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Is a federal agency encouraging discrimination against employees who support gay rights?

The Trump administration is never idle when it comes to attacking civil rights—from the smallest regulation to the most pivotal court case. A new directive from the Department of Labor proves it.  xNEW: We have learned of a new Department of Labor directi
Daily Kos

Is a federal agency encouraging discrimination against employees who support gay rights?

The Trump administration is never idle when it comes to attacking civil rights—from the smallest regulation to the most pivotal court case. A new directive from the Department of Labor proves it.  xNEW: We have learned of a new Department of Labor directive, encouraging federal contractors to discriminate against their LGBTQ employees. More, and our statement, in the thread below— National Center for Transgender Equality (@TransEquality) August 13, 2018 The directive is a dinner bell of sorts: Come one, come all, religious organizations—no matter your views or how often you’ve been termed a “hate group.” They cannot «condition the availability of [opportunities] upon a recipient's willingness to surrender his [or her] religiously impelled status.» That, friends, is language from Trinity Lutheran, the Supreme Court case that found Missouri cannot disqualify religious institutions from grant programs based on the fact of their religiosity. This administration is intent on twisting that decision: It wants to clothe the right to discriminate in the protections afforded religious status, or religiosity. Essentially, they claim that being excluded for holding an anti-LGBTQ stance, and being excluded for being a religious institution, are the same. This toxic directive makes clear that the Department of Labor’s not going to be acting on any discrimination issues, save those they characterize as based on the complainant’s religion. I chose “characterize” carefully. Why? Because the scariest part of the document is, to me, this little bullet:  They «cannot act in a manner that passes judgment upon or presupposes the illegitimacy of religious beliefs and practices» and must «proceed in a manner neutral toward and tolerant of ... religious beliefs.»

Roger Stone promises to always support Trump ... and has a great example of his support

Michael Flynn flipped. George Papadopoulos flipped. Rick Gates flipped. Michael Cohen is dying to flip. Please. So far the personal loyalty that Trump demands of anyone and everyone seems to be about as solid as ice cream on a warm day. But there is one excep
Daily Kos

Roger Stone promises to always support Trump ... and has a great example of his support

Michael Flynn flipped. George Papadopoulos flipped. Rick Gates flipped. Michael Cohen is dying to flip. Please. So far the personal loyalty that Trump demands of anyone and everyone seems to be about as solid as ice cream on a warm day. But there is one exception—dirty tricksters. The original Nixon-era tricksters, Paul Manafort and Roger Stone, have yet to step from the loyalty boat. And while it’s easy to read Trump’s entire morning opus of prosecute-my-enemies, end-this-investigation tweets as an ode to Manafort keeping his trap shut, Stone claims to need no such encouragement. Speaking to CNN Outfront, Stone stated that he never, never ever, would turn against Trump. Stone: There is no circumstance in which I intend to be pressured in order to testify against the president. First of all, I have nothing that I could say about him that would be negative. Secondarily, I'm just not going to do that. Considering that Stone tops every Man Most Likely list where the remainder of that title includes the words “be convicted of conspiracy with the Russian government of interfere in a United States election,” this is surely intended to define one end of a mutual aid and appreciation society. As in I’ll praise your giant hands, you use those stubby little digits to sign my pardon. Unlike Manafort, the charges against Stone, for now, all look to be things that neatly fit within the confines of what Trump is empowered to forgive.  But … Trump might want to consider that Stone’s idea of “support” is a bit flexible. As Talking Points Memo reported, special counsel Robert Mueller seems interested in a series of messages that Stone sent to radio host Randy Credico. Stone claims that Credico was his intermediary in talking with Wikileaks boss, Julian Assange, but not all of their contact was “business.” There were friendly exchanges. Such as ... Stone:  Prepare to die cock sucker. That message may not sound like support. But that’s exactly what Stone insists it was. Because, right before he sent that message, he learned that Credico had been diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer.

Tuesday primary preview: Minnesota Democrats fight through a three-way primary for governor

We have another big primary night Tuesday, as voters go to the polls in Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, and Wisconsin. We also have runoffs in South Dakota in races where no one took at least 35 percent of the vote in the June primary. The first polls clos
Daily Kos

Tuesday primary preview: Minnesota Democrats fight through a three-way primary for governor

We have another big primary night Tuesday, as voters go to the polls in Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, and Wisconsin. We also have runoffs in South Dakota in races where no one took at least 35 percent of the vote in the June primary. The first polls close at 7 PM ET in Vermont, with Connecticut closing at 8 ET. Minnesota and Wisconsin close an hour later at 9 PM ET. The portion of South Dakota in the Central time zone closes at 9 PM ET as well, with the remainder of the state closing at 10 ET. Our guide to the key races to watch Tuesday is below. We also invite you to join us at Daily Kos Elections that night for our liveblog starting at 8 PM ET of all of the races on the docket. You can follow our coverage on Twitter as well. ● MN-Gov (D & R): Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton is retiring after two terms, and both parties will fight hard to win this contest in the fall. The Democratic primary is a three-way race between Attorney General Lori Swanson, Rep. Tim Walz, and state Rep. Erin Murphy. Swanson only entered the race in early June, but she brought plenty of name recognition with her. However, her campaign has faced some tough stories in the two months since. News broke in July that Rep. Rick Nolan, who is Swanson's running mate, had hired a former employee for his 2016 re-election campaign even though the aide had previously left Nolan's legislative staff after multiple women accused him of sexual harassment. In the final week of the contest, former staffers at the attorney general’s office charged that Swanson had pressured government employees into doing political work for her. Two polls taken in July, before the Nolan story broke, showed Swanson leading the primary, but we have no new data since then. Walz, who represents a competitive congressional seat in the southern part of the state, looked like the frontrunner throughout most of the race, and he and his allies have outspent the rest of the field. However, Murphy, who has been trying to run to the left of the pack, has Dayton's support as well as the official endorsement of the state Democratic Party. On the GOP side, former Gov. Tim Pawlenty is seeking to regain his old seat eight years after leaving office and embarking on an unsuccessful presidential bid. He faces Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, who lost the 2014 general election to Dayton 50-44. Pawlenty has considerably more money and name recognition, and the few polls we've seen have shown him far ahead. Johnson, however, has the state GOP’s backing, and he's tried to position himself to Pawlenty's right. The former governor went up with a negative TV ad last month, so he's at least taking Johnson seriously as a threat.

Lawyers, guns, and money: Maria Butina prosecution team adds a new member

How do you handle a spy like Maria? With someone who has broad experience in dealing with the complex laws involving arms deals … and some not-so-coincidental experience dealing with alt-right nationalists. Including members of the Trump team. As the Dep
Daily Kos

Lawyers, guns, and money: Maria Butina prosecution team adds a new member

How do you handle a spy like Maria? With someone who has broad experience in dealing with the complex laws involving arms deals … and some not-so-coincidental experience dealing with alt-right nationalists. Including members of the Trump team. As the Department of Justice ramps up to prosecute alleged Russian spy Maria Butina, the Department of Justice is bringing in someone with a very special set of skills, and as The Trace reports those skills involve an attorney with “expertise in weapons export and sanctions laws.” Will Mackie is an assistant US attorney out of the Eastern District of Tennessee with a speciality in national security law and experience in looking at illegal arms dealing. The set of cases he’s handled, including a pair that happened right there in Tennessee, have earned Mackie praise and give him a unique background for making the case against Butina. In 2008, Mackie was one of a pair of assistant attorneys who prosecuted a University of Tennessee professor who was accused of sending US military research to China and Iran. Mackie won a conviction on charges of “conspiracy, wire fraud, and 15 counts of exporting ‘defense articles and services.’” In 2014, Mackie was recognized for his work in the successful prosecution of a militia leader who led armed followers in attempting to “arrest” political officials and take over a court house as part of the fringe “sovereign citizens” movement that’s woven into the nationalist right. However, the militia leader got word that law enforcement was waiting for him, and backed away from his plans before he could be arrested. Mackie then ”creatively employed an obscure, seldom-used criminal statute” to charge the leader with “transporting a firearm in interstate commerce with the intent to commit a civil disorder.” Mackie and another assistant US attorney landed a conviction. And in 2016, Mackie was part of the team who prosecuted an Arizona arms dealer who set up a $534 million deal to “ship military weapons from Eastern Europe to rebel fighters in Libya’s civil war” in a scheme that involved multiple groups of terrorists and foreign arms manufacturers. It also involved an attorney who was a “foreign policy adviser in the Trump campaign” as well as a writer for “The Blaze.” One who accused Barack Obama of shipping guns to terrorists in coordination with Qatar. So … Mackie knows arms dealers, right-wing loonies, and right-wing loony arms dealers who are part of the Trump campaign. In each of those previous cases, Mackie was successful. And now he’s part of the team prosecuting Maria Butina. 

It should be no surprise that the Trump regime has zero interest in fighting voter suppression

The U.S. has a long history of suppressing the votes of people of color. In the Deep South until the 1960s, Jim Crow laws were designed to keep all but a handful of African Americans from voting. West of the Mississippi, even after all American Indians got t
Daily Kos

It should be no surprise that the Trump regime has zero interest in fighting voter suppression

The U.S. has a long history of suppressing the votes of people of color. In the Deep South until the 1960s, Jim Crow laws were designed to keep all but a handful of African Americans from voting. West of the Mississippi, even after all American Indians got the legal right to vote in 1924, state authorities kept them from doing so—or tried to—in several states. Voter suppression these days is a bit more subtle than it was in the past, but as we have seen in the past few years, it’s still widely practiced. And since the U.S. Supreme Court in 2013 gutted one of the key sections of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, that practice has been made easier. The promoters of this suppression won’t publicly say they seek to reduce the number of people of color who vote, but a few of them have slipped up and admitted that their intent is to get Republicans elected. All it takes for a win in some instances is shaving a percentage point or two off the election results by inserting hoops for voters to overcome: cutting back on the number of polling places and the hours they are open, reducing the days of early voting, purging voter rolls to restrict the number of eligible voters. Under the Obama administration, the Department of Justice went after a number of particularly bad voter suppression laws in Texas, North Carolina, Virginia, and Ohio, rejecting them outright or at least arguing against them in courts. But as Michael Wines wrote Sunday in The New York Times, the Trump regime has little interest in fighting voter suppression. And when the DOJ does get involved in a such a case now, it’s to join the side of the suppressors: During the Obama administration, the Justice Department would often go to court to stop states from taking steps like those. But 18 months into President Trump’s term, there are signs of change: The department has launched no new efforts to roll back state restrictions on the ability to vote, and instead often sides with them. Under Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the department has filed legal briefs in support of states that are resisting court orders to rein in voter ID requirements, stop aggressive purges of voter rolls and redraw political boundaries that have unfairly diluted minority voting power — all practices that were opposed under President Obama’s attorneys general. The top priorities of every president, congressperson, legislator, governor, attorney general, secretary of state, and city councilmember should include encouraging all eligible citizens to vote, making it easy and straightforward for them to do so, and opposing laws that impose obstacles that keep people from voting via intimidation, unfair placement of polling stations, reduced hours, overly rigid identification laws, and other restrictive legislation or rules. Opposition to such legislation ought to include aggressive action by our alleged public servants at the DOJ. Turning a blind eye to these bad laws, as the Trump regime is doing, and, worse, engaging the tax-paid machinery of the federal government in favor of this suppression, are betrayals of the most fundamental right of a democracy. 

Economics

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All-in-One printers prone to hacking, researchers warn

Researchers from a Nasdaq-listed Israeli security company have warned of vulnerabilities likely to be exploited by hackers on all-in-one printers with fax functionality.
Markets

All-in-One printers prone to hacking, researchers warn

Researchers from a Nasdaq-listed Israeli security company have warned of vulnerabilities likely to be exploited by hackers on all-in-one printers with fax functionality.

Bitcoin, Ethereum tumble as crypto bear market lingers

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bitcoin dropped to an eight-week low on Tuesday, while Ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency in terms of market value, sank to a more than one-year trough as they continued their bearish trend, undermined by a strong U.S. dollar an
Markets

Bitcoin, Ethereum tumble as crypto bear market lingers

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bitcoin dropped to an eight-week low on Tuesday, while Ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency in terms of market value, sank to a more than one-year trough as they continued their bearish trend, undermined by a strong U.S. dollar and global tensions related to Turkey.

Science

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Chemicals found in vegetables prevent colon cancer in mice

Chemicals produced by vegetables such as kale, cabbage and broccoli could help to maintain a healthy gut and prevent colon cancer, a new study shows.
Latest Science News -- ScienceDaily

Chemicals found in vegetables prevent colon cancer in mice

Chemicals produced by vegetables such as kale, cabbage and broccoli could help to maintain a healthy gut and prevent colon cancer, a new study shows.

Revcontent is trying to get rid of misinformation with help from the Poynter Institute

CEO John Lemp recently said that thanks to a new policy, publishers in Revcontent‘s content recommendation network “won’t ever make a cent” on false and misleading stories — at least, not from the network. To achieve this, the compa
TechCrunch

Revcontent is trying to get rid of misinformation with help from the Poynter Institute

CEO John Lemp recently said that thanks to a new policy, publishers in Revcontent‘s content recommendation network “won’t ever make a cent” on false and misleading stories — at least, not from the network. To achieve this, the company is relying on fact-checking provided by the Poynter Institute’s International Fact Checking Network. If any two independent […]

Finding the Goldilocks zone for applied AI

To find the right opportunity around which to build an AI business, startups must apply the “Goldilocks” principle to find the sweet spot that is “just right.”
TechCrunch

Finding the Goldilocks zone for applied AI

To find the right opportunity around which to build an AI business, startups must apply the “Goldilocks” principle to find the sweet spot that is “just right.”

This robot maintains tender, unnerving eye contact

Humans already find it unnerving enough when extremely alien-looking robots are kicked and interfered with, so one can only imagine how much worse it will be when they make unbroken eye contact and mirror your expressions while you heap abuse on them. This i
TechCrunch

This robot maintains tender, unnerving eye contact

Humans already find it unnerving enough when extremely alien-looking robots are kicked and interfered with, so one can only imagine how much worse it will be when they make unbroken eye contact and mirror your expressions while you heap abuse on them. This is the future we have selected.

Revcontent is trying to get rid of misinformation with help from Poynter Institute

CEO John Lemp recently said that thanks to a new policy, publishers in Revcontent‘s content recommendation network “won’t ever make a cent” on false and misleading stories — at least, not from the network. To achieve this, the compa
TechCrunch

Revcontent is trying to get rid of misinformation with help from Poynter Institute

CEO John Lemp recently said that thanks to a new policy, publishers in Revcontent‘s content recommendation network “won’t ever make a cent” on false and misleading stories — at least, not from the network. To achieve this, the company is relying on fact-checking provided by the Poynter Institute’s International Fact Checking Network. If any two independent […]

Culture

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Baby elephant joins herd at San Diego Zoo Safari Park

SAN DIEGO (AP) - The newest elephant at San Diego Zoo Safari Park has joined the rest of the herd. Video posted by the zoo on Monday shows Umzula-zuli taking its first tentative steps in the elephant enclosure - under the watchful eye of its mother, Ndula. Z
www.washingtontimes.com stories: Travel

Baby elephant joins herd at San Diego Zoo Safari Park

SAN DIEGO (AP) - The newest elephant at San Diego Zoo Safari Park has joined the rest of the herd. Video posted by the zoo on Monday shows Umzula-zuli taking its first tentative steps in the elephant enclosure - under the watchful eye of its mother, Ndula. Zookeeper Mindy ...

5 Reasons to Stick With Overwatch

Overwatch has been going strong for just over three years now and fans cannot get enough! Right now the games developer Blizzard is preparing for the millions of players who are ready to […] The post 5 Reasons to Stick With Overwatch appeared first on G
Geek.com

5 Reasons to Stick With Overwatch

Overwatch has been going strong for just over three years now and fans cannot get enough! Right now the games developer Blizzard is preparing for the millions of players who are ready to […] The post 5 Reasons to Stick With Overwatch appeared first on Geek.com.

Geek Deals: Avengers Infinity War Releases Today, New Nintendo Labo with Switch Bundle

Ready to watch Infinity War all over again? Right now, you can get the UHD Blu-ray, the Blu-ray, and a digital copy at Walmart for just 25 bucks! Our sister site TechBargains also […] The post Geek Deals: Avengers Infinity War Releases Today, New Ninten
Geek.com

Geek Deals: Avengers Infinity War Releases Today, New Nintendo Labo with Switch Bundle

Ready to watch Infinity War all over again? Right now, you can get the UHD Blu-ray, the Blu-ray, and a digital copy at Walmart for just 25 bucks! Our sister site TechBargains also […] The post Geek Deals: Avengers Infinity War Releases Today, New Nintendo Labo with Switch Bundle appeared first on Geek.com.

GEEK PICK: Anki Cozmo Robot

A few weeks ago we got to check out Vector, an upcoming product from Anki that wants to get you used to having cute yet clever robots casually roaming around your home. And […] The post GEEK PICK: Anki Cozmo Robot appeared first on Geek.com.
Geek.com

GEEK PICK: Anki Cozmo Robot

A few weeks ago we got to check out Vector, an upcoming product from Anki that wants to get you used to having cute yet clever robots casually roaming around your home. And […] The post GEEK PICK: Anki Cozmo Robot appeared first on Geek.com.

Where in the World is Mortal Kombat 11?

When you spend years and years paying attention to the video game industry, you like to think you can make educated predictions. For example, we were excited, but not totally shocked, to see […] The post Where in the World is Mortal Kombat 11? appeared
Geek.com

Where in the World is Mortal Kombat 11?

When you spend years and years paying attention to the video game industry, you like to think you can make educated predictions. For example, we were excited, but not totally shocked, to see […] The post Where in the World is Mortal Kombat 11? appeared first on Geek.com.

A Friendly Octopus Found Within Ancient River Pebble Mosaics in Greece

Pebble mosaics dating from the 4th century BC have been unearthed in Arta, Greece. During excavations at the Small Theatre of Ancient Amvrakia, the floor of a 12-foot wide bathhouse was revealed. Achaeologists discovered carefully laid mosaics of swans, octo
Colossal

A Friendly Octopus Found Within Ancient River Pebble Mosaics in Greece

Pebble mosaics dating from the 4th century BC have been unearthed in Arta, Greece. During excavations at the Small Theatre of Ancient Amvrakia, the floor of a 12-foot wide bathhouse was revealed. Achaeologists discovered carefully laid mosaics of swans, octopuses, and winged cherubic figures  surrounded by a spiral border. Each design was formed using smooth river pebbles in white, off-white, and dark tones, with amber and red pebbles acting as accents. The dig was conducted by the Ephorate of Antiquities, in the town of Arta, which has been occupied on and off since ancient times. More

Sport

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BK Racing bid could put GMS on Cup fast track

Beam wasn’t having legal troubles – his presence in court was part of the group’s efforts to purchase BK Racing, the bankrupt Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team that’s been put up for sale. “The more and more I get into it, it’s pretty complica
Motorsport.com - All - Stories

BK Racing bid could put GMS on Cup fast track

Beam wasn’t having legal troubles – his presence in court was part of the group’s efforts to purchase BK Racing, the bankrupt Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team that’s been put up for sale. “The more and more I get into it, it’s pretty complicated to be honest with you,” Beam said of the process. “It seems like it is a good way to make attorneys money.” Beam previously ... ... Keep reading

FIFA defends bans for 'false' info, tarnishing reputations

FIFA justified an overhaul of its ethics code by asserting that people who «tarnish the reputations of others» must be banned from soccer
FOX Sports Digital

FIFA defends bans for 'false' info, tarnishing reputations

FIFA justified an overhaul of its ethics code by asserting that people who «tarnish the reputations of others» must be banned from soccer

Ben Zobrist was ejected for making electronic umpire crack

Ben Zobrist was ejected from Tuesday’s loss to the Milwaukee Brewers after cracking a line about wanting electronic umpires.Zobrist struck out looking in the sixth inning against Jhoulys Chacin on a 3-2 breaking ball outside. MLB.com showed that the pitch w
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Ben Zobrist was ejected for making electronic umpire crack

Ben Zobrist was ejected from Tuesday’s loss to the Milwaukee Brewers after cracking a line about wanting electronic umpires.Zobrist struck out looking in the sixth inning against Jhoulys Chacin on a 3-2 breaking ball outside. MLB.com showed that the pitch was just off the zone. Zobrist protested the call to umpire Phil Cuzzi, while Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon came out to back him. Maddon was tossed, and then Zobrist was ejected too for saying that is why players want electronic umpires. After the game, Zobrist explained his frustration to reporters.“I felt like I knew the zone right there, and I felt like the at-bat was taken away from me,” he said.Zobrist is right. It stinks to have an at-bat taken away like that. At the same time, as long as the human element exists, players like Zobrist should know they are better off swinging at a pitch like that than leaving it in the umpire’s hands. And that’s the problem they’re fighting. We certainly know another Cubs player who would support the change to robot u

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