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Upsetment
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U.S. Visas Helped Fuel the Juarez Drug Wars

U.S. Visas Helped Fuel the Juarez Drug Wars | Upsetment | Scoop.it
The ICE informants didn’t just go ‘sideways’ in Ciudad Juárez, they shipped drugs and waged a savage war with U.S. help.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Is the War on Drugs corrupting our bureaucracy? Of course it is. So what do we do? Most of us say stop the damn war. It isn't working, but it is doing incredible harm.

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Christian right secession fantasy: Spooky neo-Confederate talk grows louder at the fringes

Christian right secession fantasy: Spooky neo-Confederate talk grows louder at the fringes | Upsetment | Scoop.it
The religious right is spooked and making scary new allies. Some worry theocratic violence will soon be on the rise
Kenneth Weene's insight:

If this topic interests you, be sure to catch my special interview with historian John McKee Barr, author of "Loathing Lincoln," this Thursday on It Matters Radio. The show will run from 9 - 10:30 Eastern time. The show link is http://www.blogtalkradio.com/itmattersradio/2014/07/04/it-matters-radio-presents--a-salute-to-independence

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Americans’ confidence in government down as 7 percent now have trust in Congress | Washington Watch | McClatchy DC

Americans’ confidence in government down as 7 percent now have trust in Congress | Washington Watch | McClatchy DC | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Confidence in government has reached historic lows, according to a new Gallup survey, as 7 percent say they’re have confidence in Congress and 29 percent feel that way about the White House.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Is it time for a constitutional convention? For a government reorganization? Perhaps for both? Assuredly it is time to stop the waste of our military-industrial-espionage sub-government. Without question it is time to focus on the government providing services and quality of life for our people. Certainly, it is time to limit the role of government in controlling every aspect of life and business. Most importantly, it is time to reform the method of electing and the role of money in dominating our political process.

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Before Shooting in Iraq, a Warning on Blackwater

Before Shooting in Iraq, a Warning on Blackwater | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Not long after the security firm’s top manager in Iraq told a State Department investigator “that he could kill” him, an inquiry was abandoned. Weeks later, the firm’s guards killed 17 civilians in Iraq.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Blackwater is the poster child for the arrogance of the Bush administration and for the incompetence with which it governed. Worse, to the world it represents the arrogance and brutality of America. We should be better, and we must do better if we are to have  credibility in the world.

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U.S. Postal Service losing tens of millions annually subsidizing shipments to Alaska

U.S. Postal Service losing tens of millions annually subsidizing shipments to Alaska | Upsetment | Scoop.it

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Under a federal program exclusive to Alaska, the Postal Service is responsible for shipping more than 100 million pounds a year of apples, frozen meat, dog food, diapers and countless other consumer items to off-road villages in the sparsely populated outposts known as the bush. Over three decades acting as freight forwarder, the agency has lost $2.5 billion."

Kenneth Weene's insight:

It is this kind of mandate from Congress that makes it so difficult for the Postal Service to keep afloat. Perhaps providing such extra assistance to the remote people of Alaska is appropriate, but then the federal and/or state coffers should help carry the cost.

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Taliban Mount Major Assault in Afghanistan

Taliban Mount Major Assault in Afghanistan | Upsetment | Scoop.it
The group has attacked police outposts and government facilities in several districts of northern Helmand Province, sending the police and military officials scrambling to shore up defenses.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

I have said it before and I will keep saying it, the war in Afghanistan is a fool's errand. The Pashtun nationalism which underlies the Taliban (along with their commitment to Islam as they understand it) make this a movement that will not go away and cannot be defeated by guns. It can only be dealt with by both recognizing the nationalist aspiration (including those in Pakistan) and by trying to introduce a more moderate interpretation of their faith. 

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Border Patrol Scrutiny Stirs Anger in Arizona Town

Border Patrol Scrutiny Stirs Anger in Arizona Town | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Arivaca, Ariz., is surrounded by checkpoints where everyone is stopped and questioned, no matter how long they have lived there.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

What a pain in the butt to have to stop at these checkpoints all the time. Obviously, the agents must recognize the locals. How many people are we talking about on either side - locals and Border Patrol personnel? And the school bus and the senior citizen minibus, they aren't known? Why can't the bureaucracy allow some common sense? Let's be honest, this isn't fueled by concern about undocumented aliens but by the War on Drugs, which has become a war on the American people.

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Hobby Lobby: Supreme Court To Rule In Landmark Birth Control Case

Hobby Lobby: Supreme Court To Rule In Landmark Birth Control Case | Upsetment | Scoop.it
On Monday, the Supreme Court is poised to rule in a landmark case about whether for-profit corporations are entitled to religious-based exceptions from neutral laws.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

The ultimate question of most SCOTUS decisions is at the intersection between conflicting rights. If we start with the premise that women have a right to equal insurance treatment regardless of where they work and that corporations have a right to religious freedom, then we have a conflict worthy of adjudication. Of course, this entire case rests on the shoulders of Citizens United, which held that corporations were persons. Take that crazy assumption out, and there would be no case. It also rests on the assumption that the government should mandate health insurance -- not just provide it as the governments in most advanced economies do. For my part, I think that striking down Citizens United by saying that corporations cannot have religious views would be the way to go.

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Pennsylvania School Board Rejects Proposal To Include Climate Denial In Textbooks

Pennsylvania School Board Rejects Proposal To Include Climate Denial In Textbooks | Upsetment | Scoop.it
A school director called the global warming chapter of a science textbook "propaganda, " but the board ultimately approved it over his objection.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

The textbook companies have to sell their swill to the folks in Texas, the anti-education capital of America, so you can bet there will be a "fair and balanced" climate change denial chapter. Free speech should have its limits -- like at the border of reason and truth. Sadly, America has lost that common sense.

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9 signs America’s gun obsession is getting worse

9 signs America’s gun obsession is getting worse | Upsetment | Scoop.it
It goes beyond open carry activists displaying their firearms in restaurant chains. Even the NRA seems perplexed
Kenneth Weene's insight:

While the title of this piece is a bit one-sided, the contents are interesting. What is missing is the reason for the increase in gun preoccupation. Why do a relatively small number of people feel the need to wave guns around? Who is their enemy? Are they trying to create enemies for themselves? Most Americans have no desire to stop competent people from having guns. IMO, most Americans just want reasonable behavior.

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Gaza's unemployed graduates: between Google and falafel - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Gaza's unemployed graduates: between Google and falafel - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East | Upsetment | Scoop.it
With the unemployment rate steadily on the rise in the Gaza Strip, many college graduates are taking and creating jobs outside their specialty.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

If the U.S. and Europe (to say nothing of Israel) want peace and a two state solution, the place to start is encouraging the economic development of Palestine. Unemployed, educated young people are the breeding ground of violence, but give them jobs and stability will come. Why not some high tech businesses? Why not a company to make medicines? Why not a plant to make electronics? We should be encouraging investment in this region.

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NC GOPer Compares Gays To Pedophiles In Debate Over LGBT Discrimination

NC GOPer Compares Gays To Pedophiles In Debate Over LGBT Discrimination | Upsetment | Scoop.it

ZOA Republican lawmaker in North Carolina compared gays to a whole slew of sexual disorders, including pedophilia and bestiality, in a debate about LGBT discrimination Tuesday on the state House floor.

Kenneth Weene's insight:

Once again we have a right-winger using distortion of semantics and half truths in important public debate. 
"Stam did not mention that the information in his handout, which dated back to 2000, had been updated in the APA manual to classify those attractions as "disorders" rather than "orientations," according to the news station." 

Also, calling something an orientation doesn't make it okay. It is merely a descriptive word saying that is the person's preference or direction. We cannot outlaw orientation only behavior.

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2nd Bridge Inquiry Said to Be Linked to Christie

2nd Bridge Inquiry Said to Be Linked to Christie | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Investigations into the administration of Gov. Chris Christie and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey have zeroed in on possible securities law violations, people briefed on the matter say.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Some clear realities. America's infrastructure is deteriorating. Repairs cost money. Government money comes from taxes (or borrowing or fees). Republicans hate to raise taxes, but that doesn't mean riding roughshod over the rules to take money that is allocated elsewhere just to get ones hands on it is okay. Of course, it it Christie's style.

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Childhood vaccines are safe, study says

Childhood vaccines are safe, study says | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Children should get vaccinated against preventable and potentially deadly diseases. Period.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

If you remember the scourge of some of these diseases, you appreciate the wonder that vaccination is. Many anti-vaccination believers have no appreciation of the risk to which they are subjecting their children. It is bad enough that we have had recent outbreaks of measles; wait until polio reappears. I wonder how a mother will feel when her crippled child says, "You did this to me."

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Supreme Court Birth Control Ruling May Impact Millions Of Americans

Supreme Court Birth Control Ruling May Impact Millions Of Americans | Upsetment | Scoop.it
The Supreme Court said in a landmark ruling on Monday that "closely held" corporations with religious owners may opt out of Obamacare's birth control mandate, a definition that sounds narrow in scope but actually comprises a vast majority of American businesses.

The most immediate impact will be felt by the female employees of Hobby Lobby (which employs 13,000 people total) and Conestoga Wood (which employs 1,000 people), who will no longer have cost-free access to emergency contraceptives like the morning-after pill. Beyond that, health care experts and pro-choice advocates say it's close to impossible to know precisely how many women will be affected because it depends on which employers opt out.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Am I the only one wondering what happens when it comes out that a member of that close group which owns Hobby Lobby (or some other company) is using the pill for contraception? When it comes out that a member of that group is investing in a pill manufacturer? When it comes out that they have bought their own insurance which covers the pill? I have a strong suspicion that skullduggery will out; that these are not honest people; that they are hypocrites motivated by the show of religiosity not by its spirit.

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Militants making headway in Iraq and Syria declare creation of formal Islamic state

Militants making headway in Iraq and Syria declare creation of formal Islamic state | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Residents said insurgents from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) were still in control of the town center Sunday, despite state television claims that Iraqi forces had cleared Tikrit of militants.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Here is a picture of the man who would rule the Islamic State and presumably the Islamic world, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi the self-proclaimed caliph -  a man whom even the jihadist movement rejects as too extreme.  Yes, American neo-conservatives, you have created monsters for the rest of us to tame. Do not, I repeat, do not offer advice or make suggestions.

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U.S. Trained ISIS at Secret Jordan Base

U.S. Trained ISIS at Secret Jordan Base | Upsetment | Scoop.it
The United States trained members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Greater Syria) (ISIS) at a secret base in Jordan to combat Syrian President
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Shades of Afghanistan: Will our military-espionage-industrial complex ever learn? I doubt it. Perhaps we should disassemble the bureaucracy that brings us such idiocy.

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Why 28 years have passed since the EPA’s last chemical risk review | Al Jazeera America

Why 28 years have passed since the EPA’s last chemical risk review | Al Jazeera America | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Tens of thousands of chemicals have not been reviewed by the EPA, and people are starting to ask questions
Kenneth Weene's insight:

One reason the government bureaucracy works badly is that Congress works badly at keeping it updated. We need the EPA and we need it modernized.

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Long-building conservative anger at Export-Import Bank reaches boiling point

Long-building conservative anger at Export-Import Bank reaches boiling point | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Opposition to what many in tea party call a symbol of “crony capitalism” has been building for years.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Should the U.S. government help export businesses finance their sales? Is that cronyism or is it good national policy? What would it do to businesses if they had to deal with the mega-banks instead? On the other hand, can unworthy companies, like Enron and Solyndra, take advantage of government support to effectively steal from the taxpayers? The underlying question is always how do we tame the government bureaucracy and make it serve the interest of the country instead of being its own monster.

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White House Task Force To Save Bees Stirs Hornet's Nest

White House Task Force To Save Bees Stirs Hornet's Nest | Upsetment | Scoop.it
When the administration created a task force to combat the ongoing collapse of the nation's bee population, it created more than a little buzz.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

When corporate interests weigh in, scientific investigation becomes so much more difficult Isn't it time to take corporations out of government decision making on such important questions of environmental sustainability?

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Obama asks for authorization to provide direct military training to Syrian rebels

Obama asks for authorization to provide direct military training to Syrian rebels | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Administration for first time asks Congress to authorize and fund direct assistance to moderate opposition.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

It seems that the U.S. has learned very little over the years. We have no more role in Syria than we did in Afghanistan when the Afghans were trying to get rid of the Soviet Union. Today's "friends" will surely turn out to be tomorrow's enemies. Why can't we limit our efforts to humanitarian aid and to international efforts like getting the gas out, which we did well with Russian help (and that of other countries). Nothing sends shivers of dread up my spine like the words, "We are offering military assistance."

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Native Americans Forcibly Detained After Asking MLB Fan to Remove Headdress-Civil Rights Group Shocked

Native Americans Forcibly Detained After Asking MLB Fan to Remove Headdress-Civil Rights Group Shocked | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Native Americans Forcibly Detained After Asking MLB Fan to Remove Headdress-Civil Rights Group Shocked
Kenneth Weene's insight:

A true celebration of Native American Heritage Night, the cavalry commits another atrocity. Shame on the police and the security forces. I wonder if there will be a law suit. If I were on the jury, I would certainly be all over the Padres and the city.

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He Asked A Question, And A Bunch Of People Lied. So He Told Them A Truth That We All Need To Hear.

He Asked A Question, And A Bunch Of People Lied. So He Told Them A Truth That We All Need To Hear. | Upsetment | Scoop.it
He wasn't even surprised that they lied to his face.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

This is a video that needs watching and sharing. As a psychologist, I strongly urge you to take the time.

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Questions Rebels Use to Tell Sunni From Shiite

Questions Rebels Use to Tell Sunni From Shiite | Upsetment | Scoop.it
How can the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria tell whether a person is a Sunni or a Shiite? From accounts, it seems they often ask a list of questions.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

If this reminds you of the questioning of the Inquisition during the Middle Ages, that is because this is exactly the same kind of religious madness. Sadly, Islam is an adolescent religion. For Christianity that stage was passed at a time when weapons were more limited and transportation took more time. Hence a religious war could last a hundred years. Sadly for the vast numbers of peace-loving Muslims in the Middle East, today's battle is being fought with modern weapons and transportation. How sad.

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Dick Cheney Says Iraq War Was 'the Right Thing'

Dick Cheney Says Iraq War Was 'the Right Thing' | Upsetment | Scoop.it
No regrets from the former VP
Kenneth Weene's insight:

I look at the purse nastiness of this man, I hear his inability to question himself or his decisions, and I wonder how stupid we Americans were to put him and his puppet into office. I cannot say that Gore would not have made mistakes. I cannot say that Al Gore did not have his real faults, but Bush-Cheney was a disaster and it is time for Dick to shut up.

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