FEATURING PATRICK SULLIVAN - The federal government has quietly lifted its moratorium on offshore hydraulic fracturing off of the California coast. The controversial fracking operations were being rubber stamped by the government until an environmental organization took legal action. The potential destruction wrought by offshore fracking operations in the wild-life rich Santa Barbara channel does not seem to concern the Obama Administration. Find out more at www.biologicaldiversity.org. Patrick Sullivan, Climate Media Director at the Center for Biological Diversity.
FEATURING MICHAEL SAUDER - Among the myriad decisions facing new graduates are a dizzying array of choices chief among which is where to go to school. We live in a society where because we can process large amounts of data very easily, we do. We have measures of almost everything these days, intended to help us make the best possible decision, and that includes which college or university to attend. The best-known ranking system is the US News and World Report's Best Colleges rankings. Competition to appear in the top 5 or even top 20, is fierce. Now, after a decade of research, two sociology professors have published a book casting great doubt on the entire rankings industry. Michael Sauder, Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Iowa, co-author with Wendy Nelson Espeland of the new book 'Engines of Anxiety: Academic Rankings, Reputation, and Accountability'.
FEATURING AMY WALTERS - If you've ever stuffed your used clothing into one of the many yellow donation boxes in your neighborhood thinking you were doing a good deed, think again. The boxes, labeled "Planet Aid" suggest donating clothing, shoes, and other items. But an on-going investigative reporting project by Reveal, has found that Planet Aid is one of many organizations that are part of a Danish organization called The Teachers Group, and that your used goods are mostly benefitting the pocket books of its executives rather than people in need. Find more at www.RevealNews.org. Amy Walters is a reporter and producer for Reveal. She has won multiple awards for her journalism, including two Peabodys, and an Edward R. Murrow award.
FEATURING JOE DINKIN - A major coalition of progressive organizations has just formed under the clearly named banner of "Take On Wall Street." A number of unions, consumer advocacy groups, and even the Nation Magazine. The Nation's George Zornick, writing about Take On Wall Street, explains, "The campaign has five concrete policy goals: closing the carried interest loophole, enacting a Wall Street speculation tax, ending too-big-to-fail and reinstituting Glass-Steagall, closing the CEO bonus loophole, and ending predatory lending while creating more safe banking institutions, including one within the US Postal Service." Find more about the coalition at www.TakeOnWallStreet.org and the Working Families Party HERE. Joe Dinkin, National Communications Director of the Working Families Party.
FEATURING RAY MCGOVERN - A new report by the State Department's Office of the Inspector General, has found that Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had not obtained permission to use a private email server during her tenure as President Obama's Secretary of State. The OIG report added that she would not have been given permission even if she had asked, and that she, "had an obligation to discuss using her personal email account to conduct official business." The Republican Party has long fixated on the so-called "email scandal" as a way to undermine Clinton's suitability for the nation's highest office. And, Democratic party members including President Obama have brushed off the issue, relegating it to "carelessness." Even Clinton's political rival, Bernie Sanders has dismissed the controversy. So, should progressives as a whole also dismiss it? Read The Guardian newspaper article HERE. Ray McGovern, former CIA analyst who was with the agency for
FEATURING HANAA FETHI AL-WARDI - The wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, and Libya, have been stains on the international conscience, particularly as they have given way to a refugee crisis of staggering proportions - a crisis that is only newsworthy in as much as it impacts European nations. In the midst of the tragedy were moments of hope during the Arab Spring revolutions - social movements that continue to be in various stages of success and failure. Today we'll turn to a Southern California based artist and poet, Hanaa Fethi Al-Wardi. She is the founder of the Museum of Contemporary Arab Art. We're going to take our camera to her new exhibit entitled The Wall and share with you how her art depicts and is inspired by the politics of the Arab World. For more information, visit www.hagallery.com. Hanaa Fethi Al-Wardi,Arab American artist and founder of the Museum of Contemporary Arab Art.
FEATURING DEBORAH BERKOWITZ - In the past month, several new reports have been released on the horrific conditions facing workers in the meat and poultry industry. The government's Occupational Safety and Health Administration office reported that the industry had the 8th highest rate of all industries for reported severe injuries. A shocking 17 workers are having amputations or hospitalizations on average every month. Then, Oxfam released a report pointing out that poultry workers were being denied bathroom breaks and some were relying on wearing diapers during work hours. Now, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has released its own report this week confirming these claims and exposing how injured workers are being denied medical treatment. Berkowitz recommends viewers call Tyson, Pilgrims Pride, Perdue, and Sanderson and demand workers be treated more fairly, or find more at www.nelp.org. Deborah Berkowitz, Senior Fellow with the National Employment Law Project.
FEATURING KRISTEN STRADER - Corporations love to appear as good citizens, making high-profile donations to good causes that give them the veneer of being charitable and doing their bit. But notice how the donations are always high profile? Much effort and expense goes into the publicity of charitable donation. In other words, charity is just another form of marketing. For some years now, one of the world's largest corporations, McDonald's has been making donations to public schools. The gimmick is this: teachers serve fast food to students and families at a local McDonald's restaurant. They promote the event, they wear branded T-shirts, and at the end of the night, the often-impoverished schools get a cut of the sales. Now, 30,000 people have signed a petition demanding that McDonald's end the so-called "McTeachers Night" program. Find more about the petition at www.commercialalert.org or visit www.citizen.org. Kristen Strader, Campaign Coordinator for Commercial Alert with
FEATURING MONIQUE MORRIS - When activists with Black Lives Matter use the phrase #Say Her Name, what they're asking us to do is to acknowledge that black women and girls are brutalized by state violence but we fail to recognize their humanity. In a new and powerful book, author Monique Morris makes the case that black girls are criminalized starting in the classroom. The disrespect and marginalization that girls face can impact their entire lives. Find more about the book at www.moniquewmorris.me. Monique Morris, Co-Founder of the National Black Women's Justice Institute, 2012 Soros Justice Fellow, former Vice President for Economic Programs, Advocacy, and Research at the NAACP, and an advisory board member for Global Girl Media. Her earlier book is Black Stats: African Americans By the Numbers in the Twenty-First Century. Her new book is called Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools.
FEATURING DUSTIN WRIGHT - President Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan this Friday making him the first sitting US president to ever visit the site of the first atomic bombing in world history. More than 70 years ago, on August 6, 1945, under President Harry Truman the US dropped a nuclear bomb on Hiroshima and obliterated more than a hundred thousand lives. Three days later the US bombed Nagasaki. The bombings deemed necessary to ending World War II. What does President Obama's trip signify? Read Dustin Wright’s article in the Japan Times HERE and find more of Dustin's work at www.jdustinwright.com. Dustin Wright, a lecturer in the Department of History at University of California, Santa Cruz.