Hijacking Cars, Controlling Weather & Obama’s Libyan Failure‏: Feb. 20, 2015


Car Hacking Report Refuels Concerns About Michael Hastings Crash by Mary Papenfuss
A chilling 60 Minutes demonstration of how easy it is for hackers to take over a vehicle’s controls is refueling suspicion about the death of gonzo journalist Michael Hastings.

Marathon Bombing Suspect’s Slim Chance of Moving His Trial from Boston by The WhoWhatWhy Team
Boston Marathon Bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s multiple attempts to move his trial out of the city he’s accused of traumatizing finally got a hearing at the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals. The same court has told him to stay put once, by a vote of 2-1. Thursday’s arguments before the same judges didn’t seem to reveal a change in sentiment. WhoWhatWhy’s Andy Thibault reports.

Boston Bombing: Rare Opportunity to Hear the Tsarnaev Case in Action by The WhoWhatWhy Team
On Feb. 19, the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals heard Dzhohar Tsarnaev’s argument why his trial for the Marathon Bombing should be moved from Boston. Since the media is barred from recording the proceedings in his trial, the oral arguments before the appeals court offer a unique opportunity to actually hear the case in action. Listen in to decide for yourself if the three-judge panel was persuaded by the arguments put forth by both sides.



Obama’s Libya Debacle
Alan J. Kuperman examines the fallout from Obama’s “humanitarian intervention” in Libya, which has transformed it into both a failed state and a new front in the war on ISIS. His key criticism centers on the claim by the White House and their NATO partners that intervention was their only option. Had they not intervened, “Benghazi—a city nearly the size of Charlotte—could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world,” said the president. But Kuperman offers a different narrative indicating that civilians were not being targeted in the conflict, and that intervention was not the only viable option. In fact, it may have resulted in a non-Islamist, Western-leaning regime under Qaddafi’s Western-educated son, Saif al-Islam.

AIPAC: Netanyahu’s Silent Partner
Newsweek tracks the quiet campaign being waged by the pro-Israel lobbying powerhouse in advance of Bibi Netanyahu’s controversial speech before Congress. While the White House is pressuring Democratic members to boycott the speech, AIPAC is urging them to show up. And many are. So far, at least 56 House Democrats and 14 Senators—plus the party’s leadership—have RSVP’d. Of course, all of them are “major recipients of pro-Israel PAC money,” while those who’ve declined do not rely on AIPAC’s campaign cash. It’s the money, honey.

Bill O’Reilly Has His Own Brian Williams Problem
So far, NBC News has enjoyed a monopoly on fake memories of glorious war reporting. But FOX News doesn’t like to be scooped and Bill O’Reilly has come to the rescue. David Corn of Mother Jones pored over O’Reilly’s paper trail and found repeated claims by the Lord of the No Spin Zone that he’d reported from a war zone—the 1982 Falklands War between the U.K. and Argentina. One problem … no American reporter ever made it into the Falklands combat zone. Reporters were a thousand miles from the conflict and, therefore, able to enjoy “some great meals,” said CBS veteran Bob Schieffer. O’Reilly has called the story “total bullsh*t” and Corn “a liar” and a “despicable guttersnipe.” In response, Corn has doubled down on his claims and posted a list of unanswered questions for O’Reilly.


The Bleak Science Bankrolled by the Pentagon
How bad are things gonna get? If the Pentagon’s ​latest call for research is any clue, things are likely to get pretty bad, pretty quickly. The key factor they’ve identified is “resource stress”—how “resource scarcity or imbalance, including food and water insecurity” could lead to uprisings, instability or social upheaval. The Pentagon has long been planning for eventualities stemming from climate change, including population migrations and climate refugees. Now they are widening their net to include fluctuations in energy consumption, economic issues like wealth distribution and political unrest in mega-cities as populations continue to migrate in from rural areas.

The Science Behind Human-Controlled Weather
Ionizing clouds, the mysterious HAARP array in Alaska and manipulation of clouds to conduct bombing campaigns—the stories and speculation have long been relegated to the world of tin foil hat-makers. But cloud seeding has been around for some time and now the technology of weather manipulation is becoming a serious business. A “luxury company” in the U.K. called Oliver’s Travels announced a weather-modification service that guarantees a sunny wedding or balmy, cloud-free barbecue for the tidy sum of $150,000. The company claims to have new technology that improves on well-established, if unreliable, cloud-seeding technology. Although some are skeptical, the science of weather modification is advancing apace and it may be just a matter of time before you can literally buy a sunny day.


Think of Earth, Not Just Your Stomach, Panel Advises
You are what you eat. So, don’t become the living embodiment of climate change, factory farming and soil destruction. That’s the message in a 571-page report produced by the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, which recommended eating more plants and less animals because it’s better for your health and much better for the environment than the typical U.S. diet. Unsurprisingly, this has been controversial in Congress. Big Beef has a big beef with the linking of meat production to climate change. However, industrial-scale meat production is one of the largest contributors of greenhouse gases, dwarfing even automobiles. The good news is that the report also debunked claims that coffee and eggs are bad for you. So, on balance, it was a pretty good day for the breakfast lobby.

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