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LuckyTheDog

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Member since: Tue Apr 5, 2005, 09:55 AM
Number of posts: 6,653

Journal Archives

A voting rights victory in Maryland (column by Marc Morial)

Thousands of Marylanders will regain the right to cast their ballots this election year, thanks to the state’s lawmakers.

The Maryland House and Senate recently voted to override a veto by Governor Larry Hogan to ensure that ex-offenders will automatically get their right to vote back once they’ve been released from prison.

Previously, Maryland required all individuals with past felony convictions to complete all terms of their probation and parole before their access to the polls could be restored through a lengthy and confusing process. That policy — which disproportionately impacted communities of color — was unduly punitive.

It delayed the restoration of voting rights for men and women who’d already paid their debt to society by completing their prison sentences. This kind of voter disenfranchisement must not be tolerated in a nation that professes to be governed by democratic tenets.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/a-voting-rights-victory-in-maryland/


Super Tuesday sets the stage for a Clinton versus Trump showdown

An epic showdown is shaping up between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

In most of the Super Tuesday presidential primaries and caucuses, Trump and Clinton won decisive victories, building critical momentum for their campaigns.

There were a few exceptions. In the Republican contests, Ted Cruz won Alaska, Oklahoma and his home state of Texas. Marco Rubio won Minnesota in his first victory of the campaign and John Kasich finished a close second to Trump in Vermont. In the Democratic race, Bernie Sanders carried Oklahoma, Colorado, Minnesota and his home state of Vermont.

But overall the map was dominated by Clinton and Trump as each carried seven states.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/super-tuesday-sets-stage-for-a-trump-versus-clinton-showdown/


Corporate campaign to ditch workers’ comp in favor of private coverage stalls

A campaign by some of America’s biggest companies to “opt out” of state workers’ compensation 2014 and write their own plans for dealing with injured workers 2014 was dealt a major blow Friday when an Oklahoma commission ruled the alternative system unconstitutional.

Company plans were supposed to provide equal benefits to workers’ comp. But in its unanimous ruling, the Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Commission compared that notion to “a water mirage on the highway that disappears upon closer inspection.”

In addition, the U.S. Department of Labor said in a letter obtained Monday that it is evaluating whether opt-out plans in Texas and Oklahoma violate workers’ rights under federal law.

The opt-out effort was the focus of an investigation by ProPublica and NPR last fall, which found that the plans almost universally had lower benefits and more restrictions than workers’ comp.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/corporate-campaign-to-ditch-workers-comp-in-favor/


Sanders: ‘We Have Enormous Momentum’ going into South Carolina

Despite a narrow loss in the Nevada presidential caucus on Saturday, Bernie Sanders is not slowing down, and neither are his supporters.

A report filed over the weekend with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) shows the senator from Vermont has received more than four million contributions, raising a total of $94.8 million through January 31st after his campaign launched last April.

“What this entire campaign has been about has been the issue of momentum and bringing more and more people into the political process,” Sanders told a crowd of 600 after the caucus, adding, “we will not allow billionaires and their super PACs to continue to buy elections in the United States of America.”

With less than a week to go until the next Democratic primary in South Carolina, Sanders told CNN on Sunday that the Nevada loss still proved how much progress his campaign has made in just a few short months.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/sanders-we-have-enormous-momentum-going-into-south-carolina/



Four reasons why Hillary Clinton’s Nevada victory is important

A liberal tidal wave is building within the Democratic Party, but Bernie Sanders is no longer the only candidate riding it.

Hillary Clinton’s crucial victory in the Nevada caucuses on Saturday showed that Sanders does not have a monopoly on liberal voters. Clinton held her own with liberals while winning big among moderates. In the process, she has moved firmly back into the lead in the Democratic presidential race.

On Saturday Clinton won about 52 percent of Nevada’s county convention delegates. Although Nevada has a Byzantine delegate award process, Clinton’s margin of victory will likely give her a majority of the state’s 43 presidential delegates.

The ultimate importance of Clinton’s victory, however, does not really lie in the delegates at stake in Nevada.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/four-reasons-why-hillary-clintons-nevada-victory-is-important/


Why Apple is making a stand against the FBI

Apple has been ordered to help FBI investigators access data on the phone belonging to San Bernardino gunman Syed Rizwan Farook. The technical solution proposed by the FBI appears to undermine Apple’s earlier claim that they would be unable to help. However, in a strongly worded reply, Apple CEO Tim Cook has indicated that Apple is unwilling to comply with this order, as it would do irreparable damage to all iPhone owners’ security and privacy.

On newer Apple phones like Farook’s (an iPhone 5c, running iOS 9 according to the court motion), data stored on the phone is protected by encryption, using the passcode (which is also used for unlocking the phone) as part of the key. (This is a different issue from “end-to-end encryption”, which concerns iMessages when they are in transit between phones.)

Apple recently claimed that they were unable to decrypt such information at all, as they do not have the passcode. This is also the line it takes in its policy statement on providing information to governments, first posted in May 2014.


MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/why-apple-is-making-a-stand-against-the-fbi/


Trump supporters in S. Carolina: ‘We’re voting with our middle finger’

Robert Bowers, a 50-year-old debt collector, conceded that Donald Trump may have gone "overboard just a little bit" when he attacked President George W. Bush, saying he lied about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and failed to stop the Sept. 11 attacks.

But that did not stop Bowers, of Fountain Inn, S.C., from putting on a cap with Trump's "Make America Great Again" slogan and walking through an icy cold parking lot so he could crowd into a raucous Trump rally Monday night.

"He's not a polished politician," Bowers said, neatly summing up both Trump's appeal and liability.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/trump-supporters-in-south-carolina-were-voting-with-our-middle-finger/


Yes, robots will steal our jobs; but don’t worry, we’ll get new ones

The U.S. economy added 2.7 million jobs in 2015, capping the best two-year stretch of employment growth since the late ‘90’s, pushing the unemployment rate down to five percent.

But to listen to the doomsayers, it’s just a matter of time before the rapid advance of technology makes most of today’s workers obsolete – with ever-smarter machines replacing teachers, drivers, travel agents, interpreters and a slew of other occupations.

Almost half of those currently employed in the U.S. are at risk of being put out of work by automation in the next decade or two, according to a 2013 University of Oxford study, which identified transportation, logistics and administrative occupations as most vulnerable.

Does that mean that these formerly employed workers will have nowhere to go? Is the recent job growth a last gasp before machines take over, or can robots and workers coexist?

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/yes-robots-will-steal-our-jobs-but-dont-worry/


Donna Smith: Dear Americans, please stop dreaming of a better nation

This political season seems decidedly more bizarre than others have been. It’s not just the fact that someone as arrogant and ignorant about real life as Donald Trump is leading on the Republican side. What really troubles me is the assertion that we ought not aspire to achieve the best, most equitable and just solutions to our most serious problems because that is unrealistic, politically infeasible and dooms us to fail. This criticism of Bernie Sanders’ platform is really unsettling.

This argument that we ought to tamp down our political aspirations has taken many forms as it is oft repeated by those politicos who seem terrified that Bernie might actually win the Democratic presidential nomination. Some say it’s the difference between going with the heart or the head. Others have suggested that you have to ground yourself in reality to actually get things done. And still others seem to suggest that the reason Bernie does so well with young people is that they are somehow hopelessly idealistic and not yet willing to see the realities of political feasibility.

Wow. I think these arguments might be the most unacceptable and bizarre part of the presidential primary season. Who would ever want to ask our young people to scale back their dreams and goals? As Americans, I thought we have always prided ourselves on our unbridled optimism and our ability to do what others do not believe they can do. We are a nation of dreamers and a nation of doers. And I want every young person in America to keep attaching themselves to a powerful narrative of building a better future. My generation hasn’t done so well so far in leaving a legacy of improved conditions, and Bernie offers that hope to me and to the young alike. That is powerful stuff. Why would we ever want to temper that?

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/stop-dreaming-of-a-better-nation/


John Kiriakou: Trump’s impeachable offense

For anyone who cares deeply about being informed, watching Republican presidential debates can feel like a form of torture. But the program becomes more terrifying altogether when their ignorance is hitched to an endorsement of actual torture.

At the latest GOP debate in New Hampshire, Donald Trump heartily endorsed waterboarding and other forms of torture, which he promised to reinstitute in national security interrogations if he wins the election. “I would bring back waterboarding, and I would bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding,” Trump vowed.

Trump’s position was condemned immediately by Republican Senator John McCain, who knows a thing or two about torture. McCain, who was brutally beaten as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, accused his fellow Republicans of “sacrificing our respect for human dignity” with their “loose talk” about instituting human rights abuses.

McCain reminded Trump — and Republican presidential candidates Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and Carly Fiorina, who also seem to be enamored of torture — that the torture techniques employed by the Bush administration after 9/11 were unreliable. They produced no actionable intelligence, disrupted no terrorist attacks, and saved no American lives.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/trumps-impeachable-offense/


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