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Hissyspit

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Member since: Fri Nov 12, 2004, 07:39 AM
Number of posts: 43,538

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New Details in FBI Investigation of Michelle Bachmann (Sworn Testimony: Approved Secret Payments)

Source: David Shuster at Huffington Post

New Details in FBI Criminal Investigation of Michele Bachmann

David Shuster | Jun 04, 2013

While Congresswoman Michele Bachmann was announcing her retirement to much fanfare in the media, according to information given exclusively to Take Action News, the FBI was busy collecting potentially damaging evidence against her from two former campaign aides. According to sources close to the criminal investigation of Bachmann's presidential campaign, the FBI has now been given sworn testimony and documents alleging Bachmann approved secret payments to Iowa state Senator Kent Sorenson in exchange for his help and support in that state's 2012 Presidential caucuses. Ethics rules explicitly prohibit Iowa lawmakers from accepting payments from Presidential campaigns or PACs. Investigation sources tell Take Action News the FBI is examining money laundering allegations against Bachmann, as well as possible wire fraud and mail fraud.

As we detailed on my nationally syndicated radio and YouTube show Take Action News this past Saturday, the key claims against Bachmann are coming from two of her former campaign insiders -- former Congressional chief of staff Andy Parrish and former national field coordinator Pete Waldron. Waldron has filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission, alleging the payments to State Senator Sorenson were improper. Parrish has provided an affidavit to investigators, confirming Bachmann knew of and approved the payments.

The Iowa Senate Ethics Committee voted more than a month ago to appoint a special investigator to determine whether State Senator Sorenson was guilty of violating Iowa state ethics rules prohibiting direct or indirect employment from a political action committee. The Committee's ongoing investigation of Sorenson is based on Waldron's FEC complaint and Parrish's testimony.

It's not unusual for a political campaign, with all of the paperwork and forms required by the FEC, to make mistakes. Furthermore, many U.S. lawmakers have been fined by the FEC for improper fundraising, spending, and misleading accounting records. The Bachmann case, though, is different. Her own team is alleging the campaign violations, and declaring that Bachmann knew about the actions in advance. Presumably, Bachmann -- like other Presidential candidates -- signed hundreds of disclosure reports filed with the federal government. If she lied on those reports, or mailed misleading financial statements, however, she may face serious legal trouble.


Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-shuster/new-details-in-fbi-crimin_b_3381810.html

David Sirota: "New Data Shows School 'Reformers' Are Full of It - Propaganda Has Jumped the Shark"

http://www.salon.com/2013/06/03/instead_of_a_war_on_teachers_how_about_one_on_poverty

MONDAY, JUN 3, 2013 12:30 PM EDT

New data shows school “reformers” are full of it

Poor schools underperform largely because of economic forces, not because teachers have it too easy


BY DAVID SIROTA

- snip -

Meanwhile, despite the fact that many “reformers’” policies have spectacularly failed, prompted massive scandals and/or offered no actual proof of success, an elite media that typically amplifies — rather than challenges — power and money loyally casts “reformers’” systematic pillaging of public education as laudable courage (the most recent example of this is Time magazine’s cover cheering on wildly unpopular Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel after he cited budget austerity to justify the largest mass school closing in American history — all while he is also proposing to spend $100 million of taxpayer dollars on a new private sports stadium).

- snip -

That gets to the news that exposes “reformers’” schemes — and all the illusions that surround them. According to a new U.S. Department of Education study, “about one in five public schools was considered high poverty in 2011 … up from about to one in eight in 2000.” This followed an earlier study from the department finding that “many high-poverty schools receive less than their fair share of state and local funding … leav(ing) students in high-poverty schools with fewer resources than schools attended by their wealthier peers.”

Those data sets powerfully raise the question that “reformers” are so desperate to avoid: Are we really expected to believe that it’s just a coincidence that the public education and poverty crises are happening at the same time? Put another way: Are we really expected to believe that everything other than poverty is what’s causing problems in failing public schools?

Because of who comprises it and how it is financed, the education “reform” movement has a clear self-interest in continuing to say yes, we should believe such fact-free pabulum. And you can bet that movement will keep saying “yes” — and that the corporate media will continue to cheer them as heroes for saying “yes” — as long as public education money keeps being diverted into corporate coffers.

But we’ve now reached the point where the economics-omitting “reform” propaganda has jumped the shark, going from deceptively alluring to embarrassingly transparent. That’s because the latest Department of Education study isn’t being released in a vacuum; it caps off an overwhelming wave of evidence showing that our education crisis has far less to do with public schools or bad teachers than it does with the taboo subject of crushing poverty.

MORE AT LINK

Tom Tomorrow: Relationship Talk



Daily Kos Link: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/06/03/1212638/-Relationship-talk

"I'm Biracial & That Cheerios Ad Is a Big Fucking Deal," ALSO "10 Reasons It's Best Commercial Ever"

http://jezebel.com/im-biracial-and-that-cheerios-ad-is-a-big-fucking-dea-510740851

I'm Biracial, and That Cheerios Ad Is a Big Fucking Deal. Trust Me.

Meagan Hatcher-Mays
Yesterday 5:10pmg 165,006L 875

By now you know some racist dicks have whipped themselves up in a frenzy of racist dickery over the portrayal of an interracial family in a Cheerios ad. You see, Cheerios has committed the heinous crime of “acknowledging that interracial families exist,” and also that “sometimes interracial families need to eat breakfast.” This was too much for the racist dicks—Cheerios was forced to disable comments on YouTube where the video was posted. (What’s up with you racist dicks, anyway? Don’t you have jobs?)

I am biracial. My mom is black and my dad is white. My family often had the audacity to eat breakfast even though cereal was not being specifically marketed to us. When I was growing up, there were no families on television that resembled mine. My family was something of an anomaly in the overwhelmingly white neighborhood of Seattle where I lived. When I was with my mom, people would look at me and ask, “What is she?” When I was with my dad, people would ask, “Is she Italian?” Because this is definitely the kind of information that strangers are entitled to.

But life was even more confusing for my brother. He was born with blond, curly hair and bright blue eyes. He looked nothing like my mom. When they were alone together, well, that’s when shit got real. The white mothers in my neighborhood not only assumed my mom was my brother’s nanny, but they inquired after her services. Single brows were raised when my mom assured these awful women that she was, in fact, the biological mother of my brother. (This was before Botox. Eyebrows could move freely then.) When my maternal grandmother came to pick us up from daycare, despite being on the authorized pick-up list, they made sure to call my dad to make sure this black lady was legit. (By the way, there are worse things than being kidnapped by a black lady in a luxury Cadillac who takes you to her country club for lunch and lets you drive the golf cart.)

- snip -



This commercial is a huge step for interracial families like mine who want to be seen in public together and maybe eat some heart-healthy snacks. But it also validates the existence of biracial and multiracial people. Often we’re treated like exotic flowers, who should feel complimented when people say stuff to us like, “All biracial women are so beautiful” or “I would kill for your skin.” One of the hardest things about growing up the way I did is feeling like you need to choose one racial identity over another just to fit in. The fact that strangers constantly ask you to identify yourself (forcing you to put yourself in a category) makes you feel conspicuous and gazed upon. You catch strangers looking at you. You know what they want to ask you. You know that they won’t leave you alone until you give them a rundown of your heritage.

MORE




http://m.globalgrind.com/news/reasons-why-just-checking-cheerios-commercial-best-video-interracial-couple

10 Reasons Why The "Just Checking" Cheerios Commercial Is The Best Ever

Global Grind ‎- 8 hours ago

If you thought you lived in a post-racial world before yesterday, you were probably ...

CLOSE RANGE - Storm Chasers Caught near OK Tornado Today



@BTSullivan91: Most insane video of my career.. I never ever want to be in this position again.. Strong tornado hits the team! http://t.co/sOPpuGA1ex

5/31/2013 CLOSE RANGE Union City, Oklahoma Tornado - INSANE Video

ByBrandon SullivanMay 31, 2013

Brett and Brandon got extremely close to a violent tornadic circulation that produced multiple tornadoes in very close range... The team was hit by inflow jet winds into the tornado and their vehicle received damage as a barn was completely destroyed. A hay bale came barreling across the road and was tossed into their car.. The team is very fortunate to live to chase another day... Incredible storm chaser traffic prevented an escape from the tornado like normal.. There have been fatalities with this tornado.. The team's thoughts go out to those affected!

PHOTO: Weather Channel's Storm Chaser Mike Bettes' SUV Thrown



@SeanSchoferTVN: The @weatherchannel vehicle just got thrown 200 yards by tornado. We stopped to help & they are OK. @jimcantore http://t.co/AayAhvuBwA

Reports are they were scraped up some, but o.k.

Bettes: "What we were trying to do was get away from it."

Krugman: GOP Literally Taking Food from Mouths of Hungry Children. Time to Get Really, Really Angry.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/31/opinion/from-the-mouths-of-babes.html?smid=tw-NytimesKrugman&seid=auto&_r=0

OP-ED COLUMNIST
From the Mouths of Babes
By PAUL KRUGMAN
Published: May 30, 2013

- snip -

First, as millions of workers lost their jobs through no fault of their own, many families turned to food stamps to help them get by
— and while food aid is no substitute for a good job, it did significantly mitigate their misery. Food stamps were especially helpful to children who would otherwise be living in extreme poverty, defined as an income less than half the official poverty line.

But there’s more. Why is our economy depressed? Because many players in the economy slashed spending at the same time, while relatively few players were willing to spend more. And because the economy is not like an individual household — your spending is my income, my spending is your income — the result was a general fall in incomes and plunge in employment. We desperately needed (and still need) public policies to promote higher spending on a temporary basis — and the expansion of food stamps, which helps families living on the edge and let them spend more on other necessities, is just such a policy.

Indeed, estimates from the consulting firm Moody’s Analytics suggest that each dollar spent on food stamps in a depressed economy raises G.D.P. by about $1.70 — which means, by the way, that much of the money laid out to help families in need actually comes right back to the government in the form of higher revenue.

Wait, we’re not done yet. Food stamps greatly reduce food insecurity among low-income children, which, in turn, greatly enhances their chances of doing well in school and growing up to be successful, productive adults. So food stamps are in a very real sense an investment in the nation’s future — an investment that in the long run almost surely reduces the budget deficit, because tomorrow’s adults will also be tomorrow’s taxpayers.

So what do Republicans want to do with this paragon of programs? First, shrink it; then, effectively kill it.

- snip -

But I wonder whether even Republicans really believe that story — or at least are confident enough in their diagnosis to justify policies that more or less literally take food from the mouths of hungry children. As I said, there are times when cynicism just doesn’t cut it; this is a time to get really, really angry.

MORE

Oregon Muslim Sues FBI; Claims Torture

Source: Associated Press

APNEWSBREAK: ORE. MUSLIM SUES FBI, CLAIMS TORTURE

By NIGEL DUARA
— May. 30 7:30 PM EDT

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An American Muslim who says he was beaten with batons by prison interrogators while held in solitary confinement overseas for more than three months has sued the FBI and State Department, claiming the torture was done at their behest.

- snip -

Yonas Fikre said he was held for 106 days in the United Arab Emirates after refusing to cooperate with Portland, Ore.,-based FBI agents in an interview in Sudan. The State Department has confirmed previously that Fikre was held in Abu Dhabi "on unspecified charges," but said he was visited by State Department officials and showed no signs of mistreatment.

Fikre said the FBI agents named in the suit wanted him to become an informant at Portland's largest mosque, Masjid As-Saber, and were angered when he refused. He said interrogators in Abu Dhabi later used information Fikre had given to the FBI agents in his interrogation.

- snip -

"(Fikre) thus inquired whether his confinement and mistreatment was at the request of the FBI," according to the lawsuit. "On each such occasion, the interrogators responded by beating plaintiff severely."

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/apnewsbreak-ore-muslim-sues-fbi-claims-torture

Adam Kokesh Calls Off Armed March On D.C. in Favor of 50 State March

Source: Media Matters

Adam Kokesh Calls Off Armed March On D.C. In Favor Of 50 State March For "Orderly Dissolution Of The Federal Government"

57 minutes ago ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

Adam Kokesh is cancelling his planned July 4 armed march on Washington, D.C., and instead calling for a march on all 50 state capitols with the goal of overthrowing the federal government.

Kokesh, a former host for Russian state-sponsored RT television who now hosts an internet radio show, told conspiracy theorist radio host Pete Santilli that it was time to "escalate our tactics" before cancelling the Washington march and urging supporters to march on their state capitol instead.

On May 28, Santilli, a promoter of conspiracy theories about the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks who recently drew scrutiny from the Secret Service over vicious comments made about Hillary Clinton, aired an interview where Kokesh read from a press release and provided other details about the expansion of his plans.

Previously, Kokesh launched a Facebook page to organize his armed march on Washington, an event he hoped would draw at least 1,000 attendees. The page currently lists more than 5,000 attendees.

Read more: http://mediamatters.org/mobile/blog/2013/05/29/adam-kokesh-calls-off-armed-march-on-dc-in-favo/194259

France's First Gay Newlyweds Say 'Oui'

Source: Associated Press

FRANCE'S FIRST GAY NEWLYWEDS SAY 'OUI'

By THOMAS ADAMSON and CATHERINE GASHKA
— May. 29 12:12 PM EDT

MONTPELLIER, France (AP) — France's first gay couple to marry have said "oui" in a politically charged ceremony in the southern city of Montpellier. The two men sealed the deal with a lengthy smooch.

Hundreds of invited guests, including a government minister, gathered for the ceremony, which was broadcast live to the country. Hundreds more flocked to the square outside the building.

Montpellier Mayor Helene Mandroux, who officiated, called the law that legalized gay marriage "a stage in the modernization of our country."

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/couple-prepare-be-frances-1st-gay-newlyweds
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