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The Left Column


Christie booed at Monmouth Park I mean really booed--loud sustained and truly a thing of beauty

My two favorite spectators sports--both involving big creatures with small brains, who are owned by millionaires and who run around in circles guided by midgets--merged today and it was awesome.

First was a moment of true sports magic. Triple Crown winner American Pharoah won the $1.7 million Haskell Invitational with breathtaking ease. The horse hit the head of the stretch in second place. Jockey Victor Espinosa said "OK sovereign my lord whenever you're ready." The Pharoah kicked in and it was goodbye losers. I was on the rail screaming my head off along with around 65,000 other fans. When it was over Espinosa paraded the champion along the grandstand as American Pharoah walked nodding his head regally toward the crowd seeming to somehow absorb the praise and adulation as if he somehow understood that this uproar, this love was all for him.


Donald Trump: Blacks are ‘worse than just about ever’ because Obama ‘set a very low bar’

(Raw Story) Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump predicted on Sunday that he would win that he would win the black vote because President Barack Obama had set a “poor standard,” which made things worse than “just about ever” for African-Americans.”

“He has set a very low bar and I think it’s a shame for the African-American people,” Trump told ABC’s Jonathan Karl. “And by the way, he has done nothing for African-Americans. You look at what’s going on, at their income levels, you look at what’s gone on with their youth.”


Ruth Bader Ginsburg reveals the 'most disappointing' Supreme Court decision of her career

(Business Insider) Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg still is not happy about the 2010 Citizens United ruling that is responsible for opening the door for a whole new era in campaign funding and financing, she said Wednesday.

Speaking at an event at the Duke University School of Law on Wednesday, Ginsburg said the decision was the "most disappointing" ruling of her time on the bench, according to The New York Times, "because of what has happened to elections in the United States and the huge amount of money it takes to run for office."


I joined the Democratic party in 1960, as a high school kid. Here's what I've learned.

From the very beginning, and throughout my active participation ever since, I've seen people come to party meetings of one sort or another and express their dissatisfaction with the status quo. Invariably, they wanted to change things in major ways. Problem was that they ignored the realities of politics in a nation that relies, more or less, on majority rule. Also invariably, they left, never to return to the discussion. They saw their goals as obviously correct, but couldn't get agreement on them...


Scott Walker destroyed his state: Wisconsin’s economic cautionary tale

(Salon) The continuum of American politics is not a straight line — it is more like a circle. Travel farther out on the right and left, and ultimately the sides bend to a common position on an issue like taxpayer subsidies for big business. To many progressives, such expenditures are giveaways to the already wealthy. To many conservatives, they are a free-market-distorting waste of taxpayer resources. Both sides also often criticize the subsidies as an instrument of cronyism and corruption.


Nancy Pelosi:The House Has the Votes to Back the U.S. Deal With Iran

(National Journal) Earlier this month, Nancy Pelosi came out in full support of the U.S. nuclear deal with Iran, as she and fellow House Democrats were in the midst of what she called the "educational phase" of reviewing the agreement.

Now, two weeks later, she says she's "confident" that the House would be able to uphold the president's veto of a potential Republican-backed bill to kill the deal.


Indiana clears Planned Parenthood of wrongdoing after videos

(MSNBC) Gov. Mike Pence, a Republican, on July 16 ordered an investigation of Planned Parenthood facilities in Indianapolis, Bloomington and Merrillville to see if organs from aborted fetuses were being sold. He was among a number of conservative lawmakers around the country who have called for investigations after an anti-abortion group circulated a video it made secretly showing some of its national officials discussing how they obtain organs from aborted fetuses for research. Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest provider of abortions, has said its donations of fetal tissue for research are legal.

The Indiana Department of Health said in a statement Thursday that an investigation found no evidence of any laws being broken. Health department inspectors investigated the Indiana facilities on July 21.


So a Big Mac is only going to go up 17 cents with the minimum wage increase.

(Examiner) A new study just showed that once fast food workers get $15 an hour, the average price increase for a Big Mac will only be about 17 cents.

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Latest Breaking News

Ex-con accused of killing police officer turns self in

2 min ago - MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — An ex-con accused of fatally shooting a police officer who interrupted a drug deal turned himself in Monday, ending an intensive two-day manhunt, a spokesman for a U.S. attorney said. Tremaine Wilbourn, 29, was with his family ... (AP)

Bobby Jindal Cuts Off Medicaid Funding to Planned Parenthoods In Louisiana

25 min ago - Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) announced he had ended the state's Medicaid contract with Planned Parenthood in response to an anti-abortion "sting" video campaign against the reproductive health service. “In recent weeks, it has been shocking to se ... (TPM)

Isro to put US satellite in space for the first time

43 min ago - Many may find it a crowning glory, but Indian Space Research Organization (Isro) scientists think it's just an acknowledgement long due. The US, which imposed sanctions on India, will take India's help to launch one of its satellites soon. Isro has ... (Times of India)

Here Are the Polls Fox News Will Use to Select the Candidates for the First GOP Debate

48 min ago - Tomorrow around 5 p.m., Fox News executives are scheduled to gather in Roger Ailes's second-floor conference room at the network's midtown headquarters to decide the lineup of candidates who will participate in the first Republican debate on Thursday ... (New York Magazine)

Democrats Block Vote On Planned Parenthood Defunding

1 hr ago - Democrats Block Vote On Planned Parenthood Defunding Republicans fell short of the 60 votes they needed to debate the legislation. Laura Bassett, Senior Politics Reporter, The Huffington Post Posted: 08/03/2015 06:03 PM EDT Senate Democrats bl ... (HuffingtonPost)

Top House Dem on intelligence panel backs Iran nuclear deal

1 hr ago - WASHINGTON (AP) — The top Democrat on the House Intelligence committee says he’s backing the international accord to curb Iran’s nuclear power. California Rep. Adam Schiff said Monday he supports the agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear program in exch ... (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Putin aide accused of corruption over 'wedding present' watch

1 hr ago - Moscow (CNN)Vladimir Putin's newly-married press spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, has become the focus of angry corruption allegations after wedding photographs circulating on social media showed him kissing his bride while wearing a wristwatch estimated to ... (CNN)

Anti-Abortion Extremist Will Stand Trial for Threatening a Provider

1 hr ago - Anti-Abortion Extremist Will Stand Trial for Threatening a Provider by Feminist Newswire on Aug 3, 2015 • 11:25 AM In a powerful decision for abortion providers being threatened by extremists, the 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals found in a 2 ... (by Feminist Newswire)

Wisconsin to join lawsuit to block Obama greenhouse gas cuts

2 hrs ago - Wisconsin to join lawsuit to block Obama greenhouse gas cuts By Lee Bergquist Updated: 3:18 p.m. Email Print (315) Comments At the request of Gov. Scott Walker, Attorney Brad Schimel said Monday he would join a group of other states and f ... (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

Delta Is Latest Airline To Join Big Game Trophy Transport Ban

2 hrs ago - The recent killing of a popular lion named Cecil by an American dentist in Zimbabwe sparked considerable outrage on social media and elsewhere against safari hunting. The event has also brought to light the role that airlines play in transporting tro ... (New York Times)

Puerto Rico just defaulted for the first time

3 hrs ago - Puerto Rico just went into default for the first time in its history. The commonwealth paid a mere $628,000 toward a $58 million debt bill due Monday to creditors of its Public Finance Corporation. This will hurt the island's residents, not Wall Str ... (CNN)

Clinton hits Bush, Walker for 'full-on assault on women’s health'

3 hrs ago - August 03, 2015, 02:49 pm Clinton hits Bush, Walker for 'full-on assault on women’s health' By Peter Sullivan Hillary Clinton slammed 2016 rivals Jeb Bush and Scott Walker over their calls to defund Planned Parenthood on Monday, calling the GOP-l ... (the Hill)

Sen. Manchin Will Vote To End Planned Parenthood Aid

3 hrs ago - West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin says he will back a Republican bill cutting off federal aid for Planned Parenthood. Manchin is a moderate and his decision Monday was not a complete surprise. Even so, Republicans were still expected to los ... (TPM)

METALS-Copper slides to 6-year low on China growth angst

3 hrs ago - Copper prices hit six-year lows on Monday as manufacturing data from top consumer China and a slide in Shanghai equities reinforced concern about economic growth prospects. <snip> "There hasn't been any stabilization of Chinese stocks, despite ... (CNBC)

Former trader given 14 years prison for market manipulation

3 hrs ago - Former trader given 14 years prison for market manipulation Danica Kirka, Associated Press Updated 10:41 am, Monday, August 3, 2015 LONDON (AP) — A British judge sentenced a former Citibank and UBS trader to 14 years in prison Monday after a ju ... (Associated Press)

Report: US-led strikes in Iraq, Syria killed 459 civilians

3 hrs ago - Report: US-led strikes in Iraq, Syria killed 459 civilians Vivian Salama and Zeina Karam, Associated Press Updated 1:59 pm, Monday, August 3, 2015 BAGHDAD (AP) — U.S.-led airstrikes targeting the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria have likely ... (Associated Press)

Prosecutor: Police officers unlawfully opened fire in death

3 hrs ago - Prosecutor: Police officers unlawfully opened fire in death Russell Contreras, Associated Press 2:16 pm, Monday, August 3, 2015 ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A "paramilitary response" by police in New Mexico unnecessarily escalated an encounter las ... (Associated Press)

Former President Jimmy Carter undergoes liver operation

3 hrs ago - Former President Jimmy Carter undergoes liver operation Updated 12:57 pm, Monday, August 3, 2015 ATLANTA (AP) — The Carter Center says former President Jimmy Carter has undergone a medical procedure to remove a small mass in his liver, and that ... (Associated Press)

Prosecutor: White officer panicked before shooting black man

3 hrs ago - Prosecutor: White officer panicked before shooting black man Jeffrey Collins, Associated Press Updated 11:42 am, Monday, August 3, 2015 CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A white Charlotte police officer on trial for the on-duty killing of a black man pani ... (Associated Press)

Special Olympics athlete vanishes after another found safe

4 hrs ago - LOS ANGELES (AP) — A teenage Special Olympics athlete vanished from Los Angeles International Airport early Monday, just hours after another missing competitor turned up safe 350 miles away in Northern California. Shion Isimel, 15, of the Ivory Coas ... (AP)

Detroit teachers union boss finds support at trial

4 hrs ago - Dozens of teachers rallied in support of the head of the Detroit Federation of Teachers this morning as a union trial opened that could cost him his job. Steve Conn, 57, is facing various misconduct charges before the executive board of the union. ... (Detroit Free Press)

Stocks Tumble As Oil Prices Drop Below $46 A Barrel

5 hrs ago - Jane Onyanga-Omara, USA TODAY 12:58 p.m. EDT August 3, 2015 Markets kicked off August in a downbeat fashion as stocks dropped sharply and the price of oil tumbled below $46 a barrel. The Dow Jones industrial average was down almost 170 points, or ... (USA Today)

Mugshot! Texas Attorney General Surrenders After Indictment

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24 Cuban migrants come ashore in Key West

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Netherlands crane collapse: 20 hurt in Alphen aan den Rijn

5 hrs ago - Two cranes employed to restore a bridge in the central Dutch town of Alphen aan den Rijn have collapsed on buildings, injuring at least 20 people, media say. Amateur video showed one crane trying to hoist a section of the Juliana Bridge and collapsi ... (BBC)

Verdict reached in second step of Aurora theater shooting trial sentencing

6 hrs ago - CENTENNIAL — Jurors have reached a verdict in the second step of the death penalty sentencing trial for the Aurora movie theater shooting. The verdict will be announced at 12:30p.m. The decision by the jury of nine women and three men came after le ... (The Denver Post)

Alpha Natural Resources files for bankruptcy

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Iran bans newspaper of nuclear deal critic, warns others

6 hrs ago - Iran banned a weekly newspaper owned by a critic of its nuclear deal on Monday and issued a formal warning to the country’s leading conservative daily for alleged breaches of reporting guidelines. The penalties were the first issued by the governmen ... (Agence France-Presse)

Gulf States Cautiously Support Iran Nuclear Deal

6 hrs ago - Persian Gulf monarchies issued a cautious endorsement on Monday of the accord Secretary of State John Kerry negotiated last month to constrain Iran’s nuclear program. “This was the best option among other options,” said Khalid al-Attiyah, the foreig ... (New York Times)

Weak auto demand crimps U.S. consumer spending

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