Saturday, August 22, 2015

President Obama: 'It’s Time for Congress To Pass a Responsible Budget'


In this week's address, the President spoke to the economic progress that our country has made over the past few years, from over 13 million new jobs over the past five and a half years, to 17 states raising the minimum wage.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Jesse Ventura: What Happens to Campaign Funds After the Elections




West Wing Week: 08/21/15


Welcome to the West Wing Week, your guide to everything that's happening at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Last week, we took you behind the scenes of some of the summer's most momentous White House moments. This week, we'll preview some of the exciting events on the President's schedule in the weeks to come.

ISIL's Second-in-Command Killed in U.S. Military Strike




Statement by National Security Council Spokesperson Ned Price on the Death of ISIL Deputy Leader Fadhil Ahmad al-Hayali

Fadhil Ahmad al-Hayali, also known as Hajji Mutazz, the second in command of the terrorist group ISIL, was killed in a U.S. military air strike on August 18 while traveling in a vehicle near Mosul, Iraq, along with an ISIL media operative known as Abu Abdullah.  Al-Hayali was an ISIL Shura Council member and, as the senior deputy to ISIL leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was a primary coordinator for moving large amounts of weapons, explosives, vehicles, and people between Iraq and Syria.  He supported ISIL operations in both countries and was in charge of ISIL operations in Iraq, where he was instrumental in planning operations over the past two years, including the ISIL offensive in Mosul in June 2014.  He was a member of Al Qa’ida in Iraq, the predecessor to ISIL, and previously served as ISIL’s Baghdad military emir and the emir of Ninawa Province.  Al-Hayali’s death will adversely impact ISIL’s operations given that his influence spanned ISIL’s finance, media, operations, and logistics.  The United States and its coalition partners are determined to degrade and destroy this terrorist group which has wrought so much harm and suffering on the people of the region and beyond.
 
Source: The White House Press Office

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter on Threat Russia Poses

 

"It's a very, very significant threat." Secretary Ashton Carter on Vladimir Putin's Russia.

Click here to access video. 

Source: C-Span

Governor Scott Walker Town Hall Meeting in New Hampshire



Governor Scott Walker (WI-R), a candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, spoke at a town hall meeting in the American Legion Hall in Ashland, New Hampshire.

Click here for video access. 

Source: C-Span

Defense Department MidEast Operations Briefing

 

Marine Corps Brigadier General Kevin Killea briefed reporters at the Pentagon on Operation Inherent Resolve, the U.S. military operation against ISIS.*

* The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) or the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or DAISH/DAESH in Arabic), is a militant group that has called itself the Islamic State.

Click here for video access. 

Source: C-Span

The Spread of Synthetic Drugs



Karl Racine, Attorney General for the District of Columbia, talked about synthetic drug use in several major cities and the implications for law enforcement and public health. **This clip is part of C-SPAN Classroom's FREE resources for teachers and students. 

Click here to access the video.

Source: C-Span

Cuomo Announces New Highest Ranking Soldier for New York Army National Guard

 Command Sgt. Major David Piwowarski

Afghan War Veteran to Take Over Top
Non-Commissioned Officer Job in November

A veteran of the war in Afghanistan will be the new highest ranking non-commissioned officer of the 10,500 member New York Army National Guard. Command Sgt. Major David Piwowarski, who currently serves as the command sergeant major for the Troy-based 42nd Infantry, will replace Rochester resident Louis Wilson, a retired police officer, who will retire from the Army National Guard after 33-years of service. Piwowarski will serve as the senior enlisted advisor to Major General Patrick Murphy, the Adjutant General of New York, on training and enlisted Soldier issues.

“On behalf of all New Yorkers, I'm proud to welcome Command Sergeant Major David Piwowarski to his new post and commend him for taking on the many responsibilities that come with this position” Governor Cuomo said. “It is an honor for him to continue the great work of his predecessors and I am confident that he will help keep New York’s Army National Guard strong.”

"Command Sgt. Major Piwowarski has had a distinguished career and is uniquely qualified to continue the high level of leadership, initiative and dedication to our enlisted New York Army National Guard Soldiers that Command Sgt. Major Wilson embodied during his tenure as my senior enlisted advisor," said Major General Patrick Murphy, the Adjutant General of New York.

Piwowarski has extensive experience with the Guard having served as a rifleman, platoon sergeant, company first sergeant, and as command sergeant major at the battalion, brigade, and division level. He is currently a military technician who works full-time in the New York National Guard headquarters in the New York National Guard's Joint Force headquarters' domestic operations office.

Piwowarski, who is originally from the Buffalo area, enlisted in the Army in 1981 and served in the 82nd Airborne Division before joining the New York Army National Guard. In 2008, Piwowarski deployed to Afghanistan with the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team and served as the command sergeant major for Combined Joint Task Force Phoenix. This multi-national military force, headed by a New York Army National Guard general, was responsible for training thousands of Afghan National Army Soldiers throughout the country.

Piwowarski holds a dual bachelor's degree in Economics and Business from Buffalo State College. He is a 2004 graduate of the Army's Sergeants Major Academy.

His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, and the Global War on Terror Service Medal, the NCO Professional Development Ribbon, the NATO Medal, the Combat Infantry Badge, the Expert Infantry Badge, and the Parachutist Badge.

He and his wife Domenica live in Ballston Spa with their son Bryan and daughter Alexa.  

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Early Intervention Services Expanded for NY Youth with Schizophrenia

 
$6.75 Million Program Opens New Locations in
Buffalo, Long Island, New York City, and Syracuse

The New York State Office of Mental Health is expanding a program that provides much needed mental health services to young adults with newly emerging psychotic symptoms. Individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia typically experience their first psychotic episode in young adulthood. With $6.75 million in current annual state and federal funding, the Office of Mental Health has developed the OnTrackNY program, which provides psychiatric treatment, employment, educational services, and family education and support for young adults throughout New York State.

"Early intervention can save lives, and with this funding we're going to be able to reach more young adults with mental illness and put them on the path toward comprehensive treatment," ‎Governor Cuomo said. "I thank our state and federal partners for working with us to secure this funding and ensuring that more New Yorkers get the services they need."

This program offers the resources necessary to help New York’s youth struggling with mental illness take control of their health,” Governor Cuomo said. “As with many illnesses, early intervention can lives, and by expanding access to these services, we are helping these young New Yorkers get back on track and on a path towards comprehensive treatment.”

OnTrackNY began with sites in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, and Yonkers; which serve approximately 160 youth at any given time. The Office of Mental Health has now expanded this program to five new locations, in Buffalo, Farmingville, Syracuse and another two in Manhattan, which will serve 175 youth combined. An additional three OnTrackNY sites are in currently in development for Albany, Rochester, and New York City and plans to further expand the program with existing resources are also in development.

It is estimated that nearly 3,000 New York residents develop schizophrenia each year, which if left untreated leads to a number of significant issues, including problems at school and work, strained family relations, and estrangement from friends. Untreated schizophrenia can lead to problems such as homelessness, incarceration, and substance abuse, the probability of which increases the longer the psychosis goes untreated. Oftentimes, untreated schizophrenia leads to disability, which exacts painful human costs upon the individuals and their families, as well as substantial financial costs to individuals, families, and the healthcare and social service systems.

Started in 2013, the OnTrackNY program provides an innovative, evidence-based, team approach to providing recovery-oriented treatment to young people who have recently begun experiencing psychotic symptoms. OnTrackNY helps young adults with newly emerged psychotic disorders achieve their goals for school, work, and social relationships. This program follows principles of care which include shared decision making, youth friendly and welcoming environments, and connection with flexible and accessible mental health services.

“Through early identification and intervention through programs such as OnTrackNY, we are able to mitigate the disruption and suffering faced by these young people and their families. The expansion of OnTrackNY will build upon the successes of the existing programs and increase the access and availability of community-based psychiatric care throughout New York State.” said New York State Office of Mental Health Commissioner Dr. Ann Marie T. Sullivan, M.D.

Senator Charles Schumer said, “The OnTrackNY program is a vital resource for New Yorkers with severe mental illnesses. This is a much-needed expansion to ensure some of our most vulnerable residents have the care and treatment they need,” said Senator Schumer. We should continue to invest in programs to make sure every New Yorker has the care they need.” – U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer
 
Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney said, "Early treatment and intervention is essential for young people who suffer with severe mental illnesses like schizophrenia. The expansion of the OnTrackNY program will allow more people to benefit from lifesaving services, and avoid problems like homelessness and incarceration that often plague those who do not receive proper treatment. I applaud Governor Cuomo for his leadership, and will continue supporting strong federal funding for the Office of Mental Health.”

Congressman Brian Higgins said, “Opening an OnTrackNY location in Buffalo will bring a mental health care program to Western New York that has already proven successful in other areas of the state. This combined federal and state investment will provide critical and comprehensive services to young people and their families who are learning how to manage mental health issues, allowing them to navigate personal relationships and educational and career goals to lead fulfilling lives.”

Congressman Lee Zeldin said, "It's crucial that Long Island residents and families have access to the highest quality of mental health care, especially our youth in need. I am proud to join with Governor Cuomo to announce the expansion of treatment for those families affected by mental illness in Suffolk County. The expansion of this program, which is centered around early detection, helps accelerate the identification and treatment process and provide timelier support for those who are suffering."

OnTrackNY is funded by the New York State Office of Mental Health and the United States Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Make Toplessness in Public Illegal for Everyone


 
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW
By Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz
District 32 Bronx County, New York


You should know that some time ago, Times Square used to be the pits of the nation where criminals, drug dealers, prostitutes and all kind of sordid behavior could be found in the area.

Times Square was a haven for open prostitution, commercialized sex, selling and using drugs. There were used condoms all over the place. People were afraid to take their families – especially children to Times Square because they didn’t want to witness the immoral behavior. Even the streets were dirty.

It is well known that New York City Mayors used to come and go, and Times Square didn’t see any change - until a guy by the name of Rudy Giuliani was elected Mayor and instituted the quality of life policy.  Regardless of anyone’s opinion or fight for supposed civil rights, his legacy includes completely reforming Times Square.

During his war on crime, Giuliani cleaned the streets and transformed Times Square into a new place where families from all over the world were drawn. New York’s next Mayor Michael Bloomberg closed the streets in Times Square and created a plaza.

But ladies and gentlemen, surprise, surprise: Times Square has made a turn for the worse and is on its way back to what it was before Giuliani.

Now we have naked cowboys, topless women doing business and taking photos – accosting and molesting tourists, a cursing Elmo, and people pissing in the streets.  All kinds of immorality have returned to Times Square.

Our current Mayor Bill de Blasio’s solution to the problem is to close the Times Square Plaza due to the fact that equality in the law allows for women to go topless because men can go topless.  Therefore, Police Officers are not permitted to arrest, summons or harass topless women, because of “equality.”

The problem with Mayor de Blasio’s solution in closing the Times Square Plaza, will cause the naked cowboys and the naked women to move to other places. That will create a situation where Mayor de Blasio will have to keep closing places all throughout the City of New York.  He will have to keep chasing them all over and closing places until there are no places left to close.

The law that authorizes women and men to go topless needs to be changed! As a Senator representing the South Bronx, I am afraid that Hunts Point might be next to go back to what it was.

Therefore, I am introducing legislation to make it illegal for anyone to go topless in the streets and places in New York State except for beaches.

In a city where millions of people are drawn to Times Square, we need to push against the immorality that has taken root there once again so families can enjoy New York. If equality laws are in the way, let’s push for equality so neither men nor women can go topless in our streets.

My dear reader, I hope that my colleagues in the State Legislature and the Mayor of New York City will support my legislation to do away with toplessness in the streets of New York.

That will be better than chasing topless women and closing streets all over New York City.

I am State Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz and this is what you should know.

Trump—Racist—Revisited

Steven Jonas, MD, MPH

Over four years ago, on BuzzFlash, I published a column on Donald Trump entitled “Trump is the Race Card.”  Yes, Trump is a blowhard, and no he doesn’t have any real programs to offer that would have a chance of solving the problems he likes to list (some real; some imagined.  His new [old by Repub. standards] “immigration” policy is a bad joke [see below]).  But like just about every other political commentator on our side around, I still find it irresistible to launch broadsides at him. 

In a recent column for The Greanville Post, I placed Trump in the Repub. tradition of anti-immigration doctrine that began with those Know-Nothings who were part of the Republican Party from the beginning.  Looking backwards, in this space I am re-visiting a 2011 column (edited down, to be sure), showing, if nothing else, that Trump’s racism is nothing new.  Except that this time around, it happens to be directed at Latinos.  One does not need to emphasize the point now made by a number of observers that the only thing different between Trump and the “Main-line” Repubs. is that he says out loud what has been Repub. doctrine, signaled by dog-whistles, for years.  (And of course now, following the Rightward Imperative of the Repubs., the so-called “mainstream” candidates, from Rubio to Walker, are even jumping on the openly racist specifics of the Trump immigration bandwagon.)  And so:

Not so long ago in a land not at all far away, part of it was ruled by a tiny oligarchy of very wealthy large landowners.  They made their wealth in part off the backs of unpaid farm laborers for whom they provided nothing more than minimal food and shelter, in part by trading in those laborers as property, and in part off the backs of another group of (much smaller) landowners/small farmers, who were generally poor, although definitely better off than the aforementioned unpaid laborers.  Actually, the latter two groups had much in common.  They worked hard, got nothing (in the case of the first) and precious little (in the case of the second) for their labors.  They were both dominated and exploited by the oligarchy.  One would have thought, in fact, that the two groups of laborers might actually join forces and struggle to improve their respective states in life.

Trump’s racism is nothing new. But the only difference with the “Main-line” Repubs. is that he says out loud what has been GOP doctrine for years. 

But of course this did not happen in the slaveholding South (or the other non-Southern slaveholding states before the First Civil War either).  For in the South in particular, the ruling oligarchy had, over a period of two centuries since slaves were first brought to North America in 1620, very carefully nurtured the false doctrine of white supremacy.  They trumpeted this doctrine even though there had been interbreeding between European settlers and African slaves from the earliest days and the coloring became quite muddled.  Given that inbreeding, the grouping “black people” in particular was a totally artificial construct and of course still is.  But logic and facts never troubled the Right back then any more than they do now.

Whatever could be said about the status and living standards of the poor whites in the South, the oligarchy could and did always buy them off with the notion that whatever else was going on in their lives, they were somehow “superior” to the “blacks.”  Of course, the doctrine of White Supremacy and its power over the “white” people of the U.S. has never gone away.  In fact, its presence and wide-spread influence on the thinking of United States folk of all kinds to this very day is a major indicator of how the South actually won the First Civil War

Race is still the trump card for the Right.  And Donald Trump used it back in 2011-12, just as he uses it now.  Trump is a former Health Care Single-Payer supporter, a former pro-choicer, a former supporter of other liberal causes.  But now he is apparently really running for the Repub. Presidential nomination.   The racist issue he is using this time around is of course “immigration.”  But racism is nothing new for Trump.  In 2011-12, when he appeared to be, or at least claimed to be, running for the Repub. nomination, it was the so-called “birther issue.”

Yes, the State of Hawaii had produced a birth certificate and the President eventually released it.  Yes there were the also the contemporaneous birth announcements in Honolulu newspapers.  But the Right knows better than to confuse any of its adherents with facts.  There is still an ample “birther movement” and Trump still refuses to affirm that he is convinced by the existence of a Hawaii state birth certificate.  (Of course, it doesn’t matter where Obama was born.  He had a U.S. citizen mother and therefore is a U.S. citizen; just ask Ted Cruz, who was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, of a U.S. mother.)

Every racist idiot and opportunistic politician in the US dumps on hardworking Latino immigrants, conveniently forgetting what a contribution they make to the nation’s cheap food supply. For so many vociferous Christians, there’s little sign of compassion.

Trump knew full well what the facts were.  But how better to distinguish himself from the rest of the undistinguished Repub. field than to openly play the race card, using the dog whistle of “birtherism” resting on the foundation of the Doctrine of White Supremacy that has been in place in this country since long before the First Civil War.  The attack was/is on Obama’s legitimacy as a person/President, and “we all know what that means, don’t we.”

And then came the Trump attack on Obama’s credentials for and in higher education, which he is still playing.  As Trump said: “I have friends who have smart sons with great marks, great boards, great everything and they can’t get into Harvard.  We don’t know a thing about this guy. There are a lot of questions that are unanswered about our president.” Must have been affirmative action, donchaknow.  How else could he have gotten into Columbia College and Harvard Law School?  And never did release his transcripts (as if they were anybody’s business).  He must have made President of the Harvard Law Review and Magna cum Laude by affirmative action too.  And we know what THAT all means. 

Of course, “affirmative action” has always not meant granting admissions or jobs preferentially to discriminated-against minorities, but rather simply giving them equal opportunity to apply and be considered on their own merits.  However, that fact has never stopped the racists from using “affirmative action” as a weapon in their race war.  Yes indeed.  Race was the trump card for the Right and for Trump himself, back then, and it still is. 

Postscript I: On Trump’s immigration “policy.”  1. Build a wall.  There are already substantial sections of a wall, built at great expense.  They apparently are not too effective.  2.  Ramp up deportation.  Deportation already runs at a fairly high rate under the Obama Administration.  Obama’s first Homeland Security Sec. Janet Napolitano ramped up “border enforcement” in the mistaken belief that doing so would call off the Repub. dogs on the immigration issue: ho, ho, ho.  3.  Pay for a wall by increasing visa fees: ho, ho, ho.  Quoting from Seinfeld: “You can’t be serious.”  4.  End U.S. citizenship for persons born in the U.S. of undocumented aliens. Well that would require amending the U.S. Constitution, and actually echoes the fictitious  “30th Amendment” to the U.S. Constitution passed by a fictitious future Republican government, as told in chapter four of my book, The 15 Percent Solution, (which was written in 1994-95 --- based on what some Repubs. were already talking about back then).

Postscript II:  The Duopoly Watch aspect of all this is that a) no one on the Democratic side will really go after Trump, and indeed the rest of the Repubs., on his/their racism, and b) the Obama Administration can hardly boast about its vastly increased anti-immigration enforcement measures, about which, apparently, only a minority of the Latino community is aware.

Postscript III:  For a brief review of Repub. lies about the true state of immigration policy presently, see Robert Reich’s comment at: http://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/31899-focus-trumped-up-myths-and-downright-lies-about-immigration.  To which one could add that if any significant number of working age undocumented immigrants were deported, given the many very important jobs they hold in many US industries, the U.S. economy would suffer a severe downturn, if not collapse.

Postscript IV:  It now turns out that Trump employs undocumented immigrants.  One has to wonder.  Were e-verity to be applied to all of his enterprises, how much would he have to pay in fines, and how much would his profits drop?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Senior Editor, Politics, Steven Jonas, MD, MPH is a Professor Emeritus of Preventive Medicine at Stony Brook University (NY) and author/co-author/editor/co-editor of over 30 books. In addition to his role with The Greanville Post, he is a Contributor for American Politics to The Planetary Movement, a columnist for BuzzFlash@Truthout, a “Trusted Author” for OpEdNews, and the Editorial Director of and a Contributing Author to The Political Junkies for Progressive Democracy.  Dr. Jonas’ latest book is The 15% Solution: How the Republican Religious Right Took Control of the U.S., 1981-2022: A futuristic Novel, Brewster, NY, Trepper & Katz Impact Books, Punto Press Publishing, 2013, http://www.puntopress.com/jonas-the-15-solution-hits-main-distribution/, and available on Amazon.  

Bernie Can Win in November 2016

2016 Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders

By Ted Glick
A CNN/ORC poll that came out a couple of days ago shows that Bernie Sanders is rapidly shrinking Hillary Clinton’s lead in the polls. Over just the last two months he has cut it down by more than half, from 57-14 in a late June CNN/ORC poll to 47-29 today. And then there’s the Boston Herald poll showing Bernie winning New Hampshire by 7 percentage points.

How does this compare with Hillary Clinton vs. Barack Obama at a comparable time in their 2007/2008 race? Pretty favorably; polls back then had Clinton ahead by 15 percentage points, very close to where Sanders is right now.

Of course, that hasn’t made much difference to the talking heads and supposed political experts who get paid by the corporations who own much of the mass media. Virtually all of them, whether liberal or conservative, keep saying that “Bernie can’t win.”

However there’s another CNN/ORC poll from a month ago, July 26th, that tells a very different story. In that poll, Bernie came out the winner in head-to-head match-ups with Donald Trump (59-38), Scott Walker (48-42) and Jeb Bush (48-47). And this is despite the fact that, in that same poll, 41% of those polled said they really didn’t know enough to have either a favorable or unfavorable opinion about Bernie!

What are the reasons given for why Bernie can’t win, other than the usual “conventional wisdom” from supposed know-it-alls on TV?

One is his age. He’s six years older than Hillary, 73 vs. 67, not a huge difference there. How old was Ronald Reagan when he took office? 70, and he was 78 when he left. Bernie would be 75 upon taking office. And when you compare Bernie’s energy to Hillary’s energy, who seems to have more?

The age issue is really a non-issue, or at worst a minor issue.

Then there’s the fact that he calls himself a “democratic socialist.” This is an interesting one, given that the July CNN/ORC poll had him beating the then-top-three Republican candidates in a head-to-head match-up. How could this be? How could an avowed socialist be in such a strong political position nationally? Clearly, it has a lot to do with his authenticity, his adherence to basic principles over the course of his political life, his popularity among the Vermont electorate and the fact that the ideas and proposals he has been espousing for 30 years are, indeed, ideas whose time seems to have finally arrived. Hooray for that!

It is realistic to expect that both the Clinton Democrats and the Republicans, if he wins the Democratic nomination, are going to use this one to try to paint him as out of the mainstream, far left, not in touch with American values, etc. That will have some impact, though I think the odds are just as good that it could ultimately rebound in Bernie’s favor, as more people take a closer look at him and find that his positions on many issues are very similar to theirs. And Bernie is no spring chicken when it comes to dealing with these kind of attacks; it has happened in Vermont, and in Bernie’s last re-election campaign for the US Senate, he won with 71% of the vote.

The latest reason being given, probably the most substantive, is that he is not well known by and has low levels of support among African Americans and other people of color compared to Hillary Clinton. What’s the reality about Bernie’s history on issues specific to people of color? It’s pretty good. He was an activist in the civil rights movement of the 60’s, getting arrested for his activism, and he attended the August, 1963 March on Washington at the Lincoln Memorial. He has a near-100% voting record from the national NAACP. He voted against Bill Clinton’s very problematic and discriminatory “welfare reform” legislation in the 90’s. When disrupted by Black Lives Matter supporters recently at rallies, he came out with a strong and comprehensive platform on racial justice issues. He seems to be taking this issue seriously and is moving to address it.

He can’t let up on this, and neither can his supporters. The progressive movement in the USA has a long history of not dealing well with issues of particular importance to people of color. Bernie and those white people around him need to have the intelligence and sensitivity to model a positive way of dealing with these issues. If he and they do so, Bernie’s strengths in so many other areas should lead to a significant change in the level of both active and passive support for his candidacy from people of color going forward.

Finally, there’s the issue of money. 

This is a two-edged sword. On one side is the conventional wisdom that you can’t win the Presidency unless you sell out to the Wall Street crowd to get their money to buy TV ads. This has certainly been true up to now. But there’s another side, and that’s the political power of a genuinely people-powered and people-financed campaign. When Bernie is consistent and makes an issue of his unwillingness to take Super PAC money or be dependent on the big donors, that position resonates with lots of people. And he sure seems to be doing well with his fund-raising from we, the people.

Many more of we, the people need to see it as a personal responsibility to make sure Bernie’s campaign has the money needed so that he can win, donating as generously as we can.

One key component of a Bernie win, both for the Democratic nomination and then in November of next year, is an expansion of the electorate. When he won election and then re-election for mayor in Burlington, Vt. in the 1980’s, I remember seeing stories of voter registration doubling during that time.

Turning on those who, for good reason, have turned off to the US political system, getting them to register and getting those registered to turn out on election, or caucus, day is critical for the Sanders campaign, and I’m sure Bernie and his team know it. They also know that defending the right to vote and going after those who are working to restrict it has to be a priority.

Bernie can win. That’s not a belief, and it’s not even influenced by my personal support of the guy. It is an objective assessment of the political realities of the country, the state of both the Sanders and Clinton campaigns, polling and the rising currents of progressive activism. Si, se puede!

 
Ted Glick has been an activist, organizer and revolutionary since 1968. Past writings and other information can be found at http://tedglick.com, and he can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/jtglick.

New York State's Student Internship Program Offering Hundreds of Internships




Students Encouraged to Apply to Meet Fall Deadline

The New York State Department of Civil Service today announced that New York State has hundreds of internships available, and reminded college students to apply for fall semester opportunities before the application deadline on Tuesday, September 8th, 2015.

“The internship program continues to connect a new generation of young leaders seeking opportunities and experience in State government,” said Governor Andrew Cuomo. “Internships provide valuable opportunities for students to enhance their academic education with hands-on work experience.”

New York State has a one-stop website—www.nysinternships.com—that allows students to view and apply for internship opportunities across an array of state agencies both downstate and upstate. Opportunities include both paid and unpaid positions.  Internships may include academic credit, depending on the policy of the educational institution.

The website is one component of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s New New York Leaders initiative, which attracts new talent to state government through both a fellowship program and an internship program. The internship website allows applicants to view job descriptions, create profiles, specify interests, and upload resumes, writing samples and letters of recommendation. Students can apply for multiple internships at the same time.

“New York State continues to offer students diverse opportunities for professional development,” said Civil Service Executive Deputy Commissioner Lola Brabham.  “The Governor’s internship program offers a host of opportunities in fields like finance, engineering, public relations, information technology and health care. These opportunities can significantly enhance students’ resumes once they begin seeking career employment.”

The internship program is open to resident graduate and undergraduate students as well as students who attend schools in other states, but reside in New York. To apply, visit nysinternships.com.

Source: New York State Department of Civil Service

"Flashback Friday": Hurricane Katrina...Day by Day

 
Published on YouTube on Aug 29, 2012
 
Follow a day-by-day account of Hurricane Katrina's wrath, from its birth in the Atlantic Ocean to its catastrophic effects: flooded streets, flattened homes, and horrific loss of life.

Trailblazers in Black History: Althea Gibson, Tennis Legend

Published on YouTube on Jun 30, 2015

American Masters: Althea premieres nationwide Friday, September 4, 2015, 9-10:30 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). #AltheaPBS

Discover the story of Althea Gibson (1927-2003), a truant from the rough streets of Harlem, who emerged as the unlikely queen of the highly segregated tennis world in the 1950s. Bringing a fierce athleticism to the game, she was the first African American to play and win at Wimbledon and the U.S. Nationals (precursor of the U.S. Open) — a decade before Arthur Ashe. Gibson’s life and achievements transcend sports, and are part of African-American history. The documentary explores Gibson’s roots as a sharecropper’s daughter, her family’s migration north to Harlem in the 30s, and her mentoring from boxer Sugar Ray Robinson, former New York City Mayor David Dinkins and others. Interviewees include Dinkins, Wimbledon champion Dick Savitt and Billie Jean King, who also serves as one of the film’s executive producers. Produced and directed by Rex Miller (A Chef’s Life, Private Violence).

Today in History: August 21st


'Stage Zero' Breast Cancer: New Study Casts Doubt on Early Intervention


About 60,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year, but a new study raises doubts about the effectiveness of early treatments.

Robin Roberts Reflects on Covering Hurricane Katrina, 10 Years Later


Robin Roberts visits New Orleans for an in-depth look at how residents are still recovering a decade later.

20 Trans People Were Murdered This Year. This is What Happened.




At a Los Angeles protest on Tuesday, Jennifer Thompson held a sign with a list of 20 names of “transgender womyn killed in 2015.”

One speaker at the rally said there had been 19 murders. Another said 17 trans women have been killed this year.



Why Biden Can't Overlook Iowa or New Hampshire




Vice President Joe Biden's reported focus on South Carolina as key to his potential presidential bid has early-state operatives and officials — and even some of Biden's supporters — alarmed and incredulous.

They note there's little historic precedent for a presidential candidate ignoring Iowa and New Hampshire and going on to win the nomination.

They say he wouldn't be taken seriously in the race. The strategy was so unthinkable that Iowa state Sen. Herman Quirmbach — a 2008 Biden supporter — refused to believe it.

"I don't see any precedent at all, at any time in the last 50 years, for somebody skipping Iowa and New Hampshire and still being viable," Qurmbach said in an interview.

"It just doesn't work that way. And Joe Biden knows that." 

Click here for the full article and corresponding videos. 

Source: NBC News

Has Donald Trump Forced Jeb Bush to Change Tune on Immigration?

KEENE, N.H. — Jeb Bush, as he often notes, co-wrote a book two years ago called "Immigration Wars," laying out a path to reforming America's immigration system. In the six chapters of the book, two phrases never appear: "sanctuary cities" and "anchor babies."

But in a six-point immigration proposal he released earlier this month, the former Florida governor included a plan to crack down on cities that don't cooperate with federal authorities on immigration law enforcement.

Now, Bush has invoked the term "anchor babies," the idea that some women enter the U.S. illegally simply so they can have babies who are U.S. citizens, which might make it easier for those women and their families to then become citizens too. Many, particularly in the Latino community, find this phrase offensive.

Rick Santorum Wants Credit for GOP Immigration Ideas


Rick Santorum has a simple message for his GOP rivals when it comes to immigration reform: I thought of it first.

"Up until a few days ago, I was the only candidate in this race to put forth a legal and illegal immigration program that puts American workers first," Santorum said during a speech at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

Santorum has said all immigrants, legal and illegal, are hurting wages for American workers and has proposed curbing even legal immigration. 

The full article is available here.

Source: NBC News

Three Firefighters Killed in Washington Blaze Identified


The U.S. Forest Service on Thursday identified the three firefighters who were killed battling a fast-growing wildfire in Washington state as Tom Zbyszewski, 20, Andrew Zajac, 26, and Richard Wheeler, 31.

The men, all members of an engine crew from Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest in central Washington, died Wednesday after their vehicle crashed and was overtaken by flames near the town of Twisp. The fire spread quickly and erratically, driven by wind and feeding on drought-parched land, the agency said. 

The full article and corresponding videos are available here.

Source: NBC News

Washington State Enlists Volunteers to Fight Fires


Caitlyn Jenner Could Face Manslaughter Charge in Fatal Car Crash


Caitlyn Jenner could face a manslaughter charge in a fatal February car crash in California after investigators determined she was driving too fast, officials and law-enforcement sources said on Thursday.

The four-vehicle crash involving the former Olympian and current reality-TV star left a woman dead on the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu on Feb 7.

Traffic investigators have completed their investigation into the deadly crash and will present the results to the Los Angeles County District Attorney, according to a statement from the L.A. County Sheriff's Department. 

The full article and corresponding videos are available here.

Source: NBC News

Doing Business With Iran - Before And After Nuclear Agreement

 
Published on YouTube on Aug 21, 2015
 
Mr. Nader Ghadessi is an Iranian businessman who lives in Dubai. He owns a company that supplies equipment and bolt material for oil gas and industries. His activity is not banned by any of the sanctions against Iran. But he has his views on the evolving situation.

Source: Euronews

‘Tear Gas and Stun Grenades’: Migrants Under Fire in FYR Macedonia


Source: Euronews

Syriza Rebels Form New Party Following Tsipras’ Resignation


Source: Euronews

Greek PM Tsipras Resigns, Requests ‘Earliest Possible’ Elections


Source: Euronews

‘Several Dead’ in Israeli Retaliation Against Rocket Attacks from Syria


By Sarah Joanne Taylor

Source: Euronews

Stop Propaganda or Come Under Fire, Pyongyang Warns Seoul


By Sarah Joanne Taylor | With REUTERS

Source: Euronews

Le Pens Further Divided as National Front Votes to Oust Founder


Source: Euronews

Bangkok Bombing: At Least 10 People Involved, Foreign Terrorism ‘Unlikely’


Source: Euronews

DRC to Investigate Rape Allegations Against its UN Peacekeepers


Source: Euronews

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Source of Deadly NYC Legionnaires' Outbreak Identified


Health officials have identified a cooling tower at the Opera House Hotel as the source of the Legionnaires' spike that has sickened more than 120 people in the Bronx, killing 12 of them, since July, marking the largest outbreak of the disease in New York City history.

The tower at the Opera House Hotel was disinfected Aug. 1, authorities said. The last case reported in connection with the outbreak was reported two days later. Local, state and federal officials tested samples from 25 patients linked to the outbreak, including some who died, and in each case found a match to the strain of Legionella found in the cooling tower at the Opera House Hotel.

Full article and related video available here: Legionnaires' Source Identified in NYC

Source: NBC News

Governor Cuomo Announces Next Phase of the Nano Utica Initiative


Today, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo hosted Capital for a Day” in Utica – a day-long series of meetings between the Governor, senior state officials and local leaders. The Governor began the day with a cabinet meeting. The Governor also announced the next phase of the Nano Utica initiative at the Quad-C Building at SUNY Polytechnic Institute.

Cuomo Issues Statement on Rochester Shooting

 

 Statement from Governor Andrew Cuomo

“Last night, the community of Rochester was rocked by a deplorable act of violence. The shooting that took place outside of the Boys and Girls Club on Genesee Street – an act that killed three young men and injured four others – is nothing less than heartbreaking, and I join with the people of Rochester in mourning this tragedy. Local authorities are working to bring the perpetrators of this hateful act to justice, and my administration stands ready to assist them in any way possible.

“On behalf of all New Yorkers, my thoughts and prayers are with the families of the seven victims of last night’s senseless violence.” 

Information and video on the tragedy available here

Source: Press Office, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo 

Former President Jimmy Carter News Conference on Cancer Diagnosis


Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter discussed his cancer diagnosis from the Carter Center in Atlanta. He said that melanoma which first occurred in his liver has now spread to his brain, and that he begins treatment today. He took questions from reporters, and talked about his plans going forward. President Carter said he trusts his doctors and will follow their advice for treatment, and that he is at ease. 


Source: C-Span

Forum on Domestic and International News Coverage


Newspaper editors talked about the state of domestic and international news coverage. Marty Baron talked about threats to free expression. Elisabeth Bumiller talked about international news coverage. Then they both were interviewed about the state of journalism by Tom Blinkhorn and responded to questions submitted by members of the audience. Topics included government and non-state threats to free expression, American media coverage of U.S. global power, the state of in-depth news coverage, and how the Internet and financial constraints have impacted their industry, both here and abroad. 

“America’s Power and Influence as Perceived by the Media” was part of the Osher@Dartmouth Summer Lecture Series held in Spaulding Auditorium at the Hopkins Center for the Arts.

Occasional audio difficulties.

Video link: The State of Journalism

Source: C-Span

Washington Journal: Jason Williamson on Efforts to Reform Policing

 
Jason Williamson, with the American Civil Liberties Union, discusses efforts to reform police practices in the U.S. in light of recent incidents involving officers' use of force.

Video link: Jason Williamson

Source: C-Span

Former Senator Rick Santorum on Immigration Policy

 
Former Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), who is seeking the Republican nomination in the 2016 presidential election, lays out his plan to reform the immigration system during remarks at the National Press Club.


Source: C-Span

Trailblazers in Black History: Malcolm X


 
Uploaded on YouTube on Jan 9, 2012
 
A short biography of Malcolm X, the nationalist leader who was a charismatic spokesman for the Nation of Islam until breaking with the group shortly before his 1965 assassination.

Today in History: August 20th


Carly Fiorina: Not Clear to Me Donald Trump is a Republican

Ben Carson on 2016 Presidential Race

ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Donations Help Lead to Breakthrough


After viral campaign raised $115 million for the ALS Association, scientists believe they've made a big discovery.

Trump Takes Jabs at Jeb Bush as Both Campaign in New Hampshire

First Read: The Joe Biden Honeymoon

 
First Read is a morning briefing from Meet the Press and the NBC Political Unit on the day's most important political stories and why they matter.
 
Here's your Biden honeymoon

Maybe the biggest news from the newest batch of swing-state Quinnipiac polls (of Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania) is the political honeymoon that Biden is experiencing as he mulls a presidential run. His fav/unfav numbers among Democrats are slightly better than Hillary's in these three states:


Florida: Biden 80%-10%, Hillary 80%-15%
Ohio: Biden 79%-10%, Hillary 77%-11%
Pennsylvania: Biden: 87%-5%, Hillary 81%-11%


And Biden fares as well (or better) in general-election matchups against Jeb Bush:


Florida: Jeb 49%, Hillary 38%; Jeb 51%, Biden 38%
Ohio: Hillary 41%, Jeb 39%; Biden 42%, Jeb 39%
Pennsylvania: Jeb 43%, Hillary 40%; Jeb 43%, Biden 42%.

Full article available here: First Read

Source: NBC News

Iran’s Top Security Council Holds Back on Nuclear Deal Review


Reuters, 20/08 15:48 CET

DUBAI (Reuters) – The secretary of the Iranian Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) indicated on Thursday that it has nearly finished examining Tehran’s landmark nuclear deal with world powers but will announce no conclusion before the U.S. Congress does.

The SNSC and parliament are both perusing the text of the July 14 pact mandating Iran to curb its nuclear work in exchange for a removal of sanctions, mirroring Congress which has the right to approve or reject it in a vote to be taken by Sept. 17.

“We are in the final stages of examining the deal in the Supreme National Security Council,” SNSC secretary Ali Shamkhani was quoted as saying by the Tasnim news agency. 

Full article available here: Iran Nuclear Deal 

Source: Euronews