We are the Liberal Blog From Hollywood
L.A.'s Premier Post Facility

L.A.'s Premier Post Facility

Photographer in L.A.

Hot Pics & Gossip.

Archive for September 26th, 2014

2 States Suspend New Guardrail Use

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

2 States Suspend New Guardrail Use
Transportation officials in two states said they are halting the use of a widely-installed guardrail end terminal that was the subject of an ABC News investigation while they further investigate potential safety hazards. “Our internal observations, as well as our review of available information, indicates to us the ET-Plus guardrail end treatment is not performing as intended and could pose the risk of malfunctioning,” the Missouri Department of Transportation said today, referring to a newer version guardrail end piece. “Therefore, we are taking proactive steps to correct the situation. We are immediately stopping the further use of this product on Missouri’s highway system by taking it off of our approved products list, removing it from projects currently under construction and prohibiting its use on any future projects.”

Orthodox Jews Demand Gender-Segregated Flight
An El-Al flight from New York to Tel Aviv was turned into an “11-hour nightmare” after hundreds of ultra-Orthodox Jewish passengers refused to sit next to women. According to those on board the flight descended into chaos because of their demands. The flight was full with Israelis, secular, orthodox and ultra-Orthodox Jews — known as Haredim — flying home to celebrate Rosh Hashanah. Even though the passengers had been pre-assigned seats before boarding, the ultra-Orthodox Jews refused to accept the arrangements because their beliefs required that men and women were segregated.


Explosion tears apart truck in northern Arizona

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Explosion tears apart truck in northern Arizona
PHOENIX (AP) — Authorities are investigating an explosion of a pickup truck that was parked on farmland near a remote enclave on the Arizona-Utah state line where polygamy has been practiced openly.


Obama to host lunch, dinner for fasting Indian prime minister

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Obama to host lunch, dinner for fasting Indian prime minister
The fasting Indian leader will also be invited to a State Department lunch next week


Allen West Tells Military To Disobey Commander-In-Chief

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Allen West Tells Military To Disobey Commander-In-Chief

Fox News contributor Allen West, who has previously called President Obama an “Islamist” with unclear “loyalties,” is now calling on the military to ignore orders from its commander-in-chief.

The Military Times reported that the Department of Defense will expand an existing program, Military Accessions Vital to National Interest (MAVNI), to allow recruiters “to target foreign nationals with high-demand skills, mostly rare foreign language expertise or specialized health care training.” The program “is capped at 1,500 recruits per year. Officials say it’s unclear how many of those might be unlawful DACA status immigrants as opposed to others who are also eligible for military service under MAVNI, including those with legal, nonpermanent visas such as students or tourists.”

The Times noted that “the military recruits about 5,000 noncitizens each year, nearly all of them permanent U.S. residents, or so-called ‘green card’ holders. Starting in 2006, DoD began accepting some foreigners with nonpermanent visas, such as students or tourists, if they had special skills that are highly valued. After entering military service, foreigners are eligible for expedited U.S. citizenship. Since 2001, more than 92,000 foreign-born service members have become citizens while serving in uniform.”

West, a retired Army Lt. Colonel whose service ended in controversy, reacted to the news on his Facebook page by writing that “Barack Hussein Obama took out his pen and ordered our Military to enlist illegal aliens. In other words, this charlatan has allowed those who have disrespected our Constitution and are not citizens to take an oath to support and defend the very document, our rule of law, of which they are in violation.”

He added: “This is an illegal order and should not be followed by our Military.”


Energy Policy: Regional Wild Card in the Midterms?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Energy Policy: Regional Wild Card in the Midterms?
Carl M. Cannon, RealClearPolitics
Last May, an energy conservation bill appeared to be coming to the Senate floor for a vote. Passage seemed a foregone conclusion, but that’s a risky assumption on Capitol Hill these days, especially during an election year. Despite its grandiose name, The Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act was a modest collection of sensible ideas that included tax incentives and funding designed to encourage homeowners, landlords, and those who manage commercial buildings to improve the energy efficiency of their properties. Its sponsors claimed it would generate billions of dollars in energy…

Middle-Class Squeeze: Costs Rise 32% While Wages Stagnate
Christopher Rugaber, RealClearPolitics
WASHINGTON — Three years ago, Jason Prosser was stunned to discover the cost of child care for his newborn son — so much so that he and his wife postponed having a second child. The day-care center they found near their Seattle home tops $10,000 a year. Next year, their son, now 3, can attend a Catholic preschool less than half as costly. “It’ll be nice to have enough relief next year,” Prosser said. “It’s just funny that the relief will be a private school.” He and his wife are among legions of middle-class families who are straining under the…

Wanted: Grownups
Erick Erickson, RealClearPolitics
The United States had a cold war to win against the Soviet Union. For several decades, students were taught to dive under their desks should a nuclear bomb go off. People built bomb shelters. Americans got so tired of the containment strategy, they took a gamble on a guy from California whose strategy was simple: “We win. They lose.” President Reagan did win the Cold War. His Vice President, George H. W. Bush, swept into office promising to finish what Reagan started. The Berlin Wall fell. Then a threat sparked in the Middle East. Bush stormed into Iraq, freed Kuwait and saw approval ratings…

Striking ISIL in Syria; Energy Policy as a Midterm Wild Card; Who Shot JFK?
Carl M. Cannon, RealClearPolitics
Good morning, it’s Wednesday, September 24, 2014. On this day in 1964, the Warren Commission presented its report to President Lyndon B. Johnson. It was an incomplete and hurried work, marred by fanny-covering by the FBI and rife with personal conflicts, including Earl Warren’s friendship with the Kennedy family. It was, at the same time, an extraordinary effort on the part of dedicated public servants who had nothing to gain and much to lose. The fact that their reputations and careers survived afterward is itself a testament to the gravitas of the commission members: chairman…


Pile-up on the road to Birmingham

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Pile-up on the road to Birmingham
Political pile-up on the road from Edinburgh to Glasgow, via Manchester, Birmingham and Doncaster.

VIDEO: Fallon: ‘Long drawn out campaign’
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon has told the BBC’s Newsnight that the UK’s air strikes in Iraq were the start of “a long drawn out campaign”.


Chelsea Clinton Gives Birth To A Girl

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Chelsea Clinton Gives Birth To A Girl
Chelsea Clinton is a mom!

The daughter of former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tweeted early Saturday morning that she had given birth to a baby girl named Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky:

This is the first grandchild for the Clintons, who have been vocal in the past about wanting grandchildren.

Both Clintons have openly discussed their first grandchild. In mid-September, Bill Clinton received a call on a phone only used by his wife and daughter during an event, and said he hoped the call wasn’t a “premature” birth announcement. A few days later, Hillary Clinton told the crowd at the annual Harkin Steak Fry she and her husband were “on constant grandchild watch.”

Clinton announced her pregnancy while speaking at the Lower Eastside Girls Club in New York City in April.


U.S. Court Issues Summons to Modi in Lawsuit Over 2002 Riots

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

U.S. Court Issues Summons to Modi in Lawsuit Over 2002 Riots
The suit accuses Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will soon begin a five-day United States visit, of human rights abuses in connection with religious riots in the state of Gujarat.



3 Nations Offer Limited Support to Attack on ISIS
Britain, Belgium and Denmark lined up behind the United States, agreeing to military operations in Iraq — but not in Syria.



Peru: Suspects Arrested in Killings of 4 Environmental Activists
Peru has arrested two loggers suspected of murdering four environmental activists to keep them from opposing timber extraction on native lands near the border with Brazil.



Refugee Flow to Industrialized Nations Is Poised for a 20-Year High
More than 330,700 people applied for asylum in 44 countries in Europe, North America and parts of the Asia-Pacific region in the first half of the year, a U.N. agency reported.



Beatification Brings Opus Dei Into the Open
The beatification Mass for a former leader of Opus Dei is an unusually public show of force for the movement, one of the most powerful and discreet in Catholicism.




Meet The 21 Countries That Don’t Believe In Protecting LGBT People From Violence

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Meet The 21 Countries That Don’t Believe In Protecting LGBT People From Violence

The United Nations Human Rights Commission passed a resolution seeking to protect LGBT people from violence, but not everybody supported it.

The post Meet The 21 Countries That Don’t Believe In Protecting LGBT People From Violence appeared first on ThinkProgress.

UN LGBT Vote

CREDIT: Twitter

On Friday afternoon, the United Nations Human Rights Commission approved a resolution opposing violence and discrimination against people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity by a vote of 25-14 with 7 abstentions.

Among the 21 who countries who rejected or abstained from the measure were several commonwealth countries that still have laws criminalizing homosexuality, including Botswana, Kenya, Namibia, Maldives, and Sierra Leone. Other countries who rejected it were Muslim nations like Kuwait, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia, all of which punish same-sex behavior — particularly between men — in some fashion.

Two years ago, Russia successfully stripped LGBT protections from a similar measure. They unsurprisingly rejected this year’s inclusive resolution.

China and India both abstained from the vote, as did Kazakhstan and Congo.

The text of the resolution simply condemns violence and discrimination against LGBT people:

Expressing grave concern at acts of violence and discrimination, in all regions of the world, committed against individuals because of their sexual orientation and gender identity,

Welcoming positive developments at the international, regional and national levels in the fight against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity…

Among the countries that supported the measure were the U.S., the U.K., South Africa, Vietnam, Cuba, Korea, Argentina, Japan, Czech Republic, and Peru. (Note: Not all members of the U.N. sit on the Human rights Commission.)

The post Meet The 21 Countries That Don’t Believe In Protecting LGBT People From Violence appeared first on ThinkProgress.

Public Pressure Forces Tar Sands Waste Operator Out Of Chicago

“Doing business in the city is increasingly difficult,” the company president said.

The post Public Pressure Forces Tar Sands Waste Operator Out Of Chicago appeared first on ThinkProgress.

A mount of petcoke in Chicago in 2013.

A mount of petcoke in Chicago in 2013.

CREDIT: AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

An operator in charge of storing petroleum coke, a dirty byproduct of tar sands refining, has announced it’s leaving the city of Chicago, and taking the black, dusty piles with it.

Beemsterboer Slag Corp., which has been storing petcoke at a storage facility by the Calumet River, has closed the facility after facing increasing pressure from city officials and residents.

“The property has been sold,” company president Alan Beemsterboer said of the Calumet Transload Facility. “Doing business in the city is increasingly difficult.”

At the end of April, the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance that banned new petcoke storage facilities from opening and prevented existing storage facilities from expanding. In addition, earlier this month, Beemsterboer was fined $50,000 for violating an order to remove petcoke from a different site.

The move is good news for Chicago residents, many of whom have gotten increasingly fed up with the piles of petcoke. If left uncovered, stores of petroleum coke create black dust that can blow into residents’ homes and aggravate breathing conditions like asthma.

Beemsterboer isn’t the only company storing petcoke in Chigaco, however. KCBX Terminals, which is a much larger company than Beemsterboer, still stores petcoke in Chicago, and was the target of protests earlier this month.

“Beemsterboer was always the little guy, compared to KCBX,” Olga Bautista from the Southeast Chicago Coalition to Ban Petcoke said. “We need to drive KCBX out. It’s an uphill battle, but we don’t have a choice. We have a 50 percent higher cancer rate than the rest of the city, and the highest asthma rate in the city of Chicago. We’re defending ourselves from toxic industry, because we’ve got nothing to lose. We’re already in a terrible situation.”

KCBX, which is controlled by petrochemical billionaires Charles and David Koch, has threatened legal action if Chicago doesn’t allow the company an extra two years to cover up its piles of petcoke. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel imposed a deadline of 2016 for companies to cover any uncovered petcoke piles they’re storing in Chicago, but KCBX wants to be able to wait until 2018 to cover its piles. It also wants to be able to have larger piles than the city’s new limits — 45 feet high rather than the 30-foot limit imposed by the city.

As the Chicago Tribune reports, Chicago residents already aren’t pleased about the city’s choice to give companies two years to comply with the new rules on covering petcoke, let alone four years.

“The mayor promised to make it tougher for them to operate, not easier,” Peggy Salazar, executive director of the Southeast Environmental Task Force said. “Four more years of dust is just going to make the situation worse for us.”

And unlike Beemsterboer, KCBX doesn’t appear to be scaling down its operations in Chicago — or in the rest of Illinois and the Midwest. Instead, the company is ramping up petcoke storage. Since petcoke is used as fuel in other countries (it’s also burned in Michigan’s coal-fired power plants) the company buys petcoke from oil refineries and sells it on the international market.

Chicago isn’t the only city to suffer the effects of petcoke storage, either. Detroit residents and environmental groups have also waged battles against petcoke storage in their city, and have spoken out about bills like the one sponsored by state Rep. Aric Nesbitt (R) that aimed to label petcoke a renewable energy source in Michigan.

The post Public Pressure Forces Tar Sands Waste Operator Out Of Chicago appeared first on ThinkProgress.


Colbert: ‘The Cocks on Fox’ Are Wrong About ‘Boobs on the Ground’

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 26th, 2014 11:08 pm by HL

Colbert: ‘The Cocks on Fox’ Are Wrong About ‘Boobs on the Ground’
From: Leslie Savan

Bolling apologized, he said, because his wife gave him “the look.” Sounds sincere to us!

Newark Students Have Made the City Their Classroom
From: StudentNation

Students in Newark, New Jersey, walked out of class earlier this month in protest of the “One Newark” plan to privatize the district’s schools. A substitute teacher reflects on the action.

‘The Facts Themselves Speak Truth to Power’: An Interview With NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith
From: Dave Zirin

After the most tumultuous, scandal-plagued month in the history of the NFL commissioner’s office, we speak to the executive director of the player’s union about where the league goes from here.

Roxane Gay Is a Bad Feminist
From: Melissa Harris-Perry

Roxane Gay talks about rewriting the rules of feminism.