Daily Archive: 11/28/2010

Nov 28 2010

The Week In Review 11/21 – 27

244 Stories served.  35 per day.

This is actually the hardest diary to execute, and yet perhaps the most valuable because it lets you track story trends over time.  It should be a Sunday morning feature.

No News on Thanksgiving, but plenty the rest of the week.

Nov 28 2010

Rant of the Week: Cenk Uygur

It’s all about the money.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Nov 28 2010

Keeping Fear Alive

The FBI helps fabricate and then thwart a terrorist plot to blow up a van at the Christmas Tree lighting in Portland, OR. You can’t make this stuff up but apparently the FBI can. The suspect, Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, a naturalized United States citizen living in Corvallis, Ore., is the only person arrested and other than the FBI agents, the only one involved in this so-called plot. For over a year the FBI prompted a gullible and angry teenager and led him into believing that he was participating in a jihadist plot. The more details that the FBI reveal the more it seems that it was the FBI who targeted Mohamud and radicalized him into believing that he could pull this off. It appears almost impossible that a high school student even with terrorist contacts would have been allowed to be privy to the details of the plans, let alone help formulate it.  

Teddy Partridge who has been following this story at FDL said it best in is first article:

Clearly, the Pacific Northwest has been too complacent about terror brewing in our midst. Thank goodness for the heroic FBI that allowed one silly young man trying to impress older, more senior “terrorists” with an operational plan. And thank goodness they saved us from this attack, moments before it didn’t occur.

How long are we going to let the cowboys shoot up our country with their false terror plots and operations that would go nowhere without their instigation, planning, and coercion? How long will we allow our own federal constabulary to justify its own recklessly inflated budget by permitting actions like this to develop, fester, and grow operational in our midst?

This is terror, pure and simple. State-sponsored terror. Big-splash terror designed to make people compliant and fearful, and grateful to their federal government – in a city which has not yet installed the Rapiscan porno-scanners at our airport.

Someone needs to put an end to it.

Exactly.

Glenn Greenwald expounds on this further:

It may very well be that the FBI successfully and within legal limits arrested a dangerous criminal intent on carrying out a serious Terrorist plot that would have killed many innocent people, in which case they deserve praise.  Court-approved surveillance and use of undercover agents to infiltrate terrorist plots are legitimate tactics when used in accordance with the law.

But it may also just as easily be the case that the FBI — as they’ve done many times in the past — found some very young, impressionable, disaffected, hapless, aimless, inept loner; created a plot it then persuaded/manipulated/entrapped him to join, essentially turning him into a Terrorist; and then patted itself on the back once it arrested him for having thwarted a “Terrorist plot” which, from start to finish, was entirely the FBI’s own concoction.  Having stopped a plot which it itself manufactured, the FBI then publicly touts — and an uncritical media amplifies — its “success” to the world, thus proving both that domestic Terrorism from Muslims is a serious threat and the Government’s vast surveillance powers — current and future new ones — are necessary.

Greenwald goes further, examining the evidence already put out by the FBI and shredding their case against Mohamud with numerous violation of his Constitutional rights that will never hold up in a court of law. The prosecution must also be able to show that this was not entrapment by the FBI by showing that the defendant “was independently predisposed to commit the crime for which he was arrested.”. They must also prove that they did not manipulate the accused by him from traveling domestically for employment.

I would think that there are bigger fish to fry out there that don’t need the help of the FBI to plan and carry out their attacks. A little less time and money spent on manipulating a lone teenager and a little more effort into catching real bad guys would go a long way into protecting the US, and the world, from criminals.

Nov 28 2010

On This Day in History: November 28

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

November 28 is the 332nd day of the year (333rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 33 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1970, George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord” is released.

Nov 28 2010

Punting the Pundits: Sunday Preview Edition

Punting the Punditsis an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.

The Sunday Talking Heads:

This Week with Christiane Amanpour: Berkshire-Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett, Microsoft founder and Chairman Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda Gates, of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, CNN founder Ted Turner and hedge fund manager Tom Steyer sit down with Christiane Amanpour in a “This Week” exclusive and explain their reasons for making the Giving Pledge – a commitment by some of America’s wealthiest individuals to give the majority of their wealth to philanthropy. Joined by 40 billionaires, boosting diverse causes such as education, the environment, AIDS, human rights and nuclear arms reduction these visionaries offer their insights on changing the world.

Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer:] Roundtable: Edmund Morris, Ron Chernow, Arianna Huffington and Bob Woodward.

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The Chris Matthews Show: This Week’s Guests John Heilemann, New York Magazine, National Political Correspondent, Norah O’Donnell MSNBC Chief Washington Correspondent, Anne Kornblut, The Washington Post White House Correspondent and Reihan Salam, National Review.

They will discuss along with Mr. Matthews these questions:

Can Sarah Palin Remake Herself Into a Serious Presidential Candidate?

Will the U.S. Turn the Airport Security Focus to the Bomber Instead of The Bomb?

Meet the Press with David Gregory: This Sunday Mr. Gregory will be joined by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Assistant Majority Leader and Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Assistant Minority Leader.

The Round Table pudits, Washington Post’s E.J. Dionne, Republican Strategist Ed Gillespie, The Wall Street Journal’s Peggy Noonan, and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.

State of the Union with Candy Crowley: Arizona Sen. John McCain, who just won his fifth term in the Senate, will join Candy to discuss the lame duck Congress and the conflicting priorities of a Democratic White House and a more powerful Republican Party in Congress.

Then, Sen. Byron Dorgan and Rep. David Obey will tell us why they’re thankful to be leaving Washington. Both of them announced their retirements earlier this year and have just over one month left in the nation’s capital.

We’ll also share the final segment from our interview with former President George W. Bush and his brother, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Jeb will tell us how many copies of his brother’s book he purchased and whether or not he’s actually read it.

And finally, a fascinating interview with White House photographer Pete Souza who captures history 1/500th of a second at a time.

Fareed Zakaris: GPS: This week on GPS: It’s that time of year when American’s gather together with their loved ones to give thanks for all that they have. But Fareed says the puritanical roots of that tradition are hard to find in America these days…and you’ll be surprised where you need to look to find them today.

Then, the nation’s top military man, Admiral Mike Mullen the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff sits down with Fareed. On the agenda with the President’s top military adviser: the world’s trouble hot spots from Afghanistan to North Korea and beyond.

Next up, has somebody in China know what web sites your visited? Have they read your email? Maybe.

After that we have a fascinating discussion with the man who helped engineer the largest tax cuts in American history. Fareed sits down with President Reagan’s budget director, David Stockman, to talk about how to fix the economy. Stockman says his own party – the GOP – has all the wrong ideas…and has abandoned its core economic principles.

Finally, a last look at Afghanistan’s brutal national sport and what the US military just might learn from it.

Nov 28 2010

Holiday TV Sunday

Well, it’s that holiday time of year again when all you want is some mindless entertainment to spare you from dealing with your relatives and TV programmers screw with you by replacing all your familiar favorites with sappy specials and marathons of your least liked shows made more inpenetrable by the one line crawl of uselessness that TV Guide channel has become.

Thank goodness kindly uncle ek is here to highlight a few moments of blessed distraction as well as some of the potential pitfalls to be avoided.

I look on it as a public service.

My job is made a little easier because of a neat little network ‘day at a glance’ feature of Zap2it TV Listings.  Click on the channel name.  I’m going from my last diary to Paid Programming.  I’m putting the main meat below the fold because the table is too long for the Front Page.  It’s arranged by time and marathons (4 half hour episodes, 3 hour episodes, double features, themes, and Instapeats) may be noted earlier than you expect, but they do also include the running time so you know when they end.

Nothing like watching A Christmas Story 25 times in a row.

Today is the last day of your special 24 hour Holiday coverage.  Prime Time tomorrow as usual.  I’m rolling publishing again because it’s much easier.  Right now this covers until noon.  Expect an update.

Update: Good until 6 am.

Nov 28 2010

Morning Shinbun Sunday November 28




Sunday’s Headlines:

Don’t let us down: UN climate change talks in Cancun

USA

F.B.I. Says Oregon Suspect Planned ‘Grand’ Attack

U.S. strategy for treating troops wounded in Afghanistan, Iraq: Keep them moving

Europe

Which domino will be the next to fall in the eurozone?

Moldova seeks to end stalemate

Middle East

Egypt’s discredited elections blighted by shadow of police violence

Yemen’s tragic tide of trafficked humanity

Asia

Monsoon gives pledge on minimum wage for Indian women

North Korea’s undercover journalists reveal misery of life in dictatorship

Africa

Gadaffi’s ‘cultural’ tours to Libya for Italian models

Diamond warfare

Latin America

Haiti presidential election gains in drama

N. Korea preps missiles amid U.S. war games

Pyongyang warns of ‘merciless’ assault if further provoked as joint naval drills begin

msnbc.com news services

YEONPYEONG ISLAND, South Korea – The sound of new artillery fire from North Korea just hours after the U.S. and South Korea launched a round of war games in Korean waters sent residents and journalists on a front-line island scrambling for cover Sunday.

None of the rounds landed on Yeonpyeong Island, military officials said, but South Korea’s Defense Ministry later ordered journalists off the island.

Nov 28 2010

Well what do you make of this?

Union Drops Health Coverage for Workers’ Children

One of the largest union-administered health-insurance funds in New York is dropping coverage for the children of more than 30,000 low-wage home attendants, union officials said. The union blamed financial problems it said were caused by the state’s health department and new national health-insurance requirements.

Just squeezed out.

The union fund faced a “dramatic shortfall” between what employers contributed to the fund and the premiums charged by its insurance provider, Fidelis Care, according to Mitra Behroozi, executive director of benefit and pension funds for 1199SEIU. The union fund pools contributions from several home-care agencies and then buys insurance from Fidelis.

“In addition, new federal health-care reform legislation requires plans with dependent coverage to expand that coverage up to age 26,” Behroozi wrote in a letter to members Oct. 22. “Our limited resources are already stretched as far as possible, and meeting this new requirement would be financially impossible.”

And the hits just keep on coming.  

Nov 28 2010

Well what do you make of this?

Union Drops Health Coverage for Workers’ Children

One of the largest union-administered health-insurance funds in New York is dropping coverage for the children of more than 30,000 low-wage home attendants, union officials said. The union blamed financial problems it said were caused by the state’s health department and new national health-insurance requirements.

Just squeezed out.

The union fund faced a “dramatic shortfall” between what employers contributed to the fund and the premiums charged by its insurance provider, Fidelis Care, according to Mitra Behroozi, executive director of benefit and pension funds for 1199SEIU. The union fund pools contributions from several home-care agencies and then buys insurance from Fidelis.

“In addition, new federal health-care reform legislation requires plans with dependent coverage to expand that coverage up to age 26,” Behroozi wrote in a letter to members Oct. 22. “Our limited resources are already stretched as far as possible, and meeting this new requirement would be financially impossible.”

And the hits just keep on coming.  

Nov 28 2010

Evening Edition

Evening Edition is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 Bluefin tuna gets scant relief at fisheries meet

by Marlowe Hood, AFP

1 hr 22 mins ago

PARIS (AFP) – Fishing nations opted Saturday to leave catch limits for eastern Atlantic bluefin tuna virtually unchanged despite concerns that the species is perilously close to collapse.

Annual quotas for the sushi mainstay will be trimmed from 13,500 tonnes this year to 12,900 tonnes in 2011, the 48-member International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) decided at the close of a 10-day meeting in Paris.

Some nations here favoured a much lower cap, or even a suspension of fishing, to ensure bluefin’s long-term viability.