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A time comes when silence is betrayal. Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government's policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought within one's own bosom and in the surrounding world.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Riverside Church - April 4, 1967
As Camp Fire Death Toll Rises, Meet the Prisoners Making $1 an Hour to Fight California's Wildfires
Fri, 16 Nov 2018 08:53:29 -0500
The death toll from the Camp Fire in California has risen to at least 63, with 631 people reported missing. As California continues to battle the deadliest fire in the state's history, we turn to the hidden heroes on the front lines the raging climate-fueled wildfires: prisoner firefighters. At least 1,500 of the 9,400 firefighters currently battling fires in California are incarcerated. They make just a dollar an hour battling on the front lines but are rarely eligible to get jobs as firefighters after their release. In September, the Democracy Now! team traveled to the Delta Conservation Camp about an hour north of San Francisco, a low-security prison where more than 100 men are imprisoned. We interviewed incarcerated firefighters who had just returned from a 24-hour shift fighting the Snell Fire in Napa County.
Color of Change: Facebook Retaliated Against Protests by Pushing Anti-Semitic, Anti-Black Narratives
Fri, 16 Nov 2018 08:40:04 -0500
A New York Times investigation has revealed that Facebook fought critics and a growing number of scandals following the 2016 election by launching a PR offensive backed by a dubious Republican opposition-research firm: Definers Public Affairs. We speak with Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, one of the organizations targeted by Definers Public Affairs. We also speak with Siva Vaidhyanathan, the author of "Antisocial Media: How Facebook Disconnects Us and Undermines Democracy." He is a professor of media studies and director of the Center for Media and Citizenship at the University of Virginia. Vaidhyanathan's new article for Slate is titled "Facebook Is a Normal Sleazy Company Now."
NYT Investigation: How Facebook Used a Republican Firm to Attack Critics & Spread Disinformation
Fri, 16 Nov 2018 08:33:19 -0500
"Delay, Deny and Deflect." That's the name of a new bombshell investigation by The New York Times revealing that Facebook executives, including CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, were aware of a Russian misinformation campaign on the social media network and took a series of extraordinary private actions to preserve the company's reputation, launching an aggressive lobbying campaign to combat critics and spread misinformation. The New York Times investigation reveals that Facebook hired the Republican opposition-research firm Definers Public Affairs to discredit critics of Facebook, linking them to the billionaire liberal donor George Soros. Facebook also allegedly lobbied the Anti-Defamation League to condemn criticism of the company as anti-Semitic. Since the publication of the investigation, Facebook has announced it will cut ties with Definers. We speak with Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, one of the organizations targeted by Definers Public Affairs. We also speak with Siva Vaidhyanathan, the author of "Antisocial Media: How Facebook Disconnects Us and Undermines Democracy." He is a professor of media studies and director of the Center for Media and Citizenship at the University of Virginia. Vaidhyanathan's new article for Slate is titled "Facebook Is a Normal Sleazy Company Now."
Exclusive: WikiLeaks Lawyer Warns U.S. Charges Against Assange Endanger Press Freedom Worldwide
Fri, 16 Nov 2018 08:15:30 -0500
The Justice Department has inadvertently revealed that it has prepared an indictment against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. In an unusual development, language about the charges against Assange was copied and pasted into an unrelated court filing that was recently unsealed. In the document, Assistant U.S. Attorney Kellen S. Dwyer wrote, "Due to the sophistication of the defendant and the publicity surrounding the case, no other procedure is likely to keep confidential the fact that Assange has been charged." The news broke on Thursday night just hours after The Wall Street Journal reported the Justice Department was planning to prosecute Assange. Assange has been living since 2012 in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London where he has sought refuge and political asylum. It's unclear what charges may be brought against Assange; the Justice Department has previously considered prosecuting him over his role in the release of hacked DNC emails during the 2016 presidential campaign, as well as over the release of the so-called Iraq and Afghanistan War Logs, shared by U.S. military whistleblower Chelsea Manning. The Assange case has been closely followed by advocates for press freedom. Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch tweeted, "Deeply troubling if the Trump administration, which has shown little regard for media freedom, would charge Assange for receiving from a government official and publishing classified information—exactly what journalists do all the time." We speak with human rights attorney Jennifer Robinson, who has been advising Julian Assange and WikiLeaks since 2010.
Headlines for November 16, 2018
Fri, 16 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
Deadly NorCal Wildfire Kills At Least 63; 631 Reported Missing, Wildfire Smoke Creates Hazardous Air Quality in NorCal, DOJ Accidentally Reveals Indictments Against WikiLeaks' Assange, Florida Senate Race Heads to Manual Recount, Democrats Score House Wins in Maine, California, U.S. Sanctions 17 Saudis over Khashoggi Murder, White House Weighing Extradition of Exiled Turkish Cleric, Central American LGBTQ Migrants Face Additional Hurdles on Journey to U.S. Border, North Korea Deports U.S. Citizen as Kim Jong-un Oversees Weapon Test, Bangladesh Delays Plans to Repatriate Rohingya to Burma Amid Uproar, Renowned Bangladeshi Photographer Granted Bail After Political Arrest, DRC: Seven U.N. Peacekeepers Killed in Ebola-Stricken Region, Women Sue Dartmouth, Accuse 3 Male Professors of Sexual Misconduct, Racist Kentucky Gunman Charged with Hate Crimes, FDA Announces Restrictions on Vaping Products, Maryland Journalists Move to Unionize, Housing Rights Activists March in NYC to Demand Universal Rent Control
Vermont Immigrant Rights Group Sues ICE for Monitoring, Infiltrating & "Hunting Down" Organizers
Thu, 15 Nov 2018 08:47:19 -0500
A major new federal lawsuit claims that immigration agents are targeting undocumented organizers for their activism in Vermont. The suit accuses Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Department of Homeland Security and the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles of carrying out a multiyear campaign of political retaliation against members of the group Migrant Justice. According to the lawsuit, Migrant Justice was infiltrated by an informant, and its members were repeatedly subjected to electronic surveillance. At least 20 active members of Migrant Justice have been arrested and detained by ICE. We speak with Will Lambek, an organizer with Migrant Justice, a Vermont-based group founded and led by immigrant farmworkers.
"He Was a Protector": Remembering Jemel Roberson, 26-Year-Old Chicago Security Guard Slain by Police
Thu, 15 Nov 2018 08:33:51 -0500
Community members are demanding answers for the police killing of a black security guard in the Chicago suburbs, after 26 year-old Jemel Roberson was shot and killed by a white policeman Sunday. Roberson jumped into action early Sunday morning when a shooting broke out at a bar where he was working as a security guard. He was restraining a shooting suspect when several police officers arrived on the scene, and a white police officer from the Midlothian Police Department shot and killed Roberson. Witnesses said the police officer opened fire even though people at the bar were screaming that Roberson was a security guard. Roberson was armed and held a valid gun owner's license. We speak with Avontea Boose, the partner of Jemel Roberson and mother of his 9-month-old son Tristan. She is currently expecting their second child. We also speak with Lee Merritt, a civil rights attorney representing the children of Jemel Roberson.
Rep. Ro Khanna: By Blocking Yemen Resolution, House GOP Is Abdicating Its Duty to Decide War & Peace
Thu, 15 Nov 2018 08:15:59 -0500
House Republicans have quashed debate on a resolution that aims to end U.S. military support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen, by sneaking a single line into an unrelated resolution about wolves. The House voted 201 to 187 on the bill Wednesday, approving a provision that blocks the Democrats from forcing a vote on the U.S. role in Yemen under the War Powers Act. For nearly four years the United States has played a key role supporting the Saudi-led invasion, which has devastated Yemen, creating the world's worst humanitarian crisis. The U.N. is warning 14 million Yemenis are on the brink of famine. One new study has estimated the war has killed at least 57,000 people since the beginning of 2016. We speak with Congressmember Ro Khanna, who introduced the resolution in the House.
Headlines for November 15, 2018
Thu, 15 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
GOP Halts Debate on Ending U.S. Support for Saudi-Led War in Yemen, Eleven Saudis Indicted in Murder of Journalist Khashoggi, Deadly Wildfires in California Kill At Least 59, Another 300 Missing, Two Prisoner Firefighters Among Those Injured Battling Wildfires, Report: Climate Change Could Intensify Hurricane Rainfall by 30%, Florida Recounts in Question as Multiple Counties Report Issues, NJ Elects First Democratic Korean-American Congressmember, Georgia: Voting Activists Arrested for Holding Balloons, Trump Claims Democratic Voters Put on Disguise to Vote Twice, Trump Threatens Violence Against Anti-Fascist Protesters, Pentagon Chief Admits No Long-Term Plan for Border Troop Deployment, "Sanctuary Caravan" to Assist Migrants at U.S.-Mexico Border, Sentencing Reform Package Draws Broad Early Support, Deputy Nat'l Sec. Adviser Reassigned in WH After Clashing with FLOTUS, Michael Avenatti Arrested on Suspicion of Domestic Violence, NY: Queens Cab Driver Becomes 8th Driver-for-Hire to Die by Suicide in Past Year, NYT: Facebook Hired Conservative Firm to Protect Image by Discrediting Critics, Senate Republicans Block Bill to Protect Special Counsel Mueller, British Deal to Leave EU in Crisis as Brexit Secretary Quits, Israeli Defense Minister Resigns over Gaza Ceasefire, Calls for Elections, CIA Considered Administering "Truth Serum" to 9/11 Detainees
Advocates: Trump Creating Border Crisis by Pitting Troops Against Women & Children Fleeing Violence
Wed, 14 Nov 2018 08:47:56 -0500
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is traveling to McAllen, Texas, today to visit some of the thousands of troops deployed at the U.S.-Mexico border by President Donald Trump. Nearly 6,000 active-duty troops are currently stationed in Texas, California and Arizona, following Trump's escalating attacks against the Central American caravan heading toward the border. Trump has warned that that number could swell to 15,000—more than the U.S. forces in Afghanistan and almost triple the number of troops in Iraq. According to some reports, the border deployments could cost $220 million, despite the fact the Pentagon does not see the caravan as a risk. Mattis's visit comes just days after the Trump administration announced new immigration rules to deny asylum to anyone who enters the country outside of a port of entry, a move the American Civil Liberties Union has called "illegal." We speak with Fernando Garcia, the founding director of the Border Network for Human Rights, an advocacy organization based in El Paso. We also speak with Liz Castillo, immigration reporter and managing editor with Neta, a community news outlet in the Rio Grande Valley.
As Jeff Bezos Earns $191K Per Minute, Why Are NY & VA Giving Amazon $3 Billion in Corporate Welfare?
Wed, 14 Nov 2018 08:25:02 -0500
Amazon has selected a pair of cities to host its new, expanded headquarters: Crystal City in Arlington, Virginia, and Long Island City in Queens, New York. Amazon's decision came after a 14-month search that saw cities around the U.S. promise tax breaks, taxpayer-funded infrastructure and business-friendly ordinances in an effort to win what Amazon says will be $5 billion in new investment and thousands of jobs. Democratic Virginia Governor Ralph Northam called the Amazon headquarter "a big win for Virginia," and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has similarly applauded Amazon's decision. But many local politicians have openly criticized authorities in New York and Virginia for backing the deals, which will create a total of 50,000 jobs. We host a roundtable discussion about Amazon and corporate welfare. In New York, we speak with Ron Kim, member of the New York State Assembly. He recently co-wrote an opinion piece for The New York Times headlined "New York Should Say No to Amazon." In Washington, D.C., we speak with Greg LeRoy, executive director of Good Jobs First, a watchdog group on economic development incentives. And in Portland, Maine, we speak with Stacy Mitchell, co-director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. She is the author of "Big-Box Swindle: The True Cost of Mega-Retailers and the Fight for America's Independent Businesses."
NY Politician: We Need to Block $3 Billion Handout for Amazon & Use Money to Forgive Student Debt
Wed, 14 Nov 2018 08:16:00 -0500
After a months-long PR campaign, Amazon has officially announced it will split its so-called second headquarters between New York and Arlington, Virginia, outside Washington, D.C., after being offered more than $3 billion in tax breaks and other incentives. The news prompted protests at the site of Amazon's future office complex in Long Island City, New York, to condemn the city and state governments for showering Amazon with massive tax breaks and other giveaways to entice the company to expand into the city. As part of the deal, New York taxpayers will even build a helipad for Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, who is the richest man in the world. Many local politicians have openly criticized authorities in New York and Virginia for backing the deals, which will create a total of 50,000 jobs. We speak with New York Assemblymember Ron Kim, who is introducing legislation to block the deal and redirect taxpayer money away from Amazon subsidies and toward student debt relief. He recently co-wrote an opinion piece for The New York Times headlined "New York Should Say No to Amazon."
Headlines for November 14, 2018
Wed, 14 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
California Wildfires Kill 50 Across State as Blazes Rage On, Police Arrest 51 Activists Demanding Climate Action from Pelosi, Landmark Climate Lawsuit by Young Activists in Legal Limbo, Pentagon Chief Mattis to Visit 6,000 Troops at U.S.-Mexico Border, Congressional Progressives Appear to Downplay Plans to Abolish ICE, Congressional Race Results Still Uncertain One Week After Midterms, Georgia: Black Woman State Senator Arrested at Peaceful Voter Protest, Fates of Senior Trump Advisers in Doubt After Clashes with FLOTUS, Trump Lawyers Prepare Answers in Mueller Probe, CNN Sues Trump over Acosta Ban, Chicago: Police Shoot and Kill a Black On-Duty Security Guard, FBI: Hate Crimes Up for Third Consecutive Year, Viral Photo of Wisconsin Students Giving Nazi Salute Draws Fire, Audio Reveals Iowa Rep. Steve King Calling Immigrants "Dirt", U.N. Calls for Halt to Forced Repatriation of Rohingya Refugees, Gaza: Ceasefire Halts Palestinian Rockets and Israeli Airstrikes, German Chancellor Backs Plan to Create a European Union Army
Acting AG Matt Whitaker Scrutinized over His Radical Judicial Beliefs & Past Dirty Work for GOP
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 08:48:35 -0500
Controversy is growing over President Trump's selection of Matt Whitaker to serve as acting attorney general following the ousting of Jeff Sessions. The state of Maryland is heading to court today to challenge the legality of Whitaker's appointment. The state contends that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein should have been named acting attorney general instead of Whitaker, who was not confirmed by the Senate for his previous post—chief of staff to Sessions. Meanwhile, pressure is growing on Whitaker to recuse himself from overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. We speak with Ian Millhiser, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress Action Fund and the editor of ThinkProgress Justice.
Gaza Is Already Unlivable: A Response to Israel's Deadly Airstrikes Targeting TV Station & Homes
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 08:39:09 -0500
The death toll in Gaza has risen to at least six after Israel launched its heaviest airstrikes on the region since 2014, targeting scores of buildings, including the TV station Al-Aqsa TV. Israeli airstrikes also reportedly hit dozens of homes. Militants in Gaza responded by launching hundreds of homemade rockets into Israel. One person in Israel, a Palestinian man in Ashkelon, was reportedly killed. Some 16 others were injured, including at least two critically. The escalation began after a team of Israeli commandos drove into the southern Gaza city of Khan Younis Sunday in a clandestine raid that killed seven Hamas members, including a commander. Israel said one of its soldiers had been killed in an exchange of fire before Israel called in tank fire and airstrikes while the commandos escaped back to Israel. We speak with Muhammad Shehada, a writer and activist from the Gaza Strip and a student of development studies at Lund University, Sweden. He writes for Haaretz, The Forward and other publications.
"An Incredible Victory": Opponents of Keystone XL Pipeline Praise Judicial Order Blocking Construction
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 08:32:52 -0500
On Thursday, a federal judge in Montana temporarily halted the construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada's tar sands region in Alberta to refineries as far away as the Gulf of Mexico. The court's decision will require the Trump administration to review more thoroughly the potential negative impacts of the pipeline on the surrounding environment and climate change. President Obama halted the construction of the pipeline, which is being built by TransCanada, in 2015 following mass public protests, but Trump reversed the order shortly after he came into office. Environmental and indigenous groups hailed the decision Thursday. Sierra Club attorney Doug Hayes said in a statement, "The Trump administration tried to force this dirty pipeline project on the American people, but they can't ignore the threats it would pose to our clean water, our climate, and our communities." We speak with May Boeve, executive director of 350 Action, the political arm of the climate organization 350.org.
As Fires Devastate California, 350.org Calls for Transition to 100% Renewable Energy Economy
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 08:29:13 -0500
California's Camp Fire has become the state's deadliest fire on record, decimating the town of Paradise, killing 42 people and destroying 7,200 structures. The fires in California are so large they can be clearly seen from space. Smoke and ash have left millions of Californians exposed to air quality rated at "unhealthy" or "very unhealthy" levels, with residents of Los Angeles, Sacramento and the Bay Area warned against spending time outdoors. We speak with May Boeve, executive director of 350 Action, who says, "We are really daunted by the reality of the climate impacts that are facing us."
Climate Scientist Who Fled CA Wildfire: We're Going to Keep Paying Price If We Ignore Climate Change
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 08:14:14 -0500
At least 44 people are dead and more than 200 remain missing as two massive wildfires, fueled by easterly winds and a historic drought, continue to rage in California. In Northern California's Butte County, the Camp Fire has become the state's deadliest fire in history, after the blaze swept through the town of Paradise, killing 42 people and destroying nearly 6,500 homes. In Southern California, a quarter-million residents of Los Angeles and Ventura counties were ordered to evacuate the Woolsey Fire—including the entire city of Malibu and parts of the San Fernando Valley. Governor Jerry Brown said Sunday that the fires were driven by climate change and that California needs to learn to adapt. We speak with climate expert Glen MacDonald, John Muir memorial chair of geography, director of the White Mountain Research Center and a UCLA distinguished professor. He was forced to evacuate his Thousand Oaks home due to the Woolsey Fire.
Headlines for November 13, 2018
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
California's Record-Breaking Wildfires Kill At Least 44 Across State, Arizona's U.S. Senate Seat Flips Blue as Sinema Declares Victory, Trump Falsely Claims Voter Fraud in FL, Says Races Should Go to Republicans, Mississippi Senator Under Fire for "Public Hanging" Comment, Daily Beast: ICE Imprisoning Record High of 44,000 People, Audio of Khashoggi's Murder May Implicate Saudi Crown Prince, Amnesty Int'l Withdraws Top Honor from Burmese Leader Aung San Suu Kyi, Gaza: Israeli Airstrikes Kill 6 Palestinians as Fighting Intensifies, DRC: Ebola Outbreak Worst in Country's History, Kills Almost 200, NYT Investigation Accuses North Korea of Expanding Missile Program, Vatican Orders U.S. Bishops to Halt Vote on Stopping Child Sex Abuse, Roger Stone Associate Jerome Corsi Expects to Be Indicted by Mueller, In New Memoir, Michelle Obama Slams Trump's Sexism and Bigotry, Amazon Selects Queens, NY and D.C. Suburb for Headquarters Expansion, Trump Blames Democrats as Stock Market Falls 600 Points, Legendary Comic Book Creator Stan Lee Dies at 95
After Former Marine Kills 12 in Thousand Oaks, CA, a Discussion on Mental Health for Veterans
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 08:53:54 -0500
On November 7, 2018, a former marine opened fire at a country music bar in Thousand Oaks, California, killing 12 people, mostly college students. Police have identified the gunman as 28-year-old Ian David Long, a Marine veteran who had deployed to Afghanistan and had a history of mental health issues, including possible PTSD. The shooting has reignited a national discussion over mental healthcare for veterans returning from war. Earlier this year, Ian Long was evaluated by mental health professionals after police responded to a disturbance at his home, where he lived with his mother—and was cleared by the specialists. For more, we talk with Suzanne Gordon, whose new book probes the history of the Veterans Health Administration providing healthcare to U.S. veterans, generating medical innovations and healing the wounds of war.
On Veterans Day, Advocates Warn Against Pence & Trump-Led Attacks on VA Healthcare
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 08:45:48 -0500
On the federal observance of Veterans Day, we take a closer look at the issue of veterans' healthcare. On Sunday, Vice President Mike Pence wrote an article for Fox News touting Trump's record on veterans' health and the passage of a policy known as "Veterans Choice," which is seen by veterans' advocates as an attempt to drain the Veterans Health Administration of needed resources and eventually force privatization of the system. We're joined by award-winning journalist and author Suzanne Gordon. Her new book is "Wounds of War: How the VA Delivers Health, Healing, and Hope to the Nation's Veterans." She recently wrote an article for The New York Times titled "By Protecting Veterans' Health, You May Protect Your Own."
A Century After WWI's End, Adam Hochschild Cautions: "Think Long and Hard Before Starting a New War"
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 08:31:52 -0500
Between 1914 and 1918, about 10 million civilians perished in World War I, and almost 10 million soldiers were killed. Another 21 million were wounded. This week marks the 100th anniversary of the celebrated armistice credited with ending the war. But the agreement, which signified German surrender, was a shock to the people of Germany, says journalist and author Adam Hochschild—and it guaranteed the continuation of a brutal wartime naval blockade that saw over 400,000 Germans die of malnutrition. A right-wing backlash in Germany followed after the armistice, leading into World War II and the Holocaust. Hochschild says WWI, like the Iraq War, holds important lessons for today's leaders to avert another war. "Wars almost always cause more problems than they solve," he says. "Anybody at any time should take that lesson from this first of the terrible wars of the 20th century."
Emma Goldman, Eugene Debs, Jane Addams: Honoring Antiwar Resisters on the 100th Anniv. of WWI's End
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 08:24:50 -0500
This weekend marked 100 years since the armistice that ended World War I. In a speech commemorating the anniversary, French President Emmanuel Macron cautioned against the dangers of nationalism, in comments widely viewed as a rebuke of U.S. President Trump, who has recently identified himself as a "nationalist." Just before the summit, Macron also called for the formation of a European army that would operate without the United States. Journalist and author Adam Hochschild argues that the 100th anniversary of the war's end is an opportunity to honor the dissenting voices against the war, including anarchist political activist and writer Emma Goldman, socialist and trade unionist Eugene V. Debs and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Jane Addams.
A Century After End of WWI, Trump Snubs Peace Summit While Macron Warns of Growing Nationalism
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 08:16:30 -0500
The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month—that's when World War I ended in 1918, 100 years ago this weekend. On Sunday, world leaders gathered in Paris to pay tribute to the dead, marking the anniversary of the armistice of what had been described as the "war to end all wars." Following the formal ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe, Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attended a peace conference with dozens of heads of state, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Trump was reportedly the only one among 72 leaders to skip the meeting. Trump also faced widespread criticism for his decision to cancel a visit to a U.S. military cemetery in France on Saturday because it was raining. To find out more about the significance of the war and its commemoration, we speak with Adam Hochschild, lecturer at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley. His most recent book, published last month, is titled "Lessons from a Dark Time and Other Essays." His article for The New Yorker earlier this month was headlined "A Hundred Years After the Armistice."
Headlines for November 12, 2018
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
Over 30 Killed and 200 Missing in California Wildfires, Gov. Brown Blames Climate Change for Fires as Trump Blames California, Thousand Oaks Evacuated for Wildfires Days After Deadly Mass Shooting, Florida Recounts Underway in Contested Senate and Governor Races, Senate Race in AZ Still Uncalled as CA District Flips to Democrats, MS Senate Candidates Head to Runoff as GOP Incumbent Under Fire for Racist Joke, FBI Probing "Scam Company" Where Acting AG Matt Whitaker Once Served, Trump Continues Attacks on Black Women Reporters, In Final Act as AG, Sessions Limits Police Abuse Consent Decrees, Trump Skips Paris Peace Forum During WWI Commemoration, Yemen: U.S.-Backed Assault Threatens Supplies to Millions Facing Famine, NYT: Saudi Intelligence Officials Discussed Iran Assassinations, Somalia: Al-Shabab Attack Kills 39 as U.S. Ramps Up Airstrikes, Gaza: Israeli Raid Kills Seven Palestinians, Gaza: Israel Allows Qatar to Pay Palestinians' Back Salaries, Aetna Ordered to Pay Family of Cancer Patient Denied Treatment
Congresswoman-elect Rashida Tlaib & Peace Activist Kathy Kelly Condemn Saudi Cruelty in Yemen
Fri, 09 Nov 2018 08:50:30 -0500
We turn now to the crisis in Yemen, where the U.S.-backed, Saudi-led coalition has drastically escalated its assault on the Yemeni port city of Hodeidah. The Guardian reports there have been at least 200 airstrikes in the past week, killing at least 150 people. One Saudi airstrike destroyed a home in Hodeidah, killing a father and his five children. The increased fighting comes as calls grow for a ceasefire to the 3-year war, which has devastated Yemen. On Thursday, a group of Yemeni and international organizations called for "immediate cessation of hostilities" in Yemen, warning that 14 million people were now "on the brink of famine." UNICEF has warned that the Saudi assault and blockade on Hodeidah is increasing shortages of food, drinking water and medicine. The group says a Yemeni child now dies from a preventable disease every 10 minutes. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis have both called for a ceasefire in Yemen. Meanwhile, The Washington Post reports that the Trump administration is considering designating the Houthis a "terrorist organization." We speak to newly elected Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Kathy Kelly, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, a campaign to end U.S. military and economic warfare. She took part in Thursday's protest.
Rashida Tlaib on Impeaching Trump, Occupied Palestine & Becoming One of First Muslim Congresswomen
Fri, 09 Nov 2018 08:38:24 -0500
On Tuesday evening, Palestinian American Rashida Tlaib in Michigan and Somali American Ilhan Omar in Minnesota became the first two Muslim women ever elected to Congress. Rashida Tlaib is a Democratic Socialist who supports the Palestinian right of return and a one-state solution. She also supports Medicare for all, a $15 minimum wage and abolishing ICE. The child of immigrants, Tlaib has spoken out against the Trump administration's travel bans.
"We Will Never Concede to Bigotry": Florida Organizers Sound the Alarm over Voting Discrepancies
Fri, 09 Nov 2018 08:27:37 -0500
Days after the midterm elections, Florida's contests for U.S. Senate and governor appear to be heading for recounts. Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum said he is prepared for a possible recount, as his margin with Republican opponent Ron DeSantis narrowed to less than half a percentage point Thursday. A recount is triggered in Florida if the winning candidate's margin is less than half a percentage point. Incumbent Democratic Senator Bill Nelson and Republican Governor Rick Scott will likely also head to a recount in the Senate race, with Scott leading by less than a quarter percentage point as of Thursday. Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott is also suing the Democratic election supervisors of Broward and Palm Beach counties, accusing them of trying to steal the election. Andrea Cristina Mercado, executive director of The New Florida Majority, joins us to discuss the group's grassroots organizing to expand the electorate in Florida. She also details reports of widespread voting problems on Tuesday, including confusion over ballot design and problems with accessing polling sites and navigating Florida's voter ID law.
After Massacre in California Bar, Will a Democrat-Controlled House Take Action on Gun Control?
Fri, 09 Nov 2018 08:13:53 -0500
The city of Thousands Oaks, California, is mourning after a former marine opened fire at a country music bar Wednesday night, killing 12 people, mostly students. It was the deadliest mass shooting in the United States since the Parkland, Florida, school shooting in February. Police have identified the gunman as 28-year-old Ian David Long, a Marine veteran who had deployed to Afghanistan and had a history of mental health issues, including possible PTSD. The dead include 27-year-old Telemachus Orfanos, who survived the deadly Las Vegas massacre at a country music festival last year, only to be gunned down Wednesday night. We speak with Sarah Dachos, a Navy veteran and volunteer with the D.C. chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and a founding member of the Everytown Veterans Advisory Council.
Headlines for November 9, 2018
Fri, 09 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
SoCal Mass Shooter Was Veteran with History of Mental Health Issues, Wildfires Rage In Northern and Southern California, Judge Halts Construction of Keystone XL Pipeline, Congressional Responses to Sessions Firing Seek to Protect Mueller, Protesters Take to the Streets to Call for Protection of Mueller Probe, Trump to End Asylum for Migrants Entering U.S. Outside of Ports of Entry, Court Rules Trump Cannot End DACA, Key Midterm Races Still Uncalled, FL Races Likely Headed to Recounts, WH Press Secretary Shares Doctored Video of CNN Reporter Acosta, North Korea-U.S. Talks Postponed, Gaza: Israeli Forces Shoot and Kill Palestinian Man, U.S. Imposes New Sanctions over Russian Annexation of Crimea, Google to Overhaul Policy for Responding to Sexual Misconduct, SCOTUS Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Hospitalized with Fractured Ribs
Deb Haaland, One of Nation's First Native Congresswomen, Calls for Probe of Missing Indigenous Women
Thu, 08 Nov 2018 08:47:55 -0500
Two Native American women have made history in the midterms, becoming the nation's first Native congresswomen. Democrat Sharice Davids won the 3rd Congressional District in Kansas, unseating Republican Kevin Yoder. In New Mexico, Democrat Deb Haaland won in the 1st Congressional District, defeating Republican Janice Arnold-Jones. They will join more than 100 women in the U.S. House of Representatives—another historic first. We speak to Deb Haaland about her plans for Congress, the crisis of missing and murdered Native American women around the country, and whether she'll attempt to impeach Donald Trump.
Ex-Congresswoman Who Voted to Impeach Nixon: Trump Firing Sessions Brings Back Troubling Memories
Thu, 08 Nov 2018 08:29:27 -0500
Democrats have seized control of the House of Representatives, flipping more than two dozen seats in a historic midterm election that gives Democrats subpoena power for the first time since President Donald Trump was elected two years ago. A day after the election, Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Trump's firing of Sessions has led to many comparisons between Trump and former President Richard Nixon. On Wednesday, CNN's Jake Tapper called Sessions's ouster another chapter in "a slow-motion, multi-monthed Saturday Night Massacre." He was referencing the infamous Saturday Night Massacre in 1973, when then-Attorney General Elliot Richardson and his deputy resigned after President Richard Nixon ordered Richardson to fire the special prosecutor investigating the Watergate scandal. We speak with Elizabeth Holtzman, former U.S. congressmember from New York who served on the House Judiciary Committee that voted to impeach Richard Nixon. Her new book, "The Case for Impeaching Trump," is out on Monday. And we speak with David Cole, the national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union and professor of law and public policy at Georgetown University Law Center.
Trump Fires AG Sessions, Installs New Loyalist Whitaker to Oversee Mueller Probe
Thu, 08 Nov 2018 08:13:39 -0500
President Donald Trump has fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions, replacing him with a Trump loyalist who has called special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation a "witch hunt." Matthew Whitaker, formerly Jeff Sessions's chief of staff, will now take charge of the Russia inquiry, prompting questions about the future of the Russia investigation and whether Trump will target Robert Mueller next. Some experts are raising questions about the legality of putting Whitaker in charge rather than Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who had been overseeing the Russia probe. The ACLU wrote in a statement, "Jeff Sessions was the worst attorney general in modern American history. Period. But the dismissal of the nation's top law enforcement official shouldn't be based on political motives." We speak with David Cole, national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union and professor of law and public policy at Georgetown University Law Center. His most recent book is "Engines of Liberty: The Power of Citizen Activists to Make Constitutional Law."
Headlines for November 8, 2018
Thu, 08 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
California: Mass Shooter Kills At Least 12 at Student-Filled Bar, Trump Fires AG Sessions, Puts New Loyalist in Charge of Mueller Probe, WH Bans CNN Reporter Acosta as Trump Spars with Reporters, At Least 15 Midterm Races Still Uncalled, GOP Congressmembers Facing Indictments Re-elected, Voters Weighed In on Abortion Rights Measures in WV, AL, OR, Philippines: Lawyer Fighting Duterte's Drug War Shot Dead, Poland: Warsaw Mayor Bans Annual Far-Right March, Cameroon: Almost 80 Kidnapped Students Released
"Love Prevails": Floridians Celebrate Massive Restoration of Voting Rights to People with Felonies
Wed, 07 Nov 2018 08:48:59 -0500
At least 1.4 million people have regained the right to vote in Florida, following the passage of Amendment 4, a statewide initiative to re-enfranchise people with felony convictions who have completed their sentences, excluding people convicted of murder or sex offenses. The amendment passed overwhelmingly, with 64.5 percent of the vote. It needed 60 percent to pass. The win will permanently alter politics in a state that elected Republican Ron DeSantis as Florida governor by just over 55,000 votes, according to the latest numbers. DeSantis defeated Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum, who was vying to be the first African-American governor in Florida's history. We speak with Desmond Meade, who spearheaded the fight for Amendment 4. Desmond Meade is the president of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition. He's also chair of Floridians for a Fair Democracy. He is one of some 1.4 million people who has just regained his right to vote.
Democratic Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: We Need to Confront Trump's Creeping Authoritarianism
Wed, 07 Nov 2018 08:37:50 -0500
Twenty-nine-year-old Democratic Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has become the youngest woman ever elected to Congress. Ocasio-Cortez rose to national prominence in June, when she unseated 10-term incumbent Representative Joe Crowley, the fourth-ranking Democrat in the House. She was elected to represent New York's 14th Congressional District by a landslide last night, defeating Republican candidate Anthony Pappas with 78 percent of the vote. Ocasio-Cortez celebrated her victory in Queens last night. Democracy Now! was there with The Intercept for our special election broadcast. We spoke with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez about her plans for Congress.
Katrina vanden Heuvel: Democrats Must Offer Bold, Progressive Plan While Holding Trump Accountable
Wed, 07 Nov 2018 08:34:19 -0500
As Democrats retake the House of Representatives for the first time in eight years, we speak with Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor and publisher of The Nation, about the future of the Democratic Party. The Democrats picked up more than the 23 seats they needed to flip the House, but the Republican Party expanded its grip on the Senate in Tuesday's midterm elections. Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi is poised to reclaim her gavel as speaker of the House, barring a leadership challenge.
Carol Anderson: Massive Voter Suppression Could Be Deciding Factor in Georgia Governor's Race
Wed, 07 Nov 2018 08:26:18 -0500
Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp is holding a slim lead over Democrat Stacey Abrams in the race to be governor of Georgia. Abrams is vying to be the first black woman governor in U.S. history. Despite Kemp's slight lead, Abrams is refusing to concede because thousands of absentee ballots have not yet been counted. Kemp is currently at 50.5 percent. If he dips below 50 percent, the race will go to a runoff. The Georgia race was marred by widespread allegations of voter suppression carried out by Brian Kemp. We speak with Carol Anderson, chair of the African American Studies Department at Emory University and author, most recently, of "One Person, No Vote: How Voter Suppression Is Destroying Our Democracy."
In Rebuke of Trump, Democratic Women Help Seize House & 7 Governorships in Historic Midterm
Wed, 07 Nov 2018 08:13:01 -0500
In a historic midterm election, Democrats have seized control of the House of Representatives, flipping more than two dozen seats. This gives Democrats subpoena power for the first time since President Donald Trump was elected two years ago. While the Democrats will control the House, the Republicans picked up two more seats in the Senate. The midterms were a groundbreaking election for women. At least 100 women will serve in the U.S. House for the first time in U.S. history, including the first two Native American women and the first two Muslim women. We speak with Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor and publisher of The Nation, and Rashad Robinson, executive director of Color of Change.
Headlines for November 7, 2018
Wed, 07 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
Democrats Take the House of Representatives as GOP Gains in Senate, Democrat Stacey Abrams Refuses to Concede Georgia Governor's Race, Republican Ron DeSantis Defeats Andrew Gillum in Florida Governor's Race, Maryland GOP Gov. Larry Hogan Defeats Former NAACP Head Ben Jealous, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz Defeats Progressive Democratic Challenger Beto O'Rourke in Texas, Incumbent Senate Democrats Lose in North Dakota, Indiana and Missouri, Democrats Win Governor's Races in Maine and Midwestern States, Wave of Women Voters Brings Historic Firsts in Midterm Elections, Florida to Restore Voting Rights to 1.4 Million with Felony Convictions, Colorado Anti-Fracking Proposition Defeated, Washington Voters Reject Fee on Carbon Dioxide Pollution, Texas: Border Patrol Cancels Drill Amid Voter Intimidation Accusations, Yemen: Dire Warnings of Famine Amid Saudi-Led Assault on Port City, U.N. Warns of Ecosystem Collapse Without Swift Action on Biodiversity, Accused Pipe Bomber Cesar Sayoc Denied Bail at First Court Appearance, Death Row Prisoner Tells High Court Lethal Injection Would Be "Cruel and Unusual", Wisconsin: Foxconn Recruits Chinese Workers for Taxpayer-Subsidized Factory
Florida's Amendment 4 Would Restore Voting Rights to 1.4 Million People with Nonviolent Felonies
Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:51:33 -0500
Florida voters are preparing to vote on Amendment 4, a measure that would restore voting rights to 1.4 million people with nonviolent felonies who have fully completed their sentences. One in five African Americans in Florida and 10 percent of the state's adult population are ineligible to vote because of a criminal record. Across the United States, more than 6.1 million people with felony convictions are not eligible to vote. Florida is one of just four states that bar them from voting for life. In October, Amy Goodman traveled to Melbourne, Florida, and spoke with Desmond Meade, the president of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, who is a formerly homeless returning citizen who is leading the fight to re-enfranchise people with felony convictions in Florida.
Oil & Gas Industry Giants Spend Millions in Attempt to Defeat Anti-Fracking Proposition in Colorado
Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:40:47 -0500
Colorado voters have managed to get a statewide anti-fracking measure on the November ballot. Proposition 112 would require companies to place new wells at least 2,500 feet from homes, schools, waterways and other areas designated as "vulnerable." This distance is two-and-a-half to five times the current state regulation. The initiative is unprecedented in its scope because it potentially bars new wells on 95 percent of land in top-producing counties. Industry executives are watching with concern, fearful that Proposition 112 could encourage similar measures across the nation. In response, the oil and gas industry has spent millions to defeat Proposition 112, while at the same time putting millions of dollars behind a different measure on the ballot that would amend the constitution to allow property owners to sue their local governments for regulating industries like fracking. We are joined by David Sirota, investigative reporter for Capital & Main.
Women of Color Hope to Make History in 2018 Election with Wins in Congress and Governor's Races
Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:26:55 -0500
A historic number of women of color are running for public office in today's election. At least 255 women are on the ballot as congressional candidates, including a record number of women of color. In Georgia, Stacey Abrams hopes to become the state's first black governor—and the country's first black woman governor. Meanwhile in New Mexico, Deb Haaland could become the nation's first Native American woman to serve in Congress. Amid a rash of racist ads by Abrams's opponent Brian Kemp, there is something "deeply transformational about the electoral organizing and the campaign that Stacey Abrams represents," says Aimee Allison, president of Democracy in Color and founder of She the People.
"Smoking Gun" Evidence Shows Trump Admin's Top Anti-Immigrant Officials Trying to Rig the Census
Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:19:58 -0500
We look at a federal trial underway in New York City that could overturn the Trump administration's plans to put a citizenship question on the 2020 census. Voting rights activists fear the question will deter immigrants from participating in the census, leading to a vast undercount in states with large immigrant communities. This could impact everything from the redrawing of congressional maps to the allocation of federal funding. The citizenship question was announced in March by U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who touted it as a way to enforce the Voting Rights Act and protect minorities against voter discrimination. But on Sunday evening, the plaintiffs released a deposition that seems to contradict the Trump administration's stated purpose for adding the citizenship question to the census. We speak with reporter Ari Berman, who has been following the case and says, "The fix was in from the very beginning. This was done by Kris Kobach, Steve Bannon, Jeff Sessions—the most anti-immigrant figures in the Republican Party." Berman's newest story is headlined "Trial over Census Citizenship Question Kicks Off Amid Revelation of Trump Administration Deception."
36 Million in U.S. Cast Early Votes, Shattering Records for Young People & People of Color
Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:13:12 -0500
Millions of voters head to the polls today for a midterm election that's widely seen as a referendum on Donald Trump's presidency, with both houses of Congress and 36 governor's races in the balance. In fact, millions have already voted: A record 36 million Americans voted early this year, with participation high among young people and people of color. That's up from 27 million four years ago, leading many to predict a record turnout for a midterm election. "If you look at the numbers, early voting is shattering records among young people, among people of color," says Ari Berman, senior writer at Mother Jones. "We're seeing a lot more people that typically sit out midterm elections going and showing up because they believe these races are so important."
Headlines for November 6, 2018
Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
Huge Turnout for Early Voting in Midterms as Technical Issues Surface, Trump Attacks Democrats and Migrants on Eve of Midterm Elections, Fallout from Racist Trump Campaign Ad Continues as Networks Pull Ad, Georgia Dem. Gov. Candidate Abrams Responds to Kemp Hacking Probe, Racist Robocalls Attack Georgia Dem. Gov. Candidate Abrams, Students Across Country Walk Out of Class to Cast Ballots in Midterms, NYC: Trial Begins over 2020 Census Citizenship Question, Coloradans to Vote on Divisive Oil and Gas Ballot Measures, Washington State Voters to Vote on Fee for Large Carbon Polluters, NYC: Local Leaders Decry Racist Graffiti at African Burial Ground, Cameroon: At Least 79, Mostly Children, Kidnapped by Rebels, Ukraine: Anti-Corruption Activist Dies 3 Months After Acid Attack, Brazil: Ex-President Lula Challenges Conviction, Citing Judge's Bias
Noam Chomsky: The Future of Organized Human Life Is At Risk Thanks to GOP's Climate Change Denial
Mon, 05 Nov 2018 08:49:01 -0500
Just weeks after the United Nations warned that humanity has only a dozen years to mitigate global warming and limit the scope of global catastrophe, we speak with world-renowned political dissident, linguist and author Noam Chomsky. He says, "We have to make decisions now which will literally determine whether organized human life can survive in any decent form."
A March to Disaster: Noam Chomsky Condemns Trump for Pulling Out of Landmark Nuclear Arms Treaty
Mon, 05 Nov 2018 08:40:32 -0500
President Donald Trump recently announced plans to pull the United States out of a landmark nuclear arms pact with Russia in a move that could spark a new arms race. President Ronald Reagan and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty in 1987. The INF banned all nuclear and non-nuclear missiles with short and medium ranges. The treaty helped to eliminate thousands of land-based missiles. We speak to world-renowned political dissident, linguist and author Noam Chomsky about the significance of the INF treaty and the impact of Trump's plan to pull out.
Noam Chomsky on Midterms: Republican Party Is the "Most Dangerous Organization in Human History"
Mon, 05 Nov 2018 08:31:40 -0500
In the run-up to the U.S. midterm elections, we speak with world-renowned linguist, dissident and author Noam Chomsky. "What are the domestic policies of the Trump administration?" Chomsky says. "Very straightforward: lavish gifts on the rich, powerful corporate sector and try to undermine and destroy anything that might be of benefit to the general population."
"He Set Out to Kill Women": Self-Proclaimed Misogynist Murders 2 Women at Florida Yoga Studio
Mon, 05 Nov 2018 08:15:43 -0500
Two women were shot and killed at a yoga studio in Tallahassee, Florida, on Friday when a far-right extremist and self-proclaimed misogynist entered a yoga class and opened fire. Forty-year-old gunman Scott Beierle murdered 61-year-old Nancy Van Vessem, a medical doctor and a faculty member at Florida State University, and Florida State University student 21-year-old Maura Binkley in the deadly shooting. He critically injured four other women, including one woman who was shot nine times. Beierle also pistol-whipped a man in the rampage before turning the gun on himself. Police say Beierle was found dead at the yoga studio from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Beierle had a track record of attacking women, black people and immigrants via online videos and songs and had previously been investigated for harassing women and arrested at least twice, once on allegations of battery against women. We speak with Soraya Chemaly in Washington, D.C. She is a longtime writer and feminist activist and author of the new book "Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger." She is also director of the Women's Media Center Speech Project.
Headlines for November 5, 2018
Mon, 05 Nov 2018 08:00:00 -0500
U.S. Reinstates Harsh Sanctions on Iran After Nuclear Deal Withdrawal, Florida: Self-Proclaimed Misogynist Kills 2, Injures 5 in Tallahassee, Georgia Secretary of State and GOP Candidate Launches Probe into Dem. Party, Obama Campaigns for Vulnerable Senate Democrats Ahead of Midterms, Kansas Republican Kris Kobach Took Donations from White Nationalists, Trump Praises "Beautiful" Razor Wire as Soldiers Deploy to Border, NBC Airs Racist Anti-Immigrant Trump Campaign Commercial, Nigerian Military Tweets Trump Video to Justify Shooting Protesters, U.N.: A Yemeni Child Dies Every 10 Min. from War-Caused Disease, Hunger, Khashoggi's Sons Call on Saudis to Repatriate Slain Father's Remains, Pakistan: Protests Erupt After Woman Accused of Blasphemy Set Free, Egypt: ISIS Kills 7 Coptic Christians, Gov. Claims to Kill 19 ISIS Fighters in Response , Afghan Commando Kills Utah Mayor, New Caledonia Rejects Independence from France, SCOTUS Rules Youth Climate Trial Against U.S. Gov. Can Proceed, Judge Denies DOJ Bid to Halt Emoluments Lawsuit Against Trump, NYC: Suspect Arrested in Brooklyn Synagogue Anti-Semitic Vandalism
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