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Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Friday, June 27, 2014

The Daily Drift

Team USA moving on to next round of the World Cup ...!
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For those interested: In World Cup play Portugal bested Ghana 2-1: Germany bested the United States 1-0: Belgium bested South Korea 1-0 while Russia and Algeria played to a 1-1 tie in play on the fifteenth day of the tourney.

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Today in History

363 Roman Emperor Julian dies, ending the Pagan Revival.
1743 English King George defeats the French at Dettingen, Bavaria.
1833 Prudence Crandall, a white woman, is arrested for conducting an academy for black women in Canterbury, Conn.
1862 Confederates break through the Union lines at the Battle of Gaines' Mill–the third engagement of the Seven Days' campaign.
1864 General Sherman is repulsed by Confederates at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain.
1871 The yen becomes the new form of currency in Japan.
1905 The crew of the Russian battleship Potemkin mutinies.
1918 Two German pilots are saved by parachutes for the first time.
1923 Yugoslav Premier Nikola Pachitch is wounded by Serb attackers in Belgrade.
1924 Democrats offer Mrs. Leroy Springs the vice presidential nomination, the first woman considered for the job.
1927 The U.S. Marines adopt the English bulldog as their mascot.
1929 Scientists at Bell Laboratories in New York reveal a system for transmitting television pictures.
1942 The Allied convoy PQ-17 leaves Iceland for Murmansk and Archangel.
1944 Allied forces capture the port city of Cherbourg, France.
1950 The UN Security Council calls on members for troops to aid South Korea.
1963 Henry Cabot Lodge is appointed U.S. ambassador to South Vietnam.
1973 President Richard Nixon vetoes a Senate ban on the Cambodia bombing.
1985 The U.S. House of Representatives votes to limit the use of combat troops in Nicaragua.

Non Sequitur


Darth Cheney and Lush Dimbulb Claim That President Obama Is Deliberately Hurting America

dick cheney rush limbaugh

On Tuesday, Darth Cheney and his evil spawn, Liz, appeared on The Lush Dimbulb Show to discuss Iraq and basically trash the President. The Cheneys have had a pretty rough go of it media-wise since co-writing an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal last week claiming that President Obama is solely to blame for the recent troubles in Iraq. Faux News’ Megyn Kelly famously tore Darth apart regarding his claim that Obama has been frequently wrong regarding Iraq, as she pointed out that Cheney has made many incorrect statements about the war during his tenure in office.
An appearance on ABC’s This Week didn’t go much better, as even Jonathan Karl gave Cheney a tough interview and pushed back on many of his claims. On top of that, The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart and numerous columnists and reporters have ripped apart Cheney for having the temerity to even show his face and try to criticize this administration considering his own track record. However, Darth Cheney and his hateful spawn were able to find one safe haven to spew their dangerous and idiotic rhetoric, and that was El Lushbo’s show.
During the' interview', which was more like a ‘Blame Obama’ whine fest, Dimbulb and both Cheneys claimed that the president is purposely trying to “take America down a notch,” weaken the economy and hurt the United States’ presence in the international community. Essentially, they are playing into the birthers’ conspiracy theories that Obama doesn’t believe in ‘American exceptionalism’ and that he is actually working to harm the country in order to make it pay for years of imperialism and colonialism. The fact that we have a lying pervert, along with his spawn, intentionally placing these ideas into the conversation is absolutely disgraceful. Based on what was said during this interview, it is apparent that the Cheneys new think tank, Alliance for a Strong America, is nothing more than a refuge for lunatic fringe wingnut nut jobs to gain ‘legitimacy’ for their crazy stories and conspiracy theories.
Below is just a sampling of the crazy that was witnessed in the interview:
LUSH: You bet. Now, you guys have formed a group, a think tank. I want to know what it is. It’s called the Alliance for a Strong America. I can pretty much guess why you’ve decided to do this now, but I want you to tell me why you’re doing it, if there was one particular tipping point or issue that made you finally throw down the gauntlet and say you just had to do this.
DARTH CHENEY: Well, I think one of the things that stimulated our thinking, Lush, and sort of brought it to a head — we’ve been thinking a lot of this for some time — is Liz and I took a trip to the Middle East a couple months ago and visited with a lot of friends out there, people I dealt with 25 years ago during Desert Storm. And we came away from that experience thoroughly depressed at the perception they have of the United States, in particular of the Obama administration. Lack of trust, lack of confidence in our leadership or our willingness to keep our commitments. Just a decided diminution of the ability of the United States to influence events in a key part of the world, for all kinds of reasons.
LUSH: They volunteered this, or did you interview them?
DARTH CHENEY: I think it’d be fair to say they volunteered it. These are people I’ve known a long time and that I’ve kept up with over the years, and they all agreed to see us in advance. Liz worked that part of the world extensively when she was at the State Department and previous juntas, and you just came away with this sense of weakness, of lack of trust and confidence in the US; that the role that we historically have played as sort of the leading nation in terms of maintaining the peace and stability in the world was gone.
LUSH: Well, I was happy to hear Dr. Krauthammer suggest that Obama is managing a decline. I’ve been worried about this for three or four years, and I’m gonna go a step further. I don’t think he’s managing a decline, ’cause I think the natural tendency of the United States economy — for example, like an airplane. The natural tendency is to grow. You have to sit on this economy if you want to suppress it.
The natural tendency of the American people is to expand, to grow, to improve themselves and everybody around them. Same thing with foreign policy. Some of this stuff doesn’t seem like it’s part of a natural decline. My fear is that this goes far beyond managing and is, in fact, purposeful because of a distorted view of this country that the president and people like him have about this country.
Being unjust and immoral and, “We have no business, we’re colonialists, we’re imperialists!” We fight now kidnapped girls in Nigeria with hashtags and we want people to take us seriously? You know, some of this stuff is just beyond belief. So it’s good that you’re doing this, but what is the practical application of your group? Who’s gonna join? What are you gonna do?
LIZ CHENEY: Well, there’s a number of different things. First of all, it’s clear to us that we’ve got the problem that you’re laying out, which is absolutely right. I think the president’s actions are very intentional. He wants to take America down a notch. He doesn’t believe in American exceptionalism. So what we’re doing initially is we’re gonna be a place where people can come to get ammunition, frankly, to make the arguments.
To be able to say, “Wait a second, this is why American power matters.” We want to be a place that can help to buck people up, to lay out the policy discussions, to lay out this side of the policy debate, so that people’s voices can be heard. People can sign up on our website, which is StrongerAmerica.com, in order to get information about all the important national security issues of the day.

Usually, you try to at least beat around the bush and not come right out and say that you think a President is trying to deliberately bring the country down. Let alone do you say you’ve created a group where people can get “ammunition” to use when trying to defend their crazy second-rate theories about the President. Yet, here you go. This was broadcast on hundreds of radio stations and listened by millions of people. Extremely dangerous and outlandish rhetoric of this type has no place in our national conversation.

Darth Cheney

John Boehner and House repugicans Are Suing Obama For Being President

From the "Of all the Lame Idiots" Department:

obama-boehnerInstead of creating jobs or passing legislation, Speaker of the House John Boehner announced that House repugicans are suing President Obama using his presidential power to issue executive orders.
Boehner told House repugicans that he will be announcing within days, or maybe next week, that the House, a.k.a. House repugicans, will be suing President Obama over his use of executive orders.
According to Roll Call:
Boehner told the House repugican coven during a closed-door meeting Tuesday morning that he has been consulting with legal scholars and plans to unveil his next steps this week or next, according to sources in the room.
Boehner spokesman Michael Steel said further action is necessary because the Senate has not taken up bills passed by the House targeting executive actions. The House has passed a bill expediting court consideration of House resolutions starting lawsuits targeting executive overreach and another mandating that the attorney general notify Congress when the administration decides to take executive action outside of what has been authorized by Congress.
“The president has a clear record of ignoring the American people’s elected representatives and exceeding his constitutional authority, which has dangerous implications for both our system of government and our economy,” Steel said. “The House has passed legislation to address this, but it has gone nowhere in the Democratic-controlled Senate, so we are examining other options.”
Boehner told the repugicans that he didn’t know which executive orders that the House was going to sue Obama over. What Speaker Boehner announced boils down to this: House repugicans are mad because the Senate won’t pass their bills, so they are going to sue President Obama over something. They aren’t sure what yet, but they are definitely going to sue the President Of The United States.
One might think that before they went to court, House repugicans might try to come up with a reason for suing the president. Logic has never been a friend of these repugicans, so the odds are that Boehner made the decision to sue the president and then decided that he would work out the details later.
Executive orders have been used since George Washington was president. Courts have long held that executive orders are legal. After seeing their attempts to block President Obama’s legislative agenda fail, repugicans are turning to the courts in the hope that the judicial branch will obstruct this president. The Boehner lawsuit isn’t about checks and balances. It isn’t about the separation of powers. Any potential lawsuit from the House repugicans will be all about political obstruction.
House repugicans are doing anything that they can think of distract the nation from their abysmal job performance. They are even willing to take President Obama to court if it means keeping people from asking questions about why repugicans won’t create jobs while trying to take away healthcare from millions.
The truth is that Boehner and the repugicans are suing Obama for carrying out his duties and being president. The truth is that repugicans had no problem with the shrub’s executive orders, or ronnie raygun’s executive orders. The issue that they have isn’t with executive orders. It’s because Barack Obama is the President Of The United States.

John Boehner Snubs the Unemployed as repugicans Push for Unpaid For Business Tax Cuts

John BoehnerAs they push for permanent unpaid tax subsidies for big business, House repugicans once again turn their noses up at the unemployed.
The Senate offered up yet another bill to renew long term unemployment benefits, according to Arthur Delaney at The Huffington Post, who reported that the bill is paid for, just like the previous one the Seante tried to get the House to pass.
A spokesman for Boehner told HuffPost on Tuesday that the speaker’s response would remain the same.
House Speaker John Boehner can’t be bothered to look at the new bill, which just like the old bill, addresses the alleged “issues” the repugicans had with it, according to HuffPo. It’s paid for with revenue increases, as required by Senate repugicans.
Apparently this isn’t good enough for House repugicans, who have invented truly creative excuses for their reliable refusal to legislate.
This bipartisan bill authored by Sens. Jack Reed (D-RI) and Dean Heller (r-NV) should have at least garnered a longing glance by repugicans since it doesn’t provide retroactive benefits to those 3 million Americans House repugicans have been kicking in the gut since December.
However, it seems Boehner’s rejection is not about the actual bill. Boehner is already entrenched in his position and will not budge no matter how repugican the bill is. The only logical conclusion to draw from this is that Boehner doesn’t want to address the long term unemployment benefits, and he’s run out of excuses so now he’s just passing sight unseen.
Speaker Boehner’s shafting of the unemployed impacts more than just those folks who are looking for work. In March 2014 it was estimated that Boehner and his House of Cards had caused the economy to lose 5 billion dollars:
The U.S. economy has lost $4.7 billion ($4,698,892,545 to be exact – see the breakdown below) in the first three months of the year due to the Dec. 28 expiration of federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation, according to an analysis released today Monday by Ways and Means Committee Democrats.
The repugicans were busted in March for trying to add 310 billion dollars — which Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Sander Levin (D-MI) pointed out, “represents more than half of the entire federal deficit this year” — to the deficit with permanent, unpaid for tax provisions.
On June 12, Levin again pointed out the hypocrisy of repugicans hiding under the false excuse that the unemployment extensions are not paid for while they shred their own alleged budget principle by adding unpaid tax credits to the deficit.
“The inability of the House repugican Majority to take action to help our recovery, bolster small businesses, and grow our economy has resulted in smoke and mirror votes like the ones before us today. They want to signal that they support small business, but their action is so inconsistent with their past positions that it is rendered hypocritical,” Levin charged.
So, once again, Boehner won’t even look at a bill for the unemployed that would help our economy. It doesn’t matter that it’s paid for. It doesn’t matter that it pretends the last 6 months of misery for the unemployed didn’t happen or that Boehner is costing the economy billions of dollars just to appease the repugican base by giving the middle finger to hurting Americans.

Voter Fraud Found as Scott Walker Supporter Charged With 13 Felonies In Wisconsin

It turns out that voter fraud is real. A repugican Scott Walker supporter in Wisconsin has been charged with 13 felony counts related to voter fraud.
According to WisPolitics.com:
Robert Monroe, a 50-year-old Shorewood health insurance executive, was charged Friday with 13 felonies related to his voting a dozen times in five elections between 2011 and 2012 using his own name as well as that of his son and his girlfriend’s son.
According to those records, Monroe was considered by investigators to be the most prolific multiple voter in memory. He was a supporter of Gov. Scott Walker and state Sen. Alberta Darling, both repugicans, and allegedly cast five ballots in the June 2012 election in which Walker survived a recall challenge.
According to the John Doe records, Monroe claimed to have a form of temporary amnesia and did not recall the election day events when confronted by investigators.
Hallelujah! The repugicans have found their voter fraud. Unfortunately for them, they are the ones committing it. The Monroe case is even worse, because he voted multiple times in the April 2011 Wisconsin Supreme Court race that required a recount. This isn’t the first episode of repugican voter fraud in the state. In 2011, a repugican legislative aide was investigated for voting multiple times.
The greatest irony of all is that the Monroe case exposes why voter ID laws don’t do what repugicans claim they do. Since repugicans benefit most from absentee voting, they have refused to address the glaring potential for fraud by absentee ballot. The repugican in Wisconsin was able to commit multiple acts of state and federal voter fraud by using absentee ballots for state elections, and driving across state lines for federal elections.
The repugican voter ID laws address none of these issues, and instead focus on suppressing the vote by requiring voters who are more likely to vote for Democrats to show identification. A person is least likely to have identification if they are living in the city, and don’t drive. Voter ID laws are being used to suppress the votes of women by making strict rules about acceptable names on the identification.
It turns out that voter fraud is real, and repugicans are guilty of doing it.

Rick Snyder’s Emergency Manager Is Denying Poor People Running Water In Detroit

A coalition working with organizations and activists the world over to promote water as a basic human right filed a report with the U.N. Commission on Human…
It is likely that most Americans have a difficult time comprehending what drives certain individuals to purposely create intolerable suffering for other human beings. In fact, the majority of Americans can hardly understand, much less tolerate, cruelty to animals and would rush to report animal abuse to groups like the Humane Society to intervene in the animals’ behalf. It is a sad fact of life that there is no humane society to report abuse of human beings, or the repugican cabal would face investigations for a litany of human abuse complaints and it is likely why they blatantly abuse Americans with impunity. However, there is a world organization monitoring human rights violations and a group of Americans appealed to the United Nations Commission for Human Rights to intervene on behalf of poor American citizens who have lost a fundamental human right in any country in the world.
Last Wednesday, a coalition working working with organizations and activists the world over to promote water as a basic human right filed a report with, and appealed to, the U.N. Commission on Human Rights on behalf of tens-of-thousands of poor Detroit residents who are being denied access to what any civilized human being would consider a basic human right; running water. The report filed with the U.N.’s Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation alleges the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) shut off water for tens-of-thousands of residents who are 60 days delinquent on their bills.
It is important to remember that the purpose behind Governor Rick Snyder and Michigan’s repugican legislature in passing Snyder’s “emergency manager” abomination that was rejected by voters was to sell off Detroit to privatization. Despite voters’ abhorrence and rejection of Snyder’s plan to appoint dictators and abolish democracy in financially struggling areas, repugicans passed “emergency manager” legislation in a lame duck session less than three weeks after voters said rejected the idea at the polls. Snyder defended the move and said, “These new laws recognize and respect the needs of citizens and will deliver meaningful reforms to keep Michigan on the path to prosperity.” Apparently, access to safe water is not part of Michigan repugicans’ idea of the “needs of citizens,” especially poor citizens, but it is “the path to prosperity” for whichever corporation Detroit’s emergency manager gives the water delivery system to.
One of the groups lending their voice to the report to the U.N. Human Rights Commission noted that as Detroit’s poverty rate rose to 40%, water rates doubled and put the cost of basic running water out of the reach of tens-of-thousands of households. To make matters worse, the Detroit lawmaker just raised water rates by nearly 9% to both appeal financially to a private enterprise and affect even more low-income households, but not commercial clients. According to “The People’s Water Board,” businesses that are delinquent on their water bills “have not been targeted in the same way as residential users.”
The DWSD said they do not discriminate in terms of individuals or businesses, and boasted that “Last month we shut off about 3,600 accounts that were $150 or 60 days in arrears. That is our policy and we’re ramping up our enforcement of that policy.” However, out of 165,000 delinquent accounts facing the prospect of losing access to water, less than 11,000 are commercial or industrial clients that average more than $7,700 in arrears. Residential clients are losing their water over $150, or 60 days, delinquency. In fact, non-residential clients account for half of delinquent bills in spite of accounting for less than 7% of total delinquencies.
The city, or better yet, the emergency “manager” is aggressively seeking to privatize the water delivery system that was the drive to bankrupt Detroit in the first place. The emergency manager appointed by Governor Snyder, Kevin Orr began seeking private bids back in March with submission end date this month. Experts and analysts were stunned at the fast track to privatization they claim is too costly and too damaging to residents and cited examples of residents’ suffering higher water and sewer rates, poorer service, and the ill-effects of administrative dysfunction. It is what ALEC alumnus Snyder considers meeting the “residents’ needs” and “the path to prosperity” for the corporation that “buys” the right to deliver water to those who can afford it, and it appears more residents will lose the basic human right to water.
It is pathetic that the richest nation on Earth cannot provide all its citizens with a basic human right that is as key to sustaining life as nutrition. One of the coalition members that appealed to the U.N. Human Rights Commission, the Council of Canadians Maud Barlow said, “We are asking the UN special rapporteur to make clear to the U.S. government that it has violated the human right to water.” Barlow also said that besides creating international pressure to stop the Detroit dictator (emergency manager) from withholding water from residents, the United Nation’s intervention could lead to formal consequences for the United States. She said, “If the US government does not respond appropriately this will also impact their Universal Periodic Review when they stand before the Human Rights Council to have their human rights record evaluated.” Two months ago, the U.N. Human Rights Committee condemned (Section 19) the United States for criminalizing homelessness they called “cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment” and a violation of America’s obligation to adhere to international human rights treaties.
It is a deplorable state of affairs when the country most likely to condemn other nations for human rights abuses is once again the target of United Nations human rights violations. Having access to something as fundamentally basic as clean running water should not be determined by a family’s income level or rate increases meant to appeal to a prospective corporation’s bottom line. However, this is America and more specifically, it is an ALEC repugican-controlled state violating its own citizens most basic human rights.
This country was once a leader in human rights, but when Americans elected an African American man as President, repugicans made this country in the image of third world countries that treat their citizens like so much refuse. What is happening in Detroit portends the condition of the entire nation if repugicans, teabaggers, and libertarians have their way. Because if basic human rights are exclusive to those who can afford them, it will not be long until privatization-minded repugicans put water in the same category as basic healthcare on the national level; a privilege for those with the means to afford it when the rest of civilization considers it a fundamental human right.

White Gun Nuts Plan To March Through Black Neighborhood Carrying Assault Rifles

open carry texasThe Houston chapter of Open Carry Texas, a gun nut agitator coven, postponed an event that was scheduled for this past Sunday where their members were going to walk through the streets of the Fifth Ward in Houston openly carrying assault rifles. The event, which has not been canceled but merely moved to another date, was ostensibly also going to be a canned food drive organized with a local cult. The Fifth Ward is a predominantly black neighborhood and the event was originally scheduled to take place shortly after the celebration of Juneteenth.
Per event organizers, the march has been moved to another date because one of the main organizers, C.J. Grisham, was unable to attend this past Sunday, as he was scheduled to appear somewhere else where open carry agitatirs were appearing in public with guns. Per Grisham, the neighborhood march is meant to be a community outreach attempt by Open Carry as well as a charitable affair. If you are to ask the group, Open Carry’s purpose in doing this isn’t to antagonize and intimidate, but merely to ‘educate’ others and let them know that they all have the right to carry around scary-looking assault weapons everywhere they go. Texas’ laws now make it perfectly legal to openly carry long assault rifles, such as an AR-15.
Joe Deshotel at Burnt Orange Report, upon learning of the original event, checked with the local cult that the event’s organizers stated they had coordinated with to do the canned food drive portion of the march. As one would suspect, the cult had no idea what was going on and confirmed that they had not discussed any such drive with Open Carry Texas. It appears that the cabal was caught in a lie, as they were merely trying to create the illusion that this event was something more than just a bunch of nut jobs marching through a neighborhood carrying guns.
Deshotel also highlighted past incidents from some of the group’s members. He provided pictures and Facebook posts from some of the members showing quasi-racist behavior. One member took a picture of himself outside the office of Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), who represents the ward, eating a piece of fried chicken. The Congresswoman is African American. Another person was shown holding a sign that stated that the Congresswoman supported slavery because she’s for gun control. One Open Carry member posted to Facebook that most blacks are thugs and that going to prison is no different than living at home and leeching off of the government, only the address has changed.
Basically, the Houston chapter of Open Carry Texas was looking for a way to be provocative and step it up as a way of getting further press, which they have now received. I guess you can only go to so many chain restaurants and box stores in the suburbs before people stop paying attention to you. Considering that the NRA retracted their original admonishment of the group’s activities, and have essentially endorsed what they are doing now, Open Carry now feels emboldened to push the envelope and organize more aggressively inappropriate demonstrations. It seems like race-baiting is the new direction.
I see this march with guns (if they still decide to go through with it) as a multi-front operation. One, considering that their membership is almost exclusively white, they are perhaps hoping to appeal to some people of color and add some diversity to their organization. Another reason to do this march is to garner some easy publicity. Finally, I think they are hoping that the antagonistic nature of the march will lead to a confrontation that could eventually lead to shots fired. Open carry agitatirs and gun nut agitators constantly claim that they need their guns for self-defense and to fight off the ‘bad guys.’ By purposely causing a tense and volatile situation, there might be some gun nuts in the crowd that are hoping they finally get a chance to be the ‘good guy with a gun.’

Random Celebrity Photos


Audrey Hepburn
Audrey Hepburn

Critically burned toddler in coma after SWAT team drug raid on home

Bounkham Phonesavanh, a 19-month-old, was severely injured during a SWAT team raid in Georgia.
Bounkham Phonesavanh, a 19-month-old, was severely injured during a SWAT team raid in Georgia. A toddler nicknamed "Bou Bou" by his mom and dad was put into a medically-induced coma after being badly burned by a police “flash bang” grenade, which landed in the crib where the boy was sleeping during a drug raid.
In Salon, his mom Alecia Phonesavanh recounts what she witnessed. Officers threw a flashbang grenade in her son's crib and left a hole in his chest.
"I have to face the reality that my son is fighting for his life," she writes. "It’s not clear whether he’ll live or die. All of this to find a small amount of drugs?"
Flashbang grenades were created for soldiers to use during battle. When they explode, the noise is so loud and the flash is so bright that anyone close by is temporarily blinded and deafened. It’s been three weeks since the flashbang exploded next to my sleeping baby, and he’s still covered in burns.
There’s still a hole in his chest that exposes his ribs. At least that’s what I’ve been told; I’m afraid to look.
My husband’s nephew, the one they were looking for, wasn’t there. He doesn’t even live in that house. After breaking down the door, throwing my husband to the ground, and screaming at my children, the officers – armed with M16s – filed through the house like they were playing war. They searched for drugs and never found any.
I heard my baby wailing and asked one of the officers to let me hold him. He screamed at me to sit down and shut up and blocked my view, so I couldn’t see my son. I could see a singed crib. And I could see a pool of blood. The officers yelled at me to calm down and told me my son was fine, that he’d just lost a tooth. It was only hours later when they finally let us drive to the hospital that we found out Bou Bou was in the intensive burn unit and that he’d been placed into a medically induced coma.
An Atlanta TV news account is here, graphic images of the child's injuries.

First Amendment Protects Employees From Job Retaliation

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the First Amendment protects public employees from job retaliation when they testify in court about official corruption.In a unanimous decision, the court decided in favor of Edward Lane, a former Alabama community college official who says he was fired after testifying at the criminal fraud trial of a state lawmaker.

USA's no-fly list is unconstitutional, says federal judge in landmark ruling

Photo: Reuters
A federal judge ruled that the US deprived 13 people on its no-fly list of a constitutional right to travel, and provided no effective way to challenge being on the list. Her decision is the first ruling in the country to find the no-fly list redress procedures unconstitutional.
U.S. District Court Judge Anna Brown's decision says the procedures lack a meaningful mechanism for people to challenge their placement on the list.
Thirteen people challenged their placement on the list in 2010, including four military veterans.
Initially, Brown said she couldn't rule on the case. In 2012, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed that decision and sent the case back to her.
Brown said placement on the no-fly list turns routine travel into an "odyssey," and some of those on the list have been subjected to detention and interrogation by foreign authorities.

How Powerful Is Your Passport?

Even in our digital world, a 3x5 inch paper booklet we call the passport dominates our ability to travel between countries. But no two national passports are created equal. As we all know some passports enjoy a lot more privileges than others.

Check out this infographic from GOOD Infographics to see how your passport ranks in terms of mobility. Can you guess which passports are the most valuable?

HSBC customer forced to make 10,000-mile round trip to access his bank account

When former Hong Kong resident Robert Lewis opened an account with the 'world's local bank' he thought HSBC would be able to cater for all his financial needs, wherever in the world he went. Little did he know that due to a breakdown in communication over his signature, he would be forced to embark on a marathon 16,000-kilometer (10,000 mile) round-trip from his native Australia to Hong Kong, simply to access his cash.
Now he is seeking AUS$5,000 (£2,800) from the bank to cover the cost and inconvenience of his journey. Lewis's problems started in April when he tried to access his account online from his home in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales. He had turned to the bank's website after discovering that the ATM card he was issued in Hong Kong was no longer valid due to a security upgrade. The account had not been used since he returned to Australia in August 2011.
Once online Lewis discovered he was unable to gain access to the account as he did not have an internet security device. To get one, the 55-year-old learned that he would have to travel to an HSBC branch and change his address in person. This involved a 10-hour round trip to Sydney, 455 kilometers away - an inconvenience that was just the tip of the iceberg. Two weeks later, and despite being approved by two HSBC officers in Sydney, the Hong Kong branch rejected the change-of-address application on the grounds that his signature did not match the one on its records.
That left the education consultant with no choice but to fly to Hong Kong and confront staff himself. Lewis said his travails made a mockery of the bank's "world bank" claims and the convenience of its network. "The first port of call is the nearest branch, where you expect there's a relationship between all these branches," Lewis said. "This has cost me an incredible amount of time and income, inconvenience, stress and anxiety. It is hardly the thing you expect from an international bank." An HSBC spokesman said the bank was checking the case and would not comment on the affairs of individual customers.

Everyday Life in New York City in the 1890s

Social reformer and photojournalist Jacob Riis took many pictures of New York City in the 1890s to show how “the other half” lives. Those pictures are now part of The City Museum, and a selection is online at Vintage Everyday. These pictures show the streets of the city, the back alleys, tenements, poorhouses, schools, sweatshops, and makeshift livings spaces for the struggling poor of the era.
As you see how much has changed in the past century, you also realize that cities still have sweatshop workers, homeless people, crowded slums, and marginalized folks getting by the best they can.

31 Essential Science Fiction Terms And Where They Came From

There are so many words and phrases that we use in science fiction - and even science - without giving it much thought. But where did we get terms like 'alien,' 'death ray,' 'terraforming,' 'hive mind,' telepathy,'' and 'parallel universe.'



Tanning Addiction

Seeking out the perfect tan might be about more than vanity, research suggests.

Too Sleep-Deprived to Excel?

Would kids do better in school if they did not have to wake up at the crack of dawn Monday through Friday? Tara examines the impact of a sleepy head on academic performance. 

Ebola 'Out of Control'

The medical charity Doctors Without Borders reports that the scale of the epidemic is unprecedented. 

Contrails and Climate Change

Contrails trap solar energy and contribute to climate change. But that effect could be lessened by rerouting the planes, scientists say.

All the Earth's Carbon

Scientists are hoping for a new perspective on the long-standing mystery with a NASA satellite that will, for the first time, make carbon dioxide measurements globally from space. 

Daily Comic Relief


This Second Century A.D. Lighthouse Is Still in Use

This is the Tower of Hercules near La Coruña, Spain--the northwestern tip of the Iberian peninsula. It may be the only ancient lighthouse still in use. It's possible that a Phoenician work preceded it, but we can be sure that a Roman structure lies at the core of this tower. The Romans built it sometime during the reign of Emperor Trajan (r. 98-117 A.D.), who was himself from an area that forms modern Spain. The Romans referred to it in classical writings as Farum Brigantium.
During the Eighteenth Century, the architect Eustaquio Giannini conducted a renovation of the site, building a 161-foot tower over the original 112-foot Roman one.

Waterfalls On Uluru

A Rare Sight
Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, is a large sandstone rock formation in central Australia, and one of the most recognizable natural landmarks of the country. The sandstone formation looks the most wonderful during sunrise and sunset when the fiery red sun is reflected off its surface. But the real spectacle occurs in summer when the region experiences heavy rains.
Rains occur between November and March. At such times, the famous monolith is covered with innumerable streams of water that changes the very color of Ayers Rock to a rare shade of violet.

Super-Colorful Rivers

Rivers hold a presence in our hearts comparable to that of an ocean, but more dynamic, more alive and in tune with a changeable human nature. An ocean is a ponderous entity, immense and immovable, but rivers flow and change their character.
Their nature is at once boisterous and disciplined, humbly contained within the geological framework allotted to them. Some rivers sparkle with many colors, and here are some of the most colorful rivers in the world.

Animal News

Canines relay information with their eyes, especially for group hunting, suggests new research.
Other than 3 being more than 2, what's the difference between a two-toed sloth and a three-toed sloth? The cute little creatures can't speak for themselves, so the job's up to Trace.
A threat to the future of our food supply garners some action from the U.S. federal government.
Is anything ever drab under the sea? Fish don't ever seem to dress down -- they're as colorful as possible, always decked out. That, of course, makes us wonder why.

Animal Pictures