March 17, 2017

Trump’s budget proposal reportedly includes deep cuts in infrastructure spending. “Trump’s budget outline hits hardest at surface transportation by eliminating a $500-million-a-year program that was created in the federal stimulus package of 2009 to finance a wide range of projects, from replacing bridges to building street car lines. The budget also would cut funding for new rail or bus lines.”

Trump budget also reportedly cuts ALL government funding for PBS, NPR and National Endowment for the Arts. “The budget plan, which calls for the elimination of four independent cultural agencies — the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting — also would radically reshape the nation’s cultural infrastructure.”

Israeli jets reportedly strike targets in Syria, Syria claims one jet shot down with missile. “The Israeli military said its warplanes struck several targets in Syria and were back in Israeli-controlled airspace when several anti-aircraft missiles were launched from Syria toward the Israeli jets.”

Bomb sniffing dog escapes onto runways, New Zealand airport security shoots it to avoid additional flight delays. “Security staff at Auckland International Airport say they tried everything they could to retrieve a detector dog who caused havoc this morning, before deciding to shoot it dead.”   Reminds me of the time they shot a passenger on the runway in Miami. “An agitated passenger who claimed to have a bomb in his backpack was shot and killed by a federal air marshal Wednesday after he bolted frantically from a jetliner that was about to take off, officials said. No bomb was found.”

British equivalent of the NSA rejects accusations that it spied on Donald Trump at the request of then President Obama. “‘Three intelligence sources have informed Fox News that President Obama went outside the chain of command (to spy on Trump). He didn’t use the NSA, he didn’t use the CIA … he used GCHQ,'” (White House press secretary Sean) Spicer told journalists.”

California judge throws out murder conviction of 62 year-old man who had served 32 years in prison. “Citing “cumulative errors,” a prosecutor Wednesday conceded that Wilson, 62, had been deprived of his right to a fair trial.”

Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch reportedly defended Bush administration’s indefinite detention and torture policies. “He was also part of teams that helped draft speeches on national security for Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and an op-ed published by USA Today, under his supervisor’s byline, defending President Bush’s warrantless surveillance program and his use of a signing statement to claim a right to bypass the Detainee Treatment Act’s provision banning torture.”

Group of academics, retired military officers and ministers to investigate CIA’s “extraordinary rendition” program. “The initially secret anti-terrorism program saw suspects captured and sometimes kidnapped, then transferred to locations in countries where they were interrogated and often tortured outside the reach of U.S. law.”

U.S. military admits it bombed village of al-Jena in Syria, denies targeting mosque. “A US official confirmed that American planes conducted an airstrike along the border of the provinces of Idlib and Aleppo but said they struck a building, where it was believed an al Qaeda meeting was underway, and killed “several terrorists”.”

Irish prime minister urges Trump not to deport the 50,000 Irish citizen living and working illegally in the U.S. ““We would like this to be sorted,” Mr. Kenny said, calling for these people to be given a path to citizenship.”   White Christians? No problem! (sarcasm alert)

31 killed, 80 hospitalized after “helicopter gunship” reportedly opens fire on Somali refugees fleeing Yemen by boat. “The trafficker says the Somalis were all refugees and that there were women and children among them.”

Adopted Iowa teen reportedly died of starvation after child protective services and police failed to intervene. “They were called in to look in to the family after receiving reports from Natalie’s school, Walnut Creek Campus, that she would come to class dirty and hungry.”

$3,000,000 missile reportedly used to shoot down $200 drone. “No further details of the encounter – such as where or how recently it took place – were given, but Gen Perkins did describe the party that launched the missile as “a very close ally”.”


March 17, 2017

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