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n2doc

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Home country: USA
Current location: Georgia
Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 12:08 PM
Number of posts: 33,986

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Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

NYT Editorial: Stop Hiding Images of American Torture

By THE EDITORIAL BOARD

A hooded man standing on a box, electrodes wired to his fingers. A naked prisoner lying on a cement floor, a leash around his neck held casually by an American soldier. The bloody bodies of dead inmates with their heads bashed in.

Ten years later, the photos leaked from Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq remain seared into the American consciousness. But while the United States government was unable to prevent their release, more than 2,000 other photos taken at various American military facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan have remained hidden under a 2009 law. By one account, the images — which officials say are a mix of snapshots by soldiers and photos by military investigators documenting allegations of abuse — are “worse than Abu Ghraib.”

On Wednesday, the American Civil Liberties Union won an important victory for transparency when a federal district judge in New York City, Alvin Hellerstein, rejected the government’s blanket claim of privilege for all the photos. Judge Hellerstein ordered the government to show why the release of the photos would endanger American lives, and to show that it had considered each photo individually.

President Obama agreed to the photos’ release after taking office in 2009 but changed his mind after pleas from military officials and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki. The 2009 law — the Protected National Security Documents Act — created a three-year exemption from the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act.

more

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/31/opinion/sunday/stop-hiding-images-of-american-torture.html?_r=0

Bill Nye The Science POTUS?

"Bill Nye The Science POTUS" may have a nice ring to it, but would the famed "Science Guy" ever run for office?

A listener of the StarTalk Radio program, which was first hosted by renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, asked Nye that question in a recent episode.

His answer just may make your ears perk up. Check out the video above.

"Oh, sure, so Neil deGrasse Tyson and I are working on our cabinet," Nye says in the video, before offering positions to guest hosts comedian Eugene Mirman and former NASA astronaut Mike Massimino.

more
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/08/31/bill-nye-neil-degrasse-tyson-for-president-video_n_5739052.html?ncid=fcbklnkushpmg00000043

I would be fine with that...

GOP-backed fake news sites target Dems in congressional races

Unlike The Onion and other satire sites, the goal is to fool voters, not make them laugh
By Anna Clark


DETROIT, MI—Deceptive political ads are one thing. But how about deceptive ads that trade on the credibility of journalism?

That’s what a Republican political group is trying out. This month, the National Republican Congressional Committee debuted at least 20 websites in key congressional districts—from Central Valley, California, to Augusta, Georgia—that are designed, albeit amateurishly, to look like news sites. One of them, “South Michigan Update,” sports the headline “Byrnes Struggles to Escape Her Record,” referring to Democrat Pamela Byrnes in Michigan’s 7th District. Like the other NRCC sites, the featured post attacks the Democratic candidate in the race. The piece has a byline credit to “Geoff,” though, as The Washington Post pointed out, most of “Geoff’s” posts are rewrites of content from the NRCC site. The spare South Michigan site has one other item: a video ad for the 7th District’s Republican incumbent, Tim Walberg, that is featured under the header, “Most Viewed.”

As Lester Graham, an investigative reporter with Michigan Radio, described it in a story that drew attention to South Michigan Update, the casual observer might easily mistake the fake news site for a real one. Because the NRCC is promoting the sites through localized Google search ads, according to the National Journal, readers may well stumble on them unwittingly: It’s the first item that comes up when you search for the Democratic candidates’ name. The NRCC did put a box at the very bottom of the sites indicating that they are paid political ads. But the sites seem designed for social sharing and email-forwarding—exactly the kind of delivery where readers are likely to read only the headline or first few paragraphs of the story. They wouldn’t even see the bottom of the page.

“This ‘South Michigan Update’ may look phony and insubstantial to more sophisticated Web surfers, but a lot of online traffic doesn’t spend a lot of time thinking about such things,” said Fred Brown, vice chair of the ethics committee for the Society of Professional Journalists.

- See more at: http://www.cjr.org/united_states_project/republican_fake_news.php#sthash.fTEaOlwJ.dpuf

Australia to deliver arms in Iraq at US request

Australian will help deliver arms to Kurdish fighters battling Islamic State militants in Iraq.

Describing the situation in the country as an "humanitarian catastrophe," Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced on Sunday that the government had agreed to a US request for Australia to transport military equipment on the RAAF C-130J Hercules and C-17A Globemaster aircraft.

"Australia will join international partners to help the forces in Iraq," Mr Abbott said in a statement.

Australian planes will fly alongside aircraft from Canada, Italy, France, Britain and the US.



more

http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/australia-to-deliver-arms-in-iraq-at-us-request-tony-abbott-20140831-10ajfj.html

Atlantic City facing unprecedented economic collapse

Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer

The Atlantic City region is on the brink of a short-term economic disaster.

Atlantic City made history 36 years ago when it opened the first legal casinos in the United States outside Las Vegas.

Now it's doing so again as casino employment - which for years exceeded the number of city residents - drops precipitously after a decade of steady decline.

The closing of three casinos, starting with Showboat and Revel this weekend followed by Trump Plaza two weeks later, and the rapid-fire loss of 5,700 jobs, draw historic comparisons to longer-term collapses of U.S. industries such as steel.


Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20140831_Atlantic_City_facing_unprecedented_economic_collapse.html

Central America Hit by Severe Drought

A severe drought has ravaged crops in Central America, and as many as 2.8 million people are struggling to feed themselves, the United Nations World Food Program said Friday. The drought, which is also affecting South America, has been particularly hard on southern Guatemala, northern Honduras and western El Salvador. Guatemala declared a state of emergency after 256,000 families lost their crops. Farmers growing peas, green beans and broccoli estimate that they will lose 30 to 40 percent of their crops. Jesús Samayoa, a farmer in Jutiapa, Guatemala, said, “I am 60 years old, and this is the first time I have seen a crisis like this.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/30/world/americas/central-america-hit-by-severe-drought.html?partner=rss&emc=rss


That's the whole article. First I have heard of this. Seems like more than the western US is having a bad drought...

Sunday's Non Sequitur- A Solution to Washington's football Team name issue




(I still like the suggestion that they change the logo to that of a potato)

The Rams have released Michael Sam.

One of their last cuts. Hopefully he catches on with another team, or goes on Practice squad
https://twitter.com/ESPNNFL/status/505806948533809152/photo/1

Danziger!

Officer ‘Go F*ck Yourself’ Out of a Job After Pointing Gun at Ferguson Protesters

By Joe Coscarelli

St. Ann police Lieutenant Ray Albers, better known as Officer “Go Fuck Yourself,” has resigned after pointing his rifle at protesters in Ferguson and telling them, “I will fucking kill you.” An internal inquiry recommended he either resign or be fired for the incident, which was caught on video, although the local police chief insists Albers raising his weapon was “totally justifiable.” Well, not totally, apparently.

From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

Prior to the camera turning on, Albers had had water and urine thrown at him, said. He then saw three men with bandanas in the crowd, and one of them had a gun. He then heard gunshots, but not from that gun. So Albers raised his gun.

“That's why he used those words,” said Jiminez, who added, “I'm not condoning his behavior whatsoever.” (Maybe just a little bit.)

Officer Matthew Pappert of the nearby Glendale Police Department has also been fired following a suspension for racist Facebook postings about the protests. Pappert’s public suggestions included that the demonstrators (“a burden on society and a blight on the community,” “thugs”) be “put down like rabid dogs.” He added, “Where is a Muslim with a backpack when you need them?”

more

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2014/08/2-cops-fired-over-ferguson-protests.html
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