Our government may be stalking us, but at least we still have jobs. A new report from the Labor Department out Friday shows the U.S. added 175,000 jobs in May and the unemployment rate rose from 7.5 percent in April to 7.6 percent, which apparently is actually a good thing because it means people are looking for work. The report shows that job growth has remained steady over the past three months, with employers adding an average of 155,000 jobs, but still not as high as the surge -- an average of 237,000 jobs added -- that occurred between November 2012 and February 2013.
Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert looks at the National Security Agency decision to collect the telephone records of millions of Americans.
The Colbert Report host actually said, “Obama is a tyrannical despot who ignores all the rules.”
“Yes, the National Security Administration is spying on our phone calls," Colbert explained, "and unlike during the Bush administration, this time it’s the Obama administration. Yeah, this guy, he is always trying to outdo his predecessor. ‘Oh, he poured water on their face? I’m going to blow ’em up! Ha Ha Ha! Did I win?’”
Colbert said, “Folks, I’m going to be straight with you. I’m conflicted here, folks. On the one hand, this proves Obama is a tyrannical despot who ignores all the rules. On the other hand, I kind of like tyrannical despots who ignore all the rules. Shows spunk.”
Colbert then began to read –- “a cherry on top of my conflict sundae” -- some of the New York Times editorial claiming “The Obama administration has lost all credibility.”
Colbert then picked up the phone and ordered home delivery of the Times. “My wife likes the Style section. I go straight for the Obama bashing.”
“I didn’t actually make a phone call just then,” he continued. “I just assumed the NSA is listening and will pass it on.”
Hilarious, but it will be rather creepy if the New York Times shows up at his door in the morning.
On his Thursday radio show, conservative host Glenn Beck asserted that Michelle Obama's recent run in with a GetEqual activist who heckled her at a fundraising event proved that the First Lady was a "monster."
Beck said that Michelle Obama had confronted the heckler because she "snapped."
"And then they shut that person up and then she walks back, and then she goes right back into the speech," the radio host explained. "No little funny thing about, 'Hey, that was...' She just went right back into the speech!"
"This woman's a monster," Beck declared. "She is Lady MacBeth. She is a frightening woman."
"And I'll tell you something else. I really believe that she -- Valerie Jarrett and Michelle and Ms. Eric Holder, that's where the information is going. The wives are talking."
(h/t: Right Wing Watch)
You've got to love this logic from the right wingers like Malkin who supported this domestic spying program under Bush suddenly having a problem with the spying and data mining under Obama -- now it's completely different because the Kenyan usurper terrorist lover is doing it.
On this Thursday's Fox & Friends, resident flame thrower Michelle Malkin gave the right's latest sorry excuse for why this was acceptable under Bush but not Obama and that is, Obama declared the "war on terror is over"... even though that's not exactly what he said.
Apparently in Malkin's world, as long as you're willing to declare perpetual war against a tactic, spying on Americans who haven't done anything wrong is perfectly acceptable. And of course, as always, there's that other rule, which is IOKIYAR.
On the "Colbert Report" this week, Stephen Colbert addressed Monsanto's GMO wheat incident last week, which led to Japan and South Korea to suspended U.S. wheat imports, causing wheat futures to tumble.
Comparing wheat to zombies, Colbert called it “amber waves of frankengrain” and "the return of the walking bread." He even mocked Monsanto for claiming it is "mystified by the appearance of the wheat," noting that "at this point, [the wheat] can probably talk" and solve the whole mystery.
Colbert also mentioned that Monsanto could face criminal prosecution and a $1 million fine over the discovery of the wheat that hasn't yet been approved by the U.S. government, adding that it would be merely pocket change based on Monsanto’s profits.
Colbert was joined by science journalist Laurie Garrett to discuss the new strain of wheat, and what role it might play in the future of the maker of Agent Orange. She said that Monsanto has been “leaking” the fact that they may have been sabotaged, adding that "There's no reason seeds should survive in the soil for the last couple of years."
Part one of the DeSmogBlog investigation of "FrackNation" - a film made in response to "Gasland 2" - honed in on the past track records and funding streams of co-directors Phelim McAller and Ann McElhinney. We revealed that Donors Trust/Donors Capital - the "dark money ATM of the right" - partially…
By Joaquin Sapien, ProPublica
Hundreds of teen-agers are raped or sexually assaulted during their stays in the country's juvenile detention facilities, and many of them are victimized repeatedly, according to a U.S. Department of Justice survey.
The teens are most often assaulted by staff members working at the facilities, and fully 20 percent of those victimized by the men and women charged with protecting and counseling them said they had been violated on more than 10 occasions.
"Today's report illustrates the fundamental failure of many juvenile detention facilities to keep their youth safe," said Louisa Stannow, executive director of Just Detention International, a California-based health and human rights organization.
The Justice Department survey — covering both secure juvenile detention facilities and group homes, the less restrictive settings into which troubled youngsters are often ordered — involved more than 8,500 boys and girls. In all, 1,720 of those surveyed reported being sexually assaulted.
H/T Media Matters
Good morning, and TGIF! The right wing media need a science class. If only Bill Nye could educate them all one by one.
Your morning open thread begins below...
This is your Moment of Clarity #240: I could end terrorism in a matter of hours. This video will tell you how. It's quite simple - all we need is to make a few key moves.
What is happening in Turkey with the #occupygezi protests? Why should we care? We should care because, above all else, our grievances are connected through the violence brought when people stand up to say no to the initiatives of big business, planned behind closed doors and without our consent. The story that follows is a first hand account of the current struggle on the street in Turkey.
"Well, we are just filling light bulbs with paint," said my friend, a cafe owner in Cihangir, the SoHo of Istanbul. Speaking to me on the phone, she sounded as relaxed as if she was baking an apple pie. "You know," she continued, "the only way to stop a TOMA is to throw paint on its window so that the vehicle loses orientation."
My friend, who was completely uninterested in politics until six days ago, had never been in conflict with the police before. Now, like hundreds of thousands of others in Turkey, she has become a warrior with goggles around her neck, an oxygen mask on her face and an anti-acid solution bottle in her hand. As we have all learned, this the essential kit to fight the effects of tear gas. As for TOMA, that is the vehicle-mounted water cannon. To paralyze it, you either have to put a wet towel in its exhaust pipe or burn something under its engine or you and a dozen others can push it over. This kind of battle-info is circulating all over Turkey at the moment. It is like a civil war between the police and the people. Yet nobody expected this when, six days ago, a group of protesters organized a sit-in at Istanbul's Gezi Park to protect trees that were to be cut down for the government's urban redevelopment project.