Monday, Nov 30th

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John Bel Edwards beats David Vitter to become Louisiana's next governor

Edwards wins Louisiana Governor raceState Rep. John Bel Edwards, a relatively unknown Democrat from a rural Amite, will be the state's next governor after toppling Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter, R-La., in one of the biggest political upsets in the state's history.

No state in the Deep South has had a Democratic governor since Kathleen Blanco left office eight years ago. A Democrat hasn't even come within spitting distance of statewide office in Louisiana since 2008, when former U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu won reelection.

That all changed Saturday (Nov. 21) as Edwards came out of nowhere to take down a Republican candidate once seen as unbeatable in a solidly Red State.


Anthropologists vote overwhelmingly to boycott Israeli universities

Boycott Israel vote Colorado anthropologistsMembers of the American Anthropological Association voted in favor of a resolution calling on the group to boycott Israeli academic institutions by a 1,040 to 136 margin at the association’s annual business meeting on Friday evening.

The resolution will be put to a vote by the full AAA membership in the spring. A simple majority vote in favor of the resolution would make the academic boycott association policy. Unlike the Modern Language Association, the AAA does not require a minimum percentage of members to vote on a resolution for it to take effect.


Pope Francis calls Christmas festivities "a charade"

Pope FrancisIn a mass Thursday, Pope Francis called Christmas celebrations this year "a charade" because so many nations wage violence, according to media reports.

Speaking at the Casa Santa Marta in the Vatican, the head of the Catholic Church said God and Jesus were weeping "because we have chosen the way of war, the way of hatred, the way of enmities," Vatican news reported.

"Christmas is approaching. There will be lights, parties, Christmas trees and nativity scenes... it's all a charade. The world continues to go to war," he said, according to AFP.


Trump Supporters Beat Black Lives Matter Protester At Campaign Rally

Trump rallySeveral people attending a rally for Donald Trump in Birmingham, Alabama, physically assaulted an African-American protester on Saturday, witnesses said.

The protester began chanting "Black Lives Matter" and took off his sweatshirt to display a T-shirt printed with the phrase before people at the rally appeared to attack him.

CNN reporter Jeremy Diamond posted a video of the assault on Twitter. In it, a man in a blue gingham shirt can be seen kicking a black man lying on the ground.


Three former Vatican officials and two journalists to face trial over Vatileaks

Journalists charged for Vatican leaksThe Vatican has formally charged five people in connection with leaking and sharing documents concerning the Holy See’s finances.

Three former Vatican officials and two journalists, who wrote books based on the documents, will face trial with the first hearing due to take place on Tuesday.  Those charged include the journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi, the author of Merchants in the Temple, and Emiliano Fittipaldi, who wrote Avarice.


World powers to help Iran redesign reactor as part of nuclear deal

World powers to help Iran redesign reactorSix world powers will help Iran redesign its Arak heavy water reactor so that it cannot produce weapons-grade plutonium, according to a document released by the state news agency IRNA on Saturday.

The document was signed separately on Nov. 13, 17 and 18 by the foreign ministers of Iran and the P5+1 (the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia plus Germany) as well as EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini. It became effective on the date it was signed by all states.


Ford union workers ratify new four-year U.S. labor pact: UAW

Ford union workers ratify new contractFord Motor Co's U.S. union workers narrowly approved a four-year labor contract after a late push for support by United Auto Workers leaders, the UAW said late Friday night.

The UAW said 51.3 percent of production workers and 52.4 percent of skilled trades workers voted in favor of the new contract, after more than a week of voting that concluded at U.S. operations of Ford (F.N) on Friday night.


Brussels raises terror alert, 'serious and imminent' threat

Brussels raises terror alert- Belgium raised its terror alert in Brussels to the highest level Saturday after a "serious and imminent threat," closing the city's metro until Sunday and encouraging people to avoid concerts, shopping centers and other crowded areas.

Prime Minister Charles Michel said the threat of attacks against the Belgian capital are similar to those that happened in Paris last week. Football games have been canceled and armed soldiers and police were deployed outside many hotels.


Post-Paris calls for expanded surveillance fall flat for many

Post Paris Calls for More Surveillance falls flat for moneyIt is perhaps not surprising that an event like last Friday’s Paris attack would raise questions about why government surveillance didn’t spot such a sweeping and apparently coordinated assault in advance. But the speed with which intelligence and law enforcement professionals worked to play down their own possible shortcomings — and in some cases invoke the attacks in a play for broader powers — has caught the attention of security experts, privacy rights advocates and editorial boards.

Editors at The New York Times called this turn of events “a wretched yet predictable ritual,” singling out statements made Monday by CIA Director John Brennan as “a new and disgraceful low.” Brennan went to the press with complaints that recent “policy and legal” moves have made it harder to spot and disrupt potential terror plots.


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