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Rigged Election = when the winner is chosen before the vote.

"I had promised Bernie when I took the helm of the Democratic National Committee after the convention that I would get to the bottom of...

Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Untold History of the United States


"Stop treating the symptoms superficially, look for the underlying cause, the patterns. Get at the root. What is really causing the system as a whole to be sick. Understand the deeper causes. We want the country to start thinking about the big questions again. Understanding history is a start." - Peter Kuznick


Sunday, December 23, 2012

NDAA 2013

The amendment — proposed by Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) and Adam Smith (D-Wash.) and passed in the House last Friday afternoon — would effectively nullify the Smith-Mundt Act of 1948, which explicitly forbids information and psychological operations aimed at influencing U.S. public opinion.


Lt. Col. Daniel Davis, who released a highly critical report regarding the distortion of truth by senior military officials in Iraq and Afghanistan, dedicated a section of his report to Information Operations (IO) and states that after Desert Storm the military wanted to transform IO "into a core military competency on a par with air, ground, maritime and special operations."

Davis defines IO as "the integrated employment of electronic warfare (EW), computer network operations (CNO), psychological operations (PSYOP), military deception (MILDEC), and operations security (OPSEC), in concert with specified supporting and related capabilities, to influence, disrupt, corrupt or usurp adversarial human and automated decision making while protecting our own."
IO are primarily used to target foreign audiences, but Davis cites numerous senior leaders who want to "protect a key friendly center of gravity, to wit US national will" by repealing the Smith-Mundt Act to allow the direct deployment of these tactics on the American public.


Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/ndaa-legalizes-propaganda-2012-5#ixzz2FrSV79l8

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Seize the Airways!

Seize the Airways!

By Betty Yu, Media Action Grassroots Network
If the FCC is sincere about its role in protecting the public’s interest in telecommunications and media markets, then they cannot further relax media ownership rules. The recent proposal on the table threatens to gut the 30-year-old broadcast/newspaper cross-ownership rule that allows one company to own a daily newspaper, two TV stations and up to eight radio stations in one town. We know that today, media ownership is already concentrated in the hands of a few corporations thanks to the loosening of ownership rules by Washington in the last several decades. These corporate media giants not only own the broadcast networks and local stations; but also own the pipeline — the cable and the Internet signals that deliver most of the media content.
Betty Yu coordinates the Media Action Grassroots Network (MAG-Net) where she manages their national media justice network of over 100 grassroots community organizations, coordinates nine regional chapters and curates the media justice learning community.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Downtown Community TV - Citizen Media

Downtown Community Television has served as both an educational video center for its Chinatown neighborhood and a pioneering independent producer for major broadcast networks. DCTV is marking its 40th anniversary this fall. Jon Kalish talks to its founders, alumni and current crop of students about why its work is still important.

These days, you can shoot, edit and screen your own holiday movie with just a phone. These high-definition recorders, so small they fit in your pocket, are the culmination of the portable video revolution that can make just about anyone into a director or a journalist. But back in the 1970s, people were still carrying around bulky video recorders weighing more than 20 pounds. And that was considered cutting edge. The Downtown Community Television Center in New York was one of the first to embrace the latest technology. It's an independent group - both a media training center and documentary production house. And as Jon Kalish reports, this community institution has spent 40 years telling stories from all over the world.
JON KALISH, BYLINE: DCTV was launched in 1972 by a cab driver named Jon Alpert and a waitress named Keiko Tsuno in her Chinatown loft.
JON ALPERT: We lived and worked in a very little tiny place. In one corner, there was a group of senior citizens and they were learning how to make video tapes. In the other corner, a group of high school students at 10 o'clock at night on Sunday. People were ringing the doorbell to be able to borrow cameras.
KEIKO TSUNO: Sometimes, I didn't change my clothes because I knew somebody was coming, and I didn't want to meet somebody with my, you know, nightwear, so I went to bed just dressed up in there.
(LAUGHTER)
ALPERT: You had to stay dressed all the time because you just never knew when somebody was going to knock on the door and want to borrow a microphone or a light or something.
KALISH: When they started out, they had one black and white portapak, which recorded to half-inch reel-to-reel videotape. They eventually moved to an abandoned firehouse in Lower Manhattan where they continue to work and teach.
(SOUNDBITE OF CHATTER)
KALISH: In the 40 years in between, they've taught neighborhood kids to be videographers and covered wars from Southeast Asia to Central America to the Middle East for NBC, PBS and HBO, which commissioned the one-hour documentary "Baghdad E.R."
(SOUNDBITE OF DOCUMENTARY, "BAGHDAD E.R.")
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: How many fingers?
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: I can't see nothing, man.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: All right, you're blind. Can you see light?
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: Uh, yeah. So, it's like a big white cloud.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: You can see light. OK.
KALISH: DCTV's work has always had a point of view, one that frequently challenges the political establishment, says Ron Simon, curator of radio and television at the nonprofit Paley Center for Media. Simon says Jon Alpert's career as a video journalist is remarkable.
RON SIMON: His work does have ideological underpinnings, but I don't consider him to be an ideologue. He does want you to think about tough subjects, but he does allow the viewer to make up his or her mind.
KALISH: "Baghdad E.R." won four Emmys in 2006.
(SOUNDBITE OF BANGING)
KALISH: A glass case on the second floor of DCTV's firehouse holds 15 national Emmys, yet Alpert's approach has not always sat well with his bosses. DCTV worked for NBC for 13 years. It provided the network with the first TV images of the Cambodian killing fields. But Jon Alpert says they had a falling out over a story about civilian casualties in the first Gulf War.
ALPERT: We always try to call them the way we see them. And every once and a while, when you call them the way you see them, that gangplank gets run out on the side of the ship and you're going overboard.
KALISH: Alpert and DCTV also butted heads with PBS over a documentary about New York City hospitals. Yet, it was the first American TV crew to visit Vietnam after the war, producing the public television documentary "Vietnam: Picking Up the Pieces" in 1978.
(SOUNDBITE OF DOCUMENTARY, "VIETNAM: PICKING UP THE PIECES")
ALPERT: The war left many reminders. Perhaps the most tragic are 800,000 orphans. At the Man Ha Orphanage nearly half the children had American fathers.
UNIDENTIFIED CHILDREN: (foreign language spoken)
KALISH: Alpert and his team spend as much, if not more, time training young people from across New York. Maryann Deleo began as a college intern and went on to work at DCTV for 15 years. She won an Oscar in 2004 for her own documentary on children affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
MARYANN DELEO: One of the reasons it was so good to work there is I learned everything; how to be an assistant, how to carry the deck, how to do sound, how to shoot, how to edit.
KALISH: Every year, hundreds of high school students learn video production in the firehouse.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Zoom all the way in on his face. Don't tell me Bruno didn't teach you the rule of thirds.
KALISH: This past summer, one of the students was Jasmine Barkley. She produced a documentary in which she talked about her life and what it meant to have a father in prison. Barkley is now in college and says she learned more than just how to shoot and edit at DCTV.
JASMINE BARKLEY: I learned how to be independent, because a lot of people here encouraged me to do things that I probably otherwise wouldn't have done. And when you're here at DCTV they care about you beyond those red doors outside. They care about what happens to you when you leave here.
KALISH: The red doors of the DCTV firehouse will remain open for years to come, if Keiko Tsuno and Jon Alpert have anything to say about it.
ALPERT: We have transformed this building into a tool. And maybe it's one of the strongest tools we have.
KALISH: For NPR News, I'm Jon Kalish in New York.
Copyright © 2012 National Public Radio. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to National Public Radio. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

Monday, October 1, 2012

The Newsroom


Anyone Watching? Propaganda or Anti-Propaganda?

Friday, September 28, 2012

John Lynch denies threatening to disband the San Diego Port District

From Voice of San Diego Posted: Friday, September 28, 2012 3:56 pm | Updated: 4:37 pm, Fri Sep 28, 2012.
On Thursday, we received a copy of an email Unified Port of San Diego board Commissioner Scott Peters said he received from U-T San Diego CEO John Lynch.
In it, Lynch threatened to use the newspaper to lead a campaign to disband the port.
But just what the email Lynch sent to Peters says has taken another turn.
Lynch claims it did not have a threat. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

San Diego Solutions Demo



Please give us a listen, then post the link below to your facebook friends or email them:
http://soundcloud.com/san-diego-speaks/sdsolutionsdemo


In this Program:

This has been a San Diego Speaks production of "San Diego Solutions". This is a demonstration project for a new one-hour, weekly talk-show about Non-Profit Businesses in San Diego and the solutions created by social-entrepreneurs to deal with local issues.

If you want to find out more about San Diego Solutions, and listen to extended interviews, go to our web site SDSpeaks.com 

There you can log-in and find ways to contribute to your local community, volunteer, become a citizen journalist, or submit a your favorite charity for an interview. 

The people of San Diego face many issues, If you would like to be part of the solution, then join the conversation online, and contact us with your thoughts about how we can improve this local show and create a better tomorrow. Together, there is nothing our community can't accomplish. 

Please, support our local Charities. Lean how to find worthy non-profit businesses in your area, and achieve results in your neighborhood. 

You can support San Diego Solutions through our web-site, simply subscribe to our email newsletter and listen to the podcast. You can listen to archived shows and extended interviews with local leaders about the challenges and opportunities we all face together. 

When you join our community, you'll find you are not alone, and that what at first may seem overwhelming is manageable when we share the work. Best of all you can express yourself, tell us your ideas, and propose your solutions to the issues you care most about. 

Thanks for listening, and welcome to "San Diego Solutions". 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Why is Russian TV Better than US TV?

Why do we need to get our media from Russia?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Photographing Police is Free Speech in the USA

Photographing Police: What Happens When the Police Think Your Phone Holds Evidence of a Crime?
By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy and Technology Project at 9:27am
The Washington, DC chief of police on Friday issued a new “General Order” to members of the police department on “Video Recording, Photographing, and Audio Recording of Metropolitan Police Department Members by the Public.” The order, which was part of the settlement of an ACLU lawsuit, includes some very interesting, groundbreaking provisions.
The order reminds police officers in Washington that:
•    Still and video photography “of places, buildings, structures and events are common and lawful activities.”
•    “A bystander has the right under the First Amendment to observe and record members [of the police force] in the public discharge of their duties.”
•    “A bystander has the same right to take photographs or make records as a member of the media” as long as the bystander has a right to be where he or she is.

More - From ACLU

Friday, July 20, 2012

Bob Filner Speaks in Pacific Beach July 18, 2012

San Diego Speaks presents Bob Filner - running for San Diego Mayor 2012, at the Pacific Beach Town Council meeting at the PB Women's Club, Wednesday, July 18, 2012.




Promises: I will get the City to put Solar Panels on EVERY City and School Building.
I will consult with neighborhood councils to invent local solutions.
I will find a way to deal with homelessness without breaking our back.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Narrative Science

From the Atlantic JOE FASSLER - Joe Fassler, a recent graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, teaches creative writing at the University of Iowa. In 2011, his work for TheAtlantic.com was nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award in Journalism. He hosts The Lit Show on KRUI radio andlitshow.com.

Computers have proven competence—no, fluency—in yet another aspect of human life: writing. Narrative Science, a Chicago-based startup, has developed an innovative platform that writes reported articles in eerily humanlike cadence. 
Wherever there is data, Narrative Science founders say, their software can generate a prose analysis that's robust, reliable, and readable. They claim their technology will reshape our relationship to data, media, and the way we consume information

Birnbaum and Hammond, both Yale-educated professors of computer science, have academic backgrounds in linguistic systems—and their serious interest in the science of story arc is apparent at Narrative Science. Here, because they each contribute such valuable work, writers and coders inhabit the same hierarchical plane. Programmers are crucial because they maintain and improve the robust authoring platform that is the company's foundation. This foundation is enormously powerful. "We've created a horizontal platform that's vertically agnostic, industry agnostic," CEO Stuart Frankel told me. "We can write just about any kind of content, using any kind of data." But each client not only has different rules—house style, publication tone, specialized vocabulary. They also tell different kinds of stories. That's why Narrative Science needs journalists.

"Data is tremendously valuable," he told me. "It's unbelievably valuable. But it's not valuable as a spreadsheet of numbers. It's valuable based on the insights that you can glean from it." We're swimming in numeric data, he insists, almost drowning in it—which strikes him as odd because most people don't actually like numbers very much. Spreadsheets confound us because human beings think in stories. So, in Hammond's view, wherever there are numbers, we should have stories instead--and that's where Narrative Science comes in. "In the long run," he said, "our technology ends up being the mediator between data and the human experience."
When I ask him what this means for human writers, he points out that his work has long been a collaboration between computer scientists and journalists. In his ongoing work at Northwestern'sIntelligent Information Laboratory, which he co-chairs with Narrative Science Chief Scientific Advisor Larry Birnbaum, he routinely partners with students and faculty at the University's Medill School of Journalism to create from "cross-functional teams" of writers and coders. (This itself is a pioneering move, as journalists and computer scientists tend not to cross paths in scholarship or public life.)

When Narrative Science inks a deal with a new client, their writers begin work customizing the existing platform within a configuration layer. House style—how to format names and dates, when to italicize, and so on—is the easy part. What takes more time is establishing the facts and inferences that will conceivably be drawn from client data, as well as a "constellation" of possible story angles through which the data might be presented. In the case of baseball, this means "all the scenarios that might be derived from the raw data of a box score": the slugfest, the shutout, the pitcher's duel, the back-and-forth, postponed by rain, on and on.


In this way, Narrative Science writers don't think about specific stories as much as they outline a web of story possibilities. "They know how to configure our technology to allow them to become what are essentially meta-journalists," Frankel told me, "people who can write millions of stories opposed to a single story at a time." As the technology progresses, we may see more and more writers working on this macro level.



But using Narrative Science to write baseball games is a little like hammering a nail with an atom bomb. The platform's inference engine, Hammond says, is supported by "hardcore data analytics"—it can handle vast, truly complex information, data sets that would boggle any human mind. In this regard, the platform may one day serve as a kind of all-star assistant for human journalists.

Imagine, for instance, the prospect of deducing how Twitter users feel about the Republican presidential candidates on a particular day. A human journalist simply couldn't do it—trying to monitor any significant sample size would be impossible. Twitter moves so fast, and at such a high volume, that it eludes us. The problem with social media," Hammond writes on his blog, "is that there's so damned much of it."
Now consider how valuable this kind of data-combing could be for investigative journalists. In his novelThe Pale King, the late David Foster Wallace argued that the era of secrecy is over: The post-Watergate government hides secrets in plain sight, obscuring them in an unchartable morass of freely available information. The result? We lose interest, civilians and journalists and activists alike.


"One of the great and terrible PR discoveries in modern democracy," the book's narrator tells us, "is that if sensitive issues of governance can be made sufficiently dull and arcane, there will be no need for officials to hide or dissemble, because no one not directly involved will pay enough attention to cause trouble. No one will pay attention because no one will be interested...we recoil from the dull."


Both Hammond and Frankel insisted that, while Narrative Science will certainly replace some types of human-generated writing, the stories they're most excited about are the ones journalists rarely cover. Because of readership expectations, no journalist would write a story with relevance to only one person, or a few—sports writers, for instance, don't write about Little League games in the first place. That's why the company's putting special effort into what they call "audience of one" applications—narratives that bring professional-caliber prose insight where right now we only have confusing data.


CHARTING THE SEAS OF BIG DATA
Though computer authoring will almost certainly reshape our relationship to content, Narrative Science will also have huge impact in the growing arena of corporate data collection and management. "We're looking at a situation where every company worth its salt right now is metering and monitoring their business processes, and amassing huge databases of information," Hammond told me. Cost, production, sales, and earnings figures are scrupulously measured over in ever-broadening array of categories, with increasingly sharp detail. Frankel says the standard business mindset is to collect "as much data as possible" in order to become more competitive and profitable.
But here's the strange thing about our current moment: Though companies invest heavily in data collection, they can only work their findings in very limited ways. Since there's a deluge of information, much of it radically new, many data collectors simply throw up their hands. "It's painful to see how much data has gone fallow," Hammond says. Gleaning understanding from these lodes of information—what Hammond calls "big data"—is a primary focus for Narrative Science.


That's why Hammond yearns to improve the software until it can look for insights that haven't yet occurred to its creators—the Rumsfeldian "unknown unknowns" that continually elude us. "We can't do it now," he told me, "but the entire notion behind the platform is to get there." "As the system becomes smarter and smarter," Frankel predicted, "it will be able to draw on data that it analyzes to make its own conclusions." Eventually, he said, the platform will be able to "draw some conclusions without even first knowing what the subject matter is."


 Frankel told me that the platform already works with some "unstructured data"—it can understand the driving "sentiment" within a Tweet or blog comment, for instance. But further developments in computer understanding of human language could blow the current technology open. When Narrative Science can scan written documents with the same comprehension it brings to number sets, its viability increases dramatically.


Taken together, these two advancements—the ability to drawn unique conclusions and the ability to work with difficult unstructured data—would render an astoundingly human authoring platform. One that could read, say, all the artificial intelligence scholarship ever written in an afternoon, and then use it to make original claims.


As a journalist and fiction writer, it of course struck me to think about the relevance of all of this to what I do. I arrived at the Chicago office prepared to have my own biases confirmed—that the human mind is a sacred mystery, that our relationship to words is unique and profound, that no automaton could ever replicate the writerly experience. But speaking with Hammond, I realized how much of the writing process—what I tend to think of as unpredictable, even baffling—can be quantified and modeled. When I write a short story, I'm doing exactly what the authoring platform does—using a wealth of data (my life experiences) to make inferences about the world, providing those inferences with an angle (or theme), the creating a suitable structure (based on possible outcomes I've internalized from reading and observing and taking creative writing classes).


Besides, the best journalism is always about people in the end—remarkable individuals and their ideas and ideals, our ongoing, ever-changing human experience. In this, Frankel agrees. "If a story can be written by a machine from data, it's going to be. It's really just a matter of time at this point," he said. "But there are so many stories to be told that are not data-driven. That's what journalists should focus on, right?"


And we will, we'll have to, because even our simplest moments are awash in data that machines will never quantify—the way it feels to take a breath, a step, the way the sun cuts through the trees. How, then, could any machine begin to understand the ways we love and hunger and hurt? The net contributions of science and art, history and philosophy, can't parse the full complexity of a human instant, let alone a life. For as long as this is true, we'll still have a role in writing.

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2012/04/can-the-computers-at-narrative-science-replace-paid-writers/255631/

http://infolab.northwestern.edu/

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Bill is back




Walter Lippmann defined a "Spectator Democracy" in 1932 where the Public is a herd that must be steered by the elites. Now days they are simply diverted, using entertainment to drug everyone into a sleep like state, just like Huxley's Brave New World. First in tragedy then in farce, the trope or meme becomes the confidence game. Look up "What Orwell Didn't Know", and understand that we start in ignorance, then by use of the network effect we are exposed to toxic media that poisons our brains. Politifact and FactCheck.org can not keep up.



Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Local TV stations refuse to go on camera

Bill Moyers, TV Journalist, challenged journalism students to go to their local TV stations and get the information about who is funding political advertisements. Some students in Cleveland, Ohio, took him up and found some surprising fear of being video recorded from the media staff. What do you think they are afraid of?

Monday, April 23, 2012

FAIR reveals Dow's purchase of PBS

Is 'America Revealed'--or PBS?
Dow-sponsored public TV series tracks Dow's product lines

4/23/12

The four-part series America Revealed, airing on PBS stations this month, looks at big-picture economic issues, from agriculture to transportation to manufacturing. The series underwriter? The Dow Chemical Company, whose commercial interests closely track the subjects covered in the PBS series.

The first episode (4/11/12) focused on large-scale agriculture, which is one of the industries in which Dow is a major player. The program featured an extended look at the corn industry, including efforts to control pests. As the program explained, the food industry "needed a game changer" in that fight. And it got one: The "genetically modified organism, better known as a GMO."

This positively portrayed "game changer" just happens to be the very type of product Dow sells. Indeed, Dow is among a handful of companies that dominate the genetic seed market (Pesticide Action Network, 8/10). The company has recently been trying to win approval for a new genetically modified corn that has been nicknamed "Agent Orange" for its resistance to a highly toxic herbicide. Dow's application is opposed by the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Center for Food Safety because of its toxicity, and the likelihood that it will simply create even more resistant weeds (EcoWatch, 4/10/12).

The problem with the Dow series is broader. On the company's website, Dow breaks down its interests into four categories: Agricultural, Infrastructure/Transportation, Energy and Consumer/Lifestyle.

The PBS series Dow is funding addresses food and agriculture in the first episode. The second episode, which aired last week, is titled "Nation on the Move"--a look at transportation. The third episode is "Electric Nation," and the final installment will deal with American manufacturing.

In other words, Dow's interests are all over the Dow-funded public TV series.

Under PBS's underwriting guidelines, this show should never have been allowed with this sponsor. Over the years, however, PBS has shown a remarkable willingness to allow certain funding arrangements--usually when the funders were large corporations (FAIR Press Release, 4/3/02). The network outlines three tests that "are applied to every proposed funding arrangement in order to determine its acceptability":
  • *Editorial Control Test: Has the underwriter exercised editorial control? Could it?
  • *Perception Test: Might the public perceive that the underwriter has exercised editorial control?
  • *Commercialism Test: Might the public conclude the program is on PBS principally because it promotes the underwriter’s prod ucts, services or other business interests?

Without knowing anything about the matter of editorial control, it would seem clear that America Revealed has problems with the perception and commercialism tests. As the PBS guidelines state of the perception test:

When there exists a clear and direct connection between the interests or products or services of a proposed funder and the subject matter of the program, the proposed funding will be deemed unacceptable regardless of the funder's actual compliance with the editorial control provisions of this policy.

On its commercialism test, PBS explains:

The policy is intended to prohibit any funding arrangement where the primary emphasis of the program is on products or services that are identical or similar to those of the underwriter.

On paper, PBS would seem to take these matters quite seriously:

Should a significant number of reasonable viewers conclude that PBS has sold its professionalism and independence to its program funders, whether or not their conclusions are justified, then the entire program service of public television will be suspect and the goal of serving the public will be unachievable.

If PBS believes that conflicts of interests are indeed that important, then why is it airing a Dow-funded series about Dow's business interests?

ACTION:
Ask PBS to explain why Dow Chemical Company is permitted to fund a series about issues closely linked to Dow's business.

CONTACT:
PBS Ombud
Michael Getler
ombudsman@pbs.org
703-739-5290

Monday, March 26, 2012

Totalitarian Systems Always Begin by Rewriting the Law

by Chris Hedges, Truthdig - (Published without permission, because it's too important not to)

I spent four hours in a third-floor conference room at 86 Chambers St. in Manhattan on Friday as I underwent a government deposition. Benjamin H. Torrance, an assistant U.S. attorney, carried out the questioning as part of the government's effort to decide whether it will challenge my standing as a plaintiff in the lawsuit I have brought with others against President Barack Obama and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta over the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), also known as the Homeland Battlefield Bill.

The NDAA implodes our most cherished constitutional protections. It permits the military to function on U.S. soil as a civilian law enforcement agency. It authorizes the executive branch to order the military to selectively suspend due process and habeas corpus for citizens. The law can be used to detain people deemed threats to national security, including dissidents whose rights were once protected under the First Amendment, and hold them until what is termed "the end of the hostilities." Even the name itself—the Homeland Battlefield Bill—suggests the totalitarian concept that endless war has to be waged within "the homeland" against internal enemies as well as foreign enemies.

Judge Katherine B. Forrest, in a session starting at 9 a.m. Thursday in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, will determine if I have standing and if the case can go forward. The attorneys handling my case, Bruce Afran and Carl Mayer, will ask, if I am granted standing, for a temporary injunction against the Homeland Battlefield Bill. An injunction would, in effect, nullify the law and set into motion a fierce duel between two very unequal adversaries—on the one hand, the U.S. government and, on the other, myself, Noam Chomsky, Daniel Ellsberg, the Icelandic parliamentarian Birgitta Jónsdóttir and three other activists and journalists. All have joined me as plaintiffs and begun to mobilize resistance to the law through groups such as Stop NDAA.

The deposition was, as these things go, conducted civilly. Afran and Mayer, the attorneys bringing the suit on my behalf, were present. I was asked detailed questions by Torrance about my interpretation of Section 1021 and Section 1022 of the NDAA. I was asked about my relationships and contacts with groups on the U.S. State Department terrorism list. I was asked about my specific conflicts with the U.S. government when I was a foreign correspondent, a period in which I reported from El Salvador, Nicaragua, the Middle East, the Balkans and other places. And I was asked how the NDAA law had impeded my work.

It is in conference rooms like this one, where attorneys speak in the arcane and formal language of legal statutes, that we lose or save our civil liberties. The 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force Act, the employment of the Espionage Act by the Obama White House against six suspected whistle-blowers and leakers, and the Homeland Battlefield Bill have crippled the work of investigative reporters in every major newsroom in the country. Government sources that once provided information to counter official narratives and lies have largely severed contact with the press. They are acutely aware that there is no longer any legal protection for those who dissent or who expose the crimes of state. The NDAA threw in a new and dangerous component that permits the government not only to silence journalists but imprison them and deny them due process because they "substantially supported" terrorist groups or "associated forces."

Those of us who reach out to groups opposed to the U.S. in order to explain them to the American public will not be differentiated from terrorists under this law. I know how vicious the government can be when it feels challenged by the press. I covered the wars in El Salvador and Nicaragua from 1983 to 1988. Press members who reported on the massacres and atrocities committed by the Salvadoran military, as well as atrocities committed by the U.S.-backed Contra forces in Nicaragua, were repeatedly denounced by senior officials in the Reagan administration as fellow travelers and supporters of El Salvador's Farabundo Marti National Liberation (FMLN) rebels or the leftist Sandinista government in Managua, Nicaragua.

The Reagan White House, in one example, set up an internal program to distort information and intimidate and attack those of us in the region who wrote articles that countered the official narrative. The program was called "public diplomacy." Walter Raymond Jr., a veteran CIA propagandist, ran it. The goal of the program was to manage "perceptions" about the wars in Central America among the public. That management included aggressive efforts to destroy the careers of reporters who were not compliant by branding them as communists or communist sympathizers. If the power to lock us up indefinitely without legal representation had been in the hands of Elliott Abrams or Oliver North or Raymond, he surely would have used it.

Little has changed. On returning not long after 9/11 from a speaking engagement in Italy I was refused entry into the United States by customs officials at the Newark, N.J., airport. I was escorted to a room filled with foreign nationals. I was told to wait. A supervisor came into the room an hour later. He leaned over the shoulder of the official seated at a computer in front of me. He said to this official: "He is on a watch. Tell him he can go." When I asked for further information I was told no one was authorized to speak to me. I was handed my passport and told to leave the airport.
Glenn Greenwald, the columnist and constitutional lawyer, has done the most detailed analysis of the NDAA bill. He has pointed out that the crucial phrases are "substantially supported" and "associated forces." These two phrases, he writes, allow the government to expand the definition of terrorism to include groups that were not involved in the 9/11 attacks and may not have existed when those attacks took place.

It is worth reading Sections 1021 and 1022 of the bill. Section 1021 of the NDAA "includes the authority for the Armed Forces of the United States to detain covered persons (as defined in subsection (b)) pending disposition under the law of war." Subsection B defines covered persons like this: "(b) Covered Persons—A covered person under this section is any person as follows: (1) A person who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored those responsible for those attacks. (2) A person who was a part of or substantially supported Al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the U.S. or its coalition partners." Section 1022, Subsection C, goes on to declare that covered persons are subject to: "(1) Detention under the law of war without trial until the end of the hostilities authorized by the Authorization for Use of Military Force." And Section 1022, Subsection A, Item 4, allows the president to waive the requirement of legal evidence in order to condemn a person as an enemy of the state if that is believed to be in the "national security interests of the United States."

The law can be used to detain individuals who are not members of terrorist organizations but have provided, in the words of the bill, substantial support even to "associated forces." But what constitutes substantial? What constitutes support? What are these "associated forces"? What is defined under this law as an act of terror? What are the specific activities of those purportedly "engaged in hostilities against the United States"? None of this is answered. And this is why, especially as acts of civil disobedience proliferate, the NDAA law is so terrifying. It can be used by the military to seize and detain citizens and deny legal recourse to anyone who defies the corporate state.

Torrance's questions to me about incidents that occurred during my reporting were typified by this back and forth, which I recorded:
Torrance: In paragraph eight of your declaration you refer to the type of journalism we have just been discussing, which conveyed opinions, programs and ideas as being brought within the scope of Section 1021's provision defining a covered people as one who has substantially supported or directly supported the acts and activities of such individuals or organizations and allies of associated forces. Why do you believe journalistic activity could be brought within that statute?

Hedges: Because anytime a journalist writes and reports in a way that challenges the official government narrative they come under fierce attack.

Torrance: What kind of attack do they come under?

Hedges: It is a range. First of all, the propaganda attempts to discredit the reporting. It would be an attempt to discredit the individual reporter. It would be a refusal to intercede when allied governments physically detain and expel the reporter because of reporting that both that allied government and the United States did not want. And any foreign correspondent that is any good through their whole career has endured all of this.
Torrance: Remind me, the phrase you used that you believed would trigger that was "coverage disfavorable to the United States"?

Hedges: I didn't say that.

Torrance: Remind me of the phrase.

Hedges: I said it was coverage that challenged the official narrative.

Torrance: Have you ever been detained by the United States government?

Hedges: Yes.

Torrance: When and where?

Hedges: The First Gulf War.

Torrance: What were the circumstances of that?

Hedges: I was reporting outside of the pool system.

Torrance: How did that come about that you were detained?

Hedges: I was discovered by military police without an escort.

Torrance: And they took you into custody?

Hedges: Yes.

Torrance: For how long?

Hedges: Not a long time. They seized my press credentials and they called Dhahran, which is where the sort of central operations were, and I was told that within a specified time—and I don't remember what that time was—I had to report to the authorities in Dhahran.

Torrance: Where is Dhahran?

Hedges: Saudi Arabia.

Torrance: And that was a U.S. military headquarters of some sort?

Hedges: Well, it was the press operations run by the U.S. Army.

Torrance: And what was the asserted basis for detaining you?

Hedges: That I had been reporting without an escort.

Torrance: And was that a violation of some law or regulation that you know of?

Afran: Note, object to form. Laws and regulations are two different things.

Hedges: Not in my view. ...

Torrance: Did the people who detained you specify any law or regulation that in their view you violated?

Hedges: Let me preface that by saying that as a foreign correspondent with a valid journalistic visa, which I had, in a country like Saudi Arabia, the United States does not have the authority to detain me or tell me what I can report on. They attempted to do that, but neither I [nor] The New York Times [my employer at the time] recognized their authority.

Torrance: When you obtained that journalistic visa did you agree to any conditions on what you would do or where you would be permitted to go?

Hedges: From the Saudis?

Torrance: The visa was issued by the Saudi government?

Hedges: Of course, I need a visa from the Saudi government to get into Saudi.

Torrance: Did you agree to any such conditions?

Hedges: No. Not with the Saudis.

Torrance: Were there any other journalists of which you were aware who [were] reporting outside of the pool system?

Hedges: Yes.

Torrance: Were they also detained, to your knowledge?

Hedges: Yes.
The politeness of the exchanges, the small courtesies extended when we needed a break, the idle asides that took place during the brief recesses, masked the deadly seriousness of the proceeding. If there is no rolling back of the NDAA law we cease to be a constitutional democracy.

Totalitarian systems always begin by rewriting the law. They make legal what was once illegal. Crimes become patriotic acts. The defense of freedom and truth becomes a crime. Foreign and domestic subjugation merges into the same brutal mechanism. Citizens are colonized. And it is always done in the name of national security. We obey the new laws as we obeyed the old laws, as if there was no difference. And we spend our energy and our lives appealing to a dead system.

Franz Kafka understood the totalitarian misuse of law, the ability by the state to make law serve injustice and yet be held up as the impartial arbiter of good and evil. In his stories "The Trial" and "The Castle" Kafka presents pathetic supplicants before the law who are passed from one doorkeeper, administrator or clerk to the next in an endless and futile quest for justice. In the parable "Before the Law" the supplicant dies before even being permitted to enter the halls of justice. In Kafka's dystopian vision, the law is the mechanism by which injustice and tyranny are perpetuated. A bureaucratic legal system uses the language of justice to defend injustice. The cowed populations in tyrannies become for Kafka so broken, desperate and passive that they are finally complicit in their own enslavement. The central character in "The Trial," known as Josef K, offers little resistance at the end of the story when two men arrive to oversee his execution. Josef K. leads them to a quarry where he is expected to kill himself. He cannot. The men do it for him. His last words are: "Like a dog!"

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The People Are the Media

People will own the media — Annabel Park speech to planners of October 2011. In this video Annabel Park, the co-founder of the Coffee Party, puts forward a very empowering message and describes how we can be the media.



By Kevin ZeeseKevin Zeese - Posted on 15 September 2011

Shifting Power from Corporate Interests Requires us to be Expand Our Media Power

When You Come to Freedom Plaza, Prepare to Tell the World

By Kevin Zeese

We have the power to be the media, to spread the word and tell vast networks of people the truth. Media is being democratized and we can speed that process by recognizing we are the media. When you come to Freedom Plaza in October one of your roles will be to be the media.

On Tuesday, October 13th the October2011 movement and the Coffee Party held a session at Bus Boys and Poets in Washington, DC about shifting power to the people away from concentrated corporate interests. One of the critical power structures holding up the corporate-dominated media and crony capitalist economy is the traditional media owned by six corporations. This corporate media has rapidly decreasing credibility with the American public creating an opportunity for new media to fill a void. As the people’s media grows, the corporate media will have even less credibility, not only because our message will provide a more complete story, but because the corporate media is caught in a cycle of dependence on big business dollars resulting in more corporate control over their content. We have the power – right now – to overcome the corporate media dominance of the message and democratize the media.

Think of the networks of people you know – friends, families, professional associates – and all of the outlets where you can get out a message – social networks like Facebook, twitter, blogs, email lists. There is no doubt that the thousands of people who will read this article and the thousands more who will be in Freedom Plaza this October have the ability to reach millions of people – literally millions.

If we act with intention, the intention to get our message out, we can have a dramatic impact on the information Americans (and others around the world) receive. Typically the cable news networks have viewers in the hundreds of thousands, a few shows have slightly over a million and a few shows are under 100,000. The same is true for the circulation of the largest newspapers in the United States. We can achieve greater level of viewers and readers right now – if we intend to.

Intention means building your network and sending messages to it. People need to learn to use social networks as tools, build their email data base, start a blog or website . . . act intentionally to become the media. You can be a reporter that sends information to other media outlets but you can also be a media outlet yourself. Then, we need to act in a unified way. If you support the goals of the October2011 movement, the goals of ending corporatism and militarism, then whenever you see something on the October2011.org site that is a good message, share it widely.

We also need to learn how to communicate in persuasive ways. Short messages are important, not only to fit into a 140 character tweet, but also to sharpen focus in a persuasive way. Short, punchy messages are also important so you can write a headline, or a subject line for an email, in ways that get people interested, get them to read the full article or open the email. We must all work to sharpen our message.

If you are in government or in big business and are sick of the corruption you see there are various avenues for you to become an anonymous source to the media. Of course, Wikileaks is the most famous of these outlets. But there are others. One outlet developed by journalism students in New York is Local Leaks, which will send materials to thousands of U.S. media outlets. You can leak documents to these outlets in total safety as the outlets will not even know who you are. If you see corruption, weigh heavily the truth that silence is complicity and realize you have the power to safely expose corruption. This is all part of the democratization of media, a reality that is growing tremendously every day.

If you are part of the October2011.org movement, and plan to join us at Freedom Plaza, come prepared to spread the word. Bring your cell phones to take pictures and make videos. Be prepared to write a daily report to your networks. Plan to write to your local traditional news outlets that you are going to Freedom Plaza and write them again when you come back – we can use them as tools as well. We need to be conscious that we are trying to reach a broad network of people with clear messages that educate, organize and mobilize them to end corporatism and militarism. From the messages on the signs we carry, the statements we make when we are interviewed, the artwork we make – whenever we communicate, we must be conscious that we are communicating and be mindful of the message. It is one thing to talk, it is another to communicate in effective and persuasive ways.

*

You are hereBlogs / Kevin Zeese's blog / The People Are the Media
The People Are the Media

By Kevin ZeeseKevin Zeese - Posted on 15 September 2011

Shifting Power from Corporate Interests Requires us to be Expand Our Media Power

When You Come to Freedom Plaza, Prepare to Tell the World

By Kevin Zeese

We have the power to be the media, to spread the word and tell vast networks of people the truth. Media is being democratized and we can speed that process by recognizing we are the media. When you come to Freedom Plaza in October one of your roles will be to be the media.

On Tuesday, October 13th the October2011 movement and the Coffee Party held a session at Bus Boys and Poets in Washington, DC about shifting power to the people away from concentrated corporate interests. One of the critical power structures holding up the corporate-dominated media and crony capitalist economy is the traditional media owned by six corporations. This corporate media has rapidly decreasing credibility with the American public creating an opportunity for new media to fill a void. As the people’s media grows, the corporate media will have even less credibility, not only because our message will provide a more complete story, but because the corporate media is caught in a cycle of dependence on big business dollars resulting in more corporate control over their content. We have the power – right now – to overcome the corporate media dominance of the message and democratize the media.

Think of the networks of people you know – friends, families, professional associates – and all of the outlets where you can get out a message – social networks like Facebook, twitter, blogs, email lists. There is no doubt that the thousands of people who will read this article and the thousands more who will be in Freedom Plaza this October have the ability to reach millions of people – literally millions.

If we act with intention, the intention to get our message out, we can have a dramatic impact on the information Americans (and others around the world) receive. Typically the cable news networks have viewers in the hundreds of thousands, a few shows have slightly over a million and a few shows are under 100,000. The same is true for the circulation of the largest newspapers in the United States. We can achieve greater level of viewers and readers right now – if we intend to.

Intention means building your network and sending messages to it. People need to learn to use social networks as tools, build their email data base, start a blog or website . . . act intentionally to become the media. You can be a reporter that sends information to other media outlets but you can also be a media outlet yourself. Then, we need to act in a unified way. If you support the goals of the October2011 movement, the goals of ending corporatism and militarism, then whenever you see something on the October2011.org site that is a good message, share it widely.

We also need to learn how to communicate in persuasive ways. Short messages are important, not only to fit into a 140 character tweet, but also to sharpen focus in a persuasive way. Short, punchy messages are also important so you can write a headline, or a subject line for an email, in ways that get people interested, get them to read the full article or open the email. We must all work to sharpen our message.

If you are in government or in big business and are sick of the corruption you see there are various avenues for you to become an anonymous source to the media. Of course, Wikileaks is the most famous of these outlets. But there are others. One outlet developed by journalism students in New York is Local Leaks, which will send materials to thousands of U.S. media outlets. You can leak documents to these outlets in total safety as the outlets will not even know who you are. If you see corruption, weigh heavily the truth that silence is complicity and realize you have the power to safely expose corruption. This is all part of the democratization of media, a reality that is growing tremendously every day.

If you are part of the October2011.org movement, and plan to join us at Freedom Plaza, come prepared to spread the word. Bring your cell phones to take pictures and make videos. Be prepared to write a daily report to your networks. Plan to write to your local traditional news outlets that you are going to Freedom Plaza and write them again when you come back – we can use them as tools as well. We need to be conscious that we are trying to reach a broad network of people with clear messages that educate, organize and mobilize them to end corporatism and militarism. From the messages on the signs we carry, the statements we make when we are interviewed, the artwork we make – whenever we communicate, we must be conscious that we are communicating and be mindful of the message. It is one thing to talk, it is another to communicate in effective and persuasive ways.

To understand the broader goals of shifting power to the people and how we will do so – how we will weaken the pillars of support that hold up the current structure, the second half of this session will be of interest where Margaret Flowers and I discuss the approach the October2011 movement is taking to undermine government and corporate power.



Finally, this video of Annabel at the recent Democracy Convention in Madison talks about how we can change the current corrupt cycle of money>power>policy>money>power>policy to the cycle it should be in a participatory democracy people>power>policy>people>power>policy.


*

You are hereBlogs / Kevin Zeese's blog / The People Are the Media
The People Are the Media

By Kevin ZeeseKevin Zeese - Posted on 15 September 2011

Shifting Power from Corporate Interests Requires us to be Expand Our Media Power

When You Come to Freedom Plaza, Prepare to Tell the World

By Kevin Zeese

We have the power to be the media, to spread the word and tell vast networks of people the truth. Media is being democratized and we can speed that process by recognizing we are the media. When you come to Freedom Plaza in October one of your roles will be to be the media.

On Tuesday, October 13th the October2011 movement and the Coffee Party held a session at Bus Boys and Poets in Washington, DC about shifting power to the people away from concentrated corporate interests. One of the critical power structures holding up the corporate-dominated media and crony capitalist economy is the traditional media owned by six corporations. This corporate media has rapidly decreasing credibility with the American public creating an opportunity for new media to fill a void. As the people’s media grows, the corporate media will have even less credibility, not only because our message will provide a more complete story, but because the corporate media is caught in a cycle of dependence on big business dollars resulting in more corporate control over their content. We have the power – right now – to overcome the corporate media dominance of the message and democratize the media.

Think of the networks of people you know – friends, families, professional associates – and all of the outlets where you can get out a message – social networks like Facebook, twitter, blogs, email lists. There is no doubt that the thousands of people who will read this article and the thousands more who will be in Freedom Plaza this October have the ability to reach millions of people – literally millions.

If we act with intention, the intention to get our message out, we can have a dramatic impact on the information Americans (and others around the world) receive. Typically the cable news networks have viewers in the hundreds of thousands, a few shows have slightly over a million and a few shows are under 100,000. The same is true for the circulation of the largest newspapers in the United States. We can achieve greater level of viewers and readers right now – if we intend to.

Intention means building your network and sending messages to it. People need to learn to use social networks as tools, build their email data base, start a blog or website . . . act intentionally to become the media. You can be a reporter that sends information to other media outlets but you can also be a media outlet yourself. Then, we need to act in a unified way. If you support the goals of the October2011 movement, the goals of ending corporatism and militarism, then whenever you see something on the October2011.org site that is a good message, share it widely.

We also need to learn how to communicate in persuasive ways. Short messages are important, not only to fit into a 140 character tweet, but also to sharpen focus in a persuasive way. Short, punchy messages are also important so you can write a headline, or a subject line for an email, in ways that get people interested, get them to read the full article or open the email. We must all work to sharpen our message.

If you are in government or in big business and are sick of the corruption you see there are various avenues for you to become an anonymous source to the media. Of course, Wikileaks is the most famous of these outlets. But there are others. One outlet developed by journalism students in New York is Local Leaks, which will send materials to thousands of U.S. media outlets. You can leak documents to these outlets in total safety as the outlets will not even know who you are. If you see corruption, weigh heavily the truth that silence is complicity and realize you have the power to safely expose corruption. This is all part of the democratization of media, a reality that is growing tremendously every day.

If you are part of the October2011.org movement, and plan to join us at Freedom Plaza, come prepared to spread the word. Bring your cell phones to take pictures and make videos. Be prepared to write a daily report to your networks. Plan to write to your local traditional news outlets that you are going to Freedom Plaza and write them again when you come back – we can use them as tools as well. We need to be conscious that we are trying to reach a broad network of people with clear messages that educate, organize and mobilize them to end corporatism and militarism. From the messages on the signs we carry, the statements we make when we are interviewed, the artwork we make – whenever we communicate, we must be conscious that we are communicating and be mindful of the message. It is one thing to talk, it is another to communicate in effective and persuasive ways.



To understand the broader goals of shifting power to the people and how we will do so – how we will weaken the pillars of support that hold up the current structure, the second half of this session will be of interest where Margaret Flowers and I discuss the approach the October2011 movement is taking to undermine government and corporate power.



Finally, this video of Annabel at the recent Democracy Convention in Madison talks about how we can change the current corrupt cycle of money>power>policy>money>power>policy to the cycle it should be in a participatory democracy people>power>policy>people>power>policy.

We are at a moment in history when an epic battle between informed and organized people against concentrated capital is underway. We have to work to shift power to the people and create participatory democracy and a fair economy; and in this transition one of the critical fronts is the democratization of the media. You have a role to play in creating a media that serves the peoples’ interests and not the interests of concentrated capital.


"I pledge to support the nonviolent occupation of Washington, DC, in Freedom Plaza, participating either in person on Freedom Plaza or from wherever I am, as we nonviolently resist a corporate-driven war-and-Wall-Street government that exploits people and the planet for the 1%. I commit to supporting this resistance until we have a real democracy and our resources are invested in human needs and environmental protection.."

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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Josh Fox, producer of Gasland documentary, arrested on Capital Hill

Republicans afraid of press providing much needed transparency. Watch the documentary: Gasland




Josh Fox, meanwhile, has issued the following statement to the press:
I was arrested today for exercising my First Amendment rights to freedom of the press on Capitol Hill. I was not expecting to be arrested for practicing journalism. Today's hearing in the House Energy and Environment subcommittee was called to examine EPAs findings that hydraulic fracturing fluids had contaminated groundwater in the town of Pavillion, Wyoming. I have a long history with the town of Pavillion and its residents who have maintained since 2008 that fracking has contaminated their water supply. I featured the stories of residents John Fenton, Louis Meeks and Jeff Locker in GASLAND and I have continued to document the catastrophic water contamination in Pavillion for the upcoming sequel GASLAND 2. It would seem that the Republican leadership was using this hearing to attack the three year Region 8 EPA investigation involving hundreds of samples and extensive water testing which ruled that Pavillion's groundwater was a health hazard, contaminated by benzene at 50x the safe level and numerous other contaminants associated with gas drilling. Most importantly, EPA stated in this case that fracking was the likely cause. As a filmmaker and journalist I have covered hundreds of public hearings, including Congressional hearings. It is my understanding that public speech is allowed to be filmed. Congress should be no exception. No one on Capitol Hill should regard themselves exempt from the Constitution. The First Amendment to the Constitution states explicitly "Congress shall make no law...that infringes on the Freedom of the Press". Which means that no subcommittee rule or regulation should prohibit a respectful journalist or citizen from recording a public hearing. This was an act of civil disobedience, yes done in an impromptu fashion, but at the moment when they told me to turn off the cameras, I could not. I know my rights and I felt it was imperative to exercise them. When I was led out of the hearing room in handcuffs, John Boehner's pledge of transparency in congress was taken out with me. The people of Pavillion deserve better. The thousands across the US who have documented cases of water contamination in fracking areas deserve their own hearing on Capitol hill. They deserve the chance to testify in before Congress. The truth that fracking contaminates groundwater is out, and no amount of intimidation tactics --either outright challenges to science or the arrest of journalists --will put the genie back in the bottle. Such a brazen attempt to discredit and silence the EPA, the citizens of Pavillion and documentary filmmaking will ultimately fail and it is an affront to the health and integrity of Americans. Lastly, in defense of my profession, I will state that many many Americans get their news from independent documentaries. The hill should immediately move to make hearings and meetings accessible to independent journalists and not further obstruct the truth from being reported in the vivid and in depth manner that is only achievable through long form documentary filmmaking. I will be thinking on this event further and will post further thoughts and developments. I have been charged with "unlawful entry" and my court date is February 15.
Josh Fox Washington D.C. 2/1/12

Monday, January 16, 2012

Looks like good reporting can make a difference

Last week This American Life ran a show about Apple's dirty little secret: Slave Labor. This week Apple changed it's tune, but its not enough. More...
There's news from Apple today, relating to some of the issues discussed in our program last week “Mr. Daisey and the Apple Factory.”
 
For the first time, Apple has released a list of companies that build its products around the world. In another first, the company also announced that it will allow an independent third party to check on working conditions at those factories, and to make its findings public.

We don’t know that our show inspired these moves from Apple, but both of the changes are things that Mike Daisey called for in Act Two of our episode.

Apple announced these changes today when it released its latest Supplier Responsibility Progress Report, which the company has published every year since 2007. In the past, the reports have typically come out in February.

The organization that will oversee independent audits of Apple’s assemblers is a nonprofit called the Fair Labor Association, which already checks on suppliers for other American companies, including Nike, New Balance, and Adidas. Apple is the first technology company to work with the FLA. Apple says it will "open its supply chain" to the FLA, who will do unannounced factory visits. It will do these without coordinating with Apple, and will then post the results on its website.

“It’s a level of transparency and independent oversight that is unmatched in our industry,” Apple wrote in its progress report.

That said, this isn’t actually what Mike was asking for at the end of our show. While Apple is listing the names of its suppliers, it still does not identify which facilities it found to have work standard violations.
It gets even deeper, they workers in China have threatened MASS SUICIDE if working conditions don't change.