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Monday, Nov 24th

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The end of AIPAC?

AIPAC influenceFor decades, AIPAC has thrived on bipartisanship, exerting its influence on congressional Democrats and Republicans alike. But Israel’s government, now dominated by a coalition of right-wing parties led by Likud, has made compromise far less likely than it was a generation ago.

Prime Minister Netanyahu, the leader of Likud and an unabashed partisan of the Republican view of the world, took office at about the same time as President Obama, and the two have clashed frequently over the expansion of Israeli settlements and the contours of a potential peace agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians.

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Flushing Money Down the Tea Party Toilet

Tea Party toiletThis article is not a piece of commentary about beliefs or ideologies. Airing concerns openly can be constructive, civil debate can be productive, and incumbency shouldn’t equate to job security.

This article is about the hijacking of a movement that started in 2009 by the modern equivalent of the “Old West Snake Oil Salesman.” Slick, fast-talking, and capable of whipping a crowd into a frenzy, they travel from town to town peddling their promises of “change.’

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GOP led House intel report on Benghazi finds no secret Obama scandal

benghaziA House investigation into the Benghazi embassy attack concluded that the Obama administration was not guilty of any deliberate, negligent wrongdoing, according to Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.). Thompson told SFGate that the report, from a GOP-led panel, "confirms that no one was deliberately misled, no military assets were withheld and no stand-down order" was given to troops in the area.

The House Intelligence Committee voted last week to declassify the report, pending approval from security agencies.

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GOP Senate Candidate Caught Saying States Can Nullify Laws

GOP candidat : states can nullify“You know we have talked about this at the state legislature before, nullification. But, bottom line is, as U.S. Senator why should we be passing laws that the states are considering nullifying? Bottom line: our legislators at the federal level should not be passing those laws. We’re right…we’ve gone 200-plus years of federal legislators going against the Tenth Amendment’s states’ rights.

We are way overstepping bounds as federal legislators. So, bottom line, no we should not be passing laws as federal legislators—as senators or congressman—that the states would even consider nullifying. Bottom line.”

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Congressional staffer arrested for bringing gun to Capitol office

Ryan ShucardCapitol Police arrested the press secretary of a Republican congressman Friday when he entered a House-side office building carrying a handgun.

Ryan Shucard, the press secretary for Rep. Tom Marino, R-Pa., was found carrying a 9mm Smith & Wesson pistol and magazine when he tried to go through security at the Cannon office building at approximately 9:15 a.m., said Capitol Police spokeswoman Lt. Kimberly Schneider.

All people entering buildings on the Capitol Hill complex are required to pass through metal detectors and send bags through an x-ray belt, although members of Congress are generally allowed to pass through without a check.

TVNL Comment:  Yeah, sure....you can carry a handgun and magazine 'by mistake.'  Geez.

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White House to issue order on LGBT federal contractors

barack ObamaPresident Barack Obama will on Monday sign an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against workers on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, a senior administration official said Friday.

The action, which amends two existing executive orders, will also formally prohibit discrimination against federal workers on the basis of gender identity.

With Congress unable thus far to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act – which would apply to most employers nationwide – LGBT activists had for years been calling on the president to take action where he could, and to sign an executive order opposing discrimination at the 24,000 companies employing 28 million workers who have government contracts. But it does not have an exemption for religious employers — something that religious groups had asked the White House to include in the measure.

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Koch High: How The Koch Brothers Are Buying Their Way Into The Minds Of Public School Students

Charles KochIn the spring of 2012, Spenser Johnson, a junior at Highland Park High School in Topeka, Kansas, was unpacking his acoustic bass before orchestra practice when a sign caught his eye. "Do you want to make money?" it asked.

The poster encouraged the predominantly poor students at Highland Park to enroll in a new, yearlong course that would provide lessons in basic economic principles and practical instruction on starting a business. Students would receive generous financial incentives including startup capital and scholarships after graduation. The course would begin that fall. Johnson eagerly signed up.

In some ways, the class looked like a typical high school business course, taught in a Highland Park classroom by a Highland Park teacher. But it was actually run by Youth Entrepreneurs, a nonprofit group created and funded primarily by Charles G. Koch, the billionaire chairman of Koch Industries.

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