Washington Post

10 things you need to know today: February 26, 2015

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The Week

1.GOP splits on Homeland Security funding as deadline nears
Republicans continued feuding over Homeland Security Department funding after the Senate advanced a “clean” bill to give the agency the money it needs through September, and prevent a shutdown when its current funding runs out Friday. The Senate removed a provision in the House version blocking President Obama’s executive actions on immigration. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wants to hold two votes, one on DHS funding and another countering Obama on immigration, but House GOP leaders have refused to endorse it.

Source: The Washington Post

2.Three New York men accused of trying to aid ISIS
Federal authorities arrested three New York men Wednesday on charges that they plotted to join Islamic State fighters in Syria. One of them also allegedly spoke of attacking President Obama, and planting a bomb on Coney Island. One of the men, Akhror Saidakhmetov, was arrested at Kennedy Airport as he attempted to board a flight to Turkey, Syria’s neighbor. Another man, Abdurasul Hasanovich Juraboev, was arrested in Brooklyn. He allegedly had a ticket to travel to Istanbul next month. A third man, Abror Habibov, was arrested in Florida and accused of helping fund Saidakhmetov.

Source: The Associated Press

3.Rice calls Netanyahu’s U.S. visit “destructive” to relations
National Security Adviser Susan Rice on Wednesday strongly criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ahead of his address to a joint session of Congress next week, saying that his trip was “destructive” to the relationship between Israel and the U.S. Netanyahu was invited by House Speaker John Boehner without President Obama’s approval to argue against the Obama administration’s effort to negotiate a deal to curb Iran’s controversial nuclear program.

Source: The New York Times

4.Palestinians blame Jewish nationalists for West Bank mosque fire
Someone set a mosque near Bethlehem on fire Wednesday. Palestinian leaders blamed Jewish nationalists, calling the arson “a sign of the mounting violent extremism within Israeli society.” The attackers spray-painted the walls of the mosque with a Star of David, and slogans, such as, “We want the redemption of Zion,” and “Revenge.” The blaze was discovered when worshippers showed up for morning prayers at 4:30 a.m.Nobody was injured, but interior walls, as well as furniture and carpet were damaged.

Source: The Washington Post

5.Apple told to pay Texas tech company $533 million for violating patents
Apple was ordered to pay Texas-based technology company Smartflash $533 million after a federal jury on Wednesday found that the iPhone and iPad maker’s iTunes software infringed on three Smartflash patents. Smartflash had asked for $852 million. Apple tried to have the court throw out the case, arguing that it had never used Smartflash’s technology and that the company’s patents were invalid because they involved innovations already patented by other companies. Apple says it will fight to overturn the decision.

Source: PC World

6.French authorities detain three Al-Jazeera journalists over drone flight
Three Al-Jazeera English journalists were arrested in France on Wednesday and charged with flying drones in Paris. The network said the journalists were working on a report on mysterious reports of drone flights near sensitive sites in the city, which have triggered an investigation. The drone sightings have heightened tensions in a city that has been under an elevated alert status since last month’s terrorist attacks on the offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a kosher grocery.

Source: Fox News

7.17 injured in massive pile-up on I-95 in Maine
Seventeen people were injured Wednesday in a 75-car pile-up on a snow-covered stretch of Interstate 95 in Maine . The crashes began at around7:30 a.m. At first, several cars, a school bus, and a tractor-trailer were involved. By the time it was over, at least 50 vehicles were so damaged they had to be towed away. State police called it the largest accident they had seen in more than 15 years. The highway’s two northbound lanes were closed for more than five hours.

Source: The Associated Press

8.Avalanches kill 124 in northeastern Afghanistan
Avalanches killed at least 124 people in northeastern Afghanistan on Wednesday. Rescuers were digging through debris and snow with their bare hands trying to reach buried survivors. The avalanches buried homes in four provinces. The hardest hit was Panjshir province 60 miles northeast of Kabul, where 100 homes were buried. The province’s police chief, Gen. Abdul Aziz Ghirat, said he expected the death toll to rise when rescuers resumed work early Thursday after heavy snowstorms passed.

Source: The Associated Press

9. Washington, D.C., legalizes home pot smoking over GOP threat
Home use of marijuana became legal for people age 21 or older in Washington, D.C., at 12:01 a.m. Thursday. District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser said at a news conference Wednesday evening that the voter-approved legalization measure would take effect as planned despite threats from House Republicans to send her to prison for violating the Anti-Deficiency Act. “I have a lot of things to do in the District of Columbia,” Bowser said in the televised conference. “Me being in jail wouldn’t be a good thing.”

Source: The Washington Post

10.“Jihadi John” identified in news reports
News outlets including BBC News and The Washington Post have published reports identifying the masked, British-accented Islamic State killer shown in videos beheading Western hostages. The terrorist, known as “Jihadi John,” is allegedly a Kuwaiti-born British man named Mohammed Emwazi. Emwazi, now in his mid-20s, grew up in West London and became radicalized after graduating from college with a computer programming degree. He traveled to Syria in 2012. “I have no doubt that Mohammed is Jihadi John,” a close friend said.

Source: BBC News, The Washington Post

10 things you need to know today: February 19, 2015

(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

The Week

1.Ukraine call for peacekeepers meets Russian opposition
Ukraine’s president, Petro Poroshenko, on Wednesday called for international peacekeepers to restore order to his country’s war-ravaged east, where pro-Russian separatists have continued fighting for a strategic rail hub despite a new ceasefire deal. Hours earlier, thousands of Ukrainian troops pulled out of the town, Debaltseve, where rebels continued fighting after the truce took effect on Sunday. Rebels and Russia, which could veto a peacekeeping proposal at the United Nations Security Council, said sending foreign troops would violate the peace deal.

Source: The Washington Post

2.Obama challenges mainstream Muslims and world leaders to counter extremists
President Obama on Wednesday called on leaders of more than 60 nations to join together to fight “violent extremism,” calling the effort to the Islamic State, al Qaeda, and other terrorist groups a “generational challenge.” Obama, speaking on the second day of a three-day summit, called on governments, educators, and mainstream Muslims to “amplify the voices of peace and tolerance,” saying the U.S. is not at war with Islam, but with people who have “perverted Islam.”

Source: The New York Times

3.Obama administration weighs lawsuit against Ferguson police
The Justice Department is getting ready to sue Ferguson, Missouri, police over allegedly racially discriminatory tactics, CNN reported Wednesday. Attorney General Eric Holder said his department is likely this week to release investigators’ findings regarding the fatal shooting of an unarmed black teen, Michael Brown, by a white police officer last year. The Justice Department is expected to say it won’t charge the officer, but will sue the Ferguson Police Department if it doesn’t change its tactics.

Source: CNN

4.Jeb Bush says he is his “own man” on foreign policy
In a speech former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) gave Wednesday before the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, the likely 2016 presidential candidate tackled the elephants in the room: His brother George W. Bush and father George H.W. Bush. Because they both “shaped America’s foreign policy from the Oval Office” as president, “my views will often be held up in comparison to theirs — sometimes in contrast to theirs,” Jeb Bush said. “I admire their service to the nation and the difficult decisions they had to make. But I am my own man.”

Source: The Washington Post

5.Obama taps Joseph Clancy to fix the Secret Service
President Obama has picked acting Secret Service chief Joseph Clancy to run the beleaguered agency long-term. Critics had called on Obama to pick an outsider to lead the Secret Service out of a period of embarrassing security lapses, such as a case last year when a knife-wielding man jumped a fence and managed to get into the White House before being caught. White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Obama believed Clancy would “conduct a candid, clear-eyed assessment” of the agency’s problems.

Source: The Washington Times

6.Fed minutes show the central bank fears hiking interest rates too soon
Federal Reserve policy makers expressed concern in a meeting last month about the possibility of undermining the economic recovery by raising historically low interest rates too soon, according to meeting minutes released Wednesday. Members of the Federal Open Market Committee tried to reconcile conflicting signals from the U.S. economy, which is strengthening, and weak international markets. The central bank now appears to be looking to start raising rates in June.

Source: Reuters

7.Two die in superbug outbreak at UCLA
At least seven patients treated at UCLA’s Ronald Reagan Medical Center between October and January have been infected by the drug-resistant superbug CRE. Two deaths have been linked to the outbreak. At least 180 people were potentially exposed, and the number could rise as more are tested. UCLA discovered the outbreak in late January, and began notifying patients this week. The superbug can stay on a specialized endoscope that is used to treat cancers and digestive system issues and is hard to disinfect.

Source: Los Angeles Times

8.Record cold pushes from the Midwest into the South
A blast of Arctic and Siberian air will hit parts of the Southeast withrecord cold on Thursday and Friday. Temperatures in Washington, D.C., could drop below zero for the first time since 1994, and areas from Tennessee to Virginia could see the lowest February temperatures on record. The frigid plume early Thursday pushed through the Midwest and Kentucky, which could get the worst of it with temperatures hitting 40 degrees below normal. Forecasters say the entire state will be below zero.

Source: The Washington Post

9. Greek government makes request for bailout extension
Greece on Thursday formally asked the European Union and the International Monetary Fund to extend its bailout by six months. Without the extension, the new government of leftist Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will run out of cash within weeks. Tsipras, who has vowed to dismantle painful austerity measures demanded by creditors, offered concessions and promised not to unilaterally ditch the existing program’s fiscal targets. Eurozone finance ministers plan to consider the request in Brussels on Friday.

Source: Reuters

10.Oregon swears in nation’s first bisexual governor
Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown (D) was sworn in on Wednesdayto replace John Kitzhaber, who resigned in an ethics scandal. Brown, 54, became the nation’s first openly bisexual governor. LGBT rights advocates cheered the news. Brown, 54, served 17 years in the state legislature. She is married to a man. “I don’t think anybody cares” that Brown is bisexual, Bob Moore, a Republican pollster, said. “The whole thing seems irrelevant to me. But what does it mean to be a bisexual and married? What does that mean?”

Source: Los Angeles Times

10 things you need to know today: February 3, 2015

Kayana Szymczak/Getty Images

The Week

1.Second snowstorm hits already snow-covered Northeast
Boston authorities postponed a victory celebration for the New England Patriots after their Super Bowl victory, moving it from Tuesday to Wednesday due to a record breaking winter storm. The second blizzard to hit the Northeast in a week dumped another foot of snow on Boston, which was blanketed with two feet of snow last week, the most snow ever to fall on the city in seven days. The storm has been linked to at least 10 deaths, and forced the cancellation of 2,900 flights in Chicago, Newark, Boston, and New York.

Source: Reuters

2.Paul and Christie criticized for vaccine remarks
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, both potential 2016 GOP presidential candidates, faced criticism from medical experts on Monday after suggesting some child vaccinations should be made voluntary. Paul said some vaccines have caused “profound mental disorders.” Christie said parents need “some measure of choice” although, with a U.S. measles outbreak surpassing 100 cases, a spokesman said Christie believes “there is no question kids should be vaccinated” for measles. CDC director Tom Frieden said not vaccinating endangers other children.

Source: Fox News, The Washington Post

3.Obama sets new rules on NSA data mining
The Obama administration on Tuesday will announce new rules about how U.S. intelligence agencies manage the data they collect. The National Security Agency and other spy agencies will have to delete private information they collect about Americans that has no intelligence value, and do the same for foreigners after five years, The New York Timesreports. Obama will also begin a regular, formal White House assessment of NSA spying on foreign leaders.

Source: The New York Times

4.Obama releases his proposed $4 trillion budget
President Obama on Monday unveiled the specifics of a $4 trillion proposed budget that would roll back blanket spending cuts, raise taxes on wealthy Americans, and extend tax benefits to the middle class. “These proposals will put more money in middle-class pockets, raise wages, and bring more high-paying jobs to America,” Obama said in a statement. The budget covers the 2016 fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1. The blueprint is largely a symbolic statement of the president’s priorities, as Congress will make significant changes to it over the coming months.

Source: The Associated Press

5.Google reportedly is developing an Uber rival
Google invested $258 million in Uber in August 2013, and put more money in the next year, but now the internet search giant reportedly is preparing to compete with Uber by starting its own ride-hailing service, possibly linked to its driverless car project. A person close to Uber’s board said David Drummond, Google’s chief legal officer and an Uber board member, informed fellow Uber board members of the possibility. Uber leaders reportedly have seen a prototype app being used by Google employees.

Source: Bloomberg

6.Cuba publishes first photos of Fidel Castro since August
Cuba on Monday released the first photos of former president Fidel Castro seen since August. With Cuba’s communist government and the Obama administration attempting to renew diplomatic relations cut off in the Cold War, rumors have surfaced that Castro, 88, was dead or near death. Last week, Cuba released a letter attributed to Castro in which he said he didn’t trust the U.S. but advocated a “peaceful resolution to conflicts.” The photos, published in the official Granma newspaper, showed Castro in a meeting with a youth leader.

Source: The Washington Post

7.Bus firebombing kills seven in Bangladesh
Attackers hit a packed bus with gasoline-bombs in Bangladesh on Tuesday, killing at least seven people and injuring 16 others. The local police chief blamed the bombing on opposition activists, but they denied responsibility. At least 53 people have died in political violence, mostly vehicle firebombings, since the opposition launched a nationwide transportation strike in early January in a bid to force Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to resign.

Source: The Associated Press

8.Suge Knight charged with murder
Former rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight was charged with murder and attempted murder on Monday for allegedly running over two men with his truck, killing one and injuring the other. His $2.2 million bail was revoked because authorities considered him a possible flight risk. Police said Knight argued with the men on the set of Straight Outta Compton, a film about the group N.W.A., and later ran them over. Knight’s lawyer said he accidentally ran over the victims while trying to get away from two men trying to attack him.

Source: Los Angeles Times

9. Charles Manson’s marriage license expires with no wedding
Eighty-year-old mass murderer Charles Manson’s marriage license is set to expire on Thursday without a wedding. Manson and his fiancee, 26-year-old Afton Elaine Burton, missed their last chance to marry over the weekend — weddings are not performed on weekdays at the California prison where Manson is incarcerated. Burton, who uses the nickname Star, intends to get another 90-day license and proceed with the wedding plan, according to a source in contact with her.

Source: The Associated Press

10.Revenge-porn site creator convicted of extortion
A California court on Monday convicted revenge-porn site founder Kevin Bollaert, 28, on identity theft and extortion charges. He faces up to 20 years in prison. Bollaert set up one website, YouGotPosted.com, where women’s former husbands and boyfriends posted nude photos of them, and he established another website, ChangeMyReputation.com, where victims could pay up to $350 to get the photos taken down. “This is essentially 21st century blackmail,” Deputy Attorney General Tawnya Austin told jurors last week.

Source: NBC 7 San Diego, The Washington Post

Sunday Talk: Reversal of fortune

Daily Kos

A funny thing happened on the way to the State of the Union address
President Obama stopped givingfuck about what his Republican and/or mainstream media critics think, and started getting real.

With no more campaigns to runObama returned to his trash-talkingelbow-throwing, Beyoncé-loving roots—and in doing so, he defied the so-calledconventional wisdom.”

We were told, again and again, that Republicans won a mandate in the midterms, and that Obama is a lame duck—maybe the lamest duck ever!

Or maybe not.

While the GOP has been stumbling toward 2016, alienating entire genders and voting blocs, Obama has been issuing executive orders and veto threats like they’re going out of style—and his approval rating has been rising.

This isn’t the way things were supposed to play out… but apparently Obama didn’t get the message.


Morning lineup:

Meet The Press: White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough; Former Arkansas Gov.Mike Huckabee (R); Former NBA Player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; Roundtable: Radio Host Hugh Hewitt, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (D), Helene Cooper(New York Times) and Tom Brokaw (NBC News).Face The Nation: White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough; Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA); Sen. John McCain (R-AZ); Roundtable: Susan Page (USA Today),Dana Milbank (Washington Post), Michael Crowley (Politico), Jeffrey Goldberg (The Atlantic) and John Dickerson (CBS News).

This Week: White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough; Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R); Roundtable: Democratic Strategist Donna Brazile, Republican StrategistSarah Taylor Fagen, Bill Kristol (Weekly Standard) and Cokie Roberts (ABC News).

Fox News Sunday: White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough; Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R); Roundtable: George Will (Washington Post), Ron Fournier (National Journal), Sociopath Liz Cheney and Charles Lane (Washington Post).

State of the Union: White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough; Rep. Adam Schiff(D-CA); Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman (R); Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL); Rep.Ruben Gallego (D-AZ).

Evening lineup:

60 Minutes will feature: an interview with GOP leaders Rep. John Boehner and Sen. Mitch McConnell (preview); an interview with Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams (preview); and, a profile of Chinese tennis champion Li Na (preview).



Sunday Talk: All glory to GOP

Daily Kos

It’s only been a few days since Republicans took control of the Senate, but in that short period of time, they’ve already managed to save the U.S. economy—which President Obama and his extinct Democratic majority spent the last six years destroying.

Data released on Friday confirmed that we’re now experiencing the best job growth since 1999—despite all of those job-killing regulations in Dodd-Frank and Obamacare, and absent the Keystone XL pipeline.

One can only imagine how much (more) Republicans will be able to improve the business environment now that they’ve taken charge of “Teh Math.”

If I had to guess, I’d say that it’s going to be a very good couple of years for rich, whitestraight, Christian men.

For the poors, minorities, gays, non-Christians, and womennot so much.


Morning lineup:

Meet The Press: Attorney General Eric Holder; Paris Attack Roundtable: David Brooks(New York Times), Helene Cooper (New York Times), Andrea Mitchell (NBC News) andRich Lowry (National Review); Guantanamo Roundtable: Former State Department Special Envoy for Guantanamo Closure Clifford Sloan, Carol Rosenberg (Miami Herald) and Danielle Pletka (American Enterprise Institute).

Face The Nation: Attorney General Eric Holder; Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX); Sen.John Cornyn (R-TX); Paris Attack Roundtable: Former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell, Bob Orr (CBS News), Former State Department Special Representative to Muslim Communities Farah Pandith and David Ignatius (Washington Post); Political Roundtable: Ruth Marcus (Washington Post), Peter Baker (New York Times) and Jim Vandehei (Politico).

This Week: Attorney General Eric Holder; Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC); Others TBD.

Fox News Sunday: Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey; Sen.John Hoeven (R-ND); Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE); Roundtable: George Will (Washington Post), Julie Pace (Associated Press), Republican Strategist Karl Rove and Juan Williams (Fox News).

State of the Union: Attorney General Eric Holder; Sen. John McCain (R-AZ); Sen.Dianne Feinstein (D-CA).

Evening lineup:

60 Minutes will feature: a report on the state of Colorado’s pot industry a year after retailers began selling the drug for recreational use (preview); an inerview with author Steven Brill about his new book about Obamacare (preview); and, a report on a former Hells Angel who helps gravely wounded veterans climb the world’s Seven Summits (preview).

Watch John Green Totally Annihilate ‘Racism-Deniers’ (VIDEO)

Addicting Info

According to a December 2014 poll from CNN, 57 percent of white Americans don’t believe there is racial injustice in law enforcement. On the other hand, a Washington Post – ABC poll shows that just one in ten black people believe that the criminal justice system treats whites and minorities equally.

Overall, only about 40 percent of US citizens deny that racism is an issue in the criminal justice system. Not surprisingly, most of those deniers are white and Republican. According to the Washington Post:

“While 2 in 3 white Republicans say minorities and whites are treated equally in the criminal justice system, only 3 in 10 white Democrats agree with that view. Similarly, while more than 8 in 10 white Republicans say they are confident that police treat blacks and whites equally, half as many white Democrats share that opinion.”

On December 30, Nerdfighter John Green took on the 40 percent of Americans who can be classified as “racism-deniers.” In a four-minute, fact-filled video, Green fires off a list of facts which show how systemic racism impacts, not only the criminal justice system, but every single system in the US.

Here’s the video, via the VlogBrothers on youtube:

As always, Green provides a detailed list of sources for the information presented in the video. You can view those in the video description here, along with other suggested reading.

Whether you’re talking about the criminal justice system, the healthcare system, the education system, the financial system or any other system in the United States, when you examine the facts and statistics, the evidence of systemic racism is all too clear.

Racism-deniers don’t use facts or statistics to explain their views. That’s because the facts don’t support their views. They’re left with no option but to just “not believe” in the mounds and mounds of evidence that demonstrates the reality of racism in this country.

The funny thing about facts is that they remain true, whether you believe in them or not.

*Featured image credit: screen capture, John Green, the VlogBrothers via youtube

10 things you need to know today: December 14, 2014

The Heisman Trophy

The Heisman Trophy Alex Goodlett / Getty Images

The Week

The Senate averts another government shutdown, the U.N. reaches a climate deal, and more.

1. Senate passes $1.1 trillion spending bill
After several procedural delays, the Senate used a rare weekend session Saturday to pass a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund most of the federal government through the end of the fiscal year. The Senate had been poised Friday to punt a vote on the measure to Monday, but Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and a small group of conservative lawmakers upended the plan by trying to block funding for President Obama’s immigration order. That forced the Saturday session, where the bill passed in a bipartisan vote, 56 to 40. [The Washington Post]


2. U.N. negotiators reach landmark climate deal
U.N. members on Sunday salvaged a historic climate change agreement that will for the first time require all nations to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Reached by delegates from 196 countries, the pact itself does not accomplish the U.N.’s goal of slashing emissions to sustainable levels, but rather requires every nation to create a plan in the next six months for doing so at home. Those plans will then form the bedrock of a longterm climate deal, to be signed next year in Paris. [The New York Times]


3. Marcus Mariota wins Heisman Trophy
Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota won the Heisman Trophy Saturday night with a near-record share of the vote. Mariota was widely expected to win in a landslide, and he claimed 90.92 percent of the possible points, trailing only Ohio State QB Troy Smith’s 91.63 percent in 2006. Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon finished second, while Alabama wide receiver Amari Cooper finished third. [ESPN]


4. Thousands nationwide protest police killings
Tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets Saturday to march against recent police killings of unarmed black civilians. More than 10,000 people participated in Washington, D.C.’s, “Justice For All” march, while thousands more demonstrated in New York City, Boston, Oakland, and other major cities. “This is a history-making moment,” said Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner, the Staten Island man who died after a New York police officer placed him in a banned chokehold. [CNN]


5. Japan holds parliamentary vote amid recession
Japanese voters headed to the polls Sunday to cast ballots in parliamentary elections considered a referendum on the economic policies of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Last month, Abe called for the immediate election following the unexpected news Japan had slipped into a recession despite his vaunted “Abenomics.” The next election wasn’t due until late 2016. [The Wall Street Journal]


6. Texas man in North Korea criticizes U.S.
A Texas man who claims to have snuck illegally into North Korea last month went on state TV and assailed the U.S. as a “mafia enterprise.” Arturo Pierre Martinez, of El Paso, said he entered the country via China and was not being held against his will. “The illegal war carried out against the nation of Iraq serves as a perfect example of how the U.S. government acts much like a Mafia enterprise by criminally plundering entire nations,” he said in a video released Sunday by the Korean Central News Agency. [The Washington Post]


7. Turkey detains journalists in raid
Turkey on Sunday arrested two dozen journalists it accused of trying to topple the state. Police raided one newspaper and a TV station to apprehend journalists it claimed hold ties to a U.S.-based Islamic cleric, Fethullah Gulen, who is a rival of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Erdogan’s critics condemned the move as a blatant crackdown on the freedom of the press. [BBC]


8. Afghan president to overhaul security after Taliban attacks
Calling a wave of recent terror attacks “inhuman” and “not Islamic,” Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Sunday said the nation had to ramp up its domestic security operations. “It is enough and it’s no longer acceptable,” he said. A spokesperson for Ghani said Afghanistan had a sufficient defense force, but that it wasn’t being deployed in the most effective manner to counter the Taliban. [Reuters]


9. Sweden claims Russian jet nearly hit passenger plane
Sweden on Saturday claimed a Russian military jet flying with its radar-signaling transponders disabled came dangerously close to hitting a passenger plane. Russia’s Defense Ministry on Sunday pushed back that the two planes were never less than 42 miles apart, and accused Sweden of overreacting. In March, a Russian jet flying with its transponders off came within 300 feet of a Scandinavian Airlines plane. [The Associated Press]


10. Taylor Swift turns 25
Taylor Swift celebrated her 25th birthday on Saturday with a star-studded party in her adopted home of New York City. After performing at the city’s Jingle Ball, the pop star — whose hits include an homage to feeling like a 22-year-old — partied at her Manhattan home with Jay Z, Beyonce, Justin Timberlake, and other celebrities. [People]

Sunday Talk: Thanks for nothing

Daily Kos

Monday night, in a televised press conference, #FergusonProsecutorBob McCulloch announced that his grand jury had (literally) investigatedthe hell out of Michael Brown—and, to the surprise of no Juan, they’d decided not to indict Darren Wilson for killing him.

Apparently, after examining all of the physical evidence and eyewitness testimony, and having been apprised of the relevant statutes, the grand jury concluded that the 24-hour news cycle and social media were to blame.

Or something… it was kinda hard to follow everything—with all of that tear gas, smoke, and pepper spray in the background.

Whatever the case may be, shortly after McCulloch’s press conference ended, President Obama went on TV and tried to restore order—but not even his black magic was powerfulenough to quell the hungry masses; it was clear to most that justice wasn’t being served.

Morning lineup:

Meet The Press: Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D); Sen.-Elect Tom Cotton (R-AK); Others TBD.Face The Nation: Sen.-Elect Thom Tillis (R-NC); Sen.-Elect Gary Peters (D-MI); Brown Family Attorney Benjamin Crump; Ta-Nehisi Coates (The Atlantic); Lehigh University Prof. Dr. James Peterson; Roundtable: John Heilemann (Bloomberg Politics), Michael Crowley (Politico) and Nancy Cordes (CBS News).

This Week: St. Louis Alderman Antonio French (D); Former NYC Police CommissionerRay Kelly; Jelani Cobb (The New Yorker); Roundtable: Democratic Strategist Donna Brazile, Bill Kristol (Weekly Standard), Bret Stephens (Wall Street Journal) and Cokie Roberts (ABC News).

Fox News Sunday: Darren Wilson’s Attorney Neil Bruntrager; Brown Family AttorneyDaryl Parks; Marc Morial (National Urban League); Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani(9/11); Roundtable: Kimberley Strassel (Wall Street Journal), Julie Pace (Associated Press), Robert Costa (Washington Post) and Bob Woodward (Washington Post).

State of the Union: Director of the Federal Aviation Administration Michael Huerta; Former NYC Police Commissioner/Convicted Felon Bernard Kerik; Malik Aziz (National Black Police Association); Thomas Manger (Police Executive Research Forum); Detroit Police Chief James Craig; Roundtable: Presidential Historians Richard Norton Smith &Douglas Brinkley, Karen Tumulty (Washington Post) and Peter Baker (New York Times).

Evening lineup:

60 Minutes will feature: a report on the U.N. World Food Programme, which has undertaken the task of feeding Syrian refugees (preview); a report on the hacking of credit card info, which leads to billions of dollars in fraudulent charges annually (preview); and, a profile of a former lion park staffer who saved 26 lions (preview).

Sunday Talk: ¡Ay, dios mio!

Daily Kos

Thursday night, in a nationally televised (sólo en español) address, President Obama totally #Grubered any chance of bipartisanship in our time, using only his bare hands.Contra the claims of his loyalist subjects, Obama’s so-called “executiveactions are without precedent in Real American history—which is not to say that they’re entirely unprecedented.

If not for the fact that Obama already shredded the Constitution, we’d probably just find ourselves in a constitutional crisis right now; but, instead, we’re faced with the prospect of widespread rioting and/or ethnic cleansing.

No me gusta.

Morning lineup:

Meet The Press: Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ); Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ); Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani (9/11); Lawyer for Michael Brown’s Family Anthony Gray; Georgetown University Prof. Michael Eric Dyson; Former CEO of Shell Oil John Hofmeister; Author Daniel Yergin; Roundtable: Joe Scarborough (MSNBC), Jose Diaz-Balart (Telemundo), Amy Walter (Cook Political Report) and Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson (D).Face The Nation: Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX); Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL); Rep. Raúl Labrador (R-ID); Roundtable: Michael Gerson (Washington Post), David Ignatius(Washington Post), Susan Page (USA Today), Clarence Page (Chicago Tribune) andMark Leibovich (New York Times Magazine).

This Week: President Barack Obama; Roundtable: “Brain Surgeon” Dr. Ben Carson, Democratic Strategist James Carville, Republican Strategist Matthew Dowd andKatrina vanden Heuvel (The Nation).

Fox News Sunday: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX); Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-CA); Texas Gov.-Elect Greg Abbott (R); Roundtable: George Will (Washington Post), Julie Pace(Associated Press), Kimberly Strassel (Wall Street Journal) and Ron Fournier (National Journal).

State of the Union: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC); Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA); Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA); Roundtable: Princeton University Prof. Cornel West,Sherrilyn Ifill (NAACP), Jim Wallis (Sojourners) and LZ Granderson (ESPN)..

Evening lineup:

60 Minutes will feature: a report on the critical condition of America’s infrastructure and why the problem persists (preview); a report on the current state of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant (preview); and, a report on the use of modern technology to locate the remains of airmen missing in action in the waters off Palau, the site of costly World War II battles in the South Pacific (preview).

Morning Maddow – 11-3-2014


The Rachel Maddow Blog

World Trade Center reopens for business. (AP)


Pres. Obama: ‘Vote. Vote. Vote. Vote. Vote.’ (Politico)


Independent candidate drops out of Connecticut governor’s race, endorses Republican. (Hartford Courant)


Ebola nurse Kaci Hickox on why she felt she had to fight Govs. Christie and LePage. (Portland Press Herald)


The armed security guard on a CDC elevator with Pres. Obama was not a convicted felon. (Washington Post)


Iraqis prepare ISIS offensive with U.S. help. (NY Times)


U.S.-backed Syrian rebels routed by fighters linked to al Qaeda. (Washington Post)


Thieves steal the “Arbeit Macht Frei” gate from Germany’s Dachau concentration camp. (NBC News)


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