**Update… today’s podcast is now available. Just click the player above to listen, or go to the video page to watch.  Also, today’s TRNS update came from the wonderful Victoria Jones, who wrote “Sharron Angle — Bill of Rights? On Her Terms Only” for Huffington Post today.  Definitely worth reading!***

Depending on what report you’re reading, Google has gone evil (we already know Verizon is!), or they’ve come to their senses.  Unfortunately, I’m leaning toward the former.

The Daily Beast can try to paint this as nothing to worry about:

Google, Verizon Back Net Neutrality

You can turn off the alarms: Google and Verizon have issued a joint statement declaring that last week’s reports that they were teaming up to throw net neutrality under the bus are “false, misleading, and not correct.” According to Google’s Public Policy blog, the company believes that the internet should remain open and “neutral in terms of content, and traffic should not be discriminated nor blocked. In short: net neutrality should be enforced over existing wired networks.” However, Google believes wireless carriers should be exempt from these rules, as they currently are. Verizon apparently agrees with these statements, but says that future services that are not transmitted over the existing “open internet” should be exempt. Gizmodo says, “It’s clear that the product of Google and Verizon’s talks was not doomsday scenario that was outlined last week.”

But I’m more inclined to believe my friends over at FreePress:

“Google and Verizon can try all they want to disguise this deal as a reasonable path forward, but the simple fact is this framework, if embraced by Congress and the Federal Communications Commission, would transform the free and open Internet into a closed platform like cable television. This is much worse than a business arrangement between two companies. It’s a signed-sealed-and-delivered policy framework with giant loopholes that blesses the carving up of the Internet for a few deep-pocketed Internet companies and carriers.

“If codified, this arrangement will lead to toll booths on the information superhighway. It will lead to outright blocking of applications and content on increasingly popular wireless platforms. It would give companies like Verizon, Comcast and AT&T the right to decide which content will move fast and which should be slowed down. And it will destroy the open Internet as a platform for small business innovation and job creation, cementing companies’, like Google’s, dominant market power online.

“Still worse, this deal proposes to keep the FCC from making rules at all. Instead of an even playing field for everyone, it proposes taking up complaints on a case-by-case basis, or even leaving it up to third-party industry groups to decide what the rules should be. The only good news is that neither of these companies is actually in charge of writing the rules that govern the future of the Internet. That is supposed to be the job of our leaders in Washington.

“Congress and the FCC should reject Verizon and Google’s plans to carve up the Internet for the private benefit of deep-pocketed special interests, and move forward with policies that preserve the open Internet for all. This begins with the FCC reasserting its authority over broadband to ensure it can protect the open Internet and promote universal access to affordable, world-class quality broadband.

“The Internet is one of our nation’s most important resources, and policymakers everywhere should recognize that the future of our innovation economy is far too important to be decided by a backroom deal between industry giants.”

Read the Free Press fact sheet “How the Google-Verizon Deal Threatens to Destroy the Open Internet”: http://www.freepress.net/files/carving_up_the_internet.pdf

To bring us up to date on what’s going on with these two strange bedfellows, FreePress.net‘s Managing Director Craig Aaron, who wrote this excellent piece on the subject for Huffington Post today, will join me in the second hour of tonight’s show.

Don’t forget to visit www.savetheinternet.com to sign the petition to Google and send your comments to the FCC regarding their jurisdiction over broadband services.

Today marks the 65th anniversary of the US dropping a nuclear bomb on Nagasaki.  On Friday, it was the anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima.  I recently read a book I hope everyone will pick up.  It’s Howard Zinn’s final missive, simply entitled The Bomb. I’ll share a bit of it with you, then talk with Peace Action Organizing, Political and PAC Director Paul Kawika-Martin, who’s in Nagasaki today for this unfortunate anniversary.

This might be a good time to revisit my interview from July 20 with Lawrence Bender– the producer of the new film, Countdown to Zero.  At the very least, watch the trailer and imagine a world without nuclear weapons. Please.

And finally, she’s ba-ak.  Ok, I know Sarah Palin, unfortunately,  never left. But she’s back in Alaska, filming a new TV series for the Discovery channel-owned “TLC” (which used to stand for The Learning Channel, which is quite ironic considering her reaction to the mention of the teaching profession in the following video).  She had the temerity to show up to tape a segment in Shannyn Moore‘s hometown of Homer, Alaska, where she was met with more disdain than enthusiasm.  Read Shannyn’s account of the encounter, and watch the cell phone video… and listen, as Shannyn joins me at the top of tonight’s show!  *** Note: Shannyn and I also spoke about an issue about which she is passionate… that of the Pebble Mine.  She’s happy to share information with you, and send you a No Pebble Mine sticker if you send her an email!***