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Here's what an actual 'six strikes' copyright alert looks like

March 1, 2013 by legitgov

Here's what an actual 'six strikes' copyright alert looks like --Comcast provides copies of Alerts 1, 2, 4, and 5. 27 Feb 2013 Earlier this week, the Copyright Alert System (CAS)--better known as "six strikes"--finally debuted. Both Verizon and Comcast activated the service on Wednesday. The new system is funded by a group known as the Center for Copyright Information (CCI), which is made up of five major American ISPs, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). It's been in the works for years and may provide a significant change to the copyright infringement policing regime in the United States. At the end of a series of six alerts, accused infringing customers could have their home Internet connection significantly slowed down. Those accused of infringing can file an appeal for $35.

Bradley Manning says U.S. 'obsessed with killing' opponents

March 1, 2013 by legitgov

Bradley Manning says U.S. 'obsessed with killing' opponents 28 Feb 2013 Army Pfc. Bradley Manning pleaded guilty Thursday to 10 charges that he illegally acquired and transferred highly classified U.S. materials later published by WikiLeaks, saying he was motivated by a U.S foreign policy that "became obsessed with killing and capturing people rather than cooperating" with other governments. "I felt we were risking so much for people who seemed unwilling to cooperate with us due to the mistrust and hatred on both sides," Manning said, reading a 35-page, hand-written statement describing his angst over the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "I began to become depressed with the situation we had become mired in year after year," he added.

British terror suspects quietly stripped of citizenship...then killed by US drones

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

British terror suspects quietly stripped of citizenship...then killed by US drones 28 Feb 2013 The Government has secretly ramped up a controversial programme that strips people of their British citizenship on national security grounds -- with two of the men subsequently killed by American drone attacks. An investigation by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism for The Independent has established that since 2010, the Home Secretary, Theresa May, has revoked the passports of 16 individuals, many of whom are alleged to have had links to militant or terrorist groups. Critics of the programme warn that it allows ministers to "wash their hands" of British nationals suspected of terrorism who could be subject to torture and illegal detention abroad. They add that it also allows those stripped of their citizenship to be killed or "rendered" without any onus on the British Government to intervene.

'Frozen Dirt' and Methane...'We Cannot Go There'

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

'Frozen Dirt' and Methane...'We Cannot Go There' 28 Feb 2013 When permafrost ['frozen dirt'] thaws, so do the microorganisms. With no oxygen, the microorganisms make methane, and with it they make carbon dioxide, Kevin Schaefer of the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Centre explains. The concern is that much of the carbon stored in permafrost -- in frozen dirt -- could be released into the carbon cycle, says scientist Charles Miller of NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The Arctic, Miller says, is being affected by warming faster and more significantly than models had predicted. Methane concentrations, and even CO2 concentrations, "that one might associate with flying near a large oil or natural gas production facility or even flying through the middle of a large city" can be observed from an airplane, he says.

Symantec discovers 2005 US computer virus attack on Iran nuclear plants

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Symantec discovers 2005 US computer virus attack on Iran nuclear plants --Internet security firm finds early 'Stuxnet O.5' version revealing espionage and sabotage virus released under George W Bush 26 Feb 2013 Researchers at the security company Symantec have discovered an early version of the "Stuxnet" computer virus that was used to attack nuclear reprocessing plants in Iran, in what they say is a "missing link" dating back to 2005. The discovery means that the US and Israel...were working on the virus scheme long before it came to public notice -- and that development of Stuxnet, and its forerunner, began under the presidency of George W Bush, rather than being a scheme hatched during Barack Obama's first term. The older version of the virus, dubbed "Stuxnet 0.5" -- to distinguish it from the "1.0" version -- also targeted control systems in Iran's Natanz enrichment facility, the researchers said.

Taliban attacks not down after all - AP

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Taliban attacks not down after all - AP --Pentagon retracts 'Taliban attacks down 7 percent' false claim 26 Feb 2013 The American-led military coalition in Afghanistan backed off Tuesday from its claim that Taliban attacks dropped off in 2012, tacitly acknowledging a hole in its widely repeated argument that violence is easing and that the insurgency is in steep decline. In response to Associated Press inquiries about its latest series of statistics on security in Afghanistan, the coalition command in Kabul said it had erred lied in reporting a 7 percent decline in attacks. In fact there was no decline at all, officials said.

U.S. Coast Guard responds to report of oil spill off Louisiana coast

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

U.S. Coast Guard responds to report of oil spill off Louisiana coast 28 Feb 2013 The U.S. Coast Guard said on Wednesday that it was responding to a report of a collision between a boat and an inactive oil wellhead, which is now discharging an oily-water mixture off the coast of the state of Louisiana. Coast Guard Sector New Orleans watchstanders received a report that the 42-foot crewboat Sea Raider hit a wellhead owned by Swift Energy at around 8 p.m. Tuesday, the Coast Guard said in a statement posted online. "The platform is discharging an oily-water mixture, but the amount is unknown at this time," it noted.

Threat to Kill 25 Students Led to Lockdown in Weston, CT

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Threat to Kill 25 Students Led to Lockdown in Weston, CT 27 Feb 2013 Weston High School was placed on lockdown and then evacuated as a precaution because of a threat. The lockdown began at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, after a teacher found a note with a threat to kill a teacher and 25 students, according to a police source with knowledge of the investigation. A police officer was at the school on an unrelated matter, and was told about the note.

Pipe bombs found at Aurora home

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Pipe bombs found at Aurora home 19 Feb 2013 Aurora police say one person has been arrested after several pipe bombs and bomb-making materials were found inside a home. Spokeswoman Cassidee Carlson says police were responding to a small fire in a basement Tuesday when they found suspicious materials. Authorities also found and removed two explosives from a shed in back. Michael Grover is facing charges of possession of explosives and was being held in the Aurora jail on $6,000 bond.

Chuck Hagel Sworn in as Defense Secretary

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Chuck Hagel Sworn in as Defense Secretary 27 Feb 2013 Chuck Hagel was sworn in as Defense Secretary today shortly after arriving to the Pentagon for his first day on the job. Hagel and his wife Lillibet walked up the stairs into the building and turned to say "good morning" to the reporters and camera crews on hand to record his arrival. A short time later, Hagel was sworn in as Defense Secretary in a small private ceremony at 8:30 a.m. private ceremony inside his new offices.

Former Bailed-Out Citi Executive, Jack Lew, Wins Confirmation to Become Treasury Secretary

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Former Bailed-Out Citi Executive, Jack Lew, Wins Confirmation to Become Treasury Secretary 27 Feb 2013 The Senate confirmed Jacob Lew Wednesday as the country's 76th Treasury secretary. The Senate voted 71-26 to confirm Mr. Lew, with 20 Republicans joining all the Democrats present, despite earlier concerns raised by some in the GOP about the nominee's time in the private sector. Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont joined the other Republicans voting against Mr. Lew. Three Democrats were absent. Mr. Lew said his top goals in the job would include overhauling the corporate and individual tax codes, reducing the cost of entitlement programs, such as Medicare... Some Republican senators were critical of Mr. Lew, citing concern about his tenure as a senior executive at Citigroup Inc. from 2006 to 2009. Mr. Lew received a bonus as he left Citi, just as the banking group required a taxpayer bailout during the [Wall Street-engendered] financial crisis. [Let us cut to the chase, shall we? This f*cker is all set, financially -- ditto his Wall Street/CIA troll boss, Barack Obama -- so he's fine and dandy with cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. Start reading.]

Bird flu research to resume shortly

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

US bioterrorists dying to get the pandemic party started: Bird flu research to resume shortly 27 Feb 2013 Research on the bird flu may start up again on the University of Wisconsin campus after scientists voluntarily put the project on hold more than a year ago. UW spokesperson Terry Devitt said UW professor Yoshihiro Kawaoka from the university’s Department of Pathobiological Sciences may resume his research on the transmission of the bird flu virus. "People questioned what was the benefit of this type of research," said Rebecca Moritz, a research compliance specialist in the Office of Biological Safety at UW. [Right, the 'benefit' is billions in profit for US pharma-terrorists, when they develop a 'cure,' and for implementation of a full-blown police state during the pandemic.']

Obama unveils Rosa Parks statue; first full-length statue of black woman in Capitol

February 28, 2013 by legitgov

Obama unveils Rosa Parks statue; first full-length statue of black woman in Capitol 27 Feb 2013 The nation's most powerful politicians honored Rosa Parks on Wednesday by unveiling her statue in a permanent place in the U.S. Capitol. President Barack Obama praised Parks as an enduring reminder of what true leadership requires, "no matter how humble or lofty our positions." Parks became the first black woman to be depicted in a full-length statue in the Capitol's Statuary Hall. A bust of another black woman, abolitionist Sojourner Truth, sits in the Capitol Visitors Center.

Scalia: Renewing Voting Rights Act 'perpetuation of racial entitlement'

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Scalia: Renewing Voting Rights Act 'perpetuation of racial entitlement' 27 Feb 2013 Supreme Court Justice [sic] Antonin Scalia referred to the renewal of the Voting Rights Act as the "perpetuation of racial entitlement," during Wednesday's Supreme Court hearing on the law. Scalia made the comments while discussing the unanimous re-authorization of the act passed by the Senate in 2006. Justice Sonia Sotomayor challenged Scalia's comments, asking "Do you think Section 5 was voted for because it was a racial entitlement?" She also asked "Do you think racial discrimination has ended?"

Swine flu jab raises risk of narcolepsy in children

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Swine flu jab raises risk of narcolepsy in children 27 Feb 2013 A swine flu jab which was given to hundreds of thousands of children carried an increased risk of developing the sleep disorder narcolepsy, research suggests. For every 55,000 doses of Pandemrix delivered, around one child developed the condition that causes excessive daytime sleepiness, health experts said. At the height of the [lab-generated] swine-flu pandemic, between October 2009 and March 2010, more than 850,000 children in England aged six months to 16 years were given the vaccine.

Proposed Ala. city ordinance: Give police more power, disarm individuals during disasters

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Proposed Ala. city ordinance: Give police more power, disarm individuals during disasters 26 Feb 2013 A proposed disaster emergency ordinance in Guntersville is causing controversy. The city council and mayor are considering a new ordinance that gives the city more power. Mayor Leigh Dollar says it would ensure a quick response in the event of a major disaster, like the April 27, 2011, tornadoes. But it would also give police officers more power. The ordinance states officers could disarm individuals, if necessary.

Thermostat Challenge Marks International Polar Bear Day

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Wednesday is International Polar Bear Day: Thermostat Challenge Marks International Polar Bear Day 26 Feb 2013 By now most of us have seen the images of polar bears stranded on bits of ice that were once massive slabs. According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, ice extent in the Atlantic sector of the Arctic Ocean has been far below average this winter. The concern is that, thanks to global climate change warming, the Arctic will continue to see less sea ice throughout the year, putting the polar bear habitat in danger... In an effort to slow that sea ice loss, people across the globe are asked to participate in International Polar Bear Day's Thermostat Challenge.

Chuck Hagel wins Senate confirmation to become next defense secretary

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Chuck Hagel wins Senate confirmation to become next defense secretary 27 Feb 2013 The Senate voted Tuesday to confirm Chuck Hagel, a Vietnam War veteran and former Republican senator from Nebraska, as the 24th secretary of defense after a brutal confirmation process in which members of his own party questioned his capacity to lead the Pentagon. Just hours after a vote to end the first filibuster of a defense nominee, Hagel was approved 58-41. Hagel could begin work at the Pentagon as soon as today. A sergeant in Vietnam and two-time Purple Heart recipient, Hagel becomes the first veteran of that war to become defense secretary.

Fukushima radiation spread to residential areas hours before venting

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

Fukushima radiation spread to residential areas hours before venting 22 Feb 2013 Radioactive material from the damaged Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant spread to residential areas hours before workers vented the containment vessel of the plant's No. 1 reactor on March 12, 2011, to release pressure, it has emerged. In one area, the level of radiation had surged to more than 700 times the normal level, indicating that many local residents were exposed to high levels of radiation before they evacuated. It was not revealed that radiation had spread before the plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), commenced venting operations -- and neither the Diet nor the government's nuclear accident investigation committees were aware of the fact. Workers are believed to have first tried opening a vent at the plant at 10:17 a.m. on March 12, 2011.

US court brands whale activists Sea Shepherd 'pirates'

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

US court brands whale activists Sea Shepherd 'pirates' --Ruling Monday clears the way for Japan, which calls the activists terrorists, to launch more extensive legal action against them. 26 Feb 2013 A court in the US has labelled conservationist group Sea Shepherd "pirates". Judge [sic] Alex Kozinski said the group's "aggressive and high-profile attacks" on Japan's whaling fleet endangered lives, ordering them to stop. US-based Sea Shepherd has for many years chased the Japanese whalers, attempting to disrupt the annual hunt... Sea Shepherd has  accused the whalers of using water cannon and stun grenades against them, and says Japan has deployed a military icebreaker, the Shirase, to intimidate them - something Japan rejects.

MSNBC: Disclose Fix-the-Debt co-chair Ed Rendell's conflicts of interest when booking

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

MSNBC: Disclose Fix-the-Debt co-chair Ed Rendell's conflicts of interest when booking 26 Feb 2013 Disclose Ed Rendell's conflicts of interest due to his position as a co-chair of the Fix the Debt campaign - a billionaire-financed campaign to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid - when he appears on MSNBC to offer commentary on budget, public investment, infrastructure or environmental issues. Ed Rendell is a co-chair of Fix the Debt -- nevertheless, in media appearances on your network he is regularly introduced only as the former Democratic governor of Pennsylvania. He is special counsel to the law firm Ballard Spahr, where he focuses on privatization in housing and infrastructure. Rendell is a senior adviser at Greenhill & Co., a multinational investment bank. Rendell is also on the advisory board of Verdeva, a technology development firm, and an operating partner at the venture capital firm Element Partners, a company that has recently invested in natural gas "fracking" in Pennsylvania and nearby states. Ed Rendell is no longer a Democratic politician. He is a lobbyist, a banking adviser, and technology investor. (CREDO petition to sign)

WikiLeaks: US 'to call bin Laden raid Navy SEAL to testify against Bradley Manning'

February 27, 2013 by legitgov

WikiLeaks: US 'to call bin Laden raid Navy SEAL to testify against Bradley Manning' 26 Feb 2013 The US government is believed to be preparing to put a Navy SEAL on the witness stand to testify that secret files published by WikiLeaks were discovered in 'Osama bin Laden's' compound. Prosecutors trying Bradley Manning, the 25-year-old soldier accused of engineering the largest intelligence leak in US history, are seeking to prove that 'al-Qaeda' directly benefitted from access to the classified files. They claim that when bin Laden requested information about US defence policy a subordinate emailed him with data taken from the trove of documents WikiLeaks published on the internet. Today, prosecutors argued they should be allowed to call a military "operator" - a common term for a US commando - as a witness, saying he could offer testimony about evidence collected from the 2011 raid in Pakistan. [And, the SEAL will be committing perjury, because Osama bin Laden died in December 2001.]

WikiLeaks soldier's request to dismiss case rejected

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

WikiLeaks soldier's request to dismiss case rejected 26 Feb 2013 A defense request to dismiss the case against Army Private First Class Bradley Manning in the mass disclosure of military and diplomatic secrets by WikiLeaks was denied by a U.S. military judge on Tuesday. Manning's lawyers filed a motion to dismiss all charges against him, arguing the government had violated their client's right to a speedy trial. Ruling at a pretrial hearing on Tuesday, military judge Colonel Denise Lind said that the case took only 90 days to come to trial, well within the 120 day "clock" rule that exists for a court martial, in reference to the time between pretrial confinement and arraignment.

Hagel receives enough Senate votes for confirmation as secretary of defense, voting continues

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Hagel receives enough Senate votes for confirmation as secretary of defense, voting continues 26 Feb 2013

Senate votes to clear Hagel for confirmation vote

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Senate votes to clear Hagel for confirmation vote 26 Feb 2013 Senators voted to end debate today on President Obama's nomination of Chuck Hagel to be the secretary of Defense. He now faces a formal vote on confirmation. Hagel's confirmation seems virtually assured, as Democrats control the Senate and none has said publicly they oppose him. A formal vote could come as early as Tuesday afternoon.

Concrete cracks won't factor into nuclear power plant relicensing

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Concrete cracks won't factor into nuclear power plant relicensing 25 Feb 2013 (NH) The cracking of safety-related concrete structures at the Seabrook Station nuclear power plant has made a lot of news recently, but the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has decided not to make the issue a formal part of the hearings on extending the plant's operating license until 2050. The reason given was based on a technicality rather than on a substantive decision, the agency confirmed. "The ASLB panel (Atomic Safety [sic] and Licensing Board, which adjudicates issues for the NRC) denied the contention because it was late-filed and, therefore, did not meet the timeliness criteria for such proceedings," NRC Public Affairs Officer Neil Sheehan stated. The attorney for the groups who were asking for the concrete degradation issue to be formally included in the proceedings, the Maine-based Friends of the Coast and the New England Coalition in Vermont, expressed frustration about this decision.

Lawyers, journalists have no standing to challenge foreign surveillance law, SCOTUS rules

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Lawyers, journalists have no standing to challenge foreign surveillance law, SCOTUS rules 26 Feb 2013 A group of plaintiffs that includes lawyers and legal organizations has no standing to challenge a foreign surveillance law, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in a 5-4 opinion. Justice [sic] Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote the majority opinion finding that the plaintiffs had not established an injury in fact based on their assertion that their communications could be intercepted. The law as amended in 2008 authorizes surveillance of foreigners who are outside the United States, with advance approval of the "targeting procedures" by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The American Civil Liberties Union, which filed suit on behalf of the plaintiffs, has said the 2008 law permits "dragnet surveillance."

Supreme Court blocks challenge to anti-terrorism law

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Supreme Court blocks challenge to anti-terrorism law 26 Feb 2013 One of the most controversial anti-terrorism laws passed in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks may be beyond normal judicial review, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. In a 5-4 decision, the court's conservative justices ruled that lawyers, journalists, human rights activists and others lacked standing to challenge a law passed in 2008 that increases the government's ability to intercept international communications. The plaintiffs had contended that even the potential of government snooping -- which, they said, would violate the Fourth Amendment -- was forcing them to change the way they communicate with clients and sources. The question before the high court wasn't whether the law itself, passed near the end of the Bush administration, was constitutional. It was whether those challenging it even had the ability to find out.

Manning headed back to court in Maryland

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

Manning headed back to court in Maryland 26 Feb 2013 A U.S. Army private accused of sending hundreds of thousands of classified documents to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks is back in court for a four-day hearing that may address his attorney's motion to dismiss the charges against him. Pfc. Bradley Manning is expected to be in a Maryland court Tuesday when the hearing begins.

'Obama to tell Netanyahu US gearing up for Iran strike'

February 26, 2013 by legitgov

'Obama to tell Netanyahu US gearing up for Iran strike' --During upcoming visit, president will convey message that window for American military operation opens in June, TV report says 25 Feb 2013 When he visits Israel next month, US President Barack Obama will tell Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that a "window of opportunity" for a military strike on Iran will open in June, according to an Israeli TV report Monday evening. Obama will come bearing the message that if diplomatic efforts and sanctions don't bear fruit, Israel should "sit tight" and let Washington take the stage, even if that means remaining on the sidelines during a US military operation, Channel 10 reported. Netanyahu will be asked to refrain from any military action and keep a low profile, avoiding even the mention of a strike, the report said, citing unnamed officials.

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'We want either a hammer or a fire, to break the spell or dissolve the ice.' Artisan radical freethinker, George Jacob Holyoake, Reasoner V (1848): 2.

CLG's Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D. and Lori Price receive the Patrick Henry Think Tank's American Hero Award 02 Nov 2005 The Patrick Henry Democratic Club --A Think Tank working to give the government back to the people. "Give me liberty or give me death!"

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