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In the Other Press... Create or login to a User account?
To alleviate the problem of articles from other press sources being reposted on this IMC site, this section allows users to link to articles published elsewhere, and to contribute and read comments on those pieces. Have something interesting to post?
News: Media
The Web: Phishing rattles consumers
CHICAGO -- Consumer confidence in the security of online financial services has declined considerably, in response to continual reports of identity theft and phishing scams, experts told UPI's The Web.

"There's been a loss of trust in the channel, but not in specific brands," said Bruce Cundiff, a research analyst with Javelin Strategy & Research in Pleasanton, Calif., producer of a new report called "Phishing: Consumer Awareness and Behavior." By Gene Koprowski
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News: Media : Right Wing
The Rove Factor?
The Rove Factor?
By Michael Isikoff

11 July issue

...Now the story may be about to take another turn. The e-mails surrendered by Time Inc., which are largely between Cooper and his editors, show that one of Cooper's sources was White House deputy chief of staff Karl Rove, according to two lawyers who asked not to be identified because they are representing witnesses sympathetic to the White House. Cooper and a Time spokeswoman declined to comment. But in an interview with NEWSWEEK, Rove's lawyer, Robert Luskin, confirmed that Rove had been interviewed by Cooper for the article. It is unclear, however, what passed between Cooper and Rove.
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Commentary: Democracy : Imperialism : Media : Peace : Right Wing
The Unknown Unknowns of the Abu Ghraib Scandal
The Unknown Unknowns of the Abu Ghraib Scandal
By Seymour Hersh
The Guardian UK

Saturday 21 May 2005

The 10 inquiries into prisoner abuse have let Bush and Co off the hook.
It's been over a year since I published a series of articles in the New Yorker outlining the abuses at Abu Ghraib. There have been at least 10 official military investigations since then - none of which has challenged the official Bush administration line that there was no high-level policy condoning or overlooking such abuse. The buck always stops with the handful of enlisted army reservists from the 372nd Military Police Company whose images fill the iconic Abu Ghraib photos with their inappropriate smiles and sadistic posing of the prisoners.

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Commentary: Media
Can't seem to get that "As I See It" in the Star? Here's the secret."Prime Real Estate"
Prime Real Estate
Kirkwood sells it on the Plaza — and buys it on the Star’s editorial page. By Tony Ortega in the Pitch

Can't get the Star to print your "As I See It" submission?
Here's some tips on how it all works.

Prime Real Estate
Kirkwood sells it on the Plaza — and buys it on the Star’s editorial page.


Those pictures on the editorial page look awfully familiar ...

Every newspaper gets duped from time to time, including this one. But rarely has the Strip seen a major daily get worked as cleverly as the way The Kansas City Star got burned a couple of weeks ago.

This bellicose beef loin is referring to the slick way the Star was punked by one of its own advertisers. It began with an ad that ran in the Star's March 29 Business Weekly tabloid. The paid print come-on was for "The Residences at Kirkwood," that ritzy new condo and townhouse development south of the Plaza.

Coincidentally, that swank money pit was the subject of a Pitch story by David Martin last spring ("High-Class Handout," May 20, 2004). Martin wrote that the city had promised $8.7 million in tax-increment financing to Kirkwood's developers, DST Realty and SCOL Inc., so they could build homes that would sell for $350,000 to $2 million. The reason for subsidizing such expensive digs? That area, the city had decided, was "blighted."

Actually, that part of town is anything but blighted. But ya think that's going to stop our city leaders from handing over millions in taxpayer cash to help a developer put up high-priced housing for rich folks?

Hell no!

Anyway, with all that assistance from us taxpayin' fools, it's really no wonder the folks at Kirkwood had the money to hire the slick public-relations firm Blades Trozzolo to create its print advertising.

The ad in the Star featured a smiling couple, Ed and Sherry Hall, who had been among the first to purchase one of the $400,000 townhouses in the development. "Now welcoming its first residents," the ad reads, "the uncompromised buildings are quickly transforming into homes."
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News: Everyday Life : Neighborhoods : Poverty : Urban Development
Emanuel Cleaver sells out poor to banking industry
Thousands of Americans will be prevented from erasing their debts under a bankruptcy bill approved by Congress on Thursday. The House vote was 302-126; it passed the Senate last month. President Bush said he would sign the bill, the largest overhaul of the nation's bankruptcy laws since 1978.
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Commentary: Labor
Debtors of the World, Unite!
The "bankruptcy reform" bill "passed the House on a 302-126 vote on Thursday, a month after the Senate voted 74-25." It is time for the American wing of the global justice movement, which has been struggling to force the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to drop the debt under which peasants and workers of the global South groan, to take on the finance and credit industry that oppresses US workers by usury.
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News: Right Wing
Broadcast comments threaten job, activist says
Publish Date: 4/4/2005

Broadcast comments threaten job, activist says
City investigating rec employee’s radio visit

By Pierrette J. Shields
The Daily Times-Call

LONGMONT — A city employee said Sunday that he could be fired for political comments he made in his free time.

Glenn Spagnuolo, a city recreation employee, said his guest appearance on KHOW radio’s Caplis and Silverman show four weeks ago earned him a visit Friday from his superiors at the city.

Spagnuolo said he was escorted from his office and told the city would be investigating the comments he made on the show, and the investigation could lead to his being fired. He said he was told the investigation would determine what effect his appearance on the talk show, in defense University of Colorado professor Ward Churchill, had on the city of Longmont.

Rigo Leal, spokesman for Longmont, said he couldn’t comment on the issue.

“What’s going on is that there is a personnel issue, and I can’t tell you a whole lot about it,” he said.

Spagnuolo said he has been asked to continue working during the investigation.

Spagnuolo supports Churchill and has taken other local stands, including speaking out against the Wal-Mart Corp. and leading the effort to change the name of Chivington Drive in Longmont. He said the talk show hosts had been asking him for weeks to appear on their show to talk about the Churchill situation.

Churchill is the CU professor who in 1991 penned an essay assessing the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, calling some victims of the attacks “little Eichmanns.” He later said the reference was to bureaucratic and technological workers who enable the U.S. government to engage in foreign polities that encourage “blow back,” such as the terrorist attacks.

While he’s not sure what comments may have caused the investigation, he has an idea. When asked by one of the radio hosts whether he agreed with Churchill that the Denver police were criminals. Spagnuolo said he responded: “The police ... have been functioning as a paramilitary force.” He then reportedly drew comparisons between the Denver police and Chicago and Miami police in response to political activities.

He said his comments were taken by the radio hosts to mean he advocated killing police officers.

Spagnuolo said Sunday that after the interview he received a call from a Longmont officer who asked him to confirm that he was on the show. He did. He said the officer wouldn’t say why she was asking, but that he was later reassured by police that there wasn’t a problem.

He said he has long kept his work at the city and his political activities separate, but not secret.

“It was after work on my own time,” Spagnuolo said.

He said he was not introduced as a city employee on the show, and that he didn’t even mention that he lives in Longmont.

“They treated me like I was a criminal and that stays in people’s minds,” he said of being escorted out in front of other employees who are his subordinates. “They just brought my whole outside life into the workplace.”

Spagnuolo said he doesn’t think the actions are typical of the city.

“I thought it was very out of character for Longmont. They’ve known I have been an open advocate for a long time. It is no secret to them,” he said. “I never saw this coming, to be honest.”

He is being represented by attorney David Lane, who is also representing Churchill in his fight with the University of Colorado.

Spagnuolo said he has a right to free speech.

“I know I rub people who are more on the right-wing conservative side of things the wrong way,” he said. “But no more than they rub me the wrong way.”

Pierrette J. Shields can be reached at 303-684-5273, or by e-mail at
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News: Children & Education : International Relations : Peace
Is God Christian ?
Religious conservatives in Texas are pressuring textbook publishers to conform to their agenda—which is changing schoolbooks everywhere.

Publishers compete energetically to win the Texas Board of Education’s adoption sweepstakes. In their strenuous efforts, publishers break bread and cut deals with the most powerful political players—not teachers, not school board officials, not parents or government officials, but rather Texas’ community of religious conservatives, whose support or opposition can make or break a textbook adoption.

Conservative influence does not begin or end with health education. Consider the changes made to these 2002 textbooks adopted by the Texas Board of Education:

Evolution: In Our World Today: People, Places and Issues (Glencoe/McGraw-Hill), a passage noting that “glaciers formed the Great Lakes millions of years ago” was altered to read “in the distant past” after a conservative reviewer attacked the phrase as merely “the opinion of some scientist who support [sic] the theory of evolution.”

Islam: A passage in World Explorer: People, Places and Cultures (Prentice Hall) noting that the Quran teaches “the importance of honesty, honor, giving to others and having love and respect for . . . families” was deleted after a conservative reviewer branded it “more propaganda” for Islam.

Global warming: Prentice Hall dropped an entire section on global warming from World Explorer after a reviewer charged that it would “prepare students to look to the government for solutions to problems.”

Thin Gruel
How the Language Police Drain the Life and Content from Our Texts
By Diane Ravitch - Published in American Educator, Summer 2003 issue

Censors on the political right aim to restore an idealized vision of the past, an Arcadia of happy family life, in which the family was intact, comprising a father, a mother, two or more children, and went to church every Sunday. Father was in charge, and Mother took care of the children. Father worked; Mother shopped and prepared the meals. Everyone sat around the dinner table at night. It was a happy, untroubled setting into which social problems seldom intruded. Pressure groups on the right believe that what children read in school should present this vision of the past to children and that showing it might make it so. They believe strongly in the power of the word, and they believe that children will model their behavior on whatever they read. If they read stories about disobedient children, they will be disobedient; if they read stories that conflict with their parents’ religious values, they might abandon their religion. Critics on the right urge that whatever children read should model appropriate moral behavior.

Censors from the political left believe in an idealized vision of the future, a utopia in which egalitarianism prevails in all social relations. In this vision, there is no dominant group, no dominant father, no dominant race, and no dominant gender. In this world, youth is not an advantage, and disability is not a disadvantage. There is no hierarchy of better or worse; all nations and all cultures are of equal accomplishment and value. All individuals and groups share equally in the roles, rewards, and activities of society. In this world to be, everyone has high self-esteem, eats healthy foods, exercises, and enjoys being different. Pressure groups on the left feel as strongly about the power of the word as those on the right. They expect that children will be shaped by what they read and will model their behavior on what they read. They want children to read only descriptions of the world as they think it should be in order to help bring this new world into being.

For censors on both the right and the left, reading is a means of role modeling and behavior modification. Neither wants children and adolescents to encounter books, textbooks, or videos that challenge their vision of what was or what might be, or that depict a reality contrary to that vision.

By the end of the 1980s, every publisher had complied with the demands of the critics, both from left and right. Publishers had established bias guidelines with which they could impose self-censorship and head off the outside censors, as well as satisfy state adoption reviews. Achieving demographic balance and excluding sensitive topics had become more important to their success than teaching children to read or to appreciate good literature. Stories written before 1970 had to be carefully screened for compliance with the bias guidelines; those written after 1970 were unlikely to be in compliance unless written for a textbook publisher. So long as books and stories continue to be strained through a sieve of political correctness, fashioned by partisans of both left and right, all that is left for students to read will be thin gruel.
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