Leid Stories Stories and news that affect us all

May 31, 2013  

Oligarchs Trump Plutocrats; They're America’s New Ruling Class

They’re young, absurdly wealthy, supercorporatist tech gurus—and, with the Obama administration, have become a de-facto and “potentially dominant” ruling class in America, says Leid Stories guest Joel Kotkin, who for more than 30 years has been tracking the footprints of power and influence globally.

This group, says Kotkin, has quietly amassed unprecedented power and influence, and in many ways is driving domestic and foreign policy.

More contemptible than the 1-Percenters that rile critics of corporate greed, these .001-Percenters are large and in charge—“gaming the system, says Kotkin, “and jerking the rest of us around.”

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May 30, 2013  

There’s Room for Your View on Open Forum!

Have an opinion about a news issue or event? Want to give us something to think and/or talk about? Well, share it on Leid Stories’ Open Forum, "the gathering place for the exchange of information, opinions and ideas.” In this intellectual give-and-take with the savviest audience in the world, expect to be challenged—with great love and respect, of course.

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May 29, 2013  

Lawsuit In Paris Opens Closed Chapter on Reparations; Lawsuit in Chicago Seeks to Reopen Doors of Closed Schools

A lawsuit filed in Paris by a group of black civil-rights organizations has revived a vexing question that continues to haunt many in the post-colonial/post-slavery world: Does a former colonial/imperialist country or government, enriched by the free labor of people it enslaved, even by force or terror, have a financial obligation to its former colony and its people? A class-action lawsuit filed against the city and school administrations in Chicago challenges a decision last week to close 50 public schools, almost all of them in African American and Latino communities. The teachers union says the city wants to close about 120 schools – a policy that is being enacted in major cities across the United States. The toll so far is 4,000 and counting.

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May 28, 2013  

Immigration ‘Reform’: A Crying Sham

Its 844 pages and 300 amendments presented last week as the fine bipartisan handiwork of the U.S. Senate’s “Gang of Eight” on immigration reform, the measure soon comes up for full debate. But Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) is worried that they can muster 60 votes to survive a filibuster. And Speaker John Boehner (R-Iowa) isn’t sounding hopeful about the House’s version of the bill. Yet another of President Obama’s constituency-pleasing priority items is caught up in the murky world of politics. What is clear, though, is that big money is driving immigration reform, and Latinos are being used by all stakeholders to achieve hidden, race-based agendas. It’s a crying sham!

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May 27, 2013  
May 23, 2013  

Just yesterday, the City of Chicago declared that it will close 54 schools, giving a last-minute reprieve to four after community protests. It is the first wave of closings in Chicago; Mayor Rahm Emanuel has placed more than 120 in the crosshairs, claiming underutilization and budget issues. Chicago’s fight against school closings is symptomatic of a nationwide pattern, especially in large urban areas, in which the targeted schools are overwhelmingly in poor African American and Latino communities. City administrations cite the same reasons. Leid Stories sees two parallel motives in school closings – the Obama-supported plan to privatize education, and, locally, politically connected real estate developers who have their eyes on city properties in now-undesirable areas that they can get for a song and then turn into handsome windfalls with inevitable gentrification.

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May 22, 2013  

Tell It the Way You See It: It’s Open Forum on Leid Stories—which means the discussion goes where callers want it to go. Postulate, opine, debate, respond, retort, analyze, theorize, criticize, decipher, challenge—just go ahead and state your case! But, as usual, be prepared to defend your point of view, because you’ll be challenged—with great love and respect, of course.

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May 21, 2013  

Death Throes in Florida/Extreme Labor Pains in Several States: Gov. Rick Scott of Florida has on his desk a piece of legislation, the Timely Justice Act, that prisoner-rights advocates are hoping he won’t sign, but instead will veto. The act speeds up executions, requiring the governor to sign a death warrant within 30 days after a review by the state Supreme Court, and scheduling executions within 180 days. Marc Mauer, director of The Sentencing Project in Washington, D.C., discusses the enormous impact the legislation would have for 404 death-row inmates in Florida, and the domino effect in other states. Recent labor statistics are cause for alarm at the Washington, D.C.-based Economic Policy Institute. Doug Hall, director of EPI’s Economic Analysis and Research Network, details the devastating effect of unemployment in several key states and the persistence of race as a major factor in the growing numbers of people without jobs.

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May 20, 2013  

President Obama apparently deemed it irrelevant that Morehouse College has been battling educational apartheid, shaping the minds of African American men and molding them into stalwart and exemplary leaders since 1867. Or, maybe he had nothing really relevant or new to say. Morehouse’s graduating Class of 2013 sat through a steady rain, complete with thunder and lightning, to hear Obama go homie on them with his standard themes when addressing African Americans, especially men: make good choices and don’t go to jail; don’t be a sperm-donor absentee father; there’s no excuse for a lack of ambition; face up to personal responsibilities; hard work is how one achieves in life. For that Morehouse conferred on Obama an honorary doctor of laws degree. Did the president go homie at the $32,400-per-couple fundraiser held at the office of the foundation of Arthur M. Blank, co-founder of Home Depot and owner of the Atlanta Falcons, following his Morehouse gig? Nuh-uh!

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May 17, 2013  

Obama: No Rescue for Haitians, But Rescue Him More than three years after a devastating 7.0-magnitude earthquake and 52 significant aftershocks hit Haiti, killing 316,000 people, dispossessing 3 million others and literally shutting down the impoverished nation, a program that would have allowed U.S.-based Haitians to send for their distressed relatives and care for them while Haiti rebuilds remains in limbo. The emergency measure received bipartisan support, but President Obama has refused to green-light it. Steven Forester, immigration policy coordinator for the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti, explains the current situation. Plus, Leid Stories continues the discussion on why, with the groundswell of opposition to Obama and his administration, the core constituency the embattled president has ignored will be expected to come to his aid and rescue.

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