August 21, 2017

Three Confederate statues come down at University of Texas. “Those statues depict John H. Reagan (Confederate Postmaster General),  Albert S. Johnston (a Confederate general), and Robert E. Lee ( commander of the Confederate army).”

U.S. and South Korea decide to go ahead with war games despite warnings from North Korea. “North Korea warned Sunday that the upcoming US-South Korea military exercises are “reckless behavior driving the situation into the uncontrollable phase of a nuclear war”.”

Some top Trump aides say they don’t dare to resign. “You have no idea how much crazy stuff we kill.”

Trump administration to abolish climate change committee. “The panel — the Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment — is a 15-member panel made up of academics, corporate employees and local officials charged with simplifying findings from the National Climate Assessment for those inside and outside of the federal government.”

Trump’s secret plan for peace in Middle East – telling each party what they want to hear? “Abbas noted that in meetings with envoys representing U.S. President Donald Trump in recent weeks, he heard that they support a two-state solution to the conflict and a settlement construction freeze. However, the Palestinian president said they are refusing to say so publicly and to present Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with such a position as an American demand.”

Philippine Catholic leaders call for end to government drug war killings. “Most people in the Philippines support the anti-drug campaign and Duterte remains a popular leader but questions have begun to be asked about the slaughter, with more than 90 people killed in a new surge of shootings in recent days.”

An estimated 22,000 turn out in Hong Kong to protest arrests of pro-democracy activists. “Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow were initially given non-custodial sentences for their involvement in mass protests in 2014.”

Robotics and artificial intelligence companies urge U.N. to ban “lethal autonomous weapons”. “An open letter by 116 founders of robotics and artificial intelligence companies from 26 countries was launched at the world’s biggest artificial intelligence conference, the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI), as the U.N. delays meeting until later this year to discuss the robot arms race.”

Off-duty officer reported singing man to police in excessive force case. “As he dined with his wife outdoors at Shula’s Steakhouse, officer Taldan Cashatt saw Ochse’s serenade as a disturbance, court papers say, and called his colleague, officer Robert Busch, who Cashatt knew was on-duty and assigned to patrol the area.”

Judge questions accuracy of police officer’s version of events in shooting death of unarmed teenager Deven Guilford. “Maloney detailed those “factual disputes” in his 38-page opinion and was pointed in his criticism, addressing what he described as inconsistencies between (Officer) Frost’s account and the evidence.”

Washoe County, Nevada agrees to pay settlement in lawsuit claiming deputies released attack dog after suspect had surrendered. “As Corona knelt on the ground (with his hands on his head), deputy Jason Wood unleashed his police dog on him, telling the dog to “get that bad guy”.”

Minneapolis woman claims police used excessive force to remove her from vehicle after they mistook her boyfriend for wanted felon. “We need more accountability so this doesn’t happen to anyone else.”

Lawsuit accuses White Plains, New York police of excessive force during arrest. “Video inside police headquarters showed Pateman’s wrists covered in blood. He says he also suffered several rotator cuff tears and neck and back injuries, in addition to psychological trauma.”

Man sues Niskayuna police after arrest left his arm broken in three places. “He claims in the suit that police pulled him through his car window, then twisted his disabled arm behind him.”

Family of Orange County prisoner sues over his death after neck fracture during cell extraction. “The suit claims the nursing staff had a “deliberate indifference” to his serious medical needs.”

Trump can still count on the support of his wealthy, conservative donors, some of whom recently joined him at the White House for dinner, who are poised to benefit “hugely” from proposed tax cuts. “They included the New York investor Robert Mercer, the Kentucky coal executive Joseph W. Craft, and the Wisconsin roofing magnate Diane Hendricks, according to people familiar with the dinner.”

Some Americans are working full-time, six days a week, and are still homeless. “We are the foot soldiers for these billion-dollar companies.”

CIA torture victims win settlement from psychologists. “Because the settlement mandates confidentiality, lawyers for the ACLU declined to discuss the terms with The Intercept.”

Anti-fraud banking program to be scrapped by Trump administration. “Operation Choke Point heightened scrutiny on banks who failed to raise concerns about questionable transactions on their networks.”

Author claims little will to prosecute corporate crime. “…not that long ago, the US prosecuted the likes of Mike Milken, the executives of Enron and Adelphia and WorldCom. Today, executives at Wells Fargo or Goldman Sachs or so many that clearly were responsible for the potential criminal acts that caused the 2008/2009 crash have escaped the long arm of the law.”

Phoenix Craigslist ads seek minorities to hold Trump signs at rally, children as “crisis actors”. “While Trump has paid actors to attend events before, it’s equally likely that the ads are an internet prank or someone’s attempt to create a disinformation campaign.”

National Security Advisor H. R. McMaster defends idea of “preventative war” with North Korea. “The president’s been very clear about it. He said he’s not going to tolerate North Korea being able to threaten the United States.”

German police raid home of man who posted YPG flag image on Facebook. “A special police commando raided a shared apartment in the Schwabing district of the Bavarian capital at 6 a.m. on Thursday morning, having tracked down one of its inhabitants who had, according to their search warrant, posted an image of the triangular yellow YPG flag in March.”

New York Times accused of publishing “alternative facts” when claiming U.S. opposed military coup in Honduras. “…the US continued most aid to Honduras, carefully avoiding the magic words “military coup” that would have necessitated withdrawing support from the coup regime.”

Steve Bannon returns to Breitbart News. “His departure came after a series of meetings last week with billionaire funder Robert Mercer, who funds Breitbart and funded Trump’s campaign. Bannon met with Mercer Wednesday, and Trump met with Mercer on Thursday.”

Who are the Mercers, the family that has funded the Trump campaign, Breitbart News and Cambridge Analytica, and what do they want? “They’re undoing the sort of the government as we know it, which has, you know, the protections for people, for workers, for the environment, for the poor, for the disabled.”




August 21, 2017

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