Thursday, May 5, 2011

Wisconsin Democrats file formal challenge against recall petitions submitted by Republicans

This article reveals major allegations against out-of-town petitioners who gathered signatures to recall three Democratic state senators in Wisconsin. All sorts of tactics appear to have been used to get people to sign, including lying about the purpose of the petition. It appears that after all challenges are heard, including six GOP recall petitions, that the recall elections will be held sometime in mid-June. That could be a very exciting time for those hoping to push back against the arrogance of Republicans and their anti-labor, anti-environment agenda.

Fight over Israel and Tony Kushner heats up

A recipient of a 2008 Honorary Degree from CUNY, based on her academic work examining McCarthyism, has said she will return her award in protest of the University's politically motivated decision to table the Kushner degree.

School Blocks Kushner Honor Over Israel

The International Assault on Labor

Noam Chomsky is a brilliant critic of the American capitalist system and its many manifestations, particularly concerning our country's propensity to use military force to protect national interests. In this essay, penned to coincide with the May Day international labor celebrations, Chomsky details recent attacks and trends against labor in the U.S. that are championed in the name of free trade and globalization, while extemporizing on the exploitation and manipulation of the system on the part of the financial class.

Supreme Court Deals Crushing Blow to Americans

Public Citizen is actively opposing the new Supreme Court ruling to forces customers and employees to accept binding arbitration, and forego class action remedies, to redress legal claims against powerful corporations. The group is filing litigation in opposition of the recent ruling and it's in the interest of all American consumers and workers to support their efforts.

Corporate Royalty - Perspective from Public Citizen

Public Citizen is actively campaigning for corporations to disclose their political contribution when vying for government contracts, and also agitating for a constitutional amendment to overturn the Citizen's United Supreme Court ruling. Read this piece and then sign a few petitions that are hosted on the site.

Spitzer Calls on Holder to Prosecute Goldman Sachs or Resign

Former NYS Governor, NY Attorney General and noted Wall Street critic, Elliott Spitzer, has publicly called for US Attorney General Eric Holder to prosecute Goldman Sachs for double dealing and lying about their role in the financial collapse and also to a Senate panel. Spitzer points out that Goldman made a high-level decision that the entire housing market was going to collapse, in 2008, and then bet against it.

15 Dangerous Drugs Big Pharma Shoves Down Our Throats

This report from last November details a host of serious side effect problems with fifteen major market drugs that are still sold to unwitting patients who simply believe that the FDA would not approve dangerous medications for human use. In fact, over the past two decades the FDA has transferred significant risk to patients for choosing their medications. They list side effects in package inserts and that is largely the extent of 'buyer beware'. This is very distressing reading.

Fracking Well Shutdown Extended As Researchers Study Link To Earthquakes In Arkansas

This article fails to mention the hundreds of unregulated chemicals used in fracking, and the dangers to water safety that they present. Nonetheless, it brings attention to the situation in Arkansas where many believe that the deep drilling and injection of wastewater has spurred seismic activity. In the month prior to the moratorium there were 80 seismic events, whereas since drilling has halted there have only been 20 earthquake events in the region.

Greenwashing Genetically Engineered Crops

Food & Water Watch has produced a talking points guide that refutes 6 beneficial claims of the biotech industry regarding genetically-engineered crops and food.

Is a mining company giving the shaft to farmers and ranchers?

As the battle for water rights between the energy sector and agriculture rages on, Farm Wars puts the spotlight on some back room dealing in Nevada that may permit a fifty-year Mt. Hope mining project to proceed without accurate environmental impact studies. This story also contains disturbing information that the mining company in question, General Moly, is parted owned by a George Soros associated company, Black Rock Trust Company. That trust is on record as the fifth largest shareholder in Monsanto.

Big Pharma's Crime Spree: Drug Makers Pushing Products For Unapproved Uses

Here are a couple of background pieces on recent prosecutions against Big Pharma that resulted in record civil and criminal fines that did not even dent the enormous profits generated by illegal sales tactics pushing doctors to prescribe off-label uses for dangerous drugs.
Pfizer Broke the Law by Promoting Drugs for Unapproved Use

A Public Citizen report on Johnson & Johnson's settlement for bribing doctors to prescribe dangerous off-label uses for one of its drugs.
Crime in the Pharma Suites

Blue Cross, Blue Shield Getting Richer, Like Corporate Insurers

This report examines record profits for health insurance companies and also the tax break supported "non-profit" Blue Shield and Cross. Look at these numbers and see the fat layer of profits piled onto the US healthcare system. We pay the most and still have 51 million uninsured, while denying coverage drives the bottom line. We need to push very hard in the direction of a single-payer system, like what recently passed in Vermont, if we are ever to knock down healthcare costs and provide affordable care to all citizens.

De-Coding Seafood Eco-Labels: How the European Commission Can Help Consumers Access Sustainable Seafood

The largest sustainable food source in the world, fish in the oceans, are at risk of being crippled by over-fishing on the part of large, technologically sophisticated factory fishing operations. Those interested in the challenges faced by most saltwater species should check out the excellent documentary, The End of the Line. Currently efforts are underway to encourage sustainable fishing practices and label seafood products accordingly. This Food & Water Watch report details a host of problems with the private eco-labels used to demonstrate that seafood products were harvested responsibly and sustainably in Europe.