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April 2013

Three Arrested at Bush Library Dedication

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney were arrested Thursday morning during a protest near the Southern Methodist University campus. Sort of. Three men, two wearing papier-mâché bobble-heads depicting the former president and vice president, were taken into custody. Iraq war veteran Gary Egelston of Fort Worth, Dennis Trainor of Groton, Mass., and Bill Perry of Philadelphia all face misdemeanor charges for defying police orders and walking in the Central Expressway service road near Mockingbird Lane.

Anti-Drone Protestors Arrested at Beale Air Force Base

Five people were arrested around 8 a.m. this morning after dozens of anti-drone demonstrators blocked the entrance to Beale Air Force Base for hours, resulting in hundreds of vehicles being prevented from entering the base. The CHP had to be called in to clear traffic which had lines of hundreds of cars in several directions after peace advocates from Sacramento, San Francisco, Nevada City and as far away as Fresno protested President Obama’s U.S. killer drone program.

Alternative Currencies and Economies with Jeff Dicken, Paul Glover and Edgar Cahn

Today we focus on using local currencies and economies to opt out of Wall Street and build resilient and sustainable

Earth Day Celebration: Announcement of Green Shadow Cabinet with Cheri Honkala, Christopher Cox and Sean Sweeney

Today we mark International Mother Earth Day with the announcement of the new alternative government in the US, the Green

Drone Warfare and Growing Resistance to it with Noor Mir and Judy Bello

This week we discuss the use of drones for surveillance and warfare around the world, but particularly in Pakistan. April

Over 7,000 March, Demand Return of Stolen UMWA Health Benefits

The UMWA pioneered in healthcare benefits and pensions when they battled coal operators and the American Medical Association to establish the UMWA Health & Welfare Fund. John L. Lewis and the union defied accusations of socialized medicine to set up miners’ clinics and built the miners’ hospitals that serve today as the backbone of health care in Appalachia. The UMWA won early retirement with family coverage for miners who retired before they were 65. These achievements of the miners’ struggles are under attack by Patriot, Peabody, and Arch. Most unions, following the lead of the UMWA, have negotiated early retirement with employers picking up the cost of health care until Medicare kicks in. The attack on UMWA retirees is a snapshot of what employers have in store for union negotiated early retirement plans.

Homeland Security Kept Tabs on Occupy Protesters: Report

The PCJF obtained the 252 pages of documents under a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filing with the DHS, the sprawling Federal agency ostensibly created to combat terrorism after the September 11 attacks. In November 2011, the group launched a campaign to unearth public records that would show whether the federal government was spying on OWS pretests across the nation. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) records obtained by the group in December showed that the bureau investigated the Occupy movement as a potential "domestic terrorism" threat. One document said there was “coordination and intelligence monitoring by the DHS, the FBI, the NYPD (New York Police Department) and other law enforcement agencies of 'Occupy-type' protests.”

A Forest of Poisonous Trees: The US Criminal (In)Justice System

The US prison system has become an embarrassment to the nation and to the principles which the United States claims to uphold. From police treatment on the streets through the courts and into the prisons, we should be ashamed at what activities are considered criminal and the way people are treated. There is a desperate need to re-evaluate what is defined as crime and the extreme punitive approach being used and to move toward a system that is more just and dignified. There is empirical evidence from around the world, and within the United States of more effective approaches which reduce crime and recidivism, cost less and build communities. But as it is with so many solutions to the crises we face, those who are most affected do not have the right to a political voice.

Fast Food Workers Plan Surprise Strike

Fast food is becoming an ever-larger and more representative sector of the U.S. economy. “We should think of these jobs as the norm,” said Columbia University political scientist Dorian Warren, “because even when you look at the high-skilled, high-paying jobs, they’re even adopting the low-wage model” of management. That means erratic schedules, paltry benefits, and – so far – almost no unions. “These are the quintessential example of the kinds of jobs that we have now,” said Warren, “and of the kind of job that we can expect in the future for the next few decades.” Asked yesterday about recent labor protests, a McDonald’s spokesperson emailed a statement saying, “We value and respect all the employees who work at McDonald’s restaurants” and that the majority of its stores are franchisee-run restaurants “where employees are paid competitive wages, and have access to flexible schedules and quality, affordable benefits.”

Greenpeace ‘Polar Bear’ Floats Past Kremlin

The activist in a furry white suit stood on a white air cushion designed to look like an ice floe with signs reading "Help!" and "Arctic not for Sale" before a river patrol came out in a motorboat and bundled the activist inside. The activist was later released from a police station with no charge, Greenpeace said on Twitter, adding that "the crimes are being committed in the Arctic." Greenpeace said Monday's protest aimed to draw attention to a planned joint venture between Norway's Statoil and Russia's Rosneft to explore Russia's Barents Sea for untapped oil reserves.

Towson University Students March For Unity

A march for unity. Towson students fed up with the alleged poor representation a white student union is painting of their school marched through campus in effort to bring peace. Rochelle Ritchie has more on how students and university officials plan to re-establish a positive image. The white student union is not recognized as an official group by Towson University—which says many of the group’s members aren’t even students. It’s a sign of unity on Towson University’s campus as students rallied to show support for diversity after the formation of a white student union. “We fight negativity with positivity,” said one student.

Big Finance Fraud and Public Banks with Bill Black and Ellen Brown

Bill Black, associate professor of economics and law and leading investigator of financial fraud, discusses the rampant fraud and corruption
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