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Showing posts from November 4, 2016

Germany reveals the truth about refugees and terrorism

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[Far from being a large pool of suspects, refugees are one of the German government's best sources of actionable intelligence on terrorist activities. *RON*]
Esther Yu Hsi, Think Progress, 2 November 2016
Refugees living in Germany are helping law enforcement authorities nab suspected criminals by crowdsourcing terror tips on social media sites, the Wall Street Journal reported, sometimes even finding suspects themselves.

In the latest instance, last month, German authorities sent out a public call for help in Arabic to search for Jaber al-Bakr, a 22-year-old Syrian suspected bombmaker who escaped a police manhunt after they found explosives at his residence — but hundreds of Syrians had already translated the wanted notice. Just two days later, a group of Syrian refugees who temporarily housed him tied him up for law enforcement officials and turned him in.

Police Are Still Getting Surplus Army Gear—and They’re Using it to Crack Down on Standing Rock

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[The militarization of police forces and the tightening of the net between capital interests and the sanctioned use of deadly force against expressions of direct democracy continues apace. See also the Canadian banks listed here: How to Contact the 17 Banks Funding the Dakota Access Pipeline. *RON*]

By Seth Kershner, In These Times, 2 November 2016

The armored vehicles used during mass arrests of water protectors last week likely came from a controversial Defense Department program.

Widely circulated images showed police using rifles and armored vehicles to confront protesters in Ferguson, Miss. following the killing of Black teenager Michael Brown. Now, local police are employing similar gear against the resistance movement led by the Standing Rock Sioux.

Last Thursday, hundreds of police and sheriff’s deputies from eight states moved in to break up an encampment of demonstrators seeking to block construction of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access P…

The Places Left Behind

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[Trickle-down redux. An excellent piece for outlining how the world will work under President Hillary: "Clinton’s programs reinforce the notion that retail opportunities and access to credit — rather than more social services and government funding — will solve the problems that beset distressed communities and their residents." Bill Clinton’s New Markets initiative tried to fight poverty by showering incentives on the private sector. And now Hillary has embraced it. On a related note: Forget the FBI cache; the Podesta emails show how America is run. *RON*]

Lily Geismer, Jacobin, 1 November 2016

On July 5, 1999, Bill Clinton sat on the porch of a dilapidated rental home in Tyner, Kentucky, the first stop on a four-day, nationwide tour. As he crisscrossed the country over the next few days, Clinton touched down in places with some of the highest rates of unemployment and persistent poverty in the US: Clarksdale, Mississippi; East St Loui…

Solvent Degreaser ‘Known’ Human Carcinogen: Federal Report

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[Government is always slow and unmotivated to look into the health effects of compounds used by industry. The eye-popper for me in this article wasn't so much trichloroethylene, which has been a known carcinogen by everyone except DHHS for decades, as the fact that they just got around to labeling radioactive cobalt and the HIV virus as 'cancer causing'!!! *RON*]

By Pat Rizzuto, Chemical Regulation Reporter, Bloomberg, 2 November 2016

Nov. 2 — Trichloroethylene, formerly a widely used solvent, will be listed as a “known human carcinogen” in a federal Report on Carcinogens to be published Nov. 3.

The Department of Health and Human Services, which issues the report, upgraded trichloroethylene (TCE) from a “reasonably anticipated to be” to a “known human carcinogen,” HHS’s National Toxicology Program said in a Federal Register notice to be published Nov. 3.

The HHS classification is consistent with the conclusion the Environmental Prote…

Study: Obama tax hikes on rich didn't hurt economy, or rich

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[Good study. Reported by the Calgary Herald. Say, was their editor asleep that day? :-D *RON*]

Christopher S. Rugaber, Associated Press / Calgary Herald, 3 November 2016
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama's 2013 tax increases for wealthy Americans neither slowed their income growth nor hurt the economy, according to a study that taps into a key debate in the current presidential race.

The top 1 per cent of earners managed to increase their share of the nation's income at about the same pace after their taxes were raised as they had before, according to the study , released Thursday by Emmanuel Saez, an economics professor at University of California, Berkeley.

That outcome suggests that wealthier Americans did not respond to the higher taxes by either working less or saving less, as many economists often say will happen.

Brexit plan screeches to halt

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[This twists ideas about democracy into a pretzel. Elected representatives bring the UK into the EU. Then they decide to give their decision making power away to the people by holding a referendum. Then they try, through the courts, to get the decision-making they gave away put back with the elected representatives when they don't like the outcome. See also: 'I am fed up of the elite ignoring us': leave voters on article 50 ruling. *RON*]
Canadian Press, Castanet.net, 3 November 2016
Britain's High Court brought government plans for leaving the European Union screeching to a halt Thursday, ruling that the prime minister can't trigger the U.K.'s exit from the bloc without parliamentary approval.

The government said it would go to the Supreme Court to challenge the ruling, which if upheld could prevent it starting exit talks by March 31 as planned.

The pound, which has lost about a fifth of its value since the June 23 decision…