Mar 30 2007

Weekly Digest – 03/30/07

Weekly Digest | Published 30 Mar 2007, 1:56 pm | Comments Off on Weekly Digest – 03/30/07 -

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Our weekly edition is a nationally syndicated one-hour digest of the best of our daily coverage.

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This week on Uprising:

* Escalating Tensions Over Britons Detained in Iran
* Empire Notes on the fight over Iraq Appropriations
* Immokalee Workers’ Next Target: McDonald’s
* Black Agenda Report on Alberto Gonzalez
* Anti Porn Law Struck Down in the Name of Free Speech

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Escalating Tensions Over Britons Detained in Iran

IranGUEST: Reese Erlich, author of the upcoming book, “The Iran Agenda: The Truth Behind US Policy and the Middle East Crisis; ” his latest article on Iran, called “Brad Pitt and the Girl Guerrillas,” appears in Mother Jones Magazine

Britain said this week that it would seek help from the United Nations against Iran in the dispute over the recent detention of 15 British Naval personnel. The Iranians are claiming that they were captured in Iranian waters, while the British military had earlier released what it called proof that its boats were in the territorial waters of Iraq, not Iran. Earlier in the week, Iranian state TV showed a video of the sailors and marines being captured – a move loudly denounced by the British government. One of the sailors was shown saying, “Obviously we trespassed into their [Iranian] waters.” Britain has decided to freeze business with Tehran. Meanwhile, for the first time since the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the US began holding naval exercises in the Gulf. International markets experienced a jolt fueled by rumors of a clash between Iran and the U.S. Navy. Amid months of indications that the US was preparing to invade Iran, could this incident escalate into a full scale conflict?

Reese Erlich’s article in Mother Jones is available at:

Empire Notes on the fight over Iraq Appropriations

GUEST: Rahul Mahajan, author of Full Spectrum Dominance and The New Crusade

Empire NotesEmpire Notes are weekly commentaries filed by Rahul Mahajan, author of Full Spectrum Dominance and The New Crusade. Today’s commentary is on “the fight over Iraq appropriations”
Empire Notes is online at

Immokalee Workers’ Next Target: McDonald’s

Gerardo ReyesGUEST: Gerardo Reyes, Staff member with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers

After 4 years of boycotts against the Fast food giant, Taco Bell, and its parent company Yum Brands, a well organized coalition of immigrant and people of color workers won a huge victory in 2005 for workers rights. The Coalition of Immokalee Workers in Southwest Florida, consisting of mostly Latino, Haitian, and Mayan workers, garnered national attention and support for their campaign for fair wages for tomato pickers. Now, nearly two years later, the CIW is taking aim at the father of all fast food corporations – McDonald’s. The group asserts that tomato pickers are paid the same wage today as they did in 1980 and that McDonald’s is supporting a form of modern day slavery. To kick off the campaign, the CIW is organizing a Carnaval and Parade for Fair Food, Real Rights and Dignity.

For more information, visit

Black Agenda Report on Alberto Gonzalez

GUEST: Glen Ford is a writer and radio commentator and the Executive Editor of The Black Agenda Report

This week’s commentary is about Alberto Gonzalez. Visit for more information.

Anti Porn Law Struck Down in the Name of Free Speech

Pamela Paul's book PornifiedGUEST: Pamela Paul, author of “Pornified: How Pornography is Transforming our Lives, Our Relationships, and Our Families,” she has written for Time Magazine, The Economist, Psychology Today, and the New York Times Book Review

In 1998, Federal law makers drafted the Child Online Protection Act, or COPA, with the intent of protecting children from porn and other indecent material on the Web. The law would have fined commercial Web sites up to $50,000 a day and six months in prison for each day they disseminated information deemed “harmful to children.” But COPA never took effect because a court barred enforcement pending the outcome of legal challenges. Now, the law has finally been declared dead after U.S. District Court Judge Lowell Reed Jr. struck it down last week. The judge’s decision was greeted positively by a group called the Free Speech Coalition, which is actually a trade association for the pornography industry. According to Judge Reed the law is too narrow in its failure to address technologies such as peer-to-peer file sharing, community sites, and foreign sources. But Reed also thinks the law is too broad in that it targets speech protected under the U.S. Constitution. The ACLU, which was very involved in the campaign contended that the COPA law “could result in a loss of appropriate and valuable content for adults, including information about safe sex or art galleries with modern photography.” The anti-COPA ruling is a legal precedent that could make it impossible to further regulate online pornography.

Pamela Paul’s website is

Sonali’s Subversive Thought for the Day

“For years the pornography industry and the pornified culture have told both men and women who oppose pornography to shut up or turn a blind eye. They have accused anti-pornography activists, or even those who have dared question their profit equation, of being anti-sex and anti-freedom. They have done so while creating a forcefully anti-sex product that limits the freedom of men, women, and children. They have sold America on the idea of fantasy while inciting us to ignore reality. Those who have been silenced have only served to further legitimize pornography with their lack of censure. Those who are now quiet must speak out.” Pamela Paul, from her book, “Pornified.”

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