(photo: Wikimedia)

The coffee’s freshly ground, there’s a wide variety of teas and the sticky buns are homemade.

  • “Party leaders in Greece’s ruling coalition have ended talks on backing a proposed 130bn euros ($171bn; £108bn) EU rescue plan without agreement. Prime Minister Lucas Papademos was seeking the three party chiefs’ support for reforms demanded by the IMF and EU as a condition of the bailout.”
  • “You have heard, perhaps, that rich people in America are egregiously overtaxed. And the poor? They’re the lucky duckies! Why, 47 percent of Americans pay no taxes at all! (This is not true, of course. Many poor and elderly Americans pay no federal income tax, but they pay plenty of other taxes.)”
  • “A US trade adviser appointed by Barack Obama orchestrated a deal to buy gold worth millions of dollars from a wanted Congolese warlord, according to a UN report. Kase Lawal, a Nigerian-born US oil tycoon, transferred millions of dollars to the notorious rebel leader Bosco Ntaganda between December 2010 and February 2011 as part of the deal, the report by the UN’s Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) states.”
  • “By the time she was 22, Shukofar had suffered nine miscarriages. She carried the babies until about six months, before losing them all. Poor, uneducated and lacking access to proper medical care, she turned to the fix-all panacea in rural Afghanistan: opium. Smoking the drug, she was told, would keep her calm, stop any bleeding and allow her to carry to full term. By the time she eventually gave birth to her first son, Shukofar was an addict.”
  • “Egyptian officials say 43 NGO workers, including 19 Americans, have been referred for trial for alleged involvement in banned activity and illegally receiving foreign funds. The decision on Sunday by investigating judges is likely to further sour relations between Egypt’s military rulers and the US, the Arab nation’s chief western backer for more than 30 years….The Americans include Sam LaHood, the head of the Egypt office of the Washington-based International Republican Institute and the son of US transportation secretary, Ray LaHood.”
  • “US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has described as a ‘travesty’ Russia and China’s veto of a UN resolution condemning Syria’s crackdown against anti-government protesters. Speaking in Bulgaria, Mrs Clinton said efforts outside the world body to help Syria’s people should be redoubled.”
  • “If Israel really attacks Iran this year, it – and the Americans – will be more dotty than their enemies think. True, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a crackpot, but then so is Avigdor Lieberman, who is apparently the Israeli Foreign Minister. Maybe the two want to do each other a favour. But why on earth would the Israelis want to bomb Iran and thus bring down on their heads the fury of both the Lebanese Hezbollah and Hamas at the very same moment? Along with Syria, no doubt. Not to mention sucking the West – Europe and the US – into the same shooting match.”
  • Politico: Lost Malcolm X speech discovered

From Real News:

  • Doha Debates: Is Turkey a Bad Model for the New Arab States? The Doha Debates takes on one possible model for Arab states” (48 minutes)
  • Prof Richard Wolff’s weekly radio broadcast on WBAI New York, Economic Update. It’s fundraising time at WBAI so Prof Wolff gives us shorter discussions with pitches in between. Hey, it’s community radio. Send ‘em some dust. Scroll down to Saturday, 4 Feb at 12:00pm.

The truth will set you free but first it will piss you off.