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Issa Rae on Blackness

Jane Mulkerrins The Guardian
The creator of Insecure, Issa Rae, talks about blackness as season two begins.

labor

How Trump Made Wage Theft Routine

Eric Cortellessa The American Prospect
“The Trump administration’s rhetoric on immigration and its approach to enforcement have made immigrant communities obviously fearful in a new way,” says Laura Huizar, a staff attorney with the National Employment Law Project. “This is going to prevent a lot people from filing wage complaints that they otherwise would have.”

labor

How Obama Has Tilted the Workplace for Unions

Sean Higgins Washington Examiner
As far as labor leaders are concerned, former Labor Sectary Hilda Solis and her successor, Tom Perez, have delivered. "President Obama has been a good president for working people," AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka says. Since his days as a community organizer in Chicago, Obama has had close relations with labor unions, and organizations such as the Service Employees International Union were among his earliest and most vocal supporters when he ran for president in 2008.

Why Obama and Putin are Both Wrong on Syria

Juan Cole Informed Comment
So Obama wants al-Assad to stand down as a prerequisite for effective US action against Daesh in Syria (a few air sorties and even fewer air strikes are ineffectual). Putin thinks al-Assad is key to defeating Daesh and that everyone should ally with Damascus. Putin is blind to the ways that al-Assad and his military brutality is prolonging the civil war. Backing his genocidal policies will just perpetuate that war.

Guantánamo Closure Remains Elusive

Jennifer Fenton Aljazeera America
The status of the controversial facility, along with its inhabitants, remains mired in delays, appeals and political dramas that make shutting the prison increasingly difficult to imagine.

books

Groundbreakers: How Obama's 2.2 Million Volunteers Transformed Campaigning in America

Andrew Mayersohn Boston Review
It's clear that President Obama out-organized his opponents in both of his runs for president. But how did he do it? Elizabeth McKenna and Hahrie Han, in Groundbreakers, shows us how. As Andrew Mayersohn notes in this review, "giving people meaningful responsibilities is a powerful way to engage them and keep them engaged." This is a vital lesson in politics, one that Team Obama, in two national campaigns, realized with spectacular results.

Netanyahu's Speech: Mansplaining Iran to Obama

David Corn Mother Jones
Netanyahu's main mission was to advance his extremist stance—and undermine Obama's attempt to reach an agreement with Iran. He contended that Iran is bent on destroying Israel and "the Jewish people."

Proving That 'Activism Works,' Obama Vetoes Keystone XL Bill

Lauren McCauley Common Dreams
May Boeve, Executive Director of 350.org, which spearheaded the fight against the Keystone pipeline, heralded the move as "conclusive proof that activism works. After four years of rallies, marches, sit-ins, and civil disobedience, we’re thrilled to see President Obama take an important first step by vetoing this love letter to Big Oil." A coalition of environmental groups is holding a celebration outside of the White House in Lafayette Park.
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