common dreams

Common Dreams, an aggregator of progressive news and commentary, provides a daily e-mail summary. It’s so good at capturing the news that I care about — politics, economics, and the environment — that I now read it before any other newsfeeds. In fact, it’s so good, if it weren’t for my need to check out local Canadian news, it’s almost the only newsfeed/newspaper I need to read. It reliably picks up the most important stories and op-ed from the world’s best newspapers. Less time reading newsfeeds, more time for blogs!

As a sample, here’s last night’s Common Dreams e-mail. I’d like to get a script that would show this every day in my right sidebar, like some people do with BuzzFlash. Anyone know how to do that?

Today’s Headlines

Condoleezza Rice Leads White House Offensive on Iraqi Weapons
Iraq Commission Could Pose Serious Threat to Bush
WMD: Now It is Bush’s Turn to Face Uncomfortable Truths
Corporate Owners of Radio, TV Blasted at Hearing
UK: Demands Grow for Inquiry into the Case for War as Hutton is Accused of a ‘Whitewash’
Diplomacy, Not War on Iraq, Forced Libya to Give Up Nuclear Quest: Blix
FDA Drug Ad Enforcement Declines Again
Rumsfeld Stuns House Committee by Bumping Up US Forces by 30,000
ExxonMobil: What Just One Company Can Do To the World
Space Militarization Looms as Threat of 21st Century: Expert
Brussels Clears GM Maize ‘To Please US’
Arab-American Political Group Endorses Kucinich

Today’s Views

Robert Reich:
The Dead Center
Tad Daley: Choosing a Flag to Unite a Planet
David Corn: A Dis-Endorsement of Dean
Arianna Huffington: Judy Dean And The Politics Of Authenticity
James Goldsborough: Truth on Iraq Begins to Emerge
Ted Rall: Let Their People Go: Why Stop With Iraq?
Greg Palast: BBC At War: M’Lord Hutton Blesses Blair’s Attack on BBC’s Investigation of Iraq War Claims
Haroon Siddiqui: Truth Catching up to Bush
Paul Campos: CBS: The Censor Broadcast System
Jay Bookman: No Mystery to Untangling WMD Puzzler
Sidney Blumenthal: The Remaining Democratic Hopefuls are all Singing from the Same Hymn Sheet to Defeat the President
Robert Kuttner: The Privileged Act Worried

Today’s Progressive Newswire

Jewish Human Rights Watch
U.S.: Despite Releases, Children Still Held at Guantanamo
20/20 Vision No Weapons in Iraq. Now What?
Natural Resources Defense Council Split London Court Decision Allows Controversial Belize Dam Project to Proceed
Jewish Voice for Peace Jewish Voice for Peace Calls For an End To Ongoing Violence Against Civilians
People For the American Way 11th Circuit Upholds Anti-Gay Florida Adoption Law
Miami Activist Defense Judge Dismisses Charges in First FTAA-Related Jury Trial
Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting NPR Responds to FAIR Activists, Says Review of Cheney’s Statements Would be a “Service to the Listeners”
State PIRGs New Report Shows College Textbooks Are “Ripoff 101” – Publishers Increase Prices Through Gimmicks; Faculty Are Concerned
Drug Policy Alliance “Biggest Shake-Up of Britain’s Drug Laws in 30 Years” Goes Into Effect Today!!
League of Women Voters of the United States A Report Finds Youth Are Ready to Get Involved
Kucinich.US More Troops Will Be Blocked From Leaving or Retiring
Sierra Club Statement of Emily Green, Director of Sierra Club’s Great Lakes Program, on EPA Announcement of Funding for Great Lakes Toxic Cleanups
Institute for Public Accuracy UN Spy Scandal on Iraq: Prominent Americans Support British Whistleblower
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom League Challenges the President, Candidates to Fulfill the Values of Peace, Justice, & Human Rights for All
National Urban League African Americans, College Graduates Hit Hardest By Recession; New National Urban League Study Says Jobless Recovery Impossible
The Oil Depletion Analysis Centre Oil Supply Shortages Likely After 2007
Democrats Abroad Canada American Voters in Canada Could Have an Impact on the 2004 U.S. Presidential Election

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  1. Philip says:

    There is an RSS feed for Common Dreams, as I remember Andrew ran a radio weblog that could display the output of other people’s RSS feeds on his blog. There is also a javascript include file that lists some of the top headlines with a link to Common Dreams for more. If you want me to send it along drop me some mail. I will insert it in to my page so you can see the output. (Give me a few minutes to get it done)

  2. Phil says:

    Thanks for this, Dave. I’d not seen it before. Now maybe I’ll have time to carefully read your more erudite posts!

  3. Philip says:

    The javascript version of Common Dreams headlines can be found at myRSS. At the present it only gets updated once a day. Sponsorship of the channel is available for $25 a year where you can arrange more frequent updates. May be a good advertising thing for Meeting of Minds. You can see how it looks now on my page. (sorta I added the logo and played with the style).

  4. Dave Pollard says:

    Wow, thanks, Philip. You’ve given me a real education. Just showing the first 5 news items each day isn’t enough, I think — you still have to go to the Common Dreams site even to see the full list of headlines. I’ll investigate sponsorship with them, provided I can get more headlines rather than more frequent updates for my $25. Your tech skills are waaaay beyond mine! I’ve saved the section of page source from your home page as an example of how to put js onto your blog — I’m sure it will come in handy when I redesign my blog (next month I hope). As always, your help of fellow bloggers is exemplary. I especially appreciate the welcome you give new bloggers.

  5. O RLY YA RLY says:

    I have a question. While looking for sources to substantiate my arguments I have often come across this source. But I’ve always been a bit weary about using it. Could you say something about how partisan it is? Has it (or its sources) often or ever been found to be mistaken? What is its reputation for factuality?

  6. Dave Pollard says:

    Harald: Common Dreams doesn’t source their own material — at least not often. They’re an aggregator, and the three sections of the daily e-mail are selected articles from (a) newspapers and news feeds (with the source cited e.g. the Condoleeza article is from the NYT), (b) op-eds and editorials from a variety of progressive sources (with the author, and usually his/her credentials cited), and (c) press releases from 120 selected progressive organizations (cited). Its slant is clearly left-of-centre — what it includes are exclusively stories and editorials that support liberal positions and reflect liberal philosophy. Drawing from so many sources, I’m sure at least one of them has been found to be mistaken, but Common Dreams takes care to ensure its sources are factual and reliable — one irresponsible source would undermine the credibility of their entire site, and I’ve never read anything from any of their sources that I know to be dubious. A few of the sources are a bit strident, and a few are not very articulate, but their facts seem credible.

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