Validated Independent News stories (VINs) report information and perspective that the public has a right and need to know, but to which it has limited access. Before being posted as a VIN, each story undergoes evaluation by student researchers and faculty evaluators to determine that it is important, timely, fact-based, well documented, and under-reported in the corporate media. These VINs are candidates for inclusion among the top 25 stories in Project Censored’s annual book.
A shocking report in The Nation magazine exposes how white vigilante groups patrolled the streets of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, shooting at least eleven African American men. Local police have never conducted investigations. While most of New Orleans was deluged, word spread that Algiers Point was dry. Desperate people began heading toward the west […]
Student Researcher: Benjamin Kaufman
Faculty Evaluator: Eric Williams, Ph.D.
The Constitution requires President Obama to faithfully execute the laws. That means prosecuting lawbreakers. When the United States ratified the Geneva Conventions and the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, thereby making them part of U.S. law, we agreed to prosecute those who violate their prohibitions. The bipartisan December 11 report of the Senate Armed Services Committee concluded that "senior officials in the United States government solicited information on how to use aggressive techniques, redefined the law to create the appearance of their legality, and authorized their use against detainees." While lawyers for the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Council wrote memos that purported to immunize government officials from war crimes liability, Committee chairman Senator Carl Levin clarified that you cannot legalize what's illegal by having a lawyer write an opinion. Yet two Obama advisors told the Associated Press that "there's little-if any chance that Obama’s Justice Department will go after anyone involved in authorizing or carrying out interrogations that provoked worldwide outrage." If Obama and the DoJ stand in the way of prosecutions they are violating oaths to the constitution and are accomplices to said crimes.
“Cheney Throws Down Gauntlet, Defies Prosecution for War Crimes” Marjorie Cohn, CommonDreams.org, December 19, 2008 http://commondreams.org/view/2008/12/19
“Holder assures GOP on prosecution” Ben Conery and Eli Lake, The Washington Times, January 28, 2009, http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jan/28/exclusive-holder-assures-gop-torture-prosecution/print/
“The Missing Memos” Dan Nguyen and Christopher Weaver, ProPublica, January 28, 2009, http://www.propublica.org/special/missing-memos
“ACLU Tests Obama With Request for Secret Bush-Era Memos, Marisa Taylor, CommonDreams.org, http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2009/01/28-1
Student Researcher: Caitlin Ruxton Faculty Evaluator: Chip McAuley After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Cuba planted thousands of urban cooperative gardens to offset reduced rations of imported food. In the wake of three hurricanes that wiped out 30% of Cuba’s farm crops, the country has turned again to urban farming to […]
Peter Orszag, the new director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is on record favoring a reduction in Social Security benefits. Orszag has stated that Social Security benefits should be cut back to help balance the Social Security Trust Fund. He spells out his views in a paper he wrote for the Brookings […]
Student Researcher: Alan Grady Faculty Evaluator: Sheila Katz The current leadership in Sweden is dismantling its social programs. Strongly impressed by the Bush administration, Sweden’s Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt has broken its 75-year Social Democrat tradition as the nation of strongest social programs, with the least poverty in the world, and 87% unionization of labor. […]