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The Special Inspector General and SIGAR staff discussing the status of the Kabul C-27s with members of the US military during a recent inspection trip.
Photo credit: SIGAR PDF
US Tax Dollars up in Smoke Over Afghanistan
By Jeff Schechtman
Wasting billions of dollars in taxes is standard operating procedure for the US government. It has spent more on Afghanistan than on the entire Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe after World War II. Where are these staggering amounts going? In this strikingly candid interview, John Sopko, a former federal prosecutor and currently the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction lets loose an amazing commentary on what he and his inspectors are finding. This is a must-listen. Even the most jaded will be astonished to hear.
PICKS are stories from many sources, selected by our editors or recommended by our readers because they are important, surprising, troubling, enlightening, inspiring, or amusing. They appear on our site and in our daily newsletter. Please send suggested articles, videos, podcasts, etc. to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The state of Alabama decided to close 31 driver’s licenses offices including all the offices in counties where African Americans make up more than 75 percent of the registered voters. This caused an eruption of concern across the country. In response to the backlash, Gov. Robert Bentley announced that starting in November driver’s license offices will reopen 1 day per month.
Photo Credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy Jerry “Woody” / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0),Crotalus horridus / Wikimedia
Thousands of Syrians Return Home Because Exile so Awful (Russ)
Situation in Jordan and other welcoming countries miserable.
FBI Director Comey: Mass Incarceration “A Distortion,” Warns Against Criticizing Police for Brutality (Trevin)
The DoJ is “puzzled.” The White House, “irritated.” Even The New York Times admits he doesn’t provide evidence for his claims. The director’s comments are red meat to Republicans who have used them to criticize President Obama for not being supportive of law enforcement.
European Parliament Clears Path for Snowden Asylum (Trevin)
“Snowden described the development as a ‘game-changer’ and added, ‘This is not a blow against the US government, but an open hand extended by friends. It is a chance to move forward.’”
Governor Setting Up Office to Help Wrongly Convicted (Russ)
Iowa may lead the way on coming reforms for the apparent legions who are in prison, but didn’t do it.
Jeremy Corbyn and the Revival of the Left (Russ)
What can we learn from the unexpected triumph of the comparably radical new head of UK’s Labour Party?
How Wal-Mart Became the Town Square in America (Russ)
In small towns, Wal-Mart is not just part of life, it is life.
Be on the Lookout for Donald Trumpkins (DonkeyHotey)
The Internet is rife with people carving Jack o’lanterns in the image Donald Trump. Here are some examples:
• Trumpkins: Carving Donald Trump’s Face Into Pumpkins Is All the Rage This Halloween – [Newsweek]
• Carve your own Donald Trumpkin in time for Halloween [Mashable]
• How To Carve Donald Trump’s Face Into A Pumpkin This Halloween [Huffington Post]
• Woman transforms 374-pound pumpkin into Donald ‘Trumpkin’ [USA Today]
Robots Help Bedridden Experience Art and the World (Russ)
Pretty amazing development — quadriplegic tours museum and kicks a soccer ball.
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