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Monday, March 30, 2015

The Daily Drift

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Today is - Grass Is Always Browner On The Other Side Of The Fence Day
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Editor's Note

Editor's Note:
We have quite a backlog of links and editorial illustrations in the files so we decided to post a few today.

Obama Gashes Republicans For Trying to Give 4,000 Millionaires A $4 Million Tax Cut

obama protect middle class weekly address
President Obama exposed the Republican agenda by calling out the morally repugnant GOP budget plan to give 4,000 of the wealthiest Americans a $4 million tax cut while passing the bill on to every other citizen.
In his weekly address, the President said:
Five years ago, after the worst financial crisis in decades, we passed historic Wall Street reform to end the era of bailouts and too big to fail.

As part that reform, we created an independent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau with one mission: to protect American consumers from some of the worst practices of the financial industry.

They’ve already put $5 billion back in the pockets of more than 15 million families. And this week, they took an important first step towards cracking down on some of the most abusive practices involving payday loans.

Millions of Americans take out these loans every year. In Alabama, where I visited this week, there are four times as many payday lending stores as there are McDonald’s. But while payday loans might seem like easy money, folks often end up trapped in a cycle of debt. If you take out a $500 loan, it’s easy to wind up paying more than $1,000 in interest and fees.
The step the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced this week is designed to change that. The idea is pretty common sense: if you’re a payday lender preparing to give a loan, you should make sure that the borrower can afford to pay it back first.
As Americans, we believe there’s nothing wrong with making a profit. But there is something wrong with making that profit by trapping hard-working men and women in a vicious cycle of debt.
Protecting working Americans’ paychecks shouldn’t be a partisan issue. But the budget Republicans unveiled last week would make it harder, not easier, to crack down on financial fraud and abuse. And this week, when Republicans rolled out their next economic idea, it had nothing to do with the middle class. It was a new, more-than-$250 billion tax cut for the top one-tenth of the top one percent of Americans. That would mean handing out an average tax cut of $4 million a year to just 4,000 Americans per year, and leaving the rest of the country to pay for it.
I don’t think our top economic priority should be helping a tiny number of Americans who are already doing extraordinarily well, and asking everybody else to foot the bill. I think our top priority should be helping everybody who works hard get ahead. This country does best when everyone gets their fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules.

That’s what middle-class economics is all about, and as long as I’m your President, that’s what I’ll keep on fighting to do.
The reason the budget process is always a bad time for Republicans is because it is the one moment where the true GOP agenda gets exposed. Republicans want to cut taxes for the super wealthy while passing the bill on to the non-rich. The Republican budget isn’t just bad economics. It’s morally wrong. Since 2011, President Obama and his fellow Democrats have repeatedly stung Republicans on their agenda to shift all wealth upwards to the top.
It could be argued that President Obama won reelection in 2012 based on his middle-class economics campaign. What Republicans are trying to do with their budget is a form ideological illness that refuses to see reality. The nation tried the tax cuts for the wealthy grow the economy approach under George W. Bush, and the result was a historic failure.
The role of government should never be to make the rich richer and life more difficult for everyone else. The budgets paint a clear picture of the contrast in priorities between the two parties. Democrats have got your back while Republicans are trying to pick your pocket.

Orwellian Pigs ...

Or as they are more commonly known - Republicans

Big Banks Are So Scared Of Elizabeth Warren, They’ll Resort To Petty Scheming To Stop Her

Featured image by Ben Wikler. Licensed under CC BY-2.0 via Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bnwklr/16037332480/The big banks that helped send the world’s economy into the tank in 2008 are pondering a new strategy to combat Elizabeth Warren: Stop donations...

2016 GOP Contenders Declare Themselves the Anti-Family Party

GOPSenFrom the "Public Enemies" Department

The Senate blasted through votes on amendments to the Republican budget Thursday, and against all odds, two major amendments proposed by Democrats passed. Sen. Patty Murray’s measure would…

This is what happens when Republicans work together ...

The People Get Fucked Over ... of course the people get fucked over when republicans don't work together either

TPP leak: states give companies the right to repeal nations' laws

A new Wikileaks-published leak from the secretive Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) treaty reveals a January 2015 draft "Investment Chapter" of the agreement, where the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanisms are set out. They allow companies to repeal nations' environmental, health and labor laws. The ISDS work is led by the USA. Under its terms, a treaty-established tribunal would have the power to overrule national courts, and to award millions from tax-coffers to companies who believe that laws undermine their future profits.
The US Congress is preparing to hand Obama's trade rep fast-track authority to enter into TPP, though the terms of the deal can't be disclosed for at least four years (Congress only just got its first look at the TPP, and the USTR threatened to jail Members if they disclosed its contents to voters).

Ted Cruz Is Trying To Gut The Clean Air Act And Repeal All Climate Regulation

The bill seeks to prevent the federal government from regulating greenhouse gas emissions through any of its executive agencies.

Ted Cruz is Trying and Failing to Weasel Out of His Obamacare Duplicity

Ted Cruz (R-TX) is now apparently undecided how he'll buy insurance, backing away from his Obamacare announcement earlier in the week.

Taliban or Republican

Here's a hint for you ....They're all Republican

Voter Suppression

Vote via ShutterstockVoter registration deadlines suppressed up to 4 million votes in 2012
New analysis shows that voter registration would increase turnout by millions.

Israeli Spying

Religio-wingnts are all the same ...

Rand Paul is an Idiot

Michigan Republican Says Schools Should be a Cult Ministries

When Pink Floyd sang that "we don't need no education," I don't think cult ministries are what they had in mind.…
Indiana has gotten a lot of attention lately for their religious tyranny law, but let’s not forget that teabagger gulag-in-the-making, Michigan. Republican anti-education efforts don’t get much worse than the teabaggers’s own Michigan State Rep. Gary Glenn’s (R-Larkin Township) House Bill 4394.
As Michigan-based Eclectablog explains,
If Glenn’s bill – House Bill 4394 – becomes law, schools can hire anyone they want. The criteria currently used would be tossed out the window. The bill literally strikes out all of the criteria. In addition, it removes the words grades “9 through 12″ meaning that schools could hire anyone they wish, with or without a teaching certificate, for any grade level. No training as an educator required.
Can you imagine being a parent in a state where suddenly your children’s competent, trained teachers are fired and replaced with any Tom, Dick, or Harry, whose sole qualification is that he or she is willing to work for a fraction of what a teacher would be paid?
Can you imagine the effect on the state’s educational standards? Can you imagine the effect on your children when they go to school and are told that the earth is flat and only 6000 years old?
As the father of a fourth-grader, I can imagine the effect on my blood pressure.
Bad as this seems, it could get worse, believe it or not. And as these things go, it does: Glenn’s fellow Representative, Todd Courser, an attorney in real life, who represents the 82nd District, posted his own brilliant idea on Facebook. Courser later deleted the post, but Electablog was able to capture it (below):
As you can see, Courser opposes “Soviet-style” central planning, and like most Republicans, he seems to think Common Core standards are federally imposed standards (they are not). Courser is an attorney, mind you. He should know better. But then a lot of Republicans, Ted Cruz included, should know better.
So instead of the public schools our Founding Fathers envisioned, education should return to being a cult ministries. Excuse me, but I think that’s what the Founding Fathers wanted to move away from.
When Pink Floyd sang that “we don’t need no education,” I don’t think cult ministries are what they had in mind.
Look, I know Ted Cruz has said, “This country remains a country, I believe, grounded in values, grounded in faith, but far too many Christians have ceded the public arena to people who aren’t believers,” but come on.
And while we’re talking about the lunatics representative the Republican Party in state after state, I can’t leave out Arizona State Sen. Sylvia Allen, R-Snowflake. It know it’s a whole other state, but trust me, it’s relevant: Allen actually told the state’s appropriations committee on Tuesday that corrupt souls are at the root of our nation’s problems (as opposed to whack-a-doodle’s like her) and that therefore,
We are slowly eroding religion at every opportunity that we have. We should probably be debating a bill requiring every American to attend a church of their choice on Sunday to see if we can get back to having a moral rebirth.
Yes, because that jibes so well with the First Amendment!
In case you don’t believe it, here’s the video:
I guess while we’re forced to sit in cult it would be a good time to be forced (at gunpoint) to listen to David Barton. Then Mike Huckabee could get his wish too. I guess this would be a sort of jobs bill, because then the GOP could give all those open-carry wackos jobs pointing guns at us, because that’s the only thing that could get many of us into a cult.
On Wednesday, Allen told the Arizona Capitol Times that while it was a “flippant” comment, she would not apologize for the comment. What the Times carefully did not mention is that, as Right Wing Watch reveals,
Allen is the very same lawmaker who defended uranium mining in her state by insisting that the earth is a mere 6,000-years-old…She also proposed that the state enable the creation of a volunteer border militia and pushed for a state constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage, warning that gay marriage would harm children and destroy Social Security.
Yes, gay people – not the Republican Party – are going to destroy social security.
That seems bad enough, but she also “Allen even offered a bill to protect her son-in-law who was under investigation for harassing female inmates while working in a country prison.” The young Republican was apparently forcing female inmates to give him oral sex.
I’m sorry, but as a metaphor of the Republican War on Women, I can’t think of a more apt metaphor.
If only the mainstream media would tell people the truth about their elected representatives. You have to wonder how many of them would get elected again, if they only knew.
It is interesting how Republicans think if only we “put the bible back in school” and force people to go to cult, our “free” society can be saved. But what’s free about coercion?
Of course, our young people won’t know what “coercion” means if Michigan’s Courser and Glenn get their way. After all, it doesn’t matter who teaches the scriptures. Anyone can do that, and the bible’s the only textbook kids really need.
It’s much easier for the elites to lead them around by the nose that way. And really, it does put them a step above Europe’s serfs in that those poor unfortunates had to have the bible read to them.
See how progressive the Republican Party is! If you want to know just how progressive, check out with Cindy Gamrat and Todd Courser have been up to in Michigan with their “contract for liberty,” which would dismantle the Constitution just the way the Founding Fathers intended, and their “life at conception” legislation to do away with that pesky freedom women have to control their own reproductive functions, and finally, their plans to turn Michigan into a theocracy, yay!
Fortunately, Eclectablog explains that they “have heard from multiple sources that the Republicans in the state legislature are doing everything in their power to make sure these two, along with [Cindy] Gamrat, are not seen as representing the Republicans as a whole and that they are neutralized and unable to have an impact that would harm their brand.”
Let’s hope this is true..

Wingnuts Refuse To Believe Germanwings Pilot Wasn’t Muslim Terrorist With Laughable Results

Conservatives Refuse To Believe Germanwings Pilot Wasn’t Muslim Terrorist With Laughable Results
Wingnuts are struggling to prove Germanwings pilot suspected of intentionally flying plane into ground was “secret” muslim and the results are really, really sad.

Back from the dead ...

Fox News Outraged That A Lawmaker Compares Police Brutality To ISIL

Fox News Outraged That A Lawmaker Compares Police Brutality To ISISFrom the "Someone spoke the truth and Fox went ape-shit. OK, so now tell us something we didn't already know" Department:
On Fox News, it's okay to compare unionized teachers to ISIL, but don't label racist police a bigger threat to safety than the terror group half a world away.

Mega Dump

secrets of the conservative war on truth
you get paid less because corporate shareholders make more
the states are quietly beginning to expand abortion rights
Dallas-Fort Worth is on track to get full net metering for solar power
taking the train is better for your health than deiving to work
consent and sympathy 
Iraqi forces = more war crimes
why unions are the seeds of democracy
6 myths about welfare recipients debunked
the entrepreneur profiting off the anti-vaxxer movement
Donald Trump steals famous Ronald Reagan line; has apparently never heard of google
Koch brothers proxy openly calls for less democracy
politics is now about worship of money
4 million demand Obama protect bees from toxic pesticides
the water California that is now pumping is prehistoric
10 disappearing middle class jobs
American exceptionalism and white history
from prison to your dinner table
how to die of dumb
white christians are no longer the majority in 19 states
trickle down economics: the rich get all the money
counties with kkk activity in the 60's consistantly vote republican thereafter
farming insurance fraud runs rampant in this country
drone pilots quitting the program
different justice system for the rich and powerful
it wasn't the prison boom that led to the drop in crime 
refrigerator caught sending spam
10 things you can do now to help the oceans
how new york activists banned fracking
racism is not backed by science
papa john's franchisee ordered to pay workers over $2 million for wage theft
how  the nra hacked the second amendment
whites have 12 times the wealth as blacks
when religious liberty justified racism instead of homophobia
right-to-work's racist roots
NYT Sunday magazine:  for the 1%
study: rich get richer with fewer labor unions
why not worker ownership?
study: men are more narcissistic than women
we waste enough food to feed the world's hungry
why libertarianism is a childish sham
blue states have more people in colleges; red states have more people in prison
dear gun owners: we still live in a democracy
austerity kills: economic distress blamed for ise in middle-aged suicides
you can actually only see about 30 shades of gray
police find marijuana in container labeled 'not weed'
monopoly's inventor: the progressive who didn't pass 'go'
is the junk food era drawing to a close?
leading medical groups call for measures to reduce gun deaths
air marshals' flights rearranged for sexual trysts
less than 6% of domestic terrorism is perpetrated by muslims
china overtook the u.s. as the world's largest economy
the republicans that did exactly what Hillary did
the rocky mountains are the safest spot to hide from a zombie outbreak
office workers will soon have less space than supermax prisoners
the u.s. is 45th in electoral integrity
why companies reward investors instead of investing in the real economy
study finds strong genetic component to obesity
nypd officers call retraining program a waste of time
the conservative attempt to rewrite u.s. history
most pediatricians will turn away patients who refuse ro vaccinate their children
the alaskan village that needs to be relocated due to climate change
gun deaths are expected to surpass automobile deaths this year
marijuana may be safer than previously thought
poll finds huge support for tax on the rich
the researcher who found undiscovered fairy tales even darker than the Grimms
a map of which disease will probably kill you depending on where you live
secret stash of moon artifacts found in Neil Armstrong's closet
college students prefer dead tree books
this could be relevant to the upcoming California governor's race: the 2004 San Francisco mayoral candidates were asked the questions from the Voight-Kampff test
why don't we tax the 1% as much as we tax the poor?
everything you know about addiction is wrong
Ferguson's government was run like a racket
death of unions = decline of marriage
white people aren't considered terrorists unless they liberate animals
the town where everyone got free money
basic personality changes linked to unemployment
you heard about Pluto?  that's messed up, right?
each American produced $140,000 in goods, but median wage is $28,000
and half a million people with college degrees are making minimum wage
female lawmakers are more productive than their male counterparts
America's poorest 11 cities
Ringling brothers is ending its use of elephants in the circus
life after a minimum wage increase
our nation's love of guns is killing our children
conservatives sent $50 million to scam pacs
Ferguson is not the only city to get a bad report
climate change progress is possible
autism rates aren't actually increasing
woman arrested for beating someone to make them convert to jesus
the crime rate is going down, but the number of people in jail is going up
hospitals fail to protect nursing staff from becoming patients
study: low IQ correlates with bigotry
study: mass incarceration is costly and doesn't work
feel trapped in your job?  that's because you are
Canadians told to stop Spocking the 5 dollar bill
mega-droughts could last 30 years
Iceland convicts bad bankers
studies suggests raising children without religion may be good for them
japan has more car chargers than gas stations
is Alaska losing its snow?
bBack and Latino scientists are routinely mistaken for janitors
women received $1.5 million after brain injury makes her become a dominatrix
the u.s. faces greater threat from lone wolf terrorists than jihadists
lower the drinking age to 19 
Brianna Uu is risking her life standing up to gamergate
science deniers are not skeptics
most common type of American terrorist is a white man with a grudge and a gun
u.s. faces worst drought in 1,000 years
s.c. senator says women are a lesser cut of meat
when in Tokyo, be sure to stop by the owl cafe
stock buybacks are killing the American economy
vaccines: facts vs. myth
girls score better on math tests if teachers don't know they're girls
research shows dinosaurs be trippin'!