Analiese’s Reading 6/2

The threat against Obama; bailout contractors and conflict of interest; Hong Kong protest over Tiananmen; war damage in Pakistan; Lady Gaga video; and pig farming documentary under threat.

Coincidence? Another paper links Obama and violence

The “mistakes” are adding up: On May 15 of last year, the Roswell Beacon in Georgia ran a cover photo showing President Barack Obama in a gun’s crosshairs. Early this month, Fox ran a photo of a rifle situated as if taking aim at Obama, followed two weeks ago by an odd item at the Washington Times Web site: the conservative publication used a photo of Obama’s daughters to illustrate a story about Chicago schoolchildren who’ve been murdered.
Minnesota Independent

Government Taps Bailout Contractors With Conflicts of Interest

As the Wall Street bailout nears its first anniversary, the controversy over giving public money to private banks has become public knowledge. But an equally risky aspect of the financial rescue has flown largely under the radar: the government’s reliance on private contractors – many with potentially significant conflicts of interest – to help revive the stalled economy.

The Treasury Department knows that the law firms and investment managers hired to aid its salvage effort could be influenced by their ties to bailed-out banks; in fact, the department released a rule in January aiming to mitigate the problem.
Washington Independent

Hong Kong protest over Tiananmen

Thousands have marched in Hong Kong to mark the forthcoming 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen killings, in one of the few such events on Chinese soil.

Hundreds, possibly thousands, of people were killed in China’s crackdown on pro-democracy protests.

There has been no official inquiry so the exact death toll remains unclear.

Pakistan city centre ‘destroyed’

The scale of the war damage to the main city in the Swat valley has become clear, as fears are expressed about the humanitarian situation in the region.

Taliban rebels were driven out of Mingora on Saturday by Pakistan government troops.

The defence secretary says operations in the whole Swat valley region should end in the next few days, though military chiefs are more cautious.

Sexualized Violence in a Lady Gaga Video

In the documentary Dreamworlds 3: Desire, Sex, and Power in Music Video, Sut Jhally investigates how images of sex and violence, and sexualized violence against women, are used in music videos, and how music videos help shape ideas of what is sexy.
Sociological Images

Documentary on Intensive Pig Farming Faces Legal Threat

A documentary about intensive pig farming due to be screened at the Guardian Hay festival on Sunday is facing a legal threat from one of the companies it investigates. Pig Business criticises the practices of the world’s largest pork processor, Smithfield Foods, claiming it is responsible for environmental pollution and health problems among residents near its factories.

The film was due to be broadcast on Channel 4 in February but was cancelled because of legal fears. A planned screening at the Frontline Club in London earlier this year was also called off.
Common Dreams

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