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Jun 13 2014

The Breakfast Club: 6-13-2014

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we’re not too hungover we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Everyone’s welcome here, no special handshake required. Just check your meta at the door.

Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.

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This Day in History

Breakfast News

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Iraqis flee as militants close in; Obama says Iraq’s government needs help

Radical Islamists pushed forward in Iraq as an increasingly nervous United States sought ways to stop the militants from closing in on Baghdad.

As Iraq further disintegrated, residents fled Mosul in droves. Militants captured the country’s second-largest city this week after soldiers scattered, leaving their uniforms and weapons behind.

Jittery families eager to leave sat in traffic jams stretching as far as the eye could see.

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Thai junta considers $93 billion transport plan

The head of Thailand’s military junta said Friday he is considering a 3 trillion baht ($93 billion) plan to build more rail lines and other infrastructure, adding more than $30 billion to a canceled project of the government it ousted.

Army commander Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha told a meeting of civil servants that “the 3 trillion baht project” was under discussion.

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Myanmar panel deals blow to Suu Kyi’s chances of becoming president

Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi’s hopes of becoming Myanmar’s president next year have been dealt a blow when a parliamentary committee voted not to change a constitutional clause that bars her from the post, two of the panel members said on Friday.

The committee tasked with recommending amendments opted to retain the section that prevents anyone married to a foreigner or with children of foreign citizenship from becoming head of state.

The two sources declined to be identified and did not say why the proposal was rejected by 26 of the 31 panelists.

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Tony Abbott and Barack Obama strike deal to let the US build military facilities in Australia

THE United States will be able to build permanent military facilities on Australian soil and expand to locations across the country under a deal struck between Tony Abbott and Barack Obama.

The deal – which initially covers up to 2500 US forces rotating through Darwin but can be expanded – will allow the US to bring warships, planes and troops in Australia.

New bases can be set up across the country and the number of troops increased without limit over 25 years under the deal, senior US officials confirmed.

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US indicts ‘Guccifer’ hacker after release of private Bush family photos

A grand federal jury in Virginia has indicted in absentia the Romanian hacker nicknamed ‘Guccifer’ for hacking into Facebook and email accounts of top US government officials, a relative of two ex-presidents and celebrities.

Marcel Lehel Lazar, 42, faces the charges that include wire fraud, unauthorized computer access, cyber stalking and aggravated identity theft, the US Department of Justice said on Thursday.

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Bergdahl’s writings reveal a fragile young man

Before he became a Taliban prisoner, before he wrote in his journal “I am the lone wolf of deadly nothingness,” before he joined the Army, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was discharged from the Coast Guard for psychological reasons, said close friends who were worried about his emotional health at the time.

The 2006 discharge and a trove of Bergdahl’s writing – his handwritten journal along with essays, stories and e-mails provided to The Washington Post – paint a portrait of a deeply complicated and fragile young man who was by his own account struggling to maintain his mental stability from the start of basic training until the moment he walked off his post in eastern Afghanistan in 2009.

“I’m worried,” he wrote in one journal entry before he deployed. “The closer I get to ship day, the calmer the voices are. I’m reverting. I’m getting colder. My feelings are being flushed with the frozen logic and the training, all the unfeeling cold judgment of the darkness.”

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Behind Eric Cantor’s campaign meltdown

From the moment polls opened Tuesday, it could not have been clearer that Eric Cantor gave no mind to the idea he could lose.

In the morning, he huddled with lobbyists at a Starbucks on Capitol Hill. In the afternoon, a campaign aide in Richmond emailed Cantor allies in Washington to report that Election Day plans were going swimmingly. The Cantor campaign organized volunteers to meet at the Republican National Committee to travel to the district for a get-out-the-vote effort that was billed as a way to “build up your resume campaign credentials,” with the added perk of getting a chance to “meet the majority leader” and celebrate at his “victory party,” which would feature a bar and catering stations.

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Jahi McMath: ‘Brain dead’ teen to get honorary diploma

A California teenager declared brain dead after a routine operation went wrong will receive an honorary diploma from her school, her family says.

The uncle of Jahi McMath, 13, told local media the school had decided to give her a diploma later this month.

It will be accepted by a relative at the school’s graduation ceremony.

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Hillary Clinton’s Gay-Marriage Problem

Hillary Clinton didn’t refrain from supporting same-sex marriage for political reasons-prior to last year, she earnestly believed that marriage equality should be denied to gays and lesbians. That’s the story the 66-year-old Democrat settled on after NPR host Terry Gross pressed her on her views. The admission is easily the most significant in the interview with the former senator, secretary of State, and presidential candidate, though much of the subsequent media attention has focused on the perception that there was a “heated exchange” where Clinton “lashed out” at her interviewer.* The mild tension stemmed from persistent questioning as Clinton obfuscated on an issue that could damage her chances in a 2016 primary, but that is relatively unlikely to hurt her in a contest against a Republican, given that her coalition is so much stronger on gay rights than the opposition.

In a primary, Clinton could be forced to explain a longtime position that a significant part of that Democratic political coalition now views as suspect or even bigoted. Most famously, the Silicon Valley left forced the ouster of Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich for a 2008 donation he made to an anti-gay-marriage ballot initiative. That same year, Clinton ran for president while openly opposing gay marriage. If she is to be believed, she also opposed gay marriage as recently as 2013, long after a majority of Americans already held a more gay-friendly position. Would the subset of Democrats who thought 2008 opposition to gay marriage should prevent a man from becoming CEO in 2013 really support the 2015 presidential campaign of a woman who openly opposed gay marriage until last year?

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Dinosaurs ‘neither warm nor cold blooded’

Dinosaurs fit in an intermediate class between warm and cold blooded animals, a study in the journal Science claims.

Scientists compared the growth rates of hundreds of living and extinct species, using growth rings and bone size to calculate the rates for dinosaurs.

They linked growth rate to metabolic rate, the measure of energy use that divides warm and cold blooded animals.

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The Startling Link Between Dating Apps And STI Risk

Smartphone social apps like Grindr, Scruff and Recon are associated with a greater risk for STIs like gonorrhea and chlamydia among gay and bisexual men, according to a new study conducted by the Los Angeles LGBT Center, a non-profit organization in Los Angeles, Calif.

Compared with men who met partners online or in person, men who used social apps had 25 percent greater odds of being infected with gonorrhea and 37 percent greater odds of being infected with chlamydia, the study found. However, there seemed to be no difference between the groups when it came to syphilis or HIV infection.

“As technology has benefits, it also has certain risks,” said Matt Beymer, the lead researcher and an epidemiologist at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. “We want to educate gay and bisexual men about the potential risks that they may face with these apps.”

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Something to Think about over Coffee Prozac

Thus did a handful of rapacious citizens come to control all that was worth controlling in America. Thus was the savage and stupid and entirely inappropriate and unnecessary and humorless American class system created. Honest, industrious, peaceful citizens were classed as bloodsuckers, if they asked to be paid a living wage. And they saw that praise was reserved henceforth for those who devised means of getting paid enormously for committing crimes against which no laws had been passed. Thus the American dream turned belly up, turned green, bobbed to the scummy surface of cupidity unlimited, filled with gas, went bang in the noonday sun.

Kurt Vonnegut

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Breakfast Tunes

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