Connecticut's Office of The Child Advocate Releases Report on Sandy Hook Shootings "Newtown shooter Adam Lanza was an isolated young man with deteriorating mental health and a fascination for mass violence whose problems were not ignored but misunderstood and mistreated, according to a report released Friday by a Connecticut state agency." [more inside]
Ebola and the Construction of Fear by Karen Sternheimer (Everyday Sociology)
"Sociologist Barry Glassner, author of The Culture of Fear: Why Americans are Afraid of the Wrong Things, explains how misguided panics are not just benign opportunities to prevent something horrible, but can divert attention and public funds away from more likely threats. He notes:[more inside]Panic-driven public spending generates over the long term a pathology akin to one found in drug addicts. The money and attention we fritter away on our compulsions, the less we have available for our real needs, which consequently grow larger (p. xvii).
Brave and afraid and heading down the longest road [Part 1/3] The cars made a wet rushing sound as they swept past him, close enough that he could feel their motion in the air. He was certain if he tried, he could reach out and touch them. Mike Bourne stretched out both arms, fingertips extended. He was walking in the middle of the busy street. The yellow line on the pavement told him where to go. He thought of it as the yellow brick road. It would take him somewhere, he knew, somewhere beautiful. [more inside]
There were a number of notable firsts for women elected to office as early as the late 1800s, and there is a significant history of women running for president and vice president in the United States, but until 1984, no woman had been nominated to as vice president in one of the major parties. 30 years ago, the Democratic presidential candidate Walter Mondale announced Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate, and she accepted the nomination to resounding roar of excitement (another version, on YouTube; transcript). [more inside]
On July 8, the Daily Mississippian published Sierra Mannie's Op-Ed, "Dear white gays", which was then picked up by Time Magazine, and has spurred discussion on whether white gay men are stealing the culture of black women.
FIFA: "The votes have been counted and the winners declared! Congratulations to our 32 winners... The winning slogans will be placed on the respective teams' buses at the 2014 FIFA World Cup! Scroll down to read all the winning entries." - CNN: FIFA's bus slogans cause misery and mirth on social media - and The Guardian asks: "Can you think of better World Cup slogans for the 32 teams? "The England team are not 'the heartbeat of millions', real men do not 'wear orange' and since when did 'heroes play like Greeks'? The World Cup slogans need a rewrite. Can your wit help?"
While CNN is known for its flashy technology displays like holograms of Will.I.Am and its glossy map displays, not everything about the network is so up-to-date: the CNN Interactive: In-Depth Food website appears to have remained unchanged since 2001. via
The University of Southern California's US-China Institute has a huge number of videos on YouTube regarding China, Taiwan, history, global diplomacy, etc. [more inside]
Conflicts of interest in the Syria debate: An analysis of the defense industry ties of experts and think tanks who commented on military intervention
Should viewer discretion be advised for pictures of children with congenital deformities? One Ontario woman doesn't think so: "I am 'deformed' and reading that viewer discretion warning ahead of the article (amounted) to telling me that every time I left the house I should wear a similar warning." [more inside]
Piers Morgan stares his chief critic in the face. Alex Jones [previously] is a controversial radio DJ responsible for, amongst other things, starting a petition to have CNN's Piers Morgan deported for comments critical of the Second Amendment. Jones was invited by Morgan to debate gun rights on Morgan's primetime show. This is what happened.
"Especially with the country in great need of donation, science should speak louder than stigma in determining who can help."
Tainted: Why Gay Men Still Can't Donate Blood - "Since 1983, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines have disqualified men who have ever had sex with men (MSM) from donating blood... Uneven application of exclusion to at-risk individuals suggests that risk aversion disproportionately impacts MSMs. For example, a non-MSM individual who has had sexual contact with a commercial sex worker or HIV-positive partner is deferred for only twelve months... The fact that the U.S. upholds a lifetime ban on MSM donation while Australian policy allows MSM individuals to donate a year or less after contact reveals a glaring discrepancy. Both ethics and science point to a flaw in FDA policy. That I could have had sex with 365 partners this year and be a perfectly fine candidate for donating blood, while the MSM next to me wouldn't qualify, betrays a faulty line of logic." [more inside]
Ever since the first televised general election presidential debate was held on September 26, 1960, between U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy, the Democratic nominee, and Vice President Richard Nixon, the Republican nominee the vast majority of moderators have been men. "Why haven’t women moderated a presidential debate in the past 20 years, especially when women vote more than men?"* [more inside]
"I want to encourage mainstream journalists to speak up when they discover their companies are misleading the people, doing PR for corporations and governments and disguising it as journalism."
Former CNN journalist Amber Lyon is speaking out against the network after it decided for "editorial reasons" not to air its documentary iRevolution on CNN International. Lyon worked on a 13-minute segment interviewing democratic activists in Bahrain, who risked their own safety to be heard. Glenn Greenwald reveals that at the same time, CNN was being paid by the Bahrain Economic Development Board to produce pro-state coverage as part of its "Eye On" series. A senior producer complained to Lyon about the nature of her coverage: "We are dealing with blowback from Bahrain govt on how we violated our mission, etc."
"When Robert Wood Jr. disappeared in a densely forested Virginia park, searchers faced the challenge of a lifetime. The eight-year-old boy was autistic and nonverbal, and from his perspective the largest manhunt in state history probably looked like something else: the ultimate game of hide-and-seek." [more inside]
But it is already too late. CNN has been carefully orchestrating its transformation into a shockingly efficient news distribution company. They have been planning to saturate every screen in reach with this story as fast as possible, and the producer’s initial go-ahead pulled the trigger. On the air, Wolf Blitzer is sending the coverage to the Courthouse steps. And as planned the reporter is putting her phone down to go on the air, which cuts herself off from the only CNN employee with access to the opinion. We’re getting wildly differing assessments: SCOTUSblog compiles first-hand accounts of the minutes between 10:06 and 10:15am on June 28, when CNN and FOX misreported and retracted that the mandate had been struck down.
Al Jazeera: 'US admits ops in Yemen and Somalia: White House formally acknowledges "direct action", believed to mean drone strikes, against al-Qaeda and its affiliates.' [more inside]
Online articles often change after publication, except there is no history tab and sometimes those revisions are controversial, for example this Politico story on General Stanley McChrystal. Enter NewsDiff: Tracking Online News Articles Over Time. It allows you to compare evolving versions of online news articles after they are published, starting with The New York Times and CNN. Here are some example diffs - see anything controversial? Last year, Times executive editor Jill Abramson called the idea "unrealistic" in response to an OpEd calling for diffs. (via)
Are jobs obsolete? - op-ed by Douglas Rushkoff. "The question we have to begin to ask ourselves is not how do we employ all the people who are rendered obsolete by technology, but how can we organize a society around something other than employment? Might the spirit of enterprise we currently associate with 'career' be shifted to something entirely more collaborative, purposeful, and even meaningful?" [more inside]
The Outer Limits episode, The Architects of Fear is built around faking an alien invasion in order to stop nuclear armageddon. In a recent interview, Paul Krugman of the New York Times proposed a fake alien invasion to stimulate the economy.
With East Africa facing its worst drought in 60 years, affecting more than 11 million people, the United Nations has declared a famine in the region for the first time in a generation. Alan Taylor's In Focus quickly brings home the scale of the suffering, with a link to the CNN article listing several ways to donate.
Tomorrow, closing arguments are scheduled for 9:00 a.m. (Eastern) in the Casey Anthony trial. Since 2008, the case of the young mother accused of killing her toddler daughter, Caylee, has captivated the U.S. Deemed by some to be the 'social media trial of the century,' the capital murder case is based entirely on circumstantial evidence. Tomorrow's hearing is being broadcast on cable station CNN Headline News and streamed live online.
"Americans maximize their... [happiness] by working, and Europeans maximize their [happiness] through leisure,"
Why America is the 'no vacation nation'. (CNN) -- Let's be blunt: If you like to take lots of vacation, the United States is not the place to work.
Cost Of A Slave At Historic Low Price - 90 Dollars SLYT. I don't know what to say.
Now in its fourth year, CNN Heroes highlights and rewards "Everyday People Changing the World." This year's Hero of the Year (chosen by public poll) is Anuradha Koirala, whose group Maiti Nepal has rescued more than 12,000 women and girls from sex slavery along the India / Nepal border since 1993. [more inside]
Salon.com's War Room is listing the worst columnists and cable news commentators America has to offer. The Hack 30 presents thirty of the most predictable, dishonest and just plain stupid pundits in the American media. Notables so far include: David Brooks Tucker Carlson Howard Kurtz and Bill Kristol.
James O'Keefe, the right-wing activist whose previous escapades include fraudulently posing as a pimp to facilitate the shutdown of ACORN and getting arrested for allegedly trying to phone tap a Senator's office, has apparently been caught in the setup of yet another scam expose. According to forwarded emails and testimony from a would-be accomplice, O'Keefe had created a plan to lure CNN correspondent Abbie Boudreau "onto a boat filled with sexually explicit props and then record the session."
Katrina: Then and Now. Comparing scenes of devastation after Hurricane Katrina struck 5 years ago and what they look like now.
"Israel is our only hope as the post-American president is aiding and abetting a nuclear Iran. Barack Obama is enabling Iran’s Islamic bomb" - Pamela Geller
As the "ground zero mosque" story approaches bipartisan consensus, thanks to unexpected statements by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (joining a growing opposition), several journalists trace the origins of how the Park 51 community center became(warning: CNN) a toxic subject. What they found was Pamela Geller, a blogger at Atlas Shrugs, who has some very interesting vlogs. You may previously know her from this cozy 2006 interview with Bush's infamous anti-UN UN ambassador John Bolton.
Anderson Cooper attempts to reason with the wild-eyed Debbie Riddle, a Texas State Representative who wants to save the US from bomb-throwing "anchor babies".
Daniel Schorr is dead at 93. Schorr began a career in journalism which spanned more than six decades at 12 years old, when he wrote a story for the Bronx Home News about a suicide. A woman had jumped from the roof of his building, he phoned the police and then wrote and article about the event, for which he was paid $5. After serving in military intelligence during World War II, he worked as a foreign correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor and the New York Times before joining CBS in 1953 as one of the legendary "Murrow Boys". [more inside]
Octavia Nasr Canned at CNN. CNN's Chief Middle East correspondent for 20 years, Octavia Nasr tweeted “Sad to hear of the passing of Sayyed Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah... One of Hezbollah’s giants I respect a lot.” She was fired by CNN shortly afterward because they believed "her credibility in her position as senior editor for Middle Eastern affairs has been compromised going forward".
CNN.com's 'Home and Away' initiative honors the lives of U.S. and coalition troops who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. The extensive data visualization project tells the story of where and how the lives of these troops began and ended. The project is a sobering look at the human cost of two wars in the Middle East, and as such is restrained with a sober palette of blacks, whites and greys. [via] [more inside]
Being looked upon as feebleminded is something I have been forced to endure my entire life. What an extremely difficult hole to have to climb out of, to fight for your own intelligence.
"She was quirky, the sort who excused herself from a social gathering by saying she had to wash her socks."
"I would have liked to think I'd have gone out with a bit more flair." Margaret Moth, CNN photojournalist, has died of colon cancer at 59. [more inside]
Why Americans Love the Dalai Lama : an insightful piece from CNN preceding his appearance tonight at 9PM EST on Larry King Live. [more inside]
Two separate studies about the children of deployed military personnel with dramatically different conclusions.
A former colonel, and lieutenant colonel team up to show that 56% of kids do well (or even VERY well) when their parents are shipped off to war (again). [more inside]
Fox News is the most trusted news network in the United States, according to a new poll [.pdf] of 1,151 Americans conducted by Public Policy Polling (a polling firm with a mostly Democratic and progressive list of clients), the most trusted news network among Americans is FOX News, which was trusted by 49% of respondents (beating out CNN, MS-NBC, CBS, NBC, and ABC (though PBS was not included in the survey)). The pollsters conclude: “A generation ago you would have expected Americans to place their trust in the most neutral and unbiased conveyors of news,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. “But the media landscape has really changed and now they’re turning more toward the outlets that tell them what they want to hear.”
Is aviation security mostly for show? An essay by Bruce Schneier.
Perhaps it was bound to happen eventually, but it seems Michael Jackson's ghost is already haunting the halls of Neverland Ranch. Whether or not the spirt was moonwalking is currently inconclusive. [more inside]
Leah Ward Sears, former Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court, on the destruction of fatherhood in Western society. This may sound like heresy, but I believe the United States and a host of Western democracies are engaged in an unintended campaign to diminish the importance of marriage and fatherhood. By refusing to do everything we can to stem the rising rate of divorce and unwed childbearing, our country often isolates fathers (and sometimes mothers) from their children and their families.
Dear Israel: you picked wrong boat to mess with. Israeli patrol boats have rammed into and nearly capsized a relief vesssel sailing in international waters, bearing humanitarian medical aid to Gaza. Accompanying the international doctors and aid workers who comprised the heart of the mssion were several politicians, including former US congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, as well as several international journalists, such as Karl Penhaul of CNN and Othman Abu Battiri of Al Jazeera, who have used mobile video reporting to refute Israel's claims that the damage was somehow caused by those leading the relief mission. Shades of the USS Liberty... or Whale Wars?
The jedi council may have to wait a few more years to incorporate holograms for absentee members.
The self-proclaimed "most trusted name in news", CNN, has launched its beta t-shirt store. Finally, for $15 plus shipping and tax you can buy direct from CNN branded t-shirts with such wonderful headlines as: "Dad mistakes son for prey, shoots" and "Free prom dresses honor girl's memory." If that's not enough, yes, you can share your new purchase on Facebook, and grab your 15 minutes of fame by posting pictures of yourself in your newly acquired apparel on CNN's quasi-news ireport system (link not yet live, but I'm waiting with much anticipation). [more inside]