The disappearing virtual library Los Angeles, CA - Last week a website called "library.nu" disappeared. A coalition of international scholarly publishers accused the site of piracy and convinced a judge in Munich to shut it down. Library.nu (formerly Gigapedia) had offered, if the reports are to be believed, between 400,000 and a million digital books for free. And not just any books - not romance novels or the latest best-sellers - but scholarly books: textbooks, secondary treatises, obscure monographs, biographical analyses, technical manuals, collections of cutting-edge research in engineering, mathematics, biology, social science and humanities. The texts ranged from so-called "orphan works" (out-of-print, but still copyrighted) to recent issues; from poorly scanned to expertly ripped; from English to German to French to Spanish to Russian, with the occasional Japanese or Chinese text. They are students and scholars, from every corner of the planet. Pirating to learn So what does the shutdown of library.nu mean?
Los EE. UU. del mañana: ¿un país con todos sus manifestantes encarcelados? Las manifestaciones de Ocupa Wall Street estallan con nueva fuerza tras la aprobación de una polémica ley que, entre otras cosas, prevé hasta diez años de cárcel por una protesta pacífica. Según los activistas, esta medida amenaza la libertad de expresión. 10 años de cárcel por protestar El pasado 27 de febrero en EE. Para acercarse al presidente de EE. De hecho la HR 347 puede reprimir cualquier protesta en cualquier lugar como, por ejemplo, en eventos deportivos o la próxima reunión del G8 en Camp David, o cuando se desarrollen reuniones bilaterales en Estados Unidos. ¿Nacimiento de una dictadura? Con dicha medida el Gobierno de EE. La HR 347 ha levantado una gran polémica en la sociedad estadounidense. Para los manifestantes la situación es clara: el proyecto de ley HR 347 no es nada más que una evidente definición de autoritarismo, una flagrante violación y un grave ataque a los derechos otorgados por la Primera Enmienda a todos los ciudadanos de EE.
Oligarchy and Democracy - Jeffrey A. Winters It is a confounding moment in American political history. On the one hand, evidence of democratic possibilities is undeniable. In 2008, millions of Americans helped catapult a man of half-African descent into the White House long before observers thought the nation was “ready.” On the other hand, democracy appears chronically dysfunctional when it comes to policies that impinge on the rich. Everyone is by now aware of the staggering shift in fortunes upward favoring the wealthy. Such outcomes are inexplicable on standard, commonly understood democratic grounds. One increasingly popular answer is that America is an oligarchy rather than a democracy.1 The complex truth, however, is that the American political economy is both an oligarchy and a democracy; the challenge is to understand how these two political forms can coexist in a single system. Oligarchy within Democracy hen democracy combines with oligarchy, the result is a distinctive fusion of equality and inequality. Money and Power
African American pastors express support for Occupy movement A growing number of African American pastors in the Washington area, including the Rev. Carroll A. Baltimore Sr., president of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, have embraced the Occupy movement. In December, leaders of Occupy D.C. left their encampments at McPherson Square and Freedom Plaza to worship at Empowerment Temple, Bryant’s church in Baltimore. Hagler has held services on Freedom Plaza. The pastors’ pleas for economic justice sound a lot like King’s. “This is the continuation of the [civil rights] movement. The Rev. “When Dr. Some critics say the focus of the Occupy movement, which by design does not have leaders, is unclear. “Number one, we are asking for more Pell grants so that our young people might be able to compete and go to colleges and universities,” he said. Beginning in February, Bryant plans to launch a campaign to urge people to bank only at minority-owned financial institutions. “I think the Occupy Wall Street movement has held the legacy of Dr.
'Big Government' Isn't the Problem, Big Money Is With the 2012 elections projected to be the priciest ever, we must rein in the billions of influence-peddling dollars flowing toward Washington. Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney responds to cheers from the crowd as he speaks at a campaign rally at West Hills Elementary School in Knoxville, Tenn., Sunday, March 4, 2012. About the Author Robert Reich Robert Reich, a former secretary of labor, is the Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of... Also by the Author Surging inequality, not Wall Street banditry, is the underlying cause of the Great Recession. That view is understandable. Homeowners can’t use bankruptcy to reorganize their mortgage loans because the banks have engineered laws to prohibit this. Not a day goes by without Republicans decrying the budget deficit. The other big budget expense is defense. “Big government” isn’t the problem. Millionaires and billionaires aren’t donating to politicians out of generosity.
La City de Londres gana batalla legal a indignados - El Universal - El Mundo Londres | Miércoles 18 de enero de 2012EFE | El Universal16:00 El Ayuntamiento de la City de Londres ganó hoy su batalla legal para desalojar a los "indignados" que desde el pasado mes de octubre acampan frente a la catedral de San Pablo. El Tribunal Superior de Londres dio hoy la razón al ayuntamiento y le concedió una orden judicial para tomar medidas contra las personas que protestan frente al templo anglicano, aunque ello no supondrá necesariamente un desalojo inmediato. Tras conocerse la sentencia, las autoridades de la City expresaron en un comunicado su deseo de que los manifestantes "retiren las tiendas de campaña de San Pablo de manera voluntaria". "Si no es así, y teniendo en cuenta cualquier proceso de apelación, consideraremos la opción de desalojarlos por la fuerza", señaló el ayuntamiento. Un portavoz del grupo que protesta a las puertas de la catedral de San Pablo señaló por su parte que "probablemente" recurrirán la sentencia. jfra
Violence Begets Defeat or Too Much Pacifism? by Michael Albert "But remember that if the struggle were to resort to violence, it will lose vision, beauty and imagination. Most dangerous of all, it will marginalize and eventually victimize women. And a political struggle that does not have women at the heart of it, above it, below it, and within it is no struggle at all." - Arundhati Roy Chris Hedges has written a very aggressive attack on what is called the black bloc element of the current occupy movements. Pacifism often comes from a religious or a philosophical stance and says violence, or even property damage, is a bad personal choice – no exceptions. When adherents of a political view assert that all other actors must agree or be irrelevant, it is often called sectarianism. Here's the hard part: When a pacifist says that everyone must be a pacifist because all other options are immoral, it is fundamentalism. With any tactic we can usefully ask: What are its effects on those who utilize it? Regrettably, though, this is not inevitable.
Occupy Wall Street could go broke within a month - BlogPost Posted at 12:26 PM ET, 01/17/2012 Jan 17, 2012 05:26 PM EST TheWashingtonPost Less than a week after it was reported that Occupy Wall Street was on the hunt for an accountant, the reason has become clear — the protesters are nearly broke. A protester holds a sign asking for donations for pets at the Occupy Wall Street protest at Zuccotti Park. The Atlantic Wire reported last week that fewer were donating to the group than ever and that Occupy is “hemorrhaging cash.” In flusher times, the group was eager to spend money spreading the message. Occupy Wall Street manages its budget with help from the Alliance for Global Justice, a nonprofit based in the District, according to BuzzFeed. Carey earlier told The Wire that Occupy will not actively ask for funds because “there’s a sizable and serious resistance towards going to a traditional form of fundraising.” Instead, the group relies on voluntary handouts.
Why we need to stop SOPA and PIPA Cambridge, Mass - SOPA - the Stop Online Piracy Act - and a sister bill, PIPA - the Protect IP Act - seek to minimise the dissemination of copyrighted material online by targeting sites that promote and enable the sharing of copyright-protected material, like The Pirate Bay. While this goal may be laudable, entrepreneurs, legal scholars and free speech activists are worried about the consequences of these bills for the architecture of the internet. At the MIT Media Lab, we share those concerns, and we oppose SOPA and PIPA as threats to innovation on the internet. To limit access to rogue sites, SOPA and PIPA would: Major internet companies, including Google, Facebook, Twitter and others, oppose SOPA and PIPA because it changes the liability rules around copyright infringement. SOPA substantially alters this system, and internet companies worry that without protection from contributory infringement, user-generated content sites like YouTube and Twitter would not have come into existence.