At Hillary Clinton’s campaign headquarters in Brooklyn, staffers are invited to complete a phrase that is written on a wall: “Hillary for …”
Beside it, staffers have plastered dozens of sticky notes with various words and phrases.
While the wall could be seen as a freewheeling experiment in the manner of a tech startup, it could also be regarded as symptomatic of a nagging problem for Clinton in the 2016 race: namely, the difficulty she has had in explaining why she’s running for president.
On one hand, the United States is being accused of being too scared of civilian casualties to take the fight to the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.
On the other, the US is being accused of razing a hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, killing 19 – including three children – and even continuing the attack for 30 minutes after being told what the building was.
Though the picture from Afghanistan is incomplete and shifting, both statements appear to be true. They point to how, in the ambiguous realm of counterinsurgency in unfamiliar foreign lands, the line between waging war with a modicum of morality and committing what could be a war crime is remarkably thin.
At least three investigations into the Kunduz attack have been promised, and the Frenchaid group that ran the hospital, Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders), has been relentless in demanding answers. But more broadly, the episode raises new and pressing questions about how an airstrike could go so horribly wrong at a time when the stated goal of the Obama administration is zero civilian casualties.
Test your knowledge How well do you know Afghanistan? Take our quiz.
When a reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine exploded on April 26, 1986, radioactive dust settled over thousands of miles. The next day some 116,000 people were evacuated, thinking they would return home just days later. They never did.
Now nearly 30 years later, villages and cities in the 1,600-square-mile exclusion zone sit empty. Pripyat, once a city of 50,000 nearby Chernobyl, is a crumbling ghost town.
But the zone isn’t truly empty. In the absence of humans, the animals seem to have taken over, say researchers.
Well, so bad that even the stock market didn’t like it and it usually welcomes news that restrains the Fed from raising interest rates. But this morning, the NYSE opened over 200 points in the red.
Here are some of the ugly details one finds when drilling down into the numbers.
* For the last three months, average job growth comes in at 167,000. Nearly 100,000 below the average for 2014. We are going in reverse.
* Average hourly wages were expected to rise by 0.2%. They remained flat at 0.0%.
* Labor force participation declined 0.3% year over year and, at 62.4%, is the lowest it has been since President Obama came into office.
* Of the 142,000 new jobs, 24,000 are in government.
* Not only did workers not get a raise, they also worked less: The average workweek declined from 34.6 to 34.5 hours.
They have talked, for seven years now, about a “recovery.” But it is another “R” word that is increasingly on people’s minds.
Last week we reported that Gov. Hickenlooper was out of the running as Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential selection after he literally sounded the death knell of her campaign.
We appear to have been wrong. The Clinton campaign announced this week that Hick has instead been promoted to headline her Colorado campaign leadership committee along with vice presidential wannabe-in-waiting, U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet.
We’re not exactly sure what a leadership council does and the AP was somewhat vague in its report, except to say that it would allow Hillary to “tap politicians and fundraisers who can generate both grassroots and financial support in the swing state.”
The Democratic Party is doing nothing to promote the upcoming primary debate, scheduled for next week. Democratic strategist Simon Rosenberg commented this morning that there has been “no mention of [the debate] on DNC’s website, or in emails or social media.”
Rosenberg added, “DNC has posted more than 50 tweets in past week. Not a single one has mentioned upcoming debate.”
President Obama this morning lauded the conclusion of Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations, vowing that once the 12 nations involved “have finalized the text of this partnership, Congress and the American people will have months to read every word before I sign it.”
“When more than 95 percent of our potential customers live outside our borders, we can’t let countries like China write the rules of the global economy. We should write those rules, opening new markets to American products while setting high standards for protecting workers and preserving our environment,” Obama said in a statement.
Whole Foods Market Inc. has announced that it will no longer sell products made using a prison labor program.
The move comes after months of complaints from customers who object to Whole Food’s sourcing of products through inmate labor.
During the weekend, prison reform advocate Michael Allen and other protesters in Houston hung signs that said: “End Whole Foods Market’s Profiting From Prison Slave Labor,” reported National Public Radio (NPR).
… Currently, the grocery store sells a goat cheese produced by Haystack Mountain Goat Dairy in Longmont, Colo., and a tilapia from Quixotic Farming. These companies partner with Colorado Correctional Industries, a division of the Colorado Department of Corrections, that employs prisoners who milk the goats and raise the fish, according to The Associated Press. …
… While criticism focused on the low wages paid to produce goods that sell for high prices, Whole Foods correctly noted that prison work programs can help inmates learn new skills, including “soft skills” like showing up for work on time and navigating boss-employee interactions, which can help them upon release.
The program has also been hailed a model for teaching inmates valuable work skills and allowing them to earn a higher wage than other prison jobs – such as cooking or laundry duty. It has also been hailed for allowing the prison department to make back some of the money it spends on housing inmates,” Collen Curry reports for Vice.”…
Warren’s push to purge Wall Street money from D.C.’s think tanks is more selective than it seems. The senator maintains a cozy relationship with Better Markets, a Washington, D.C.–based 501(c)3 organization funded almost exclusively by multi-millionaire hedge-fund manager Michael Masters. The hedge funder’s advocacy group is so tight with progressives’ favorite senator that the two often operate as a united front in the fight for stricter financial regulations — Better Markets’s stake in the finance industry notwithstanding.
While McDonald’s is closing more stores than it’s opening this year for the first time in over 40 years and KFC’s parent company Yum! Brands Inc. is down nearly $17 per share from its peak in May, Chick-fil-A has 20 store openings planned over the next two months, most notably the company’s first full-service location in New York City.
O.k. sorry. A little too political this morning.
Scientists uncover evidence of prehistoric ‘megatsunami’
Researchers have found evidence of an 800-foot wave, caused by the collapse of a volcano in the Cape Verde Islands some 73,000 years ago.
By Joseph Dussault, Staff writer October 4, 2015
Scientists have found evidence of an unprecedented “megatsunami” off the Cape Verde Islands that occurred some 70,000 years ago.
Caused by sudden volcanic collapse, the 800-foot wave would have engulfed what is now Santiago Island, some thirty miles away. That estimate, which was published today in Science Advances, could prompt scientific community to re-evaluate the threat of catastrophic collapses near coastal communities.
When volcanoes collapse, the resulting landslides can cause tsunamis of varying severity. Previous research proposed a gradual model for volcanic breakdown, which would result in multiple smaller waves.
First, the apparent engagement by the institute in “partisan political activity” – which, as a non-profit, it is forbidden by law from doing.
Second, what precisely has the IGES institute done with the $63 million in taxpayer grants which it has received since 2001 and which appears to have resulted in remarkably little published research?
For example, as Watts Up With That? notes, a $4.2 million grant from the National Science Foundation to one of the institute’s offshoots appears to have resulted in just one published paper.
But the amount which has gone into the pockets of Shukla and his cronies runs into the many hundreds of thousands of dollars. In 2013 and 2014, for example, Shukla and his wife enjoyed a combined income in excess of $800,000 a year.
Steve McIntyre, the investigator who shattered Michael Mann’s global-warming ‘Hockey Stick’ claim, has done a detailed breakdown of the sums involved. He calls it Shukla’s Gold.
No body gets fired. Nobody loses their pension or bonuses. AND … NOBODY SPOKE UP AND SAID THAT ‘THIS IS WRONG’.
Halting the wave of applause for the Secret Service’s smooth handling of Pope Francis’s visit to the United States, a new Homeland Security Department report suggests that the agency violated federal privacy law in an effort to embarrass Rep. Jason Chaffetz, a Republican congressman from Utah.
In the midst of a March investigation led by Representative Chaffetz as the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee into the latest Secret Service scandal involving drunk senior agents, agency employees accessed his 2003 job application to the organization, forwarding the information to others, the DHS investigation found.
According to the latest report written by Homeland Security’s inspector general, John Roth, Secret Service Assistant Director Ed Lowery even encouraged leaking embarrassing details about the congressman.