In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: War] War, war, and neverending war: "President Obama on Wednesday formally asked Congress to authorize a three-year military campaign against the terrorist group the Islamic State that would avoid a large-scale invasion and occupation but in addition to air power could include limited ground operations by American forces to hunt down enemy leaders or rescue American personnel. ...[I]n a letter to Congress accompanying the proposal, Mr. Obama, who has said there would be no boots on the ground in Iraq and Syria, envisioned limited ground combat operations 'such as rescue operations' or the use of 'Special Operations forces to take military action against ISIL leadership.' He also said the legislation would allow the use of ground forces for intelligence gathering, target spotting and planning assistance to ground troops of allies like Iraq's military."

[CN: Death] Oh no: "At least 300 migrants are feared to have drowned after attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea from North Africa this week in rough seas, the UN says. UNHCR Europe director Vincent Cochetel said the incident was a 'tragedy on an enormous scale.' ...The UNHCR said [that four dinghies] left Libya at the weekend. Those rescued on Wednesday morning had spent days drifting without food or water in two of the other dinghies—with each said to be carrying more than 100 people. The survivors said the fourth dinghy disappeared at sea. Carlotta Sami, a spokeswoman for the UNHCR, said the victims had been 'swallowed up by the waves,' with the youngest a child of 12. ...The UN said the latest incident should be a message to the European Union that the current search and rescue operation in the Mediterranean was inadequate. 'Europe cannot afford to do too little too late,' Mr Cochetel added."

[CN: Homophobia; transphobia; video may autoplay at link] What the actual fuck: "State workers [in Kansas] are no longer protected based on their sexual orientation or gender identity following an executive order by Gov. Sam Brownback on Tuesday. ...His order rescinds a prior order from former Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, which expanded the protections." What an absolute asshole.

[CN: War on agency] And anti-choicers' strategy of chipping away at Roe continues unabated: "On the heels of a record-breaking number of new abortion restrictions that have been enacted over the past four years, state lawmakers are continuing to push forward with a stringent anti-abortion agenda in 2015. By last week, states had already introduced more than 100 bills intended to regulate access to abortion, according to researchers at the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Lawmakers are working to restrict the procedure in more than half the states in the country."

[CN: Sexual assault] I don't even know what to say about the trial of former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who has been repeatedly accused of rape. He is clearly a sexual predator and an unrepetant liar.

Speaking of liars, Brian Williams has been suspended from NBC for six months without pay, for his tall tale of coming under fire in Iraq. Ian Milliser observes: "BREAKING: Brian Williams becomes first person in human history to suffer professional consequences for lying about the Iraq War." Boom.

Something something Jon Stewart is leaving The Daily Show. Okay. Who cares.

Wisconsin's problem wants to be a national problem: "Scott Walker, the Republican who leads the presidential pack in Iowa polling, is the first of the 2016 White House aspirants to open an office here." Good grief.

Want to see popcorn explode in slow motion? It's pretty cool!

And finally: This goat loves peanut butter. "This tastes way better than a tin can!"

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