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“Project Censored brings to light some of the most important stories of the year that you never saw or heard about. This is your chance to find out what got buried.” –Diane Ravitch, author of The Death and Life of the Great American School System.
“In another home run for Project Censored, Censored 2013 shows how the American public has been bamboozled, snookered, and dumbed down by the corporate media. It is chock-full of ‘ah-ha’ moments where we understand just how we’ve been fleeced by banksters, stripped of our civil liberties, and blindly led down a path of never-ending war.” –Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare, cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK.
“Project Censored is one of the organizations that we should listen to, to be assured that our newspapers and our broadcasting outlets are practicing thorough and ethical journalism.” —Walter Cronkite
“Most journalists in the United States believe the press here is free. That grand illusion only helps obscure the fact that, by and large, the US corporate press does not report what’s really going on, while tuning out, or laughing off, all those who try to do just that. Americans–now more than ever–need those outlets that do labor to report some truth. Project Censored is not just among the bravest, smartest, and most rigorous of those outlets, but the only one that’s wholly focused on those stories that the corporate press ignores, downplays, and/or distorts. This latest book is therefore a must read for anyone who cares about this country, its tottering economy, and–most important– what’s now left of its democracy.” –Mark Crispin Miller, author, professor of media ecology, New York University.
“Censored 2014 is a clarion call for truth telling. Not only does this volume highlight fearless speech in fateful times, it connect the dots between the key issues we face, lauds our whistleblowers and amplifies their voices, and shines light in the dark places of our government that most need exposure.” –Daniel Ellsberg, The Pentagon Papers
“Project Censored continues to be an invaluable resource in exposing and highlighting shocking stories that are routinely minimized or ignored by the corporate media. The vital nature of this work is underscored by this year’s NSA leaks. The world needs more brave whistle blowers and independent journalists in the service of reclaiming democracy and challenging the abuse of power. Project Censored stands out for its commitment to such work.” —Deepa Kumar, author of Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire and associate professor of Media Studies and Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University
“Activist groups like Project Censored . . . are helping to build the media democracy movement. We have to challenge the powers that be and rebuild media from the bottom up.” —Amy Goodman
“Project Censored shines a spotlight on news that an informed public must have . . . a vital contribution to our democratic process.” —Rhoda H. Karpatkin, president, Consumer’s Union
“At a time when the need for independent journalism and for media outlets unaffiliated with and untainted by the government and corporate sponsors is greater than ever, Project Censored has created a context for reporting the complete truths in all matters that matter. . . . It is therefore left to us to find sources for information we can trust. . . . It is in this task that we are fortunate to have an ally like Project Cen-sored.” —Dahr Jamail
“Project Censored interrogates the present in the same way that Oliver Stone and I tried to interrogate the past in our Untold History of the United States. It not only shines a penetrating light on the American Empire and all its deadly, destructive, and deceitful actions, it does so at a time when the Obama administration is mounting a fierce effort to silence truth-tellers and whistleblowers. Project Censored provides the kind of fearless and honest journalism we so desperately need in these dangerous times.” —Peter Kuznick, professor of history, American University, and coauthor, with Oliver Stone, of The Untold History of the United States
“The staff of Project Censored presents their annual compilation of the previous year’s 25 stories most overlooked by the mainstream media along with essays about censorship and its consequences. The stories include an 813% rise in hate and anti-government groups since 2008, human rights violations by the US Border Patrol, and Israeli doctors injecting Ethiopian immigrants with birth control without their consent. Other stories focus on the environment, like the effects of fracking and Monsantos GMO seeds. The writers point out misinformation and outright deception in the media, including CNN relegating factual accounts to the “opinion” section and the whitewashing of Margaret Thatcher’s career following her death in 2013, unlike Hugo Chavez, who was routinely disparaged in the coverage following his death. One essay deals with the proliferation of “Junk Food News,” in which “CNN and Fox News devoted more time to ‘Gangnam Style’ than the renewal of Uganda’s ‘Kill the Gays’ law.” Another explains common media manipulation tactics and outlines practices to becoming a more engaged, free-thinking news consumer or even citizen journalist. Rob Williams remarks on Hollywood’s “deep and abiding role as a popular propaganda provider” via Argo and Zero Dark Thirty. An expose on working conditions in Chinese Apple factories is brutal yet essential reading. This book is evident of Project Censored’s profoundly important work in educating readers on current events and the skills needed to be a critical thinker.” -Publisher’s Weekly said about Censored 2014 (Oct.)
“For ages, I’ve dreamed of a United States where Project Censored isn’t necessary, where these crucial stories and defining issues are on the front page of the New York Times, the cover of Time, and in heavy rotation on CNN. That world still doesn’t exist, but we always have Project Censored’s yearly book to pull together the most important things the corporate media ignored, missed, or botched.” –Russ Kick, author of You Are Being Lied To, Everything You Know Is Wrong, and the New York Times bestselling series The Graphic Canon.
“[Censored] offers devastating evidence of the dumbing-down of main-stream news in America. . . . Required reading for broadcasters, journalists, and well-informed citizens.” —Los Angeles Times
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“[Censored] should be affixed to the bulletin boards in every newsroom in America. And, perhaps read aloud to a few publishers and television executives.” —Ralph Nader
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone
“Those who read and support Project Censored are in the know.” —Cynthia McKinney
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast

Habeas Corpus No Longer Protects the Criminally Convicted

Lynn Adelman, a US District Court judge and a former Wisconsin state senator, believes that contemporary changes in US law have led to the destruction of habeas corpus, a legal principle intended to protect individuals from unlawful exercises of state power. Adelman writes that habeas corpus has “been so extensively diminished that it is no longer a protection against unlawful imprisonment but rather an empty procedure that enables and may actually encourage state courts to disregards constitutional rights.”

The writ of habeas corpus was adopted to the United States from English common law where it dates back to 1215. It can be found in the Suspension Clause in Article I, Section 9 of the US Constitution. In 1789, Congress passed the Judiciary Act which enabled prisoners to “challenge the legality of their custody” in federal courts. The purpose of habeas corpus is to determine the lawfulness of one being held in custody and to protect citizens against unlawful imprisonment

Adelman’s article focused on the case of Leandro Andrade. On November 4, 1995, Andrade was arrested after he attempted to shoplift five videotapes from a K-Mart in California. Two weeks after his arrest, he entered a different K-Mart and stole four more videotapes. Andrade was caught, arrested, and charged in a California state court for two counts of petty theft with a prior conviction. Andrade’s prison sentence for stealing roughly $150 worth of video tapes amounted to fifty years behind bars. Andrade was subject to California’s three strike law having been in and out of prison on multiple accounts. As a result of the three-strikes law, which was enacted one year before Andrade’s last arrest, each charge against him resulted in a minimum sentence of twenty-five years.

After his failed attempts to appeal in California courts, he petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus in federal court to challenge the constitutionality of his five-decade long sentence. When his case reached the Supreme Court on March 5, 2003, the court ruled against him. The modern legal era has continued to ignore and destroy habeas corpus, failing citizens such as Leandro Andrade, who is still serving his prison sentence today, with no chance of parole until the age of eighty-seven years old.

An increasingly conservative Supreme Court, Adelman writes, poses “numerous new obstacles for habeas petitioners,” including, for example, limits on federal review of state prisoners’ claims regarding the constitutionality of their cases. Despite these changes, a state prisoner still has the right for a federal court to review the merits of their constitutional claim. If a prisoner has been imprisoned as a result of a constitutional violation, a federal court has the authority and the duty to grant a writ of habeas corpus.

Adelman tracks the demise of habeas corpus back to April 1996, when President Clinton signed the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA), which had been championed by congressional Republicans who made habeas corpus reform a top priority. Adelman writes that, despite Clinton’s constitutional law background, he signed a bill that weakened the foundational legal principle of habeas corpus. Adelman attributes Clinton’s signing of the bill to his own political gain, as he wanted to appear tough on crime. According to Adelman, “A terrible bill thus became the law of the land.”

Source: Lynn Adelman, “Who Killed Habeas Corpus?,” Dissent Magazine, Winter 2018,

Student Researcher: Sophie Rachel Behrend (University of Vermont)

Faculty Evaluator: Robert Williams Jr.  (University of Vermont)

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