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Monday, April 28, 2014

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Welcome to the Finger-Wagging Olympics | TIME.com

It's time to look at ourselves — and our collective moral outrage — in the mirror, says former NBA player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

.Kareem Abdul Jabbar Clippers

Moral outrage is exhausting. And dangerous. The whole country has gotten a severe case of carpal tunnel syndrome from the newest popular sport of Extreme Finger Wagging. Not to mention the neck strain from Olympic tryouts for Morally Superior Head Shaking. All over the latest in a long line of rich white celebrities to come out of the racist closet. (Was it only a couple days ago that Cliven Bundy said blacks would be better off picking cotton as slaves? And only last June Paula Deen admitted using the “N” word?)
Yes, I’m angry, too, but not just about the sins of Donald Sterling. I’ve got a list. But let’s start with Sterling. I used to work for him, back in 2000 when I coached for the Clippers for three months. He was congenial, even inviting me to his daughter’s wedding. Nothing happened or was said to indicate he suffered from IPMS (Irritable Plantation Master Syndrome). Since then, a lot has been revealed about Sterling’s business practices:
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Welcome to the Finger-Wagging Olympics | TIME.com

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Welcome to the Finger-Wagging Olympics | TIME.com

It's time to look at ourselves — and our collective moral outrage — in the mirror, says former NBA player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

.Kareem Abdul Jabbar Clippers

Moral outrage is exhausting. And dangerous. The whole country has gotten a severe case of carpal tunnel syndrome from the newest popular sport of Extreme Finger Wagging. Not to mention the neck strain from Olympic tryouts for Morally Superior Head Shaking. All over the latest in a long line of rich white celebrities to come out of the racist closet. (Was it only a couple days ago that Cliven Bundy said blacks would be better off picking cotton as slaves? And only last June Paula Deen admitted using the “N” word?)
Yes, I’m angry, too, but not just about the sins of Donald Sterling. I’ve got a list. But let’s start with Sterling. I used to work for him, back in 2000 when I coached for the Clippers for three months. He was congenial, even inviting me to his daughter’s wedding. Nothing happened or was said to indicate he suffered from IPMS (Irritable Plantation Master Syndrome). Since then, a lot has been revealed about Sterling’s business practices:
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Welcome to the Finger-Wagging Olympics | TIME.com

Radical racist context missed in rancher hype | MSNBC

Radical racist context missed in rancher hype
Rachel Maddow points out that Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s racist remarks are unsurprising in the context of his apparent adherence to the philosophy of the Posse Comitatus and Sovereign Citizen movements, rooted in post-Civil War reconstruction.

Radical racist context missed in rancher hype | MSNBC

Saturday, April 19, 2014

A Story About Race - Neil deGrasse Tyson

Why it's time to take domestic terrorism seriously | MSNBC

After the deadly Oklahoma City bombing on April 19, 1995, then-Attorney General Janet Reno formed a special task force to coordinate the country’s response to the threat of domestic terrorism.
The task force was scheduled to hold one of its monthly meetings on Sept. 11, 2001, but did not for obvious reasons. In fact, because the threat of jihadist terrorism has taken so much of the government’s attention since 9/11, the special task force has never met again.
The killings in Overland Park, Kansas, last Sunday remind us, however, that the threat of domestic terrorism is still very real. What’s more, Saturday is the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, an event that killed 168 people and led to the formation of the now-defunct special federal task force. It is time, therefore, to ask whether the pendulum has swung too far in the direction of jihadist terrorism.
There were actually good reasons to ask this very question before the events of the past week – a point we made in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and then-Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano last year.
A 2006-2007 survey of state police agencies sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), for example, found that more states reported the presence of far-right anti-government, neo-Nazi and racist skinhead groups than Islamic extremists. Since the time of that survey, our tracking shows that the number of far-right anti-government groups has exploded, and the number of neo-Nazi and racist skinhead groups has remained at an extraordinarily high level.


Why it's time to take domestic terrorism seriously | MSNBC

U.S. more oligarchy than democracy, study suggests | MSNBC

Americans may like to think they live in a Democracy, but a new study suggests the opinions of a moneyed elite class are far more influential than those of the masses.
The study, by professors at Northwestern and Princeton, found that policies supported by economic elites and business interest groups were far more likely to become law than those they opposed.
It also found that the preferences of the middle class made essentially no difference to a bill’s fate.


U.S. more oligarchy than democracy, study suggests | MSNBC

Neil DeGrasse Tyson Said What He Thinks About Race Now That He's Made It, And Almost Nobody Noticed

To set the scene, the (poorly posed) question is referring to comments made by former Treasury Secretary and Harvard University President Lawrence Summers, who suggested that genetic differences could explain why there are fewer girls in science. Yup, he really was Treasury secretary and president of Harvard.
Neil deGrasse Tyson's answer is, um, out of this world. There, I said it. Let me have this one.


Neil DeGrasse Tyson Said What He Thinks About Race Now That He's Made It, And Almost Nobody Noticed

NYTimes: Covert Inquiry by F.B.I. Rattles 9/11 Tribunals

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Report: NSA Used Heartbleed Security Flaw To Spy On People For Two Years

"After a week of speculation from security experts, Bloomberg reported Friday that the National Security Agency has actively known about and exploited the Heartbleed security bug for at least two years. According to Michael Riley:"

Talk About Income Inequality! De Blasio Is No Bloomberg, Tax Returns Confirm - NYTimes.com

"New Yorkers already knew that Mayor Bill de Blasio was far less prosperous than his billionaire predecessor, Michael R. Bloomberg. But tax documents released on Tuesday, the filing deadline, revealed just how stark that contrast is.

Mr. de Blasio and his wife, Chirlane McCray, reported $165,047 in adjusted gross income for 2013, a combination of his pay as public advocate, a tax refund and $45 in interest.

The mayor had no book deals, either — unlike Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, who found last year that writing a memoir can be more lucrative than governing New York. His newfound literary riches were disclosed on Tuesday as reporters inspected his tax returns as well."

NYTimes: China’s Actions in Hunt for Jet Are Seen as Hurting as Much as Helping

The man behind the Kansas City shootings | MSNBC



The man behind the Kansas City shootings | MSNBC

Is Russia staging a slow-motion invasion of Ukraine? | MSNBC



Is Russia staging a slow-motion invasion of Ukraine? | MSNBC

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The US “Southwest” was stolen from Mexicans | Thetruthisfreedom's Blog

"The land stolen from Mexico is bigger than Germany and France combined and considered to be among the riches in the world where an abundance of gold was found after the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed. The native Mexicans were forced to become US citizens or leave the area one year after the Treaty was signed. As a result of the invader’s laws, thousands of native Mexicans left but the great majority stayed and became citizens. Throughout the development of the so-called “Republic of Texas” the war against Mexicans was made of grave crimes. The well-known philosopher and historian Jose Vasconcelos wrote that one reason whites perpetrated horrible crimes against Mexicans, was because they believed in the concept known as “manifest destiny” which in practice meant to “kill all the Mexicans and take Mexico.” History has registered thousands of grotesque crimes against Mexicans in that part of the Native American Continent, but more outstanding for having similarities with the grave crimes by whites in Central and South America, are those related to the taken of men by force of arms out of their homes to be murdered, then the white killers would back to the homes and rape women and little girls, murder them, set the homes on fire, and kill all the animals."

NYTimes: U.N. Climate Panel Warns Speedier Action Is Needed to Avert Disaster

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Another Prosecutor Is Said to Investigate Port Authority - NYTimes.com

The Manhattan district attorney’s office has subpoenaed documents from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey concerning a range of the troubled agency’s major construction projects, including several that have come under scrutiny as a result of the politically charged George Washington Bridge lane closings, a person with knowledge of the matter said Saturday.



Another Prosecutor Is Said to Investigate Port Authority - NYTimes.com

Neil deGrasse Tyson - Reason & Faith are Irreconcilable

Recommended read from Salon.com: Stop twisting the Bible: There is no message against same-sex marriage

"In Genesis 19, we read the story of Sodom, from which the terms “sodomy” and “sodomite” are drawn. In this story, two angels (in both Hebrew and Greek the word “angel” means “messenger”) came from God, and visited the town of Sodom. Lot, Abraham’s nephew, invited the men to lodge with him for the night. Here’s what Genesis says: “Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom—both young and old—surrounded the house. They called to Lot, ‘Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.’ Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him and said, ‘No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing. Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof ’ ” (Genesis 19:4–8, niv)."

Recommended read from Salon.com: Stop twisting the Bible: There is no message against same-sex marriage

"1 In Genesis 19, we read the story of Sodom, from which the terms “sodomy” and “sodomite” are drawn. In this story, two angels (in both Hebrew and Greek the word “angel” means “messenger”) came from God, and visited the town of Sodom. Lot, Abraham’s nephew, invited the men to lodge with him for the night. Here’s what Genesis says: “Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom—both young and old—surrounded the house. They called to Lot, ‘Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.’ Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him and said, ‘No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing. Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof ’ ” (Genesis 19:4–8, niv)."

Gassy Cows Are Warming The Planet, And They're Here To Stay

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Recommended read from Salon.com: Why Stephen Colbert is dangerous -- and invaluable

"O’Reilly’s fame has only grown over the years, but his ability to tolerate Colbert’s spoof has withered. O’Reilly has emerged as the angry red face of white grievance, our greatest race hustler, telling his older, white male audience that they’re right to resent our black president and the changing America he leads. This meaner, angrier Bill O’Reilly is no longer tolerating Colbert’s satire but shrilly campaigning against him, with a meltdown on Tuesday night that called the comedian a “deceiver” peddling “shameful” lies that “damage” the country."

Clusterf#@k to the Poor House - Wall Street Bonuses - The Daily Show - Video Clip | Comedy Central

Clusterf#@k to the Poor House - Wall Street Bonuses - The Daily Show - Video Clip | Comedy Central

America's Got Coverage - The Daily Show - Video Clip | Comedy Central

America's Got Coverage - The Daily Show - Video Clip | Comedy Central

For Obama Presidency, Lyndon Johnson Looms Large - NYTimes.com

For better or worse, Johnson represented the high-water mark for American presidents pushing through sweeping legislation — not just the Civil Rights Act, but the Voting Rights Act, Medicare, Medicaid, the Fair Housing Act and major measures on immigration, education, gun control and clean air and water. No president since has approached that level of legislative success, although there are people who argue that is a good thing because government should not be so intrusive.

But Mr. Obama and many Democrats are not among them. At this stage of his presidency, Mr. Obama has become a symbol of liberal frustration over his inability to use government to bring about change. Republicans publicly, and some Democrats privately, blame Mr. Obama for not doing more to work across the aisle. The White House and many Democrats scoff at that, laying stalemate at the feet of what they call an obstructionist Republican Party.


For Obama Presidency, Lyndon Johnson Looms Large - NYTimes.com

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Battlestar Galactica on course for movie reboot, report
says

" The rumoured project, which is said to have signed on "Transcendence" writer Jack Paglen, will be a "complete reimagining" of the story, Variety reports. Glen Larson, who created the original 1978 series, is pegged to produce the silver screen effort.

While details are thin on the ground, a "reimagining" suggests that any upcoming Battlestar movie will depart from the acclaimed 2004 series, which starred Katee Sackhoff, Edward James Olmos and Mary McDonnell as star-flung travellers fleeing the destruction of the Colonies at the hands of the dastardly, cybernetic Cylons. Universal execs Scott Bernstein and Jay Polidoro are rep"

Monday, April 07, 2014

The Web can make you lose your religion, study says

"Allen Downey, a computer scientist at the Olin College of Engineering in Massachusetts, thought he'd see whether religious affiliation was taking a hit from Mammon's constant virtual dissemination.

His study, published in the MIT Technology Review, might send chills down the pocket-linings of more than one tele-evangelist. For the figures show that there is a significant correlation between increased Internet use and a decline in religiosity.

Between 1990 and 2010, 25 million Americans shed their religion. At least officially. Using the University of Chicago's General Social Survey, Downey plotted the rise of the Internet against this fall in holy devotion.

The biggest factor of continued religious affiliation is family. If you are born into a religious family, you are more likely to maintain that commitment.

Downey, though, insists that though fewer people are being born into religious families, he can only attribute 25 percent of the drop in religiosity to this factor.

Greater levels of college education also contribute. However, when Downey examined the figures for Internet use, he found that by 2010, 25 percent of people were online for more than 7 hours every day.

How odd that this 25 percent number mirrors the 25 percent who seem to have shed their beliefs."

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Online debate sparked on race and poverty The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates speaks to Melissa Harris-Perry about the online back-and-forth between himself and New York Magazine’s Jonathan Chait about the “culture problem” within the African American community.





How women factor into the debate on race | MSNBC

Melissa Harris-Perry Calls Out Mississippi Governor For Signing Law That Helps 'Bigots'

MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry called out the governor of Mississippi on Saturday for signing legislation that may protect business owners' ability to discriminate against LGBT customers.




Melissa Harris-Perry Calls Out Mississippi Governor For Signing Law That Helps 'Bigots'

Other People's Pathologies - Ta-Nehisi Coates - The Atlantic

"Black culture and the culture of poverty are not the same thing."

Black Pathology Crowdsourced - Ta-Nehisi Coates - The Atlantic

"I think it might help this discussion to offer some sense of how I came to my views on culture and white supremacy. I want to go back to the original piece I wrote, "A Culture of Poverty," and highlight an exchange I had in comments. Then I want to point to a recent note I received which helped clarify things even more."

A Few Data Points on the Supreme Court’s Donor-Limit Decision | FiveThirtyEight

The Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down biennial aggregate campaign contribution limits. For 2014, the overall limit was $123,200. There was a lower limit of $74,600 for donations to PACs and party committees (of which no more than $48,600 could be given to a nonnational party committee). And donors could give, at most, $48,600 to all candidates. At this point, the court hasn’t touched the limits to individual candidates. So, what’s the impact of this decision? Here are a few data points.
First, the parties will become more powerful. Over the past few elections, most people looking to get around donation limits gave tons of money to Super PACs. Now contributors can ingratiate themselves with a party by giving directly. Along the same lines, major bundlers (e.g. those who have a habit of getting ambassadorships) will gain more pull.


A Few Data Points on the Supreme Court’s Donor-Limit Decision | FiveThirtyEight

Neil deGrasse Tyson- Debunks Creation (Intelligent Design)

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Mozilla Chief, a Gay-Marriage Foe, Steps Down - NYTimes.com

“Apple was among the first California companies to offer equal rights and benefits to our employees’ same-sex partners, and we strongly believe that a person’s fundamental rights — including the right to marry — should not be affected by their sexual orientation,” Apple said in a statement at the time.

Apple donated $100,000 to oppose the measure, and Google’s co-founders, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, had also reportedly donated a combined $140,000 to fight the bill."

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Supreme Court Strikes Down Aggregate Limits on Federal Campaign Contributions - NYTimes.com

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a major campaign finance decision, striking down some limits on federal campaign contributions for the first time. The ruling, issued near the start of a campaign season, will change and most likely increase the already large role money plays in American politics.



Supreme Court Strikes Down Aggregate Limits on Federal Campaign Contributions - NYTimes.com

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

CIA misled on interrogation program, Senate report says - The Washington Post

"A report by the Senate Intelligence Committee concludes that the CIA misled the government and the public about aspects of its brutal interrogation program for years — concealing details about the severity of its methods, overstating the significance of plots and prisoners, and taking credit for critical pieces of intelligence that detainees had in fact surrendered before they were subjected to harsh techniques."



CIA misled on interrogation program, Senate report says - The Washington Post

Why you should know about Matt Doherty Steve Kornacki discusses why Belmar, New Jersey mayor Matt Doherty should be on your radar - especially considering his role in the internal review of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s administration.







All In with Chris Hayes on msnbc