May 29 2014

Daily News Flash with Robert Jensen on Obama’s Planned Reduction in Coal Emissions, Egypt “Elects” The General, and Skyrocketing Global Obesity Rates

Uprising’s guest expert Robert Jensen, an author and a Professor of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin, analyzes today’s news headlines:

President Obama is planning to use his executive authority to cut coal emissions by up to 20%. The new regulations, which are apparently written by the Environmental Protection Agency, are intended to reduce emissions from coal plants and also force companies who pollute, to pay through the so-called cap-and-trade program. According to the New York Times, “It would be the strongest action ever taken by an American president to tackle climate change and could become one of the defining elements of Mr. Obama’s legacy.” Such cuts could, according to the paper, be even more significant in the fight against climate change than a cancelation of the Keystone XL Pipeline. Click here for a New York Times article about the story.

In a result that comes as no surprise whatsoever, Egypt’s General Abdel Fattah Al Sisi appears to be the winning candidate in this week’s Presidential elections. While the official results will be announced next week, it appears the General has secured 96% of votes cast, and his only rival, leftwing candidate Hamdeen Sabahi, has won 3.5%. Turnout was low at only 47%, prompting the Egyptian Army to extend the voting period from 2 to 3 days. About 1 million votes were invalidated – an unusually high number. Turnout during the 2012 election when the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammad Morsi won, was as high as 51%. Click here for an Al Ahram article about the story.

A study reported in the Lancet medical journal has found that global obesity rates are “staggeringly high,” particularly in countries in the Middle East and North Africa, Central America and the Pacific and Caribbean islands. The total number of people considered obese worldwide stands at 2.1 billion. That’s up from 857 million in 1980. One of the contributors to the study said, “Two-thirds of the obese population actually resides in developing countries.” Obesity is linked to a complex of debilitating conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and cancer. Click here for an RT.com article about the story.

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