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Monday, March 27, 2017

[Republican Congressman Steve] King tweeted in support of the right-wing Dutch politician Geert Wilders that "Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can't rebuild our civilization with someone else's babies." ... The congressman's rhetoric can't be dismissed as the ravings of a fringe paranoiac. In the 52 years since the United States liberalized its immigration laws -- which is to say, since it eliminated the most overtly racialist elements of immigration law -- this kind of doomsaying has retained a certain underground currency. King's sentiments are not unique or novel: they're racism of a particular vintage, a throwback to the imaginary fears that have animated American politics for a century. The only difference is a context in which he feels empowered to state those ideas in public. read more


"Right-to-try" laws are intended to give the desperately ill access to medications not yet approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Thirty-three states have passed such laws, which ostensibly allow patients to take experimental medicines outside of clinical trials and without FDA oversight as long as the therapies have undergone preliminary safety testing. Many of the remaining states are considering such bills or are expected to do so. And now, for the first time, federal legislation is gaining traction. The right-to-try campaign is the ultimate in patient empowerment, according to its champion, the Goldwater Institute, a libertarian non-profit organization that wrote the model legislation that has become the foundation of most statutes. "It represents a unanimous voice from the states and the people saying that patients ought to be able to make these life-or-death decisions to save their own lives," said the institute's executive vice president, Christina Sandefur. read more


The chair of the House Intelligence Committee, under fire for excessive closeness to President Trump, visited the White House the day before lodging a bombshell allegation.

As House Intelligence Committee chairman, Representative Devin Nunes's job is to oversee American spycraft. But Nunes's own actions over the last few days suggest more the cloak-and-dagger actions of a would-be John Le Carré character than those of a sober government investigator.

Amid accusations from Democrats on the panel that Nunes is acting as a surrogate for the Trump administration, CNN revealed Monday that Nunes was seen on the White House grounds on Tuesday, the day before he announced he had new and important information about surveillance of Trump transition team figures by the intelligence community. read more


WASHINGTON - An able-bodied senior citizen who refuses to do anything but watch television receives three free government meals every day, according to reports.

The senior, who has three piping-hot meals wheeled up to him each day, reportedly has no intention of working and prefers to fill his hours watching cable news.

Even more outrageous, the recipient of the meals spends most weekends in Florida, where the flow of free government food continues without interruption.

Harland Dorrinson, the executive director of the Center for Benefit Reduction, a think tank that focuses on reducing federal benefits, called the individual's consumption of free government meals "the worst abuse of the system I've ever seen."

"I might be accused of being heartless for saying this, but this person should be thrown out on the street," he said.

read more


Sunday, March 26, 2017

For the eighth weekend in a row, Trump has visited a property that bears his name.

He has done so on 21 of the 66 days he has been in office, meaning that for the equivalent of three full weeks of his just-over-nine weeks as commander in chief, he has spent all or part of a day at a Trump property -- earning that property mentions in the media and the ability to tell potential clients that they might be able to interact with the president. And, despite his insistence on the campaign trail that he would avoid the links -- "I'm going to be working for you. I'm not going to have time to go play golf," he said in August -- he has made 13 visits to his own golf courses since becoming president, likely playing golf on at least 12 of those occasions. read more


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Experts Rip Trump Ban on Electronic Devices from 10 Middle Eastern Airports
Technologists say new order is illogical and at odds with basic computer science

www.alternet.org

Airlines have also lobbied the Trump administration to intervene on behalf of American carriers in the Persian Gulf, where they have contended for years that the investments in three rapidly expanding airlines in the area – Etihad Airways, Qatar, and Emirates – constitute unfair government subsidies with which Delta, American and United cannot compete.

All three Middle Eastern airlines are among the carriers affected by the electronics ban.

Asked if the new order was an excuse to rifle through passengers' hard drives, a DHS official said: "This has absolutely nothing to do with the data in passengers' baggage."

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