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Archive for February 14, 2011

Vilsack Chooses Local Control Over Corporate Agriculture With New Rule

Vilsack Chooses Local Control Over Corporate Agriculture With New Rule issued this action alert today:

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack has written a fair livestock
marketing rule (the new GIPSA rule) to help force the giant agribusiness
corporations to stop deceiving consumers and stop discriminating
against independent family farmers.  We need just 50 Iowans to call the
White House today
to make sure the new rule is implemented.

The battle for local control over corporate agriculture and our food supply is on, and we need you to take action right now! 

Call President Obama at the White House right now at (202) 456-1111 and tell him to bust up big ag and put people first by finalizing and implementing the fair livestock marketing rule, otherwise known as the new GIPSA rule.

Click here to make the call
Decades of bad farm policy have driven independent family farmers out of business. Now, powerful agribusiness giants control our food supply.  Their domination of the market forces consumers to pay more while farmers and workers get paid less.
But you and I have a chance to fight back, today, with a simple phone call.

Will you take just 2 minutes and make one of these calls today?
Click here to make the call

For more information, go to or call 515.282.0484.

Link: US Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack Hailed as New Champion of Local Food


Huffpo Went Corporate Long Before The AOL Sell-Out

Huffpo Went Corporate Long Before The Sell-Out

by Trish Nelson

 In light of the recent news that Huffington Post has been sold to AOL, it seems timely and fun to post something I wrote about Huffpo in November of 2009. 

I published an article on my Huffpo blogger account called “Huffpo Going Mainstream?”  Later, I published a few more articles on Huffpo. Then in November of 2010, I again submitted a blog post for publication but nothing happened.  Last week I submitted another article for publication and it also apparently has not been published.  Must have something to do with the AOL acquisition and not needing free bloggers anymore.

Mind you, my blog posts were not published anywhere on the Huffpo pages such that you could actually find it if you were just looking around the site, you would have to do a search with the key words in order to find it.  But according to Nate Silver NY Times: Economics of Blogging and Huffington Post, there is approximately a 50:1 correllation between page views and comments (an imperfect formula), so I figure at 1 comment, that single post may have gotten around 50 views.  Anyway, FWIW, here's what I wrote over a year ago about my impression that Huffington Post seemed to be going corporate. 

But first let me preface it with this disclaimer: I understand that many progressives are mad at Obama, and I'm not too happy about how certain things have played out either, but it did seem like all of a sudden Huffpo became extremely negative about Obama across the board.  At the same time and since, Obama bashing has seemed to be the narrative of choice for corporate and right-wing media.  That and some other things like the huge headlines, and having to wade through the celebrity and gossipy stuff made me virtually abandon Huffpo as a favored source for accurate political news and commentary.  So the site being bought by AOL didn't seem like a huge loss for me because in my view it has not been what it started out being, for a long time.

Here's what I wrote in November 2009: You can still link to it and read the comment here.

Why is Huffpo attacking the Obama administration with the same zeal with which they went after the Bush administration? It's not like they're the same animal, and need to be treated with equal venom.  Why would a progressive blog see fit to undermine a progressive President who is actually trying to pass an agenda that is good for the people, making a good faith effort,  in the same way they went after a frat-boy Supreme Court appointee/election-stealer whose lying administration bordered on criminal [was criminal] and who couldn't have cared less about the people's agenda?  

Let's have some perspective, please.

It appears to this blogger that Huffpo is going the way of corporate media, where right wing talking points and gossip topics are relied upon  for the news of the day. This post was my last straw:

“Patrick Caddell, a Fox News contributor and former pollster for President Carter, said he had spoken to Democratic consultants who said they were told by the White House to avoid appearances on Fox. He declined to give their names.  Caddell said he had not gotten that message himself from the White House.”

Why would Huffpo run with this lame story from a Fox News contributor, with an unnamed source claiming to have been warned off of appearing on Fox News?  This is not news. It doesn't even make sense. I'll betcha anything it is not true.  [Read Salon's debunking; other links below]

Using Drudge Report and Fox News standards of reporting is not why I read this blog. I used to rely on Huffpo to make sense of what is going on, to help me see through the fog of  the broadcast media.  I do not come here to find an ongoing litany of the same tired, over-used, GOP talking points that are masked as news and can be found on any corporate medium.  

I come to this blog for smart, progressive views, facts, and an alternative to the insipid, corporate media trash talk.

Huffpo seems to be taking a fast track downhill.  How disappointing.

first rebuttal: b_348717.html