A Motive for the Colorado Springs Shooting? Do We Have to Ask?

by Leslie Salzillo – The gunman who gunned down 11 people on Friday, killing three at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, is now in custody. Here is a recent press release from Vicki Cowart, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains: “Our top priority is the safety of our patients and staff. Our hearts go out to everyone involved in this tragic situation. Planned Parenthood has strong security measures in place, works closely with law enforcement agencies, and has a very strong safety record. We don’t yet know the full circumstances and motives behind this criminal action, and we don’t yet know if Planned Parenthood was in fact the target of this attack. We share the concerns of many Americans that extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism in this country. We will never back away from providing care in a safe, supportive environment that millions of people rely on and trust.”...

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Yes, Donald Trump was Mocking Serge Kovaleski’s Physical Appearance. Here’s Proof…

by databob – I guess our wanna-be Dear Leader just can’t help himself. The more outrageous he gets, the more his rabid rabble of die-hard followers demands, and as a performer he can’t resist. You’ve probably seen his latest, but here’s a link to it just in case you haven’t. So what’s the proof that I offer? It’s what Trump says as he mimics Serge Kovaleski’s appearance: The poor guy. You’ve got to see this guy.  Ah, I don’t remember what I said!  I don’t remember! ‘The poor guy. You’ve got to see this guy.’ That’s not ambiguous at all, especially when he’s holding up his arms in a horribly gross imitation of Kovaleski’s medical condition. To make matters worse, in his statement the day after, Trump said this: If Mr Kovaleski is handicapped, I would not know because I do not know what he looks like. Excuse me, Mr. Trump?...

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Forget ISIS: Humanity is at Stake

by Ramzy Baroud – I still remember that smug look on his face, followed by the matter-of-fact remarks that had western journalists laugh out loud. “I’m now going to show you a picture of the luckiest man in Iraq,” General Norman Schwarzkopf, known as ‘Stormin’ Norman, said at a press conference sometime in 1991, as he showed a video of US bombs blasting an Iraqi bridge, seconds after the Iraqi driver managed to cross it. But then, a far more unjust invasion and war followed in 2003, following a decade-long siege that cost Iraq a million of its children and its entire economy. It marked the end of sanity and the dissipation of any past illusions that the United States was a friend of the Arabs. Not only did the Americans destroy the central piece of our civilizational and collective experience that spanned millennia, it took pleasure in degrading us in...

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None Of The 14 GOP Presidential Candidates Have Responded To The Planned Parenthood Shooting

by EMILY ATKIN – Approximately 10 hours after a gunman went on a shooting rampage at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado, only two presidential candidates have issued statements expressing support for either the three victims or the women’s health organization. Of the 17 candidates, only former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) have put out public statements in response to the massacre, which lasted approximately five hours and resulted in the deaths of one police officer and two civilians. Hillary Clinton ✔@HillaryClinton Today and every day, we #StandWithPP. https://twitter.com/Newsweek/status/670341297601978369 … 5:36 PM – 27 Nov 2015 Bernie Sanders ✔@BernieSanders We proudly #StandWithPP of Colorado Springs and the brave law enforcement personnel who fought to protect it. 11:12 PM – 27 Nov 2015 As of Friday night, none of the 14 Republican candidates had mentioned the shooting. President Obama has also not issued a formal...

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Erdogan Says Syria’s Assad, not Turkey, Backing ISIL

Turkish president says Syrian regime buying oil from ISIL, after Russian claims that Ankara was funding the armed group Turkey’s president has said the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is funding the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), and denied that Ankara has bought any oil from the group. Speaking on Thursday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan also insisted Turkey’s fight against the group was “undisputed”. “Shame on you. Those who claim we buy oil from Daesh are obliged to prove it. If not, you are a slanderer,” Erdogan said, lashing out at charges from Moscow after the downing of a Russian warplane on the Syrian border on Tuesday. “ISIL sells the oil they drill to Assad. To Assad. Talk this over with Assad you support,” he said. Moscow is one of the few remaining allies of the Damascus regime. Russia, a major trade partner and Turkey’s second...

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21 Kids and a Climate Scientist Are Suing to Force Obama to Fight Climate Change

by John Light – When the young people working with Our Children’s Trust talk about their lawsuits to compel governments to act on climate change, they like to use a quote attributed to Mahatma Gandhi: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” This month, it looks like these young activists have made it to step three: On Nov. 12, three fossil fuel lobby groups asked a judge to let them join the federal case as co-defendants against the 21 children (and a climate scientist) who are suing the Obama administration and federal regulatory agencies to take serious, science-based action on climate change. Kelsey Juliana on Her Lawsuit Against Oregon The case is the culmination of a series of lawsuits brought by various groups of young people in all 50 states since 2011. Their argument is that the federal government is infringing on the constitutional rights of America’s youth...

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Daesh/ISIS Is Not Israel’s Problem — For Now

by Michael Winship – Maybe I didn’t get the memo, but I hadn’t heard the word “Daesh” used to describe ISIS until our recent trip to Israel and Jordan. Now, since the attacks in Paris, even President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry have been saying it. As The Guardian explained earlier this year, “The term is based on an Arabic acronym al-Dawla al-Islamiya fil Iraq wa’al Sham, which translates as Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (Syria), but is close to ‘Dahes’ or “one who sows discord.’” That wordplay has ISIS members threatening severe bodily harm to anyone who uses it, yet as Matt Iglesias and Zack Beauchamp pointed out at Vox, “Daesh” is useful in the West because, unlike ISIS or Islamic State, it neither directly suggests some sovereign territorial caliphate nor impugns the Islamic religion. My girlfriend, Pat, and I had left Tel Aviv at the end of...

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We Found Trump’s ‘Celebrating 9/11 Muslims’ — Except They Weren’t Muslims

by JOHN PRAGER – For some reason, a debate has raged over whether or not Muslims were celebrating in the streets of New Jersey after the attacks on our nation on September 11, 2001 ever since 2016 Republican hopeful Donald Trump mindlessly parroted the long-discredited internet rumors. While Trump’s assertions have not been in any way validated, the billionaire continues to stick to his story that he witnessed “thousands” of Muslims leave their homes and celebrate the attacks in the streets. After people with more than two brain cells questioned his spurious claims, Trump asserts that: “It did happen, I saw it with my own eyes. There were thousands of people that were cheering, on the other side of the river … I know it may not be politically correct to talk about, but there were people cheering as those buildings came down. And that tells you something. It...

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The Obama Family did More in One Night to Help Veterans than the Entire Republican Party

by CHRISTIAN DRAKE – President Obama, and the rest of the first family, were out helping homeless veterans on Thanksgiving eve. They stopped in at the Friendship Place Homeless Center in Washington D.C and spent the evening serving up meals for hungry, at-risk people. As you might have already guessed, no Republicans were seen helping homeless vets. Huge shocker, right? Republicans will go to any length to make political footballs out of our veterans by blaming Obama for every single problem that besets them, both at home and abroad. In the reality where everyone else lives, Republicans are the sole reason nothing gets done to help the veterans they created. Related: Support The Troops? The Top 7 Ways The GOP Has Turned Their Backs On Veterans Daily KOS user War On Error, came up with this great list of veterans’ legislation blocked by Republicans, and this was only up till 2012. There have been...

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EPA Turnaround on Toxic Herbicide ‘Huge Victory for Future of Food’

by Deirdre Fulton – Citing “new information” on the herbicide’s environmental toxicity, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Wednesday announced it will revoke its controversial approval of Dow’s Enlist Duo after determining that its combination of chemicals may be significantly more harmful than initially believed. “With this action, EPA confirms the toxic nature of this lethal cocktail of chemicals, and has stepped back from the brink,” said Paul Achitoff, managing attorney for Earthjustice, one of several groups that sued the EPA for its failure to consider the impacts of Enlist Duo on threatened and endangered plants and animals protected under the Endangered Species Act. As Common Dreams has reported, Dow AgroScience’s herbicide combines glyphosate, found in Monsanto’s Roundup, and 2,4-D, the key ingredient in Agent Orange. The EPA had approved its use in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Nebraska, Oklahoma and North Dakota,...

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Bill Clinton Sits Down with Neil deGrasse Tyson to Discuss Climate Change and Bill Levels Deniers

by Walter Einenkel – Neil deGrasse Tyson had former President Bill Clinton on his Startalk show for a conversation about science and politics. They discussed a variety of subjects from Clinton’s successes with getting funding for the Genome Project, to his regrets of losing the predecessor to the Large Hadron Collider. In the clip below, Neil deGrasse Tyson asks Bill Clinton about how one negotiates the politics of science between what is reality and what some people want reality to be. Clinton, using his almost peerless ability to articulate in layman’s terms, explains his newest way of testing people on science. I think with regard to science we have to at least get those people who have no interest in it to adopt what is now my mode of thinking—the grandparent test. That is, you name me one other risk-related decision, where if 95 percent of the experts were here and one to five percent...

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Sweet Karma: Obama-Appointed Judge To Hear Suit Against Trey Gowdy And The Benghazi BS

by CHARLES TOPHER – In case you missed it, there was thing that happened called “Benghazi.” A bunch of people were a**holes  and because of it 4 Americans died. Since that tragic day, Republicans of the ilk of Trey Gowdy and Darrell Issa have used the deaths of those men as a political tool to keep a scandal open “involving” the president. They also attempted to discredit then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her inevitable presidential campaign. It has been an all-out assault ever since, especially on Hillary Clinton, logic, and reason. Taxpayers are taking hit after hit for the costs of the “investigations” the Republicans are running as they look for “answers.” So far, every question that isn’t the subject of myth is the subject of emails Secretary Clinton herself turned over. While it was fun to watch her brush off the stupidity for eleven hours, in the end the...

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Marco Rubio Says ‘God’s Rules’ Trump Supreme Court Law, Advocates For Theocracy (VIDEO)

by STEPHEN D FOSTER JR – Marco Rubio is calling for conservatives to turn America into a theocracy. During an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network, GOP presidential wannabe Marco Rubio pandered to conservative “Christians” by basically telling them that they can ignore any laws they don’t like as long as they can find a biblical reason to do so. Rubio specifically took aim at a woman’s right to choose, expressing his desire to see women lose their constitutional right to have an abortion. “It’s current law; it’s not settled law. No law is settled. Roe v. Wade is current law, but it doesn’t mean that we don’t continue to aspire to fix it, because we think it’s wrong.” Rubio said that “God’s rules” are higher than Supreme Court law, which somehow justifies his crusade to oppress women and discriminate against gay people. “In essence, if we are ever ordered...

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Scientists: Kindergartners Know More About Science Than This Candidate (Hint: It’s A Republican)

by JAMESON PARKER – How little do Republican candidates understand science? According to these experts, about the level of the average kindergarten student. In a scathing analysis conducted by the Associated Press, scientists were given statements made by all the major Republican and Democratic presidential contenders with their names obscured. The scientists, all top climate and biological scientists, then rated the statements based on a 0 to 100 scale of accuracy. When the results were revealed, the divide between the conservative and liberal candidates was stark. The Republicans weren’t even close. Hillary Clinton’s comments on science were rated to be nearly flawless. In fact, all of the Democratic candidates did extremely well. The most inaccurate Democrat was a whopping 23 points ahead of the closest Republican. At the very bottom of the spectrum were the top three highest polling Republicans: Donald Trump (15), Ben Carson (13), and – don’t laugh...

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Majority Of ISIS Suspects In U.S. Are American Citizens — Zero Were From Syria

by CASSANDRA FAIRBANKS – As politicians and pundits scrambled to stoke fears of Syrian refugees following the devastating attacks in Paris, the truth of the matter is that 81% of ISIS suspects charged in the United States have been U.S.-born citizens, and not a single one has been from Syria. So far, there have been 68 people indicted for their alleged involvement with the terror organization: 55 of them were U.S. citizens, and 44 were born in the United States, research published by the Center on National Security at Fordham University revealed. While the majority were born in the United States, six were born in Bosnia, four in Uzbekistan, three in Somalia, and two in Sudan. Yet, despite this misguided hostility towards people fleeing from the war-torn wreckage and violence of the Syrian civil war this week, not a single one of these suspects has been from Syria. The report...

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30 Seconds, 16 Shots, 400 Days: The Murder of Laquan McDonald

by Amy Goodman, Denis Moynihan – On the night of Oct. 20, 2014, Laquan McDonald, a 17-year-old African-American teenager in Chicago, was walking down the street when two police cruisers sped up to him. Officers jumped out, and at least one of them, Jason Van Dyke, began firing. Laquan fell to the ground, his final, painful moments caught on the dashboard video camera of a third police vehicle that had arrived just seconds before. Laquan spun as he was shot. Two bullets hit him in the back. As the video clearly shows, the bullets were pumped into him, evidenced by clouds of dust exploding off the pavement. This week, on the day the video was released to the public by court order, Officer Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder—400 days after he killed Laquan McDonald. The official scenario that the Chicago Police Department (CPD) offered sounded like so many others:...

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Trump Adds Attacks on the Disabled to His Insult Repertoire (VIDEO)

by leevank – The thoroughly odious Donald Trump has now added belittling the disabled to his disgusting bag of tricks. Serge Kovaleski is a New York Times reporter, formerly with the Washington Post, who has a physical disability that causes him to have awkward arm movements. Back in 2001, when he was working for the Washington Post, he reported on the rumors about Muslims in Jersey City celebrating the events of 9/11, and debunked those reports. He recently repeated his recollection of the interviews that led him to the conclusion the rumors were false. That was enough for Donald Trump to attempt to mimic Mr. Kovaleski’s disability while he attacked his reporting: More than 45 years ago, in the summer after my freshman year in college, I was working in the mailing room of the University of Illinois College of Agriculture. The University of Illinois had a large program for physically...

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Facing A Budget Crunch, Alabama Cuts Voter ID Access While Keeping State Liquor Stores Open

by ALICE OLLSTEIN –   Demonstrators gathered on the steps of the Alabama state capitol in Montgomery this week pressure Gov. Robert Bentley (R) to reverse his decision to cut the hours of more than a dozen state DMVs — a move they say will make it much harder for many residents to get a voter ID. “This is not about budgets. This is about voting right,” state Sen. Hank Sanders (D-Selma) told ThinkProgress. “The governor, with a stroke of a pen, can change this. Our efforts are to enlighten him and pressure him.” Bentley had originally ordered 31 DMV offices — concentrated in rural, majority-African American counties — to be shut down entirely. After pressure from local officials and national civil rights groups, the state announced they would keep the offices open, but only one day per month. At the same time, the state will keep funding 25 liquor...

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Does Turkey’s Downing of Russian Warplane Portend Deeper Disaster To Come?

by Jon Queally – Though Tuesday’s incidents do not likely signal the start of War World III, experts say the deeper contradictions surrounding the war against ISIS in Syria cannot hold much longer Offering a dramatic window into the fractious and complex geopolitics that are now swirling around the war against the Islamic State inside Syria and Iraq, the downing of a Russian warplane by Turkey on Tuesday was also followed by the release of footage showing a Russian military helicopter being destroyed by Syrian rebel forces armed with U.S.-supplied anti-tank missiles. Even as some analysts were quick to tamp down assertions that Tuesday’s incidents would lead to an overt military conflict between Turkey and Russia or serve as the spark for “World War III,” other informed voices argue there are numerous reasons to be concerned over just how volatile the situation has become inside Syria, and regionally, as simmering tensions...

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Tackling the Islamic State Requires Realistic Goals

by Steve Chapman – No-fly zones and ground invasions aren’t the solution After a bloody series of terrorist attacks, the natural impulse is to respond with overwhelming force to make sure they never happen again. The 9/11 carnage prompted a U.S. invasion of Afghanistan to smash al Qaida, which carried out the attacks, and remove the Taliban, which furnished the plotters a safe refuge. The Paris attacks have spurred new calls for a change in U.S. strategy toward the Islamic State, also known as ISIS and ISIL, which occupies large sections of Iraq and Syria. But this is not a new American war; it’s one we have been pursuing since August 2014. And the group’s newly demonstrated ability to slaughter people well beyond the Middle East does not mean the options for fighting it have improved. The two main ideas coming from presidential candidates are a no-fly zone, championed by Hillary...

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