A Peek Inside the Conservative Mind

WARNING: Below, you will be exposed to toxic thinking and noxious conclusions from right-wing partisans. A Level Four HazMat suit is recommended. The CDC will NOT be available for protection. You have been warned. Proceed with caution. Should you experience nausea, vomiting, tearing eyes, a rise in blood pressure SHUT DOWN YOUR BROWSER [...]

Arizona and Wyoming gay marriage bans struck down

Los Angeles Times, By Julie Westfall & James Queally, October 17

Same-sex couples in Arizona, Wyoming and Alaska will all be free to obtain marriage licenses by next week after federal judges struck down bans in two of those states Friday and the U.S. Supreme Court denied a request for a further stay in Alaska.

[...]

Senior NSA official moonlighting for private cybersecurity firm

Patrick Dowd recruited by former NSA director Keith Alexander – Unusual for US official to work for private, for-profit company

The Guardian, By Spencer Ackerman, October 17

The former director of the National Security Agency has enlisted the US surveillance giant’s current chief technology officer for his lucrative cybersecurity business venture, an unusual arrangement undercutting [...]

Senate’s inquiry into CIA torture sidesteps blaming Bush, aides

McClatchy, By Jonathan S. Landay, Ali Watkins and Marisa Taylor, October 16

A soon-to-be released Senate report on the CIA doesn’t assess the responsibility of former President George W. Bush or his top aides for any of the abuses of the agency’s detention and interrogation program, avoiding a full public accounting of one of the [...]

Joe Biden’s son Hunter thrown out of navy over cocaine

Vice-president’s son issues statement of regret after failed drug test leads to discharge from US navy reserve.

The Guardian, October 17

The US vice-president’s son Hunter Biden has been discharged from the US navy reserve after testing positive for cocaine.

Biden failed a drug test administered in June 2013, sources said. The son of Joe [...]

Nurses at Texas hospital: ‘There were no protocols’ about Ebola

CNN, By Catherine E. Shoichet, October 15

A union made troubling allegations Tuesday about the Texas hospital where a nurse contracted Ebola, claiming “guidelines were constantly changing” and “there were no protocols” about how to deal with the deadly virus.”

“The protocols that should have been in place in Dallas were not in place, and [...]

US Supreme Court blocks Texas abortion restrictions

Guardian – The US Supreme Court on Tuesday blocked key parts of a 2013 law in Texas that had closed all but eight facilities providing abortions in America’s second most-populous state.

In an unsigned order, the justices sided with abortion rights advocates and health care providers in suspending an October 2 ruling by a panel [...]

Alaska ban on same-sex marriage ruled unconstitutional

Reuters, By Steve Quinn, October 12

Juneau, AK – A U.S. federal judge on Sunday ruled that the state of Alaska’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional.

Judge Timothy Burgess of the U.S. District Court for Alaska made the ruling after hearing oral arguments on Friday challenging the state’s 16-year-old ban, saying it added to [...]

Connecticut declares Ebola ‘state of emergency’

State health commissioner granted quarantine power

AP, October 7

Hartford, CT — Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has signed an order that gives the state’s public health commissioner the ability to quarantine anyone she believes may have been exposed to the Ebola virus.

Malloy says Tuesday’s order is precautionary and designed to ensure that the state [...]

Crypto wars redux: why the FBI’s desire to unlock your private life must be resisted

In 1995, the US government tried – and failed – to categorise encryption as a weapon. Today, the same lines are being drawn and the same tactics repeated as the FBI wants to do the same. Here’s why they are wrong, and why they must fail again.

The Guardian, By Cory Doctorow, October 9

Eric [...]

Confirmed: California Aquifers Contaminated With Billions Of Gallons of Fracking Wastewater

DeSmogBlog, By Mike G., October 7

After California state regulators shut down 11 fracking wastewater injection wells last July over concerns that the wastewater might have contaminated aquifers used for drinking water and farm irrigation, the EPA ordered a report within 60 days.

It was revealed yesterday that the California State Water Resources Board has [...]

Supreme Court to wait on gay marriage

AP, October 2

Washington – The U.S. Supreme Court has decided not to take action right now on the issue of same-sex marriage. Gay marriage cases are not among cases the court agreed to hear in its term that begins next week.

By rejecting the pending appeals, the court leaves untouched laws in 20 states [...]

Fired financial regulator releases secret tapes of Goldman Sachs meetings

Carmen Segarra, 41, said she began recording meetings because she couldn’t believe how the regulators bowed and scraped to the behemoth investment bank. The tapes were released to ProPublica and This American Life.

New York Daily News, By Ginger Adams Otis, September 27

A fired financial regulator whose job was to oversee Goldman Sachs for [...]

The sexual threats against Emma Watson are an attack on every woman

Vox, By Amanda Taub, September 23

In her famous 1996 commencement address, writer Nora Ephron warned the new graduates of Wellesley college that they were entering a world that was hostile to women’s achievements and begged them to “take it personally.”

“Understand,” she said, “every attack on Hillary Clinton for not knowing her place is [...]

US school districts given free machine guns and grenade launchers

Calls to hand back weapons and gear, from M16 rifles to mine-proof vehicles, obtained under Pentagon scheme

AP, September 18

Los Angeles – School police departments across the US have taken advantage of free military surplus gear, stocking up on mine-resistant armoured vehicles, grenade launchers and scores of M16 rifles.

At least 26 school districts [...]

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