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Texas mom shoots kids, kills self after being denied food stamps

A Texas woman’s trip to the welfare office ended in tragedy Tuesday when she shot her two children and then turned the gun on herself after being denied food stamps. Authorities in Laredo said that 38-year-old Rachelle Grimmer killed herself during a seven-hour standoff with police. Her children, 10 year-old…

Fire dept. watches home burn because family didn’t pay fee

Firefighters in one Tenn. county watched this week as a family’s home burned to the ground, refusing to take action to save the structure because the residents had not paid their yearly $75 fee. Homeowner Vicky Bell told a reporter with NBC affiliate station Local 6 WPSD that she immediately…

Bank’s leaked email admits ‘Occupy’ movement ‘could impact our industry’

A national effort to reclaim vacant properties has one of the country’s largest lenders scrambling. The financial website Zero Hedge has allegedly obtained a memo from Bank of America’s field services operation warning, “We need to make sure we are all prepared.” Vocal New York organizer Sean Barry told Raw…

FBI policy group votes to expand definition of ‘rape’

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Criminal Justice Advisory Policy Board voted on Tuesday to expand the definition of “rape,” after activists bombarded them with thousands of emails insisting that the original, 1929 definition is too narrow. The change is not official, however: agency director Robert Mueller still has to…

U.S. marks 70th anniversary of Pearl Harbor

The United States on Wednesday marks the 70th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor with memorial services, lowered flags and silence at the moment the history-changing assault began. Ceremonies were scheduled from Pearl Harbor in Hawaii to Washington DC on the US East Coast to remember the 2,400 Americans who died on December 7, 1941…

Los Angeles votes to end corporate personhood

The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously to support a resolution calling for a constitutional amendment that would assert that corporations are not entitled to constitutional rights, and that money is not the same as free speech. The resolution was backed by Move to Amend, a national coalition working to…

Why no financial crisis prosecutions? Ex-Justice official says it’s just too hard

It’s an issue we and others have noted again and again: Years after the financial crisis, there have still been no prosecutions of top executives at the major players in the financial crisis. Why’s that? Well, according to a now-departed Justice Department official who used to be in charge of investigating…

PETA upset White House ignored bestiality question

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is not pleased that White House press secretary Jay Carney laughed off a question about bestiality in the military. In a letter to Carney, PETA said it was upset that he “flippantly addressed the recently approved repeal of the military ban on…

Alabama farmers look to replace migrants with prisoners

MIAMI — Alabama farmers have proposed using prisoners to work their fields to replace migrants who fled the state after it passed the country’s harshest anti-immigration law, officials said Tuesday. The Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industry officials met Tuesday in Mobile with farmers to discuss their proposal, a spokeswoman…

U.S. mulls easier access to emergency contraception

WASHINGTON — US regulators are considering whether to grant a drug company’s request to make emergency contraception available over the counter to people of all ages instead of by prescription. Currently, the morning-after pill — which can reduce the chance of pregnancy if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex…

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