December 1, 2021

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The Edge
Protecting Democracy with the Local Journalism Initiative

Local news media “have been the foundation of the American free press, and political democracy, since 1776,” providing the “lion’s share of original reporting upon which all other news media depend.”

Robert McChesney and John Nichols of the Local Journalism Initiative explain that local journalism of the past 200 years has seen a rapid decline over the recent two decades, as the business model of commercial journalism that supported them collapsed.

“The ramifications are increasingly clear, and endlessly depressing,” but LJI’s policy proposal presents an option to revitalize this essential aspect of American democracy.

Read more of their proposal on The Edge.

Current Inflation has ‘Everything To Do with Corporate Greed’

Rising inflation in the United States has captured headlines during November. Mainstream media outlets have been warning of increasingly expensive commodities like coffee and deciding where to assign blame — including to Joe Biden, to Americans themselves, and far too rarely, to corporate greed.

A bevy of factors contribute to rising inflation levels, including interruptions in the supply chain, increased labor costs, and rising demand for goods. But a key force driving up prices are the U.S.’s mega-corporations.

Mainstream media has the responsibility to cite these conscious decisions by the wealthy to ramp up costs for profit.

Read the full report on The Edge.

The True Cause of the Omicron Variant: Vaccine Hoarding

For months, health experts have warned wealthy countries of the dangers and immoralities of hoarding COVID-19 vaccines. Affluent nations have fully vaccinated about 65% of their populations, but low-income countries maintain a vaccination rate of less than 3%.

In the absence of global vaccination, COVID-19 is not only spreading uninhibited among unprotected people, but is mutating, with new variants emerging and causing waves of panic.

Now, as the new Omicron variant has been identified and labeled a “variant of concern,” global vaccine disparity must be at the forefront of the Covid conversation.

Read the full report on The Edge.

More from the Edge
COP 26: Since Paris Agreement, ‘No Progress Has Been Made’

COP26 concluded November 12, with disappointing outcomes from many perspectives concerning the climate emergency.

As the summit ran late on its final day, and as delegates shaped their statements for all 197 countries to agree on, a group of over 200 international scientists warned that “immediate, strong, rapid, sustained and large-scale actions are necessary to hold global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius and pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius.”

The summit brought some hope for the future of mitigating the climate emergency if leaders can more aggressively curb emissions and rising temperatures.

Read the full report here.

‘Midnight Is Still With Us’: Senator Adam Schiff discusses the Threats still posed to American Democracy after Trump

On November 10, the Brennan Center for Justice interviewed Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and lead manager in first impeachment trial of Donald Trump to discuss the Constitution, Congress, and the disastrous culmination of Trump’s presidency on January 6.

Schiff began by equating the darkness that shrouds midnight to the moral darkness that has seemingly shrouded Congress: “After Joe Biden was elected, I thought we were on the other side of midnight… But as it turns out midnight is still with us. Instead of rejecting Donald trump and rejecting the Big Lie that led to the insurrection, Republicans in leadership positions in Congress and elsewhere have embraced the Big Lie that us here.”

Read highlights of Schiff’s interview on The Edge.

Watch the full interview here.

In Other News

1. Boy, 17, becomes fourth victim killed as suspect’s chilling warning revealed (The Independent)

2. What J&J Can Still Teach Us (The Atlantic)

3. Roe v. Wade In Serious Peril After Dramatic Supreme Court Arguments (HuffPost)

4. Aztec altar with human ashes uncovered in Mexico City (BBC)

5. ‘Deluge of plastic waste’: US is world’s biggest plastic polluter (The Guardian

Read previous Briefs and more from independent media on the PCIM website, and The Edge, and follow PCIM on social media: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The Indy Brief is edited by Jeremy Lovelett.