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Thursday, January 16, 2014

Good Morning, News!

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Thu, Jan 16, 2014 at 9:29 AM

What a reasonable thing to begin the day with. The House of Representatives, in a rare display of wisdom, snuck a provision into its $1.1 trillion budget bill compelling the all-seeing National Security Agency to get real about whether its Edward Snowden-revealed super-spying is effective or gratuitous. Congress also decided it might be good if the NSA stop turning some of those spying techniques on its own citizens.

A new poll finds that almost six in 10 Americans agree its time the NSA submit to some sensible reforms—like no longer collecting every phone call made in America always.

But wait! There's more! The House also snuck in a provision blocking President Obama's plan to move control of the CIA's drone-strike program to the Pentagon. Moving it to the Pentagon might lift some of the veil of secrecy surrounding the program. But CIA-friendly lawmakers are worried the Pentagon will be even worse than the CIA when it comes to killing civilians. Like the eight Afghan citizens, mostly children, reported blown to bits this week.

None of that matters, though. Not really. BECAUSE OF THE OSCARS.

America's only official POW is still alive four years after his capture in Afghanistan. Or at least he was last month, according to a video that showed him quite frail but also plugged in enough to know about the death of Nelson Mandela.

The Al-Qaida operative who came up with the idea of flying planes into buildings now says, in a manifesto released from his cell, that it's not actually okay to use violence as a vehicle for spreading Islam. People change! I guess.

New footage of the hell following last year's Asiana lane crash in San Francisco, released eerily in time for a wrongful death lawsuit, pretty clearly shows a still-living 16-year-old girl lying on the runway. Before first responders ran her over and killed her.

Iraq has climbed up on Uncle Sam's knee and begged for all manner of nifty weapons so it can make a good stab at retaking Ramadi and Fallujah from Islamist rebels.

"Hi, judge. I shot my daughter, accidentally, while firing my gun in the air while arguing with her mother. And now she's dead and I'm in jail. I think everyone's still pretty mad at me. But is it cool if I come to the funeral anyway?"

The president of France, who plays a consequential role in world affairs and isn't in high school, totally wants to dump his girlfriend. But he has to wait because she's in the hospital. AND, OH MY GOD, HE HASN'T EVEN GONE TO VISIT HER! FOR REAL!

Europe's parents are refusing to let that charming, if headstrong, Putin boycome over for dinner.

OH YEAH? WELL LOOK AT WHAT YOU'RE MISSING, STUPID EUROPE! THE FINEST DINNER COMPANION EVER! STUPID, STUPID EUROPE!

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