Morning Reads

As we continue our effort to keep you up-to-date on how money corrupts American government and politics, as well as other news of the day, we’re pleased to publish this daily digest compiled by’s Michael Winship.

The refugee crisis –> “A divided European leadership will try to seek a credible response to the continent’s worst migration crisis since [the] second world war at an emergency summit on Wednesday,” The Guardian reports. “… Angela Merkel called on her peers to accept joint responsibility.” ALSO, at The Huffington Post, Adam C. Levine of Brown Medical School suggests “A Humanitarian Solution to Europe’s Political Problem.” AND, The New York Times: “The Obama administration will increase the number of worldwide refugees the United States accepts each year to 100,000 by 2017, a significant increase over the current annual cap of 70,000, Secretary of State John Kerry said Sunday.”

Blow to democracy –> Matea Gold and Tom Hamburger at The Washington Post write, “The national political parties are urging wealthy backers to give them ten times more money than was allowed in the last presidential election, taking advantage of looser restrictions to pursue million-dollar donors with zeal. Under the new plans, which have not been disclosed publicly, the top donation tier for the Republican National Committee has soared to $1.34 million per couple this election cycle. Democratic contributors, meanwhile, are being hit up for even more — about $1.6 million per couple… The new push… further elevates the uber-wealthy at a time when independent big-money groups known as super PACs are dominating the 2016 presidential race.”

The Pope –> Pope Francis begins his second full day in Cuba this morning. After celebrating mass yesterday, Philip Pullela and Daniel Trotta at Reuters report, “Latin America’s first pope and [Fidel] Castro, the region’s last surviving leftist icon of the 20th century, discussed religion and world affairs at the home of the 89-year-old retired president for about 40 minutes.”

That Chicago hunger strike –> At Common Dreams, Ujju Aggarwal and Renee Hatcher write, “On Saturday, a group of parents, grandparents, teachers, and community members ended a historic 34-day hunger strike. Their cause? To save what is the last open enrollment public high school in the historic Bronzeville community in Chicago, Walter H. Dyett High School. Several strikers had been hospitalized… The attending nurse for the strikers, Erin Raether for Nurses for Justice, has pronounced that it was ‘a life threatening situation.’

“And it is life—and the struggle for it—that seems to be at the heart of the fight for Dyett. Recently, a study from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation affirmed what many have known to be true for a very long time: premature death is significantly determined by access to education, which is stratified by race and class.”

Tell truth and shame the devil –> Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo goes after the MSM for failing to follow up on Carly Fiorina’s performance at last week’s GOP debate, in which “she not only made a string of false statements, or claims that showed a willful disregard for or ignorance of reality, she almost certainly manufactured a bogus memory entirely out of whole cloth” — i.e., her description of those edited, anti-Planned Parenthood videos.

Other dust from the campaign trail –> Dr. Ben Carson does not believe a Muslim should be president. Which figures, because, according to an article by Lawrence Goldstone in The New Republic, “Ben Carson Thinks Islam Isn’t Consistent With the Constitution. He’s Dead Wrong.”

ALSO, John Nichols in The Nation, “Bernie Sanders Offers GOP Debaters a Tutorial on Democratic Socialism.” And at CounterPoint, “The Sanders Paradox: a Brief for Bernie,” by William Kaufman, on radical left opposition to Sanders and why he thinks it’s a bad idea.

Must read –> Mark Warren in Esquire on “Why the Best War Reporter in a Generation Had to Suddenly Stop,” the story of C.J. Chivers, the correspondent and former Marine whose journalism skills, empathy and knowledge of the military told readers what it’s really like to be under fire, whether soldier or civilian. ALSO, Dave Philipps in The New York Times on the suicides among members of a Marine battalion that served in Afghanistan and the alleged indifference of the VA.

AND Steve Brill’s ongoing series in The Huffington Post, “America’s Most Admired Lawbreaker,” the story of how Johnson & Johnson “created a powerful drug, promoted it illegally to children and the elderly, covered up the side effects and made billions of dollars.”

RIP –> Everett C. Parker, founder and longtime director of the Office of Communications for the United Church of Christ, passionate fighter against racial discrimination in broadcasting and advocate for children’s programming and public media.

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