Category Archives: News

Scotland: Parliament backs independence referendum call

Source: Chicago Tribune

"Scottish lawmakers voted Tuesday to seek a new referendum on independence, to be held within the next two years — an unwanted headache for the British government as it prepares to push the European Union exit button. The Edinburgh-based legislature voted 69-59 to back First Minister Nicola Sturgeon's call to ask the British government for an independence vote. Outside, several dozen independence supporters bearing Scottish and EU flags broke into cheers and tears of joy as the news broke. … Scottish voters rejected independence in a 2014 referendum that Sturgeon's Scottish National Party called a once-in-a-generation vote. But Sturgeon says Brexit has changed the situation dramatically." (03/28/17)

Video of TSA thug feeling up teenager goes viral

Source: Fort Worth Star-Telegram

"A Transportation Security Administration official is drawing heavy criticism after a video that shows him patting down a boy at DFW Airport went viral on social media over the weekend. Jennifer Williamson, the boy's mother, posted the video to Facebook on Sunday morning, writing that she was 'livid' at the TSA agent. The two-minute clip shows Williamson's son, Aaron, standing in a security area at the airport. The agent begins patting down the boy's arms, back and torso before moving to the back of his shorts and the insides of his legs." (03/28/17)

Iran: Regime says Russia can use its military bases "on case by case basis"

Source: Reuters

"Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told Reuters on Tuesday that Russia could use Iranian military bases to launch air strikes against militants in Syria on a 'case by case basis.' Russia and Iran are both key allies of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and have played decisive roles in the past 18 months to turn the tide of the Syrian conflict in his favor. Russian jets used an air base in Iran to launch attacks against militant targets in Syria last summer, the first time a foreign power had used an Iranian base since World War Two." (03/28/17)

Trump signs order to roll back Obama's climate moves

Source: The Hill

"President Trump on Tuesday signed a wide-ranging executive order to start the process of rolling back former President Obama's aggressive climate change agenda. … The most significant piece of the order instructs the EPA to formally consider repealing the Clean Power Plan. It was the central piece of Obama’s second-term climate agenda, setting a 32 percent cut in the power sector’s carbon dioxide emissions by 2030." (03/28/17)

Germany: 1.4 million Turks head to polling stations as voting in crucial referendum begins

Source: Chicago Chronicle

"As 1.4 million eligible Turkish voters in Germany headed to the polls to cast their vote in the crucial Turkish referendum on expanding Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s powers — the sentiment amongst voters was that of conflict and confusion. Polling stations in Germany opened on Monday and was [sic] closely watched in Ankara as the number of eligible voters in Germany make up about half the total number of expatriates who can cast ballots." (03/28/17)

CA: Middle school losing funding because it has too many white students

Source: Fox News

"Having too many white students will cost a California middle school funding and imperil the jobs of some teachers and others. Last week the Los Angeles Unified School District informed parents of students at the Walter Reed Middle School in North Hollywood that because the white population had exceeded 30 percent, it had to make cuts. Under provisions of a district policy, the school had qualified for additional funding, which enable the hiring of more teachers and having smaller classes, because it had a student body that was 70 percent or higher of Hispanics, blacks, Asians and non-Anglos. However, in the last two years that percentage has fallen beneath the 70 percent level, meaning Walter Reed no longer qualified for those extra funds. The announcement infuriated parents, who fear that class sizes will increase as the number of teachers and other school personnel decreases." [editor's note: Okay, I would note that this was an added subsidy for being a good doobie, not basic funding, as is implied by the headline – SAT] (03/28/17)

Trump expected to sign controversial hunting bill

Source: Raw Story

"A controversial hunting law awaits the signature of President Trump after the Senate voted mostly along party lines last week and after clearing the House in February. The Senate voted 52-47 on March 21 to overturn Obama-era hunting restrictions that protected grizzly bears, wolves and other animals on national wildlife refuges in Alaska from baiting, trapping and aerial shooting. Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, who introduced the resolution, said the Obama-era rules were an overreach of government power. He shared support with other Alaska Republicans on Capitol Hill. 'Not only does this action undermine Alaska'’s ability to manage fish and wildlife upon refuge lands, it fundamentally destroys a cooperative relationship between Alaska and the federal government,' Young wrote on his website." (03/28/17)

US hospital shares drop as Republicans weigh healthcare repeal

Source: Reuters

"U.S. hospital stocks dropped on Tuesday as Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives said they were considering a renewed push to repeal and replace Obamacare, after the effort failed last week. Shares of Community Health Systems Inc (CYH.N) dropped 7.6 percent and Tenet Healthcare Corp (THC.N) shares fell 4.8 percent at mid-afternoon. HCA Holdings Inc (HCA.N), Universal Health Services Inc (UHS.N) and Envision Healthcare Corp EVHC.O were all down around 2 percent. Sector stocks had gained after Republicans on Friday pulled legislation to gut the 2010 Affordable Care Act, often dubbed Obamacare, and said they would move on to other issues on President Donald Trump's agenda, like tax reform." (03/28/17)

Report: Turkey "spied on" pro-Gulen opponents in Germany

Source: BBC [UK state media]

"German Interior Minister Thomas De Maiziere has said Turkey will not be allowed to spy on Turks living in Germany. Reports say the head of Turkey's intelligence service handed a list of people suspected of opposition sympathies to his German counterpart. The list is said to include surveillance photos and personal data. Germany and other EU states have banned local rallies in support of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Turkish ministers have been seeking to campaign among ethnic Turks in a referendum on 16 April on increasing his powers. Some 41,000 people have been arrested in Turkey since a coup was defeated in July of last year. Many are suspected of following a movement loyal US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen. Turkey has accused him of organising the coup. " (03/28/17)

All clear given at the White House after "man claimed he had a bomb near the grounds"

Source: Daily Mail [UK]

"Secret Service agents cleared the White House's North Lawn Tuesday morning while the president was home after a man reportedly said he had a bomb. The North Lawn was evacuated and reporters were locked into the press room so that armed agents could search the area just before 10:30am. Around 11:50am, the shelter in place was listed but agents continued to investigate the suspect's package behind a secure perimeter. Reporters first started tweeting about the incident around 10:25am." (03/28/17)