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Archive for June 6th, 2014

Georgia Courthouse Thwarts Armed Invader

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Georgia Courthouse Thwarts Armed Invader
A man armed with explosives and an assault rifle might have entered a north Georgia courthouse Friday if not for a deputy who was wounded in the shootout with the gunman, Forsyth County Sheriff Duane Piper said.Authorities killed Dennis Marx outside the courthouse, Piper said, adding that the gunman planned to wreak more havoc once inside the building. “Marx’s intention was to get in that front door and take hostages,” he said. Marx was scheduled to attend a hearing at the Forsyth County Courthouse on Friday.


Asia stocks slip ahead of jobs, ECB boosts Europe

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Asia stocks slip ahead of jobs, ECB boosts Europe
HONG KONG (AP) — Asian stocks were mostly indifferent on Friday to the unveiling of a big stimulus package from the European Central Bank as investors awaited the U.S. jobs report for May.


With opponent mired in controversy, Sen. Thad Cochran forges ahead

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

With opponent mired in controversy, Sen. Thad Cochran forges ahead
Mississippi Republican hopes for a victory in a primary runoff as his opponent, Chris McDaniel, deals with a pair of bizarre episodes involving supporters

“These men waged war so that we might know peace”
Obama marks 70th anniversary of D-Day in Normandy, says we can’t know freedom unless “free people are prepared to die for it”


Fox’s Megyn Kelly On Media’s Treatment Of Hillary Clinton: “I Just Don’t See What She Has To Complain About”

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Fox’s Megyn Kelly On Media’s Treatment Of Hillary Clinton: “I Just Don’t See What She Has To Complain About”

From the June 6 edition of Fox News’ The Kelly File:

Previously:

Fox’s Karl Rove Reportedly Claims Hillary Clinton Has Brain Damage

Obsessing Over Hillary, Pundits Complain About Clinton “Fatigue”

Fox’s Howard Kurtz On Media Gender Bias: “Deal With It”

Enough Already: Why The Press Should Stop Lecturing Hillary Clinton About The Press


Is ‘Not Obama’ Enough?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Is ‘Not Obama’ Enough?
Mona Charen, RealClearPolitics
Though President Barack Obama’s first term was characterized by anemic economic growth, decreasing household income, prolonged joblessness, an unpopular health law, foreign policy blunders and bitter partisanship, the electorate seemed stubbornly unwilling to lay any of it at his feet. As late as July 2013, 35 percent of Americans assigned George W. Bush a “high degree” of blame for the economy versus only 19 percent who named Obama alone. Now the spell appears to have been decidedly broken. The benefit of the doubt Obama enjoyed for more than four years has been depleted. The Benghazi, IRS…

In Mississippi Runoff, GOP Must Step Carefully
Caitlin Huey-Burns, RealClearPolitics
With Mississippi’s GOP Senate primary headed to a runoff, Republicans backing incumbent Thad Cochran are engaged in a high-wire balancing act. Even with greater than expected turnout and local and national establishment backing, the six-term senator finished just below the 50 percent threshold required to win the nod — in fact, he came in second to challenger Chris McDaniel by 1,400 votes. With low turnout expected for the June 24 runoff, when no other races will be on the ballot, Republicans are faced with a decision: Should they financially invest in Cochran at this point and continue…


Hain to stand down as Neath MP

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Hain to stand down as Neath MP
Former cabinet minister Peter Hain will stand down as Neath MP at the next general election.

I’m not in race for EU job – Lagarde
IMF chief Christine Lagarde appears to rule herself out of the race to be the next president of the European Commission.


Prayer Meeting Shows Pope’s Larger Vision

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Prayer Meeting Shows Pope’s Larger Vision
Pope Francis’s prayer meeting on Sunday with the Israeli and Palestinian presidents shows how he is trying to position the Vatican as an independent, global diplomatic player.



World Briefing: Syria: Drought Adds to Woes, U.N. Says
The supply of safe water in Syria is now one-third of the level it was before March 2011 when the civil war began, Unicef officials said.



World Briefing: India: Officers Convicted in Man’s Death
Seventeen police officers were convicted of kidnapping and killing a man, 22, and could face the death penalty when they are sentenced on Monday, Indian officials said.



State Department Ramps Up Efforts Against Boko Haram
State Department officials acknowledged that their efforts to directly challenge Boko Haram could prove challenging in a region racked by massacres, bombings and shootings.



Facebook Under Fire for Temporarily Blocking Pages in Pakistan
Citing pressure from the Pakistani government, Facebook said it blocked left-wing political pages and a popular rock band, Laal, whose members spoke out against Taliban.




For GOP Senate Candidates, Banning Same-Sex Marriage In The Constitution Has Lost Its Appeal

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

For GOP Senate Candidates, Banning Same-Sex Marriage In The Constitution Has Lost Its Appeal

Of the 83 Republicans currently running for the U.S. Senate, just 6 explicitly support a constitutional amendment to ban marriage equality.

The post For GOP Senate Candidates, Banning Same-Sex Marriage In The Constitution Has Lost Its Appeal appeared first on ThinkProgress.

LGBT flag

CREDIT: Shutterstock

In 2004, many pundits credited the advent of same-sex marriage in Massachusetts (and 13 ballot initiatives banning marriage equality) with prompting conservative Christian voters to turn out in droves and help re-elect President George W. Bush. That same year, and again in 2006, Republicans in Congress were so rattled by the looming threat of marriage equality that they overwhelmingly voted to amend the Constitution to forbid same-sex unions. (The amendments failed.)

Yet eight years later, in a testament to the rapid advance of LGBT rights, just a tiny fraction of this year’s GOP Senate candidates are explicitly calling for a constitutional amendment. In fact, there are nearly as many Republican contenders touting their opposition to federal action as there are ones calling for it.

A ThinkProgress examination found that of all 83 current Republican Senate candidates, just six mention their support for a federal marriage amendment to ban marriage equality. The six include three current senators — John Cornyn (R-TX), Jim Risch (R-ID), and Pat Roberts (R-KS) — as well as Rep. Steve Daines (R-MT) and two GOPers running in Oklahoma, Randy Brogdon and Andy Craig.

Many senators who voted in favor of the 2006 Federal Marriage Amendment now don’t mention the matter, even as they discuss same-sex marriage in general.

Take Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL). Before voting for the 2004 FMA, Sessions announced on the Senate floor, “It is time for us as a people to utilize the power of the Constitution given us through our elected representatives to amend the Constitution.” In 2006, then-Senate Minority Whip Mitch McConnell (R-KY) argued, “The constitutional amendment process, being the closest process we have to a national referendum, is the best way for the people to speak on this important issue.” Neither senator calls for a constitutional amendment on their re-election websites now; Sessions simply says that “He has worked hard to strengthen families by protecting the institution of marriage.”

This, of course, doesn’t necessarily mean that Sessions or McConnell don’t still support a constitutional amendment. They likely do, and would almost certainly vote for it again if it came up in 2015. But the fact that they no longer find it politically expedient to explicitly mention the matter is telling.

In fact, some even altered the way they discussed marriage equality from the last time they ran. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), running for re-election in 2008, noted on his website that he “aggressively supported and voted for a federal amendment defining marriage as the union between one man and one woman.” By 2014, however, that language had been scrubbed. Now, Graham simply says he “supported laws to define the traditional definition of marriage between one man and one woman.” Though he doesn’t mention the specific laws he’s referring to — most likely the recently struck-down Defense of Marriage Act — it’s important to note that a constitutional amendment is not a law.

Of the nine current Republican senators who supported a constitutional amendment and are running for re-election in 2014 — Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Thad Cochran (R-MS), John Cornyn (R-TX), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Graham, James Inhofe (R-OK), McConnell, Pat Roberts (R-KS), and Sessions — six avoided endorsing the FMA on their websites.

Meanwhile, four candidates — Jim Oberweis in Illinois, Kevin Crow in Oklahoma, and South Carolina contenders Bill Connor and Benjamin Dunn — explicitly call for decisions about same-sex marriage to be left to states, rather than the federal government.

Nationwide, many prominent Republicans have been toning down their rhetoric on the issue of marriage equality, if not always changing their positions. Even a stalwart like former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) no longer wants to talk about marriage equality, despite the fact that a judge he recommended legalized same-sex marriage in Pennsylvania last month. Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), who vigorously opposes equality, summed up the likely thinking of many of his Republican colleagues on the matter in May: “Let’s face it, anybody who does not believe that gay marriage is going to be the law of the land just hasn’t been observing what’s going on.”

The post For GOP Senate Candidates, Banning Same-Sex Marriage In The Constitution Has Lost Its Appeal appeared first on ThinkProgress.

More Dads Are Staying At Home, But Moms Still Do Most Of The Childrearing

The number of stay-at-home dads has doubled in 25 years, but it is still dwarfed by how many women assume that role.

The post More Dads Are Staying At Home, But Moms Still Do Most Of The Childrearing appeared first on ThinkProgress.

black dad

CREDIT: Shutterstock

The number of stay-at-home fathers has nearly doubled since 1989, climbing from 1.1 million to 2 million in 2012, according to a Pew analysis of Census Bureau data, but while the sheer number of fathers who leave the workforce to be at home full time is growing, they still make up a tiny percentage of traditional stay-at-homers.

The high point was in 2010, when 2.2 million fathers were staying at home full time, but the number has fallen slightly since then thanks to declining unemployment. A growing share of these fathers are at home to care for children: 21 percent are home taking care of family, up from just 5 percent in 1989. Comparatively, about three-quarters of mothers, on the other hand, are home full time to care for their families.

The largest share of men staying home — 35 percent — is home because of an illness or injury. Nearly another quarter are home because they can’t find a job.

Pew notes that fathers make up 16 percent of all at-home parents, an increase from 10 percent in 1989. Yet families with a stay-at-home father and a working mother make up less than 1 percent of all families with children headed by a married couple, according to an analysis by University of Maryland Professor Philip N. Cohen, while those with a stay-at-home mother and working father make up about a quarter. By that definition, “stay-at-home mothers outnumber [stay-at-home] fathers 100 to 1,” he told ThinkProgress.

SHP-1. PARENTS AND CHILDREN IN STAY-AT-HOME PARENT FAMILY GROUPS: 1994 TO PRESENT

CREDIT: Philip N. Cohen

As with the growing share of stay-at-home mothers who are living in poverty and have a high school diploma or less, stay-at-home dads are twice as likely to have dropped out of high school compared to working fathers while half live in poverty, compared to 8 percent of working fathers. For at-home moms, these barriers to getting jobs that pay well enough to cover the sky-high costs of childcare are a big factor in why they don’t work — much more rarely are they well-educated, high-income moms who opt out of their careers.

On the whole, fathers are certainly more involved with their children than they ever have been. They have nearly tripled the amount of time they spend on childcare since 1965, and they may wish they could do more, as about an equal share of moms and dads say they are stressed about balancing work and family responsibilities. Yet they are also more likely to want to work full time than mothers, and women are still doing the lion’s share of childrearing, spending double the time on it that fathers do and more than the mothers of the 1960s did. Women are also far more likely to adjust their careers to take care of family members.

The post More Dads Are Staying At Home, But Moms Still Do Most Of The Childrearing appeared first on ThinkProgress.


Did the Obama-Putin Encounter Help Ease the Ukraine Crisis?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Did the Obama-Putin Encounter Help Ease the Ukraine Crisis?
From: Bob Dreyfuss

Leaders in Western Europe clearly want the problem to go away, but the United States is pressing Europe to step up military spending.

Tawdry Politicking on D-Day Is as Old as the Day Itself
From: Back Issues

A dispatch from the House of Representatives, June 6, 1944.

Temp Nation: How Corporations Are Evading Accountability, at Workers’ Expense
From: Michelle Chen

Fixing the regulatory regime for outsourcing requires both new modes enforcement and reforms that target corporations’ systematic evasion tactics.

Harry’s Last Stand: Message From a D-Day Veteran
From: Peter Rothberg

One of the last remaining survivors of the Great Depression cautions against the steady erosion of civilized society.

Bowe Bergdahl and the Real Guantánamo Detainee Scandal
From: Zoë Carpenter

Seventy-eight men who have been cleared for release remain in interminable detention. 


Obama Is Sabotaging Dem Senate Hopes

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on June 6th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Obama Is Sabotaging Dem Senate Hopes
Josh Kraushaar, National Journal
Does President Obama care about keeping the Senate?The president reportedly has told his close allies that losing the Senate would be “unbearable,” but his administration is doing everything possible to make things difficult for his party’s most vulnerable senators. On energy issues alone, the administration’s decisions to impose new Environmental Protection Agency regulations on coal-fired plants and indefinitely delay a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline could help burnish his long-term environmental legacy, but at the expense of losing complete control of Congress.

An Omaha Beach Memoir
Michael Ruane, Washington Post
As Leo Scheer swam for Omaha Beach from his burning landing craft that morning, he watched a pattern of machine gun bullets splash toward him and stop short.On the beach, he spotted a land mine a foot from his head just as he was about to trip it. And when a buddy was about to make a hazardous dash under fire, Scheer pulled him back just in time to save his life.

President Obama’s Dirty Deal
Charles Krauthammer, New York Daily News
What is it with Susan Rice and Sunday morning talk shows? She said Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl had served in Afghanistan “with honor and distinction” — the biggest whopper since she insisted the Benghazi attack was caused by a video.There is strong eyewitness evidence that Bergdahl deserted his unit and that the search for him endangered his fellow soldiers. Otherwise, there would be no national uproar over his ransom and some of the widely aired objections to the deal would be as muted as they are flimsy. For example:

The Longest Day