Today in China: New Leaders, New Changes

 New Leaders, New Changes feature image
March 25, 2013
China held its most important political meetings in ten years with the Communist Party Congress in Nov. and the National People's Congress in March 2013. A new leadership group assumed power: Xi Jinping is the new CPC general secretary and national president, Li Kejiang the premier of the state council. New officials assumed all but two positions in the political bureau's standing committee. A major decision is that China will change its economic development...
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California Health Workers Get a Second Chance

California Health Workers Get a Second Chance feature image
March 25, 2013
The National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) will have a second chance at a representation election at Kaiser Permanente. And it's because the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) will be holding a revote of a 2010 representation election between NUHW and SEIU-UHW where the latter prevailed by violating the law and colluding with Kaiser to rig the vote. There is no nice way to say it. These are the facts.
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Immigrants Held in Solitary Cells, Often for

 Immigrants Held in Solitary Cells, Often for feature image
March 25, 2013
The United States has come under sharp criticism at home and abroad for relying on solitary confinement in its prisons more than any other democratic nation in the world. While Immigration and Customs Enforcement places only about 1 percent of its jailed immigrants in solitary, this practice is nonetheless startling because those detainees are being held on civil, not criminal, charges.
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Extinction Paved Way For Dinosaurs

Extinction Paved Way For Dinosaurs feature image
March 24, 2013
A mass extinction caused by volcanic activity wiped out some of the dinosaurs' competitors, allowing them to assume ascendancy. Of course, another mass extinction, caused by a meteor impact caused their demise. Earth is not as hospitable to life as we might like to think.
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Wikileaks Was Just a Preview

Wikileaks Was Just a Preview feature image
March 24, 2013
In all of these cases, the government pursued maximum punishments and generally took zero-tolerance approaches to plea negotiations. These prosecutions reflected an obvious institutional terror of letting the public see the sausage-factory locked behind the closed doors not only of the state, but of banks and universities and other such institutional pillars of society. This is a Wizard of Oz moment, where we are being warned not to look behind the curtain.
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Scuttling Obama's Progressive Cabinet Nominee

Scuttling Obama's Progressive Cabinet Nominee feature image
March 24, 2013
If Republicans block Obama's Labor Secretary Nominee Thomas Perez over his actions in the St. Paul case, it won't be because of corruption or ethics. It will be because he rescued a civil rights law they oppose from almost certain death at the hands of the Roberts court.
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Shot, Then Shut Out

Shot, Then Shut Out feature image
March 24, 2013
The cascade of trauma center closures around the country epitomizes the challenges to combating healthcare inequities in a for-profit system. In the absence of federal or state regulations mandating the availability of trauma care, hospitals in high poverty areas have found that simply closing their trauma units improves their bottom line.
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Medical Device Tax-How Not to Close Loopholes

Medical Device Tax-How Not to Close Loopholes feature image
March 24, 2013
As the medical device tax saga shows, cutting loopholes is really hard to do in practice. They were likely put there to benefit specific industries, which can often be quite powerful and influence even stalwart liberal Senators who claim to want new revenue sources. Many progressives thus fear that the loopholes most likely to be closed are the ones that benefit people without lobbyists—middle-class wage earners and homeowners, students, and the very poor.
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Rewind 3.23.13

Rewind 3.23.13 feature image
March 23, 2013
Bradley Manning, Cyprus, peace movement and more
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Rachel Corrie

Rachel Corrie feature image
March 23, 2013
US peace activist was killed by Israeli bulldozer in Gaza as she tried to block the demolition of a Palestinian home.
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Pages

Portside Culture

Anna Mae

Marsha de la O
Antidote for Night
Marsha de la O, a southern California poet, depicts most tenderly the hard wages of environmental pollution.

Trump's Itchy, Twitchy Finger

Scott McLemee
Inside Higher Ed
Focusing mainly on Trump's first year in office, the authors emphasize what they call a pattern of systematic reaction, where growing voter frustration regularly drives each party in and out of control. Trump arrived with scant political capital, amassed little and appears to have no strategic competence going forward. While the authors believe Trump can develop one, the essayist faults the authors for offering nothing but wishfulness to back up the assumption.

Yanis Varoufakis’s Doomed Fight Against Austerity

Emmett Rensin
The New Republic
This volume is an insider's account of Greece's recent struggle to preserve the general welfare of its people in the fact of the belt-tighening demands of the managers of the international financial system. Reviewer Rensin offers an assessment.

Louis C.K. Is Done

Matt Zoller Seitz
Vulture
A New York Times investigation published today put names and specifics to unsourced stories that had been circulating for years, alleging that the filmmaker-performer pressured five female colleagues to watch or listen to him masturbate.

Portside Labor

50 Years On, Steinbeck’s Classic Still Packs a Punch

Barry Healy
Green Left Weekly
This year marks the 50th anniversary of John Steinbeck’s great mythic novel of alienation under US capitalism, Of Mice and Men. The story is of lonesome labourers, reeling from the Great Depression, wandering from farm to farm seeking respite from their endless oppression.

Iowa Workers Defy Attempt to Weaken Their Unions

Bill Knight
Pekin Daily Times
Under a new anti-union law, public-sector unions must re-certify each time they’re scheduled to bargain new contracts, every two or three years. Right-wing backers of the law hoped it would weaken unions by forcing them to devote time and resources to the recertification process and lead workers to drop their membership. But the members of the state's 468 union locals voted overwhelmingly to stick with their union.

When Unions Lead Education Reform

Rachel M. Cohen
In These Times
Like Bargaining for the Common Good, TURN members also believe teachers need to approach bargaining more creatively and boldly. Specifically, TURN wants to see unions negotiate over policies that “advance student learning,” such as reducing the number of standardized tests students must take while also pushing for new kinds of assessments that measure skills like creativity.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

One year after the presidential election, John Oliver discusses what we've learned so far and enlists our catheter cowboy to teach Donald Trump what he hasn't.

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

"Down on Me" is a traditional freedom song from the 1920s or earlier that became popular following its remake 50 years ago (1967) by Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company. (Wikipedia)

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

Charles Dickens connected Scrooge, greed and redemption to Christmas in a book that changed the holiday forever.
Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

The Paradise Papers exposed an unseen world of offshore accounts, hidden money and financial maneuvering at the highest levels of politics, business and finance.

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

The Senate holds a hearing to debate President Trump's power to use nuclear weapons without congressional approval.

Posted by Portside on November 10, 2017

Is there one person who can save us from Donald Trump. Schneider-man, maybe? Eric Schneiderman doesn't think so.

Posted by Portside on November 10, 2017

Music, where cultures meet and perform mad dances. Arabic, Spanish and Russian influences power this mashup.