Hey folks, hope you’re doing well today.

International Developments

Overall

- Pew: More migrants are going to high-income countries, though are being born in middle-income countries

- “A top adviser to Iran’s supreme leader said Tuesday Tehran is ready for a final nuclear deal with world powers over its disputed nuclear program, a strong signal of interest after it pulled out of expert-level talks to protest the U.S. targeting of companies it says evaded current sanctions.

- Part 3 with David Swanson, “Are there just wars?”

- “Indian authorities removed concrete security barriers in front of the U.S. embassy in New Delhi on Tuesday in apparent retaliation for the arrest and allegedly heavy-handed treatment of an Indian diplomat in New York.

- Obama now snubs the Sochi Olympics with Biden as well

- “Western nations have indicated to the Syrian opposition that peace talks next month may not lead to the removal of President Bashar al-Assad and that his Alawite minority will remain key in any transitional administration, opposition sources said.

- U.N.: Congo soldiers have used child soldiers, committed executions and actively used sexual violence

- “The military judge presiding over the Sept. 11 war crimes tribunal at Guantanamo ejected one defendant from the courtroom twice Tuesday for speaking out of turn, adding a bit of drama to an otherwise dry pretrial motions hearing at the U.S. naval base in Cuba.”

- U.N. 210,000 have been displaced in Central African Republic

Middle East

- “Hospitals in the Syrian city of Aleppo have been overwhelmed with casualties after a wave of air strikes which killed more than 100 people in recent days, Medecins Sans Frontieres says.

- “The Scourging of Roger Waters

- “A car bomb went off near a Hezbollah base in eastern Lebanon early on Tuesday, officials said, the latest in a wave of deadly attacks that have targeted the Shia militant group’s interests in Lebanon.

- “Major US academic body backs boycott of Israeli educational institutions

- Six U.S. soldiers have died in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan

- “NATO would have to start planning for a complete withdrawal fromAfghanistan by early next spring if President Hamid Karzai refuses to sign a security pact allowing foreign troops to stay on, the alliance’s top military commander said on Tuesday.

- “UK minister: Syria has ‘in effect’ murdered doctor

- The plan to destroy Syrian chemical weapons may be delayed

- E.U. to Israel: Do not announce anymore West Bank settlements since it may jeopardize talks 

- “‘Suspension of military aid to Syrian rebels is pure rhetoric’

Asia and Oceania

- “Kerry’s Return to the Mekong

- Jon Stewart on China’s landing on the moon

- “China said Monday it was on track to launch a fifth lunar probe with the aim of bringing back lunar soil and rock samples following the successful moon landing of a space probe.”

- “Chinese police arrest suspects after Kashgar violence

- The elite in North Korea have pledged allegiance to Kim Jung Un

- Japan has increased the military budget amid tensions with China

- On Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

- “Israel’s defense minister says Lebanon has pledged to punish the sniper who killed an Israeli soldier in a cross-border shooting this week.

Africa

- “Mandela and the ANC Brought Real Political Changes to Post- Apartheid South Africa

- Increasing homophobia in Ethiopia

- After yesterday’s coup averted, South Sudan faced faction fighting that left at least 59 dead and 400 injured

- U.N.: “Heavy toll” in South Sudan

- “South Sudan said Tuesday it had arrested 10 senior political figures and was hunting for its ex-vice president, accusing him of leading a “foiled coup” in the oil-producing nation’s capital, where gunfire rang out for a second day.

- France: EU countries will send troops to Central African Republic

- “Libyan Justice Minister Salah Margani says his government will allow U.S. and British investigators to question Abdullah al-Senoussi, Gadhafi’s notorious spymaster, over the Lockerbie bombing.

- In Tunisia, stand off between police and protesters

- “A police officer was shot and killed early on Monday morning while securing one of Tripoli’s petrol stations.

Europe

- “Ukrainians Protest Oligarchic Rule that has Stripped the Country of its Wealth

- “Angela Merkel was elected to a third term as chancellor in a vote in the German lower house of parliament on Tuesday, paving the way for her new government to formally take power after months of coalition talks.

- Russia has bailed out Ukraine with $15 billion

- Opposition in Ukraine have denounced the deal and pledged to stop it in parliament

- NATO military commander: I’m concerned over Russian missile deployment 

- “American neonazis express solidarity with Golden Dawn

- “The government has received the green light from the troika for a controversial restructuring plan for the country’s main defence industry, which will see the company split into two.

- “Italy denounced for hosing down migrants in cold

- “ One of Northern Ireland’s most prominent Irish republican militants has been charged with conspiring to possess weapons and kill police and soldiers.”

- Amnesty bill in Russia passed parliament, but more ahead for it to be completed

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

- “Mexico’s human rights body says the government shouldn’t be allowing the formation of vigilante groups in some parts of Mexico where people have risen up to battle drug gangs. It says they could lead to more violence and undermine the rule of law.

-  ”10 Steps to Dictatorship in Haiti

- “Honduran Elections Signal Increased Militarism and Resource Extraction

- Regarding the U.S. and the Honduran election

- “Corruption scandal swirls around Argentine leader

- “ News reports say Brazil’s finance minister has backtracked on plans to possibly delay the implementation of a law requiring automakers to install frontal air bags and anti-locking braking systems in all news cars.

Surveillance Planet

- Pew: 55 percent of Americans see the Snowden leaks as harmful for the public interest

- Snowden to Brazil: I will assist you over U.S. spying if offered asylum.

- Brazil: We are not considering asylum at this time

- Tech companies to government: We need “aggressive” reforms over surveillance

- “The Internet Giants Oppose Surveillance—but Only When the Government Does it

- Sen. Dianne Feldstein (D-CA): NSA phone surveillance program is “important,” though not “indispensable”

- CNN has deleted a Tweet suggesting Snowden was offered a chance to spy on the U.S., though deleted it. Greg Mitchell has more.

- “Is 1976 robbery legally relevant to NSA spying?

- “Obama’s National Security State

- On the phone with Obama, Merkel has severely criticized NSA programs as similar to the Stasi

- Critiquing Oakland’s “domain surveillance center,” despite evidence suggesting it doesn’t affect crime rates

- Jesselyn Radack: “Awards they couldn’t accept: The tragic irony of Greenwald, Poitras and Snowden

- “Demand Your Privacy

- “Alan Rusbridger, Jimmy Wales and ex-GCHQ chief debate spying

- Stephen Colbert jokes on the NSA’s video game surveillance

- “Judge who issued NSA ruling often bucks executive

- Emptywheel: “Dianne Feinstein Glosses Jeffrey Miller Phone Dragnet Decision

Financial Matters

- Gallup: Increased confidence in the U.S. economy

- “European finance ministers are beginning two days of emergency meetings aimed at achieving agreement on more centralized control over banks.

- U.S. District Court Judge Jed S. Rakoff seriously critiques the feds for not going after Wall Street criminals. Here is his full article.

- “The Justice Department is preparing to file civil fraud charges against Citigroup Inc and Bank of America’s Merrill Lynch unit over their sale of flawed mortgage securities ahead of the financial crisis, according to people familiar with the probes.

- 10 greediest people in the U.S.

- “US income gap is holding back economy

- “How the government funds abusive tycoons

- NAFTA is now 20 years old, what’s the state of the North American worker since then?

- “Did Someone Say “Crash”?

- “The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has asked a federal judge to order the former Goldman Sachs vice-president Fabrice Tourre to pay more than $1.1m (£700,000) for his role in a failed 2007 mortgage deal.

- “The Municipal-Industrial Complex Around the World

- “AT&T Inc, the biggest U.S. phone company, said on Tuesday that it would sell its wireline operations in Connecticut to regional telephone operator Frontier Communications for $2 billion in cash, to help fund network upgrades.”

- Emptywheel: “US Government Slaps HSBC’s Wrist for Facilitating Terrorism, Again

Labor’s a-Brewing

- More victory! “Wal-Mart’s dirty partners pay up: Fired workers win thousands

- A march for a minimum living wage in India

Politics USA

Washington USA

-  Budget deal has passed the Senate 67-33, most Republicans voted against it

- Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has introduced a bill that would prohibit companies from using credit reports to discriminate against poorer folk

- The rhetoric-only progressives in the Democratic Party

- Katrina vanden Heuvel: “Just Because Congress Cut a Budget Deal Doesn’t Mean It’s a Good One

- “The White House and news media representatives agreed Tuesday to work toward expanding access to President Barack Obama’s public duties to give photo journalists a less restricted view of the president at work.

- “Obamacare Lives

- Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Justices should still be around if able to work, not to retire for benefit of a politician

- “Obama Is Trying to Fix Inequality by Hiring the Same Hacks Who Caused It

Everything Else USA 

- “A federal grand jury has indicted a man accused of a deadly shooting spree at Los Angeles International Airport on first-degree murder charges.

- “Land of the Free? America Has 25 Percent of the World’s Prisoners

- “It’s time to take the white savior out of slavery narratives

- “Goodies for the Rich, Pennies for the Poor

- “De Blasio Takes Agenda National—Because He Has To

- “Detroit seeks key court ruling to infuse bankrupt city with cash

- “A review panel on a proposed pipeline to the Pacific Coast that would allow Canada’s oil to be shipped to Asia will issue its recommendations this week.

- A woman’s personal history with the idiotic no-fly list

- Henry Giroux: “Radical Democracy Against Cultures of Violence

- “Woman who survived years of sexual abuse given rehab instead of jail time for burglaries

- Brilliant Stewart critique of the myth of the “Knockout” game and also goes on about Megyn Kelly, resident entertainer who talks on news

- “How tight jeans almost ruined America’s money

We Don’t Need No Education

- Gallup: 93 percent of American see college as important

- Church leaders have criticized Catholic University for accepting money form the Koch brothers

- Report: Chinese third-graders are falling behind U.S. high school students

Top Gun! (Stories)

- “Thought Crimes, School Shootings and State Violence

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

- Study: Vitamins are a waste of money and scam for you

- “A look at food companies that removed ingredients

- “ABC asks judge to throw out ‘pink slime’ lawsuit

- “How Big Food Creates an Illusion of Choice at the Supermarket

- “A nasty virus first detected in Africa that is spread to people by the bite of infected mosquitoes is being locally transmitted in the Americas for the first time on the tiny French Caribbean dependency of St. Martin, health officials said Tuesday.

- Study: Half of psychiatrists won’t accept health insurance like Medicare and Medicaid

The Second Sex

- “#MeninistTwitter thinks feminism is a movement about buying women flowers

- “Beyoncé Is ‘Absolutely’ a Feminist

- A U.S. district judge has ruled a Catholic group in New York has the right to deny birth control for its employees

- “A year after a deadly rape, Delhi women not keen on self-defence classes

- Pope Francis has rejected the idea of female Cardinals

Planet Earth

- Bill McKibben: Obama has made climate change worse; Strong words, a turn of the tides

- “Climate Change Clears The Way For The Extraction of Arctic Resources

- ““The Great Dying” redux? Shocking parallels between ancient mass extinction and climate change

- “Chevron Corp. failed to maintain equipment at a California refinery and has not responded adequately to multiple airborne chemical releases, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday.

- “A kind of rock that often contains diamonds has been found in Antarctica for the first time, hinting at mineral riches in the vast, icy continent — where mining is banned.

- One in 10 people face water scarcity due to climate change

- “Macedonia’s government has imposed emergency measures in four cities, including Skopje, the capital, to address heavy air pollution caused by traffic and wood- and oil-burning heating systems.

- There have been chemicals found at fracking sites associated with infertility, birth defects and cancer

- “Jurors have adjourned for the night after saying they are having difficulty reaching a unanimous verdict in the trial of a former BP engineer charged with trying to obstruct a probe of the company’s 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

- November was the warmest month for the planet, breaking records

Mixed Bag

- We are down to five inspirational stories

- Pew: The top 10 Google searches of illnesses (Number one is “Flu”)

- Six scientific findings on morality

- “Boys and girls may get different breast milk

- Hilarious Colbert segment on robots Google has purchased rights for

- “NASA has ordered up a series of urgent spacewalks to fix a broken cooling line at the International Space Station.

- Strange sex laws in the U.S.

- Oldest domesticated cat fossil found in China

Break Time

- Don’t Shoot Me Santa