Saturday, August 3, 2013

August 3

Texas cop took fan photos before letting Zimmerman off with warning


'Frack Gag' Bans Children From Talking About Fracking, Forever


36 (un-American treasonous) Senators Introduce Bill Prohibiting Virtually Any New Law Helping Workers




Good Christ it is really getting hard for us to come up with snappy ways to write about the NRA. What do you do with an organization so consistently terrible and deliberately tone-deaf? There's just no hyperbole left, people! So we've really got no clever way to tell you that the NRA is pretty much one step away from demanding that the law mandate that babies are given a gun the very second they exit the womb - READ MORE »


Climate change occurring "orders of magnitude faster" than anything seen on the fossil record.


BBC swallows Weiner, Spitzer


Politico: The government shuts down Sept. 30. The farm bill isn't done. The appropriations process is in shambles. Immigration reform is stagnant. And Congress is heading for the exits.

The tensions on Capitol Hill are high, as legislative achievements are low. The anger, frustration and disappointment was exposed after the House Republican leadership pulled a transportation spending bill from the floor this week because funding levels were too high for some, too low for others. Instead of recalibrating, House Republicans moved onto a series of bills aimed at stopping what they consider government abuse — legislation that dovetails with their August messaging.

Rep. Tom Latham (R-Iowa), the chair of the subcommittee that wrote the bill, stood up at a Wednesday afternoon meeting and yelled at attendees — including his best friend, Speaker John Boehner — "this is bullshit," referring to leadership pulling his bill without warning. A

Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), so frustrated by the stymied pace of spending bills, said he won't pen a year-long continuing resolution, and his committee will not vote for it. The House has passed just four of 12 appropriations bills.

As Congress leaves town for a five-week recess, it faces no shortage of unsolved challenges. There is no clear strategy for funding the government beyond Sept. 30 and lifting the debt ceiling, the two fiscal fights looming in the fall.

According to Politico reporter Ginger Gibson, Nancy Pelosi said sarcastically, "We have to go home by noon on Friday because we have nothing else to do."

No wonder Congress is literally less popular than root canals, cockroaches, North Korea, or lice


On Friday, this came down:

The United States and Pakistan agreed Thursday to restart high-level talks on security and other issues, yet the two sides still deeply mistrust each other in a relationship frayed by disputes over issues like U.S. drone attacks, which U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said could end soon.

Kerry's remarks to Pakistan TV about a possible end to the CIA-led program of drone strikes was the first time an administration official has said the Obama administration wants to end the program. Kerry offered no timetable, and spokeswomen assured reporters he was merely reflecting President Barack Obama's statements in a speech earlier this year. [...]

Pakistani officials have been angry about U.S. drone strikes against suspected militants in Pakistan, claiming they violate their sovereignty. They used Kerry's visit to press the U.S. to stop the drone attacks.

"I think the program will end as we have eliminated most of the threat and continue to eliminate it," Kerry told the Pakistan TV interviewer. "I think the president has a very real timeline and we hope it's going to be very, very soon. I think it depends really on a number of factors, and we're working with your government with respect to that."

This of course is positive news, which will hopefully be followed up at some point with the president's pledge to repeal the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force.

By the way, via Ashby, the use of drones in Pakistan has been winding down. In Yemen, they're on pace for lower numbers this year as well.

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