Thursday, August 5, 2010

Truthout 8/5

Gulf Residents Likely Face Decades of Psychological Impact From BP's Oil Disaster
Dahr Jamail, Truthout: "While the devastating ecological impacts of BP's oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico are obvious, the less visible but also long-lasting psychological, community and personal impacts could be worse, according to social scientists, psychologists and psychiatrists."
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Elena Kagan Will Be Fourth Woman to Join Supreme Court
Deb Weinstein, Truthout: "Losing just one vote from the Democrats, the Senate approved Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court, 63-37, Thursday afternoon. Despite Sen. Ben Nelson's (D-Nebraska) vote against her nomination, Kagan picked up five Republican backers: Susan Collins, Lindsey Graham, Richard Lugar, Olympia Snowe and Judd Gregg. South Carolina's Graham was the only Republican member of the Senate Judiciary Committee to support the nominee."
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Eugene Robinson | Raising the Stakes on Gay Marriage
Eugene Robinson: "The 14th Amendment is a mighty sword, and U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker used it Wednesday to flay and shred all the specious arguments - and I mean all of them - that are used to deny full marriage rights to gay and lesbian Americans. Bigotry has suffered a grievous blow."
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Possible Verizon-Google Deal Worries Net Neutrality Advocates
Deb Weinstein, Truthout: "A rumored deal between cellphone service provider Verizon Wireless and Internet giant Google that would give preferential speeds to Google properties such as YouTube on mobile devices has net neutrality advocates on edge. Details of the agreement, as first reported by The New York Times, has thrown net neutrality advocates in a tailspin. By creating a two-tier Internet system, advocates say it not only exploits mobile users trapped in service agreements, but also works around years of wrangling over what constitutes a fair playing field on the Internet."
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John Pilger | Tony Blair Must Be Prosecuted
John Pilger, Truthout: "Tony Blair must be prosecuted, not indulged like his mentor Peter Mandelson. Both have produced self-serving memoirs for which they have been paid fortunes. Blair's will appear next month and earn him 4.6 million pounds. Now, consider Britain's Proceeds of Crime Act. Blair conspired in and executed an unprovoked war of aggression against a defenseless country, which the Nuremberg judges in 1946 described as the 'paramount war crime.'"
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Scientists Cast Doubt on Claims BP Spill's No Threat to Gulf
Erika Bolstad, Renee Schoof and Margaret Talev, McClatchy Newspapers: "Many scientists say they're skeptical of a widely publicized government report Wednesday that concludes much of the oil that gushed from BP's leaking well is gone and poses little threat to the Gulf of Mexico."
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Bacevich: Creating an "Iraq/Afghanistan Syndrome"
Robert Naiman, Truthout: "Campaigning for the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2008, Senator Barack Obama said, 'I don't want to just end the war, but I want to end the mindset that got us into war in the first place.' But as Andrew Bacevich notes in his new book, 'Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War,' as President, Barack Obama has done the opposite: he has promoted and acted on behalf of the mindset that leads to war."
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New York Senate Passes Temporary Ban on Hydraulic Fracturing
Abrahm Lustgarten and Nicholas Kusnetz, ProPublica: "In a pre-dawn vote Wednesday, New York State's senate passed a bill that reaches beyond the debate over the environmental safety of drilling for gas in the Marcellus Shale and would effectively ban almost all gas and oil drilling in the state until next spring. The bill circumvents an environmental review by the state's regulatory agency that could be finished this year."
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Joe Conason | Defending the Mosque
Joe Conason, Truthout: "No recent controversy has so plainly revealed the hollow values of the American right than the effort to prevent the construction of a community center in Lower Manhattan because it will include a mosque. Arguments in opposition range from a professed concern for the sensitivities of the Sept. 11 victims' families to a primitive battle cry against Islam - but what they all share is an arrant disregard for our country's founding principles."
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What a Government Can Do With Its Own Bank
Ellen Brown, Truthout: "Virg Bernero, the mayor of Lansing, Michigan, just won the Democratic nomination for governor of his state, making a state-owned Bank of Michigan a real possibility. Bernero is one of at least a dozen candidates promoting that solution to the states' economic woes. It is an innovative idea, with little precedent in the United States."
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Whose Hands? Whose Blood? Killing Civilians in Afghanistan and Iraq
Tom Engelhardt, TomDispatch: "Consider the following statement offered by Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, at a news conference last week. He was discussing Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks as well as the person who has taken responsibility for the vast, still ongoing Afghan War document dump at that site."
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