Afghan War Is Not Over, Says Judge, So Indefinite Detention Can Continue

by Jon Queally – Though President Obama has publicly championed end of combat operations in Afghanistan, that doesn’t mean prisoners of war can be released A federal judge on Thursday rejected the petition of a Guantanamo detainee who had requested to be freed after spending nearly a decade and a half in the U.S. offshore prison without trial. As the Associated Press reports: Muktar Yahya Najee al-Warafi has said his detention was illegal in light of President Barack Obama’s statements that active hostilities in Afghanistan had ended. The Yemeni was captured in Afghanistan in 2001. Courts have upheld his detention on grounds that he likely aided Taliban forces. His lawyers argued that his detention was unlawful under the Authorization for the Use of Military Force, which provided the legal justification for the imprisonment of foreign fighters captured on overseas battlefields. The Supreme Court has said such detention is legal as long...

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Some Of The Videos Targeting Planned Parenthood May Be Illegal, Court Rules

by TARA CULP-RESSLER – An anti-abortion group that has so far released four inflammatory videos accusing Planned Parenthood of profiting from the sale of “aborted baby parts” will not be allowed to publish additional footage featuring a California company that facilitates fetal tissue donation, thanks to a temporary restraining order issued by the Los Angeles Superior Court. The court order issued this week blocks the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) from releasing video footage featuring employees who work at StemExpress, a biological company that partners with some Planned Parenthood clinics to help transfer fetal tissue donations to medical research facilities. The unfolding controversy plaguing Planned Parenthood has been focused on this type of tissue donation, which CMP misleadingly characterizes as trafficking in baby parts. So far, stoking moral outrage over the practice has been pretty successful. One video released by CMP, for instance, features a woman who says she was...

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This Is What Happened When A NJ Waitress Paid For Firefighters’ Breakfast (VIDEO)

by T. STEELMAN – Firefighter Paul Hullings had just spent 12 hours fighting a particularly huge fire in New Brunswick when his fellow firefighter, Tim Young, took him out for breakfast. They stopped at the Route 130 Diner in Delran and had a nice breakfast. As they chatted about the fire, their waitress overheard and Liz Woodard decided that she would comp the firefighters’ breakfasts. She left this note instead of a check: “Your breakfast is on me today. Thank you all that you do, for serving us and for running into the places everyone runs away from. No matter your role, you are courageous, brave and strong. Thank you for being bold and badass everyday. Fueled by fire and driven by courage – what an example you are. Get some rest!” The two men were moved to tears, knowing that they were appreciated. When Young posted the note on...

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California’s Drought and the Battle for Medicine Lake

Plans are afoot to build power plants and frack near one of California’s biggest reserves of fresh water Redding, California – Before Leonard Lowry, a 20-year-old boxing champion from Susanville, California, was shipped off to fight in the Pacific during World War II, his Pit River tribal elders helped him prepare for battle. They fixed him a medicine bag with root and tobacco and had him run the full 11km circumference of remote Medicine Lake for good luck. As a rifleman with the 42nd Infantry Division in the Philippines and New Guinea, Lowry survived outbreaks of malaria, getting shot at three times and hand grenade fragments smashing his wrist. He was awarded the Silver Star Medal – the third-highest military declaration for valour given to members of the US Armed Forces – and went on to have a sterling career as a military leader, said Radley Davis, a member of...

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Jeb Bush Parrots Frank Luntz Climate Script, Just As His Brother Did A Decade Ago

by JOE ROMM – The White House is gearing up to announce the final carbon pollution standards that power plants will have to meet in EPA’s Clean Power Plan (CPP). And that means you can expect many conservatives critical of the plan to start using the poll-tested words “technology” and “innovation” over and over and over. For instance, Bloomberg BNA just interviewed GOP presidential contender Jeb Bush about the CPP and his own energy, environment and climate strategy. He said, “Technology, innovation and discovery should play a major role in preserving a clean and healthy environment.” Wait, that wasn’t Jeb. That was Frank Luntz in his famous 2002 memo to conservatives and the Bush White House explaining that the best way to pretend you care about the climate and the environment — while opposing regulations that might actually do something to reduce pollution — was to blather on about “technology...

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Christian College Takes Away All Student Health Insurance Over Birth Control Temper Tantrum

by JAMESON PARKER – For conservative Christians, being “pro-life” is beginning to look a lot like “anti-healthcare for post-born people.” Hundreds of college students at one of the country’s leading Evangelical universities are beginning to learn that the hard way. Wheaton College announced this week that they are discontinuing all health insurance for their students because the Affordable Care Act won’t allow them to specifically deny birth control, which they say violates their religious freedoms. So rather than simply accept that some of their students might have sex and might use birth control, the school says nobody gets any form of health insurance at all. American students who wish to avoid going bankrupt if they become sick or get injured while attending classes must now scramble to find their own health insurance on the open market. Foreign students are out of luck entirely. At Wheaton College, prayer is now the only healthcare students have access too. Like...

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40 Hour Standoff Ends in Call to Obama to Cancel Shell’s Arctic Drilling Plans

By Stefanie Spear, EcoWatch – After a 40-hour blockade stopping Shell’s Fennica icebreaker from leaving port, 26 Greenpeace USA activists have come down from the St John’s Bridge in Portland, Oregon, including the 13 climbers that repelled from the bridge. Shell’s vessel did finally make its way on Thursday under the Portland bridge and out to sea as the demonstrators were preparing to leave the bridge. A federal judge in Alaska yesterday ordered Greenpeace USA to remove the climbers or face a series of escalating fines, starting at US$2,500 per hour and reaching as high as US$10,000 per hour after a number of days. “We are incredibly proud of these climbers and truly humbled by what they have achieved here in Portland,” Greenpeace USA Executive Director Annie Leonard said. “The last two days have been a very emotional experience for all of us at Greenpeace, as well as all those who supported this action around...

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Gov. ‘Don’t Say Climate Change’ Scott, Is About To Be Given An Environmentalist Award

by SHANNON ARGUETA – Florida’s governor has one of the worst environmental records in the history of the state. Not only has Rick Scott banned state employees from saying “climate change,” but he has also decimated funding for a number of important environmental departments and projects. Even with all of that, the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida has decided that they are going to give Scott and award for his “conservation work.” No, this isn’t a joke. First of all, you have to understand that Florida is quickly expanding in growth. As a resident of the Gulf coast of Florida, I have watched my small city almost double in size over the last 15 years as rural areas become more and more developed. Most of the governors over the last five decades realize that the state has a very fragile environment, until Rick Scott came along. Scott does not care about Florida’s...

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GOP Women’s Group Posts Shareable Graphic Of A Lynching To Facebook

by IAN MILLHISER – If you are about to compare something to lynching, and it is not lynching, it’s probably best to keep your mouth shut. The Oklahoma Federation of Republican Women apologized on Wednesday after they posted an image of a black man being lynched on their official Facebook page. The image included a solitary African American man hanging by a noose from a tree, with the text “The KKK was formed by the Democrats to keep control over black Americans. The Democrats of today just traded ropes for welfare” accompanying the image. After KFOR, a local news station, contacted the organization’s president, Pam Pollard, about the image, Pollard deleted the post. She later released a statement saying that she “did not make the post or approve the post and when it was brought to my attention I immediately deleted it.” The message accompanying the offensive image relies on...

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ALEC Conference Funding Dominated by Big Polluters

by Nick Surgey – At the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) 2015 annual meeting in San Diego, California, dirty energy companies and their supporters–including ExxonMobil, Chevron, and Duke Energy–continue to dominate the funding of activities, according to a list of conference sponsors obtained jointly by the Center for Media and Democracy and Greenpeace. At the top of the agenda, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker spoke to ALEC delegates over breakfast on Thursday. Walker is now campaigning on a promise to destroy the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) if elected President in 2016, a plan which was earlier debated by ALEC at its December 2014 conference and is in line with ALEC’s long-term legislative agenda. At ALEC conferences and meetings, rhetoric against the EPA–and in particular the Obama administration’s proposed Clean Power Plan to reduce carbon pollution–is frequently extreme. ALEC sessions have repeatedly featured overt denial of climate change science. During recent...

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Oncologist Sentenced To 45 Years In Prison For Wrongly Diagnosing And Administering Chemo To Patients

by Amanda Froelich – This unfortunate account shows how far some doctors will go just to receive some financial kickbacks The ‘sick care’ industry is a big money maker for pharmaceutical companies. While some health care practitioners have begun to recognize the importance of diet and lifestyle and now recommend preventive care as a main form of ‘medicine’, others have wrongly benefited from vulnerable patients and traded their integrity as physicians for profit. One such doctor, Farid Fata, has a long jail sentence ahead of him for such malpractice. A hematologist-oncologist who once worked in the suburbs of Detroit, Fata was sentenced to 45 years in prison for running a fraud scheme in which he falsely ‘diagnosed’ patients with Cancer. Once he wrongly misdiagnosed them, he then prescribed unnecessary chemotherapy and other cancer treatments to help them ‘remedy’ their non-existent condition. In order to scam Medicare and private insurance...

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Cruz Stands By Claim That President Obama Is World’s Biggest Funder Of ‘Islamic Terrorism’

by JUSTIN SALHANI – Ted Cruz doesn’t appear to be backing down from comments calling President Obama “the world’s leading financier of radical Islamic terrorism” for striking up a deal over Iranian’s nuclear program. “If this deal is consummated, it will make the Obama administration the world’s leading financier of radical Islamic terrorism,” Cruz said on Tuesday, according to Politico. “Billions of dollars under control of this administration will flow into the hands of jihadists who will use that money to murder Americans, to murder Israelis, to murder Europeans.” International powers are scheduled to lift economic sanctions on Iran so long as the nuclear deal’s conditions are met. Critics of the deal argue that the windfall of $55 billion (not over $100 as originally reported) Iran is expected to receive from the sanction removal will help contribute to the funding of international proxies that the U.S. and Israel consider terrorist groups....

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Cincinnati and the Murder of Samuel DuBose

by Amy Goodman, Denis Moynihan – A stunning indictment has been handed down in Cincinnati, focusing attention again on police killings of people of color. Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph T. Deters announced that University of Cincinnati Police Officer Ray Tensing has been charged with murder, for the July 19 shooting death of Samuel DuBose, a 43-year-old African-American man. Tensing pulled over DuBose because he was driving a car without a front license plate. As Deter said in his news conference: “He was dealing with someone without a front license plate. This is, in the vernacular, a very chicken-crap stop.” Tensing wanted to see DuBose’s driver’s license. When DuBose said he didn’t have it, Tensing made a motion to open DuBose’s car door. Within seconds of this interaction, Tensing’s right hand swung into the video frame with a pistol. He fired a single shot into DuBose’s head, which sent the car, with...

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DOJ Head Says Sandra Bland’s Death Epitomizes Police’s Broken Relationship With Black Community

by LAUREN C. WILLIAMS – Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Sandra Bland’s death while in police custody earlier this month taps into deep-seated fears within the black community: that interactions with law enforcement too frequently end fatally. The Justice Department’s (DOJ) first African-American woman attorney general told Pierre Thomas in an ABC News interview Sunday that Bland’s death “highlights the concern of many in the black community that a routine stop for many members of the black community is not handled with the same professionalism and courtesy that other people may get from the police.” Bland’s death was officially reported as a suicide but is being treated like a homicide investigation. But there’s much public speculation around the 28-year-old’s arrest, death, and its subsequent investigation. Bland was held for three days by the Texas Department of Public Safety for a routine traffic stop — allegedly for not using a signal...

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One Of World’s Most Important Bald Eagle Nesting Sites May Be Replaced By Golf Resort

By  JAMESON PARKER, Addicting Info – Virginia is right in the heart of America’s golf country, so it probably comes as no surprise to learn that Richmond County already has several sprawling golf courses. Now they want one more. And they want to place it in a region that is famous as one of America’s biggest, and most crucial, bald eagle nesting sites. The corporation who owns the land on which the nesting site sits plans on destroying much of the scenic area and replacing it with an 18-hole golf course, a big resort building, and a new (pricey) housing development for those whose bank account allows them to live right there on the links. According to opponents of the plan, there are a lot of good reasons not to develop the land and turn it into yet another unneeded golf course. Opponents such as the Chesapeake Conservancy and Friends of the...

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Christian Extremist Lawmakers Form A New Caucus Dedicated To Republican Jesus

by CHARLES TOPHER – As national support for the Tea Party crumbles, the Christian right has been scrambling for new ways to infiltrate government and inject it with religious extremism. The formation of the Appeal To Heaven national caucus may be just the answer they’re looking for. The new alliance, complete with nutjobs from 18 states, may prove to be more dangerous than the Tea Party. Republican state lawmakers have proven themselves effective at enacting archaic laws when it comes to women’s reproductive rights, so called “religious freedom” acts that are nothing but legalized discrimination and redistricting gerrymandered pools of guaranteed GOP wins. At a time when the country is finally seeing the light, denouncing the Republican Party for its lack of intelligence, the far-right is banding together to mobilize what power it has in states where progressives are few and far between, and bastions of 1862 values can form unabated....

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Sanders Makes History With 2016 Cycle’s Biggest Campaign Event Yet

“I have never seen a campaign as exciting as this,” says supporter in Alabama By Deirdre Fulton, Common Dreams – Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders addressed an estimated 100,000 supporters at more than 3,500 house parties in all 50 states on Wednesday night, at what is being called the largest campaign event of the 2016 election cycle thus far. The organizing kick-off, which Sen. Sanders (I-Vt.) said was aimed at building a political movement from the ground up, saw the democratic socialist beamed into bars, libraries, and living rooms from Alaska to Florida. There was a “custom cocktail” featuring Vermont maple syrup at a bar in Washington, D.C., while a Texas event served up “brisket and biscuits for Bernie.” The man himself spoke from what the Burlington Free Press described as “a modest, steamy apartment” in the nation’s capitol. His remarks were delivered “off a yellow legal pad balanced precariously on a wobbly music...

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Post ObamaCare Employment Stats

by darkonc – I had Yet Another Republican (presumably) go off on how Obamacare destroyed jobs  — or at least full-time jobs.. So the obvious thing for me to do was to grab the stats and generate some graphs. I grabbed the data from The US Bureau of Labour Statistics page and massaged it into a format that made graphing in a spreadsheet easier.  For my spreadsheet, I used LibreOffice, a free and very useful replacement for MS Office.  Download it if you’d like to play with my spreadsheets. So, the statistics that I thought were most susceptible to change if the doomsday predictions were true were:  Employment, Hours worked, and Terminations (layoffs and firings)… so here are the graphs (with links to the appropriate spreadsheet. Employment: Employment As you can see, employment tanked after the Bush meltdown, and has climbed ever since. Nary a blip around April 2014 when the...

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Koch Brothers Declare War On Donald Trump

By SHANNON ARGUETA, Addicting Info – Everyone knows that the Koch brothers have a huge hand in picking out who the GOP candidate is going to be for the 2016 presidential election. They, along with their huge network of conservative donors, plan on spending almost $900 million on the upcoming election; with that kind of money up for grabs, the Republican candidates are vying for their attention big time. However, one candidate is being completely frozen out of the Koch brothers’ network: Donald Trump. Trump’s loudmouth, racist comments have caused him to jump to number one in the GOP polls. The party’s totally-not-racist base loves that he is picking on all of the people they hate — especially undocumented immigrants. Republican leadership isn’t as in love with The Donald as their base, because they know that his rhetoric is turning important Independent voters and Hispanic voters (the swing votes) off; but,...

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Blue Ridge Beauty

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