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Major Drug War Expansion on Senate Agenda This Week

The so-called immigration bill the United States Senate is considering this week (S.744) is about much more than immigration laws. As Ted Hesson explains at ABC News, the bill would significantly expand the US Border Patrol's already large role in the US government's war on drugs. Putting the legislation in context, San Antonio Express-News columnist O. Ricardo Pimental advises that the legislation advances what he calls the "growing border-industrial complex," which operates much like the military-industrial complex and yields profits for many of the same companies.
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Farm Freedom: US House Votes for Pro-Hemp Amendment

The United States House of Representatives voted 225-220 on Thursday to remove the US government prohibition on colleges and universities growing industrial hemp for research purposes in compliance with state laws. The vote was taken on an amendment offered by Rep. Jared Polis and cosponsors Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Thomas Massie during consideration of the farm bill (HR 1947). While the farm bill failed to pass in the House, the amendment vote has established majority support in the House for some rollback of US government restrictions on growing hemp.
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House Intel Committee's Sham Hearing on Mass Spying

Today the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in the United States House of Representatives is holding a hearing designed to cheer the US government's secret mass spying programs. The committee leadership's one-sided agenda is highlighted by the title of this morning's hearing—How Disclosed NSA Programs Protect Americans, and Why Disclosure Aids Our Adversaries—and the hearing's witness list, composed entirely of high-level managers and lawyers in government entities administering the programs:
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Potential US House Amendment Would Help Edward Snowden

Roll Call reports that Reps. Justin Amash and Thomas Massie are considering introducing an amendment in the United States House of Representatives as early as this week that would protect National Security Agency whistle-blower Edward Snowden from prosecution. Snowden may need such legislative help. Over at Fox Business, RPI Advisory Board Member Judge Andrew Napolitano calls Snowden a hero and explains why Snowden may face serious legal consequences.
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Bipartisan Agreement: Anti-TSA Amendment Disqualifies Rep. Broun from Winning Senate Race

United States Rep. Paul Broun of Georgia, who is running for US Senate, struck a nerve when he offered an amendment to eliminate funding for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) during consideration of the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act in the House of Representatives last week. At Roll Call, this amendment is characterized as the latest example of Broun's "penchant for pushing amendments that are viewed as extreme, even by many in his own party." The article includes quotes from Republican and Democrat pundits piling on Rep. Broun, saying that his offering of the amendment is one of the reasons Broun can win neither the Republican primary nor the general election.
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No Hemp Legalization Vote in US Senate

The United States Senate is preparing to end consideration of the Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act (S. 954) without any vote on Sen. Ron Wyden's amendment that would eliminate the Controlled Substances Act prohibition on growing hemp. Ryan Grim at the Huffington Post presents a behind-the-scenes story of the lack of a vote on the amendment. Sen. Wyden made the following statement regarding the resolution of the amendment in this year's farm bill:
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New 3 June: Industrial Hemp Bill This Week?

The United States Senate may vote this week on an amendment that would eliminate the Controlled Substances Act prohibition on growing industrial hemp. Sen. Ron Wyden has introduced in the Senate his Industrial Hemp Farming Act as Amendment 952 to the Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act (S. 954).
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Another Nail in the Neocon Coffin

The recent opening of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity was a watershed moment in American history. There has never been anything quite like it. Ideologically diverse, the Ron Paul Institute reaches out to all Americans, and indeed to people all over the world, who find the spectrum of foreign-policy opinion in the United States to be unreasonably narrow. Until Ron Paul and his new institute, there was no resolutely anti-interventionist foreign-policy organization to be found.

Neoconservatives have not responded warmly to the announcement of Ron’s new institute. Whatever their particular gripes, we can be absolutely certain of the real reason for their unhappiness: they have never faced systematic, organized opposition before.


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Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Sequester - Trust?

Syria:   So now we have the emergence of supposed proof of Assad's government being in violation of the self assigned "red line" of poison gas use against the rebels. Let's see the proof.  Let's see and hear something beyond Andrea Mitchell beating her drum for war.  This is especially important on this week when the arch deceiver is fawned over at his presidential library.  He still does not admit that his administration chose to believe fabricated information in the matter of Iraq's posession of nuclear weapons and poison gas. Now we have Obama and his Sancho Panza man (Biden) walking the American people toward war in Syria in pursuit of god knows what interest of the US. Don't think for a minute that a "no fly zone" over Syria is anythng but war against the Syrian government.  There would be massive movement of air assets to Turkey, Israel and Jordan.  There would be sufficient air to air combat to destroy the Syrian Air Force.  There would be Search Air Rescue operations in Syria for downed air crew.  And at the end there would be a Saudi satellite jihadi state in Syria.  We should be trusting about this?
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Oh That Smell: CISPA Returns from the Dead

A new and much unimproved CISPA bill heads for the House Floor for a vote this week. The new measure strips what little privacy measures and makes it even more mandatory that the private company you trust with your business be forced by the government to spy on you.
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