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House Votes to Allow Repeal of 'Don’t Ask, Don't Tell' Law

House Votes to Allow Repeal of 'Don’t Ask, Don't Tell' Law 27 May 2010 The House voted Thursday to let the Defense Department repeal the ban on gay and bisexual people from serving openly in the military, a major step toward dismantling the 1993 law widely known as "don’t ask, don’t tell." The provision would allow military commanders to repeal the ban. The House vote was 234 to 194, with 229 Democrats and 5 Republicans in favor. Opposed were 168 Republicans and 26 Democrats.

Two Norfolk teachers put on leave over material about police

Two Norfolk teachers put on leave over material about police 27 May 2010 (VA) Two Norview High School teachers were placed on paid administrative leave this week after a parent complained that they distributed classroom materials that gave advice on how to deal with police if stopped. The materials - a one-page handout and a video distributed and aired in a 12th-grade government class - are sponsored by two organizations, one a nonprofit that supports legalization of marijuana and one that calls itself a "decentralized anarchist collective." The last paragraph of the flier, titled "When Dealing with Police" [accurately] states, "Remember You have legal rights, but many police will not respect your rights. Be careful - Be Street Smart."

Gunmen kill four policemen in Pakistan

Gunmen kill four policemen in Pakistan 28 May 2010 At least four Pakistani policemen have been killed by unidentified gunmen in the southwestern part of the country. According to officials, the officers were killed on Friday in Satellite Town, a neighborhood of Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province. "A police station house officer, two constables and the driver were killed on the spot," local police official Mohammad Amin told AFP. Currently, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack. [Sounds like Blackwater, to me.]

Acres of land burnt by Israeli war games

Acres of land burnt by Israeli war games 28 May 2010 Military exercises conducted by the Israeli army have set fire to thousands of acres of the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, destroying plant life in the region. Firefighting teams put out the fire on more than 17,000 acres, Israeli news outlet Ynet reported on Thursday. The five-day-long military maneuvers, dubbed Turning Point 4, began Sunday and were conducted in 68 cities and towns.

US base in Bahrain to double size

US base in Bahrain to double size 28 May 2010 Amid regional turmoil, a US naval base in the Gulf is set for major expansion. Ground has been broken at the American naval base in Bahrain, home to the US Fifth Fleet, for a $580 million expansion that is estimated to take five years to complete, the US Navy said in a press statement on Wednesday. "Naval Support Activity Bahrain continues to grow to better support ongoing operations around the region," said Capt. Enrique Sadsad, commanding officer of Naval Support Activity Bahrain.

Iran Navy detects US nuke sub in PG

Iran Navy detects US nuke sub in PG 27 May 2010 Iranian naval forces have detected a US nuclear submarine in the Persian Gulf waters, amid growing concerns over the safety of one of the most important energy routes in the world. An Iranian patrol on Thursday spotted the nuclear-armed and -powered submarine in the strategic Strait of Hormuz, which allows the passage of 90 percent of the oil produced by Persian Gulf states to Asia, the US and Western Europe. There are currently 48 logistic and 18 combat US vessels in the Persian Gulf waters, among them the USS-Eisenhower aircraft carrier.

Witness: Secret Iraq prison for women and children

Witness: Secret Iraq prison for women and children --Iraq's Muthanna Army base has women and children in a secret prison, says an Iraqi eyewitness. He says some are family members of Al Qaeda suspect and are used to extract confessions. 26 May 2010 There aren't supposed to be any prisons at the Muthanna Iraqi Army base, let alone ones with children in them. But a member of the Iraqi security services says that as late as mid-May, he saw children playing in a makeshift detention center here... The Muthanna facility appears to be operating weeks after a separate undisclosed prison on the base, where more than 400 suspects were held and dozens tortured, was closed.

BP's Photo Blockade of the Gulf Oil Spill

BP's Photo Blockade of the Gulf Oil Spill --Photographers say BP and government officials are preventing them from documenting the impact of the Deepwater Horizon disaster. 27 May 2010 News photographers are complaining that their efforts to document the slow-motion disaster in the Gulf of Mexico are being thwarted by local and federal officials--working with BP--who are blocking access to the sites where the effects of the spill are most visible. More than a month into the disaster, a host of anecdotal evidence is emerging from reporters, photographers, and TV crews in which BP and Coast Guard officials explicitly target members of the media, restricting and denying them access to oil-covered beaches, staging areas for clean-up efforts, and even flyovers. Last week, a CBS TV crew was threatened with arrest when attempting to film an oil-covered beach.

Louisiana Biologists Rescue an Oiled Pelican

Oil Spill Photo Gallery: Louisiana Biologists Rescue an Oiled Pelican By Kim Hubbard 26 May 2010 (Gretna, LA) Yesterday we rode along with the Lousiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in their search for oiled birds. They discovered and rescued a Brown Pelican on a small, unnamed island in the Barataria Bay.

Oil spill: BP had wrong diagram to close blowout preventer

Oil spill: BP had wrong diagram to close blowout preventer 12 May 2010 In the days after an oil well spun out of control in the Gulf of Mexico, BP engineers tried to activate a huge piece of underwater safety equipment but failed because the device had been so altered that diagrams BP got from the equipment's owner didn't match the supposedly failsafe device's configuration, congressional investigators said Wednesday. The oil well also failed at least one critical pressure test on the day that gas surged up the drill pipe and set the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig aflame, killing 11 and setting off [a large oil spill]  according to BP documents provided to congressional investigators.

Who to blame for flu? Maybe the U.S., study finds

Who to blame for flu? Maybe the U.S., study finds --The first cases of H1N1 swine flu were diagnosed in the United States. Experts are still unsure where swine flu originated. [Yeah, it's a tough one.] 27 May 2010 U.S. researchers said on Thursday. A team at the University of Michigan, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Florida State University found that not all strains of flu circulating in North America die off at the end of influenza season... For example, aggressive use of antiviral drugs such as Roche AG's Tamiflu could promote drug resistance if flu strains never really die out in the United States. [See: Killer flu recreated in the lab 07 Oct 2004. Scientists have shown that tiny changes to modern flu viruses could render them as deadly as the 1918 strain which killed millions. A US team added two genes from a sample of the 1918 virus to a modern strain known to have no effect on mice. Animals exposed to this composite were dying within days of symptoms similar to those found in human victims of the 1918 pandemic.]

BP Well May Have Leaked More Than Twice Exxon Valdez

BP Well May Have Leaked More Than Twice Exxon Valdez 27 May 2010 BP Plc’s Gulf of Mexico oil well may have spilled more than twice the oil that the Exxon Valdez dumped, according to figures from a U.S. government panel. The BP well may have gushed 12,000 to 19,000 barrels a day, more than the company has estimated, Marcia McNutt, director of the U.S. Geological Survey and science adviser to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, said today in a conference call.

US troops deployment irks Mexico

US troops deployment irks Mexico 27 May 2010 Mexico's President Felipe Calderon has expressed discontent with a US decision to deploy 1,200 soldiers along the two countries' shared border. Mexico does not object to US plans to station troops along the border between the two nations as long as the soldiers do not arrest Mexicans trying to get into the United States, President Felipe Calderon said on Thursday.

Senate panel votes end to 'don't ask, don't tell'

Senate panel votes end to 'don't ask, don't tell' --House Republicans were strongly against it 27 May 2010 The Senate Armed Services Committee has voted to repeal the 1993 law known as "don't ask, don't tell" and allow gays to serve openly in the military. The 16-12 vote endorses an end to the Clinton-era policy under which gays could serve in the military only if they don't disclose their sexual orientation. The full House planned to take an identical measure later Thursday or Friday.

100,000 teachers nationwide face layoffs

100,000 teachers nationwide face layoffs 27 May 2010 Senior congressional Democrats and the Obama administration scrambled Wednesday to line up support for $23 billion in federal aid to avert an estimated 100,000 or more school layoffs in a brutal year for education budgets coast to coast. As early as Thursday, the House Appropriations Committee expects to take up a bill that couples the school funding with spending for the Afghanistan war -- a measure that has bipartisan support. [Why not just cut the funding for the illegal, insane war on Afghanistan?]

Obama Defends Handling of Oil Spill

Obama Defends Handling of Oil Spill 27 May 2010 Saying that he is "angry and frustrated" over the oil spill gusher in the Gulf of Mexico, President Obama on Thursday ordered work to be suspended on exploratory drilling in the gulf and cancelled or deferred some future wells around the country, as the head of the agency regulating offshore drilling resigned under pressure. Addressing deepening public frustration and defending his handling of the five-week-old crisis, Mr. Obama acknowledged that his team had made several mistakes of judgment and approach, at one point even saying "I was wrong" to believe that oil companies were prepared for worst-case disasters as he moved forward with plans for expanded offshore drilling last month, before the disaster in the gulf.

"Hope-and-Change," A Hoax

"Hope-and-Change," A Hoax By Michael Rectenwald and Lori Price, www.legitgov.org 27 May 2010 In our encounters on various social networking sites and political blogs, we consistently encounter the faithful remnants of the "hope-and-change" believers. To combat the onslaught of evidence and opinion that leads one to the conclusion that Obama is a fraud at best and represents a hoax at worst, they point to lists of his accomplishments and the ways he has delivered on his campaign promises. Such lists, we believe, are generally misrepresentations and fail to rise to the level of credibility. They are misleading because they represent minor deeds that might very well have been accomplished otherwise... There are some notable changes, but are they commensurate with Obama’s euphuistic campaign rhetoric? We think not.

AP: New, giant sea oil plume seen in Gulf

AP: New, giant sea oil plume seen in Gulf 27 May 2010 Marine scientists have discovered a massive new plume of what they believe to be oil deep beneath the Gulf of Mexico, stretching 22 miles from the leaking wellhead northeast toward Mobile Bay, Alabama. The discovery by researchers on the University of South Florida College of Marine Science's Weatherbird II vessel is the second significant undersea plume recorded since the Deepwater Horizon exploded on April 20.

New Flu Vaccines Could Protect Against All Strains

New Flu Vaccines Could Protect Against All Strains [that they create] 26 May 2010 A new vaccine may be able to provide some protection against all strains of influenza. Current immunizations create antibodies that target a specific piece of a molecule on the surface of the virus that researchers call its "head." That piece of the hemaglutinin protein evolves very quickly... The next-generation vaccine causes antibodies to go after a piece of the hemaglutinin that changes less often and that is present in many influenza strains. Researchers are calling them "headless HA" vaccines, and they could be the key to a universal flu shot. [Instead of 'headless HA,' they should call it 'brainless HAHA - no thanks.' --LRP]

Iraq PM details 'several' assassination attempts

Iraq PM details 'several' assassination attempts 26 May 2010 Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki claimed in remarks released Wednesday that he had escaped several assassination attempts, including one where insurgents [Blackwater?] tried to shoot down his plane. "There have been several attempts," Maliki told London-based Arabic newspaper Al-Hayat, according to a transcript of the interview released by his office.

BP live video link from the ROV monitoring the damaged riser

Terror Attacks Against U.S. At All-Time High

Terror Attacks Against U.S. At All-Time High --DHS Report Says Pace May Increase And Include More Homegrown Extremists 26 May 2010 The pace and number of attempted terror attacks against the U.S. over the past nine months has surpassed the number of attempts during any previous one-year period, according to an internal Department of Homeland Security report issued on Friday, May 21. The report notes chillingly that while US officials "lack insights" they believe that "operatives are in the country and could advance plotting with little or no warning."

BP attempts 'top kill' to plug devastating oil leak

BP attempts 'top kill' to plug devastating oil leak 26 May 2010 Energy giant BP began a high-stakes operation Wednesday to plug a ruptured oil well in the Gulf of Mexico, shooting heavy drilling fluid known as "mud" into a stack of damaged pipes on the sea floor in the hope of sealing a leak that has been gushing crude for 37 days. In a statement Wednesday evening, BP CEO Tony Hayward said the "top kill" operation was "proceeding as planned." U.S. Coast Guard officials gave BP approval to start the "top kill" procedure as President Barack Obama expressed cautious optimism about its chances of success.

British soldier killed in southern Afghanistan

British soldier killed in southern Afghanistan 26 May 2010 A British soldier has been killed in southern Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence said today. The serviceman, from 4th Regiment the Royal Artillery, died after being shot in a fight with insurgents in the Nahr-e Saraj area of Helmand province this morning. The Ministry of Defence said the soldier was conducting a joint foot patrol with the Afghan national army when he was shot.

US prison in Afghanistan to hold first 'trial'

US prison in Afghanistan to hold first 'trial' 26 May 2010 The main U.S. prison [on the edge of Bagram Air Field] in Afghanistan is less than a week away from holding a 'trial.' On June 1, a detainee prisoner will stand with a lawyer and plead his case in front of an Afghan judge, said Brig. Gen. Mark Martins, the deputy commander for detention operations. His remark came during a tour of the prison Tuesday for a handful of Afghan lawmakers who have been critical of U.S. detention practices.

BP Used Riskier Method to Seal Oil Well Before Blast

BP Used Riskier Method to Seal Oil Well Before Blast 26 May 2010  Several days before the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, BP officials chose, partly for financial reasons, to use a type of casing for the well that the company knew was the riskier of two options, according to a BP document. The concern with the method BP chose, the document said, was that if the cement around the casing pipe did not seal properly, gases could leak all the way to the wellhead, where only a single seal would serve as a barrier... Workers from the rig and company officials have said that hours before the explosion, gases were leaking through the cement, which had been set in place by the oil services contractor, Halliburton. Investigators have said these leaks were the likely cause of the explosion.

440 birds, 393 of them dead

440 birds, 393 of them dead --Oil spill's BP's animal victims struggle as experts fear a mounting toll 27 May 2010 In the Louisiana marsh, oil-coated pelicans flap their wings in a futile attempt to dry them. A shorebird repeatedly dunks its face in a puddle, unable to wash off. Lines of dead jellyfish float in the gulf, traces of oil visible in their clear "bells." Now that oil from the Gulf of Mexico's vast spill has come ashore -- in some places, as thick as soft fudge -- it is causing serious damage in one of the country's great natural nurseries. In nature, oil is a versatile killer. It smothers the tiny animals that make up a coral reef. It suffocates blades of marsh grass, cutting them off from air and sunlight. It clumps up a bird's feathers, leaving it unable to fly; then, trying to remove the oil, birds swallow it.

Oil spill hits over 100 miles of Louisiana coast-gov

Oil spill hits over 100 miles of Louisiana coast-gov 26 May 2010 More than 100 miles (160 km) of Louisiana's coast have already been affected by oil from the massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico, state governor Bobby Jindal (R) said on Wednesday. He criticized BP and the federal authorities for a response he called "too little, too late", saying his state needed more protective boom and oil skimming ships to protect its coastline. "More than 100 miles of our shoreline have already been impacted by this oil spill," Jindal told reporters, in comments carried live by CNN. [Yes, but Bobby Jindal, the whiny little hypocritical maggot, would have also yelped if the federal government seized operations from BP. --LRP]

CIA considered faking Saddam Hussein sex video

CIA considered faking Saddam Hussein sex video 26 May 2010 Unnamed former officers told the Washington Post it was one of a number of outlandish plans thought up to discredit the Iraqi dictator before the 2003 American-led invasion. "It would look like it was taken by a hidden camera," said one. "Very grainy, like it was a secret videotaping of a sex session." Another scheme was to break into Iraqi television stations with a bogus news bulletin in which a Saddam lookalike would announce that he was stepping down.

NORAD test flights set in Fargo area

NORAD test flights set in Fargo area 26 May 2010 The North American Aerospace Defense Command will conduct exercise flights today in the skies in the vicinity of Minneapolis and Duluth, Minn., to Fargo. The flights will take place in the early afternoon, and people may hear and see NORAD fighter aircraft in close proximity with Department of Defense-contracted general aviation aircraft as they practice intercept and identification procedures.

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'We want either a hammer or a fire, to break the spell or dissolve the ice.' Artisan radical freethinker, George Jacob Holyoake, Reasoner V (1848): 2.

CLG's Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D. and Lori Price receive the Patrick Henry Think Tank's American Hero Award 02 Nov 2005 The Patrick Henry Democratic Club --A Think Tank working to give the government back to the people. "Give me liberty or give me death!"

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