October 4, 2012 -- (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:
- Loose seats on American Airline flights ground planes (WAFB TV)
- Ahead of presidential debates, polls show Obama ahead on key issues (Washington Post)
- Mitt Romney would allow waivers to DREAMers (NBC)
- Most swing states are better off today (LA Times)
- Supreme Court rejects appeal on airport scanners (Reuters)
- China farm sues Obama over blocked wind farm deal (BBC)
- Obama blocks Chinese company from owning Oregon wind farm (Fox)
- Montana governor sees big savings with new state health clinic (Reuters)
- Intelligence effort named citizens, not terrorists(UT San Diego)
- U.S. intelligence now says Benghazi attacks deliberate (Reuters)
- Pesticide use ramping up as GMO crop technology backfires: study (Reuters)
- Nigeria probes student killings (BBC)
- The Arab Spring becomes a Western Winter (Jewish World Review)
- California man behind anti-Islam film arrested
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.
Loose seats on American Airline flights ground planes (WAFB TV)
October 2, 2012 -- Cloudy skies cast over American Airlines continued Monday, after loose seats forced two of the airline's flights to make an unexpected landing.
The affected flights were both heading to Florida, with the first incident occurring Saturday and the second on Monday.
On Saturday, the American Airlines flight headed from Boston to Miami was forced to make an emergency landing at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport when an entire row of seats came loose.
Ahead of presidential debates, polls show Obama ahead on key issues (Washington Post)
October 2, 2012 -- President Obama continues to lead Mitt Romney among likely voters, polls show, suggesting that the president has been able to maintain a post-convention bounce as the Republican candidate struggles to regain traction.
The polls come as Romney and Obama are set to face off in their first debate Wednesday in Denver. Voters give Obama an edge going into what is expected to be a key event, with 54 percent believing he will win the debate to 28 percent who think Romney will do better, according to a new poll by Quinnipiac University.
Mitt Romney would allow waivers to DREAMers (NBC)
October 2, 212 -- For the first time, Mitt Romney said in an interview he would not deport those undocumented immigrants who are granted temporary work visas during the Obama administration if he becomes President.
The GOP presidential nominee told the Denver Post on Monday, “the people who have received the special visa that the president has put in place, which is a two-year visa, should expect that the visa would continue to be valid. I’m not going to take something that they’ve purchased.” Romney told the paper, “before those visas have expired we will have the full immigration reform plan that I’ve proposed.”
Most swing states are better off today (LA Times)
October 2, 2012 - Are you better off now than four years ago?
If you live in one of the key swing states, chances are the answer is "yes." And that could prove to be a difference maker in the competitive race for the White House.
Even as the national economy remains stubbornly sluggish, the performance of several hotly contested states has been comparatively bright.
Supreme Court rejects appeal on airport scanners (Reuters)
October 1, 2012 -- The Supreme Court on Monday refused to consider a Michigan blogger's challenge of the use of full-body scanners and thorough pat-downs at airport checkpoints.
Without comment, the court declined to take up Jonathan Corbett's complaint that the Transportation Security Administration's use of the screening techniques violated passengers' protection against illegal searches under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
China farm sues Obama over blocked wind farm deal (BBC)
October 3, 2012 -- A Chinese-owned firm in the US is suing President Barack Obama after he blocked a wind farm deal on national security grounds.
Ralls Corp, a private firm, acquired four wind farm projects near a US naval facility in Oregon earlier this year.
Mr Obama signed the order blocking the deal last week. The lawsuit alleges the US government overstepped its authority.
Obama blocks Chinese company from owning Oregon wind farm (Fox)
September 28, 2012 -- Citing national security risks, President Obama on Friday blocked a Chinese company from owning four wind farm projects in northern Oregon near a Navy base where the U.S. military flies unmanned drones and electronic-warfare planes on training missions.
It was the first time in 22 years that a U.S. president has blocked such a foreign business deal.
Obama's decision was likely to be another irritant in the increasingly tense economic relationship between the U.S. and China. It also comes against an election-year backdrop of intense criticism from Republican presidential challenger Mitt Romney, who accuses Obama of not being tough enough with China.
Montana governor sees big savings with new state health clinic (Reuters)
September 29, 2012 -- Montana, looking to cut down on state healthcare costs, has opened the nation's first government-run clinic for state employees in a program the Rocky Mountain state's governor says could ultimately cover a much broader range of people.
Democratic Governor Brian Schweitzer says the primary care clinic in the state capital Helena will keep the area's 11,000 state workers and their dependents healthier while saving the state $20 million over five years.
Intelligence effort named citizens, not terrorists (UT San Diego)
October 2, 2012 -- A multibillion-dollar information-sharing program created in the aftermath of 9/11 has improperly collected information about innocent Americans and produced little valuable intelligence on terrorism, a Senate report concludes. It portrays an effort that ballooned far beyond anyone's ability to control.
What began as an attempt to put local, state and federal officials in the same room analyzing the same intelligence has instead cost huge amounts of money for data-mining software, flat screen televisions and, in Arizona, two fully equipped Chevrolet Tahoes that are used for commuting, investigators found.
U.S. intelligence now says Benghazi attacks deliberate (Reuters)
September 29, 2012 -- The top U.S. intelligence authority issued an unusual public statement on Friday declaring it now believed the September 11 attack on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Benghazi, Libya, was a "deliberate and organized terrorist attack."
The statement by the office of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper acknowledged that it represented a change in the U.S. intelligence assessment of how and why the attack happened. During the attack on two U.S. government compounds in the eastern Libyan city, four U.S. personnel, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, were killed.
Pesticide use ramping up as GMO crop technology backfires: study (Reuters)
October 1, 2012 -- U.S. farmers are using more hazardous pesticides to fight weeds and insects due largely to heavy adoption of genetically modified crop technologies that are sparking a rise of "superweeds" and hard-to-kill insects, according to a newly released study.
Genetically engineered crops have led to an increase in overall pesticide use, by 404 million pounds from the time they were introduced in 1996 through 2011, according to the report by Charles Benbrook, a research professor at the Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources at Washington State University.
Nigeria probes student killings (BBC)
October 4, 2012 -- Nigerian police have denied that there have been arrests in connection with the killing of at least 26 people at a college hostel in Mubi.
But police spokesman Mohammed Ibrahim told the BBC many officers had been deployed to the north-eastern town in the search for the attackers.
Most victims were students called out by name by the gunmen who went from door-to-door, police said.
The Arab Spring becomes a Western Winter (Jewish World Review)
September 27, 2012 -- Is the Arab Middle East ready for democracy? We know how the past two American presidents have answered this.
The revised stated purpose behind President George W. Bush's invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq was to build a new world order by forcing democracy on populations to whom it was truly alien. The original stated purpose for invading Afghanistan was to destroy the folks who provided shelter to the 9/11 attackers, and the original stated purpose for invading Iraq was to rid it of a government that possessed and might use weapons of mass destruction.
California man behind anti-Islam film arrested
September 27, 2012 -- The California man behind a crudely produced anti-Islamic video posted to YouTube that has inflamed parts of the Middle East was arrested for violating terms of his probation, authorities said Thursday.
Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, was convicted in 2010 for federal check and sentenced to 21 months in prison. Under terms of his probation, he was not allowed to use computers or the Internet for five years without approval from his probation officer.