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Big budgets, little oversight in war zones
Washington Post, by Scott Higham*

Original Article

Posted By:Pluperfect, 5/5/2014 5:34:16 AM

In 1998, an ordained minister with the United Church of Christ and his wife from the war-wrecked region of Bosnia-Herzegovina began a humble international humanitarian effort out of a modest office in downtown Washington. After the United States launched the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the mom-and-pop nonprofit corporation boldly ramped up, undertaking some of the federal government’s biggest and most ambitious projects in the battle zones, everything from building roads to funding wheat production. In doing so, International Relief and Development increased its annual revenue from $1.2 million to $706 million, most of it from one corner of the

Comments:
*[w/Jessica Schulberg & Steven Rich]

More than a million a year for the head of this group?

      


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Most Recent Articles posted by "Pluperfect"



Big budgets, little oversight in war zones
Washington Post, by Scott Higham*    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/5/2014 5:34:16 AM     Post Reply
In 1998, an ordained minister with the United Church of Christ and his wife from the war-wrecked region of Bosnia-Herzegovina began a humble international humanitarian effort out of a modest office in downtown Washington. After the United States launched the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the mom-and-pop nonprofit corporation boldly ramped up, undertaking some of the federal government’s biggest and most ambitious projects in the battle zones, everything from building roads to funding wheat production. In doing so, International Relief and Development increased its annual revenue from $1.2 million to $706 million, most of it from one corner of the

   

 

R-G1
  


 
Putin’s Stupidity Leading the
Russian Economy to Disaster
PJ Media, by Kim Zigfeld    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/4/2014 4:32:12 AM     Post Reply
Here’s a stock tip for those who’d like to get in on the ground floor of the bountiful opportunities being provided by Russian dictator Vladimir Putin to American investors: Short International Paper, and go long on SpaceX. You can profit mightily by selling International Paper stock you don’t yet own because the company has been aggressively cooperating with the Putin dictatorship, and it now finds itself on the outside of the civilized world looking in. As international sanctions resulting from Putin’s aggression in Ukraine begin to bite and multinationals in Russia run for the exits, companies like International Paper are seeing

Does ‘Sperm Donor’ Mean ‘Dad’?
New York Times, by Brooks Barnes    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/4/2014 4:28:21 AM     Post Reply
LOS ANGELES — He is a movie star who shot to fame on a motorcycle in “The Lost Boys.” She is a California massage therapist from a prominent East Coast family. Four years ago, with his sperm, her eggs and the wonder of in vitro fertilization, they produced a child. From there, the tale gets very, very messy. For the last two years, Jason Patric and Danielle Schreiber have been waging what has become one of the highest-profile custody fights in the country — one that scrambles a gender stereotype, raises the question of who should be considered a legal parent and

South Korea ferry was overloaded on 246 trips
in months before sinking, documents show
Associated Press, by Jung-yoon Choi*    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/4/2014 4:24:04 AM     Post Reply
INCHEON, South Korea – The doomed ferry Sewol exceeded its cargo limit on 246 trips — nearly every voyage it made in which it reported cargo — in the 13 months before it sank, according to documents that reveal the regulatory failures that allowed passengers by the hundreds to set off on an unsafe vessel. And it may have been more overloaded than ever on its final journey. One private, industry-connected entity recorded the weights. Another set the weight limit. Neither appears to have had any idea what the other was doing. And they are but two parts of a maritime

Benghazi Made Simple
Tribune Media Services, by Jonah Goldberg    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 2:45:56 PM     Post Reply
Deer Reader, On Wednesday, Jay Carney explained — as if he was talking to a room full of children — that the Benghazi e-mail the White House refused to release until the White House was forced to release its Benghazi e-mails wasn’t in fact about Benghazi, even though the e-mail talks about Benghazi. This is Monty Pythonesque of “Dead Parrot” proportions. That’s not a Benghazi e-mail, it’s just an e-mail about Benghazi, in a folder marked “Benghazi” e-mails, idiot. As I said on Fox yesterday, Jay Carney is a very strange creature for Washington. He’s an extremely confident liar — we’ve got

Damn Right I Taped
Kerry’s ‘Apartheid’ Talk
Daily Beast, by Josh Rogin    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 2:42:51 PM     Post Reply
And if I had to do it all over again, I’d do it in the exact same way. Ten years ago, when I was a rookie reporter for the Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun, I looked up to Joseph Nye as a sacred figure, the preeminent American expert on Japan. So it hurt a little when Nye wrote to Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday to accuse me of “sneaking in” to a meeting of the Trilateral Commission last week in Washington, where John Kerry made explosive remarks warning that Israeli could become “an apartheid state.” But I don’t blame

   

 

R-TA-Wide
  


 
Teenage burglar in high-profile New Orleans
self-defense case burglarizes again
Legal Insurrection, by Andrew Branca    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 2:37:26 PM     Post Reply
It was just days ago that I provided an update of the Merritt Landry self-defense case down in New Orleans: Merritt Landry home-defense shooting prosecution stalls. In that post I noted the remarkable degree to which the Prosecutor was struggling to obtain an indictment from the Grand Jury on the charges of attempted second degree murder brought against Landry. Twice the Grand Jury had taken up the case, and twice they had declined to take any definitive action, neither returning a “no-bill” (which would have dismissed the second degree murder charges against Landry) or an indictment (which would have progressed the

One Completely Logical Hillary Running Mate
Daily Beast, by Jeff Greenfield    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 4:17:45 AM     Post Reply
There’s one candidate who would make a whole lot of sense—and he’s got history and plenty of experience in his favor. Do you share with me a deep sense that we haven’t spent nearly enough time covering the 2016 presidential race? Oh, sure, Nexis tells is that there have been 520 stories written between January and March, compared with 176 stories at this time four years ago. OK, the National Journal looked at TV coverage, and found that there were 69 mentions between January and March on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, NPR, and the PBS New Hour, compared with 31 in 2008 and

BP cries foul over $500M
in compensation awards
CBS News, by Staff    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 4:14:44 AM     Post Reply
BP claims that $500 million of the money it set aside to compensate victims of its 2010 oil spill has been awarded to businesses that don´t deserve it. Among the unwarranted claims, says BP, were an escort service in Florida, a surgical practice 300 miles from the spill and a wireless phone company that burned to the ground before the spill occurred. Scott Pelley reports the latest twist in this story that began with an oil rig explosion that killed 11 and polluted the Gulf of Mexico with over 200 million gallons of oil. Pelley´s report will be broadcast on

VA chief Eric Shinseki not
talking about delays
CNN, by Scott Bronstein*    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 4:12:04 AM     Post Reply
Washington -- He´s the leader of the Department of Veterans Affairs, which runs the VA hospitals where dozens of U.S. veterans died waiting for simple medical screenings. Yet in the six months that CNN has been reporting on these delays, Eric Shinseki has been silent. And he hasn´t spoken out on the matter to any other news organization, either. Early Friday evening -- after this story appeared on CNN.com -- the VA gave a response, via spokesman Drew Brookie. He explained that the VA´s inspector general´s office (referred to as OIG), which is probing the matter, "advised VA against providing

5 Cautionary Signs Tucked
Into April´s Jobs Report
Associated Press, by Josh Boak    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/3/2014 4:08:14 AM     Post Reply
WASHINGTON -- Employers added a sizable 288,000 jobs in April. Hiring in February and March was better than first thought. The unemployment rate plunged to 6.3 percent from 6.7 percent. At first glance, Friday´s U.S. jobs report suggested that the agonizingly slow 5-year-old economic recovery had burst into a full sprint. Yet several cautionary signs emerged from the report, starting with that spectacular plunge in the unemployment rate. Here´s why: The government uses two surveys for the jobs report. The job gain comes from a survey of businesses, the unemployment rate from a survey of households. Sometimes, the two conflict. The survey of businesses showed 288,000

   

 



 
Life on a Navy Sub Relies on Rules: Some
Dead Serious, Others Completely Ridiculous
Wall Street Journal, by Julian E. Barnes    Original Article
Posted By: Pluperfect- 5/2/2014 5:28:01 AM     Post Reply
ABOARD THE USS NEW MEXICO—There are subcultures. And there are cultures aboard a sub. Silently cruising the ocean depths while safely operating a 130-man tin can powered by a mini nuclear-power plant doesn´t leave much room for error. That is why sub culture is built around rules, some dead serious, others completely ridiculous and some that are both. There are rules to run the systems that provide the submarine´s oxygen, water and power. And there are rules that keep the crew, whose bunks allow just 14 inches of headroom, somewhat sane. One of the most important rules has every new junior officer teamed



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