GOP State Sen. Wants Return to Era of 'the Condition of England Question' 17 Feb 2011
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Thu Feb 17 18:04:48 EST 2011
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17 Feb 2011
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GOP State Sen. Wants Return to Era of 'the Condition of England Question' --By Lori Price, www.legitgov.org 17 Feb 2011 We read: GOP State Sen. Proposes Elimination of Child Labor Laws 15 Feb 2011... In fact, Missouri Republican State Senator Jane Cunningham's Bill invokes potentially worse labor conditions for children than those experienced in Victorian England. In 1833, the government actually limited the age eligibility in which children could toil, and imposed limits on their working hours. In 1847, after further 'radical agitation,' (sorely needed in the US, circa 2011), an act ' limited both adults and children to ten hours of work daily.'
CIA director indicates future prisoners could be held at Guantanamo --CIA Director Leon Panetta says that if Osama bin Laden or another top Al Qaeda leader were captured, he would probably be detained at Guantanamo Bay. 17 Feb 2011 If the U.S. captured Osama bin Laden or other senior Al Qaeda [al-CIAduh] leaders, they would probably be imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay, CIA Director Leon E. Panetta said in his first public acknowledgment that the controversial U.S. military prison in Cuba might be used to hold future detainees. Bin Laden and Al Qaeda's No. 2 leader, Ayman Zawahiri, both of whom are believed to be hiding in Pakistan dead, would probably be moved quickly to the U.S. air base at Bagram, Afghanistan, for questioning and eventually moved, "probably to Guantanamo," Panetta told the Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday. [Um, is this more 'change we can believe in?' *Primary Obusha in 2012.*]
CIA: If caught, bin Laden would go to Guantanamo 16 Feb 2011 What would the government do if Osama bin Laden, an FBI most-wanted terrorist for more than a decade, were captured? Washington is abuzz about questions whether bin Laden would ever see the inside of an American courtroom or where he might be imprisoned if he doesn't stand trial. For years, President Barack Obama's administration has maintained that criminal courts were more than equipped to handle even the most serious terror cases, but when faced with that question Wednesday during a Senate hearing, CIA Director Leon Panetta said the administration probably would just send bin Laden to the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. [See: Has Osama Bin Laden been dead for seven years - and are the U.S. and Britain covering it up to continue war on terror? 11 Sep 2009.]
Curveball could face jail for warmongering, says German MP --Agent whose lies about Saddam's weapons capability led to Iraq war has broken German law, says Green MP 16 Feb 2011 A German politician has warned that the CIA informant Curveball could go to jail after telling the Guardian that he lied about Saddam Hussein's bioweapons capability in order to "liberate" Iraq. Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi, who was given the name Curveball by his US and German handlers, told the German secret service that Iraq had a secret biological weapons programme. In his adopted home of Germany, MPs are demanding to know why the German secret service paid Curveball £2,500 a month for at least five years after they knew he had lied.
Colin Powell demands answers over Curveball's WMD lies --Former US secretary of state asks why CIA failed to warn him over Iraqi defector who has admitted fabricating WMD evidence 16 Feb 2011 Colin Powell, the US secretary of state at the time of the Iraq invasion, has called on the CIA and Pentagon to explain why they failed to alert him to the unreliability of a key source behind claims of Saddam Hussein's bio-weapons capability. Responding to the Guardian's revelation that the source, Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi or "Curveball" as his US and German handlers called him, admitted fabricating evidence of Iraq's secret biological weapons programme, Powell said that questions should be put to the US agencies involved in compiling the case for war. In particular he singled out the CIA and the Defence Intelligence Agency - the Pentagon's military intelligence arm.
Defector admits to WMD lies that triggered Iraq war --Man codenamed Curveball 'invented' tales of bioweapons --Fabrications used by US as justification for invasion 15 Feb 2011 The defector who convinced the White House that Iraq had a secret biological weapons programme has admitted for the first time that he lied about his story, then watched in shock as it was used to justify the war. Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi, codenamed Curveball by German and US intelligence officials who dealt with his claims, has told the Guardian that he fabricated tales of mobile bioweapons trucks and clandestine factories in an attempt to bring down the Saddam Hussein government, from which he had fled in 1995.
Skeptical judge gives Bagram detainees another shot at trying to win access to federal courts 16 Feb 2011 A skeptical judge is giving terrorism detainees at a U.S. air base in Afghanistan another shot at trying to win the right to challenge their imprisonment in federal court. U.S. District Judge John Bates ruled two years ago that detainees at Bagram Airfield should have access to U.S. courts just like Guantanamo Bay prisoners. But his ruling was overturned on appeal last year.
Baghdad wants U.S. to pay $1 billion for damage to city 17 Feb 2011 Iraq's capital wants the United States to apologize and pay $1 billion for the damage done to the city not by bombs but by blast walls and Humvees since the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. The city's government issued its demands in a statement on Wednesday that said Baghdad's infrastructure and aesthetics have been seriously damaged by the U.S. military. "The U.S. forces changed this beautiful city to a camp in an ugly and destructive way, which reflected deliberate ignorance and carelessness about the simplest forms of public taste," the statement said.
3 die as police fire on demonstration 16 Feb 2011 Police fired on thousands of demonstrators in Kut today, killing at least three people as protests over decrepit public services and government corruption intensified across occupied Iraq. Enraged protesters responded by storming the governor's headquarters and his home, setting both ablaze. Authorities said that at least 27 people were injured in the chaos, including one police officer.
'Turkey no military launchpad for US' 16 Feb 2011 Turkish President Abdullah Gul says Ankara will not allow the US to use NATO bases in Turkey for military purposes against other countries. In an exclusive interview with Press TV in Tehran on Tuesday, Gul said every military facility in Turkey is under the control of Turkish commanders, noting that "without our knowledge, nothing can happen there."
US slammed for supporting Iran riots 16 Feb 2011 Former Iranian presidential candidate Mohsen Rezaiee has criticized the United States' support for the recent anti-government riots in Tehran. Supporters of the defeated candidates in the 2009 presidential elections, Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, gathered in parts of the Iranian capital on Monday. Tehran says members of anti-government groups, including the anti-Iran terrorist group Mujahedin Khalq Organization (MKO), disrupted the protests by staging riots and shooting on bystanders.
Israel says Iran warships to transit Suez for Syria --Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Israel was tracking them and had alerted 'friendly nations in the region' accordingly. 16 Feb 2011 Two Iranian warships planned to sail through the Suez Canal en route to Syria on Wednesday, Israel's foreign minister said, calling it a "provocation," but the vessels were seen as posing no serious military threat. Israel's state-funded Channel One television said Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, a vociferously far-right partner [nutjob] in the conservative coalition, had spoken out of turn as the Defense Ministry "had preferred to ignore" the ships' approach. [USociopaths don't 'own' the Suez Canal, despite assertions to the contrary. Who cares what the US (and Israel) thinks?]
U.S. claims diplomatic immunity for ex-Special Forces soldier accused of shooting dead two men in Pakistan (but what was he REALLY doing there?) --Speculation Davis was spy working on frontline 15 Feb 2011 America is claiming diplomatic immunity for a U.S. official accused of shooting two men dead in Pakistan in an extraordinary case which threatens to open new tensions between the two countries. The case of Raymond Davis, a former Special Forces soldier [mercenary] who worked for the U.S. Consulate in Lahore, has sparked an international stand-off between Pakistan and the U.S. - with Congress even threatening to withdraw millions in aid unless he is handed over to American authorities. Sources in Pakistan claim that when police searched Mr Davis's Honda rental car, they found a telescope, photographs of sensitive defence installations and even sophisticated make-up that could be used for facial disguises.
Argentina accuses US of trying to smuggle weapons into country --Diplomatic row over cargo US claims was intended for 'training programme' [false flag?] further sours already poor relationship 15 Feb 2011 Relations between the US and Argentina have deteriorated after Buenos Aires lodged a formal complaint over a US military plane that landed late last week carrying guns, drugs and satellite phones. The Argentinian government claimed the US was trying to sneak the weapons into the country, though it didn't offer an explanation of why Washington might want to do this.
Mega barf alert *and* gag me with a chainsaw: Obama honors ex-President George H.W. Bush with Medal of Freedom 15 Feb 2011 President Barack Obama honored former President George H.W. Bush this afternoon with the nation’s highest civilian award, the Medal of Freedom, at an emotional White House ceremony. Obama spoke of Bush’s "humility and decency" and a career of service that spanned seven decades, from "decorated Navy pilot who nearly gave his life in World War II to U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, from CIA director [leading the JFK assassination team] to U.S. envoy to China to the vice presidency."
U.S. veterans sue Pentagon 'after they were raped and sexually abused by comrades' --One commander allegedly told Army reservist she 'did not struggle enough or act like a rape victim' 15 Feb 2011 Fourteen U.S. veterans who say they were raped and abused by their comrades today accused the Pentagon of ignoring their claims. More than a dozen female and two male current or former service members will launch a legal action today, claiming that servicemen get away with rape and other sexual abuse. One woman claimed that two male colleagues raped her in Iraq and videotaped the attack, circulating it around the base.
Bahrain crushes protest camp, locks down capital --Hours after the attack on Manama's main Pearl Square, the military announced a ban on gatherings. 17 Feb 2011 Army patrols and tanks locked down the capital of this tiny Gulf kingdom after riot police swinging clubs and firing tear gas smashed into demonstrators, many of them sleeping, in a pre-dawn assault Thursday that uprooted their protest camp demanding political change. Medical officials said four people were killed.
Bahrain anti-government protesters clash with police – in pictures (Guardian) 17 Feb 2011 Hundreds are wounded as Bahraini riot police fire teargas at protesters on Pearl roundabout.
Berlusconi Ordered to Stand Trial in Underage Prostitution Case 15 Feb 2011 Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was ordered to stand trial on charges of abuse of power and paying a minor for sex, fueling the calls for his resignation amid a deepening clash with the nation’s judiciary. Judge Cristina Di Censo today approved a request by Milan prosecutors for Berlusconi to be tried and fixed an April 6 start for the proceedings, according to a statement read to reporters.
NORAD to conduct exercises Thursday over Montreal 16 Feb 2011 Montrealers might notice some unusual sights and sounds in the skies over the city on Thursday. The North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD) announced Wednesday morning that it would be conducting a series of "intercept and identification procedures" in airspace over southern Quebec, eastern Ontario, northeastern Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts. "Those living in these areas may hear and/or see NORAD-controlled fighter jets in close proximity to a U.S. Air Force C-21, which will be taking on the role of a Track of Interest (TOI)," said a release issued by NORAD.
F-16 jets, military copter over DC at midnight Wednesday 15 Feb 2011 As part of a post 9/11 training and preparedness military mission, F-16 jets, a coast guard helicopter and civil patrol aircraft will be flying over the Washington D.C. area from midnight to 2 a.m. on Wednesday, officials said on Tuesday. Exercise "Falcon Virgo 11-05" will allow NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command) to hone its "intercept and identification" operations and test a visual warning system, the U.S.-Canadian based agency said.
Hacked and Now Vandalized, HBGary Pulls out of RSA 16 Feb 2011 The California security company that is at the center of a controversy over a plan to discredit WikiLeaks and its supporters abruptly pulled itself out of the RSA security conference in San Francisco this week, citing security concerns. The company's subsidiary, HBGary Federal, also cancelled a talk it had planned to give on the Internet activist group, Anonymous. It was news of this talk that riled Anonymous and precipitated the controversy last week.
US security contractors planned 'WikiLeaks attack' 15 Feb 2011 The computer hackers' collective Anonymous has uncovered a proposal by a consortium of private contractors to attack and discredit WikiLeaks. Last week Anonymous volunteers broke into the servers of HB Gary Federal, a security company that sells investigative services to companies, and posted thousands of the firm's emails on to the internet. The attack was in revenge for claims by the company's chief executive Aaron Barr that he had successfully infiltrated the cyber protest network and discovered details of its leadership and structure.
US Senate votes extension of anti-terrorism powers 15 Feb 2011 The US Senate voted Tuesday to extend controversial counter-terrorism search and surveillance powers at the heart of the Patriot Act law adopted after the September 11, 2001 attacks. With the three provisions set to expire February 28, lawmakers approved legislation to extend them to May 27 by a 86-12 margin, one day after the House of Representatives passed an extension to December 8.
Gov't, NBA team launch All-Star security campaign 15 Feb 2011 The Homeland Security Department and the NBA said Tuesday they will launch a security campaign at this weekend's All-Star game activities in Los Angeles, encouraging people to report suspicious activity. TV monitors and print materials at the All-Star game will urge people, "If you see something, say something" - a core post-Sept. 11 message.
Narcotics cop, investigator face drug charges --Authorities believe the two conspired to sell methamphetamine, marijuana and steroids 17 Feb 2011 A veteran state drug agent based in Contra Costa County and a Concord private investigator were arrested Wednesday on suspicion of conspiring to sell drugs stolen from an evidence locker, authorities said. Norman Wielsch, a state Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement special agent supervisor, and Christopher Butler, the owner of Butler and Associates Private Investigations, were booked at Contra Costa County Jail after a monthlong undercover investigation.
Mexican Gunmen Confronted ICE Agents Before Shooting, Sources Say --Attacked Agents Identified Themselves as U.S. Diplomats During Roadside Exchange 17 Feb 2011 Gunmen who attacked a pair of U.S. special agents along a rural Mexican roadside Tuesday had a face-to-face exchange with their victims before opening fire, sources familiar with the investigation confirmed to ABC News. New details of the incident suggest the assailants, who remain at large, knew their targets were U.S. officials, though it's still unclear whether the attack was premeditated. Investigators believe Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents Jaime Zapata and Victor Avila were returning to Mexico City from a training exercise in Monterrey when their armored SUV with diplomatic plates was spotted going through a toll plaza and became a target.
Body of slain agent flown to Department of Defense mortuary 17 Feb 2011 The body of slain Immigration Customs Enforcement agent was flown to Houston on Wednesday night for a second autopsy, but was diverted to Delaware after the local medical examiner refused to do the procedure. After the remains of Special Agent Jaime Zapata were en route, ICE learned that Harris County officials refused to do the second autopsy, and the body was transferred to another plane and flown to the Department of Defense Mortuary at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, the source said.
3 U.S. marshals shot trying to serve arrest warrant in W.Va. 16 Feb 2011 Three U.S. marshals were shot Wednesday while trying to serve an arrest warrant at a home in Elkins, authorities said. The suspect was then killed by officers. The condition of the marshals was not immediately known. The shooting happened around 8:30 a.m. as several deputy marshals from the Northern District of West Virginia were serving a warrant at a residence, said Jeffrey Carter of the U.S. Marshals Service.
Panel: FBI overstated science in anthrax probe 15 Feb 2011 Federal investigators overstated the scientific case against the late Army researcher blamed for the 2001 anthrax attacks that killed five people, but the evidence is also consistent with the government's finding fabrication that Bruce Ivins was behind the mailings, a panel of scientists said Tuesday. The National Research Council committee held a briefing in Washington on its 170-page report, which examines the novel microbial forensic techniques used by the FBI to determine that Ivins, a researcher at Maryland's Fort Detrick, acted alone in making and sending the powdered spores. The panel that conducted the 18-month review faulted government assertions that the mailer must have had a high level of technical skill and that the parent material of the anthrax strain used in the attacks had to have come from a flask that Ivins alone maintained.
CDC Reports First Human Cowpox Infection in Laboratory Worker --'The investigation revealed cowpox virus stocks in the laboratory's freezer, but no known or intentional use of cowpox in the patient's laboratory in the previous 5 years.' 08 Feb 2011 (Vienna, Austria) The first human cowpox virus infection in the United States has been documented in an unvaccinated laboratory researcher, according to a report by investigators from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. The findings were reported by Andrea McCollum, MPH, an epidemiologist from the Mycotic Diseases Branch of the CDC here at the IMED 2011: International Meeting on Emerging Diseases and Surveillance.
Sergeant at Arms Looking for Absent Wisconsin Capitol Democrats --Protests swell to 25,000 people at Wis. Capitol 17 Feb 2011 Authorities say an estimated 25,000 people are protesting anti-union legislation at the Wisconsin state Capitol, and nine demonstrators have been arrested. On the third day of protests, the Statehouse was completely jammed with protesters opposed to a bill that would strip public employees of their collective bargaining rights. The crowd filled the building's hallways, sat cross-legged across the floor and chanted slogans. For the moment, a group of Democratic senators have blocked the bill by refusing to attend a midday vote and leaving the Capitol. The sergeant at arms was looking for them.
Madison Schools Closed for Second Day to Protest 17 Feb 2011 Schools in Madison are closed for a second day, as teachers continue to protest the Republican effort to end most of their collective bargaining rights. And at least a dozen other school districts around Wisconsin's capital decide to close, after the head of the state’s largest teachers' union called on all 98,000 members to drive to Madison Thursday for protest rallies.
Madison schools to close Wednesday due to district-wide teacher sickout 16 Feb 2011 Madison schools will be closed Wednesday as teachers planned a district-wide absence to attend protests against [GOP] Gov. Scott Walker's proposal to limit union bargaining. District Superintendent Dan Nerad made the announcement at 11 p.m. Tuesday after 40 percent of the 2,600 members of the teacher's union had called in sick and more were expected to do so through Wednesday morning.
Student strike at University of Puerto Rico rocks island and sparks political crisis 16 Feb 2011 A student strike at the University of Puerto Rico has forced the resignation of its president and sparked the second political crisis in a year for the island's rulers. José Ramón de la Torre, head of the 60,000-student system, resigned Friday after a series of violent clashes between students and riot police. Some 200 people have been arrested and scores of students injured, prompting professors and university workers to walk out for two days last week in sympathy with the students. On Monday, conservative Gov. Luis Fortuño finally relented and pulled back the hundreds of riot police that had been occupying the system's 11 campuses for weeks.
Mega hypocrisy barf alert! Joint DHS-DOJ 'Operation Protect Our Children' Seizes Website Domains Involved in Advertising and Distributing Child Pornography 15 Feb 2011 The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Justice (DOJ) today announced the execution of seizure warrants against 10 domain names of websites engaged in the advertisement and distribution of child pornography as part of "Operation Protect Our Children"--a new joint operation between DOJ and DHS' U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to target sites that provide child pornography. [Yeah, they should start by seizing their own f*cking domains! Every other week I read about DHS or TSA agents caught with child porn on their computers or nabbed trying to make a date with a thirteen-year-old. --LRP]
GOP State Sen. Proposes Elimination of Child Labor Laws 15 Feb 2011 Missouri State Sen. Jane Cunningham says her quest to change Missouri's child labor laws is driven by her belief that the current restrictions are "implying that government can make a better decision than a parent." But Cunningham, R-Chesterfield, takes exception to critics who contend that her proposed changes, contained in SB 222, would put children younger than 16 in danger.
Mo. Senate panel advances 'right to work' bill 16 Feb 2011 A Missouri Senate panel has advanced legislation that would prevent people from having to pay union fees as a condition of employment. The legislation cleared the Senate General Laws Committee on a party-line vote Tuesday, with Republicans backing it and Democrats it opposing it. The vote means the bill can now move to the full Senate for debate.
Common Cause Asks Court About Thomas Speech at Koch Brothers Event 15 Feb 2011 Discrepancies in reports about an appearance by Justice [sic] Clarence Thomas at a political retreat for wealthy conservatives three years ago have prompted new questions to the Supreme Court from a group that advocates changing campaign finance laws. When questions were first raised about the retreat last month, a court spokeswoman said Justice Thomas had made a "brief drop-by" at the event in Palm Springs, Calif., in January 2008 and had given a talk. In his financial disclosure report for that year, however, Justice Thomas reported that the Federalist Society, a prominent conservative legal group, had reimbursed him an undisclosed amount for four days of "transportation, meals and accommodations" over the weekend of the retreat. The event is organized by Charles and David Koch, brothers who have used millions of dollars from the energy conglomerate they run in Wichita, Kan., to finance conservative causes.
House Shoots Down Boehner-Backed Project 17 Feb 2011 The House of Representatives voted Wednesday to kill a military jet engine project based in Republican House Speaker John Boehner's backyard, in a display of budget-cutting resolve fueled by an alliance of Republican budget hawks and Democrats who backed a White House call to end the program. In a 233-198 vote, lawmakers approved an amendment cutting $450 million in 2011 spending to develop a second engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. The engine is being developed by General Electric Co. and Rolls-Royce Group PLC in a town that abuts Mr. Boehner's southwest Ohio district, and the speaker and his top lieutenants opposed the move to kill the project.
Boehner: 'So Be It' If Federal Workers Are Laid Off 15 Feb 2011 House Speaker John Boehner expressed little sympathy Tuesday for federal workers who lose their jobs as the result of Republican budget cutting. "In the last two years, under President Obama, the federal government has added 200,000 [sic] new federal jobs," Mr. Boehner told reporters Tuesday morning during a press conference in the lobby of the Republican National Committee, according to various news outlets. "If some of those jobs are lost, so be it. We're broke." ...Mr. Boehner’s "so be it" line marks a coarse reversal from his more sympathetic "Where are the jobs?" mantra from the last election.
Obama's budget and the rot of American capitalism By Patrick Martin 15 Feb 2011 After committing trillions in federal bailouts to the banks and billionaires, the White House is demanding [federal budget] cuts that will devastate the working class, and particularly its poorest and most vulnerable sections. The $1.1 trillion in cuts for the next decade proposed by the White House is to be only the starting point for further cuts, as spokesmen for both big business parties acknowledge... Democrats and Republicans agree on gargantuan military spending, an uninterrupted flow of funds to the financial aristocracy, and continued tax breaks for corporate America and the wealthy.
Mississippi governor refuses to denounce proposal to honour former Ku Klux Klan leader 16 Feb 2011 The governor of Mississippi has refused to denounce a Southern heritage group's proposal for a state-issued vehicle license plate that would honour a rebel general who was an early leader of the Ku Klux Klan. Haley Barbour, a potential 2012 Republican presidential candidate, said he did not think the state legislature would approve the plate bearing the name of Gen Nathan Bedford Forrest that was proposed by the Mississippi Division of Sons of Confederate Veterans. The group wants to sponsor a series of state-issued license plates over the next few years to mark the 150th anniversary of the Civil War -- or in its words, the "War Between the States".
Controversial 'defense of unborn' bill could be changed or dropped 16 Feb 2011 Rep. Phil Jensen (R-Sociopath-Rapid City) said Wednesday that he is considering amending or withdrawing a controversial bill that incited a national uproar when opponents said it would legalize the killing of abortion providers. House Bill 1171 has the stated purpose of making use of lethal force in defense of a fetus justifiable homicide. Supporters disputed that it would allow the killing of abortion providers and deferred the bill from its scheduled Tuesday hearing to consider amendments.
Calif. stores face lawsuits after ZIP code ruling 15 Feb 2011 More than a dozen national retail chains operating in California have been hit with lawsuits since the state Supreme Court ruled that it's illegal for clerks to ask customers for their ZIP codes. The high court unanimously ruled last week that ZIP codes are part of customers' addresses, which a state consumer privacy law forbids stores from requesting during credit card transactions.
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