Why a Donald Trump Victory Could Make Climate Catastrophe Inevitable

Michael Klare on the forces moving us toward an uninhabitable planet.
By Michael Klare | MotherJones
MinersIn a year of record-setting heat on a blistered globe, with fast-warming oceans, fast-melting ice caps, and fast-rising sea levels, ratification of the December 2015 Paris climate summit agreement—already endorsed by most nations—should be a complete no-brainer. That it isn't tells you a great deal about our world. Global geopolitics and the possible rightward lurch of many countries (including a potential deal-breaking election in the United States that could put a climate denier in the White House) spell bad news for the fate of the Earth. It's worth exploring how this might come to be. Read More
What is Humility?
A easily misunderstood human quality that seems to have gone missing in our modern times. How to make it part of your life once again.
By Larry Laird - lairdslair.com
HumbleI attend a small evangelical Lutheran church in Marion, Ohio called St. Paul's and have for over 60 years. I took my catechism there and was confirmed in this little church.  On occasion, our pastor takes a much needed vacation and since we have no assistant pastor he calls on members of the congregation to lead a service in his absence.  I have done so a couple of times in the past two years. What follows is the message I delivered on a Sunday in late August, 2016.

What exactly is humility?

The dictionary defines it this way -

Humility is the quality of being humble. In a religious context this can mean a recognition of self in relation to God or deities, acceptance of one's defects, and submission to divine grace as a member of a religion. Outside of a religious context, humility is defined as the self-restraint from excessive vanity, and can possess moral and/or ethical dimensions.

The Urban Dictionary puts it this way, in a more plain speaking Will Rogers manner

Humility is an admirable quality that not many people possess. It means that a person may have accomplished a lot, or be a lot but doesn't feel it is necessary to advertise or brag about it.

Are you a humble person? How can you know?  Read More
Donald Trump: the madman in his castle
Isolated from power, the Republican party has turned inward and driven itself insane on a toxic mix of fear and rage. Trump is its natural figurehead
by Ben Fountain | The Guardian
The worst thing that ever could happen happened after the worst thing that ever could happen happened after the worst thing that ever could happen happened.

Carlton Douglas Ridenhour, AKA Chuck D

Let's hate!So after a miserable couple of weeks for everyone who gives a damn about peace, love and understanding, and with more bad news shortly on the way from Baton Rouge, the word came down in Cleveland: no tennis balls.

For the sake of public safety and national security, no tennis balls would be allowed in the cordon sanitaire around the Quicken Loans Arena, site of the Republican national convention, nor would water guns, toy guns, knives, rope, tape, umbrellas with metal tips, light bulbs, gas masks or several dozen other items. Guns, however, were authorized. Guns were OK, a pronouncement that was quickly taken up by groups as divergent in their orientations as Bikers For Trump and the New Black Panthers, among others. Read More
The Great Renewal
By Anonymous | The Great Renewal
This is an example of how the militarized police become 'government out of control' as seen by both the Right and the Left!

What do we have to do to change this?  Read More
Making a Killing
The business and politics of selling guns. How Fear Helps the Gun Business.
By Evan Osnos | The New Yorker
For the love of gunsBars in the Old City neighborhood of Philadelphia let out at 2 A.M. On the morning of January 17, 2010, two groups emerged, looking for taxis. At the corner of Market and Third Street, they started yelling at each other. On one side was Edward DiDonato, who had recently begun work at an insurance company, having graduated from Villanova University, where he was a captain of the lacrosse team. On the other was Gerald Ung, a third-year law student at Temple, who wrote poetry in his spare time and had worked as a technology consultant for Freddie Mac. Both men had grown up in prosperous suburbs: DiDonato in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, outside Philadelphia; Ung in Reston, Virginia, near Washington, D.C.

Everyone had been drinking, and neither side could subsequently remember how the disagreement started; one of DiDonato’s friends may have kicked in the direction of one of Ung’s friends, and Ung may have mocked someone’s hair. “To this day, I have no idea why this happened,” Joy Keh, a photographer who was one of Ung’s friends at the scene, said later. Read More
Hell week for Ohio conservatives: The courts deal the GOP major blows to its oppressive agenda
New pushes to curtail the rights of women, the poor and minorities were dealt a serious setback in Ohio this week
By Gary Legum | Salon
Our bad boyIt has been a very bad week in court for conservatives’ efforts to suppress the rights of women, minorities, poor people and really anyone who is not a wealthy white Republican voter in Ohio. To which one can only say, good.

First on Monday, a federal judge who was appointed to the bench by George W. Bush granted a stay of a law the Ohio legislature passed in February that would have stripped federal funds from Planned Parenthood groups in the state. The law would have essentially defunded 28 clinics in Ohio, which would have meant an end to other health programs such as HIV testing and sex education. The law also would have taken funding from any group that counsels patients that abortion is an option, an action the judge, Michael Barrett, found to be in violation of the First Amendment. Read More
Declassified documents detail 9/11 commission's inquiry into Saudi Arabia
Newly released files may show connections between low-level Saudi officials and a terrorist support network in southern California led to the 9/11 attacks
By Philip Shenon | The Guardian
ReflectionsInvestigators for the 9/11 commission would later describe the scene in Saudi Arabia as chilling.

They took seats in front of a former Saudi diplomat who, many on the commission’s staff believed, had been a ringleader of a Saudi government spy network inside the US that gave support to at least two of the 9/11 hijackers in California in the year before the 2001 attacks.

At first, the witness, 32-year-old Fahad al-Thumairy, dressed in traditional white robes and headdress, answered the questions calmly, his hands folded in front of him. But when the interrogation became confrontational, he began to squirm, literally, pushing himself back and forth in the chair, folding and unfolding his arms, as he was pressed about his ties to two Saudi hijackers who had lived in southern California before 9/11. Read More

“A lot of things that seem simple aren’t so simple”: Seymour Hersh on the untold story of Osama bin Laden killing and the way Washington — and the media — really work
The great investigative reporter on how he unraveled a counter-narrative of the Bin Laden mystery
By Michael Schulson | Salon
HershInvestigative reporter Seymour Hersh broke the story of the My Lai massacre in 1969. He was the first to report the atrocities at Abu Ghraib prison, back in 2004.

Hersh’s most recent break threatens to blur the boundary between investigative reporting and conspiracy theory. The story, published last May in the London Review of Books, alleges that Pakistan caught Osama bin Laden years ago and then kept him under house arrest in Abbottabad. Eventually, Hersh writes, a walk-in leaked bin Laden’s whereabouts to the CIA. The SEAL raid that killed bin Laden was military theater, staged in cooperation with the Pakistani government. Read More
Vinyl is back as a popular and profitable music medium
By EuropeanCEO
RevivalAnalogue formats were once thought dead, replaced by physical digital storage mechanisms that have themselves been usurped by online streaming services. Vinyl, however, is now experiencing a full-blown revival

Be it the eight-track tape, audio cassette or digital download, near enough every step on the auditory timeline has rendered the format before it superfluous. As much was the case in the late 80s and early 90s, when the compact disc – after an initial bout of scepticism – was embraced as the album medium of choice and set in motion the decline of the vinyl format. Read More
An Odd Mix of Vindication and Depression
New York Times columnist Ross Douthat on watching his worst fears for the Republican Party come true.
By Isaac Chotiner | Slate
Ross Douthat, the New York Times op-ed columnist, probably didn’t imagine that he would spend much of the past six months writing about Donald Trump. For a brief moment in 2012 and early 2013, it seemed possible that Republicans, chastened by Barack Obama’s re-election, would regroup and recalibrate, and perhaps pursue what Douthat and Reihan Salam (a Slate contributor and fellow “reform conservative”) had called for in their 2008 book, Grand New Party: an economic agenda focused on the middle class and policies friendly to an increasingly diverse America. Alas, the one 2016 candidate who has really bucked Republican orthodoxy, at least rhetorically, has been Trump, who Douthat views as a dangerous demagogue. Read More
What do you have to do to get booked in this town? Fire a gun in the public library?
By David Waldman | Daily KOS
Gunlove 2016Yes, it’s another week full of self-inflicted, accidental gunshot wounds. Because all weeks are full of self-inflicted, accidental gunshot wounds. I found 24 this time, including a two-fer at the Ohio Gun Collectors Association Show in Wilmington. The media reports of the accident danced around the issue of whether or not anyone actually shot themselves, but the gun enthusiasts in attendance were quick to report it. Though it should also be noted that the discussion eventually devolved into that recurring conspiracy theory in which “anti-gunners” are to blame for purposefully sabotaging the show by secretly loading rounds into other people’s previously safely cleared weapons when they’re not looking. Read More
Elon Musk Says Tesla Vehicles Will Drive Themselves in Two Years
Musk opens up about autonomous vehicles, self-driving car rules, and the competition.
By Kirsten Korosec | Fortune

In Elon Musk’s world, “easy” is used to describe problems many might consider impossible - orElon at least very difficult to solve. Producing a fully autonomous vehicle that can operate in any condition and on any road, for example, is easy-ish. And Tesla Motors, the all-electric automaker that Musk heads, is two years away from achieving it.

“I think we have all the pieces, and it’s just about refining those pieces, putting them in place, and making sure they work across a huge number of environments—and then we’re done,” Musk told Fortune with assuredness during his commute to SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, Calif., where he is also CEO. “It’s a much easier problem than people think it is. But it’s not like George Hotz, a one-guy-and-three-months problem. You know, it’s more like, thousands of people for two years.”  Read More

How Do You Spot A Nonconformist?
You Can Start With Their Internet Browser!
By NPR | www.npr.org
DifferentIn 2009, one of the founders of the online eyeglass maker Warby Parker approached management consultant Adam Grant about becoming an early investor. Grant says he declined because the company's founders weren't working at their startup full time; he also says it was the worst financial decision he's ever made.  Read More
They’re all bought and sold: American democracy belongs to the billionaires now
With the lone exception of Bernie Sanders, every candidate is either in bed with Wall Street or super-rich himself
By Nomi Prins | TomDispatch.com
Graft Inc.Speaking of the need for citizen participation in our national politics in his final State of the Union address, President Obama said, “Our brand of democracy is hard.” A more accurate characterization might have been: “Our brand of democracy is cold hard cash.”

Cash, mountains of it, is increasingly the necessary tool for presidential candidates. Several Powerball jackpots could already be fueled from the billions of dollars in contributions in play in election 2016. When considering the present donation season, however, the devil lies in the details, which is why the details follow. Read More
There May Soon Be More Plastic in the Oceans Than Fish
The environmental impact of plastic waste is already staggering and getting much worse
By Gregory Barber | MotherJones

Discarded plastic will outweigh fish in the world's oceans by 2050, according to a report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. That is, unless overfishing moves the date up sooner.

The study, a collaboration with the World Economic Forum, found that 32 percent of plastic packaging escapes waste collection systems, gets into waterways, and is eventually deposited in the oceans. That percentage is expected to increase in coming years, given that the fastest growth in plastic production is expected to occur in "high leakage" markets—developing countries where sanitation systems are often unreliable. The data used in the report comes from a review of more than 200 studies and interviews with 180 experts. Read More

Noam Chomsky Says GOP Is 'Literally A Serious Danger To Human Survival’
The MIT professor and noted author said "strategic voting" can keep Republican candidates away from the levers of power.
By Matt Ferner | The Huffington Post
Noam ChomskyNoam Chomsky, the noted radical and MIT professor emeritus, said the Republican Party has become so extreme in its rhetoric and policies that it poses a “serious danger to human survival.”

“Today, the Republican Party has drifted off the rails,” Chomsky, a frequent critic of both parties, said in an interview Monday with The Huffington Post. “It’s become what the respected conservative political analysts Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein call ‘a radical insurgency’ that has pretty much abandoned parliamentary politics.”  Read More
Forbes Site, After Begging You To Turn Off Adblocker, Serves Up A Steaming Pile Of Malware 'Ads'
Forbes is joining the ranks of sites that were attempting to hold their content hostage over people's use of adblockers 
from Techdirt
Malware CityWe had just discussed a couple of websites, Forbes amongst them, joining the ranks of sites that were attempting to hold their content hostage over people's use of adblockers. The general point of that post was that the reason people use adblockers generally is that sites like Forbes serve up annoying, irritating, horrible ads, such that the question of whether the site's content is worth the hassle of enduring those ads becomes a legitimate one. The moment that question becomes relevant, it should be obvious that the problem is the ad inventory and not the adblocking software. Read More
Getting to the Heart of David Letterman
The beloved king of comedy—and part time Montana resident—talks about growing up and getting older.
By Brian Schott | The Whitefish Review
David LAs of his final Late Show this past May, David Letterman had hosted 19,932 guest appearances on 6,028 broadcasts across more than 33 years—and redefined late-night and humor itself along the way. The man had earned some peace and quiet. Judging from the searching, thoughtful interview he granted to the Whitefish Review, he has found both—thanks, in large part, to life on his ranch in northwest Montana.

In an interview with Jane Pauley prior to his retirement, Letterman talked about the “white-hot adrenaline” he’d felt on his early appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson: “It’s like you’re sitting on the knee of the Lincoln Memorial and Lincoln is talking to you. You know, it’s like, ‘Holy God, it’s the guy on the $5 bill talking to me.’” That’s about what it feels like to interview David Letterman. Read More
UFO truthers want to make Roswell an issue for 2016. Meet their lobbyist.
Stephen Bassett was determined to be the first lobbyist for the UFO disclosure cause in Washington. Nineteen years later, he’s still the only one — but he is more optimistic than ever
By Ben Terris | The Washington Post
One day nearly 20 years ago, Stephen Bassett realized UFO abductees needed a lobbyist.

AliensHe had spent four months working for the Program for Extraordinary Experience Research out of a modest townhouse in Cambridge, Mass., when he had the epiphany: He could continue his research with John Mack, the leading authority on the alien abductions, for the rest of his life — but it would never make a difference.

“It occurred to me that it wasn’t a scientific problem, but a political one,” he said. They could pile evidence of extraterrestrial encounters from the White House lawn to the moon, and no one would pay it any mind. What the issue needed was someone who could get the powers that be to listen. Read More
Fox News, liberal-baiting and the politics of populist fear: Here’s where it all began
The roots of our modern nightmarish politics can be found in Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon's early campaign
By Kathryn S. Olmsted | Salon
Excerpted from "Right Out of California: The 1930s and the Big Business Roots of Modern Conservatism"

Tricky Dick

RonnieIn early 1946, in Orange County, an area that would become a hotbed of right-wing activism, a group of businessmen launched a search for a charismatic candidate who would represent their interests in Congress. The manager of a local Bank of America branch suggested Richard Nixon, a lawyer and Navy veteran. Hoover and his son Herbert Jr. traveled to Pasadena to meet this promising young man and urge him to run for the House of Representatives. Nixon would always remember the meeting fondly and revere the former president for his role in jump-starting his career. Read More
10 right-wing conspiracy theories that have slowly invaded American politics
Paranoia is in our bloodstream. And with the emergence of social media, we're more misinformed than ever before
Mark Potok and Don Terry, Southern Poverty Law Center
SPLCThis article was originally published by The Southern Poverty Law Center. https://www.splcenter.org/
The Southern Poverty Law Center “There is nothing makes a man suspect much, more than to know little.” FRANCIS BACON, Of Suspicion, 1625
America, as the historian Richard Hofstadter famously noted in 1964, is a place peculiarly given to “the paranoid style” of politics — the idea that history is no accident, but rather the outcome of a series of conspiracies. The surface of events is never what it appears, but instead hides deep, dark and destructive forces. Read More
God is not on our side: The religious right’s big lie about the founding of America
Reagan and others pushed the idea that we're a Christian nation chosen by divine providence. That's not the case
By Steven K. Green | Salon
Excerpted from "Inventing a Christian America: The Myth of the Religious Founding"

Mr. DisasterOne of the more popular and enduring accounts of America’s past is that of its religious founding. Belief that the British-American colonies were settled largely by religiously devout people in search of spiritual freedom, that the United States government was founded in part on religious principles, that the Founders intended to create a “Christian nation,” and that America is a specially chosen nation whose success has been directed by divine providence has resonated in the national psyche for generations. Versions of this account have existed since the founding era and have persisted through times of national distress, trial, and triumph. They represent a leading theme in our nation’s historical narrative, frequently intertwined with expressions of patriotism and American exceptionalism. Read More
Ten Facts You May Not Know About The Federal Budget
The fiscal year for 2014 ended on September 30th. With the release of the end-of-year totals for fiscal year 2014, below are 10 facts you may not know about the federal budget.
By Senate Budget Committee; Patty Murray, Chairman
1) Overall federal spending has been flat for five straight years, for the first time since the end of World War II.

When measured in simple, raw dollars, spending has historically risen year to year. This is not surprising given that the size of the population and the cost of living (inflation) both increase from year to year. However, from 2009 to 2014, spending was largely unchanged at $3.5 trillion per year. The last time spending did not rise over a five year period, even in nominal dollars, was during the post-World War II phase down from 1946 to 1951. Read More
One man alone can be pretty dumb sometimes, but for real bona fide stupidity nothing beats teamwork.
- Mark Twain
Don't forget - it's all Obama's fault.
- Fox News
Lead, follow or get out of the way.
- Thomas Paine
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Playing into the right’s trap: The media is all too quick to go chasing phony Clinton scandals
As always with the Clintons, their enemies are again engaging in absurd overreach — and the press is playing along
By Gary Legum | Salon
ClintonStop me if you heard this story recently: The conservative legal group Judicial Watch releases a batch of State Department emails it obtained through lawsuits and FOIA requests, all related to the work of the Clinton Foundation. This results in a round of headlines proclaiming that Foundation donors tried to leverage their giving into access to Hillary Clinton while she was serving as Secretary of State. Political reporters write stories full of innuendo up front, waiting until around the tenth paragraph to reveal that those donors actually failed in their quests to trade donations for special meetings or other privileges with Clinton. Other writers look at the original stories and knock them down, and then we all go back to tweeting about the Kardashians or something. Read More
Political violence is no joke
By William Kennedy Smith and Jean Kennedy Smith | From The Washington Post
Robert KennedyWilliam Kennedy Smith and Jean Kennedy Smith are the nephew and sister of President John. F. Kennedy and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, who was assassinated on June 6, 1968.

On April 4, 1968, the day the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and killed, Robert Kennedy was campaigning for the presidency in Indianapolis. Bobby conveyed the news of King’s death to a shattered, mostly black audience. He took pains to remind those whose first instinct may have been toward violence that President John F. Kennedy had also been shot and killed. Bobby went on, “What we need in the United States is not division; what we need in the United States is not hatred; what we need in the United States is not violence and lawlessness, but is love, and wisdom, and compassion toward one another, and a feeling of justice toward those who still suffer within our country, whether they be white or whether they be black.” Read More
Last year, I predicted the GOP would nominate Trump — here is what will happen next
After Trump's defeated, his base will face an energized electorate of diverse Americans who rallied to defeat him
By Chauncey DeVega | Salon
Duce! Last year I predicted that Donald Trump would be the Republican Party’s 2016 presidential nominee. I shared this intuition in my writings here at Salon, my own website, and during various TV and radio appearances. My prediction was met with incredulity, rebuttals that the “data” does not support such a conclusion, and a deeply held belief that the elites and opinion leaders in the Republican Party would never let Donald Trump ascend to power.

My critics were wrong. I would be proven right. On Tuesday at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Donald Trump, the American Il Duce, was officially selected as the party’s presidential nominee. I am not psychic. Nor was my prediction an act of political prestidigitation. The talking heads in the mainstream corporate news media were simply looking in the wrong places for answers. Read More
Read Sonia Sotomayor’s Atomic Bomb of a Dissent Slamming Racial Profiling and Mass Imprisonment
Yet the terrible ruling came with a bright spot: In a powerful and groundbreaking dissent...
By Mark Joseph Stern | Slate
SoniaThe Supreme Court issued an extraordinarily disappointing 5–3 decision on Monday in Utah v. Strieff, a Fourth Amendment case about police searches. Yet the terrible ruling came with a bright spot: In a powerful and groundbreaking dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor lambasted the majority for its heartless and illogical rejection of Fourth Amendment freedoms, invoking the Justice Department’s Ferguson report, echoing Black Lives Matter, and even citing Ta-Nehisi Coates. Read More
The Activism of Patricia Arquette
The Boyhood actress speaks out about equal pay, the election, and her infamous comments at the Oscars.
By Becca Andrews | MotherJones
PAPatricia Arquette recites statistics about unequal pay and domestic violence as if they were the memorized phone numbers of close friends. It's clear the Boyhood actress has been studying hard in preparation for her higher profile in activism and lobbying around women's rights. At the Women in Technology International Summit, we caught up with Arquette to talk feminism, the 2016 election, and her comments at last year's Oscars.  Read More
Meet the Mom Who Helped Expose Flint's Toxic Water Nightmare
LeeAnne Walters' tap water tested at 27 times the EPA limit for lead. The city offered her a garden hose.
By Julie Lurie | MotherJones
Whistle blowerOn a chilly evening last March in Flint, Michigan, LeeAnne Walters was getting ready for bed when she heard her daughter shriek from the bathroom of the family's two-story clapboard house. She ran upstairs to find 18-year-old Kaylie standing in the shower, staring at a clump of long brown hair that had fallen from her head.

Walters, a 37-year-old mother of four, was alarmed but not surprised—the entire family was losing hair. There had been other strange maladies over the previous few months: The twins, three-year-old Gavin and Garrett, kept breaking out in rashes. Gavin had stopped growing. On several occasions, 14-year-old JD had suffered abdominal pains so severe that Walters took him to the hospital. At one point, all of LeeAnne's own eyelashes fell out. Read More
America is overdosing on religion: How the presidential election got taken over by theocrats and zealots
From the Islamophobia of Donald Trump to everything about Ted Cruz, this is getting bad. And Democrats aren't immune
By Edwin Lyngar | Salon
Beliefs!Although someday I’d like to run for my local school board, I doubt I ever will. The single biggest factor holding me back (in my own mind) is the fact that I’m an outspoken atheist. I’m not only “out of the closet”; I’ve also written quite a lot that can be mined for nuggets to discredit me as a human being. No matter what the Constitution says, there remains a powerful, de facto religious test for public office, and it has bubbled up to the surface this election far worse than usual in the form of breathtaking religious pandering and bigotry. The establishment in both the Republican and Democratic parties, it seems, is hell bent on wringing the last bit of religious exploitation out of an angry, unruly electorate. Read More
The pledge of allegiance must go: A daily loyalty oath has become a toxic, nationalistic ritual
We make students salute national greatness for 13 years. No wonder Trumpian anti-intellectuallism is on the march
By David Niose | Salon
Allegiance!The final straw came when a teacher accused Alicia, a high school sophomore, of treason.

Alicia (not her real name) hardly comes across as subversive. She’s not one of those kids who is intrigued by anti-American propaganda from ISIS, for example, nor is she one who has been duped by homegrown anti-government groups calling for a citizens’ rebellion. She’s pretty much an ordinary, intelligent teenager—interested in politics, current events and government, but hardly a fringe radical. Read More
A true analysis of our problem, and an over-whelming list of our tax shame.
By Eric Hamm | Orlando Sentinel (Ret.)
Congress sucksPoliticians, as I have often said, are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Everything on the Republican contract is a problem created by Congress. Too much bureaucracy? Blame Congress. Too many rules?

Blame Congress. Unjust tax laws? Congress wrote them. Read More
The War on Women Is About to Get a Whole Lot Worse
If you thought 2015 was bad for abortion rights, wait until you see 2016.
By Nina Liss-Schultz | Mother Jones
WarBetween the shooting deaths of three people at a Colorado Planned Parenthood, the Supreme Court's decision to hear its first abortion-related case in nine years, and the more than 50 new abortion restriction laws enacted by state governments, abortion access was one of the most important issues of 2015. With presidential politics and ongoing legal challenges in the states, abortion rights will continue to be under fire in 2016.

"Last year's big events, like the Planned Parenthood videos and the Supreme Court case, have actually ginned up even more interest in restricting abortion," Elizabeth Nash, a senior state issues associate at the Guttmacher Institute, tells Mother Jones. "If it was possible, they've actually added more energy to decreasing abortion access." Read More
This is right-wing terrorism: The frightening new rise of church and clinic arson — and why you won’t hear about it on Fox News
Right-wing extremists are setting churches and clinics ablaze. It's a scary -- and vastly undercovered -- story
By Amanda Marcotte | Salon
Hate crimeWhile Donald Trump is bragging about closing mosques to fight Islamic terrorism, there has been an under-reported surge of right-wing terrorism recently in the U.S.

Since July, when anti-choice crusaders released hoax videos that falsely claimed that Planned Parenthood sells fetal body parts, there has been a rash of arsons at clinics, at least one of which doesn’t perform abortions. Just this week, police in New Hampshire arrested a teenager threatening a Planned Parenthood with a hatchet. After the racist church shooting in Charleston in June, itself an ugly act of domestic terrorism, there were a series of fires at black churches across the South. Read More
Staying on the Firearms Story
You can have your own opinions, but not your own facts.
By Eric Garland | Via Facebook
For the love of a gunI think I'm staying on the firearms story because there are two parts of my identity that are stronger than any others: being a Vermonter and being a professional analyst. The first means I neither fear nor loathe guns, which are all over the Green Mountains, but the second means that I can't stand bogus arguments and lying about data. Well, that and mass murders. Those are really getting annoying, too. Read More
At the Door of the Loony Gas Building
The only way to start this story is by opening a door – the door leading into the Loony Gas building.
By Deborah Blum
The workers at the Standard Oil Refinery in New Jersey, gave the building that name,Standard Oil Looney Building waving goodbye to their colleagues when they entered the shadowed opening, promising to have undertakers waiting when they came out. The building was only one year old, that fall of 1924, but it had earned the nickname.

It looked harmless enough from the outside, the usual style of factory buildings on the New Jersey site, the familiar rectangle of neat red brick with narrow windows set in stone. Inside, the first impression was also of routine, noise and heat, the hiss and clank of the pipes, the grumble and clatter of the retorts. And then the unfamiliar, a smell carried by vapors rising from the machinery, not the usual odor of gasoline, but the dull musty scent of tetraethyl lead. Read More
Your Wi-Fi Network’s Soft Underbelly
You probably don’t even think about this easy way for hackers to sneak in.
By Josephine Wolff | Slate
You probably don’t spend much time thinking about your wireless router—until it stops working, that is. Our inattention to routers has been a security problem for years, most recently last week when Brian Krebs reported that researchers at the Fujitsu Security Operations Center had discovered hundreds of routers were being used to spread a financial fraud malware called Dyre.  Read More
How Supercharged Blue Heroin Ravaged This Small Town In Ohio
By Mitch Stacy | AP
Heroin in Marion, OhioMARION, Ohio (AP) — The usual handwringing over the heroin problem turned into panic in this small city in May when a supercharged blue-tinted batch from Chicago sent more than 30 overdose victims to the hospital and two to the morgue in a 12-day stretch.

Like many places in America, Marion — an hour's drive north of the capital, Columbus — has gotten used to heroin. Emergency crews in the city of 37,000 have become accustomed to treating an overdose patient about once a day for the past year or so. But they were stunned when the unprecedented onslaught began on May 20.

They say if it hadn't been for naloxone, an antidote carried by paramedics, most of the survivors probably would have died, too. They ranged in age from their late teens to early 60s. Read More
Is Depression a Kind of Allergic Reaction?
By Caroline Williams | The Guardian
In the dumpBarely a week goes by without a celebrity “opening up” about their “battle with depression”. This, apparently, is a brave thing to do because, despite all efforts to get rid of the stigma around depression, it is still seen as some kind of mental and emotional weakness.

But what if was nothing of the sort? What if it was a physical illness that just happens to make people feel pretty lousy? Would that make it less of a big deal to admit to? Could it even put a final nail in the coffin of the idea that depression is all in the mind? Read More
Requiem for a Golf Course
by Fred Altvater | B9R Lessons
HGGCThe Golf economy today is a mixed bag, while some areas of the golf business are very strong, other parts are suffering.

Part of the reason is that young people do not seem to be taking to the game as the older generation did. With the variety of activities available to the X and Y Generations, other sports seem to be more attractive.

A slow walk around a golf course can’t compete with mountain biking or zip-lines. Read More
The Charleston Tipping Point For White America
By Rev. Dr. Martin Otto Zimmann | Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
If you have yet to see Jon Stewart’s opening monologue on June 18 th , please do so now. Our nation’s court jester is the one who managed to place the Charleston terrorist attack in proper perspective, and I applaud him for it. We white Americans should be deeply troubled by his words.

I live in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. My wife works and teaches at the Lutheran seminary here.We moved here after serving a Lutheran church in Jerusalem. The parallels between what I witnessed in Jerusalem and what I see here are astonishing.
Read More
Activists began campaigning to change the understanding of the 2nd Amendment in the late 20th century
By Larry Laird | lairdslair
One of the greatest pieces of fraud, I repeat theMy Right word ‘fraud,’ on the American public by special interest groups that I’ve ever seen in my life time. The real purpose of the Second was to ensure that state armies—the militias—would be maintained for the defense of the state. The very language of the Second Amendment refutes any argument that it was intended to guarantee every citizen an unfettered right to any kind of weapon he or she desires.”
---- Chief Supreme Court Justice Warren Burger

Justice Burger said in no uncertain terms, before gun lobbyists and activists began campaigning to change the understanding of the 2nd Amendment in the late 20th century, nobody considered it to be an individual right.

In 2008, the right wing contingent on the most recent Supreme Court (the same people who said that corporations are people) decided to throw away centuries of juris prudence and extend the 2ndAmendment as an individual protection for gun owners’ right to bear arms. During the case, United States v. Emerson, the Supreme Court decided that the 2nd Amendment is not a collective protection for gun ownership in militias, but rather a protection for individuals to own and operate weapons. This decision flies in the face of centuries of settled law and, like Citizens United v. FEC is just another case where right wing extremist wearing robes have perverted our country’s longstanding understanding of our laws.”
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