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Amnesty International has released a shocking report claiming as many as 13,000 people—mostly civilians—have been hanged in a Syrian government military prison in recent years. Amnesty accuses the Assad government of running a human slaughterhouse and engaging in a deliberate policy of extermination by hanging thousands of civilians at a prison near Damascus. Amnesty says the killings amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.
"I was among the 100,000 who marched in San Francisco’s Women’s March the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration. While enthusiasm for the struggle seemed high, an important question was looming: What’s the strategic plan, as we head into the Trump era? Although there’s no simple answer, I offer this 10-point plan — fully open for discussion and debate."
A 10-point plan to stop Trump and make gains in justice and equality
Anarchism shares common roots in the late Enlightenment with liberal republicanism, through figures like William Godwin and Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. They agreed with earlier liberals like Locke, for instance, that people have the capacity to reason and the dignity to self-govern; the difference was that they went further in seeking self-governance at every level and in every corner of life.
An occasional ballot box is not enough. Anarchism is not content with any form of coercion, whether by countries or corporations or an electoral college. It is skeptical of all pretenders to authority, like God’s warnings about kings in the Hebrew Bible and Jesus’ indifference to the powers that pretended to rule Palestine in his time. This is the anarchism, for instance, that Dorothy Day inherited and lived by.
On a day that saw the ascent of a man who promises to personally deliver more weapons, walls and wealth for some, anarchism offers a stark alternative. It calls for a politics that doesn’t begin and end with politicians. more
Gasolinazo protests: The symptom of a bigger crisis....
...In the late 1980s Mexico started its political transition from a one-party authoritarian regime towards what is now a "crony" capitalist political system with low levels of investment blocking democratic development and with highly corrupt political parties infiltrated by organised crime.
Throughout this period until the present, most state enterprises providing health, water, oil and other basic goods were being gradually transferred to political cronies and oligarchs. These people have no inclination to pursue technological innovation or to generate employment....
A longtime advocate for public lands, Terry Tempest Williams has been at the forefront of fighting for conservation. This year, she stepped into the firing line.
“I’ve thought so much lately about what erosion means – how the same geologic principles that erode stone also erode us closer to the essence of who we want to become,” she said.
In her philosophical consideration of the natural world, Williams might be considered a successor to Thoreau, most famous for his nature writing but most ardent in his abolitionism.
She’s taken up the gauntlet from her friend Edward Abbey, the Utah polemicist whose novel The Monkeywrench Gang launched a thousand bulldozer-wrecking Earth Firsters. Public lands have always been more than scenery in the US: they’re political battlegrounds, now and forever.
“Lease sales are an ostensibly public process in which the public has no actual say,” Jason Schwartz, a Greenpeace media officer, told the Guardian. To Schwartz’s mind, Williams’s intervention carved out a potential new avenue for participation in the opaque auction system. “She showed that you don’t have to get arrested to protect the public interest – you can put a credit card down.”
Homelessness continues to be a national crisis, affecting millions of people each year, including a rising number of families. Homeless people, like all people, must engage in activities such as sleeping or sitting down in order to survive. Yet, in communities across the nation, these harmless, unavoidable behaviors are treated as criminal activity under laws that criminalize homelessness.
Changing Laws. Changing Lives.
Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age:
"The new orthodoxy envisions the Web as a kind of Robin Hood, stealing audience and influence away from the big and giving to the small. Networked technologies will put professionals and amateurs on an even playing field, or even give the latter an advantage. Artists and writers will thrive without institutional backing, able to reach their audiences directly. A golden age of sharing and collaboration will be ushered in, modeled on Wikipedia and open source software.
In many wonderful ways this is the world we have been waiting for. [But] in some crucial respects the standard assumptions about the Internet’s inevitable effects have misled us."
"Many of the problems that plagued our media system before the Internet was widely adopted have carried over into the digital domain — consolidation, centralization, and commercialism — and will continue to shape it. Networked technologies do not resolve the contradictions between art and commerce, but rather make commercialism less visible and more pervasive… The pressure to be quick, to appeal to the broadest possible public, to be sensational, to seek easy celebrity, to be attractive to corporate sponsors—these forces multiply online where every click can be measured, every piece of data mined, every view marketed against. Originality and depth eat away at profits online, where faster fortunes are made by aggregating work done by others, attracting eyeballs and ad revenue as a result."
By Shoshana Walter / September 8, 2016
It’s been three years now of food shortages, inflation, and queues in Venezuela, and the millions of people involved in community and movement organizing have been the most affected. But they’ve also defied right-wing and general expectations, and even perhaps the expectations of the Maduro government, and have become stronger and better organized as a result of the hardships.
‘We can feel the difference between the quality of life we had four years ago – when things had improved so much. Everything is extremely expensive. You go out to buy a kilo of rice, and four days later the price has gone up, and it’s hard to deal with because our salaries don’t go up every four days,’ Jose Loaiza told me. A worker in charge of sustainable development for the mountain town of Los Nevados for Merida’s Teleferico (cable car) and a member of an urban agriculture organization, La Minga, Loaiza was one of four people I interviewed to get a sense of how the grassroots have been affected by these difficult times – times that have been utterly sensationalized and lied about by the mainstream media.
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