❖ “Afghan judges free three jailed for torture of child bride [12-year-old] Sahar Gul” who was imprisoned, starved and burned.
❖ Almost overnight, “Gas lines have disappeared, power cuts have stopped and the police have returned to the street” in Egypt. “Sudden Improvements in Egypt Suggest a Campaign to Undermine Morsi.” Update: “Morsi loyalists vow to keep up ‘peaceful’ protest.”
❖ “Burma jails 25 Buddhists for mob killings of 36 Muslims in Meikhtila”.
❖ The pilot of the Asiana plane that crashed upon landing at San Francisco International Airport last week was “temporarily blinded” by a bright flash of light “seconds before” the accident.
❖ “The operator of the runaway train that derailed and exploded in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, this weekend recorded an accident rate far higher than the U.S. average over the past 10 years.” Officials continue investigations. The conductor is “under police control.”
❖ From the New England Journal of Medicine: Guantanamo Bay: A Medical Ethics-free Zone?”
❖ Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, 9/11 mastermind and notorious waterboarding survivor, wanted to design a vacuum cleaner while in prison.
❖ As this week’s US-EU trade talks wind down, consumer groups are fearful that “government will be . . . rushing to help corporations cash in on billions of dollars in new business.”
Money Matters USA
❖ Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) asked officials from the Federal Reserve, Treasury, FDIC and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency today at a Senate Banking Committee Hearing why they “had sought settlements with many of Wall Street’s bad actors instead of taking those firms to trial.”
❖ Why relying on Econ 101 “in a complex, global and technologically driven economy in which nation-states compete” economically “is like a physicist today relying on Newton.”
❖ Upon being assured by Big Daddy Bernanke that “stimulus measures [will continue] for the foreseeable future”, stocks soared to “near session highs”.
❖ The US ran a $117bn surplus in June.
❖ The Treasury Department’s Financial Stability Oversight Council has put AIG and General Electric Capital Corporation (GECC) under “consolidated supervision and enhanced prudential standards . . . by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve”.
❖ Charles Koch is all against the minimum wage since it “reduces the mobility of labor.” Uhhhhhh, wtf?
❖ Not just government secrets, but “NSA Spying on Latin American Countries Included Targeting of Trade Secrets” (e.g. Venezuelan oil) as well as “military capabilities.”
❖ “Brazil’s government . . . may contact . . . Edward Snowden as it probes allegations the U.S. monitored phone calls and e-mail in Latin America’s largest economy.”
❖ Colombia is also “seeking answers” about US surveillance programs in the region. Some Brazilian senators are even questioning whether President Dilma Rousseff should go to Washington as scheduled in October.
❖ “Even senators must fear to describe America’s laws to America’s citizens. This is, yes, democracy-suppression, but it . . . keeps you and your adorable kids and even your cute pet dog alive.”
❖ Information sharing between internet giants, the FBI and CIA through PRISM is a “‘team sport’”, says the NSA. Glenzilla and his team report on the depth of the relationship between Microsoft and the FBI and NSA. Update: What Microsoft “Is Letting the Government See”. Update: Emptywheel brings up the interesting timing of acquisitions by Microsoft and Verizon.
❖ Yahoo wants to “publish its legal argument against a  case that gave the government ‘powerful leverage’ in persuading tech companies to co-operate”.
❖ Interview with CIA whistleblower, and now federal prison inmate, John Kiriakou: “Everyone is corrupt, I’ve come to learn” as he offers advice to Edward Snowden and everyone else.
❖ Jeremy Hammond “agrees to ‘non-cooperating plea agreement’ as alternative to endless court battle and decades of prison time”, for hacking Stratfor, “law enforcement and defense contractor websites.” Facing 10 years.
❖ Thud! From NSA Director Keith Alexander’s keynote speech last year to: “Hackers convention ask government to stay away over Snowden”.
❖ “Eliot Spitzer takes lead over Scott Stringer in [New York City] controller race after just three days.”
❖ “The Backlash Begins: Indiana Makes Same-Sex Marriage a Felony Punishable by Prison”, effective July 2014.
❖ Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is defending one of his aides “who spent years as a pro-secessionist activist and radio shock jock.”
Health, Homelessness & Hunger
❖ “House Approves Farm Bill, Without Food Stamp Program“. Watch Rep Louis Gohmert (R-TX) behaving badly.
❖ How to get from the mess we have to a single payer, “‘unified, universal’ health care system” with access for all.
❖ Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University’s suit against mandatory coverage of full-time workers and abortion subsidy under Obamacare was rejected.
The War on Women
❖ Congrats to TX Gov. Rick Perry and his misogynist band of Republicans: “Flea-Market Abortions Thrive as Texas May Close Clinics”.
❖ MD officials have “sharply tightened oversight” of Maryland abortion clinics “through new regulations and procedures” negotiated “by heath officials in consultation with medical groups, clinic managers and anti-abortion leaders”.
Planet Earth News
❖ A National Geographic photographer, George Steinmetz, has been arrested and charged with misdemeanor criminal trespassing for “taking pictures of a feedlot outside Garden City [KS] from a paraglider”.
❖ Six SD Sioux tribes are collaborating on developing “the largest wind farm in the US and one of the world’s largest.”
❖ The Union of Concerned Scientists weighs in on genetically modified crops.
❖ “New Study Claims Fracking Leads to More Earthquakes.”
❖ “Tens of thousands of workers across Brazil walked off their jobs [today] . . . demanding better working conditions and improved public services”.
❖ RIP, Toshi-Aline Ohta Seeger
❖ New law in the Vatican makes “it a crime to abuse children sexually or physically on Vatican grounds” and includes “provisions of international laws against war crimes, racial discrimination and humiliating treatment or punishment”.