Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when
we’re not too hungover we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.
Breakfast Tune: Steve Martin & Earl Scruggs – Foggy Mountain Breakdown
Today in History
Lindbergh baby kidnapped; Khalid Sheikh Mohammed caught in Pakistan; Bobby Sands begins hunger strike; JFK creates Peace Corps; Ron Howard born.
Breakfast News & Blogs Below
Homan Square protesters demand answers over Chicago police ‘black site’
Zach Stafford, The Guardian, February 28, 2015
More than 100 activists and community leaders rallied in Chicago on Saturday to call for official investigations into and even a shutdown of Homan Square, the police facility at the centre of allegations over unconstitutional abuse and a growing protest movement known as #Gitmo2Chicago.
Less than a week after a Guardian investigation uncovered detailed accounts from Chicago citizens who said they were abused and detained without access to legal counsel or basic rights, demonstrators from groups including the hacktivist collective Anonymous and the Black Lives Matter movement chanted “freedom first” and pushed for open access to the secretive police warehouse.
The diverse crowd pressed most directly for answers from Rahm Emanuel, the Chicago mayor who is facing a runoff election in an extended campaign in which police reform has featured prominently. …
Newly discovered algae could save world’s coral from climate change
Renee Lewis, Al Jazeera, February 27, 2015
A new species of algae discovered in the Persian Gulf may help declining coral populations survive as climate change warms ocean temperatures and threatens reefs with often-fatal bleaching, according to a new report.
Researchers from the University of Southampton and New York University Abu Dhabi identified the algae while studying the world’s warmest coral reef habitat, located in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, to understand how it survived such extreme temperatures.
“Understanding how corals survive under the extreme temperatures in the Gulf will give us important insights into the ability of reef corals to handle the heat stress, which is threatening their survival in the oceans that are warming up in response to climate change,” Jörg Wiedenmann, professor of biological oceanography and head of the coral reef laboratory at the University of Southampton, said in a statement. …
US sells prisoners to the highest bidders
Mary Turck, Al Jazeera, February 28, 2015
On Feb. 20 prisoners at the Willacy County Correctional Center refused to work and eat breakfast, to protest inadequate medical care at the for-profit Texas tent prison. The situation soon escalated into a riot, with inmates setting fire to some of the tents and at least three injuries. Guards used tear gas to quell the uprising.
A day later, the federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) said the Willacy facility, which houses mostly undocumented immigrants – many held for illegal border crossing and low-level offenses – was uninhabitable and its 2,800 prisoners would be moved to other facilities.
The Willacy prison fiasco highlights the problems of privatizing prisons and prison services across the U.S. Instead of protecting their limited rights, state and federal governments are selling prisoners to the highest bidder. …
Despite U.N. Treaties, War Against Drugs a Losing Battle
Thalif Deen, IPS News, February 27, 2015
As the call for the decriminalisation of drugs steadily picks up steam worldwide, a new study by a British charity concludes there has been no significant reduction in the global use of illicit drugs since the creation of three key U.N. anti-drug conventions, the first of which came into force over half a century ago.
“Illicit drugs are now purer, cheaper, and more widely used than ever,” says the report, titled Casualties of War: How the War on Drugs is Harming the World’s Poorest, released Thursday by the London-based Health Poverty Action.
The study also cites an opinion poll that shows more than eight in 10 Britons believe the war on drugs cannot be won. And over half favour legalising or decriminalising at least some illicit drugs. …
Three cases of leprosy in eastern Florida ‘linked to armadillos’
Jessica Glenza, The Guardian, February 27, 2015
Health officials on the east coast of Florida have diagnosed three cases of leprosy in the last five months, linking two of the cases to contact with armadillos. The small armored mammals are known to harbor the disease in the southern US.
The cases were confirmed in Volusia County, Florida, which is home to about 500,000 people and tourist cities such as Daytona Beach. Health officials believe the three cases developed independently.
Though such a cluster of cases of leprosy is uncommon, experts say the general public has little to worry about. About 95% of the population is not susceptible to leprosy, also called Hansen’s disease, which can be cured with antibiotics. Also, only the nine-banded armadillo carries leprosy. The common five-banded armadillo does not. …
- What’s Butylated Hydroxyltoluene and Why Is It in Your Food Even Though It’s Banned in Europe?, by Alison Rose Levy
- Venezuela president Maduro announces diplomatic sanctions against US, by Sibylla Brodzinsky
- Private Prison Companies Foresee Increased Profits as Ruling Limits Immigrant Detentions, by Candice Bernd
- As Fast Track Looms, Opposition Mounts to Corporate-Friendly Trade Deals, by Deirdre Fulton
- Protesters question investigation of fatal police shooting in New Jersey, by Jessica Glenza
Seconds: Yes Ma’am String Band in New Orleans, Foggy Mountain Breakdown