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Archive for September 11th, 2014

Report: Palin Family in Snowmobile Party Brawl

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

Report: Palin Family in Snowmobile Party Brawl
The Palin family was reportedly involved in a messy fistfight on Saturday night that involved at least 20 people in Anchorage, Alaska at an event sponsored by the annual Iron Dog snowmobile race. Alaska blogger Amanda Coyne offered this description of the fracas: “Palin women screaming. Palin men thumping their chests. Word is that Bristol has a particularly strong right hook, which she employed repeatedly, and it’s something to hear when Sarah screams, ‘Don’t you know who I am!’ And it was particularly wonderful when someone in the crowd screamed back, ‘This isn’t some damned hillbilly reality show!'”


How Obama Became the Reluctant Warrior

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

How Obama Became the Reluctant Warrior
From Nobel Peace Prize winner to the bearer of Bush policies.

Ohio woman recovering after rock dropped on car
AKRON, Ohio (AP) — A northeast Ohio woman who was critically injured when a rock was dropped on her family’s car from a Pennsylvania overpass has made “amazing” strides, her husband said.

APNewsBreak: US sharply cutting deportations
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is on pace this year to deport the fewest number of immigrants since at least 2007, even as he has postponed until after Election Day his promised unilateral action that could shield millions more from deportation.


Female senators want the NFL to change its domestic violence policy

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

Female senators want the NFL to change its domestic violence policy
Sixteen senators wrote a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell after a domestic violence incident involving former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice

Obamacare repeal still atop Senate Republicans’ to-do list
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, weighs in on a potential GOP takeover in November, President Obama’s ISIS plan and speculation that he’ll mount a 2016 White House bid


Right-Wing Media Think Unemployed Americans Spend Too Little Time Working

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

Right-Wing Media Think Unemployed Americans Spend Too Little Time Working

Fox's Charles Payne Says The Unemployed Are

Conservative media are claiming that unemployed Americans are “lazy” because they supposedly spend too much time “shopping” and not enough time working or looking for work. But the data they cite includes the activities of stay-at-home parents, students, people with disabilities, and retirees who are “not employed.”

On September 8, fringe conservative website CNS News published an article claiming “an unemployed American is more likely to be shopping … than to be looking for a new job. ” The article ostensibly cited data from the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), an annual survey conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). CNS claimed that “only 18.9 percent of Americans who were unemployed” engaged in job searches or job interviews on “an average day.” Meanwhile, according to CNS, 22.5 percent of the “unemployed” engaged in shopping “for items other than groceries” on “an average day.”

Unfortunately, CNS did not link to its internal data or provide methodology for its reporting, leaving readers to take the website’s claims at face value.

Digging into the technical notes of the ATUS reveals that the BLS does not categorize individuals as “unemployed,” but rather as “not employed.” This distinction is important, as it includes individuals who fit the classification of being unemployed — not working but actively looking for work — as well as individuals who are “not in the labor force” for other reasons, including retirement, educational pursuit, and disability. So-called “discouraged workers,” the small percentage of the population who involuntarily leave the labor force due to a lack of opportunity, would also count as “not employed” by ATUS classification.

CNS’ insinuation that the so-called “unemployed” spend too much time engaged in non-work activities like “shopping” is based on a fatally skewed statistical error. But that fact has not stopped right-wing media outlets from using CNS’ assumptions to fuel their campaign against the unemployed.


Obama’s Careful War

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

Obama’s Careful War
Michael Gerson, RealClearPolitics
WASHINGTON — The most compelling and encouraging parts of President Obama’s Islamic State speech — his intention to “degrade and ultimately destroy” the enemy, his pledge to hunt down its fighters and deny them “safe haven,” his moral clarity on their “acts of barbarism” — also sounded least like Obama. Everyone — and I mean just about everyone on the planet — knows that he was more comfortable declaring that America had moved “off a permanent war footing” and that the war on terrorism, “like all wars, must end.” This is not merely a statement of the obvious. It illustrates the main…

The New Politics of Foreign Policy
E.J. Dionne, RealClearPolitics
WASHINGTON — Over the last decade, the views of Americans on foreign policy have swung sharply from support for intervention to a profound mistrust of any military engagement overseas. Over the same period, political debates on foreign affairs have been bitter and polarized, defined by the question of whether the invasion of Iraq was a proper use of the nation’s power or a catastrophic mistake. This contest for public opinion has taken place in the shadow of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. For understandable reasons, the United States was thrown off balance by the horrific events of 13 years…

Actually, Senators, You’re the Ones Who Threaten the Country
David Harsanyi, RealClearPolitics
We are, as it always seems, “at a pivotal moment in American history.” At least that’s what Sens. Tom Udall and Bernie Sanders maintained in a melodramatic Politico op-ed last week as they explained their efforts to repeal the First Amendment. Let me retort in their language: It’s true that building the United States has been long, arduous and rife with setbacks. But throughout the years, the American people have repelled efforts to weaken or dismantle the First Amendment. We have weathered the Sedition Act of 1918, a law that led to the imprisonment of innocent Americans who opposed the war…


Scots challenge for ‘Effing Tories’

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

Scots challenge for ‘Effing Tories’
Why David Cameron nearly turned the air blue in Scotland

New EU Commission embraces East
East Europeans get big jobs in new Commission


World Briefing: Mexico: Trust to Pay for Spill Damage

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

World Briefing: Mexico: Trust to Pay for Spill Damage
Mexican federal officials say Grupo Mexico, a mining conglomerate, will pay for damage caused when one of its mines spilled acid-laced copper sulfate and heavy metals into two rivers in northern Mexico.



World Briefing: Germany: Life Expectancy Has Risen in East Since Reunification, Study Says
The life expectancy of East Germans has risen sharply since their state was reunified with the more prosperous West in 1990, a new study shows.



New Eni Chief Investigated Over Nigeria Purchase
Eni and Shell denied wrongdoing in their $1.1 billion acquisition of an oil block in 2011 from the Nigerian government.

Oscar Pistorius Not Guilty of Murder; Still Faces Lesser Homicide Charge
Judge Thokozile Matilda Masipa is expected to rule on Friday on the remaining charge of “culpable homicide” in the killing of Reeva Steenkamp.




John McCain Votes To Preserve A Supreme Court Case He Called The ‘Worst Decision Ever’

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

John McCain Votes To Preserve A Supreme Court Case He Called The ‘Worst Decision Ever’

McCain had previously denounced the ruling as the Supreme Court’s “worst decision ever.”

The post John McCain Votes To Preserve A Supreme Court Case He Called The ‘Worst Decision Ever’ appeared first on ThinkProgress.

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)

CREDIT: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

A proposed constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court’s controversial 2010 Citizens United ruling and give lawmakers greater ability to prevent large donors from corrupting government failed in the United States Senate on Thursday on a party-line vote. Among the 42 Republicans voting no was Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who in the past had been a campaign finance reform advocate.

Citizens United decision found, for the first time, that the First Amendment’s free speech protections guaranteed corporations and unions the right to spend unlimited sums of money on political advertisements. McCain denounced the ruling as the Supreme Court’s “worst decision ever.”

In 2012, McCain promised that “there will be huge scandals… because there’s too much money washing around, too much of it… we don’t know who, who contributed it, and there is too much corruption associated with that kind of money.” He blasted the Supreme Court’s view that corporations are people and denounced the Roberts Court for demonstrating “a combination of arrogance, naivete, and stupidity, the likes of which I have never seen.”

The amendment, proposed by Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) would have given Congress and the states the authority to “regulate and set reasonable limits on the raising and spending of money by candidates and others to influence elections,” as long as doing to did not abridge the freedom of the press, and would have allowed them to “distinguish between natural persons and corporations or other artificial entities created by law, including by prohibiting such entities from spending money to influence elections.” Like all constitutional amendments, it would have required a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate and ratification by three-fourths of the states’ legislatures.

But McCain cast the deciding vote against the DISCLOSE Act in 2010, which would have required disclosure of the major funders of political ads. He has refused to back similar legislation to require transparency for outside political spending in every Congress since.

Update

Brian Rogers, communications director for Sen. McCain, told ThinkProgress: “Senator McCain is proud of his long record of fighting special interests in both parties to reform our broken campaign finance system, and doesn’t need to vote for a partisan, hypocritical, election-year stunt in order to prove it. At a time when the Senate has not passed a single appropriations bill, the Defense Authorization Act has not been brought to the floor, and during turbulent times for America’s national security, it is unfortunate that Majority Leader Reid has decided to spend the Senate’s short time in session on a bill everyone knows cannot pass the House and was introduced for purely political purposes.”

The post John McCain Votes To Preserve A Supreme Court Case He Called The ‘Worst Decision Ever’ appeared first on ThinkProgress.


Are Campaigns to Raise the Minimum Wage Really ‘Recruitment Ground for Fascism’?

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

Are Campaigns to Raise the Minimum Wage Really ‘Recruitment Ground for Fascism’?
From: Nation in the News

One Koch brothers strategist thinks so.

Is the War on ISIS Illegal?
From: Zoë Carpenter

The Obama administration’s legal justification for expanding military action in Iraq and Syria is hypocritical and based on tenuous logic.

Overturned Death Penalty Conviction Sparks Debate in North Carolina
From: StudentNation

The release of a wrongfully imprisoned death row inmate has opened up a bipartisan conversation around punitive justice in North Carolina.

The Central African Republic’s Forgotten Crisis
From: Foreign Policy In Focus

Though it scarcely makes headlines, the Central African Republic’s vicious civil war has created a sickening humanitarian crisis.