Facebook Slider
Optional Member Code
Get News Alerts!

2016.25.2 BF Mellino(Photo: Percy)COLE MELLINO OF ECOWATCH FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

Article reprinted with permission from EcoWatch

By giving a monthly donation of even a small amount, you can make a big difference to the future of Truthout and BuzzFlash. Sign up just once and read on, knowing that you've pledged your ongoing support!

The city of Hamburg, Germany has banned single use coffee pods in state-run buildings as part of an initiative to reduce waste.

MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

aaaaaaaaaaaaaablankfein32Lloyd Blankfein, head of Goldman Sachs, caustically attacked Bernie Sanders but paid Hillary Clinton $675,000 in speaking fees. (Photo: DonkeyHotey)

According to an article in The Hill a few weeks back, Lloyd Blankfein - head of Goldman Sachs and symbol of Wall Street's lack of accountability - warned that Bernie Sanders is "dangerous." Blankfein told CNBC that Sanders is too set in his ways, adding, "It's a liability [in this anti-Wall Street environment] to say, 'I'm willing to compromise'… It's just incredible. It's a moment in history. Eventually people, the electorate, will notice nothing is getting done."

At no time did Blankfein, who personally supported Hillary Clinton against Barack Obama in 2008, find fault with Clinton; his alarm is solely focused on the senator from Vermont. He contrasted Sanders with more flexible candidates who are willing to work with Wall Street when he emphasized that a candidate must be "willing to compromise."

The Sanders campaign - supported by public records - charges that Wall Street donations make up a considerable portion of the Clinton war chest. She is supported by at least one huge Wall Street PAC, and, of course, has made millions of dollars in speaking fees from Wall Street financial firms.  

2016.25.2 bf berkowitz(Photo: Brian via Flickr)BILL BERKOWITZ FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

It takes less than a minute to sign up to keep Truthout and BuzzFlash strong by making a monthly donation, in any amount you choose. Help sustain grassroots, groundbreaking journalism!

Not everyone would elevate it to a matter for serious concern, but St. Louis Archbishop Robert Carlson’s latest broadside takes the cake, and maybe even the cookies. According to numerous reports, including a dailykos.com piece by Jen Hayden, in late-February Carlson issued a letter to area “Priests, Scout Leaders and Faithful of the Archdiocese,” warning them against falling prey to … wait for it … the Girl Scouts USA, and the parent organization of GSUSA, the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS).

Archbishop Carlson’s letter is loaded with accusations against the Girl Scouts, many of them repeats from previous conservative-initiated anti-Girl Scout campaigns, many of which go back more than a decade. The letter strings together a church enemies list that includes Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan (nice to see her name resurfacing), Amnesty International, Oxfam and others.

LORRAINE CHOW OF ECOWATCH ON BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

aaaErin(Photo: Eva Rinaldi)Erin Brockovich is speaking out on Oklahoma’s alarming earthquake activity and she’s not afraid to tie the state’s seismicity to a certain industry.

In an interview with Oklahoma’s News9, the prominent environmental activist and consumer advocate explained she’s aware that the injection of mass quantities of fracking wastewater in disposal wells is triggering the tremors, as geologists have confirmed.

But Brockovich added, “It’s fracking, let’s just be honest.”

Oklahoma experiences more earthquakes than anywhere in the world. Before 2009, Oklahoma had two earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or greater each year, but now there are two a day. A 5.1 magnitude earthquake that shook northwest Oklahoma two weeks ago was the third-strongest ever recorded in the state, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said. And, within the past 24 hours, seven earthquakes rattled the city of Edmond in central Oklahoma.

Brockovich told News9 that many citizens have been concerned about structural damage to their homes and have called on her to help protect their health, property and legal rights.

“These people you know, they have rights and their homes are being damaged and structural damage and its cause by a man-made condition,” Brockovich said.

MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaatrumpbackLooming over the United States is the possibility that the nation may elect its first Snake-Oil-Salesman-in-Chief. (Photo: Tony Webster)

By giving a monthly donation of even a small amount, you can make a big difference to the future of Truthout and BuzzFlash. Sign up just once and read on, knowing that you've pledged your ongoing support!

A few years back, taking advantage of his brand identity and the emergence of for-profit educational corporations, the current leading GOP presidential candidate established Trump University.  Donald Trump announced the "academic" venture, which offered no degrees or transferable credits, with his usual bombastic flourish at a news conference in 2005.

However, the unaccredited "university" became increasingly tainted by charges of fraud, profiteering, and courses that were allegedly often just high-pitch sales session for other Trump University and Trump organization products. The attorney general of New York, Eric Schneiderman - who called Trump University a scam - filed a lawsuit against Trump and The Trump Organization in 2013, according to an article last year in The Washington Post:

Schneiderman filed a $40 million civil lawsuit against Trump and the institution, accusing both of charging more than 5,000 people big money to supposedly learn Trump’s successful real estate techniques but failing to deliver. The suit says Trump U — often using high-pressure sales tactics and telling students that the next, more expensive seminar would reveal important secrets — earned about $40 million from students and seeks to the money recovered.

Last year [2014], a judge found Trump personally liable for the university’s violation of New York education laws, and this past April, and a Manhattan Supreme Court judge ruled in April that the case would have to resolved at a trial.

Meanwhile, a class-action suit was filed in California by a former Trump University student named Art Cohen who said he spent more than $36,000 on courses that failed to deliver the top-notch education the university had promised. A judge in that case ordered both sides to complete “fact discovery” by Aug. 10, according to a Courthouse News story.

JIM HIGHTOWER ON BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

aaaMitchMc(Photo: Gage Skidmore)Antonin Scalia is gone. The nastiest and noisiest of right-wingers on the Supreme Court is dead.

But he can't be any more brain dead than Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader of the U.S. Senate. In a blatantly partisan ploy to prevent President Obama from nominating a successor to Scalia, McConnell has cited a historical precedent dictating that presidents who are in the last year of their term do not name new justices to the high court. "Therefore," he babbled, "this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president."

What a silly old squirrel McConnell is! Article II of the U.S. Constitution plainly states that the president "shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint ... Judges of the Supreme Court." Note that the Constitution says the president "shall" do this — as a duty to the nation. Nothing in the founding document suggests that this power and duty is voided in an election year. In fact, 13 Supreme Court nominations have been made in presidential election years, and the Senate took action on 11 of them. McConnell's assertion is bogus (and silly), for history and the Constitution clearly back Obama.

By giving a monthly donation of even a small amount, you can make a big difference to the future of Truthout and BuzzFlash. Sign up just once and read on, knowing that you've pledged your ongoing support!

Ironically, one who would have nailed McConnell for such a slapstick political perversion of plain constitutional language is Scalia himself. He practiced what he called "originalism" in his official judgments, insisting that the Constitution must be interpreted only by the words in it and only by the original meaning those words had for the founders when they wrote them into the document.

MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaatrumppunchIn openly espousing thuggish violence, Trump is unleashing a firestorm. (Photo: DonkeyHotey)

By giving a monthly donation of even a small amount, you can make a big difference to the future of Truthout and BuzzFlash. Sign up just once and read on, knowing that you've pledged your ongoing support!

Donald Trump is a demagogue who is unleashing the barely restrained violence that simmers under the "grievances" of many Americans who benefit from white supremacy. About that, there is no doubt.

Trump has frequently condoned, praised and even incited physical attacks on protesters at his rallies. The Guardian US reports on a weekend appearance in Nevada, in which Trump continued to ratchet up his incitement of mob rage. A heckler interrupted Trump, and the frontrunner for the GOP nomination responded with direct references to violence:

"You know what they used to do with guys like that when they were in a place like this? They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks," [Trump] said.

Noting the protester was smiling as he was escorted out, Trump quipped: "I’d like to punch him in the face, I tell you that." It was a remarkable comment from a presidential candidate who appears to be building a momentum that could soon be unstoppable

In a nation awash in violence - particularly gun violence - in which predominantly white males engage in mass and domestic shootings, Trump is providing an authoritative license for resentful white men to act violently. Just replace "I'd like to punch him in the face" with "her" instead of "him," or "them" instead of "him," or "shoot" instead of "punch." Given Trump's open racism toward non-whites, you could also place Blacks, Muslims, Mexicans or other groups that he has defamed in the context of this sentence. This is the fury that Trump is letting loose.

2016.23.2 bf durst(Photo: DonkeyHotey)WILL DURST FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

By giving a monthly donation of even a small amount, you can make a big difference to the future of Truthout and BuzzFlash. Sign up just once and read on, knowing that you've pledged your ongoing support!

Q. Has the issue of Justice Antonin Scalia’s replacement on the Supreme Court turned a mite political?

A. You could say that. You could also say that flight simulation wind- tunnels are tough on comb-overs.

Q. How long after the first Italian US Supreme Court Justice’s death did it take to get ugly?

A. Within a short-time of the discovery of the body, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell vowed to keep the seat vacant until after the November presidential election. Probably took longer for a family of five to order dessert at Applebee’s.

2016.23.2 BF Chow(Photo: DonkeyHotey)LORRAINE CHOW OF ECOWATCH FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

Article reprinted with permission from EcoWatch

It takes less than a minute to sign up to keep Truthout and BuzzFlash strong by making a monthly donation, in any amount you choose. Help sustain grassroots, groundbreaking journalism!

Looks like the extremely wealthy and politically influential Koch Brothers are waging a multimillion dollar war against the burgeoning electric vehicle(EV) market, notably frustrating none other than EV titan Elon Musk.

In an effort to strike back at record-breaking EV sales, the fossil fuel industry is allegedly funding a new organization that will spend $10 million a year to push petroleum-based transportation fuels and attack government subsidies on EVs, refining industry sources told the Huffington Post.

According to HuffPo, a Koch Industries board member and a veteran Washington energy lobbyist will be involved in the purported EV-squashing initiative.

Monday, 22 February 2016 11:46

Bundy Boys Bagged By Federal Grand Jury

BILL BERKOWITZ FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT

aaaCliven(Photo: Gage Skidmore)It took nearly two years, but Nevada’s Cliven Bundy and four others “were indicted by [a] federal grand jury … on 16 felony charges related to the armed assault against federal law enforcement officers that occurred in the Bunkerville, Nev. area on April 12, 2014,” according to a Press Release issued by the Department of Justice Attorney’s Office, District of Nevada.

Back in 2014, Bundy and his family rallied hundreds of armed like-minded folks to his side in a face off against government agents causing the out strategized and out-smarted U.S. Bureau of Land Management to back down and withdraw. “The BLM's mistakes are now playing into the government's theory in the extortion and assault case against Bundy and his sons, Ammon and Ryan, according to Kathleen Bliss, a former longtime federal prosecutor,” the Las Vegas Review-Journal recently reported.

"Prosecutors are using this to show the conspiracy," said Bliss, who prosecuted organized crime and domestic terrorism cases. "This wasn't just a group that kind of showed up and got together. They definitely had a system in place, and they were organized to meet a certain goal."

As I wrote in late-April 2014, “While many following his story wondered what this government-disdaining Nevada-based rancher -- who has been illegally grazing his cattle on federal land and who marshaled armed militia forces to engage in a standoff with federal agents -- was all about, America's right wing, especially the crew at Fox News, and conservative radio talk show hosts, were quick to brand Bundy a courageous leader of a New Sagebrush Rebellion.”

Bundy’s instant hero status quickly faded when the New Sagebrush Rebellion hero started spouting such racist views about African Americans that even his most confident conservative media admirers forsook him.

Page 12 of 1412