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Health Care & Environment

07.21 Greta Thunberg: ‘They see us as a threat because we’re having an impact’ [We love a sane smarty-pants! Trump, you won't understand any of this, so just go off and tweet or chant, or whatever...]

07.20 Until Emissions Drop, Nothing Has Been Accomplished: The Climate Resistance Handbook Is Here. [Trump can't be bothered as the world turns into a large cinder. His laser focus is on personal greed.]

07.20 Cargo ships are emitting boatloads of carbon, and nobody wants to take the blame [1:19 video; Governments must commission to fight deadly shipping emissions, previously omitted in climate summit agreements....]

07.20 Babies Born Near Oil and Gas Wells Are Up to 70% More Likely to Have Congenital Heart Defects, New Study Shows

07.20 Giving 'Upper Hand to Corporate Polluters,' EPA Drops Surprise Inspections

07.20 With Petition to Congress, 100,000+ People Demand Green New Deal 'That Fixes Our Food System' [Realtime proactive response to reality—now and threatening—doesn't get attention in this greed focused administration]

07.19 Trump administration won't ban pesticide tied to childhood brain damage [There is no truth to the persistent rumor that chlorpyrifos pesticide was heavily used at Trump's childhood home in Queens]

07.19 'Unprecedented' Decline of Plants and Animals as Global 'Red List' Reveals Nearly One-Third of Assessed Species Under Threat

07.17 ‘Off-the-charts’ heat to affect millions in U.S. in coming decades

07.17 Planned Parenthood president Leana Wen forced out by board [Given that states have lost abortion rights on political grounds recently, Wen's philosophical approach to protect abortion rights based on ‘health care’ was smarter – therefore it was that smarter strategy that was killed at the secret meeting.]

07.17 Billions of air pollution particles found in hearts of city dwellers

07.17 What is happening in America's Cancertown is tragic, immoral and evil [Niggardly white government policies could change to produce better students, better jobs and net revenue instead of costs. But it seems they enjoy more cruelty—like Trump.]

07.16 US aid cuts to UN agency will hurt vulnerable women and children, critics say

07.16 Trump abortion restrictions in effect for taxpayer-funded clinics

07.15 The response to DRC’s Ebola crisis isn’t working. Here’s what we need to do

07.15 Extinction Rebellion protests block traffic in five UK cities [Non-corporate human animals make their annoying bleating sounds...]

07.14 A Glacier the Size of Florida Is Becoming Unstable. It Has Dire Implications for Global Sea Levels [The willfully ignorant needn't read more, Trump]

News Media Matters

07.19 Fox News’s star names excuse the inexcusable after Trump's latest racist attack

07.18 In Sinclair's New 'Must-Run' Segment, Former Trump Adviser Tries to Defend Racist Attacks on 'the Squad'

Daily: FAIR Blog
The Daily Howler

US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'

07.21 Of course Donald Trump is a racist – and his Wall Street enablers know it

07.21 A court ruled it was legal for guards to strip search female inmates and force them to remove their tampons in front of male officers for a 'training exercise' [The frequency and degree of immorality and degradation being reported in the media is very disturbing, as if society has been reprogrammed overnight to be more like the worst behavior of Nazi Germany]

07.21 THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY IS GETTING CRUSHED IN FUNDRAISING: “THEY NEED TO GET THEIR SHIT TOGETHER” [Since so-called moderate Democrats will prostitute themselves in many conceivable ways (offering that special quid pro quo) they have effectively become competitively ANTI-PUBLIC, like Republicans. Whereas progressive Democrats must promise not to take corporate donations at all as an effective litmus-test. The DNC refuses to raise funds for moderate and progressives separately, and thus donations fall short. Which is it to be: 1) Will the DNC change? or 2) Must progressive Democrats become corporate whores too? or 3) Maybe you don't need corporate contributions at all if your policies are fantastic?]

07.21 State and Local Taxes Are Worsening Inequality

07.21 State and Local Taxes Are Worsening Inequality

07.21 We're no longer in Brave New World. We're back in 1984. [1:35 video; Our despicable President is at it again]

07.21 BALTIMORE'S FILTHIEST HOODS [7:38 video. Ask your governments, why are our cities so much worse than Europe's? Why is our healthcare worse and so much more expensive? And why are our Billionaires so much richer? Ask if those results of bad government are all related, and why? Are they all caused by a power-elite with greed-obsessed immorality?]

07.21 Nancy Pelosi's Dem Socialist Challenger Shahid Buttar: "We're Gonna Win" | Full Interview [5:43 video]

07.21 Jon Stewart goes viral excoriating Rand Paul after blocking vote [9:02 video]

07.21 Nicolle Wallace Refuses to Broadcast Trump Live [5:43 video]

07.21 Sassy Bernie Sanders Sh*ts on Jeff Bezos on His Home Turf... Numerous Times [17:22 video]

07.20 Puerto Rico: top US politicians join chorus calling for governor's resignation

07.20 Fact check: Trump says Puerto Rico got $92 billion. They've seen only a fraction [If he opens his mouth, Trump's lying.]

07.20 "Trump Says Go Home, Ilhan's Community Says Welcome Home": Rep. Omar Greeted With Cheers of Love and Support in Return to Minnesota

07.20 WATCH: Amid Extreme Anti-Refugee Push, Trump Displays Neither Interest Nor Knowledge of Asylum Seekers' Plight in Oval Office Meeting

07.20 Trump Denies Being at North Carolina Rally [Not sure if Trump supporters 'get' satire, but here goes....]

07.19 Are progressives working on a climate plan for 2021? You bet.

07.19 House Democrats demand Hope Hicks clarify testimony after Cohen document dump

07.19 The 51 most outrageous lines from Donald Trump's repugnant North Carolina rally

07.19 The Real Meaning of ‘Send Her Back!’

07.18 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Breaking up Homeland Security

Justice Matters

07.19 UN urged to act over 'purge' of Turkey's lawyers by Erdogan

07.19 DOJ Releases Strong Evidence of Trump’s Campaign Finance Violations But No Explanation of No Charges [The statement]

High Crimes vs. Human Rights

07.19 Conscientious objectors of first world war – their untold tales [The record proves they were morally right by avoiding violent early deaths of their cousins and themselves]

Economics & Corrupt Capitalism

07.18 Corporate tax cuts blocked at least 15,000 affordable homes in California. Here’s how

International & Futurism

07.21 Millions face hardship as Zimbabwe comes close to ‘meltdown’

07.21 Spain set for socialist-led government after Iglesias deal [Some loaded drama going on here...]

07.20 US to deploy troops to Saudi Arabia in face of 'credible' regional threats [Working with Osama bin Laden's godfathers, Trump wants to profit like Erik Prince (for-profit education secretary Betsy DeVos' brother) of Blackwater infamy (hurriedly renamed ‘Academi’), the U.S. taxpayer to pay inflated costs while Trump siphons off long-term emolument largesse]

07.20 Iran on 'dangerous path' with seizure of Stena Impero, says UK [Which is this, a tit or a tat?]

07.20 'Dark satanic mills': Tony Abbott continues his crusade against wind turbines [Too much CO2 air pollution makes you stupid, and turns your country into an “Idiocracy” (1:36 video clip)]

07.20 Bolsonaro declares 'the Amazon is ours' and calls deforestation data 'lies' [Lazy and willfully stupid whenever it serves his purpose, just like Trump. “And the rest of you can all go to hell.” Again, just like Trump. Has your country turned into an “Idiocracy”? (1:36 video clip)]

07.19 U.N.'s Bachelet says Congresswomen opposing Trump are 'fantastic'

07.19 Iran makes 'substantial' nuclear offer in return for US lifting sanctions [Was barbaric Saudi Arabia—whose citizens were more involved in the 9-11 attacks—the wrong ally all along?]

07.19 “The Task Ahead Is Enormous, and There Is Not Much Time” [Read this and learn. Or read Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) | Twitter and/or President Trump (@POTUS) | Twitter. Are you serious? Or are you in hideously criminal denial?]

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  Conyers Again Seeks Bush Prosecutor
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COMMENTARY:

Conyers Again Seeks Bush Prosecutor

by Jason Leopold
5 April 2009

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers has renewed his call for a special prosecutor to conduct a criminal inquiry into “war on terror” policies of the Bush administration, including whether “enhanced interrogation techniques” used on alleged terrorist detainees violated international and federal laws against torture.

The recommendation comes amid signs from other senior Democrats that they are shying away from a full-scale investigation, whether by a “truth commission” or a special prosecutor, into possible crimes committed under the authority of President George W. Bush. Congressional Republicans have been adamantly opposed to any inquiry.

Conyers, a Michigan Democrat, included his recommendation to Attorney General Eric Holder in a final report that was quietly released on April 2. Conyers made a similar recommendation in an earlier draft of his report, but this final version includes additional evidence that has surfaced in recent months to support his call for a special prosecutor.

“The Attorney General should appoint a Special Counsel to determine whether there were criminal violations committed pursuant to Bush Administration policies that were undertaken under unreviewable war powers, including enhanced interrogation, extraordinary rendition, and warrantless domestic surveillance,” Conyers’s report said. “In this regard, the report firmly rejects the notion that we should move on from these matters.”

While issuing a statement that accompanied the report, Conyers did not resubmit his formal request for a special prosecutor that he made last year when he and 55 other House Democrats signed a letter to Attorney General Michael Mukasey. Not unexpectedly, Mukasey – a staunch defender of Bush’s theories about expansive presidential powers – ignored the letter.

While Republicans have said they are against any effort to probe the Bush administration’s “war on terror” policies, Democrats also have been cool to the idea. Indeed, in early January, Conyers introduced a resolution, H.R. 104, to establish a national commission on presidential war powers and civil liberties. Two months later, the resolution had attracted a mere 27 co-sponsors.

Still, the final version of Conyers’s report, entitled “Reining in the Imperial Presidency: Lessons and Recommendations Relating to the Presidency of George W. Bush,” may create some new momentum for holding the Bush administration accountable.

Of the 50 recommendations in the final version of the 541-page report, the appointment of a special prosecutor is the first, with the suggestion that a criminal inquiry should be conducted alongside hearings by a “blue ribbon” panel.

International Demands

In a statement posted on his Web site, Conyers said the Obama administration needs to follow in the footsteps of a magistrate in Spain who has authorized prosecutors there to investigate possible war crimes by six Bush administration officials who helped create the framework for the torture policies.

"President Obama has taken immediate action to right many of the Bush administration’s wrongs including pledges to disavow torture and close the prison at Guantanamo," Conyers said.  “However, the administration still has much to do to restore the rule of law to its rightful place.

“A nonpartisan, independent accounting of what happened must take place, and the new administration must do more to roll back its predecessor’s policies on issues ranging from signing statements to the state secrets privilege."

Civil liberties and human rights organizations as well as numerous progressive groups have been pressuring Congress to back a criminal investigation into the Bush administration, particularly in light of evidence that has surfaced which demonstrates the Bush administration sanctioned torture.  

The new version of Conyers’s report adds more details about the alleged crimes of the Bush administration and cites international laws against torture that require the U.S. to immediately launch a wide-ranging probe to determine whether torture laws were broken:

“The United Nations Convention Against Torture and Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment (Torture Convention), ratified by the United States in 1994, appears to require the United States to investigate possible torture committed within its jurisdiction,” Conyers’s report says.

“Moreover, the statement of Susan J. Crawford, the convening authority for military commissions, that: 'We tortured [Mohammed al-Qahtani],' along with other public materials that describe aspects of that interrogation, provide 'reasonable grounds' to believe that torture was committed there.”

In an interview with the Washington Post earlier this year, Crawford said that she would not allow al-Qahtani’s prosecution to move forward because his interrogation met the legal definition of torture and as such the evidence against him was tainted.

On the same day Conyers released the updated version of his report, his counterpart on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Patrick Leahy, said in a floor statement that he still favored a “truth commission” to probe the Bush administration’s “war on terror” policies, but expressed concern that Republicans were balking at such an inquiry.

"I regret that Senate Republicans have approached this matter to date as partisans,” Leahy said. “It will take bipartisan support in order to move this forward.”

Congress and the Obama administration are facing pressure from progressive organizations and civil and human rights groups for a serious investigation. Two weeks ago, the ACLU called on Holder to appoint a special prosecutor to launch a probe into the Bush administration's torture practices.

“The fact that such crimes have been committed can no longer be doubted or debated, nor can the need for an independent prosecutor be ignored by a new Justice Department committed to restoring the rule of law,” ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero said.

“Given the increasing evidence of deliberate and widespread use of torture and abuse, and that such conduct was the predictable result of policy changes made at the highest levels of government, an independent prosecutor is clearly in the public interest,” Romero said.

Leahy has said he is against a criminal inquiry because it could take years, but Conyers indicated that a public inquiry and a criminal probe could go forward simultaneously.

“The fact that Congress is pursuing responsible oversight should not impact any criminal investigations, just as the work of the Ervin Committee did not limit the prerogatives of Special Counsels [Archibald] Cox or [Leon] Jaworski” in the Watergate scandal of the 1970s, Conyers said. “As a matter of fact, information gleaned from one review could reinforce and galvanize others.

“While I understand there is a powerful desire to simply move on and focus on the many large issues facing us, we simply cannot sweep these matters under the rug of history without addressing them head on,” Conyers said.

Congress has just left Washington for a two-week recess.


Jason Leopold has launched his own Web site, The Public Record, at www.pubrecord.org.

This article is republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



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This story was published on April 3, 2009.

 

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