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EPA Chief: CO2 Regulations Are About 'Justice' For 'Communities Of Color'

EPA Chief: CO2 Regulations Are About 'Justice' For 'Communities Of Color'

 Michael Bastasch

Gina McCarthy YouTube screenshot/U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

'Carbon pollution standards are an issue of justice'

“Carbon pollution standards are an issue of justice,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy in a teleconference call with environmental activists. “If we want to protect communities of color, we need to protect them from climate change.”

McCarthy is referring to the EPA’s proposed rule that would limit carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants. The agency says the rule will not only help fight global warming, but will also improve public health as coal-fired power plants are shuttered. McCarthy, however, put special emphasis on how the rule would reduce asthma rates, which affect African-American children.

“Asthma disproportionately affects African-American kids,” McCarthy added. “In just the first year these standards go into effect, we’ll avoid up to 100,000 asthma attacks and 2,100 heart attacks — and those numbers go up from there.”

 
American Jihadis: From Losers to Martyrs

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American Jihadis Douglas McCain and Troy Kastigar: From Losers to Martyrs

If you can’t make it anywhere, you can make it there—that, at least, seems to have been the theory of Douglas McCain and Troy Kastigar, friends who ended up with ISIS and al-Shabab.

Why be a loser when you can be a martyr?

 
NFL players, Obama agree on pot

NFL players, Obama agree on pot

By LUCY MCCALMONT

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon (12) fumbles the ball against the Redskins. | AP Photo

Three in four players in the National Football League agree with President Barack Obama’s remarks earlier this year that marijuana is less dangerous than alcohol, according to a new poll. A survey conducted by ESPN.com’s NFL Nation and reported by the network on Wednesday shows 75 percent of players agree with the president’s take on the substances.

“I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol,” Obama said in a profile published in January by The New Yorker.
 
Army Know-How Seen as Factor in ISIS Successes

Army Know-How Seen as Factor in ISIS Successes

As fighters for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria continue to seize territory, the group has quietly built an effective management structure of mostly middle-aged Iraqis, including many military officers under Saddam Hussein, overseeing departments of finance, arms, local governance, military operations and recruitment.

At the top the organization is the self-declared leader of all Muslims, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, a radical chief executive officer of sorts, who handpicked many of his deputies from among the men he met while a prisoner in American custody at the Camp Bucca detention center.

He had a preference for military men, and so his leadership team includes many officers from Saddam Hussein’s long-disbanded military.

 The pedigree of its leadership, outlined by an Iraqi expert and United States intelligence officials who have seen documents seized from ISIS by the Iraqi military, helps explain its battlefield successes: Its leaders augmented traditional military skill with terrorist techniques refined though years of fighting American troops, while also having deep local knowledge and contacts. ISIS is in effect a hybrid of terrorists and an army.

 
At College Football Games, Student Sections Likely to Have Empty Seats

[image]

At College Football Games, Student Sections Likely to Have Empty Seats

Declining attendance by students at college football games reflects soaring ticket prices, more lopsided matches and the proliferation of televised games.

Average student attendance at college football games is down 7.1% since 2009, according to an analysis by The Wall Street Journal of stadium turnstile records from about 50 public colleges with top-division football teams. The decline was 5.6% at colleges in the five richest conferences.

The decrease even at schools with entrenched football traditions and national championships stands in contrast to college football's overall popularity. Total turnout at home games of top-tier teams hit a record in 2013, while average attendance has slipped just 0.8% since 2009.

The growing number of empty seats in student sections across the U.S. is a sign of soaring ticket prices, more lopsided games and fewer matchups against longtime rivals, and the proliferation of televised games that make it easier than ever for students to keep tailgating long after kickoff.

Schools can't even rely on students who buy tickets to show up at games—or they trickle into their seats late and leave early. At the University of Kansas, which had a 3-9 record last season, 74% of student tickets went unused.

 
Why some people thrive in the face of adversity

How Resilient Are You?

By Diane Dreher, Ph.D.

Why some people thrive in the face of adversity

What makes such a difference in some people’s lives? What moves them to transcend adversity, embrace a meaningful identity, and become beacons of hope? Stronger than genetics, external conditions, socio-economic status, or education, it is a power deep within us. The Renaissance called it free will: our power to choose and thereby create our own destiny. Smith and Werner’s (1982) landmark study of at risk children in Hawaii who defied the odds called it “resilience”—the ability to thrive despite adversity. While many of their peers developed ill health, behavioral problems, and learning disabilities, the resilient children, who had at least one positive adult role model, grew up with hope and perseverance, learning to see obstacles as challenges

 
Immigration plan could shake up 2014 election

Immigration plan could shake up 2014 election

Both political parties fear President Obama’s plan to defer deporting millions of illegal immigrants could change the course of November’s midterm elections.

Both political parties are in a state of high anxiety over the possibility that President Obama will allow millions of illegal immigrants to remain in the country, fearing that White House action on the issue could change the course of November’s midterm elections.

In the past few days, Democratic candidates in nearly every closely fought Senate race have criticized the idea of aggressive action by Obama. Some strategists say privately that it would signal the president has written off the Democrats’ prospects for retaining control of the chamber, deciding to focus on securing his own legacy instead.

Senior Republicans, meanwhile, have their own worries about a “September surprise” on immigration. They know their volatile party’s tendency to erupt at such moments — launching threats of impeachment and government shutdowns — and that the GOP brand is even more tattered than the Democratic one.

A conservative uprising against the administration would pose little risk for safely entrenched Republicans in the GOP-controlled House. But any moves toward impeachment hearings or another government shutdown would raise serious risks for Republicans in key Senate races, who must appeal to independents already suspicious about the party’s ability to govern.

 
Jessica Alba's Startup Raises $70 Million as It Prepares to Go Public

Jessica Alba's Startup Raises $70 Million as It Prepares to Go Public

Jessica Alba's Startup Raises $70 Million as It Prepares to Go Public

Laura Entis

Celebrities are flooding to hop on the entrepreneurial bandwagon. From Jared Leto to Justin Bieber to Leonardo DiCaprio, it seems like every A-lister is repping a new venture.

While a celebrity co-founder/investor can bring notoriety and publicity to a new company, often the dazzle quickly fizzles away. But Jessica Alba's startup, The Honest Company, which the actress cofounded with Christopher Gavigan, Sean Kane and Brian Lee in 2012, has steadily continued to grow and raise funding long after the initial bout of celebrity-fueled hype.

Case in point: The company, which makes and sells eco-friendly nontoxic baby and family products, has raised $70 million from Wellington Management Company and all existing venture investors, a group that includes ICONIQ Capital, General Catalyst Partners, and Institutional Venture Partners. This latest financing ads to the $52 million, including a $25 million funding round in November, that The Honest Company has raised since its launch and values the company at just under $1 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.

 
Billy Crystal's Emmys tribute to Robin Williams criticised as 'racist

Billy Crystal's Emmys tribute to Robin Williams criticised as 'racist'...

Jenn Selby

  • It included a short snippet of a stand-up performance during which Williams borrows a pink scarf and puts it on his head like a Hijab

  • "I would like to welcome you to Iran… Help me!"

 
Why Hasn't Florida State Visited the White House?

Why Hasn't Florida State Visited the White House?

By Ben Cohen and Jonathan Clegg

As Season Approaches, College Football's Champion Still Hasn't Gotten to Take Its Victory Lap

It is a time-honored perk for college football's national champions to visit the White House and meet the president.

Almost eight months after winning the title, though, Florida State still hasn't met with President Barack Obama. Now, with the college-football season kicking off this week—Florida State opens against Oklahoma State in Arlington, Texas, on Saturday—the Seminoles may become the first nonrepeat champion since 1990 to not make its ceremonial trip.

"The window for a team visit has likely closed altogether," a Florida State spokesman said.

Last year was also tumultuous for Florida State. During the 2013 season, a Florida prosecutor cited insufficient evidence in deciding not to pursue criminal charges against star quarterback Jameis Winston, who had been accused of sexually assaulting another student in December 2012. His attorney has denied the allegation and said the sex was consensual. Winston said afterward: "I knew that I did nothing wrong and everything would be OK."

On April 3, the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights opened a probe to investigate whether Florida State's handling of the allegations against Winston violated Title IX, the gender-equity law that prohibits schools receiving federal funds from discriminating on the basis of sex. The government agency received a complaint from the alleged victim on March 6, according to a Department of Education letter reviewed by the Journal. Florida State is one of 76 schools being investigated amid a push from the Obama administration to stop sexual assaults on campus.

Weeks after the state's attorney's decision not to prosecute Winston, he won a cluster of the sport's most prestigious awards, including the Heisman Trophy. But he and Florida State ran into other troubles since last season.

Winston was cited in the spring and briefly suspended from the school's baseball team for walking out of a Publix supermarket without paying for about $30 worth of crab legs and crawfish. His punishment was part of an adult civil citation program for first-time offenders. He said at the time he forgot to pay for the food and later apologized for what he called a "terrible mistake."

 
Why Hillary Clinton should keep her mouth shut

hillary clinton

Why Hillary Clinton should keep her mouth shut

Megan Carpentier

Megan Carpentier

She might not be the change liberals are looking for, but her no-comment policy – on Ferguson and beyond – will keep her the frontrunner.

Hillary Clinton is not going to save you.

She’s not your mother, your best friend or your confessor; a time machine to the 90s, the solution to the nation’s increasing divisiveness, or the correct variable in a complicated equation that equals 538; a reflection of what you want to hear, or the embodiment of what you want a “leader” to believe.

What she is: a politician with two successful Senate campaigns under her belt – both in Democrat-friendly New York – and one ultimately unsuccessful presidential campaign; the former US secretary of state; an author; the former First Lady of both the United States and the state of Arkansas; a lawyer; a soon-to-be grandmother; a flawed human being; and, despite the fact that she hasn’t even said if she plans to run for office ever again, the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016

(if a vote were held today, which it won’t be).

 
Jennifer Aniston tired of being made to feel less of a woman

'It's not fair to put that kind of pressure on people!'

Jennifer Aniston opens up about being made to feel less of a woman because she has not had a baby.

While usually very secretive about her personal life, the Friends star opened up on the Today Show on Wednesday about how she is often made to feel less of a woman because of her life choices.

 

 
Homewreckers Beware: Revenge May Come in an Unexpected Way

Homewreckers Beware: Revenge May Come in an Unexpected Way

By Ruth Sarah Lee, J.D.

The story of how one wife sued another woman for having sex with her husband and breaking up her marriage. . . and won $9 million in court.

 
Scientists say we should buy things that give us 'experiences'

Scientists say we should buy things that give us 'experiences'

- and sports equipment, musical instruments and video games should be top of the list

Treating yourself to a new set of sports gear could be the key to happy shopping, researchers say

By Mark Prigg

Michigan researchers say if you want to be happier, buy things that provide you with experiences.

Darwin Guevarra, a doctoral candidate in the U-M Department of Psychology and the study's lead author, said experiential products offer more well-being than material items because they satisfy a person's autonomy (behaviors to express one's identity), competence (mastering a skill or ability) and relatedness (having a sense of belonging with others).

 
Women Need Love for Peak Sexual Satisfaction?

Women Need Love for Peak Sexual Satisfaction?

By Seth Meyers, Psy.D.

A new study suggests that women need love to have peak sexual satisfaction. But isn't this just another version of "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus?"

 
Intel believes 300 Americans fighting with Islamic State, posing threat to U.S.

A convoy of vehicles and militant fighters  move through Iraq's Anbar Province. The U.S. government is tracking and gathering intelligence on as many as 300 Americans who are fighting side-by-side with the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria and are poised to become a major threat to the homeland, according to senior U.S. officials. (Associated Press)

Intel believes 300 Americans fighting with Islamic State, posing threat to U.S.

- The Washington Times 

American militants could commit terrorist attacks with skills acquired in Iraq, Syria.

Officials say concern is widespread in Washington that radicalized foreign fighters could return to the homeland and commit terrorist attacks with skills acquired overseas, according to officials who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the information. Those concerns were heightened by the disclosure Tuesday that a California man was killed fighting alongside militants with the group, also known as ISIS.

 
She let her son play in the rain. He never came back.

Jack Donaldson, 12, left, with family. (Courtesy of Whiston-Donaldsons)

She let her son play in the rain. He never came back.

Nora Krug

After Anna Whiston-Donaldson’s son died, she wrote a memoir about his death and her slow emergence from a cloud of grief.

 
Cyrus VMAs date wanted by police

Cyrus VMAs date wanted by police

Miley Cyrus and Jesse Helt VMAs

Jesse Helt, who highlighted the plight of homeless youths at the MTV video awards, sought for Oregon probation violation

Jesse Helt, the homeless man who accompanied Miley Cyrus to Sunday's MTV Video music awards, is wanted by police in Oregon police. Officers have an outstanding arrest warrant for the 22-year-old from 2011, alleging that he had violated the terms of his probation.

In 2010, Helt was reportedly arrested for breaking and entering the apartment of a man he believed had sold him bad marijuana. Salem police charged him with criminal mischief, criminal trespass and burglary; after pleading guilty to the first two charges, Helt was assigned a 30-day jail sentence and probation.

Some time thereafter, Helt stopped reporting to his probation officer. "He doesn't make himself available to community supervision, and he takes off," the director of Polk County's community corrections department told the Oregonian newspaper. Helt moved to Los Angeles, living on the streets and occasionally receiving help from the homelessness charity My Friend's Place. That's where he met Cyrus, during the pop star's visit on 19 August.

Inspired by Marlon Brando, who used a 1973 Oscar win to make a statement against Hollywood's exploitation of Native Americans, Cyrus asked Helt to attend the VMAs as her date. When she was announced as winner of video of the year, she sent Helt to make a speech in her stead: "My name is Jesse," he said. "I am accepting this award on behalf of the 1.6 million runaways and homeless youth in the United States who are starving, lost and scared for their lives right now. I know, because I am one of those people."

 
Talking In Sync Is Good For Your Relationship

Talking In Sync Is Good For Your Relationship

By Erica B. Slotter, Ph.D.

We know that how we talk to our partners matters. Recent research has shown that greater similarity between romantic partners with regard to the structure of the language they use predict greater likelihood of being interested in a potential partner and greater stability in ongoing romantic relationships.

 
Deadly family of gut bacteria could eradicate food allergies, researchers reveal

Deadly family of gut bacteria could eradicate food allergies, researchers reveal

Young woman with hands on stomach.   ACKTJE  Image shot 2006. Exact date unknown.

The new study suggests that 'friendly' Clostridia have a unique ability to block the harmful immune response behind food allergies. Tests on 'sterile' mice sensitised to peanuts showed that introducing a Clostridia cocktail into their bacteria-free guts reversed their allergy. Re-introduction of another major group of gut bacteria, Bacteroides, did not have the same effect. Tests indicated that Clostridia caused immune cells to produce high levels of a signalling molecule known to decrease permeability of the intestinal lining. This in turn reduced the chances of allergens - molecules that trigger an allergic reaction - leaking into the bloodstream.

 
Getting Past Your Regrets

Getting Past Your Regrets

By Marty Nemko, Ph.D.

Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda.

So many people have regrets: If only I had taken (or not taken) that job. If only I invested (or didn’t invest) in that. If only I had gone (or not gone) to grad school. If only I married (or didn’t marry) that person. Yes, it’s usually good advice to stop beating yourself up and start moving forward. But what if you can’t stop yourself from wallowing in regret?

 
Obama will sign sweeping international climate change agreement

Obama will sidestep Congress by signing sweeping international climate change agreement

Obama and his negotiators plan to update a 1992 agreement in order to avoid a Congressional vote on a new treaty.

Barack Obama is pursuing a sweeping international climate change agreement that would compel the U.S. and other nations to cut emissions, all without getting the okay from Congress.

While the president may not enter into legally binding treaties without backing from two-thirds of the Senate, he and climate negotiators intend to sidestep the Constitutional rule by agreeing to what they call a 'politically binding' deal.

It's a move that has already infuriated congressional Republicans in coal and gas producing states.

 
'True Detective' Blues

'True Detective' Blues

By Skip Dine Young, Ph.D.

A list of great TV dramas of recent times (The Sopranos, Breaking Bad, Mad Men) reveal many similarities. They are all dark, grim series with anti-hero protagonists who behave badly and challenge viewer identification. True Detective has many of these qualities, yet in the end, offers a vision of what old-fashioned heroism might look like in the modern world

 
USC CB Josh Shaw Hurts Himself Saving Nephew…Or Beating Girlfriend

 Seth Richardson

at Los Angeles Coliseum on November 16, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.

Same thing, basically.

“I would do it again for whatever kid it was, it did not have to be my nephew,” Shaw told ESPN. “My ankles really hurt, but I am lucky to be surrounded by the best trainers and doctors in the world. I am taking my rehab one day at a time, and I hope to be back on the field as soon as possible.”

 
One in five middle school students have received a sext.

Sexting And The Middle School Years

By Raychelle Cassada Lohmann, M.S., L.P.C.

Are you a parent who has purchased or are you thinking about purchasing an electronic device for your teen? If so, this blog is for you.

 
After Protests, Skepticism About Change

Mementos placed on the spot where Michael Brown died. Credit Todd Heisler/The New York Times

After Protests, Skepticism About Change

By CAMPBELL ROBERTSON and JOSEPH GOLDSTEIN

Though the shooting of Michael Brown turned a few blocks of Ferguson, Mo., into disputed territory, many protesters emphasized that their grievances with police are common.

On Monday night, just a few hours after Michael Brown was laid to rest, an amiable judge sat in the City Council chambers here and weighed in on the traffic violations and petty crimes, one by one, of more than a hundred people. At least two-thirds of those waiting were black, roughly a reverse racial image of the demographics of Maplewood itself.

The scene was banal compared to the tear gas and outrage over the last two weeks in Ferguson, 13 miles away. But it is in courts like this that the daily frustrations that led in part to the turmoil in Ferguson begin to fester.

Young black men, who in many towns in St. Louis County are pulled over at a rate greater than whites, routinely find themselves in the patchwork of municipal courts here, without lawyers and unable to pay the fines levied for their traffic violations. Many end up being passed from jail to jail around the county until they can pay their fines and in some cases other administrative fees, a revenue source on which some towns are growing increasingly reliant.

 
There’s No Such Thing as ‘Black America’

The concept of a ‘black community’ or ‘black America’ led by figures like Al Sharpton is counterproductive and, at best, outdated. It’s time we spent more time concentrating on what unites us.

In light of the tragic shooting of Michael Brown, I’ve been troubled by the notion that a monolithic entity called “Black America” or “the black community” still exists in the 21st century—if it ever existed at all. Moreover, I think that it is simply dangerous for the likes of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson to be allowed to act as if they speak for all black Americans. They don’t, but the media and our first black president perpetuate this insidious myth.

 
Couric Slams Sawyer in New Tell-All

By Lloyd Grove

In a juicy new tell-all book, Katie Couric comes across as brash, striving, and self-absorbed, Diane Sawyer is a Machiavellian, often-inscrutable workaholic, and Christiane Amanpour has an off-putting moral superiority.

Sawyer is a Machiavellian, often-inscrutable workaholic who uses her seductive charm and good looks to professional advantage and torments news producers with her relentless perfectionism and insecurity—an apparent consequence of a fraught relationship with her judgmental, formidable mother (who once sent the adult Sawyer into a self-flagellating death spiral, Weller writes, when she criticized how her TV star daughter had made her bed).

 
2008 Meltdown Was Worse Than Great Depression, Bernanke Says

2008 Meltdown Was Worse Than Great Depression, Bernanke Says

By Pedro Nicolaci da Costa

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, a prominent student of the Great Depression, contends that the 2008 financial crisis was actually worse than its 1930s counterpart.

Mr. Bernanke is quoted making the statement in a document filed on Aug. 22 with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims as part of a lawsuit linked to the 2008 government bailout of insurance giant American International Group Inc.

“September and October of 2008 was the worst financial crisis in global history, including the Great Depression,” Mr. Bernanke is quoted as saying in the document filed with the court. Of the 13 “most important financial institutions in the United States, 12 were at risk of failure within a period of a week or two.”

Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is quoted in the document offering a similarly apocalyptic assessment. From Sept. 6 through Sept. 22, the economy was essentially “in free fall,” he said.

 
Douglas McAuthur McCain: first American to die fighting for Islamic State

Douglas McAuthur McCain, 2008 photo. (AP)

Douglas McAuthur McCain, 2008 photo. (AP)

How he became the first American to die fighting for Islamic State

Terrence McCoy

The few fragments available, trouble with the law, limited prospects, offer little explanation for his fatal choice.

Douglas McAuthur McCain, tattooed and thin, never stayed in one place long. Born on Jan. 29, 1981, his 33 years would be spent hopping from school to school, from business to business, continent to continent — until, finally, he landed in Syria, where he became the first American reported to die fighting for the Islamic State.

Much of the Douglas McAuthur McCain story remains unclear. It’s unclear how he died in a recent Islamic State battle, into which he carried his American passport and 800 bucks. It’s unexplained what led him down a path to Islamic radicalization and violence. And it’s unknown whether he traveled alone.

A review of court records, social media accounts and news clippings does little to answer any of those questions, but instead conveys the profound contrast between the McCain who violently died in Syria — and the Midwestern McCain who rapped, worked dead end jobs, picked up a few petty convictions and was “just a regular American kid,” as one friend told the San Diego Union-Tribune.

Born in Illinois, his early life was one slice of Americana after another: He followed the Chicago Bulls, was a fan of Michael Jordan, watched “The Simpsons” and developed an affinity for Pizza Hut. After moving to the Minneapolis area as a boy, he played basketball in high school, though classmates tell reporters he wasn’t any good. Between 1997 and 2000, he attended two different high schools in the Robbinsdale Area School District, though the New York Times says district records don’t show him graduating from either school.

 
Obama Wants a Syria War Plan This Week

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Obama Wants a Syria War Plan This Week

Leading U.S. officials now believe that America has to expand its air war against ISIS into Syria, but nobody knows yet how we can do it… or what will happen next.

President Obama wants to decide by the end of the week whether or not his war in Iraq against the Islamic State will expand to the group’s haven in eastern Syria. But nearly everything about the potential military campaign is still in flux, administration officials tell The Daily Beast—from the goals of the effort to the intelligence needed to carry it out.

ISIS’s murder of American photojournalist James Foley and its continued military expansion have pushed the administration into an urgent drive to take action against the Islamic extremists in Syria. Despite the new urgency, the plans for such a strike are far from complete. In a series of high-level meetings Tuesday—including one gathering of the Principals’ Committee, the administration's top national security officials—White House staffers and cabinet secretaries alike struggled to come up with answers to basic questions about the potential strikes. Among the unresolved issues: whether the U.S. has reliable intelligence on ISIS targets in Syria; what the objectives and limits of the strikes would be; and how the administration would defend the action legally, diplomatically, and politically.

One huge unanswered question is whether the president will order the attacks, or whether he will ultimately balk, as he did this time last year after preparing for limited strikes against the Bashar al-Assad regime. One administration official working on Syria policy said the purpose of the meetings Tuesday was “to convince one man, Barack Obama,” to follow through on the rhetoric and widen the aims of the war to include destroying ISIS in both Iraq and Syria. While Obama and his top officials have said they will need to address the threat of ISIS on both sides of the Iraq/Syria border, Obama has not said specifically what that means.

 
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