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California Legislature passes strict school vaccine bill

June 30, 2015 by legitgov

Insane in the membrane: California Legislature passes strict school vaccine bill | 29 June 2015 | California lawmakers on Monday sent the governor a contentious bill that would impose one of the strictest school vaccination laws in the country after a series of emotionally charged debates. The Senate reaffirmed the bill striking California's personal belief exemption for immunizations on a 24-14 vote. Mississippi and West Virginia are the only two states with such strict requirements in place. Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown has not said if he would sign it.

New WikiLeaks Documents Reveal NSA Spied on Top French Companies

June 29, 2015 by legitgov

New WikiLeaks Documents Reveal NSA Spied on Top French Companies | 29 June 2015 | Following last week’s eavesdropping reports, WikiLeaks shared new documents with Libération and Mediapart. This time, the new documents reveal that the NSA was spying on France’s best performing companies for economic intelligence purposes. In addition to eavesdropping French Economy Ministers François Baroin and Pierre Moscovici between 2004 and 2012, the NSA gathered as much data as possible on big French companies. According to an economic espionage order, the NSA intercepted all French corporate contracts and negotiations valued at more than $200 million in many different industries, such as telecommunications, electrical generation, gas, oil, nuclear and renewable energy, and environmental and healthcare technologies.

U.S. top court rules against Obama administration over air pollution rule

June 29, 2015 by legitgov

SCOTUS Koch-suckers strike again: U.S. top court rules against Obama administration over air pollution rule | 29 June 2015 | The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled the Obama administration should have considered compliance cost when it decided to limit emissions of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants mainly from coal-fired power plants, a setback for the government that leaves the legal status of the regulation in limbo. The court ruled in a 5-4 decision, with its five conservative justices [Koch-suckers] in the majority, against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The rule stays in effect for the time being, with the case returning to an appeals court, which will decide whether or not it should be thrown out.

Supreme Court upholds Oklahoma lethal injection process

June 29, 2015 by legitgov

Supreme Court upholds Oklahoma lethal injection process | 29 June 2015 | The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled that a drug used by Oklahoma as part of its lethal injection procedure does not violate the U.S. Constitution's ban on cruel and unusual punishment, dealing a setback to opponents of the death penalty. The court, in a 5-4 decision with its conservative justices [sic] in the majority, handed a loss to three inmates who objected to the use of a sedative called midazolam, saying it cannot achieve the level of unconsciousness required for surgery, making it unsuitable for executions.

Greek debt crisis: Banks to remain shut all week

June 29, 2015 by legitgov

Greek debt crisis: Banks to remain shut all week | 29 June 2015 | The Greek government has confirmed that banks will be closed all week, after a decision by the European Central Bank not to extend emergency funding. In a decree, it cited the "extremely urgent" need to protect the financial system due to the lack of liquidity. Cash withdrawals will be limited to €60 (£42; $66) a day for this period, the decree says.

New York prison escapee David Sweat shot, in custody

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

New York State Trooper Is Said to Have Shot David Sweat, the Surviving Prison Escapee | 28 June 2015 | David Sweat, the surviving prison escapee on the run in northern New York, was shot by a state trooper on Sunday, according to three people briefed on the matter. His condition was unknown. Mr. Sweat, 35, was alive and in custody, according to two of the people. The shooting occurred after a State Police sergeant saw Mr. Sweat walking down a road toward him, according to one of the people. The sergeant ordered Mr. Sweat to stop, but he broke into a run and the sergeant, a firearms instructor, opened fire, the person said.

Facebook, Twitter, Google Celebrate Same-Sex Marriage Decision

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

Facebook, Twitter, Google Celebrate Same-Sex Marriage Decision | 27 June 2015 | The Internet's biggest companies celebrated Saturday after the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a landmark ruling Friday making same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states. Google, Facebook, and Twitter were just some of the social media networks adding rainbow-colored filters, pride videos, and hidden Easter eggs on their websites after Friday's Supreme Court decision...Taxi app Uber displayed rainbow trails on each of the cars in a user's vicinity.

Terrorism Scare Shuts Down Highway 163 in Mission Valley

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

Terrorism Scare Shuts Down Highway 163 in Mission Valley --'Hazardous objects' were later identified as mortars | 27 June 2015 | (CA) Discovery of several hazardous objects, on a weekend when the federal government is warning police about terrorism, forced the closure of Route 163 between Balboa Park and Mission Valley on Saturday. San Diego Fire-Rescue dispatchers said their bomb squad was rolling to an undisclosed location on the freeway, north of University Avenue and south of Friars Road. That stretch of Highway 163 includes its interchange with Interstate 8. At around 3:15 p.m., the freeway was once again opened to all traffic.

Obama sings 'Amazing Grace' after delivering eulogy for slain pastor

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

Obama sings 'Amazing Grace' after delivering eulogy for slain pastor | 26 June 2015 | President Barack Obama broke into the spiritual after delivering the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa C. Pinckney, the slain South Carolina state senator and former pastor of Emanuel A.M.E. Church. (Video)

Woman removes Confederate flag in front of SC statehouse

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

Woman removes Confederate flag in front of SC statehouse | 28 June 2015 | The two people arrested for removing the Confederate flag from the front of the South Carolina Statehouse have been released from jail in the state capital. Officer L. Tucker of the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center said 30-year-old Bree Newsome and 30-year-old James Ian Tyson were released from jail Saturday after posting bond. Both Newsome and Tyson are from Charlotte.

Gulf states share shock of terror attack on mosque in Kuwait

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

Gulf states share shock of terror attack on mosque in Kuwait | 27 June 2015 | The aftermath of the attack on a Shia mosque in Kuwait has resonated well beyond its borders into neighbouring Gulf countries, which have long shared both its worldview and its fears that Islamic State is stalking them. On Saturday, Kuwaiti officials announced arrests linked to the Friday blast at the Imam al-Sadiq mosque, which killed 27 and maimed 200 more, as security at places of worship from Sharjah to Doha was tightened and rhetoric against the group intensified across the region. Officials in Kuwait had long said an attack of the type carried out during Friday prayers would be very difficult to stop.

San Francisco police responding to shooting at Civic Center/UN Plaza, near Pride festivities

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

San Francisco police responding to shooting at Civic Center/UN Plaza, near Pride festivities | 27 June 2015 | San Francisco police are responding to a shooting at the Civic Center/UN Plaza Station near Pride festivities this afternoon. Officials say at least one person was injured and transported to the hospital.

Republican presidential candidates condemn gay-marriage ruling

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

Republican presidential candidates condemn gay-marriage ruling | 26 June 2015 | The Supreme Court on Friday ruled 5-4 that same-sex couples nationwide have the constitutional right to marry, splitting the 2016 candidates sharply along partisan lines. While Democratic candidates all hailed the decision as another marker for equality, the Republican response was more varied, with some expressing their objection more forcefully than others...All the GOP hopefuls noted their personal objection to same-sex marriage and their belief that marriage should be left to the states.

CIA photos of black sites, naked prisoners during transfer could complicate Guantanamo 'trials'

June 28, 2015 by legitgov

CIA photos of black sites, naked prisoners during transfer could complicate Guantanamo 'trials' --Classified pictures include images of naked detainees during transport and psychologists [war criminals] Bruce Jessen and James Mitchell, architects of the CIA's torture program | 27 June 2015 | Military prosecutors earlier this year learned about a massive cache of CIA photographs of its former overseas "black sites" while reviewing material collected for the Senate investigation of the agency's interrogation torture program, according to U.S. officials. The existence of the approximately 14,000 photographs will probably cause yet another delay in the military tribunals at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as attorneys for the defendants demand that all of the images be turned over and the government wades through the material to decide what it 'thinks is relevant' to the proceedings. Defense attorneys said they have not yet been informed about the photographs and said it is unacceptable that they should come to light only now, more than three years after the arraignment of Khalid Sheik Mohammed and four other defendants accused of planning the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks [when the Bush regime actually did it].

1,200 Officers Searching for Escaped Prisoner David Sweat

June 27, 2015 by legitgov

1,200 Officers Searching for Escaped Prisoner David Sweat | 27 June 2015 | More than 1,000 law enforcement officers are combing through a 22-square-mile area in upstate New York as they look for convicted killer David Sweat. Saturday's search for Sweat involves about 1,200 federal, state and local law enforcement members, the New York State Police said. The search comes three weeks after Sweat and fellow inmate Richard Matt escaped from the Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, 50 miles away from Saturday's search area. Matt was shot and killed by authorities in the nearby town of Elephant's Head Friday afternoon.

More Than a Dozen Landmarks You Won't Believe Were Turned Rainbow

June 27, 2015 by legitgov

More Than a Dozen Landmarks You Won't Believe Were Turned Rainbow | 27 June 2015 | Here's a photo roundup of what Twitter users have so far found being illuminated in rainbow spirit after Friday's marriage ruling.

Pentagon paying monthly stipends to Syrian rebels (aka ISIS) to eventually fight Assad and invoke regime change

June 27, 2015 by legitgov

The U.S. is quietly--and under a virtual media blackout--conducting a coup d'etat in Syria at enormous taxpayer expense: Pentagon paying monthly stipends to Syrian rebels (aka ISIS) to eventually fight Assad and invoke regime change | 24 June 2015 | The U.S. Department of Defense announced Monday it is making monthly payments to 'moderate Syrian rebels' being trained to fight foment the Islamic State. The United States, Turkey, Jordan, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia agreed in February to participate in the training and fielding of a moderate Syrian opposition force..."The trainees are currently receiving a stipend of between $250 and $400 per month, per soldier, depending on skill set, performance and leadership position," Navy Cmdr. Elissa Smith, a Pentagon spokeswoman, told reporters. The Pentagon hopes to have 3,000 fighters trained by the end of the year and 5,400 trained after 12 months. The fighters are primarily to be used 'against' IS forces and are envisioned to eventually stand as viable opposition to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, USA Today reports. [Yeah, let's pay I-CIA-SIS to fight while we slash Medicare to fund the TPP - great idea!]

Explosions hit US-owned Air Products chemical factory in France; terrorist probe opened

June 27, 2015 by legitgov

Explosions hit US-owned Air Products chemical factory in France; terrorist probe opened | 26 June 2015 |Like the three homegrown terrorists who staged multiple assaults in and around Paris in January, Yassin Salhi, a 35-year-old deliveryman who staged an audacious attack Friday at an American-owned chemical factory [Air Products] in southeast France, was well known to French intelligence...On Friday, Salhi, a father of three, drove a delivery truck onto the grounds of a chemical plant, left the severed head of his employer on a gate and then sought to spark a chain of explosions before being seized by firefighters. French authorities said two flags bearing Arabic inscriptions were found at the scene beside the severed head.

Landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizes gay marriage nationwide

June 27, 2015 by legitgov

Landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizes gay marriage nationwide | 26 June 2015 | The Supreme Court ruled on Friday that the U.S. Constitution provides same-sex couples the right to marry, handing a historic triumph to the American gay rights movement. The court ruled 5-4 that the Constitution's guarantees of due process and equal protection under the law mean that states cannot ban same-sex marriages. With the landmark ruling, gay marriage becomes legal in all 50 states. Immediately after the decision, same-sex couples in many of the states where gay marriage had been banned headed to county clerks' offices for marriage licenses as officials in several states said they would respect the ruling.

Two Tunisians interrogated at CIA black site in Afghanistan secretly flown home

June 27, 2015 by legitgov

Two Tunisians interrogated at CIA black site in Afghanistan secretly flown home | 26 June 2015 | The Pentagon secretly repatriated two Tunisians who were interrogated at a CIA black site in Afghanistan and imprisoned by the U.S. military in that country for more than a decade, U.S. officials said. A U.S. military cargo plane flew Lutfi al-Arabi al-Gharisi and Ridha Ahmad al-Najjar from Afghanistan to Tunisia on June 15, according to U.S. officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss a detainee transfer that had not been made public. The Pentagon on Friday confirmed the transfer of the two men who were being held in Afghan government custody prior to their repatriation by the U.S. military, which said the flight was done in support of the Afghan government.

David Cameron: Britain to stand with France and Tunisia against terrorism

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

David Cameron: Britain to stand with France and Tunisia against terrorism | 26 June 2015 | Britain will stand alongside Tunisia and France and fight the "evil of terrorism", David Cameron has said as he warned that "we all face this threat". The Prime Minister said that the terror attacks could have happened "anywhere" as he vowed to fight the "poisoning death cult" of Islamic extremism with "everything we have". Speaking at a Brussels summit, Mr Cameron also urged Europe to do more to "co-ordinate and build our capacity on counter-terrorism". It comes amid growing concern in Britain over Europe's failure to share passenger data to try to help stop terrorists. [?!?]

Tunisia attack on Sousse beach 'kills 37'

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Tunisia attack on Sousse beach 'kills 37' | 26 June 2015 | At least 37 people, mostly foreigners, have been killed and 36 injured in an attack on a beach in the Tunisian resort town of Sousse, according to the health ministry. Video footage showed the body of a suspected gunman lying in a street. Tunisians, Britons, Germans and Belgians and at least one Irish citizen are among the dead. At least five Britons are confirmed dead, UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said, adding "we must expect more reports of fatalities".

Guantanamo prisoner on nine-year hunger strike will be released

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Guantánamo prisoner on nine-year hunger strike will be released --Shalabi had never been charged with a crime | 26 June 2015 | A prisoner who has been on a nine-year hunger strike to protest against his confinement at the US base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, can now return to his native Saudi Arabia, a government review board said on Friday. The Periodic Review Board, which has been re-evaluating dozens of Guantánamo prisoners previously deemed too dangerous to release, said in a statement published on its website that Abdul Rahman Shalabi can be released to take part in a Saudi government rehabilitation program for militants and would be subject to monitoring afterward. Shalabi, 39, was among the first prisoners taken to Guantánamo in January 2002.

In Charleston, Pinckney's funeral brings long lines and words of hope

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

In Charleston, Pinckney's funeral brings long lines and words of hope | 26 June 2015 | Blacks and whites gathered by the thousands on the streets of Charleston on Friday to pay their last respects to state Sen. Clementa Pinckney and eight other parishioners who were slain by a white gunman last week at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. The mood was somber as the long line of mourners -- many dressed in black in the sweltering heat -- began lining up at dawn to enter the College of Charleston's TD Arena, just a block away from the historic African American church where the nine parishioners were shot to death June 17...Above the crowd loomed a statue of John C. Calhoun, the United States' seventh vice president and a staunch defender of slavery.

New York prison escapee shot; second convict 'being chased by police'

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Richard Matt, Escaped Prisoner in New York Manhunt, Is Fatally Shot | 26 June 2015 | Richard W. Matt, one of the two convicted murderers who engineered an elaborate escape from New York's largest prison, was shot and killed on Friday by a federal agent, the authorities said, ending one prong of a three-week manhunt that spread over large stretches of the state's northern terrain. A team of agents from the federal Customs and Border Protection agency found Mr. Matt in the woods in Malone, N.Y., after he fired a shot at the back of a camping trailer, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said at a news conference. Officers heard him cough as he fled on foot, and a federal agent killed him when Mr. Matt, still armed with a 20-gauge shotgun, refused orders to put up his hands, the authorities said.

South Dakota county issues same-sex marriage license in wake of Supreme Court ruling

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

South Dakota county issues same-sex marriage license in wake of Supreme Court ruling | 26 June 2015 | South Dakota county issues same-sex marriage license in wake of Supreme Court ruling.

Man beheaded in France, Islamist flag found

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Man beheaded in France, Islamist flag found | 26 June 2015 | A man whose decapitated head was pinned to the gates of a French factory in a grisly attack has been identified as a local businessman from eastern France, a source close to the investigation said Friday. It was not clear whether the businessman was killed on the site of the attack, where a suspected Islamist drove a vehicle into an Air Products factory around 40km from Lyon before setting off several explosive devices. French President Francois Hollande says the incident bears the hallmarks of a terrorist attack.

Supreme Court rules gay couples nationwide have a right to marry

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Supreme Court rules gay couples nationwide have a right to marry | 26 June 2015 | The Supreme Court on Friday delivered a historic victory for gay rights, ruling 5 to 4 that the Constitution requires that same-sex couples be allowed to marry no matter where they live and that states may no longer reserve the right only for heterosexual couples. The court's action marks the culmination of an unprecedented upheaval in public opinion and the nation's jurisprudence. Advocates called it the most pressing civil rights issue of modern times, while critics said the courts had sent the country into uncharted territory by changing the traditional definition of marriage.

Headless body, scrawled with Arabic, found at French blast site

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Headless body, scrawled with Arabic, found at French blast site | 26 June 2015 | A decapitated body daubed with Arabic writing was found at a U.S.-owned factory in southeast France on Friday after an assailant rammed a delivery van into gas containers at the site, triggering an explosion. A source close to the investigation said the victim was the boss of the suspect, a delivery man. The two had gone to the company to make a delivery but the assailant killed and beheaded his 50-year-old manager before entering the secured site in the vehicle. The attacker was injured in the blast and arrested on the site.

Same-Sex Marriage Is a Right, Supreme Court Rules, 5-4

June 26, 2015 by legitgov

Same-Sex Marriage Is a Right, Supreme Court Rules, 5-4 | 26 June 2015 | In a long-sought victory for the gay rights movement, the Supreme Court ruled on Friday that the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote the majority opinion in the 5 to 4 decision. He was joined by the court’s four more liberal justices. The decision, the culmination of decades of litigation and activism, came against the backdrop of fast-moving changes in public opinion, with polls indicating that most Americans now approve of same-sex marriage.

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