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Anti-Islam protesters to stage 'Draw Muhammad' contest at Phoenix mosque, encourage participants to bring guns

May 29, 2015 by legitgov

Anti-Islam protesters to stage 'Draw Muhammad' contest at Phoenix mosque, encourage participants to bring guns | 29 May 2015 | Anti-Islam protesters sociopaths have planned a "Draw Muhammad" rally outside an Arizona mosque once attended by the gunmen responsible for the attack on a similar event in Texas earlier this month. The event is timed to coincide with the Friday night communal prayer, jummah, at the Islamic Community Center in Phoenix. Rally participants are encouraged to bring guns to the event, despite the organizer's claim that it is a "peaceful" protest. Jon Ritzheimer, the event organizer, said that event is meant to "expose Islam" and to send a message "to the known acquaintances of the two gunmen".

Radioactive Leak Contained at Delhi Airport, Minister Says

May 29, 2015 by legitgov

Radioactive Leak Contained at Delhi Airport, Minister Says | 29 May 2015 | A radioactive leak detected at New Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport was contained by emergency response teams, India's Home Minister Rajnath Singh said. There's "absolutely no risk of exposure" to any passengers and authorities are making arrangements to remove a medical consignment suspected to be radioactive, Delhi International Airport Ltd., the operator, said in an e-mailed statement. The suspected material was Sodium Iodide Liquid Class 7, which is low on radio-activity and is used in medicine, DIAL said in the statement, citing a preliminary report by the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research.

U.S. drops Cuba from list of state sponsors of terrorism

May 29, 2015 by legitgov

U.S. drops Cuba from list of state sponsors of terrorism | 29 May 2015 | The [corporate-ruled] United States formally dropped Cuba from a list of state sponsors of terrorism on Friday, an important step toward restoring diplomatic ties but one that will have limited effect on removing U.S. sanctions on the Communist-'ruled' island. President Barack Obama had announced on April 14 he would drop the former Cold War rival from the list, initiating a 45-day review period for Congress that expired on Friday. Obama ordered a review of Cuba's status on the terrorism list as part of a landmark policy shift on Dec. 17, when he and Cuban President Raul Castro announced they would seek to restore diplomatic relations that Washington severed in 1961, and work toward a broader normalization of ties.

Iraq: 10 dead, 30 wounded after car bomb blasts at top Baghdad hotels

May 29, 2015 by legitgov

Iraq: 10 dead, 30 wounded after car bomb blasts at top Baghdad hotels --'Baghdad is burning' | 29 May 2015 | At least 10 people have been killed after car bombs exploded at two luxury hotels in Baghdad. The explosions happened just before midnight local time (21:00 GMT) and were heard across the city centre. Both hotels are popular with Western tourists. Reuters news agency reported that at least 30 people were injured in the blasts which went off in the hotel car parks.

Ex-House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert Indicted on Federal Charges

May 29, 2015 by legitgov

Ex-House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert Indicted on Federal Charges | 28 May 2015 | J. Dennis Hastert, a former speaker of the House of Representatives, has been charged with lying to the F.B.I. and making cash withdrawals from banks in a way that was designed to hide that he was paying $3.5 million to someone for his "misconduct" from years ago, a federal indictment released on Thursday said. Mr. Hastert, 73, the longest-serving Republican speaker, now works as a lobbyist in Washington. The indictment, announced by the United States attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, said Mr. Hastert, who was once a high school teacher and wrestling coach in Yorkville, Ill., had so far paid $1.7 million to the person, who had lived in Yorkville and had known Mr. Hastert for most of his or her life. Mr. Hastert worked in Yorkville from 1965 to 1981. [Hmm. Why in the *world* would Hastert fork over $3.5M, surreptitiously? Was GOP's Coach Hastert once a busy little bee in the gym showers?]

FBI: ISIS poses 'near-term' threat to U.S. military bases; personnel warned of insider attacks

May 29, 2015 by legitgov

FBI: ISIS poses 'near-term' threat to U.S. military bases; personnel warned of insider attacks [aka false flags] | 26 May 2015 | The FBI, the National Counterterrorism Center and Department of Homeland Security have issued a new bulletin warning of increased "near-term" threats against U.S. military bases and events. The bulletin, obtained by Fox News, advised law enforcement and military personnel to remain vigilant, especially during upcoming national holidays and military events, due to the "heightened threat of attacks" by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the ultra-radical group that's been targeted by U.S. forces [after they were created and funded by U.S. forces]. The bulletin said there was no "credible" threats involving specific events but said the agencies had become aware via social media of suggestions U.S. military bases, locations, and events could be targeted in the near-term.

How the Humanist Movement Fosters Economic Injustice

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

How the Humanist Movement Fosters Economic Injustice --A Movement That Makes a Mockery of Its Conventions | 28 May 2015 | The idea that solving the social problems produced by religion will allow for solving the problems of economics in fact gets the reality of the matter backwards. "The demand to give up the illusions about its [i.e. the people's] condition," Marx wrote concerning the link between economic hardship and the religious impulse, "is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." As Michael Rectenwald, Professor of cultural history, science studies, and critical theory at New York University and an expert on the history of secularism, recently suggested to me, with such comments Marx may well have invented what is now called the Existential Security Hypothesis (ESH)...Thus, as Rectenwald writes, "a true humanist doesn’t work hard to eradicate religion. A true humanist works to eradicate the conditions that make religion necessary. In other words, a true humanist condemns liberals more than religions, because liberalism permits such oppression as makes religion necessary."

Here's how much corporations paid US senators to fast-track the TPP bill

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Here's how much corporations paid US senators to fast-track the TPP bill --Out of the total $1,148,971 given, an average of $17,676.48 was donated to each of the 65 'yea'votes. | 27 May 2015 | A decade in the making, the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is reaching its climax and as Congress hotly debates the biggest trade deal in a generation, its backers have turned on the cash spigot in the hopes of getting it passed... Ron Wyden and seven other Senate Democrats announced they were on the fence on 12 May, distinguishing themselves from the Senate's 54 Republicans and handful of Democrats as the votes to sway. In just 24 hours, Wyden and five of those DemocRATic holdouts -- Michael Bennet of Colorado, Dianne Feinstein of California, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Patty Murray of Washington, and Bill Nelson of Florida -- caved and voted for fast-track. Bennet, Murray, and Wyden -- all running for re-election in 2016 -- received $105,900 between the three of them. Bennet, who comes from the more purple state of Colorado, got $53,700 in corporate campaign donations between January and March 2015, according to Taylor Channing's research.

Hundreds Form Search Parties to Seek Survivors in Texas Floods

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Hundreds Form Search Parties to Seek Survivors in Texas Floods | 27 May 2015 | (Wimberley, TX) They descended on this tiny town in the hundreds on Wednesday, volunteers who spread out on foot, in off-road vehicles and fanboats and even aboard private helicopters to search the wreckage and muck along normally idyllic rivers for seven people still missing three days after floodwaters ravaged the area...This was the largest of many search operations across a region that has been battered since Saturday by severe thunderstorms, flooding and tornadoes, leaving at least 19 people dead in Texas and Oklahoma and 14 in Mexico, with others missing and the toll expected to rise. Two more bodies were found Wednesday, including one of eight people who had been missing from a vacation house here that was carried off and dashed to pieces by the Blanco River.

Live anthrax 'inadvertently' sent by U.S. military

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Live anthrax 'inadvertently' sent by U.S. military | 28 May 2015 | Four Defense Department workers in the United States and up to 22 overseas have been put in post-exposure treatment, a defense official said, following the revelation the U.S. military 'inadvertently' shipped live anthrax samples in the past several days. CNN learned on Wednesday a Maryland-based lab received the live samples, which prompted an across the board urgent review to see whether any other live anthrax has been shipped. Officials are concerned because samples left over at the lab in Dugway, Utah, where the samples originated, were tested and determined to contain live agent. Pentagon spokesman, Col. Steve Warren, said one sample was also sent to the Joint United States Forces Korea Portal and Integrated Threat Recognition Program at Osan Air Base. [A drill gone live?]

TISA: Yet Another Leaked Treaty You've Never Heard of Makes Secret Rules for the Internet

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

TISA: Yet Another Leaked Treaty You've Never Heard of Makes Secret Rules for the Internet | 27 May 2015 | A February 2015 draft of the secret Trade In Services Agreement (TISA) was leaked again last week, revealing a more extensive and more recent text than that of portions from an April 2014 leak that we covered last year. Together with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), TISA completes a trifecta of trade agreements that the administration could sign under Fast Track without full congressional oversight. Although it is the least well-known of those agreements, it is the broadest in terms of membership.

Why Is the U.S. Desperate to OK Slavery in Malaysia?

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Why Is the U.S. Desperate to OK Slavery in Malaysia? | 27 May 2015 | On Friday night, in an impressive display of dysfunction, the U.S. Senate approved a controversial trade corporate control bill with a provision that the White House, Senate leadership and the author of the language himself wanted taken out. The provision, which bars countries that engage in slavery from being part of major trade deals with the U.S., was written by Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.). At the insistence of the White House, Menendez agreed to modify his language to say that as long as a country is taking "concrete" steps toward reducing human trafficking and forced labor, it can be part of a 'trade' deal. Under the original language, the country that would be excluded from the pending Trans-Pacific Partnership pact is Malaysia...Observers are left with a deeper question: Why, in the year 2015, is the White House teaming up with Republican leaders essentially to defend the practice of slavery?

Israel asking US for 50% increase - to reach $4.5bn - in next defense package

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Insane in the membrane: US infrastructure is *disintegrating* - but Israel needs to carry out more war crimes, so US taxpayers will fund the latter: Israel asking US for 50% increase - to reach $4.5bn - in next defense package | 26 May 2015 | Israel reportedly wants the US to increase its annual defense assistance package by half, to an average [eye-popping] $4.5 billion. Defense News reported this weekend that Israel and US officials have in recent months begun negotiations on the next 10-year aid package. The previous package, negotiated by the George W. Bush and Ehud Olmert governments in 2007, averaged $3 billion of assistance each year, for a total of $30 billion, from 2007-2017. [Start reading.]

Rick Santorum runs for White House again

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Rick Santorum runs for White House again | 27 May 2015 | Rick Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator who mounted an unexpectedly strong bid for the Republican nomination in 2012, is making another bid for the White House. Santorum launched his campaign on Wednesday evening from a factory in the blue collar town of Cabot, Pennsylvania, on the outskirts of Pittsburgh, with a starkly populist tone. He said that not only "big government," but also "big business" had demolished the American middle class.

Nebraska Bans Death Penalty, Defying a Veto

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Nebraska Bans Death Penalty, Defying a Veto | 27 May 2015 | (Lincoln, NE) Nebraska on Wednesday became the first conservative state in more than 40 years to abolish the death penalty, with lawmakers defying their Republican governor, Pete Ricketts, a staunch supporter of capital punishment who had lobbied vigorously against banning it.After more than two hours of emotional speeches at the Capitol here, the Legislature, by a 30-to-19 vote that cut across party lines, overrode the governor's veto of a bill repealing the state’s death penalty law.

Live anthrax shipped across states, to S. Korea 'by accident' - Pentagon

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Live anthrax shipped across states, to S. Korea 'by accident' - Pentagon | 28 May 2015 | The Pentagon says that live anthrax was 'inadvertently' shipped across state lines from a military lab in Utah to nine other states and a military base in South Korea. However, a Department of Defense spokesperson says the public is not at risk. [?!?] One unnamed US official also told Reuters that anthrax samples were being shipped out from two military facilities for over a year, from March 2014 to April 2015. These samples were mistakenly marked inactive, the official said. While the anthrax samples were first moved out of Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, they were later shipped from Edgewood Chemical Biological Center in Maryland to federal, private and academic facilities.

Australia's search for MH370 under scrutiny

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

Australia's search for MH370 under scrutiny | 27 May 2015 | Nearly a year after embarking on a multi-million dollar quest to solve one of aviation's greatest unsolved mysteries, authorities and search teams are being criticised over their approach to finding Flight MH370 in the remote southern Indian Ocean. The Australian-led search, already the most expensive in aviation history, has found no trace of the Malaysia Airlines jet or its 239 passengers and crew, prompting calls for a rethink into the way the mission is conducted. Experts involved in past deep water searches say the search to find MH370 could easily miss the plane as Dutch company Fugro NV, the firm at the forefront of the mission, is using inappropriate technology for some terrain and inexperienced personnel for the highly specialized task of hunting man-made objects. [Check Diego Garcia.]

U.S. military 'mistakenly' ships live anthrax to labs in nine states

May 28, 2015 by legitgov

The Pentagon is *dying* to get pandemic party started: U.S. military 'mistakenly' ships live anthrax to labs in nine states | 27 May 2015 | A U.S. military facility in Utah 'mistakenly' sent live anthrax bacteria to private laboratories in nine U.S. states and a U.S. military base in South Korea, the Pentagon said on Wednesday. Four U.S. civilians have been started on preventive measures called post-exposure prophylaxis, which usually includes the anthrax vaccine, antibiotics, or both...In this latest incident, anthrax was sent from the Army's Dugway Proving Ground to laboratories in Maryland, Texas, Wisconsin, Delaware, New Jersey, Tennessee, New York, California and Virginia, a defence official said. The four civilians receiving post-exposure prophylaxis are in Delaware, Texas, and Wisconsin.

Supreme Court to consider redefining 'one-person, one-vote' principle

May 27, 2015 by legitgov

Supreme Court to consider redefining 'one-person, one-vote' principle [26 May 2015 | The Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to define what it meant by "one person, one vote" a half century ago. The justices will consider a challenge brought by two rural voters in Texas who claim their state Senate ballots carry less weight than those cast in urban areas with large numbers of non-citizens ineligible to vote. Under the current system in nearly all states, state legislative districts are drawn with roughly equal populations. The standard dates back to decisions made by the Supreme Court in the early 1960s. [OMG. Apparently, predator/Koch troll Clarence Thomas wants to return to the days of King Henry VIII.]

Many men, women arrested in Cleveland during protests of Michael Brelo verdict released

May 27, 2015 by legitgov

Many men, women arrested in Cleveland during protests of Michael Brelo verdict released | 25 May 2015 | Fifty-three men and women arrested Saturday in Cleveland during protests of the acquittal of police officer Michael Brelo have been released from jail. Those released were among 56 arraigned Monday morning in Cleveland Municipal Court. All 56 faced a charge of failure to disperse -- a first-degree misdemeanor -- in connection with three clashes with police during a day of protesting in the city.

71 protesters arrested following Brelo verdict

May 27, 2015 by legitgov

71 protesters arrested following Brelo verdict | 24 May 2015 | Cleveland police arrested 71 people during a day of protests on Saturday following the acquittal of Cleveland police officer Michael Brelo. Police Chief Calvin Williams said on Sunday that about 39 are men and at least 16 women were arrested. Juveniles and were also arrested during the protest, Williams said. A police spokeswoman said she expects to release more detailed information on who was arrested.

Bernie Sanders kicks off 2016 bid from Clinton's left

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Bernie Sanders kicks off 2016 bid from Clinton's left | 26 May 2015 | Challenging Hillary Rodham Clinton from the left, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders kicked off his presidential bid Tuesday with a pitch to liberals to join him in a "political revolution" to transform the nation's economy and politics. Sanders, who entered the Democratic race in late April, formally opened his White House campaign in Burlington, where he was first elected mayor by defeating a longtime Democratic incumbent by 10 votes. Three decades later, Sanders is the underdog again, vowing to campaign on an agenda to elevate issues like income inequality, campaign finance and climate change.

Husky puppy who suffered terrible cruelty 'at the hands of US Marines': Dog had its legs broken and mouth scarred to the bone

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Arrest these Camp Pendleton sociopaths NOW: Husky puppy who suffered terrible cruelty 'at the hands of US Marines': Dog had its legs broken and mouth tied shut so tightly his snout was scarred to the bone | 26 May 2015 | Two Marines are being investigated after a husky puppy was beaten so brutally his hind legs were broken and his snout was bound with rubber bands that cut through to the bone. Five-month-old Kane was allegedly abused by the married couple, but is on the road to recovery and has found a new home. When he was discovered by California-based Ranch Dog Rescue, the dog weighed just 11lbs and his mouth had been bound shut for so long that his teeth had rotted and his snout was scarred to the bone. A statement from Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton said: 'Two Camp Pendleton Marines, a husband and wife, are under investigation by the military police aboard Camp Pendleton and their unit for allegations of animal abuse.'

Official: 'Wall of water destroyed everything in its path'

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Official: 'Wall of water destroyed everything in its path' --Two confirmed dead in Texas floods | 26 May 2015 | Residents and officials faced an unprecedented wall of water during flash floods that crushed homes and swept away families over the weekend in Central Texas. Rescue crews on Tuesday continued searching the length of the Blanco River for 13 people who remained missing, including a family of eight vacationing in a single home washed away, authorities said. A record surge 44 feet high sped down the Blanco River late Sunday, demolishing homes and businesses, Hays County Commissioner Will Conley said. The previous record on the river was 32 feet, recorded in 1926. "It was literally a large wall of water that came down the Blanco River and destroyed everything in its path," he said.

Faulty fan, smoke blamed in brief evacuation of US Capitol

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Faulty fan, smoke blamed in brief evacuation of US Capitol | 26 May 2015 | Police briefly evacuated hundreds of workers and tourists from the U.S. Capitol and its adjacent visitors' center on Tuesday in a problem officials tentatively blamed on a faulty exhaust fan in a visitor center kitchen. Within an hour after alarms sounded, employees returned to the building. Tourists were readmitted shortly after that.

US appeals court rules against Obama's plan to shield 5 million from deportation

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

US appeals court rules against Obama's plan to shield 5 million from deportation | 26 May 2015 | A federal appeals court refused Tuesday to lift a temporary hold on Barack Obama’s executive action that could shield as many as 5 million immigrants illegally living in the US from deportation. The Justice Department had asked the fifth US circuit court of appeals to reverse the decision of a Texas judge who agreed to temporarily block the president's plan in February, after 26 states filed a lawsuit alleging Obama's action was unconstitutional. But two out of three judges on a court panel voted to deny the government's request.

Sanders kicks off presidential run with help from Ben & Jerry's

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Sanders kicks off presidential run with help from Ben & Jerry's | 26 May 2015 | Challenging Hillary Rodham Clinton from the left, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders formally launched his Democratic presidential campaign on Tuesday by vowing to start a "political revolution" to address core economic issues, massive student debt and the role of big money in politics. Already in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, Sanders was opening his campaign with a kickoff event -- complete with free Ben & Jerry's ice cream -- in Burlington, the place where he won his first election by beating a longtime incumbent Democrat by 10 votes to become mayor.

2 civilians, including 12yo killed by Ukrainian army shell in Donbass - reports

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

2 civilians, including 12yo killed by Ukrainian army shell in Donbass - reports | 26 May 2015 | Two civilians, including a child, have reportedly been killed in eastern Ukraine after a shell fired by the [US-backed] Ukrainian military hit a residential area. The shell hit five people in the town of Gorlovka, killing a man and a 12-year old girl, senior rebel commander Eduard Basurin told Russia's Rossiya24 channel. However, according to the Emergencies Ministry of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, the victims were a man and an 11-year-old boy.

Iraqi army lacks 'moral cohesion' to fight Isis, says UK military chief

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Iraqi army lacks 'moral cohesion' to fight Isis, says UK military chief | 25 May 2015 | The Iraqi army is struggling to deal with attacks from Islamic State fighters, despite heavily outnumbering them, because it lacks "moral cohesion" and effective leadership, according to the most senior British officer to be involved in postwar planning in Iraq. Maj Gen Tim Cross echoed comments by the US defence secretary that successive gains by Isis [I-CIA-SIS] militants in the region were because the Iraqi army did not have the "will to fight". Speaking to the BBC's Today programme, Cross said: "It's interesting that the secretary used that [will to fight] expression because we use that expression in the British army and our argument is that it's about a moral cohesion in your army."

Privacy advocates oppose fresh Senate attempt to renew NSA spying powers

May 26, 2015 by legitgov

Privacy advocates oppose fresh Senate attempt to renew NSA spying powers | 26 May 2015 | Fresh attempts to prevent controversial National Security Agency surveillance powers expiring this weekend emerged on Tuesday, only to quickly run into opposition from privacy campaigners in Congress. Democratic senator Dianne Feinstein, a hawkish member of the intelligence committee, has proposed the new legislation to try to win over a handful of wavering Republicans who stood in the way of more ambitious reform efforts during a showdown last week. Feinstein's current proposed bill -- presented as an update to the original Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (Fisa) of 1978 -- proposes an end to NSA bulk collection but contains various mandates for how phone companies [NSA's corpora-terrorists] would be required to store the data, something privacy advocates argue amounts to a recreation of the NSA database in private hands.

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