Love song rallies war effort

As many Americans continue to celebrate the recent death of 9-11 mastermind Osama bin Laden, a new song combining references to love and war is quickly becoming the next YouTube sensation:

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Department of Education bans English from schools

The new hate crime: officials move to ban offensive English language from public schools.

The Department of Education has moved to ban English from public schools.  Calling the language “a potential threat to civil rights,” the Department’s regulation will affect all U.S. public schools and universities beginning with the 2011-2012 school year.

Janice Hamby, an attorney with the Department, said that use of English in public schools raises serious concerns of civil rights and justice.  She notes that the English culture surrounding the language has historically been linked with racism, oppression and other injustices.

“As an obvious example,” she notes, “the colonial era is a classic reminder of English oppression against native populations.”

Hamby explained that genocide, environmental destruction, and subjugation of peaceful indigenous populations are connected inseparably to the English language.

To allow English to be spoken in public schools, Hamby argues, would be to permit a hate crime against all the ethnic, racial, religious, and sexual minorities victimized by English culture.

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Trusted politicians assure world bin Laden dead

Leaders: we have proof bin Laden is dead, but you don't.

Several members of America’s most trusted institution, the U.S. Congress, have assured the country and world that bin Laden is dead but that no one really needs evidence of it.

Arguing that there is proof, without showing anyone this proof, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) explained that it’s important for elected leaders to see the pictures but that “regular folks” can’t be trusted with the same.

“There’s absolute proof that Osama bin Laden is dead, which proof we’ve declined to show anyone,” Hoyer said.  “But trust us, it’s there, we promise.”

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Birth certificate shows Obama born in U.S. … 34 years ago

Obama's long-form birth certificate shows he isn't old enough to be president.

The release of President Obama’s long-form birth certificate is expected to put to rest – for most people – any doubt that the president was born in the United States.  But the document is causing a new controversy by showing that the president was born in August 1976 – meaning Obama was not 35 years old when he became president, as the Constitution requires.

“It’s like whack-a-mole,” said political analyst Chuck Warren, who has followed the birther issue.  “Now it becomes not an issue of where, but when.”

Neither Obama nor the White House has responded specifically to the issue of the president’s birth date.  Meanwhile, an offshoot of the birther movement – the agers, as some call them – has sprung up.

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Feds offer solutions for sleeping air traffic controllers

New signs will deter sleeping air traffic controller, officials say.

The Federal Aviation Administration is announcing new steps designed to address recent controversies over air traffic controllers caught sleeping on the job.

“Air traffic controllers are responsible for the safety of millions of air passengers, and it’s imperative that we do more to ensure they’re doing their jobs,” said FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt.  “The first step is to issue new rules rather than directly address the problematic individuals by firing them.”

One such rule will require additional signs posted throughout control towers warning controllers that they must be rested before they come to work.  The signs will use larger text and fewer words than older versions in order to catch the attention of heavy-eyed workers.  The FAA will also conduct a two-week training course on how workers can get more sleep during their time off.

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‘No guns’ sign credited with stopping would-be armed robber

Police say this sign kept Brandt from robbing a Subway restaurant.

Police in Madison, Wisc., are crediting a sign that prohibits guns with keeping a career criminal from robbing a Subway restaurant.

Robert Brandt, who has been twice convicted for armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon, told officers he had planned to rob the restaurant Sunday night as it was closing.  Upon approaching the store, however, he noticed a sign in the window that read, “No Guns Allowed.”

“He told us that he had decided to rob the place, but noticed the sign and realized guns were not allowed there,” said Officer Mick Smuggs.  “So he turned himself in.”

Gun control advocates are hailing the news as proof that prohibiting guns can reduce crime.

“Radical pro-gun extremists have said for years that criminals who have broken so many other laws will just break gun laws as well.  This line has been proven false,” said Linda Harcove of Wisconsins Against Gun Violence.

In a statement, Brandt’s attorney explained why his client decided to turn himself in.

“Mr. Brandt had made a career out of breaking so many other laws in his life, but when he saw this placard at the Subway restaurant saying guns were not allowed, he changed course and decided to abandon his criminal past,” said Kevin Abbot.

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Environmental requirements take effect

Aggressive recycling rules are part of the new law.

Despite a looming government shutdown which threatens its funding, a strict law enacted last year to protect the environment came into effect Tuesday.

Known as Society’s Course of Action for Responsible Environmental Stewardship, the measure empowers the Department of the Interior to take aggressive steps to limit human impact on the planet.

“This is an important step to protect America’s natural heritage, for ourselves and for our children,” President Obama said during a press conference about the ongoing congressional budget negotiations.  He noted that SCARES embodies several benchmark goals put forth in recent years by the United Nations.

“This has broad international support,” Obama said.  “And as we all know, whatever is favored by the international community is automatically right.”

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Obama lays out war doctrine

Obama promised military action against oppressive regimes, unless the American government is friends with them.

President Obama’s prime time address Monday night did more than justify the current conflict in Libya.  The president also used the opportunity to lay out a global humanitarian mission for America’s armed forces.

While avoiding use of the term ‘war’, Obama made clear that military force will be an option to stop atrocities around the world – but only in countries whose leaders U.S. officials don’t like.

“This mission does not end with the current military-based intensive strike action taking place against the Gadhafi regime in Libya,” Obama said.  “We must take concerted action to stop human rights abuses wherever we can…unless it’s a country who owns a massive amount of our debt or with whom we are conflicted allies.”

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IRS unveils ‘user-friendly’ agency

The IRS is hoping to make Americans enjoy paying their taxes.

The Internal Revenue Service is working overtime to not only raise more revenue in an era of record budget deficits, but also to make Americans actually enjoy paying taxes.

“We’re on a mission both to crack down on tax cheats and to encourage more Americans to do their civic duty,” said Commissioner of Internal Revenue Doug Shulman.  The move comes as the budget deficit has reached a number so high that it has yet to be named by mathematicians.

Named Leadership and Accuracy in Efficient Tax Solutions, the IRS plan is intended to ensure that those who owe taxes pay them before spending the money elsewhere.  To that end, each American’s paycheck will be assessed based on a proportional tax rate – with the money automatically sent directly to the IRS – thereby avoiding the burden and expense of filing a tax return.

In other words, before you see your money, the IRS will.  If, on tax day, the IRS determines it has taken too much the previous year, it will issue a refund; if too little, the agency will bill the taxpayer.

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America wages non-war on Libya

Officials stressed that launching numerous missiles at Col. Gadhafi is not intended to directly ouster him.

U.S. forces continued to launch tomahawk cruise missiles into Libya Monday while officials in Washington insisted the campaign is not actually war.  During a news conference in Brazil, where he was getting a new coat of gold for his 2009 Nobel Peace Prize medal, President Obama made clear his intent to define the public relations front.

“It’s important to remind the American people and the international community that we’re not at war with Libya or its people,” Obama said.  “The proper term is ‘military action’; also acceptable are ‘humanitarian campaign,’ ‘international mission,’ and ‘peaceful, quiet rainfalls of soft-spoken fire.’  But under no circumstance are we at war with yet another country.”

The president has also taken pains to demand Col. Moammar Gadhafi step down, while recognizing that last week’s U.N. Resolution 1973 restricts the U.S. and its allies from directly ousting him.

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