Final Q-Poll of Fla: Charlie Crist 43%, Rick Scott 40%

by saintpetersblog – A jump in support from independent likely voters in the Florida governor’s race leaves Democrat Charlie Crist with 43 percent, inches ahead of Republican incumbent Gov. Rick Scott with 40 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Libertarian candidate Adrian Wyllie has 8 percent, with 9 percent undecided. This compares to results of an October 22 survey by the independent Quinnipiac University, showing Gov. Scott and Crist tied 42 – 42 percent, with Wyllie at 7 percent. With Wyllie out of the race, Crist gets 45 percent to Scott’s 42 percent. Men and women remain divided in the three-way matchup. Scott leads Crist among men 47 – 37 percent, with 9 percent for Wyllie, while Crist leads Scott 49 – 35 percent among women, with 6 percent for Wyllie. Independent voters go to Crist over Scott 47 – 29 percent, with 16 percent for Wyllie. This...

Read More...


The New Presidential Propaganda

Imagery of the chief executive is more tightly controlled and carefully considered than ever by Todd Krainin – There is a photograph of Barack Obama, taken by the official White House photographer, only minutes before his first inauguration. Obama stands before a mirror. His reflected expression is intense, but ambiguous. Depending on your interpretation, the former Illinois senator looks dignified and confident-or paralyzed with fear. At that very moment, millions of Americans were waiting to see their new president address the nation for the first time. What sort of a person were they going to see? Even after an exhausting presidential campaign, it was an open question. For months, rumors circulated about Obama’s place of birth. Pew Research polls showed a growing minority of Americans believed he was Muslim. Public figures like Donald Trump and Sean Hannity were openly asking: Who is this guy? The ferocity of the personal attacks demanded...

Read More...


Frank Serpico Explains How Police Violence is the New Graft

by Ed Krayewski – In 1971 Frank Serpico was shot in the face while opening a door during a drug bust in a Brooklyn apartment, and left there to die by the cops with him because Serpico had testified against crooked cops in the narcotics division. An elderly man in the building, not the other cops, called 911 to send an ambulance. In a piece at Politico, Serpico explains that to this day he’s shunned by the New York Police Department (NYPD). A Medal of Honor recipient, he’s only been invited to the annual dinner once, when Bernard Kerik was commissioner. While the graft is, thanks to greater accountability, not as systematic as it used to be, Serpico writes, a lack of accountability is why police violence is such a problem. Via Politico: I tried to be an honest cop in a force full of bribe-takers. But as I found out...

Read More...


Senator Botches Key Obamacare Stat By 900 Percent

by  IGOR VOLSKY – Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) appeared on NewsMax TV on Wednesday morning to complain about the “coercive” and “very destructive” consequences of the Affordable Care Act on Wisconsin residents. Responding to a question about premium increases under the law, Johnson related his own experiences with voters. “I’m driving around Wisconsin, I’m talking to business owners and I’m talking to health care providers and insurance agents as well and they’re seeing that same kind of range , anywhere from 16 to 60 percent,” he explained. “Kind of with an average of around 30 percent here just anecdotally in Wisconsin.” But Johnson’s anecdotes appear to be outliers at best and fabrications at worst.Actual rate filings submitted to the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance (OCI) just last month show that the average premiums in health care plans offered through the law’s federal exchange will...

Read More...


Media Outlets ‘Outraged’ After FBI Caught Falsifying AP Story to Target Suspect

by Sarah Lazare – Major media outlets expressed outrage following revelations this week that in 2007, the FBI crafted a news story under a false Associated Press byline, and possibly mimicked the Seattle Times website, as part of a covert effort to locate a suspect in a bomb threat. Chris Soghoian of the American Civil Liberties Union on Monday exposed the findings, which are based on documents obtained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation three years ago through a Freedom of Information Act Request. The FBI became involved in a case regarding bomb threats that resulted in evacuations in June 2007 at Timberline High School in Lacey, Washington. Internal communications show that the FBI spoofed a story, which it falsely identified as published by the AP, about the bomb threats. Emails indicate the false story may have been designed “in the style of The Seattle Times”. The article was then sent to...

Read More...


IRS Whistleblowers: Agency Executives Behind Multibillion-Dollar Corporate Tax Giveaways

A veteran Internal Revenue Service attorney demands a congressional audit of the IRS to investigate the agency’s alleged role in allowing US corporations to illegally avoid paying billions of dollars in taxes even as it cracks down on individuals and small businesses by Nafeez Ahmed, Truthout | Report – A 10-year veteran Internal Revenue Service (IRS) attorney has demanded a congressional audit of the IRS to investigate the agency’s alleged role in allowing US corporations to illegally avoid paying billions of dollars in taxes even as it cracks down on individuals and small businesses. In a letter to Treasury secretary Jacob Lew, IRS commissioner John A. Koskinen and IRS chief counsel William Wilkins, Jane J. Kim, an attorney in the IRS Office of the Chief Counsel in New York, accused IRS executives of “deliberately” facilitating multibillion-dollar tax giveaways. The letter, dated October 19, will add further pressure on the...

Read More...


Why This Public High School Walked Out on Budget Cuts

by Jesse Hagopian – Seattle’s Garfield High School has once again moved into collective struggle—and we may to find out today if one of us is to be displaced from the building or if the power of protest has kept us safe from the budget-cut ax for now. The Seattle School District announced on Friday, October 17, that Garfield High School would be forced to cut and transfer one teacher in a core subject area by Friday, October 24—or come up with $92,000. But on Thursday October 23, almost the entire building emptied in a mass walkout of students and educators against the budget cuts and has so far convinced the district to delay the cut. The morning of the walkout, one of my colleagues was in the middle of reading the list of grievances that the rebellious colonists proclaimed against the British in the Declaration of Independence. As he told...

Read More...


With Groundbreaking Transparency, MIT Releases Report on Campus Sexual Assault

‘We face a serious problem,’ university chancellor says by Deirdre Fulton – The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on Monday released an unusually transparent report on sexual assault and harassment on its Cambridge campus, a move that may galvanize other institutions of higher education to take a deeper look at a national problem, and to be more forthcoming with what they find. The report (pdf) was based on a survey that was sent to all of MIT’s 10,831 undergraduate and graduate students on April 27, 2014—two days before the White House Task Force called on all U.S. colleges and universities to undertake similar surveys on their campuses. Just over 3,800 MIT students responded, representing 35 percent of the enrolled population. The results show that MIT’s sexual assault problem is in line with that at other colleges. Seventeen percent of undergraduate females in the MIT survey reported having been sexually assaulted, compared...

Read More...


Scott Walker Runs Ad In Support Of Equal Pay For Women After Repealing Wisconsin’s Equal Pay Law (VIDEO)

by STEPHEN D FOSTER JR – Remember that time in 2012 when Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed a bill into law repealing the state’s equal pay for women law? Well, two years later, Walker wants us all to think that he actually supports equal pay. In a move that strongly suggests that Walker thinks women are stupid, the incumbent Republican candidate ran an ad in an attempt to convince them that he believes in equal pay. Walker couldn’t even be bothered to profess his support in his own ad and enlisted Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch to do the dirty work, instead. Kleefisch declares: “Under Scott Walker, workplace discrimination will always be illegal for any reason. Mary Burke wants to create more opportunities to sue. We want to create more opportunities for women to succeed.” Here’s the video via YouTube: Walker is currently embroiled in a tough race against Democrat Mary Burke,...

Read More...


Costco – A Store that Supports Progressive Values – And Still Manages to Make a Profit

by liberaldad2 – Corporations. Evil. Greedy. Powerful. Koch Industries. Hobby Lobby. Walmart. Monsanto. Exxon-Mobil. Fox News. Enemies of progressive values and an open democracy. But are there any responsible corporations out there that a progressive can patronize without contributing to conservative coffers? A store that reflects your progressive values? Actually, there ARE a few. Here’s one example. I had heard that Costco the big-box retailer stands up for our progressive values, so I decided to check it out. A few Google searches led me to some very interesting information. Full disclosure: I am a Costco member and a regular Costco shopper. But I do NOT own Costco stock, nor do I have any family or friends who are investors (to my knowledge). On to the data. In a 2014 Huffington Post article, Costco was ranked second to Google on employee satisfaction with pay and benefits. A survey released Friday from the...

Read More...


Greenwald: Harper Government Exploiting Recent Attacks to Expand Powers

Prime Minister, says journalist, is exploiting recent violence in Canada to ‘further dismantle civil liberties and core principles of western justice’ by Nadia Prupis – The Canadian government is exploiting last week’s attacks against soldiers in the country to push sweeping national security bills into law and give the state ever-more invasive surveillance powers, investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald said in Ottawa over the weekend. Terrorism is “the most inflammatory, but also the most meaningless word in our political lexicon,” Greenwald told an audience of over 1,000 during a speech on privacy and state surveillance on Saturday. “We’ve allowed this word terrorism to take on such profound meaning that right before our eyes governments dismantle the protections and defining attributes of western justice in order to keep us safer.” Last week, following two separate incidents that resulted in the death of Canadian soldiers, Prime Minister Stephen Harper argued that Parliament should give...

Read More...


Sarah Palin Announces She Might Run For Office Again, Despite ‘Haters’ (VIDEO)

by VALERIE BEAUMONT – On Tuesday, Sarah Palin announced that she may consider another run for a political office she will promptly quit halfway into her term. When Fox host Stuart Varney asked Palin on a rousing installment of Fox Business Network’s Varney and Co. about the “extraordinary” “hatred level” directed toward the half-term half-wit, Palin responded in her traditional nonsensical fashion: “Bless their hearts, those, uh, those haters out there. They don’t understand that it, it invigorates me. It wants me to get out there and defend, um, the innocent. It makes me want to work so hard for justice in this country.” “So, hey, the more they’re pouring on, the more I’m gonna bug the crap out of them by being out there with a voice, with a message, hopefully running for office in the future, too. The host asked Palin what it is like dealing with the amount...

Read More...


Shocking Statement From Mike Brown Autopsy Expert Gets Lost in the Shuffle of Leaks and Lies

by Shaun King – When the St. Louis Post-Dispatch somehow obtained the confidential autopsy report from the local medical examiner, the newspaper consulted Dr. Judy Melinek to analyze the report and draw some very basic conclusions on how exactly Officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Mike Brown on August 9 in Ferguson, Missouri. Her comments about the scuffle drew so much attention that one key point she made was totally missed. She says that the gunshot to the back of Mike Brown’s upper arm could have come from behind while he was fleeing the scene, as described in the final three paragraphsof an MSNBC story: All but one of the gunshots, Melinek said, seem to have struck Brown in the front of his body, which is consistent with witnesses who said Brown had been facing Wilson when he was shot. Depending on any witnesses physical proximity to the shooting, Brown could...

Read More...


Steyer Escalates Campaign to Keep Climate Deniers Out of Office

By Anastasia Pantsios, EcoWatch – On the heels of its Science Denier Week last week, NextGen Climate founder and funder Tom Steyer has put another $15 million into its coffers to help elect climate- and science-friendly candidates in the midterm elections. And that was merely his contribution in September. The billionaire is on track to fulfill his promise to put $50 million into this year’s elections, with $41 million donated so far this year. Other sources put in an additional $1.9 million. NextGen will continue its campaign of trying to shame climate-denier candidates and officeholders into changing their stance through ads and promotions like Science Denier Week and its Stone Age Report, released last week, targeting the most egregious deniers. It singled out U.S. Senate candidates Cory Gardner (CO), Terri Lynn Land (MI), Joni Ernst (IA) and Scott Brown (NH), and Governors Rick Scott (FL) and Paul LePage (ME), who are...

Read More...


NFL Tackles Domestic Violence Crisis With New “No More” PSA

by VIVIAN NUNEZ – During Thursday Night Football, the National Football League used one of the aspects of the football viewing experience that they had never really lost control of—their advertising—to help send a strong message on domestic violence and sexual assault. NoMore.org, a coalition of major organizations working to address issues of sexual violence, was given time at the end of the first quarter of the San Diego Chargers vs. Denver Broncos game to air a PSA in support of ending domestic violence and sexual assault. The independent PSA was produced by Mariska Hargitay, former Law & Order: SVU actress and founder of the Joyful Heart Foundation. “ is a huge opportunity because people look to football players to set the bar,” Hargitay said toThinkProgress. “These are the people who are our heroes today. And if they stand up and say, “No more” and show men how to be real...

Read More...


God Isn’t ‘A Magician With A Magic Wand’: Pope Defends Evolution, Big Bang Theories

by  JAMESON PARKER – During a speech at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Pope Francis pointed out that, the opinions of fundamentalist Christians notwithstanding, the evidence for scientific theories such as the Big Bang and evolution are incontrovertible. Making another sharp deviation from his predecessors, Francis insisted that being a devout Catholic needn’t mean abandoning all scientific reason. God is big enough to come under the scrutiny of science. “When we read about Creation in Genesis, we run the risk of imagining God was a magician, with a magic wand able to do everything. But that is not so,” Francis said. He added: “He created human beings and let them develop according to the internal laws that he gave to each one so they would reach their fulfilment.” “The Big Bang, which today we hold to be the origin of the world, does not contradict the intervention of the divine...

Read More...


That Moment When Mitch McConnell Put The Final Nail In His Political Coffin

If Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) loses his seat to Democratic challenger Alison Grimes, pundits may point to this moment as the one that put the final nail in the Turtle’s political coffin: When a reporter asked McConnell whether he planned on continuing his efforts to privatize Social Security, McConnell made a pitifully blatant and pathetically self-serving attempt to dodge the question: “I’m not announcing what the agenda would be in advance.” Rachel Maddow then caught wind of her colleague’s MSNBC report and posted the link on Facebook with her usual dead-on witty commentary: “Asked if he’d try to privatize Social Security if Republicans take the Senate, Mitch McConnell said: ‘I’m not announcing what the agenda would be in advance.’ But isn’t that the point of a political campaign in a democracy? Shouldn’t voters know the agenda ‘in advance’?” A Maddow fan then took a screen shot of the post and added:...

Read More...


Occupy Democracy Brings London a Blast From Its Past

by Kate Aronoff – Inspired partially by Occupy Central in Hong Kong, London’s newly formed Occupy Democracy is being called a revival of Occupy London, which for a brief time in 2011 served as a major center of the global Occupy movement. The new occupation began shortly after an 80,000-person march organized by the country’s Trade Union Congress, though it has not been involved with Occupy Democracy in any official capacity. Demonstrators have been camping out since October 17, and intend to stay until Sunday. As in Hong Kong, organizers are looking to build a movement for truly representative democracy. On the group’s website, Occupy Democracy couches this call in a larger narrative around austerity and growing corporate influence in parliament and on 10 Downing Street. “We know that democracy is not just about having a vote every four, now five years,” it states. “It is about having the power to...

Read More...


Super PACs Exploit Disclosure Loophole

Last-minute registration means groups may hide donors until after Election Day By Dave Levinthal, Center for Public Integrity – Super PACs must, by law, publicly reveal their donors. Except, that is, for those that materialize during the final days of the 2014 midterm election. Thanks to a contentious quirk in federal law, at least six new super PACs may hide their funders from public scrutiny until early December, no matter how much money they raise or spend from now until Election Day on Nov. 4. Why? Federal campaign finance reporting regulations state that various political committees must file this week “pre-election” financial diclosures that cover activity through Oct. 15. Any political committee that forms after Oct. 15 gets a free non-disclosure pass for up to seven weeks. Charles Philipp, a New York City media professional who created the Trucks for Cowboys Super PAC on Thursday, says he’s well aware...

Read More...


Power Shifts to Outsiders in U.S. Senate Fight

Candidates routinely outspent by super PACs, political nonprofits in pivotal contests By Michael Beckel, Center for Public Integrity – The days of candidates dominating their own political campaigns are over. In the most competitive U.S. Senate races this year, big-money special interests that proliferated after the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision are routinely out-muscling and out-messaging the candidates themselves. This power shift is most prominent on television, where super PACs and politically active nonprofits — both may accept unlimited contributions — routinely account for nearly one out of every two ads run in a U.S. Senate race. Most of the ads are decidedly negative, and they’ve collectively cost hundreds of millions of dollars with Election Day still 10 days away. Wealthy liberals and conservatives alike are complicit, pumping money into these groups that, by law, may not operate “in concert or cooperation with” the...

Read More...