ALEC Facing Funding Crisis from Donor Exodus

ALEC Facing Funding Crisis from Donor Exodus  feature image
December 3, 2013
• Rightwing lobby group appealing to major donors to return • Internal documents reveal so-called 'Prodigal Son Project' • Network lost almost 400 state legislators over past two years
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Pandora and the Drones

Pandora and the Drones feature image
December 3, 2013
Drones are a growth industry with, aside from the U.S., states such as Israel, Britain, Sweden, Iran, Russia, China, Saudi Arabia, and even Lebanon in possession of the more lethal varieties.
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Media Bits and Bytes - Dec. 3, 2013

Media Bits and Bytes - Dec. 3, 2013 feature image
December 3, 2013
Hail & Farewell Andre Schiffrin; Silicon Valley Warping San Francisco; Oakland Building Big Brother; Ebooks Challenge Academic Presses; NSA Drops 50,000 `Sleeper Cells' in Computer Networks Worldwide; New Site to Seek Funding from the Masses for Investigating Reporting
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An iPad on Every Desk

 An iPad on Every Desk feature image
December 2, 2013
Teachers in Progressive Educators for Action (PEAC), a caucus within the teachers union, questioned the iPads as one of many quick fixes pushed onto students and teachers by advocates of one-size-fits-all approaches to learning.“This is not technology that helps my classroom,” said high school social studies teacher Rebecca Solomon.
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The Pope Versus Unfettered Capitalism

 The Pope Versus Unfettered Capitalism feature image
December 2, 2013
Condemning the “new tyranny” of unfettered capitalism and the “idolatry of money,” Pope Francis argues in a newly circulated apostolic exhortation that “as long as the problems of the poor are not radically resolved by rejecting the absolute autonomy of markets and financial speculation and by attacking the structural causes of inequality, no solution will be found for the world’s problems or, for that matter, to any problems.”
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Strange Frontiers

Strange Frontiers feature image
December 2, 2013
The parts of the border that take the form of an actual, physical barrier are an intrusion on the landscape, an eyesore to many — and to millions, a deadly obstacle to overcome. Just as immigrant rights activists see the border as a violent social barrier, environmentalists see the border fence as an assault on the integrity of regional ecologies.
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France’s Aggressive Foreign Policy

France’s Aggressive Foreign Policy feature image
December 2, 2013
What is behind Francois Hollande’s assertiveness on the world stage? Is the decline of the United States’ effective power on the world scene what is permitting France’s return to aggressiveness ?
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Wal-Mart Arrests "A New Political Movement?"

Wal-Mart Arrests  "A New Political Movement?" feature image
December 2, 2013
Florida Congressman questions Obama's praise for Wal-Mart: "What has Wal-Mart given the president in return?" "Even people who are employed now, many of them are not making enough money to survive," said Grayson. "And the outlet more and more for people that they see is this kind of civil disobedience, because the political system has become completely unresponsive to their genuine concerns and their physical needs."
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Small Black Holes Deadlier Than Thought

Small Black Holes Deadlier Than Thought feature image
December 1, 2013
The book on stellar black holes needs to be rewritten.
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Banning the Negative Book Review

Banning the Negative Book Review feature image
December 1, 2013
BuzzFeed’s heroic initiative will succeed even if it merely eradicates the depressing negativity that has for so long kept literary criticism from becoming a full-fledged economic sector, like agriculture, transport and erectile dysfunction.
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Pages

Portside Culture

Palestinian -Themed Films Draw Plaudits

Bill Meyer
There were three exceptionable and rewarding Palestinian themed films at the Toronto Interrnational Film Festival this year, and Ziad Doueiri’s The Insult has been selected to represent his home country of Lebanon at the Oscars. A more timely film could not have been made and selected, seeing that this film addresses most every area of conflict possible.

The Sad, Sexist Past of Bengali Cuisine

Mayukh Sen
Food 52
Party line suggested that widowhood made a woman’s sex drive fickle and vulnerable. A woman’s libido was a site of such agita that she couldn’t be trusted to keep it quiet, and so her body needed to be governed. The alienation imposed upon high-caste, Hindu Bengali women was meant to act as a hormonal suppressant, silencing the desire more dangerous than hunger for fish or meat: sex.

Anna Mae

Marsha de la O
Antidote for Night
Marsha de la O, a southern California poet, depicts most tenderly the hard wages of environmental pollution.

Trump's Itchy, Twitchy Finger

Scott McLemee
Inside Higher Ed
Focusing mainly on Trump's first year in office, the authors emphasize what they call a pattern of systematic reaction, where growing voter frustration regularly drives each party in and out of control. Trump arrived with scant political capital, amassed little and appears to have no strategic competence going forward. While the authors believe Trump can develop one, the essayist faults the authors for offering nothing but wishfulness to back up the assumption.

Yanis Varoufakis’s Doomed Fight Against Austerity

Emmett Rensin
The New Republic
This volume is an insider's account of Greece's recent struggle to preserve the general welfare of its people in the fact of the belt-tighening demands of the managers of the international financial system. Reviewer Rensin offers an assessment.

Portside Labor

Number of Women, Minorities in Labor Leadership Called Dismal

Jaclyn Diaz
Bloomberg Law/ Daily Labor Report
Leaders must also know when it’s time for a new person to take the helm. To keep new blood flowing through the labor movement, older leaders have to make room for their successors, RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United, said. “You have to get out of the way. You can’t just talk about it,” she said. “If you’re a leader, a strong leader, you step down and open that up to someone you believe reflects where this union needs to be.”

50 Years On, Steinbeck’s Classic Still Packs a Punch

Barry Healy
Green Left Weekly
This year marks the 50th anniversary of John Steinbeck’s great mythic novel of alienation under US capitalism, Of Mice and Men. The story is of lonesome labourers, reeling from the Great Depression, wandering from farm to farm seeking respite from their endless oppression.

Iowa Workers Defy Attempt to Weaken Their Unions

Bill Knight
Pekin Daily Times
Under a new anti-union law, public-sector unions must re-certify each time they’re scheduled to bargain new contracts, every two or three years. Right-wing backers of the law hoped it would weaken unions by forcing them to devote time and resources to the recertification process and lead workers to drop their membership. But the members of the state's 468 union locals voted overwhelmingly to stick with their union.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

One year after the presidential election, John Oliver discusses what we've learned so far and enlists our catheter cowboy to teach Donald Trump what he hasn't.

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

"Down on Me" is a traditional freedom song from the 1920s or earlier that became popular following its remake 50 years ago (1967) by Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company. (Wikipedia)

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

Charles Dickens connected Scrooge, greed and redemption to Christmas in a book that changed the holiday forever.
Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

The Paradise Papers exposed an unseen world of offshore accounts, hidden money and financial maneuvering at the highest levels of politics, business and finance.

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

The Senate holds a hearing to debate President Trump's power to use nuclear weapons without congressional approval.

Posted by Portside on November 10, 2017

Is there one person who can save us from Donald Trump. Schneider-man, maybe? Eric Schneiderman doesn't think so.

Posted by Portside on November 10, 2017

Music, where cultures meet and perform mad dances. Arabic, Spanish and Russian influences power this mashup.