Sometimes the Supreme Court simply decides cases and sometimes it seems to have something bigger in mind. In the past two weeks, it has been in scold mode, and its target has been the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit.
When Martin Luther King, Jr. “broke the silence” on the war on Vietnam in 1967, he shattered the establishment rhetoric on America’s mission in Southeast Asia. His speech, “Beyond Vietnam: Time to Break the Silence,” delivered at Riverside Church in upper Manhattan, still has revolutionary ring to it as we approach MLK Day more than 40 years later.
In short, by not understanding the fundamental truth of King’s message that an injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, we have created a society, 43 years since his death, where injustice and suffering are rampant. And one in which the dreams of the civil rights movement appear the fantastical products of some Ambien-induced haze. Only by putting away, forever, the safe and sanitized version of this man and his compatriots, might we ever awaken from the stupor and become worthy of that which we celebrate this week.
Martin Luther King, Jr., would have been 82 this month, and his assassination occurred nearly 43 years ago. As we get further and further from that time, memories get fuzzy and a kind of collective amnesia sets in, as Vincent Harding has observed, some of it deliberately promoted amnesia. So, the question is how to remember King clearly and to see that amazing moment in history that he participated in through a sharp and focused lens?
Mr. Dupnik called the shooting a "very sad day for Tucson" and a "horrendous, horrendous, senseless, unbelievable crime." And then he blamed the crime on the rhetoric -- presumably political rhetoric -- in the country.
It's been almost a year since a catastrophic earthquake killed more than 230,000 people and left more than a million homeless in Haiti. But from the slums of Port-au-Prince to the rural Central Plateau, this impoverished country continues to suffer -- buffeted by Hurricane Tomas in November, a cholera epidemic that left over 3,600 dead and the violent chaos of political stalemate.
In a recent AlterNet article, we detailed how the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) helped increase the “FCC Line Charge” (SLC), now capped at $6.50 per line, that is imposed on every residential and business phone line. It is a charge that is usually hidden among the “taxes and surcharges” section of the phone bill. It does not go to fund the FCC, but is a direct subsidy to phone companies.
However, the full story of the role AT&T, Verizon and others played in the FCC’s deliberations establishing the SLC has yet to be told. It is a model of what is known as “regulatory capture,” the process by which a federal or state regulatory or other government agency becomes too cozy with those it is charged to oversee.
The natural gas boom gripping parts of the U.S. has a nasty
byproduct: wastewater so salty, and so polluted with metals like
barium and strontium, most states require drillers to get rid of
the stuff by injecting it down shafts thousands of feet deep.
Not in Pennsylvania, one of the states at the center of the gas
There, the liquid that gushes from gas wells is only partially
treated for substances that could be environmentally harmful, then
dumped into rivers and streams from which communities get their
So how did the Vision Forum do in 2010? Well, it promoted patriarchal male authority, framed any activity outside of motherhood on the part of women as promoting “the culture of death,” opposed efforts to protect the environment as anti-Christian, and generally worked to transform culture according to its “vision”: quite a year, indeed.