Monday, July 28, 2014

Paul Does Poverty

Digby's take on Paul Ryan's proposal:
Ryan wants to "help" the poor the same way conservatives have always wanted to help them --- by giving them the "tough love" of making their lives even worse than they already are. If they want "help" they can go to a church and pray to their God and maybe they'll get a sandwich.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Indiana Children
Indiana beats Kentucky and Michigan but gets beaten by Illinois and Ohio in the Annie E. Casey Foundation study of child well-being in the U.S.

From Janet Allon at AlterNet:
The four categories taken into consideration are economic well-being, education, health, and family and community. Mixed together these factors helped researchers glean a ranking of states where children are better and worse off overall. Highest honors went to Massachusetts, Vermont and Iowa. New Mexico, Mississippi, Arizona and Nevada ranked among the lowest again.
. . .
State by state ranking in overall child well-being: 2014
1. Massachusetts
2. Vermont
3. Iowa
4. New Hampshire
5. Minnesota
6. North Dakota
7. Connecticut
8. New Jersey
9. Virginia
10. Nebraska
11. Utah
12. Maryland
13. Wisconsin
14. Maine
15. Kansas
16. Pennsylvania
17. South Dakota
18. Washington
19. Wyoming
20. Illinois
21. Idaho
22. Colorado
23. Delaware
24. Ohio
25. Hawaii
26. Rhode Island
27. Indiana
28. New York
29. Missouri
30. Oregon
31. Montana
32. Michigan
33. Alaska
34. North Carolina
35. Kentucky
36. Tennessee
37. West Virginia
38. Florida
39. Oklahoma
40. California
41. Arkansas
42. Georgia
43. Texas
44. Alabama
45. South Carolina
46. Arizona
47. Louisiana
48. Nevada
49. New Mexico
50. Mississippi

Friday, July 18, 2014

U.S. Corporations — Not

"The S&P 500 stock index supposedly includes the largest public American companies. It turns out that 28 of them are incorporated in places like Ireland and Switzerland to avoid high U.S. tax rates. These companies sure seem American—except when it comes to paying taxes."

Links via Skippy and Campaign for America's Future, which puts it this way:

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Indiana Rules

Indiana received quite a bit of attention on the internet about how we play by the rules...

NWI Times:
INDIANAPOLIS | The seven statewide elected officials can use state property for campaign purposes, so long as they approve a policy statement authorizing themselves to do so.
Charles P. Pierce:
This sounds very much like something dreamed up by the late Hoosier Kurt Vonnegut expressly so that the late Hoosier J. Doghouse Riley would have something on which to comment. Either that, or Happy Hour came early in the Indiana state government.
Julia Vaughn:
If you're not outraged...

Not only did the Commission approve a settlement agreement [...] that results in only a $5000 fine and no criminal investigation, it also turns years of strict prohibitions about using public resources for politicking on its head. 

Sunday, July 06, 2014

Some corporations more equal than others

Hobby Lobby and other "closely held" corporations may claim exemption from laws that apply to corporations of the hoi polloi. But all corporations should have equal right to religious freedom, right?

From 10 Mind-Bending Questions About the "Hobby Lobby" Decision:

[Richard Eskow]
6. What does it mean for the future of “corporate personhood” now that some corporations have more rights than others?

This decision specified that only “closely held corporations” — whatever those are determined to be — may have “religious beliefs,” and therefore can be relieved of certain obligations. That gets us into another knotty area that has yet to be explored. It means that, in this era of “corporate personhood,” there are now two distinct types of corporate persons: one that can exercise religious rights, and that which cannot.

The long-term implications of that have yet to be considered, but here’s one right off the bat: if one corporation is relieved of a costly obligation while its competitors are not, it will quickly find itself at a competitive advantage in the marketplace. That could provide a powerful incentive for corporations to “get religion."

It also means that the Supreme Court is tampering with the one thing it may hold even more sacred than religion: the free market.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Hobby Lobby: No Slut Pills

"The court, I fear, has ventured into a minefield."
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Supreme Court clarifies: Yes, Hobby Lobby is about all slut pills
Joan McCarter, Daily Kos
That argument you keep hearing from the Right, about how Hobby Lobby still offers 16 kinds of birth control that they don't believe is abortion-y, so quit your bitchin' libs? Yeah, well, the Supreme Court  punched a hole in that one.
Post-Hobby Lobby, Religious Orgs Want Exemption From LGBT Hiring Order
Dylan Scott, TPM
The day after the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling, a group of religious leaders sent a letter to President Barack Obama asking that he exempt them from a forthcoming executive order that would prohibit federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT people.