February 2021

Historic Peace Deal Signed in Nepal

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreA peace agreement reached in the early hours of November 8th marks the end of the Maoists’ decade-long insurgency in Nepal that cost 13,000 lives. Concessions have been made by both sides including the rebels agreeing to disarm and join the Democratic process. (ZeeNews.com)AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

Is The Media Really Biased?

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreA lot has been written about an apparent media bias — a Liberal bias because so many reporters donate to “Liberal causes”, a Conservative bias in radio because so many talk show hosts rule the airwaves with outrage. I believe the single strongest bias dominating American journalism, regardless of political inclination, is the allegiance paid and importance given to the notion that bad news sells.Never mind the citizen and what is most important for their learning or understanding. Bad news sells, and that’s what matters most. The fevered race for corporate profits has biased the decision-makers within newsrooms toward the sensational and the negative, and readers or viewers are turning away in droves.Even reporters are rebelling. Witness on YouTube, the on-air protest by an MSNBC news anchor who tried to burn her script after being given the Paris Hilton story as her news lead. (GNN story with video)The constant drumbeat focused on what’s gone wrong in the world, with nary a mention of what’s gone right, is best illustrated by the Center for Media and Public Affairs study calculating that while the number of actual murders throughout the 1990’s plummeted 42%, American network news coverage of homicides jumped 700 percent during those same years. To any viewer of TV news, the country was growing ever more violent.If it’s bad news, it’s headline news; if it’s good news, like the murder rate declining, it’s lost on page 23. This is the bias with which we should be concerned: the obvious play toward the sensational and the habitual publicizing of the worst examples of humanity.A 2005 study by Bayer concluded that an overwhelming 93 percent of Americans wanted more good news in their media diet. 77 percent believed there was not enough good news offered by mainstream media.No wonder people are turning to the internet for their news. A Pew research study found that while television still ranks first as a source of news among broadband users, the internet is catching up fast. Further, tens of thousands of people each year search on Google for “good news”, and most are rather surprised at what they find.The #1 offering on Googles’s list for “good news” is a website that features all positive news stories, called the Good News Network. Started by a Virginia mom and former news professional, the website is now in its tenth year and serving over a quarter-million pages of good news each month. The site’s launch in 1997 filled a need that mainstream journalists are just now beginning to recognize.In the face of a newspaper industry’s overall declining readership, the Grand Rapids City paper carries on their website a daily syndicated feed of headlines from the Good News Network. Next to the tab marked “Odd News” is now a tab heading for “Good News”.Even some in the mainstream media are starting to realize that good news CAN sell:McClatchy Newspapers, the third largest newspaper group last year added a “good news” beat to their Washington, DC bureau and assigned a reporter to cover such stories full time. Now, occasional stories by Frank Greve are filed under a Good News banner on their website, and are distributed on the McClatchy-Tribune newswire, with headlines such as, “Violence against intimate partners down sharply”, “Fewer Americans injured, killed on the job”, and “Many patients who check into hospices to die, don’t”.NBC’s Nightly News experimented and discovered – lo’ and behold – good news is popular with their audience. Five nights in a row they featured stories of people who were “Making a Difference” in the lives of others. The series was so successful (the executive producer said they never had received so much mail) that they decided to continue periodically producing such stories and archive them on a special web page.NBC’s sister website and cable counterpart, MSNBC, now sports a regular internet column called “Wonderful World” that highlights several stories each week featuring heroes, rescues, or the odd happenstance of luck.KXTV-10 in Sacramento airs a weekly Friday feature called, Good News Good People, that spotlights people doing positive works within their community But these are the exceptions.What will you and I hear and see most over the next days? Will it be a consistent choir of Liberal causes – or an ear-splitting cacophony of Conservative wrath? Maybe. What we are sure to hear and see will be celebrities out of control, fires and storms, bombings and cruelty. Thomas Jefferson said that the mission of the journalist should be to tell the truth about what is happening in the world. If the media only gives us one side, the negative, then we are not hearing the truth about society.As the late Norman Cousins said, “If news is not really news unless it is bad news, it may be difficult to claim we are an informed nation.”_______________________________________Geri Weis-Corbley is founder and managing editor of the Good News Network. She lives near Manassas with her husband and three teens. Sign up to receive her e-mail of the Top Ten Good News of the Week at www.GoodNewsNetwork.org.###AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

David Duchovny Supports Unicef in Myanmar (Video)

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreDavid Duchovny urges support for the million at risk in Myanmar after the cyclone that killed tens of thousands. He says the UN children’s fund, Unicef, has been in Myanmar since the 1950’s and the group is in a position to help. Please support if you are able. (YouTube video) AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

Congress Approves Renewable Energy Grants for Another Year

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreAs Congress approved the tax deal last week, they also extended the 1603 Treasury grant program -– a popular government incentive for renewable energy projects.The measure, which covers up to 30% of the cost of solar, wind and other alternative energy installations, was considered a key buffer for the industry during the recession. It was due to expire at the end of the year.(READ the story in the LA Times)AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

Chicago-area Firefighters Help Latin America

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreA year ago, an earthquake in southern Chile devastated towns, flattening fire stations and equipment that could have been used in the rescue efforts.An Illinois pastor, who was in the locality working at the time, wanted to help the fire departments rebuild and to ensure they were better prepared to help in the event of another catastrophe.He mobilized 10 Chicago-area firefighters who next week will pack their bags and travel to the South American country to train about 100 firefighters, bringing along discarded but usable firefighting gear.(READ the story in the Chicago Tribune)AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

New Clean Air Act Protections Tackle Deadly Mercury Pollution from Dirty Power Plants

first_img“Today’s announcement reminds us all that the Clean Air Act works to protect the air we breathe and save lives,” said Kassie Siegel, director of the Center for Biological Diversity’s Climate Law Institute. “Blocking or delaying these rules will lead directly to increased premature deaths, more heart attacks and increased childhood asthma and developmental delays.”But not everyone is satisfied. Since the standards were proposed in March, the coal industry has vigorously pressured the EPA to relax the clean-air safeguards. House Republicans have already passed legislation to delay the mercury rules and loosen the requirements. And Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) has promised to introduce legislation to undo the rules following today’s announcement. The electric industry and coal-burning allies point to the estimated $10 billion in cost to utilities and their consumers as too heavy a burden.Supporters believe that for every dollar spent to reduce pollution from power plants, we’ll see up to $9 in health benefits, for a total of $90 billion annually — meaning that more people will be able to stay at work and school instead of the hospital, and spend less of their money on medical bills — thus, offsetting the cost.The White House says the rule also paves the way for tens of thousands of new jobs as power plants get up to speed with today’s technology: an estimated 46,000 short-term construction and 8,000 long-term utility jobs in the next few years.“This is a great victory for public health,” EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson said during a briefing with reporters. “Coming generations will grow up exposed to lower levels of toxic pollution in the air they breathe.”AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency yesterday announced the first-ever national standards to reduce dangerous mercury, arsenic and other toxic air pollutants from power plants.The agency projects that the new safeguards will prevent as many as 11,000 premature deaths, 4,700 heart attacks and 130,000 cases of childhood asthma each year. The pollutants have also been found to harm lakes, streams and fish and might even cause cancer. The new rules are likely to cut mercury emissions by 90 percent.The new rule aimed at out-of-date power plants has been 20 years in the making and children, in particular, have paid the price for delays: More than 300,000 are born every year after being exposed to unsafe levels of mercury while in the womb, increasing their risk of having learning disabilities later on.last_img read more

Maine Scientists Say Acid Rain Effects Are Reversing Much Faster

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore“Two Maine scientists are celebrating good news about the environment, after a decades-long study has shown that the negative effects of acid rain have been reversed much faster than expected,” reports the Bangor Daily News.The study looked at lakes throughout most of New England and New York, and it found that environmental regulations and the voluntary actions of industry have sharply reduced sulfur emissions in rain and snow. It also found that soils are recovering quickly, without taking centuries to bounce back that some had predicted would be necessary.(READ the story from the Bangor Daily News)Photo by Benjamin Edelstein Photography AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

Two Americans Freed by North Korea, Returning Home

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreNorth Korea released from prison two American citizens who had been sentenced to years of hard labor.Kenneth Bae and Matthew Miller are in route to the United States after the “surprise involvement” of a top-ranking U.S. intelligence official. In a statement The Department of State welcomed the release of U.S. citizens Kenneth Bae and Matthew Todd Miller from the D.P.R.K., where they have been held for two years and seven months, respectively.“The United States has long called on D.P.R.K. authorities to release these individuals on humanitarian grounds.”“We are grateful to Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who engaged on behalf of the United States in discussions with D.P.R.K. authorities about the release of two citizens. We also want to thank our international partners, especially our Protecting Power, the Government of Sweden, for their tireless efforts to help secure the freedom of Mr. Bae and Mr. Miller.”(READ the Reuters story, w/ photos, from NY Post)Photo by John Pavelka via CC licenseAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more

Late UNC Coach Dean Smith Left Surprise in His Will For Each Player

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreLegendary North Carolina Coach Dean Smith, who took his college basketball team to two NCAA championships, always coaxed the best out of his players. Now, a month after his death, he has issued one final ‘thank you’ to every full-time player who ever hit the court for him.Trustees of Smith’s estate mailed out $200 checks to 180 players with an accompanying letter that read, “enjoy a dinner out compliments of Coach Dean Smith.”Michael Jordan with Dean Smith (Zeke Smith, 2007, CC)Player Brad Daugherty said on ESPN that he would ignore the coach’s orders to spend the money on dinner out: “Nope, I’m going to get it matted and framed, and stick it on my wall so I can look at it every day.”Buzz Peterson, a teammate of Michael Jordan’s when they played for Smith, was in awe of the gesture, according to ESPN. “I saw the check, and was like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. This is unbelievable that he would do this for us.’”Smith was known for teaching his players to show respect for others during his 36 years coaching at UNC. And Coach Smith respected his players, pushing them to succeed in their studies just as they succeeded on the court. While the average graduation rate for NCAA Division I basketball players was 70% in 2013, student athletes who played for Smith had a 96.6% graduation rate over the course of his career.And the lessons of respect he taught still resonate with his former players.Serge Zwikker, who played for Smith from 1993-1997 said the $200 check is unlike any other money he has received.“I don’t think I can cash this,” he told ESPN. “If anything, I will donate it to a good cause.”Teen Track Star Carries Fallen Opponent Across Finish Line Multiply the Good and Share it Forward (below)…AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore Smith, who died February 7 at the age of 83, was a giant in basketball circles. In addition to one of the most impressive records in NCAA history, the four-time National Coach of the Year led the U.S. basketball team to a Gold Medal in the 1976 Olympics, earned a place in the Basketball Hall of Fame and was remembered for contributions to the Civil Rights movement. He was buried at Old Chapel Hill Cemetery on the UNC campus.(WATCH the video below from WNCN) – Story tip from Mike McGinleylast_img read more

This Man Used His Motorcycle to Rescue 166 Abandoned Cows

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreThis biker loves cows so much, he has taken it upon himself to rescue cows that have been abandoned on the street – and he does so using his motorcycle.These cows end up on the streets of Nepal after their farmers feel that the animals have outgrown their use – which is why R.B. Neupane has dedicated his life to providing a better life for the livestock.Neupane has set up a makeshift sanctuary, but cannot afford a truck for transportation. He simply recruits volunteers to rescue the cows and take them to safety on his motorcycle. RELATED: Man Bought School Bus to Rescue Shelter Pets During Hurricanes –He Just Saved 64 During FlorenceThe biker now cares for 166 cattle – all of whom he saved from the streets. He has orchestrated dozens of campaigns that encourage the people of Nepal to care more about their bovine companions. As a result, city residents have been stopping by Neupane’s sanctuary in Kathmandu with food, vegetables and treats.Since the cow is the national animal of Nepal, Neupane hopes that the government will soon implement legislation that will care for the cows more efficiently.Until then, Neupane is determined to continue rescuing cattle from the streets.(WATCH the video interview below) – Photo by BBC ReelBe Sure And Share This Man’s Inspiring Story On Social MediaAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMorelast_img read more