Oxdown Diaries

Over Easy: Can You Hear Me Now?

By: Friday November 21, 2014 5:39 pm

Big technology companies like Amazon, Apple and Google are introducing new products that offer consumers the opportunity to exchange personal information for access to convenient services — and we’re increasingly choosing the services, somewhat oblivious to the effects on our privacy. Tiny computers, controlled by our voices, have become a reality, but many of us are unaware of how we open ourselves up to the world when we use them.

Our devices are listening to us all the time — but do we care?

Chances Are the FBI Has Files on Your Favorite Human Rights Activist

By: Friday November 21, 2014 4:25 pm

Yale University American historian Beverly Gage was sifting through the US National Archives in the summer of 2014, doing research for a book on J. Edgar Hoover, when she came across a letter historians had been searching for for many a decade. Written from the perspective of an imaginary yet disappointed admirer of Martin Luther King, Jr., the missive encouraged the leading civil rights, anti-war, and socialist activist to kill himself.

“There is only one thing left for you to do,” the anonymous author warned, “before your filthy, abnormal fraudulent self is bared to the nation.” “You know what it is.”

Late Night: Ferguson: Tearing the Band-Aid Off Racism and the Police State; GJ Announcement to Come Soon?

By: Thursday November 20, 2014 8:00 pm

How many in this nation are courageous enough even to face the truth, much less protest it, or join in solidarity with all the oppressed who are denied justice in Ferguson, and all the other Fergusons across the land? Are you and they…willing to imagine being in the black underclass, living in a place where dissent has been deemed ‘terrorism’, or that municipal courts use trumped up charges and fines as a way to fill their coffers.

A Quick Whirl Around The Fracking World: 20 Nov 2014

By: Thursday November 20, 2014 6:12 pm

*USA. “A two-year Senate investigation of the financial sector has found that banks can meddle with the economy in new and frightening ways”. Deregulation resulted in banks buying commodities, owning mines, a “fleet of 100 oil tankers”, “31 power plants” and more.

Albert Woodfox’s Overturned Conviction Upheld in Unanimous Fifth Circuit Decision

By: Thursday November 20, 2014 5:18 pm

This is THE moment those of us whose lives have been touched by these men and this case over the years have been waiting for. This is the time when we must call upon the whole of our connections, creativity, and courage to call with one voice for the immediate, unequivocal release of Albert Woodfox from prison once and for all without delay.

Late Night: Some of Us Still Remember . . .

By: Wednesday November 19, 2014 8:00 pm

The current president knows damn well that the “conservative” agenda is repulsive, that it is malevolent, that it is fascist to the core. That brutal reality cannot be concealed no matter how many times it is portrayed as “free market capitalism” on Fox News, no matter how many times it is glorified as “liberty” on rightwing hate radio, no matter how many times the corporate media tries to sanitize it.

The “midterm elections” are over, and we’ve seen once again that Democrats are incapable of telling the truth about any of this, they are complicit in it, and their token and temporary resistance to the relentless “conservative” assault on democracy has no meaning or value whatsoever.

Gulf-Bound Tar Sands for Export? Follow the Oiltanking Trail

By: Wednesday November 19, 2014 5:52 pm

The U.S. Senate failed to get the necessary 60 votes to approve the northern leg of TransCanada‘s KeystoneXL pipeline, but incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) already promised it will get another vote when the GOP-dominated Senate begins its new session in 2015.

Though the bill failed, one of the key narratives that arose during the congressional debate was the topic of whether or not the tar sands product that may flow through it will ultimately be exported to the global market.

Where To, What Next

By: Wednesday November 19, 2014 4:46 pm

So I got evicted today.

There was a small part of me that knew it was coming, having been down this road many times before, just not in the last 12 years. In the courtroom last week, and in the hallway today, listening to people trying to negotiate more time to move their lives and families, was a study in heartbreak.

Cultivating Climate Justice: Brazilian Workers Leading the Charge Toward Zero Waste

By: Tuesday November 18, 2014 6:52 pm

The streets of Belo Horizonte were filled with singing, dancing, chanting, and marching. It was not a holiday or an election day or a soccer game. The chant was: “We don’t want incineration! Recycle! Recycle!” (See this video)

It was September 19, 2014, and this was the launch of a national Zero Waste Alliance, Brazil style. Exuberant, celebratory, and led by recycling workers.

The recycling workers of Brazil have long been a powerful force in protecting their communities and the climate. Now they are on the forefront of a nationwide movement for zero waste.

Mining The Earth: 18 Nov 2014

By: Tuesday November 18, 2014 3:23 pm

*US. National Public Radio and Mine Safety and Health News: “thousands of mine operators fail to pay safety penalties . . . [most of which] are between two and 10 years overdue . . .. [F]ederal regulators seem unable or unwilling to make mine owners pay.” $70 million in delinquent penalties owed by 2700 mining companies to date, 130,000 additional violations among delinquent mines, and many other findings.

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