Daily Archives: November 21, 2020

2020-11-21: News Headlines

Susan Jaffe (2020-11-21). [World Report] US Supreme Court poised to keep the Affordable Care Act. thelancet.com A lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act may be floundering after Supreme Court justices questioned why the law should be dismantled. Susan Jaffe reports from Washington, DC.

_____ (2020-11-21). New York Times Job Listing Shows How Western Propaganda Operates. strategic-culture.org Caitlin JOHNSTONE | People who are only just beginning to research what's wrong with the world often hold an assumption that mainstream news reporters are just knowingly propagandizing people all the time. That they sit around scheming up ways to deceive their audiences into supporting war, oligarchy and oppression for the benefit of their plutocratic masters. | Once you've learned a bit more you realize it's not quite happening that way. Most mainstream news reporters are not really witting propagandists—those are to be found more in plutocrat-funded think tanks and other narrative management firms, and in…

_____ (2020-11-21). Over 100 Rebellions In Jails And Prisons Over COVID19 Conditions. popularresistance.org U.S jails and prisons, already death traps, have been completely ravaged by COVID-19. Crowded quarters, a lack of PPE, inadequate medical care, an aging population, and unsanitary conditions have contributed to an infection rate 5.5 times higher than the already ballooned average in the U.S. As of this writing, over 252,000 people in jails and prisons have been infected and at least 1,450 incarcerated people and officers have died from the novel coronavirus. Evidence suggests these figures are underreported, however.

Peoples Dispatch (2020-11-21). Human rights organizations condemn arrest of Egyptian activists. peoplesdispatch.org Three functionaries of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, Gasser Abdel-Razek, Karim Ennarah and Mohammed Basheer, have been arrested over the past week. They have been sent into pre-trial detention…

Staff (2020-11-20). "A Huge Blow to Civil Society": Egypt Arrests Leading Human Rights Monitors in Latest Crackdown. democracynow.org In Egypt, the executive director of the country's leading human rights group has been arrested as part of an unprecedented crackdown on activists and journalists. Gasser Abdel-Razek was arrested at his home just days after two other staffers for the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights were also arrested. The move signals a major escalation of repression from the government of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who has imprisoned thousands of people since he came to power after the 2013 overthrow of former President Mohamed Morsi. "These arrests are a huge blow to civil society in Egypt," says Sharif Abdel Kouddo…

A Guest Author (2020-11-20). 'Accelerate our efforts' to free Mumia. workers.org By Angela Davis Professor Angela Davis, herself once a political prisoner, is a founding member of Critical Resistance, a national organization dedicated to dismantling the prison industrial complex. On Nov. 16, Davis delivered the following remarks during the virtual press conference "Freedom & Abolition: A critical moment in the fight . . . |

Sheren Khalel (2020-11-20). 'The French government has no right': CAIR slams Macron's 'ultimatum' to Muslims. middleeasteye.net 'The French government has no right': CAIR slams Macron's 'ultimatum' to Muslims | Muslim-American civil rights group labels French president's order to establish 'National Council of Imams' under government parameters 'hypocritical and dangerous' | Fri, 11/20/2020 – 19: 58 | "> | The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) condemned French President Emmanuel Macro…

MEE staff (2020-11-20). UN experts warn 50 people face possible executions in Iraq after unfair trials. middleeasteye.net UN experts warn 50 people face possible executions in Iraq after unfair trials | After 21 executions this week, UN experts urge Baghdad to halt mass capital punishment | Fri, 11/20/2020 – 22: 08 | Statement by UN experts notes there are currently about 4,000 prisoners slated for execution (AFP/File photo) | UN human rights experts have said 50 Iraqi prisoners face possible execution next week following convict…

MEE staff (2020-11-20). US senators urge Egypt to take action in case of detained Christian activist. middleeasteye.net US senators urge Egypt to take action in case of detained Christian activist | Legislators ask Cairo to allow fair trial for Ramy Kamel or drop charges and release him | Fri, 11/20/2020 – 19: 02 | Ramy Kamel is prominent Coptic Christian activist and founder of rights group Maspero Youth Union (Twitter) | A pair of bipartisan senators called on the Egyptian government to take action in the case of an imprisone…

Betsey Piette (2020-11-20). Pennsylvania prisons: Breeding grounds for coronavirus. workers.org Philadelphia When the coronavirus first became a global pandemic in the spring of 2020, there were widespread demands, met with promises from state officials, to release particularly vulnerable incarcerated workers. Some states and municipalities did release people, but never in the numbers the situation warranted. In April, protesters in Philadelphia . . . |

Karl Grossman (2020-11-20). BNL lawsuit and the impacts of national nuclear laboratory. nationofchange.org Brookhaven National Laboratory "continues to show almost no regard for its neighbors…Is this any way for a government-funded agency to treat its neighbors?"

commondreams (2020-11-20). Black Lives Matter D.C. v. Trump Must Proceed, Defendants Need to Be Held Accountable. commondreams.org ______________________________…

Common Cause (2020-11-20). Thursday 12/3: What's Next for Civil Rights: Democracy in the 117th Congress Town Hall w/ Common Cause. indybay.org Online via Zoom…

_____ (2020-11-20). Dozens File Federal Suit Alleging Chicago Police Abuse This Year. popularresistance.org "The (Chicago Police Department) and other city agencies responded to these demonstrations with brutal, violent, and unconstitutional tactics that are clearly intended to injure, silence and intimidate plaintiffs and other protesters," according to the more than 200-page lawsuit. "These abuse tactics include beating protesters with batons — often striking them in the head; tackling and beating protesters while on the ground; using chemical agents against protesters; falsely arresting protesters; and trapping protesters in enclosed areas."

Staff (2020-11-19). Headlines for November 19, 2020. democracynow.org U.S. COVID-19 Death Toll Passes 250,000; Nearly 1% of U.S. Population Currently Infectious, Pfizer to Seek Emergency Authorization of COVID-19 Vaccine, Touting 95% Efficacy, Lawsuit Alleges Tyson Foods Managers Wagered on Meatpackers' Coronavirus Infection Rate, COVID-19 Surge Overwhelms Hospitals as Healthcare Workers Fall Ill, Biden Says Trump's Refusal to Concede Could Set Back Vaccine Rollout by Months, Arizona Secretary of State Faces Death Threats as Trump Promotes Election Conspiracy Theories, Democratic Congressmembers Reelect Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House, Australian Military Apologizes to Afghan…

MEE staff (2020-11-19). Saudi court sentences Salman al-Odah's brother to five years in prison. middleeasteye.net Saudi court sentences Salman al-Odah's brother to five years in prison | Khaled al-Odah's sentencing comes three and a half years after he was detained for showing solidarity with his brother on social media | Thu, 11/19/2020 – 17: 39 | Khaled al-Odah was also issued a travel ban preventing him from leaving the country (Abdullah Alaoudh/Twitter) | Saudi Arabia sentenced the brother of jailed cleric Salman al-O…

Bryant Arroyo (2020-11-19). COVID-19 protocols: Recipe for disaster in Pennsylvania prisons. workers.org Bryant Arroyo (left) with Joe Piette of WWP Prisoners Solidarity Committee. Incarcerated workers across Pennsylvania are demanding that Department of Corrections Secretary John Wetzel reverse his disastrous decision to begin mass transfers of prisoners at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The following commentary is from jailhouse organizer and environmentalist . . . |

MEE staff (2020-11-19). Amnesty urges G20 leaders to 'stand up for brave activists' jailed in Saudi Arabia. middleeasteye.net Amnesty urges G20 leaders to 'stand up for brave activists' jailed in Saudi Arabia | Women's empowerment features prominently on G20 Agenda, despite several activists languishing in jail or facing trial | Thu, 11/19/2020 – 18: 17 | Protesters gather at Saudi embassy in Washington to remember slain Middle East Eye columnist Jamal Khashoggi (AFP/File photo) | Member states of the Group of 20 (G20) meeting in thi…

Gloria Rubac (2020-11-19). Ramsey Prison terrorizes Texas incarcerated. workers.org Just like in this 1970s Houston Chronicle photo, Texas prisoners still pick cotton with armed guards on horseback overseeing them. Prisoners earn $0.00 an hour. "We're already stressed out because of the virus. We've all had it, and now there are new threats that it's returning. On top of that, . . . |

Tim Wheeler (2020-11-19). Karl Yoneda and Elaine Black—star-crossed lovers in a class war. peoplesworld.org In October 1987, I covered a rally in Washington, D.C., for the People's Daily World celebrating the federal government's apology for the mass incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II. The event, which drew hundreds to the U.S. Capitol steps, was sponsored by the Japanese American Citizens League. Among those who flew into town …

Elise Swain (2020-11-19). Anti-Nuclear Pacifists Get Federal Prison Terms for Nonviolent Protest. zcomm.org The most dedicated peace activists you've never heard of are headed to federal prison amid a deadly pandemic…

Spencer Garcia (2020-11-19). Remembrance, Resilience, and Response: Addressing An Epidemic of Violence Against Trans and Non-Binary People. aclu.org Each year on Nov. 20,

_____ (2020-11-19). Inmate Kitchen Workers Forced To Serve Expired Meat In Prison. popularresistance.org Arizona – Incarcerated people who work in the kitchens at the Eyman, Lewis and Yuma state prisons claim they were forced to serve expired meat to their fellow inmates, resulting in foodborne illnesses. | Several inmates report being diagnosed with H. pylori infections, which they attribute to the food and unsanitary conditions in the kitchens. The inmates say they were subsequently put on antibiotics in recent days and weeks to treat the infections. | KJZZ is not naming the inmates because they fear retaliation for speaking out about the prison conditions.

RT (2020-11-18). Pennsylvania Supreme Court shoots down Trump campaign claims of blocking Philadelphia election observers. rt.com The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has rejected allegations by President Donald Trump's campaign team that election observers in Philadelphia were deprived of "meaningful access" to the polls, overturning a lower court's ruling. | The state's liberal-leaning Supreme Court ruled 5-2 against Trump's lawsuit on Tuesday, rebuffing claims that local election officials barred Republican poll-watchers from standing close enough to the vote-counting process to see what was happening. | "We conclude the [Philadelphia County Board of Elections] did not act contrary to law… during the precanvassing and canvassing proces…

Ralph Nader (2020-11-18). Abdicating to Boeing: An Open Letter to FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson. counterpunch.org November 13, 2020 Stephen Dickson, Administrator Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) U.S. Department of Transportation 800 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20591 Dear Mr. Dickson, It is now abundantly clear that instead of clearing out top Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) operatives who have worked to make the FAA safe for Boeing, you have thrown in your

Staff (2020-11-18). As COVID Deaths Soar, El Paso at Breaking Point with Hospitals & Mobile Morgues Filling Up. 18.224.45.15 Some Republican governors are dropping their resistance to mask mandates, as public health officials in the United States brace for a COVID-19 surge from the Thanksgiving holiday amid already record-high infection rates. However, Republican resistance to other public health safety measures continues as coronavirus cases in Texas reach record highs for a second time during the pandemic. El Paso County, an area along the U.S.-Mexico border where 80% of residents are Latinx, is also facing one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks in the U.S. and now has 10 mobile morgues to hold bodies. Some prisoners are being paid just…

WSWS (2020-11-18). British Medical Journal accuses UK government of the "suppression of science" wsws.org The COVID-19 pandemic and the British ruling class' criminal "herd immunity" response has created a humanitarian disaster.

Eds. (2020-11-18). Tutu, Gandhi, King descendants call for clemency for NYS imprisoned elder activist. mronline.org The Open Letter, coordinated by Fellowship of Reconciliation former Chairperson Matt Meyer, is one of many such efforts throughout the U.S. calling for relief for over-age inmates facing fatal consequences in light of multiple health crises, and throughout the world calling for freedom for all political prisoners.

A Guest Author (2020-11-18). Colin Kaepernick: 'Free Mumia!'. workers.org During a virtual press conference Nov. 16 on the critical juncture in the fight to free political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal, Colin Kaepernick expressed his support. Kaepernick sacrificed his stellar athletic career in 2016 when he began to take a knee in protest against police terror during the playing of the . . . |

Nathaniel Chase (2020-11-18). The white vote for Trump: Is multinational working class solidarity possible? workers.org Why did nearly 73 million people vote for Trump, given his disastrous pandemic response and the economic collapse? The answer, simply put, is racism. In a country built on white supremacy, from slavery and genocide to mass incarceration and imperialist war, it should come as no surprise that a substantial . . . |

a guest author (2020-11-18). A survivor speaks: 'I had to defend myself'. workers.org This is a slightly edited version of a talk given at the webinar "Women and Oppressed Genders: Survival and Resistance" hosted by WWP's Prisoners Solidarity Committee on Sept. 24. Wendy Howard with daughters Bailey (left) and Miranda (right) in front of the office of the Kern County District Attorney. . . . |

MEE staff (2020-11-18). Egypt arrests another rights activist after meeting with Western diplomats. middleeasteye.net Egypt arrests another rights activist after meeting with Western diplomats | Karim Ennarah was detained in the resort town of Dahab in South Sinai while on vacation, EIPR said in a statement | Wed, 11/18/2020 – 20: 05 | Some 60,000 detainees in Egypt are political prisoners, according to an estimate by Human Rights Watch (AFP/File photo) | Egyptian authorities arrested a human rights defender on Wednesday, jus…

Eds. (2020-11-18). Tutu, Nobel laureates, call for clemency for David Gilbert, NYS imprisoned elder activist. mronline.org The Open Letter, coordinated by Fellowship of Reconciliation former Chairperson Matt Meyer, is one of many such efforts throughout the U.S. calling for relief for over-age inmates facing fatal consequences in light of multiple health crises, and throughout the world calling for freedom for all political prisoners.

Laura Flanders (2020-11-18). The Media's Quadrennial Eclipse. counterpunch.org Whatever will he do next? The cable newscasters cry, eager to ply their audiences with more of the drip, drip that keeps advertisers hooked. If you're feeling withdrawal from Disaster Don's tweets, there are pictures of his golf cart and non-news of his non-lawsuits. And Joe, oh Joe, and the next four years. How will

Andrew Emett (2020-11-18). Lawsuit filed against Fort Worth and police officer who killed innocent woman. nationofchange.org "Defendant Dean in his prowl around the backyard of her home caused Atatiana fear and uncertainty. Dean shot Atatiana, causing pain and suffering. Dean failed to render medical aid to Atatiana."

_____ (2020-11-18). Why A 58-day vigil Is Going On Outside The Governor's House. popularresistance.org Demonstrators gathered outside the Executive Mansion on Sunday to demand that Gov. Roy Cooper use his powers of pardon and clemency to protect people who are incarcerated during the pandemic. | Members of Decarcerate Now NC, a coalition of organizations which say they're working to end to mass incarceration, have been holding daily vigils outside the governor's mansion since Election Day and plan to continue through Jan. 1, when Cooper begins his second term. That's a total of 58 days. | "We stand vigil to bring attention to your Administration's ongoing failure to prioritize and appropriately protect Black lives…

Labor Video Project (2020-11-18). "Fed Up" The SF POA Contract, Mayor Breed, Unions, The SFLC & Cops with John Crew. indybay.org Retired attorney John Crew who was ACLU Director of Police Practices talks about the effort by the Mayor of San Francisco London Breed with the leadership of the San Francisco Labor Council leadership to push through a City contract with the San Francisco Police Officers Association SF POA. He discusses the history of the SF POA including his arrest by a past president and the secret negotiations Mayor Breed and DHR Carol Eise has done with SF POA that that they are now trying to release…

_____ (2020-11-18). Hunger Strike Enters Third Week At California's Largest Prison. popularresistance.org In the southern part of California's Central Valley, about halfway between Bakersfield and Fresno, sits Corcoran, California—a small farming town surrounded on all sides by acres of cotton and tomato fields. | Perched at the town's southern tip are two of the state's largest prisons. Together, their denizens make up about 33% of the population of Corcoran. One of the facilities, the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility (CSATF), is the state's single largest, housing 4,481 prisoners, about 130% of its intended capacity.

Meg Sherman (2020-11-18). The Healthcare Multinational Profiting off Fraudulent Detentions. dissidentvoice.org In July 2020, US healthcare multinational UHS Delaware reached a $122million settlement with the US federal government as the result of an investigation by the FBI into fraudulent detentions of psychiatric patients for profit. Following the resolution of the investigation and civil settlement, UHS must retain an independent monitor selected by the Office of Inspector …