Now available on Oyez: This week’s oral argument audio aligned with the transcriptsOyez has posted the aligned audio and transcripts from this week’s oral arguments at the Supreme Court. The court heard argument this week in: Virginia House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill Smith v. Berryhill Cochise Consultancy Inc. v. United States, ex rel. Hunt Flowers v. Mississippi  

The post Now available on Oyez: This week’s oral argument audio aligned with the transcripts appeared first on SCOTUSblog.

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Authoritarianism has reemerged as the greatest threat to the liberal democratic world, and we have no idea how to confront it, Robert Kagan wrote in the first edition of The… Read more »

The post Identifying sources of democratic resilience and renewal appeared first on Democracy Digest.

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Last month, Alexander Korovainy shared an image on his Facebook page as part of the online “10-Year Challenge,” in which people post photos of themselves from a decade ago and today. Korovainy, who lives in Yeysk, in Russia’s Krasnodar region, made a tweak to the challenge, sharing an infographic comparing prices of household items such as a kilo of sugar in 2009 and 2019.

Alexander Korovainy.


© 2017 Daniel Burmaka

It sounds harmless enough. Except that the graphic was from MBKh Media, a news outlet founded by Mikhail Khordokovsky, a former oil tycoon, political prisoner and longstanding thorn in the Russian government’s side. And Korovainy, 34, is a member of Russia’s Yabloko opposition party and a deputy of Yeysk’s municipal council. He spent 10 days in jail in 2017 for taking part in a protest against corruption, and was fired from his teaching job on the same day. “I often ask uncomfortable questions” he told Human Rights Watch.

On March 14, Korovainy was summoned to the prosecutor’s office and informed that administrative charges had been filed against him under Russia’s 2015 law on “undesirable organizations,” which authorizes the prosecutor general to ban from the country any foreign or international organization that it perceives as harming Russia. The prosecutor alleged his post was related to Open Russia, an online movement that encourages transparency and independent information on Russia. In 2017, Russia’s prosecutor general designated Open Russia, a Khordokovsky initiative, an “undesirable organization.” Those who support Open Russia have also come under increasing pressure from the authorities.

The charges against Korovainy are consistent with the authorities’ wider crackdown on online expression. Prosecutions for speech offenses on social media have increased in Russia. That extends, as in Korovainy’s case, to posts the authorities deem merely connected to a foreign “undesirable organization”.

Korovainy, who faces a maximum 15,000 ruble fine (US$233) if convicted, told the prosecutor that MBKh Media, though blocked in Russia, is neither an undesirable organization nor the same as Open Russia. The prosecutor responded that MBKh media is a resource of Open Russia and “this is the same thing because MBKh stands for Mikhail Borisovich Khordokovsky.” Whether MBKh is or isn’t part of Open Russia is a distraction: neither should be banned from Russia. “I believe the case against me is intended to pressure me to stop my protest activities,” Korovainy said.

The authorities should stop exploiting vaguely worded laws to go after critics and drop the case against Korovainy.  

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Both the DNC and RNC posted strong numbers, particularly from small donors, early in the 2020 presidential cycle.

The post February showed strong fundraising for both parties, particularly among small donors appeared first on OpenSecrets News.

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The mantra of the Arab Spring is back. Protesters in Algeria, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia and the Palestinian territories [and Sudan] have demanded better governance of late, prompting talk of… Read more »

The post Arab Spring: the sequel? appeared first on Democracy Digest.

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Opinion analysis: An extremely narrow Fair Debt Collection Practices Act rulingOn Wednesday, the Supreme Court unanimously affirmed the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Obduskey v. McCarthy & Holthus LLP, holding that parties who enforce security interests are not debt collectors within the meaning of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act provided that they do no more than the bare minimum required […]

The post Opinion analysis: An extremely narrow Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ruling appeared first on SCOTUSblog.

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Ukraine votes for a president on March 31. Will the pro-Western incumbent, Petro Poroshenko, win? Or will he lose to his old foe, Yulia Tymoshenko, or wild card Volodymyr Zelenskiy?… Read more »

The post What’s at stake in Ukraine’s election? appeared first on Democracy Digest.

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Petitions of the weekThis week we highlight petitions pending before the Supreme Court that address whether federal preclusion principles limit the what defenses a defendant can raise when a plaintiff asserts new claims and when a state law might be exempt from the dormant commerce clause. The petitions of the week are: Lucky Brand Dungarees Inc. v. Marcel Fashion […]

The post Petitions of the week appeared first on SCOTUSblog.

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Foreign-based corporations or U.S. subsidiaries of foreign-based corporations have contributed millions of dollars to super PACs following Citizens United.

The post Following Citizens United, foreign-owned corporations funnel millions into US elections appeared first on OpenSecrets News.

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قبيل شهر، كنت من المشاركين في تدريب لإعداد مدربي التأمل واليقظه الذهنيه في مملكة تايلاند، وقد كان تدريبًا مختلفًا عن أي تدريب شاركت به في حياتي. ولهذا  قررت أن اكتب سلسة من المذكرات عن تلك الرحله لتعيشوا معي لحظات من أهم الدروس الحياتيه والمبادئ التي استفدت منها هناك وغيرت من حياتي الكثير أول مذكراتي ستكون …

Continue reading “عيش معانا التجربة”

The post عيش معانا التجربة appeared first on Peace Blog.

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