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US House to vote on repealing 2nd, 5th Amendments

San Francisco Chronicle San Francisco Chronicle

"With Democrats applying election-year pressure to act on gun control, Republican Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday the House will vote next week on a GOP proposal aimed at keeping suspected terrorists from obtaining firearms. Democrats indicated that by itself, Ryan's plan would not quell the partisan showdown that has intensified since the June 12 mass shooting in Orlando, Florida. Two Republicans said the House is expected to vote on legislation resembling a National Rifle Association-backed bill that the Senate rejected last week and was opposed by most Democrats." [editor's note: Lest we forget, that one was also opposed by both the ACLU and the FBI - SAT] (06/30/16)

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Ryan-House-to-vote-on-barring-guns-for-suspected-8334602.php

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Study: Ozone hole over Antarctica beginning to heal

USA Today USA Today

"Decades after the fog from hairspray and deodorant cans dissipated in a worldwide ban, the results are finally paying off for the Earth's protective layer: The ozone hole over the Antarctic is beginning to heal, a new study finds. Located in the stratosphere, the ozone layer blocks potentially harmful ultraviolet energy from reaching our planet's surface. Without it, humans and animals could experience increased rates of skin cancer and other ailments. Researchers found the hole shrunk by more than 1.5 million square miles (about half the area of the contiguous United States) since 2000, when ozone depletion was at its peak. 'It’s a big surprise,' said Susan Solomon, an atmospheric chemist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and lead author of the study published Thursday in the journal Science. 'I didn’t think it (the healing) would be this early.'" (06/30/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/weather/2016/06/30/ozone-hole-healing-antarctic/86552814

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Global database leaked — reveals 2.2 million suspected “risky” persons

The Hacker News

"A massive database of terrorists and 'heightened-risk individuals and entities' containing more than 2.2 Million records has reportedly leaked online. Researcher Chris Vickery claimed on Reddit that he had managed to obtain a copy of 2014 version of the World-Check confidential database, which is being used by banks, governments, and intelligence agencies worldwide to scope out risks including suspected terrorists. The leaked database contains more than 2.2 Million records of people with suspected terrorist, organized crime, money laundering, bribery, corruption links, and 'other unsavory activities.'" (06/29/16)

http://thehackernews.com/2016/06/world-check-terrorism-database.html

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Where are the drone casualty figures the White House promised months ago?

The Intercept The Intercept

"Despite months of repeated promises, the White House has yet to release its estimate of civilian casualties from the administration's drone program -- a delayed disclosure the 'New York Times' Editorial Board described as 'too little, too late.' In March, Lisa Monaco, President Barack Obama chief counterterrorism adviser, announced that the White House would 'in the coming weeks' release an 'assessment of combatant and non-combatant casualties' from U.S. drone strikes since 2009. Monaco doubled down on the commitment in a second speech a few weeks later." (06/29/16)

https://theintercept.com/2016/06/29/where-are-the-drone-casualty-figures-the-white-house-promised-months-ago/

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Amid bailout, support grows for Puerto Rico statehood

ABC News ABC News

"That feeling has been reinforced by Congress'[s] approval on Wednesday of a measure meant to help the island['s politicians] out of [their] deep economic malaise. The bill, which President Barack Obama signed on Thursday, allows Puerto Rico['s politicians] to restructure some of [their] debt as U.S. cities['] and counties[' politicians] can. It also creates a board appointed by Congress and the White House that will oversee the debt-restructuring process and Puerto Rico's [politicians'] finances, including requiring the island['s politicians] to have balanced budgets. The measure came too late, with Puerto Rico's governor on Thursday declaring a debt moratorium on nearly $2 billion worth of debt that is due Friday, marking the largest default in the island's [politicians'] history." (06/30/16)

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/amid-crisis-support-grows-puerto-rico-statehood-40257198

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Spain: Tax thugs raid Google’s Madrid office

United Press International United Press International

"Google's offices in Madrid have been raided by Spain's tax investigators in the latest tax conundrum faced by the tech giant. Countries including Spain, France and Britain have complained about the way some technology companies, including Google, Apple, and Yahoo, generate profits in their countries but funnel those funds elsewhere. After the Madrid raid, Google said it complies with all regulations." (06/30/16)

http://www.upi.com/Business_News/2016/06/30/Googles-Madrid-office-raided-amid-European-investigations-into-taxes/5411467287103/

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The Somme at 100: Trench battle showed war’s terrible learning curve

Minneapolis Star Tribune

"The mine exploded on schedule at 7:20 a.m., 100 years ago, July 1, 1916. British sappers had tunneled for months under the no man's land separating the Allied British-French trenches from those of the Germans, and placed 40,000 pounds of high explosive under the German redoubt on Hawthorn Ridge. A British cameraman filmed the explosion, which can be viewed today on the internet. ... On that first day, few of the infantry reached a German trench. The British-led forces suffered more than 57,000 casualties, with nearly 20,000 deaths. Some isolated objectives were achieved, but most were lost following German counterattacks. Despite all, however, the Somme battle slogged on until Nov. 18. No general breakthrough was attained, and the territory gained by the end amounted to a few square miles. The final 'butcher's bill' on both sides: More than 1 million casualties." (06/30/16)

http://www.startribune.com/the-somme-at-100-trench-battle-showed-war-s-terrible-learning-curve/384934481/

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Philippines: Duterte inaugurated as president

USA Today USA Today

"Rodrigo Duterte, whose tough talk and populist rhetoric has earned him comparisons to Donald Trump, promised to tackle crime, corruption and drug use as he was inaugurated Philippine president Thursday. 'The fight will be relentless and it will be sustained,' vowed the 71-year-old former mayor of Davao, a city on the southern island of Mindanao. His brief remarks at the swearing-in ceremony were delivered in English." (06/30/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/06/30/rodrigo-duterte-philippines/86544354/

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FL: “Miami-Dade Police Department” gangsters steal millions from home

CNN CNN

"Authorities found millions of dollars stashed inside buckets hidden in attic walls, along with drugs and a gun, during a search of a home in the Miami area. Between $10 million and $20 million in cash was found after a search of a business and a home, according to arrest documents from the Miami-Dade Police Department. Luis Hernandez-Gonzalez, 44, and his sister, Salma Gonzalez, 32, were arrested Wednesday .... Hernandez-Gonzalez is facing drug trafficking and money laundering charges. His sister, who was arrested at the business, is facing marijuana possession and trafficking charges." [editor's note: Talk about insult to injury. Most gang-bangers would take the drugs, guns and cash but after that leave their victims alone unless there was some reason to kill them on the spot. These guys throw in kidnapping -- likely long-term -- to boot! - TLK] (06/30/16)

http://www.cnn.com/2016/06/30/us/florida-cash-drugs-gun-found-in-home/index.html

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FL: Scott declares state of emergency over blue-green algae

TCPalm

"Thursday morning lakes north of Lake Okeechobee will start holding back a total of about 20 billion gallons of water that otherwise would flow into Lake O and could have ended up feeding algae blooms in the St. Lucie River. The action is part of Gov. Rick Scott's declaration Wednesday of a state of emergency in Martin and St. Lucie counties because of the expansive algae blooms in the St. Lucie River. Scott's executive order calls on state agencies to take actions to address the blooms that are ruining the river's ecology, devastating water-related businesses and potentially could cause health problems for people who come in contact with the water." (06/29/15)

http://www.tcpalm.com/news/indian-river-lagoon/health/martin-county-declares-state-of-emergency-over-blue-green-algae-36707d03-1411-2d05-e053-0100007fd301-384905611.html

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Lebanon: Army says twin Islamic State terror plots foiled

Fox News Fox News

"The Lebanese army says it has foiled two terror plots by the Islamic State group targeting residential and tourist sites in the country. The army said in a statement released Thursday that it had arrested five suspects linked to the plots, among them the alleged mastermind. It did not say where or when the suspects were stopped. The country has been on high alert since nine bombs exploded in the eastern border village of Qaa on Monday, killing five residents." (06/30/16)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/06/30/army-says-twin-is-terror-plots-foiled-in-lebanon.html

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Afghanistan: Suicide attack on police convoy kills 37

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

"A twin suicide attack on a convoy of buses carrying police cadets killed 37 people and wounded 40 others on Thursday, an Afghan official said. The attack took place in Paghman district, some 20 kilometers west of the Afghan capital, Kabul, according to Mousa Rahmati, the district governor of Paghman. The first suicide attacker struck two buses carrying trainee policemen, and a second attacker targeted those who rushed to the scene to help and hit a third bus, Rahmati said. He said that four civilians were among those killed." (06/30/16)

http://triblive.com/usworld/world/10717970-74/attack-suicide-trainee

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SC: Armed citizen thwarts nightclub shooter

USA Carry

"On June 26th, festivities at a nightclub in Spartanburg County, South Carolina were interrupted when a man open fired into the crowd outside. The local sheriff's department reports that there were several injuries at the scene. Speaking for the department, Lt. Kevin Bobo told the press that: 'His rounds struck 3 victims, and almost struck a fourth victim, who in self-defense, pulled his own weapon and fired, striking him in the leg.' ... Legislation passed on June 14th allows South Carolinians with CCW permits to carry in bars and restaurants provided that they are not drinking themselves." [editor's note: Odd, the people yelling that armed citizens couldn't have stopped the Orlando massacre don't seem to be talking about this one ... - TLK] (06/29/16)

http://www.usacarry.com/south-carolina-ccw-holder-thwarts-nightclub-shooter/

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Turkey: Police detain 13 in connection with Istanbul airport attack

The Washington Post Washington Post

"Turkish police have detained at least 13 people in connection with the triple suicide bombing that killed 42 people at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport on Tuesday, state-run Anadolu news agency reported. Counterterrorism units raided 16 addresses in Istanbul on Thursday and launched operations in the coastal city of Izmir, the agency said. ... There has been no claim of responsibility for Tuesday night's airport attack. But Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said in a televised speech late Wednesday that the government's assertion that the Islamic State is responsible 'continues to gain weight.'" (06/30/16)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/turkish-police-conduct-raids-on-suspected-islamic-state-hideouts-after-deadly-airport-attack/2016/06/30/2b91d61a-3e5e-11e6-9e16-4cf01a41decb_story.html

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US Senate passes bailout for Puerto Rico pols

The Hill The Hill

"The Senate late Wednesday approved legislation to address Puerto Rico's [politicians'] growing debt crisis, stepping in to help the ailing territory['s politicians] just ahead of a daunting deadline. By a vote of 68-30, senators cleared a bill that would let the island['s politicians] restructure [their] massive debt load, while establishing an outside control board to police [their] troubled finances. The bill now heads to President Obama, who has been a vocal proponent of the measure and is expected to sign it in short order." (06/29/16)

http://thehill.com/policy/finance/286026-senate-passes-puerto-rico-debt-relief-bill

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Italy, Netherlands regimes agree to split seat on powerful UN Security Council

Fox News Fox News

"Sweden and Kazakhstan won contested elections for coveted seats on the Security Council on Tuesday and the Netherlands and Italy ended a battle for another seat by agreeing to split the two-year term on the U.N.'s most powerful body. The U.N. General Assembly met to choose five new council members and it overwhelmingly elected Ethiopia and Bolivia, who faced no opposition for seats earmarked for Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean. But after five rounds of voting, the Netherlands and Italy who belong to the Western group of countries were deadlocked with each receiving 95 votes -- and needing 127 votes to win." (06/29/16)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/06/29/italy-netherlands-agree-to-split-seat-on-powerful-un-security-council.html

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Iraq: US official claims airstrikes kill at least 250 Islamic State fighters

Fox News Fox News

"A series of American airstrikes killed at least 250 ISIS fighters driving in a convoy outside Fallujah on Wednesday, a senior U.S. defense official confirmed to Fox News. The strikes occurred on the outskirts of the Iraqi city in 'southern Fallujah,' a second U.S. defense official told Fox News. 'There was a strike on a convoy of ISIS fighters trying to leave a neighborhood on the outskirts of southern Fallujah that we struck,' the official said. At least 40 vehicles were destroyed in the airstrikes, a U.S. official told Reuters, which was first to report the air assault." (06/29/16)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/06/29/us-airstrikes-kill-at-least-250-isis-fighters-in-convoy-outside-fallujah-official-says.html

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Obama regime removes GE Capital’s “too big to fail” label

USA Today USA Today

"A U.S. oversight board has voted to remove the 'too-big-to-fail' designation from GE Capital, which had requested the move after its decision to shed billions in assets. The Financial Stability Oversight Council voted Tuesday to remove the label, which had subjected GE Capital to additional scrutiny from the Federal Reserve, including certain financial controls. The panel's unanimous decision, revealed Wednesday morning, reflects a determination that a collapse of GE Capital would no longer represent a systemic threat to the U.S. financial system [or, more likely, that enough council members have received enough favors from GE Capital]." (06/29/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2016/06/29/financial-stability-oversight-council-ge-capital/86505334/

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China replaces top Internet regulator and censor with deputy

Billings Gazette

"China has replaced its internet regulator, Lu Wei, the hard-liner responsible for leading the government's efforts to tighten control over domestic cyberspace and export the ruling Communist Party's philosophy of web control. Lu wielded expansive powers as head of the Central Leading Group for Cyberspace Affairs since 2014, dictating what 700 million Chinese internet users may view online and acting as gatekeeper for technology companies wishing to do business in China." (06/29/16)

http://billingsgazette.com/news/world/china-replaces-top-internet-regulator-and-censor-with-deputy/article_4b501402-54b9-5dc3-a45c-04ad9c58247c.html

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Two transgender Democrats nominated in Western GOP strongholds

San Francisco Chronicle San Francisco Chronicle

"Democrats in some of the reddest pockets of the interior West have nominated transgender women for Congress, sending a message of inclusivity in races many consider unwinnable for the party. Misty Snow was nominated Tuesday in Utah to challenge GOP U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, and Misty Plowright won a primary to challenge Republican Colorado Rep. Doug Lamborn in the state's most conservative congressional district. Both candidates are downplaying gender identity in their primary contests. 'Yeah, I'm trans, but the simple fact of the matter is that a lot of people just don't care,' said Plowright, 33, a first-time candidate who decided to run after attending Democratic presidential caucuses earlier this year and being inspired by the presidential campaign of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders." (06/29/16)

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/2-transgender-Democrats-nominated-in-Western-GOP-8332670.php

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Commentary


| News

What doesn’t fly

Paul Jacob Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

"Omar Mir Seddique Mateen, who murdered 49 people and wounded 53 others in The Pulse nightclub, worked for the globe's largest security firm, Britain's G4S. He passed two background checks conducted by the company. Mateen's government credentials included 'a Florida state-issued security guard license and a security guard firearms license.' Twice, he was investigated by the FBI, in 2013 and again in 2014, and cleared -- investigations closed. Should we talk about security failures? Instead, a filibuster by Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy and a sit-in protest by House Democrats changed the channel to gun control." (06/30/16)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2016/06/30/what-doesnt-fly-2/

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Revolt of the others

spiked spiked
by Frank Furedi

"The morning after the EU referendum, I was with some colleagues at an academic conference in Canterbury, Kent. Most of them were totally dumbfounded by the result. They were genuinely taken aback that a majority of British voters opted to leave the EU. One puzzled social scientist expressed his astonishment: 'I have never met or talked to anyone who supported Brexit.' And he is by no means the only person who has never encountered those 'other' people, those people who felt moved to vote against the EU. It seems that far too many highly educated supporters of the Remain campaign have been talking only to people like themselves. The world they inhabit has little room, or patience, for those others who do not share their outlook." (06/30/16)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/revolt-of-the-others-brexit-eu/

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Tony Blair, war crimes and the plot to remove Jeremy Corbyn

OpEdNews
by Mark Maguire

"In 2 weeks time the long awaited Chilcott Report into the Iraq War is widely expected to savage ex British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Blair and others have done their best, it seems, to delay the report, but its publication is now imminent. A cross-party group of MPs is preparing to press for Tony Blair to be prosecuted for War Crimes. Of even greater concern, though, amongst Blairite supporters and many Tories and establishment figures, Jeremy Corbyn as leader of Her Majesty's Opposition, has made clear that he will request that the Prime Minister establish a Tribunal to investigate Tony Blair for War Crimes. It is against such a background that the Blairite faction of the Labour Party is making desperate attempts to remove Corbyn in advance of the Chilcott Report's publication." (06/30/16)

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Tony-Blair-War-Crimes-and-by-Mark-Maguire-Brexit_Brexit_Chilcott-Inquiry_Crimes-Against-Humanity-160630-503.html

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Multiculturalism: A failed concept

Town Hall
by Walter E Williams

"German Chancellor Angela Merkel declared that multiculturalism has 'utterly failed,' adding that it was an illusion to think Germans and foreign workers could 'live happily side by side.' The failure of multiculturalism is also seen in Denmark, Sweden, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium and other European countries. Immigrants coming from Africa and the Middle East refuse to assimilate and instead seek to import the failed cultures they fled. Leftist diversity advocates and multiculturalists are right to argue that people of all races, religions and cultures should be equal in the eyes of the law. But their argument borders on idiocy when they argue that one set of cultural values cannot be judged superior to another and that to do so is Eurocentrism. That's unbridled nonsense." (06/29/16)

http://townhall.com/columnists/walterewilliams/2016/06/29/multiculturalism-a-failed-concept-n2183873

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Venezuela: Socialism and hunger

Students For Liberty Students For Liberty
by Ludwig Laborda

"June 2nd, 2016 became quite a tense day in Caracas, Venezuela. Many people were waiting for their turn to buy food, but they were not served. This provoked much tension that ended up in a protest. They tried to march to the Miraflores Presidential Palace near the Fuerzas Armadas Avenue, to demand a solution for the food supply shortage, but the only answer they received was plain repression from the National Guard. Events like this could -- and will -- happen again in the country. On the one hand, price controls drown any entrepreneurial activity, since they prevent entrepreneurs from even recovering the resources invested in the manufacturing of price-regulated goods. On the other hand, foreign exchange controls make it much more difficult to obtain the raw materials needed for production." (06/30/16)

http://studentsforliberty.org/blog/2016/06/30/venezuela-socialism-and-hunger/

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Destroying the Electoral College destroys freedom

10th Amendment Center Tenth Amendment Center
by Tom DeWeese

"Our Founding Fathers went to a lot of trouble to give us a government that was fair, representing all the people in every state -- to protect a minority of one against the will of a mob which isn't too concerned about the rights of someone standing in their way. Hence the Electoral College. The abolishment of the Electoral College would, in fact, establish an election tyranny giving control of the government to the massive population centers of the nation's Northeastern sector, along with the area around Los Angeles." (06/30/16)

http://tenthamendmentcenter.com/2016/06/30/destroying-the-electoral-college-destroys-freedom/

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On trade, Trump is an encyclopedia of error

Steve Chapman Reason
by Steve Chapman

"The vision Trump conjures is one of alluring simplicity. He promises to achieve 'economic independence' by abandoning globalization, instead using American workers to produce American goods. This change, he said, would 'create massive numbers of jobs' and 'make America wealthy again.' It's a scam, skillfully pitched to fool the gullible. His framework is a house of cards built on sand in a wind tunnel. Its most noticeable feature is a total divorce from basic economic realities." (06/30/16)

http://reason.com/archives/2016/06/30/on-trade-trump-is-an-encyclopedia-of-err

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Washington still gets it wrong on Islamic State

Reuters Reuters
by Peter Van Buren

"Tuesday’s attacks at Istanbul’s main airport, which appear at this time to be the work of Islamic State, are the latest reminder that the United States should not downplay the group’s rudimentary (yet effective) tactics. Since the wave of Islamic State suicide bombings in May (killing 522 people inside Baghdad, and 148 people inside Syria), American officials have downplayed the strategy as defensive. Brett McGurk, the Special Presidential Envoy in the fight against Islamic State, said the group "returned to suicide bombing" as the area under its control shrank. The American strategy of focusing primarily on the 'big picture' recapture of territory seems to push the suicide bombings to the side. 'It’s their last card,' stated an Iraqi spokesperson in response to the attacks. The reality is just the opposite." (06/29/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-islamic-state-commentary-idUSKCN0ZF2L2

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In search of fascism

The American Conservative The American Conservative
by Allen Mendenhall

"The term 'fascism' is employed with such regular enthusiasm by everyone from political activists to celebrities and academics that our pundits could be forgiven for assuming that fascists lurk behind every corner and at every level of government. MSNBC host Keith Olbermann accused the Bush administration of fascism. Thomas Sowell has called President Obama a fascist. A quick online search yields accusations that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are fascists. The term 'Islamofascism' circulates widely, and groups as dissimilar as campus Social Justice Warriors and the leaders of the National Rifle Association have been dubbed fascist. It's clear why fanatics or dogmatists would label their opponents with the f-word: rhetorical play scores political points. But is there ever any truth behind the label?" ()6/30/16)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/in-search-of-fascism/

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Supreme Court legalizes influence peddling: McDonnell v. United States

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Rob Hager

"Until now, it has been the corrupt Congress, not the Court, that has been responsible all these years for the failure to enforce traditional conflict of interest prohibitions against the increasing levels of legalized campaign finance corruption of politicians who divert their delegated public powers to the service of their benefactors' private interests against the public interests of the electorate. While the Supreme Court has given the benefactors nearly absolute First Amendment protection from any laws effectively prohibiting the supply of political investments, it is the politicians who have given themselves a free pass to deliver the influence they have peddled in return for those investments." (06/30/16)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/06/30/supreme-court-legalizes-influence-peddling-mcdonnell-v-united-states/

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Could the US really gut its trade deals?

The Atlantic The Atlantic
by Alana Semuels

"Free trade is largely to blame for the decline of America's middle class. That's the increasingly popular sentiment embraced by politicians like Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, and even, to some degree, Hillary Clinton, in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election. In a speech Tuesday, Trump went the furthest yet, vowing to rip up past trade deals and renegotiate other trade agreements 'to get a better deal for our workers.' But is it really trade deals like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that have caused manufacturing jobs to disappear? Or is it just the predilection of companies to go where labor is the cheapest, whether or not there are trade deals?" (06/30/16)

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/06/could-the-us-really-gut-its-trade-deals/489476/

1 Comment »

That Brexit induced stock market disaster in full

Tim Worstall Adam Smith Institute
by Tim Worstall

"The financial markets were of course going to go spare if Britain voted to leave the European Union. Armageddon, plagues of frogs, stockbrokers leaping from windows. That is of course how it turned out too: 'A buying bonanza fuelled the FTSE 100's remarkable rebound, erasing all of its post-Brexit losses in just two days. London's benchmark index enjoyed its best day in almost five years, soaring 219.67 points, or 3.58pc, to a two-month high of 6,360.06." (06/30/16)

http://www.adamsmith.org/blog/that-brexit-induced-stock-market-disaster-in-full

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Positively natural, part 2

The Cobden Centre
by Sean Corrigan

"Thus, it is the case that today's producer good, needing to be bid away from an alternative use, must be deemed to be able to give rise to either a slug or a stream of future consumables just greater in cumulative, time-weighted value than it would in alternative hands, whether the last, most eager man whom we outbid in order to secure them intended them for a different productive end or for one involving immediate, exhaustive consumption. Stated like this, it may all sound all very abstract, so let us try to illustrate it in more readily comprehensible terms." (06/30/16)

http://www.cobdencentre.org/2016/06/positively-natural-pt-ii/

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Supreme Court eliminates corruption! (by defining it out of existence)

The Intercept The Intercept
by Jon Schwarz

"Back in 2010, the majority held in Citizens United that corruption should be defined only as straightforward bribes. Do big donors to 'independent' Super PACs get a receipt saying 'Received: $5 Million in Return for Cutting Your Taxes?' No? Then according to the decision, the donation did 'not lead to, or create the appearance of, quid pro quo corruption,' and that's all that matters. Now in the unanimous McDonnell decision, the Court held that a lower court's interpretation of quid pro quo defined the quo too broadly, because for McDonnell to run interference for his generous donors with state officials didn't actually qualify as an 'official decision.' In other words, the Court first decided in 2010 that only out-and-out bribes matter, and now it has decided that only a carefully defined subset of bribes qualify." (06/29/16)

https://theintercept.com/2016/06/29/supreme-court-eliminates-political-corruption-by-defining-it-out-of-existence/

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Hating Turkey for its freedom and values?

Jacob G Hornberger Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

"Those who blame anti-American terrorism on radical Islam, the Koran, the quest for a worldwide caliphate, regular Muslims, or hatred for America's freedom and values are a bit stymied by the recent terrorist attack in Istanbul, Turkey. They just don't know what to say. Why? Because over 90 percent of Turkey is Muslim! Obviously that puts the Islam-Koran-Muslims-caliphate crowd into a bit of a quandary. They'd have to say that in their quest to establish a worldwide caliphate, the terrorists who struck in Istanbul decided to begin by attacking a country that is predominantly Muslim. But why do that? Why not attack, say, Switzerland, which is filled with Christians and has much more in common with American freedom and values than Turkey? Let's see now. Could there possibly be another motive for the Istanbul terrorist attack?" (06/30/16)

http://fff.org/2016/06/30/hating-turkey-freedom-values/

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Free Talk Live, 06/29/16

Free Talk Live Free Talk Live
by

"Security Guy Has Copy of World Check Confidential Database :: How to get on the list? :: Suspicious Activity :: Should the guy release the list? :: Disability in the Free Market :: Containing ISIS :: Postal Address Hassles :: Free the Data :: Lunar Landing :: Bombings At Istanbul Airport :: NHexit :: Secession :: ISIS Fearmongering." [Flash audio or MP3] (06/29/16)

https://soundcloud.com/freetalklive/free-talk-live-2016-06-29

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The Jason Stapleton Program, 06/29/16

The Jason Stapleton Program
by

"I'm tired of giving up ground. The progressive playbook is so predictable. They exploit every opportunity to restrict liberty and trample on our Constitution. No more. It's time to draw a line, dig in and refuse to fall back." [various formats] (06/29/16)

http://www.jasonstapleton.com/not-another-inch/

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If the UK economy tanks, don’t blame Brexit

Frank Shostak Ludwig von Mises Institute
by Frank Shostak

"Last Thursday, the people of Britain voted in a referendum to leave the European Union (EU). Most commentators view Britain's exit ('Brexit') from the European Union as bad news for economic growth in the UK and the eurozone. As a result, it is argued, the growth rate in the rest of the world will be also badly affected. It is more likely that, whether the pace of real economic growth over time will weaken or strengthen is going to be set by the pace of expansion in the pool of real wealth." (06/30/16)

https://mises.org/blog/if-uk-economy-tanks-don%E2%80%99t-blame-brexit

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Channeling Karl Marx

Gene Callahan La Bocca della Verita
by Gene Callahan

"The globalist elites have a problem they must continually solve: there are a lot more of us then there are of them, and they have to keep us from noticing that. A tried-and-true strategy for doing this is divide and conquer: if they can convince half of the poor and lower middle-class population that their real problem is the other half of the poor and lower middle-class population, and vice a versa, they are good to go. And thus we get the twin memes of 'white privilege' and 'welfare parasites.' The function they serve is to help convince poor black families in the South Bronx that their real problem is poor hillbilly families in Kentucky, and vice a versa. To the extent these two memes take hold, they block the possibility of a true populist revolt against the rule of the current elite." (06/29/16)

http://gene-callahan.blogspot.com/2016/06/channeling-karl-marx.html

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Surveillance paranoia and my London bust

James Bovard JimBovard.com
by Jim Bovard

I arrived at London's Heathrow Airport, coming in from Hamburg, Germany and saw an immigration line that was surprisingly short. ... The clerk who was working glanced listlessly at the American passport I passed over to her. 'Is this your first visit to the UK?' 'No, I visited England in 1977.' 'Are you here for business or pleasure?' 'Business.' 'What is your occupation?' she asked. 'Journalist,' I replied. I had carefully printed that out in the immigration form under the category 'Occupation.' But since this woman worked for the government, maybe she didn't read so good. Or maybe she was trying to catch me disavowing what I wrote 10 minutes earlier. 'What will you be doing in the U.K.?' 'I am going to be interviewed by a television network.' She showed a flicker of response. 'Which one?' she asked, as her monotone waned. 'Al Jazeera,' I replied. Boom." (06/29/16)

http://jimbovard.com/blog/2016/06/29/surveillance-paranoia-london-bust/

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“We the prisoners”: The demise of the Fourth Amendment

John W. Whitehead Future of Freedom Foundation
by John W Whitehead

In a carceral state -- a.k.a. a prison state or a police state -- there is no Fourth Amendment to protect you from the overreaches, abuses, searches and probing eyes of government overlords. In a carceral state, there is no difference between the treatment meted out to a law-abiding citizen and a convicted felon: both are equally suspect and treated as criminals, without any of the special rights and privileges reserved for the governing elite. In a carceral state, there are only two kinds of people: the prisoners and the prison guards. With every new law enacted by federal and state legislatures, every new ruling handed down by government courts, and every new military weapon, invasive tactic and egregious protocol employed by government agents, 'we the people' -- the prisoners of the American police state -- are being pushed that much further into a corner, our backs against the prison wall." (06/29/16)

http://fff.org/explore-freedom/article/prisoners-demise-fourth-amendment/

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Yes, a GOP delegate revolt is possible

Thomas L Knapp -- photo by Avens O'Brien William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism
by Thomas L Knapp

"Donald Trump, the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee, is heading toward July's national party convention with a majority of delegates (as 'bound' by state primaries and caucuses) in hand. But ever since it became clear that he would garner that majority, both he and the GOP leadership have spent a good deal of time trying to snuff out talk of a floor revolt by those delegates against his nomination and in favor of some other candidate's. 'The Republican National Committee put out a statement 'you can't do it, it's not legal, you can't do it, you're not allowed to do it,'' says Trump. Is Trump right? Is it 'illegal' for the delegates to do what they want instead of what Trump and the RNC claim the rules demand? In a word, no." (06/29/16)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/6495

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Cigarettes hazardous, but some lawmakers worse

Town Hall
by Jeff Jacoby

"In Hawaii and California, the minimum age for buying cigarettes was raised recently to 21. Now Massachusetts lawmakers, addicted to the rush that comes from limiting other people's choices, are keen to jump on the bandwagon. A bill banning the sale of tobacco products to anyone younger than 21 (and, for good measure, making it a crime to sell cigarettes in drugstores) passed the state Senate by an overwhelming vote last month. The bill is now before a House committee; it could reach the full House for a vote in a matter of days. Soon after the Fourth of July, adults in Massachusetts who smoke or who do business with smokers can expect to have less freedom than they have right now. Happy Independence Day. ... Today, smoking is at an all-time low in the United States, down to just 14.9 percent in a Centers for Disease Control survey released in November. Among teens, smoking is rarer still." (06/29/16)

http://townhall.com/columnists/jeffjacoby/2016/06/29/cigarettes-are-hazardous-but-some-lawmakers-are-worse-n2185422

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The Supreme Court is moving left, here’s why

Reuters Reuters
by William Yeomans

"The U.S. Supreme Court’s strange 2015 term ended this week in a flurry of dysfunction on difficult issues (the inability to rule on President Barack Obama’s immigration orders), interspersed with predictable decisions (the unanimous stay-out-of-jail pass for the unethical but no longer felonious former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell). Most intriguingly, though, the term marked the emergence of a leftward-leaning Justice Anthony Kennedy. Kennedy, soon to be 80 years old, has sat at the center of the nine-member conservative court since the resignation of Justice Sandra Day O’Connor in 2005. He still retains his status as the deciding vote -- but on this new, more liberal, if diminished court. We may also be witnessing a phenomenon that conservatives have railed against for years: the gradual liberalization of justices as they age. In recent years, Justices Harry Blackmun, John Paul Stevens and David Souter, all Republican appointees, moved consistently left with advancing age." (06/28/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-supreme-court-commentary-idUSKCN0ZE2LR

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Equal means color blind — not

Timothy J. Taylor Authority!
by Timothy J Taylor

"[E]very SCOTUS justice should, by the mandate of his or her sworn oath to uphold the Constitution, vote to strike down any state law which does not protect all persons in the jurisdiction equally, right? Wrong, say Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Anthony Kennedy, in a 4 to 3 decision upholding a Texas affirmative action policy which blatantly takes the race of student applicants for admission to the University of Texas into account, and thereby denies equal protection of the law to whites." (06/29/16)

http://authoritycon.blogspot.com/2016/06/equal-means-color-blind-not.html

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Gary Johnson, the choice for the morally conflicted

USA Today USA Today
by Matthew Tully

"America is peppered with conflicted Republicans -- loyal members of the Grand Old Party who simply cannot tolerate the notion of voting for Donald Trump, but who also find the idea of casting a ballot for Hillary Clinton unimaginable, if not sacrilegious. It’s a quandary for many of you. If you’re among those in this political black hole, I feel for you. And, so, today I am here to help. I’ll do that by introducing my troubled Republican friends to Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party nominee for president. He’s a former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico and, thanks to this year’s political discontent, he notched a head-turning 10% in a recent national poll." [editor's note: We libertarians have an interesting dilemma, whether to object to the limited aspects of Johnson's libertarian parts, or to offer the general public an option far beyond what they think they have - SAT] (06/29/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/nation-now/2016/06/29/gary-johnson-libertarian-republican-party-candidate-column/86504536

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Venezuela should abolish its worthless currency

Steve H. Hanke Foundation for Economic Education
by Steve H Hanke

"With the arrival of President Hugo Chavez in 1999, Venezuela embraced Chavismo, a form of Andean socialism. In 2013, Chavez met the Grim Reaper and Nicolas Maduro assumed Chavez's mantle. Chavismo has not been confined to Venezuela, however. A form of it has been adopted by Rafael Correa -- a leftist economist who became president of a dollarized Ecuador in 2007. Even though the broad outlines of their economic models are the same, the performance of Venezuela and Ecuador are in stark contrast with one another." (06/29/16)

https://fee.org/articles/venezuela-should-abolish-its-worthless-currency/

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Economics not great at Orthodox council

Acton Institute Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty
by Dylan Pahman

"We Orthodox who are especially nerdy followed the remnants of what was planned as a 'Great and Holy,' 'Pan-Orthodox' council of the Orthodox Churches, which concluded Sunday in Crete. The sad reality, however, is that for various reasons Antioch, Russia, Bulgaria, and Georgia decided not to attend. Antioch, especially, had unique and legitimate grievances. So 'Pan-Orthodox' is a bit of a misnomer at this point, and 'Great and Holy' was probably overly aspirational to begin with. But despite its questionable importance and authority, the council marched on." (06/29/16)

http://www.acton.org/pub/commentary/2016/06/29/economics-not-great-orthodox-council

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The first post-middle-class election

The American Prospect The American Prospect
by Harold Meyerson

"Two years ago, a pollster for Democratic candidates told me he’d begun advising his clients to cease emphasizing 'the middle class' when speaking of those Americans whose interests they were defending. Many Americans who once thought of themselves as middle-class, he argued, no longer did. Last year, a Pew Research Center survey confirmed those Americans’ assessment. The share of income going to middle-class Americans declined from 62 percent in 1970 to 43 percent in 2014, while the share going to upper-income households rose from 29 percent to 49 percent. The erosion of middle-class America has been afoot for 40 years, but it was the financial crisis of 2008 and the tepid recovery that followed it that have shaken American politics to its foundations." [editor's note: This long, rather didactic history lesson lacks perspective beyond the War Party's two wings (no mention of either LP or GP, or their possible effect), but is otherwise readable - SAT] (06/29/16)

http://prospect.org/article/first-post-middle-class-election-0

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The hot land

The Intercept The Intercept
by Ryan Devereaux

"When Enrique Pena Nieto assumed office as president of Mexico in 2012, he did not want to talk about the drug war. He had staked his candidacy on promises of reform; on the possibility of a Mexico freed from depictions in the international press of a nation defined by violence. That was an attractive idea. After all, the loss of life under Pena Nieto's predecessor, Felipe Calderon, who sent the military into the streets to do battle with organized crime, had been historic, with even the most conservative estimates of the dead and disappeared soaring well into the six-figure range. Pena Nieto avoided references to a sweeping, militarized campaign against drug cartels -- the defining feature of Calderon’s tenure -- instead favoring more generalized references to public security. Unfortunately, avoiding the subject didn't make it go away. Within two years, Mexican security forces at all levels would be implicated in a series of grisly crimes." (06/29/16)

https://theintercept.com/2016/06/29/after-uprising-in-mexico-return-of-narco-warlords/

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Is the ACLU’s lawsuit against bad anti-hacking law ingenious or terrifying?

Scott Shackford Reason
by Scott Shackford

"The vague language of the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) has made it prone to abuse by federal prosecutors. This law's alleged purpose is to fight cybercrimes and hackers. But the law is far more expansive, making it a federal crime to violate a web site's 'terms of service' as a user or to access a computer or network in an 'unauthorized' fashion. Yes, the law is used to fight hackers trying to get into people's bank accounts to steal their money. But it has also been used to put journalist Matthew Keys in prison for giving a password to a member of Anonymous, who then vandalized the website for the Los Angeles Times by changing a single headline." (06/29/16)

http://reason.com/blog/2016/06/29/is-the-aclus-lawsuit-against-bad-anti-ha

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An alternative to the madness of proving police injustice

The Atlantic The Atlantic
by Vann R Newkirk II

"When Baltimore police officer Caesar Goodson Jr., was acquitted Thursday of all charges related to the death of Freddie Gray, the one emotion absent from the courtroom, social media, and the crowds of protesters in the city was surprise. The cases of all six officers alleged to be involved in Gray's April 2015 death have been tossed about in a sea of strange legal wrangling and reshuffling, but without much real suspense. The trial of Officer Edward Nero ended in a judge's acquittal, and that of Officer William Porter in a hung jury. All six officers charged in the case remain on administrative, drawing full salaries, pending the outcome of an internal investigation. But it's likely that these officers will share the fate of most officers accused of killing black people in the line of duty: a return to police work." (06/29/16)

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/06/restorative-justice-police-violence/489221/

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Elizabeth Warren, Hillary’s most rational choice for VP

The New Republic The New Republic
by Brian Beutler

"Nearly all reports from the Hillary Clinton brain trust suggest Senator Tim Kaine is the runaway favorite to be the Democrats’ vice presidential nominee in 2016. There are soft spots in this consensus. For instance, the Clinton campaign is apparently not 100 percent convinced that Donald Trump will walk away from next month’s convention in Cleveland as the Republican nominee. Clinton’s allies think there’s a small but real chance she’ll be running against a candidate who isn’t fatally flawed himself (or mortally wounded for having deposed Trump). If that did happen, a more electric candidate might rocket to the top of her short list." [editor's note: Some say this would destroy the last vestige of credibility for Warren for a 2020 run; I frankly don't give a crap either way - SAT] (06/29/16)

https://newrepublic.com/article/134726/elizabeth-warren-hillary-clintons-rational-choice-vp

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The 2,000-year, ongoing fight for democracy

spiked spiked
by Tom Slater

"The vote to leave the European Union was the biggest democratic mandate in British political history. Those 17.5 million Leave votes represented a decisive, democratic choice that, in terms of individual voters, outstripped that made in any past referendum or General Election. And the result has sparked horror. ... We have been told voters were misled, played and duped. That, in effect, voters are so stupid, so plagued by prejudice, that consulting them on this profound political question was a mistake. Democracy itself has been called into question in a bald, unashamed way. But we shouldn't be surprised. Those who support the EU, a body designed to protect politics from the people, can hardly be relied upon to defend popular sovereignty. What's more, the response was also entirely in keeping with a disdain for democracy that has existed for millennia. Democracy has always been fragile." (06/29/16)

http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/the-2000-year-ongoing-fight-for-democracy/

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Brexit: What now?

Michael D. Tanner Cato Institute
by Michael D Tanner

"The short-term shock and turmoil of Brexit will eventually pass. Markets will stabilize as investors realize that the scare campaign by the anti-Brexit establishment was vastly overblown. The Britain of today is largely the same as the Britain of a week ago. The big question, though, remains unanswered: Will Britain seize on this opportunity to fundamentally remake its economic policies in a way that will increase economic growth? Or will it simply substitute British bureaucracy, taxes, and regulations for European ones?" (06/29/16)

http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/brexit-what-now

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The glories of central planning

A Geek With Guns
by Christopher Burg

"Socialists often criticize the market for allowing people to starve. They often say it's unfair that somebody with surplus food is allowed to keep it while others starve to death. They also lambast the idea of property rights because the concept allows a person with a surplus of food to defend it against a starving thief. These are valid criticisms, mind you. But they also ignore an important fact. Markets and private property rights may allow some people to starve but you really need a centrally planned economy if you want to starve everybody ..." (06/29/16)

https://blog.christopherburg.com/2016/06/29/the-glories-of-central-planning/

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Banning the box is not nearly enough

In These Times In These Times
by Lewis M Steel

"At last, the United States is taking steps to reduce its enormous prison population. With 2.5 million people behind bars, we are the world’s largest jailer. Sentencing reform to reduce mandatory minimums for nonviolent crimes starts to address this problem. But for those who have been incarcerated, punishment doesn’t end with prison: 70 million Americans are burdened with some form of criminal record that jeopardizes their ability to find a job and re-enter society. When employers learn applicants have prison records, rejection is often swift. Because African Americans and Latinos suffer a disproportionately high percentage of arrests and convictions, their rejection rates are even higher." (06/29/16)

http://inthesetimes.com/article/19188/banning-the-box-is-not-nearly-enough

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Hillary Clinton’s easy choices

David Gordon Ludwig von Mises Institute
by David Gordon

"Few books have as misleading a title as Hard Choices. For Hillary Clinton, as this tedious memoir of her years as Secretary of State makes evident, there are no hard choices. The Solutions to all political and economic problems are easy. We must always rely on the directing hand of government, guided by the superior wisdom of our moral and intellectual betters, Hillary Clinton foremost among them." (06/29/16)

https://mises.org/library/hillary-clintons-easy-choices

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To my less-evilism haters: A rejoinder to Halle and Chomsky

CounterPunch CounterPunch
by Andrew Smolski

"If you advocate that third parties should be abandoned in contentious states, then you are advocating that third parties should be abandoned. We can call this the 'risk nothing, win nothing' political strategy. When there is a left flank, Chomsky and Halle have advocated that it should be abandoned if it threatens the Democratic contender against a Republican. Why should the Democrats care about progressive demands when the Congressional Progressive Caucus is only 29% of the party and there is no left flank to apply pressure? And why should they feel threatened by a left flank that will abandon itself as soon as there is anything substantial at risk?" (06/29/16)

http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/06/29/to-my-haters-a-rejoinder-to-halle-and-chomsky/

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A bullet train to the head

Paul Jacob Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

"Romanticism. The yearning for greatness; the need for speed. Efficiency! It's all there in California's high-speed rail project -- hopes and dreams and a sense of the grandeur of progress. And yet the bullet train project, approved by voters in 2008, is a fiasco. One can blame the voters, I suppose. At least the 53.7 percent who said yes to a referendum authorizing a 9.95 billion bond. Just to get the project started. But we shouldn't, really." (06/29/16)

http://thisiscommonsense.com/2016/06/29/a-bullet-train-to-the-head/

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Surrendering power: Duke students speak out about free speech

Foundation for Individual Rights in Education Foundation for Individual Rights in Education
by Caroline Wang

"More than 50 years ago, the student-led Free Speech Movement took place at the University of California, Berkeley. This movement remains one of the greatest examples of students' recognition that the right to free speech is what gives them the ability to challenge the status quo and make their opinions heard. After all, as the Supreme Court noted in the landmark decision Healy v. James, 408 U.S. 169, 180 (1972), freedom of speech is what allows students to 'examine and discuss all questions of interest to them.' Unfortunately, it seems some of today's student activists are choosing to use their speech to advocate for freedom from speech." (06/28/16)

https://www.thefire.org/surrendering-power-duke-students-speak-out-against-free-speech/

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Is Brexit national suicide?

The American Conservative The American Conservative
by Philip Jenkins

"Over the past week, I have often been asked what I think about the British referendum vote to leave the European Union, or to seek 'Brexit.' My standard response is that I would be happy to explain, provided the sight of me ranting and shrieking obscenities does not bother my listeners. In my view, Brexit is quite literally nothing short of national suicide. It is a cataclysm that that country must and can avert, at all costs. In saying this, I run contrary to the view of many conservative writers who seem delighted by the vote." (06/29/16)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/is-brexit-national-suicide/

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Heartland Daily Podcast, 06/28/16

Heartland Institute Heartland Institute
by

"In today's edition of The Heartland Daily Podcast, Julie Kelly, one of the leading, non-scientist, voices in the contentious debate over America's food system, joins the show to talk about Genetically Modified Foods (GMOs)." [various formats] (06/28/16)

http://blog.heartland.org/2016/06/heartland-daily-podcast-julie-kelly-gmo-crops-are-perfectly-safe/

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The Syria “dissent” memo and US bureaucratic pressure strategy

Gareth Porter Antiwar.com
by Gareth Porter

"The memorandum by 51 State Department officials calling for US military intervention in Syria last week has been treated in news media coverage as a case of dissent from existing Syria policy by individual officials involved in Syria policy. But the memo has all the earmarks of an initiative that had the blessing of the most senior officials in the department -- including Secretary of State John Kerry himself -- rather than having been put together by individual officials entirely on their own. And it may mark the beginning of an effort to take advantage of the presidential candidacy of Hillary Clinton." (06/29/16)

http://original.antiwar.com/porter/2016/06/28/syria-dissent-memo-us-bureaucratic-pressure-strategy/

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Apocalypse mindset: Don’t let it get you killed

Zero Gov Zero Gov
by John Meyers

"Tactical Fantasy Band Camp simply does not prepare you for operating in the totally un-sexy street clothes on your back instead of your Kryptek Highlander, with the pistol in your waistline and yourself alone as your team. In our daily lives we are not wearing all our kit, a RACK with 18 magazines and a Team Wendy Exfil. We don't have a rifle in our back pocket in aisle 18 of the local Wally World. I can assure you asking your favorite instructor on Facebook what pants he is wearing in the latest Firelance Media photo array, will not make you more combat effective in the fight. I'm sure the ones you are wearing will work just fine. You have what you have on you. You have your EDC. You are much more likely to be accosted in the local mall than you are by invading Soviets in the Fourteener's of the Rocky Mountains. Focus on the most likely, then work to the least likely." (06/28/16)

http://zerogov.com/?p=4774

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The case against raising the US minimum wage

PanAm Post PanAm Post
by Jose Azel

"When it comes to a mandated minimum wage, politicians irrationally trip over themselves in a classic case of good intentions, bad policy. President Obama has called for raising the minimum wage to USD $10.10 an hour. Hillary Clinton favors a $12.00 minimum wage, and Mr. Sanders supports the labor union call to raise the wage to $15.00 an hour. Many believe that minimum wage laws are necessary to insure that low-skilled workers, especially new entrants, teens and minorities earn a living wage and are not exploited by greedy capitalists. But do minimum wage laws produce the desired results?" (06/28/16)

https://panampost.com/jose-azel/2016/06/28/the-case-against-raising-the-us-minimum-wage/

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