Articles of Interest
By DAVID JOLLY
PARIS — The European Commission will enact a two-year ban on a class of pesticides thought to be harming global bee populations, the European Union’s health commissioner said Monday.
“I pledge to do my utmost to ensure that our bees, which are so vital to our ecosystem and contribute over €22 billion annually to European agriculture, are protected,” Tonio Borg said in a statement from Brussels, where the commission is based.Read more »
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By Robert Parry, Consortium News
The U.S. news media was never "liberal." At most, you could say there were periods in the not-too-distant past when the major newspapers did a better job of getting the facts straight. There also was an "underground" press which published some scoops that the mainstream media avoided.Read more »
By PAUL KRUGMAN
Those of us who have spent years arguing against premature fiscal austerity have just had a good two weeks. Academic studies that supposedly justified austerity have lost credibility; hard-liners in the European Commission and elsewhere have softened their rhetoric. The tone of the conversation has definitely changed.
My sense, however, is that many people still don’t understand what this is all about. So this seems like a good time to offer a sort of refresher on the nature of our economic woes, and why this remains a very bad time for spending cuts.Read more »
By Ashley Curtin
While pesticide residue is continuously detected in conventional-grown produce, the Environmental Working Group recently revealed The Clean Fifteen for 2013. The study determined 15 fruits and vegetables that were the “least likely to test positive for pesticide residue,” according to the EWG’s website, to help consumers confidently purchase healthier food.Read more »
SENATORS say they fear the N.R.A. and the gun lobby. But I think that fear must be nothing compared to the fear the first graders in Sandy Hook Elementary School felt as their lives ended in a hail of bullets. The fear that those children who survived the massacre must feel every time they remember their teachers stacking them into closets and bathrooms, whispering that they loved them, so that love would be the last thing the students heard if the gunman found them.Read more »
By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
For 45 senators, the carnage at Sandy Hook Elementary School is a forgotten tragedy. The toll of 270 Americans who are shot every day is not a problem requiring action. The easy access to guns on the Internet, and the inevitability of the next massacre, is not worth preventing.Read more »
By David Biello, Scientific American
The Keystone XL Pipeline would move enough tar sands oil to result in another 181 million metric tons of greenhouse gases entering the atmosphere yearly. A new report prepared by environmental group Oil Change International (OCI) analyzes what the climate change impacts of the proposed pipeline might be.Read more »
By Joseph E. Stiglitz, The New York Times
LEONA HELMSLEY, the hotel chain executive who was convicted of federal tax evasion in 1989, was notorious for, among other things, reportedly having said that "only the little people pay taxes."
As a statement of principle, the quotation may well have earned Mrs. Helmsley, who died in 2007, the title Queen of Mean. But as a prediction about the fairness of American tax policy, Mrs. Helmsley's remark might actually have been prescient.Read more »
As the world burns, a new movement to reverse climate change is emerging - fiercely, loudly and right next door
by BILL MCKIBBEN
It got so hot in Australia in January that the weather service had to add two new colors to its charts. A few weeks later, at the other end of the planet, new data from the CryoSat-2 satellite showed 80 percent of Arctic sea ice has disappeared. We're not breaking records anymore; we're breaking the planet. In 50 years, no one will care about the fiscal cliff or the Euro crisis. They'll just ask, "So the Arctic melted, and then what did you do?"Read more »