The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected Arizona’s law requiring residents to prove their citizenship before registering to vote.
The ruling, which had only two dissents (Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito), represented the second time that the Supreme Court has overturned an Arizona law targeting illegal immigrants. In both cases, the court said the state had entered legal territory where the federal government and its law are dominant.
A total of 37 states now use facial-recognition technology as part of their driver’s-license registries—of which 26 permit local, state, or federal law enforcement agencies to search or request searches of photo databases to assist with criminal matters. In most cases, there was little public notice of this expanded, police use of driver’s license photos of U.S. citizens who are not under suspicion for any crime. Read More
The FTC, which estimates that the pay-for-delay deals cost American consumers $3.5 billion per year in higher drug prices, announced that it plans to proceed with litigation, now that it has gotten a green light from the Supreme Court.
So which side really came out ahead as a result of this ruling?
Jeffery Cross, an antitrust expert with Freeborn & Peters LLP, told Reuters that that answer was simple: “The winners here are the trial lawyers.”
Another Guardian survey question revealed that 56% believe Congress has not done enough to keep watch over the NSA.
The Guardian poll also showed that 58% are worried about private contractors handling secret intelligence for the government. Additionally, 59% of both Democrats and Republicans said that the government needs to be more transparent about its data collection activities.
The British targeted the finance minister and more than a dozen delegates from Turkey in an attempt to assess their position on a deal “to coordinate the global economic recovery to avoid the recession becoming a depression,” according to one of the documents. The latest disclosure surfaced just as representatives of the Group of 8 industrialized nations prepared to meet in Northern Ireland. Among those attending the meeting are some leaders who were spied on in 2009. Read More
Simone Gordon, who worked at the bank from 2007 until early 2012 as a senior collector, told ProPublica that she and other workers “were told to lie to customers and claim that Bank of America had not received documents it had requested.”
“We were told that admitting that the Bank received documents ‘would open a can of worms,’” she added. Bank employees “who placed ten or more accounts into foreclosure in a given month received a $500 bonus.”
The government is relying on Section 215 [of the Patriot Act] to collect “metadata” about every phone call made or received by residents of the United States. The practice is akin to snatching every American’s address book—with annotations detailing whom we spoke to, when we talked, for how long, and from where. It gives the government a comprehensive record of our associations and public movements, revealing a wealth of detail about our intimate associations. Read More
Appearing on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal,” Loretta Sanchez said, “I don't know if there are other leaks, if there's more information somewhere, if somebody else is going to step up, but I will tell you that I believe it's the tip of the iceberg,” She added that she was “astounded” by what she heard and that NSA’s surveillance system is “just broader than most people even realize.” Read More
Keith Cressman of Oklahoma City filed litigation in 2011 objecting to the state’s standard license plate, adopted in 2008, which appears on three million vehicles statewide, claiming the image on it promotes Native American spiritual beliefs and thus endorses a religion. Federal Judge Joe Heaton dismissed the lawsuit last year, but a panel of the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals voted 2-1 to reinstate it on June 11. Read More
Demographers attribute the early arrival of Caucasian natural decrease to several factors, especially the Great Recession and sluggish aftermath, which depressed both birth rates and immigration; and the much higher average age of whites compared to other groups (the median age of whites is 42, of Asians-34, of blacks-32, of Hispanics-28), which translates into lower rates of population growth. Read More
The bookless library will have 100 e-readers for people to borrow in order to read any of the 10,000 digital titles that will be available. Residents also will have access to dozens of computers to browse, study, and learn digital skills.
One of the inspirations for the Bexar paperless public library was the bookless engineering school library at the University of Texas San Antonio, which has been open for three years.
Not only is the Pentagon wasting taxpayer dollars on overpriced contractors, the contractors’ role in running PPBS makes them, in the words of Defense contracting expert Chuck Spinney, “privy to—and in some cases deeply involved in—shaping the detailed decisions concerning how the Pentagon intends to spend its money over the next five or six years. That means, to put it charitably, there are conflicts of interest between the buyer and the sellers.” Read More
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this month that wages in the U.S. declined 4.3% during the first quarter of this year. The drop was the steepest on record, going back to 1947.
But the first three months of 2013 were fantastic for banks, which posted a record $40.3-billion profit, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
Zions received a cut of the fee received by Modern Payments for each person whose account was accessed. Between 2007 and 2009, Zions allowed about $39 million to be withdrawn from hundreds of thousands of its accounts, much of which was transferred to other bank accounts in India, Canada and the Caribbean. This enabled Zions to charge $20 million worth of insufficient funds fees to its customers who had been scammed. Read More
The first explosion occurred on June 13 at a chemical plant in Geismar owned by Williams Cos. Inc. that resulted in two deaths and dozens of injuries. It is not yet known what caused the accident. The plant produces ethylene and propylene.
The very next day an explosion at a chemical plant just a few miles away in Donaldsonville, killed one worker and injured eight others.
Take Miami, Florida, for example. It has a human population of about 409,000. But a factory farm with 2,500 cows can equal Miami’s production of “fertilizer.”
Even more concerning is that the waste from really large factory farms, what the government calls “concentrated animal feeding operations” (CAFOs), is not treated. It simply gets dumped—either onto fields as fertilizer or stored in surface ponds that can grow into small lakes.
A study was convened by the Over-Criminalization Task Force, which discovered the criminal code had grown by 500 new statutes in about 10 years. It now includes about 4,500 crimes.
Some of the laws have wound up punishing Americans for actions not considered a serious offense, such as a child who was fined $535 under the migratory bird law for saving a woodpecker from her family’s cat. After a public outcry, the fine was cancelled. Read More
In 2003, as President George W. Bush prepared to invade Iraq, his administration used the NSA’s capabilities to spy on diplomats from countries undecided about voting to support the United Nations’ authorization for the American-led attack against Saddam Hussein’s regime. The NSA intercepted the home and office telephone and email communications of the U.N. delegates Read More
The nations with the most technically recoverable shale gas resources are said to be China, Argentina, Algeria, the United States, Canada and Mexico.
The nations with the most technically recoverable shale oil resources are Russia, the United States, China, Argentina and Libya.
In Germany, the issue of government snooping is especially sensitive, given the decades of domestic spying by the East German Stasi during the Cold War. Britain’s Foreign Secretary William Hague informed Parliament that British intelligence services have not colluded with the U.S. to circumvent the country’s laws. Some observers suspect that the leaders of foreign allies have known all along what the U.S. government was up to and are just posturing publically for domestic consumption. Read More
Serving as State Department spokesperson since May 2011, Nuland played a major role in editing the administration “talking points” in the aftermath of the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, last year. Nevertheless, recent praise for her nomination from key Senate Republicans. Nuland served and as principal deputy national security advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney from 2003 to 2005. She is married to neoconservative writer Robert Kagan. Read More
From 2006 to 2009, he was counselor for management affairs at the embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and chargé d’affaires ad interim, and from 2009 to 2011, he was chargé d’affaires and deputy chief of mission at the embassy in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Since 2011, Mushingi has served as deputy executive secretary and executive director of the Executive Office of the Secretary of State.
Mushingi bears an unusual resemblance to President Obama.
Padalino practiced law in El Paso at Kemp Smith LLP from 2003 to 2009, representing rural water districts, litigating commercial cases and handling appeals in state and federal appellate courts. He also took leave from his law practice in 2008 to volunteer as a field organizer for Obama for America in Texas.
From 2009 to 2012, Padalino served in a number of positions at USDA, including chief of staff for USDA Rural Development Under Secretary Dallas Tonsager.