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Human101948's Journal
Human101948's Journal
April 26, 2016

Federal Judge Upholds North Carolina Voter Rules (George W. Bush appointee of course)

RALEIGH, N.C. — A federal judge on Monday upheld sweeping Republicanbacked
changes to election rules, including a voter identification provision,
that civil rights groups say unfairly targeted African­Americans and other
minorities. The ruling could have serious political repercussions in a state that
is closely contested in presidential elections.

The opinion, by Judge Thomas D. Schroeder of Federal District Court in
Winston­Salem, upheld the repeal of a provision that allowed people to
register and vote on the same day. It also upheld a seven­day reduction in the
early ­voting period; the end of preregistration, which allowed some people to
sign up before their 18th birthdays; and the repeal of a provision that allowed
for the counting of ballots cast outside voters’ home precinct.

...“North Carolina has provided legitimate state interests for its voter ID
requirement and electoral system,” Judge Schroeder said near the end of his
485­page opinion. The judge, an appointee of President George W. Bush,
found that North Carolina’s system was not beyond “the mainstream of other

I wonder how many cases of voter fraud they cited? One or two at most, if any.

April 25, 2016

Goldman Sachs gets caught short, turns to Main Street to fund their money making operation...

Investment-banking powerhouse Goldman Sachs Inc. is doing something that would have been unthinkable before the financial crisis.

The banker to the biggest companies around the world is offering online savings accounts to ordinary Americans with as little as $1 to deposit, as it moves to diversify its funding base and satisfy regulators.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is scheduled to review new rules on the amount of liquidity lenders are obliged to have on hand at a meeting Tuesday. The net stable funding ratio will require all banks to reduce their reliance on short-term funding that can be volatile, in favor of more stable long-term funding that is more expensive. The new rules are part of a broader effort to prevent a repeat of the 2008 crisis.

In a sign that it is serious about attracting depositors, Goldman is offering a 1.05% annual interest rate on deposits, which is far higher than rates currently available at other big U.S. banks.


April 24, 2016

Why corporate political cash matters: The Real Welfare Cheats by Nicholas Kristof

It’s because the issues seem arcane that corporate lobbyists get away with
murder. The Oxfam report says that each $1 the biggest companies spent on
lobbying was associated with $130 in tax breaks and more than $4,000 in
federal loans, loan guarantees and bailouts.

And why would a humanitarian nonprofit like Oxfam spend its time
poring over offshore accounts and tax dodges? “The global economic system is
becoming increasingly rigged” in ways that exacerbate inequality, laments Ray
Offenheiser, president of Oxfam America.

One academic study found that tax dodging by major corporations costs
the U.S. Treasury up to $111 billion a year. By my math, less than one ­fifth of
that annually would be more than enough to pay the additional costs of fullday
prekindergarten for all 4­year­olds in America ($15 billion), prevent lead
poisoning in tens of thousands of children ($2 billion), provide books and
parent coaching for at ­risk kids across the country ($1 billion) and end family
homelessness ($2 billion).


April 23, 2016

Get ready for war: NY Times "How Hillary Clinton Became a Hawk"

As Hillary Clinton makes another run for president, it can be tempting to
view her hard­edged rhetoric about the world less as deeply felt core principle
than as calculated political maneuver. But Clinton’s foreign­policy instincts are
bred in the bone — grounded in cold realism about human nature and what
one aide calls “a textbook view of American exceptionalism.” It set her apart
from her rival­turned­boss, Barack Obama, who avoided military
entanglements and tried to reconcile Americans to a world in which the United
States was no longer the undisputed hegemon. And it will likely set her apart
from the Republican candidate she meets in the general election. For all their
bluster about bombing the Islamic State into oblivion, neither Donald J.
Trump nor Senator Ted Cruz of Texas have demonstrated anywhere near the
appetite for military engagement abroad that Clinton has.

April 21, 2016

Trump U Redux: Trump Family Auctioning Off Summer Internship They Claim Is Worth $100K

Want to be hired by Donald Trump's business empire? It could cost you.

For the next week, you can bid on a summer internship with the Trump Organization, which carries an estimated value of $100,000, according to a listing on CharityBuzz.

The internship will give a well-heeled recipient the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to answer phones, run errands, and do administrative work for the Trump Organization starting in June.

The intern also gets 15-minute sit-downs with Trump and each of his oldest children, Ivanka, Eric, and Donald Jr., to "pick their brains about how to be successful in the real estate & business world."


Step 1 for Success: Get born into wealthy family and inherit half a billion...

April 21, 2016

Bringing us Together: Hillary Clinton Aide Tells Journalist: F**k Bernie Sanders

Reflecting on Clinton's double-digit victory, the anonymous senior aide told Politico: "We kicked ass tonight," adding, “I hope this convinces Bernie to tone it down. If not, fuck him.”

Late last month, the Clinton campaign delayed signing on to debate Sanders in Brooklyn, New York, saying they would consider adding the event if the Vermont senator changed his "tone."

The dig was a stark departure from the Democratic race's generally diplomatic rules of engagement. After months of amicably agreeing to disagree, the claws came out while campaigning in New York, Clinton's adopted home state and Sanders' birthplace.


April 20, 2016

NY Times: Sanders and Kasich Should Ignore Any Pressure to Quit

Mr. Sanders’s presence has made this an immeasurably more substantive race, in which both candidates’ policies have been better vetted, and as a result, better delineated. That’s the best preparation for the general election.

Yes, Mrs. Clinton’s lead is nearly insurmountable, but it should be voters who erase the “nearly.”

Mr. Sanders has voiced the concerns and energized millions of young people, many of them voting for the first time. His candidacy has forced the party to go deeper on addressing issues like wealth inequality, college tuition costs and the toll of globalization — important points of distinction with Republicans.

What’s more, Mr. Sanders’s commitment to small individual contributions has put the lie to Democrats’ excuses that they, too, must play the big money game to win. This is a message too seldom heard in the party
that first championed campaign finance reform. That it’s back is long overdue, good for Democrats and good for campaigning.

Mrs. Clinton “is clearly irritated by the fact that she has to deal with this guy,” the Democratic strategist David Axelrod said in an interview. “But he’s pushed her on a lot of issues in a positive way, and I think that his young supporters will be bitterly
resentful if anyone tries to shove him out of the race.”


April 20, 2016

Disappointing, Berners? Sure. NOT Devastating.

Disappointing day for Bernie and supporters, but far from devastating, as the Spinners-That-Be will be mightily spinning it.

The reason? This:

While in 2008, Obama won only one county of 64 in Clinton's "home state" of New York; this time, Sanders took FIFTY counties to Clinton's twelve.

(Think about that for a coupla seconds... and how such a change reflects something of that eyebrow-raising,negative national favorability number.) And, since delegates are awarded by congressional district, Clinton looks to only net 30 delegates with her win (final results not yet in)... what looked like a substantial win didn't amount to a substantial net gain.


Is Hillary really a strong candidate?

April 18, 2016

Watch out! Repubs working on Obamacare replacement...any day now!

GOP group promises ObamaCare replacement plan — soon

A group of senior House Republicans is promising to deliver proof that the party is making headway in its six-year struggle to replace ObamaCare.

"Give us a little time, another month or so," House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) told reporters this week. "I think we’ll be pretty close to a Republican alternative."

Upton is one member of a four-person task force that is supposed to come up with a replacement plan for the healthcare law, at the behest of Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.). For now, the group is still in "listening mode," Upton said. When asked who they are listening to, Upton said: "You name it – the world."
Coming up with a plan to replace ObamaCare has been an aim for the Republican Party for so long that it’s become a laugh line even in conservative circles. Despite voting more than 50 times in the House to repeal the law, the GOP has not once voted on legislation to take its place.


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