NY Times: North Korea Says Kim’s Uncle Executed.
Old or young, presumptive heirs tend to have shorter life spans in such situations.
Guardian.UK: Conservative rift laid bare as Boehner rips into Tea Party over budget strategy.
“They pushed us into this fight to defund Obamacare and to shut down the government. [snip] Most of you know that wasn’t exactly the strategy I had in mind. But if you recall, the day before the government reopened one of these groups stood up and said ‘Well, we never really thought it would work’. Are you kidding me?!” Easy to push someone else into doing your dirty work for you.
The Economist: The politics of low pay - Raising the floor.
“Had the federal minimum wage kept up with productivity gains since 1968 it would have reached $21.72 last year …” Hard to believe the $2.75/hour I received in ‘78 would buy more than the $9.60 today. Then I look at the price of a simple cup of coffee, and realize I’ve been hoodwinked.
Slate: Suing Lance Armstrong.
“… DOJ and Landis have invoked a little-known law, the Wartime Suspension of Limitations Act, which stops the clock on the statute of limitations for fraud committed against the government during war. The idea is that because the United States has been at war in Afghanistan since 2001, the clock on Armstrong’s fraud never began ticking.” Yet we have many, many old laws that get pushed ‘beyond original meaning’. Recall the Mining Act of 1872.
Guardian.UK: FDA to crack down on antibiotics in animals reared for meat.
A little behind the eight ball, what?
Guardian.UK: Taxpayers to pay for fracking pollution if companies go bust.
“Minister rejects proposal to amend regulations to make companies sign a bond to pay for potential pollution incidents.” MISTAKE. Don’t know if the UK is the same as here, but larger outfits set up smaller corporations, in order to shield themselves. They take the smaller corporations bankrupt before cleanup is necessary.
Daily Kos: New bipartisan plan to ‘only’ cut food stamp benefits for 1.7 million.
Would that the ghost of Jacob Marley pay a visit. To voluntarily impose more hunger at this time of year, in the midst of such weather … terrible.
Mainichi: Radiation 36,000 times permissible level found in water at Fukushima plant.
When is the world going to stop watching in horror and *do* something about this?
CNN: Shooting down drones - a town votes.
Told you so. Next, shoulder-mounted heat-seeking missiles will be ‘needed’ to maintain 2nd Amendment rights.
Guardian.UK: Canada to claim north pole as its own.
Oh, wonderful. Likely no Arctic ice by 2016, so everyone wants to move in for the ‘easy’ fossil fuels. Might as well light fires on your way to Hades.
Guardian.UK: Royal Mail to phase out post bikes completely in 2014.
“Royal Mail says the removal of bikes reflects the changing nature of mail: thanks in part to our growing love of online shopping; with more packages and fewer letters modern mailbags are bulkier and heavier. Royal Mail will now mostly deliver on foot using trolleys which, it says, are more efficient than bicycles.” My italics. Responding to the realities on the ground. I expect a bike/trailer combo would be too dangerous/unwieldy.
Metafilter: Is the Affordable Care Act a ‘Republican’ Health Plan?
Apparently hyperbole. The individual mandate is shared by the Heritage Foundation concept, little else. Perhaps that explains the Roberts/Supreme Court opinion. The comment thread on this one is less helpful than usual.
PNHP: Reviving the Fight for Single-Payer.
“It’s possible hospital groups can reduce costs [snip] but I look at the consolidations going on and ask myself, ‘Are we going to wind up with hospitals that are too big to fail? Are we going to have hospitals so powerful that we cannot not give them what they want?’ It’s going to be the government against the medical-industrial complex, which is developing very rapidly.” And what a mighty arm the medical-industrial complex is going to wield. Perhaps not as powerful as the military-industrial complex on paper … this one you’ll feel directly in your wallet, in your creaking joints.
The Observer.UK: ‘There are now two Americas. My country is a horror show’.
A worthy read. I believe the only way to cure this is on the micro-level. Almost to the point of having local community ‘debates’ about politics, where everyone can listen, shout, gesticulate, foam at the mouth … and perhaps a more reasonable future can be realized. The question is, how to arrange such a device.
ataxingmatter: Does Lowering Corporate Tax Rates Create Jobs?
Death and Taxes: Google is now funding numerous Tea Party groups.
SF New Mexican: Sam Pick - ‘Don’t tell me how to brush my teeth’.
“Local governing is … a civic commitment. It’s not political. It’s keeping the streets clean. It’s keeping the libraries open. It’s paying for the police and the fire and planners and the parks. That’s what it is.”
The New Yorker/Postscript: Nelson Mandela, 1918-2013.
The Art Newspaper: Time is running out for America’s historic houses.
“A lot of historic buildings have huge deferred maintenance problems.” Isn’t this the problem for America in general?
CNN: Some Reid staffers exempt from Obamacare exchanges.
Really dumb to hand ammunition to the opposition.
WaPo/Milbank: Republicans see one remedy for Obama - impeachment.
“They’ve failed at cutting off funding, they’ve had difficulty suing Obama in court and they lost the 2012 election. That basically leaves them with the option of making loud but ineffectual noises about high crimes and misdemeanors.” If they push the i-word, and they’ll chip away at their ACA gains.
CFEG: The Corporate Tax Rate Debate.
“Lower taxes on corporate profits not linked to job creation.” [PDF] Who is the Center for Effective Government? Formerly OMB Watch.
NY Times: As Hospital Prices Soar, a Stitch Tops $500.
Just read it. Even the best-intentioned ‘affordable’ health care reform doesn’t stand a chance against such market forces.
Youtube: NMELC/NM Copper Rule Video.
Hey, I know a lot o’ these people. Some backstory here, courtesy of the SF New Mexican. Debate the ‘logic’ of allowing groundwater pollution in a state that is still experiencing record-setting drought … if you can. Lined pits should be the law, at the very least. As we’ve seen with industries in the past, it’s too easy to set up a shell corporation and then bankrupt it before the expensive cleanup is required, dumping it on taxpayers. It’s a very common ‘rerun’ we’ve lived through many times before. It would be nice if our politicians would get on our side, for once. At this rate, ‘slippery slope’ is very likely. Donate if you can. NMELC does a fantastic job opposing these kinds of things, but they need $$ to do so.
Appropriate Disclosure: NMELC is a client of mine; however I get no compensation for agreeing with their actions. Only for occasional codesmithing.
The Dish: Did Healthcare.gov Meet Its Deadline?
Doesn’t look like a single person is asking what I’m asking: What did the ‘fix cost? What is the continuing work costing?
I suppose this information is either being obscured, or ‘saved up’ as the next great disaster-news-du-jour.