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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Good Morning, News!

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Thu, May 22, 2014 at 9:30 AM

McDonald's has a long and cherished history of providing convenience, flavor, and fun for America's harried homemakers and their families. It also employs hoards of impoverished people. That's why convenience is so cheap! Yesterday, 2,000 workers and activists descended on the fast-food giant's suburban Chicago campus (where waiters roam the tables, looking to refill your paper cups; I've been there), in what's believed to be the largest protest the company has seen. More than 100 people were arrested—and HQ was shut down.

Edward Snowden's leaks have dealt a calamitous, grave, serious, etc. blow to America's intelligence-gathering capabilities and standing, according to a Pentagon report made public, conveniently, without any of the details that would normally back up that kind of assertion.

A bill to reform the National Security Agency in the wake of those leaks, meanwhile, has been watered down significantly since its proposal—losing support from the tech companies and privacy advocates who'd been counted on as political cover.

The bombs at last year's Boston Marathon that killed three and injured 260 may not have been built by the Brothers Tsarnaev, according to court papers. The feds didn't find much powder residue at their apartment and think they may have had some help assembling the sophisticated devices. Maybe from... Al-Qaida?

Pennsylvania's governor, realizing he'd lose, won't fight a judge's ruling in favor of marriage equality. Only two states now—North and South Dakota—have (1) a marriage ban and (2) no one filing a lawsuit to challenge that marriage ban.

For the 19th time in 82 years, more often than Americans have changed presidents, Thailand's military has declared a coup and seized power. This time, it was after six months of bickering between rival political factions failed to produce a constitution.

Pro-Russian separatists, still hanging on in the east of Ukraine, still have a bit of fight left. They launched a raid on a military checkpoint that left about a dozen or so Ukrainian soldiers dead.

And amid all the bad blood with the west over his Ukraine provocations, Vladimir Putin has hopped into a Brezhnev-era time machine, turned his open arms to the east, and made nice with China over a $400 billion gas contract.

Force feedings at Guantánamo have been recorded—by the thousands, and secretly—a revelation that emerged as part of a federal court case filed on behalf of a hunger-striking detainee.

Louisiana is poised to make like its old Dixie neighbors, passing limits on abortion providers so strict they'll likely force three of the state's five clinics to shut down.

Le French bought new trains worth $20 billion. Le French forgot to make sure those new trains would fit inside most of its old train stations. And, well, they don't. Merde.

MERDE! MERDE! MERDE! (THAT'S FRENCH FOR "POOP! POOP! POOP!")

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