CJE Sunday News Briefs
WS – Constitution? No Johnny, go back to sleep, just a dream. Don’t mention it to mom. She’s been acting weird lately.
WASHINGTON, Dec. 9 (UPI) — The U.S. Supreme Court is considering whether a coalition of civil rights advocates and lawyers can challenge a law that allows spying on citizens in the United States without a warrant in the name of counter-terrorism — but unless Congress steps on the gas the law will expire on New Year’s Eve, leaving the high court case hanging in midair.
The justices heard argument Oct. 29 on whether the coalition has “standing” to challenge the latest version of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. To challenge a government practice or law as unconstitutional, a plaintiff needs “standing.” One acquires standing — the right to sue — by showing injury.
The Bush administration and the Obama Justice Department have argued individuals and organizations must be able to show they were monitored by the surveillance program to have standing and challenge it in court.
But the program’s target list is secret. The U.S. government won’t tell potential targets whether they have been monitored. Therefore, the government contends, no one has standing. More…
SOUTH AFRICAN ICON NELSON MANDELA HOSPITALIZED
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South Africa’s former President Nelson Mandela was admitted to a military hospital Saturday for medical tests, though the nation’s president told the public there was “no cause for alarm” over the 94-year-old icon’s health.
The statement issued by President Jacob Zuma’s spokesman said that Mandela was doing well and was receiving medical care “which is consistent for his age.” The statement offered no other details.
Mandela, who spent 27 years in prison for fighting racist white rule, became South Africa’s first black president in 1994 and served one five-year term. He later retired from public life to live in his village of Qunu, and last made a public appearance when his country hosted the 2010 World Cup soccer tournament. More…
Today is “National Pastry Day” Stick your face in dough and make gorilla cookies!
Egypt president scraps decree that sparked protests
WS – CIA regrouping. Stay Tuned.
(Reuters) – Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi has cancelled a decree that gave him sweeping powers and sparked violent unrest but did not delay this month’s referendum on a new constitution that was a major demand of his opponents.
Islamist supporters of Mursi have insisted the referendum should go ahead on time on December 15, saying it is needed to complete a democratic transition still incomplete after autocrat Hosni Mubarak’s overthrow 22 months ago.
Ahmed Said, a leading member of the main opposition National Salvation Front said the decision to press ahead with the referendum was “shocking” and would deepen a political crisis. More…
PM Dmitry Medvedev: Russia has top secret files on aliens
WS – He won’t release them until Margaret Thatcher dies.
Russian PM Dimitry Medvedev, may have set conspiracy theorists in a rut of excitement two weeks to the Mayan Apocalypse when he said in a footage recorded after a TV interview that Russian presidents get to see secret files about aliens living among us.
According to The Telegraph, as he was finishing an interview with a Ren TV journalist, the former Russian president, presumed to have been unaware that the microphone was still turned on, said every new Russian president is given two folders of information about extraterrestrials who are permanently resident on earth. According to The Telegraph, he was responding to a question whether Russian presidents receive secret files on aliens. He said:
“Along with the briefcase with nuclear codes, the president of the country is given a special ‘top secret’ folder. This folder in its entirety contains information about aliens who visited our planet. Along with this, you are given a report of the absolutely secret special service that exercises control over aliens on the territory of our country…” More…
WS – What’s the big deal? The whole election was for them!
WASHINGTON, Dec. 8 (UPI) — Organizers of U.S. President Barack Obama’s second inauguration say they are accepting unlimited corporate donations.
Although corporations are allowed to donate to Obama’s inauguration, lobbyists and political action committees are banned from giving to the event, The Hill reported Saturday.
“Here is this guy that came to Washington, and said, ‘I’m going to come and change the way Washington works. I’m going to bring a new, basically, working class to Washington,’” the GOP fundraiser said. “But now that I’m re-elected and I have nothing to worry about in the future, besides possibly my library, that quote-unquote moral compass doesn’t exist.” More…
DAD”S GONE WILD:
WS- You mite want to look into recent insurance policies on this one. Pistols don’t just go off. You have to have the safety off and pull the trigger. Dead kids tell no tales.
MERCER, Pa., Dec. 8 (UPI) — A Pennsylvania man apparently accidentally shot his 7-year-old son to death outside a gun store Saturday, state police said.
State police Joseph V. Loughrey, 44, of Sharpsville, was putting a handgun in a truck outside Trig’s Reloading Den in East Lackawannock Township in Mercer County just before 11 a.m. when the 9mm Taurus pistol fired, striking his son Craig in the chest. The boy died at the scene, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported. More…
Pa. father runs over son, 3
INDIANA, Pa., Dec. 8 (UPI) — A Pennsylvania man accidentally backed over his 3-year-old son with his pickup truck Saturday, killing the boy, authorities said.
The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported Charleson Littleben, age unavailable, of Indiana, Pa., was moving the truck about 2:35 p.m.in the family’s driveway when Rylee Littleben ran behind the truck and was hit by a rear tire. More…
Mich. right-to-work-for-shit-and-be-exploited -by -corporations law demonstrations coming at ya!
LANSING, Mich., Dec. 8 (UPI) — About 7,000 people are expected to gather in Lansing, Mich., Tuesday for rallies both in favor of and against a proposed state right-to-work law.
Unions spent Friday organizing civil disobedience training and staffing phone banks for their anti-right-to-work law protests, which the Detroit Free Press reported could be the largest at the Capitol in decades.
“On a scale of one to 10, this is an 11,” said former U.S. Rep. Mark Schauer, now a business development representative with the Michigan Laborers-Employers Cooperation and Education Trust. “This is a direct affront to organized labor and its members. It’s a game-changer.” More…
Is happiness good for you?
The imperative to be happy has become so integrated into our daily lives that we hardly even notice it.
Few aspirations are seen as more worthwhile and self-evidently desirable than the pursuit of happiness. These days, no one is against it. All of us can become happy, whether poor or rich, Christian or Muslim, conservative or libertarian.
It is no wonder then that Freud – the father of psychoanalysis – is often regarded with suspicion. Categorically, he claimed that man is not designed for happiness. If happiness would fully come out and realise itself, he claimed, we would not be prepared for it. We simply wouldn’t know what to do with it. Admittedly, this sounds rather disconcerting. Yet, there’s a profound and important point here, one that is worth considering at a time when we are told, again and again, that happiness is the one true way to a meaningful life.
It is an argument worth considering because today we are not just allowed to be happy; we ought to be so. The imperative to be happy has become so integrated into our daily lives that we hardly even notice it. We have become accustomed to the newsstands at the supermarket, lined with guilt-inducing lifestyle magazines mockingly staring back at us, as if whispering “I know you’re not yet happy”. And we have even begun to accept otherwise solemn politicians talking about happiness as the ultimate goal of politics (and I’m not only thinking about the British prime minister, David Cameron, who issued the country’s first happiness survey in 2011). More…
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