The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan, 2001-2014; Balochistan: At a Crossroads

Book Discussion Wrong Enemy Balochistan | Video | "Carlotta Gall and Willem Marx talked about Pakistan and the border area between Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran. In her book, The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan, 2001-2014, Carlotta Gall argues that following September 11, 2001, the U.S. should have focused on Pakistan instead of Afghanistan. She said that the Afghans have paid a heavy price for Pakistan’s treachery. In his book, Balochistan: At a Crossroads, Willem Marx talks about the border region between Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran and the civil conflict that is happening there." (video at link above)

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Amazon, Hachette, James Patterson says Amazon practices a "national tragedy"

Why Is Amazon Squeezing Hachette? Maybe It Really Needs the Money - "Amazon hasn’t really explained what it is after, but here’s one compelling theory: The company just doesn’t have enough money to finance everything it wants to do. Rather than trim its ambitions, it is putting one side of its business through the wringer to pay for another."

James Patterson calls Amazon's practices 'a national tragedy' -"Writer James Patterson accepted the Indie Champion award at Book Expo America in New York City. Patterson received the award for his plan to distribute one million dollars to indie bookstores.  During his acceptance speech, the author called Amazon’s business practices “a national tragedy,” according to industry newsletter Shelf Awareness."

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Susan Stranahan, Fukushima, Union of Concerned Scientists

Words Susan Stranahan | Video | "Susan Stranahan talks about the book Fukushima, an account of the 2011 tsunami and resulting meltdown at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan. Ms. Stranahan co-authored the book with members of the Union of Concerned Scientists."

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John Micklethwait, Adrian Wooldridge, The Fourth Revolution – The Global Race to Reinvent the State; Stephen Levitt, Stephen Dubner, Think Like A Freak, Charlie Rose interview video

Charlie Rose interviews: John Micklethwait & Adrian Wooldridge of the Economist magazine on their book, “The Fourth Revolution – The Global Race to Reinvent the State;” Stephen Levitt & Stephen Dubner on their book, “Think Like A Freak."

The Fourth Revolution: The Global Race to Reinvent the State: John Micklethwait, Adrian Wooldridge: " . . . the book is a global tour of the innovators in how power is to be wielded. The age of big government is over; the age of smart government has begun. Many of the ideas the authors discuss seem outlandish now, but the center of gravity is moving quickly. This tour drives home a powerful argument: that countries’ success depends overwhelmingly on their ability to reinvent the state. And that much of the West—and particularly the United States—is failing badly in its task. China is making rapid progress with government reform at the same time as America is falling badly behind. Washington is gridlocked, and America is in danger of squandering its huge advantages from its powerful economy because of failing government. And flailing democracies like India look enviously at China’s state-of-the-art airports and expanding universities...."

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Glenn Greenwald, No Place to Hide, Edward Snowden, NSA, US Surveillance State, Noam Chomsky (video)

Glenn Greenwald: No Place to Hide - Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State -

Harvard Book Store welcomed political commentators Glenn Greenwald and Noam Chomsky for a discussion of Greenwald's latest book, No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State.

In May 2013, Glenn Greenwald set out for Hong Kong to meet an anonymous source who claimed to have astonishing evidence of pervasive government spying and insisted on communicating only through heavily encrypted channels. That source turned out to be the 29-year-old NSA contractor Edward Snowden, and his revelations about the agency's widespread, systemic overreach proved to be some of the most explosive and consequential news in recent history, triggering a fierce debate over national security and information privacy. As the arguments rage on and the government considers various proposals for reform, it is clear that we have yet to see the full impact of Snowden's disclosures.

Now for the first time, Greenwald fits all the pieces together, recounting his high-intensity eleven-day trip to Hong Kong, examining the broader implications of the surveillance detailed in his reporting for The Guardian, and revealing fresh information on the NSA's unprecedented abuse of power with never-before-seen documents entrusted to him by Snowden himself.

Going beyond NSA specifics, Greenwald also takes on the establishment media, excoriating their habitual avoidance of adversarial reporting on the government and their failure to serve the interests of the people. Finally, he asks what it means both for individuals and for a nation's political health when a government pries so invasively into the private lives of its citizens—and considers what safeguards and forms of oversight are necessary to protect democracy in the digital age. Coming at a landmark moment in American history, No Place to Hide is a fearless, incisive, and essential contribution to our understanding of the U.S. surveillance state.
(Published on May 19, 2014)

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