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Fukushima radiation spread to residential areas hours before venting

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Fukushima radiation spread to residential areas hours before venting 22 Feb 2013 Radioactive material from the damaged Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant spread to residential areas hours before workers vented the containment vessel of the plant's No. 1 reactor on March 12, 2011, to release pressure, it has emerged. In one area, the level of radiation had surged to more than 700 times the normal level, indicating that many local residents were exposed to high levels of radiation before they evacuated. It was not revealed that radiation had spread before the plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), commenced venting operations -- and neither the Diet nor the government's nuclear accident investigation committees were aware of the fact. Workers are believed to have first tried opening a vent at the plant at 10:17 a.m. on March 12, 2011.

US court brands whale activists Sea Shepherd 'pirates'

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

US court brands whale activists Sea Shepherd 'pirates' --Ruling Monday clears the way for Japan, which calls the activists terrorists, to launch more extensive legal action against them. 26 Feb 2013 A court in the US has labelled conservationist group Sea Shepherd "pirates". Judge [sic] Alex Kozinski said the group's "aggressive and high-profile attacks" on Japan's whaling fleet endangered lives, ordering them to stop. US-based Sea Shepherd has for many years chased the Japanese whalers, attempting to disrupt the annual hunt... Sea Shepherd has  accused the whalers of using water cannon and stun grenades against them, and says Japan has deployed a military icebreaker, the Shirase, to intimidate them - something Japan rejects.

MSNBC: Disclose Fix-the-Debt co-chair Ed Rendell's conflicts of interest when booking

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

MSNBC: Disclose Fix-the-Debt co-chair Ed Rendell's conflicts of interest when booking 26 Feb 2013 Disclose Ed Rendell's conflicts of interest due to his position as a co-chair of the Fix the Debt campaign - a billionaire-financed campaign to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid - when he appears on MSNBC to offer commentary on budget, public investment, infrastructure or environmental issues. Ed Rendell is a co-chair of Fix the Debt -- nevertheless, in media appearances on your network he is regularly introduced only as the former Democratic governor of Pennsylvania. He is special counsel to the law firm Ballard Spahr, where he focuses on privatization in housing and infrastructure. Rendell is a senior adviser at Greenhill & Co., a multinational investment bank. Rendell is also on the advisory board of Verdeva, a technology development firm, and an operating partner at the venture capital firm Element Partners, a company that has recently invested in natural gas "fracking" in Pennsylvania and nearby states. Ed Rendell is no longer a Democratic politician. He is a lobbyist, a banking adviser, and technology investor. (CREDO petition to sign)

WikiLeaks: US 'to call bin Laden raid Navy SEAL to testify against Bradley Manning'

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

WikiLeaks: US 'to call bin Laden raid Navy SEAL to testify against Bradley Manning' 26 Feb 2013 The US government is believed to be preparing to put a Navy SEAL on the witness stand to testify that secret files published by WikiLeaks were discovered in 'Osama bin Laden's' compound. Prosecutors trying Bradley Manning, the 25-year-old soldier accused of engineering the largest intelligence leak in US history, are seeking to prove that 'al-Qaeda' directly benefitted from access to the classified files. They claim that when bin Laden requested information about US defence policy a subordinate emailed him with data taken from the trove of documents WikiLeaks published on the internet. Today, prosecutors argued they should be allowed to call a military "operator" - a common term for a US commando - as a witness, saying he could offer testimony about evidence collected from the 2011 raid in Pakistan. [And, the SEAL will be committing perjury, because Osama bin Laden died in December 2001.]

WikiLeaks soldier's request to dismiss case rejected

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

WikiLeaks soldier's request to dismiss case rejected 26 Feb 2013 A defense request to dismiss the case against Army Private First Class Bradley Manning in the mass disclosure of military and diplomatic secrets by WikiLeaks was denied by a U.S. military judge on Tuesday. Manning's lawyers filed a motion to dismiss all charges against him, arguing the government had violated their client's right to a speedy trial. Ruling at a pretrial hearing on Tuesday, military judge Colonel Denise Lind said that the case took only 90 days to come to trial, well within the 120 day "clock" rule that exists for a court martial, in reference to the time between pretrial confinement and arraignment.

Hagel receives enough Senate votes for confirmation as secretary of defense, voting continues

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Hagel receives enough Senate votes for confirmation as secretary of defense, voting continues 26 Feb 2013

Senate votes to clear Hagel for confirmation vote

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Senate votes to clear Hagel for confirmation vote 26 Feb 2013 Senators voted to end debate today on President Obama's nomination of Chuck Hagel to be the secretary of Defense. He now faces a formal vote on confirmation. Hagel's confirmation seems virtually assured, as Democrats control the Senate and none has said publicly they oppose him. A formal vote could come as early as Tuesday afternoon.

Concrete cracks won't factor into nuclear power plant relicensing

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Concrete cracks won't factor into nuclear power plant relicensing 25 Feb 2013 (NH) The cracking of safety-related concrete structures at the Seabrook Station nuclear power plant has made a lot of news recently, but the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has decided not to make the issue a formal part of the hearings on extending the plant's operating license until 2050. The reason given was based on a technicality rather than on a substantive decision, the agency confirmed. "The ASLB panel (Atomic Safety [sic] and Licensing Board, which adjudicates issues for the NRC) denied the contention because it was late-filed and, therefore, did not meet the timeliness criteria for such proceedings," NRC Public Affairs Officer Neil Sheehan stated. The attorney for the groups who were asking for the concrete degradation issue to be formally included in the proceedings, the Maine-based Friends of the Coast and the New England Coalition in Vermont, expressed frustration about this decision.

Lawyers, journalists have no standing to challenge foreign surveillance law, SCOTUS rules

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Lawyers, journalists have no standing to challenge foreign surveillance law, SCOTUS rules 26 Feb 2013 A group of plaintiffs that includes lawyers and legal organizations has no standing to challenge a foreign surveillance law, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in a 5-4 opinion. Justice [sic] Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote the majority opinion finding that the plaintiffs had not established an injury in fact based on their assertion that their communications could be intercepted. The law as amended in 2008 authorizes surveillance of foreigners who are outside the United States, with advance approval of the "targeting procedures" by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The American Civil Liberties Union, which filed suit on behalf of the plaintiffs, has said the 2008 law permits "dragnet surveillance."

Supreme Court blocks challenge to anti-terrorism law

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Supreme Court blocks challenge to anti-terrorism law 26 Feb 2013 One of the most controversial anti-terrorism laws passed in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks may be beyond normal judicial review, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. In a 5-4 decision, the court's conservative justices ruled that lawyers, journalists, human rights activists and others lacked standing to challenge a law passed in 2008 that increases the government's ability to intercept international communications. The plaintiffs had contended that even the potential of government snooping -- which, they said, would violate the Fourth Amendment -- was forcing them to change the way they communicate with clients and sources. The question before the high court wasn't whether the law itself, passed near the end of the Bush administration, was constitutional. It was whether those challenging it even had the ability to find out.

Manning headed back to court in Maryland

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Manning headed back to court in Maryland 26 Feb 2013 A U.S. Army private accused of sending hundreds of thousands of classified documents to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks is back in court for a four-day hearing that may address his attorney's motion to dismiss the charges against him. Pfc. Bradley Manning is expected to be in a Maryland court Tuesday when the hearing begins.

'Obama to tell Netanyahu US gearing up for Iran strike'

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

'Obama to tell Netanyahu US gearing up for Iran strike' --During upcoming visit, president will convey message that window for American military operation opens in June, TV report says 25 Feb 2013 When he visits Israel next month, US President Barack Obama will tell Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that a "window of opportunity" for a military strike on Iran will open in June, according to an Israeli TV report Monday evening. Obama will come bearing the message that if diplomatic efforts and sanctions don't bear fruit, Israel should "sit tight" and let Washington take the stage, even if that means remaining on the sidelines during a US military operation, Channel 10 reported. Netanyahu will be asked to refrain from any military action and keep a low profile, avoiding even the mention of a strike, the report said, citing unnamed officials.

US firms hatched plot to topple Hugo Chavez - WikiLeaks

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

US firms hatched plot to topple Hugo Chavez - WikiLeaks 25 Feb 2013 WikiLeaks has revealed the participation of at least two American companies behind attempts to overthrow Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. The hand of Washington was detected in actions of the Venezuelan opposition since 2006 and in its opposition campaign for the 2010 parliamentary elections. The leaked email messages, dating back to July 2004 and December 2011, were tracked to the Stratfor and Canvas companies that used students and other people in an effort to overthrow Chavez.

'Suspicious Powder' Found in Letter to Conn. Governor, Second Scare in Week

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

'Suspicious Powder' Found in Letter to Conn. Governor, Second Scare in Week 25 Feb 2013 A suspicious powder was found in a letter sent to Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) at the State Capitol on Monday and state police, Capitol Police and the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection responded. The call came in around 2:30 p.m., according to state police. The letter was sent to the constituent services office and someone opening the mail discovered the green, granular powder, according to a spokesperson for Gov. Malloy's office. It is the second letter addressed to the governor containing a powdery substance in a week.

Supreme Court Rejects Case Challenging Corporate Political Donations

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Supreme Court Rejects Case Challenging Corporate Political Donations 25 Feb 2013 The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear a case challenging state and federal laws prohibiting corporations from making direct contributions to political candidates, possibly indicating how it will rule in a similar case involving limits on individuals. The high court this morning denied certiorari for Danielczick vs. U.S., apparently agreeing with the Obama administration [!] that there was no reason to review an appeals-court decision allowing the criminal prosecution of a man accused of funneling more than $100,000 to political candidates through corporations he controlled. The court's refusal could foreshadow how it will rule in another case challenging limits on how much money individuals can contribute to candidates.

Blumenthal, Murphy, Esty to Zuckerberg: Yank Newtown Pages on Facebook

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Blumenthal, Murphy, Esty to Zuckerberg: Yank Newtown Pages on Facebook 25 Feb 2013 Democratic Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy joined U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D-5th) today in a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg about the increasing number of Netwtown tribute pages. They say the Facebook sites have become a source of harassment for the surviving families. In particular they point to pages dedicated to Victoria Soto and Kaitlin Roig.

'Coming up next: How Facebook Sandy Hook tribute pages are hurting surviving families'

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

'Coming up next: How Facebook Sandy Hook tribute pages are hurting surviving families' posted by Lori Price, www.legitgov.org 25 Feb 2013 A promo aired on FOX CT news Monday afternoon, which stated the following. "Coming up next: How Facebook Sandy Hook tribute pages are hurting surviving families." The promo introduced this topic. The report stated, "Facebook is taking them down, to comply with officials' requests." Included in the FOX CT news report was this observation. "Officials said they would keep tabs on the social media giant." In an interview, Connecticut Democratic Rep. (5th) Elizabeth Esty stated, "I called the FBI right away...I learned that these pages don't violate existing laws." [Also, see: Sandy Hook Shooting 'Oddities'.]

Facebook agrees to remove some Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting pages

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Facebook agrees to remove some Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting pages --Sen. Blumenthal: Facebook officials said they would begin removing the pages immediately. 25 Feb 2013 U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal says Facebook has agreed to remove some so-called tribute pages related to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting over concerns they're being used to exploit the tragedy. Blumenthal and fellow Connecticut Democrats U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy and U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty had complained to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg in a letter Monday morning. [CLG's Sandy Hook Shooting 'Oddities' page, which will not be taken down.]

NATO mulls funding Afghan troops through 2018

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

NATO mulls funding Afghan troops through 2018 22 Feb 2013 NATO has said it is strongly considering a proposal to extend funding for a security force of Afghan troops through 2018. NATO is considering plans to continue supporting about 350,000 Afghan troops in the country until 2018, its Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Thursday. The move could increase the costs to the US and allies by more than $2 billion (roughly 1.5 billion euros) a year. Last May, NATO agreed to endorse an Afghan force of about 230,000, for about $4.1 billion a year after 2014. Currently, it costs about $6.5 billion to fund an Afghan force of 352,000, and the US is providing about $5.7 billion of that.

'US-trained' Afghan forces 'are just like criminals'

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

'US-trained' Afghan forces 'are just like criminals' --Murder, sexual abuse, drugs and extortion revealed in Panorama investigation 24 Feb 2013 Shocking revelations of murder, sexual abuse of young boys, unarmed civilians being shot at, police officers high on drugs, and routine kidnaps and extortion are exposing the true state of Afghanistan's security forces in Helmand province. The despair of the US marines advising Afghan forces is laid bare in scenes being broadcast on BBC1's Panorama tomorrow evening. It reveals how three boys were shot dead escaping from police commanders who were sexually abusing them. Major Bill Steuber meets the deputy police chief, who claims the children want to stay at the bases and "give their bodies at night". Eventually he agrees to take action, but the operation to rescue the other "chai boys" used as sex slaves does not happen. Afghan forces are seen under the influence of drugs, indiscriminately firing into the air without regard for civilians, and US soldiers discover four men kidnapped by police and used to barter with the Taliban. [See: U.S. should hit 'pause' button on billions more in Afghan aid: watchdog --U.S. 'reconstruction' aid to Afghanistan approaching $100 billion 13 Feb 2013 The U.S. government should reconsider whether to spend more on reconstruction aid in Afghanistan, the U.S. watchdog that monitors the funds said on Wednesday, citing Afghanistan's persistent corruption and inability to manage projects as U.S. troops withdraw. John Sopko, the special inspector general for Afghan reconstruction, said $20 billion in U.S. assistance for Afghanistan had been appropriated but not yet spent. Nearly $10 billion more in aid may soon be approved by Congress. See: NATO mulls funding Afghan troops through 2018 22 Feb 2013 NATO has said it is strongly considering a proposal to extend funding for a security force of Afghan troops through 2018... Currently, it costs about $6.5 billion to fund an Afghan force of 352,000, and the US is providing about $5.7 billion of that.]

Iran calls Oscar for 'Argo,' awarded by Michelle Obama, an ad for CIA

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Iran calls Oscar for 'Argo,' awarded by Michelle Obama, an ad for CIA 25 Feb 2013 Iran has dismissed the awarding of an Oscar to the film "Argo" as an "advertisement for the CIA" and a Zionist plot to misrepresent an event arising from the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The Washington Post quoted Fars News as writing: "In a rare occasion in Oscar history, the First Lady announced the winner for Best Picture for the anti-Iran Film 'Argo,' which is produced by the Zionist company Warner Bros."

Canadian terrorists killing polar bears

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Canadian terrorists killing polar bears 25 Feb 2013 The Labrador polar bear hunt is underway, and Hopedale resident Kevin Flowers claimed the first animal. Flowers was approximately 15 miles outside of town on the sea ice when he shot the polar bear, which measured 10 feet 8 inches in length and 10 feet 3 inches wide. Every year the Nunatsiavut Government gets a dozen polar bear licenses, which it can distribute to its beneficiaries. "When I knocked it down with the first shot, it started growling," recalls Flowers. [Too bad the polar bear couldn't *shoot first.*]

Scottish woman with serious 'flu-type illness' airlifted to Leicester hospital

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Scottish woman with serious 'flu-type illness' airlifted to Leicester hospital 24 Feb 2013 A Scottish woman is in intensive care at a specialist hospital in Leicester after contracting a suspected form of swine flu. Jennifer Scott, 27, was transferred by helicopter from Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary after she was diagnosed with a serious "flu-type illness". Her condition at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester was described as critical but stable. A spokesman for NHS Dumfries and Galloway said: "We have had a confirmed case of a significant flu-type illness."

Autopsy shows Palestinian prisoner died of torture in Israeli jail

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Autopsy shows Palestinian prisoner died of torture in Israeli jail 25 Feb 2013 Palestinian Minister of Prisoners Affairs Eissa Qaraqe' said on Sunday that autopsy revealed that Palestinian prisoner Arafat Jaradat died of torture. "Traces of severe torture appeared on Jaradat's body: neck, face and backbone," Qaraqe' told reporters in a news conference held in the West Bank city of Ramallah. Jaradat, 30, died in an Israeli prison on Saturday after he was detained in one of the almost-daily Israeli army raids in the West Bank since less than a week. Initial Israeli media reports cited sources suggesting that Jaradat died of a heart attack. Qaraeq' denied this claims, describing it an "untrue Israeli claim."

6.2-magnitude quake jolts central Japan

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

6.2-magnitude quake jolts central Japan 25 Feb 2013 An earthquake measuring 6.2 on the Richter scale jolted central Japan on Monday, said the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA). The quake took place at 4:23 p.m. local time and the epicenter was initially determined at degree 36.9 north latitude, 139.4 degree east longitude, with a depth of 10 km. The temblor was marked upper 5 in JMA seismic intensity of 7 in the area near the epicenter in the northern Tochigi Prefecture.

Second bird flu patient dies in Guizhou

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Second bird flu patient dies in Guizhou 25 Feb 2013 A 31 year old man died Friday after having contracted H5N1 bird flu earlier this month, according to authorities in Guizhou. The website of the province's health department said the man, who developed symptoms of the virus February 3, died of multiple organ failure. This is the second bird flu death in Guizhou in less than two weeks, coming after a 21 year old woman died February 13. Health officials have found no connection between the two cases, and the two are reported to have come into close contact with birds.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai to US Special Ops: Get Out

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Afghan President Hamid Karzai to US Special Ops: Get Out 24 Feb 2013 Afghan President Hamid Karzai has ordered all U.S. Special Forces out of two key provinces within two weeks, accusing Afghan units under their jurisdiction of being responsible for the torture, abuse, and disappearance of Afghan civilians. The deadline was announced today by Karzai spokesman Aimal Faizi at a hastily convened press conference, and later repeated in a statement from the Presidential Palace. The decision came after Karzai met Sunday with his National Security Council. According to the statement, during the meeting "it became clear that armed individuals belonging to US Special Forces engaged in harassing, annoying, torturing, and even murdering innocent people."

Gene Rosen getting fed his lines by handler or coach - Sandy Hook

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Gene Rosen getting fed his lines by handler or coach - Sandy Hook by Scotty Walker 08 Feb 2013 (Video) Creepy Gene Rosen was prompted to say "TERRIFIED" at corner of firehouse by a woman. Was she at his house with the children? Note the two guys in red & black, they are seen when Rosen is circling around practicing his lines as seen from chopper footage. Notice the black tape over the police car at two seconds in. Since when do police have time to tape over identifying owrds on their car doors after being dispatched to a shooting? When did they tape over their doors?

Afghanistan: Hamid Karzai orders US torture troops to leave

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

Afghanistan: Hamid Karzai orders US torture troops to leave 24 Feb 2013 US special forces have been ordered to leave a region of Afghanistan over claims they used local soldiers to torture or kill innocent people. Elite troops have been given two weeks to get out of troubled eastern Wardak province by Afghan president Hamid Karzai. Those engaged in 'harassing, annoying, torturing and even murdering innocent people' will be handed over to the government, said his spokesman. [It's about time.]

6 underground tanks full of radioactive waste are leaking at Washington State's Hanford Nuclear Reservation

February 25, 2013 by legitgov

6 underground tanks full of radioactive waste are leaking at Washington State's Hanford Nuclear Reservation 23 Feb 2013  Federal and state officials say six underground tanks holding a brew of radioactive and toxic waste are leaking at the country's most contaminated nuclear site in south-central Washington, raising concerns about delays for emptying the aging tanks. The news has renewed discussion over delays for emptying the tanks, which were installed decades ago and are long past their intended 20-year life span. "None of these tanks would be acceptable for use today. They are all beyond their design life. None of them should be in service," said Tom Carpenter of Hanford Challenge, a Hanford watchdog group. "And yet, they're holding two-thirds of the nation's high-level nuclear waste." Just last week, state officials announced that one of Hanford's 177 tanks was leaking 150 to 300 gallons a year, posing a risk to groundwater and rivers.

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'We want either a hammer or a fire, to break the spell or dissolve the ice.' Artisan radical freethinker, George Jacob Holyoake, Reasoner V (1848): 2.

CLG's Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D. and Lori Price receive the Patrick Henry Think Tank's American Hero Award 02 Nov 2005 The Patrick Henry Democratic Club --A Think Tank working to give the government back to the people. "Give me liberty or give me death!"

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