Nov 18 2014

The Breakfast Club (It’s All Been a Pack of Lies)

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. 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

Cult leader Jim Jones and hundreds of followers die in mass murder-suicide in South America; Massachusetts high court rules gay couples can marry; Disney’s ‘Steamboat Willie’ premieres in New York.

Breakfast Tunes

Breakfast News

Missouri governor declares state of emergency as national guard called in to Ferguson

The governor of Missouri declared a state of emergency on Monday, authorising the national guard to assist the policing of protests expected in Ferguson after it is announced whether a white police officer who shot dead an unarmed black 18-year-old will face charges.

Jay Nixon signed an executive order on Monday activating the national guard to support police “during any period of unrest that might occur following the grand jury’s decision concerning the investigation into the death of Michael Brown”. [..]

The governor said in a statement on Monday that the soldiers would help “maintain peace and protect those exercising their right to free speech” in the event of demonstrations following the grand jury’s announcement, which is expected in the coming days.

South Dakota Sioux tribe calls Keystone XL pipeline approval ‘act of war’

A Native American tribe in South Dakota has called a congressional vote to approve the Keystone XL pipeline an “act of war” and vowed to close the reservation’s borders if the US government tries to install a pipeline there.

The prospective route for the pipeline, which would connect Canadian tar sands fields to the Gulf coast, runs through the 922,759-acre (1,442 sq mi) Rosebud Sioux reservation in south-central South Dakota. The House of Representatives voted 252-161 on Friday to approve the pipeline.

“I pledge my life to stop these people from harming our children and our grandchildren and our way of life and our culture and our religion here,” the tribe president, Cyril Scott, said on Monday. He represents one of nine tribal governments in the state.

Surgeon brought to US for Ebola treatment dies at Nebraska hospital

A surgeon from Sierra Leone who was being treated for Ebola at a Nebraska hospital died on Monday, according to the hospital.

Dr Martin Salia, a permanent US resident, is the second patient to die of Ebola in the US. He arrived in Omaha on Saturday, having left Freetown on Friday by air ambulance. He was immediately transported to Nebraska medical center, where he began treatment in the hospital’s biocontainment unit.

Doctors and nurses cared for the ailing surgeon around the clock, the hospital said. At around 4am on Monday Salia’s heart stopped and medical staff were not able to revive him.

Capitol tree planted in honor of Emmett Till

Emmett Till was remembered Monday at the Capitol, as lawmakers planted a tree in his honor on the Capitol grounds.

Till was an African-American murdered in Mississippi after allegedly flirting with a white woman.

“Emmett Till never got to grow to his full potential,” recalled Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who sponsored thre tree. “In the summer of 1955, he was a fun-loving African-American youngster, just past his 14th birthday, who was visiting family in Mississippi.

“His brutal murder was followed by a gross miscarriage of justice that allowed his murderers to go free. Emmett Till’s death helped to awaken America.”

Detention at Guantánamo grinds on: 13 years and counting, 148 captives remain

It’s the first Tuesday in November, just another day as Guantánamo grinds on toward the detention center’s 14th year as the most expensive prison on earth with no end in sight. President Barack Obama ordered it emptied in 2009, on his second day in office, and people here are dubious that it will be done before his last.

It will close “a year from now, six months from now, 10 years from now – I don’t know,” says Zak, a Pentagon employee who has served as the prison’s Muslim cultural adviser since 2005.

“My focus is to ensure that I have operationally effective and safe facilities for a mission with an indeterminate end date,” says Rear Adm. Kyle Cozad, the 14th commander of the prison operation.

Iran nuclear deal: ‘tough decisions’ still to be made as deadline looms

A comprehensive nuclear agreement with Iran will be difficult, but still possible, to achieve by the 24 November negotiating deadline, a senior US official said ahead of the final scheduled week of talks in Vienna.

Ultimately, the senior official said, some of the key decisions would not be taken around the negotiating table in the Austrian capital, but by national leaders in capitals. And she predicted that those decisions might not be made until the eleventh hour of the negotiations.

“We all knew the tougher decisions would be taken at the end, and that looks like it will indeed be the case,” the official said. “We hope this is a week when tough decisions are made.

One in 30 US children are homeless as rates rise in 31 states, report finds

One in 30 American children are homeless, according to a new state-by-state report that finds racial disparities, increasing poverty and domestic violence responsible for the historic high.

According to the report released on Monday by the National Center on Family Homelessness, child homelessness increased in 31 states and the District of Columbia. Nearly 2.5 million children experienced homelessness in the US in 2013, an 8% rise nationally from 2012.

California and states in the south and south-west ranked particularly poorly in an analysis of homelessness, state responses and associated factors. According to the report, California has more than 500,000 homeless children, a high cost of living and only 11,316 housing units for homeless families; only Alabama and Mississippi, with chronically bad poverty rates, ranked worse.

Under Pressure, Texas Textbook Publisher Caves on Climate Denial

Climate scientists can breathe a bit easier.

Pearson Education-the largest educational publisher in the world-has cut material from a proposed Texas social-studies textbook that cast doubt on the human causes of global warming. [..]

When the proposed Texas textbooks were released in September, the National Center for Science Education heavily criticized the assertion that “scientists disagree about what is causing climate change.”

95 percent of climate scientists agree that human activity, including the burning of fossil fuels, is the primary driver of global warming. For the sake of comparison, that agreement is equivalent to the scientific consensus that smoking cigarettes is deadly.

“Scientists do not disagree about what is causing climate change,” NCSE wrote in an analysis of the textbooks. The Texas Freedom Network, a left-leaning advocacy organization, also called on Pearson to edit out that statement.

In the wake of the backlash, that sentence has now been cut from the textbook.

Federal Investigation Into Painkillers Targets N.F.L. Teams’ Medical Staffs

Federal drug enforcement agents questioned medical-staff members from the San Francisco 49ers and several other teams on Sunday as part of a continuing investigation into the distribution of painkillers in the N.F.L.

The unannounced visits by the Drug Enforcement Administration were spurred, in part, by reports of widespread abuse of painkillers that were included in a class-action lawsuit against the N.F.L. The suit, which is being heard in federal court in California, claims that team doctors routinely dispensed Percocet, Toradol, Novocain and other drugs to energize players before games and relieve pain afterward.

More broadly, the agency has increased its policing of prescription drugs in recent years as addiction and abuse of painkillers and other medications have skyrocketed.

F.C.C. Chief Aims to Bolster Internet for Schools

With a goal of fiber-optic lines reaching to every school and a Wi-Fi connection in every classroom, Tom Wheeler, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, is expected on Monday to propose a 62 percent increase in the amount of money the agency spends annually to wire schools and libraries with high-speed Internet connections.

Mr. Wheeler will propose that the annual cap on spending for school Internet needs be raised by $1.5 billion, to $3.9 billion, according to an F.C.C. official who spoke on condition of anonymity but was authorized to release details of the proposal. The initiative is part of a continuing overhaul of the Universal Service Fund and its educational component, known as E-Rate.

The new spending would lead to an increase of roughly 16 percent in the monthly fee on consumers’ phone bills. The fee is used to finance the Universal Service Fund, an $8.7 billion effort that provides phone and broadband connections for low-income populations, rural areas, and schools and libraries.

Night shift work linked to obesity in new sleep study

Sleeping during the day burns fewer calories than at night, according to research that shows working night shifts can increase the risk of developing obesity.

A new study has found that night shift patterns disrupt the metabolism of employees, causing them to use less energy than they normally would over the course of a day.

The effect was particularly pronounced when the employees were trying sleep during the day as, despite suffering more disturbed sleep, they burned between 12% and 16% fewer calories than when sleeping at night.

The findings may help to explain why those who work night shifts are more likely to suffer from obesity and related diseases such as heart disease.

Must Read Blog Posts

Conclusion: Slow Growth and Inequality are Political Choices. We Can Choose Otherwise. Joseph E. Stiglitz, The Washington Monthly

Undercover Supreme Court Police Deployed Outside Courthouse to Spy on Protests Kevin Gosztola, FDL The Dissneter

US Feeding its Addiction to Training Iraqi Military Jim White, emptywheel

In the Future All Marijuana Edibles Might Need to Be Pre-Approved By Colorado Government Jon Walker, FDL Just Say Now

Eric Holder’s Pathetic Reason for Continuing to Shirk His Responsibility on Marijuana Rescheduling Jon Walker, FDL Just Say Now

Lobbying Used to Be a Crime: A Review of Zephyr Teachout’s New Book on the Secret History of Corruption in America Matt Stoller, naked capitalism

Jonathan Gruber, ObamaCare, and “Stupid Voters”: It Couldn’t Happen to a Nicer Shill Lambert Strether, naked capitalism

Just Don’t Call It Democracy Big Al, The Stars Hollow Gazette

Justice Department Defends US Marshals’ Airborne Cell Tower Spoofers; Refuses To Acknowledge Program Exists Tim Cushing, Techdirt

Ted Cruz Doubles Down On Misunderstanding The Internet & Net Neutrality, As Republican Engineers Call Him Out For Ignorance Mike Kasnick, Techdirt

Something to Think about over Coffee Prozac

Hot Takes

Governor Nixon will bring in the National Guard in order to pacify the restive province of Ferguson.

“We must use state violence in order to put down peaceful protests of unlawful state violence”- Nixon, probably.

Large numbers of white people (especially) in this country see black people as inherently criminal, as irrationally violent, as a problem to be dealt with. Not as citizens who sometimes have very legitimate grievances.

It’s all very depressing.


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