News on the Net

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Citing the Second Commandment, North Carolina churches take aim at Second Amendment

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

American Evangelicals are famously supportive of gun rights. But a religious southern coalition, the North Carolina Council of Churches, believes that guns have become modern graven images and that they aren’t the “solution to our safety.” To that end, the council has put up a billboard just outside of Burlington picturing guns, ammo, and quoting the Second Commandment (the Protestant version, which Catholics usually count as part of the First Commandment).

“For many of us, guns have become the symbol of safety, the idol we turn to because we ‘believe in them’ to keep us safe,” the North Carolina Council of Churches told local news channel WBTV. “God commands the people not to have any idols. Idols can assume a lot of guises in our world that we don’t immediately understand as idolatry.”— More…

In Democratic circles, early efforts at rehabilitating Al Franken

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

Now that some time has passed since former Sen. Al Franken was first accused of sexual misconduct, it’s time to rehabilitate the Minnesota Democrat’s public image.

At least, that’s one way to interpret this conversation Monday between EMILY’s List president Stephanie Schriock and former senior adviser to President Barack Obama David Axelrod. The way they tell it, Franken was given a raw deal when he was made to resign in January after eight women accused him of unwanted touching and kissing.—More….

ISIS Beheaders: Be Sure To Give Us Due Process, Please

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh are the two surviving members of the so-called “Beatles” of ISIS, so named for their British accents while torturing and butchering Western hostages. The same unit employed “Jihadi John,” who starred in videos of beheadings, making it a top target for military action that eventually killed Jihadi John and another member. Now they want Western due process, the pair tell CNN’s Nick Paton Walsh, but they may not be in position to demand it:—More…

Most Links to Popular sites on Twitter come from Bots

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

BOTS HAVE BECOME a great scourge of the internet. Recently, they’ve flooded government comment systems with fake activism, distorted the national discourse on guns, and launched malicious attacks against the Justice Department. And a new study suggests they’re behind the majority of links shared on Twitter, too.

A Pew Research report released Monday finds that a whole two-thirds of links to popular sites shared on Twitter come from automated accounts. But these aren’t just those malicious Russian bots posing as the uncannily angry and active boy next door. They also include legitimate accounts belonging to organizations that schedule tweets through some kind of automated service. What’s more, the study finds, the majority of these accounts are not as politically polarized as headlines might make them out to be, nor do they primarily link to hyper-partisan websites. In fact, some of the websites receiving the largest share of links from bots are mainstream business outlets. Oh, and porn.—More…

Kentucky neighborhood bans Danes, Dobermanns, German Shepherds, St. Bernards and more

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

People living in a Lexington neighborhood were notified last week that several dog breeds, including pit bulls, Great Danes and huskies, were being banned.

Homeowners in McConnell’s Trace were sent letters by the neighborhood developer detailing a change in an existing dog restriction, which previously referred only to unspecified “aggressive breeds,” said Josh McCurn, president of the area’s neighborhood association. Now German shepherds, St. Bernards and chows are among the list of 11 dog breeds restricted from the neighborhood.—More…

Mark Levin: Time For Jeff Sessions To Resign

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

Sessions to resign. Levin said the buck stops at the AG’s desk, even if he did recuse himself. Levin, an attorney, said the Justice Department is out of control and what is happening now has nothing to do with the Russian matter.

“It’s time for the Attorney General to step aside and for the president of the United States, he can make a recess appointment, not to put in a body or anything like that,” Levin said. “He can put Dershowitz in there for all I care.”—More…


Alzheimer’s gene neutralised in human brain cells for the first time

Apr 10, 2018 — News on the Net

Scientists have claimed an important breakthrough in the battle against Alzheimer’s after neutralising the most significant gene responsible for the disease for the first time.

A team in California successfully identified the protein associated with the high-risk apoE4 gene and then managed to prevent it damaging human neuron cells.—More…

Trump on Potentially Firing Mueller: We’ll See What Happens, ‘Many People Have Said&#821

Apr 9, 2018 — News on the Net

After denouncing the Mueller probe after his lawyer’s office was raided, President Trump responded to a question about whether he would fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

The FBI raided Michael Cohen’s Manhattan office and hotel room on Monday, seizing records, emails and documents — including records relating to Cohen’s $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels, the porn star claiming she had an affair with Trump.—More…

FBI raids offices of Donald Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen

Apr 9, 2018 — News on the Net

Federal agents on Monday raided the offices of President Donald Trump‘s personal attorney Michael Cohen, who has been under intense public scrutiny for weeks over a $130,000 payment to a porn actress who says she had sex with Trump more than a decade ago.

The raid on Cohen’s office was done by the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan and was based at least partly on a referral from special counsel Robert Mueller, according to Cohen’s lawyer, Stephen Ryan.—More…

A tax on Jerusalem’s churches will harm Christianity

Apr 9, 2018 — News on the Net

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is Christianity’s most holy place. Here, on the site that marks Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection, where we welcome more than a million pilgrims and visitors every year, it is heart breaking to close the door on even a single pilgrim or prevent anyone from entering this place of prayer. But we had to do this back in February of this year. The decision was not easy, but it was necessary.

The closure of the Church was an act of protest—a necessary stand against a mounting campaign of intimidation and discrimination that threatens the survival of Christianity in the Holy City.— More…

Israel blamed for missile strike in Syria; 14 reported dead

Apr 9, 2018 — News on the Net

BEIRUT (AP) — Russia and the Syrian military blamed Israel for a pre-dawn missile attack Monday on a major air base in central Syria, saying Israeli fighter jets launched the missiles from Lebanon’s air space. A war-monitoring group said the airstrikes killed 14 people, including Iranians active in Syria.

Russia’s Defense Ministry said two Israeli aircraft targeted the T4 air base in Homs province, firing eight missiles. It said Syria shot down five of them while the other three landed in the western part of the base. Syrian state TV quoted an unnamed military official as saying that Israeli F-15 warplanes fired several missiles at T4. It gave no further details.—More…

Judge’s Death Gives Trump a Chance to Remake a Vexing Court

Apr 9, 2018 — News on the Net

WASHINGTON — In the spring of 2014, a friend tried to nudge Judge Stephen Reinhardt, then an 83-year-old liberal stalwart on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, into stepping aside from full-time duties so President Barack Obama could nominate a successor.

The friend, Erwin Chemerinsky, now the dean at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, said he had gently suggested to Judge Reinhardt that he and another longtime liberal figure on the San Francisco-based court make way while Democrats still had the power to assure that jurists with a similar philosophy would take their place. Judge Reinhardt swiftly rejected that notion and stayed on. - More…

Hungary’s strongman Viktor Orban wins third term in power

Apr 8, 2018 — News on the Net

BUDAPEST, Hungary (Reuters) - Prime Minister Viktor Orban won a third straight term in power in Sunday elections after his anti-immigration campaign message secured a strong majority for his party in parliament, granting him two-thirds of seats based on preliminary results.

The rightwing nationalist prime minister projected himself as a savior of Hungary’s Christian culture against Muslim migration into Europe, an image which resonated with millions of voters, especially in rural areas.—More…

Hawaii legalises assisted suicide

Apr 8, 2018 — News on the Net

Hawaii has become the seventh American jurisdiction where assisted-suicide is legal. The “Our Care, Our Choice Act” passed the Hawaii House of Representatives on a 39-12 vote on March 6, and cleared the Senate on a vote of 23-2 this week. Governor David Inge signed the bill on Thursday. “It is time for terminally ill, mentally competent Hawaii residents who are suffering to make their own end-of-life choices with dignity, grace and peace,” he said.

Under the provisions of the new law, the terminally ill may get a prescription for a lethal drug so long as two doctors agree that the patient has no more than six months to live and is mentally competent. He would also need to undergo a mental health evaluation; two separate requests should be made to an attending provider (who could be a nurse, not a doctor); and two witnesses must attest to the patient’s wish to die. Although a doctor could dispense the medication, patients would be required to take it on their own. The patient’s family need not be informed of his decision.—More…

Facebook could face record fine, say former FTC officials

Apr 8, 2018 — News on the Net

Facebook’s disclosure this week that its search tools were used to collect data on most of its 2.2 billion users could potentially trigger record fines and create new legal vulnerability for not having prevented risks to user data, three former federal officials said.

The three former officials, all of whom were at the Federal Trade Commission during the privacy investigation that led to a 2011 consent decree with Facebook, said the company’s latest mishap may violate the decree’s provisions requiring the implementation of a privacy program.—More…

Responding to Trump’s call, Mattis authorizes 4,000 National Guard troops for U.S.-Mexico border

Apr 8, 2018 — News on the Net

Defense Secretary James N. Mattis has signed an order to send up to 4,000 National Guard troops to to the U.S.-Mexico border but barred them from interacting with migrants detained by the Border Patrol in most circumstances.

The order, issued in response to President Trump’s call for using troops to stem illegal immigration, specifies that National Guard troops will assist the Department of Homeland Security along the border but not perform law enforcement missions and will be armed only when necessary for self-defense.—More…

Did Twitter Shadow Ban Ted Cruz?

Apr 8, 2018 — News on the Net

With all the talk about Twitter shadow banning conservative commentators, National Review’s Jim Geraghty wondered whether the social network also had the gall to go after conservative politicians. So he looked at the number of retweets and likes Senator Ted Cruz’s tweets receive on average and compared them to California Democratic Senator Kamala Harris.

Harris has only half of Cruz’s followers: 1.5 million versus 3.2 million. As such, you’d expect Cruz to be retweeted more often by his followers. Surprisingly, that’s not the case. But that’s not even the most shocking part. Look at the difference; it’s gigantic.—More…

Puffin beaks are fluorescent and we had no idea

Apr 7, 2018 — News on the Net

‘It’s amazing, a real fluorescence,’ said English scientist Jamie Dunning, who discovered puffin beaks glow under UV light. (Submitted by Jamie Dunning)
A scientist in England has made an enlightening discovery about Atlantic puffins — under a UV light, their bills glow like a freshly cracked glow stick.

“It was sort of discovered by accident,” said Jamie Dunning, the ornithologist who first saw the beaks light up.

‘Protected’ marine area open to oil, gas exploration

Apr 7, 2018 — News on the Net

Newfoundland and Labrador’s offshore oil and gas regulator is taking bids for exploration off the island’s east coast, in an area the federal government recently listed as a marine-protected area.

While the area is closed to fishing, it remains open to the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board (C-NLOPB) — and that’s not sitting well with the president of the fisheries union.— More…

Parkland shooting victim criticizes sheriff, school after release from hospital

Apr 7, 2018 — News on the Net

A week after the last victim of February’s school shooting in Parkland, Florida, was released from the hospital, Anthony Borges made it known in a press conference Friday he and his family were not pleased with several circumstances around the massacre.

Borges, 15, was shot five times—in the lungs, abdomen and legs—as he held shut a door at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School to prevent alleged shooter Nikolas Cruz from gunning down students inside.—More…