? The FBI has rescued 105 victims of child sex trafficking. The youngest was 9 years old. 150 pimps and others were arrested, as part of the Innocence Lost National Initiative in operation since 2003 (FBI, Dept of Justice, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children).
? Yesterday’s news about Palestinian-Israeli peace talks sounded almost too good to be true. Today, things are a bit more familiar as they’re arguing over the peace talks “formats”. Update: “Obama hails Mid-East talks, warning of ‘hard choices’.”
? “A wave of car bombs has killed at least 51 people in mostly Shia areas of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, and in other cities around the country.”
? “Europe’s top diplomat pressed Egypt’s rulers . . . to step back from a growing confrontation with the [pro-Morsi] Muslim Brotherhood.” Update: “Fifteen killed in Cairo gunfight between street vendors and shopkeepers.”
? “Tunisia’s Islamist-led government will not step down despite opposition demands”, according to Prime Minister Ali Larayedh. Two popular politicians killed by “suspected Islamist militants”; 8 soldiers gunned down “near the Algerian border”.
? ICBMs have been around since Reagan and they still don’t work. Nonetheless, they’re scheduled for installation on both coasts and in “Japan, Guam, Jordan, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.”
Money Matters USA
? “The GOP’s Relentless Quest to Destroy The US Postal Service Is Almost Done.” Thanks to 2006 legislation, the Postal Service must “pre-fund its future health care benefit payments to retirees for the next 75 years in just a ten-year time span.”
? Average income in Detroit is $15,261 while it’s $67,580 in one suburb. As a result of “white flight” to the suburbs, Detroit’s population is 83% black. Question is whether to restore Detroit (and how). More: “Bad Derivatives Trades Added to Detroit’s Woes.”
? Have we beaten the Austerity Monster? “For the first time in three years, the U.S. Treasury will announce plans to begin reducing debt sales in a victory for stimulus over austerity”.
? USA! We’re tops in: cost of having a baby, obesity, anxiety, gun ownership, incarcerations, energy consumption, health care cost, cocaine.
? “Fast food workers protest in 7 cities.” From New York City today on to Chicago, St. Louis, Detroit, Milwaukee, Kansas City and Flint (MI). They want to unionize and they want $15/hour minimum. McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s and Papa John’s. Seattle, too.
? PA schools have been so hard-hit by budget cuts that when “Bethlehem Area School District advertised it was looking to hire 20-some elementary school teachers this summer, . . . more than 1,200” applied for the jobs.
? “More than three months after a Texas fertilizer plant [in West, TX] exploded killing 15 people and hurting hundreds, the state still has not started surveying blast injuries.”
? Boeing now wants inspection of “up to 1,200 aircraft across its fleet to gather data on Honeywell . . . emergency beacons . . . following a fire on a parked 787 Dreamliner two weeks ago.” [cont’d.]