Wednesday, 26 April 2017 / TRUTH-OUT.ORG

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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

A budget is a moral document. So let me say this plainly so that you fully understand. The conservative-movement budget the GOP is going to deliver for President Trump to rubber stamp is a morally bankrupt document. There is something in this budget for libertarian free market monsters, predatory capitalists, racists, nationalist reactionaries, neoliberal corporate grifters, religious zealots and militarists. President Trump didn't write this budget. It has been written and has been passed in pieces since Reagan.

Milo Yiannopoulos is the latest in a string of far right-wing voices to salivate over an incident at Gustavus Adolphus College (which I attend) on March 20. The Diversity Leadership Council (DLC) put up A-frames advising students on how to respond to an incident of discrimination. Next to the A-frames was an example of such discrimination, where a sign was posted calling the United States a white nation, and asking citizens to report people who are undocumented. The right-wing media presented the poster on its own, chastising the DLC for spreading racism.

Mar 30

The Myth About College Degrees

By Ramin Farahmandpur, Speakout | News Analysis

Does a college degree boost earnings and reduce unemployment? That's the question that economists have been debating for years, especially after the "Great Recession," when hundreds of thousands lost their jobs as a result of the global economic crisis in 2008. Research shows that the earnings gap between high school and college graduates is widening. Between 1979 and 2012, it doubled from $17,411 to $34,969. Businesses cite this as evidence that college degrees accelerate economic growth, reduce poverty and increase wages.

"My brain is fried and I have so many words that I feel them winding around me like chains of lament, constricting me." When Alicia Crosby of Center for Inclusivity (quoted with permission) told me she was feeling that way, I gasped. I also feel like I'm choking and my brain is oozing out of my head. And I'm exhausted. Alicia and I are very different people in many ways, yet the feeling descriptors are identical and her words represent a destructive microcosm of struggle lying dormant in my gut. The lament, the grief and pain, wrapping themselves around my every move.

Mar 29

The March to "Brainwash Our Kids" With Science

By Brian Moench, Speakout | Op-Ed

Candice Millard's book, Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President, chronicles the atrocious medical care given to President James Garfield after he was shot in an assassination attempt in 1881. It should teach us a valuable lesson about embedding science in our most important public health policy.

It was March 7, and I wasn't expecting the snow. I tucked my fingers into my sleeves, wishing I hadn't left my gloves in California. I had traveled to the Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor to demonstrate at the site of the largest stockpile of deployed nuclear weapons in the United States, likely the world. With a dozen protesters, I occupied lanes of traffic. Down this road, past the gate on Trigger Avenue, on the Hood Canal just 20 miles from Seattle, sits a deadly fleet of nuclear submarines.

Over the past ten years, Ecuador has achieved major economic and social advances. We are concerned that many of these important gains in poverty reduction, wage growth, reduced inequality, and greater social inclusion could be eroded by a return to of the policies of austerity and neoliberalism that prevailed in Ecuador from the 1980s to the early 2000s. A return to such policies threatens to put Ecuador back on a path that leads not only to a more unequal society, but to more political instability as well. It is important to recall that from 1996 to 2006, Ecuador went through eight presidents.

Mar 24

For the Yazidis, Justice Too Long Delayed Is Justice Denied

By Brandon Jacobsen, Speakout | Op-Ed

When ISIS (also known as Daesh) swept into Sinjar to begin a genocidal campaign against the Yazidi ethnoreligious minority on August 3, 2014, those who managed to escape fled to the mountain in search of safety. More than two years later, Yazidis are on the run again, this time seeking to avoid being caught in the crossfire of an intra-Kurdish conflict that has flared up in their homeland.

Here's how this veteran feels about the $54 billion military budget increase demanded by our new so-called commander-in-chief: it's bullshit. In fact, calling it bullshit is too kind, because that would insinuate that it's useful in some way -- bullshit actually makes excellent compost. Unlike genuine bullshit, this military budget increase cannot assist anyone in growing food. But at the risk of offending any bulls, whose shit legitimately benefits the Earth, I'm going to go ahead and label Trump's budget proposal as bullshit, because it's truly the first and only thought that came to my head when I read it.

From FBI investigations to the halls of Congress to the pages and screens of US media, questions are being asked and accusations are being made about Russia and North Korea. Russia has been accused of interfering in US elections, and because North Korea is "irrational," diplomatic efforts to end its nuclear weapons program were pronounced dead simultaneously with the birth announcement of a new approach to the problem that put "all options on the table." However, allegations of Russian interference in US elections and North Korean irrationality preventing a nuclear agreement require historical amnesia on the part of the accusers.

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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

A budget is a moral document. So let me say this plainly so that you fully understand. The conservative-movement budget the GOP is going to deliver for President Trump to rubber stamp is a morally bankrupt document. There is something in this budget for libertarian free market monsters, predatory capitalists, racists, nationalist reactionaries, neoliberal corporate grifters, religious zealots and militarists. President Trump didn't write this budget. It has been written and has been passed in pieces since Reagan.

Milo Yiannopoulos is the latest in a string of far right-wing voices to salivate over an incident at Gustavus Adolphus College (which I attend) on March 20. The Diversity Leadership Council (DLC) put up A-frames advising students on how to respond to an incident of discrimination. Next to the A-frames was an example of such discrimination, where a sign was posted calling the United States a white nation, and asking citizens to report people who are undocumented. The right-wing media presented the poster on its own, chastising the DLC for spreading racism.

Mar 30

The Myth About College Degrees

By Ramin Farahmandpur, Speakout | News Analysis

Does a college degree boost earnings and reduce unemployment? That's the question that economists have been debating for years, especially after the "Great Recession," when hundreds of thousands lost their jobs as a result of the global economic crisis in 2008. Research shows that the earnings gap between high school and college graduates is widening. Between 1979 and 2012, it doubled from $17,411 to $34,969. Businesses cite this as evidence that college degrees accelerate economic growth, reduce poverty and increase wages.

"My brain is fried and I have so many words that I feel them winding around me like chains of lament, constricting me." When Alicia Crosby of Center for Inclusivity (quoted with permission) told me she was feeling that way, I gasped. I also feel like I'm choking and my brain is oozing out of my head. And I'm exhausted. Alicia and I are very different people in many ways, yet the feeling descriptors are identical and her words represent a destructive microcosm of struggle lying dormant in my gut. The lament, the grief and pain, wrapping themselves around my every move.

Mar 29

The March to "Brainwash Our Kids" With Science

By Brian Moench, Speakout | Op-Ed

Candice Millard's book, Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President, chronicles the atrocious medical care given to President James Garfield after he was shot in an assassination attempt in 1881. It should teach us a valuable lesson about embedding science in our most important public health policy.

It was March 7, and I wasn't expecting the snow. I tucked my fingers into my sleeves, wishing I hadn't left my gloves in California. I had traveled to the Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor to demonstrate at the site of the largest stockpile of deployed nuclear weapons in the United States, likely the world. With a dozen protesters, I occupied lanes of traffic. Down this road, past the gate on Trigger Avenue, on the Hood Canal just 20 miles from Seattle, sits a deadly fleet of nuclear submarines.

Over the past ten years, Ecuador has achieved major economic and social advances. We are concerned that many of these important gains in poverty reduction, wage growth, reduced inequality, and greater social inclusion could be eroded by a return to of the policies of austerity and neoliberalism that prevailed in Ecuador from the 1980s to the early 2000s. A return to such policies threatens to put Ecuador back on a path that leads not only to a more unequal society, but to more political instability as well. It is important to recall that from 1996 to 2006, Ecuador went through eight presidents.

Mar 24

For the Yazidis, Justice Too Long Delayed Is Justice Denied

By Brandon Jacobsen, Speakout | Op-Ed

When ISIS (also known as Daesh) swept into Sinjar to begin a genocidal campaign against the Yazidi ethnoreligious minority on August 3, 2014, those who managed to escape fled to the mountain in search of safety. More than two years later, Yazidis are on the run again, this time seeking to avoid being caught in the crossfire of an intra-Kurdish conflict that has flared up in their homeland.

Here's how this veteran feels about the $54 billion military budget increase demanded by our new so-called commander-in-chief: it's bullshit. In fact, calling it bullshit is too kind, because that would insinuate that it's useful in some way -- bullshit actually makes excellent compost. Unlike genuine bullshit, this military budget increase cannot assist anyone in growing food. But at the risk of offending any bulls, whose shit legitimately benefits the Earth, I'm going to go ahead and label Trump's budget proposal as bullshit, because it's truly the first and only thought that came to my head when I read it.

From FBI investigations to the halls of Congress to the pages and screens of US media, questions are being asked and accusations are being made about Russia and North Korea. Russia has been accused of interfering in US elections, and because North Korea is "irrational," diplomatic efforts to end its nuclear weapons program were pronounced dead simultaneously with the birth announcement of a new approach to the problem that put "all options on the table." However, allegations of Russian interference in US elections and North Korean irrationality preventing a nuclear agreement require historical amnesia on the part of the accusers.