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Sunday, December 28, 2014

NYPD Chief Defends Mayor de Blasio and Criticizes Police Funeral Protest

By Ed Pilkington, The Guardian

Commissioner Bratton: turning of backs on mayor ‘very inappropriate.’

5 Absurd Right-Wing Moments this Week: Sarah Palin Hawks Christmas Book in a Negligee

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

And O'Reilly takes time out from his vacation to be a complete jerk.

5 Worst Things Rich People Did This Week

By Natalie Shure, AlterNet

’Tis the season for the very wealthy to be just as miserly as usual.

Chris Rock, Colbert, Silverman, Aamer Rahman — 11 More Great Moments in Political Comedy This Year

By Kali Holloway, AlterNet

Political humor gave us rare opportunities to laugh in an otherwise difficult year.

Search for Missing AirAsia Flight QZ8501 Halted as Darkness Falls

By Jonathan Kaiman, The Guardian

Plane lost contact after taking off from Indonesian city of Surabaya for Singapore with 162 people on board.

The Democratic Party Keeps Screwing Up: Why Progressives Need to Be Independent of the Party

By Bill Curry, Salon

Progressives have no power in a corporate, focus-grouped, Wall Street-leaning party.

Great Artist Mr. Turner, Thumbs Nose at Establishment in Rousing Mike Leigh Flick

By Mark Kermode, The Guardian

Timothy Spall is a giant as the eccentric Victorian painter in this visually ambitious biopic.

What If Jesus Had Been A Republican?

By James Martin, S.J., Tikkun

A sample of what the Scriptures might look like if Jesus had actually been a conservative.

9 Other Countries that Jumped on the Post 9-11 Terrorism Fear to Crack Down on Dissenters

By Alex Kane, AlterNet

These nations have taken a page from post-9/11 America's playbook.

Hey, Nebraska, On Marijuana, Colorado's Not the Problem. You Are.

By Bill Piper, AlterNet

Nebraska and Oklahoma have sued Colorado, claiming pot legalization there is a public nuisance. But it's their policies that creating the nuisance, not Colorado's.

The Triumph of Core American Values in the Epic Battle for a Grocery Store Chain

By Louis Ferleger, Matthew Lavallee, AlterNet

The Market Basket conflict illustrates why recognizing the contributions of workers is the key to success.

Citing Fear of Prosecution, Florida Court Clerks to Refuse to Issue Same-Sex Marriage Licenses

By Tom Boggioni, Raw Story

Following a court decision, marriage licenses are supposed to be available to same-sex couples in January.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Pioneering Doctor Working to Reverse Alzheimer's Offers Ways to Help Avoid the Disease

By Martha Ture, Daily Kos

What you eat today may affect your cognitive as well as physical health.

Think About It: The U.S. Is the Richest Country as Well as the Most Unequal: 8 Consequences of American Greed

By Les Leopold, AlterNet

America is the richest country in all of history... with a whole lot of poor people.

This Week in Religion: For-Profit Ark Park Sues Kentucky For Right to Discriminate

By Dan Arel, AlterNet

The twisted thoughts of the religious right got very bent as the holidays approached.

9 Wacky Products That People Actually Like

By Sage McHugh, AlterNet

From rideable luggage to an app that tells moviegoers when to pee, nutty products abound.

In 2014 Fear Trumped Empathy, and Other Smart Insights

By Michele Filgate, Salon

Looking back on a long, hard 2014, communal panic was a dominant theme, says the critic Leslie Jamison.

It's Car Buying Season: 8 Ways Used Car Dealers Can Swindle You

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

As the busiest car buying weeks approach, beware the tricks of used-car salespeople.

Can We Stomach It? Imagine Another Possible Bush vs. Clinton Showdown in 2016

By Will Durst, AlterNet

If Jeb Bush leaning, considering, exploring — but we know what that means.

American Sniper Feeds America's Hero Complex, and It Isn't the Truth About War

By Alex Horton, The Guardian

Real life is not like the movies. So why does Hollywood keep trying to make us believe that elite commandos can do anything, and save anyone, all the time?

The Most Awkward Sex Ever? 8 Epic Holiday Hookup Tales

By Jenny Kutner, Salon

"I asked if he wanted to have sex — while he was talking about his dad having a stroke."

What Does the “Right to Life” Really Mean for Catholics in Mexico?

By Renee De La Torre, Open Democracy

It’s time for leaders in the Mexican Catholic Church to speak up where they are most needed.

NY State Trooper Threatens Driver Recording Stop: ‘I’ll Find a Way for the DA’s Office to Arrest You’

By Tom Boggioni, Raw Story

An irritated cop threatens man for recording him.

Islamic World Takes Same Drugs We Do: It Just Has Different Rules About Them

By Kenneth Anderson,

Imagine if coffee carried a death sentence and opium was entirely accepted?

Biotech Companies Are Peddling Dangerous Propaganda About the Risks of GM Potatoes

By Jeffrey M. Smith,

One man had the courage to speak out in 1998 about the risks associated with genetically modified foods.

Friday, December 26, 2014

'Selma' Portrays the True Martin Luther King Jr: A Radical Despised by the Political Establishment

By Zaid Jilani, AlterNet

This is not your sanitized Hollywood version of Dr. King.

'Some Sort of Hell': How One of the Wealthiest Cities in America Treats Its Homeless

By Evelyn Nieves, AlterNet

The city refuses to provide affordable housing, yet won't tolerate people living outdoors.

Right-Wingers on Twitter Blow Up After Neil DeGrasse Tyson Tells a Few Harmless Xmas Jokes

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Tyson didn't denounce the holiday, but don't tell that to the right-wing fanatics who trolled him.

White Americans Have Been Brainwashed About Race: Lies We Tell Ourselves About Black Women

By Tim Wise, AlterNet

Black women are being pathologized and demeaned.

How I Became Homeless

By MD Marcus, Salon

My landlord's mistake became my nightmare—three kids, no house and too many nights on borrowed mattresses

Paul Krugman: 4 Surprising Reasons to be Cheerful at the Close of 2014

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

Don't believe the propaganda that good governance can't deal with big problems.

How's the Economy Where You Live? 3 Interactive Maps Show State-by-State Comparisons

By David Jarman, Daily Kos

Is your area booming or busting, or just chugging along?

Does Religion Step In Where Science Fails?

By Sara Scribner, Salon

Science is about learning, and religion about coping with life, says editor of new Norton Anthology of religion.

The Bloody 'Bad Old Days': How the Specter of 1970s New York Is Used to Quash Dissent

By Evan McMurry, AlterNet

With the murder of two NYPD officers, 1970s rhetoric made a comeback.

The Surprising Relationship Between Sex and Pizza: 4 Things We Learned About Sex This Week

By Katie Halper, AlterNet

From car sex to food aphrodisiacs, human sexuality is strange and interesting.

Is the Latest Cyberattack That's Crippling Playstation Related to 'The Interview' Hacks?

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Cybersecurity experts say the hackers behind both attacks work together.

A Triple-Breasted Woman, Giant Crabs, and Black-Eyed Kids: 11 Weirdest Hoaxes of 2014

By Andrew Griffin, The Independent

Hoaxes have a tendency to reflect the news, worries and interests of the time.

10 Most Important Environmental Stories of 2014

By Jason Mark, Earth Island Journal

Earth Island Journal's roundup of significant events of the past year.

Ferguson’s Other Tragedy: School Segregation Still Leaves a Mark in Missouri

By Sara Afzal, ProPublica

Today, the majority of the state’s black students are stuck in lower-ranking schools.

Are Vapers Just the Latest Drug Users to Be Demonized?

By Tony Newman, AlterNet

Vapers and e-cig users need to join forces with the drug reform movement to fend off prohibitionist impulses.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Not-So-Virgin Birth: Why Stories of Jesus Became More Magical Over Time

By Valerie Tarico, AlterNet

What you learn when you read the Bible in the order it was actually written.

The Creepy Misogynist Movement That's Making Conservatives Even More Sexist

By Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

A fringe movement out there believes women are out to get men.

Man Who Killed NYPD Officers Was Just Another Resentful, Mentally Ill Person With Access to Firearms

By David Atkins, AlterNet

An angry young man fell through society's cracks and was able to get a gun.

I Got Slimed by Rush Limbaugh

By Sophia A. McClennen, Salon

Rush went after me when I suggested we were better off getting our civics lessons from Colbert's satire than Limbaugh's hate speech.

7 Ways to Be Less Wasteful This Holiday Season

By Anastasia Pantsios, EcoWatch

Holiday guests and piles of food and presents all add up to lots of waste.

How Ayn Rand Was Used to Vet "It's a Wonderful Life" for Commie Propaganda

By Michael Winship,

There was concern about the Hollywood portrayal of bankers as villains.

4-Year-Old Handcuffed, Shackled and Hauled off to Sheriff’s Office by Cops

By Scott Kaufman, Raw Story

He suffers from nightmares as a result of his brush with law enforcement.

Santa Gets Tear-Gassed In Palestine: How Israel Suppresses Christmas for Palestinians

By Zaid Jilani, AlterNet

Palestinian Christians don't have much to celebrate under the occupation.

How Bad Trips on LSD and Magic Mushrooms Compare

By George Arnett, The Guardian

Data reveals the countries where psychedelic drug users are most likely to have had a bad trip.

Why Hollywood's Cowardice Is So Destructive

By Andrew Lam, The Huffington Post

Art should be loud and challenging -- not muffled and silenced.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Why Activists Get Death Threats

By Valerie Tarico, AlterNet

Activists talk about the dangers of standing up for controversial ideas.

Outrage: After Killing Missouri Teenager Antonio Martin, Police Say He 'Made Bad Choices'

By Andrew Buncombe, The Independent

The 18-year-old was shot by a white officer who says he acted in self-defense.

My Horrible Right-Wing Past: Confessions of a One-Time Religious Right Icon

By Frank Schaeffer, Salon

I was a religious fanatic appealing to political leaders. Today, the fanatics are the political leaders.

Robert Reich: Why We Can't Get the Government We Want and Deserve

By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog

Our biggest problem isn't the size of our government, it's who the government works for.

Happy Holidays from the AlterNet Editorial Team

By , AlterNet

Can you give us a shot in the arm?

Rush Limbaugh Is Furious That a Black Actor Might Be the Next James Bond

By Kali Holloway, AlterNet

The right-wing radio host is apparently thoroughly confused by the concept of fiction.

4 Reasons the NRA Is Losing the Culture Wars

By Timothy Johnson, Media Matters

Ted Nugent and his merry band of gun-toting right-wingers are losing precious ground.

P.U.-litzer Prizes: The Stinkiest Reporting From the Year

By Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting, FAIR

Examples of journalism at its finest in 2014.

9 Signs the Kochs Have Created Their Own National Political Party

By Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet

The Koch Party is what plutocracy, not democracy, looks like.

America's Dangerous Turn to Anti-Intellectualism

By Patricia Williams, The Guardian

The rise in academic book bannings and firings is compounded by a growing disregard for scholarship itself.

From the ER to the Courtroom: How Nonprofit Hospitals Are Seizing Patients' Wages

By Paul Kiel, Chris Arnold, ProPublica , NPR Online

“We will be paying them off until we die,” one debtor said.

If You're Going to Take Ecstasy for New Year's, Play It Safe

By Phillip Smith, AlterNet

Check those drugs!

How CIA Torture Spread Like Wildfire Throughout the US Military

By Alex Kane, AlterNet

The Bush officials' lies about CIA torture will haunt us in years to come, says filmmaker Alex Gibney.

7 Ways to Be Less Wasteful This Holiday Season

By Anastasia Pantsios, EcoWatch

Holiday guests and piles of food and presents all add up to lots of waste.

The Truth About the Lockerbie Bombing—And the Censored Film That Dared to Reveal It

By Alexander Zaitchik, AlterNet

A documentary that never aired in the U.S. theorizes that the Pan Am 103 bombing was an Iranian revenge hit.

NYC Sends $30M a Year to School With History of Giving Kids Electric Shocks

By Heather Vogell, Annie Waldman, Pro Publica

Students keep getting sent there despite repeated evidence of abuse.

How Bill de Blasio Schooled a Right-Wing Planted Reporter -- A Guide for Progressives

By Egberto Willies, Daily Kos

The New York mayor fires back at a reporter's controversial question about the recent police protests.

Sean Hannity Has ALL-CAPS Twitter Meltdown After Being Named ‘Worst’ Fox News Host

By Tom Boggioni, Raw Story

Hannity decided he wasn’t going to take it lying down.

Don't Believe the Hype -- Canada's Got an Inequality Problem

By Jeremy Nuttal, The Tyee

Inequality crosses 'all geographies and demographics,' new study shows.

How the Bush Dynasty Mirrors the Decay of the Republican Party

By Jeff Smith, Salon

Going back to the days of Prescott Bush, one thing unites all Bush politicians. Will it haunt Jeb in 2016?

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Black Cops Fear Other Cops

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Two dozen black NYPD cops tell Reuters that they've been treated similarly to Eric Garner.

Corporate America’s 5 Most Despicable and Cowardly Acts of 2014

By Lynn Stuart Parramore, AlterNet

You just can't make this stuff up.

Man Could Face Charges for Posting 'Put Wings On Pigs' to Facebook

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Western Massachusetts police were not amused by Charles DiRosa's alleged copycat threat.

That’s Rich! Why So Many Wealthy Americans Think They’re Middle Class

By David Sirota, Salon

Recent remarks from Treasury Secretary Jack Lew help shed light on a bizarre phenomenon.

Dear White Facebook Friends: 10 Ways to Get Yourself Blocked by a Black Person Like Me

By Terrell Jermaine Starr, AlterNet

Revealing yourself as racist or condescending or just not letting us vent are definite no-nos.

Happy Selfish Christmas! 21 Ayn Rand Holiday Cards

By David Akadjian, Daily Kos

Some warm and festive cheer from the right-wing author.

Sick: Shocking Racist Song About Michael Brown Sung at Party Thrown by Ex-Cop

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

A former federal investigator likened Michael Brown to "roadkill" in hate-filled parody.

Illness Is Caused By Unrepentant Sin? How Evangelical Christians See Mental Health

By Guardian Staff, The Guardian

Readers share their own stories of how their churches deal with the topic of mental illness.

What Really Killed Fracking in NY?

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Clues point to relentless protesters, a high-court ruling and a natural gas glut, not Cuomo’s ban.

The Climate for 2015: Everything’s Coming Together While Everything Falls Apart

By Rebecca Solnit, TomDispatch

How to find hope on the subject of climate change in the face of a reality that others find almost too grim to consider.

10 Weirdest, Most Fascinating Sex Stories of 2014

By , AlterNet

Sex tips from a man with no penis? Open relationships reduce jealousy? Here are some of AlterNet's most interesting sex stories of 2014.

How Food Star Guy Fieri Made Culinary TV Into a Viewer’s Hell

By Farsh Askari, Salon

The network that used to assuage my nerves after a rough day has become one more source of stress.

Were NATO Dogs Used to Rape Afghan Prisoners at Bagram Air Base?

By Emran Feroz, AlterNet

Buried accounts of horrors in the U.S.-led war on terror raise questions about the 9,000 documents still withheld by the CIA.

Police: Dallas Cop on Duty Forced Woman to Perform 'Sex Acts'

By David Edwards, Raw Story

The woman felt that she had to comply because the officer had threatened the safety of her daughter.

10 Educational Apps for Your Kids This Holiday Season

By Terry Heick, AlterNet

Looking for last-minute gifts that feed the brain?

Thousands of Websites May Have Left Passwords Exposed

By Jeff Fox,

Large corporations, like AT&T, FedEx, The New York Times and Macy’s have laid bare user information.

Monday, December 22, 2014

5 Outrageous Right-Wing Reactions to the Tragic NYPD Shootings

By Kali Holloway, AlterNet

Conservative pundits and pols blamed the tragedy on everyone from protesters to the president.

Religion's Smart People Problem: The Shaky Intellectual Foundation for Belief

By John G. Messerly, Salon

Most highly educated people shed religious beliefs, but not all. Why not?

Joseph Stiglitz on Why the Rich are Getting Richer and Why it Could Get Much Worse

By Lynn Stuart Parramore, AlterNet

Through corporate consolidation and even gentrification, the elite are syphoning up all the world's wealth for themselves.

12 Things the Insane Right-Wing Christian Duggar Family Gave Us

By Vyckie Garrison, AlterNet

The Duggars' extreme fundamentalist Christian worldview actually harms families in myriad ways.

NYPD Union President Evokes Fear in Black New Yorkers in Aftermath Police Shootings

By Terrell Jermaine Starr, AlterNet

The gunman acted alone, but an entire community braces for a siege.

WikiLeaks: CIA Knew in 2009 That Drone Strike Program Could Backfire

By Alex Ellefson, AlterNet

Leaked document warned that targeted assassinations could increase popular support for extremist groups.

10 Worst Things Walmart Did in 2014

By Alyssa Figueroa, AlterNet

From illegal discipline to mistreating pregnant workers, the corporation stooped to dismal lows this year.

Paul Krugman Drops a Truth Bomb on America's Warmongers

By Janet Allon, AlterNet

Putin and his admiring American neocons fail to learn that conquest really doesn't pay.

12 Ways People are Being Screwed by the System at Christmas Time

By Paul Buchheit, AlterNet

The 1% should apologize for the harm caused by their greed. That would be a real holiday miracle.

White Liberals Cannot Hide From Racism Any Longer

By Tim Donovan, AlterNet

The last few weeks have revealed that too many white liberals refuse to even question their own assumptions about race and racism in America.

Big Pharma in the Bedroom: Are Drugs That Enhance Sex a Good Thing?

By Martha Rosenberg, AlterNet

There is money to made in sex enhancement drugs, but whether they work is another question.

What I Learned Working as a 'Hooters Girl'

By Claire Burgess, xojane

As so-called "entertainers," we had to chat up customers, which could either be great or horrifying.

New Jersey Man Who Has No Use of His Arms Charged with Gun Possession

By Jen Hayden, Daily Kos

A bit of overreach by Trenton, New Jersey prosecutors.

​The Scoop on the Poop Bus: How Human and Animal Waste Might Fuel Our Future

By Cliff Weathers, AlterNet

Power from poop can be the source of countless jokes, but it can also be a serious source of energy.

An Educator's Wishlist for the New Year

By Laurie Levy, AlterNet

How one long-time educator hopes to change the education landscape in 2015.

8 Reasons Why the US and its Allies Are Responsible for Islamic Extremism

By Lorenzo Estébanez, AlterNet

Violent Islamic extremism used to be a useful tool of Western Imperialism.

Ohio Cops Back into, Then Arrest Woman Who was Protesting Killing of Unarmed Black Man at Walmart

By Scott Kaufman, Raw Story

She was one of four protestors arrested staging a die-in at the Walmart where police fatally shot a black man for holding a toy gun.