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Just 54,000 jobs created in May as unemployment rises to 9.1%

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Employment rose far less than expected in May to record its weakest reading since September, while the jobless rate rose to 9.1 percent as high energy prices and the effects of Japan’s earthquake bogged down the economy. Nonfarm payrolls increased 54,000 last month, the Labor Department said…

Sanders: Oil speculators behind high gas prices

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) says that the soaring gas prices are the fault of oil speculators on Wall Street. “Ten years ago oil speculators controlled about 30 percent of the oil futures market,” Sanders explained. “Today Wall Street speculators control over 80 percent of that market.” “Their sole function in…

U.S. anti-coal film shows painful reality of mountaintop mining

LOS ANGELES (AFP) – A new film protesting against US coal mining and starring Robert F. Kennedy Jr. aims to boost green alternatives such as wind power and highlight “criminal” destruction by the industry. Five years after “An Inconvenient Truth,” Al Gore’s landmark movie about climate change, makers of “The…

2011 is deadliest U.S. tornado season in 75 years

CHICAGO (AFP) – The deadliest US tornado season in 75 years has ripped babies from their mother’s arms and transformed entire towns into apocalyptic scenes of destruction as the toll hit 523. And it isn’t over yet. While warmer summer weather should hopefully reduce their intensity, the peak tornado season…

U.S. lawmakers cut Homeland Security funding

WASHINGTON (AFP) – The US House of Representatives has voted to shave more than a billion dollars from next year’s Department of Homeland Security budget as part of its deficit reduction plan. The Republican-held House voted 231 to 188 to cut the fiscal 2012 budget by $1.1 billion to $40.6…

Film takes behind-the-scenes look at school shooting

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Mass school shootings fill TV screens with bloody images, newspapers with heart-wrenching accounts from terrified students, and pose searching questions about the motives of the young killers. But the movie “Beautiful Boy”, opening in U.S. theaters on Friday, puts a rare spotlight on the anguished parents of a teen…

Lawrence O’Donnell to Bill O’Reilly: Remember your own sex scandal?

MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell said it was “really uncool” for Fox News host Bill O’Reilly to comment on Rep. Anthony Weiner’s current fiasco, since O’Reilly had his own sex scandal in 2004. “Bill, you really should take a pass on this Twitter story,” he said. “You are in no position…

Bernstein: Fight over debt limit a ‘fake, manufactured controversy’

The investigative journalist who helped uncover the Watergate scandal said Thursday that the fight over raising the federal debt limited was a contrived debate, manufactured “particularly by Republicans.” “They’re going to take it to the cliff and pull back at the last minute, but the consequences of that are very…

Obama barely paying attention to 2012 Republican contenders

WASHINGTON — The White House said Thursday that President Barack Obama was barely paying attention to the Republican race to unseat him in 2012, as a possible foe Mitt Romney threw his hat into the ring. But it did mount a detailed defense of Obama’s economic record, as Romney warned…

Tornadoes have already killed 523 in 2011

CHICAGO — The United States is experiencing its deadliest year for tornadoes since 1936 and the fifth worst year on record, officials said Thursday. With the tornado season far from over, the 2011 toll rose to 523 Thursday. It includes four new victims who died in hospital nearly two weeks…

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