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ThinkFast: May 22, 2006

By ThinkProgress on May 22, 2006 at 9:06 am

"ThinkFast: May 22, 2006"

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Attorney General Alberto Gonzales yesterday suggested that journalists can be prosecuted for publishing classified information. “There are some statutes on the book which, if you read the language carefully, would seem to indicate that that is a possibility,” Gonzales said.

The former top procurement officer in the White House Office of Management and Budget, David Safavian, goes on trial this week to face charges, evidenced by a string of e-mails, that “he concealed [Jack] Abramoff’s interest in government business when seeking permission to accept airfare for a Scotland golf trip from the lobbyist in 2002. Safavian is also accused of obstructing inquiries into the matter.”

“There is no official Category 6 for hurricanes, but scientists say they’re pondering whether there should be as evidence mounts that hurricanes around the world have sharply worsened over the past 30 years “” and all but a handful of hurricane experts now agree this worsening bears the fingerprints of man-made global warming.”

A Virginia businesswoman whom Rep. William Jefferson (D-LA) allegedly tried to scam was an FBI informant. Under investigation for bribery, Jefferson was videotaped accepting $100,000 in $100 bills from the informant whose conversations with the lawmaker were also recorded.

People who hire undocumented workers are “21st century slave masters…just as immoral as the 19th century slave masters we had to fight a civil war to get rid of,” said House immigration point-person Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) yesterday. Conservative bloggers blasted the analogy as “dangerous,” “insane moral equivalence,” and “dumb.”

U.S. warplanes attacked an Afghan village, killing an estimated 50 Taliban fighters. Villagers claim another “50 civilians had been killed and dozens more wounded in the attack.”

1 in 136: The proportion of U.S. residents serving time in prison, according to a Bureau of Justice Statistics report. The report “found that 62 percent of people in jails have not been convicted, meaning many of them are awaiting trial.”

A new report from University of California, Berkeley professor Raymond Seed found that many of the “major breaches in the New Orleans levee system during Hurricane Katrina were caused by flaws in design, construction and maintenance – and parts of the system could still be dangerous even after the current round of repairs by the Army Corps of Engineers.”

The Bush administration is “shunning pressure from allies for direct dialogue with Iran [and] shifting toward a more confrontational stance and intensifying efforts to undercut the country’s ruling clerics.” Under pressure from the United States, “four of the biggest European banks have started curbing their activities in Iran.”

And finally: White House Press Secretary Tony Snow “told reporters that he spent [a flight last week] in the staff cabin watching Gen. Michael V. Hayden’s confirmation hearings to be the new C.I.A. director – on CNN.” “There is no official channel at the White House,” the former Fox news anchor claimed. Someone should tell Cheney.

What did we miss? Let us know in the comments section.

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