Monday, February 29, 2016

Conservation and Biological Diversity in Organic Production

"The National Organic Program (NOP) – part of the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) – protects the integrity of certified organic products by developing clear standards, overseeing the certification of organic farms and businesses, and ensuring compliance with the USDA organic regulations.
Organic is a labeling term that means the food or other agricultural product has been produced through approved methods that integrate cultural, biological, and mechanical practices. These practices foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance, and conserve biodiversity. Certified organic crop and livestock producers manage their farms according to the USDA organic regulations. This means using materials that are approved for use in organic production, and maintaining or improving the natural resources of their operation, including soil and water quality..."
Organic production

Getting Enough Sleep?

"35% of U.S. adults do not get enough sleep. Not getting enough sleep continues to be a problem in the U.S. 
Are you one of those adults? Learn more about your risk and how many adults don't get enough sleep in the U.S.

How much sleep do we need and what can happen when we're not getting enough?

Sleep is an important part of good health.1 Sleeping less than 7 hours per night is linked to increased risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and poor mental health, as well as early death.2-4 Not getting the recommended amount of sleep can affect your ability to make good decisions and increases the chances of motor vehicle crashes..."

Traveling Overseas? Consider Getting Insurance

"If you are planning an international trip, there are 3 types of insurance you should consider: trip cancellation insurance, travel health insurance, and medical evacuation insurance. These will cover different situations and may give you financial peace of mind, as well as allowing for safe and healthy travel.

Trip Cancellation Insurance

Trip cancellation insurance covers your financial investment in your trip, such as flights, cruises, or train tickets. Carefully examine the policy to make sure that it covers what you need it to cover, including cancellation if you or a close family member gets sick. Depending on the policy, trip cancellation insurance might not cover any medical care you need overseas, so you may need a separate travel health insurance policy..."
Travel insurance

Sunday, February 28, 2016

2013 Annual Report of A TV-Related Deaths and Injuries

"This report presents the 2013 annual update of information collected by U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) staff on deaths and injuries related to the use of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs). The update includes information on ATV-related deaths, based on data available to CPSC staff as of December 31, 2013, as well as information on ATV-related injuries treated in hospital emergency departments from January 1, 2013 through December 31, 2013.

The report begins with a brief background section. This is followed by a summary of ATV-related fatality counts (reports) derived from CPSC staff data and a discussion of reported ATV-related deaths involving children younger than 12 and 16 years of age. Then, based on the counts of ATV-related fatalities reported to CPSC staff, annual estimates of ATV-related deaths are presented. Next, the report provides estimates of ATV-related, hospital emergency department-treated injuries. The report concludes with a short discussion of the observed patterns of ATV-related deaths and injuries over time..."

A Sports Curator at the Smithsonian Unpacks the Myths and Reality in the Film "Race

"James “J.C.” Cleveland Owens, one of the fastest men on earth, was born into an impoverished family of sharecroppers in Oakville, Alabama, in 1913. The family moved to Ohio when Owens was 9, in search of a better life. He acquired his nickname Jesse after feeling too shy to correct a teacher who pronounced his name “Jey-See.”
Money was incredibly tight in the Owens household. As a child, his mother had to remove a large lump on his chest with a kitchen knife because they couldn’t afford to take him for surgery. Owens survived the makeshift procedure, despite losing a lot of blood, and went on to become a legend.
The recently released film Race focuses on Owens’ college years leading up to the 1936 Olympics held in Berlin under Nazi Germany, where he won four gold medals..."
Jesse Owens

Homeland Infrastructure Foundation-Level Data (HIFLD)

"This site provides National foundation-level geospatial data within the open public domain that can be useful to support community preparedness, resiliencey, research, and more. The data is available for download as CSV, KML, Shapefile, and accessible via web servies to support application development and data visualization.,,"

Infrastructure and Big- Data

Money for Something: Music Licensing in the 21st Century

"Taylor Swift made headlines around the world when she pulled her entire catalog of recorded music from the digital steaming service Spotify in November 2014. She reportedly felt that Spotify devalued her music by making her entire albums available on its free service. As a songwriter, a composer, and a singer, Ms. Swift is entitled to get paid for (1) reproductions and public performances of the notes and lyrics she creates (the musical works), as well as (2) reproductions, distributions, and certain digital performances of the recorded sound of her voice combined with the instruments (the sound recordings). The amount Ms. Swift gets paid for her musical works and sound recordings depends on market forces, contracts among a variety of private-sector entities, and federal laws governing copyright and competition policy..."
Music licensing

Women are Leading the Rise of Black-Owned Businesses

"The number of black or African American-owned firms grew 34.5 percent between 2007 and 2012 — from 1.9 million to 2.6 million in 2012. In contrast, the total number of firms in the United States increased  2.0 percent during the same period, from 27.1 million in 2007 to 27.6 million in 2012. However, the proportion of black or African American-owned businesses account for 9.4 percent of all firms, which is still below the 13.1 percent black or African American share of the U.S. adult population (according to the Census Bureau’s July 1, 2012, population estimates).
These business figures are from the Survey of Business Owners, which provides a broad socio-economic picture of business owners across the nation and is part of the Census Bureau’s economic census conducted every five years.  Drawing upon a sample of 1.75 million employer and nonemployer businesses, the Survey of Business Owners collects data on firms’ receipts, payroll and employment as well as the gender, ethnicity, race and veteran status of the firm owners. It is the most authoritative source of data on businesses by the demographic characteristics of the owner..."
Black-Owned Businesses

Friday, February 26, 2016

Eleanor Roosevelt Resignation from DAR

"On February 26, 1939, in a dramatic act of conscience, Eleanor Roosevelt resigned from the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) when it barred the world-renowned singer Marian Anderson, an African American, from performing at its Constitution Hall in Washington, DC...."
Eleanor Roosevelt

The Rosa Parks Collection is Now Online

"The Rosa Parks Collection at the Library of Congress has been digitized and is now online.
The collection, which contains approximately 7,500 manuscripts and 2,500 photographs, is on loan to the Library for 10 years from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation. The Library received the materials in late 2014, formally opened them to researchers in the Library’s reading rooms in February 2015 and now has digitized them for optimal access by the public.
"It’s a great privilege to open the Rosa Parks Collection and help people worldwide discover more about her active life and her deep commitment to civil rights and to children," said David Mao, Acting Librarian of Congress. "From the thoughtful reflections she left us in her own handwriting to her "Featherlite Pancakes" recipe and smiling portraits, you’ll find much to explore in this collection about Mrs. Parks’ life beyond the bus."
Parks became an iconic figure in history on Dec. 1, 1955, when she refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a segregated bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Her arrest sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott, a seminal event in the Civil Rights Movement. Parks died at age 92 in 2005..."
Rosa Parks

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Congressional Bill Status in Bulk XML

"At the direction of the House Appropriations Committee, and in support of the Legislative Branch Bulk Data Task Force, GPO, the Library of Congress (LOC), the Clerk of the House, and the Secretary of Senate are making bill statuses in XML format available through the bulk data repository at for the 113th and 114th Congresses.
The House and the Senate each produce detailed, chamber-specific status steps as chambers and committees record daily legislative business. The Library of Congress aggregates those status steps, adds metadata, then provides access through"
Congressional Bills

President Obama Announces His Intent to Nominate Carla D. Hayden as Librarian of Congress

"Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate Carla D. Hayden as Librarian of Congress.
 President Obama said, “Michelle and I have known Dr. Carla Hayden for a long time, since her days working at the Chicago Public Library, and I am proud to nominate her to lead our nation’s oldest federal institution as our 14th Librarian of Congress. Dr. Hayden has devoted her career to modernizing libraries so that everyone can participate in today's digital culture. She has the proven experience, dedication, and deep knowledge of our nation’s libraries to serve our country well and that’s why I look forward to working with her in the months ahead. If confirmed, Dr. Hayden would be the first woman and the first African American to hold the position – both of which are long overdue.”
Carla D. Hayden, Nominee for Librarian of Congress, Library of Congress:
 Dr. Carla D. Hayden is CEO of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland, a position she has held since 1993.  Dr. Hayden was nominated by President Obama to be a member of the National Museum and Library Services Board in January 2010 and was confirmed by the Senate in June 2010.  Prior to joining the Pratt Library, Dr. Hayden was Deputy Commissioner and Chief Librarian of the Chicago Public Library from 1991 to 1993..."

Librarian of Congress

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

What the All Writs Act of 1789 Has to Do With the iPhone

"The ongoing battle between the United States government and Silicon Valley tech companies over encryption exploded last week when a federal judge ordered Apple to unlock an iPhone. In doing so, the government invoked a 227-year-old law signed by President George Washington, himself. But what does one of the United States’ earliest laws have to do with the latest in communications technology?
To make a long story short, Apple has so far refused to comply with government agents, who have demanded that the company helps break the encryption on the iPhone that belonged to one of the San Bernardino shooters responsible for killing 14 people in California, last year. Since the attacks, the F.B.I. has received a warrant for the information on the iPhone, but they have been stymied by its encryption, which is why they’re looking for Apple’s help. In an attempt to make Apple create a backdoor into the phone’s operating system, the U.S. government has invoked the All Writs Act of 1789.
The legal issues around the All Writs Act are complex, but at its core, it gives federal judges the power to issue orders to compel people to do things within the limits of the law, Eric Limer writes for Popular Mechanics. In its original form, the All Writs Act was part of the Judiciary Act of 1789, which established the federal justice system from the Supreme Court down to the lower federal courts. The All Writs Act allows federal judges the power to issue court orders, which makes sense considering that "writs" is an old-fashioned term for "formal order." At one point in history, writs were fairly common, but over the centuries, courts have tended to use them only in extraordinary circumstances where there are no other laws that apply to the situation at hand, such as this case, where the government wants access to information in a password-protected cell phone. The vagueness built into the All Writs Act has leant itself to new readings throughout American history, Laura Sydell reports for NPR..."
iPhone & All Writs Act

Getting Enough Sleep?

"35% of U.S. adults do not get enough sleep. Not getting enough sleep continues to be a problem in the U.S. 
Are you one of those adults? Learn more about your risk and how many adults don't get enough sleep in the U.S.

How much sleep do we need and what can happen when we're not getting enough?

Sleep is an important part of good health.1 Sleeping less than 7 hours per night is linked to increased risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and poor mental health, as well as early death.2-4 Not getting the recommended amount of sleep can affect your ability to make good decisions and increases the chances of motor vehicle crashes.."

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

National Invasive Species Awareness Week: Snakes, Starlings, and Swine, Oh my!

"This month USDA highlights some of the important partners that work with us to care for our land, air, water, and wildlife.  The National Invasive Species Council is one such group.
When you hear the word “invasive,” most people automatically think of bugs and weeds. Unfortunately, invasives (or non-native pests) can also include wildlife, such as birds, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals.
It is estimated that 50,000 animal and plant species in the United States are non-native, meaning they are not naturally found here. Approximately 5,000 are considered invasive because of the ecological and economic damages they cause. That’s why the National Invasive Species Council and APHIS Wildlife Services (WS) are raising awareness about the negative impacts caused by invasive species in America as a part of National Invasive Species Awareness Week..."
Invasive species

Mosquito Deterrents: The Good, the Bad and the Potentially Effective

"There’s not much that's good about mosquitoes. The itch-inducing little suckers kill about 725,000 people a year worldwide through the diseases they transmit: malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever, encephalitis, chikungunya, and West Nile virus, just to name a few. Now, with news that the mosquito-borne Zika virus may be causing an epidemic of severe birth defectsacross South America, Central America and the Caribbean, there’s been an increased focus on mosquito control. Here, we’re highlighting some of the most interesting anti-mosquito innovations of the past few years, some more effective than others..." 

Marines Flag Raising on Iwo Jima, 02/23/1945

"On February 23, 1945, during the battle for Iwo Jima, U.S. Marines raised a flag atop Mount Suribachi. It was taken down, and a second flag was raised. Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal captured this second flag-raising. Now part of U.S. Navy records, it is one of the most famous war photographs in U.S. history..." 
Iwo Jima

Drinking Water Mapping Application to Protect Source Waters

"What is the Drinking Water Mapping Application to Protect Source Waters (DWMAPS)?
The Drinking Water Mapping Application to Protect Source Waters or DWMAPS is EPA’s online mapping tool to help you find information about drinking water in your community. This user-friendly tool provides answers to questions like:
  • Who supplies my drinking water?
  • Is the source of my drinking water polluted?
  • Are there possible sources of pollution near my drinking water that might be affecting my community's water supply?
  • How can I get involved in protecting sources of drinking water in my community?..."
    Drinking water

2016 Economic Report of the President

View the latest edition of the Economic Report of the President  together with the 
Annual Report of the Council of Economic Advisers as submitted to Congress, February 2016.
President's Economic Report

Laminate Flooring Test Results - Health Issues and Solutions

"CDC/ATSDR was notified February 13 of an error in its report released February 10, 2016, about the possible health effects from exposure to formaldehyde emitted from select laminate flooring samples. Health risks of people who have the laminate flooring are being revised to reflect greater exposure to formaldehyde, which could cause eye, nose, and throat irritation for anyone. The estimated risk of cancer associated with exposure to the flooring increased.
The CDC/ATSDR indoor air model used an incorrect value for ceiling height.  As a result, the health risks were calculated using airborne concentration estimates about 3 times lower than they should have been.  The original report found:
  • Exposure to the low end of the modeled levels of formaldehyde in indoor air could cause increased frequency of asthma symptoms and other respiratory issues for people with asthma and COPD;
  • Exposure to the higher-end levels could result in eye, nose, and throat irritation for anyone; and
  • Low risk of cancer (2-9 cases per 100,000 people).
After correcting the measurement in the model, CDC/ATSDR is revising the possible health effects. The final results are not yet available, but are estimated to be closer to these:
  • Exposure to the range of modeled levels of formaldehyde in indoor air could cause increased symptoms and other respiratory issues for people with asthma and COPD;
  • Exposure to the lowest modeled levels of formaldehyde could result in eye, nose, and throat irritation for anyone; and
  • The estimated risk of cancer is 6-30 cases per 100,000 people. Because of the very conservative (health protective) nature of the models used in this analysis, ‎the calculated risk is likely lower than our modeled estimate..."
    Laminated floors

Friday, February 19, 2016

EPA Announces National Enforcement Initiatives for Coming Years

"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced its seven National Enforcement Initiatives for fiscal years 2017-2019, which focus on national pollution challenges where EPA’s enforcement efforts will protect public health. For the next cycle starting on October 1, 2016, EPA will retain four of its current National Enforcement Initiatives, add two new initiatives, and expand one to include a new area of focus. The fiscal year 2017-2019 National Enforcement Initiatives are:

1. Keeping Industrial Pollutants Out of the Nation’s Waters (new initiative)
2. Reducing Risks of Accidental Releases at Industrial and Chemical Facilities (new initiative)
3. Cutting Hazardous Air Pollutants (expanded initiative)
4. Reducing Air Pollution from the Largest Sources
5. Ensuring Energy Extraction Activities Comply with Environmental Laws
6. Keeping Raw Sewage and Contaminated Stormwater Out of the Nation’s Waters 
7. Preventing Animal Waste from Contaminating Surface and Ground Water.."


DHS to Streamline Regulations Related to Flights from Cuba

"At the direction of the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will initiate a rule change regarding flights to and from Cuba. This action follows U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Transportation announcements that the United States will re-establish scheduled flights between the United States and Cuba.

As part of this process, CBP will seek to repeal the current regulation, 19 CFR, 122, Subpart O. These Cuba-related regulations are no longer needed because they are largely redundant with current regulations that apply to all air travel to the U.S. Once repealed, flights to and from Cuba would be subject to the same legal requirements under Title 19 as other international flights. Currently, CBP requires flights to and from Cuba to use CBP-authorized airports..."

Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications

"Anyone with a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) can prepare a tax return for a client. However, tax return preparers have differing levels of skills, education and expertise. This searchable directory is intended to help you with your choice by providing a listing of preparers in your area who currently hold professional credentials recognized by the IRS or who hold an Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion.
Understanding Tax Return Preparer Credentials and Qualifications can help you learn more about the different types of tax professionals.
Choosing a Tax Professional provides more guidance for making this important choice..."

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Lincoln Memorial Is Getting a Makeover

"Since its dedication in 1922, the Lincoln Memorial has been one of Washington, D.C.’s most beloved tributes. The monument is noteworthy for its sheer size—the statue of Lincoln alone clocks in at 175 tons. But over the years, it’s gained associations with the Civil Rights movement, too. In 1939, Marian Anderson, a soprano who was denied access to Constitution Hall because of her race, gave a historic concert on the memorial’s steps. And the memorial was the backdrop for Martin Luther King, Jr.’s electric “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963. But in recent years, Honest Abe’s temple has gotten dirty and somewhat damaged. That’s about to change: Yesterday, the National Park Service announced that the memorial will get a multimillion-dollar renovation.
In a release, the National Park Foundation announced that philanthropist David Rubenstein has donated $18.5 million to repair and restore the memorial. The long to-do list includes plans to repair damaged brick and marble, build 15,000-square feet of additional display space, add an elevator and, of course, give the memorial a good scrub. The renovation will also open the memorial’s foundational pillars to the public, giving visitors glimpses of graffiti left by the workers who built the monument..."
Lincoln Memorial

Consumer Demand Bolstering Organic Production and Markets in the U.S.

"Organic food sales in the United States have shown double-digit growth during most years since the 1990s, and this trend shows no sign of slowing.  The Nutrition Business Journal reports annual growth in the nation’s organic food sales has generally exceeded 10 percent since the downturn in the American economy in 2008.  U.S. organic food sales approached an estimated $37 billion in 2015, up 12 percent from the previous year.  The country’s top food retailers, including Costco, Kroger, Walmart and Target, have expanded their organic food offerings in recent years, and have announced initiatives which could further boost demand.

Although organic sales have been increasing from a small base, the Organic Trade Association estimates that U.S. organic food purchases accounted for nearly 5 percent of the total food market in 2014.  In addition, U.S. sales of organic personal care products, linens, and other nonfood items were in excess of an estimated $3 billion in 2014.  Certified organic farmland has also expanded, while not as fast as organic sales..."
Organic foods

CDC's Zika Virus site

Find up-to-date information on the Zika Virus by visiting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention new web site.
Zika Virus

CIA Releases Declassified Documents to National Archives

"Today, CIA released about 750,000 pages of declassified intelligence papers, records, research files and other content which are now accessible through CIA’s Records Search Tool (CREST) at the National Archives in College Park, MD. This release will include nearly 100,000 pages of analytic intelligence publication files, and about 20,000 pages of research and development files from CIA’s Directorate of Science and Technology, among others.

The newly available documents are being released in partnership with the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) and are available by accessing CREST at the National Archives. This release continues CIA’s efforts to systematically review and release documents under Executive Order 13526. With this release, the CIA collection of records on the CREST system increases to nearly 13 million declassified pages..."
CIA declassified documents

Monday, February 15, 2016

Supreme Court Appointment Process: Roles of the President, Judiciary Committee, and Senate

"The appointment of a Supreme Court Justice is an event of major significance in American politics. Each appointment is of consequence because of the enormous judicial power the Supreme Court exercises as the highest appellate court in the federal judiciary. Appointments are usually infrequent, as a vacancy on the nine-member Court may occur only once or twice, or never at all, during a particular President’s years in office. Under the Constitution, Justices on the Supreme Court receive lifetime appointments. Such job security in the government has been conferred solely on judges and, by constitutional design, helps insure the Court’s independence from the President and Congress.

The procedure for appointing a Justice is provided for by the Constitution in only a few words. The “Appointments Clause” (Article II, Section 2, clause 2) states that the President “shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint ... Judges of the supreme Court.” The process of appointing Justices has undergone changes over two centuries, but its most basic feature—the sharing of power between the President and Senate—has remained unchanged: To receive lifetime appointment to the Court, a candidate must first be nominated by the President and then confirmed by the Senate. Although not mentioned in the Constitution, an important role is played midway in the process (after the President selects, but before the Senate considers) by the Senate Judiciary Committee..."
Supreme Court

Sunday, February 14, 2016

The Islamic State and U.S. Policy

"The Islamic State (IS, aka the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL/ISIS, or the Arabic acronym Da’esh) is a transnational Sunni Islamist insurgent and terrorist group that controls large areas of Iraq and Syria, has adherents in several other countries, and disrupts regional and international security with violence and terrorism. A series of terrorist attacks attributed to the group outside of Iraq and Syria has demonstrated IS supporters’ ability to threaten societies in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and the United States, including in countries with sophisticated and capable intelligence and security forces.

The U.S.-led campaign to degrade and ultimately destroy the Islamic State organization in Iraq and Syria (IS, aka ISIL/ISIS or the Arabic acronym Da’esh) appears to be entering a new phase in early 2016, as Administration officials implement planned changes in military strategy and tactics, pursue new diplomatic and coalition building initiatives, and consider alternative proposals. The conflicts in Iraq and Syria remain focal points in this regard, but a series of terrorist attacks inspired or directed by the Islamic State have claimed hundreds of lives on four continents since November 2015, creating a more global sense of urgency about combatting the group and reversing its spread..."
Islamic State

Social Security Primer

"The Social Security program was established in the 1930s and has been modified by Congress many times over the years. Today, Social Security provides monthly cash benefits to retired or disabled workers and their family members, and to the family members of deceased workers. Among the beneficiary population, approximately 82% are retired or disabled workers, and 18% are the family members of retired, disabled, or deceased workers. In November 2015, nearly 60 million beneficiaries received a total of $74 billion in benefit payments for the month, with an average monthly benefit of $1,227.

Workers become eligible for Social Security benefits for themselves and their family members by working in Social Security-covered employment. An estimated 94% of workers in paid employment or self-employment are covered, and their earnings are subject to the Social Security payroll tax. In 2016, employers and employees each pay 6.2% of covered earnings, up to the annual limit on taxable earnings ($118,500 in 2016)..."
Social Security

EPA Regulations: Too Much, Too Little, or On Track?

"Since Barack Obama was sworn in as President in 2009, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed and promulgated numerous regulations to implement the pollution control statutes enacted by Congress. Critics have reacted strongly. Many, both within Congress and outside of it, have accused the agency of reaching beyond the authority given it by Congress and ignoring or underestimating the costs and economic impacts of proposed and promulgated rules. The House conducted vigorous oversight of the agency in the 112th and 113th Congresses, and approved several bills that would overturn specific regulations or limit the agency’s authority. Particular attention has been paid to the Clean Air Act, but there has also been congressional scrutiny on other environmental statutes and regulations implemented by EPA. With Republican majorities in both the House and Senate, the 114th Congress has accelerated oversight of the Administration’s initiatives and renewed efforts to rein in EPA..."

Supreme Court Opinions written by Justice Scalia

Here is a convenient listing of the Supreme Court opinions of Justice Antonin Scalia.[via Cornell University's Legal Information Institute]
Justice Antonin Scalia

Friday, February 12, 2016


"The Bureau of International Labor Affairs' new mobile application, “Sweat & Toil: Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking Around the World,” is now available to download for devices using the Android operation system from Google Play.
Released for iOS last September, the app streamlines the wealth of research in ILAB's “Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor,” “List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor” and “List of Products Produced by Forced or Indentured Child Labor” reports and makes it available anytime or anywhere.
Sweat & Toil is a comprehensive resource that documents child labor and forced labor worldwide. Developed by Presidential Innovation Fellows at the U.S. Labor Department, the app contains information on goods produced by child labor or forced labor and the latest findings on the worst forms of child labor. It digitally reduces thousands of pages to fit into the palm of your hand. The app makes ILAB's research portable, searchable, and available offline..."
Child labor

Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community

"Chairman McCain, Vice Chairman Reed, Members of the Committee, thank you for the invitation to offer the United States Intelligence Community’s 2016 assessment of threats to US national security. My statement reflects the collective insights of the Intelligence Community’s extraordinary men and women, whom I am privileged and honored to lead. We in the Intelligence Community are committed every day to provide the nuanced, multidisciplinary intelligence that policymakers, warfighters, and domestic law enforcement personnel need to protect American lives and America’s interests anywhere in the world..."
Threat assessment

Demographic and Economic Profiles of Nevada’s Electorate

"In advance of the Nevada caucuses on Feb. 20 and Feb. 23, the U.S. Census Bureau presents a variety of statistics that give an overall profile of the state’s voting-age population and industries. Statistics include:
Nevada electorate

Demographic and Economic Profiles of South Carolina’s Electorate

"In advance of the South Carolina primaries on Feb. 20 and Feb. 27, the U.S. Census Bureau presents a variety of statistics that give an overall profile of the state’s voting-age population and industries. Statistics include:
South Carolina electorate

Laminate Flooring Test Results - Health Issues and Solutions

"The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) tested formaldehyde levels released from specific types of laminate flooring made in China between 2012 and 2014 and sold at Lumber Liquidators® stores in the United States. CPSC tested the same type of flooring that had some of the highest formaldehyde levels in tests conducted during a recent consumer investigation.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) evaluated possible health effects from formaldehyde released into indoor air from this laminate flooring.
Irritation and breathing problems can happen in anyone, but children, older adults, and people with asthma or other breathing problems are more likely to have these symptoms.
If your home already has elevated levels of formaldehyde from other products (like cabinets, furniture, or curtains) and you have this type of flooring in your home, the formaldehyde levels could affect everyone in the home.
Breathing in very high levels of formaldehyde over many years has been linked to rare nose and throat cancers in workers. Formaldehyde exposure from the tested laminate flooring would be much lower and would last for less time than the exposures linked to cancer. We estimated the risk of cancer from exposure to this flooring and it’s low..."
Laminated flooring

Iran’s Nuclear Program: Tehran’s Compliance with International Obligations

"Several U.N. Security Council resolutions required Iran to cooperate fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA’s) investigation of its nuclear activities, suspend its uranium enrichment program, suspend its construction of a heavy-water reactor and related projects, and ratify the Additional Protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement. However, Tehran has implemented various restrictions on, and provided the IAEA with additional information about, its uranium enrichment program and heavy-water reactor program pursuant to the July 2015 Joint Cooperative Plan of Action (JCPOA), which Tehran concluded with China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. On the JCPOA’s Implementation Day, which took place on January 16, 2016, all of the previous resolutions’ requirements were terminated. The nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) and UN Security Council Resolution 2231, which the Council adopted on July 20, 2015, comprise the current legal framework governing Iran’s nuclear program. Iran has complied with the JCPOA and resolution..."
Iran's nuclear program

Saudi Arabia: Background and U.S. Relations

"The kingdom of Saudi Arabia, ruled by the Al Saud family since its founding in 1932, wields significant global influence through its administration of the birthplace of the Islamic faith and by virtue of its large oil reserves. Close U.S.-Saudi official relations have survived a series of challenges since the 1940s. In recent years, shared concerns over Sunni Islamist extremist terrorism and Iranian government policies have provided a renewed logic for continued strategic cooperation. Political upheaval and conflict in the Middle East and North Africa appear to have strained bilateral ties, but the full effect has yet to be determined.

Amid regional turmoil, Obama Administration officials have referred to the Saudi government as an important regional partner, and U.S. arms sales and related security cooperation programs have continued with congressional oversight. Since October 2010, Congress has been notified of proposed sales to Saudi Arabia of fighter aircraft, helicopters, naval vessels, missile defense systems, missiles, bombs, armored vehicles, and related equipment and services, with a potential value of more than $100 billion. Since March 2015, the U.S.-trained Saudi military has used U.S.-origin weaponry, U.S. logistical assistance, and shared intelligence to carry out strikes in Yemen. Some Members of Congress have expressed skepticism about Saudi leaders’ commitment to combating extremism and the extent to which they share U.S. policy priorities. Nevertheless, U.S.-Saudi counterterrorism ties reportedly remain close, and Saudi forces have participated in some coalition strikes on Islamic State targets in Syria since 2014
Saudi Arabia