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marmar

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit, MI
Member since: Fri Oct 29, 2004, 12:18 AM
Number of posts: 74,622

Journal Archives

Jeff Seidel: Dearborn couple says Lance Armstrong admitted using drugs


from the Detroit Free Press:



Betsy Andreu, who lives in Dearborn, claimed for years that she heard champion cyclist Lance Armstrong admit to using performance-enhancing drugs.

Betsy's husband, Frankie Andreu, was a member of Armstrong's cycling team and one of Armstrong's best friends. Armstrong and Frankie even lived together for a time.

Andreu and her husband say they were in a hospital with Armstrong in 1996 when they heard him telling doctors he used performance enhancers.

The couple gave depositions about Armstrong and paid a price. Frankie lost his job, Betsy said. ..............(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.freep.com/article/20120825/COL38/308250057/Once-good-friends-with-Lance-Armstrong-Dearborn-couple-says-he-admitted-using-drugs?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE



Jeff Seidel: Dearborn couple says Lance Armstrong admitted using drugs


from the Detroit Free Press:



Betsy Andreu, who lives in Dearborn, claimed for years that she heard champion cyclist Lance Armstrong admit to using performance-enhancing drugs.

Betsy's husband, Frankie Andreu, was a member of Armstrong's cycling team and one of Armstrong's best friends. Armstrong and Frankie even lived together for a time.

Andreu and her husband say they were in a hospital with Armstrong in 1996 when they heard him telling doctors he used performance enhancers.

The couple gave depositions about Armstrong and paid a price. Frankie lost his job, Betsy said. ..............(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.freep.com/article/20120825/COL38/308250057/Once-good-friends-with-Lance-Armstrong-Dearborn-couple-says-he-admitted-using-drugs?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE



Colleges Ship Freshmen to Paris to Boost Tuition Coffers


(Bloomberg) U.S. colleges including New York University and Northeastern University are pushing freshmen into study-abroad programs -- before the students even set foot on campus -- to enroll larger classes and get more tuition dollars.

NYU and Boston-based Northeastern, which both charge more than $50,000 a year to attend, make some freshmen spend the first semester or two abroad. They then use the students and their tuitions to fill the beds of midyear dropouts and upper classmen heading overseas. While some students find the opportunity rewarding, others are disoriented at not starting off with their class or having a choice.

“Most students are not going to accept this right off the bat,” said Bev Taylor, a New York-based college admission consultant. “What they envisioned was graduating, going to college and being enmeshed in college life.”

While foreign study has been a hallmark of junior year, many freshmen respond to strings-attached acceptances with disappointment and concern, Taylor said. Students often find themselves paying travel costs atop already hefty tuitions. ...............(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-08-24/colleges-ship-freshmen-to-paris-to-boost-tuition-coffers.html



Guardian UK: Radical right threatens to blow Mitt Romney off course as Republicans gather in Tampa



Radical right threatens to blow Mitt Romney off course as Republicans gather in Tampa
Mitt Romney wants his party convention to attract moderates, but a show of strength by the Tea Party puts that hope at risk

Paul Harris in Tampa, Florida
guardian.co.uk, Saturday 25 August 2012 07.22 EDT


Some of them believe Barack Obama was born in Kenya. Others want to force raped women who become pregnant to have their child. There are those who vilify Obama as a socialist and want to do away with most of the federal government. A fair few doubt the theory of evolution or hold that gays can be "cured".

As Mitt Romney arrives at the Republican national convention in Tampa, Florida, where he will be nominated to run for president, he faces the difficult task of dealing with a party base that has become one of the most radical in recent American history.

Convulsed by the rise of the anti-government Tea Party and dominated by socially conservative Christians, the Republican party has continued to move right in recent years. That means the carefully laid plans for a Tampa convention aimed at introducing a voter-friendly version of Romney could easily be upset by the party's more extreme elements.

"They don't want anyone to look behind the curtain," said Professor Shaun Bowler, a political scientist at the University of California, Riverside. "You want the party base to turn up, give money and keep quiet. But it is hard to keep them quiet." However, the curtain has already been lifted to some degree. ..................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/aug/25/republican-convention-romney-radical-right



Dutch Socialists sense victory is near


from the WaPo:



By Matt Steinglass, Published: August 23


AMSTERDAM — “People used to call us dirty communists,” says Filinta Karabulut, a 20-year-old member of the Socialist Party in Diemen, a working-class suburb of Amsterdam. “Now they come up to us and say we’re doing good work.”

This sea change in the Dutch mood experienced by Karabulut comes after 18 months of conservative government, with austerity policies and the euro-zone crisis driving widespread disaffection.

The Socialist Party’s supporters can taste victory amid the newfound respect. The most left-wing of the Netherlands’ mainstream parties, a group descended from 1970s Maoists, is poised to become the largest in parliament in elections next month.

A win by the Socialist Party and its leader, Emile Roemer, on Sept. 12 could mean a dramatic reversal for a country that has been one of the strongest advocates of austerity policies throughout the euro-zone crisis. If the party takes the Netherlands out of the German-led camp of countries pressing for stricter E.U. budgetary supervision in exchange for euro-zone rescue measures, it could shift the balance of power in Europe as a whole. ..................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/dutch-socialists-sense-victory-is-near/2012/08/23/701630ee-ed43-11e1-b09d-07d971dee30a_story.html



Greg Palast: How Voter Suppression Could Swing the Election


from YES! Magazine:



How Voter Suppression Could Swing the Election
It won’t be easy to protect our votes from being sidelined and stolen this year, but here are a few simple things we can do.

by Greg Palast
posted Aug 24, 2012


In more than 100 years, there has not been a single case of voter identity fraud in the state of Indiana. Yet, in 2008, 145,000 legitimate voters there were turned away from the polls because they could not produce the photo IDs acceptable to state officials on a crusade against “voter fraud.”

Approximately two out of three of those voters were black. Ten of them were black and white (nuns from the Sisters of the Holy Cross). One nun, aged 98, had given up her driver’s license as had her “younger” sisters.

Now, 16 states have passed voter ID laws similar to Indiana’s. The story is that legislators are trying to stop an epidemic of people voting under false names or casting the ballots of dead people. But nobody’s come up with more than a tiny handful of cases where that’s happened. Taking away the votes of hundreds of thousands of people to stop one or two fake votes is like killing a flea with a shotgun.

Moreover, no fewer than 68,029 Indiana citizens, and 488,136 voters nationwide, had their absentee ballots thrown out on nutty technicalities like using the wrong size envelope or crossing out a bubble instead of filling it in. ................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/its-your-body/how-voter-suppression-could-swing-the-election



The Human Cost of War on Iran


from Consortium News:



The Human Cost of War on Iran
August 23, 2012

Exclusive: As Israel threatens to bomb Iran, U.S. pundits are again pontificating about the necessity of war and opining about military tactics. Left out of their frame is the certainty of mass human suffering, a reality forgotten since the days of the Vietnam War, says former U.S. intelligence analyst Elizabeth Murray.

By Elizabeth Murray


In late 2002, just prior to the launch of the U.S. “shock and awe” campaign against Iraq, I was invited to join a gathering of intelligence analysts at the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, to participate in an Iraq “war games” exercise. We were assigned specific roles and asked to “play out” various political and diplomatic scenarios that might unfold in the wake of a U.S. attack on Iraq.

A tall, heavy-set Iraqi-American, who was present as an observer and seated beside me on the final day, remarked quietly: “All these people are talking about strategic, political and military issues; no one here is talking about the hundreds of thousands of people — my people — that are going to die.”

His words struck me as profoundly tragic, and the tears welling up behind his dark glasses made me feel suddenly ashamed to be there, aware of the complete absence of consideration for Iraqis. I struggled to find something to say that would console the man, but found myself at a loss.

All these years later, that incident has come back to haunt me as we approach the precipice of yet another deadly war. Will we allow ourselves to be blinded again? ................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://consortiumnews.com/2012/08/23/the-human-cost-of-war-on-iran/



The bizarre, unhealthy, blinding media contempt for Julian Assange



The bizarre, unhealthy, blinding media contempt for Julian Assange
It is possible to protect the rights of the complainants in Sweden and Assange's rights against political persecution, but a vindictive thirst for vengeance is preventing that

Glenn Greenwald
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 22 August 2012


Earlier this week, British lawyer and legal correspondent for the New Statesman David Allen Green generated a fair amount of attention by announcing that he would use his objective legal expertise to bust what he called "legal myths about the Assange extradition." These myths, he said, are being irresponsibly spread by Assange defenders and "are like 'zombie facts' which stagger on even when shot down."

In addition to his other credentials, Green – like virtually the entire British press – is a long-time and deeply devoted Assange-basher, and his purported myth-busting was predictably regurgitated by those who reflexively grasp onto anything that reflects poorly on western establishmentarians' public enemy No1. It's really worth examining what Green argued to understand the behavior in which Assange detractors engage to advance this collective vendetta, and also to see how frequently blatant ideological agendas masquerade as high-minded, objective legal expertise.

But before getting to that, let us pause to reflect on a truly amazing and revealing fact, one that calls for formal study in several academic fields of discipline. Is it not remarkable that one of the very few individuals over the past decade to risk his welfare, liberty and even life to meaningfully challenge the secrecy regime on which the American national security state (and those of its obedient allies) depends just so happens to have become – long before he sought asylum from Ecuador – the most intensely and personally despised figure among the American and British media class and the British "liberal" intelligentsia?

In 2008 – two years before the release of the "collateral murder" video, the Iraq and Afghanistan war logs, and the diplomatic cables – the Pentagon prepared a secret report which proclaimed WikiLeaks to be an enemy of the state and plotted ways to destroy its credibility and reputation. But in a stroke of amazing luck, Pentagon operatives never needed to do any of that, because the establishment media in the US and Britain harbor at least as much intense personal loathing for the group's founder as the US government does, and eagerly took the lead in targeting him. Many people like to posit the US national security state and western media outlets as adversarial forces, but here – as is so often the case – they have so harmoniously joined in common cause. .................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/aug/22/julian-assange-media-contempt



David Sirota: From Greenwashing to Workerwashing


from truthdig:


From Greenwashing to Workerwashing

Posted on Aug 24, 2012
By David Sirota


Big Industrial Ag pretends to go organic. PC behemoths mimic Apple products. Barack Obama goes to the right of the Republicans on civil liberties. Mitt Romney suddenly portrays himself as a left-leaning moderate on immigration. It seems no matter the arena, the most cliched move in corporate and political combat is to co-opt an opponent’s message, expecting nobody to notice or care.

But as inured as we are to this banality, it’s still shocking to see Corporate America transform the message of organized labor into a sales pitch for ... Corporate America. Yes, according to The New York Times last month, that’s what’s happening, as new ads are “tapping into a sense of frustration among workers to sell products.”

One spot for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (read: the casinos) shows a woman climbing onto her desk to demand a vacation. Another for McDonald’s implores us to fight back against employers and “overthrow the working lunch.” Still another for a Coca-Cola subsidiary seizes on the stress of harsh working conditions to create buzz for a branded “Take the Year Off” contest.

“Marketers are adopting the theme of workers’ rights at a time when unions themselves are confronting declines in membership and influence,” notes the Times. “In effect, some labor experts say, they are turning a pro-worker theme on its head to serve the corporate interest.” ......................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/from_greenwashing_to_workerwashing_20120824/



American, JetBlue, Southwest, United Airlines Shrink Legroom on Planes





American, JetBlue, Southwest, United Airlines Shrink Legroom on Planes

Books & Review | Cole Garner Hill
Updated: Aug 23, 2012 11:30 AM EDT


Fuel prices are rising once again. So, prepare to get to know the guy who smells like Axe body-spray in 3A a whole lot better. Airlines are shrinking legroom on planes across the board.

Everyone from American, to JetBlue, Southwest, and United are looking for creative ways to save money and increase revenue beyond fare increases, and charging add-on fees. Many airlines are adding seats and decreasing legroom in the economy section by reducing seat pitch - the amount space from one point on the seat to the same point on the row ahead - swapping out thicker seat cushions for thinner ones or installing new seat architecture.

.....(snip).....

Southwest Airlines:

Southwest began retrofitting its fleet with a new interior in March. Seats are now six pounds lighter than previous models with thinner cushions. In a blog post on Southwest's website, the airline admits this allows them to increase the number of seats on board from 137 to 143 on some aircraft. It claims that seat comfort and space isn't sacrificed, but hey, you do that math and see if that means less space.

JetBlue:

JetBlue announced this month that the company has added enhanced legroom seats, dubbed Even More Space, to its fleet of Embraer 190 aircraft. Of course, this has come at the expense of a tighter seat pitch for those seated further back in the coach cabin. ..................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.booksnreview.com/articles/780/20120823/american-jetblue-southwest-united-airlines-shrink-legroom-on-planes.htm



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