi-esque.

Note: Learn more about emerging warfare technology in our comprehensive Military-Intelligence Corruption Information Center. For more, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


‘Huge Win’: Court Rules Big Telecom Must Comply With State Environmental Laws
2024-04-04, The Defender
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:49:23
https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/chd-lawsuit-la-county-court-telec...

Los Angeles County officials must comply with state environmental law when issuing permits for new wireless infrastructures, a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge ruled. The ruling is a win for Children’s Health Defense (CHD) and a coalition of community and environmental groups in a historic case challenging the fast-tracked proliferation of wireless infrastructure in Los Angeles County. W. Scott McCollough, lead attorney for the plaintiffs, said in a press release, “The court’s ruling is a huge win in the battle against unfettered proliferation of wireless because of the known risks to the environment and people’s health.” The lawsuit alleged Los Angeles County violated California’s state environmental law — the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) — when it passed two ordinances allowing telecommunications companies to install wireless infrastructure without environmental review. In his 65-page opinion, Judge Chalfant said that state environmental law generally applies to wireless projects and is only preempted by federal law — in this case, the Telecommunication Act of 1996 — when it comes to minor modifications and “collocations,” meaning additions to existing towers, upgrades or repairs. The judge also noted that an environmental impact analysis is necessary for proposed wireless projects, like 5G small cells or cell towers, along scenic highways or historical sites.

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


The FBI Colluded With Twitter to Suppress Free Speech. Where Is the Outrage?
2022-12-21, Newsweek
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:47:07
https://www.newsweek.com/fbi-colluded-twitter-suppress-free-speech-where-outr...

For the past few weeks, journalists have been reporting on what they've found in the "Twitter Files." The revelations have been astonishing and deeply troubling, exposing solid evidence of collusion between top executives at the FBI and their cozy counterparts at Twitter. FBI leadership and Twitter censors conferred constantly about how to shut down political speech based on its content, confirming the suspicions of, well, anyone who was paying attention. And it proves without a doubt that over the past few years, countless Americans have undergone a real violation of their First Amendment rights. The First Amendment mandates that government can't abridge—meaning limit or censor—speech based on its content. Even if attempting to advance the noblest of causes, government actors must not collide with this constitutional guardrail. The Constitution simply isn't optional. The government can't enlist a private citizen or corporation to undertake what the Constitution precludes it from doing. When Twitter acquiesced to the FBI's urging, it essentially became an agent and of the government. FBI officials created a special, secure online portal for Twitter staff, where the two sides could secretly exchange information about who was saying what on the platform and how that speech could be squelched. In this virtual "war room," the FBI made dozens of requests to censor political speech. Twitter chirpily complied.

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


Why do people forgive? It's messy, complex and 'the best form of self-interest'
2024-04-23, Minneapolis Star Tribune
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:44:20
https://www.startribune.com/forgiveness-project-minneapolis-laura-yuen/600360...

Forgiveness is a principle promoted by just about every faith tradition. Even neuroscientists agree on its mental and physical benefits — from lowered risk of heart attacks to improved sleep. Twenty years ago, UK-based journalist Marina Cantacuzino launched the Forgiveness Project, a collection of stories from survivors and victims of crime and conflict, as well as perpetrators who reshaped their aggression into a force for peace. Cantacuzino documented real-life stories of seemingly supernatural examples of forgiveness. A Canadian woman who forgave her husband's killer. An Israeli filmmaker wounded in a terrorist attack. A Minneapolis mother who grew to love the person who murdered her only child. But even Cantacuzino admits it can seem difficult to relate to those who forgive the seemingly unforgivable. Are they morally superior? Extremely religious? Some are, but they are more likely to share the traits of curiosity, empathy and a flexible viewpoint. It feels like those characteristics are harder to come by today. The cacophony of "if you're not with us, you're against us" has divided families and entire communities. One's ability to recognize the pain on both sides of the Israel-Hamas war can evoke outrage, for example. But Cantacuzino continues to support discussions that bring together Israeli and Palestinian victims of the conflict, stories that require people to embrace complexity and contradiction while honoring the "sanctity of every human life ... Stories stick, whereas facts fade," she says. The Forgiveness Project's exhibit has now journeyed to 17 countries, including Kenya, Australia and Israel.

Note: Explore Cantacuzino's latest inspiring book, Forgiveness: An Exploration, which delves into the politics, mechanics and psychology of forgiveness. Explore more positive stories that reveal the power of healing social division and polarization.


A daycare built a ‘forest floor’, and it changed kids’ immune systems
2020-10-28, The Optimist Daily
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:40:27
https://www.optimistdaily.com/2020/10/a-daycare-turned-their-playground-into-...

One daycare in Finland decided to invest in a playground that replicated the forest floor. The results were amazing. The daycare replaced their sandy playground surface with lawn and added indigenous forest species like dwarf heather and blueberries. They also added planter boxes and allowed children to tend them. After just one month, children at the daycare had healthier microbiomes and stronger immune systems than their counterparts in other urban daycares. Specifically, the children had increased T-cells, increased immune-boosting gammaproteobacteria microbes, and a reduction in interleukin-17A, a contributor to immune-transmitted disease. Environmental scientist Marja Roslund from the University of Helsinki said, “We also found that the intestinal microbiota of children who received greenery was similar to the intestinal microbiota of children visiting the forest every day.” These results demonstrate that loss of biodiversity in urban areas can contribute to poorer health outcomes and that easy environmental manipulation can radically change these health dynamics, especially in young children. Children living in rural areas tend to have fewer cases of allergies and asthma which seems to be directly tied to time outdoors. More studies are needed to definitively draw the correlation between time in nature and childhood health, but this experiment strengthens the argument for this link.

Note: Explore more positive stories about healing our bodies.


How Schools in Germany Are Preparing Students for Flexible Futures
2024-04-08, Reasons to be Cheerful
Posted: 2024-04-29 12:37:53
https://reasonstobecheerful.world/german-students-vocational-training-future-...

Kein Abschluss ohne Anschluss (KAoA) — or “no graduation without connection” — [is] a program that has been rolled out across the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia to help students better plan for their futures. Young people get support with resumes and job applications; in ninth grade, they participate in short internships with local businesses and have the option of doing a year-long, one-day-a week work placements in grade 10. “You don’t learn about a job in school,” said Sonja Gryzik, who teaches English, math and career orientation at ... Ursula Kuhr Schule. “You have to experience it.” Students in Germany can embark on apprenticeships directly after finishing general education at age 16 in grade 10, attending vocational schools that offer theoretical study, alongside practical training at a company. College-bound kids stay in school for three more years, ending with an entry exam for university. Businesses in Germany seem keen to participate in vocational training. Chambers of commerce and industry support company-school partnerships and help smaller businesses train their interns. Students are even represented in unions, said Julian Uehlecke, a representative of the youth wing of Germany’s largest trade union alliance. The goal of apprenticeships is to offer training in the classroom and in the workplace. The system gives students “a pretty good chance of finding a well-paid stable job,” said [policy researcher] Leonard Geyer.

Note: Explore more positive stories about reimagining education.


Meta is the world’s ‘single largest marketplace for paedophiles’, says New Mexico attorney general
2024-01-31, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-04-22 22:43:28
https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2024/jan/31/meta-worlds-single...

The New Mexico attorney general, Raúl Torrez, who has launched legal action against Meta for child trafficking on its platforms, says he believes the social media company is the “largest marketplace for predators and paedophiles globally”. The lawsuit claims that Meta allows and fails to detect the trafficking of children and “enabled adults to find, message and groom minors, soliciting them to sell pictures or participate in pornographic videos”, concluding that “Meta’s conduct is not only unacceptable; it is unlawful”. Torrez says that he has been shocked by the findings of his team’s investigations into online child sexual exploitation on Meta’s platforms. Internal company documents obtained by the attorney general’s office as part of its investigation have also revealed that the company estimates about 100,000 children using Facebook and Instagram receive online sexual harassment each day. The idea of the lawsuit came to [Torrez] after reading media coverage of Meta’s role in child sexual exploitation, including a Guardian investigation that it was failing to report or detect the use of Facebook and Instagram for child trafficking. If it progresses, the New Mexico lawsuit is expected to take years to conclude. Torrez wants his lawsuit to provide a medium to usher in new regulations. “Fundamentally, we’re trying to get Meta to change how it does business and prioritise the safety of its users, particularly children.”

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


The Vile Sextortion and Torture Ring Where Kids Target Kids
2024-02-20, Vice
Posted: 2024-04-22 22:40:46
https://www.vice.com/en/article/7kxjnz/the-vile-sextortion-and-torture-ring-w...

764 has been responsible for horrific abuse and blackmail across the globe. It’s a network of online communities using several social media platforms (primarily Telegram, where the recruitment and spread of content occur, and Discord, where the actual abuse and grooming take place). The engine behind this nightmare factory is sextortion, a form of blackmail that’s becoming increasingly prevalent. It refers to a predator convincing a victim to send sexually explicit images of themselves, and then using that to bend the victim to their will—this most commonly involves money but can, for instance, involve threatening to send pictures to the victim’s parents if they don’t cut themselves. In many cases, these demands involve the creation of child sexual abuse material, or CSAM, and “hurtcore” content, which focuses on the non-simulated infliction of pain and humiliation on children, typically toddlers. The members of 764 boast that they have left thousands of children traumatized. [Discord] removed 37,000 accounts for child safety in the last quarter of 2022; that number exploded to 116,000 in the final quarter of 2023. The FBI said that from October 2021 to March 2023 it received over 13,000 reports of sextortion of minors, which led to “at least 20 suicides.” There are also tools like Take It Down, which youths can anonymously use to aid them in removing content that is being used to abuse them. The tool works by issuing a unique digital fingerprint to content, which platforms can use to track the image and take it down. This can be done without informing a parent or law enforcement or giving any sort of personal information.

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


The Dark Side of Nickelodeon
2024-03-22, Newsweek
Posted: 2024-04-22 22:38:53
https://www.newsweek.com/nickelodeon-dark-side-dan-schneider-brian-peck-1881413

It prides itself on offering an "assortment of family-friendly programming." For Alexa Nikolas, however, Nickelodeon's claims concealed a darker truth. She says young stars were exploited into taking part in sexually suggestive scenes. "Kids are groomed into thinking that the lines that they're doing are pretend, that it's not real life," the star, who played Nicole Bristow on the Nickelodeon TV series Zoey 101, [said]. Nikolas spoke out in the wake of docuseries Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV, which aired on the Investigation Discovery channel ... and exposed the "toxic culture" and alleged abuse on the set of some of Nickelodeon's biggest shows. In addition to Nikolas, several former child stars have spoken out, claiming sexual assault and harassment while working for the channel. Drake & Josh star Drake Bell speaks publicly for the first time about being repeatedly molested by his dialogue coach, Peck, when he was 15. "I was sleeping on the couch where I usually sleep and I woke up to him... I opened my eyes and I woke up and he was...he was sexually assaulting me." Bell claimed the abuse occurred more than once and said he was scared to report it. He explained: "And it just got worse, and worse, and worse, and worse, and I was just trapped. I had no way out. The abuse was extensive and it got pretty brutal." The four-part docuseries documents the child sexual abuse committed by assistant Jason Handy, dialogue coach Brian Peck, and studio freelancer Ezel Channel, as well as the alleged abusive and misogynistic behavior of showrunner Dan Schneider.

Note: Read more about the disturbing history of child sex abuse in Hollywood from the courageous voices of actor Corey Feldman and Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and sexual abuse scandals from reliable major media sources.


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