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8387NEWS -- 2014.01.13.Monday

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  • James Martin
    Jan 13, 2014
      1) West Virginia -- has anyone traced the movement of the chemicals to the Gulf of Mexico? More pollution for the Gulf.
      2) The Mormon old men Generals Instruct Leaders on Same-Sex Marriage
      3) Former manager of Russian gay nightclub to seek asylum in U.S.
      4) Truthdig
      Monday 13 January 2014
      The chemical spill in West Virginia -- Freedom Industries -- rightwing republican capitalist no regulations needed/wanted pig company.  This is what the Koch brothers and all rightwing republicans defend.  Unfettered capitalism.  No rules.  Everyone else suffers. 
      The Mormon Church generals issue some more bull --->
      Official Statement — 10 January 2014

      Church Instructs Leaders on Same-Sex Marriage

      Salt Lake City —

      Following recent court actions bearing on same-sex marriage, the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles today sent the following instructions and guidance to congregational leaders throughout the United States. Leaders were asked to share this information with their members in appropriate settings.

      On December 20, 2013, a federal district judge in Salt Lake City issued an order legalizing same-sex marriage in Utah, striking down century-old state laws and a state constitutional amendment that defined marriage exclusively as between a man and a woman. The United States Supreme Court has put that ruling on hold pending consideration of the issue by an appellate court. During the interval between the district court ruling and the Supreme Court stay, numerous same-sex marriages were performed in Utah. Legal proceedings and legislative action in some other states and countries have given civil recognition to same-sex marriage relationships.

      As we face this and other issues of our time, we encourage all to bear in mind our Heavenly Father’s purposes in creating the earth and providing for our mortal birth and experience here as His children. “God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth” (Genesis 1:27–28). “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). Marriage between a man and a woman was instituted by God and is central to His plan for His children and for the well-being of society. Strong families, guided by a loving mother and father, serve as the fundamental institution for nurturing children, instilling faith, and transmitting to future generations the moral strengths and values that are important to civilization and crucial to eternal salvation.

      Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God has established. God expects us to uphold and keep His commandments regardless of divergent opinions or trends in society. His law of chastity is clear: sexual relations are proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as husband and wife. We urge you to review and teach Church members the doctrine contained in “The Family: A Proclamation to the World

      Just as those who promote same-sex marriage are entitled to civility, the same is true for those who oppose it. The Church insists on its leaders’ and members’ constitutionally protected right to express and advocate religious convictions on marriage, family, and morality free from retaliation or retribution. The Church is also entitled to maintain its standards of moral conduct and good standing for members.

      Consistent with our fundamental beliefs, Church officers will not employ their ecclesiastical authority to perform marriages between two people of the same sex, and the Church does not permit its meetinghouses or other properties to be used for ceremonies, receptions, or other activities associated with same-sex marriages. Nevertheless, all visitors are welcome to our chapels and premises so long as they respect our standards of conduct while there.

      While these matters will continue to evolve, we affirm that those who avail themselves of laws or court rulings authorizing same-sex marriage should not be treated disrespectfully. The gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us to love and treat all people with kindness and civility—even when we disagree.

      As members of the Church, we are responsible to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to illuminate the great blessings that flow from heeding God’s commandments as well as the inevitable consequences of ignoring them. We invite you to pray that people everywhere will have their hearts softened to the truths of the gospel, and that wisdom will be granted to those who are called upon to decide issues critical to society’s future.


      Style Guide Note: When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online style guide.

      [ picture at URL ]

      Former manager of Russian gay nightclub to seek asylum in U.S.

      By Agata Dera, Sports and International Media Intern 
      January 10, 2014

      The former manager of Central Station Nightclub in Moscow, Arkady Gyngazov, is seeking asylum in the United States due to the anti-LGBT harassment he faced.

      “I’m not going to go back to Russia because I feel my safety, even my life, is threatened,” said Gyngazov to Washington Blade.

      Under Gyngazov’s management, on November 16th 2013 two men tried to enter the club. Due to their aggressive demeanor, the security staff denied them access to the building. Shortly after, the men returned and opened fire. None of the estimated 500 people inside of the night club got hurt. This incident was followed by several others such as poisonous gas in the club..Following the vandalism episode, the owner of Central Station wrote to the Russian President Vladimir Putin. In his letter Andrei Lishchinsky blamed the controversial “gay propaganda law” for the intolerance in Russia.

      "The building was seized by a professional raiding company that served the interests of unknown foreign legal entities that ordered multiple illegal actions against LGBT visitors of the club," he wrote in the letter, a copy of which he posted to Facebook. "These actions were obviously motivated by hatred toward representatives of the LGBT community and had a clear extremist tone." Lishchinsky said to The Moscow Times.

      Due to the ongoing anti-LGBT harassment in Russia, Gyngazov fled to United States on December 14th because of the threat to his well-being. After his visa expires, he will seek an asylum, a protection as a political refuge of Russia. The asylum will assure his safety.

      Gyngazov also commented on the recent release of Russian punk band Pussy Riot who staged a protest against Putin as well as Mikhail Khodorkovsky, convicted on fraud charges. Gyngazov believes that Putin granted amnesty to the Pussy Riot, Khodorkovsky and Greenpeace members as a way to settle Russia’s reputation of discrimination towards members of the LGBT community. Since the political move according to Gyngazov is specifically taken before the start of the winter Olympic games in Sochi, Gyngazov is afraid for the status of the LGBT individuals in Russia after the conclusion of the 2014 winter Olympics.  Gyngazov had to travel to United States to protect himself from anti-gay harassment and discrimination. He is one of few individuals to speak up about his own experience with the intolerance of LGBT individuals in Russia.

      Along with a club manager escaping his own country in fear of anti-LGBT harassment, other instances have demonstrated the ongoing discrimination of the LGBT community in Russia. A creative director of one of the biggest phone retailer in Russia expressed his opinion about homosexuality which many argued should be a reason for Apple to back away from the contract. He believes that LGBT individuals should be thrown "alive into an oven."

      The LGBT rights coalition wrote an official letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook:

      "[Okhlobystin's] statements have been enthusiastically published by the Kremlin's propaganda press and distributed across entire Russia just adding additional fuel to the rampant homophobic campaign that already resulted in at least 26 murders and countless hate crimes against Russian LGBT population [sic]" As told by Mother Jones.

      Tim Cook now faces a crucial decision. His decision can severely hurt Apple’s great reputation for the support of the LGBT community.Both Gyngazov’s story and Ivan Okhlobystin’s stance on the LGBT community, serves as a glimpse of the severity of discrimination of LGBT individuals in Russia.

      http://www.truthdig.com/ Monday 13 January 2014

      Column: Chris Hedges on Chris Christie's Thuggery
      "The Trouble With Chris Christie" -- The most retrograde billionaires and corporate capitalists have pinned their hopes, as well as their money, on the New Jersey governor for the next presidential race. They love him because he is as vicious as he looks.

      Truthdigger of the Week: Documentary Filmmaker Marije Meerman
      "Truthdigger of the Week: Documentary Filmmaker Marije Meerman" -- Through testimony from the people who built it, Dutch filmmaker Marije Meerman gives us a singular view into the dark and dangerous future of investment and trade.


      Trailer: ‘The Internet’s Own Boy’
      "Trailer: ‘The Internet’s Own Boy’" -- One year after the death of Internet visionary Aaron Swartz, Brian Knappenberger, a director of films about hacktivism, is ready to release a documentary that follows a child programmer’s maturation into one of the most important and effective political minds of his generation.

      Neil deGrasse Tyson and the New ‘Cosmos’
      "Neil deGrasse Tyson and the New ‘Cosmos’" -- Almost 35 years after the original “Cosmos” ignited the imaginations of English-speaking audiences, Neil deGrasse Tyson, whom journalist Bill Moyers describes as “America’s most popular scientist,” has updated the series for a new generation.

      My comment --- Cosmos is my all time favorite book and TV program. 

      ‘Left, Right & Center’: A Dismal Jobs Report and Christie Bridge-Gate
      "‘Left, Right & Center’: A Dismal Jobs Report and Christie Bridge-Gate" -- Truthdig Editor-in-Chief Robert Scheer and the other “Left, Right & Center” panelists ask: With only 74,000 jobs created last month, who or what is to blame? Also, has New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie solved his Bridge-gate troubles or is his image permanently tarnished?


      Ear to the Ground: Why Hitler and ‘50 Shades of Grey’ Are Amazon Best-Sellers
      "Why Hitler and ‘50 Shades of Grey’ Are Amazon Best-Sellers" -- Due to the inconspicuous nature of e-books, “Mein Kampf” seems to be in everyone’s hands these days; scientists have created an algorithm that can predict whether a book will be a best-seller; working in the arts can lead to high levels of happiness. These discoveries and more after the jump. 

      Ear to the Ground: John McCain Wants Congress to Investigate NSA
      "John McCain Wants Congress to Investigate NSA" -- Sen. John McCain may be a hawk, but that apparently doesn’t stop him from becoming a conspicuous, if incongruous, member of the chorus of critics demanding accountability on the highest levels of government when it comes to the U.S. administration’s surveillance practices.

      My comment --- McCain is demanding accountability only because a Democrat -- Obama -- is the president.

      Ear to the Ground: Iran Sets Date to Start Shrinking Uranium Stockpile
      "Iran Sets Date to Start Shrinking Uranium Stockpile" -- The White House announced Sunday that Iran will start whittling down its stockpile of enriched uranium by Jan. 20, giving a sense of momentum to the agreement announced in November between Washington and Tehran.

      Ear to the Ground: NSA Makes Final Push to Retain Surveillance Powers
      "NSA Makes Final Push to Retain Surveillance Powers" -- Just before President Obama announces the future of domestic surveillance, the spying agency and its allies concede a need for greater transparency but maintain that limiting the scope of their work would put the country at greater risk of terrorist attacks.