Dozens of suspected Nazi war criminals and SS guards collected millions of dollars in U.S. Social Security benefits after being forced out of the United States, an Associated Press investigation has found.
The payments, underwritten by American taxpayers, flowed through a legal loophole that gave the U.S. Justice Department leverage to persuade Nazi suspects to leave the U.S. If they agreed to go, or simply fled before deportation, they could keep their Social Security, according to interviews and internal U.S. government records.
Among those receiving benefits were armed SS troops who guarded the network of Nazi camps where millions of Jews perished; a rocket scientist who used slave laborers to advance his research in the Third Reich; and a Nazi collaborator who engineered the arrest and execution of thousands of Jews in Poland.
This really is remarkable. I came across it over at Charlie Pierce’s blog at Esquire. Imagine, a politician downplaying his heroic war record.
The American political graveyard has more than a few monuments to politicians and public officials who embellished details of their military service, in some cases laying claim to medals for heroism or other military honors they never received.
And then, uniquely, there is Seth W. Moulton, the Democratic nominee for Congress in the Sixth Congressional District, a former Marine who saw fierce combat for months and months in Iraq. But Moulton chose not to publicly disclose that he was twice decorated for heroism until pressed by the Globe.
ON October 20, the murder trial of self-proclaimed Satanist Mark Dobson will resume in Barrie, Ontario. On May 2, 2012, Dobson was discovered in a hotel room where he had drugged and killed two female acquaintances—his girlfriend and an older woman he called “mom.” He had also attempted to take his own life and allegedly told the shocked hotel staff, “I did it, it was a satanic cult thing.”
Dobson’s attorney has found three psychiatrists to testify that Dobson was not criminally responsible because he was psychotic and schizophrenic. However, Dr. Andriy Kolchak, a psychiatrist for the prosecution, has argued that Dobson was performing a ritual in accordance with his religious beliefs, and therefore was not mentally ill.
In an eerily similar case, Pamela Christensen of Montgomery, Illinois, is awaiting trial for attempting to kill her three daughters so they could “meet Jesus Christ.” Like Dobson, Christensen tried to drug and stab her loved ones before attempting to kill herself. Christensen claimed she was responding to a phone call from her husband, a pastor, who announced that the world was ending and to get the family ready.
Cases such as this raise questions that have long gone unanswered about how the state should define “religion.” By what criteria should we decide whether deviant beliefs and actions are an expression of religion or evidence of a medical problem?
Same-sex couples wishing to have a have a memorable Elvis-themed wedding in Las Vegas will be disappointed if they show up on the rice-strewn steps of the Elvis Wedding Chapel on Las Vegas Blvd.
According to 8 News Now, the owner of one chapel is refusing to sanctify the marriage of gay couples, citing her Christian faith.
The Elvis Wedding Chapel, which offers a variety of Elvis-themed wedding packages including the “Blue Hawaii,” the “Rockabilly,” and “Elvis in Concert” is refusing to conduct same-sex weddings despite a Federal Court ruling in early October allowing the ceremonies to commence….
Vegas Wed Chapel owner Dolly Deleon, saying she’s a born-again believer in Jesus, stated she wouldn’t permit a same sex marriage in her chapel due to her faith.
“My faith won’t allow me,” Deleon said.
Because, really, what is more sacred than being married by some actor in an Elvis costume.
Here’s a really interesting debate that has been playing out on Twitter over the past couple days, over a recent story in the Guardian saying the anonymous messaging app Whisper was tracking users’ locations without their permission.
The Guardian says its story resulted from a three-day visit to Whisper headquarters to discuss an “expanded journalistic relationship,” and now journalists are taking to Twitter to discuss the ethics of the Guardian’s reporting.
Whisper has a number of media partners, including the Guardian, and many of them are working to distance themselves from the company following the report, which Whisper has vehemently denied. BuzzFeed, Fusion and the Huffington Post have all confirmed to Re/code that they are temporarily halting their relationships with Whisper until more information surfaces about how the company deals with user privacy.
So far, the virus is behaving just as public-health officials said it would. It infected Duncan, and when he was shedding the maximal amount of virus just before his death, it infected two of his caregivers. The reproductive rate for the Ebola virus — the number of infections that one sick person creates — is about 1.5 to 2, reflecting the Ebola situation here.
This good news in America also comes with a reminder from Nigeria that, while Ebola is scary, it is containable when action is taken early: the country has just been declared Ebola-free after registering no new cases for 41 days.
Even poor kids who do everything right don’t do much better than rich kids who do everything wrong. Advantages and disadvantages, in other words, tend to perpetuate themselves.
The science lesson in which we covered human biology focused primarily on puberty - things would change, we were told in a serious voice: hair would grow in new places, breasts would sprout, shoulders would broaden and voices would break. Girls were informed of the menarche - their first menstrual cycle - one of approximately 500 over the course of a lifetime. We were told to expect “some discomfort”, but given no hint that for some this pain would go beyond mild and descend into pretty damn awful.
Period pain is caused by contractions in the uterus. The blood vessels in the muscle wall are compressed by the contractions, which cut off blood supply to the womb, starving it of oxygen and adding to the discomfort.
Dysmenorrhea, as period pain is medically known, generally falls into two camps: secondary dysmenorrhea is caused by a specific underlying condition such as endometriosis (when cells that normally line the uterus are found at other sites in the body - usually the ovaries and fallopian tubes). The more common primary dysmenorrhea, which affects nine out of 10 women, has no specific cause. It is generally worst in the first few years after starting your period, with symptoms tending to improve with age or after childbirth. Yet many women who report having primary dysmenorrhea well into their 20s and 30s say their pain is dismissed.
Williams had been living in the St. Louis ghetto and worked as an assistant school principal in Wellston, a black St. Louis suburb. His wife, Geraldine, taught in a state special education school. They could afford to live in middle-class Ferguson, and hoped to protect their three daughters from the violence of their St. Louis neighborhood. The girls would also get better educations in Ferguson than in Wellston, where Williams worked, because Ferguson’s stronger tax base provided more money per pupil than did Wellston’s; Ferguson could afford more skilled teachers, smaller classes, and extra enrichment programs.
Williams was familiar with Ferguson because he once lived in the neighboring black suburb of Kinloch. (California Congresswoman Maxine Waters and the comedian and activist Dick Gregory grew up there.) In those years, Williams could enter Ferguson only during daytime; until the mid-1960s, Ferguson barred African Americans after dark, blocking the main road from Kinloch with a chain and construction materials. A second road remained open so housekeepers and nannies could get from Kinloch to jobs in Ferguson.
INCIDENCE OF ABORTION
• Half of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and four in 10 of these are terminated by abortion.
•Twenty-one percent of all pregnancies (excluding miscarriages) end in abortion.
• In 2011, 1.06 million abortions were performed, down 13% from 1.21 million in 2008. From 1973 through 2011, nearly 53 million legal abortions occurred.
• Each year, 1.7% of women aged 15-44 have an abortion . Half have had at least one previous abortion.
• At least half of American women will experience an unintended pregnancy by age 45, and at 2008 abortion rates, one in 10 women will have an abortion by age 20, one in four by age 30 and three in 10 by age 45.[4,5]