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The Left Column

n2doc

Jimmy Carter calls for end to fighting in Gaza

(AJC) Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter has called for an end to the fighting and bombing in Gaza.

“Both sides must distinguish between combatants and noncombatants, and Israel must ensure that its use of force is proportionate in accordance with international humanitarian law. More immediately, all combat operations must stop, and Israeli troops should withdraw from Gaza,” Carter said in a statement released Tuesday.

Octafish

FBI Entrapment Created 'Illusion' of Terrorist Plots: Report

(Common Dreams) Federal officials and law enforcement agents are treating American Muslims like "terrorists-in-waiting," according to a new report released Monday by Human Rights Watch and Columbia Law School's Human Rights Institute.

The FBI, under pressure to appear effective and worthy of its $8.4-billion budget, has "targeted American Muslims in abusive counterterrorism 'sting operations' based on religious and ethnic identity"; sent informants to mosques to "troll for leads"; and in some cases encouraged or even paid individuals to undertake terrorist acts, the report (pdf) reveals.

kpete

Mass. Governor compares immigrant kids to Jews turned away in 1939, offers to shelter them

(Raw Story) Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) announced a proposal on Friday for two military facilities to serve as host sites for some of the thousands of undocumented Central American immigrants who have come into the U.S. in recent months, saying the move falls in line with the country’s tradition of helping children in need.

“We have rescued Irish children from famine, Russian and Ukrainian children from religious persecution, Cambodian children from genocide, Haitian children from earthquakes, Sudanese children from civil war, and New Orleans children from Hurricane Katrina,” Patrick said. “Once, in 1939, we turned our backs on Jewish children fleeing the Nazis, and it remains a blight on our national reputation. The point is that this good Nation is great when we open our doors and our hearts to needy children, and diminished when we don’t.”

Scuba

I absolutely love this idea: The Bad Boss Tax

(BillMoyers.com) TakeAction Minnesota, a network that promotes economic and racial justice in the state, wants to make that fee a reality. It’s developing the framework for a bill that it hopes will be introduced in 2015 by state legislators who have worked with the network in the past. As conceived, the “bad business fee” legislation would require companies to disclose how many of their employees are receiving public assistance from the state or federal government. Companies would then pay a fine based on the de facto subsidies they receive by externalizing labor costs onto taxpayers.

Cooperstown

New England Journal Of Medicine: 20 Million Covered Under Obamacare

(TPM) A report published last week in the esteemed New England Journal of Medicine provided an overview of Obamacare's first year, its successes and the challenges ahead. It also offered a yet another estimate of the number of people covered by the law: 20 million.

The NEJM report pulled a wealth of information, much of it already known by those closely following the law's implementation but presented together by the journal, from think tanks and government agencies. It covered a range of topics, including the number of people covered, 2015 premiums, and the adequacy of provider networks for plans offered through the law.

underpants

Hospitals See Troubles In Red States That Snubbed Obamacare's Medicaid Deal

(Forbes) While record numbers of Americans sign up for the larger Medicaid health insurance program for the poor, financial issues are emerging for medical care providers in the two dozen states that didn’t go along with the expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

Reports out in the last week indicate the gap between those with health care coverage is widening between states that agreed to go along with the health law’s Medicaid expansion and those generally led by Republican legislatures and GOP governors that are balking at the expansion.

wyldwolf

New Poll: Democrats Poised To Flip Georgia’s Senate Seat As Michelle Nunn Holds Commanding Lead

(Politicus USA) First it was Jason Carter's notable lead in the GA governor's race. Now, in a poll by Landmark Communications released Sunday, Democrat Michelle Nunn has a commanding lead against both of her potential challengers in Georgia’s US Senate race. Against Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) Nunn is up by eight points, 49% to 41%. The poll also shows her with a nice lead against businessman David Perdue as Nunn leads him 48% to 42%. Perdue and Kingston are heading into a GOP primary runoff this coming Tuesday. The survey shows Kingston with a sizable lead as he is ahead by seven points, 48% to 41%.

bigtree

With the strokes of a pen, Obama will have very real and immediate impact on lives of LGBT people

Following the news that President Obama will sign an executive order Monday outlawing anti-LGBT discrimination among federal contractors and federal employees, Human Rights Campaign (HRC) President Chad Griffin issued the following statement:

“With the strokes of a pen, the President will have a very real and immediate impact on the lives of millions of LGBT people across the country. Each and every American worker should be judged based on the work they do, and never because of a fundamental aspect of who they are – like their sexual orientation or gender identity. These actions from the President have the potential to be a keystone in the arch of his administration’s progress, and they send a powerful message to future administrations and to Congress that anti-LGBT discrimination must not be tolerated. We also call on Congress to immediately pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.”

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Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine to fend off Putin-backed rebels

9 min ago - By Maggie Ybarra-The Washington Times Tuesday, July 22, 2014 A team of Pentagon officials is heading to Ukraine to help the country rebuild its fractured military, a mission that lawmakers and analysts expect will result in recommendations for great ... (The Washington Times)

Veteran Says He Was Forgotten Inside VA Clinic

24 min ago - DELTONA, Fla. (AP) — A veteran of the U.S. Marines says he was locked inside a central Florida community clinic operated by the Veteran's Administration. Jeffrey Duck told WKMG (http://bit.ly/WCJOHU ) he arrived as a "walk in" patient at the clinic ... (HUFF POST)

In Israel, Kerry Sees ‘Work to Do’ to Get Deal on Cease-Fire

1 hr ago - JERUSALEM — Secretary of State John Kerry began a round of intensive meetings here on Wednesday as he sought to forge a cease-fire to stop the bitter fighting in the Gaza Strip. Mr. Kerry began his consultations by meeting in Jerusalem with Ban Ki-m ... (StarTribune National.)

U.S. DOT Announces Comprehensive Proposed Rulemaking for the Safe Transportation of Crude Oil

1 hr ago - WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation today released the details of its comprehensive rulemaking proposal to improve the safe transportation of large quantities of flammable materials by rail - particularly crude oil and ethanol - in the ... (U.S. Department of Transportation)

US Air Force to launch new surveillance satellites

2 hrs ago - The US Air Force will launch new satellites Wednesday to track those of other countries and counter possible threats to American spacecraft, officials said. Two satellites are due to be sent into high-altitude orbits for the first time as part of a ... (AFP)

Report: Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Killing 51 People

2 hrs ago - Taiwan's Central News Agency says a plane has crashed in a failed emergency landing, killing 51 people. The news agency cited the head of the fire department in the Taiwanese county of Penghu as saying that seven people were also injured in the cras ... (Associated Press)

Cuomo’s Office Hobbled State Ethics Inquiries

2 hrs ago - With Albany rocked by a seemingly endless barrage of scandals and arrests, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo set up a high-powered commission last summer to root out corruption in state politics. It was barely two months old when its investigators, hunting for vi ... (New York Times)

China detains employees of suspect meat seller

3 hrs ago - By JOE McDONALD BEIJING (AP) — Five employees of a company accused of selling expired beef and chicken to McDonald's, KFC and other restaurants were detained by police Wednesday after an official said illegal activity was an organized effort by the ... (AP-Excite)

2 Ukrainian jet fighters shot down in rebel-held region

3 hrs ago - Two Ukrainian fighter jets were shot down Wednesday in the eastern regions of the country that are controlled by Russian-backed separatists, according to Ukraine's defense ministry. Defense Ministry spokesman Oleksiy Dmitrashkovsky said the Sukhoi-2 ... (USA Today)

UN Rights Chief Warns Of Israel-Gaza War Crimes

3 hrs ago - By ASSOCIATED PRESS Published JULY 23, 2014, 6:24 AM EDT GENEVA (AP) — The U.N.'s top human rights official has told diplomats that Israel's military and Hamas militants appear to have violated international humanitarian law and might have committed ... (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Kerry Cites Progress In Gaza Cease-Fire Talks

3 hrs ago - By ASSOCIATED PRESS Published JULY 23, 2014, 6:27 AM EDT JERUSALEM (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says negotiations toward a cease-fire agreement in the Gaza Strip are making some progress after days of a deadly impasse between Israel and ... (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

For second time, rockets found at UN school in Gaza

4 hrs ago - For the second time in less than a week, rockets have been found in a school in Gaza operated by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, the body said “Today, in the course of the regular inspection of its premises, UNRWA discovered rockets hidd ... (Times of Israel)

China bubonic plague death: Town of 30,000 placed in quarantine after man dies

5 hrs ago - An entire Chinese town of 30,000 people has been quarantined off from the rest of the country after a man living in a nearby village died from bubonic plague. Police have now had the old town of Yumen city in Gansu province sealed off for more than ... (The Independent)

Gaza families plead for evacuation amid battle

5 hrs ago - By IBRAHIM BARZAK and PETER ENAV GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Israeli troops battled Hamas militants on Wednesday near a southern Gaza Strip town as dozens of Palestinian families trapped by the fighting scrambled to flee the area. The U.S. secretar ... (AP-Excite)

Neo-Nazi group banned in Germany's Bavaria state

6 hrs ago - Neo-Nazi group banned in Germany's Bavaria state Jul 23, 5:36 AM EDT BERLIN (AP) -- Authorities in the German state of Bavaria say they have banned a neo-Nazi group that operated in the region. The state interior ministry said it banned the Free ... (Associated Press)

Louisiana parents, teachers, charters sue to get the Common Core back on track

10 hrs ago - A group of parents, teachers and a foundation that runs charter schools filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging that Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) lacks the authority to withdraw his state from the Common Core national academic standards. “We think the g ... (Wash. Post)

Plan for Young Migrants at Impasse in Congress

10 hrs ago - WASHINGTON — Lawmakers are deadlocked on a plan to deal with the surge in migrant children who are filling detention centers along the Mexican border, with both Democrats and Republicans saying Tuesday that it was increasingly unlikely they could rea ... (NY Times)

Bloomberg jets to Israel in defiance of flight ban

10 hrs ago - The move from the former mayor of New York, a city of eight million with the largest Jewish population in the US, puts him at odds with the US government that backed the ban to protect US citizens from possible Hamas rocket attacks. Bloomberg urged ... (ToI)

David Perdue wins (GA) Republican Senate nomination

10 hrs ago - Businessman David Perdue stunned Georgia’s Republican political establishment Tuesday by capturing the party’s U.S. Senate nomination in his first run for office. The former CEO of Reebok and Dollar General toppled 11-term Rep. Jack Kingston by a na ... (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Mexican official: Central American children no threat to Texas

10 hrs ago - (07-22) 18:39 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- Mexico Foreign Minister José Antonio Meade Kuribreña on Tuesday challenged Texas Gov. Rick Perry's characterization of the flow of Central American children into the U.S. as an "assault" on Americans and their secur ... (San Francisco Chronicle)

Obama arrives in Bay Area for fundraiser

11 hrs ago - SAN FRANCISCO -- President Barack Obama arrived at San Francisco International Airport Tuesday night for a fundraising trip to the Bay Area. Air Force One touched down at 9:20 p.m., a little more than six hours after the president landed in Seattle ... (San Jose Mercury News)

US tracked missile that brought down Malaysian Airlines Flight 17

13 hrs ago - The United States detected the launch of the “specific missile” that brought down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 last week, a senior administration official told reporters on Tuesday. U.S. intelligence followed “this specific missile” as it was fired f ... (Yahoo News)

Former President Jimmy Carter: ‘Israeli Troops Should Withdraw From Gaza’

14 hrs ago - ATLANTA (CBS Atlanta/AP) — Former President Jimmy Carter says all combat operations must stop, and Israeli troops should withdraw from the Gaza Strip. In a statement issued Tuesday through the Carter Center in Atlanta, the former president also said ... (CBS Atlanta/AP)

US: No link to Russian gov't in plane downing

14 hrs ago - WASHINGTON (AP) — Senior U.S. intelligence officials said Tuesday that Russia was responsible for "creating the conditions" that led to the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, but they offered no evidence of direct Russian government involv ... (MSN News)

Obama Administration to Unveil Stricter Fuel Regulations for Trains: WSJ

15 hrs ago - The administration of U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to announce new regulations related to more stringent safety standards on trains carrying flammable fuels on Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reported citing a source on Capitol Hill fam ... (nyt/reuters)

U.S. Senate Sets $225 Million for Israel's Iron Dome in Emergency Bill

15 hrs ago - U.S. Senate Democrats included $225 million for Israel's Iron Dome rocket interception system in an emergency funding bill on Tuesday that also cut $1 billion from President Barack Obama's request for $3.7 billion to deal with thousands of undocument ... (NYT/Reuters)

White House To Tweak Birth Control Coverage Rule For Nonprofits

15 hrs ago - The Obama administration is developing a new accommodation for religious nonprofit organizations that want to opt out of covering contraception in their health plans without having to fill out a form, according to a brief the Department of Justice fi ... (Huffington Post)

MH17 crash: Did Russia pull the trigger? Ukraine says yes

16 hrs ago - Kiev, Ukraine (CNN) -- Did a Russian fire the missile that downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17? That depends on who you ask. A top Ukrainian official says he has no doubt. Vitaly Nayda, Ukraine's director of informational security, told CNN the pers ... (CNN)

Postal Workers Protest Staples in Chicago

16 hrs ago - By Alexandria Fisher Hundreds of members of the American Postal Workers Union protested outside a Staples in Chicago Tuesday in hopes to keep mini-post offices from opening up inside the business. The group, which included leaders from the Chicago ... (NBC Chicago)

Gov’t arrests 192 on immigrant smuggling charges

17 hrs ago - WASHINGTON (AP) — The Homeland Security Department says it has seized more than $625,000 and arrested 192 people in a crackdown on human smuggling along the Mexican border in South Texas. The government’s crackdown, called “Operation Coyote,” is ano ... (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

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