Morning Reads

Good morning — and a happy 91st to actor Christopher Lee! Here are some of the stories we’re reading as we get back into the swing after the long weekend…

A “monumental cheap shot” –> Veterans groups are firing back at Sen. Richard Burr after the North Carolina Republican charged that they’re not doing enough to politicize condemn VA boss Eric Shinseki over the waiting list scandal. Hadas Gold reports for Politico.

The grand finale –> Glenn Greenwald told The Sunday Times that the biggest revelation from the Snowden files is yet to come: naming the names of US citizens who were victims of NSA snooping. Toby Harnden has the story at Real Clear Politics.

Accountability –> The Obama administration is preparing a ratings system for colleges and universities that would evaluate their performance based on factors like their graduation rates, the amount of debt their students accrue and how much their graduates earn. Michael Shear reports for The New York Times that colleges are “rattled” by the initiative.

Another TRAP –> Slate’s Emily Bazelon reports that an Alabama court case being heard this week could lead to women in red states losing access to abortion providers entirely. Its the latest TRAP law (or “targeted regulation of abortion providers”) seeking to make it prohibitively expensive for abortion clinics to function.

The new warmongers? –> In a provocative piece in The Boston Globe, Steven Kinzer argues that “some of the most outspoken warmongers in Washington are self-proclaimed human rights advocates.”

Mystery solved? –> Brian Moench, head of Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment, writes at Truthout that a spike in infant mortality in rural Utah may be linked to an explosion in oil drilling and gas fracking.

Industrial hemp –> At AJA, Renee Lewis reports that the versatile crop, which was banned “when powerful petrochemical and pulp-paper industries realized they stood to lose billions if hemp’s potential was fully realized,” is set to make a comeback.

The internet that you know is dying –> Andrew Leonard at Salon: “Facebook and Google are killing the classic internet and reinventing it in their image.”

Job creators –> Paul Krugman writes that Europe’s austerity-driven pain and fiscal messes obscure its longer-term success in creating new jobs.

Big numbers –> Dean Baker writes about Wall Street’s “pension scam” — aided by scary reports about underfunded pensions put out by various “well endowed foundations” — for Truthout.

“This is 2014, not 1960” –> People are outraged over a report that a Mississippi judge slapped and shouted racial epithets at a mentally disabled black man at a local market.

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